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Does Star Trek Have A Language?

Does Star Trek Have A Language?
vulcan star trek language
(Last Updated On: November 3, 2022)

Star Trek

The question has been asked before, but it’s still worth asking again: Does Star Trek have its own language?

It seems like an odd question to ask about the TV show, especially when there are more important questions to ask about the accuracy of its science and whether it’s good or bad that we’re inching closer to the world depicted in it every day.

The answer isn’t really simple, but neither is this question.

Mind you, when we talk about language in Star Trek, we’re talking about something more than the spoken and written language of characters like Kirk and Spock.

What languages are in Star Trek?

There are a lot of alien languages in the Star Trek series, which makes sense considering that there are a lot of planets and civilizations throughout the various TV shows and movies.

For example, Jean-Luc Picard is fluent in Klingon and commands officers to speak 24th-century English with varying degrees of fluency. Harve Bennett – creator of all three movies – stated he wanted each civilization to have its own unique language or code system.

On Earth, the Ohlonean Native American Language played an important role because it is one of Earth’s oldest natural languages still spoken today, along with many others.

star trek words
star trek languages

The Klingon language of Star Trek

Klingon is the official language of the fictional universe in which the TV series Star Trek takes place. This idea was coined by actor James Doohan, who was running out of phrases while filming one episode and created a few lines in what he called Klingonese.

The Klingon language used on-screen reflects Doohan’s dialect of Scots Gaelic, as William Shatner once explained that he himself could not speak it. However, later episodes have included a few phrases spoken in Klingon.

Marc Okrand created the Klingon Language based on a cross between Native American, Inuit, Serbo-Croatian, Georgian, Hawaiian and other languages.

Other members of the TNG production staff such as David Gerrold (who wrote The Trouble with Tribbles) assisted in this endeavor.

Since its conception, Klingon has grown in popularity among many people who enjoy studying linguistics or have an interest in learning it for fun.

As a result, most speakers are interested in what is being said rather than getting the proper translations. Do you hear about the Klingon translators? Knew it.

The Klingon Language Institute has been working for years to create a dictionary of words from the series, mostly from The Next Generation and Deep Space Nine.

They’ve been using their members’ knowledge of real-world languages combined with previously published dictionaries for guidance.

Since some words don’t translate directly into English, they include definitions/explanations written in natural human language for context as well as cross-referencing examples from different episodes so viewers can understand how words are used.

There is no definite name for the Star Wars language, but one possibility is Klingon. 

No. It’s a fictional language, first created for the 1984 film The Search for Spock by James Doohan and updated for later movies.

The Vulcan language of Star Trek

Vulcan is the only official language and real language of the planet Vulcan. While it was developed by actor Leonard Nimoy and linguist/futurist Mark Okrand.

More so, it’s mostly been relegated to the realm of fiction for most of its existence. It never really got a chance to become an actual proper language.

In a recent language meeting in Portland, Oregon, different ideas were proposed as to what it should sound like: Christopher Lauer said that he feels strongly that Vulcans have a singing sort of accent which would be more like singing through your nose.

The Ohlonean language in Star Trek

The Ohlonean language in Star Trek was first introduced in an episode called The Andorian Incident which aired on November 27, 1997. This is a very old version of the fictional and extinct North American Indian tribal group, that inhabited central and northern California.

Later in another episode, entitled Return To Grace, we find out that for Captain Picard, his closest link to home is his Old Picard family bible that he found among his belongings when he came aboard USS Enterprise-D in 2363.

The Tamarian Language in Star Trek

In the 1990s, there was a popular theory about the Tamarian Language that had many people convinced. The theory is linked to a deleted scene from the final episode of Star Trek: The Next Generation, All Good Things.

In it, a Federation-made ‘Star Trek-related iPhone’ from 1992 (the original Communicator) records Lt. Commander Data speaks in an unknown language and is described as being Tamarian with its own dictionary of meanings encoded in it.

However, this Tamarian language has never been explored in any later incarnations or products of Star Trek canon and has remained an unconfirmed idea ever since the episode aired over twenty years ago now.

languages in star trek
startrek language

Written Languages in Star Trek

Here are the written languages we’ve seen in Star Wars. The ancient and original language of the Sith lords on Tattooine is called Bocce.

It’s never spoken or written aloud but is seen scrawled on old tombs and shown during Master Yoda’s training sequences with Luke Skywalker.

We can also see it when Jor-El tells his son Kal-El about his homeworld. As a rule, this Kryptonian language doesn’t have any punctuation marks and appears to be written horizontally across the page.

They do use symbols that resemble shapes from our own alphabet, like Greek letters. However, those glyphs don’t necessarily match up to what they sound like in English. For example, the letter L sounds more like r.

Many different alien races use a wide variety of written languages, but most are never shown on screen.

In some cases, however, we do get to see them in action. The most prominent examples are those used by English-speaking characters, including Klingon, Vulcan, and Dothraki.

While their writing systems differ in how they’re presented (e.g., on-screen or in print), their written languages share many similarities when it comes to their structure and syntax.

Frequently Asked Questions

The word ‘hola’ is the Klingon word for hello.

There are a lot of countries in Africa, but not all of them speak English. Many African countries speak their own languages, as well as French and Portuguese. Some countries that speak English include: Kenya, Nigeria, Ghana, South Africa and Botswana.

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