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(In the books)
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'''Ghiscari''' or '''Old Ghiscari''' is the [[languages|language]] of the ancient [[Ghiscari Empire]]. It is still spoken in some parts of the [[Slaver's Bay]] region of [[Essos]], more frequently by [[slavery|slaves]]<ref>"[[Mhysa]]"</ref> than the noble caste, who prefer to use [[High Valyrian]].<ref>"[[And Now His Watch is Ended]]"</ref>
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'''Ghiscari''', or '''Old Ghiscari''', is the [[languages|language]] of the ancient [[Ghiscari Empire]]. After the [[Valyrian Freehold]] conquered the Ghiscari Empire five thousand years ago, the indigenous language of the Ghiscari died out, as the inhabitants of the region were forced to adopt the [[High Valyrian|Valyrian]] language of their new masters.
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After the [[Doom of Valyrian]], four hundred years before the [[War of the Five Kings]], the local cities of [[Slaver's Bay]] re-asserted their independence, but five thousand years of Valyrian domination had taken a heavy toll. While they pride themselves as descendants of the old Ghiscari Empire, only a few scraps of its ancient culture survived, and Old Ghiscari remained a dead language.
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However, without the central influence of Old Valyria anymore, the old High Valyrian language mutated into various romance languages, differing from region to region, known as [[Low Valyrian]]. Some words and features of the old Ghiscari language influenced the new Low Vayrian of Slaver's Bay, making it quite different from the various Low Valyrian languages of the [[Free Cities]].
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For example, the word for "mother" in Slaver's Bay Low Valyrian, "mhysa", is a direct loanword from Old Ghiscari, in which "mhysa" also meant "mother".<ref>"[[Mhysa]]"</ref>
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The language of Slaver's Bay is still fundamentally a form of Low Valyrian, however, and a few loanwords and possibly grammatical features, little of Old Ghiscari has survived five millennia after the destruction of the old empire. In the present day, the ruling [[Slavery|slave-masters]] of Slaver's Bay even pride themselves on speaking High Valyrian - once the language of their Valyrian conquerors, but now the preferred language of refined social elites across much of Essos.<ref>"[[And Now His Watch is Ended]]"</ref>
   
 
==Lexicon==
 
==Lexicon==
''mhysa'' ("me-sar") - "Mother".
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Little of Old Ghiscari has survived, save for a few words in Slaver's Bay Low Valyrian which are known to be direct loanwords from the earlier Ghiscari language:
   
==Speakers of Ghiscari==
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*''mhysa'' ("me-sar") - "Mother".
* [[Missandei]]
 
   
 
==In the books==
 
==In the books==
In the ''[[A Song of Ice and Fire]]'' novels, Ghiscari is much more widely-spoken in Slaver's Bay (as part of an attempt to reclaim their cultural heritage and erase all trace of the [[Valyria]]n conquest) and remains the primary tongue of the kingdom of [[Ghiscar (kingdom)|Ghiscar]] to the south. When Daenerys asks what language is spoken is Yunkai, Missandei says that they speak a version of Low Valyrian. The cities of Slaver's bay actually have a polyglot population, because slaves are brought in from distant areas. In the books, Daenerys is hailed by the freed slaves as "mother", but using the different words for "mother" in at least five different languages: ''Mhysa'', ''Maela'', ''Aelalla'', ''Qathei'', and ''Tato''. "Mhysa" is the word for "mother" in Old Ghiscari, but the other four languages aren't identified. The TV series simply had the freed slaves call her only "Mhysa" and omitted the other forms.
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In the ''[[A Song of Ice and Fire]]'' novels, Ghiscari is much more widely-spoken in Slaver's Bay (as part of an attempt to reclaim their cultural heritage and erase all trace of the [[Valyria]]n conquest) and remains the primary tongue of the kingdom of [[Ghiscar (kingdom)|Ghiscar]] to the south. When Daenerys asks what language is spoken is Yunkai, Missandei says that they speak a version of Low Valyrian. The cities of Slaver's bay actually have a polyglot population, because slaves are brought in from distant areas. In the books, Daenerys is hailed by the freed slaves as "mother", but using the different words for "mother" in at least five different languages: ''Mhysa'', ''Maela'', ''Aelalla'', ''Qathei'', and ''Tato''. "Mhysa" is the word for "mother" in Old Ghiscari, but the other four languages aren't identified. The TV series simply had the freed slaves call her only "Mhysa" and omitted the other forms.
   
The books aren't very consistent on this point, because at times Old Ghiscari is spoken of as if it is functionally a dead language, while at other times it appears that at least some of the population speaks it.
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The books aren't very consistent on this point, because at times Old Ghiscari is spoken of as if it is functionally a dead language, while at other times it appears that at least some of the population speaks it.
   
 
For the TV show, the Ghiscari language appears to be regarded as more of a dead language (hence the "old" appellation) than an active one and the people of Slaver's Bay instead speak a variant of High Valyrian with some old Ghiscari language influences.<ref>[http://www.dothraki.com/2013/03/game-of-thrones-season-3-premiere-event/ David J. Peterson's blog], Dothraki.com, March 19, 2013.</ref> For the TV show, it is not yet known if the Ghiscari kingdom to the south speaks Ghiscari or a similar variant of High Valyrian.
 
For the TV show, the Ghiscari language appears to be regarded as more of a dead language (hence the "old" appellation) than an active one and the people of Slaver's Bay instead speak a variant of High Valyrian with some old Ghiscari language influences.<ref>[http://www.dothraki.com/2013/03/game-of-thrones-season-3-premiere-event/ David J. Peterson's blog], Dothraki.com, March 19, 2013.</ref> For the TV show, it is not yet known if the Ghiscari kingdom to the south speaks Ghiscari or a similar variant of High Valyrian.

Revision as of 17:20, September 17, 2013

Ghiscari, or Old Ghiscari, is the language of the ancient Ghiscari Empire. After the Valyrian Freehold conquered the Ghiscari Empire five thousand years ago, the indigenous language of the Ghiscari died out, as the inhabitants of the region were forced to adopt the Valyrian language of their new masters.

After the Doom of Valyrian, four hundred years before the War of the Five Kings, the local cities of Slaver's Bay re-asserted their independence, but five thousand years of Valyrian domination had taken a heavy toll. While they pride themselves as descendants of the old Ghiscari Empire, only a few scraps of its ancient culture survived, and Old Ghiscari remained a dead language.

However, without the central influence of Old Valyria anymore, the old High Valyrian language mutated into various romance languages, differing from region to region, known as Low Valyrian. Some words and features of the old Ghiscari language influenced the new Low Vayrian of Slaver's Bay, making it quite different from the various Low Valyrian languages of the Free Cities.

For example, the word for "mother" in Slaver's Bay Low Valyrian, "mhysa", is a direct loanword from Old Ghiscari, in which "mhysa" also meant "mother".[1]

The language of Slaver's Bay is still fundamentally a form of Low Valyrian, however, and a few loanwords and possibly grammatical features, little of Old Ghiscari has survived five millennia after the destruction of the old empire. In the present day, the ruling slave-masters of Slaver's Bay even pride themselves on speaking High Valyrian - once the language of their Valyrian conquerors, but now the preferred language of refined social elites across much of Essos.[2]

Lexicon

Little of Old Ghiscari has survived, save for a few words in Slaver's Bay Low Valyrian which are known to be direct loanwords from the earlier Ghiscari language:

  • mhysa ("me-sar") - "Mother".

In the books

In the A Song of Ice and Fire novels, Ghiscari is much more widely-spoken in Slaver's Bay (as part of an attempt to reclaim their cultural heritage and erase all trace of the Valyrian conquest) and remains the primary tongue of the kingdom of Ghiscar to the south. When Daenerys asks what language is spoken is Yunkai, Missandei says that they speak a version of Low Valyrian. The cities of Slaver's bay actually have a polyglot population, because slaves are brought in from distant areas. In the books, Daenerys is hailed by the freed slaves as "mother", but using the different words for "mother" in at least five different languages: Mhysa, Maela, Aelalla, Qathei, and Tato. "Mhysa" is the word for "mother" in Old Ghiscari, but the other four languages aren't identified. The TV series simply had the freed slaves call her only "Mhysa" and omitted the other forms.

The books aren't very consistent on this point, because at times Old Ghiscari is spoken of as if it is functionally a dead language, while at other times it appears that at least some of the population speaks it.

For the TV show, the Ghiscari language appears to be regarded as more of a dead language (hence the "old" appellation) than an active one and the people of Slaver's Bay instead speak a variant of High Valyrian with some old Ghiscari language influences.[3] For the TV show, it is not yet known if the Ghiscari kingdom to the south speaks Ghiscari or a similar variant of High Valyrian.

References

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