Writing in Khuzdul, while not transcribing it in Latin characters but using the proper runes can be a big challenge, especially given the fact that most runic fonts seem to have the character mappings wrong. Meaning that if you type “a” you do not get the rune that should match with “a”.
The challenges don’t stop there sadly, seeing there are not one but several forms of dwarvish runes.
In addition one rune could be two letters in Latin script, so that if one were to make a font that allows you to type in dwarvish, it would need to make a distinction between a rune that combines two latin characters and a rune that is only one latin character (for instance, “sh”, “s”, and “h” are three different runes).
So, with all of the above in mind, I set to work on a new font and created one myself, so that you (and others like you with the same need) can write Dwarvish with greater ease.
Note: To use this font with Android or iOS on your phone or tablet you may need third party software that will allow the usage of non-standard fonts (there are several available that will allow that, some good ones for only a few dollars). To be clear, I am currently NOT developing an app for Android or iOS, as such this font was made with Windows and MacOS in mind.
Firstly, this font is for Angerthas Moria (though an Angerthas Erebor version is planned to be created in future).
Seeing that all forms of (neo-)Khuzdul runic script do not have capital letters these were used for specific runic characters.
Active Capital letters:
- A, E, I, O and U are used to write the long Dwarvish vowels, being: “â”, “ê”, “î”, “ô” and “û”.
- G, K, S and T are used to write the Dwarvish “gh”, “kh”, “sh” and “th”.
- N is used to write the Dwarvish geminated n, being “nn”.
- D and J are used to write the Dwarvish “nd” and “nj” (Note: for “nj” also “ñ” or “Ñ” can be used)
- C and P are in fact place holders for the Angerthas Erebor character set “ts” and “ps” – in this font they are written out in their Angerthas Moria counterparts.
meaning that the phrase “Baruk Khazâd.” should be typed as:
To end up correctly as…
Non-Active Capital letters:
- The following capital letters are NOT used in this font. Hence, when you would type: B, F, H, L, M, Q, R, V, W, X, Y or Z (in capitals) you will not get a rune but the Latin character (and the font should revert to a Latin character font).
Active lower letters:
- a, e, i, o and u are used for the shortened vowel only (for long vowels use the Capital version).
- p, v and x are also active, though not part of the (neo-)Khuzdul own alphabet they may be used for words derived from other languages or non-native names and represent “p”, “v” and “ks” respectively in this script.
Non-Active lower letters:
- q is the only lower letter character that is NOT active in this font. Hence, when you type “q” you will not get a rune but the Latin character (and the font should revert to a Latin character font).
- Digits: 0 to 9 have been included (clearly marking them with a dot below the rune to indicate they are indeed numbers and not letters).
- Reading signs: The vast majority of reading signs have been activated (ampersand, apostrophe, question mark, exclamation mark, left and right parenthesis, etc…. Most of these runes are inventions, yet some (like ampersand, space and period) are original runes.
- $, € and £ symbols are used to indicate copper, silver and gold coins respectively. Here new runes were invented.
- à, ò and ù are all characters (both in lower and Capital versions) that can be used to write the open-mid back unrounded vowel or caret – More information on the caret here
- è (both in lower and Capital version) can be used to write the mid central vowel sound or schwa. Note: the schwa is usually omitted in writing – more information on this here.
Further notes on writing runes:
- Don’t forget that (neo-)Khuzdul does not have capital letters, in fact the usage of capitals in this font has a different purpose (see above).
- In order to write a proper line one must ensure you START each line with a period (.) This will give you the characteristic look familiar for dwarvish runes. You end each line with the reading sign required (period, question mark, exclamation mark, etc…)
Where to Download / Compatibility / How to Install:
- You can download the font freely from the www.dwarrowscholar.com libary, HERE
- The font is a “TrueType” font file, so any computer system that can read this type should be compatible.
- This font was made with FontStruct and is packaged in .zip files together with a license document and a ‘read me’ document. The font file needs to be extracted from this .zip file so you can install it. You will find some excellent general information on installing fonts here – just note that all users, including users of OSX, will download their fonts in .zip format. Once installed you should find it listed among your fonts (restart may be required).
Ever at your service,
The Dwarrow Scholar
Well… This font is great 😀 !
I’m currently writing a course (in French) to popularize Tolkien’s linguistic works for Middle Earth, and your blog is really helpful, dude.