Solresol

A transcoder for a lost musical language

Solresol is an artificial language created in the early 1800s by a French musician. Unlike alphabetic languages such as English, Solresol is syllabic: each of its characters represents a syllable. Its seven syllables are based on the notes of the diatonic musical scale: do re me fa so la ti. Because it has only seven characters, Solresol can be communicated through numerous media, including music, speech, writing, sign language, color, or number.

Solresol's creator, Fran├žois Sudre, devoted the majority of his life to developing it, hoping it would be adopted internationally as a universal language. He spent many years composing dictionaries, translating Solresol's lexicon of arbitrarily combined syllables into English, German, Spanish, Italian, Arabic, French, Dutch, and Swedish. Today, the language is all but forgotten, and only one of his eight dictionaries has survived.