Official website: naolang.github.io
There you can find the full information about the language, the dictionary, the textbook, games, forum and many other things.
Nao is a new artificial language with the following features:
1. Requires thinking rather than memorization
2. Easy and logical grammar
3. Easy spelling and pronunciation
4. Truly neutral (the words and grammar are not based on those of any existing language)
Nao has a unique powerful rich system of logical word construction. It allows one to reach a better level of expressiveness and clarity, and at the same time master the language way faster than any natural language. Knowing just 300 elementary words and knowing how to combine them will allow you to construct thousands and thousands of words which is enough for full-fledged speaking.
bu = bodypart
kan = see / look
bukan = eye
So, you don’t actually have to memorize bukan, you just have to get used to it which is much much easier. Now that you know how to make eye, it’s easy to guess how you build ear or leg. Nao is very consistent and logical when it concerns word construction. So, knowing 300 elementary words in Nao would be roughly the same as knowing 10000 words in English! You can see the table of the elementary words in the main page of the dictionary.
One very important trick in Nao is building antonyms - all you need to do is to alternate the final i/u. For example:
li = good → lu = bad
dobun = dangerous → dobin = safe
soinienai = summer → soinienau = winter
Examples of how it works
da = person
tio = work -> datio = worker
nesakohom = teach -> danesakohom = teacher
disakohom = learn -> dadisakohom = student
naponsolse = care only about oneself -> danaponsolse = egoist
gocua = go to space -> dagocua = astronaut
lun = long -> togelun = length
foi = fast -> togefoi = speed
modei = possible -> togemodei = probability
pun = big -> togepun = size
la (turns a verb into a verbal noun)
lis = read -> lalis = reading
mei = live -> lamei = life
Nao has 19 native letters: p t k b d g h f s c l m n a i u e o
Also 4 additional letters are used only in loan words: y r z v.
All are pronounced like in IPA except: c=[ʃ],j=[dʒ],y=[ə],o=[ɔ],e=[ɛ]
The stress in the elementary word is on the first syllable. In vowel clusters, i and u become non-syllabic. In compounds, the stress is semantic and usually happens to be on the last elementary word.
Nao uses Latin alphabet but an ideogrammic writing is also being developed as an alternative.
One letter one sound, no exceptions. Everything is written exactly the way it is pronounced.
Capital letters are not used. Sentence borders are marked with a dash (−).
How to construct words
The basis of the language are the so-called elementary words. Each elementary word consists of: one consonant + by one or a few vowels + [optionally] consonant(s). For example, ku, lei, kan are elementary words but bambufui is a compound word consisting of bam + bu + fui.
Each elementary word is either a noun or a verb, and here are the rules of how to put them together.
Any elementary noun or verb can be modified (=described / made more specific) by another noun or verb: just put the describing word after the word being described. Note that the left word must be elementary.
|Compound||Primary meaning||Secondary meaning|
|[noun1] [noun2]||[noun1] belonging to [noun2]||[word1] described by [word2]|
|[noun] [verb]||[noun] who does [verb]|
|[verb] [noun]||[verb], the object being [noun]|
|[verb1] [verb2]||[verb1], the object being [verb2]|
If the left word is a noun, the resulting compound is a noun. If the left word is a verb, the resulting compound is a verb. Use the secondary meaning if and only if the primary meaning makes no sense in the given context.
How to construct sentences
A sentence is a sequence of elementary words. Spaces are used purely for ease of reading and do not influence the meaning.
The structure of the sentence is classic:
The head of the sentence is the main verb + the subject(s) and the object(s).
The main verb (=the predicate) is normally marked with the marker ho.
The subject, if not marked with a special marker word, must come before the main verb.
The object, if not marked with a special marker word, must come after the main verb.
Subject, object, and even the main verb can be omitted for shortness or vagueness if the speaker wishes to do so, as long as the grammatical structure of the sentence remains clear.
Nouns by default can play a role of the subject, direct object or indirect object in the sentence.
Verbs by default can play a role of the main verb in the sentence.
Markers are used to mark or change the default roles of words in the sentence. That said, markers enable you to change the word order in the sentence. All markers are put in front of the word being marked. If the marker is obvious from the context and it hasn't been applied to change the word order, it may be omitted. The markers are as follows:
ho = main verb marker
gi = subject marker
gu = object marker
po = adverb (= main verb modifier)
ce = adjective (= main noun modifier, does not create a main noun)
de = adjective (= main noun modifier, creates a main noun)
pe = clause marker
How many words are in Nao? Technically infinite. It’s like asking “How many sentences are there in English?”. Just like the grammar of English allows you to generate an infinite number of sentences, the grammar of Nao goes to the next level and allows you to generate an infinite number of words.
For the dictionary, check the official website https://naolang.github.io
– dio de tondom 'babilon –
− ca te lebei ki moisa ca hoike da nomo hom pia din pobapus ca hoike dagau ba len sum − podomonofoku jin ta hobei hudiodofapon − mo doso maie genel keu pomodei bei soi todei pani ta, nodomogafo − lenel da kigaushom pia poba len sim − ta domofambefo hoi datagau bio paijun 'noi pe nodumei le maliagomakiu din mit topabin jin macilcun 'ararat − sudama kinidipun din disakomoli to janbeilin − kucta gausda lek nekobebei biu din pani ta nekobebei tondom cun ge cul ge domokan ti topa noponcake de kelcualau − kibei to gepun pe da honikidimoli : nefaia simur, nepakopia doua din nepa ta tuni tocipuatendom − tondom honikidicun podijin cul − gausda kijoi togefoi pe tonebei datagau hodipun − le danegau disa jin ta, muta najus kan tondom pupun cepicse tu cul − danegau no fi tofambeniku ta : gausda dilunataldohunse puslem potua picsebejin cul − din muta ba: «bio ji sudama, dagau hom pia, dagau ba len sim − keu nifa ke − ponataldohun din dofeunedu, datagau moi picsebejin cul, jin hudanegau» − danegau no nejantallu datagau kie nemeu keu nesum len pe datagau ba − dianel, le gausda gonu tu tondom, datagau ponodofoku du hom pia − dagai mo hom ca ke doba pajin − gausda mo fa gai − lanekobebei du − gausda goci ti tondom tu cil pua dihom ca ke nidofa − keu pa cil gausda diban hoi nohom toba pia − le kan ta, danegau nepusfei gausda kie nego gausda ti biu nodoganekobebei din nepa datagau tu biu sum pa num sum de kelcualau − le le go, gausda dumem paujun se podijo hutogausfa din len se –
The story of the Babylon tower
Have you ever wondered why people can't understand each other and moreover why they speak different languages? Actually there is a legend on this matter, too. It might seem a little bit magical but maybe there is a bit of truth in it, who knows.
At some time, people used to understand each other speaking the same language. After all, all of them were descendants of Noi who survived during the flood and found a shelter near the Ararat mountains. Step by step the people was getting bigger and learning new things and skills. And then people decided to build a city and in it they'd build a tall tower right up to the skies so that it could be seen from anywhere on Earth.
There were a lot of things that the people had learned by then: burning bricks, gathering stones and putting them into the foundation. Step by step the tower was growing getting closer to the sky. The people were happy to see how fast and steadily their creature was growing.
When God found out about it he was surprised to see a enormous tower stretching to the sky. God did not like the that idea: the people became empty pride and vanity again, trying to ascend to the sky. And he said: "It's one people, everybody understands each other, everybody speaks the same language. But what are they doing? Proud and stubborn, they want to reach to the sky, to approach God Himself!" God did not punish them with death, but he mixed the languages they were speaking.
One day, when people went out to the tower, they suddenly couldn't understand each other anymore. Nobody could understand what is spoken near them. People could not do anything. The construction stopped. People went down from the tower to the ground to find out what's going on. But on the ground they started fighting because one couldn't understand what the other wants to say. Upon seeing that, God helped the people by making them leaving the unfinished city and putting them into different cities located at the different edges of the Earth. As time passed, people forgot about their ancestry, they got their own traditions and languages.