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In S02E08 of The Dragon Prince, Viren searches some ancient texts for information about an individual or entity that he met. The first text that he consults appears appears to be written in Arabic, or perhaps in another language that uses a similar script, such as Farsi or Urdu. Another text appears to be written with clear Latin-like letters. This is interesting, since the setting is a fantastical world, and most of the text that we have seen up to this point is written in a vague scrawl that presumably is intentionally not recognizable as any Earth language.

What does this text say? Is there any meaning behind the choice of real languages for the ancient texts?

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2 Answers 2

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According to an old Tumblr posting these texts are written in real human languages: Arabic and Danish respectively. These seem to provide a "bilingual bonus (TV Tropes) but nothing more.

The Danish has been translated as

“Finally, he told me his name. I had never heard a name like his, but neither had I imagined an elf like him either. He is stronger, older, and wiser than any other magical creature in Xadia. Yet he is a friend to all humans. Where others look down on us, call us inferior, he sees great potential in us. When we receive the gifts Aaravos promised us, they will pay for their conceit and become forced to see us as equals. And when we are equals, we can take our destiny into our own hands and build our future. I can see it before me-”

The Arabic is:

She cried when the stars of the sky turned black
They donned their masks
They turned their backs on her
And left Elarion to die.
Elarion, while her vessel fought death
Withered and suffered in darkness
Until the last star
Communicated from afar
She touched it: A fire, a gift, a spark
Elarion, with her pure whiteness
Embraced the night’s great dark flame
And when she bowed
She declared her faith A whisper. His name was Aaravos.
Elarion, black-eyed child,
Her twisted roots spread deep and far,
The humans’ might
Sparked by the light
Of Aaravos, her midnight star.
Elarion, shaking to her core,
Laid on the ground on an icy night
And in the cold
Pulled her roots close
Daring winter’s deadly bite

The rest of the poem is obscured but some more lines from the poem include:

Her flowers blossomed
Fears withering and darkness
Has searched
For
It lit with flames
A spark
The eyes of a hungry dragon

These might just let the writers embed a little "Easter Egg" for any views with a pause button and access to Google Translate. Or it might be to create a more realistic "foreign looking text", most of the audience wont' be able to read either text, but by using real human languages you create something that seems more realistic.

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I grabbed this screenshot from the episode:

Danish text

If I enter this text in Google translate:

vel er han en ven for alle mennesker. Hvor andre ser ned pa os, kalder os underlegen, ser han stort potentiale i os. Nar vi tager imod foraeringerne Aaravos har lovet os, skal de betale for deres indbildskhed de vil vaere tvunget til at se os som ligevaerdige. Og nar vi er ligevaerd[...] vi tage vores skaebne i egne haende[...] bygge vores fremtid. Jeg ser det

I get this translation from Danish:

well he is a friend to all people. Where others look down on us, call us inferior, he sees great potential in us. When we accept the gifts Aaravos has promised us, they must pay for their conceit, they will be forced to see us as equals. And when we are equal[...] we take our destiny into our own hands[...] to build our future. I see it

It appears to be sensible written text (it seems to make sense in context) that is translated to a non-English language and written in a fancy script to make it look exotic.

Working from the shot when he turns the page:

Hand turning a page with danish text in a fraktur-like script

I can reconstruct the following text:

Aaravos endelig fortalte han mig sit navn. Jeg havde aldrig hort et navn som hans, men jeg havde heller aldrig forestillet mig en elver som ham. Han er staerkere aeldre og visere end noget aerdne magisk vaesen i Xadia. Allige vel er han en ven for alle mennesker. Hvor andre ser ned pa os, kalder os underlegen, ser han stort potentiale i os. Nar vi tager imod foraeringerne Aaravos har lovet os, skal de betale for deres indbildskhed de vil vaere tvunget til at se os som ligevaerdige. Og nar vi er ligevaerd vi tage vores skaebne i egne haende bygge vores fremtid. Jeg ser det for mig i mine dromme en storslae by, hele menneskelighede [...]

Which Google translate tells me is:

Aaravos finally told me his name. I had never heard a name like his, but I had never imagined an elf like him either. He is stronger older and wiser than any earthly magical creature in Xadia. All right, he is a friend to all people. Where others look down on us, call us inferior, he sees great potential in us. When we accept the gifts Aaravos has promised us, they must pay for their conceit, they will be forced to see us as equals. And when we are equal we take our destiny into our own hands to build our future. I see it in my dreams a magnificent city, the whole of humanity...

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  • Is it from an existing work? Does it have any significant meaning to the show? Or just meant to look fancy?
    – fez
    Dec 9, 2021 at 22:06
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    I don't imagine this is a previously existing text; "Aaravos" is a character in-universe who has been magically imprisoned for unknown reasons, which this text may hint at.
    – DavidW
    Dec 9, 2021 at 22:23

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