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Pronounced: /omnikan/
Timeline and Universe:
Species: Human
Total speakers:
Writing system:
Word order:
Creator: Qwynegold
Created: 2009

Omni-kan is an international auxiliary language. (Its earlier names include Pasetok, Pastok, Omnis-kan and Omenis-kan.) Although Omni-kan is an auxlang, there is no serious ambition to make it an actually used international language. It was just created for the fun of the challenge of creating a conlang that could potentially be spoken by as many people as possible on Earth.

Since the language is supposed to be international the phonemic inventory is rather small, and several phonological constraints exist for ease of pronunciation. Yet homonyms are avoided. Omni-kan has borrowed all of its words from other languages. There are 38 languages that have been especially prioritized in word borrowing and phonology. These languages represent the largest language families on Earth.

Prioritized languages

Prioritized languages are the languages that are the source of the vast majority of Omni-kan's vocabulary. There were two goals when defining the criteria for which languages should be chosen: 1) There should be as much diversity as possible among the languages, meaning that there should be many unrelated languages and languages spoken in many different parts of the world. 2) The languages should be spoken by a large number of people.

The reason behind the first goal was because Omni-kan is an international language. The reason for the second goal was that the more speakers these languages have combined, the greater likelyhood that a given learner will find words in Omni-kan that they recognize. The two goals are not quite compatible, so the results were that goal 1 was not as succesfully met as goal 2. The prioritized languages have their origins in three continents, Europe, Africa and Asia, and they represent 12-13 different language families. (They uncertainty of the number of language families depends on whether the Mande languages and Atlantic-Congo languages should be classified as two separate families, or as part of the Niger-Congo family.) The prioritized languages together have around 6 billion speakers (including second language speakers).

There are two kinds of prioritized languages in Omni-kan: primary and secondary languages. A primary language's share of Omni-kan's vocabulary is meant to be twice the size of a secondary language's share. If none of the language's had any words in common, this would mean that ca. 3.1% of all the words in Omni-kan should be borrowed from a given primary language, and ca. 1.6% from a given secondary language. However, since many languages have words that are identical, or so similar that they become identical when they are assimilated into Omni-kan, it means that a word can have several donor languages. Currently the sum of the shares of all the languages make up around 217%. So the objective regarding this is to borrow words in such a way that all secondary languages will have a share that is roughly the same size, and all primary languages will have a share that is roughly the same size, and about twice as big as that of the secondary languages.

Criteria for becoming a prioritized language

Omni-kan could not have an enormous number of prioritized languages, because otherwise each language's share of the vocabulary would be miniscule, and therefore no one would be able to find many words that they recognize. So a few criteria was set up for determining which languages should be chosen. Firstly, the language must have at least 10 million speakers (including second language speakers). This goes for both primary and secondary languages. Secondly, for a language to be a primary language, it must be largest language in its family, or a main branch of that family. The very large language families were broken up into their main branches. This resulted in 26 primary languages.

But this did leave out some very large languages. So the concept of secondary languages was introduces. A secondary language is any language that has at least 50 million speakers (including second language speakers), and which is not a primary language. This resulted in nine secondary languages.

It was also decided to that three dead languages, which have had a profound impact on many other languages, should also be added to the secondary languages, bringing that group up to 12 languages. These dead languages were Latin, Ancient Greek and Sanskrit. Latin and Ancient Greek are sources of a large number of words in most European languages, especially in the fields of science and technology. And through European influence they have reached even further out in the world. Sanskrit has had a similar impact on the Indian subcontinent, and on all areas of Asia that have been influenced by Hinduism or Buddhism.

List of prioritized languages

In the following table all speaker numbers are based on the creator's research. These figures are from 2018 or earlier. For many languages there is no very reliable data. You may also notice that different languages have had different levels of rounding.

L1 speakers refer to how many people speak that language as their first language. Speakers total refers to the number of L1 and L2 (second language) speakers combined. Note that data for L2 speakers is often very unreliable, as there is not even a clear definition of who counts as an L2 speaker. For some languages no figures for L2 speakers have been found, so the number in the speakers total column is the same as in the L1 speakers column.

In the type column, 1 refers to primary languages and 2 to secondary languages.

Prioritized languages
Family Branch Language L1 speakers Speakers total Type
Afro-Asiatic Chadic Hausa 27,374,100 47,000,000 1
Cushitic Oromo 17,465,900 17,465,900 1
Semitic Modern Standard Arabic 0 273,989,700 1
Atlantic-Congo[1] Benue-Congo Swahili 2,000,000 50,000,000 1
Kwa Akan 22,000,000 22,000,000 1
Senegambian Fula 23,657,340 23,657,340 1
Volta-Niger Yoruba 30,000,000 30,000,000 1
Austro-Asiatic Mon-Khmer Vietnamese 75,000,000 75,000,000 1
Austronesian Malayo-Polynesian Filipino[2] 23,564,390 68,600,000 2
Javanese 84,377,600 84,377,600 2
Malay[3] 77,000,000 250,000,000 1
Dravidian South-Central Dravidian Telugu 74,244,300 79,000,000 1
South Dravidian Tamil 65,675,200 74,000,000 1
Indo-European Germanic English 360,000,000 960,000,000 1
German 76,029,280 132,101,000 2
Hellenic Ancient Greek† 0 0 2
Indo-Aryan[4] Bengali 189,144,830 208,300,000 2
Hindustani[5] 328,743,250 543,260,000 1
Marathi 71,796,800 74,800,000 2
Punjabi 122,260,170 122,260,170 2
Sanskrit† 15,804[6] 4,991,289 2
Iranian[7] Persian 60,000,000 110,000,000 1
Italic French 76,795,640 284,952,860 2
Italian 63,783,247 87,800,000 2
Latin† 4[8] 100 2
Portuguese 222,708,500 236,512,000 2
Spanish 480,000,000 570,000,000 1
Slavic Russian 150,000,000 260,000,000 1
Japonic Japanese 128,202,710 128,334,210 1
Koreanic Korean 77,166,230 77,166,230 1
Mande[9] West Mande Bambara 4,072,040 14,000,000 1
Sino-Tibetan Sinitic Mandarin 908,762,230 1,107,162,230 1
Tibeto-Burman Burmese 32,906,490 43,000,000 1
Tai-Kadai Tai Thai 20,396,930 60,400,000 1
Turkic Karluk Uzbek 27,000,000 27,000,000 1
Kipchak Kazakh 12,813,860 12,813,860 1
Oghuz Turkish 78,907,540 78,907,540 1
Uralic Ugric Hungarian 12,605,590 12,605,590 1
Total 4,026,469,975 6,251,457,619
  1. ^ ^ It is unclear if this should be classified as a family of its own, or as part of a larger Niger-Congo family.
  2. ^ This includes Tagalog.
  3. ^ This includes Malaysian and Indonesian.
  4. ^ ^ Iranian and Indo-Aryan technically belong to the same branch, Indo-Iranian, but the split of that branch into Iranian and Indo-Aryan subbranches is so major, that they have been treated like two major branches here.
  5. ^ This includes Hindi and Urdu.
  6. ^ ^ Although this is a dead language, there are people who claim to have been taught it as their first language by their parents.


Phoneme inventory

Pulmonic consonants
Bilabial Labiodental Dental Alveolar Postalveolar Retroflex Palatal Velar Uvular Pharyngeal Epiglottal Glottal
Nasal /m/ <m> /n/ <n> /ŋ/[10] <g>
Plosive /p/ <p> /t/ <t> /k/ <k>
Affricate /tʃ/ <c>
Fricative /f/[11] <f> /s/ <s> /h/ <h>
Approximant /ʋ/ <w> /j/ <y>
Trill /r/[12] <r>
Tap or flap
Lat. fricative
Lat. approximant /l/ <l>
Lateral flap
Co-articulated pulmonics
Labial-palatal Labial-velar Alveolo-palatal Palatal-velar
Front Near-front Central Near-back Back
Close /i/ <i> /u/ <u>
Mid /e/ <e> /o/ <o>
Open /a/ <a>
  1. ^ ^ ^ These are marginal phonemes. There are no minimal pairs involving these phonemes, except for possibly in proper nouns and interjections. [ŋ] is in complementary distribution with /n/, [f] with /p/, and [r] with /l/. The former ones can be replaced by the latter ones if the speaker cannot pronunce any of the alternatives marked with the same color in the above phoneme charts.

The sounds of Omni-kan can be pronunced in several ways depending on what the speaker is capable of, but the most desirable pronunciations have been marked in the above tables. The desirable realization may be substituted for any phoneme marked with the same color. For example /s/ should preferrably be an alveoral fricative, as "/s/ <s>" has been marked in column alveolar, row fricative, but postalveolar, retroflex and alveolo-palatal realizations are also acceptable.

There are also six diphthongs: /ui, oi, ei, ai, ou, au/. The final /i/ could optionally be [j], and final /u/ could be [w]. The diphthongs can also be split up into two syllables, with an optional [ʔ] between. /ei/, /au/ and /ou/ are marginal phonemes as mentioned above, and in complementary distribution with other phonemes.

Phonological constrains

The syllable structure of Omni-kan is (C)V(C). The onset can be any consonant except g, while the coda can be any of m, n, g, p, t, k, c, f, s, l. The allowed medial clusters are:

  • m+{n, p, f, s, h, r, w, l, y}
  • n+{t, c, s, h, r, l, y}
  • g+{m, n, k, f, s, h, r, w, l, y}
  • p+{m, n, t, k, c, f, s, h, r, w, l, y}
  • t+{m, n, p, k, f, s, h, r, w, l, y}
  • k+{m, n, p, t, c, f, s, h, r, w, l, y}
  • c+{m, n, p, t, k, f, r, w, l, y}
  • f+{m, n, p, t, k, c, s, r, w, l, y}
  • s+{m, n, p, t, k, c, f, r, w, l, y}
  • l+{m, n, p, t, k, c, f, s, h, r, w, y}

The sequences yi and wu are disallowed.

Complementary distribution

In the following list # stands for word boundary, and $ stand for either syllable break or word boundary.

  • au - o
  • c - ts
  • ci - ti
  • e# - ei#
  • ei# - e#
  • f - p, w
  • g - n
  • h - ∅
  • l - r
  • n - g
  • o - au, ou
  • ou - o, u
  • p - f
  • r - l
  • s$ - t$
  • st - t
  • t - st
  • t$ - s$
  • ti - ci
  • ts - c
  • u - ou
  • w - f

Borrowing scheme

When borrowing words, the word might need to be changed to fit Omni-kan's phonological constrains. Generally, e is used to split up non-word final consonant clusters, while o is used at the end of words. If possible, the vowel is placed so that the consonants are still adjacent. Here some other rules, which take precedence over the above:

  • #CiV > CijV
  • #CuV > CuwV (but see wo and wu below)
  • Cː > C
  • CCiV > CCijV
  • CCuV > CCuwV (but see wo and wu below)
  • Vː > V
  • Vst > Vt
  • eu > e
  • iV > jV
  • ji > i
  • m# > mo
  • r· > l·
  • wo > o
  • wu > u


Nominal morphology

Nouns are pluralized with the suffix -kal, e.g. palke (stick) → palkekal (sticks), mau (cat) → maukal (cats). Nouns can also be reduplicated to form collective nouns, e.g. manusiya (human) → manusiya manusiya (humanity).

There is no definiteness marking and no case in Omni-kan.


Personal pronouns

Personal pronouns
Sg. Pl.
1st p. mi
2nd p. tu
3rd p. o

Plural pronouns are formed the same way as plural nouns: with the suffix -kal. Unlike in some other languages, the second person plural pronoun is not used as a polite form of address for one person.


The demonstratives are es (this), on (that) and pe (what). When used as pronouns, es and on can be pluralized with the plural suffix -kal, but when they are used attributively they are not pluralized. Since Omni-kan lacks definiteness marking, es is often used for referring back to things the speaker has brought up. On can be used for the same purpose, but also for things that the listener or some third person has brought up.

The demonstratives are combined with some other words to form meanings for which English uses completely separate words. Some examples include es/on/pe lokus (here/there/where), es/on/pe wakte (now/then/when).


  • co ‒ to
  • ni ‒ at, in, on
  • te ‒ of, -'s
  • Menten is used for telling what way something is going, like the words along, through and via in English.

See Location for examples of how locational relations are expressed.


There are many derivational suffixes in Omni-kan, used for creating new words. All derivational suffixes are actually shorter forms of other words with independent meanings. An -s- is added between a root that ends with a vowel and a suffix that begins with a vowel. If the root ends with, and the suffix begins with a consonant, an -e- is inserted between them.

Derivational suffixes
Original word Meaning Suffix Meaning/use Example
aprofa child -apro Turns a word for an animal specie into a word meaning "the infant form of that animal". hunto (dog) > huntosapro (puppy)
epitatai know -epi Used for making words with the meaning "the teaching of X". kanatlai (animal) > kanatlaisepi (zoology)
person -ren Turns a country name into an ethnicity, or a verb into the agent of that verb.
mama mother -mam Turns a word for an animal specie into a word meaning "a mother of that specie". *** (goose) > ***mam (mother Goose)
mekas big -meka Adds a meaning of "largeness". winakil (human) > winakilmeka (giant)
mikros small -mikro A diminutive suffix. winakil (human) > winakilmikro (dwarf)
ona woman -on Makes a word feminine. aprofa (child) > aprofason (girl)
otoko man -oto Makes a word masculine. aprofa (child) > aprofasoto (boy)
papa father -pap Turns a word for an animal species into a word meaning "a father of that species". awahahufokaho (bird) > awahahufokahopap (bird father)
sekop stick -seko Used for deriving a word for the handle of a tool. *** (broom) > ***seko (broomstick)
language -kan Used for deriving names of languages from names of countries or ethnic groups. When added to a country name, the suffix -(i)stan is replaced by -kan.
winakil human -wina Used for deriving words of mythical beasts who are half human, half animal. awahahufokaho (bird) > awahahufokahowina (birdman)



Location is usually expressed by a locational preposition followed by a noun in genitive and a locational noun. The preposition tells the direction: to, from, along or not moving. The locational noun (LOC.NOUN) tells the actual place. The locational can be combined with the prefix ka-, which means that the subject has physical contact with the place. In the following list, the different ways of telling location has been likened to different noun cases.

  • Adessive - tou NOUN GEN fukan.
  • Apudessive - tou NOUN GEN wijeri.
  • Inessive - tou NOUN GEN in.
  • Intrative - tou NOUN and NOUN GEN aita.
  • Pertingent - tou NOUN GEN ka-LOC.NOUN.
  • Subessive - tou NOUN GEN alat.
  • Superessive - tou NOUN GEN (ka)-soharu.
  • Ablative - ta NOUN GEN fukan
  • Delative - ta NOUN GEN (ka)-soharu.
  • Egressive, initiative - ta NOUN (GEN LOC.NOUN).
  • Elative - ta NOUN (GEN in).
  • Allative - si NOUN GEN fukan.
  • Illative - si NOUN GEN in.
  • Terminative - si/tou NOUN (GEN LOC.NOUN).
  • Perlative (penetrating) - menten NOUN GEN aita.
  • Perlative (going through a space) - menten NOUN GEN in.
  • Prosecutive - menten NOUN GEN soharu.
  • Vialis - with NOUN GEN use.
  • Temporal (at an exact point of time) - tou TIME.NOUN (GEN in).
  • Temporal (around some time) - tou TIME.NOUN GEN fukan.
  • Temporal (sometime during a time span) - tou TIME.NOUN GEN aita.
  • Benefactive - si NOUN (GEN sake).
  • Dative, orientative - si NOUN.
  • Exessive - ta NOUN (GEN LOC.NOUN) (si NOUN (GEN LOC.NOUN))
This article is part of a series on International Auxiliary Languages.

Romance-based Auxlangs: Aercant * Atlango * Interlingua * Latin Nov * Novial * Occidental (Interlingue) * Panroman * Romanal
Germanic-based Auxlangs: Folksprak * Nordien
Slavic Auxlangs: Novoslovnica
Turkic Auxlangs: Jalpi Turkic
African Auxlangs: Afrihili
Mixed-Origin Auxlangs: Esperanto * Adjuvilo * Ido * Ayola * Medial Europan * Bolak * Kotava * North American * Pantos-dimou-glossa * Pasetok * Sasxsek * Universalglot * Volapük
A priori auxlangs: -