Not complete. Will be added to constantly. Also acts as Glossary and notes for the Gai'talar setting.
Gai'talar: The first known given to the world. An old name often used in academic circles. Equivalent to modern english using Gaia or Tera to refer to earth. Each Language group has its own word to refer to the world but this is considered the universal name. The Exact translation of the word is not fully know.
Te'( insert name ) : Te' is the prefix to indicate a star. The races of gai'talar knew stars were distant balls of incandescent gas for thousands of years. It is unsure who discovered this.
Te'naas: The name of the star Gai'talar oribits. This is the formal name for it. Many people just call it " The sun" in whatever language they speak.
The Blood star/ Blood moon: a hypothetical 3rd moon that people of certain magic affinities feel and see. Used as a symbol in old magic texts. Is invisible to most people so it is commonly regarded as a myth or is so irreverent to their lives that it is just not thought about. Mostly considered a magical phenomenon and not an actually celestial body.
Kurinessa/ the white moon: The closer of gai'talar's moons. Hesken,Ulvalter, and werewolves all howl at it sometimes. this frightens or annoys other races. It has the greatest effect on tides so it is considered very significant in Lutrondae culture.
The Black moon/ Char'tem'hjerl: the second of Gai'talar's moons orbit farther out and reflects little to no light. Many cultures regard it differently, the Valparet dislike it and consider it bad, the Lontracant use it is a symbol for for rest ( Lontracant inn signs all have a black moon on them ) and the Hesken and Fanock think it is a damned nuisance when star gazing as it just creates dark spots in the sky. Some culture refuse to give it a name so will just say " the black moon" or " the other moon " when talking about it.
Chir'tiris: The lost city that is the supposed homeland of the Skitritch. Many consider it to be a myth. Despite its relatively recent destruction ( 70-80 years ) the location was kept secret from most species. This was just seen as a eccentricity of the Skitritch by most races but it was a means of keeping pirates away from their main trade hub. The Lutrond kingdom knew where it was so they were the only pirates to ever plague the city. After the mysterious fall of the city all skitritch took an oath to never reveal its location to anyone even their descendants. The Lutrond kingdom did send several ships to loot the place after it reportedly went dark. None of those ships returned. A small scout vessel was sent months after ward and did return. After the report to the king all crew of that scout vessel were executed and the king declared publicly the city never existed. A fleet of mages guild ships did explore the city and save many documents and artworks from the city and opened a public museum about it. Despite this the public at large disbelieve in the city's existence. The actual location of the city is unknown and strange things seem to happen to people trying to find it again. They disappear or seem to lose memory of ever wanting to find it.
Lutrond: The coastal kingdom of the Lutrondae. This is considered the origin of their species.
The Wild Continent: An unexplored land that is the source of many legends.
Mages guild: A world spanning organization of magical learning and craftsmanship.
Artificer's guild: Wizards that specialize in building magic based technology but also does research into non magic based physics and chemistry.
Paerkehar: Largest and most prosperous of the fanock nations.
Earth: The name that humans gave to their origin.
Kelthgeka: A mythological continent that is said to drift through realities. Has influenced many cultures by becoming parts of sayings and legends. No one knows who named it but the name is the same in every culture. Is different from the Lost Continent but those that don't believe in Kelthgeka claim they are the same thing but with added mythical elements. A 700 year old account of a Valperet expedition that encountered it on accident is considered credible because they didn't go ashore as that was not their destination but a follow up expedition found nothing there. There is a tale of a skitritch who swam out to a hesken ship when they encountered a mysterious island that shouldn't have been where it was. He claimed to have been from a ship lost 20 years prior but says he only spent 3 months on the island. Refused to talk about what he saw on the island. He was taken to a hospital at the next port but released hours later and he disappeared before he could be questioned.
Thethen: The name given to Mysterious first civilization. It is known that this is not what they called themselves. The word derives from " Thet theo thehn" translated as " The ones that came before" Nothing is known of what they looked like. Most that is know about them is from left writings that conspicuously never describe them. No Art depicting them has ever been found. Every species has a theory that they are descendants of this race. Lifespan: Unknown.
Rapa-Putamlian: An as yet undiscovered ancient race of very technology advanced culture. They were contemporary with the Thethen but are completely unheard of by the Time of the other races. Their only impact is tales ancient tales of Flying cities though by modern times on Gai'talar these are considered either legend or belonging to the THethen. Some of their artifacts still exist but are considered of unknown origin or thought to be Thethen. A statute of one of the species has been obtained and taken to the Mages guild but no one knows what it is supposed to be ( Featured in story Old Memories New Chances). Rapa-Putamlians look like red Pandas to humans who remember the animals of earth.
Skitrtich: Rat like species that stand approximately 4.5-5 feet tall. They are agile, fast and suited to climbing. Have taken well to sea trade so they are most common in maritime settings. This name is what they call themselves in their own language. Other Races have different names for them and range in tone, from the Hesken calling them " Sketlans" an affectionate term meaning " little ones" to the Valparet calling them " Vermampt" or " Vermin ." Unlike other races they don't have a designated homeland but did at one time. Lifespan: 110 years
Human: Extra dimensional species that arrived mysteriously on Gai'talar. In most societies they are seen as outsiders and distrusted. A human language has become the trade language since human appeared all over the world suddenly so many populations learned this language and it became a useful way to communicate between the species, lacking sounds that were particular to a species or unpronounceable by any Race. ( You know what humans are like ) Life span: 100 years. Humans have higher instances of Lactose intolerance than other species. Humans brought with them knowledge of enzymes, intestinal bacteria and other advanced knowledge. This knowledge was recorded and passed around by the mages guild so the world at large think these are mage derived facts and disbelieve they were learned from humans. Ex: When humans came to Gai'talar viruses and bacteria where known as being pathogens that cause disease, but through information relayed by humans and experimentation it was confirmed that some bacteria are beneficial. After this information was passed down it was lumped into just being something wizards found out and the human origin is ignored or forgotten. Even many humans have no idea they brought vast knowledge to the world.
( Place holder ) Varulv /werewolves : Appear to be human but can transform into wolflike creatures. Manifested 1 generation after humans arrived on gai'talar. Origins are unknown but there are many theories concerning them. Each culture has a different name for them but the English or Swedish words is universally understood. The Swedish word was adopted so readily because of the wolf like Ulvalter already having Ulv in their name so many cultures already had half an idea of what it meant. The Ulvalter don't like this this as they take great steps to stay away from werewolves and don't like that world might be comparing the two. The ulvater instead call them Djarlman a portmanteau of Djarlendt ( hesken ) and human. Werewolves can tell each other by smell but other races can't even those that are known for their keen senses of smell. When in human form a werewolf will smell human to every other race. Their scent only becomes distinct when they are in beast form. This beast form is distinct enough for werewolves to no be mistaken for Ulvalter or Hesken. Some werewolves have a fully wolf form that looks like a gigantic wolf and these are sometimes if rarely mistaken for being normal wolves. Even species with weaker senses of smell can detect the difference from beast form werewolves and normal wolves. Many theories about the origin and purpose of werewolves exist but none have confirmation. It is know that the bite or scratch of a werewolf will not transform another despite what human legend says. All werewolves are born.
Ulvalter: Wolf like species related to the Hesken. Far more reclusive then the Hesken. They are also far more tempremental and aggressive but are slightly smaller and not as strong or have the same endurence as the Hesken. Lifespan: 250 years Ulvalter and Hesken are chemically inter-fertile so they can produce fertile offspring with eachother so they are technically one species but have enough physical and behavioral differences that they are considered distinct.
Hesken: The Common name dog like people that thrive in cold climates. They tend toward being large and stocky of build though all body shapes are present i the population. They are larger than many other of the races standing 6 to 6.5 feet tall. They are known for their friendliness and endurance. Their Friendliness has made them seem like pushovers in the past but they are considered the world's best fighters with a balance of speed, strength, cunning and their outstanding endurance has made them the strongest military force in the world but their disposition has been according to many the only thing that has stopped them from conquering the world. There were incidents in the past in which other races tried to take advantage of them through slavery and this ended very poorly for the slavers. Their skill at farming coupled with adaptation to cold climate means they tend to get fat but this is well accepted in their culture but this is sometimes viewed negatively by other societies. They make outstanding farmers and laborers but are also well represented in academic circles due to their dismissal of notions regarding class or species based caste stratification. This has also made them one of the more accepting societies. Certain maladies documented in other species never appear in hesken. Cholesterol build up in arteries and diabetes have never been observed in Hesken and they have a low incidence of heart disease. As the causes of these ilnesses are increasingly understood the lack of them in a race know for being on the fat side remains mysterious and is not understood even among Hesken medical professionals. They are closely related to the Ulvalter. Lifespan: 250 years
Lutrondae: The name of them sea otter like race that are most at home in coastal waters and kelp beds. They are the race most home at sea. The sea trade has put them in competition with the Skitritch and has led to a general sense of hostility between the two races. This isn't totally universal as some populations of the two learned to coexist. Their body proportians are somewhat different than the other races on gai'talar. Their legs are shorter and bodies slightly longer giving them a slight awkwardness on land but and advantage while swimming. Because of this they tend to live close to water and even wealthy individuals preffer living close to the ocean or among the docks. Have even been seen to build homes underwater using air pockets in living spaces. This makes having other species as visitors hard so it is less common outsiide mostly Lutrondae controlled territories Lifespan 190 years
Lontracant: River otter like cousin species to the Lutrondae. They Don't have the same cultural disdain for Skitritch that their sea dwelling relatives have. This lack of hostility is reciprocated by the skitritch. The Lontracant often act as intermediaries when dealing with Skitritch. Their body proportians are somewhat different than the other races on gai'talar. Their legs are shorter and bodies slightly longer giving them a slight awkwardness on land but and advantage while swimming. Tend to live close to water such as lakes or rivers or on boats. Boat decks are considered akin to the front lawn so a lontracant climbing up the side of your ship on comming on deck is considered socially acceptable to them while other races find it a tad invasive but rarely react violently because this behavior is well known and Lontracant tend to not be hostile so are often regarded with annoyance instead of suspicion when they do this. Lifespan 190 years
Valperet/ sionact: Fox like species that is known for wit and cunning. They are often considered the intellectuals of the world. They are at home in the realms of politics and academics. The Hesken are also an academically minded society so this has bred a sense of civil competition between the races, though some individuals ignore this attitude and work together in the pursuit of knowledge. Species has 2 language groups and thus have 2 common names for their species lifespan 230-250 years. The 2 cultures have different racial stereotypes about them and are still thought by some to be different species despite what the evidence shows. Sionact were freed from forced servitude to the Valperet 900 years ago by the hesken. this resulted in a persiting attitude that Sionact and hesken get along more easily than Hesken and Valperet. Some Valperet actively hold a grudge against the hesken while others openly criticize this grudge claiming it is pointless.
Alo: another foxlike species. This species is at home in the frozen polar regions and thus have had much contact with the Hesken. The societies are on friendly terms and often cooperate. Even though they maintain different languages the two cultures have considerable overlap in stories, legends and culture. Since they share territory Alo and hesken can usually undertand each other's language but usually do not attempt to speak the language of the other even though they are capable of doing so. An old unspoken code of respect states that each is to use their own language when speaking to each other so neither is forced to change behavior to accommodate the other. This doesn't always work out and if neither is capable of communicating they bother switch to English or one will speak the others language. Children of both species find attempts of the other to speak their language comical and may be the origin of the unspoken code to just use their own language but learn to understand the other. Lifespan 230-250 years
Drakkar: A legendary race. Their existence is unconfirmed and often contested. Life span unknown.
Fanock: Large eared desert dwelling fox race. lifespan 200 years. Odd occurrence regarding their life spans is they will Die the moment they reach the age of 200.5 years regardless of how healthy they are. Why this occurs is unknown but it is general accepted. The day they reach 200 they start setting their affairs in order, paying off all debts and trying to make amends with anyone they have wronged even if the day before reconciliation seemed impossible. Their attitudes can change completely and they will try to rectify any wrongs they committed even if they did not think it was wrong up until then. This 6 month period is called " the Clarity "
Baagh-raj: The tiger like people that live on the far side of the Fancok territories. Had less exposure to the rest of the world then the other races but that is not for a lack of curiosity. Until recently open hostilities between Baagh-raj and one of the 3 Fanock kingdoms kept them within their territory. Now that those hostilities have lessened the Baagh-raj want to start exploring the world and have the rest of the world visit them. They like other societies had an influx of humans 500 years ago but got comfortable with them much more quickly then the surrounding species. Strangely the language that those particular humans spoke normally wasn't much different then what the Baagh-raj spoke so they quickly reached mutual understanding. It also means the Baagh-raj never learned english as the trade language as other races had. Since the only other language they encountered was Fanock ( which Baagh-raj have trouble speaking ) they will have to learn other languages from visitors while visitors try to learn from them.
Trade language/ English: the most common language brought to Gai'talar by humans. It appeared in some many places in the world when humans came that mulitiple disparate races of Gai'talar learned it to comunicate with the new comers that it became convenient to speak to other races. The trade language has the benefit of not having sound that any known Gai'talar race is incapable of producing.
Arabic: Spoken in small pockets in Fanock territory
Farsi: Spoken in small pockets in Fanock territory
Hebrew: Spoken in small pockets in Fanock territory
Hindi: Spoken in Baagh-raj territory and oddly seems to be the same language as what the Baagh-raj already speak. Minor differences in word meaning do occur but it seems to be the same language.
Djarlendt: Considered guttural and barky by many of the other Gai'talar species this Language is the main language used by the hesken. There are multiple dialect some harsher some more musical but all mutually intelligible. ( Closest human equivalent would be Germanic or Scandinavian languages ) Most confusing aspect for non Djarlendt speakers has to do with " Emotive Conjugation" Alteration of a word to add an emotional aspect to it. This can result in single words conveying complete sentences or thoughts. Ex: Just saying the word "song" Conjugated in present temporal tense and Positive emotive tense would mean " This song is Lovely" while conjugating it in past temporal tense and negative emotive conjugation would be "That song was terrible." There are about 5 emotive tenses: Positive, Negative, Ambivalent, Apathetic and UnConjugated also called neutral. Some Dialects of Djarlendt drop emotive conjugation and just use vocabulary to express the emotion of the speaker. Djarlendt also has a Negated tense that can be applied to any word but whether or not it makes sense. In written form it is a little stroke above or through the word. The method for saying something is not the case is to only negate the word or concept in question, not every word in the sentence. The Djarlendt and Ulval writing system has both phonetic symbols and pictographic symbols that convey an entire concept. Djarlendt has gender in the language but it is only applied to something that has a personality. Applying gender to an inanimate object would be funny to Hesken and Ulvaltar. They would either think you thought the object had a mind or that you were taught the language wrongly as a joke.
High Djarlendt: the hesken language before many of the complicated rules were cut back or simplified. Is still mostly intelligible with modern Djarlendt as not all of the complicating rules were removed just lessened in use. Such rules would be the aforementioned emotive conjugation which remained and turning entire phrases into single aggregated words. Ex: "Glvecht'kleoucht" meaning something like " I promise terror in return" is made up of "Glvecht" word meaning "i pledge/i promise", " Kle " The negative emtoive conjugation "klet" which means 'in return/ or in consequence of/ reciprocated' when emotively conjugated as " Kle " it usually means ' in revenge ' and finally the word "eoucht" which translates to "Terror" In more modern hesken the phrase would have been more word as "Glvecht" ( i promise ) would be "Gle vecht" 'Gle' ( 'I' in neutral ) 'Vecht' ( promise ) *what ever consequence is promised* and 'Kle' ( Revenge or 'unpleasent in return' ) Most native Djarlendt speakers would understand the high form even if it takes longer to piece out or is cumbersome but new learners of the language would be confused by it and Djarlendt is confusing enough already. Most High Djarlendt is translated for other races directly into English as English is not only widely spoken and understood but also flexible enough to convey the odd things that can come from High Djarlendt when it jams too much meaning into dense packages.
Ulval: same language root as Djarlendt it shares the same sound palate and is still considered Mutually intelligible with Djarlendt though some words are different and speakers can not fully communicate. Also far less complex grammatically. A phonetiic shift in the past has led to distinct accents between the languages but it is never considered a big enough deal to for the speaker of either to try and change or correct it when learning the other.
Urullul: The name for the form of howling communication that is instinctively used and understood by Hesken,Ulvalter, and werewolves, even untrained individuals of these races can comprehend it somewhat. It lacks some features of normal spoken languages and can be rather vague and unspecific in it's pure form so other languages are sometimes woven into it for specificity. One extra feature is built in distance counting and number of times it has been relayed. If a canid individual hears it they know instinctively how far away it is and if they relay it will add the distance and number of times relayed to the howl. Used to be used for pack hunting before civilization. The non canid races find this language creepy and some cities discourage it's use. ( Yes this is a Ban Awoo reference )
Vulpine Race languages:
Valperet: ( Pronounced Val-PE-ray ) is a language spoken by the Valperet culture. The Valperet and the Sionact are the same species but they are different cultural and ethnic groups so they have different languages. Nasal in pronunciation but is most suited to the size nasal cavity of the Valperet. it is considered unusual when other species try to speak it as they have different nasal cavities and thus sound different no matter how much practice they have in speaking it.
Ogharm: Pronounced ( Owarm ) is the language used by the Sionact Ethnic group. Is considered a lovely in not high class language. Contains saying that refrence entire stories and are often incomprehensible unless you were raise in the culture. Example: saying " I left it in Chimmra " would mean that they intentionally stopped paying attention to something and it goes missing but they didn't actively throw it away. The meaning of this is there was a now considered mythical community called Chimmra which existed off things people didn't want anymore so people would leave things for them to Take. It has now come to mean you didn't want to deal with something anymore and it went missing or became not your problem. Another example is "Tummrin used to know." Which means no one knows and something is so old there is no way of finding out what it means. Absolutely befitting the phrase no one knows who Tummrin is or where, when or how the saying came into being.
other examples " Even Gwellin liked tits" meaning you can be into more than one thing. This saying came from a Bishop who wrote hymns and pious poetry but also drew porn. This saying has been adopted into almost every language but it started as a sionact saying.
Lellia'al: The language spoken by the Alo. This language is considered musical and sweet sounding by most races of Gai'talar. When spoken harshly or aggressively that musicality remains but can become disconcerting. Writing system is mixed phonetic and pictographic similar to Djarlendt. The pictographs are the same between Lellia'al and Djarlendt while the phonetic alphabets are different.
Fanock: The Language of the large eared desert dwelling fox people. Oddly similar in sound to middle eastern languages from earth though no common roots exist. An English speaker may mistake it for an earth language of the middle east but a fanock speaker would not be able to understand any earth language of the middle east were they to hear them. This Does not preclude them Learning such languages. Arabic, Farsi and Hebrew as well as English came through with the Humans that appeared in Fanock territories. Fanock is written vertically and can be read in either direction leading to a type of poetry that changes its meaning depending on the direction it is read. For normal use though a 4 sided diamond marks the start of a sentence and a cube the end.
Chir'kikkimissi : A chittering and squeaky language used by the Skit'ritch. This language is often spoken very quickly and it tone sensitive. This language is notable for being difficult for other species to produce. For this reason all Skit'ritch also grow up with the trade language so they are able to communicate outside their species. Chir'kikkimissi while hard to speak is not considered overly hard to read when printed as their lettering system is phonetic and grammar is straightforward. There exists a Chir'kikkimissi cursive that is very hard to read as letters become less distinct and it is written very small. This is rarely used and when it is used it is more often done to irritate someone than it is for any other purpose. Not even Affluent skitritch commonly write in it. When keeping journals or diaries that are for private use and the writer wants to make causal perusal harder they use the cursive form of the language. This can lead to the writer not being able to read their own writing though.
Lontremic: This is the language used by the Lutrondae and Lontracant. also somewhat squeaky. The two cultures have different idioms so sometimes idiomatic phrases are avoid when speaking between species. Both species use the trade language. Written form looks similar to cuneiform of earth as a reasult of how it is written. Lontrimic is written on wax or clay with a special stylus. If written on clay it is dried and fired to and glazed to make it permanent. If Written on paper or other mediums they are treated with wax or lard in a special waterproofing technique that makes durable water proof books that withstand time and wear very well but are rather flammable. Both races that use this language tend to put Libraries under water.
Unity Signs: A type of non verbal sign language inspired by American Sign language meant to be a full and meaningful method of non verbal communication. Specifically crafted to not use any features any present race of gai'talar lacks. So movable ears and tails are not needed but sometimes used for emphasis if the user has them. The depth of this language is meant to make up for all the historical short falls of the Ancient sign language. Is sometimes mistaken for Casting signs.
American Sign language: A sign language brought from earth and preserved by the mage's guild. Still used among some humans.
Alchemist/ chemist sigils: While not a true language there exists a set of universally understood symbols for elements and chemical compounds. Because of the Mage's and Artificer's guild these symbols are standardized and well understood by anyone who works with chemicals. Instead of having 2 letter symbols for chemical elements that are derived from an old name for them instead this language comes up with a symbol that is understood throughout time and culture to denote an element. The Source for these symbols can range widly from just using the Hesken Pictograph for Iron to a newly made up symbol for a more recently discovered element. Some Symbols are taking from human chemistry books that came through with the humans when they arrived and some are from magical texts that are so old no one knows their origin. Each culture will have different names for the elements but through education have a unified set of symbols for them allowing scientists to communicate. Human Periodic tables are also used because humans discovered or synthesized some elements before their world was lost. Periodic tables from Gai'talar differ in that there are elements that are completely magical in nature and are distinguished from normal mundane chemicals. There is also a Symbol that means, "magically charged" that can be added to a normal element to denote a chemical or element that has been altered by magic.
Unknown origin languages:
Viatorem: A language who's origins were lost to time but it is still spoken and taught in academic settings. Oddly enough some human words seem to be related to it even though it far predates humanity's arrival on Gai'talar
Kzo'fck: An ancient language used primarily in ancient magical texts dealing with the outer realms of reality. Texts range from summoning outer realm creatures to banishing them and healing afflictions caused by them. Kzo'fck is not a widely used or studied language even in magical institutions. Many don't know it exists.
Flute speaking: A musical code used for communication that can relay basic information and sentiments. Despite it's name it can be done on almost any musical instrument. Humans can even use this language well by whistling. Messages can be hidden in songs or melodies or the messages can be played plain as day.
Ancient 'universal' sign language: A simple and very limited form of sign language used to communicate between species for thousands of years. Its simplicity and lack of depth meant that it was only of limited use. The signs were sufficient for simple commerce. One could say " want 4 tons iron " but could not be used to ask if someone is ok or if they need help. This weakness meant it was quickly abandoned when English/ The trad language came along as it allowed for connection beyond commerce and for more complex dealings with in it.
Dream speak: A seemingly coherent language that people speak in their sleep. Has been observed in every species all over the world. Even when compiled and words separated out no one knows what these words mean or how the language is structured. People that speak or sing in this never remember what they were saying and more often then not don't remember doing it. Those that can recall 100% of the words they spoke while dreaming don't know what they mean.
Dialect: A regional variation of a language. Each language has some differences that accumulate due to influences present in the area the speaker grows up in.
A few Examples of this is the Lontrimic dialects used by the Lutrondae and the Lontracant are different enough that certain idioms don't carry over into the other dialect or that the Ulvaltar language and Djarlendt have sound shifts and slightly different grammar. The Trade language of English will have different dialects and you can almost always tell someone's upbringing from how they speak english. The seafaring or dockside dialects have far more contractions than Mercantile or Scholarly English. Also Djarlendt itself has different dialects for normal speech and ritual use. People who sing Hesken funeral songs soften their consents taking a lot of the edge off the language. Some languages will even have simpler grammar structures made for new learners. Some languges strangely don't build up dialectic differences. Sionact is one of these, no matter the location or influences around them the sionact language doesn't change that much, instead Sionact speakers learn the other language of their neighbors and speak that while their own language remains unchanged. Valparet is similar but strict schooling and measures are put in place to keep Valparet from splitting into dialects.
Another mechanism for dialects is that races learning another language will add features of their own language to the one they are learning. Examples: Skitritch children when they are learning english will speak really quickly, Hesken children will start compounding words that shouldn't be and Valparet will be very nasal even with languages that don't call for it.
CONCEPTS OF MAGIC
Affinity ( Magic ) : A talent or predisposition toward a specific type of magic. That type of magic will come more naturally to the caster.
Bio-thaumaturgy: The type of magic that specializes in altering the physical body. Healing magic as well as magically inflicting maladies fall under this type. Like all others this type of magic is neither good or evil it depends on how it is used but is often seen as holy.
Magitech: A blend of magic and technology or technology powered by magic. A Boiler the derives its heat from magic instead of coal is still considered magitech by most people.
Ritual magic: Magic that is performed by a ritual such recitation of words, writing of runes or hand gestures. This is akin to a magical computer program that is activated to make a certain effect. They take less mental manipulation of magical energy and are used for to cast things more difficult than the cast is usually able to do. These were made by many ancient cultures and so one language or writing system is employed to use them but they can only be performed in the language they are set in. Ex: A Lontracant ritual can not be performed in any other language than Lontracant. The Art of creating and crafting Rituals is closely guarded and is not an easy feat. Sometime Invokes outer beings for a purpose.
Casting signs: Finger or hand movements used in ritual magic, these are akin to keystrokes at a computer to enter commands. People who learn these casting signs can tell what a caster is trying to do even if they have no magical talents.
Outer Beings: Creatures from extra or outer planes of reality. Range from the utterly vicious to the slightly quirky. Are recognized as a source of power by many cults.
Realms: The catch all term for the different but connected worlds or planes that are accessible through magic.
Shadow Realm/ the place echoes: This is a mirror of what happens in the physical world, a shadow of it, this is where most but not all ghost would reside. Is neither good nor evil in nature though many vile things reside there. Also considered the dream world but this is contested.
Astral realm/ ethereaum: The realm that houses a vast array of places manifest. Can also be mirrors of the physical realm but are connected to greater vastness of things. It is theorized that this is where souls go after death unless something causes them to go elsewhere.
Le Verld/ physical world/ Mundus, Miorgar : The physical world were laws of physics are consistent and life arises. Also just called Gai'talar
Intent magic: This is a type of magic performed entirely through thought and will power and the manipulation of energies through thought and focus. Someone with an affinity will perform that magic type easily through intent even if they have difficulty with other types of magic. This requires no speaking or movements though many casters will move as it help focus their intent. The moments are simple gestures and not complicated affairs such as ritual magic calls for.
Heritage memory: A rare magical manifestation of remembering all the history, stories or language of a culture. This culture is usually but not always that of the person who it manifests in. These are memories of how events actually occurred and not always how history records them so sometimes these individuals are seen as being very inconvenient.
Artificer: Someone who specializes in imbuing magic into devices and technology. Also talented in crafting.
Holy magic/ Sacred flame: Magic sourced from the creator of the universe and Deity of all Gai'talar's religions. Has grown more an more rare.
Speaker Of the Sacred Flame: Sense 1: This is an extremely rare manifestation in which the creator of the universe can speak directly through someone or tell them to do things. The Speaker can even be completely taken over to perform a task. They usually don't remember this task and awaken after feeling no ill effects from whatever they were doing even if they were up all night doing intense physical labor they do not feel tired or sore the next day and think they just fell asleep. This state can last a long time. One of the most well known Speakers of the flame created an orphanage and ran it for 4 years before waking up in an unfamiliar city in a strange country and not remembering what had happened. Skills he picked up such as cooking and medicine mysteriously remained. Often called True speakers to differentiate from the title.
Speaker of the Sacred flame Sense 2: A title give to priests who show holy affinity or have attained very high rank. Some churches such as the Alo and the Hesken will never bestow this as a title. Other titles are used in its stead and the term is reserved for sense 1 individuals.
Totem animal: An ik'sophant species that is held sacred to an individual. It is not required that the totem animal be the progenitor species of the individual. A Skit'ritch may have a wolf as a totem animal. Totem animals act as magical scouts or guides for Spirit magic practitioners.
Spirit singers/ Soul song: A mysterious type of magic that is not as well understood as other practices. Sometimes the song doesn't come from a person, it can come from a place or object. Can manifest in actual sound ( Vibration of air molecules ) and sometimes it manifests purely inside someone's head and can not be reordered or perceived through methods of sound recording. ( Gai'talar has simple sound recording and playback technology like Phonographs ) A milder manifestation of the later form can come in vague feelings. The are Called "memories of the Melody" and it has become a common turn of phrase to express a vague emotion that is not explainable. These can be positive and negative.
Spirit Singers can also influence people with song though this is not full control. Examples range from whipping soldiers up to fight to calming them down and reminding them not to get too carried away. Some Spirit singers disguise themselves as regular Bards and play at pubs to make random people feel better. They Most openly perform at funerals and can help give closure to the grieving. People who specialize in this are called 'grief singers' or 'chanters of Lament' and are the most accepted form of spirit singers. Some villages also have dedicated Spirit singers who's job it is to keep certain types of supernatural entities at bay or to move on.
Soul trap: A magical device that holds the soul or ghost of a being. Used in trapping dangerous spirits by ghost hunters. Soul Traps can also be made of living beings. Some magic users have soul traps worked into their own flesh and use it to hold someone's soul for greater power or because they are not ready for that person to die. Most magically inclined people can see the state of the soul trapped and so determining if they are holding a person that is not ready to move on or if they are holding a soul against its will is a simple matter. The Make of a soul trap can also tip off people as to its intent. When made one way it allows a soul to stay there for as long as it wants but nothing stops the soul from leaving. When made another way it traps the soul of the person but is delicate and can be broken by and outside force.
Reborn: A soul that has been born into a new body. They can usually remember their past lives or learn to remember them. Memories are no guarantee that you are a reborn and not everyone who thinks they are actually are. Sometimes people with mental illnesses think they are reborn. There are methods of checking but not everyone is comfortable with them. The most well know and Documented Reborn was an ancient Hesken wizard king who was born again 5 thousand years later into a poor Sionact household and retained his memories and powers but never tried to amass power and regain his position because he was happier with the new family. He died of old age with a large family and it is thought that his soul passed on, though some claim he is hanging around as a ghost watching over the surviving members of the family.
Focus: See Focus in significant objects section.
concepts of culture:
Religion: "Church of the Sacred Flame" The main religion of Gai'talar. Every disparate culture recognizes The Sacred Flame somewhere in their past and so it is considered the universal constant factor in Religion. The exact Nature of the Sacred flame is sometimes up to debate but most recognize it has an intention and is beneficent. Sometimes the Sacred flame picks agents to perform specific tasks in the world. ( See: speaker of the Sacred flame in magic concepts section. ) Differences have built up between the cultures regarding certain particulars of Doctrine due to each culture shaping their particular church through their saints and through their own cultural lens. Examples of this range from the Valperet thinking that each species has their own afterlife to the Lutrondae and Lontracant thinking their is a realm of punishment for wrong doers called " The cold deep." Some Sects have theological elements that others don't have and some sects are Species restricted or treat parishioners from other species and secondary. Unsurprisingly the Hesken founded the most egalitarian denomination with each race having equal standing and the belief in a unified afterlife. Their notions of morality don't flow from punishment or command so they incorporated a code of ethics separate from their sacred writings and have even called into question the conduct of their own saints. If they think a saint had a flaw they openly admit it while in many other denominations you are dissuaded from doing this. The Arrival of humans has upset some Denominations of the church of the Sacred Flame as they are outsiders from another universe so religious based prejudice is an issue. Humanity has made their own small branch of the Church of the sacred flame and incorporated elements of earth religions into it. Sometimes their is tension and disagreements between the establishment church and folk practitioners who have slightly different customs.
Saint: Saints are People known for their devotion to their religion On Gai'talar this term is preserved for people who do great things in the name of The Sacred Flame/ The light. Each species has a Cannon or set of Saints who did great things in their region usually before the cultures started mixing. Each Species Mostly learns about their own saints or the saints revered in the area they live. Not All people recognized as saints are loved by the Establishment of the Church.
EX: Some Saints like Saint Gerund Advocated the celebration of love in all forms even between other thinking species, which at the time was considered extremely controversial. Gerund Stated that Friendship, comradery and even love should not be restricted by species only by Consent. At the time of this writing friendships between species were considered as outlandish as Romances Between them. Saint Gerund was also know for his extreme brutality on the field of battle that contrasted with his preaching of kindness and caring in society. The Hesken However understand his Credo to mean " Be gentle with all during peacetime, but if someone declares you an enemy destroy them." Saint Gerund's species is in debate as He is revered by Hesken but all the writings on history stated he was Not a Hesken but never say what he was. No descriptions exist of Saint Gerund and when questioned firmly there is no proof that Gerund was male as is presumed. While Gerund's status as a saint is not in question very few churches mention him in sermons. While the Recent, Saint Vaarouge the fearless is Widely Lauded despite having fewer holy deeds and no writing at all to his name in comparison to Gerund.
Paladins: Knight priests in service of the church, despite multiple Denominations of the church existing their is only one Holy order of knights and they come from all species and are not beholden to any one sect. This has caused some tensions as each denomination tries to sway the Leaders of this holy army. This Army used to be part of the mage's guild, and formed when holy magic users congregated to share teachings and ideas and slowly became their own entity. Their ideology is more focused on service and less on influence so they often are rather uninvolved in politics. They gain most of their funds from the establishment churches who support them out of tradition and in hopes of gaining their favor.
Ik'sophant / NullSapiens: The term for any non saipeint animal. These animals are the non thinking base type and often considered the forerunners of the intelligent races. Each race has a corresponding Ik'sophant species that they hold dear such as Lutrondae being fond of normal sea-otters or the Alo holding Arctic foxes in high esteem in their culture. Ulvalter sometimes run with packs of wild wolves. Each culture has different relation to their Ik'sophant species: Lutrondae would be gravely insulted if you try to sell them otter pelts: Ulvalter will defend wolves as their own kin, Valperet don't think much about redfoxes at all and the Skit'ritch find rats to be little more than a nuisance. The terms are derived from the Viatorem language Nullsapiens meaning zero thought and ik'sophant from Sophant meaning thinking or wise being but negated by ik' which means not in the most widely used hesken language.
Ranihm/ ne'mode/ Race caste : The Race based caste system which some societies adhere to. This dictates that certain races are destined to fulfill certain rolls. Ex: Because of quick wit and nimble tongue Valperet are considered perfect for intellectual, administrative and mercantile rolls and are dissuaded from labour intensive jobs. Hesken with their amazing endurance and strength are considered good farmers, labourers and soldiers. Lutrondae and Skit'rtich are considered good sailors and fisherman, the downside to this system is that negative stereotypes occur such as Skit'ritch being considered sneaky and theiving since they are small and quiet, Valperet being greedy cheats who trick people into bad deals, or that Hesken are only good for dumb labour and combat. These stereotypes are often racially motivated and not necessarily accurate. The Skit'ritch don't steal at any higher rates then other species, but be better at it and Hesken of all class brackets are far more likely to be literate than other races. Valperet are no more likely to cheat than any other race but their salesmanship skills make them an easy target for accusations. Humans fall outside this hierarchy and this is another for of prejudice that they face.
Fra Velk: Anyone who actively rejects the Race Caste. This is consider a political label in most countries. It means Free person in Djarlendt. The term used to be used when slaves were set free by hesken warriors. Hesken culture has a deep abhorrence of slavery as Hesken were considered the best slaves if they could be controlled. This term is loaded with historical baggage in some countries and is well loved in others.
UlvalRasa: English equivalent of Ulvalrasa is " Going Berserk " This is the violent rage state that Ulvalter and hesken can enter when in combat or cornered. It is considered extremely Distressing to witness a hesken enter it as it is so unlike their usual gentle and friendly behavior. Also since hesken are stronger then Ulvalter, Hesken can do far more damage. This state can be triggered at will and controlled if the individual is trained properly. In rare cases other species can enter this state through training or magic.
VelkSjel ( Velk Syel )/ populame: Literally people soul. This concept is that of your cultural identity but is the term is meant as holding pride in your culture without denigrating the culture of another. It is a personal expression of your culture that you do not impose on others or allow others to impose upon you. Since the concept is so heavily centered on personal expression any harm you do to another person even if it is an expression of your culture is not considered VelkSjel. This concept was thought up by many species but the Valperet and Hesken words are the most popular. Not every society holds this ideal.
Joik/yoik, Evocation with the voice, shishral, Gra'jul: A type of singing that is the direct equivalent to Joiking as Practiced by the Sami people from earth. " As an art form, each joik is meant to reflect or evoke a person, animal, or place. " Wikipedia. Several Gai'talar cultures have this type of singing. Is often thought to be the origin of the magical practice of spirit singing or Vice versa. Among the Alo and the Fannock it is called: Shishral but no one knows why they use the same word as both languages had the term long before they had cultural contact. Hesken and Ulvaltar call it Gra'jul. Humans or other english speakers use the Sami term joik/yoik or call it "Evocation with the voice" The Lontracant species has this style of singing but has no special word for it. Sometimes people are unable to tell if someone is trying to spirit sing or are just Yoiking. Sometimes the Urullul is lumped into this type of singing but Hesken and Ulvaltar consider them to be completely different things. This has led to some places outlawing this type of singing because they mistakenly associate it with the Urullul which most species find disturbing.
Stutzel: A type of wrestling that is meant to be playful and fun to watch as well as a martial sport. Mostly done in small areas like pubs or backyards the two contestants hold a stick behind their back and push against each other with their chests, stomachs or shoulders and try to knock the other out of the ring. Humans often call it "Belly Bucking" because a similar sport existed on earth by that name. Stutzel is not confined to one species or gender. It is Hesken in origin but had spread to other cultures pre human contact so each culture may have their own rules for it.
Berfock: A Hesken sport that is akin to Sumo wrestling. Goal is to get opponent out of the ring or onto the ground. Can be achieved through brute strength or wit or a combination of the two.
Punchies/ spofist: Playful fist fighting. Can become rather rough. Almost every culture has sport by the same name. Spofist was one of the few pre human contact words or concepts that spread and was understood by the whole world. There are very few rules. The goal is to just playfully fight not knock the other person out or injure them. When initiating this game it is supposed to be clear this is play-fighting. That is the number one rule. Sometimes people use this as a prelude to mating or dating but this is not universal, there is no expectation that any Spofist match will turn romantic.
Thumb Wrestling: A game from earth in which you clasp hands and try to pin the other person's thumb with your own. Considered a children's game by humans it has become popular with bored sailors in dockside pubs.
Arm wrestling: While it existed on earth it also existed on Gai'talar since history began. Unlike Spofist there was no universal word to describe it. Is suprisingly popular with Hesken women as it is a strength based game they can still play while pregnant. ( Pregnancy is the few universal bars to women participating in sports on Gai'talar and games that can be played while pregnant are considered life savers to female sportsmen. )
Competitive net mending: While not quite a formal sport bored fishermen will race each other on how fast they can mend nets. People actually watch them and beyond all reason it is growing in popularity as a spectator sport.
Mace ball/ kruck co: A Hesken game in which clubs or maces are used to hit a a ball or stone back and forth. It is like a mixture of tennis and baseball. Started out as a game for soldiers it became popular as a way to train hand eye coordination.
Archery: Bow and arrow used competitively
Spear throwing: Spears thrown competitively, usually uses hunting or fishing style spears and not combat spears. Not Popular in cities due to lack of space.
Fencing: Competitive sword fighting. Name is used for sport fighting with every type of sword.
Brainoux/ zikrikik: A form of competitive poetry. The Valparet and Skitritch both came up with it independently of each other. While not Usually considered a sport it is a popular pass time that can draw big crowds. Is somewhat equivalent to a Rap Battle.
Parkour/ chetzenketch: A discipline using the enviroment or surroundings to move swiftly through a space. The only difference between Parkour from earth and the skitritch idea of chetzenketch is that chetzenketch has combat maneuvers and training built into it. Alo, sionact/valparet and Skitritch are considered well suited to this discipline due to their light weight and agility. Hesken on the other hand are not light in weight but have the agility to perform it but must be more careful in doing so as they are more likely to damage the environment they are trying to traverse. Hesken must train more to be accomplished at it. Humans also have to train for it and are not considered as naturally gifted at it. chetzenketch is considered a standard part of skitritch childhood as it prepares them for life at sea and for the foibles of skitritch architecture where jumping roof to roof is considered normal and little rope to walk or climb across are considered normal.
Fomendus: A Lutrondae game played under water in which a stone must be carried to a goal. Rules are like underwater football played in 3 dimensions. Only the otter like races play this game.
Gates: Magical gateways constucted by a long gone race. These are of various types and sizes and levels of complexity. These are usually found in Thethen ruins and are thought to have been constructed by the Thethen. No one living on gai'talar know how to work them, some organizations try to activate them while others figure out how to break or deactivate them.
Belt knife: Many Gai'talar cultures have a tradition of carrying belt knives. The knives can differ greatly due to culture and function. These knife types have many earth equivalents. In some town and cities Belt knives and Fire arms are restricted.
The Hesken prefer heavy bladed work knives similar to a Seax or Bowie knife. Men and women carry the same types. A male and female owned knife have little to no distinction. These knives are meant to serve both as tool and as weapon in emergencies. These can be passed down in families but are usually made by the owner in late childhood. Both boys and girls make their own blades as Hesken have a pretty egalitarian attitude. Non Hesken living in Hesken controlled areas are also allowed to make them as a right of passage.
The Alo carry smaller work knives similar to a Finnish Puuko men and women carry slightly different types differing mainly in decoration.
Fanock don't carry a standard type but most if not all carry some type of knife. Usually suited to whatever they wish to use it for.
Skit'ritch sailors all carry short bladed knives suited to maritime work. Families of Sailors will also carry them as a reminder of their family members at sea. A widow or widower will carry their own knife and that of their spouse should the knife be recovered. If both parents are lost at sea then the remaining children will inherit them if they are old enough to have knives.
Guns: Firearms have become more developed and wide spread. Often augmented with magic.
Stunners:Usually An electron thrower that can stun or numb the muscles of a target. though other methods of non lethal firearms are also called stunners.
Thermal ( weapon ) : A weapon that uses concentrated beams of heat. Comes in many sizes from hand held pistols to ship mounted cannons. Do no damage other than heat, if the target is insulated from extreme heat then the weapon has no effect.
Magical Focus: There are many tools used to focus and amplify magical energies. Allows for more efficient use of energy but not all magic users need them. Almost any object can becoeme one if properly modified. Here are a few.
Rod: A wood or metal rod that has been augmented to serve as a magical focus. Is favored by people who expect to have to fight using magic. It is Sturdy enough to be used as a striking or blocking implement.
Orb: A magical ball or Orb ( though it can be other shapes like a pyramid ) that levitates and moves with the users will. It can emit magical attacks and effects from it leaving the user to do something else with their hands. These are not as popular because of the mental effort and constant focus needed to control it. The benefits of it are the user can see through it and distance is pretty meaningless to orbs. They are usually strong enough that they are are near impossible to break. A full martial art focused around using an orb as a offensive and defensive tool in place of fists. The draw back is that some mages can send haptic feed back through the link connecting the user.
Wand: The classical magic wand. Is light and maneuverable but is the most fragile option so it is not as popular outside strictly academic institutions.
Imbued Knife: A knife that has been modified to channel and amplify magic. Is useful because it is both a tool for physical work and magical work.
Sword: Some mage knights imbue their swords to act as focuses so they can switch seamlessly between casting and swordplay. They are falling in popularity but are still around.
Staff: The traditional and oldest form of magical focus. Is versatile in that it can be used as a weapon, a tool and as a magic focus.
Cane: similar to a rod but made to act as a walking implement when not used in magic. Can and rod fighting techniques are a little different.
Ring: A ring used as a magical focus. Is not usual particularly powerful but is portable and concealable.
Knuckles: Bras knuckles modified to be magical focus. these are favored for fighters who mix magic into fist based martial arts.
Gauntlet/glove : A glove or armored gauntlet modified to be a magical focus. These are not as popular as they are harder to make them light. It take an expert artificer to make a simple pair of leather gloves act as a focus.