Monday, May 3, 2010
Paul Frommer, a communications professor at the University of Southern California (USC) and a linguistics consultant, created the Na'vi language for the fictional indigenous race in James Cameron's 2009 film Avatar.
He is the former Vice President, Special Projects Coordinator, Strategic Planner, and Writer-Researcher at Bentley Industries and served as Director of the Center for Management Communication at the USC Marshall School of Business. Frommer graduated from college at the University of Rochester with a bachelor of arts in mathematics. He taught English and math in Malaysia with the Peace Corps, and earned his masters degree and doctorate in linguistics from the University of Southern California under Bernard Comrie; his doctorate was on aspects of Persian syntax.
Paul's contribution, written in Na'vi for Reading In Public:
And the translation:
We've had a lot of great additions to Paul's opening line above and some of them have been too long for our comments! So we pulled them out of comments and are extending the post below.
Written and translated by Kayrìlien Rolyu (Alton DeHaan)
Neytiril oeru poltxe san nga oehu ’awsiteng lasyu frakrr sìk.
Ngaru seiyi irayo, ma karyu ’eylansì, ulte Eywa ngahu tì’i’avay krrä!
Translation: Neytiri said to me "You will always be together with me." / I thank you, my teacher and friend, and may Eywa be with you until the end of time.
Written and translated by IRAMightyPirate
"Poel oeti kä’olärìp nekll ne kllte tengkrr palulukan spolä moene. Oe tolawng tengkrr tsaw ftem em moe, tsawä pxia sre’ìl merun’i oeyä pxunit a krr tsaw ftolem."
"She pushed me down towards the ground just as the Thanator jumped at us. I ducked as it passed over us, it’s sharp teeth cutting my arm when it passed by."
Written and translated by Mirri
Tengkrr palulukan moene kxll sarmi, poltxe Neytiril aylì’ut a frakrr ’ok seyä layu oer.
(As the thanator was charging towards the two of us, Neytiri said something I will always remember.)
San txo takuk tsakem steyki nì’aw sìk.
("If you hit it, you’ll only make it angry.")
Tolul moe ne tìhawnu ulte swirä fewi.
(We ran for safety and the creature chased.)
Terul kxamlä na’rìng tengkrr ayvulìl takuk oeti sì kì’ong seyki.
(Running through the forest, the branches hit me and slowed me.)
Palulukanìri ska’a fra’ut a mì fya’o.
(The thanator crushed everything in his path.)
Oeri tolìng nari ne’ìm ulte tse’a apxa aysre’it a rerikx oene. Kxal re’ot oeyä frìyìp a krr tsyokxìl za’olärìp neto oet.
(I looked back to see the large teeth coming towards me, and just before its mouth closed around my head, a hand pulled me away.)
Neytiril za’ärìp oeri tangeksìn oel nìwin nìspawnä nong pot, nefä sì nefä tsawla ayvulne.
(Neytiri pulled me onto the trunk of a tree and I jumped after her, upwards and upwards towards the tall branches.)
Woka pamit stawm aysre’ä ulte utral rikx a fì’u ’efu tengkrr sperä fäpane.
(I could hear the loud sounds of teeth and claws and felt the tree shaking while we jumped higher.)
Ke txey vaykrr a tse’a eana taw kxamlä ayrìk.
(I did not stop until I could see the blue sky through the leaves.)
Palulukanìri utralpxaw ulte nguway seri txankrr.
(The thanator circled the tree and howled for a long time.)
Tsakrr hum ne na’rìng nìmun.
(Finally, it left and walked into the deep forest again.)
Nìn Neytirit ulte po plltxe san oe kawkrr tsame’a uniltìrantokx a tul nìwin na tsakem. Nga keteng lu to aylahe sìk
(I looked up at Neytiri and she said "I have never seen an avatar run so fast. You are different from the others.")
Peyä menariri atanatan na sanhì soli ulte lrrtokìl tsweykayon oeyä txe’lanit.
(Her eyes shined like stars and her smile made my heart fly.)
Po lu nìlaw keteng to aylahe nìteng.
(She was certainly something different too.)
Written and translated by Kayrìlien Rolyu (Alton DeHaan)
(Many thanks to LearnNavi.org members Plumps and Lance R. Casey)
As the thanator was charging towards the two of us, Neytiri said something I will always remember. She was always so brave; the bravest hunter I have ever known. On that day, when my heart was not strong, she threw me to the ground and leaped into the air. She shouted to the creature, "Go back! This is our hunting land!" and it walked back into the forest. I did not understand, but I soon would.
Tengkrr palulukan moene kxll sarmi, poltxe Neytiril aylì’ut a frakrr ’ok seyä layu oer. Frakrr fìtxan tstew lamu poe; lamu frato tstewa taronyu a olomum oeri. Krr a txe’lan oeyä ke lamu txur, tsrole’i ne kllte poel oeti ulte spolä yanemfa. Poel swiräru zolawng san "Tìng tseng! Fìtsenge lu awngeyä atxkxe letaron!" sìk, ulte na’rìngnemfa ne’ìm tolìran palulukan. Tsakrr oe ke tslamam, slä ye’rìn tslivam.
I will always remember the day of Neytiri’s Dream Hunt. Eywa showed to us that Neytiri’s spirit animal was the thanator. Now I understood. This was a terrifying omen; no one had ever met an angry thanator and lived to tell the story. I give thanks to Neytiri every day for allowing me to be one of the first two.
Frakrr ‘ok trrä Uniltaronä Neytiriyä layu oer. Eywal ayoer wamìntxu futa palulukan livu tireaioang Neytiriyä. Tsakrr oe tslolam. Fì’u layu aungia a txopu seyki ayoer nìtxan. Kawkrr tuteol palulukanit a steri ke ultxaralmun ulte mi rarmey fte tsivun vurit piveng. Neytiriru irayo seiyi oe fratrr talun poel tolung futa oe slivu ‘awvea mesuteyä hapxì.
I will always remember the day we first saw the skypeople. I want to kill them all. They attack us from above in their gunships. They destroy the land. My father thinks that they will leave soon. Doctor Grace tells us that they only want a little bit of land to dig up their sacred rock. Screw that! The skypeople will not leave until they have completely destroyed the forest for their useless rock. Their gunships and metal demons will never stop.
Frakrr oel zayerok ’awvea trrit a tsame’änga ayoel sawtutet. Fori oe new tspivang nìwotx. Fol ayoeti ‘eko ta’em hunsìpfa feyä. Fol atxkxeti ska’a. Oeyä sempulìl fpìl futa ye’rìn hayum fo. Toktor Kìreysìl ayoer peng futa sawtutel ’itit atxkxeyä new nì’aw fte tsivun kllkivulat feyä tskxet aswok. Pxasìk! Sawtute ke hayum vaykrr fol na’rìngit skola’a nìwotx fpi feyä tskxe akelsar. Kawkrr ke fpayak ayvrrtep lefngap hunsìpsì feyä.
We went to where the metal demons were sleeping. I knew that we could not kill them with bow and arrow. There was only one way, and that was the way of the skypeople. Fire. But the skypeople’s alarm cry screamed across the land, and their warriors quickly tried to capture us. We ran faster than even the mighty Toruk can fly, hoping that perhaps they could not find us in the forest, but their gunships flew faster still. There was only one other way. Doctor Grace must know what to tell to them.
Ayoe kolä tsengne a ayvrrtep lefngap harmahaw. Omum oel futa ayoel ayfoti ke tspivang fa tsko swizaw. Nì’aw lamu ‘awa fya’o sawtuteyä. Txep. Slä (alarm) sawtuteyä atxkxeka zayawng ulte ayoeti feyä samsiyul fmi spive’e. Ayoe to Toruk nìwin tamul, ulte sìlparmey tsnì mì na’rìng fol awngati ke tsun rivun, slä ayhunsìp feyä tswamayon nìwin frato. Nì’aw lamu ‘awa fya’o alahe. Zene ivomum Toktor Kìreysì foru futa piveng.
So we ran to the school. Neytiri was there; Oh Neytiri, you were always so beautiful, so strong. And Doctor Grace was there too, even after many years her small eyes still looked strange to me. When we arrived, she said to me, "I see you, my friend, but why have you come so quickly?" I said to her, "We have killed one of your metal demons. The forest is safe once again!"
Tafral awnga ne numtseng tolul. Neytiril tarmok tsatsengit. Ma Neytiri, frakrr fìtxan sevin lu nga, fìtxan txursì. Ulte Toktor Kìreysì tarmok tsatsengit kop. Oeri mi hì’ia menari poeyä hiyìk leram. Krr a polähem ayoe, poe oeru poltxe san "Oel ngati kameie, ma ‘eylan, slä pelun zola’u ayoel fìtxan nìwin?" sìk. Oe poeru poltxe san "Tspolang awngal ayngeyä vrrtepoti lefngap. Set na’rìng leiu kxuke nìmun!" sìk.
Her face told me everything. I had never seen a skyperson be afraid before, and it frightened me as well. She said to us, "Run! Go to Hometree now; I will protect you!" I did not need to see the warrior skypeople behind her to know it was a lie. And then the shooting began.
Keyìl ngeyä fra’ut oeru poleng. Oel ke tsole’a futa tawtute txopu sivi srekrr, ulte kop tsal oeti txopu seykängi. Poel awngati poleng san "Tivul! Kivä Kelutralne set, ulte oel ayngati hìsyawnu!" sìk. Sawtuteti letsamsiyu uo poe oel ke kin tsive’a fte ivomum futa livayu lay. Ulte tsakrr sngolä’i tìtem.
Yes, I will always remember what Neytiri said to me, even as my blood now flows toward the leafy ground from the body the skypeople have destroyed. My sister said to me, "Sìlwanin, Eywa brings harmony to the people if the people bring harmony to Eywa." And all I could think as I lay there dying among the howling guns and the screams of my friends was, "Have I failed, sister? Have I failed?"
Srane, frakrr oel zayerok aylì’ut a poleng Neytiril oeru, tengkrr reypay oeyä rerängikx klltene alerìk ftu oeyä tokx a sawtutel skola’a. Oeyä tsmuke oeru poltxe san "Ma Sìlwanin, Eywal Na’viru tìme’emit zamayunge txo Na’vil Eywaru tìme’emit zamivunge." sìk. Ulte tengkrr tarmerkup oe ayhunkip anguwaysusi aysìzawngkipsì eylanä oeyä nì’aw tsun fpivìl san "Oe ke flolä srak, ma tsmuke? Oe ke flolä srak?" sìk.
-- The last thoughts of Sìlwanin te Tskaha Mo’at’ite
-- Syena aysäfpìl Sìlwaninä te Tskaha Mo’at’ite
Labels: Paul Frommer