Languages

This is in no way every language in Golarion, but it’s most of the popular ones and we won’t be likely to use ones that aren’t on this list or the list on d20pfsrd (many, but not all, languages on that list are also on this list).

Modern Human languages

The following are the most common languages.

  • Common (Taldane): One of the oldest languages still in use in the Inner Sea region, Taldane is also the most widely spoken in the area, and is used as a common tongue.
  • Hallit: Spoken by the Kellid people in the far north, Hallit is a coarse, rough-sounding language.
  • Kelish: Throaty, phlegmatic, and passionate, this ancient language derives from the tribal tongues of the Padishah Empire of Kelesh in the distant east.
  • Osiriani: The most widespread language of Garund, Osiriani is directly descended from Ancient Osiriani.
  • Polyglot: The dialects of the Mwangi share enough remnants of a mysterious root language that members of different tribes can generally understand one another.
  • Shadowtongue: A mix of Infernal, Azlanti, and Common, Shadowtongue is rarely spoken beyond Nidal’s borders.
  • Shoanti: Spoken widely in northwest Avistan but rarely anywhere else, the Shoanti tongue is a unique combination of Varisian, Giant, and Thassilonian.
  • Skald: Famous for its long, complex words and lilting pronunciation, Skald sounds at the same time lyrical and hard to the ears of southern Avistani.
  • Tien: This language contains thousands of homophones. Its written form uses nearly 24,000 pictographs. (GM Note: This is essentially the Common of Tian-Xia. There are many others (such as Senzar, a language of ancient spirits), but they are rarely heard outside Tian-Xia.)
  • Varisian: Varisian is rife with subtle double meanings, innuendo, and gradations of meaning.
  • Vudrani: Vudrani borrows and adapts words from both Kelesh and Tien to form a pleasing, musical dialect.

Ancient Languages

The following languages are not commonly known in the Inner Sea region, save by scholars and historians.

  • Ancient Osiriani: This precursor to modern Osiriani shares many similarities and differs mainly in its hieroglyphics and lexicon. Speakers of this tongue can speak modern Osiriani, but with an archaic accent.
  • Azlanti: One of the most widely spoken languages of its time, Azlanti became the basis for dozens of languages all over Avistan and Garund.
  • Cyclops: Once the ancient language of the giants, this tongue was created before the rise of humanity by the cyclopes of Ghol-gan.
  • Jistka: Jistka remains in use throughout Avistan, though almost exclusively by scholars and royalty.
  • Tekritanin: This choppy language is a meld of various regional dialects once spoken in the Tekritanin League.
  • Thassilonian: One of the ancestor tongues of modern Varisian, Thassilonian is mostly remembered for its now unused alphabet, consisting of three sets of runes.

Other Languages

Humans are far from the first race to communicate verbally or in a written form.

  • Abyssal: Many believe Abyssal was the first language to develop among natives of the Outer Sphere.
  • Aklo: This mysterious tongue is common among sinister elements of the First World and the Darklands, as well as among other ancient creatures like the aboleths.
  • Aquan: Aquan is a guttural tongue with thick, throaty sounds and long syllables.
  • Auran: Auran is a breathy, gentle-sounding language.
  • Celestial: Celestial is used by all of the good-aligned planes of the Outer Spheres.
  • Draconic: This ancient tongue, the language of dragons, is among the oldest in the Inner Sea region.
  • Druidic: Only druids speak this complex language, and they guard its secrets jealously.
  • Dwarven: Dwarven is a guttural, phlegmatic language consisting of hard consonants and clipped syllables.
  • Elven: The Elven language is complex but beautiful, sounding poetic in its cadence and tone.
  • Giant: Giant exists today as a simplistic mesh of original Cyclops and Thassilonian.
  • Gnome: Gnome shares some similarities with both Aklo and Sylvan, but has a larger vocabulary than either.
  • Goblin: The nigh-incomprehensible yapping of goblins, the militaristic barking of hobgoblins, and the sibilant taunts of bugbears all use the same vocabulary.
  • Gnoll: Punctuated by high-pitched yips, deep barks, and throaty growls, this cacophonous language is difficult for non-gnolls to pick up—much less master.
  • Halfling: The modern language of Halfling descends directly from various human tongues.
  • Ignan: Ignan consists mostly of short words—their staccato feel on the tongue emulates the popping of fire.
  • Infernal: Infernal requires precise enunciation, for many of its words with unrelated meanings nonetheless bear extremely similar pronunciations.
  • Necril: A whispering tongue said to have ties to ancient Osiriani, Necril is the language of the dead—it is spoken primarily by ghouls and agents of the Whispering Way.
  • Orc: Known for the brusque delivery of its disjointed, hard-consonant syllables, Orc sounds harsh and angry.
  • Orvian: Sort of a cross between Aklo and Terran, this ancient tongue is spoken by many of the deepest-dwelling races of the Darklands.
  • Sylvan: Spoken by fey and certain denizens of the First World, Sylvan is one of the oldest languages.
  • Terran: Terran is a slow and deliberate language, the sounds of which cannot be rushed.
  • Undercommon: Descended from Elven but incorporating certain Orvian words, the drow-created tongue called Undercommon expands upon certain specific areas of its mother tongue’s vocabulary while ignoring others.

Languages

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