Reformed Esperanto

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Reformed Esperanto, or Esperanto 1894, is an Esperantido, a constructed language derived from Esperanto. It is notable as the only complete Esperantido created by the original creator of Esperanto, L. L. Zamenhof. Although Zamenhof's stated preference was to avoid any discussion of changes, he was put under considerable pressure, including financial, to respond to the diverse reforms proposed by others. Reluctantly he decided to present a reformed dialect himself and undertook to continue guiding the community, whether or not reforms were eventually agreed.

Although Zamenhof initially called his reform a systematic attempt to re-create the language in the light of more than six years of practical experience, scarcely any of the Esperanto community of the time accepted it as a whole. The majority voted to reject all changes. Zamenhof himself later rejected the whole project and referred to 1894 as 'a wasted year'. In 1907 he expressly refused permission to anyone wishing to re-publish the proposed reforms. In 1929 Johannes Dietterle cited this refusal as justification for omitting details of the reform project from his collection of Zamenhof's complete works, Originala Verkaro.

Some of the proposed reforms from 1894 such as replacing the -oj plural with -i, the removal of the diacritics and adjectival agreement were used in the language reform project Ido beginning in 1907, but these were not accepted by the Esperanto community either and Esperanto has changed relatively little since the publication of Zamenhof's Fundamento de Esperanto in 1905.

Main proposed changes[edit]

  1. The accented letters would disappear, together with most of their sounds.
  2. The "c" would be pronounced like the old "ŝ"; "z" as the old "c", i.e. as "ts".
  3. The letters "ĝ" and "ĵ" would be usually replaced by "g" and "j" respectively.
  4. The definite article would be eliminated.
  5. The accusative would have the same form as the nominative and depend on position for clarity.
  6. A plural noun would replace "-o" with "-i", instead of adding "-j".
  7. Both adjectives and adverbs would take the ending "-e", be invariable, and depend on position for clarity.
  8. The number of participles would be reduced from six to two.
  9. The table of correlatives would be replaced with words or phrases taken from Romance languages.
  10. The roots of the language would be changed to reflect the new alphabet.
  11. The roots of the language not taken from Latin or Romance languages would be replaced by such.


Esperanto 1894 alphabet
Number 1 2 3 4 5 6 8 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22
Upper case A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P R S T U V Z
Lower case a b c d e f g h i j k l m n o p r s t u v z
IPA phoneme a b ʃ d e f g h i j k l m n o p r s t u v t͡s

Language samples for comparison[edit]

The Lord's Prayer in both Reformed and standard Esperanto for comparison:

Reformed Esperanto Ido Standard Esperanto
Patro nose, kvu esten in cielo, Patro nia, qua esas en la cielo, Patro nia, kiu estas en la ĉielo,
Sankte estan tue nomo. tua nomo santigesez; Via nomo estu sanktigita.
Venan reksito tue, tua regno advenez; Venu Via regno,
estan vulo tue, tua volo facesez plenumiĝu Via volo,
kom in cielo, sik anku sur tero. quale en la cielo tale anke sur la tero. kiel en la ĉielo, tiel ankaŭ sur la tero.
Pano nose omnudie donan al nos hodiu Donez a ni cadie l'omnadiala pano, Nian panon ĉiutagan donu al ni hodiaŭ.
e pardonan al nos debi nose, e pardonez a ni nia ofensi, Kaj pardonu al ni niajn ŝuldojn,
kom nos anku pardonen al nose debenti;   quale anke ni pardonas a nia ofensanti,   kiel ankaŭ ni pardonas al niaj ŝuldantoj.
ne kondukan nos versu tento, e ne duktez ni aden la tento, Kaj ne konduku nin en tenton,
sed liberigan nos de malbono. ma liberigez ni del malajo. sed liberigu nin de la malbono.

The Reformed version follows Zamenhof's revised roots.