Language quiz

Your challenge this week is to identify the con-scripts on these signs, all of which appear on Omniglot, and to decipher each one. Do you also know what the original texts were on these signs? Or can you suggest amusing alternatives?

Signs with con-scripts on them

Three of the signs are in English, the other one is in Chinese.

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This entry was posted in Language, Quiz questions, Writing.

14 Responses to Language quiz

  1. renato says:

    the first is is Tamazight- hospital; second don’t swim in a Berber language (maybe Tamachek); 3rd no coffee? or better don’t drink- language South Asian as Tamil- just guessing; 4th no idea

  2. Simon says:

    renato – they are all constructed scripts that appear on Omniglot. Three are alternative scripts for English and one is an alternative script for Chinese.

  3. Drabkikker says:

    1. Utruscan: snake doing maths.

    2. tinta Pyanaw: no sea monsters.

    3. Géyīnzì: [Something in Chinese]

    4. Looks like Trevor’s Super Long Hand, but I believe it isn’t.

  4. old_nomad says:

    4. Efkolia: cryptic symbols ahead.

  5. Rauli says:

    Utruscan: snake doing maths
    tinta Pyanaw: no sea monsters
    Géyīnzì: jìnzhi he chá (禁止喝茶 or something like that: Prohibited to drink tea)
    Efkolia: cryptic symbols ahead

    This was fun. Almost didn’t find Efkolia, but didn’t give up.

    For the original meanings:
    Pharmacy?
    No swimming
    I guess it does indeed prohibit drinking tea :D
    Stuff for rinsing your eyes with in case you get chemicals in them.

  6. Daydreamer says:

    1) Tabledance by snake for good health.
    2) Men with wings: Stay out of the water!
    3) Only bottles allowed.
    4) Somebody’s watching when you’re praying in the shower.

  7. Daydreamer says:

    Oops! It is of course poledancing what the snake’s doing.

  8. Drabkikker says:

    Very nice quiz! Would be an interesting idea next time to use conlangs/-scripts not featured on Omniglot, for those real die hards out there.

    (Btw. Simon, I noticed I goofed up my link to Géyīnzì – fixit?)

  9. Simon says:

    Here are the answers:

    1. Script: Utruscan, Text: Snake doing maths, Original text: Medical point

    2. Script: tinta Pyanaw, Text: No sea monsters, Original text: No swimming

    3. Script: Géyīnzì, Text: 禁止喝茶 (jìnzhǐ hē chá – No tea drinking), Original text: No drinking

    4. Script: Efkolia, Text: Cryptic symbols ahead, Original text: Emergency eye wash

    Source of signs: http://www.online-sign.com

  10. Rauli says:

    Just a curious remark: the terms of use of that website grant the right to use the signs offline. Online use requires prior consent. Thus I have two questions:
    1) Did you get that consent?
    2) Do they even have the copyright over signs created with the website? Aren’t the signs either general knowledge or owned by the ones who originally created the design? And can they hold copyright over the texts added by the user?

    I know this is way off topic, and I’m not accusing you of anything. It just gets often very confusing with online services.

  11. Simon says:

    Rauli – I didn’t know that consent was needed, and don’t know how copyright works for the signs.

  12. Lev says:

    Eventually I figured them all out, but at first I tried to decipher the second sign as Chartograph without vowels.

  13. Kevin says:

    1. Eye-wateringly expensive medical treatment ahead
    2. Do not throw your pipe in the river
    3. No Horlicks
    4. New broom at CBS+ television

  14. Shimmin Beg says:

    1. Free snake with every purchase
    2. Ce n’est pas un pipe
    3. Do not ask for a “grande”. This is a proper tea shop.
    4. This fountain protected by Optimax Security Plus.