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Sekhavi Language


The Sekhavi language is one of the oldest in Istra. It is a notably difficult language for most of Istra to speak, mostly because it remained in isolation and is its own language family. The tenses, endings, and eleven cases also add to the complexity of the language, along with the three major dialects. Minor dialects have evolved in pockets throughout Sekhav, and some are so different that even native Sekhavi have difficulty understanding them. It is a language of contradictions. Some words are short, while others are very long. Some words are easy to pronounce, while others pose a challenge. It is a lilting and musical language with percussive sounds, like snow lightly tapping against a roof. The Sekhavi language is spoken almost solely in Sekhav by the Sekhavi. It is very rare to find speakers outside of Sekhav, aside from merchants or miners, and even then, they typically only know Trade Sekhavi.  


Traditional Sekhavi

  The archaic form of the Sekhavi language. It is no longer spoken in everyday life and has evolved to Common Sekhavi. It has also gone through many iterations, but they are all categorized under the umbrella term of Traditional Sekhavi. These have been named Early, Middle, and Late Traditional Sekhavi, but many other forms of the language existed for thousands of years prior. They are now lost to time and no writing has been found earlier than ~300 GY.   Traditional Sekhavi is spoken only by scholars and the for ritual purposes. It can be compared to Latin in the real world.

Common Sekhavi

The dominant form of the Sekhavi language in the present day. It is no simpler than Traditional Sekhavi, but it is a form of the language that has evolved over time. During the Great Settling, when the Sekhavi started to create permanent settlements instead of living as nomads, writing systems became more utilized, regional differences began to spring up, and the occasional outside influence from Lieretsa or Bolaan crept in. 

Trade Sekhavi

The simplified version of Common Sekhavi. It is used by merchants, miners, and other outsiders who have found it easier to speak. It has numerous influences, primarily from Kieruskan, Lieretsan, or Vathne. Ironically, this made it an even more complex language than Common Sekhavi, since it is an amalgamation of three separate languages. Still, it is easier for outsiders due to the influences from their own native language. Many of the Sekhavi in clans have learned Trade Sekhavi alongside Common, realizing its usefulness. Some call it "the language of the future" and claim that it will replace Common Sekhavi in a few hundred years.

Comparing the Dialects

  As an example, compare the differences between the texts below in Old English, then Middle English, then Modern English. Trade Sekhavi is not necessarily an evolution of Common Sekhavi, rather, it is a simplification, so this is not a perfect comparison. Still, it should provide a general idea of how different the dialects are from each other. A speaker of Trade Sekhavi might be able to understand a few words in Common, but almost none in Traditional.  

Traditional (Old English)

  Her for se here of East Englum ofer Humbremuþan to Eoforwicceastre on Norþhymbre, ond þær wæs micel ungeþuærnes þære þeode betweox him selfum, ond hie hæfdun hiera cyning aworpenne Osbryht, ond ungecyndne cyning underfengon Ællan; ond hie late on geare to þam gecirdon þæt hie wiþ þone here winnende wærun, ond hie þeah micle fierd gegadrodon, ond þone here sohton æt Eoforwicceastre, ond on þa ceastre bræcon, ond hie sume inne wurdon, ond þær was ungemetlic wæl geslægen Norþanhymbra, sume binnan, sume butan; ond þa cyningas begen ofslægene, ond sio laf wiþ þone here friþ nam.   (Anglo-Saxon Chronicle, A.D. 867)

Common (Middle English)

  Whan that aprill with his shoures soote The droghte of march hath perced to the roote, And bathed every veyne in swich licour Of which vertu engendred is the flour; Whan zephirus eek with his sweete breeth Inspired hath in every holt and heeth Tendre croppes, and the yonge sonne Hath in the ram his halve cours yronne, And smale foweles maken melodye, That slepen al the nyght with open ye (so priketh hem nature in hir corages Thanne longen folk to goon on pilgrimages, And palmeres for to seken straunge strondes, To ferne halwes, kowthe in sondry londes; And specially from every shires ende Of engelond to caunterbury they wende, The hooly blisful martir for to seke, That hem hath holpen whan that they were seeke.   (Geoffrey Chaucer, Canterbury Tales, c. 1400)

Trade (Modern English)

  Whose woods these are I think I know. His house is in the village though; He will not see me stopping here To watch his woods fill up with snow.   My little horse must think it queer To stop without a farmhouse near Between the woods and frozen lake The darkest evening of the year.   He gives his harness bells a shake To ask if there is some mistake. The only other sound’s the sweep Of easy wind and downy flake.   The woods are lovely, dark and deep, But I have promises to keep, And miles to go before I sleep, And miles to go before I sleep.   (Robert Frost, Stopping by Woods on a Snowy Evening, 1923)

Common Sekhavi: Words and Phrases

Hello Denki
How are you? Dys ara svanativkirev tir?
I'm fine, and you? Nil svanativkirlaan, nes tira?
Please Noska
Thank you Nis tir potaak
You’re welcome Tir sherystrakh bij taam
Goodbye Neratanii
See you later Va tira schikek ashaka
Excuse me Iraeska nilaste
I’m sorry Nil vyraivaaskiv akse tiravek
What’s your name? Nal ak bista tir?
My name is... Nil bista...
Nice to meet you Badra si jel tira
Where are you from? Nera ara tir nys?
I’m from... Nil nys...
Friend Kryrinaan
How old are you? Dys ostrevirath ara tir?
I am ___ years old. Nil as ___ aktoran.
What do you do for a living? Nal tir svyk schasvar?
What are your hobbies? Nal tir dyres?
Yes Etes
No Bi
Do you speak... Ti tir nostykiriv...
I (don’t) understand Nil (bivek) ateriskaan
I (don’t) speak... Nil (bivek) nostykirlii...
How do you say... Dis tir nostyk...?
What time is it? Nal saestra?


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