Language App Will Soon Let Users Learn ‘Game of Thrones’ Language High Valyrian

The language-learning app Duolingo will now teach users how to converse in High Valyrian as part of its instructional programming.

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The language, which is spoken by Daenerys Targaryen on Game of Thrones, has been in the apps’ “incubator” for several months, and now has a completion date. The San Francisco Chronicle reports that the language structure of High Valyrian was developed by the UC Berkeley alumnus David J. Peterson for the HBO adaptation of the George R.R. Martin series.

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In the HBO series, High Valyrian is one of the last languages spoken by the descendants of Old Valyria. Peterson was hired on, according to Mental Floss, to develop both High Valryian and another language spoken in the series, Dothraki.

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In addition, Peterson taught a summer class entitled, “The Linguistics of Game of Thrones and the Art of Language Invention.” Peterson explained at the time that the goal of the class was to help students build their own ways of communicating, reported the San Francisco Chronicle. 

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As HBO is gearing up to debut the seventh season of the show, Peterson teamed up with Duolingo to give die-hard fans of the world-famous book and TV series a way to truly get in touch with their favourite characters.

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Some of the phrases taught in the program include “Skorverdon zaldrīzoti Daenerys ēza?” (“How many dragons does Daenerys have?”), “Varys zaldrīzerme Dovaogēdī majaqsa” (“Varys admires the indestructible Unsullied”), and of course, “Valar morghulis” (“All men must die”).

A beta version of Duolingo’s High Valyrian lessons will launch for web browsers on July 13th, just in time for the premiere of the seventh season of Game of Thrones, on July 16th. These lessons will eventually be released to iOS and Android apps as well.




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