Looks like Sonja Lang has released a new book. After "pu", here comes "ku". It's a 400-page English/Toki Pona dictionary. And it includes 181 words. Here's a review by jan Misali:



I didn't realize the new dictionary is illustrated by Vacon Sartirani, the author of Nasin Nasa, this surreal comic written in sitelen sitelen.

I've never been excited about a dictionary before. Now I totally am.


I’ve received my copy of the new dictionary. It’s huge! Pictured here with the first book for comparison, it contains loads of helpful definitions.

I haven’t found time to dive into it yet, but my first impression is that it will be very useful to anyone interested in the language, though not mandatory for beginners. Besides the dictionary part and the new words, it brings a few interesting corrections and precisions regarding the first book. Now, I have to update my own dictionary…

Here’s one interesting fact in the new dictionary, the "ku": on page 194, the translation of "word", which is "nimi", also includes five entries noted as "word reserved for future use by Sonja Lang". They are "ju", "lu", "nu", "su" and "u".

It means that beyond pu and ku, there are likely plans for at least five more Toki Pona books (and that telling them apart by only one consonant will be a lot of fun.)

@ice I'm in a Mayan speaking region, so when I saw this immediately I was like "omg I can create something approximating Mayan glyphs without learning Mayan". And then I found a 12-part Youtube collection of ~3 min each that broke down the language, which I watched twice within a day, and quickly got a dopamine hit from creating meaning in another language so easily. What a lovely language! Also I found your Inktober drawings after searching #tokipona; so much fun!

@amikigu Glad you like :) Looks like you've followed jan Misali's lessons,they're a great introduction to the language. If you enjoy it, I'd recommend getting the official book, it's also very useful (Toki Pona - The Language of Good)

Another excellent online course I'd recommend is this one: rnd.neocities.org/tokipona/

And to learn the sitelen sitelen glyphs, there are lessons from the person who created them: jonathangabel.com/toki-pona/

@ice naïve question: do ppl have oral conversations in Toki-Pona, i.e. are there fluent *speakers* of it, or is it solely writing-based?

@dokoissho Yes, some people enjoy speaking it and use it as an actual communication tool, like any language, but I don't know the proportion of oral vs written use. Probably quite small.

Personally, I don't know anyone who I could physically speak in Toki Pona with, and while it could be fun, I'm more interested in the language as an introspection tool. But it's been designed to be easily spoken, and I guess it's also one of the reasons it's a popular conlang.

@RussSharek @dokoissho I do occasionally swear at my cats in Toki Pona but I dont think it qualifies as actually speaking.

@ice @dokoissho

As my household often shouts 'mu' instead of making random animal sounds, I think you're technically in.

@ice I guess my question is: what’s the relationship between speaking and writing?

Also interesting then is the notion of a language controlled by a single authority. Making it something closer to a programming language than a "living language" evolving with what the users make of it.

I've gotten back into Toki Pona a few days before the release of ku. Is there really no other way to get it than buying from Amăz0n?!

@eunice @Archiviste_Dragontigre Sure, but Sonja has made it clear that the language belongs to the community. Words of the dictionary were included and ranked depending on their popularity after numerous polls. And translation are defined as the most common ways of saying something, not the best or "official" way. Being the author of a language must be awkward at times, finding a balance and letting go of your creation is certainly quite hard. I agree "reserved" words still sound strange though.

@ice @Archiviste_Dragontigre Yes, now that ku was published I don't see so much centralization as before. I don't think the tension is so big, and would agree with what you say in your post. I don't think Sonja Lang is being very authoritarian.

@ice @eunice @Archiviste_Dragontigre

The part that frustrates me is that all of the discussions and decisions happen on closed platforms, leaving anyone who abstains from *ilo ike pi esun suli* out in the cold.

@RussSharek @eunice @Archiviste_Dragontigre Yeah, she explained ma pona pi toki pona was chosen as the main reference because it is the biggest and most active community. Personally, I lurk here from time to time, but I find it absolutely overwhelming. And yes, it’s Discord and it sucks for a huge variety of reasons. The fact both books are available only on Amazon also bothers me. I guess it’s all in the name of "convenience", or that it’s not an issue for most people.

@ice @RussSharek @eunice @Archiviste_Dragontigre I really want a copy of ku but the fact it's only on amazon stops me from buying it.

@nihilazo @RussSharek @eunice @Archiviste_Dragontigre It will probably end up in epub or pdf format in a somewhat shady but not so hidden corner of the web soon. Technically, it’s a bit strange. The dictionary part of pu is under CC BY-NC 4.0, but ku is copyrighted entirely, which makes little sense since it’s a more community-driven work, and roughly derivative from the pu dictionary. Capitalism is really good at making a mess of everything.

@Archiviste_Dragontigre @ice

Sonja is merely giving folks a heads-up that she will be including her own meaning for those words in the future. all of those sounds have been deemed words by segments of the community in some form, but that doesn't make them untouchable. i've coined a word which got overshadowed by later coinage of the same spelling. it happens. and Sonja certainly has every right to do the same imo.

@ice wow I hadn't seen Nasin Nasa before! This is insanely beautiful Thank you for sharing this link!

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