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Cardassian language

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Classroom alphabet 1

Parts of the Cardassian alphabet (center)

There is very little known about the Cardassian language, other than its proper nouns (see Cardassians and Cardassia for names of people and places respectively).

Writing system Edit

Cardassian script

Cardassian script

Official Cardassian transcript seal

Script used in an official transcript seal

Cardassian writing was composed of slender rectangular letters usually widening at the top. Lines of text were written both horizontally and vertically, radiating out from an elaborate circle motif. Lines of text also incorporated dots. (TNG: "Chain of Command, Part II"; DS9: "Tribunal", "Things Past")

Keiko O'Brien's classroom aboard Deep Space 9 featured a chart with the Human, Ferengi, Bajoran, and Cardassian alphabet. (DS9: "The Nagus", "In the Hands of the Prophets")

Cardassian military uniforms included a section of writing in gold on the right chest. It is unknown what this writing meant, though by the placement, it may be conjectured that it was the name of the wearer, or of the vessel or unit to which they were assigned, or possibly the Cardassian equivalent of rank insignia.
The Cardassian script was designed by Doug Drexler. (Star Trek - Where No One Has Gone Before, p.169)

Military and government Edit

"Gul" was a rank that was roughly analogous to the Federation rank of captain; "glinn" was a rank below Gul. "Legate" was a rank above gul (see Cardassian ranks). (TNG: "The Wounded")

The Detapa Council was the highest civilian governmental body, although the meaning of the word "Detapa" is unclear. (DS9: "The Way of the Warrior")

Miscellaneous Edit

"Odo'ital" was Cardassian for "nothing". Odo was called odo'ital when he was studied at the Bajoran Institute of Science. The Bajorans working at the institute intended to label Odo as "unknown sample", but all specimens had to be labelled in Cardassian, and Odo stated that the Bajorans mistranslated the term by incorrectly using "odo'ital", which literally meant "nothing". (DS9: "Heart of Stone")

"Yamok" sauce was a common Cardassian condiment. (DS9: "Progress")

"Nor" carried connotations of either "station" or "base"; Terok Nor and Empok Nor both had this word in their names. (DS9: "Cardassians", "Empok Nor")

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