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The Conlanger's Lexipedia [Kindle Edition]

Mark Rosenfelder
5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)

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Book Description

The Language Construction Kit and Advanced Language Construction explained how to create grammars for constructed languages. But after creating a grammar, there's the 800-pound gorilla of the lexicon to deal with.

This book gives you everything you need to know to create words. The first stop is etymology: it contains thousands of etymologies from a wide variety of languages. Borrow them or let them spark your own ideas!

It's easy to let the lexicon be a coded version of your native language. The Lexipedia contains tips on how to avoid this, including plenty of fascinating examples from non-English languages.

You want to know which words to create first. The Lexipedia includes the 1500 words most commonly found in fantasy and science fiction, sorted by frequency.

Many parts of the lexicon require real-world knowledge to handle. The Lexipedia contains just enough information on biology, physics, and human cultures to help you out.

Plus, there's a discussion of the basic tools of the word creator: categories, metaphors, and derivation.

Though aimed at conlangers, the Lexipedia will be instructive and entertaining for anyone who's interested in words.

Product details

  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • File Size: 1414 KB
  • Print Length: 424 pages
  • Page Numbers Source ISBN: 1493733001
  • Simultaneous Device Usage: Unlimited
  • Publisher: Yonagu Books; 1.0 edition (9 Dec. 2013)
  • Sold by: Amazon Media EU S.à r.l.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B00H8BGP4E
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Not Enabled
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #330,450 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent, as you'd expect from Mark 2 Mar. 2014
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
For anyone who wishes to enter the world of conlanging this is a must-have and works as a great companion to Mark's other two books, "The Language Construction Kit" and "Advanced Language Construction". Highly recomended.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Awesome!!!!!! 12 Oct. 2014
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
I can make my own languages with this now!!!!!
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) 4.6 out of 5 stars  15 reviews
11 of 11 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars This book is fantastic! Really! 13 Dec. 2013
By Grayson Richardson - Published on
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
So I got my copy of The Conglanger's Lexipedia in the mail today. My review? BUY THIS! Seriously! You WANT this! It's got everything you need. I've been looking for something like this for years, and there's nothing out there that comes remotely close.

You want lists? It's got gobs of word lists at every granularity, grouped by themes. But it's also chock full of ideas! It helps you brainstorm about how to create words for your language, how to derive words from roots in all sorts of ways and create etymologies. It shows you different strategies that natural languages use for word formation. And it approaches the subject from a lot of different directions. Whatever your style is, I think there's something in it for you.

Just flipping through a few pages, there's nifty info about proto-languages, word classes and categories, the top 1500 words used in Fantasy and Science Fiction literature, triliteral roots, metaphors, semantic fields, how different cultures divide up their concepts of the world differently, kinship relations, animal taxonomy, and it goes on and on... tons of cool stuff!

It even challenges your notions of what a word IS and makes you think about where we arbitrarily draw those fuzzy borders around the set of semantic tidbits we lump together to call a word, so that your language won't end up a relex of your native tongue.

I was over the moon thrilled with what I got in the mail. It was actually so much more than I expected it to be. It clocks in at over 400 pages, with multitudes of useful, interesting information on each page. It's a fine liqueur of highly distilled conlanging excellence. I'm not even doing it justice; really, you should buy it. You will not be disappointed. Get it for your conlanging loved ones, they will love you back.
4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great resource 21 Dec. 2013
By Scott W. Hutton - Published on
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
I own all of Mr. Rosenfelder's books, and this, in my opinion, is the best. This is a must read as you start to develop your own conlanguage and conculture. I highly recommend becoming familiar with this book BEFORE you start developing words for your conlanguage if at all possible. The Conlanger's Lexipedia really gives you a broad, interesting view of how words form, why they form, and what they would/could come to mean inside a culture. I have a conlang of 7,000+ words currently and this book is causing me to go back and revisit literally everything about the words I have and why I have them. It really causes you to think about how your culture would view a variety of categories and how word stocks would develop around them. Can't recommend this book enough!
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Must have 25 Jan. 2014
By Graidan - Published on
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
I'm pretty picky. I go through lots of resources, only to return/resell/give away because they don't fulfill their promises. If I am told X will be in there, it better dang well be in there.

And it is!

Seriously, Rosenfelder provides exactly what he says - some useful lists, handy etymologies, basic introductions into some fundamental classes (this bok is worth it for the details on color and kinship alone), and general all around usefulness. I wish he'd written this book about 20 years ago. And that I had it then. More useful than "Describing Morphosyntax", and handier that three non-English dictionaries.
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Filled to the Brim With Information 3 Jan. 2014
By J. D. Rachowicz - Published on
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
A truly astounding of information in one handy place. Great "starter" book on etymologies, too.

A must read for conlangers.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars it was an enormous disappointment and certainly an oversight on the part of the ... 2 Nov. 2014
By Sam Ryan - Published on
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
As an avid conlanger and an admirer of Rosenfelder's work- I was hugely anticipating this book. The LCK & ALCK were instrumental in my own conlanging endeavors, but many of the particulars and nuances of lexicon-building seemed daunting to me. The Lexipedia, while exceedingly helpful and worth recommendation, fell short in one fairly glaring area: it lacks an appreciable section on derivation and derivational morphology.

This seems incredible to me as it is typically the area of lexicon-building which intimidates and confounds conlangers the most, and I bought it largely with that in mind. While I would not say that the absence of such a section deprives the Lexipedia of much usefulness (far from it), it was an enormous disappointment and certainly an oversight on the part of the author.

The Lexipedia proves useful in some surprising arenas, however; indeed, the non-etymological sections possess a number of interesting and helpful observations of the lexicon-building process, and typological trends in vocabulary. The book additionally contains a fairly elaborate corpora of science fiction and fantasy literature, highlighting key sections of vocabulary for both genres that any author or conlanger would certainly need to pay particular attention to. The etymological section of the book (which comprises the bulk of it) is, in my opinion, its greatest strength. It tackles crucial clusters of vocabulary in all languages and provides, using an array of languages, excellent examples of various metaphorical approaches being used to capture the same semantic sense, and demonstrates examples of and differences between systems of derivation- which, in the absence of an explicit derivation section- is appreciated.

Over all, it is a book which fell short of my expectations and hopes as a conlanger, but one that remains useful nonetheless. Rosenfelder retains his seat as the Authorial Chief of How-to Conlanging as far as I'm concerned.
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