Ido: Wikis


Note: Many of our articles have direct quotes from sources you can cite, within the Wikipedia article! This article doesn't yet, but we're working on it! See more info or our list of citable articles.


From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Flag Flag of Ido.svg
Created by A group of reformist Esperanto speakers
Date founded 1907
Setting and usage International auxiliary language
Total speakers 100–200[1]
(but see community section)
Category (purpose) constructed language
Category (sources) based on Esperanto
Regulated by Uniono por la Linguo Internaciona Ido
Language codes
ISO 639-1 io
ISO 639-2 ido
ISO 639-3 ido

Ido (pronounced /ˈiːdo/) is a constructed language created with the goal of becoming a universal second language for speakers of different linguistic backgrounds as a language easier to learn than ethnic languages. Unlike English, which is a natural and frequently irregular language, Ido was specifically designed for grammatical, orthographic, and lexicographical regularity, and to favor no one who might otherwise be advantaged in a situation due to native fluency in a widespread language. In this sense, Ido is classified as a consciously created International Auxiliary Language (conIAL). Many other reform projects appeared after Ido: examples such as Occidental and Novial appeared afterwards but have since faded into obscurity. At present, Ido is one of the three auxiliary languages (along with Esperanto and Interlingua) with a large body of literature and a relatively large speaker base.

Ido was developed in the early 1900s, and retains a sizable following today, primarily in Europe. It is largely based on Esperanto, created by L. L. Zamenhof. Ido first appeared in 1907 as a result of a desire to reform perceived flaws in Esperanto that some of its supporters believed to be a hindrance in its propagation as an easy-to-learn second language.

The name of the language traces its origin to the Esperanto/Ido word ido, meaning "offspring", since the language was a "descendant" of Esperanto.[2]

Ido uses the 26 Latin letters used in the English alphabet with no diacritics. While still being completely morphologically regular, Ido resembles the Romance languages in appearance and is sometimes mistaken for Italian or Spanish at first glance. Ido is largely intelligible to those who have studied Esperanto, though there are certain differences in word formation, grammar and grammatical-function words that make it more than a simple reform project. Ido is a stand-alone language.[citation needed]

After its inception, Ido gained support (estimates generally range around 20%[3]) from some in the Esperanto community at the time, but following the sudden death in 1914 of one of its most influential proponents, Louis Couturat, it declined in popularity. There were two reasons for this: first, the emergence of further schisms arising from competing reform projects; and second, a general lack of awareness of Ido as a candidate for an international language. These obstacles weakened the movement and it was not until the rise of the Internet that it began to regain its former momentum.



Photograph of the International Ido Congress in Dessau, Germany, in 1922

The idea of a universal second language is not new, and constructed languages are not a recent phenomenon. The first known constructed language was created in the 12th century by St Hildegard of Bingen under the name Lingua Ignota. But the idea did not catch on in large numbers until the 19th century with the language Volapük, created in 1879 by German Catholic priest Johann Martin Schleyer. Volapük was popular for some time and apparently had a few thousand users, but was later eclipsed by the popularity of Esperanto, which arose from L. L. Zamenhof's book Unua Libro in 1887. The simpler grammar and less changed vocabulary of Esperanto appealed to many, and its popularity quickly rose. The first World Congress of Esperanto was held in 1905. However, some within the Esperanto community itself felt that the language should undergo further reform before being officially selected as a universal second language. It was at this time that Louis Couturat formed the Delegation for the Adoption of an International Auxiliary Language.

This delegation made a formal request to the International Association of Academies in Vienna to select an international language; the request was rejected in May 1907. The Delegation then decided to meet as a Committee in Paris in October 1907 to discuss the adoption of a standard international language among the various competitors that had been devised till then. According to the minutes of the Committee, it was decided that no language was completely acceptable, but that Esperanto could be accepted "on condition of several modifications to be realized by the permanent Commission in the direction defined by the conclusions of the Report of the Secretaries (Couturat and Leopold Leau) and by the Ido project." This (anonymous) "Ido project" was later suggested to have been primarily devised by Couturat with some help from Esperanto's representative before the Committee, Louis de Beaufront. Beaufront had himself argued for reforming Esperanto before he was selected to the Delegation. His eventual "conversion" to the Ido camp, upon the presentation of that language, was thus consistent with his earlier positions.

Early supporters of Esperanto tended to resist reforms, and its inventor, Zamenhof, deferred to their judgment. Several of the reforms adopted by Ido were themselves proposed at various times by Zamenhof, especially in 1894 when he proposed eliminating the accented letters and the accusative case (referring to it as "superfluous ballast"[4] ), changing the plural to an Italianesque -i, and replacing the table of correlatives with more Latinate words (see History of Esperanto and Reformed Esperanto). The custom of keeping the basic rules of Esperanto fixed remains today.

Couturat, who was the leading proponent of Ido, was killed in an automobile accident in 1914, which, along with World War I, dealt a serious blow to the Ido movement. Although that movement recovered to some degree in the immediate postwar period, the whole movement of international languages became balkanized. With the publication of an even more Europeanized planned language, Occidental, in 1922, Ido went into decline. The Ido movement lost a majority of its published periodicals in the subsequent year or so, and the defection of its major intellectual supporter, the Danish linguist Otto Jespersen, in 1928 on the occasion of the publication of his own planned language Novial, seemed at the time to provide a quietus.

Some observers trace the eclipse of Ido to its hybrid character – part Esperanto reform project, part Standard Average European (see Sapir–Whorf hypothesis). In this view, once it was clear that Ido would neither displace Esperanto nor be adopted by the Esperanto community, many viewed its Esperanto-like features as unnecessary baggage and moved on to more naturalistic projects. Those who approved of them tended to return to the larger Esperanto community.

Ido's decline had slowed by the 1930s, and the movement was still a significant force in interlinguistics during the long gestation of the International Auxiliary Language Association's project. Like the Occidentalists, many Idists hoped that IALA would produce a language relatively close to their own preferences. In the end, the radically naturalistic Interlingua was even farther from Ido than Occidental, and (in contrast to Occidental) there was no major migration of Ido supporters to the new language.

Ido's survival during this period was assisted by financial resources accumulated during its heyday (e.g., the chemist Wilhelm Ostwald had donated the proceeds of his 1909 Nobel Prize to an Ido foundation).

The language still has active speakers today, and the Internet has sparked a renewal of interest in the language in recent years. The estimates of the number of speakers range from 2000 to 5000. In comparison, Esperanto has at least 100,000 (Sidney S. Culbert's widely cited estimate of 1.6 million speakers is controversial).

Jespersen, who was present during the ten days of Committee deliberations in Paris and later served as part of the permanent Commission, wrote a history of Ido.[5]

A number of Esperanto supporters have attacked Ido over the years. The Esperantist Don Harlow has characterized Ido's founders as underhanded and conspiratorial;[6] see also Emile Boirac's report in the list of external links; also Gaston Waringhien's “Kulisaj manovroj” (Maneuvers in the Wings) in his 1887 kaj la sekvo, Antwerp: Stafeto, 1980. However, most Ido partisans argue that Harlow's history is polemical and is not consistent with all the eyewitness accounts, such as those reported by Jespersen. Harlow bases his account on material from some other eyewitnesses such as Emile Boirac and Gaston Moch and with other source documentation (such as Zamenhof's correspondence with Couturat and others during the period, as published in the two-volume Leteroj de Zamenhof, Paris: SAT, 1948), to which Jespersen, according to Harlow, would not have had access.

Comparison with Esperanto

Ido inherits many features of the grammar of Esperanto, and in many cases, the vocabulary is similar. Ido shares with Esperanto the goals of grammatical simplicity and consistency, ease of learning, and the use of loanwords from various European languages. The two languages, to a great extent, are mutually intelligible. However, certain changes were introduced to address some of the concerns that had arisen about Esperanto. These include:

  • Esperanto's alphabet uses six non-Latin letters, three of which are not found in any other existing language; as a result, Esperanto in typing and in Internet e-mail and newsgroups frequently resorts to any of several schemes to represent these special letters. This leads to the situation where the same word may be displayed any of several different ways. Ido addresses this issue by using the 26-letter Latin alphabet with two digraphs, ch (/t͡ʃ/) and sh (/ʃ/) instead of Esperanto's ĉ and ŝ. The digraph qu, representing /kw/, as in English "quick", is used instead of Esperanto kv, and likewise gu is used instead of gv. Ido orthography is phonemic in the sense that each written word has an unambiguous pronunciation, but it does not have the one-to-one correspondence between letters and phonemes that Esperanto has.
  • Ido generally does not impose rules of grammatical agreement between grammatical categories within a sentence, believing them to be grammatically complex and redundant in a potential universal second language. For example, in Esperanto, the verb in a sentence is invariable regardless of the number and person of the subject. This principle was not extended in Esperanto to adjectives and nouns; however, as a result, in Esperanto an adjective must agree in number and case with the noun it modifies as with the French grands livres (large books), where the adjective must be pluralized as well as the noun. There is no such requirement in English; for example, where number is emphasized by variation of the verb, and Ido eliminates this feature from its grammar.
  • Esperanto requires the use of the -n ending to signify the use of the accusative case. Ido allows the use of this feature in ambiguous situations where the object of a sentence does not follow the subject, but in all other situations, the accusative case was eliminated as redundant.
  • Ido imposes consistent rules on the use of endings to transform a word from one meaning or part of speech to another, thus simplifying the amount of vocabulary memorization that is necessary.
  • Ido, unlike Esperanto, does not assume the male sex as the default for family relationship words. For example, Ido does not derive the word for "sister" by adding a feminine suffix to the word for "brother", as standard Esperanto does. Instead, some relationship root words are defined as sex neutral, and two different suffixes derive masculine- and feminine-specific words from the root—frato (sibling) > fratulo (brother), fratino (sister). In other cases, Ido has two or three root words where Esperanto has one—genitoro (parent), patro (father), matro (mother).
  • Ido's vocabulary attempts to use cognates that are shared in common by as many of its six source languages as possible.

Nevertheless, modern Esperanto has received some influence from Ido in areas such as a clarification of the rules for word derivation and suffixes like -oz- ("abundant in") and -end- ("required to").


Ido has the same typical five-vowel system (a, e, i, o, u have their IPA values) as Esperanto, and most of the same consonants, omitting two consonant phonemes used by Esperanto, IPA /x/ and /dʒ/. (The distinctions between /x/ ː /h/ and between /dʒ/ ː /ʒ/ carry a very low functional load in Esperanto, and so were deemed to be unnecessary in Ido.) Without those two consonant phonemes, the consonants in the language are as follows:

Bilabial Labio-
Alveolar Post-
Palatal Velar Glottal
Nasal m n
Plosive p b t d k ɡ
Affricate ts
Fricative f v s z ʃ ʒ h
Tap ɾ
Approximant l j w

The accent rule in Ido is regular, but slightly more complex than that of Esperanto: all polysyllables are stressed on the penultimate (next to last) syllable except for verb infinitives, which are stressed on the ultimate syllable—skolo, kafeo and lernas for "school", "coffee" and "learn", but irar, savar and drinkar for "to go", "to know" and "to drink". If an i or u precedes another vowel, the pair is considered part of the same syllable when applying the accent rule—thus radio, familio and manuo for "radio", "family" and "hand".


Each word in the Ido vocabulary is built from a root word. A word consists of a root and a grammatical ending. Other words can be formed from that word by removing the grammatical ending and adding a new one, or by inserting certain affixes between the root and the grammatical ending. As with Esperanto, Ido is grammatically invariable; there are no exceptions in Ido, unlike in natural languages.

Some of the grammatical endings are defined as follows:

Grammatical form Ido Esperanto English
Singular noun -o (libro) -o (libro) book
Plural noun -i (libri) -oj (libroj) books
Adjective -a (varma) -a (varma) warm
Adverb -e (varme) -e (varme) warmly
Present tense infinitive -ar (irar) -anti (iranti) -i (iri) to be going to go
Past tense infinitive -ir (irir) -inti (irinti) to have gone
Future tense infinitive -or (iror) -onti (ironti) to be going to go
Present -as (iras) -as (iras) go, goes
Past -is (iris) -is (iris) went
Future -os (iros) -os (iros) will go
Imperative -ez (irez) -u (iru) go!
Conditional -us (irus) -us (irus) would go

These are the same as in Esperanto except for -i, -ir, -ar, -or and -ez. Esperanto marks noun plurals by an agglutinative ending -j (so plural nouns end in -oj), uses -i for verb infinitives (Esperanto infinitives are tenseless), and uses -u for the imperative. Verbs in Ido do not conjugate depending on person, number or gender; the -as, -is, and -os endings suffice whether the subject is I, you, he, she, they, or anything else.


Ido word order is generally the same as English (subject verb object), so the sentence Me havas la blua libro is the same as the English "I have the blue book", both in meaning and word order. There are a few differences, however:

  • Adjectives can be written either before the noun as in English, or after the noun as in Spanish. Thus, Me havas la libro blua is also permissible.
  • Ido has the optional -n accusative ending that is used when the object of the sentence is not clear, or it may be used to alter word order when desired. La blua libron me havas is another acceptable way of saying the same thing.

Negation occurs in Ido by simply affixing ne to the front of a verb: Me ne havas libro means, "I do not have a book". This as well does not vary, and thus the "I do not", "He does not", "They do not" before a verb are simply Me ne, Il ne, and Li ne. In the same way, past tense and future tense negatives are formed by ne in front of the conjugated verb. "I will not go" and "I did not go" become Me ne iros and Me ne iris respectively.

Yes/no questions are formed by the particle ka in front of the question. "I have a book" (me havas libro) becomes Ka me havas libro? (do I have a book?). Ka can also be placed in front of a noun without a verb to make a simple question, corresponding to the English "is it?" Ka Mark? can mean, "Are you Mark?", "Is it Mark?", "Do you mean Mark?" depending on the context.


The pronouns of Ido were revised to make them more acoustically distinct than those of Esperanto, which all end in i. Especially the singular and plural first-person pronouns mi and ni may be difficult to distinguish in a noisy environment, so Ido has me and ni instead. Ido also distinguishes between intimate (tu) and formal (vu) second-person singular pronouns as well as plural second-person pronouns (vi) not marked for intimacy. Furthermore, Ido has a pan-gender third-person pronoun lu (it can mean "he", "she", or "it", depending on the context) in addition to its masculine (il), feminine (el), and neuter (ol) third-person pronouns.

singular plural indefinite
first second third first second third
familiar formal masculine feminine neuter pan-gender masculine feminine neuter pan-gender
English I thou/you you he she it he/she/it we you they one
Esperanto mi ci¹ vi¹ li ŝi ĝi ĝi² ni vi ili oni
Ido me tu vu il(u) el(u) ol(u) lu ni vi ili eli oli li on(u)
  1. ci, while technically the familiar form of the word "you" in Esperanto, is almost never used. Results on Google have shown that while tu is only slightly less common than vu in Ido, ci is used less than half of one percent of the amount vi is in Esperanto. Esperanto's inventor himself did not include the pronoun in the first book on Esperanto and only later reluctantly; later he recommended against using ci on the grounds that different cultures have conflicting traditions regarding the use of the familiar and formal forms of "you", and that a universal language should avoid the problem by simply using the formal form in all situations. Unlike some other languages that use a formal second person pronoun, vi is not capitalized.[7]
  2. tiu, though not a personal pronoun, is usually used in this circumstance, because many people have a hard time applying "it" to humans.

It should be noted that ol, like English it and Esperanto ĝi, is not limited to inanimate objects, but can be used "for entities whose sex is indeterminate: babies, children, humans, youths, elders, people, individuals, horses, cows, cats, etc."

Lu is often mistakenly labeled an epicene pronoun, that is, one that refers to both masculine and feminine beings, but in fact, lu is more properly a "pan-gender" pronoun, as it is also used for referring to inanimate objects. From Kompleta Gramatiko Detaloza di la Linguo Internaciona Ido by Beaufront:

Lu (like li) is used for all three genders. That lu does duty for the three genders at will in the singular is not in itself any more astonishing than seeing li serve the three genders at will in the plural ... By a decision (1558) the Idist Academy rejected every restriction concerning the use of lu. One may thus use that pronoun in exactly the same way for a thing and a person of obvious sex as for animals of unknown sex and a person that has a genderless name, like baby, child, human, etc., these being as truly masculine as feminine.

The motives for this decision were given in "Mondo", XI, 68: Lu for the singular is exactly the same as li for the plural. Logic, symmetry and ease demand this. Consequently, just as li may be used for people, animals, and things whenever nothing obliges one to express the gender, so lu may be used for people, animals, and things under the same condition. The proposed distinction would be a bothersome subtlety...


Vocabulary in Ido is based on words intended to give the greatest facility to the most speakers. Early on, the first 5000+ roots were analyzed compared to the vocabulary of English, French, Spanish, German, Russian and Italian, and the following result was found:[8]

  • 2024 roots (38%) belong to 6 languages
  • 942 roots (17%) belong to 5 languages
  • 1111 roots (21%) belong to 4 languages
  • 585 roots (11%) belong to 3 languages
  • 454 roots (8%) belong to 2 languages
  • 255 roots (5%) belong to 1 language
    • Total 5371 100%

In addition, a comparison of Ido vocabulary to the six shows the following for the similarities of Ido to the six languages above:

  • French 4880: 91%
  • Italian 4454: 83%
  • Spanish 4237: 79%
  • English 4219: 79%
  • German 3302: 61%
  • Russian 2821: 52%

This is consistent with the fact that Ido is sometimes mistaken for French, Italian or Spanish at first sight.

Comparison of vocabulary with the six languages:

Ido English Italian French German Russian Spanish
bona good ("bonus") buono bon gut ("Bonus") khoroshiy (хороший) bueno
donar give ("donate") dare ("donare") donner geben darit (дарить) dar, donar
filtrar filter filtrare filtrer filtern filtrovat (фильтровать) filtrar
gardeno garden giardino jardin Garten sad (caд) jardín
kavalo horse ("cavalry") cavallo cheval Pferd ("Kavallerie") loshad, kobyla (лошадь, кобыла) caballo
maro sea ("marine") mare mer Meer more (море) mar
naciono nation nazione nation Nation natsija (нация) nación
studiar study studiare étudier studieren izuchat, (изучать) estudiar
yuna young ("juvenile") giovane jeune jung yunyi, molodoy (юный, молодой) joven

Vocabulary in Ido is often created through a number of official prefixes and suffixes that alter the meaning of the word. This allows a user to take existing words and modify them to create neologisms when necessary, and allows for a wide range of expression without the need to learn new vocabulary each time. Though their number is too large to be included in one article, some examples include:

  • The diminutive suffix -et-. Domo (house) becomes dometo (cottage), and libro (book) becomes libreto (novelette or short story).
  • The pejorative suffix -ach-. Domo becomes domacho (hovel), and libro becomes libracho (a shoddy piece of work, pulp fiction, etc.)
  • The prefix retro-, which implies a reversal. Irar (to go) becomes retroirar (to go back, backward) and venar (to come) becomes retrovenar (to return).

New vocabulary is generally created through an analysis of the word, its etymology, and reference to the six source languages. If a word can be created through vocabulary already existing in the language then it will usually be adopted without need for a new radical (such as wikipedio for Wikipedia, which consists of wiki + enciklopedio for encyclopedia), and if not an entirely new word will be created. The word alternatoro for example was adopted in 1926, likely because five of the six source languages used largely the same orthography for the word, and because it was long enough to avoid being mistaken for other words in the existing vocabulary.[9] Adoption of a word is done through consensus, after which the word will be made official by the union. Care must also be taken to avoid homonyms if possible, and usually a new word undergoes some discussion before being adopted. Foreign words that have a restricted sense and are not likely to be used in everyday life (such as the word intifada to refer to the conflict between Israel and Palestine) are left untouched, and often written in italics.

Ido-speaking community

As with all constructed languages, gauging the number of speakers of Ido is an extremely difficult task. Usenet postings by the prominent Esperantist Don Harlow have estimated the population at being somewhere in the thousands, but no accurate numbers exist. Moreover, given the often political IAL environment in which those that speak a language are not merely language users but adherents to its system and linguistic philosophy as well, there are two categories of those that know the language, Ido speakers and Ido supporters. Ido resembles Esperanto to a large extent, and many Esperantists have learned Ido out of curiosity while still not using it, preferring to support the more well-known Esperanto movement instead. One Esperanto bulletin board included the following:

Mi provis Idon antaŭ Esperanto, kaj alvenis konklude: la diferoj estas efike trivialaj, komparite al pli gravaj koncernaĵoj (kiujn mi ne detalos ĉi tie). Pro tio mi elektis subteni Esperanton, kaj ne subteni Idon, kvankam eble mi lernos Idon por hobio. Tamen via id-vortoj estas bone komprenebla al mi, kaj mi uzus Idon, se ne ekzistis tre pli subtenita lingvo.

I tried Ido before Esperanto, and came to conclude that the differences are in fact trivial, compared to larger concerns (that I will not go into detail about here). Because of that [the larger speaker community and volume of material] I chose to support Esperanto and not to support Ido, though maybe I will learn Ido as a hobby. However, your writing (lit., Ido-words) in Ido [responding to an Ido speaker] is comprehensible to me, and I would use Ido if there did not exist a much more supported language.


It is possible to find discussions of this nature on the Internet in English, Esperanto, Ido, Interlingua and other IALs, each understanding the other with little problem.[11]

A number of Esperantists viewed the schism of Ido as a mixed blessing, and a number of writings show that some were inversely glad to see those who were interested only in creating a perfect language by constantly reforming it leave the fold so that those remaining could work on using and promoting the language itself. However, these "constant reformers" eventually moved on to other reform projects, few of which survived much beyond the deaths of the authors themselves, and Ido has remained constant since then—it is safe to say that were Ido a community of language reformers during its early days, that this is not the case anymore.[12]

A small sample of 24 Idists on the Yahoo! group Idolisto during late 2005 showed that 57% had begun their studies of the language during the past three years, 32% from the mid-1990s to 2002, and 8% had known the language from before.[citation needed]

Language examples

La Princeto (The Little Prince)

Chapter 17 of The Little Prince; the conversation between the Little Prince and the snake upon his arrival on Earth. The title of the Ido-language version is La Princeto.


–Bona nokto ! –dicis la surprizata princeto.
–Bona nokto ! –dicis la serpento.
–Adsur qua planeto me falis ? –questionis la princeto.
–Adsur Tero, sur Afrika. –respondis la serpento.
–Ha !... Kad esas nulu sur Tero ?
–To esas la dezerto, e nulu esas sur la dezerti. Tero esas tre granda –dicis la serpento.
La princeto sideskis sur stono e levis lua okuli a la cielo.
–Me questionas a me –lu dicis- ka la steli intence brilas por ke uladie singlu povez trovar sua stelo. Videz mea planeto, olu esas exakte super ni... ma tre fore !
–Olu esas bela planeto –dicis la serpento-. Por quo vu venis adhike ?
–Esas chagreneto inter floro e me –dicis la princeto.
–Ha ! –dicis la serpento.
E la du permanis silence.
–Ube esas la personi ? –klamis fine la princeto-. Onu esas kelke sola sur la dezerto...
–Inter la personi onu anke esas sola –dicis la serpento.
La princeto regardis la serpento longatempe.
–Vu esas stranja animalo ! –dicis la princeto-. Vu esas tam tenua kam fingro...
–Yes, ma me esas plu potenta kam fingro di rejo –dicis la serpento.
La princeto ridetis.
–Me ne kredas ke vu esas tre potenta, mem vu ne havas pedi... nek vu povas voyajar...
–Me povas transportar vu plu fore kam navo -dicis la serpento.
Ed olu spulis la maleolo di la princeto, same kam ora braceleto.
–Ta quan me tushas retroiras a la tero deube lu venis. Ma vu esas pura e vu venas de stelo...
La princeto nulon respondis.
–Me kompatas vu, qua esas tante sola sur ta harda granita Tero. Me povas helpar vu se vu sentas nostalgio a vua planeto. Me povas...
–Ho ! –dicis la princeto-. Me bone komprenis, ma pro quo vu sempre parolas enigmatoze ?
–Me solvas omna enigmati –dicis la serpento.
E la du permanis silence.
Averto lektenda
La verko La princeto licencesas sub Creative Commons License,
Autoro.- Fernando Tejón,

Mea vido-cirklo (horizonto)

Translation of tune by Russian bard Alexander Sukhanov from verses by Russian poet Yunna Morits.

Me nule savas la Angla, la Franca, la Greka,
Mea vid-cirklo do restas sat mikra e streta -
En mea vid-cirklo trovesas nur flori, arbori,
Nur tero e maro, aero, fairo, amoro.
Me nule savas la Dana e la Portugala,
Mea vid-cirklo restas sat infantala -
Nur joyi rapide pasant', bruligiva aflikto,
Nur esperi, e timi noktal' es en mea vid-cirklo.
Me savas nek la Sanskrito e nek la Latina,
Mea vid-cirklo es ancien-mod' quale tino
Nur morto e nasko homala, nur grani ed astri
Aden mea vid-cirklo penetras e standas sat mastre.
Mea savo artala esas fakultativa.
Mea vid-cirklo restas presk' primitiva -
En olu es nia afero intima, interna
Por ke kun homaro la Tero flugadez eterne.
Mea vid-cirklon restriktas nur timi, esperi,
En olu trovesas nur amo, nur maro e tero.
Aden mea vid-cirklo penetras e standas sat mastre
Nur morto e nasko homala, nur grani ed astri.

Literature and publications

Ido has a number of publications that can be subscribed to or downloaded for free in most cases. Kuriero Internaciona is a magazine produced in France every few months with a range of topics. Adavane! is a magazine produced by the Spanish Ido Society every two months that has a range of topics, as well as a few dozen pages of work translated from other languages. Progreso is the official organ of the Ido movement and has been around since the inception of the movement in 1908. Other sites can be found with various stories, fables or proverbs along with a few books of the Bible translated into Ido on a smaller scale. The site publikaji has a few podcasts in Ido along with various songs and other recorded material.

The online encyclopedia Wikipedia includes an Ido-language edition (known in Ido as Wikipedio); as of January 2010, it has over 18,000 articles.

Recent and upcoming international Ido conventions

References and notes

  1. L. Couturat, L. Leau. Delegation pour l'adoption d'une Langue auxiliare internationale (15–24 October 1907). Coulommiers: Imprimerie Paul Brodard, 1907
  1. ^ Blanke (2000), cited in Sabine Fiedler "Phraseology in planned languages", Phraseology / Phraseologie, Walter de Gruyter 2007
  2. ^ Merriam-Webster's Third New International Dictionary
  3. ^ Ido-movado. (2005, novembro 15). Vikipedio, La Libera Enciklopedio. Retrieved 19:04, novembro 28, 2005 from
  4. ^ "History of the International Language". Retrieved 2010-01-09. 
  5. ^ Jespersen, Otto. History of our Language (Ido) from - 1912. Translated from the original Ido available at
  6. ^ Harlow, Don. The Esperanto Book, chapter 3: "How to Build a Language".
  7. ^ Eventoj, no. 103, ISSN 01215-959 X. Ci estas senvalora balasto (Ci is useless ballast). 1996. Available at
  8. ^ L. H. Dyer. "The Problem of an International Auxiliary Language and its Solution in Ido", pp. 101–124 [1], 1923.
  9. ^ Lexiko di nova vorti (lexicon of new words), available at
  10. ^
  11. ^ "Google Groups discussion in multiple planned languages". Retrieved 2010-01-09. 
  12. ^ Chandler, James. Changes in Ido since 1922, from

External links

Ido edition of Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Overview and answers to common questions

History and opinions on Ido

Pages in Ido and places to learn the language


Up to date as of January 15, 2010

Definition from Wiktionary, a free dictionary

Wikipedia has an article on:


See also ido, I do, idō, idő, and -ido



Proper noun




  1. A constructed language; a reform of Esperanto.


External links



Proper noun

Ido n.

  1. Ido


Proper noun

Ido n.

  1. Ido


Proper noun


  1. Ido (Language)


Up to date as of January 23, 2010

From Wikibooks, the open-content textbooks collection


Introduction Development stage: 00% (as of Aug 30, 2005)

  • Ido was originally created in 1907 as a reformed version of Esperanto. The reforms were not accepted by the Esperanto community and it was decided that the only way to carry them out would be to use a new name for the language.

How is Ido different from Esperanto?

Alphabet Development stage: 00% (as of Aug 30, 2005)

Grammar Development stage: 00% (as of Aug 30, 2005)

Lessons Development stage: 00% (as of Aug 30, 2005)

LEVEL I: Beginner Development stage: 25% (as of Apr 2, 2008)

LEVEL II: Intermediate Development stage: 00% (as of Aug 30, 2005)

LEVEL III: Advanced Development stage: 00% (as of Aug 30, 2005)

About this Book Development stage: 00% (as of Aug 30, 2005)

About the Authors Development stage: 00% (as of Aug 30, 2005)

Simple English

Ido is a planned language, a so-called reformed Esperanto, which was developed in 1907. Ido was made by a group of people that thought Esperanto was too hard to be a world language. They did not like how Esperanto used letters with special marks over them, because that made it hard to type, and they thought that a world language should be easy to learn and write. Ido is not as popular as Esperanto, but still about 1000 people in the world speak it, and they have a conference every year where people come together and speak the language.


Special points about Ido

Ido is easy to learn for many reasons:

  • The speaker says Ido the same way it is written. In English, the words doughnut, tough, and through all have the letters ough, but the speaker says them differently. In Ido, the word skolo is sko-lo, the word multa is mool-ta, and so on.
  • Verbs (action words) all act the same - In English the speaker says "I learn, you learn, we learn, she learns". In Ido the verb is always the same - "Me lernas, tu lernas, ni lernas, el lernas".
  • Ido looks like a lot of other languages. If learners already know English, French or some other European language, they can probably understand a lot of Ido even without studying it. Me lernas kun mea amiko en la skolo means "I learn with my friend in the school." A person can see that the word for 'I' looks like 'me', 'lernas' is 'learn, and 'skolo' is 'school'. Also, if the person is French, they will know the word 'amiko' which means friend, and looks like the French word, 'ami' or 'amie'. It also resembles the Italian word 'amico', and the Spanish/Portuguese word 'amigo'.

Grammar (how to use the language)

Each word in Ido comes from a smaller word called a root word. A root word has a root and an ending. The speaker can take the root and put it on another word to make a new one. For example, urbo means "city" and -estro means "leader". The root of urbo is urb-, and if -estro is put on the end, it becomes urbestro, which means mayor (leader of a city). Or the speaker can put something on before; chef- means chief or leader, and if the speaker puts that before the word it becomes chefurbo, which means capital city.

Here are some of the endings:

  • -o : single noun (objects and things). Book - libro. Friend - amiko.
  • -i : plural noun (more than one object). Books - libri. Friends - amiki.
  • -a : adjective (words that describe objects). Fast - rapida. Short - kurta.
  • -e : adverb (words that describe how to do an action). Quickly - rapide. Shortly, brief - kurte.
  • -ar : verb (action word), present tense infinitive (like to go, to see, to find). To go - irar. To see - vidar.
  • -is : verb, past tense. Went - iris. Saw - vidis.
  • -as : verb, present tense (now). Go, goes - iras. See, sees - vidas.
  • -os : verb, future tense. Will go - iros. Will see - vidos.
  • -us : verb, conditional (like the English would). (I) would go - irus. (I) would see - vidus.
  • -ez : verb, imperative (telling someone to do something). Go! - irez! See! - videz!


Pronouns are the words in a language like I, you, he, she, it, we, they, and so on. Ido was made from Esperanto, and all of Esperanto's pronouns end in -i. The people that made Ido thought that they sounded too much the same and that it might be too difficult to hear sometimes. Also, most languages have two ways of saying you so they decided to have two ways of saying you. Lastly, they decided to make a pronoun that can mean he or she. Some languages like the Finnish language and the Estonian language have something like this.

Here is a chart of all the pronouns in English, Ido, and Esperanto.

singular (one) plural (more than one) general
first second third first second third
familiar (with friends) formal (people you do not know) men women objects he or she
English I Archaic: thou
Modern: you
you he she it s/he we you they one
Esperanto mi vi li ŝi ĝi ĝi ni vi ili oni
Ido me tu vu il(u) el(u) ol(u) lu ni vi li on(u)

Ido and Esperanto

Ido is a language that came from Esperanto, so they look very similar. Since Esperanto has more speakers than Ido, most people that know Ido first learned Esperanto and then later learned that Ido is a language, too. Sometimes Idists (people who speak Ido) and Esperantists (people who speak Esperanto) do not agree with each other. Luckily they both agree that making a language that everybody can learn is a good idea. Most Idists and Esperantists can understand most of each other's language.


Here are samples of the language Ido to show what the language looks like. On the right is a page from a magazine in Ido called Adavane! (forward), written by an Ido group in Spain every two months. This is a page from a diary by a girl named Anne Frank, a Jewish girl from the Netherlands that was killed in 1944 by the German government of Adolf Hitler.

Below is a small part of the book The Little Prince called La Princeto in Ido.

La Princeto


Bona nokto ! – dicis la surprizata princeto.
Bona nokto ! – dicis la serpento.
Adsur qua planeto me falis ? – questionis la princeto.
Adsur Tero, sur Afrika. – respondis la serpento.
Ha !... Kad esas nulu sur Tero ?
To esas la dezerto, e nulu esas sur la dezerti. Tero esas tre granda – dicis la serpento.
La princeto sideskis sur stono e levis lua okuli a la cielo.
Me questionas a me – lu dicis- ka la steli intence brilas por ke uladie singlu povez trovar sua stelo. Videz mea planeto, olu esas exakte super ni... ma tre fore !
Olu esas bela planeto – dicis la serpento-. Por quo vu venis adhike ?
Esas chagreneto inter floro e me – dicis la princeto.
Ha ! – dicis la serpento.
E la du permanis silence.
Ube esas la personi ? – klamis fine la princeto-. Onu esas kelke sola sur la dezerto...
Inter la personi onu anke esas sola – dicis la serpento.
La princeto regardis la serpento longatempe.
Vu esas stranja animalo ! – dicis la princeto-. Vu esas tam tenua kam fingro...
Yes, ma me esas plu potenta kam fingro di rejo – dicis la serpento.
La princeto ridetis.
Me ne kredas ke vu esas tre potenta, mem vu ne havas pedi... nek vu povas voyajar...
Me povas transportar vu plu fore kam navo -dicis la serpento.
Ed olu spulis la maleolo di la princeto, same kam ora braceleto.
Ta quan me tushas retroiras a la tero deube lu venis. Ma vu esas pura e vu venas de stelo...
La princeto nulon respondis.
Me kompatas vu, qua esas tante sola sur ta harda granita Tero. Me povas helpar vu se vu sentas nostalgio a vua planeto. Me povas...
Ho ! – dicis la princeto-. Me bone komprenis, ma pro quo vu sempre parolas enigmatoze ?
Me solvas omna enigmati – dicis la serpento.
E la du permanis silence.

Mea vido-cirklo (horizonto)

This was a song by a bard from Russia named Alexandr Sukhanov; he used words from the poetry of another Russian person named Yunna Mortis. This is the Ido version, sung with guitar.

Me nule savas la Angla, la Franca, la Greka,
Mea vid-cirklo do restas sat mikra e streta -
En mea vid-cirklo trovesas nur flori, arbori,
Nur tero e maro, aero, fairo, amoro.
Me nule savas la Dana e la Portugala,
Mea vid-cirklo restas sat infantala -
Nur joyi rapide pasant', bruligiva aflikto,
Nur esperi, e timi noktal' es en mea vid-cirklo.
Me savas nek la Sanskrito e nek la Latina,
Mea vid-cirklo es ancien-mod' quale tino
Nur morto e nasko homala, nur grani ed astri
Aden mea vid-cirklo penetras e standas sat mastre.
Mea savo artala esas fakultativa.
Mea vid-cirklo restas presk' primitiva -
En olu es nia afero intima, interna
Por ke kun homaro la Tero flugadez eterne.
Mea vid-cirklon restriktas nur timi, esperi,
En olu trovesas nur amo, nur maro e tero.
Aden mea vid-cirklo penetras e standas sat mastre
Nur morto e nasko homala, nur grani ed astri.


[[File:|thumb|right|400px|An Ido conference in the German city of Dessau, in 1922]] People who know Ido come together for a few days every year to meet each other and speak the language. Most Ido speakers live in Europe and so the conventions (a meeting of people) have taken place in Europe. Information on Ido conferences (the section that says raporto is the report on the convention written in Ido): Toulouse, France will have a convention from the 23rd to the 27th of September, 2005.

2004: Kyiv, Ukraine - 17 people from 9 countries (Raporto)
2003: Grossbothen, Germany - People from 6 countries (Raporto)
2002: Kraków, Poland - 14 people from 6 countries (Raporto)
2001: Nuremberg, Germany - 14 people from 5 countries (Raporto)
1998: Białobrzegi, Poland - 15 people from 6 countries
1997: Bakkum (mun. Castricum), Netherlands - 19 participants from 7 countries
1995: Elsnigk, Germany
1991: Ostend, Belgium - 21 people
1980: Namur, Belgium - 35 people
1960: Zürich, Switzerland - ca. 50 people

Other websites

Got something to say? Make a comment.
Your name
Your email address