Straight From The Camel's Mouth
NMB 10 * MARTT~S 1997

Hïlad and welcome to issue ten of the curiously orange and strangely curious Zolid Matters, known to its friends as ZM10 and to others as 'Solid what?' Yes, dear reader, this really is the tenth issue. And they said it wouldn't last (well, it is biodegradable, actually). To those of you who've supported this peculiar little journal right from its tentative and ill-considered beginnings, the editorial committee would like to extend these brief words of gratitude: "I thank you." And now, on with the stuff...


This concise phrasebook is intended to be of assistance to the non-Jameld speaker [that'll be most of us, then--Ed.] when visiting the small area of western Europe where Jameld is spoken.

Section I: Basics




Thank you
Kothix iye

(formal)/Jey (informal)



Go away
Galyë för

I don't understand
Me na bistar

I'm sorry
Et bitrau ime

Section II: Arrival

Where is the bathroom?
Au jist te toileta?

Where is my luggage?
Au ist meü kankases?

Where is the tourist centre?
Au jist te vakansarbürau?

Where is the Jorthel Monument?
Au jist te Jorthelharepemhävel?

Speak more slowly please.
Bég', paptt~syë mor dit~skg^a.

I don't speak Jameld very well.
Me na paptt~s mol wel Jameld.

Doesn't anybody here speak English?
Surg^a, ansiko eri paptt~s Anglaz, yib?

Section III: Introductions

How are you?
Jist ye wel? (formal)/Wau poss et? (informal)

My name is...
Me'st nimeni...

What is your name?
Was jist yeü nimen?

Where do you keep the chocolate?
Au oberhü ye te tt~sokolat?

Section IV: Getting Along

Could you recommend...
Zicht ye optbiaden...

... a good restaurant?
... an gut restaurant?

... something good to eat?
... ans gut mestel?

... a good doctor?
... an gut doktor?

That was a lovely meal. What was it?
Üquü'stmä an liubi maal. Was 'mä et?

How much do we owe you...
Wauweth eg ven iye...

... for the meal?
... vor te maal?

... for the room?
... vor te tsomt~s?

... for the things that we broke?
... vor te teses tes ven brekmä?

Section V: Overcoming Problems Tactfully

How much did you say it cost again?
Bég' dyësäiryë wauweth et kost.

You are joking, aren't you?
Ye praat, yib?

Excuse me, I didn't mean to insult you.
Dest~sildyë ime, me na jolméyanmä jolhermen iye.

Please, put down that jawbone.
Bég', legyë tint te kinbéin.

Our customs are very different from yours.
Venü ütigidäires ist mol bit~seltin wrun yeüs.

Section VI: Departure

Thank you for your hospitality. We enjoyed our visit very much, but now we must be going home before the police get here.
Kothix iye vor yeü gestframkit. Ven frodmä mol weth venü haräiz, hnyo jüji ven mot al homz vorvor te poliz ïkümne.

[The Traveller's Phrasebook appears here with thanks to Mia Soderquist--Ed.] Caution: Avoid contact with mouth or eyes. If contact occurs, yell and run around in a helpless fashion. Then wash with cold water and lie down in a darkened room. Keep away from children. The BJZ are not liable for any injury or damage caused through the use or misuse of these phrases. Frankly, if you need to use Sections V or VI you've only yourself to blame.


In a previous issue of ZM it was revealed that among the small amount of ancient Jameldic literature that has survived to the present day there exists the Saga of Jorthel, which was discussed in detail in our last issue, and also a short inscription in a runic script. It is this inscription which appears below. We regret the poor quality of the reproduction, but unfortunately it is not possible to provide a photograph, since the stone exists in two discrete halves which reside in different museums (typical), in both of which photography is forbidden (totally typical). Therefore, it is an artist's impression which appears here. (Well, he said he was an artist.)

The stone is believed to date from the 8th Century, and the language used is known as Old Jameld. The particular form employed of the adjective grátte confirms the period of the document as late Sigisthian or possibly early Ælvardian.

As far as can be seen because of the considerable damage to the stone, it reads as follows (missing letters being shown in square brackets):

Stén Ulvita e[su]w, grátte kan[sa] æv Ja[melt`s]se, dá[pr]e fia[j]a-[li]iða[t]

Stone of Ulvita, great queen of Jamelt~ses, brave warrior-leader

This has long been the accepted reading, but now younger and more cynical scholars have challenged the established views. They suggest that the Ulvita Stone is, in fact, a rather more mundane document - specifically, a shopping list:

Stén Ulvita e[tu]w, grátte kan[ne] æv ja[rrsa] sed, a[ns] efia[s], a[n z]iþa[r]

(A) stone(-weight) of Ulvita*, (a) goodly bag of horse feed, some eggs, a zither

* possibly, an early form of crispbread; the Jamelt~ses may have beaten the Scandinavians to this idea

This debate may rage on for many more centuries. Then again, maybe not.

N.B. There is no evidence that runes ever had any mystical significance for the Jamelt~ses. It's just an old alphabet.


And now, for your puzzlement and perusal, a brief sample of the correspondence received at Jameld Towers since our last issue. First, an e-mail which is self-explanatory (but not very):

"I, King Jon I, of Zyraxx, compliment the Jameld language."

It's so nice to get royal assent, don't you think? The following message is from P.D. in Warsaw:

"I would be very grateful if you could send me more information about Jameld because so far I am not very much convinced that it is not a joke."

A joke? Really, it's shocking, the sort of abuse one can receive just by putting up a web site.


Firstly, please note our new Internet details below (bleep, bleep, etc.). The next issue of this august journal should appear in July, ZM having become thrice-yearly (for reasons that presumably seemed like a good idea at the time). Number 11 in this series will be a special treat for all fans of the 'other language'--J2. As a taster, we can exclusively reveal that this project now has a real name: Sevorian. ZM11 will also feature details of IJD3, which is presently scheduled for early September. With red-hot news like that in prospect, surely all will be held in rapt attention for such a... oh, who am I kidding. Nurse!

Inek te Sevöriaz Spezial--Hauf! JJ.


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