Author Topic: Aysrr, Ayvospxì, Ayzìsìkrr. Days, Months, Seasons.  (Read 2017 times)

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Offline Toliman

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Aysrr, Ayvospxì, Ayzìsìkrr. Days, Months, Seasons.
« on: October 31, 2018, 12:01:17 pm »
Aysrr, Ayvospxì, Ayzìsìkrr.   Days, Months, Seasons.

Kxì, ma smuk!

Sìlpey oe, ayngari zìskrrtsawn [tìng nari nekll] sirvalew pxaya lrrtokhu a ta Eywa, ulte ftxozä Hälowinä livu ’o’ sì snewsye txantxewvay.

It was a busy September and October for us, with a trip “back east,” as we say, to New York and Massachusetts to see family and friends, and some personal issues to resolve as well. I haven’t done too much with Na’vi these past few months, but there’s some new vocabulary in this post that I hope you’ll find useful.

But before that, two things: First, I finally corrected the entry for nìtxankeltrrtrr ‘extraordinarily’ in the March 31 post, which had incorrectly listed the word as an adjective. It is, of course, and adverb. Irayo nìtxan, ma Eana Elf! And by the way, if anyone discovers other errors in previous posts that still need to be corrected, please let me know!

Second, I want to express long-overdue thanks to our Neytiri for her excellent analysis of the differences between vitra ‘soul’ and tirea ‘spirit’ in the comment section of the previous post. If you haven’t already seen it, I strongly suggest you take a look. Lu ngeyä tsapostì lesar srunga’sì nìtxan, ma tsmuke. Aysäfpìl ngey sunu oer!

We haven’t yet had words for the specific months and seasons—at least those ’Rrtamì—so these new terms should fill in those gaps.

First, recall that we already have vocabulary for the days of the week:


Trr’awve         ‘Sunday’

Trrmuve          ‘Monday’

Trrpxeyve      ‘Tuesday’

Trrtsìve           ‘Wednesday’

Trrmrrve         ‘Thursday’

Trrpuve           ‘Friday’

Trrkive            ‘Saturday’

These clearly derive from trr plus the ordinal numbers. So Sunday is derived from “first day,” Monday from “second day,” etc. It’s important, however, to distinguish these derived compounds from the ordinary two-word phrases that still exist perfectly well in Na’vi. For example, Trrmrrve and trr amrrve/mrrvea trr are both correct but differ in meaning.

Lu Trrmrrve muvea trr a tìkangkem si oe hu Ralu.
‘Thursday was the second day I worked with Ralu.’


Given the days of the week, you might expect the names of specific months on Earth to be built on the same pattern. Since ‘month’ is vospxì, it would be natural to expect *Vospxì’awve for ‘January,’ *vospxìmuve for ‘February,’ etc. As it turns out, however, the actual words are a bit different:

Vospxì’aw (n., vo.spxì.’AW)                           ‘January’

Vospxìmun (n., vo.spxì.MUN)                        ’February’

Vospxey (n., vo.SPXEY)                                   ’March’

Vospxìtsìng (n., vo.spxì.TSÌNG)                      ’April’

Vospxìmrr (n., vo.spxì.MRR)                          ‘May’

Vospxìpuk (n., vo.spxì.PUK)                            ‘June’

Vospxìkin (n., vo.spxì.KIN)                              ‘July’

Vospxìvol (n., vo.spxì.VOL)                             ‘August’

Vospxìvolaw (n., vo.spxì.vo.LAW)                  ‘September’

Vospxìvomun (n., vo.spxì.vo.MUN)                ‘October’

Vospxìvopey (n., vo.spxì.vo.PEY)                    ‘November’

Vospxìvosìng (n., vo.spxì.vo.SÌNG)                 December’

As you see, the month names are derived from vospxì along with the cardinal (one, two, three, . . . ), not the ordinal (first, second, third, . . . ) numbers. That is, January is “Month One,” February “Month Two,” and so on.

You’ll notice that some shortenings have taken place along the way. In particular, ‘March’ must originally have been *Vospxìpxey, but that quickly evolved to Vospxey.

A note on pronunciation: Except in very careful speech, the normal conversational pronunciation of the unstressed -spxì-syllable in all these words is simply -spì-, where the ejective becomes a simple stop. That’s much easier to pronounce in fast, casual speech. The spelling, however, retains the px.


For the temperate zones on earth, we have four seasons: summer, fall, winter, and spring. Does Pandora likewise have seasons? Let me defer once again to Neytiri on this question, from some private correspondence:

Srane, Pandora has seasons, because it has an axial tilt, similar to Earth’s . . . Pandora’s seasons, like everything about Pandora, are probably just a little more exaggerated than Earth’s because of the higher axial tilt. But there should be a hotter time and a colder time, with transitional periods between, and they should have roughly the same effects, as far as I can tell . . ..

Some quotes I found:

 “If the planet has a tilt similar to ours (Mars [25°], Saturn [27°], Neptune [30°]), it has seasons similar to ours.”

 “Because of its high axial tilt (29°), Pandora exhibits considerable annual variation in the day-to-night ratio. In addition, its elliptical orbit produces seasonal temperature variations and a range in daytime illumination of about ten percent.”

Summer and winter are straightforward—they’re the hot and cold seasons on both Eywa’eveng and ’Rrta, and are thus applicable in both places:

zìskrrsom (n., zì.skrr.SOM) ‘summer’  (from zìsìkrr asom)

zìskrrwew (n., zì.skrr.WEW) ‘winter’  (from zìsìkrr awew)

For the “transitional seasons,” i.e. spring and fall, we have the following terms, which are applicable on earth but not necessarily on Pandora. (Whether the Na’vi recognize spring and fall on Pandora is still to be determined.)

On earth, spring is the season of new growth:

paw (vin.) ‘grow’

This is ‘grow’ in the sense of ‘germinate and develop (of a plant).’ It’s distinct from tsawl slu, which implies “getting big” and is also the term used for an animal that’s growing up and maturing. So we have this contrast:

Fìutral paw kilvanlok nì’aw. Tsawl slu nìwin nìtxan.
‘This tree only grows (i.e., germinates, develops) near a river. It grows (i.e., gets big) very quickly.’

With that said,

tìpaw (n., tì.PAW) ‘growth’

And so we have:

zìskrrmipaw (n., zì.skrr.MI.paw) ‘spring’ (from zìsìkrr a mipa tìpaw, ‘season of new growth’)

Fall is the harvest season:

tsawn (vtr.) ‘gather growing food from the forest; pick; (in agriculture) harvest’

Note that tsawn is not quite the same as the word for ‘gather’ that you’re already familiar with, starsìm. Starsìm is general: you can starsìm anything you can gather—arrows, stones, even people. Tsawn is specifically for gathering or picking fruits or other plant-based foods from the forest. In cases where crops are planted and cultivated—that is, where there is agriculture—tsawn can be extended to include the meaning ‘harvest.’ (Since the Na’vi mainly hunt and gather rather than plant crops, they tend to tsawn the entire year rather than restrict harvesting to the fall. Thanks again to Neytiri for clarification on this question.)

With that said,

zìskrrtsawn (n. zì.skrr.TSAWN) ‘autumn, fall’ (from zìsìkrr a tsawn ‘season for harvesting’)

Happy Halloween, everyone!
« Last Edit: October 31, 2018, 12:04:20 pm by Toliman »

Offline Tìtstewan

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Re: Aysrr, Ayvospxì, Ayzìsìkrr. Days, Months, Seasons.
« Reply #1 on: October 31, 2018, 04:25:15 pm »
Txantsan! :D :D

With that, I should create a new calendar for 2019. The version of 2015 and 2016 once used months also in Na'vi, but the "long" version like vospxì a'awve. Now, we have vospxì'aw.

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Offline Toliman

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Re: Aysrr, Ayvospxì, Ayzìsìkrr. Days, Months, Seasons.
« Reply #2 on: October 31, 2018, 05:13:08 pm »
Yeah, especially words for seasons is quite needed :D

With that, I should create a new calendar for 2019. The version of 2015 and 2016 once used months also in Na'vi, but the "long" version like vospxì a'awve. Now, we have vospxì'aw.
Good idea :D


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