Learn Dothraki, Conquer Your Foes!

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How can they cash in more deeply with Game of Thrones? Let HBO count the ways…

Starting in October, a course on learning how to speak Dothraki will be available to a wider audience, with lessons from the beginner course taught by David J. Peterson, creator of the Dothraki language.

More details in the press release:

NEW YORK, NY (JUNE 2, 2014)—Learning a new language has always been the gateway into experiencing a culture, and now fans can dive in to the world of Game of Thrones like never before with Living Language Dothraki: A Conversational Language Course Based on the Hit Original HBO Series Game of Thrones (on sale October 7, 2014).

As the popularity of the television series, based on George R.R. Martin’s bestselling A Song of Ice and Fire books, has skyrocketed, fans have eagerly looked for any and all information on the Dothraki characters and culture—creating their own online communities to catalogue Dothraki dialogue, vocabulary, and grammar from show scripts, along with their own instructional language videos on YouTube. There are already nearly 150 self-identified Dothraki speakers on the popular “Tongues of Ice and Fire” Wiki.

Now, for the first time, viewers and readers have access to an official guide to Dothraki compiled by acclaimed language and culture consultant David J. Peterson. With more than 500 words and phrases, and including never-before-heard material and words coined exclusively for the Living Language Dothraki course, fans will have the chance to master the language and join Daenerys on her march toward King’s Landing to reclaim the Iron Throne.

Like a traditional language course, users will learn vocabulary, grammar, pronunciation and even cultural notes, which lay out context as well as dos and don’ts. For example, since horses are so central to Dothraki culture, many phrases have their roots in the equestrian. Whatever you do, never call a Dothraki warrior an ifak (walker): the ultimate insult since it implies he can no longer ride his horse.

Peterson narrates the course’s lessons and dialogues, giving fans the opportunity to learn Dothraki straight from the source.

“I’m thrilled to be working with Living Language to produce the first official Dothraki text,” says Peterson. “This book will take you from arakh to zhavvorsa in no time, and the audio samples will help you perfect your pronunciation. I often get the question, ‘When will there be a Dothraki guide I can buy?’ The answer is now, thanks to Living Language. Me nem nesa!

The course, Living Language’s first for a created language, is available in three editions:

  • Living Language Dothraki ($19.99), which includes a language guide and audio CD featuring 200 words and phrases, available at the HBO Shop (store.hbo.com) and at physical and online retailers worldwide
  • Living Language Dothraki Expanded Online Course ($30.00), covering additional vocabulary and grammar including 500 words and phrases, plus interactive quizzes and games, available at www.livinglanguage.com
  • Living Language Dothraki Companion Mobile App ($3.99), featuring 15 thematic flash card decks, available on the App Store? for iPhone®, iPad® and iPod touch®

For more information on each edition of the course, visit www.livinglanguage.com/dothraki

DAVID J. PETERSON was born in Long Beach, California in 1981. He attended UC Berkeley from 1999 to 2003, and received a B.A. in English and a B.A. in Linguistics. He then attended UC San Diego from 2003 to 2006, where he received an M.A. in Linguistics. He’s been creating languages since 2000, and working on the HBO original series Game of Thrones since 2009. In 2011, he became the alien language and culture consultant for the Syfy original series Defiance. In 2013, he joined the crew of the CW’s Star-Crossed and also Syfy’s Dominion as a language creator. In 2007, he helped to found the Language Creation Society, of which David has remained a proud member. He is also the author of The Art of Language Invention, to be published by Penguin Books in 2015.

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