If you are a… game of Thrones Fan I’m sure you’ve already seen the first episode of GOT Prequel house of dragons at least once on HBO, but if you want to take your fandom even deeper into your consciousness, you can join over 700,000 other gargantuan nerds and learn how to say High Valyrian via the free DuoLingo app.
High Valyrian, the language of the ancient Valyrian Free State on the eastern continent of Essos in the GOT/HOD universe, is a constructed language developed by linguists David J Peterson that has more than 2,000 words in its lexicon and has the same rules as “real” languages. “I would say that for English speakers it’s probably just as difficult to get into Russian – with less idiomatic stuff to learn for the very, very specific reason that we don’t know much about the culture of those who spoke High Valyrian, ‘ Peterson said marketplace. “It’s still a mystery that’s still getting into the books.”
DuoLingo has offered a High Valyrian course since 2019, but the course is now being taught in partnership with HBO, and the new series means new words have been added to the lexicon. DuoLingo is offering two free months of DuoLingo Plus to HBO subscribers, and you can also use the premium version to learn languages actually spoken on Earth.
Yes, you can use DuoLingo to learn Klingon
DuoLingo is no stranger to fictional languages — it has long offered a course in Klingon for people interested in space adventures — and it’s no stranger to trend-hopping, either. The language learning platform has almost 5 million subscribers TikTok feed of meme-worthy videos and maintains a video game hub Roblox that is “packed with experiences” to teach languages in a playful way.
“We try to find moments in the culture where there are these cult audiences — these cohorts of people — who are hardcore fans of something,” said James Kuczynski, creative director of brand and marketing at DuoLingo digiday.com. “We really try to resonate with them because we feel like if we can inspire identification with them and our brand and what we are creating as an educational language brand, they almost become ambassadors for us. That in and of itself is part of the content that we can share and go back and connect with this community.”
High Valyrian as entry language
I don’t know about you, but I love nothing more than companies that resonate with me to encourage identification with their brand! Sign me up for an ambassadorship, please! But seriously, according to DuoLingo, 43% of users who take Klingon or High Valyrian lessons also start learning another language through the app, and the company is working on content dedicated to teaching endangered and indigenous languages, so does it’s ultimately a good thing.