The Dothraki language has 20 consonants, 4 vowels and 2 glides.
|e||e||e||then||"Then" would be pronounced as [ɛ]. [e] makes the sound in say and great|
|r||ɾ, r||rr||trilled when at the beginning of the word and followed by a vowel; at the end of the word; when doubled; tap medially elsewhere|
Apart from names, the letters p, b, u and x do not appear in the ortography of diegetically modern Dothraki, and c appears only in the digraph ch.
For phonemes that are marked with digraph, the geminate has a reduced ortography, eg. kkh instead of khkh. This does not affect the pronunciation, these are geminates just as any others.
Dothraki has 22 consonant phonemes:
|Nasal||m [m]||n [n̪]|
|Plosive/Affricate||voiceless||t [t̪]||ch [t͡ʃ]||k [k]||q [q]|
|voiced||d [d̪]||j [d͡ʒ]||g [ɡ]|
|Fricative||voiceless||f [f]||th [θ]||s [s]||sh [ʃ]||kh [x]||h [h ~ ħ]|
|voiced||v [v]||z [z]||zh [ʒ]|
|Approximant||w [w]||l [l̪]||y [j]|
|Rhotic||r [r ~ ɾ]|
The digraphs kh, sh, th and zh are all fricatives, while ch and j are affricates.
Doubled consonants are always pronounced geminated.
Allophones of consonnants
As in any natural or natural-aspiring language, there are some phones in Dothraki that are considered—and even heard—the same with each other.
Some phonemes change according to the surrounding phones, to ease the pronunciation.
- In syllable-final position, h [h] shifts to [ħ]
- Stop produced at the same region of mouth as the fricative following it changes to geminate of the fricative. This can occur when words are derived, especially when compounds are formed. The changed consonant cluster is marked in the ortography.
There is no definite line between complementary distribution and free variation; some variation happens always when the surrounding phones call for it, some may happen. Some variation is indifferent of the surrounding phones.
- While Dothraki has no labial plosives, [p] or [b], both of these have been available in the past and have developed into [f] and [v], respectively. The [p] and [b] phones can still be met as free variants of f [f] and v [v], and should generally go unnoticed.
- Voiceless stops, t [t], k [k] and q [q] even ch [t͡ʃ] may be aspirated.
Dothraki has four vowel phonemes:
|Mid||e [e]||o [o]|
There are no diphthongs or long vowels.
Allophones of vowels
With only four vowel phonemes, Dothraki vowels have more room to shift than in other languages. They should be treated as little less precisely placed than vowels in English. Because the sound [q] is produced far in the throat, vowels immediately following [q] undergo a considerable shift:
In addition, o may be pronounced [u] after the velar consonants g [g], k [k], and kh [x].
Relevant Information Elsewhere
- Peterson, David J. (16 September 2011). "Long (or Doubled) Consonants". Dothraki.com.
- Peterson, David J. (14 November 2011). "Qute Noises". Dothraki.com.
|Dothraki • High Valyrian • Astapori Valyrian • Meereenese Valyrian|