Gfro, the language of scholars, is the most beautiful of Dakian languages. It is rarely used conversationally. Instead, it is the language used by scholars for their writings and speeches, particularly those with a poetic strain. The written language is composed of tens of thousands of intricate pictograms, in which the slightest mark can change the meaning of the word completely. In addition to the largest alphabet, Gfro also has the largest vocabulary of any language. Ossi Gonsif, its creator, intended it to have a word for every conceivable person, place, thing, action, state of being and way of doing something. So far she has succeeded, as no one has yet been able to think of something that cannot be described in Gfro. However, as a result, the language is extremely complex. Because of this, only scholars and professors speak it at all, and only the most passionate linguists become truly fluent.
Over time, much of the language’s complex beauty has been sacrificed for convenience. The pictograms have been dropped in favor of transliteration into Common Dakian, which requires extra characters and letter combinations in order to indicate Gfro’s many inflections. Urktoo Quiggs's Dabbler's Dissertations were published in Common Dakian beginning in 60 DC, and began a swiftly growing trend of scholarly works in the common language. Finally, since 15 DC and the opening of the Cyral Tower, there has been increasing controversy over the language. Revolutionaries call for the abolition of the language because it symbolizes upper class superiority, while reactionaries claim that such a thing is impossible. “Hundreds of years of scholarly writing is in Gfro,” says Hummel Watsoo of the Great University of Cyrim, “Translating it would be like dying a Bilbipno black and expecting the Brechan to continue marveling at its colour. Besides,” he adds, “I’d like to see you convince a bunch of professors to translate all that rubbish.
Invention of GfroEdit
Gfro was invented around 1589 DC by Ossi Gonsif, professor at the Great University of Cyrim and three-time Second-Deputy-Chairman of the Department of Speculative Linguistics in the League of Extraordinary Windbags. She is said to have created the language as a retort to her Co-Second-Deputy-Chairman Shinsit Quarik, who boasted that there was no language he could not learn. Even if this was Gonsif’s original motivation, her dedication shows that she must have, at some point, left it behind and continued the project for her own reasons. She wrote the first Gfroni-hagarsTek-la:a, the dictionary of Gfro. As the language caught on, she organized a committee of friends and associates to help her keep track of the hundreds of words that were added to the language every day. The current Gfroni-hagarsTek-la:a is published in an abridged form and consists of 15 volumes which cannot be read without a powerful magnifier. The unabridged form, found almost exclusively in prestigious libraries, has 45 volumes.
It is surprising that the language was adopted so rapidly by so many scholars. Most historians attribute its speedy adoption to the rising literacy rates among the lower classes at the time, which drove the educated elite to find new ways to remain elite. They feared that soon the Remamni would be reading the great works and consequently spending their time thinking great thoughts instead of doing their less-than-nice jobs. Gfro effectively allayed that fear. No one could possibly learn the language if they were already busy with a less-than-nice job.
The words and mechanics of Gfro reflect the extraordinarily creative and scatterbrained genius of Ossi Gonsif. While Gonsif insisted that every aspect of Gfro was founded on the purest logic, the language does not appear remotely logical to anyone but the inventor herself. The grammar rules are extensive, confusing, full of exceptions, and, at times, outright contradictory. Similar sounding words supposedly have related meanings, but no one but Gonsif could possibly fathom the connections. For example, the words Plzzakw/evx)da-okhpl@K (an equilateral triangle; negative connotation) and Plzzzakw/evx)da-okhpl@Ka (to injure one’s brother by spilling water on the floor) are practically identical.
In addition, the length of the words is often inversely proportional to the frequency of their use. The verb meaning “to have” is 3475 characters long in its infinitive form. Based on who does the having, what they have, why they have it, when they got it, how they come to have it, and what else they have, it can be conjugated in hundreds of ways. The conjugation for a woman over sixty who has a single cup which she inherited from her grandfather when she was thirty-five is the longest word in Gfro. It takes up a full page of miniscule print in the unabridged Gfroni-hagarsTek-la:a; the abridged version omits it.
On the other end of the spectrum are the shortest words in Gfro:
- ): (once there were eleven)
- iR (with the intention of writing a limerick about it)
- L^ (of or relating to the study of insects in pop culture)
- osy (relative to the handmade wooden toys of the quaint village of Piko)
- #%! (where in the name of everything good and holy is that wretched assistant)
Aside from the last, no one is quite sure why Gonsif deemed these few things worth saying fast.
Kostrzewa 01:34, October 16, 2010 (UTC)