The Latest News
Connect with Us

Notable Releases
From the Store
Game of Thrones Stark Womens Slim Fit T-Shirt
Game of Thrones Stark Womens Slim Fit T-Shirt
HBO US
Featured Sites
License Holders

Jump to content


Photo

The Old Tongue - Fan Conlanging


  • Please log in to reply
6 replies to this topic

#1 Adogs

Adogs

    Commoner

  • Members
  • Pip
  • 14 posts

Posted 07 August 2012 - 05:11 AM

Hi there everybody,

Does anybody know of any unofficial fan conlanging of other ASoIaF languages? I'm interested in having a play around with a version of the Old Tongue, based on the samples such as those listed here:

http://awoiaf.westeros.org/index.php/Old_Tongue

One thing that's struck me looking at it - the fragments of the Old Tongue as spoken by the giants look like a completely different language to the fragments of the Old Tongue as seen spoken by men. The giants' version looks like a monosyllabic, isolating language (like Vietnamese or Classical Chinese - http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Isolating_language).

E.g.

Woh dak nag gram = little squirrel people
Mag Mar Tun Doh Weg = Mag the Mighty
Wun Weg Wun Dar Wun = ??? (Wun son of Wun father of Wun?)

Whereas the humans' version looks like polysyllabic "standard fantasy pseudo-Welsh" aka "let's add the letter y to everyone's name". See "sygerrik", "Toregg", "Torwyrd" and "Varamyr" for details.

Is it possible that they're two languages, but sharing roughly the same lexicon, despite operating on two different grammatical structures?

Human "speciolect" - Magnar
Giant "speciolect" - Mag Nar

Maybe even that the Giant version is an Old-Tongue-based-creole?

Even if that wouldn't be plausible in a natural language, it might be fun to experiment with.

If anyone's interested in seeing what I come up with, I'll put what I've got online and post a link on here.

#2 gussvenin

gussvenin

    Commoner

  • Members
  • Pip
  • 17 posts

Posted 08 August 2012 - 04:42 PM

I haven't heard of any fan conlangs for ASoIaF.

Here is what was compiled by Lajaki from the first 4 books regarding the old tongue: http://wiki.dothraki...#The_Old_Tongue
Not much info there really except Jon's description and a couple words. I'm guessing there could be many ways to explain why there seems to be a style difference between the words the giants use and the longer words used by humans. It could be treated just as a coincidence since the sample size is very small. Or one could create some other historical reason for it since it's a very old language that few people speak.

#3 Adogs

Adogs

    Commoner

  • Members
  • Pip
  • 14 posts

Posted 08 August 2012 - 05:39 PM

Thanks for the link. I think I'd seen most of that also on the westeros wiki.

I've started having a play with it, beginning with a "giants language" based on the samples, structured as a tonal isolating language (I speak semi-fluent Mandarin, so I think that'd be fun). Might be interesting to play with the idea that the wildlings think the giants aren't very bright, speaking in monosyllables and what not, but make their language deceptively complicated.

Once I've got that functioning, I'll see if I can make a "human wildling language" that looks more like faux-celtic. Y'know, to keep in the fantasy vein.

Concept being that they're actually two separate languages, but with very closely related lexicons, close enough that they can communicate. Referring to Jon saying the giants could speak the Old Tongue "of a fashion".

Will make up some kind of back story to explain it.

#4 armidil0

armidil0

    Killer of Threads

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 1,195 posts

Posted 01 March 2013 - 02:40 PM

Anybody think that the clans of the mountains in the Vale use the grammar of the old tongue? They use common tongue's words, but they have words out of order sometimes "shagga likes this not" and such. maybe It's a weird mix of Common tongue words, with a hint of Old tongue word palcement? Shagga also calls Tyrion a boyman, meaning they don't have a word for dwarf. Which could have carried over from Old Tongue, since we know from the a Davos chapter in DwD that they used to kill their dwarf children, so why give them a name? Or they could be using the direct translation from Old tongue which in common tongue would literally mean boyman (but once again, that doesn't make much sense becasue they never grew up to be men).

#5 Adogs

Adogs

    Commoner

  • Members
  • Pip
  • 14 posts

Posted 17 May 2013 - 09:04 PM

Anybody think that the clans of the mountains in the Vale use the grammar of the old tongue? They use common tongue's words, but they have words out of order sometimes "shagga likes this not" and such. maybe It's a weird mix of Common tongue words, with a hint of Old tongue word palcement? Shagga also calls Tyrion a boyman, meaning they don't have a word for dwarf. Which could have carried over from Old Tongue, since we know from the a Davos chapter in DwD that they used to kill their dwarf children, so why give them a name? Or they could be using the direct translation from Old tongue which in common tongue would literally mean boyman (but once again, that doesn't make much sense becasue they never grew up to be men).


It's possible they could be using Old Tongue syntax, but they could also just speak some other language isolate from before the days of the Andals. The Westeros equivalent of Basque or something...

Also, it's not made clear if they actually speak Common to each other, they may just be speaking it to Tyrion as a second language. For all we know, they could be quite eloquent in their native language.

Edited by Adogs, 17 May 2013 - 09:05 PM.


#6 Rahgh Neqaj

Rahgh Neqaj

    Hedge Knight

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPipPip
  • 254 posts

Posted 04 August 2013 - 01:58 PM

Considering that GRRM promised to show us more of the region beyond the wall, is there any chance that HBO puts in an order to get the Old Language created?

#7 Horus Ex Machina

Horus Ex Machina

    Laughing Man

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 4,368 posts

Posted 02 March 2014 - 01:02 PM

Considering that GRRM promised to show us more of the region beyond the wall, is there any chance that HBO puts in an order to get the Old Language created?

I would hope so... we'll know this season whether or not it's going to be used.

 

There was mention of "other languages" by Ciaran Hinds as Mance Raydar, but it was a bit off-hand and intimated more than one rather than the Old Tongue specifically.   They could just bypass this one, but hopefully not.  Valyrian was kinda essential to the story and Dothraki added to the foreignness of Essos.  The Old Tongue is kinda like the lost remnants of Gaelic, it doesn't seem to mean as much to the story line so the producers might just leave it out to save time.