Friday, November 19, 2010

Speak geek: the world of made-up language

Caleb Cox, in an article in called "Speak geek: the world of made-up language," discusses invented languages and linguist Arika Okrent's recent book, The Land of Invented Languages. Mentioned in the article are languages such as Elvish, Klingon, John Wilkins' Analytical Language, James Cook Brown's Loglan, Esperanto, and Blissymbolics. GR, a friend of IS, says, "BTW, I have a soft spot for Wilkins; his is the only orthography based purely on semantics. Unfortunately the only fluent writer was Robert Hooke. News of his discovery of the universal joint was delayed for many years because he chose to write the original description in Wilkins' script!" Speaking of obscure languages, GR also suggests Complete Babylonian: A Teach Yourself Guide by Martin Worthington, saying "it is truly excellent and remarkably modern both in appearance and conception -- a must have for your bookshelf."


Simon Levy said...
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Simon Levy said...

Aside from Esperanto, the fatal flaw in all these languages is that if you become fluent in any of them, no one will ever want to have sex with you. So they are virtually guaranteed never to have native speakers.

Of course, as soon as a language DOES have native speakers, it starts to gain irregularities like any natural language, as Benjamin Bergen has shown.