The Divine Language

interpreted and developed by t. leah fehr

Pronunciation

Vowels

Short Vowels

a

 

ä

When the letter ‘a’ appears at the beginning or in the middle of a word, and when preceding a consonant, it is pronounced as a short ‘ah’ sound (man), however at the end of a word, it is pronounced 'uh' (up).  When the ‘a’ appears with an umlaut (ä), usually following a double consonant or consonant group, the sound is a more elongated ‘ahh’ sound, and will always be in the stressed syllable of a multisyllable word.  The letter 'a' is always a short sound, unless in conjunction with another vowel.

keratapla / battle
mechtaba / book
matala / clothing
khrasma / destiny

e

The short 'eh' sound (bet) is the most common ‘e’ sound in Divinian.  The letter 'e' is usually short unless in conjunction with another vowel. 

djebet / meeting
dedero / decision
envolet / gone

i

There is little usage of the short 'i' sound (sit) in Divinian.  When found in an unstressed syllable, the long ‘i’, can be shortened slightly and result in a sound close to the short ‘i’ in English.

prematical / important person

o

 

ö

The letter 'o' is often short when located in the middle of a word and preceding a consonant, and is pronounced as an 'aw' sound (water).  The only time an ‘o’ will be short at the beginning of a word is if it precedes an ‘l’.  The umlaut ‘ö’ produces more of an ‘oh’ sound but still very short and less rounded than the long ‘oh’ sound, and in a multisyllable word will usually appear in the unstressed syllable.

statoncro / intention

crön / million

u

The short ‘u’ is similar to the English pronunciation ‘uh’ (stuck), however the letter ‘u’ is typically used in conjunction with another vowel, and is used only occasionally as an independent sound in Divinian.  The independent ‘u’ is most often a long sound, except when preceding a double consonant, in which case it is also always in an unstressed syllable. 

yututuki / complete

y

The letter ‘y’ is always pronounced as a short 'yuh' sound (yellow), whether at the beginning, middle or end of a word.  If preceding a vowel, the 'uh' sound would take on the sound of the vowel, unless they are separated by an apostrophe.  The 'yuh' sound is more subtle when at the end of the word, and while it does elongate a preceding vowel slightly, it does not slide into an 'ee' sound as it does in English.  The ‘yuh’ sound should not be so strong that it adds an extra syllable to a word, unless separated by an apostrophe.

yaknan / another
ydeo / believe
hany / even
daïtaky / strike
aranouylipot / rescue

Long Vowels

a

There is little or no usage of a long ‘aye’ sound (late) in Divinian, unless in conjunction with another vowel.

n/a

e

 

ë

 

é

 

As with the letter 'a', the 'e' is almost always short unless in conjunction with another vowel.  The short 'eh' sound (bet) is the most common ‘e’ sound, however it changes to a long ‘ay’ sound when accented (é), and a long ‘ee’ sound when it takes on an umlaut (ë).  The accented ‘é’ is typically found at the end of words, but may also be used in the middle of a word.  The umlaut ‘ë’ usually denotes an unstressed syllable, and is rarely used.

n/a

i

 

ï

 

The letter ‘i’ in Divinian is always pronounced as a long ‘ee’ sound (greet) unless in an unstressed syllable, where it can be shortened slightly and result in a sound close to the English short ‘i’.  Words beginning with ‘i’ are always pronounced ‘ee’.  When ‘i’ is preceded by another vowel, it will almost always take on an umlaut (ï) and lengthens the sound of the preceding vowel, sliding into an ‘ee’ sound.  The only exception is if preceded by the letter ‘u’, in which case both vowels maintain their independent sounds.  The umlaut ‘ï´ is usually found at the end of words, however its presence in the middle of a word typically denotes an unstressed syllable.

mino / my
akilet / late

luminaï / light

velui / feel

o

The Divinian ‘o’ will always be a long ‘oh’ sound (go) at the beginning and end of a word, with the exception of words beginning with ‘ol’. 

ojela / select

u

The letter ‘u’ is typically used in conjunction with another vowel, and is used only occasionally as an independent sound in Divinian.  The independent ‘u’ is always pronounced as a long ‘oo’ sound (moon), unless it precedes a double consonant in an unstressed syllable.

kulka / road
dalutan / careful

y

The letter ‘y’ in Divinian is always pronounced as a short sound (yellow), whether at the beginning, middle or end of a word.  Unlike English, when ‘y’ appears at the end of a word in Divinian, it does not slide into an 'ee' sound (as in ‘play’).  The only exception to this is when the ‘y’ is preceded by an ‘o’ at the end of a word.

selovoy / attack
sonoy / awake
melaloy’ré / mission

Vowel Groups and Dipthongs [1]

The ‘aï’ dipthong is pronounced ‘eye and appears most frequently at the end of a word.  Its presence in the middle of a word typically indicates an unstressed syllable.

apipoulaï / hi

daïtaky / strike

au

The vowel combination 'au' does not change the integrity or root sound of either vowel.  The 'a' remains a short 'ah' (man) and the 'u' remains the long 'oo' (moon).  The resulting sound is 'a-oo', two syllables, with emphasis on the second ‘u’ syllable.

caupo / hospitable

ay 

The ‘ay’ combination in Divinian is the only instance that the letter ‘a’ is not short.  Whenever ‘a’ precedes ‘y’ in a word (beginning, middle or end), the ‘a’ is pronounced as ‘aye’ (late), but be careful to not let the ‘y’ slide into an ‘ee’ sound as it tends to in English (play).  The ‘ay’ vowel group should be pronounced as ‘ayuh’ with the ‘yuh’ sound being very short, keeping the whole to one syllable, or at worst, almost a hiccup in the word.  Also, when said quickly, or in an unstressed syllable, the ‘ay’ can become a dipthong with a resulting sound of ‘eh’ (tennis).

moondelay / world
chay / was

aya 

Unlike the ‘ay’ group, the appearance of the second ‘a’ at the end of this vowel group changes the pronunciation of the ‘a’ preceding the ‘y’.  Rather than a long ‘aye’ sound, this combination changes to a long ‘i’ (eye), with the second ‘a’ causing a more prominent ‘yuh’ sound at the end, pronounced as ‘eye-yuh’.

bayaterol / raw

ayo 

The vowel group 'ayo' follows the rules of the 'ay' group, however if it appears in the middle of a word, the 'o' still retains a long 'oh' sound (go),  just as it would at the end of a word.  The 'a' is a long 'aye' sound (late) followed by a short 'yuh', which slides into the 'o'.  The resulting sound is 'ay-oh', two syllables, with emphasis on the first 'ay' syllable.

dayodomo / extremely

ea

The dipthong 'ea' is rarely used, and it is the only time the 'e' will be pronounced as a long 'ee' sound (greet), however the combination of 'e' and 'a' change to sound of each to a new sound that is similar the English word 'yeah', beginning with a subtle 'yuh' sound, and ending with the common short 'ah' sound (man).

nealla / really

ei

 

The ‘ei’ grouping is rare and typically used at the beginning of a word.  Pronounced as two quick syllables, both letters still maintain their integrity as a short ‘eh’ (bet) and a long ‘i’ or ‘ee’ sound (greet), resulting in ‘eh-ee’.  However, if ‘ei’ appears at the end of a word, the ‘i’ always takes on an umlaut (ï) and it is pronounced ‘aye (late).

eito / unusual

touteï / head

eo

Found primarily at the ends of words, the vowel group ‘eo’ retains the common rules of both the individual letters.  The ‘eh’ is short (bet), but as it slides into the long ‘oh’ sound (go), it results in a sound closer to a long ‘aye’.  Again, the result is two syllables, ‘eh-oh’, with the emphasis on the first ‘e’ syllable.

deo / god, divine

ia 

When appearing at the end of a word, the vowel group ‘ia’ follows the rules of both individual letters.  The ‘i’ is pronounced as a long ‘ee’ sound (greet), which flows into the ‘uh’ sound (up) of the ‘a’ whenever it ends a word.  The result is a distinct two syllable sound of ‘ee-yuh’.  However, if ‘ia’ is in the middle of a word, it becomes one syllable, but with two distinct sounds.  The ‘i’ behaves more like a ‘y’ in this case with a ‘yuh’ sound, and the ‘a’ is short (man), but is softened by the ‘i’ which precedes it.  The resulting sounds is ‘yuah’.

ania / none, nothing
dia / slow
sossian / self

io

Appearing primarily at the end of a word, the vowel group ‘io’ follows the rules of both individual letters.  The ‘i’ is pronounced as a long ‘ee’ sound (greet), which flows into the ‘oh’ sound (go) of the ‘o’ whenever it ends a word.   

ma'raydio / considerate

The dipthong ‘oï’ can be found in the middle or at the end of words, with both vowels retaining their long sound, but ‘oh’ (go) slides quickly into ‘ee’ (greet), the result ends up being ‘oy’ (oil or boy). 

dinoïné / whatever

limoï / listen

ou 

The vowel group ‘ou’ is quite common in Divinian, and shares its pronunciation with the letter ‘u’ and the double vowel ‘oo’.  The ‘ou’ sound is always pronounced as a long ‘oo’ (moon), unless it precedes an ‘a’.

algoulana / brave
patou / everywhere

oua

The vowel group ‘oua’ can be pronounced two different ways, but both pronunciations are actually variations of each other.  One is slow and the individual sounds are spoken clearly, resulting in two distinct syllables, while the other is said very quickly, with less diction, so only one syllable is detected.  The first sound follows the rules of the dipthong ‘ou’ spoken as ‘oo’ (moon) however the ‘a’ takes on more of the short ‘o’ sound of ‘aw’ (water).  The result is ‘oo-aw’, which inevitably leads to a slight ‘wuh’ sound between the ‘ou’ and ‘a’.  This is where the second pronunciation begins to make an appearance.  When said quickly in an unstressed syllable, ‘oua’ is spoken as simply ‘wah’ (water).  The distinct two syllable sound should always be used when followed by a hard consonant, like ‘c’ or ‘k’, whereas the single syllable sound is used when followed by a soft consonant, like ‘l’ or ‘m’.

ouacra / enemy
oualarta / small open space

ouy 

While ‘ou’ retains it’s ‘oo’ sound in this vowel group, the addition of the letter ‘y’ elongates the sound and makes the ‘yuh’ sound of the ‘y’ more prominent, pronounced as ‘oo-yuh’ and resulting in a two syllable effect.

aranouylipot / rescue

oy 

The vowel group ‘oy’ shares its pronunciation with the ‘oï’ sound as ‘oy’ (spoil), however this combination will only appear at the end of a word or preceding an apostrophe in a compound word.  This is the only time that the ‘y’ should slide into an ‘ee’ sound, as it tends to in English (boy).

selovoy / attack
sonoy / awake

ye 

The grouping of ‘ye’ is pronounced exactly as it is in English (yellow), but be careful to not add another vowel sound before the ‘y’ when ‘ye’ occurs after a consonant.  In this situation, it becomes a distinct syllable break, and almost a hiccup in the word.

fryesh / behave

Double Vowels [2]

aa

Pronounced as a short ‘ah’ sound (man), and similar to the short ‘a’, but sharper and more exaggerated.

maata / sad

ee

Pronounced as a long ‘ee’ sound (greet), and similar to the long ‘i’, but slightly more exaggerated.

leeloo / stone

oo

Pronounced as a long ‘oo’ sound (moon), and similar to ‘ou’ or the long ‘u’, but slightly more exaggerated.

ma'oolzi / confuse

Consonants

Independent Consonants

b

Pronounced the same as in English.

baraniba / present

c

As an independent consonant, ‘c’ will always be a hard sound, like the English ‘k’ (car), unless used in conjunction with an 'h'.

crön / million

d

Pronunciation of ‘d’ in Divinian is similar to that in English, however it is a softer sound, made by putting the tip of your tongue at the back of your front teeth.

devet'desset / perfect

f

Pronounced the same as in English.

flamta / forget

g

Always pronounced the same as the English ‘g’ in good’

gammal / arm

h

The letter 'h' in Divinian is most commonly found as an independent consonant at the beginning of words, although it does appear occasionally in the middle of a word.  Regardless of location, the 'h' is always pronounced as a slightly gutteral 'gh' that is produced at the back of the throat (human) when preceding a vowel.  There really is no comparable sound in Engish, however it appears in German, Dutch, Arabic and other languages.  The 'h' is also used in conjunction with other letters, such as 's', 'p' and 'c', and the subsequent sound of each consonant is changed, either individually or as a consonant group, much as it is in English.

himmÄs / father
handala / hand
hinoo / kiss
maha'nili / someone

j

The Divinian 'j' sounds much the same as it does in English, pronounced as a soft 'g' or 'juh' sound (jump).  This is a rarely used letter in Divinian, and is often found used in conjunction with 'd', which gives it a slightly harder sound.

jesset / some

k

Pronounced the same as in English (kick).

kyloun-kan / instead

l

The letter 'l' in Divinian is pronounced much the same as it is in English, however it is a slightly softer sound.  To produce the desired effect, rather than pronouncing 'l' from the back of your throat, bring the sound to the front, with the tip of your tongue touching the back of your front teeth.

loungalino / leave
lacta / infinite

m

Pronounced the same as in English.

meto / seek

n

Pronounced the same as in English.

nou'shan / sir

p

Pronounced the same as in English, and changes to an 'f' sound if combined with an 'h', just as in English.

piti / small
palela / fade

q

The letter 'q' does not exist in Divinian.

n/a

r

Similar to German, the Divinian ‘r’ tends to be a much more uvular sound that it is in the English language.  It can be rolled, as in the Scottish pronunciation, however it is more commonly pronounced as a kind of gargle.  The sound is more subtle at the ends of words, and almost disappears into a slightly guttural ‘ah’ sound.  There is no comparable sound in the English language.

rab / eight
ligurat / ground

s

As an independent consonant, ‘s’ behaves much like the English version (sit) except that it is more distinct, pronounced at the front of the mouth, with teeth together.  However, as in English, the sound produced by the letter ‘s’ changes when used in conjunction with ‘h’ or as a double ‘ss’. 

simoulaï / reason
sebat / above

t

Pronunciation of ‘t’ in Divinian is similar to that in English, however it is a softer sound, made by putting the tip of your tongue at the back of your front teeth.  In Divinian, the ‘t’ never loses its original sound, even with used in conjunction with other consonants.

tokemata / speak
bet /
take

v

Pronounced the same as in English.

mavano / have

w

Pronounced the same as in English.

awa / we

x

The letter 'x' does not exist in Divinian.

n/a

z

Pronounced the same as in English, unless used in conjunction with ‘h’.

azan / act

Consonant Groups [3]

ch

Always pronounced the same as in English (church).

michico / beautiful

chk

Following the rule of ‘ch’, with ‘k’ pronounced as it would be independently (latchkey). 

schichkéman / alright

cht

Following the rule of ‘ch’, ending in the softer Divinian ‘t’ (hitched). 

chtaman / understand

ckt

As in English, the ‘ck’ combination is always a hard ‘k’ sound, here followed by the softer ‘t’ (cracked). 

kicktenan / strong

cr

As an independent consonant, ‘c’ will always be a hard sound, like the English ‘k’.  The same rule applies here, followed by an uvular ‘r’ (crack).

crön / million

ct

Pronounced just as it appears (act), however the ‘t’ is always a slightly softer sound. 

ractamo / huge

dj

The ‘dj’ combination is found throughout Divinian and is pronounced much as you’d expect.  It becomes a slightly harder ‘juh’ sound, with a slight edge of the preceding ‘d’, resulting in a sound similar to the soft English ‘g’ (gorge).

djala / what
adjïset / something

fl

Pronounced the same as in English (floor).

flamta / forget

fr

The pronunciation of ‘fr’ is similar to English, but using an uvular ‘r’ (fresh).

fryesh / behave

ft

Pronounced similar to English (craft), however the ‘t’ is always a slightly softer sound. 

nalifta / why

kb

Pronounced just as it appears (kickback).

ekbat / honor

kf

Pronounced just as it appears (backfire).

ekfebet / important

khr

The ‘khr’ combination is one of few instances where a consonant is silent.  In this combination, the ‘h’ has little influence because it precedes the softer consonant ‘r’, except to soften the ‘k’ slightly and exaggerate the uvular ‘r’ (crack).

khrasma / destiny

kht

In the ‘kht’ consonant combination, the ‘h’ is still essentially silent, however because it precedes a hard consonant, it cause a slight exhalation prior to the ‘t’ in the inevitable syllable break. There is no comparable sound in the English language.

takhtad / tactic

kn

Unlike its English counterpart, the ‘k’ in the consonant group ‘kn’ is never silent.  Each letter is pronounced clearly, and typically signifies a syllable break in a word.

pakna / question

ks

Pronounced just as it appears, similar to the English ‘x’ (fox or sticks).

ikset / worry

kt

Pronounced just as it appears (cracked), however the ‘t’ is always a slightly softer sound.

dakta / thought

lf

Pronounced the same as in English (self), following the rules of the Divinian 'l'.

afrilfelset / destruction

lg

Both letters in the ‘lg’ group are pronounced clearly, following the rules of each individual Divinian consonant (Olga).

dolgaban / time

lk

Pronounced similar to English, following the rules of each individual letter (milk).

kulka / road

lkct

In this consonant group, the ‘k’ and ‘c’ work together to form the same hard ‘k’ sound, while the ‘l’ and ‘t’ maintains their usual softness (sulked).

metalkcta / home

ls

Pronounced the same as in English (also), following the rules of the Divinian 'l'.

welso / know, knowledge

mb

Pronounced the same as in English (remember).

topometimbackta / surprise

ml

The only instance of the 'ml' consonant group appearing is in an alternative spelling of the Divinian word oualarta.  The pronunciation of the word does not change with the use of the 'm'.

mlarta / small open space

mt

Pronunciation is similar to English (dreamt), following the rules of the Divinian ‘t’.

flamta'seddan / unforgettable

nch

Pronounced exactly as it appears, and as it would in English (crunch).

choncha / good looking

ncr

As always, the ‘c’ in this group behaves as it would independently, sounding like a hard ‘k’, and the ‘r’ is uvular or rolled (increase).  This consonant group typically signifies a syllable break in a word, between the ‘n’ and ‘c’.

statoncro / intention

nd

Pronounced essentially the same as the English version, however following the rules of the Divinian ‘d’ (hand).

kando / inside

ndlh

The consonant group ‘ndlh’ is a difficult one, and only appears to be present in one Divinian word, however it does have a similar English pronunciation (candleholder), bearing in mind the general rules of the individual consonants in Divinian.

handlha / wrist

ng

Unlike its English counterpart, the consonant group ‘ng’ never slides into one sound (as in ‘thing’).  The individual letters do not lose their integrity and are pronounced as two separate sounds, which may still blend slightly, but the ‘g’ always retains its root sound (angry).

angesset / face

nj

The ‘j’ in the group ‘nj’ in Divinian tends to become a sound very similar to the soft English ‘g’, which is not prevalent in Divinian (orange).

nonjima / change

nk

Pronounced as it appears, however does not tend to slip into an ‘ing’ sound as it may in English (drink).  Both consonants retain their individual integrity.

ankanach / rotten

nt

Pronunciation is similar to English (can't), following the rules of the Divinian ‘t’.

asountimon / deliver

nv

Pronounced the same as in English (envy).

envolet / gone

ph

Pronounced the same as its common English counterpart, changing the individual sound of each letter to form a distinct ‘f’ sound (telephone).

Phloston / Phloston

pk

Pronounced just as it appears, usually signifying a syllable break (napkin).

trapka / steal

rb

Both letters maintain their independent sounds, and are pronounced just as they appear, however following the rules of the uvular ‘r’ (marble).

zarbrra / expose

rj

In this consonant group, again both letters retain the integrity of their root sound, however the presence of the uvular ‘r’ softens the ‘j’ slightly from a distinct ‘juh’ sound to more of a soft English ‘g’ pronunciation (dirge).

ferji / rude

rl

Pronunciation is similar to English (girl), following the rules of both Divinian consonants.

orlo / go

rs

Pronunciation is similar to English (person), following the rules of the Divinian ‘r’.

parsousan / person

rt

Pronunciation is similar to English (party), following the rules of both Divinian consonants.

oualarta / small open space

sc

Unlike it’s English counterpart, the consonant group ‘sc’ never slides into one sound (as in ‘science’).  Both letters are clearly pronounced, with the ‘c’ retaining it’s usual hard ‘k’ sound (school).

escobar / priest

sh

Always pronounced the same as in English (wash).

shosha / normal

sk

Pronounced the same as in English (ask).

basaskidoun / show

sp

Pronounced the same as in English (speak).

isperobera / prophecy

sst

Following the rule of the double ‘ss’ and the softening of the letter ‘t’, this group is pronounced just as it appears (shtick).

assta / these

tch

Pronounced the same as in English (catch), with the sounds blending to produce a slightly more distinct ‘ch’.

itchewa / turn

tr

Pronunciation is similar to English (train), following the rules of both Divinian consonants.

hotro / about (something)

tz

Often signifying a syllable break, the consonant group ‘tz’ is pronounced as two very distinct sounds (Howitzer), and the ‘z’ does not soften to an ‘s’ sound as it tends to in English in similar context (as in ‘ritz’).

setzuki / happy

zh

This is another example where the ‘h’ is relatively silent, however it works with the ‘z’ to change the overall sound of each letter to produce one sound that is a distinctly deeper ‘sh’ or elongated ‘j’ sound (casual).

zhit / on

Double Consonants [4]

dd

Pronounced much the same as in English (address).

seddan / never

ll

Pronounced much the same as in English (llama).

nealla / really

mm

Pronounced much the same as in English (summer).

chimmäs / mother

nn

Pronounced much the same as in English (running).

manna / power

pp

Pronounced much the same as in English (supper).

hoppi'hoppa / make love

ss

Always pronounced as the soft English ‘sh’ sound (wash).

assin / without

tt

Pronounced much the same as in English (better).

kozött / walk



[1] Dipthongs are vowel groups that, when conjoined, create one new sound.

[2] Double vowels will always appear in the stressed syllable of a word.

[3] Unlike English, the joining of consonants in Divinian rarely alters the root sound of the individual letters, leaving the pronunciation of the following groups very much the same as they appear.  There are exceptions, but primarily, each letter is pronounced clearly.  Also, the joining of distinct syllable sounds often signifies a syllable break in the word, thereby distinguishing the two sounds clearly.  Further consonant groups may present themselves in noun declension and verb conjugation that are not outlined in this table, in which case each consonant retains its individual sound.

[4] Double consonants behave much the same in Divinian as they do in English, with the individual sound of each letter remaining the same, only slightly elongated.  However, unlike English, the presence of a double consonant often, but not always, denotes stress on the syllable following the consonants, not the syllable preceding.