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Counting in D’ni

Language overview

Forty-two in D’ni Invented by Richard Watson for the videogames Myst and Riven, then used in the sequel books taking place in that world, the D’ni language (D’ni) has its own writing system.

D’ni numbers list

  • 125 – fa (fa) 1
  • 225 – brE (brE) 2
  • 325 – sen (sen) 3
  • 425 – tor (tor) 4
  • 525 – vat (vat) 5
  • 625 – vagafa (vagafa) 6
  • 725 – vagabrE (vagabrE) 7
  • 825 – vagasen (vagasen) 8
  • 925 – vagator (vagator) 9
  • A25 – nAvU (nAvU) )
  • B25 – nAgafa (nAgafa) !
  • C25 – nAgabrE (nAgabrE) @
  • D25 – nAgasen (nAgasen) #
  • E25 – nAgator (nAgator) $
  • F25 – hEbor (hEbor) %
  • G25 – hEgafa (hEgafa) ^
  • H25 – hEgabree (hEgabree) &
  • I25 – hEgasen (hEgasen) *
  • J25 – hEgator (hEgator) (
  • K25 – riS (riS) [
  • L25 – rigafa (rigafa) ]
  • M25 – rigabrE (rigabrE) \
  • N10 – rigasen (rigasen) {
  • O25 – rigator (rigator) }
  • 1025 – fasE (fasE) 10
  • 10025 – fara (fara) 100

The base 25

D’ni numbers follow a base 25 numeral system. To better understand this numeral system, let’s start with a more familiar one: the decimal system. In the decimal system (or base-10), we have ten digits, from zero to nine. When we add 1 (one) to 9 (nine), we get 10 (ten), or the unit 1 (one) followed by 0 (zero). This system is positional (the digits represent the units, and their rank the matching power of ten). Thus, 132 decomposes in 100 + 30 + 2 = 1*102 + 3 *101 + 2 *100. This system is also known as a positional decimal numeral system.
Base-25 uses “digits” from 0 to 24. Its first ten is twenty-five in decimal (2510 = 1025), the base is noted in subscript. The decomposition of a base-25 number (in a positional system) is the same as the one of a decimal number, only the base changes: (132)25 = 1*252 + 3 *251 + 2 *250. If we carry it out, we get the matching decimal number, here 750.

D’ni numerals

D’ni language uses a specific notation to write its digits. Here is a list of D’ni digits and their correspondence in Arabic digits: 0 (0), 1 (1), 2 (2), 3 (3), 4 (4), 5 (5), 6 (6), 7 (7), 8 (8), 9 (9), ) (10), ! (11), @ (12), # (13), $ (14), % (15), ^ (16), & (17), * (18), ( (19), [ (20), ] (21), \ (22), { (23), and } (24). The number twenty-five, as being the base of the D’ni numeral system, is generally written using the positional notation system as 10 (or 1025). However, it can also be written with one glyph: |

D’ni numerals

0
025
1
125
2
225
3
325
4
425
5
525
6
625
7
725
8
825
9
925
10
1025
11
1125
12
1225
13
1325
14
1425
15
1525
16
1625
17
1725
18
1825
19
1925
20
2025
21
2125
22
2225
23
2325
24
2425
25
2525

D’ni numbering rules

  • Digits from zero to twenty-four are specific words, namely rUn (rUn) 0 [0], fa (fa) 1 [1], brE (brE) 2 [2], sen (sen) 3 [3], tor (tor) 4 [4], vat (vat) 5 [5], vagafa (vagafa) 6 [6], vagabrE (vagabrE) 7 [7], vagasen (vagasen) 8 [8], vagator (vagator) 9 [9], nAvU (nAvU) ) [1010], nAgafa (nAgafa) ! [1110], nAgabrE (nAgabrE) @ [1210], nAgasen (nAgasen) # [1310], nAgator (nAgator) $ [1410], hEbor (hEbor) % [1510], hEgafa (hEgafa) ^ [1610], hEgabree (hEgabree) & [1710], hEgasen (hEgasen) * [1810], hEgator (hEgator) ( [1910], riS (riS) [ [2010], rigafa (rigafa) ] [2110], rigabrE (rigabrE) \ [2210], rigasen (rigasen) { [2310], and rigator (rigator) } [2410].
  • Tens are formed by adding the suffix -sE (-sE) to the multiplier unit: fasE (fasE) 10 [1025/2510], brEsE (brEsE) 20 [2025/5010], sensE (sensE) 30 [3025/7510], torsE (torsE) 40 [4025/10010], vatsE (vatsE) 50 [5025/12510]…
  • Compound numbers are formed by setting the ten before the unit (e.g.: fasE vagator (fasE vagator) 19 [1925/3410], torsE nAgator (torsE nAgator) 4$ [4E25/11410]).
  • Hundreds are formed by adding the suffix -ra (-ra) to the multiplier unit: fara (fara) 100 [10025/62510], brEra (brEra) 200 [20025/1 25010], senra (senra) 300 [30025/1 87510], torra (torra) 400 [40025/2 50010], vatra (vatra) 500 [50025/3 12510]…
  • Thousands are formed by adding the suffix -len (-len) to the multiplier unit: falen (falen) 1000 [1,00025/ 15,62510], brElen (brElen) 2000 [2,00025/ 31,25010], senlen (senlen) 3000 [3,00025/ 46,87510], torlen (torlen) 4000 [4,00025/ 62,50010], vatlen (vatlen) 5000 [5,00025/ 78,12510]…
  • Tens of thousands are formed by adding the suffix -mel (-mel) to the multiplier unit: famel (famel) 10000 [10,00025/ 390,62510], brEmel (brEmel) 20000 [20,00025/ 781,25010], senmel (senmel) 30000 [30,00025/ 1,171,87510], tormel (tormel) 40000 [40,00025/ 1,562,50010], vatmel (vatmel) 50000 [50,00025/ 1,953,12510]…
  • Hundreds of thousands are formed by adding the suffix -blo (-blo) to the multiplier unit: fablo (fablo) 100000 [100,00025/ 9,765,62510], brEblo (brEblo) 200000 [200,00025/ 19,531,25010], senblo (senblo) 300000 [300,00025/ 29,296,87510], torblo (torblo) 400000 [400,00025/ 39,062,50010], vatblo (vatblo) 500000 [500,00025/ 48,828,12510]…

Books

The Myst ReaderThe Myst Reader
by , editors Hyperion (2004)
[Amazon.com Amazon.com, Kindle - Amazon.com Kindle - Amazon.com]

Myst: The Book of D’NiMyst: The Book of D’Ni
by , editors Hyperion Books (1997)
[Amazon.com Amazon.com]

From Myst to Riven: The Creations & InspirationsFrom Myst to Riven: The Creations & Inspirations
by , editors Hyperion Books (1997)
[Amazon.com Amazon.com]

Myst: El libro de D’NiMyst: El libro de D’Ni
by , editors Timun Mas (2001)
[Amazon.com Amazon.com]

Other artistic languages

Atlantean, Atrian, Barsoomian, Dovahzul, D’ni, Giak, Hylian, Ithkuil, Itláni, Kēlen, Kiitra, Láadan, Na’vi, Shiväisith, Trigedasleng, Va Ehenív, and Wardwesân.

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