"Valar morghūlis."

Translation:All men must die.

July 12, 2017



Is this a reference to something in Game of Thrones? I haven't actually watched/read it, I'm just doing this course out of curiosity.

July 13, 2017


Yes, it is a common greeting in the city of Braavos. The expected response is "Valar Dohaeris" (All men must serve).

July 13, 2017



July 13, 2017


*All free cities.

July 15, 2017


The TV show is awesome, and the books are even better. You should read them or watch it, both are worth it.

July 13, 2017


morghūlis = "must die" or just "die"?

July 13, 2017


All men die. As in "everyone dies". The meaning is still the same.

July 13, 2017


Thank you very much. I was trying to separate and I was completely confused. English is not my native language, so I had some trouble understanding.

July 13, 2017


It's the subjunctive, so it shows a necessity or obligation here.

July 14, 2017


It's not the subjunctive, it's the aorist. The course does not yet cover that topic.

The aorist indicates a general truth as opposed to something that's happening right now. So if we switch the aorist valar morghūlis "all men die" to the present valar morghūljas it now means "all men are dying."

August 2, 2017


I never heard it, but I found something in my native language. Thank you for bringing that word.

Edit: and also an awesome explanation here and here

August 2, 2017


Thank you, I'll learn to identify more accurately. =)

July 14, 2017


If I understood it correctly, it's "Men die", "all" is implicit as well. Am I right?

July 16, 2017


No, valar is a declension of vala. Valar means "all men" and is not implicit. The all is is declared in the declension itself. Correct me if I'm wrong!

May 27, 2018


Well that's morbid...

July 12, 2017


Momento mori.

July 14, 2017



July 15, 2017


Un momento mori, por favor

August 14, 2017


hue BR??

August 16, 2017


Prufrock Preperatory School!

April 26, 2018


Except Aegon Targaryen.

August 29, 2017


Some people die more often than others.

September 2, 2017


You mean, Jon.

December 20, 2017


So that the women can reign!!

July 13, 2017


abrar dohaeris

August 18, 2017


Only abrar? ;)

November 2, 2017


Abrar also means humanity as well as womankind

April 14, 2018


Abrar dohaeris daor.

May 31, 2018


Valar ābrār morghūlis.

January 1, 2019


Valar dohaeris!

July 14, 2017


This is epic!

July 13, 2017


I would like to add some vocabulary and examples sentences from the Wiki:

morghe ['moɾɣe]

adj. II (High Valyrian Adjectives) dead

Ionos Sōnaro morghe iksos daor. — Jon Snow isn't dead.

morghon ['moɾɣon]

n. 3ter. (High Valyrian Noun Declensions) death

Morghot nēdyssy sesīr zūgusy azantys vestras. — The knight says that even the brave men fear death.

morghūlilare [moɾɣuːli'lare] -ior

adj. II mortal (future participle of morghūljagon.)

Here is the infinitive form of the verb: morghūljagon

morghūljagon [moɾ'ɣuːʎagon]

perfect: morghūltan

v. C-fin. (High Valyrian Verb Tables) to die ( morghe + -ūljagon.)

of fire to burn out

Zȳhi perzi stepagon Āeksio Ōño jorepi, se morghūltas lī qēlītsos sikagon. — We beg the Lord to share his fire, and light a candle that has gone out.

Valar morghūlis All men must die, a common greeting.

From Dothraki Wiki: https://wiki.dothraki.org/High_Valyrian_Vocabulary

July 19, 2017


The sentence I came to this course for.

July 14, 2017


Bye, Adam :(

September 15, 2017


I'm a bit confused on the pronunciation for this. In the show and audio samples I can find, the gh in morghulis is clearly pronounced as a regular hard G. However the pronunciation guide points to a different sound ([ɣ] or [ʁ]), so which is it?

July 14, 2017


The official pronunciation is fricative, similar to German 'r'. However, the actors of the TV show often can't handle the phonetics, and pronounce as one would in English. The same happens e.g. with the 'kh' in Khaleesi, which is often pronounced as a hard /k/ in the show.

I just pretend that Westerosi can't speak proper HV and mangle it :)

July 16, 2017

[deactivated user]

    But none of the Westerosi are supposed to be native speakers anyway, right? So it would make sense if they have accents.

    July 17, 2017


    The language is something of a fossil, but Daenerys is supposed to be a native speaker. Beyond that, this particular change (from /ɣ/ to /g/) would be quite unusual as a natural development or accent; the only normal way for that mistake to happen is for someone to misread the writing system, as we're doing here, but most non-noble Westerosi are illiterate anyway, and it's unclear how the (non-specified) Valyrian writing would lead someone like Tyrion to misread it. I once asked the author on his blog whether I could think of "gh" = /g/ as a Westerosi accent, and he specifically told me "no"; so that's just my pesonal head-canon :)

    To make matters worse, the show also mangles the pronunciation of other languages, including Dothraki and the various Low Valyrian languages, which have plenty of native speakers. For example, several of the Dothraki say "Khaleesi" with a hard /k/ and an /i:/ sound as in "beet".

    At the end of the day we just have to accept that Peterson, the creator of the languages, wasn't hired to personally oversee the coaching of the actors, and we should take it in stride. They've still paid a proper linguist to develop several fully-featured languages, which is already infinitely better than the large majority of fantasy movies or series.

    July 17, 2017


    Well, spanish mixes the sonorant fricative and the hard g, so it is not unattested.

    July 18, 2017


    Yup, you're right. But, the natural change goes the other way: from original Latin /g/ to a relaxed /ɣ/, not the other way around (similar things would be /g/ → /ɣ/ in Old Norse→Icelandic, or Indo-European /p/, as reflected in Spanish padre, pie, pez→ Germanic /f/, as in English father, foot, fish, or Old Japanese /p/ → /f/ → /h/, and many others).

    The opposite change (fortition) isn't impossible; it occurs sometimes, especially if there's something to make the pronunciation "stronger", like preceding nasals or emphasis. But I find it hard to imagine it becoming a widespread, fully complete development among illiterate non-speakers of Valyrian. If anything I'd expect /ɣ/ to be mistook by an even softer /h/ or similar.

    July 19, 2017


    Well, in defence of the show's internal logic (and real world abilities of the actors aside), from memory, Daenerys doesn't actually say she's a native speaker, she says it's her "mother tongue".

    The concept of "mother tongue" varies in different parts of the world - I know a few people from parts of India or Africa, who when asked will tell you their "mother tongue" is Igbo or Telugu or whichever, but actually grew up speaking English mainly, and speak English better than the mother tongues. Furthermore, they may even speak their "mother tongue" with an English accent or other interference from English. Or as another possibility - if she's grown up speaking Westerosi Common with her retainers and her brother, her HV could be quite influenced that way - compare for example of e.g. children of German immigrant parents in the US speaking heavily anglicised German, even if they still speak it at home and it technically remains their native language.

    I kind of got the impression that this was the case for Daenerys.

    August 1, 2017


    DJP does have in mind that the various regions of Westeros pronounce HV differently, just as different regions of Medieval Europe did with Latin. Braavosi seems to pronounce /ɣ/ as [g] (though that did initially come from Thomas Wlaschiha's pronunciation) and medial /h/ as [ʔ].

    July 29, 2017


    Oh, did he accept [g] as an in-world variation in the end? When I asked him he rejected the idea…

    July 31, 2017


    I'm ultimately referring to this quote:

    Anyway, now that that’s dispensed with, we’ve gotten our first look at some actual High Valyrian in the show! It’s nothing that wasn’t in the books, but I think many were curious how the phrase would end up being pronounced. In IPA (transcribing broadly), what we had was /ˈva.lar mor.ˈgu.lis/ for the phrase written Valar morghulis. I know there are those who would’ve preferred that the gh be pronounced as a voiced velar fricative, but for me, that doesn’t matter much at all (after all, this is High Valyrian as pronounced by someone from Braavos. A change like *ɣ g isn’t impossible): what mattered to me was the intonation. And, as it happens, the stress pattern is exactly what I was hoping for—and no English long “a” to boot! (Which, by the way, is how it’s pronounced in the audio book—something like “veil-are”, done in English fauxnetics.) All in all, I was quite pleased.

    August 1, 2017


    Thanks for clearing that up!

    July 18, 2017


    If you want to learn the intended pronunciation, it's best to disregard the show, I'm afraid.

    July 18, 2017


    ❤❤❤❤ just got real

    July 17, 2017


    I'm confused, if "vala" means man and "vali" means men, then where the "Valar" came from?

    September 9, 2017


    Valar is the collective, one of four numbers in HV - singular, plural, paucal and collective, and is interpreted here as "all men"

    October 31, 2017


    That escalated quickly

    January 22, 2018


    Valar Dohaeris.

    July 15, 2017



    November 5, 2017


    Men as in all mankind or just all males?

    April 26, 2018


    all of mankind

    September 1, 2018


    Valar Dohaeris

    July 15, 2017


    Ah I love to hear this

    July 27, 2017


    I love how this is the only new sentence that isn't in orange! Like they expect you to know what it means and while most GoT fans do, it still amuses.

    September 11, 2017


    Well, that was... Kinda unexpected after previous phrases. :D

    November 9, 2017


    isn't that a little harsh?

    December 13, 2017


    When you take feminism to its conclusion...

    April 26, 2018


    Valar Dohaeris

    June 8, 2018


    Who didnt know that one

    June 18, 2018


    no not the cute ones!!!

    June 21, 2018


    I think this is the one none of us got wrong

    July 19, 2018


    Please mention meaning of "valar" and "morghulis" seperately

    August 3, 2018
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