Proto-ǂaa Uteq
Pronunciation Unknown
Period ca. 10000 BK
Spoken in Eastern Amutet
Total speakers unknown
Writing system none
Classification ǂaa Uteq
Basic word order VSO
Morphology Mostly agglutinative
Alignment Philippine
Created by Linguifex
Proto-ǂaa Uteq is the hypothetical proto-language from which the ǂaa Uteq languages are descended. It is believed to have been spoken around 10000BK. Evidence exists that at least some speakers of Proto-ǂaa Uteq had contact with those of Proto-Ulitan and Proto-Amutetikam.

The region where Proto-ǂaa Uteq is believed to have been spoken around 10000 BK is in red. The range of Proto-Ulitan speakers, above, is in olive; the Urheimat of Proto-Amutetikam, below, is in green.


The reconstructed phonology of Proto-ǂaa Uteq is given below.

What the exact phonetic realizations of *s₁ and *s₂ were is a matter of debate; given their various reflexes in the languages that developed out of Proto-ǂaa Uteq, all that can reasonably be said about them is that they were most likely some sort of alveolar consonants, most likely sibilants. The situation is similar with the phonemes *x₁ and *x₂, except the evidence indicates they were most likely dorsals or gutturals.

Reconstructed Proto-ǂaa Uteq consonant inventory.
  Bilabial Dental Alveolar Palatal Velar Uvular Glottal
Stops *b *t *d *k *g *q
Clicks *ǃ *ǁ
Nasals *m *n
Fricatives *s₁ *s₂ *x₁ *x₂
Liquids *w *r *l *y
Reconstructed Proto-ǂaa Uteq vowel inventory.
Front Central Back
High *i *u
Mid *e *o
Low *a


It appears that Proto-ǂaa Uteq was a (C)V(C) language. Clicks could only appear word-initially.

Noun classesEdit

A noun-classification system is believed to have been present in Proto-ǂaa Uteq. A list of reconstructed classifiers is given below.

Proto-ǂaa Uteq classifiers
Proto-Form Classifier
*ǂar intangible, inanimate
*s₂o animate, sentient
*ŋəx₁ small round or circular object
*an long or thin object
*!ux₁ powder, liquid
*s₂en worked material
*ǁab sharp object
*qi small island
*s₂is₁ large island, peninsula, isthmus, across long span of water
*tor other location
*ǀas₁ animal larger than a human
*nik insect
*du human-size animal or smaller
*ŋuq object in the sky (both weather and space)
*es₂ family member
*dax₁ bulky object
*x₂os₂ pile, stack, heap, coil
*ne other

Morphosyntactic alignmentEdit

Alignment in Proto-ǂaa Uteq seems to have followed a sort of Philippine schema.

Verbal suffixesEdit

Verbs took a verbal suffix that determined what the "trigger" was in the phrases they governed.

Reconstructed Proto-ǂaa Uteq verbal trigger system.
Agent trigger *-Ø
Patient trigger *-s₁
Locative trigger *-i

Noun SuffixesEdit

Nouns took suffixes in a five-case system: Direct, ergative, accusative, locative, and prepositional. They also declined for five numbers.

Noun declension in Proto-ǂaa Uteq.
Nullar Singular Dual Plural Collective
Direct *-əŋ *-Ø *-ni *-ŋi *-ərəŋ
Ergative *-an *-s₁a *-da *-x₁a *-erna
Accusative *-mo *-s₁o *-s₂u *-x₁o *-ermo
Locative *-x₂e *-s₁e *-et *-ek *-arx₂e
Prepositional *-ox₂ *-x₂i *-ex₂ *-ax₂ *-arx₂o

The adverbializerEdit

One notable reconstructed form for Proto-ǂaa Uteq is that of the adverbializer *u. When preposed to an undeclined verb or to a numeral, it would turn the phrase into an adverb (*u ǁao "quickly", *u dani "twice").