Narkhokul Narkhokul

The Narkhokul alphabet was created by Katie Molnar to write a fictional language. The name Narkhokul means "the signs of the land," in reference to the fictional place where Draphei, the language Narkhokul is used to write, is spoken. That place is Narthrall, part of the fictional world Katie and others collaborate on as a setting for stories and role-playing games.

Notable features

  • Type of writing system: alphabet
  • Direction of writing: top-to-bottom in columns from left to right.
  • Narkhokul's glyphs are constructed by combining a consonant with the vowel that comes after it (if any). The full stop character also functions as a vowel holder for word-initial vowels or for the second vowel of a glide (e.g. the sound of English "pay", [pei], would be written /pe/ /i/, and the /u/] would get a vowel holder).
  • The language contains no voiced plosives. The only voiced consonants are /r/, /l/, /m/, and /n/.
  • Very old documents omit the vowel marks, which were invented later on in the life of the language. In this respect, Narkhokul is similar to Hebrew. It is common for hastily written notes and other informal documents to leave them out as well, as a kind of shorthand. When they are omitted in a formal document, it represents an appeal to authority or an attempt to invoke an air of mystery and significance.
  • The fact that all of the symbols are ambiguous when rotated 90 degrees is intentional and can be exploited in steganography and poetry.

Narkhokul alphabet


Narkhokul consonants


Narkhokul vowels


Most consonants are pronounced as they are in English. The non-obvious ones, /th/, /sh/, /kh/, and /r/, should be pronounced as in "thin," "ship," "loch," and "red," respectively. Alternatively, /r/ can be pronounced as an alveolar trill, as in Spanish rojo ("red") or Russian рыба ("fish"), or any similar rhotic sound. It is also permissible to pronounce any unvoiced consonant with its voiced form, e.g. /t/ can be pronounced like [d], /f/ like [v], and so on.

The vowels; /a/, /e/, /i/, /o/, and /u/; are pronounced as in "father," "pet," "pizza," "bone," and "sue," respectively, but they may alternatively be pronounced with any similar vowels as long as they do not become ambiguous.

Sample Text

Sample text in Narkhokul


Si shenokai lan khenkalpe, tilom khun tetaimos lop khamkekekhi. Ma pe pakhte lan osetisate netherte pelent, ake shisa som o fulapente naron.


All human beings are born free and equal in dignity and rights. They are endowed with reason and conscience and should act towards one another in a spirit of brotherhood.
(Article 1 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights)

Also by Katie Molnar


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