The Mad Latinist (jdm314) wrote,
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Éban au ivétragho nýa brózhi, y do zer gímin éji tóvi!

Here's my analysis of the Valyrian from 305 "Kissed by Fire." For once I have nothing to say by way of introduction, so without further ado:

ETA: OK, some further ado: the video.

Daenerys: Késo gláesot iderḗptot daor.
Subtitle: “You did not choose this life.”
Késo: demonstrative, AV kiza, kizy.

gláesot: "life," acc.s. Compare the acc.s. of "death," mórghot. I suspect both will have the same nom.s. ending as well, but I am not yet cetain what that is.

iderḗptot daor: "you did not choose." A past tense! And as this verb comes up repeatedly we can see that the stem is *iderēb-, and the past tense is formed by a -t- infix (*iderēb·t·ot, but see below on the initial i). Note, however, that David J. Peterson has stated that, at least in some circumstances, daor triggers the subjunctive, so this may specifically be the past subjunctive.


D: Yn dā́eri váli sīr íssi. Se dā́eri váli pṓntalo syt gáomoti iderḗbzi.
S: “But you are free men now. And free men make their own choices.”
Yn dā́eri váli sīr íssi: "But you are free men now." The only new word is íssi "you (pl.) are," which I've already discussed. As I said, it is curious that this is the plural of íksa "you (sg.) are," rather than íssa "is." It is interessting that this sentence uses the plural váli, even though, as a statement of general fact, the collective válar seems at least as viable.

Se dā́eri váli pṓntalo syt gáomoti iderḗbzi: literally something like "And free men choose their very own decisions." Iderḗbzi, being at the end of the sentence, must surely be the verb, but this -zi ending is more than a little mysterious (we would have expected something like *iderēbis).  Pṓntalo syt seems to be an expression meaning "their very own," parallel to jévi jemḗle, below... I cannot be certain, but my suspicion is that pṓntalo is a posessive adjective agreeing with gáomoti (compare AV pon "them."), and syt is possibly the dative 3pl pronoun (cf. AV ji, the dative of the 3s pronoun). Gáomoti, "decisions" in the acc pl.
ETA: This can't be quite right, because we already have the 2pl dative as jemot. Syt might arguably match that, but whatever form jemḗle is, it can't be a simple dative. Genitive makes a good deal of sense semantically. We haven't seen any genitives that look like syt or jemḗle so far, but then we've seen very few genitive plurals at all, and these are, after all, pronouns.


D: Jénti jévi jemḗle iderēbilātā́s, qogróndo jévo hḗdrȳ.
S: “Have you selected your own leader, from amongst your own ranks.”
At first, I was going crazy trying to figure out how iderēbilātā́s could be glossed as both "Have you selected" (as in this line) and "you will choose" (below). I started thinking of the verbal aspects (as opposed to tenses) of Biblical Hebrew, for instance. Fortunately Mr. Peterson set us straight (PV): the line was originally "You will select...." When they changed it to "Have you selected...," Mr. Peterson sent them a new translation, but somehow in the shuffle they ended up using his original translation instead. I suppose we should have expected iderḗptot for "have you chosen"... maybe. That form might be subjunctive. Of course languages that use the subjunctive with negatives often use them with questions too. In any case, what we have here is, instead, iderēbilātā́s. This seems to be stressed as an imperative, but it contains that -il- element, and is translated as a future (albeit with imperative force.) Perhaps it's similar to the Latin "future imperative" form (e.g. eligitote "select; you will select")

jévi jemḗle: "your own," cf. AV jiva. Probably parallel to pṓntalo syt.

Jénti: "leader," acc.s.

qogróndo jévo hḗdrȳ: "from amongst your ranks." Notice that this whole phrase is displaced to after the verb. Hḗdrȳ looks like a locative singular (recall that the locative seems to be used in HV for "motion from"), and must mean "rank(s)." This leaves qogróndo meaning "from amongst," but I cannot explain it further that that


D: derḗpti
S: “Remove your helmet.”
Derḗpti is not a word. Even Peterson himself was mystified by this, until Unak78 pointed out that the audio seems to have come from another reading of the line Se dā́eri váli pṓntalo syt gáomoti iderḗbzi. Peterson is at least considering retconning this into a real Valyrian word,  perhaps meaning "'visor' or a very specific type of helmet," presumably in the accusative (that is: "(Remove your) helmet.") We still don't know that much about AV noun paradims, but this does look a bit like the buzdari declension used for borrowed words. Still, it may be possible to come up with an etymology within AV: Peterson mentions that the root derēb- means "gather." Thinking of Latin colligere "collect" and colligāre "bind up," and noting that the type of helmet the Unsullied wear definitely seems to contain a binding, I'm going to claim that derḗpti originally means "binding." OK, just kidding: this appeal to Latin is even more absurd than usual.

So what is the correct AV for "Remove your helmet"? Aṓhi géltī nādīnā́s: nādīnā́s "remove," imp.s.; Aṓhi "your" (AV oa, oo); géltī "helmet," acc.s.


Grey Worm: Bézy éza ji rígle.
S: “This one has the honor.”
Bézy éza ji rígle: only purely new word here is rígle "honor," possibly related to rijagho, which I recently proposed means "to honor." Aside from this, notice that I've been spelling the demonstrative bézy incorrectly up to this point, and that éza, as usual, does not end in -s.


D: Skoróso jéve brṓza?
S: “What is your name?”
Peterson's transcription says Skoróso jemḗle brṓza, but I'm pretty certain Dany (or Emilia Clarke) is saying jéve. If I'm right that jéve is a possessive adjective, and jemḗle is the dative of the pronoun, this is a very interesting  alternation indeed: the possessive form would match the English expression "what is your name?," whereas the dative would match the Latin "Quod tibi nomen est?" Furthermore, whether it's jéve or jemḗle, there is still the problem that this is the second person plural. Why is Daenerys addressing Grey Worm as if she were addressing the whole group? One possibility is that HV uses the plural to express formality, as do many modern European languages. The problem with this theory is that AV does not seem to do this—and given the fundamental importance of slavery to Astapori society, the familiar/formal distinction is not somethign we would expect to disappear. Before we speculate further, let's look at the other words.

Skoróso: "What." Derived, of course, from the root *sko, which we have already seen pervades AV, so it's no surprise to see a question word formed this way. I don't know if this is an interrogative pronoun (equivalent to "what," "quid") or an interrogative adjective (equivalent to "which," "quod.") In Latin, at any rate, the latter would be considered more correct here, and even though HV rarely follows the Latin expression, this is exactly the sort of thing I might expect Mr. Peterson to do. Still, it does not look like skoróso, whatever form it may be, would be in agreement with brṓza.

brṓza: "Name" (AV bróji). Norice that later on we see brṓzi as the accusative singular, and brṓza as the accusative plural. It seems to me rather implausible, even for HV, for the nom.s. and acc.pl. to be brṓza, and the acc.s. brṓzi. It seems much more likely that brṓza here is a nominative plural. Combined with our jéve/jemḗle problem, this points to a new explanation: recall that in PV Mr. Peterson said:
I have three versions of the translation I did, and three .pdf versions of this scene. Not one of them matches what eventually appeared on screen. Instead, there’s a mix of lines from the original translation I did and the revised translation I did—as well as a bit of a subtitle remix. I think I got everything, though, so I’ll do my best
Most likely this line is from an earlier draft of the script, in which Dany is addressing the whole group, not just Grey Worm.


G: Tórgo Núdho.
S: “Grey Worm.”

D: Tórgo Núdo?
S: “Grey Worm.”
I'm pretty sure that Dany gives the HV form when she repeats the name, and Dinok at any rate heard her pronunciation as different as well. I'm thinking Tórgo is the word that means worm, and I wonder if this might not be an "Easter egg."


D: Hḗzīr, brṓza jévi jemḗle iderēbilātā́s. Méntyri ídañe (jévi) ivestrilātā́s keskydóso gáomagon.
S: “From this day forward, you will choose your own names. You will tell all your fellow soldiers to do the same.”
Hḗzīr: "Henceforth." Compare AV hin kizir sizi "even from here." Perhaps in AV the -īr suffix is fore "hence, thence, whence"-type forms, but AV requires a preposition (just as, on those rare occasions that we still use those forms in Modern English, we very often say "from whence" when a simple "whence" would suffice.)

brṓza jévi jemḗle iderēbilātā́s: "you shall choose your own names." Note brṓza in the acc.pl. here.

Méntyri ídañe jévi ivestrilātā́s: "you shall tell your fellow soldiers." For méntyri "soldiers," cf. ménti ossēnātā́s "slay the soldiers!" Ídañe therefore means "fellow." Ivestrilātā́s "tell" is especially interesting. First of all, we have that "future imperative" form again. Second of all, notice that way back in VD, Peterson gave the vestras as the HV equivalent of AV ivetras. The i- is clearly a prefix of some sort, and we now know it was used as far back as HV. When this first came up, Zhalio suggested the i- might be a marker of transitivity... and something like this (if not exactly) may be going on, as we seem to have a "say" vs. "tell" distinction (and recall that in AV the addressee is treated as a direct object: Ivetrá zer ebí ji rovája "Tell her we want the biggest one.") I don't know what case Méntyri ídañe jévi is in, so I cant tell for sure if that same thing is going on here. Furthermore, we have already sean that iderēb- means "choose," but derēb- is "gather." "Gather" and "choose" may have some semantic connection (compare Latin legere, colligere  "collect," ēligere, sēligere "choose"), but not the same as that between "say" and "say."  It may have an effect similar the Semitic geminate "intensive" pattern. tell it could just be a prepositional prefix—these are very common in Latin, but the only hint we've seen of them so far in HV is henujagon "leave."

keskydóso gáomagon: "to do the same." Gáomagon "to do" (AV gómagho as in Pindas sko gomila kizi sir "She asks that you do this now." Recall that I suggested *gōmagon—close, but no cigar!) Keskydóso "te same" from kes- "this" and an element -kydo-, which I take to be the same as the AV adverbial suffix -kydo which I identified (though I spelled it -kido) back in my original post.


D: Gádbag aṓhe qrīdrughā́s. Ávy hóskas lúe brṓzi ivestrilātā́s. Múñar aṓt téptas lúe brṓzi, íā mírre tolíe iderēbā́s.
S: “Throw away your slave name. Choose the name your parents gave you, or any other. A name that gives you pride.”
Once again we have a discrepancy from David J. Peterson's official transcription: Gadbag aōhe qrīdrughās. Muñar aōt teptas lue brōzi, iā mirre tolie iderēbās. Avy hoskas lue brōzi.  This is closer to the subtitle: the text as read by Emilia Clarke seems to mean "Throw away your slave name. Tell a name that makes you proud. Choose the name your parents gave you or any other." But let's go with the official transcription.

Gádbag aṓhe qrīdrughā́s: "Throw away your slave name." Qrīdrughā́s "throw away," imperative singular. I suspect this might be related to AV qrugh, which probably means "shit"—for that semantic development compare Latin fæces, which literally means "dregs," and excreta, literally "sifted out." Peterson specifies that gádbag "slave name" is a Ghiscari word, and it certainly sounds like one (it's surely a testament to his abilities that I can say that at this point), but I would have expected it to be gádbagi in the accusative.

iderēbā́s "choose," imp.s.

brṓzi "the name," acc.s.

lúe "which," acc.s.

múñar "parents." This is the nom. collective; we have already seen the gen.sing. as muño, which I translated "of mother."

téptas "gave," past tense of tepagon. If the past works like the other tenses, we would expect -as to be a 3s ending. It might make sense for collectives to take a singular, especially when they are relexicalized, like azantyr "army." The problem is valar morghūlis. We'll need to see if we get a 3pl in -as for other past tense verbs.

aṓt "to you," 2s pronoun in the dative. AV o.

íā mírre tolíe: "or any other." "or," AV ja. Tolie "other," as we repeatedly saw last episode, acc.s. Mirre "any," acc.s.

Ávy hóskas lúe brṓzi: "a name which makes you proud." Brōzi "name," acc.s. (continuing previous thought.) Lue "which," acc.s. Hoskas "makes proud" (AV hokas, as we will see below). Avy "you," AV av.


G: “Tórgo Núdho” hókas bézy. Sa me bróji béri. Ji bróji ez bézo séne stás qimbróto. Kúny íles ji bróji méles ésko mazédhas derári va búzdar. Y Tórgo Núdho sa ji bróji ez bézy éji tóvi Daénerys Jelmázmo ji téptas ji dérve.
S: “‘Grey Worm’ gives this one pride. It is a lucky name. The name this one was born with was cursed. That was the name he had when he was taken as a slave. But Grey Worm is the name this one had the day Daenerys Stormborn set him free.”
“Tórgo Núdho” hókas bézy: "'Grey Worm' makes this one proud." As we've noted, hókas is from hoskas.

Sa me bróji béri: "It is a lucky name." Sa "it is" (HV íssa). Bróji "name" (HV brṓzi, brṓza). Béri "lucky."

Ji bróji ez bézo séne stás qimbróto: "The name this one was born with was cursed."  The composition of this sentence, specifically the relative clause, is not entirely clear to me. Let's start with the main clause:
  • Ji bróji stás qimbróto "The name was cursed." New here are stás "was" (past tense of sa. Cf. HV istiat, the 2pl of the past tense. We might suspect the 3s is *istias.) Qimbróto "cursed," with the -t- infix (like in HV kelíton "ended,", vū́jita "kissed," and possibly AV tída "done"). Not plain passive form, because qimbróto is essentially an adjective here.

  • Now, the relative(?) clause: ez bézo séne should mean "with which this one was born." The first element is ez, which we have learned as "of." Could ez also mark relative clauses? Yes, absolutely: compare, for instance, the Aramaic prefix ד־ (/di/- or /dǝ/-), which can mean "of," or mark a relative clause. Likewise, Mandarin (coincidentally also pronounced something like -/dǝ/) serves both functions. The problem is, we can easily see how either meaning might work here: "the name (with) which this one was born" or "the name of this one, (when) he was born." Séne is itself somewhat mysterious, between the -e ending, and the fact that the root looks, if anything, the verb sénagho "to kill," even if it means nearly the opposite! (It certainly has no obvious connection to Jelmázmo "Stormborn.)
... Futhermore, it is also possible that stás goes with séne rather than qimbróto. Likewise I cannot explain the difference between bézo and bézy, both of which Grey Worm uses to refer to himself in this monologue. Possibly they are different cases, but until we figure out how this sentence works we're stuck.

Kúny íles ji bróji méles ésko mazédhas derári va búzdar: "Such was the name the time when he was taken as a slave." Kúny "such." Íles seems to be the past tense of las, kúny apparently being taken as a state here.  I take méles to mean something like "(at the) time." Ésko "when," from sko, with a prefix e- that seems to occur in expressions of time (cf. eva "until," from e·va). Mazédhas derári "he was taken," as I've mentioned, looks suspiciously like what I transcribed as mazméris funmári (apparently "they are trained"), and this may be some sort of passive construction. Va búzdar "as a slave" is pretty transparant.

Y Tórgo Núdho sa: "But Grey Worm is...." This confirms that [i] means "but," as Dinok suggested, but somehow it didn't occur to either of us that if it comes from yn, it will of course be spelled ‹y›.

ji bróji ez bézy éji tóvi...: Here we run into the same problem with ez as before:
  • If ez is a relativizer, then it makes sense to think éji is the past tense of éza: "The name which this one had (on the) day..."

  • If it just means "of," then éji must be a contraction of the e from eva and esko with the relative article: "This one's name on the day..." (Nice to finally get (e)ji tóvi written out, by the way! I'd been spelling it ˣj'etovi so far.)

Altogether I think the latter is more likely. Furthermore notice that the next clause is formed by "gapping" (i.e. there is no relative marker at all, not even esko.) In both cases it looks like the case for ez as a relativizer is pretty weak.

Daénerys Jelmázmo ji téptas ji dérve: "Daenerys Stormborn gave him freedom." We already know Daénerys Jelmázmo "Daenerys Stormborn," from Dany's initial HV speech. Notice that although Grey Worm uses the the HV form of the name, rather than "Astiporifying" it (and Peterson even transcribes it as such), he does at least pronounce it Dénerys. Ji téptas "gave him;" notice that téptas is identical in HV, and this shows that the same formation is used at least sometimes for the past tense in AV. Je dérve "freedom," AV dāérvi, which would seem to show that not only ae contracts to e, but even āe.
Tags: astapori valyrian, conlangs, david j. peterson, dothraki.com, game of thrones, high valyrian, linguistics, valyrian
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