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From ‘The Lord of the Rings’ to ‘Dune,’ a look at the world of constructed languages

Two lines of an example of a phrase from a made-up language that translates to "long live the fighters."
David Peterson

Constructed languages have existed in popular culture for a long time, but they've reached a new level of ubiquity today. This hour, we talk with professional conlangers who have created languages for Game of Thrones, Dune, and many other worlds. We'll learn about the art of constructing languages, and the appeal of learning one of them.


  • David and Jessie Peterson: Professional conlangers whose work appears in Dune: Part Two, Elemental, Shadow and Bone, and more. They co-host the weekly livestream “LangTime Studio” on YouTube. David also created languages for Game of Thrones
  • Gregory Danielson III: Experienced Toki Pona speaker and teacher

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Colin McEnroe, Jonathan McNicol, and Cat Pastor contributed to this show.

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Lily is the senior producer for The Colin McEnroe Show. She first worked at Connecticut Public as an intern in 2014. She has previously worked for WBUR, KUNC and as a producer for the New England News Collaborative's weekly show Next. Lily can be reached at ltyson@ctpublic.org.