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View Poll Results: Which race's language do you want to create first?
Night Elves - Darnassian 31 29.25%
Blood Elves - Thalassian 10 9.43%
Trolls - Zandali 18 16.98%
Elementals - Kalimag 3 2.83%
Orc - Orcish 18 16.98%
Titans (Earthen/Mechagnome/etc) - Titanic 8 7.55%
Dwarves - Dwarven 7 6.60%
Draenei - Eredun (Both corrupted and uncorrupted) 5 4.72%
Dragons - Draconic 4 3.77%
Tauren - Taur-ahe 2 1.89%
Voters: 106. You may not vote on this poll

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  #51  
Old 09-15-2011, 11:44 AM
Philostrate Philostrate is offline

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I wish but in that Cata music piece "Night Song"...a night elf piece...they sing
"quel'dorei" using the same sounding "Ae" instead of "EYE"
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  #52  
Old 09-15-2011, 12:40 PM
oblivion oblivion is offline

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long time lurker:

if you guys need any help in designing the alphabet or other things graphically, i'd be happy to help out.
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  #53  
Old 09-15-2011, 12:47 PM
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It could be that darnassian is very heavy on inflection. While I just said I can't see it being oriental, I do remember what little Chinese I learned (of which I remember almost nothing) was very much inflection oriented.

So one word with a harder inflection was no, and the same word with a softer inflection was dog.
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  #54  
Old 09-15-2011, 12:55 PM
Philostrate Philostrate is offline

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Originally Posted by Ferlion View Post
It could be that darnassian is very heavy on inflection. While I just said I can't see it being oriental, I do remember what little Chinese I learned (of which I remember almost nothing) was very much inflection oriented.

So one word with a harder inflection was no, and the same word with a softer inflection was dog.
That would be neat to try and develop that out some more. Some get on that!

Soooo my -new- question:

In Thalassian "Quel'Thalas" means "High Home" or "High Kingdom." In Darnassian and Thalassian "quel'dorei" means "children of high birth." Therefore, "quel" means something to do with "high" but not as a reference to elevation---high in regards to social status or influence or power. However, "quel" is not a word by itself---it is a piece of those two words. In "Quel'thalas" it is acts like an adjective and in "quel'dorei" it is like a noun.
Therefore, it is possible that the actual Darnassian word for "High birth" or "nobility" might be something like "queli" or "quelore." Can anyone tell me more about what is going on here?
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  #55  
Old 09-15-2011, 01:03 PM
Nimbosa Nimbosa is offline

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Originally Posted by Philostrate View Post
I wish but in that Cata music piece "Night Song"...a night elf piece...they sing
"quel'dorei" using the same sounding "Ae" instead of "EYE"
so night and high elves use "ei" and blood elves use "ai". makes sense.

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Originally Posted by Philostrate View Post
In Thalassian "Quel'Thalas" means "High Home" or "High Kingdom." In Darnassian and Thalassian "quel'dorei" means "children of high birth." Therefore, "quel" means something to do with "high" but not as a reference to elevation---high in regards to social status or influence or power. However, "quel" is not a word by itself---it is a piece of those two words. In "Quel'thalas" it is acts like an adjective and in "quel'dorei" it is like a noun.
Therefore, it is possible that the actual Darnassian word for "High birth" or "nobility" might be something like "queli" or "quelore." Can anyone tell me more about what is going on here?
what is there to explain? "quel" is a root word meaning "high" or "noble".

i am interested in how it's pronounced, though. i've heard "qu" in thalassian/darnassian pronounced as a "k" sound, but it doesn't make much sense for darnassian to have both "k" and "qu", with both sounding exactly the same all the time. on the other hand, "kw"el'dorei sounds really odd. maybe "qu" is somewhere in between?

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  #56  
Old 09-15-2011, 01:07 PM
Philostrate Philostrate is offline

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so night and high elves use "ei" and blood elves use "ai". makes sense.
No no, I made a mistake earlier....in the song versions, the nelf and belf dialects with "ei" being "ae" is the same. There is no difference.
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  #57  
Old 09-15-2011, 01:09 PM
Nimbosa Nimbosa is offline

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No no, I made a mistake earlier....in the song versions, the nelf and belf dialects with "ei" being "ae" is the same. There is no difference.
where is there a song with the blood elf version? "lament of the highbourne", though it says sin'dorei, was written by a high elf, who might pronounce it differently than a blood elf would.
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  #58  
Old 09-15-2011, 01:15 PM
Philostrate Philostrate is offline

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where is there a song with the blood elf version? "lament of the highbourne", though it says sin'dorei, was written by a high elf, who might pronounce it differently than a blood elf would.
"Lament of the Highborne" gives the Thalassian one...though the belf guards say "Sin'dorei" with the ei being "EYE" and Lament of the Highborne was given words after they became blood elves and in that song it is Sin-dor-"Ae"

I know this is like a mistake my Blizz but it would be a bonus if we could explain it.
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  #59  
Old 09-15-2011, 01:25 PM
Nimbosa Nimbosa is offline

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Originally Posted by Philostrate View Post
and Lament of the Highborne was given words after they became blood elves and in that song it is Sin-dor-"Ae"
it was still written by a high elf, though.

if all else fails we can just say they're different dialects, not necessarily represented by high/blood elf, maybe something like rural/urban.
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  #60  
Old 09-15-2011, 01:32 PM
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I'm probably biased here(was born in Ireland and grew up speaking Irish Gaelic and English) but to me elven languages have always had an Irish Gaelic/Scottish Gaelic/Welsh/Manx feel to them. Taking a closer look at them might be helpful, my friends are always fascinated by the pronunciation of the word as compared to the actual spelling. There are 3 major dialects to Irish Gaelic with slight variations,spelling and pronunciation that could be helpful with Darnassian,Thalassian etc.

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  #61  
Old 09-15-2011, 02:15 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by oblivion View Post
long time lurker:

if you guys need any help in designing the alphabet or other things graphically, i'd be happy to help out.
Your help will be very much appreciated. Once we've figure out the general sounds of the dialect (e.g. the a's e's i's, etc.) and do a bit of research on the general look of elvish scripts in-game we'd love to have your talents/opinions. If you want to get started on the research of in-game stuff and add it into the thread (or PM me with it) I'll add it into the original post for easy reference.
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  #62  
Old 09-15-2011, 07:41 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Darkstar View Post
I'm probably biased here(was born in Ireland and grew up speaking Irish Gaelic and English) but to me elven languages have always had an Irish Gaelic/Scottish Gaelic/Welsh/Manx feel to them. Taking a closer look at them might be helpful, my friends are always fascinated by the pronunciation of the word as compared to the actual spelling. There are 3 major dialects to Irish Gaelic with slight variations,spelling and pronunciation that could be helpful with Darnassian,Thalassian etc.
As I said earlier in the thread, I believe Sindarin was based on Welsh. I myself have absolutely no understanding of any Celtic languages, my area of expertise being Romance languages and Greek.
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  #63  
Old 09-15-2011, 08:39 PM
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Call me biased, but I feel like all three forms of Elvish should be written in a flowing, ornamental script like Tolkien's Tengwar, which is actually based on Hebrew.

Because I get an ego boost out of flaunting my intellectual superiority, here's a primer on writing systems, based on information on Unicode.com.
  • Alphabet - all phonemes are represented by symbols, generally associated with Indo-European languages.
  • Abjad - represents consonants only, reader must add vowels, generally associated with Semitic languages
  • Abugida - symbols represent sylables (a vowel/consonant pair), default vowel may be modified by diacritial marks, used by many Asian languages
  • Logosyllibary - each symbol represents a whole word or concept, combinations of symbols may modify meaning, best examples: Chinese, Cunieform
The "Tengwar" script Tolkien used as the written forms of Quenya, Sindarin, and Blackspeech is an example of a modified abjad. The in-line letters represent consonants only; vowels are added as diacritical marks over the letter that follows them.

Looking at the Darnassian examples on WoWPedia, there is a conspicuous lack of 'K' sounds. This would suggest that phoneme is not used. I also notice a preponderance of apostrophes and hyphens, too many to be contractions. It particularly shows up in the names of places. Plausible scenario: if the name of a place is composed of more than one word (e.g. New York), the two words are combined to indicate their reference to a single thing. German sort of does this, but Darnassian inserts apostrophes.

The hyphens could be the equivalent of an 'of' phrase. Instead of saying "Glory of Azshara," we say "Glory-Azshara." It would be even more interesting if this is in fact the posessive convention, equivalent to "-'s" in English. Instead of saying "Tyrande's frostsaber," we would say "frost'saber-Tyrande."

EDIT: Scratch everything I just said. The phrases with given translations throw all this out the window. That's what happens when I stay up late: I have lots of brilliant ideas, but I tend to overlook things. At least it sounded cool...

Words like 'Quel'dorei' definately suggest adjectives come before the nouns they descibe. Given that Blizzard is unlikely to have put much thought into their languages, I wouldn't be surprised if all of them use a copied English syntax. Meh, I'm going to bed before I get any more half-baked ideas.
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  #64  
Old 09-15-2011, 09:22 PM
Ruinshin Ruinshin is offline

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I'll try and check tonight, as it depends on how things go after all my work and studies go, but I can do a fly by around the major towns and such, try and pick out runes and letters, see if any are different, or if Blizzard just uses as standard set.

I know "common" looks nothing like English, using "archaic" runes over the English lettering system, as their are some "wanted" posters hanging around Gilneas that have runes on them.

I wonder if Blizzard actually has a system similar to Aurebesh from Star Wars. It would be interesting if they do, and just haven't actually supplied a codex to translate it to the public.

I'd be specifically looking for Trollish and Elven ruins. Though I believe the Church of Elune has it's own language within the Night Elven culture, so I actually don't know if any runes taken from Temples could be used... I doubt if Blizzard DID put in the effort to add different scripts to the different places of the world that they would use such an obscure lore piece though.
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  #65  
Old 09-15-2011, 10:18 PM
Yaskaleh Yaskaleh is offline

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I see no option for the human language, also known as Common.
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  #66  
Old 09-15-2011, 10:43 PM
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Ok, so I've been playing around with an idea for Darnassian writing. We could use Troll as a basis, which, given their ruins, would likely be close to Maya writing, but the problem is that the Night Elves are nowhere near Mayan culture in-game. Rather, they are much more Greek. However, they are still elves, which means that their language should look--well, Elvish. Therefore, I give you the prototype phrase from my experimental alphabet.



It says "Bandu Thoribas"

This uses Greek consonants and Quenya/Elvish vowels. I substituted the Elvish "R" for the Greek one since it just didn't look right. To make the "nd", I just wrote it as I would in cursive, making a line between them, which in this case designates one sound. Now then, tear this apart and tell me everything you hate about it.
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Old 09-15-2011, 11:33 PM
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See, the thing is, I always got a Greco-Roman vibe from the highborne, but modern night elves... not so much. Assuming that their languages began to split before the revolution I could definitely see Thalassian and even Nazja resembling Greek (though I, personally, would rather have Nazja resemble Sanskrit), but not Darnassian per se. Then again, I could've sworn we saw some Darnassian characters in-game, if not in WoW than in WCIII.
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  #68  
Old 09-15-2011, 11:47 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Yaskaleh View Post
I see no option for the human language, also known as Common.
Funny story, human culture is one of the least well represented in-game despite its consistent use. This is because we typically hear it from the context of our own real world language, so examples of active words/phrases don't exist outside of the randomly generated garble the in-game generator uses. We could technically spam things day in and day out in-game using the generator, but we'd be basically looking at gibberish because there aren't enough consistent grammatical rules or pertinent words available.

So common is one of the most difficult ones to figure out any general theme for, and thus one I'd be the most hesitant to use as the starter of the project.
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Old 09-15-2011, 11:47 PM
Ruinshin Ruinshin is offline

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Originally Posted by Omacron View Post
See, the thing is, I always got a Greco-Roman vibe from the highborne, but modern night elves... not so much. Assuming that their languages began to split before the revolution I could definitely see Thalassian and even Nazja resembling Greek (though I, personally, would rather have Nazja resemble Sanskrit), but not Darnassian per se. Then again, I could've sworn we saw some Darnassian characters in-game, if not in WoW than in WCIII.
I'm out looking for Darn scripts now, but I don't think Highborn and Night Elven tastes are all that different to be honest.

Take a look at the Temple of Elune in Darn. More, all of their pillows, beds, buildings, and blankets are all highly stylized, with the boards on the beds in elaborate owl carvings and the like. Definitely still showy.
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Old 09-16-2011, 12:06 AM
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Old 09-16-2011, 12:49 AM
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Originally Posted by Cantus View Post
Funny story, human culture is one of the least well represented in-game despite its consistent use. This is because we typically hear it from the context of our own real world language, so examples of active words/phrases don't exist outside of the randomly generated garble the in-game generator uses. We could technically spam things day in and day out in-game using the generator, but we'd be basically looking at gibberish because there aren't enough consistent grammatical rules or pertinent words available.

So common is one of the most difficult ones to figure out any general theme for, and thus one I'd be the most hesitant to use as the starter of the project.
There are a few presumably common names- "Caer Darrow" and the like, but the only common phrase I can think of is "Esarus thar no'Darador" or "By Blood and honor we serve".
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Old 09-16-2011, 01:13 AM
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There are a few presumably common names- "Caer Darrow" and the like, but the only common phrase I can think of is "Esarus thar no'Darador" or "By Blood and honor we serve".
And people complain there is no alliance war cry.

Back on topic, we have to remember, a lot of the artwork for books/posters is generic. Taking glyphs/runes from them isn't always viable considering where they reuse assets. I will say though that symbols found on race specific architecture is definitely considered viable material.
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  #73  
Old 09-16-2011, 01:17 AM
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Hmm. I've been thinking about Darnassian and how it makes no sense that an ancient language would be named after a city built only recently. What if the night elves just re-canonized their language just before the start of WoW when Teldrassil was raised and Darnassus constructed? It would make sense for the language to stagnate during the long vigil when scholarly types were rare since even the priesthood was a martial organization. It would also fit well with the night elves joining the Alliance at about the same time and wanting to present themselves well on the world stage with well-standardized language. Such a language would be much easier to translate and codify.

If we accept this, then it means that written form and probably some grammar too are a blank slate.
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Old 09-16-2011, 01:18 AM
Magistrix Verdande Magistrix Verdande is offline

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Originally Posted by Kike-Scott View Post
Nordrassil, Zin-Azshari, Quel'Dorei, Elune Adore. Those are the phrases said in Nightsong.
Crown of the heavens, High children, Glory of Azshara.

The thing about Elune Adore is that I can't help but to think it means "love of elune" or something of the sort, because... well, adore. And I'm thinking of it in french pronounciation as well <_<

Then I started thinking that it has "dore" in it, which is one letter short of "dorei" (children/people). Elune A'dore could certainly mean "Elune's children" as in "Elune's children welcomes you" etc, etc.

Edit: So I just came to think of the word "Tel" which means "Earth" in Darnassian... And my thoughts wandered to Tel'abim.
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The thing about words is that meanings can twist just like a snake, and if you want to find snakes look for them behind words that have changed their meaning.

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Old 09-16-2011, 01:25 AM
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Quote:
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Hmm. I've been thinking about Darnassian and how it makes no sense that an ancient language would be named after a city built only recently. What if the night elves just re-canonized their language just before the start of WoW when Teldrassil was raised and Darnassus constructed? It would make sense for the language to stagnate during the long vigil when scholarly types were rare since even the priesthood was a martial organization. It would also fit well with the night elves joining the Alliance at about the same time and wanting to present themselves well on the world stage with well-standardized language. Such a language would be much easier to translate and codify.
The problem with this is the immortality thing. It certainly wouldn't have changed much since the WotA, but that's a two way thing. Won't improve, but it won't degrade either.

If I had to guess, Darnassus and Darnassian are both named after something in their history, predating the War of the Ancients. Without knowing the meaning of Darnassus though, it's hard to know for sure.

With Darnassus being a new city meant to take on the Night Elves and shelter them from the wider world, and it involved a major movement to grow and move to the World Tree, and the fact that its on a World Tree to begin with, I don't think it's just a name pulled out of their hat.

I would think the name has history, and that history is linked to the name of their language. It certainly makes more sense than them renaming their language, though I doubt Blizzard gave it much thought.
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