In Diinlang the majority of nouns derived from other words will be created by compounding. To facilitate this the majority of the most useful words will be kept to a single syllable. A small number of affixes will, however, prove useful in noun creation.
In a previous post I suggested forming abstract nouns with the “-ia” suffix used by Lingua Franca Nova (LFN). Upon further reflection Novial’s “-eso” may be the better choice, being phonetically more distinct.
English forms agent nouns with “-er” but also uses the variations “-or” and “-ar”. It also use “-er” for comparatives and a wide variety of words nothing to do with comparison or agent nouns. Novial suggest “-ere” for this but my preference is towards LFN’s “-or” as a suffix. In Diinlang the standard method to indicate the gender of a word is with the zo-, za– or ze– prefix. A small collection of nouns may also have their gender indicated by placing an -o or -a at the end. Agent nouns are part of this class and thus an agent noun may end in -or, –oro or –ora. Other words that have this characteristic are “jhen”, the word for person and “ling”, which means “young and small”.
For some verbs it will be useful to be able to form patient nouns. This is a category that seems to be somewhat neglected by many conlangs. Novial proposes “-arie”, which I find somewhat ungainly and phonetically too close to the adjective ending “-ari”. Patent nouns are inherently passive in that they denote something that is having the action of the verb done to them. Adding the prefix “ge-” to the word is a possible solution. There will be cases when it is desirable to indicate that the patent noun is a person. For Diinlang I suggest the suffix “-ar” with its derivations “-aro” and “-ara”. When this suffix is used the use of the prefix “ge-” is redundant and therefore optional.
The suffixes “-ist” and “-ism” are used to respectively mark the follower of a belief or philosophy and the belief or philosophy itself. A scientist follows a philosophy of problem solving so is “-ist” rather than “-or”.
Adjectives and nouns pertaining to nationalities are ended with “-an” or “-ian” where practical. Country names take the ending “-ia” where possible. The sounds of such words are kept phonetically as close as practical to the native rendering or most commonly recognized name.
Another system for the formation of nouns is the use the active or passive participle of a verb to designate the process, action, product etc of the verb action. In many languages the active and/or passive participle have a form distinct from verb. In English the active participle is identical in spelling to the continuous form and the passive to the perfect form. In Diinlang the active takes the same form as the continuous: “isVERB”. The passive participle takes the passive prefix, “geVERB” rather the perfect “dun VERB” form. While this is a useful mechanism it does not cover all bases.
The suffixes “-ion”, “-sion” and “-tion” or derived variants can be found in many languages. It has the meaning of “the action of a verb” and/ or “the result of the action of the verb”. For some natlang words this meaning has changed or this definition no longer fully applies. The pronunciation of these suffixes is also very variable, posing problems if phonetic rending is preferred, as it is in Diinlang. “-tion” can ʃən” or “-tʃən” while “-ion” can sound like “-yan/ yən” or “-jan/ jən” in some English words. For Diinlang I propose that for “the action of a verb” and/ or “the result of the action of the verb” we use the suffix “-sio” when the active participle is not suitable.
There may be a need for verb derived words that specifically indicate the “substrate” or the product of a verb action. For the latter Novial offers the suggestions “-um” and “-ure”. While words like “fabrikatum” and “printatum” work well for some applications I am not fully certain on this use for more general products. The suffix “-ure” gives words resembling picture and sculpture but it is not obvious when to use “-um” and when to use “-ure”. The English noun and adjective ending “-ate”, which in Diinlang would be “-ayt” or “-eyt” may serve.
Like much of Diinlang, these topics are a work in progress and hopefully useful solutions will be found.