Table of contents:
- Lincos: a language for communicating with aliens
- Solresol: the most musical language
- Ithkuil: learning the world through language
- Toki Pona: The Easiest Artificial Language
Artificial languages are created for different purposes. Some are designed to give credibility to a fictional space in a book or film, others to obtain a new, simple and neutral means of communication, while others are designed in order to comprehend and reflect the essence of the world. It's easy to get confused in the variety of artificial languages. But there are several of the most "unusual among the unusual".
The elaboration and durability of each language also varies greatly. Some, such as Esperanto, have been “living” for several centuries, while others, having originated on Internet sites, exist through the efforts of their authors for a month or two.
For some artificial languages, sets of rules have been developed, while others consist of several tens or hundreds of words designed to demonstrate the unusualness and dissimilarity of the language to others and do not form a harmonious system.
Lincos: a language for communicating with aliens
The language "lingos" (lingua cosmica) was invented for contact with extraterrestrial intelligence. It is impossible to speak it: there are no “sounds” as such in it. It is also impossible to write it down - there are no graphic forms in it ("letters" in our understanding).
It is based on mathematical and logical principles. There are no synonyms or exceptions in it, only the most universal categories are used. Messages on a linkos need to be transmitted using pulses of different lengths, for example, light, radio signal, sound.
The inventor of the linkos, Hans Freudenthal, proposed establishing contact by first transmitting the main signs - a dot, "more" and "less", "equal". The number system was further explained. If the parties understood each other, then the communication could be complicated. Lincos is the language of the initial stage of communication. If earthlings and aliens wanted to exchange poetry, it would have to come up with a new language.
It is not a "ready-made" language, but a kind of framework - a set of basic rules. It can be changed and improved depending on the task. Several lincos principles have been applied to codify messages directed to solar-type stars.
Solresol: the most musical language
Even before the surge in popularity of artificial languages, French musician Jean François Südre invented the "solresol" language, based on combinations of seven notes. In total, it contains about twelve thousand words - from two-syllable to five-syllable. Part of speech was determined by the position of stress. Texts can be written in solresol in letters, notes or numbers, they can be drawn in seven colors. You can communicate on it using musical instruments (playing messages), flags (like in Morse code), or simply singing or speaking. There are ways of communication in solresol, designed for the deaf and the blind.
The melodiousness of this language can be illustrated by the example of the phrase "I love you": in solresol it will be "dore milasi domi". For brevity, it was suggested to omit the vowels in writing - "dflr" means "kindness", "frsm" - a cat.
There is even a Solresol grammar, supplied with a dictionary. It has been translated into Russian.
Ithkuil: learning the world through language
One of the most difficult in terms of grammar and writing is the language "Ifkuil". It belongs to philosophical languages, created for the most accurate and fast transmission of large amounts of information (the principle of "semantic compression").
The creator of Ifkuil, John Qihada, did not set out to develop a language close to natural. His creation is based on the principles of logic, psychology and mathematics. Ithkuil is constantly improving: Qihada, up to the present day, makes changes in the language he constructed.
Ithkuil is very difficult in terms of grammar: it has 96 cases, and a small number of roots (about 3600) is compensated by a significant number of morphemes that clarify the meaning of the word. A small word in Ifkuil into natural language can only be translated with a long phrase.
It is proposed to write texts in Ifkuil using special characters - from the combination of four basic characters, several thousand can be made. Each combination indicates both the pronunciation of the word and the morphological role of the element. You can write text in any direction - from left to right, and from right to left, but the author himself suggests writing a vertical "snake" and reading from the upper left corner.
Moreover, the Ifkuil alphabet is based on Latin. A simplified writing system is also built in the Latin alphabet, which allows you to type texts on a computer.
There are a total of 13 vowel sounds and 45 consonants in this artificial language. Many of them individually are easy to pronounce, but in the text they form combinations with difficulty. Besides, ifkuil has a system of tones, as, for example, in Chinese.
On Ifkuil, they don't joke, they don't create puns and ambiguities. The language system obliges to add special morphemes to the roots, showing exaggeration, understatement, irony. This is an almost ideal "legal" language - without ambiguity.
Toki Pona: The Easiest Artificial Language
A large proportion of artificial languages are created deliberately simplified so that they can be learned quickly and easily. The simplicity champion is Toki Pona, with 14 letters and 120 words. Toki Pona was developed in 2001 by Sonya Ellen Kisa (Sonya Lang) of Canada.
This language is almost the complete opposite of Ifkuil: it is melodic, there are no cases and complex morphemes in it, and most importantly, every word in it is very polysemous. The same construction can mean completely different things. For example, “jan li pona” is “a good person” (if we just point to a person) or “a person fixes” (point to a plumber).
The same thing in tokipona can also be called differently, depending on the attitude of the speaker towards it. For example, a coffee lover may call it “telo pimaje wawa” (“strong dark liquid”), while a hater might call it “telo ike mute” (“very bad liquid”).
All land mammals in it are designated by one word - soweli, so a cat from a dog can be distinguished only by directly pointing to the animal.
Such ambiguity serves as the flip side of the simplicity of tokipona: words can be learned in a few days, but it will take much longer to memorize already established stable turns. For example, "jan" is a person. "Jan pi ma sama" is a compatriot. And the "roommate" is "jan pi tomo sama".
Toki Pona quickly developed a following - the community of fans of this language on Facebook numbers several thousand people. Now there is even a Tokipono-Russian dictionary and grammars of this language.
The Internet allows you to learn almost any artificial language and find like-minded people. But in real life, artificial language courses are almost absent. The exception is the groups of learners of Esperanto, the most popular international auxiliary language today.
And there is also a sign language, and if it seems too complicated to someone, you should know - there is an easy way to learn sign language from illustrations.