High Valyrian Derivational Affixes

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Derivational affixes are prefixes and suffixes used to create a new word, as opposed to inflectional affixes, which are used to inflect an existing word. In some cases it is debatable whether a particular affix is inflectional or derivational; in general, such questionable affixes are included here just in case.



-enka -ys, -on, -or adj. I: forms adjectives from nouns, which are usually used like nouns that are put before other nouns adjectively or adjectives ending in -like in English:

do(r)-: forms negatives:

-ēgrie -ēgrior adj. III: some kind of intensifier:

nā- forms opposites, similarly to English "un-" (also used for verbs, participles and nouns):

-(o)qitta -ys, -on, -or adj. I: privative/abessive, indicates lack of something, like English -less. Possibly a perfect participle in origin.

The -o- is added if the stem of the primary word cannot form a cluster with the following -q-.

-(s)īha -ys, -on, -or adj. I: forms locative adjectives, which indicate the place a noun is associated with.

-(h)ōñe -ōñor adj. II forms ablative adjectives, denoting origins:

-lie adj. III, allophones -rie, -nie.


(for class II and III adjectives), -irī (for class I): basic adverbial suffix.

-kydoso: forms adverbs from pronouns, seems to be an instrumental in origin. (cf. AV -kydho, kyd·ȳbagon.)


-āzma 1lun.: augmentative.[4]

-albar 1aq.: augmentative.

-ītsos 3sol.: diminutive, seems to form nouns specifically from nouns and indicates their smaller version.

-iapos 3sol.: diminutive, forms nouns from nouns, verbs and adjectives(participles),specifically indicating something small with related meaning.

-anna 1lun.: diminutive, seems to form from nouns and verbs.

Perhaps the kinship terms for cross cousins are of this origin: iāpanna, qȳbranna, velmanna, ñābranna.

-io 3lun.: augmentative, that is, specifically the opposite of the diminutive.

  • kēl·io "lion ('great cat.')"
  • poss. nūm·io "pearl ('great seed.')"
  • poss. ōdr·io "wound ('great damage.')"
  • possibly also the source of Low Valyrian names like Syrio, Daario.

-kio(for V-fin), -io (for C-fin) 3lun. It forms nomina agentis aka. agent nouns from verbs, which indicate the entity acting. Similar to English "-er, -or". :

-illa 1aq°. (note anomalous gender)[5]: associated with byproducts[6], seems to form from nouns and verbs. Might be mutated to -ella or -īlla due to contraction of the stem vowel of a vowel-final verb.

-ion 3ter.: There appear to be several meanings for this suffix, or rather several suffixes of this form. Among these are:

  1. The "type 2," or "generic" substantive form for adjectives of class I and II.
  2. An allomorph of the -lion suffix before some consonant-final verbs, used to indicate places.
  3. Sometimes used to form verbal nouns, as in urnēb·ion "watch."
  4. Used to form abstract nouns off of titles, as dār·ion "kingdom" (from dārys "king") or jent·ion "leadership" (from jentys "leader.") It is not certain if this suffix is productive enough to assume words like, e.g., *voktion "priesthood."

-lion (for V-fin), -ion (for C-fin), 3ter. Forms nomina loci or place names from verbs. Seems to have originated from the breaking down of ālion "place":

  • dēma·lion "throne ('sitting place.')"
  • sindi·lion "market ('buying place.')"
  • jiōr·ion "reception hall"
  • limalion "crying place." A nonce word, which DJP coined as an example.

-urlion 3ter. Forms nouns indicating the place associated with the noun from which they are formed. Perhaps it is related to -uragon:

-mio 3lun. Unknown meaning. Forms nouns form verbs. Seems to be older in origin and to have lost productivity in modern times:

-non 3ter.: used to form nomina actionis or action nouns from verbs.

-nes 4sol.: used to form event nouns from verbs.

-tys 2sol.: a common noun ending, possibly originating from the perfect participle. Seems to be especially frequent in the names of professions.


Often (but not always) occurs as -rys after a vowel:[8]

-arys 2sol. Forms nouns from verbs, carrying the meaning of "the evidence of x action":

-ves (for class II adjective), -ives (class III), -āves (for class I) 4sol.: forms abstract nouns out of adjectives, like English -ness.

-vos 3sol.: forms names of implements from verbs:


See also High Valyrian Verbal Prefixes

a-, h-, s-, z-: instrumental-passive.[9] Promotes an instrument to the subject of the sentence.

-ābagon, see -ēbagon.

-ākogon : "transformative", forms verbs from nouns with the meaning of "to turn into x". Takes object in the locative, likely for the same reason hae →loc.:

Perfect: -ākotan

ā- (for C-fin), ar- (for V-fin): "repetitive", very rare and few known examples; unknown semantic difference with-ligon:

bē-: upon, about. Identical to the postposition . Always aplied on a locative applicative verb.

-ēbagon, -ībagon, -ūbagon, -ōbagon, -ābagon, -ȳbagon v. C-fin. (vowel appears to echo the last in the verb stem if C-fin., or combine with the final vowel if V-fin.): Probably has no meaning in itself,[10] but rather is used to create verbs with adjacent meanings to the parent verbs.

Perfect: -ptan

-emagon v. C-fin. (irreg.): Factitive. In combination with an adjectival or verbal root means "to give something a certain quality." Derives from emagon and verbs of this type share its irregularities. Seems to stick to the root of C-fin verbs while there can be a vowel contraction with V-fin. It also sticks to class I and class III adjectives, which lose their ending, while there can be a consonant assimilation with cutting of the -e- with class II adjectives. The contracted products probably lose the active present 3rd person irregularity, but not the perfect tense.

Perfect: -ēdan

-ēñagon, -īñagon, -iñagon, -ñagon v. C-fin.: Appears to make the verb inchoative ("to become X") and sometimes factitive ("to make something X").

Perfect: -ntan

gō-: under, beneath. Identical to the postposition . Always aplied on a locative applicative verb:

h-, an allomorph of a-

i-, j-: oblique applicative. Causes a verb that might otherwise have an argument in some other case to take an accusative object instead[11]

-ībagon, see -ēbagon.

-ikagon (for C-fin), -kagon (for V-fin) v. C-fin.: causative.

Perfect: -ttan

j-: An allomorph of i-.

jor- (before vowels, r-, h-?), jol- (before l-), jo- (before other consonants): "continuative", seems to have initially been an inflectional aspect of a verb, but it has been rendered a derivational prefix:

-ligon v. V-fin.: Formed from a verbal root. Carries the meaning of "to do something again":

Perfect: -litan

maz-: "inceptive", from the verb māzigon to come:

mī- (before consonants), mīv- (before vowels): "temporary", opposite of jor-:

nā-: negates or reverse the action. Identical to the adjectival prefix:

o-, an allomorph of u-

-ōbagon, see -ēbagon.

oz- (before vowels and voiced consonants), os- (before unvoiced consonants): an intensifier, without much meaning of its own:

qrin-, qrim- (before labials), qril- (before l), qrīd- (before r- and rh-, which is voiced to r-): "pejorative," indicates something done badly, unsuccesfully, improperly, somewhat like English "mis-."

s-, an allomorph of a-

syt-: "for," from the postposition syt. Often followed by i-.

u-, v-, b-, o-: Locative applicative. Causes a verb that might otherwise have an argument in some other case to take a dative or genitive object instead, generally with spatial reference.

-ūbagon, see -ēbagon.

-ūljagon, -iljagon ( for class III adj.), v. C-fin.: "inchoative", with an adjective root indicates entering a state:

Perfect: -ltan

-uragon:[13] used with noun roots, seemingly with the meaning "to make use of X":

Perfect: -urtan

va- towards, to. Identical to the preposition va. Always aplied on a locative applicative verb:

-ȳbagon, see -ēbagon.

z-, an allomorph of a-

Eventative verbs

"Eventative"[14] or "eventive"[15] verbs are formed off the perfect stem of another verb, plus -egon. The semantics of this form are unknown, but perhaps they focus on the outcome of an action?

Perfect: -etan


  1. (presupposed by nā·kostōbā·ves, before confirmed)
  2. http://dedalvs.tumblr.com/post/51979081366/i-must-say-i-love-your-work-is-there-a-translation
  3. "Nope. There is another possibility here, and it has to do with the ending -zia (or, in High Valyrian proper, -sīha)." —DJP, regarding the AV word Vesterozia
  4. http://www.dothraki.com/2013/04/sesir-urnebion-z%C8%B3hon-keliton-issa/#comment-3267
  5. https://twitter.com/Dedalvs/status/451761993121161216, http://www.dothraki.com/2015/01/asshekhqoyi-anni-save-save-save/#comment-85524
  6. http://www.dothraki.com/2015/06/valahd/
  7. Cf. also the hypothetical obūnnon < obūljagon, discussed at http://www.dothraki.com/2015/01/asshekhqoyi-anni-save-save-save/#comment-85568
  8. http://dedalvs.tumblr.com/post/88694557124/love-your-work-in-game-of-thrones-i-was-wondering-if#disqus_thread
  9. https://twitter.com/Dedalvs/status/373584938353717248
  10. Cf. "Also, it might help to know that, even though not all the affixes have any meaning, but the second word segments as syt-i-vīl-īb-il-āt.DJP
  11. So, for instance, Yne ivestrās means more or less the same thing as ynot vestrās. There are some, rare exceptions to this rule, such as iderēbagon, which takes a dative or genitive object, in spite of the i- prefix.
  12. http://www.dothraki.com/2015/02/we-have-a-new-winner/#comment-85806
  13. DJP rather ambiguously tells us this is not "a common derivational suffix."
  14. http://www.dothraki.com/2014/01/asshekhqoyi-anni-save-save/#comment-7178
  15. http://dedalvs.tumblr.com/post/97841828544/in-interviews-you-often-list-dothraki-words-that
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