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MN#6 - Artakha to...Jaller?

Posted by Tolkien , in Bionicle, Language and Etymology, linguistics, Long Entries, Matoran Language May 06 2013 · 119 views

Looks like we've reached the end of this three-installment series. Next MN, I'll have to find something else to talk about. Anyways, this final entry focuses on the words in Group 3, as quoted from MN#4:
 
3) artakha, artidax, teridax, tren krom, pridak, jaller
 
Group 3:
 
The distinguishing factor for words in Group 3 is simply the presence of the particle ār in some form or another, making Group 3 the least restrictive of Groups 1-3. Any members of the preceding groups could also be included, since they all contain some form of ār, though usually as a part a stem-compound.
 
We’ll begin with the most significant (and most complex) etymology, the name Artakha:
 
artakha, n./n.cmpd. 1. (archaic) “forger, crafter, lit. one-who-applies-craft”; 2. (modern) “(a) refuge, safe haven; lit. out-of-bondage”
 
The difference between the meanings exhibited by this name/term is not necessarily a sole consequence of any semantic shift, unlike the name/term karzahni from MN#4. It is instead a consequence of a complete reinterpretation of the internal structure of the word, albeit a reinterpretation made on the basis of a semantic shift. We’ll start with the original (now archaic) decomposition of the term:
 
takha, vn. “crafting, craft”
ār, p. “applied, application (of); later (applied) against, resistance, hindering” [exhibits “splitting” and “variable placement”: ar. . .a, with displacement of ar before the stem.]
 
The element takha is a verbal noun derived directly from the verbal complex ta-ha “lit. to make-with-fire; to heat, forge, weld; to craft (smthg.)”. In this instance, the particle ār exhibits “splitting” and “variable placement”, whereby it is separated into two units a and ar, the latter of which is displaced before the stem to which it is applied (takha, in this case). This yields the complex form ar-takha-a, modernized as artakha, “one-who-applies-craft”.
 
This translation is widely attested at early stages of Matoran records, and was even used as a general term for crafter-Matoran, in addition to its usage as the name of the legendary crafter-spirit Artakha. This translation was, however, eventually supplanted by a reinterpreted formation, putatively motivated by the emergence of a mytho-historical idea that the realm of Artakha was the “Great Refuge”, the place where Matoran went out of “bondage” (“working in darkness”, literally ki arta-krāho “in the bondage of darkness”). The reinterpretation of the internal structure involved the following elements:
 
arta, n. “bondage, hinderance, limitation; (a) prison; lit. against-the-spirit”
-ha, p. “from, out of (origin particle)”
 
The element arta was an independently lexicalized word that emerged after the semantic meaning-shift of the particle ār (“applied, application (of)” > “(applied) against, resistance, hindering”). It consists of a combination of ār and the elemental stem ta, in this case with reference to “spirit”, yielding a rough meaning of “against-the-spirit”, later acquiring the concepts of “bondage, limitation” and “imprisonment”. The origin-particle -ha was then straightforwardly applied to yield the nounal complex arta-ha, modern artakha “out-of-bondage; (a) refuge, safe haven”. This newly-formed term encapsulated the mytho-historical concept of Artakha as both ruler and representation of “The Great Refuge”.
 
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artidax, n.cmpd. “bondage/imprisonment-toward-greater-order; paraphr. (a) prison for the promotion of greater order”
 
arta, n. “bondage, hinderance, limitation; (a) prison; lit. against-the-spirit”
ī-, p. “to/toward (endpoint particle)”
da, stm. “order, authority; execution-of-a-strategy/plan”           
-ak, p. “intensive particle”
-si, p. “more, -er (comparative adjectival particle)”
 
The term arta should be familiar from above. In this case, arta is combined with an internally complex element ī-da-ak-si. This consists of the stem da (from earlier zata) with the general meaning of “order, authority”. This stem is combined with the intensive particle -ak and with the comparative adjectival particle -si to yield a complex with the meaning “toward greater order”. When compounded with arta, the meaning of “bondage, hinderance” is added, with the specific meaning of “prison” becoming particularly salient. The meaning of the resulting compound arta-īdāksi > artīdaxi > artidax references the usage of the southern island Artidax as an ancient prison by the Brotherhood of Makuta: a prison intended to keep dangerous experiments confined in order to promote (i.e. as a means to the end of) “greater order”.
 
-----
 
teridax, n.cmpd. “guidance-toward-greater-order; guidance-toward-(better)-execution-of-strategy/plan”
 
tae-ār, stm.cmpd. “application of spirit/leadership/initiative; guidance, direction, (a) guide”
ī-, p. “to/toward (endpoint particle)”
da, stm. “order, authority; execution-of-a-strategy/plan”           
-ak, p. “intensive particle”
-si, p. “more, -er (comparative adjectival particle)”
 
The stem-compound tae-ār undergoes the same processes of reduction as the other stem-compounds with ār, yielding variants ter-, tar-, tre-, etc. In this case, the compound is combined with an internally complex element ī-da-ak-si. This consists of the stem da (from earlier zata) with the general meaning of “order, authority”, but also with connotations of “execution of a plan or strategy”, deriving from the original meaning of the elements za “strategy, plan” and ta “elemental fire; leadership, initiative, execution”.  This stem is combined with the intensive particle -ak and with the comparative adjectival particle -si to yield a complex with the meaning “toward greater/better execution of a plan/strategy”. When compounded with tae-ār, the meaning of “guidance, direction” is added: taeār-īdāksi. “guideance toward greater/better execution of a plan/strategy”, modern reduction taeār-īdāksi > tērīdaxi > teridax.
 
This meaning is somewhat ironic, given the intended purpose (and ultimate intentions) of the Makuta who bore this designation. The Makuta-teridax was meant to serve as a crucial stand-in for the Great Spirit during the final stages of the Great Beings’ plan (literally a “guide toward the execution of the plan”), but he instead chose to devise his own Plan for seizing control of the Great Spirit’s position, in which case the name-designation teridax still remains applicable: “a guide toward the execution of the (Makuta’s) Plan”.
 
-----
 
Tren, n. “(a) guide; lit. (a) guide-being”
Krom, n.cmpd. “lesser-master; lit. master-within-boundaries” [variant forms kroma, kromata, kiro-mata]
 
trē, stm. “guidance, guiding force” [from tae-ār via metathesis: taeār > tār > trē]
-an, aff. “being, person”
 
-oki, ke/ki-. . .-ō, p. “in/on/at/within (basic locative particle)”
rhō, stm. “ring, edge, boundary”
ma(t), stm. “mastery, control”
 
These two separate titles were applied simultaneously to the mythic being Tren Krom, who is characterized in Matoran mytho-history as a presage of Mata Nui. The first term tren derives transparently from the element trē, a variant of the stem-compound tae-ār, with addition of the affix -an yielding a complex trē-an “guiding-being”, modern form tren. The decomposition of the second term krom is somewhat more complicated. Krom consists of a stem rhō combined with the basic locative particle, resulting in the nounal complex ki-rhō-ō “within (an) edge/boundary”. This complex is then combined with the element ma(t) to form the compound ki-rhō-ō-ma(t) “master-within-(an)-edge/boundary”, eventually reducing ki-rhō-ō-ma > kirhōma > krōma > krom. The status of Tren Krom as a presage or counterpart of Mata Nui is reflected in surviving etymological variants of the Krom motif: kiro-ma, kiro-mataMata-within-boundaries; lesser-Mata”.
 
-----
 
pridak, n. “great ruler, governor” [variant forms prida’k, prīdak, praizdak, prīzdak, paridak]
 
praida, prīda, n.cmpd. “governance, rule, strong-authority; lit. applying strength toward order” [variant forms praizda, prīzda, parida]
-ak, p. “intensive particle”
 
The element praida/prīda combines straightforwardly with the intensive suffix -ak, yielding the compound praida-ak, prīda-ak with an original meaning of “extremely strong governance”, eventually shifting toward an agentive/honorific meaning “great ruler, governor”.
 
The term praida/prīda itself originates as a compound of the stem pra (from older par(a) < po-ār) and the lexicalized nounal complex ī-da, consisting of the endpoint particle ī- “to/toward” and the heavily reduced stem da “authority, order” (earlier zda < zata).
 
-----
 
jaller, n.cmpd. “excellent strategist/tactician; lit. application-of-good-strategy”
 
, n. “strategy, tactics, planning ahead; strategist, tactician”
-la, p. “good, excellent (modifying particle)”
-er, p. “application of ” [modifying particle, derived directly from older ār]
 
The element originally derives from a stem-compound ta-za, roughly meaning “fire/spirit of strategy” (eventually reduced ta-za > tzā > jā). This stem combines with the modifying particle -la to form the compound jā-la “excellent strategy/tactics/planning”, itself an independently lexicalized word. Combination with the particle -er “application of” (from older ār, see MN#4) yields the final complex form jā-la-er > jāler > jaller.

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Chapter I

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