Did you know there are a number of languages that have been formally invented for use in literature, politics, television and more? Read on for some interesting facts about just a few in existence.
- Solresol – invented by François Sudre; only seven syllables based on the Western musical scale; the first and only musically-based interlanguage
- Nadsat – Russian-influenced language used in A Clockwork Orange, the dystopian novella by Anthony Burgess
- Newspeak – fictional language in the novel Nineteen Eighty-Four, by George Orwell
- Quenya & Sindarin – Elvish languages used in J.R.R. Tolkien’s works; influenced by Finnish and Welsh
- Dothraki & Valyrian – spoken in the television series “Game of Thrones”
- Navi – spoken in Avatar; includes popping-like sounds that are found in Georgian and Amharic languages
- Esperanto – created by Ludwig Zamenhof to be an easily-learned, neutral language
- Láadan – invented by Suzette Haden Elgin in 1982 to better express women’s feelings (widazhad, for example, means “to be pregnant late in term and eager for the end”)
- Ithkuil – a philosophical language with fifty-eight distinct sounds (some say it is almost impossible to pronounce)
How does one go about creating a new language? It all depends on the intended use. Those created for short-term use, such as in a movie, would need little more than some choice vocabulary and the questions/phrases used in conversation. Those intended to be used long-term and be widely spread would need to put into place phonology (system of the language’s sounds), morphology (rules for creating words), syntax (ways of creating sentences) and – of course – the vocabulary!
Peter founded Argo Translation, originally based in Milwaukee, WI, in 1995. Prior to transferring his love of all things international and his savvy business expertise into Chicago’s premier translation agency, he attended the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee, where he graduated with a major in finance and human resource management. After graduation he went on to become an Italian translator and project manager for an international medical equipment manufacturer and major airline.