|Total speakers:||225 000|
|Language family:|| Torgyrian|
|Writing system:||High Elven alphabet|
The High Elven language is the official language of the Kingdom of Froturn. The language has a long history ensuring great cultural and literary heritage. Even though it has been eclipsed by Etrandish as the language of global trade, and is no longer considered an all-beating language of classical literacy like Classical High Elven was, but the language still serves important purposes even outside Froturn - being considered the language of love, therefore used to compose romantic poetry and songs even by non-Elves.
The language also happens to be the de facto spoken lingua franca of the Church of Titanius spoken by clergymen from different linguistic backgrounds among each other, alongside the written lingua franca Classical High Elven.
Evolution from Middle High Elven Edit
- Voiceless consonants became aspirated
- Voiced consonants became slack-voiced word-initially, lenited to fricatives between vowels and in the syllable coda.
- /ju/ became /ɥ/ before other vowels
- The short /i u/ got laxed to /ɪ ʊ/
- Word-final /e/ became silent
- /e o/ merged with /ɛ ɔ/
- /ɛː ɔː/ merged with /eː oː/
- Short /a/ backed to /ɑ/
- Long /aː/ fronted to /æː/
|Approximant||/l/||/j/, /ʎ/, /ɥ/||/w/||/h/|
- The labio-palatal approximant /ɥ/ is a very unstable phoneme and is typically stretched into [jy] or [wy] even by the most educated speakers. Very often insert a bilabial fricative [β] between /y/ and the following vowel, for example /ɥɑhoː/ being pronounced as [jyβɒhoː~wyβɒhoː]
- /r/ is realized as a flap [ɾ] intervocally and in the syllable coda, trilled [r] otherwise
- The voiceless alveolar affricate /t͡s/ appears only in Classicisms, and has mostly deaffricated to /s/ in common speech.
- The voiceless /p t t͡ʃ k kʷ/ are aspirated [pʰ tʰ t͡ʃʰ kʰ kʷʰ], unless they are following /s/ or in syllable coda
- Coda-position /p t k/ are unreleased [p̚ t̚ k̚]
- Word-initial /s ʃ/ may be aspirated [sʰ ʃʰ] by some speakers, but this is far from universal or standard
- The voiced /b d d͡z d͡ʒ g gʷ/ have varied pronunciation, depending on the environment:
- Slack-voiced [b̥ d̥ d̥͡z d̥͡ʒ g̊ g̊ʷ] word-initially
- Fully-voiced [b d d͡z d͡ʒ g gʷ] after nasals
- Fricatives [β ð z ʒ ɣ~ʝ ɣʷ] between vowels and in syllable coda
- Coda-position /g/ is [ɣ] after back vowels, [ʝ] - or even [j] - after front vowels
- Intervocalic /v/ may be lenited to [ʋ] or even [w] by many speakers
- Many speakers dissimilate the /t͡ʃ d͡ʒ ʃ/, realizing them as retroflex [ʈ͡ʂʰ ɖ̥͡ʐ~ʐ ʂ] before back vowels and alveolo-palatal [t͡ɕʰ d̥͡ʑ~ʑ ɕ] before front vowels. This however is far from universal or standard.
- In native vocabulary, the schwa /ə/ appears only in place of the former word-final /e/ in poems and songs, which has become silent in common speech. Other than that, the schwa only appears in foreign words.
- /ɑ/ is rounded to [ɒ] when between the labial or labialized consonants /p b f v kʷ gʷ w/.
- the long /uː/ is pronounced fully back [uː] only in conservative and careful speech, especially by upper-class speakers. In casual speech - especially by lower-class speakers - /uː/ is typically realized as a centralized [ʉː], sometimes even a fronted [yː] (especially after /j/).