An Introduction to the Culture Behind the Linguistics of Ornthas: Ornthasian Scholar, 996 FC
Language, a timeless connection between the sentient races capable of accomplishing many things. Language is immortal yet it is ever changing, a diverging sequence of trees decked to the brim with variance and special traits indicating culture and history. Henceforth lies my pride and joy, my life's work of the study of Ornthasian culture through the development of it's languages.
Many scholars have dedicated their lives to reconstructing the original vernacular language of the Arcosian Empire, of which we refer to today as Ornthan. A language lost to the god war, it was once widely spoken by all across the arcosian empire, unifying the public. With a widespread, common language among all, there was less attention toward differences in race and wealth, all were united. However, the god war occurred and all written records had been utterly destroyed. As the nemertingi rescued civilization, many had held onto the language, however through passage to the end and back, with the birth of new generations and the lack of written records and formal education, the language had deviated from it's natural state.
Upon the passage of time through half a millennia, the language had developed into Common Ornthasian, with many varied dialects across the lands. The lack of proper education created a terrible language gap among the citizens of ornthas, forging issues in communication across trade and politics. At this point was when the greatest linguistic scholars of the time had united to create a new lingua franca for the realms of Ornthas. A language that would defy the language barrier and create greater potential for trade and increasing the reach of politics. This language is now known as Ornthox, spoken across Ornthas by the wealthy and the powerful, while commoners remain without the blessing of education and still speak their common tongue.
With the introduction of the dwarves in the 600s FC to Erybis, their vernacular language had been oddly similar to the way scholars envisioned Ornthan to sound, with some slight and some major forms of deviance, primarily in pronunciation and new vocabularies. Scholars, unlike myself, have dedicated their lives to using the dwarven language to understand the history of the dwarves. "They sound like us, give or take a few phonetics... where do they come from?" Dwarven history may be further linked to the Ornthasians beyond the founding of Erybis, although all is currently speculation as we have no written records of Ornthan and its original speakers. The dwarven language had been spoken for nearly half a century in Erybis, right uptown from River's End, the human settlement, prior to the annexation of Erybis into Ornthas. The two languages were used in close proximity, leading to many conversations between the two for a couple of generations. By the time of the annexation of Erybis, the newer generations of both humans and dwarves had spoken a sort of hybrid language, known as Erybian Ornthasian, or just Erybian for short.
Erybian had become another language of trade, though not so much politics, as the dwarves refused to study Ornthox. With Erybis being a large settlement and the dwarves being quite the craftsmen and traders, Erybian spread across the lands as a critical language to know when interacting with Erybis. Erybis is the largest producer of spices in Ornthas, and so wealthy spice seeking men would be very keen on learning Erybian over Ornthox, if not both languages. However, in this past decade, the nemertingi have begun to dislike the lack of uniformity across language, and have decided to outlaw the use of Erybian for trade, and have been demanding local nobles to introduce free language education of Ornthox to the public.
It seems education is progressing and we are becoming one step closer to the unified language that the Arcosian Empire once had. Albeit a good thing, I feel as though educating the public and banning Erybian from trade will destroy a large portion of Orthasian culture and history. Once a language is gone, it is gone forever, and alongside it, its culture and society.