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Archaic Speech

Even for a language invented within living memory, it can sometimes be useful to simulate archaic speech, as when quoting Bible verses or Latin maxims, or writing historical fiction. For this, Romániço offers two levels of old-fashionedness: “Early Modern Romániço” and “Old Romániço”.

“Early Modern Romániço”

Were Romániço a natural language that had evolved alongside the Romance languages on which its lexicon is based, Early Modern Romániço would be the form of the language spoken from the 14th to 17th centuries, extending from the Renaissance to the Enlightenment. It is more or less analogous to the English of Shakespeare or Spanish of Cervantes, as well as the traditional language of long-established religions.

Orthography

The Graeco-Latin digraphs ch, ph, and rh are retained, as are double consonants and vocalic y. The digraph qu is retained where it still has the sound [kw] in modern Romániço: Christiano, phantasmo, rhetórico, cysto, equilla.

Typography

Lowercase s is printed as ſ at the beginning and middle of a word. Double s is printed ſs or ß: ſectionos, apóſtolos, abyſso (or abyßo).

The letter pairs i and j and u and v are not distinguished. The letter v is used at the beginning of a word and as a capital, the letter u is used everywhere else, regardless of sound: iúuena, maiora, Vrano, conuulſer.

Generally, modern printings of archaic texts should normalize these typographical conventions to avoid confusion.

Verb forms

The verb endings -an, -in, and -un of Romániço derive from Latin -ant, -ent, and -unt. In the Early Modern period, the final -t is retained in -ant, -int, and -unt, corresponding to English -eth and -est:

La Dómino dationant, la Dómino prendant. The Lord giveth, the Lord taketh away.
Dicint la corvo “jamás pluse”. Quoth the raven “Nevermore”.

Pronouns

The words ti and tua, like English thou and thy, are regularly used during this period to address family members, close friends, subordinates, God, and, if one is a longtime, faithful servant, one’s master; everyone else is addressed with vi, invented during this time to eliminate the ambiguity of vos in “Old Romániço”.

Quo, dunche, ti en tua mento habint? What, then, didst thou in thy mind have?
Consíderes mi sempre quale je tua fidela canino. Think of me always as thy faithful dog.

“Old Romániço”

Most archaic speech should be rendered along the Early Modern model, as it is in English, but when something more remote and alien is needed, there is Old Romániço. This would be the form of the language spoken from the 8th to 14th centuries, roughly the end of the Early Middle Ages through the beginning of the Late Middle Ages. It is more or less analogous to the English of Tales of Caunterbury, the French of La Chanson de Roland, and the Spanish of El cantar de myo Çid.

Typography

In addition to the typological conventions outlined above, Old Romániço uses an e caudata where Classical Latin ae and oe have been reduced to e: cęlo, pręparer, obęder.

Adjectival agreement

Adjectives agree in number with the nouns they modify:

Contre mi meas malvatas inimicos complotint equisto. My wicked foemen have done this thing to me.
imbosc-attacchita da quatricent-millas Vascos Saracenos ambushed by four hundred thousand Basques Saracens

The oblique case

In this period, one distinguishes between nominative and oblique singular pronouns, as English still does with most of its own pronouns:

jo / mi I / me nos we / us
tu / ti thou / thee vos you all
lu / li he, she, it / him, her, it los they / them
homu / homi one, they / one, them

Note that there is no vi at this time; vos does duty for both the plural and singular when not addressing, in this period, subordinates, children, or younger siblings.

Ecce quare lo mirabiliant mi enorme che tu ne liberifint de las Saracenos mea tero. That is why I am greatly astonished that thou hast not freed my land from the Saracens.
Francianas baronos, jo vidant vos morter pro mi, et jo ne potant protecter vostras vivos! French barons, I see you die on my account, and I am unable to protect your lives!
O Dómino, benedictes equisto Vostra manu-grenato por che, per li, Vos potes explosifer Vostras inimicos ad petietos en Vostra clementitio. O Lord, bless this Thy hand grenade that, with it, Thou mayest blow Thine enemies to tiny bits in Thy mercy.