Epenthesis

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Epenthesis is the addition of a sound to a word in order to help pronunciation.

Word final

In Dothraki words can't end with just any letter. There are certain consonants or clusters that are disallowed.

  1. Words can't end in /w/, /g/ or /q/. If a word were to end in one of these consonants a /-e/ is added to the end.
  2. Words can't end in a geminate (double consonant). Generally this is fixed by adding an /-e/ to the end. For example the past tense of kaffat (to crush) would be kaff but since that ends in a geminate it instead becomes kaffe.
  3. Words can't end in consonant clusters that is made up of a consonant followed by an approximant. In Dothraki this means words ending in /-Cw/, /-Cr/, /-Cl/ or /-Cy/ where C is any consonant. In cases where these clusters appear it is fixed with adding a /-e/.
  4. There are certain nouns that are irregular which don't follow these rules. They are generally nouns that end in /-CCV/ like tolorro. The accusative of tolorro would be tolorr but since geminate endings aren't allowed it instead becomes tolor. Since these nouns are irregular they simply need to be learnt.

Some known irregular nouns (nominative and accusative):

  • enosshoenosh
  • jeddajed
  • tolorrotolor

Other examples

With the verb tat = "to do" the past tense would normally have been just a single t, so to make a word out of it an /e-/ is added so that the past tense becomes et.

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