Láadan Sampler

A few samples to give you the flavor of the language….

Word

Definition

áalaá butterfly
ashon love for one who is not related by blood but is heart-kin
azháadin to menopause uneventfully
dólhorado to dominate with evil intent
doóledosh pain or loss which comes as a relief because it brings to an end the anticipation of its arrival
doólelasholan alone at last, after putting up with tiresome people
edama the science of touch — touch-science
éeme love for one neither liked nor respected
elasháana to menstruate for the first time
hena sibling by birth
héena sibling of the heart
honáal the hours between midnight and dawn
lalal mother’s milk
lewidan to be pregnant for the first time
loláad to perceive internally, to feel
lirini an achievement that seems small to other, but means a lot to the achiever
méhéna compassion despite negative circumstances
móna compassion for foolish reasons
múna compassion for bad reasons
nehena contentment despite negative circumstances
niná the one responsible
ninálh the one to blame
núháam to feel oneself cherished, cared for, nurtured by someone
nuna contentment for bad reasons
ohehena respect despite negative circumstances
óothanúthul spiritual orphanhood; being utterly bereft of a spiritual community
radama to non-touch; to actively refrain from touching
radamalh to non-touch with evil intent
radena unfriendliness for good reasons
radíidin non-holiday, a time allegedly a holiday but actually so much a burden because of work and preparations that it’s a dreaded occasion; especially when there are too many guests and none of them help
radodelh non-interface, a situation which has not one single point in common on which to base interaction, often used of personal relationships
radona unfriendliness for foolish reasons
rahéena non-heart-sibling; one so entirely incompatible with another that there is no hope of ever achieving any kind of understanding or anything more than a truce, and no hope of ever making such a one understand why (does not mean “enemy”)
rahom to non-teach; to deliberately fill students’ minds with empty data or false information
ralith to deliberately refrain from thinking about something, to wall if off in one’s mind by deliberate act
rarulh non-synergy, that which when combined only makes things worse
rashida non-game, a cruel “playing” that is a game only for the dominant player who has the power to force others to participate
rathom non-pillow; a “lean on me so I can step aside and let you fall” person
sham love for the child of one’s body, presupposing neither love nor respect nor their absence
shol absence-of-pain
thehena joy despite negative circumstances
thuna joy for good reasons
uhud nuisance
uhudemid tick (the insect)
wesháana to menstruate late
widazhad to be pregnant late in term and eager for the end
wina gratitude for no reason
wonewith to be socially dyslexic; uncomprehending of the social signals of others
wóo evidence morpheme indicating the speaker/writer’s total lack of knowledge as to the validity of what is said or written
zhaláad the act of relinquishing a cherished/comforting familiar illusion or frame of perception

[For more information, see A First Dictionary and Grammar of Láadan: Second Edition, edited by Diane Martin; published in 1988 by SF3, Box 1624, Madison WI 53701-1624.]Copyright © 2002 by Suzette Haden Elgin

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