10 Fictional Alphabets You Can Actually Use

You’re probably at an age where writing notes to buddies in a bizarre alphabet is not a top priority, but let’s take a minute to remember the good ol’ days — when summer notepads were scribbled with secret scripts that only you and your closest friends understood. Sure, those years might be gone, but that doesn’t mean we all can’t rekindle our love of strange fake alphabets in a grown-up pop culture kind of way, does it? Who wouldn’t love to put, “Can read and write English in Tolkien’s Elvish” on a résumé? Or perhaps Hylian, the language of Link and Zelda? After the jump, we’ve gathered the alphabets and handy English translations of ten awesome fictional languages from film, television, literature, and a couple video games, all thanks to the brilliance that is Omniglot.com. Feel free to write us a note in your chosen language and leave it in the comments. How? There will be a good bit of scanning and linking involved, of course. We never said passing secret notes over the Internet would be easy.

Tengwar (Elvish) alphabet — J.R.R. Tolkien, The Lord of the Rings

Photo by Moviestore/REX/Shutterstock


If you’ve never had the urge to learn Tolkien-style Elvish, watch Liv Tyler speak Sindarin at Comic-Con in 2007. Beautiful stuff, eh? The above alphabet is Tengwar, or the script used to write in Valarin, Quenya, Telerin, Sindarin, the Black Speech of Mordor, and so on. With the above translation, you can also use Tengwar to write in English, which is what we’ll be doing until we find ourselves stuck with a ring to destroy. By the way — after that firework incident, San Diego is the new Shire. Pass it on.