Watch: Inventor Of Klingon Language Discusses New Words Created For ‘Star Trek: Discovery’

One of the major elements of Star Trek: Discovery is extensive use of the Klingon language. For scenes with the Klingons they speak in Klingon with subtitles. In a new video, Lieven Litaer (aka the Klingon Teacher) speaks to Marc Okrand, the original inventor of the Klingon language, about the new additions to the Klingon language created for Discovery.

More Klingon words added for Discovery

As was noted in the video, Okrand isn’t working on Star Trek: Discovery, as the translating for the show is being handled by Klingon expert Robyn Stewart. However, Okrand is still the only person who can introduce new words into the Klingon language, which is maintained by the Klingon Language Institute. As he does at each annual conference of the KLI (called the qep’a’), Okrand introduced a number of new Klingon words in the summer of 2017. You can see the full list at KLI.org (words noted as “qep’a’ 24” were announced this year). 

In addition to many new words made by request of KLI members, this years list includes a few created for Star Trek: Discovery. Some additions were seen in the premiere, such as words for sarcophagus, coffin, Andorian, and Tellarite. But, there are some new Klingon words that we may yet see on Discovery. Possibilities include naQ ‘er (a Klingon animal called a “brush devil”), wab labwI’ (radio transmitter), noDwI’ (avenger), and possibly others.

Is this creature seen in a Discovery promo a naQ ‘er?

Netflix offering Klingon subtitles

The enhanced level of Klingon doesn’t end there. Those who watch Star Trek: Discovery on Netflix around the world have a special option not available to those watching in the USA and Canada. One of the subtitle language options available for the show is Klingon. The subtitle translations were done for Netflix by Lieven Litaer (from the above video).

Watch Discovery with Klingon subtitles on Netflix

Netflix even sent out a press release in Klingon after the show premiered earlier this week.

This is the Netflix promo video featuring Klingon dialog from that accompanied the press release. 

With so much Klingon in Star Trek: Discovery it might not be a bad idea to start learning some Klingon. The KLI can help you out with that too.


Star Trek: Discovery is available exclusive in the US on CBS All Access with new episodes released Sundays at 8:30 pm ET. In Canada Star Trek: Discovery airs on the Space Channel at the same time. Discovery is available on Netflix outside the USA and Canada with new episodes made available Monday at 8 am BST.

Keep up with all the Star Trek: Discovery news at TrekMovie.

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