Belter Creole is a conlang creole spoken in the novel series The Expanse by James S. A. Corey. When the novel was adapted into a TV series they got linguist Nick Farmer to develop the language.

Are there substantial differences between the Belter Creole of the books and the show? Or is what is in the books just less developed, and Farmer created a more complete but still fully compatible version for the show? Do the later novels, from after the show started to be produced, use Farmer's version or Corey's original version?


Yes they are totally different.

In the books

Maybe because Daniel Abraham and Ty Franck are not language experts, the Belter language in the books is very simple, and not really a con-lang. It does not exhibit a plausible grammar and etymological evolution. In short, it's just words from different languages pieced together.

You can find a good list of examples inside the fan wiki https://expanse.fandom.com/wiki/Belter_Creole_(Books), with also the real languages the Belter expression come

A couple examples that pop up often in the books:

Bist Bien: "Are you okay" from German bist and bien spanish

The usage of "dui" from Chinese to say "yes!" "correct!"

In the TV

In the series, maybe producers had a bigger budget and commissioned the creation of a real con-lang, even if it is seldom spoken.

The words you hear in the TV are not in the books, and instead sound very plausible from etymologycal analysis:

Beltalowda = from "belter", corrupted in "belta" and "lowda" people

And this is a good example, you see the consistensy in how the word component is used:

Inyalowda = from "inner" corrupted in "inya" and "lowda" again! = Inner people.

The spelling corrupt from Belter -> Belta and Inner -> Inya is plausible in a language evolution context in the future.

Another example:

Welwala = from "well-dweller", the person who live in a gravity well

And in the TV movie, Belter language is also speak in longer sentences with full grammar rules. When in books it's always just random foreign words in the same sentence, but mainly in English

I hope this help you solving your doubt. English is not my mother language, sorry if is not clear.

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