Questions about languages, whether alien, fantasy, or human.

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6
votes
4answers
262 views

Universal Translator: Sometimes working instantly, sometimes not at all?

During the different franchise series (excluding ENT) there are only very few encounters with new or unknown species the crews of the ships don't understand. Most often even the most alien species ...
19
votes
2answers
1k views

How did the Black Speech come about?

It doesn't seem to be related to any other documented languages. Being endemic to Sauron's realm, with him persisting through the Ages, it would not likely have diverged naturally from another ...
3
votes
1answer
610 views

Within-universe, is Klingon a constructed language?

From the perspective of viewers of the Star Trek franchise, Klingon is a constructed language, constructed by the creators of the franchise. It is probably one of the most famous constructed ...
4
votes
3answers
314 views

Do orcs make references to a/the “devil”?

I just saw a Shadow Mordor E3 trailer and in one of the orc's lines, he says: He moves like a ghost; fights like a [the] devil! Is this accurate to what words orcs use or what they believe in ...
3
votes
1answer
57 views

Name of book with comparison to Riddley walker on its cover

About a year ago I was at the local library browsing their SF and came across a book with a blurb on its cover (or possibly inside flap) comparing it, or at least some aspect of it, to Riddley Walker. ...
41
votes
12answers
10k views

Why does C3PO talk to R2D2 in English?

Whenever we see C3PO talking to R2, he talks in English (well, that's what we hear), so at least not in the beeps that R2 uses. My question is why doesn't C3PO talk in R2's 'beeping' language when ...
1
vote
4answers
403 views

Why did Data call the French language “obscure”?

In the video below, Data refers to the French language as "obscure". Picard objects to this and Data is about to make a remark as to why the French language was indeed obscure. Is there any ...
6
votes
2answers
185 views

Why can't a lie be spoken in the Ancient Language?

While speaking in the Ancient Language in the Inheritance Cycle one can't tell a lie. The closest one can come to doing so is speaking a half-truth. Thereby circumventing this rule. But why can't ...
2
votes
1answer
120 views

How to name a pair of a King and Queen? [closed]

Is there any way to properly name the pair of a King and Queen, other than saying "King and Queen" (i.e. "cattle" for more than one cow)? Because if there is a better way to say "Rohan's King and ...
4
votes
1answer
462 views

How do you write a regal name with both regnal number and nickname?

I know this goes beyond the scope of fantasy, but I'm specifically interested in Game of Thrones. I've been compiling a spreadsheet of every named character within Game of Thrones, and am not sure how ...
7
votes
0answers
106 views

Article about science fiction languages

I'm looking for a journal item, probably written between 1992 and 1994 which discusses languages from Venus on the Half-Shell, Sagan's Contact, and several other novels, usually science fiction, ...
6
votes
1answer
382 views

How is Eowyn written in language of Rohan

How is Eowyn, shield maiden of Rohan written in Rohirric (is that the language of Rohan?)?
4
votes
1answer
91 views

Is there a guide to Orkan language?

In the TV Series Mork and Mindy, we see a few words that are Orkan (see below). Is there actually a guide/dictionary of Orkan language? (Mork and Mindy Wikia)
5
votes
1answer
202 views

Short story about English Language Transformation?

I read a short short SF story in the early 80's (I think it was an Asimov collection). The story wasn't more than 5 pages in a paperback and conjectured what English would look like in the future ...
29
votes
2answers
1k views

How accurate is the Chinese spoken in Firefly?

In the Firefly-verse, Western and Eastern cultures are mixed and many people inject Chinese into their speaking habits, usually to swear (a la frakking and frelling). Can anyone with knowledge of ...
6
votes
2answers
2k views

In Thor: The Dark World, what is the name of the language that Malekith and the other svartalfr speak?

I find answers acceptable in the following order: Name from the script of Thor: The Dark World. Name specific to this language in Marvel comic books that make mention of the dark elves. The correct ...
2
votes
4answers
10k views

What were the people saying in the parts of Elysium in Spanish, French and Afrikaans?

I love the movie Elysium, but if has one fault, it is that on occasions people drop into Spanish, French or Afrikaans. Don't get me wrong, it does seem quite natural for the characters to be ...
5
votes
1answer
146 views

Did Tolkien's contemporaries know Quenya?

Tolkien famously interacted with several other writers, most notably CS Lewis, as he was working on The Lord of the Rings and his other works. But did any of those writer friends really delve into ...
4
votes
1answer
164 views

Were any portions of Tolkien's writing truly “translated”?

Part of what gives Tolkien's writings such weight and power is that they feel like they belong alongside Beowulf and the Odyssey, translated epics from another era. Even the way he writes, slightly ...
2
votes
2answers
2k views

Where can I find the black speech dialog used in 'Desolation of Smaug'?

I want to read the actual Black Speech sentences uttered by the Orcs and by Sauron in 'The Desolution of Smaug'. Does anybody know what they were or where can I find them?
8
votes
1answer
778 views

How do I pronounce “Sauron”?

I have always pronounced Sauron like 'S-ow-ron', after reading Appendix E of the Lord of the Rings, but now I just listened to this recording of Tolkien reciting the Eagles' Song, and it sounds like ...
5
votes
2answers
172 views

How many alien languages are spoken on screen in the entire Babylon 5 series?

In In the Beginning I know that Minbari is spoken briefly (I believe they opt to segue into English rather than use subtitles, but correct me if I'm wrong on that... it's been awhile). Narn and ...
3
votes
1answer
321 views

Languages of Mass Effect

Aside from short phrases like "keelah se'lai" and names like "Sur'Kesh," do we ever get samples of fictional languages in the Mass Effect universe? For the most part that franchise uses the normal ...
10
votes
1answer
337 views

Are groats defined in Game of Thrones?

Just moved on to Book 4 A Feast for Crows and found this word sticking out at me in a few chapters: Groat. It pops up twice in one chapter with Cersei saying something like "so-and-so is not worth ...
8
votes
1answer
591 views

Are the middle earth languages spoken in the LOTR/Hobbit films faithfully pronounced from the texts written by Tolkien?

As most Star Trek fans know, Klingon is now a spoken language. Are the middle earth languages spoken in the LOTR/Hobbit films faithfully pronounced from the texts written by Tolkien? To clarify, when ...
3
votes
0answers
94 views

Harry Potter spell languages? [duplicate]

In HP, do Wizards from different nationalities have different names for spells, and if so do they have to pronounce them as such during the casting? It seems that more veteran wizards don't seem to ...
6
votes
2answers
740 views

I want to speak the Goa'uld language, where to get started?

I want to learn how to speak Goa'uld. I know it's weird but I was wondering if anyone could show me some good sites that can help me.
5
votes
1answer
125 views

How do the Amazons of Themyscira know English?

It would seem that they cut themselves off from civilization and it's considered a Greek island. How would they even know what English is?
6
votes
1answer
168 views

Quenya for “hold” as in “to hold a belief”

Does anyone know if there is any word in Quenya that is well suited for translating “hold” as in “to hold a belief?” The context if “Fire and Ice” by Robert Frost: ...
11
votes
1answer
275 views

Trying to remember a novel with an efficient alien language

I remember reading this science fiction novel several years ago. Here's what I remember (or think I remember) about the story: Coded transmissions are intercepted right before assassinations are ...
-3
votes
2answers
1k views

After Earth: The characters use English. That isn't realistic, considering the setting, I mean — or is it?

According to Wikipedia, the plot goes as follows: In the near future, after humanity abandoned Earth after cataclysmic events, they re-established society on the planet Nova Prime, light years ...
2
votes
1answer
427 views

Looking for canon Quenya and Sindarin dictionary

Are there any canonical English <-> Elvish dictionaries, that means with no added material? Some Grammar would also be useful.
7
votes
1answer
485 views

What do we know about the Black Speech of Mordor?

We know the Ring Verse (Ash Nazg . . .), and single words like 'Ghâsh' (Fire). Do we know any more about canonical Black Speech?
43
votes
3answers
3k views

Was Picard speaking French and being translated the entire time?

Someone forwarded me this link titled Sudden Star Trek realization : (Also found on reddit) So, is there any clue that indicate that Picard is really speaking French and being translated to ...
4
votes
1answer
757 views

What does Q*Bert say when he dies?

When the classic Q*Bert character dies, he says something that sounds like an alien language: What is he supposed to be saying, exactly?
3
votes
0answers
75 views

Does the beeping language of R2-D2 follow any rules? [duplicate]

Creating the beeps and sounds that make up R2's language consisted of electronically synthesised and human-generated sounds: R2-D2's personality was developing like a toddler's, and Burtt ...
6
votes
2answers
292 views

Was the Wookie language fully designed or is it just random emotionally-relevant sounds?

We know that some of the other Star Wars languages were fairly well developed by the movie's creators, in terms of vocabulary, grammar, etc. Was the Wookie language designed in this level of detail ...
11
votes
2answers
3k views

Is it possible to understand what R2-D2 is saying?

I often find myself in Null Void when someone talks to an Astromech droid flawlessly. How can I understand voice of an Astromech like R2-D2? Is it like an advanced version of morse code or ...
11
votes
1answer
2k views

Is the Doctor Who episode 'Blink' the first use of the phrase “timey-wimey”?

Was the phrase "timey-wimey" (or time-y wimey) used in Doctor Who, or elsewhere, before it appeared in the script of the 2007 episode "Blink"?
3
votes
0answers
215 views

What story features an alien who lands on a warring earth and maintains he could stop it if he taught humans his language?

I have been told about a story and wondered if anyone could tell me what it is/where it comes from? The plot is: An alien visitor (crash?) lands on earth Alien is taken prisoner by humans Alien ...
8
votes
1answer
497 views

Who discovered the Engineer's language (and how it sounded)?

On the trip to the Engineer's world, David was learning to speak their language. But where did the lessons come from? On the star maps that were left, they showed a few symbols, but a) there don't ...
8
votes
4answers
954 views

Why do alien cultures tend to have one language, one religion etc

What are some common logical reasons given within any sci-fi universe for the lack of cultural diversity within a single alien race? Examples of what I mean: Star Trek: Vulcans come from Vulcan and ...
12
votes
4answers
1k views

Was Aragorn's First Language Elvish?

Aragorn was taken to Rivendell by his mother when he was two years old; presumably he lived in Rivendell for some time, as in one of the Peter Jackson movies he mentions to, I believe, Éowyn that he ...
4
votes
1answer
460 views

Was there Klingon used in any of Star Wars movies?

A comment on this SO question stated: Klingon is a real Earth language, but it's only heard in the second movie and never shown printed. I couldn't find any references to that. Was there ...
9
votes
2answers
800 views

Do the Borg have a language?

I just realised something, with the amalgamation of species and cultures into the Borg, what language do they speak? I see three options but I can't find evidence for any: The Language of Species ...
28
votes
9answers
4k views

Does The Doctor hear everyone speaking in Gallifreyan?

I just spotted this on reddit today : I've only watched the newer episodes (from 2005-Present) and I don't believe this question was ever answered, but I just thought of this -- The Doctor ...
6
votes
1answer
489 views

Are swords usually referred to as male, or female?

"and drawing Scalpel whistling from her sheath" (Fritz Leiber, Swords Against Wizardry) I was surprised to see the Mouser's blade referred to as "she". No particular reason why, I just thought ...
10
votes
1answer
319 views

Was the first T-800 sent from Europe?

Was the first T-800 sent from a Europen country? I understand why all the later versions of the Arnold model sounded like the first one. But why did the first one have a thick accent? The T2 version ...
6
votes
1answer
955 views

Has French fallen out of use?

"This is my Universal Translator, although it only translate into an incomprehensible dead language" When Cubert speaks into it 'Hello', it responds 'Bonjour'. Does this mean French is a dead ...
18
votes
1answer
679 views

Why did the Klingon language flourish?

I've been thinking recently about the development of the Klingon language, and how it started off as a few small phrases developed by James Doohan (Scotty) and was developed into a full language over ...