Sample wordlist

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The sample wordlist for the language box is designed for useful comparison. Where multiple words might fit the English glosses, the following principles are used:

  • The numbers are those used in counting, in the least marked form
  • The words for ‘river’ and ‘town’ are those most useful for parsing geographical terms
  • ‘People’ should be the name for an ethnic group (as opposed to, say, a group of persons)
  • ‘Big’ and ‘little’ should be the basic oppositional adjectives, or their equivalent, in the least marked form

(‘Least marked’ is a linguistic term, meaning the default, non-salient morphological form, generally singular and nominative, with the most general gender or word class. This is normally the citation form, that is, the form occurring in a lexicon.)

Naturally any complications or caveats are suppressed. If you get into a social situation where humiliation or disfigurement results from using one of these words incorrectly, the language box disclaims all responsibility.