List of constructed languages

The following list of notable constructed languages is divided into auxiliary, ritual, engineered, and artistic (including fictional) languages, and their respective subgenres. All entries on this list have further information on separate Wikipedia articles.

Auxiliary languages

International auxiliary languages are languages constructed to provide communication among all human beings, or a significant portion, without necessarily replacing native languages.

Language nameISOYear of first
Solresol1827François SudreBased on pitch levels sounded with their solfege syllables (a "musical language") although no knowledge of music is required to learn it.
Communicationssprache1839Joseph SchipferBased on French
Universalglot1868Jean PirroAn early a posteriori language, predating even Volapük
Volapükvo, vol1879–1880Johann Martin SchleyerFirst to generate international interest in IALs
Esperantoeo, epo1887L. L. ZamenhofThe most popular auxiliary language ever invented, including, possibly, up to two million speakers, the highest ever for a constructed language and the only one to date to have its own native speakers (Approximately 1,000).[1]
Spokil1887 or 1890Adolph NicolasAn a priori language by a former Volapük advocate
Mundolinco1888J. BraakmanThe first esperantido
Bolak, "Blue Language"1899Léon BollackProspered fairly well in its initial years, now almost forgotten
Idiom Neutral1902Waldemar RosenbergerA naturalistic IAL by a former advocate of Volapük
Latino sine Flexione1903Giuseppe Peano"Latin without inflection", it replaced Idiom Neutral in 1908
Ro1904Rev. Edward Powell FosterAn a priori language using categories of knowledge
Idoio, ido1907A group of reformist Esperanto speakersThe most successful offspring of Esperanto
Adjuvilo1910Claudius ColasAn esperantido some believe was created to cause dissent among Idoists
Occidentalile1922Edgar de WahlA sophisticated naturalistic IAL, also known as Interlingue
Novialnov1928Otto JespersenAnother sophisticated naturalistic IAL by a famous Danish linguist
Sona1935Kenneth SearightBest known attempt at universality of vocabulary
Esperanto II1937René de SaussureLast of linguist Saussure's many esperantidos
Mondial1940sDr. Helge HeimerNaturalistic European language
Glosaigs1943Lancelot Hogben, et al.Originally called Interglossa, has a strong Greco-Latin vocabulary
Blissymbolszbl1949Charles BlissAn ideographic writing system, with its own grammar and syntax.
Interlinguaia, ina1951International Auxiliary Language AssociationA major effort to systematize the international scientific vocabulary . It aims to be immediately comprehensible by Romance language speakers (including to some extent English speakers).
Intal1956Erich WeferlingAn effort to unite the most common systems of constructed languages
Romanid1956Zoltán MagyarA zonal constructed language based on the Romance languages
Lingua sistemfrater1957Pham Xuan ThaiGreco-Latin vocabulary with southeast Asian grammar
Neoneu1961Arturo AlfandariA very terse European language
Babm1962Rikichi OkamotoNotable for using Latin letters as a syllabary
Guosa1965Alexander IgbinéwékáA language made for use in West Africa
Arcaicam Esperantom1969Manuel Halvelik'Archaic Esperanto', developed for use in Esperanto literature
Afrihiliafh1970K. A. Kumi AttobrahA pan-African language
Kotavaavk1978Staren FetceyA sophisticated a priori IAL
Uropi1986Joël LandaisBased on the common Indo-European roots and the common grammatical points of the IE languages
Poliespo1990s?Nvwtohiyada Idehesdi SequoyahEsperanto grammar with significant Cherokee vocabulary
Romániço1991AnonymousVocabulary is derived from common Romance roots.
Europanto1996Diego MaraniA "linguistic jest" by a European diplomat
Unish1996Language Research Institute, Sejong UniversityVocabulary from fifteen representative languages
Lingua Franca Novalfn1998C. George Boeree and othersRomance vocabulary with creole-like grammar
Slovio1999Mark HučkoA constructed language based on the Slavic languages and Esperanto grammar
Interslavic2006Ondrej Rečnik, Gabriel Svoboda, Jan van Steenbergen, Igor PolyakovA naturalistic language based on the Slavic languages
Sambahsa-Mundialect2007Olivier SimonMixture of simplified Proto-Indo-European and other languages
Lingwa de planeta2010Dmitri IvanovWorldlang based on Arabic, Chinese, English, French, German, Hindi, Persian, Portuguese, Russian, and Spanish

Controlled languages

Controlled natural languages are natural languages that have been altered to make them simpler, easier to use, or more acceptable in certain circumstances, such as for use by people who do not speak the original language well. The following projects are examples of controlled English:

  • Basic English, Special English, Globish (Gogate) and Globish (Nerriere) seek to limit the language to a given list of common-use words and terms in order to make it simpler to foreign learners or other people who may have difficulties
  • Plain English proposes a more direct, short, clear language by avoiding many idioms, jargon and foreign words
  • Simplified Technical English seeks to largely reduce the complexity and ambiguity of technical texts (such as manuals)
  • E-Prime eliminates the verb to be with the intent of making writing more expressive and accurate.

Visual languages

Visual languages use symbols or movements in place of the spoken word. Sign languages fall in this category.

Ritual languages

These are languages (and scripts) in actual use by their communities or congregations.

Engineered languages


Knowledge representation

  • Attempto Controlled English is a controlled natural language that is also a knowledge representation language.[2]
  • Several well known Knowledge Query and Manipulation Languages have been created from extensive research projects, to represent and query knowledge on computers:
    • Knowledge Interchange Format (KIF), a precursor for knowledge representation.
    • Common Logic (CL), an ISO standard derived from KIF.
    • Resource Description Framework (RDF), a language standardized by the World Wide Web Consortium (W3C) based on the principles of Common Logic, which represents knowledge as a directed graph built from unordered sets of "sentences" (in fact, as relational triples: subject, relation, attribute) using various syntaxes (XML, Turtle, JSON-LD, RDFa) for its interchange format. Each element of the triple can be either a simple value (if its semantic value is not specified outside of the relation using it), or identifiers of objects (such as URIs) that are part of enumeration built from another subset of relational triples. The relations may be open (in which case the attributes are not enumerable) or closed in a finite enumerable set whose elements can be easily represented as objects as well with their own identity participating in many different relations for other parts of the knowledge.
      • UML may be used to describe the sets of relations and rules of inference and processing, and SQL may be used to use them in concrete schemas and compact store formats, but RDF designs its own (semantically more powerful) schema language for handling large sets of knowledge data stored in RDF format.
      • RDF is most probably useful only for automated machine processing, but its verbosity and complex (for a human) representation mechanisms and inference rules do not qualify it as a human language except in very limited contexts. It is still a specification with extensive research.
    • Web Ontology Language (OWL), another knowledge representation language standardized by W3C, and derived from Common Logic.
  • CycL
  • The Distributed Language Translation project used a "binary-coded" version of Esperanto as a pivot language between the source language and its translation.
  • Lincos
  • Loom
  • Universal Networking Language (UNL)

Artistic/fictional languages

Languages used in fiction

J. R. R. Tolkien

Additionally, sketches of various other languages, such as Adûnaic, the Black Speech, Khuzdul, Telerin and Westron appear in his Middle-earth works alongside earlier draughts or imagined archaic forms of Elven languages such as Common Eldarin or Primitive Quendian, Goldogrin, and Ilkorin. Others such as Entish, Rohirric, and six languages of the Avari are mentioned but have only one or two words or phrases noted. For the film adaptation, linguist David Salo was hired to expand on Tolkien's languages where required for dialogue.

Star Wars

Other literature

Comic books







Alternative languages

Some experimental languages were developed to observe hypotheses of alternative linguistic interactions which could have led to very different modern languages. Two examples include:

Micronational languages

Personal languages

See also


  1. Robert Phillipson. English-Only Europe? 2003. p. 172: "several thousand children worldwide are growing up (in over 2000 families) with Esperanto as one of their mother tongues"
  2. Schwitter, Rolf. "Controlled natural languages for knowledge representation." Proceedings of the 23rd International Conference on Computational Linguistics: Posters. Association for Computational Linguistics, 2010.
  3. Cinema, Telugu. "Welcome to new language 'Kilikili' from Baahubali". SaddaHaq. Retrieved 2017-06-11.

Further reading

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