The Language Vorlin (2006)

Chapter 6: Adjectives, Adverbs and Demonstratives


Adding the suffix -a to a noun creates an adjective meaning either “characterized by” or “pertaining to.” Examples: ful = bird, fula = avian; son = sound, sona = sonic. In some cases -a can be viewed as a contraction of -inda: gutinda = guta = engaging in goodness; good.

The suffix -a by itself is brief but ambiguous; if you need more precision, you have other options:

The intensive aspect infix -oz- means “doing something with high intensity” or “having a larger than usual amount or heavier than normal concentration of something.”

The moderative aspect infix -emz- means “doing something with moderate intensity” or “having an average amount or normal concentration of something.”

The attenuative aspect infix -iz- means “doing something with low intensity” or “having a small than usual amount or lower than normal concentration of something.”

Additionally, you can use -tefa to indicate that X pertains to Y, -haba to indicate that X “has” or “is furnished with” Y, or -sena to indicate that X lacks or “is without” Y.


lin : language
lintefa : pertaining to language(s)
sal : salt
salsena : saltless, devoid of salt, “salt-free”

bom : tree
boma / bomtefa : arboreal, pertaining to trees
bomhaba : tree-ed, having tree(s)
bomsena : tree-less, devoid of trees
bomoza : having a large quantity of trees, a dense tree population
bomemza : having an ordinary concentration of trees
bomiza : having a sparse tree population, having few trees

When used with color words, -iz- means “very much diluted in white,” for example, roda = red, rodiza = pink.

NOTE: In previous versions of Vorlin, words like saloz and saliz were inherently adjectival and did not require the -a suffix. Also, the moderative aspect was indicated by -uc rather than -emz-. These archaic forms can still be used in poems and religious scriptures when the writer wants to give the texts an old-fashioned feel.


Adding -e to a root-word forms an adverb. The -e suffix has a meaning similar to “in the manner of” or “using a method involving...” It is somewhat similar to the English suffix -ly. Examples: gut = goodness, gute = well; mal = badness, male = poorly, badly.

The aspectual infixes -oz-, -emz-, -iz- can be used in the creation of adverbs: fulize = “in a slightly bird-like manner.”


The special adverbs les “less,” mer “more,” and gam “to the same degree” form the comparatives. They often occur with the preposition pinu “than, compared to.”

tan hus gam guti pinu tun hus. This house is as good as yonder house.
yas fac les rodi pinu tis fac. My face is less red than yours.
mer luka ful mer gute gani. A happier bird sings better.

In an alternative viewpoint, les, mer, gam can take the suffix -u and become preposition-like words:

tan hus guti gamu tun hus. This house is as good as yonder house.
yas fac rodi lesu tis fac. My face is less red than your face.

By the way, les, gam and mer can be used as prefixes in the creation of compound words: ne mermalisko zak = don’t worsen matters; fem leslukisko han = the female caused the male to be less happy.


Demonstratives (words like “this” and “those”) are a special class of words. They behave like adjectives, but if there are several adjectives in a phrase, the demonstrative will “float” to the beginning of the phrase.

Like Japanese, Georgian, Old English and many other languages, Vorlin’s demonstratives have a three-way distinction: tan “this, these” refers to something near the speaker, tin “that, those” refers to something near the addressee (the person to whom the speaker is talking), and tun “yonder” refers to something which is relatively distant from both the speaker and the addressee. Note that the sequence of vowels in tan, tin, tun is the same as in the pronouns ya, ti, ku.

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