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Head direction
Nouns decline according to...
Case Number
Definiteness Gender
Verbs conjugate according to...
Voice Mood
Person Number
Tense Aspect

General information[]

olili-lan is intended to be a small, minimalist, and easy to learn. It was NOT created to be a complex, specific language. It has a reduced dictionary on purpose, allowing it to be easy to learn.

olili-lan is mainly influenced by toki pona and ygyde, with some extra bits of English, Portuguese, Polynesian pidgins, and Hawaiian. It is also a philosophical and abstract language, in the style of the Sapir-Whorf hypothesis. In short, this is a language created as a hobby, trying to balance simplicity and maximum communication potential, and being possible to learn it the shortest time possible.

Writing System[]

All olili-lan words have no case distinctions, like Arabic, for example. This means that you do not need to use Upper Case letters even in the beginning of phrases. This doesn't mean you can't write it in Upper Case; you can, but it wont mean anything.


 olili-lan consists in the Latin alphabet, albeit using only 12 letters. These letters are described in the following paragraphs.


 All the consonants are pronounced like any person who speaks a Western Germanic language would expect them to be, so if you are familiar with English or Dutch this should be pretty straightforward for you.

Bilabial Labio-dental Dental Alveolar Post-alveolar Retroflex Palatal Velar
Nasal m n
Plosive p t k
Fricative v s, z
Flap or tap
Lateral fric.
Lateral app. l
Lateral flap


 olili-lan’s vowels are quite unlike English’s. Whereas vowels in English are quite arbitrary and can be pronounced tons of different ways depending on the word, olili-lan’s vowels are all regular and never change pronunciation. If you’re familiar with Portuguese or Spanish, or certain other languages, especially romance ones, then your work is already cut out for you. The vowels are the same as they are in these languages.

Front Near-front Central Near-back Back
Close i (unrounded)
Mid e (unrounded)
Open-mid o (rounded)
Open a (unrounded)

Writing System[]

Writing System[]

Letter a e i o
Sound /a/ /ɛ/ /i/ /ɔ/
Letter k l m n p s t v
Sound /k/ /l/ /m/ /n/ /p/ /s/

/z/ (end of words)

/t/ /v/


All pronouns start with i. Unlike English, and like many other European languages, there is a difference between you (singular) and you (plural). Check the table below.

Singular Plural
i ip
iti itip
ili ilip

Gender is non-existent unless specified. Should only be specified when needed. 

Sentences in olili-lan follow the common Subject-Verb-Object (SVO) order common to most languages spoken. Check the example below:

iti emoko apana. You (singular) eat food.

This can also be easily identified by the start of the words: Since most nouns, all adjectives and all verbs have common starting letters, a simple sentence in olili-lan would have the following letters starting the 3 words: i e a

As we have seen before, the plural of the pronouns happens when you put the -p suffix in a singular pronoun. For the rest of the nouns, this is done by adding a -s suffix, if the word ends in a vowel, or a -os suffix, if the word ends in a consonant. This can also be done with verbs and adjectives; the result would be difficult to translate to English. See the examples below:

ili elasa akata-s. He/She hunts animals.
ili elasa-s akata-s. He/She hunts (many times, repeated action) animals.


All verbs start with the letter e. There is a “to be” verb in olili-lan, but it is omitted in normal conversation and writing, unless it is relating to another verb. This works in  similar way to other natural languages that omit the verb “to be”, like Russian.

i ako.                      I am a person/human.
i evile eli amama. I want to be a parent.

Verbs in olili-lan don't change according to tense, you just need to add a prefix for either future or past. For the present, just leave the verb in the normal infinitive.

ili eko omote-amani. He/She has a lot of money.
ili pi-eko omote-amani. He/She had a lot of money.
ili ni-eko omote-amani. He/She will have a lot of money.


To use possessives, you need to add a -s suffix, if the word ends in a vowel, or a -os suffix, if the word ends in a consonant.

lo ako-v akala.                     the man's fish.
ip-iv anena.                     our mountain.

If you need to add both the plural suffix and the possessive suffix, the plural comes first:

ako esitele lan-os-iv animi-s.                     the person writes the languages' names.


In agglutinated words, the last one is the most important.

  • akana-atela = land of fire, a land with fires
  • atela-akana = fire of land, a fire in land
  • valo-maso = whitish red, pink
  • valo-vola = dark grey
  • vola-valo = soft grey

tatono = 5 te-tatono = 3 * 5 = 15 tatono-te = 5 +3 = 8


 olili-lan currently features 178 unique words. You can check the complete updated list here

Example text[]

Translation of the babel text to Olili-lan:

Olili-lan: vo ale ako-atela pi-eko ta lan vo ta atoki. vo son ilip etava-etava, ilip pi-etava son na-anena-etava poka animi mi-shinar, vo pi-evoki ilip avila.

vo pi-etoki ilip poka ilip, etava-s, ip evoki atela-akive. vo ilip pi-even atela-akive-s poka atela-akive-s, poka olaki-atela. vo ilip pi-etoki, ip etava-s, ip ni-evoki avila-avila, vo ta osevi-avila, osevi sama amono-asono-atela. vo ip evoki omama-animi ki ip, vo ip na-etava-etava son lo atela. vo sipati pi-etava sila avila-avila, elokin lo osevi-avila lo ako evoki.

vo sipati pi-etoki, elokin, ilip ale ta akolopo-ako-s, vo ta lan. vo lo aveka ki ilip ken evoki. vo pepe na ken even ilip tan ilip evile-eli. ekama, ip etava son vo epini ilip asona-lan, se ilip na-eli ni-etoki-ken. vo sipati evoki ilip-etava se ale ako-atela, vo ako-s na-evoki lo avila. sipati pi-epana animi lo mi-babel, tan li sipati eveka ako-lan vo evoki ilip otava se ale ako atela.

English (original): And all the earth had one language and one tongue. And it came about that in their wandering from the east, they came to a stretch of flat country in the land of Shinar, and there they made their living-place.

And they said one to another, Come, let us make bricks, burning them well. And they had bricks for stone, putting them together with sticky earth. And they said, Come, let us make a town, and a tower whose top will go up as high as heaven; and let us make a great name for ourselves, so that we may not be wanderers over the face of the earth.

And the Lord came down to see the town and the tower which the children of men were building. And the Lord said, See, they are all one people and have all one language; and this is only the start of what they may do: and now it will not be possible to keep them from any purpose of theirs. Come, let us go down and take away the sense of their language, so that they will not be able to make themselves clear to one another. So the Lord God sent them away into every part of the earth: and they gave up building their town. So it was named Babel, because there the Lord took away the sense of all languages and from there the Lord sent them away over all the face of the earth.

External Links[]