|Full Hymmnos lexicon||Advanced grammar resources|
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Hymmnos, described as the "language of emotions", has, as its most prominent feature, a sentence structure that focuses on expressing the speaker's feelings. Because it is focused on the speaker's feelings, statements nominally flow from a first-person perspective. As with so many other things, perhaps it will be easiest to understand how Hymmnos differs from other languages by looking at an example:
|great, enjoyable happiness
(I am delighted)
This sample sentence means "I am delighted to express myself through song," conveyed with an expression of genuine joy by the speaker.
The first three words in a phrase comprise an Emotion Sound; the meaning of these three words are described in this section.
[first : degree]-[second : nature]-[third : desirability]▼ First word
|apea||blessed, bathed in happiness|
|granme||wanting to protect, brave|
|ga||I want this to stop|
|ra||I want this to continue|
|erra||I want this to continue forever|
|wa||I can tolerate this|
|gaya||I never want this to happen again|
|gagis||I am indifferent|
<Effects of Emotion Sounds>
Even when speaking the same core sentence, the meaning conveyed by a speaker whose emotional state is cool and collected may be wildly different from the meaning conveyed by a speaker who indicates seething anger. Some Hymmnos used to control Towers have different effects depending on the Emotion Words with which they are spoken. For example, a command used to open a door may receive a faster response if the emotional context with which it is delivered indicates desperation rather than calmness.
In the example above, although the word for "me" was used as a noun, it was not an indicator of narrative perspective. The nominal form of Hymmnos is first-person, which is logical because it is a language primarily centred around conveying the emotions of its speaker. However, structures do exist that allow statements to be expressed in terms of second- and third-person narrative perspectives, and these will be discussed shortly.
[Emotion Sound]-[verb]-[compound] [VC]
[Emotion Sound]-[verb]-[object]-[compound] [VOC]
In our example sentence, "Was yea ra chs hymmnos mea," the Emotion Sound is "Was yea ra," the verb is "chs," the first object is "hymmnos," and the variable component is another object, "mea".
Compounds may be any structure satisfying [nil/O/VC/VOC], which means that sentences may be infinitely long, provided they continue to make use of nested compounds.
In this case, the sentence structure is [VSV'C/VSV'OC].
The first verb, [V], indicates the speaker's action, and the second verb, [V'], indicates the subject's action.
Because Hymmnos does not nominally have an explicit subject, it has need of a special subject-identifier; this identifier is "rre".
When "rre" appears before an object, that object becomes the subject of the sentence. However, regardless of any shifts in subject, the sentence's Emotion Sound is relative only to the speaker.
Subject-form pronouns may be used in place of a "rre-[subject]" component. Hymmnos's pronouns extend those found in English by accounting for gender and quantity.
|Pronoun||Object form||Subject form|
This may be obvious, but no sentence may contain more than one subject, so "rre" or its equivalents may appear only once, precluding changes of focus in compounds.
Historically, non-first-person sentences were not part of standard Hymmnos; it was not until the formation of Central Standard Note that "rre" formally became part of the language to further its communicability.
This section describes a structure that allows an Emotion Sound to be applied to an arbitrarily large collection of sentences. This is important because it prevents a speaker from having to continually express their emotions before every sentence in a series of related statements, such as a stanza in a hymn.
Ma num ra 0x vvi. [Emotion sound ("Ma num ra") BEGIN]
・ [any number of sentences in Hymmnos]
・ [any number of sentences in Hymmnos]
1x AAs ixi. [END]
This means that, between the statements "0x vvi." and "1x AAs ixi.", every sentence will bear the Emotion Sound "Ma num ra". 0 and 1 are, of course, binary flags; as qualified numbers, "0x" is pronounced as "o ku", and, likewise, "1x" as "i ku".
Emotion Sounds, and, optionally, the initial verb, may be omitted from sentences, even
when they are not part of a persistent Emotion Sound sequence, leading to [VC/VOC].
When Hymmnos is spoken in this manner, it will not be processed by Towers, making it little more than a spoken, though highly melodious, language.
Emotionless sentences may adopt a subject other than the speaker if they are presented in [SVC/SVOC] format. (In this case, the "rre" is optional)
Although sentences expressed within the context of a persistent Emotion Sound sequence already bear Emotion Sounds by definition, it is possible to explicitly change the Emotion Sound associated with a specific sentence by prefixing it with another; explicitly specified Emotion Sounds always take priority. Doing this saves the speaker the trouble of ending one persistent sequence for a single sentence, only to have to begin another sequence immediately afterwards.