The language spoken by the dwarfs on Discworld, in the series of books by Terry Pratchett. It's a guttural language; while obviously not related to any Earth language, it appears to have a certain consonance with the way Scandinavian languages, particularly Icelandic, sound to English speakers.
While Dwarf conversations with humans are usually transcribed in English, a small vocabulary can be got up:
- -ak or -'ak (the ' may represent a glottal stop)
- a particle of negation, or perhaps a privative.
- "lawn ornament," used as an insult. Fighting words when said by a human.
- "chief mining engineer," but in practice, he occupies a position roughly equivalent to that of a king in those human societies ruled by kings.
- an outcast, literally "not a dwarf," one who has behaved egregiously and therefore been excluded from Dwarfish society.
- very traditional dwarfs, who stay underground as much as possible and take pains never to be exposed to sunlight. The term literally means "those who don't get out in the fresh air enough."
- "fresh" or "unencumbered dwarfs," similar to being born again; the word refers to dwarfs setting out with a clean slate, having paid off the debts incurred in their upbringing.
- a greeting, equivalent to the French "bonjour."
- a female dwarf, but it's a pejorative term at best. Dwarf society is genderless—all dwarfs are referred to as "he" (rather, by the single third person pronoun their language contains)—but, especially in cities and among humans, some female dwarfs are starting to come out, as it were, and live openly as females. This is meeting with some resistance, and this word, used for such dwarfs, appears to have connotations of shame.
- "royal advisor" (but see under dezka-knik, above). The word literally translates as "idea-taster" (analogous to a food-taster) and may be one of the few examples of metaphor in Dwarfish language or, indeed, Dwarfish culture.
- the Dwarfish language.
- literally "mining law," but covers almost all aspects of dwarfish day-to-day life (which largely is mining). Broadly, this is the Dwarfish equivalent of the Salic Law or the Napoleonic Code.
- T'dr'duzk b'hzg t't!
- "Today is a good day for someone else to die." A battle cry.
/msg me with additions. . . .