Wenja Language: shawi shawya-kwa

Smarkaka sakush, su-kwa Easter pas! Shajas dajris warshta dwa alya kamya Winja warshta : shawi shawya-kwa.

Hi friends, and happy belated Easter! Today’s words of the day are another two common Wenja words: ‘bird’ and ‘egg’.

You’ll see the word for ‘bird’ a lot in Oros.  Think back to the first scene where you meet Urki : Ku shawi warha?  U Urkiyi shwada kwati patashta! “Bird speaks?  Tell Urki how you fly!”  (Note the ku & u sentence starters!)

If you look closely at the word for ‘egg’, shawya, you’ll see that it’s basically identical to the word for ‘bird’.  This, of course, is not a coincidence.  An ‘egg’ is both literally and grammatically ‘that which comes from a bird’.

Both of these words have an impeccable Indo-European pedigree.  The word for ‘bird’, *h₂awi-, is the source of words like avi-ation and avi-ary (< Latin avis ‘bird’).  We also see this root in Sanskrit viḥ ‘bird’ as well as Greek aietós ‘eagle’.  English ‘egg’, from PIE *h₂owyom, is related to words like Latin ovum (think ovu-late, etc.), Greek ōón, and Old Church Slavonic aja.  If you’re wondering about the initial sh- in Wenja — PIE *h₂ (likely the Darth Vader sound, a voiceless pharyngeal or uvular fricative) regularly becomes sh in Wenja.

Tu sakwan prasti!