Royal (Royal: Mëlhën) is the lingua franca of the Snow Empire. Originally a pidgin developed in approximately Geran Year 1380 between the related Wis language of the Yuhan conquerors and the several Netkhal languages spoken by the people living in what would become Ahu and the Royal Province, it quickly spread as the original conquerors' descendants continued to overwhelm Gera. Following the conquest of Zeminar in 1422, an enormous amount of words from Old Zeminarian, preserved as a liturgical language, and the modern Migelayn languages entered Royal's vocabulary, and today up to 60% of Royal's vocabulary is derived from these sources, though it is mostly technical terms. It is spoken at some level by approximately 50% of Gera, and between 70 and 80% of its urban population. Royal is the primary language of government, science, trade, and literature. Since its birth, Royal has diverged into numerous local dialects, some of which are slightly difficult for other speakers to comprehend. Though the Weis language was, as all the Netkhal languages of Middle Man's Creek were, written with a logographic script, a script based on the Efsisi abugida was adopted to write Royal in approximately 1450.
Though there is considerable variation in Royal dialects, the eastern Bread Bin dialect is the basis for standard Royal. Though the Royal Dominion dialect was originally standard, there are sounds common in that dialect that are have fallen out of favor among most other mainland dialects; sounds only found in other dialects or proper names are put in parentheses. The current Royal standard has six vowels and about eighteen consonants, while other commonly spoken dialects may have up to twenty two consonants. Though Royal is written with the Efsisi abugida, it is transcribed with the Latin alphabet for the sake of the reader. Some letters represent more than one sound depending on their location.
|a||/a/||a as in father||ak /ak/ "to use"|
|b||/b/||b as in bet||baf /baf/ "ash"|
|c||/tʃ/, /ʃ/||at the start of a word,
ch as in cheat
sh as in show
|cicir /tʃiʃir/ "dog"|
|d||/d/||d as in dog||dwas /dwas/ "greed"|
|e||/e/||e as in bed||emën /emən/ "sun"|
|ë||/ə/||a as in about||ëfir /əfir/ "to block"|
|f||/f/||f as in fire||fabë /fabə/ "egg"|
|g||/g/||g as in gas||glur /glur/ "gnoll"|
|h||/h/, /x/||h as in hall at the start of
at the end, ch as in
|hwa /hwa/ "rain"
këhnel /kəxnel/ "criminal"
|i||/i/||i as in machine||in /in/ "cloth"|
|j||/dʒ/, /ʒ/||at the start of a word,
j as in judge
s as in measure
|jakcëk /dʒakʃək/ "sheep"
fëjar /fəʒar/ "temple"
|k||/k/||k as in sky||kai /kai/ "good"|
|(kh)||/kʰ/||k as in kite||Khalamo /kʰalamo/ Khallamo|
|l||/l/||l as in let||luk /luk/ "castle"|
|m||/m/||m as in meet||mur /mur/ "storm"|
|n||/n/||n as in not||no /no/ "you"|
|o||/o/||o as in ode||os /os/ "dark"|
|p||/p/||p as in spit||pum /pum/ "bee"|
|(ph)||/pʰ/||p as in put||Phim Nan /pʰimnan/ Phim Nan|
|r||/r/||between two syllables, tt
as in butter
elsewhere, trilled r as in
|ram /ram/ "many"
lërte /ləɾte/ "to break"
|s||/s/||s as in sell||sun /sun/ "island"|
|t||/t/||t as in sty||tuk /tuk/ "dust"|
|(th)||/tʰ/||t as in tell||Tha Men /tʰamen/ Tha Men|
|u||/u/||u as in lute||usën /usən/ "to fail"|
|(v)||/v/||v as in vase||Vendrith /vendritʰ/ Vendrith|
|w||/w/||w as in well||was /was/ "false"|
|y||/j/||y as in yet||yur /jur/ "bird"|
|z||/z/||z as in zip||zin /zin/ "tribe"|
Stress is usually placed on the first vowel of a syllable. However, in words with ë and at least one other type of vowel, the stress is on the first vowel that is not ë.
For an in-depth description of Royal grammar, see here.
For a dictionary of Royal, see here.