Can you speak Dothraki? Creating a fictional language for ‘Game of Thrones’

WASHINGTON – When HBO’s “Game of Thrones” producers put out a casting call for the creation of a fake language, David J. Peterson rose to the challenge.

The job was to craft a new language for a fictional tribe of characters who live in the pages of the bestselling fantasy novel and on the screen of the award- winning television show.

The result: Dothraki, a language that eloquently illustrates the lives of Khaleesi and the people over whom she governs.

Peterson, a former English professor, beat out 30 other language creators in a linguistics casting call for the show.

“I’m doing what I love and what I would be doing anyway, except I’m getting paid,” Peterson says. “It really is a dream come true.”

Peterson says he had to start with the few words and phrases that “Game of Thrones” author George R.R. Martin provided in the books, building an entire vocabulary from it.


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