Path to The North
All characters start with two languages: common and a regional or racial language such as Elven or Dwarven. The regional tongue is Chondathan, as indicated below. Other available human languages are below. Additionally, there are the racial tongues such as Elven, dwarven and special tongues such as draconic, celestial and infernal.
The human and humanoid languages of Faerun make use of six sets of symbols for writing: Thorass, a human symbology; Espruar, a script invented by the elves; Dethek, runes created by the dwarves;
Draconic, the alphabet of dragons; Celestial, imported long ago through contact with good folk from other planes; and Infernal, imported through those outsiders of a fiendish bent. A scribe whose name is lost to history invented the set of symbols that make up the Thorass alphabet. Thorass is the direct ancestor of today’s Common tongue as a spoken language. Though no one speaks Thorass anymore, its alphabet survives as the alphabet of Common and many other tongues.
Espruar is the moon elven alphabet. It was adopted by sun elves, drow, and the other elven peoples thousands of years ago. Its beautiful weaving script flows over jewelry, monuments, and magic items.
Dethek is the dwarven runic script. Dwarves seldom write on that which can perish easily. They inscribe runes on metal sheets or carve in stone. The lines in all Dethek characters are straight to facilitate their being carved in stone. Aside from spaces between words and stashes between sentences, punctuation is ignored. If any part of the script is painted for contrast or emphasis, names of beings and places are picked out in red while the rest of the text is colored black or left as unadorned grooves.
The three remaining scripts, Draconic, Celestial, and Infernal, are beautiful yet alien, since they were designed to serve the needs of beings with thought patterns very different from those of humanoids. However, humans with ancient and strong cultural ties to dragons (and their magic) or beings from far-off planes have occasionally adapted them to transcribe human tongues in addition to the languages they originally served.
Druids also know Druidic in addition to their other languages.
|Regional Language||Spoken in . . .||Alphabet|
|Chondathan||Amn, Chondath, Cormyr, the
Dalelands, the Dragon Coast, the
civilized North, Sembia, the Silver
Marches, the Sword Coast, Tethyr,
Waterdeep, the Western Heartlands,
the Vilhon Reach
|Common||Everywhere on Faerun’s
surface (trade language)
|Damaran||Damara, the Great Dale, Impiltur,
the Moonsea, Narfell, Thesk,
Vaasa, the Vast
|Durpari||Durpar, Estagund, Var, Veldorn||Thorass|
|Illuskan||Luskan, Mintarn, the Moonshaes,
the Savage North (uncivilized
areas), Ruathym, the Uthgardt
|Midani||Zakhara, the Bedine||Thorass|
|Mulhorandi||Mulhorand, Murghom, Semphar||Celestial|
|Serusan||Inner Sea (aquatic trade language)||Aquan|
|Shaaran||Lake of Steam, Lapaliiya, Sespech,
|Tashalan||Black Jungle, Mhair Jungle,
Samarach, Tashalar, Thindol
|Undercommon||Underdark (trade language)||Espruar|
*refers to a region of legend that may, or may not, actually exist