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Thread: Languages of Ravenloft

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Mar 2006
    Wild, Wonderful, West Virginia!

    Default Languages of Ravenloft

    So way back near the beginning of the thread, Claytor requested some more translation of words in Balok for his Caspar Von Zarovich posts. Since languages, language barriers, and verbal misunderstandings can all contribute to the flavor of a Gothic Horror campaign, I thought I'd go through the RL books and post what translations are there for languages of the Dread Realms, so your PCs can use them when and if you feel so inclined. Also included are common phrases & adages & proverbs from various realms, lending insight into that particular culture and their customs, beliefs, and attitudes.

    This is not (yet) a comprehensive list of all languages and dialects Ravenloft by any means of course, but I've started by focusing on where your PCs are from and can add more languages as you adventure to new realms.

    Also, under "Mordentish" I clear up how I'd like to use High and Low Mordentish regarding ranks in the Linguistics skill.

    Generally, if you speak High or Low Mordentish of any dialect (Dementlieuiese, Richemuloise, Mordentish etc.), you can comprehend most of High or Low Mordentish from other dialects, yet there would be words and phrases here and there that you don't fully understand the context of. Same goes for the different dialects of other broadly spoken languages (Balok, Vaasi, etc.). Enjoy!
    The Red Condor shrieked at Sir Darvig in full wrath. Wings flapped storms of fire across the sky. "The Mage-God grows in power swifter than it appears to Paladine. This I know. A warning," Sargonnas told Darvigl, "for you to give to Paladine in your prayers."

    I will, Darvig uttered.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Mar 2006
    Wild, Wonderful, West Virginia!



    High and Low Mordentish & the Linguistics Skill
    For purposes of the Mordentish language, a separate rank must be used to be fluent in each High and Low Mordentish. When a PC puts a rank in Linguistics to learn Mordentish, he must choose High Mordentish or Low Mordentish. However, a PC who has a rank in or understands one of these dialects can get the gist of what most folk speaking the other dialect are getting at. However, misunderstandings are not uncommon.

    HIGH MORDENTISH & LOW MORDENTISH (Mordentish dialect)
    There are two similar yet subtly different dialects of Mordentish, one spoken by the nobility and another, coarser version spoken by the common folk with a more cockneyed accent. While the two dialects mostly blend, a good number of phrases can still be misunderstood. This experience can come as a surprise to the traveler who thinks themselves fluent in the local tongue, only to occasionally find large gaps in their understanding of the speaker. As for the tongue itself, it is a deep, rather guttural language whose dichotomous origins are clearly evident with shorthand expressions and rather standoffish utterances, used liberally throughout everyday life by even the most refined aristocrats. On the other hand, Mordentish is also the language of great literature. Mordentish folk in a formal environment can summon up concise but eloquent language to rival any orator.

    Common Sayings, Adages, & Proverbs of Mordent
    “Evil watches / Evil waits / Goodness stumbles / Evil takes” - Mordentish proverb
    “Gone to Tumbletown” - gone mad
    “The Other Side” - the afterlife world where ghosts dwell
    “Old Jack”, “Mad Mary Bones”, “the Devil Douglas” - popular, old fearful ghosts often mentioned during Mordentish funereal customs: to say the “full” name of the dead (recently dead or otherwise) at a funereal is to beckon spirits to come and take revenge from The Other Side
    “Dogs can be trained to behave in public, but children are another matter” - a saying used to express a successful fox-hunt, or, as an expression of exasperation regarding an unruly child
    “Don’t visit evil, and evil won’t visit you” - a common response to the mention of magic
    “Spin a good yarn” - gossip, superstition, and storytelling around the hearth
    “Reconcile by the fire” - a civil plea to sit down and settle a dispute by the warmth of a hearth
    "A Nice Cup of Wraithroot Tea" - a popular tea in Mordent; also, the tiny white flower is notable as the only plant Mordentish folk trust near a cemetary.
    “Putting on Airs” - someone who is not Mordentish trying to be over eloquent in speaking High Mordentish
    “Country Life” - retiring to the woods to live out one’s final days alone in a cabin
    “Wig’s Breakfast” - Mordentish working-class folk’s mocking term for a Mordentish noble’s additional meal during midmorning consisting of tea, cold drinks, and toast
    “The sea simply got a taste for that family, and wouldn’t let go” - a summary at the end of any tale of a doomed sea voyage upon The Sea of Sorrows
    “Children of the Mist”, or, “Children of the Wind” - Mordentish babes born with grey eyes
    “Wailing Ones” - babes born caliban
    “Spirit-touched” - a sorcerer
    “Fey-touched” - all-inclusive term for elves, dwarves, gnomes, and halflings
    “Day curtains”, “Storm Curtains” - windows in Mordent typically have two sets of curtains: thin curtains for allowing only bleak sunlight into a room when closed during the day, and curtains of heavier fabric for ill weather
    “The ceremony” - when an alchemist is at work
    “The Damnable Lot” - alternative name for the noble Gauldamon family of Mordent

    Noble Family Mottos of Mordent
    “The land knows its true master” - motto of the noble de Boistribue family
    “The water of knowledge sates only those who drink the deepest” - motto of the noble Blackburn-Bruce familty
    “Approach friends and enemies alike with a smile; they both are equally deserving of it” - motto of the noble Gaulamon family
    “Those that are strong survive to lead” - motto of the noble Godefroy family
    “Only by action does any man succeed” - motto of the noble Halloway family
    “Cradles by the waves, guided by the light” - motto of the noble Holsworth family
    “Death makes all men equal; Life makes all men brothers” - motto of the formerly noble Mournesworth clan, who’s descendents are now in willing servitude to the Godefroys
    “The work of the hands is the joy of the soul” - motto of the noble Scottmatter family
    “None would survive but for the efforts of those whom history has forgotten” - motto of the noble Weathermay family
    “Those who are righteous receive what they deserve” - motto of the noble Wescote family

    High Mordentish Primer, Mordent dialect
    jour - day
    nuit - night
    soleil - sun
    lune - moon
    ville - town
    auberge - inn
    fantome - spirit
    mer - ocean, sea
    brume - mist
    brouillard - fog
    noblesse oblige - the practice of aristocratic families working peacefully together side-by-side along with the common folk

    Low Mordentish Primer, Mordent dialect
    daeg - day
    niht - night
    heathusigel, sol, sunne - sun
    mona - moon
    tun - town
    hus, tochirhus - inn
    feorh, gast - spirit
    scucca - evil spirit
    holm, mere - ocean, sea
    lyfthelm - mist
    nip - fog

    image upload
    Last edited by Bong Bellowsmoke; 11-10-2013 at 03:10 PM.
    The Red Condor shrieked at Sir Darvig in full wrath. Wings flapped storms of fire across the sky. "The Mage-God grows in power swifter than it appears to Paladine. This I know. A warning," Sargonnas told Darvigl, "for you to give to Paladine in your prayers."

    I will, Darvig uttered.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Mar 2006
    Wild, Wonderful, West Virginia!


    HIGH MORDENTISH & LOW MORDENTISH (Dementlieuise dialect)
    Mordentish is the primary language of Dementlieu. It is a curious tongue, in that it has two quite distinct dialects. There is no obvious explanation for the two diverse dialects and one can only assume they are the result of some long-forgotten merging of two separate languages. In total, the language is very flexible, with a wide vocabulary. Generally, class defines the use of the two dialects: High Mordentish is spoken by the upper classes and the wanna-be’s, while Low Mordentish is reserved for peasants and farmers. High Mordentish is a very soft language, forsaking the harsh consonants of a language such as Lamordian for rolling vowels, silent consonants, and a structure that seems to string words together together seamlessly in a lyrical, amorous and sensuous cadence.

    Common Sayings, Adages, and Proverbs of Dementlieu
    “The only language in which love can truly be expressed” - a dote over the artistic beauty of the language of High Mordentish
    “Went to Widow’s Walk” - “went to commit suicide”; Widow’s Walk is the boardwalk along the docks of Port-a-Lucine, where the distraught sometimes give their lives to the sea.
    “The faint scent of Dapplewort is in the air” - “One is hopelessly in love”; Dapplewort is also an annual herb that produces bright pink plowers with a yellow center and grows on Dementlieu’s coastal sand dunes
    “He is Severely Limited” - reference to someone not worthy of knowing your secrets or the secrets of the person you’re conversing with
    “Backwards Man” - condescending term for a person from sleepy Mordent, invoked with mocking pity implying people from Mordent seem to ultimately lack success in all matters
    “Make a donation to Richemulot” - slang among Dementlieuise nobles to throw out their old clothing from their closets once the latest fashion of the season is becoming out-of-date
    “As boring as a Lamordian” - a mocking joke about Lamordians, used in an effort to get everyone to settle down
    “The Dead Travel Fast” - the title of a roaringly popular series of cheap tawdry literary romance novels
    “Dirty Little Secret” - a common claim to know something about someone that no one else knows which could be used against them
    “Cry no more, for I will cry for you” - a sympathetic sentiment that also implies one is faithful to the goddess Ezra
    “The Little People” - reference to the very small population of halflings living in the city of Port-a-Lucine

    High Mordentish Primer, Dementlieu dialect
    bonjour - greetings
    adieu - farewell
    oui - yes
    non - no
    oh! helas! - ah! alas!
    s’en aller - go away!
    peinturex - painting
    ecriture - literature
    presentation - performance of any art
    cafe - social establishments serving food with tables set up outdoors on the premises

    Low Mordentish Primer, Dementlieu dialect
    bearn - child
    myrthra - murderer
    bearn-myrthra - child murderer
    wes thu hal - greetings; “be you well”; also “farewell”
    giese - yes
    nese - no
    la! eala! - ah! alas!
    faran aweg! - go away!
    searo - painting
    bokcraeft - literature
    plegende - performance

    Universal Mordentish, Dementlieu dialect
    “Dementlieu” - “mad place”
    “La Counseil Eclat” - “The Council of Brilliance”, the Lord-Governors council of five advisors selected personally by the Lord-Governor
    “Palais Dirigeante” - “Ruling Palace”, where The Council of Brilliance formally meets.
    “Pronouncer” - major or judge of a Dementlieuse town
    “Cour du Justice” - the high court where serious public crimes are heard and judged by the Lord-Governor and The Council of Brilliance
    “Place de Leon” - the place in the city of Port-a-Lucine where death is publicly meted out by guillotine, most often applied to traitors and captured Falkovnians, often attracting crowds of spectators.
    “La Lamenteer” - a sea captain claiming to have the skill/ability to sail “Mistways” upon The Sea of Sorrows to reach the lands of Sri Raji and Rokushima Taiyoo
    “Gendarme” - town guard; polieman
    “Monsieur” - mister
    “Perruques” - white, curled wig, immaculately made for both genders
    “L’Ordures” - refuse; trash; foul smell; often invoked as the cesspool scent of the Vuchar River that borders Falkovnia blows across Dementlieu.
    “Fois Gras” - goose liver
    “Escargot” - snails
    “Jeu Force” - a popular game using round markers on a board marked off in squares (like backgammon), played late into the night
    “La Grande Opera Nationale” - “The Port-a-Lucine Opera House”
    “La Mort de Mon Coeur” - “The Death of My Heart”, an annual entertaining tragedy traditionally performed first to kick off each opera season at the opera houses of Port-a-Lucine.
    “Musee du Port-a-Lucine” - a large civic, public art gallery featuring works from Dementlieu, Richemulot, Mordent, and more.
    “Theatre de la Baie” - an open amphitheatre in Port-a-Lucine known for its dramas
    “Grande Bibliotheque” - “The Great Library” in Port-a-Lucine
    “Voix de l’Ame” - “Voice of the Soul”, a famous, intimate venue for poetry readings in Port-a-Lucine
    “Maison de Cire” - the famous wax museum in Port-a-Lucine
    “Puits d’Orchestre” - the most famous, illustrious pit orchestra of Port-a-Lucine’s theatre and opera houses.
    “La Universite de Dementlieu” - “The University of Dementlieu”, courses and degrees available in Arcane Science, History, Military Studies, Divinities, Medicine, Physical Sciences, Poetry, Painting, Sculpture, and Music.
    “La Societe de Legerdemain” - the entertainers guild of Dementlieu consisting of conjurers, escape artists, mesmerists, painters, stage magicians, etc.
    “Domaines de la Vie Eclairee” - "Estates of the Enlightened Life"; the wealthy estates along the shores of Pernault Bay in Port-a-Lucine
    “Boite de Bijou” - “Jewel Box”, also the name of the multitude of brilliantly-tinted owbow lakes nestled aside the Musarde River, a popular bath/vacation destination for nobles during the summer months
    “Avenue de Progres” - the bustling highway connecting the towns of Chateaufaux and Port-a-Lucine

    screen shot on pc
    Last edited by Bong Bellowsmoke; 11-10-2013 at 04:02 PM.
    The Red Condor shrieked at Sir Darvig in full wrath. Wings flapped storms of fire across the sky. "The Mage-God grows in power swifter than it appears to Paladine. This I know. A warning," Sargonnas told Darvigl, "for you to give to Paladine in your prayers."

    I will, Darvig uttered.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Mar 2006
    Wild, Wonderful, West Virginia!


    HIGH MORDENTISH & LOW MORDENTISH (Richemuloise dialect)
    The Richemuloise speak a High Mordentish dialect similar to that spoken in Dementlieu. To the horror of Dementlieuse nobility, however, Richemuloise speech is sprinkled with bastardized Balok and Falkovnian words, as well as the occasional Halfling expression.

    Common Sayings, Adages, and Proverbs of Richemulot
    “Pont-a-Museau this fall, Port-a-Lucine last spring” - reference to the tendency of Richemuloise fashion and cultural trends to model the latest fashion and culture trends of Dementlieu, a season later
    “Snatchings” - cases of infants vanishing in the night from securely locked homes
    “Carte Blanche” - reference to the tendency of Richemuloise to accept nonhumans into society more readily than other folk...though they feel that this openness gives them “carte blanche” to treat such outsiders with persistent “good-natured” cruelty
    “Tabula Rasa” - reference to the phenomena that there is no recorded history of Richemulot prior to 694 BC, less than 100 years ago
    “Tunnel Stalkers” - scouts and survivors of the sewers of the cities of Richemulot, skilled in subterranean exploration and reconnaissance and valuing stealth and cunning above all else
    “Daggernails” - sadist subterranean sewer dwellers that delight in slaughter
    “Filth Breeders” - deranged sewer dwellers claiming to be holy men
    “Skin Twisters” - wererats who have mastered the art of human society and venture forth from the sewers to live among the surface world
    “Plague Kings and Queens” - masters and mistresses of wererat warrens

    High Mordentish Primer, Richemulot dialect
    ville - city
    egout - sewer
    salaud - rat
    les intruses - the wererats
    intruse - trespasser
    savant - noble or scholar
    chapradeur - traitor
    malin - affluent, astute
    decendre! - get below! (a common curse or insult)

    Low Mordentish Primer, Richemulot dialect
    burg - city
    adelscath - sewer
    raet - rat
    werraet - wererat
    forgaegend - trespasser
    aetheling - noble
    bokere, scolere - scholar
    laewend - traitor
    byrde, welig - affluent
    searocraeftig - astute
    begietan dun! - get below! (a common curse or insult)

    Universal Mordentish, Richmuloise dialect
    La Grande Dame - political ruler Jacqueline Renier’s formal title
    La Mascarade Argente - the annual masquerade party thrown by the Renier family
    Les Harpies - derogatory term for particularly vicious, tongue-wagging Richmuloise noblewomen
    Casques Safran, Soleils Craimoisi, Lions de la Rue, La Serrure et Cle - four traditional companies of Richmuloise watchmen fort hire, known for their strong sense of honor, duty, and pomp
    “L’Essai des Revelations Exquis” - “The Trial of Sweet Revelations”, a tradition where a Richemuloise maiden presents a suitor to her father, who formally and vigorously quizzes the youth (Richmuloise tend to marry young after a whirlwind courtship lasting less than a month) on family facts over a sumputuous feast. It is intended to test the suitor’s character by discerning how much familial lore he has ferreted out of the bride-to-be. Truly savvy suitors tend to smugly reveal their knowledge of the most shameful family secrets by the time the table is cleared.
    melancolie - powder blue glassware blown in the city of Mortigny and prized throughout many lands.
    prosperite - a Richemuloise maiden who is the personification of wealth
    herbediable - native Richemuloise pipeweed
    warrens - subterranean colonies where wererats feed, breed, and lair
    ratatouille - vegetable omelets with soft cheese
    millas - cornmeal and butter with honey
    cassoulet - white beans with olive oil, with spices (rosemary, sage, basil, or thyme) and meat (pork, lamb, venison, goose, duck, or pheasant). Controversy swirls around this dish, as each city insists its signature preparation is the definitive recipe.
    pastis - an herbal cordial liquor with a heady aroma of anise
    "Danseurs Divin" - “The Divine Dancers”, a thriving mystery cult offshoot of the Dementlieuise sect of the Church of Ezra, that has a presence in Richemulot
    "Echansons" - “The Cupbearers”, a secretive but notorious offshoot of the Church of Ezra whose tenets remain ambiguous (though there are many rumors, including one regarding fabulous treasure of some kind)
    Le Mulet de Villet - a famous local ferry that runs between Richmuloise cities along the Musrade River
    "Les Champs Silencieux" - “The Silent Fields”, the wooded floodplain west of the Musarde River near the forest of Verbrek
    "La Lac Haletements" - “The Gasping Lake”
    "La Maison des Savants" - “The House of the Sages”
    "La Route des Chuchotements" - “The Road of Whispers”, the highway leading north into Falkovnia
    "L’Abbeye de Fleau Luisant" - “The Abbey of the Bright Scourge”, a church of Ezra near the city of Mortigny who’s anchorites have taken a strict vow of poverty.
    Le Grande Theatre de Musarde - the most prestigious theatre in the city of Pont-A-Museau, overlooking La Place d’Etoiles
    "La Place d’Etoiles" - “The Plaza of Stars”, the thronging market of Pont-A-Museau where Vistana can often be found tarrying.
    "L’Academie de Richmulot" - "The University of Richemulot" (for the elite), offering classical training and courses in Philosophy, Literature, Linguistics, and Natural Science
    "La Cathedrale de Destine Peste" - “The Cathedral of the Ordained Plague”, the Church of Ezra in the city of Pont-a-Museau built from the remains of an ancient bathhouse.
    "Les Jardins Vieux" - “The Old Gardens”, an area of ancient, monumental archways amidst the city of Ste. Ronges.
    "La Maison des Cent Papillons" - “The House of a Hundred Moths”, a private astronomical observatory in the city of Mortigny.
    "La Sanctuaire de la Dame Oubliee" - “The Sanctualry of the Forgotten Lady”, a church of Hala just shy of the Richmuloise border with Borca

    pictures upload
    The Red Condor shrieked at Sir Darvig in full wrath. Wings flapped storms of fire across the sky. "The Mage-God grows in power swifter than it appears to Paladine. This I know. A warning," Sargonnas told Darvigl, "for you to give to Paladine in your prayers."

    I will, Darvig uttered.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Mar 2006
    Wild, Wonderful, West Virginia!


    BALOK (Barovian dialect)
    Barovian Balok has a thick and guttural sound, to most ears sounding more like a hive of angry wasps.

    Common Sayings, Adages & Proverbs of Barovia
    “Never Again Conquered, Home Forevermore” - an expression of pride in the realm of Barovia, also written in Balok on the tail side of Barovian coin.
    “Nothing can kill a man as quickly, or as slowly, as the Balinoks.” - the Balinoks are the jagged, breathtakingly-high, mountain chain that Barovia straddles, impassable and snow-choked nine months out of the year. The highest peaks are Mount Baratok, Mount Sawtooth (surrounded by a ring of fog near its peak), and Mount Ghakis, all over 7000 feet tall, among others.
    “The Devil Strahd” - nickname for Count Strahd von Zarovich XI, Lord of Barovia.
    “Devil’s Descent” - nickname for the Old Svalich Road leading east out of the village of Vallaki, twisting and descending through the Old Svalich Forest toward the village of Barovia in the shadow of Castle Ravenloft, looming over top the village from a 1000-foot cliff
    “The Eyes and Ears of Strahd” - reference to the wolves of Barovia.
    “The Sheriff” - reference to renowned and feared Barovian soldier/killer, Sheriff Von Zarovich
    “The Zarovan can be sought by anyone, but they can only be found by those whom they themselves seek” - the Zarovan are a tribe of Vistana. The expression refers to the Tser Camp, a semi-permanent vistana camp outside the village of Barovia’s ring of fog

    Balok Primer, Barovian dialect
    buna zuna - good morning; good day
    adio - goodbye
    da - yes
    nu - no
    ajutor! - help!
    se duce! - go away!
    noapte - night
    tigan - gypsy; thief
    ceatsa - mist; fog
    tepurich - scarred
    vrolok - vampire
    veela - a beguiling woman who tempts men to drown themselves
    nocnitsa - a bloodsucking crone
    poludnitsa - orchard nymph
    mahr - moth demon
    mamliga - cornmeal mush
    sarmale - pork wrapped in cabbage or grape leaves
    tocana - pork stew with onions and garlic
    mititei - grilled pork and lamb meatballs
    patricieni - grilled sausage
    placinte - pastry and fruit turnovers
    tsuika - plum brandy
    chanticleer - member of the clergy of the Church of The Morninglord
    burgomaster - administering mayor of a village
    boyar - rural landholder
    refugiu - heaven
    iadul - hell

    image hosting sites
    The Red Condor shrieked at Sir Darvig in full wrath. Wings flapped storms of fire across the sky. "The Mage-God grows in power swifter than it appears to Paladine. This I know. A warning," Sargonnas told Darvigl, "for you to give to Paladine in your prayers."

    I will, Darvig uttered.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Mar 2006
    Wild, Wonderful, West Virginia!


    BALOK (Vorostokovian dialect)
    Stuck in the Dark Ages and with no contact with other realms, the hardy survivalist folk of the scattered hamlets of the arctic forests of Vorostokov speak a derivative of Balok.

    Common Phrases, Adages, and Proverbs of Vorostokov
    "The Eternal Night" - reference to the decades of time that the sun has not risen in frozen Vorostokov

    BALOK PRIMER, Vorostokov dialect
    boyar - ruler
    boyarsky - militiamen; enforcers; bodyguards of the boyar
    arayashka - snow wraith; snow-people
    yeneskyy - forest-haunts; snow cloakers
    zilinya neshka - blizzard; black-ice storm
    marshkovik - village leader; First Ranger of a village
    loup du noir - werewolf

    photo sharing
    Last edited by Bong Bellowsmoke; 11-10-2013 at 06:14 PM.
    The Red Condor shrieked at Sir Darvig in full wrath. Wings flapped storms of fire across the sky. "The Mage-God grows in power swifter than it appears to Paladine. This I know. A warning," Sargonnas told Darvigl, "for you to give to Paladine in your prayers."

    I will, Darvig uttered.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Mar 2006
    Wild, Wonderful, West Virginia!


    VAASI (Nova Vaasan Dialect)
    Nova Vaasans insist that their dialect of Vaasi is purer than those of Kartakass, Hazlan, or Valachan, and none care to argue. Nova Vaasans take great pride in their language, and by law it is the only language that may be used in legal proclamations and historical records. The Church of the Lawgiver in Nova Vaasa has similar laws, requiring that all religious recitations and holy scripts be in Vaasi.

    Common Sayings, Adages, & Proverbs of Nova Vaasa
    “A Man without a mustache is like a Horse without a tail” - Nova Vaasan proverb regarding men’s pride in their long mustaches.
    “A Catnip” - the insulting act of snipping or cutting off a man’s mustache in his sleep
    “The Lawgiver meant for Nova Vaasans to ride, and He provided a horse for each of us” - often said at the sight of a Nova Vaasan horse, or a wild herd thundering across the grasslands.
    “A thundering sea of horses ryding wayvs of shyning green” - prideful words of an ancient, famous Nova Vaasan poet; reference to the vast beauty of The Thundering Plain and its herds of wild horses.
    “Rider’s Dilemma” - reference to any sort of indecision; an adage coined by the alienist Dr. Gregorian Illhousan in reference to reflect the whole of Nova Vaasan culture.
    “Hojplad’s Carpet” - slang for The King’s Plain boasting short golden grass with royal purple seeds.
    “Tenant Farmers” - polite term for serfs
    “Pioneer!” - a compliment to someone trying to settle in the remote regions of the plains; or someone who has delved into an ancient tomb and lived.
    “Talking about the The Three Sisters” - reference to one overboasting his romantic conquests; also The Three Sisters are a trio of Nova Vassa’s largest lakes in the northwest of the realm.
    “Dyrskov the Centaur was here!” - reference to the finding of a large, dead, half-eaten animal. Dyrskov the Centaur is the subject of a folktale in which it does such in Nova Vaasa.
    “The Blood-Cat” - reference to the legend of the most feared and dangerous of all of Nova Vaasa’s predatory midnight-black plains cats that stalk the plains.
    “Blood-Cats” - the midnight-black panther-like plains cats with bobbed tails that crouch in the tall grasses, ready to pounce upon their prey.
    “As thick and red as blood” - a derogatory, cursing reference aimed at the Vistana
    “Catspaw” - one who has been poisoned. Catspaw is also a Nova Vaasan cactus with poisonous spines, easy to not see and step on.
    “Land of Painted Warlocks and Foul Treachery!” - a derogatory reference to the realm of Hazlan to the south.
    “A Saddling” - a long, restful sleep.
    “A Credit” - in the criminal underworld of Nova Vaasan cities, a murderer who got away with a crime.
    “Bow-legged Swagger!” - a good-natured, mocking insult to someone in a jolly mood.
    “Rope-Skipping” - jump-rope, a popular children's game and passtime
    “Rider’s Stew” - pork or sausage vegetable stew
    “The Epic Poem” - “that’s life”, a reference to legendary Nova Vaasan author Ansgar’s stirring fictional poems, tales and literature.
    “Fraternization” - the illegal act (by Nova Vaasan law) of social interaction between races. A very small population of dwarves, gnomes, and elves dwell in the ghettoes of Nova Vaasan cities.
    “Viggo’s Folly” - reference to the act of talking to a caliban, dwarf, gnome, or elf
    “Heretic” - one who performs a miracle (a spell) in the name of a god other than The Lawgiver
    “In the name of the Eternal King, by the will of the Lawgiver” - a common ceremonial proclamation
    “The Whip of Right and Rod of Might” - traditional symbols of Nova Vaasan Kingship.
    “The Nova Vaasan Navy” - yes, there’s a Nova Vaasan Navy that defends the realm along the long coast of the The Nocturnal Sea to the east.
    “Trying to Civilize Tepest!” - “a hopeless pursuit!”
    “The Shambling Mud-Monster” - a fabled creature that stalks the streets of the city of Bergovista at night
    “The Kantora Strangler” - an infamous madman who strangled dozens of people over six years, now undergoing treatment at the santitarium called The Clinic of the Mentally Distressed founded by Dr. Gregorian Illhousen
    “The Nightmare Lands” - the fabled place that half the population of the city of Ergertus forever vanished to on a particularly misty night in Year 753 BC.
    “Iron Paradise” - where the god The Lawgiver reputedly dwells. Princes who die or are killed during their term are said to be taken there to rule alongside him.
    The Straffers - Prince Othmar’s personal police force
    “The Black Duke” - the fictional main character in author Armond Ironhand’s famous saga “The Beast of Ehrendton”
    “The Five Families"; "The Ordained Cycle” - the historical (but now abolished) tradition of aristocratic rulership of Nova Vaasa being passed off between the five most influential noble familes every five year cycle.

    Noble Family Mottos of Nova Vaasa
    “Unity from us, power for us” - family motto of the Bolshniks
    “Gripped in warning, drawn in anger, raised in triumph” - family motto of the Chekivs
    “Duty from without brings honor from within” - familty motto of the Hiregaards
    “The death of our enemies is the seal of our authority” - familty motto of the Rivtoffs
    “Faithful no matter the risks” - family motto of the Vistins

    Vaasi Primer, Nova Vaasan dialect
    hest - horse
    hestmand - horseman; rider
    kat - cat
    forbrydelse - crime
    graes - grass
    aedelmand - nobleman
    lavmand - commoner
    kobmand - merchant
    de rigueur - valuable and trendy (in other lands) pistol holsters or scabbards made from Nova Vaasan horsehide
    kilbaasa - spiced pork sausages
    golaabki - meat-stuffed cabbage rolls
    pirogi - pockets of dough stuffed with anything from meats (pork, chicken, fish) and cheese, to fruits (apples, pears and peaches) and vegetables
    pollo - a horse-riding sport like polo
    hestberore - a horse-riding sport where riders attempt to snatch streamers from other riding horsemen
    klaebegribe - a horse-riding sport where riders take turns attempting to pull short stakes from the ground at a gallop without falling from their horses
    "Storsortstenstol" - “Great Blackstone Throne”; the throne in the Prince’s Palace, yet no prince dares sit in it.
    jernryge - “Iron-Blacks”, a major bloodline of Vaasi horses, prized for being the largest. Black coats.
    rodbuge - “Red-Bellies”, a major bloodline of Vaasi horses, prized for strength, intelligence, spirit, and their noble beauty. Black coats with red bellies.
    vindhare - “Wind-Manes”, a major bloodline of Vaasi horses, prized for their speed and notorious for their ill temper. Blue-black coats with white markings on face and legs, sometimes streaks of white in their manes.
    gedfrode - “Goat-Foots”, a major bloodline of Vaasi horses, prized for being surest of foot, the smartest, and loyal. Black coats and slightly smaller than the other major bloodlines.
    vaamgaare - “Heat-Walkers”, a major bloodline of Vaasi horses, coats lack the luster of the other breeds, but are rugged and nearly tireless, and can go long distances without food or water, and are not bothered by extremely hot weather. Black coats without the sleek luster
    hvile - resting; repose; also, the process of carving out a stone wall or digging a grave.
    sortvingbute - tiny black fairies said to carry off lumberjacks
    hestdricker - “horse-drinker”; fey creatures rumored to stalk horse ranches at night, sucking their blood and leaving them ill and dying
    doedridere - mythic undead horsemen that silently roam the Nova Vaasan plains, seeking company.
    niksiee - fabled spectral and malicious horse creature
    skarphove - fabled malicious flesh-eating horse
    hestskaerer - goblin-like creatures that slit open the bellies of sleeping stallions and climb inside, slowly driving the horse mad
    forventetaarn - watchtower; a watchtower that stands watch over the high quarried bluffs of Nova Vaasa where mining commences and ancient tombs are unearthed
    vingraes - a short golden grass with royal purple seeds
    knivgraes - a strain of grass with cruelly sharp blades
    hestgraes - a knee-high grass with seeds of rich brown and white.
    havgraes - a sun-yellowed stalk of grass that grows high as a man’s chest.
    dodmandgraes - “Dead Man’s Grass”; folktales say this sickly white grass grows over unmarked graves only.
    vaamgaaer - the wild herds of black steeds of the plains of Nova Vaasa
    handelkonduktors - “Trade Guards”; “Caravan Guards”; mounted swords-for-hire in the cities of Nova Vaasa.
    "Himmelsk Naeve" - “Divine Fist”, a high-ranking Priest of the Church of the Lawgiver.
    "Vaasimark" - “The Vaasi Plateau”; the plains in which most of Nova Vaasa sprawls across.
    "Elendigighedmark" - “The Plains of Misery”; northwestern Nova Vaasa, due to their proximity to the Mountains of Misery.
    "Kesjermark" - “The King’s Plain”; the plains along the King’s Road.
    "Dommark" - “The Plain of Judegement”; the hottest region of Nova Vaasa’s plains.
    "Tordenmark" - “The Thundering Plain”; a plain where roaming herds of Nova Vassan horses are more common.
    "Dyrskov" - “The Beastwood”; a major forest in Nova Vaasa next to The Shadow Rift.
    "Graenseskov" - “The Borderwood”, a major forest in Nova Vaasa, spills over into Barovia.
    "Skyggeskov" - “The Shadowwood”, a major forest in Nova Vaasa, straddles border with Hazlan and is said to in many places straddle The Mists.
    "Storkaskete" - “The Black Caps”, Prince Othmar Bolshnik’s personal gaurd.
    "Slangtunge" - Prince Othmar’s network of spies and informants
    cyhmist - an alchemist seeking horse hoof powder to create adhesives

    image url upload
    Last edited by Bong Bellowsmoke; 11-10-2013 at 06:01 PM.
    The Red Condor shrieked at Sir Darvig in full wrath. Wings flapped storms of fire across the sky. "The Mage-God grows in power swifter than it appears to Paladine. This I know. A warning," Sargonnas told Darvigl, "for you to give to Paladine in your prayers."

    I will, Darvig uttered.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Mar 2006
    Wild, Wonderful, West Virginia!


    Linguistically unrelated to the tongues of other lands, Falkovnian is notable for its ability to evolve new terms and to convey complex nuances in a single word.

    Common Sayings, Adages, and Proverbs of Falkovnia
    “Sacrifice Formations” - vanguard of physically capable but dismally armed and armored prisoners forced into service by the army during wartime, often used for suicide charges or human shields for officers
    “Breed out the taint” - in reference to Vlad Drakov’s decree that any with even a taint of elven blood in their veins be enslaved or slain
    “The Granite Ramparts” - a euphemism for the cemetaries that dot the forests at Falkovnia’s northern border, a legacy of the Dead Man’s Campaign, Vlad Drakov’s failed invasions of Darkon.
    “The Silver Hawk”, “The Crimson Hawk” - invocations of the memories of the old gods by the superstitious
    “The Hawk” - nickname of Kingfurer Vlad Drakov
    “Breadbasket of the Core” - referring to Falkovnia’s climate conducive to extended and clement spring planting and fall harvesting seasons. Due to its size and rich soil, Falkovnian exports of grain serve the role of feeding many of the poor in other realms
    “Scythe’s Crescent” - the vast, waving golden fields of wheat of central Falkovnia
    “Spawn of the Lizard” - reference to the kobolds of the Crumbling Hills in southeastern Falkovnia
    “The Basilisk” - the notorious leader of the Spawn of the Lizard
    “The Hawk-Winged Butcher” - an old nickname of Vlad Drakov, known only to old timers, mostly
    “The Jewel of Falkovnia” - nickname for the city of Silbervas in southwest Falkovnia, overlooking Lake Kriegvogel fed by the Scharhag River)
    “Year of the Grey Wyrm” - in reference to the year 741 BC (about 40 years ago) when a leviathan resembling a monstrous gray, winged eel rose from Lake Kriegvogel, swallowing several boats and rampaging through the city of Silbervas

    Falkovnian Primer
    arayngeyn - enter
    abrieisan - leave
    yo - yes
    neyn - no
    hilf - help!
    zutsuruckziehein! - withdraw!
    soldat - soldier
    krieg - war
    imstechen - impaled
    falk - hawk
    zweifalk - two-headed hawk
    wursts - sausages
    lager - beer
    abfalduz - an addictive chewed herb from a vine that causes one to become shiftless and glassy-eyed, staining the teeth green.
    brandtoffizir - a notary who signs marriages into law, hence the marriage is formally recognized by the state (required).
    Talon - elite soldier of the Falkovnian army
    Kingfuhrer - king, proper title of political ruler Vlad Drakov
    Falkfuhrer - the proper title of a minister, such as Falkfuhrer Vigo Drakov, Minister of the Central Prison
    Stadtfuhrer - the proper title of the governor of a city
    Wachekapitan - the proper title of the captain of a city watch
    Silberkudexa - the oldest known written text with reference to Falkovnia
    Zeitsgraeng - name of the scriber of "The Silberkudexa"
    Silberkopf - the Drakov family’s summer palace in the southwestern city of Silbervas, Jewel of Falkovnia
    Weissfalkund - the wooded slopes of northwestern Falkovnia at the southern tip of The Sleeping Beast Mountains of bordering Lamordia
    Dunkelhertzwald - the thickly forested area in northern Falkovnia, an extension of The Forest of Shadows from neighboring Darkon.
    Seelewald - the ancient forest that encompasses Falkovnia’s heart, its interior never seen by human eyes.
    Nachtfliegen Woods - dark bat-infested woods northeast of the city of Silbervas in southwestern Falkovnia
    Bralgaoljanglangzeit Bridge - bridge-prison of jangling chains, the western gate of the city of Lekar
    "Vigilia Dimortia" - “Sentries of Death”. Also the name of a slowly expanding blighted forest along the southeastern side of Falkovnia as it approaches The Shadow Rift, Borca, and the northern tip of the Balinok Mountains.

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    The Red Condor shrieked at Sir Darvig in full wrath. Wings flapped storms of fire across the sky. "The Mage-God grows in power swifter than it appears to Paladine. This I know. A warning," Sargonnas told Darvigl, "for you to give to Paladine in your prayers."

    I will, Darvig uttered.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Mar 2006
    Wild, Wonderful, West Virginia!


    The Lamordian tongue is a flat, guttural tongue, patently unappealing to the ear. The alphabet has hundreds of sounds, including many dipthongs and slurs that would be considered two, three, or even four distinct letters in any other tongue. Lamordian grammar and style are a world apart from those of any other language. Its characteristics include euphemistic compound words, odd idiomatic expressions, and a needlessly complex system of tenses and genders. Lamordians are proud of their native tongue, insistently correcting travelers who make pronunciation or grammar errors.

    Common Sayings, Adages, and Proverbs of Lamordia
    “Deaf as a braceman” - referring to the hearing loss common to the second man helping to operate a two-man teamed blunderbuss or artillary installation
    “Peasant-sense” - referring to a belief in simple, pragmatic, rational, practicality. often used as witty repartee to counter or trump an over-analyzation or tyrade of muddled academic jargon

    Lamordian Primer
    goodendach - greetings; good day
    aufscheet - goodbye
    jo - yes
    na - no
    halpe! - help!
    aufriese! - go away
    oatst - physician
    fe’nunft - rationality; reason
    stiem - blizzard
    je’spanst - phantom; bogeyman
    schloss - castle
    stautshuss - town hall
    kjleen flocke - children; little snowflakes; little sister
    schlade - wooden sleigh
    autknosse - skis
    schneeschoo - snowshoes
    je’stuckt - culinary tradition of bland meat, heavy and tasteless potatoes, and hearty vegetables
    worscht - sausage with dumplings
    suarefleesch - pot roast marinated in vinegar
    schnad - fried veal cutlet
    kommkje - finely chopped trout, perch, or sole, with red cabbage
    suarekomst - salted and fermented cabbage
    kjnipse - a strong, dry liquor
    dakj fe’nunft - the smothering of reason
    Groot Tankjet Raut - The Great Clockwork; “time” in a philosophical sense
    feftelstoff - The Mists; viewed as an enigmatic substance binding the cosmos together
    easchtwolk - mercurial but everlasting pool of creation
    weltaulkugel - the cosmic orb
    schult - mayor
    schultebott - a town council
    stautsrote - member of the schultebott
    putsendoona - troublemaker; one who has no pride
    schepvangek - a captain of a unit of a Lamordian militaman ski patrol
    Riefa Spandwaw - The Cobweb River
    Riefa Schwoat - The Black River
    Riefa Riepje’buare - The Rimeborn River
    Maa Trua - The Sea of Sorrows
    Essenboch Somp - Heath of Fevered Tears
    Finja - The Finger, a collective term for string of islands off the coast of Lamordia in The Sea of Sorrows, including The Isle of Agony
    Schlaptia - The Sleeping Beast Mountains
    "Oatst Wonsennijch" - “The Mad Doctor” (Victor Mordenheim)
    "Insel Weedoag", or, "Wonhuss Deiwel" - "The Isle of Agony", or, the “Devil’s Domicile”

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    Last edited by Bong Bellowsmoke; 11-10-2013 at 06:59 PM.
    The Red Condor shrieked at Sir Darvig in full wrath. Wings flapped storms of fire across the sky. "The Mage-God grows in power swifter than it appears to Paladine. This I know. A warning," Sargonnas told Darvigl, "for you to give to Paladine in your prayers."

    I will, Darvig uttered.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Mar 2006
    Wild, Wonderful, West Virginia!


    Luktar is the native tongue of the Gundarakites, the realm annexed by Barovia during The Great Upheaval in Year 740 Barovian Calendar. Luktar sounds very similar to Balok, but has a slightly more sing-song cadence.

    Luktar Primer
    szervusz! - cheers
    viszlat - goodbye
    igen - yes
    nem - no
    segitseg! - help
    utazik messze! - go away!
    fellazad - to rebel
    zsarnok - king; tyrant
    szabadsag! - freedom!
    voishlacka - vampire

    how to use print screen
    Last edited by Bong Bellowsmoke; 11-10-2013 at 06:59 PM.
    The Red Condor shrieked at Sir Darvig in full wrath. Wings flapped storms of fire across the sky. "The Mage-God grows in power swifter than it appears to Paladine. This I know. A warning," Sargonnas told Darvigl, "for you to give to Paladine in your prayers."

    I will, Darvig uttered.


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