Languages

Because of the sheer scope of Koth, the number of languages spoken upon and under its surface is nigh-uncountable. For the would-be traveler looking to communicate with potential trading partners, calm unfriendly natives, or just order a beer, there are a couple of solutions.

Although there are a great many languages, most are derived from a much smaller number of sources, suggesting either that once people spoke fewer languages, or (judging by the results) that repeated contact with older, more immutable languages gradually causes them to conform to existing traditions.

As such, travelers who encounter a language from the same base ‘root language’ as their own have a much easier time learning to speak the new language, in a similar fashion to Romance languages sharing much in the way of vocabulary and grammar. There are eight common ‘root languages’, as well as a few common trade tongues.

Pyre – the tongue of fire, a common root tongue in the south and among gnolls and orcs elsewhere. Often spread by Mirage Traders, the pure form is rarely spoken on Koth. A sibilant language, often sounding nasal to non-native speakers.

Aquas – the tongue of water, a root tongue for many aquatic races and reptilian humanoids. Profoundly tonal, with mostly hard consonants and a limited script. Rarely used for terrestrial civilizations (but see Salt, below).

Vente – the tongue of wind, a popular root among halflings, shifters, and elves, with a variety of vowel sounds, well suited to poetry. A popular element of trade tongues such as Sojourn and Salt.

Terran – the earth tongue, found among dwarves, goliaths, and goblins, as well as many giantkin. An often harsh and throaty tongue. Characterized by strict verb tenses and runic script.

Draconic – as expected of a long-lived race such as the Dragons, the full complexities of this tongue take years to master, whereas most civilizations that use it (such as Kobolds and Dragonborn) use only the more common of its verb tenses. Draconic does not possess an alphabet of its own and is properly written with ideograms, though many civilizations will transcribe it into Pyre, Vente, or Terran.

Celes – A tongue native to the gods. Though elegant and refined when discussing theological concepts, it is poorly suited for day-to-day conversations, so it is most often used by itinerant priests as a trade-tongue, or as one of several elements in a theocratic country’s dialect.

Sidhe – the tongue spoken in the Seelie Courts. Eladrin and Gnomes often speak dialects of this, as do many wizards, who admire its suitability for arcane magics. Common for those near a trod through the Fey Realms, and in the North.

Morte – the tongue spoken in the Shadowlands. Used in necropoli, among sentient undead, the shadar-kai, and among the Doomspeakers. Not the most common of tongues, but sometimes heard in the South outside of the area of trades.

Trade Dialects:

Salt

Sojourn

Gith

Dark Tongues:

Abyssal

Outsider

Languages

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