Zurvár Language and Culture - Grammar Part 3


Ownership in Zurvár is indicated quite simply with the suffix -nà. This is applied to the noun or pronoun that is doing the owning, which proceeds the noun that is owned.

Katálá - fish
Maliknà katálá - Malik's fish

If the speaker is the owner, the suffix is applied directly to the owned noun.

Katálánà - My fish

To indicate ownership by something that you own (for instance "my fish's eye") a different suffix is applied, -nàá.

Katálánà - My fish
Katálánà minklá - Fish's eye
katálánàá minklá - My fish's eye


There are a number of qualifiers that can be applied not just to verb phrases, but to other constructions as well. If used on a verb phrase, they are added after the verb qualifiers.

skandas - may, I hope, I wish

skandas indicates that the speaker hopes the phrase is correct, or comes to be correct. For instance....

tìtanik belatelet kert skandas - May the Titanic not sink
dò plá pevbetlamklá kert skandas - I hope you didn't confuse him
m'ládò sà beltelefonaklá skandas - I wish they'd phone me

várnád - let us, how about, maybe, why not?

The second qualifier, várnád, turns the phrase into a suggestion along the lines of "Let us", "Why don't you" or "how about". For example...

m'sà dak belsafraklá - We will go to the beach
m'sà dak belsafraklá várnád - How about we go to the beach?
m'ládo dak pevsafraklá várnád - Maybe they went to the beach?

tal - please

tal turns the phrase into a polite request...

dò sà beltelefonaklá - You will phone me
dò sà beltelefonaklá tal - Please phone me

ná! - imperative

na! turns the phrase into a demand or order...

dò sà belbasoklá cakim - You will show me the money.
dò sà belbasoklá cakim ná! - Show me the money!!
dò belatelet - You will sink.
dò belatelet ná! - Go get sunk!!!*This is a mild insult along the lines of "Go to hell"

When directly addressing someone with ná! in a verb phrase it is not strictly neccessary to include the subject (usualy "dò" - you) or sometimes even the object. The fact that you're shouting in the subject's face is usually context enough.

belbasoklá cakim ná! - Show me the money!!
belatelet ná! - Go get sunk!!!

Both skandas and ná! may be used on constructions other than verb phrases, for instance...

dò gwárv - You are well.
dò gwárv skandas - I hope you are well

lágom ganalû - It is blue.
lágom ganalû ná! - It's blue!!!


Compared to some other aspects of the language, comparisons in Zurvár are pretty simple. The two nouns being compared are linked by one of a group of "comparison words". The comparison words known so far are...

be? - like, similar to, the same as
beme? - unlike, dissimilar, different
tale? - the same, exactly alike
bele? - opposite to, completely different

For example...

dònà rìcel be? rìcelnà - your leg is like mine
dònà rìcel beme? rìcelnà - your leg is unlike mine
dònà rìcel tale? rìcelnà - your leg is identical to mine
dònà rìcel bele? rìcelnà - your leg is completely different to mine

Modifiers can be made into comparison words with the suffixes -tárl (more) and -bedárl (less), however in this case the word order is different. The new comparison word comes after the nouns.

lindávyá - graceful
lindávyátárl - more graceful
lindávyábedárl - less graceful
ceraf sà lindávyátárl - the giraffe is more graceful than I

The new comparison word can also be used as a nomal modifier.

mirurn - dark
mirurntárl - darker
mirurnbedárl - less dark

dáceraf mirurnbedárl - The giraffe is less dark


The "basic colours" recognised in Zurvár are...

kem Black
askįr White
askem Grey
ganal Blue
bonįr Green
pedemat Yellow
kedemįr Orange
kirč Red
fonįr Purple
rłntįrl Brown
makan Aqua/Cyan

While other "colour words" exist, most colours can be satisfactorally described with these eleven, particularly when combined with the modifiers takurn (light, pale) and mirurn (dark).

rłntįrl mirurn - Dark Brown
kirč takurn - Light Red, Pink

In English the name of the colour and it's adjectival form are indentical. For instance one speaks of the colour blue, and of an object of that colour as being blue. This is not the case in Zurvár, where each colour has an associated adjectival form.

kemū Black
askįlū White
askemū Grey
ganalū Blue
bonįlū Green
pedematū Yellow
kedemįrū Orange
kirū Red
fonįlū Purple
rłntįrlū Brown
makanū Aqua/Cyan

So, whereas the colour dark blue is ganal mirurn, when describing an object as dark blue ganalū mirurn is used. For example...

delņtį lįhom? - What is it?
etįket ganalū mirurn - A dark blue stingray

delņtį lįhomnà yūat? - What colour is it? (lit: What is its colour?)
ganal mirurn - Dark Blue