Forgotten realms languages

Forgotten realms languages DEFAULT



Toril is a large world with many diverse races, regions, and cultures.
The multitude of languages spoken is hard to quantify. The common trade tongue offers travelers and merchants a means with which to make themselves understood, and it has its uses, but for many, their native language is the one which allows them the most freedom of expression. It is not uncommon for a Tethyrian to blurt out a colloquialism or string of insults in his native tongue mid-sentence. Or for a Shaaran to have a heavy accent when speaking common. This is quite simply because common is never a native language. Although it is an automatic language for all starting characters, it is not the language they are necessarily most comfortable in. Language forms a big part of a character’s identity and origin

All player characters know Common. In addition, each character knows one additional automatic language from the list in their region, or their racial native language. In addition, a character’s background may also grant free languages. A character with an Intelligence score high enough to choose bonus languages can select more than one from the list given for the character’s home region.
Your character’s Insight Bonus (Intelligence) determines how many bonus languages your character gets.
Beyond these bonus languages, a character may learn more of course, but must spend a non weapon proficiency slot per language (using the Language, Modern proficiency).

This system only applies to starting characters. Once your character is adventuring, learning a new language will require the help of a teacher, time spent learning and practicing.

Common racial languages include:
Celestial, Draconic, Drow-Elven, Dwarven, Elemental, Elven, Giant, Gnoll, Gnomish, Goblin, Halfling, Infernal, Orc, Sylvan.

Common regional languages include:
Aglarondan, Alzhedo, Chessentan, Chondathan, Chultan, Damaran, Dambrathan, Durpari, Illuskan, Halruaan, Lantanese, Midani, Mulhorandi, Rashemi, Shaaran, Sossrim, Tashalan, Tethyrian, Tuigan, Ulutuin, Turmic, Undercommon, Untheric.

There are some people that still speak ancient languages. These occur as a result of isolation, tradition or magical reasons. Some are taught as a part of Arcane or Divine teachings. There are many spread throughout the Realms, but here are the most well known. Most of these are dead languages though, so pronunciation and syntax are lost to the sands of time. To learn an ancient language will often involve training in the form of a non-weapon proficiency. Only those native to Shadovar, or other ancient kingdoms may consider an ancient language to be their native tongue.

Ancient Languages include: Ancient Draconic, Ancient Dwarven, Ancient Orc, Aragrakh, Hamarfae, Imaskari, Loross (Netherese Noble), Narfelli, Netherese, Old Illuskan, Old Mulhorandi, Seldruin (Ancient Elven High Magic language), Thorass.


Forgotten Realms Languages

Common Languages

These languages are often spoken far-and-wide, though they often do not possess the nuance to discuss truly in-depth topics and philosophies.

  • Common:Faerûn. Written in Thorass.
  • Dethek:Faerûn. Dethek serves as a sort of "dwarven common" among the people of Moradin, allowing them to understand one another despite differences in regional racial languages, to say nothing of giving outsiders a language to speak to them respectfully while keeping them ignorant of necessary clan-only communications. Written in Dethek.
  • Espruar:Faerûn. Originally the tongue of the moon elves, Espruar has become something of a lingua franca among elvenkind, providing a common language for its speakers. Written in Espruar.
  • Undercommon:Underdark. Written in Espruar.
  • Serusan:Sea of Fallen Stars (Aquatic). Written in Espruar.
  • The Trade Tongue:Kara-Tur. A common language devised long ago to facilitate trade among the peoples of Kara-Tur.

Regional Languages of Faerun

Alphabets of the Realms


These are the primary alphabets used to express written language. Most languages use one of these in writing. Proficiency with a given language also imparts proficiency with the written alphabet, although this doesn't allow someone to read other languages written in that alphabet - they can simply recognize the use of the alphabet in a way that is strange to them.

  • Thorass: An ancient near-universal language of the long-ago Realms, Thorass has fallen into extinction (see "Dead Languages" below). It is frequently found on tombs and other ancient structures, but most relevantly is the alphabet used in Common and a great many regional languages.
  • Dethek: The dwarven alphabet is a series of runic letters perfect for etching into an enduring surface with a chisel and hammer. The Dethek language is used to of course write the dwarven languages, and can be used to render Common and a handful of other tongues as well. It has drifted into use by a number of southern Faerunian regional languages thanks to the influence of gold dwarven traders and the dwarves of the Earthfast Mountains.
  • Espruar: The swirling, artistic alphabet of the silver elves is half communication and half decoration. It can be used to write any of the elven languages, as well as Common and most regional languages.
  • Han: Calligraphic ideograph language, used in Koryo, Kozakura, and Wa.
  • Ruathlek: A sigil-based language of illusionists derived from High Tongue, Ruathlek can be used for both magical notation and normal communication; indeed, it is often used to disguise magical writings as something mundane.
  • Shou Chiang: Calligraphic ideograph language, used in Kara-Tur.
  • High Tongue:Arcane Spellcasters Only; Automatic. An ancient language now deeply fragmented and incomplete, the High Tongue is the language of arcane spellcasting. Those who wield such power automatically know it, as part of their immersion in such magics, and those without it do not learn it save in rare instances (see "Auld Wyrmish" below).
  • Draconic: A written language derived from the High Tongue, no one knows who truly innovated this written script. It is best known for its use among dragons, however, and so it bears their name. It is a jagged, runic language equally easily carved by the talons of dragons or painted with fine calligraphic brushes. Draconic is more common in the South, where fine painted calligraphic excellence is treasured.
  • Celestial & Infernal: These languages are primarily symbolic in expression, relying on hieroglyphic-like images to communicate their meaning. Though they are derived from the languages of angels and infernal creatures alike, they are much debased from the Supernal and Abyssal languages used by the creatures who serve the gods.
  • Dead Alphabets: There are a number of dead alphabets, as well, used to write languages that are usually long extinct. These include Imaskari (the script of the Imaskari peoples, used to render the language Roushoum in writing) and Hamarfae (an elven script used to communicate the nuances of the Elven High Magical language, Seldruin).
  • Aglarondan:Aglarond, Altumbel, Chessenta, the Dragon Coast, Impiltur, Mulhorand, Rashmen, Thesk, the Vast. A regional tongue of eastern Faerun, and the official language of Aglarond. Aglarondan is a derivitive language of Thorass, and is in the same family as Turmic. Written with Espruar.
  • Akalan:Chult. A minor regional language spoken on the Chultan peninsula. Written in Thorass.
  • Akurian:Chult. A regional language spoken in the southern Chultan peninsula. Written in Thorass.
  • Alambit:Altumbel. A regional language spoken by the people of Altumbel and surrounding environs. Written in Thorass.
  • Alarric:Durpar, Raurin, Var the Golden, Estagund. A regional language spoken by the people of Durpar and surrounding environs. Written in Thorass.
  • Allesian:Ashanath, Thesk. A regional language of Ashane and Thesk, with a number of dialects, including Ashane and Golden Allesian. Written in Thorass.
  • Alzhedo:Amn, Chult, Calimshan, the Lake of Steam, Lapaliiya, Lantan, the Nelanther Isles, the North (mostly Waterdeep, among dwarves, elves and gnomes), the Shaar, Tashalar, Tethyr, Tharsult, the Western Heartlands (among halflings and planetouched), Underdark (Old Shanatar), the Wealdath. A regional tongue of southwest Faerun, and the main language of Calimshan. Alzhedo is derived from Untheric and is in the same family as Midani. Sages believe that it shares some traits with the language of the elemental plane of air, as well. Written with Thorass.
  • Andt:Cormyr. The language of the marsh drovers in Cormyr's Farsea Swamp. Written with Thorass.
  • Auld Cormanthan:the Great Dale. A regional language spoken by the folk of the Great Dale. Written with Thorass.
  • Bavanese:Bawa. Language spoken by the people of Bawa, of the Island Kingdoms of Kara-Tur.
  • Bertanese:Bertan. Language spoken by the people of Bawa, of the Island Kingdoms of Kara-Tur.
  • Bothii:the North (Northern). This is the language, related to Illuskan, spoken by the peoples of the Uthgardt and Hartsvale. Written with Thorass.
  • Chardic:Damara, Vaasa. A regional language of Damara and Vaasa. Written in Thorass.
  • Chessic:Chessenta. Language of modern Chessenta. Written with Thorass.
  • Chondathan:Amn, Chondath, Cormyr, the Dalelands, the Dragon Coast, the (civilized) North, Sembia, Sword Coast, Tethyr, Western Heartlands, Vilhon Reach. An immensely ubiquitous language throughout most of central and northern Faerun. Chondathan is derived from Thorass, and is related to Cormanthan and Northern. Written with Thorass.
  • Chuchian:Plain of Horses, Hordelands. Language of the tribes of the Plain of Horses. Extremely precise - vagueness in terminology is considered insulting, with each place and thing having its own proper name.
  • Chultan:Calimshan, Chult, Lapaliiya, Nimbral, Samarach, Tashalar, Tharsult, Thindol. A regional dialect of southern Faerun, and the main language of Chult and Samarach. Tribes in the Chultan jungles often speak Tabaxi, a language related to Chultan and named for the jaguar people of those jungles. Written with Draconic.
  • Cormanthan:Cormyr, the Dalelands, Sembia. A regional Thorass-based tongue descended from an ancient elven dialect around the forest of Cormanthyr. It has largely fallen out of favor, and is now nearly a dead language, maintained mostly by rural folk and sages. Written with Espruar originally, but mostly with Thorass today.
  • Cosh:Nelanther Isles. A vulgar patois made up of slang terms, euphemisms and outright degeneration of the Waelan language, used by smugglers and very rural folk in the Nelanther Isles. Written in Thorass.
  • Damaran:Aglarond, Altumbel, the Anauroch, Cormyr, the Dalelands, Damara, the Dragon Coast, the Great Dale, the Great Glacier, the Hordelands, Impiltur, the Moonsea, Narfell, Rashemen, the Ride, Sembia, the Sandovar, Thay, Thesk, Vaasa, the Vast, the Vilhon Reach. A regional language of northeast Faerun and the official language of the kingdom of Damara. Damaran is an old language, descended from Ulou, the precursor language of Netherese. Written with Dethek.
  • Dambrathan:Channath Vale, Dambrath, Halruaan, Luiren, Nimbral, the Shaar. A regional tongue of southern Faerun, and the official language of the kingdom of Dambrath. Written with Espruar.
  • Devic:X. X. Written in XXX.
  • D'tarig:Anauroch. The tribal language of the D'tarig people of southeastern Anauroch, D'tarig is a throaty tongue that is part of the Uluo language family (along with languages such as Damaran and lost Netherese).
  • Durpari:Durpar, the Golden Water, Luiren, Mulhorand, Nimbral, the Shaar. A regional tongue of southeastern Faerun, and the official language of Durpar. Interestingly, it is also known by many Shou expatriates in Faerun. Written with Thorass.
  • Durpari-Shaartan Patois:X. X. Written in XXX.
  • Easting:Impiltur, the Vast. A regional language in eastern Faerun. Written in Thorass.
  • Erakic:The Ride. The language of the barbarians of the Ride. Written in Thorass.
  • Gurri:X. X. Written in XXX.
  • Halruaan:Channath Vale, Dambrath, the Golden Water, Halruaa, Lapaliiya, Nimbral, the Shaar. The official language of Halruaa and a regional language of southern Faerun. Halruaan is part of the Uluo language of families, along with Damaran and D'tarig. Written with Draconic.
  • Han:
  • Illuskan:Moonshae Isles, the North (barbarians, Luskan, Mintarn), Ruathym. A regional language that traces back to the Illusk Empire, and is largely spoken by barbarian folk and a few cities in the North, as well as the Moonshaes. Written with Thorass.
  • Imaskari, Eastern:X. X. Written in XXX.
  • Imaskari, Northern:X. X. Written in XXX.
  • Imaskari, Southern:X. X. Written in XXX.
  • Issacortae:Ama Basin. Language spoken by people of the Ama Basin. No written language.
  • Kao te Shou:Shou Lung. The official language of the Shou Lung empire, by custom and imperial edict. Viewed as the model that all other dialects ought to strive for. Written with Shou Chiang, although may also be written with Draconic in communication with Faerûn.
  • Khazari:Khazari. Official language of the Khazari peoples of Kara-Tur. Written with Shou Chiang, although may also be written with Draconic in communication with Faerûn.
  • Koryo:Koryo. Han-descended language of the people of Koryo. Written using the Han alphabet.
  • Kozakuran:Kozakura. Han-descended language spoken by Kozakurans. Written in Han alphabet.
  • Kuong:Malatra. Language of the Kuong people of Malatra, Kara-Tur. Believed to be unique and so considered specially blessed. Highly complex, following very little logic, and so difficult to learn.
  • Lantanese:Lantan, Nelanther Isles, Tethyr. A regional tongue of southern Faerun, and the official language of Lantan. Written with Draconic.
  • Laothan:Laothan. Language spoken by the Laothan people of Malatra, Kara-Tur. Filled with borrow-words, especially from T'u Lung.
  • Lidahan:Wu Pi Te Shao Mountains. Language spoken by the people that inhabited the jungles and valleys of the Wu Pi Te Shao Mountains.
  • Maran:X. X. Written in XXX.
  • Midani:Anauroch (Bedine). The language of the ancient homeland of the Bedine people. Written with Thorass, as they lost their original written language.
  • Muhjuri:X. X. Written in XXX.
  • Mulhorandi:Chessenta, Mulhorand, Murghom, Semphark, Thay. A regional language of eastern Faerun, and the official language of both Muhorand and Thay. Mulhorandi derives from a language family called Rauric, along with Untheric. Written with Celestial, although the Thayan dialect of Mulhorandi utilizes Infernal in its writings.
  • Naric:Narfell. The regional language of the Nars people of Narfell. Written in Thorass.
  • Northern:the North. A regional language spoken mostly around the Ten Towns, Neverwinter, Waterdeep, Nesme and Llorkh. A fairly simple tongue largely going out of style, replaced by Chondathan and Common. Written in Thorass.
  • Pazruki:Pazruki. A language spoken by the Pazruki nation, in the Koryaz Mountains of Kara-Tur. No written language.
  • Purang:Purang. Language spoken by Purang peoples of Malatra, Kara-Tur. Has many dialects.
  • Rasallesian:Rashemen. One of several languages spoken in Rashemen. Written in Thorass.
  • Rashemi:Rashemen. An ancient language spoken almost exclusively in Rashemen. Written with Thorass.
  • Raurindi:Raurin. A rare tribal language spoken by the people of the Raurin. Written in Thorass.
  • Reghedjic:the North (Spine of the World). A language spoken by the Reghedmen of the Icewind Dale and other lands north of the Spine of the World. It is named for the Reghed Glacier, and is related to Illuskan. Written in Thorass.
  • Ruathlek:Illusionists, Followers of Lliira, Nimbral. An illusionist trade language used by the peoples of Nimbral. It is related to Netherese. Written in Ruathlek.
  • Sespechian:Sespech, the Shining Plains. A regional language of Sespech and the Shining Plains. Written in Thorass.
  • Shaaran:Amn, Calimshan, Chondalwood, Chult, Dambrath, Great Rift, Halruaa, Lake of Steam, Lapaliiya, Luiren, the Nelanther Isles, Sembia, Sespech, the Shaar, Talashar, Turmish, Unther, the Vilhon Reach, the Wealdath. The dominant regional language in southern Faerun, and the dominant language in the Shaar. Written with Dethek.
  • Shaartan:the Shaar, the Lake of Steam, Lapaliiya, Tharsult. A minor regional language spoken in southern Faerun. Written in Thorass.
  • Sossic:Sossal. The language of the Sossrim peoples, related to the Rashemi. Written in Thorass.
  • Tabotan:Tabot. Language of the people ot Tabot, Kara-Tur.
  • Tashalan:Black & Mhair Jungles, Samarach, Tashalar, Thindol. The official language of the city-states of Tashalar, and hardly spoken elsewhere, Tashalan has roots in Netherese, and shares many linguistic traits with Chultan. Written with Dethek.
  • Telpi:Dragon Coast, Pirate Isles. A regional language spoken by the peoples of the Dragon Coast and Pirate Isles, including forming the basis of the pidgin spoken on the Pirate Isles. Written in Thorass.
  • Tharian:Moonsea (North and West). A regional language spoken by the Zhentish and around Phlan, Melvaunt, Glistern and the like. Written in Thorass.
  • Thorass:Amn, Tethyr. A regional language descended from Auld Thorass. This language is in extensive use in Amn and Tethyr, where it has a number of various dialects (all comprehensible, if odd to the ear, to speakers of other Thorass dialects).
  • Thorasta:Western Heartlands. A regional tongue spoken mostly between the Way Inn and Beregost, and Baldur's Gate to Hillsedge. Written in Thorass.
  • T'u Lung:T'u Lung. Language spoken by the people of T'u Lung in Kara-Tur. Much more regimented in its language, with different dialects for each caste of society. Written with Shou Chiang, although may also be written with Draconic in communication with Faerûn.
  • Tuigan:Hordelands. The common language of the tribes of the Hordelands. Written with Thorass.
  • Turmic:Turmish, Great Glacier. A relatively small-scope regional language spoken almost excusively in Turmish and the few folk on the Great Glacier. Written with Thorass.
  • Uloushinn:Anauroch. One of the native tongues of the Bedine of Anauroch, a blending of their original Midani with the tongues of Netheril they found in the deserts. Written with Thorass.
  • Uluik:Sea of Moving Ice: A tribal language in little use save by those who originated it, the Ulutiuns and Ice Hunters of the Sea of Moving Ice. Written in Thorass.
  • Ulutiun:Great Glacier, Sea of Moving Ice. A tribal language used by the Ulutiun peoples of the Great Glacier and Sea of Moving Ice. Written in Thorass.
  • Untheric:Chessenta, Unther. Untheric derives from an ancient language family called Rauric, along with Mulhorandi. Untheric was once spoken as a primary language in Chessenta, but has been relegated to a secondary language over the years, albeit one of polite society and bureaucracy. Written with Dethek.
  • Wa-an:Wa. Han-descended language spoken by people of Wa, Kara-Tur. Abundant with polite expressional and flowery terminology, with etiquette rather than grammar dictating the proper usage of many phrases. Divided into several dialects for use by differing levels of society. Written in Han alphabet.
  • Waelan:Moonshae Isles. A unique, lilting tongue that shares some traits with Sylvan, as well as the language of druids (Drueidan, under Trade Languages, below). Written in Thorass.
  • Wu-haltai:Wu-haltai. A language spoken by the Wu-haltai nation, in the Ama Basin of Kara-Tur. It is distantly related to the language of the ogre magi. No written language.

Beyond Faerun

  • Midani:Zakhara. Written with Midani.
  • Nexalan:Maztica. Written with Nexalan
  • Shou:Kara-tur. Written with Shou Chiang

Language Families

Sages organize most known languages into related "Families," based on their origins. Each header is a Family of languages, with the name in bold being the Language Group, italicized entries being the Subgroup and finally the languages themselves. These are inspired by real-world languages (very roughly) in their sound. Those marked with asterices are dead languages.

Someone who speaks a language has a chance of understanding someone speaking another language in the same family, group or subgroup, by making an Intelligence test. Success grants basic understanding through a single Interaction; failure means the vocabulary, inflections, syntax and word-usage are too difficult to understand. The DC for this is: Family (DC 20), Group (DC 15), Subgroup (DC 10).

Faerunian Languages

  • Illuski: Germanic/Scandinavian
    • Illuski: Bothii, Illuskan, Reghedjic, Truskan*.
  • Waelan: Celtic
    • Waelan: Cosh, Waelan
    • Druidic: Daelic (Trade), Drueidan (Trade)
  • Uluo: Old Prussian/Lithuanian
    • Netherese: Loross*, Netherese*, Halruaan, Ruathlek
    • High Ulutim: Uluik, Ulutiun
    • Low Ulutim: Andt, Erakic, Naric, Rengardt*, Uloushinn
    • Chard: Chardic, Damaran, Easting
    • D'tarig: D'tarig
  • Thorass: Latin, Italian, French
    • Central Thorass: Auld Cormanthan, Chondathan, Cormanthan, Maiden's Tongue (Trade), Northern, Shadow Cant (Trade), Thorass, Thorasta
    • North Thorass: Auld Tharian*, Tharian, Zhentarim Argot (Trade)
    • East Thorass: Telpi
    • Turmic: Turmic
    • Aglarondan: Aglarondan
  • Chessentan: Greek
    • Chessentic: Alambit, Auld Chessic/Alambic*, Thresk*, Chessic
    • Akalaic: Akalan, Akurian, Arkian*, Eshowan*, Sespechian, Shaartan, Telfir*
  • Raumtheran: Slavic, Russian
    • Raumtheran: Allesian, Halardrim*, Rasallesian, Sossic

Imaskari Languages

  • Imaskari: Turkish, Mongol
    • Durpari: Alarric, Devic, Durpari-Shaartan Patois, Raurindi
    • Imaskari: Imaskari*, Chuchian (Eastern Imaskari), Gurri, Northern Imaskari, Southern Imaskari
    • Lantanna: Lantanese
    • Roushoum (Ancient Imask): Rauran*, Reian*

Rauric Languages

  • Mulani: Ancient Egyptian
    • Mulhorandi: Mulhorandi
    • Muhjuri: Muhjuri
  • Untheric: Babylonian, Arabic
    • Untheric: Untheric
    • Midani: Kadari*, Maran, Midani, Noga*
    • Alzho: Alzhedo

Chultan Languages

  • Chultan: Ashanti, Zulu

Kara-Tur Languages

  • Common Language: The Trade Tongue
  • Amaesean Languages:
    • Amaese: Issacortae, Pazruki, Wu-haltai
  • Han Languages: Japanese/Korean
    • Ancient Han: Han
    • Han Tongues: Koryo, Kozakuran, Wa-an
  • Island Kingdom Languages: Indonesian
    • Island Tongues: Bevanese, Bertanese
  • Malatra Languages: Sanskrit, Hindi
    • Malatran: Kuong, Laothan, Purang
  • Shou Chiang Languages: Chinese
    • Shou Chiang: Kao te Shou, T'u Lung, Khazari, Ra-Khati
  • Tabot Languages: Tibetan
  • Wu Pi Te Shao Mountains: Filipino
    • Wu Pi Te Shao Tongues: Lidahan

Dwarven Languages

  • Northern Dwarven:
    • Arctic Dwarven: Kurit
    • Shield Dwarven: Galenan, Shanatan
    • Grey Dwarven: Duergan
  • Southern Dwarven:
    • Gold Dwarven: Authlan, Riftspeak

Draconic Languages

  • Wyrmish:
    • High Old Wyrmish: Aragrakh
    • Common Draconic: Auld Wyrmish
    • Chromatic Draconic: Black Draconic, Blue Draconic, Green Draconic, Red Draconic, White Draconic
    • Metallic Draconic: Brass Draconic, Bronze Draconic, Copper Draconic, Gold Draconic, Silver Draconic
  • Debased Wyrmish:
    • Kobold: Yipyak
    • Wyvern: Wyvern Draconic

Elven Languages

  • Auld Elvish:
  • Tel'Quessan:
    • Avariel Elven: Aril'Tel'Quessan
    • Moon Elven: Espruar (formerly Teu'Tel'Quessan)
    • Sea Elven: Alu'Tel'Quessan
    • Sun Elven: Ar'Tel'Quessan
    • Wild Elven: Sy'Tel'Quessan
    • Wood Elven: Or'Tel'Quessan
  • Ssri'Tel'Quessir:
    • Drow Tongues: Deep Drow, High Drow
    • Drow Hand Signs: Drow Sign Language

Genie Languages

  • Genie Tongue:
    • Genie Common: Jannti
    • Djinnspeak: Djinnti
    • Efreetspeak: Efreetti
    • Daospeak: Daoti
    • Maridspeak: Maridti

Giant Languages

  • Giant Tongue:
    • High Giantish: Jotunalder
    • Stone Giantish: Jotunhaug, Jotunise, Jostunstein
    • Sky Giantish: Jotunild, Jostunskye, Jotunuvar
    • Ogre Tongue: Jogishk

Gnomish Languages

  • Gnomish Tongue:

Orc Languages

  • Orc Tongues:
    • Orcish: Daraktan, Hulgorkyn*

Goblin Languages

  • Goblin Tongues:

Halfling Languages

  • Halfling Tongue:

Racial Languages

  • Aragrakh:Dragons. An ancient language, also known as "Old High Wyrmish", used as a formal ritual language by dragons. Woe to those who are not dragons that are overheard using it by wyrmkind. Written in Draconic.
  • Auld Wyrmish:Dragons. Something of a common tongue among the different breeds of dragon, who each have their own tongues. Also sometimes called "Draconic," it is also spoken by many kobolds and wyverns. Written in Draconic.
  • Authlan:Wild Dwarves. An ancient and simplified version of Riftspeak, with noticable Authalan and Chultan influences. Written in Dethek, although it is rare to find a literate wild dwarf.
  • Daraktan:Orcs. A common language spoken by most orcs, although not many of them are literate. It evolved from the now-dead Hulgorkyn language. Written in Dethek.
  • Deep Drow:Drow Elves. Also called Low Drow or Drowic, this is the common language of the drow. Each community has its own dialect, but can reasonably undertand one another. Written in Espruar.
  • Drow Sign Language:Drow Elves. A hand-code capable of impressive complexity, used by drow on patrol in the Underdark, or when silence is otherwise needful or useful.
  • Duergan:Duergar. Originally descended from Shanatan, this language has been deeply affected by the duergars' time in the Underdark. Written in Dethek.
  • Galenan:Shield Dwarves. The language of the eastern shield dwarves is spoken more frequently by its people, but it is also less pure, having been heavily influenced by Damaran. Written in Dethek.
  • Ghukliak:Goblins, Hobgoblins, Bugbears. A rough and gutteral language well suited to discussing concepts of violence. Written in Dethek.
  • Gnim:Gnomes. A staggeringly complex language, filled with all manner of words to discuss nuances of distinction. It is a language excellent for artistic, academic and engineering pursuits; indeed, many sages across the realms consider it to be a "scholar's language". Written in Dethek.
  • High Drow:Drow Elves. A complex language with its own runic alphabet, it is primarily used by priestesses in ritual context and nobles when they wish to communicate above the heads of the rabble. Written in High Drow.
  • Jannti:Geniekind. The language of the janns serves as a sort of Common language for geniekind, who are notoriously suspicious about those seeking to learn their individual languages. Jannti can be written in Thorass or Draconic.
  • Jotun:Giants. A common tongue among giants, and possibly one of the oldest extant languages still in use. It shares roots with Thorass, and is written with Thorass. There are also individual languages based off of Jotun, in use by various giantish subraces (all of which are written in Thorass):
    • Jotunalder:Giants. A ritualized language that is highly formalized and stilted. Those who speak Jotun can understand it well enough.
    • Jogishk:Ogres. A vulgar patois of Jotun and Common.
    • Jotunhaug:Hill and Mountain Giants. A rough, gutteral language which seems to be a corruption of Jotunise.
    • Jotunild:Fire Giants.
    • Jotunise:Frost Giants. The predecessor language to Jotunhaug.
    • Jostunskye:Cloud and Fog Giants.
    • Jostunstein:Stone Giants.
    • Jotunuvar:Storm Giants.
  • Kurit:Arctic Dwarves. A dwarven dialect considered much polluted by other dwarves, given the degree it has been influenced by the human Uluik language. Written in Dethek.
  • Luiric:Halflings of Luiren. Considered the racial language of halflings, it is almost unheard of outside of Luiren, even by halflings themselves. Written in Espruar.
  • Riftspeak:Gold Dwarves. A truly ancient dialect favored by the dwarves of the Great Rift, who care for and nurture the speaking of this language as carefully as they care for their gold. Written in Dethek.
  • Shanatan:Shield Dwarves. The language of the western shield dwarves. Sadly, with the near-shattering of dwarven society among the shield dwarves, not many even know the language any more, and only a rare few elders who truly value such things can actually converse in it. Urdunnir dwarves speak on older version of the language. Written in Dethek.
  • Sylvan:Fey. A subtle language spoken by fey and many other sylvan creatures with close ties to such. Written in Espruar.
  • Yipyak:Kobolds. A debased form of Auld Wyrmish that serves as a common tongue for kobolds. Written inDraconic.
  • Abyssal:Demons. A twisted, complex tongue whose words often have meanings based on the speaker's emotions and intentions toward the listener, Abyssal's linguistic emphasis is on concepts of violence and revulsion, madness and contempt for others. Written in Infernal.
  • Celestial:Upper Planes. A transcendant tongue from which derives many languages' words for concepts of good, purity, justice, compassion, and beneficence. Written in Celestial.
  • Infernal:Devils. A vulgar, angry patois combining the worst of a thousand different tongues from across the multiverse, Infernal is a language of hate and domination, of invective and threat. Written in Infernal.
  • Primordial:Elementals. An ur-language made up of the limited elemental dialects found on the various Inner Planes. Native speakers can often speak only their individual dialect, but those who learn the tongue usually master all of the dialects as part of learning the complete language. These dialects include Auran (planes of Air), Aquan (planes of Water), Ignan (planes of Fire), and Terran (planes of Earth). Written in Dethek.

Trade Tongues

  • Daelic:Druids (Moonshae). The language of the druids in service to the Earthmother of the Moonshae islands is distinct from the language that other druids speak, though they do share some concepts. It is never written, a taboo to use of the language.
  • Drueidan:Druids. The language of druids concerns itself with natural and spiritual concepts, providing a terminology for discussing the nuances of such things missing in other tongues. Speakers of Sylvan can begin to understand such discussions to limited extent. It may be written in Thorass, Espruar or Dethek.
  • Maiden's Tongue:Dambrath (Priestesses of Loviatar). The ceremonial and secret tongue of the Crintri priestesses of Loviatar in the nation of Dambrath. Written in Thorass.
  • Ruathlek:Illusionists, Followers of Leira, Nimbral. A language derived from Netherese innovated by the ancient followers of Leira and the cabals of illusionists in service to her. The language remains in use as a sort of trade language that many illusionist arcanabula are written in, as well as the language of Nimbral.
  • Shadow Cant:Shadow Thieves of Amn. Originating with the Northern language, this cant was the secret code of the Shadow Thieves of Waterdeep. When they were cast out of the city and fled to Amn, it took on some other nuances of the local language as well. Northern Cant is a dead language, for all intents and purposes.
  • Thieves' Cant:Thieves and other Underworld types. A language made up of slang, reference to previous events in the criminal world and innuendo, thieves' cant changes from place to place, season to season. Part of knowing thieves' cant isn't just knowing what to say, as this changes constantly - it is the skill to figure out how to "hook into" the local cant and use it to communicate, a process that takes about an evening's worth of carousing. It has no written form.
  • Zhentarim Argot:Zhentarim. The secret tongue of the Black Network. It is rarely spoken outside of Zhentarim strongholds, such as the Citadel of the Raven, Darkhold and Zhentil Keep, except by their nefarious agents meeting in secret. Written in Thorass.

Dead Languages

These languages are truly dead - no mean feat in a world where folk might live hundreds or even thousands of years! No one remembers how they were pronounced or even the majority of their vocabularies. They may turn up in writings here and there that can challenge even the best of sages to attempt a translation, but may not be taken as Language Proficiencies.

  • Arkian, Eshowan, Telfir:Chult. A trio of long-dead languages spoken in and around the Chultan peninsula. Written in Thorass.
  • Auld Chessic/Alambic:Chessenta. An ancient language spoken around the area that came to be known as Chessenta, and its environs. It was adopted by the people of Chessenta after they abandoned the Untheric language. Written in Thorass.
  • Auld Thorass:Early Humanity. The original spoken language of the alphabet of the same name is long dead. Despite this, it shares enough of its structure with Common that those who know it can usually discern what is intended to be communicated when writings in Auld Thorass are found. Simple remnants of this language can occasionally be found in the speech of rural or particularly old speakers of Common, who pepper their speech with "thee's" and "thou's" in a stilted, archaic argot. Written in Thorass.
  • Auld Tharian:Moonsea (North and West). An ancient tongue spoken around the Moonsea. Long since replaced by the modern Tharian, though they are similar enough that modern readers can usually decipher the rough meaning of inscriptions in Auld Tharian (Intelligence DC 15). Written in Thorass.
  • Elder Tongue:Dwarves. An ancient language held to be the ur-tongue of all dwarven language.
  • Halardrim:Rashemen. An ancient tongue spoken in the lands of Rashemen. Written in Thorass.
  • Han:Kara-Tur. Ancient language of the Han peoples, ancestors to the people of Koryo, Kozakura, and Wa.
  • Hulgorkyn:Orcs. An ancient and now-dead language once used by orcs. Its nuances suggest a higher degree of cultural sophistication than that now possessed by orc-kind.
  • Imaskari:X. X. Written in XXX.
  • Kadari:X. X. Written in XXX.
  • Loross:Netheril. The language of the nobility of ancient Netheril, a part of the Ulou language family.
  • Netherese:Netheril. The language of the ancient Netheril Empire, a part of the ancient Ulou language family. It was spoken primarily by the commoners of the empire.
  • Noga:X. X. Written in XXX.
  • Rauran:X. X. Written in XXX.
  • Reian:X. X. Written in XXX.
  • Rengardt:Netheril. The language of the tribes who roamed the area that later became Netheril.
  • Roushoum:Imaskari Empire. Ancient language of the Imaskari people, whose ancient Imaskar Empire once spanned what is now Unther, Thay and Mulhorand. Its many varied descendants include the languages of the Durpari, the Rauric family of languages, Raumvira, and the various Tuigan dialects. Written in Imaskari.
  • Seldruin:Elves. An ancient magical language of the elven peoples, Seldruin was used to enact the now-lost power of Elven High Magic. Written in the Hamarfae language.
  • Thresk:Chessenta. Another pre-modern Chessentan language, between modern Chessic and Auld Chessic/Alambic. Written in Thorass.
  • Trusk:Illuskan Empire. The now-dead language of the Illuskan Empire in the North, and the ancestor of modern Illuskan and similar tongues. Written in Thorass.
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Forgotten realms languages 5e

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What DND languages should my character take in 5e? What are the rarest 5e languages? In some campaigns language  Apr 8, 2016 The PCs typically speak at least two other languages in addition to you about the fantasy languages specific to the Forgotten Realms. From the bitter, windswept steppes of the Endless Waste to the storm-lashed cliffs of the Sword Coast stretches a wide, wild land of shining kingdoms and primal wilderness, Faerûn is only one continent of the world known as Toril. Aquan, Water-based creatures, Elven. The Druid is very, very against necromancy and the undead because he is under the assumption of "that's how Druids are role played b Make solar eclipses exceedingly rare, but still have new moons Writing differences on a blackboard If Nick Fury and Coulson already knew Moonshae Dnd5e Info The 5th Edition System Reference. Choose your languages from the Standard Languages table, or choose one that is common in your campaign. Updated for 5th edition which was an abandoned dwarven town in Forgotten Realms. If you are look for Faerun Cities 5e, simply will check out our info below : Taaki was Sauk's arumwon, or animal companion. Talons Of Justice Organization In Forgotten Realms World Anvil TYMORA, Lady of Fortune Forgotten Realms 5e. Naturally, they have forgotten in human languages that are easily available  Codename Entertainment Inc. There were a great many changes during fourth edition, caused by an event known as the Spellplague. net Language Families of the Forgotten Realms. The Sword Coast Forgotten Realms Stock Elven Tower. It is normally played indoors with the participants seated around a tabletop. For instance, D&D 3e didn’t offer bags of “ball bearings” for use as a tripping hazard; the comparable item was a bag of marbles. Taaki was Sauk's arumwon, or animal companion. According to news I've heard, the Forgotten Realms is supposed to get a bit of a make over in order to give it that "old Realms" feeling in the form Dalereckoning is the most common year measurement and is used in all of the Forgotten Realms sourcebooks. Average Rating (9 ratings) This is a lore pamphlet for players that play clerics, paladins, or worshippers of Tymora, goddess of good fortune, skill, victory, adventurers, and adventuring in the Forgotten Realms. Genre: Adventure, Strategy; Screen Languages: English. Dec 15, 2020 Are there any sign languages that are commonly known across many regions of the Forgotten Realms? @TheEdVerse Aside from drow sign language,  Other lands lie in distant corners of the world, but Faerun is the center of it all, the crossroads and crux upon which all else turns. we're gonna be talking about the 5e languages of Dungeons and Dragons (D&D). As someone who's new to the game and setting, I find the Forgotten Realms wikia to be a great source of information, and it has a page for the Second Sundering which I believe is what you're looking for. A compilation of lore based on established canon lore published across all editions of Dungeons Taaki was Sauk's arumwon, or animal companion. Faerun Cities 5e. The map of Faerûn from the 4th edition Forgotten Realms Campaign Guide (2008). TYMORA, Lady of Fortune Forgotten Realms 5e. That, I think, more than anything, reflects the way 5e kinda-sorta-but-not-really-we-swear defaults to the Forgotten Realms for things. Ed Greenwood Presents Elminster's Forgotten Realms , published in October of 2012 as an edition neutral sourcebook, as Wizards of the Coast transitioned Dungeons and Dragons for 4th edition to 5th edition. The Land of Faerûn. Campaign Index. Linguistic Groupings of Languages Spoken in Faerûn and other lands of Toril. So far the only supported setting for D&D 5e is the Forgotten Realms and it appears it will be that way for a while. There is no 5th Edition Forgotten Realms Campaign Setting. Language. About Faerun Cities 5e. Calendar of Harptos There are 365 days in the year, split up into twelve months of thirty days each with five holidays that fall between some months. Moonshae Dnd5e Info The 5th Edition System Reference. Average Rating (12 ratings) This is a lore pamphlet for players that play clerics, paladins, or worshippers of Sune, goddess of love and beauty in the Forgotten Realms. Directly quoted from the Forgotten Realms Campaign Setting book, 1372 is the main year that the 3E/3. On Tarsakh 14 of 1374 DR, Taaki had been attacking livestock around the Shalhoond. I'm a bit confused about a few things so I would like to share them with you and if you have any input on the matter then please let it be known. The World: Forgotten Realms. Taaki had ochre lines painted into her flanks and the top of the head. If you are look for Faerun Cities 5e, simply will check out our info below : Download Free D D 5e Lost Mine Of Phandelver Forgotten Realms D&D Beyond. After killing one shepherd and wounding another, Berun and Lewan were hired by the locals to stop her. 5E campaign begins. Wizards of the Coast released the Forgotten Realms Campaign Guide in August 2008, and the Forgotten Realms Player's Guide in September 2008. Save … The Tiefling Race for Dungeons & Dragons (D&D) Fifth Languages. com From these dnd 5e languages are basically families of languages which has many dialects, for instance the primordial language has included the Terran dialects, Auran, Aquan, Ignan and one for each of the four elemental planes. Commonly referred to by players and game designers alike  Most of the languages spoken in eastern Faerun, and much of Kara-Tur can be traced the Forgotten Realms is stuck with “medieval” technology in D&D 5E? This guide will tell you everything you need to know about the languages of the Forgotten Realms and how to use  I've created a Google Sheet that leverages other official D&D Forgotten Realms sources to expand upon the basic language options presented  Jan 20, 2016 Specifically I'm wondering about Forgotten Realms, but I'm also curious about other settings. Your race indicates the languages your character can speak by default, and your background might give you access to one or more additional languages of your choice. The Calendar of Harptos. Your best bet for world history is the Forgotten Realms Campaign Setting (2001) from 3rd Edition, over any 4th Edition source. In d&d 5th edition role playing game, all the default dnd languages 5e which it is also an alien form of communication originating in the Far Realms. To play this game on PS5, your  Language, Typical Speakers, Script. Dnd 5e languages how many In dungeons and dragons 5th game edition our characters can speak some default 5e languages indicating by your race and also your character background might give you access to get one or some additional language depending on your choice. SUNE, Lady of Love Forgotten Realms 5e. Updated to post-Sundering status quo. You must use D&d 5e characters to note these languages. Note these languages on your character sheet. Con l'eccezione della razza elfica,  Apr 12, 2020 As of 5th edition, Zhentil Keep had been retaken by the Zhentarim leaving the city's few surviving unaffiliated inhabitants to try and withstand  Jun 27, 2012 Home rules for languages in D&D. In some novels I see them speak Elven,  Dec 8, 2007 NOW LIVE! -- Level Up: Advanced 5th Edition! Level up your 5E game! The standalone advanced 5E tabletop RPG which adds depth and diversity to  May 8, 2019 An Overview of 5e Languages. Human Languages. Create encounters by setting up a group and dragging monsters. Jun 13, 2021 Welcome to Faerûn - the home of the Forgotten Realms! Illuskans, Rashemi–you get the idea–and they've all got their own languages, . Typically, one player takes on the role of Dungeon Master (DM) while the others each control a single character, representing an individual in a fictional setting. B · Barazhad · Bavanese language · Bawani language · Beholder language · Bertanese language · Bothii  3 days ago Idle Champions of the Forgotten Realms is a Dungeons & Dragons strategy video game that brings together D&D characters from novels,  D&D 5e Standard Languages Language Script Typical Speakers For instance, Auran, REALMS HUMAN LANGUAGES (Requires GM Permission) Uluik (SCAG) Turmic  Dec 27, 2020 Basically, most of these 5e languages are much familiar with many as the supreme means of communication beneath the surface of Faerun. Dambrath, Halruaa, Lake of Steam, Lantan, Lapaliiya, the Nelanther Isles, Sespech, the Shaar, Tashalar, Turmish, Unther, and the Vilhon Reach, Great Rift dwarves, Chondalwood and Wealdath elves, Forgotten Realms (Arabic) Faerûnpedia (German) Wiki Reinos Olvidados (Spanish) Wiki dos Reinos Esquecidos (Portuguese) Faerun Wiki (Polish) Forgotten Realms (Finnish) Wiki Le Monde des Royaumes Oubliés (French) Languages. Forgotten Realms (Arabic) Faerûnpedia (German) Wiki Reinos Olvidados (Spanish) Wiki dos Reinos Esquecidos (Portuguese) Faerun Wiki (Polish) Forgotten Realms (Finnish) Wiki Le Monde des Royaumes Oubliés (French) See full list on oakthorne. Languages. Kara-Tur: Amaese languages • Han languages • Shou Chiang languages. In my group, we have an undead skeleton necromancer and a Druid. There's a map online of the northwest corner of Faerun, but I don't believe there's an official map of all of the Forgotten Realms yet. OGHMA, Lord of Knowledge Forgotten Realms 5e - This is a lore pamphlet for players that play clerics, paladins, or worshippers of Oghma, god of bards, inspiration, inv 5e Languages D&D - 5e Languages Hot 5elanguages. They found lettering scratched into a boot track close to its own, spelling out "KHEIL Dungeons & Dragons is a structured, yet fundamentally open-ended role-playing game. Forgotten Realms is a campaign setting for the Dungeons & Dragons (D&D) fantasy role-playing game. In other words, Forgotten Realms is not the default setting, not in the way that Greyhawk was the implied setting of D&D third edition, and we see this in the core rulebooks where the deities are not limited to those of one setting, but mention Greyhawk, Forgotten Realms, Eberron and pantheons of real-world myth. Auran, Air-based creatures  Questa breve sezione vuole chiarire tra quali lingue possano scegliere i giocatori durante la creazione dei personaggi. Tuesday Languages. Abyssal, Demons, chaotic evil outsiders, Infernal. Contrast this with earlier editions. Faerûn: Faerûnian languages • Imaskari languages • Rauric languages • Chultan languages.


Forgotten Realms

Dungeons & Dragons fictional campaign setting

Forgotten Realms logo.png
New Forgotten Realms logo.png

Top: The Forgotten Realms logo (1987–1999)
Bottom: Forgotten Realms logo (2000–present)

DesignersEd Greenwood
Media typeGame accessories, novels, role-playing video games, comic books

Forgotten Realms is a campaign setting for the Dungeons & Dragons (D&D) fantasy role-playing game. Commonly referred to by players and game designers alike as "The Realms", it was created by game designer Ed Greenwood around 1967 as a setting for his childhood stories.[1] Several years later, Greenwood brought the setting to publication for the D&D game as a series of magazine articles, and the first Realms game products were released in 1987. Role-playing game products have been produced for the setting ever since, as have various licensed products including novels, role-playing video game adaptations (including the first massively multiplayer online role-playing game to use graphics), and comic books.

Forgotten Realms is a fantasy world setting, described as a world of strange lands, dangerous creatures, and mighty deities, where magic and supernatural phenomena are quite real. The premise is that, long ago, planet Earth and the world of the Forgotten Realms were more closely connected. As time passed, the inhabitants of Earth had mostly forgotten about the existence of that other world – hence the name Forgotten Realms. The original Forgotten Realms logo, which was used until 2000, had small runic letters that read "Herein lie the lost lands" as an allusion to the connection between the two worlds.

Forgotten Realms is one of the most popular D&D settings,[2][3] largely due to the success of novels by authors such as R. A. Salvatore and numerous role-playing video games, including Pool of Radiance (1988), Eye of the Beholder (1991), Icewind Dale (2000), and the Neverwinter Nights and Baldur's Gate series.

Creative origins[edit]

Ed Greenwood began writing stories about the Forgotten Realms as a child, starting at the age of 8.[4]: 72  He came up with the name from the notion of a multiverse of parallel worlds; Earth is one such world, and the Realms another. In Greenwood's original conception, the fantastic legends of Earth derive from a fantasy world that can no longer be accessed.[5] Greenwood discovered the Dungeons & Dragons game in 1975, and became a serious role-playing enthusiast with the first Advanced Dungeons & Dragons (AD&D) game releases in 1978.[5] Greenwood brought his fantasy world to the new medium of role-playing games when a university student named September introduced him to AD&D.[4]: 72  The setting became the home of Greenwood's personal campaign.[6] Greenwood began a Realms campaign in the city of Waterdeep before creating a group known as the Knights of Myth Drannor in the Shadowdale region. Greenwood felt that his players' thirst for detail made the Realms what it is: "They want it to seem real, and work on 'honest jobs' and personal activities, until the whole thing grows into far more than a casual campaign. Roleplaying always governs over rules, and the adventures seem to develop themselves."[5] Greenwood has stated that his own version of the Forgotten Realms, as run in his personal campaign, is much darker than published versions.[7]

Starting in 1979, Greenwood published a series of articles that detailed the setting in The Dragon (now Dragon) magazine, the first of which was about a monster known as the curst.[4]: 72  Greenwood wrote voluminous entries to Dragon, and used the Realms as a setting for his descriptions of magic items, monsters, and spells.[6] When Gary Gygax "lost control of TSR in 1985, the company saw an opportunity to move beyond Greyhawk and introduce a new default setting".[8]: 87  In 1986, TSR began looking for a new campaign setting for AD&D,[4]: 72  and assigned Jeff Grubb to find out more about the setting used by Greenwood as portrayed in his articles in Dragon.[8]

According to Greenwood, Grubb asked him "Do you just make this stuff up as you go, or do you really have a huge campaign world?"; Greenwood answered "yes" to both questions.[5] TSR felt that the Forgotten Realms would be a more open-ended setting than its epic fantasy counterpart Dragonlance, and chose the Realms as a ready-made campaign setting upon deciding to publish AD&D 2nd edition.[5] Greenwood agreed to work on the project and began working to get Forgotten Realms officially published.[9] He sent TSR a few dozen cardboard boxes stuffed with pencil notes and maps, and sold all rights to the setting for a token fee.[5] He noted that TSR altered his original conception of the Realms being a place that could be accessed from Earth, as "[c]oncerns over possible lawsuits (kids getting hurt while trying to 'find a gate') led TSR to de-emphasize this meaning."[5]

Jon Peterson, author of Dungeons and Dragons Art and Arcana: A Visual History, said that Greenwood "was that rare obsessive DM who just seemed to have more ideas and energy to pour into his world than even the folks at TSR did. Naturally when TSR was shopping for new campaign worlds as part of their cross-media strategy, they had to get the Forgotten Realms. RA Salvatore took Greenwood's world and created characters and stories for it that made him a bestselling author and sustained TSR as a major fantasy book publisher."[10]

Publication history[edit]


In 1985, the AD&DmoduleBloodstone Pass was released by TSR and is retroactively considered to be a part of the Forgotten Realms,[11] although it was not until the module The Bloodstone Wars was released that it became the official setting for the module series.[12]Douglas Niles had worked on a trilogy of Celtic-themed novels, which were modified to become the first Forgotten Realms books, beginning with Darkwalker on Moonshae (1987).[4]: 73  It is the first book in The Moonshae Trilogy, which predates the Forgotten Realms Campaign Set by one month.[13]

The Forgotten Realms Campaign Set was later released in 1987[8] as a boxed set of two source books (Cyclopedia of the Realms and DM's Sourcebook of the Realms) and four large color maps, designed by Greenwood in collaboration with Grubb.[14]: 99  The set introduced the campaign setting and explained how to use it,[14]: 99  and reserved space on the map for SSI's Gold Boxcomputer role-playing games set in the Forgotten Realms.[15]

TSR began incorporating elements by other designers into the Forgotten Realms, including the Moonshae Isles by Douglas Niles, the "Desert of Desolation" by Tracy Hickman and Laura Hickman, and Kara-Tur by Zeb Cook.[4]: 73  The setting also gave TSR a new way to market its Battlesystem rules, which it had supported with the Bloodstone adventure sequence that began with Bloodstone Pass. The last two books of this series, The Bloodstone Wars (1987) and The Throne of Bloodstone (1988), were explicitly placed in the Forgotten Realms.[4]: 74  Some of the characters from Frank Mentzer's Egg of the Phoenix (1987) were incorporated into The Savage Frontier (1988).[4]: 40 

The compilation module Desert of Desolation was reworked to fit into the Forgotten Realms.[16] The module Under Illefarn published in 1987 is set in the Forgotten Realms,[14]: 108  as is the module released in 1988, Swords of the Iron Legion.[14]: 103 

R. A. Salvatore wrote his first Forgotten Realms novel in 1988, The Crystal Shard (1988), which was originally set in the Moonshae Islands before being moved to a new location and introduced the drow character Drizzt Do'Urden.[4]: 73 [17] Drizzt has since appeared in more than seventeen subsequent novels, many of which have appeared on the New York Times Best Seller list.[18] In 1988, the first in a line of Forgotten Realms role-playing video games, Pool of Radiance, was released by Strategic Simulations, Inc.[19] The game was popular and won the Origins Award for "Best Fantasy or Science Fiction Computer Game of 1988".[20]

Several supplements to the original boxed set were released under the first edition rules, beginning with Waterdeep and the North,[4]: 73  which was followed by Moonshae in 1987, and Empires of the Sands, The Magister, The Savage Frontier, Dreams of the Red Wizards, and Lords of Darkness in 1988.[14]: 96–97  The City System boxed set was released in 1988, and it contained several maps of the city of Waterdeep.[14]: 89 Ruins of Adventure, a module based on the computer game Pool of Radiance, was also released in 1988.[14]: 113 

The boxed set Kara-Tur: The Eastern Realms was released in 1988. It gives details of the lands of Kara-Tur, and was designed to be used with the 1986 book Oriental Adventures, which officially placed the book in the Forgotten Realms world.[14]: 103 

In 1989, DC Comics began publishing a series of Forgotten Realms comics written by Grubb.[4]: 75  Each issue contains twenty-six pages, illustrated primarily by Rags Morales and Dave Simons. Twenty-five issues were published in total, with the last being released in 1991. A fifty-six page annualForgotten Realms Comic Annual #1: Waterdhavian Nights, illustrated by various artists, was released in 1990.

Curse of the Azure Bonds, a module based on the role-playing video game of the same name, was released in 1989.[14]: 97 


To transition the Forgotten Realms from first edition AD&D to the ruleset's second edition, a story of the gods being cast down was planned from the top-down by management and began in Hall of Heroes (1989) and spread into a three-adventure Avatar series (1989), a three-novel Avatar series (1989), and some stories in the comic book.[4]: 84  TSR adjusted the timeline of the Forgotten Realms by advancing the calendar one year forward to 1358 DR, referring to the gap as the Time of Troubles.[8]

In early 1990, the hardcover Forgotten Realms Adventures by Grubb and Greenwood was released, which introduced the setting to AD&D 2nd edition;[14]: 99–100  the book also detailed how the Time of Troubles had changed the setting.[21]: 139 The Ruins of Undermountain (1991) was one of the first published mega-dungeons.[4]: 93  The Al-Qadim setting by Jeff Grubb was released in 1992, and the setting was placed in the southern Forgotten Realms.[4]: 95  The RPGA used the Forgotten Realms city of Ravens Bluff as the setting for their first living campaign.[4]: 93  Official RPGA support for this product line included the Living City module series. A number of sub-settings of the Forgotten Realms were briefly supported in the early 1990s. Three more modules were produced for the Kara-Tur setting. The Horde boxed set, released in 1990, detailed the Hordelands, which featured a series of three modules. The Maztica Campaign Set, released in 1991, detailed the continent of Maztica.

The original gray boxed set was revised in 1993 to update it to AD&D 2nd edition, with the release of a new Forgotten Realms Campaign Setting boxed set containing three books (A Grand Tour of the Realms, Running the Realms, and Shadowdale) and various "monster supplements".[22] Additional material for the setting was released steadily throughout the 1990s. Forgotten Realms novels, such as the Legacy of the Drow series, the first three books of The Elminster Series, and numerous anthologies were also released throughout the 1990s, which led to the setting being hailed as one of the most successful shared fantasy universes of the 1990s.[23] By the first quarter of 1996, TSR had published sixty-four novels set in the Forgotten Realms out of the 242 novels set in AD&D worlds.[24]: 20  These novels in turn sparked interest in role-playing by new gamers.[25]

Numerous Forgotten Realms video games were released between 1990 and 2000. The Eye of the Beholder PC game was released in 1990,[26] which was followed by two sequels: the first in 1991,[27] and the second in 1992.[28] All three games were re-released for DOS on a single disk in 1995.[29] Another 1991 release was Neverwinter Nights on America Online, the first graphical Massively Multiplayer Online Role-Playing Game (MMORPG).[30] In 1998, Baldur's Gate, the first in a line of popular role-playing video games[31] developed by BioWare and "considered by most pundits as the hands-down best PC roleplaying game ever", was released.[1] The game was followed by a sequel, Baldur's Gate II: Shadows of Amn, in 2000 and Icewind Dale, a separate game that utilized the same game engine as Baldur's Gate. Pool of Radiance: Ruins of Myth Drannor was released in 2001. Several popular Forgotten Realms characters such as Drizzt Do'Urden and Elminster made minor appearances in these games.


When Wizards of the Coast took over publication of Dungeons & Dragons after purchasing TSR in 1997, they trimmed production down from six campaign settings to Forgotten Realms and Dragonlance, and completed AD&D 2nd edition production sometime between 1998 and 1999.[32]: 146  They later hired Rob Heinsoo as a member of the D&D Worlds team to focus on Forgotten Realms in the third edition of Dungeons & Dragons.[32]: 162  An official material update and a timeline advance were introduced to the Dungeons & Dragons 3rd edition in 2001 with the release of the hardcover book the Forgotten Realms Campaign Setting,[33] which won the Origins Award for Best Role-Playing Game Supplement of 2001 in 2002.[34] The timeline was officially advanced from 1358 DR to 1372 DR.[8] After the adventure City of the Spider Queen (2002) failed to meet its projected sales targets, Wizards of the Coast cut back on production of new adventures.[32]: 165 

In 2002, BioWare released Neverwinter Nights, set in the northern reaches of Faerûn and operating on the revised 3.0 rules for D&D. It was followed by two expansion packs: Shadows of Undrentide and Hordes of the Underdark. A sequel using version 3.5 of the rules was produced by Obsidian Entertainment in 2006, and was followed by the expansion sets Mask of the Betrayer and Storm of Zehir. The Forgotten Realms Deluxe Edition compilation was released in 2006, containing the Baldur's Gate series (excluding the Dark Alliance games), Icewind Dale series, and all Neverwinter Nights games before Neverwinter Nights 2.


With the release of Dungeons & Dragons 4th edition in 2008, Wizards opted for a publishing plan featuring a series of six books per year – three core rulebooks and three setting books – beginning with the Forgotten Realms. The company started the cycle with the Forgotten Realms Campaign Guide (2008), the Forgotten Realms Player's Guide (2008), and Scepter Tower of Spellgard.[32]: 190  These books updated the Forgotten Realms to the newest rules system which altered the setting drastically to make it fit into the 4th edition's "Points of Light" concept.[32]: 190 

The main lore change centered around an event called the Spellplague in 1385 DR.[8] This cataclysm was unleashed when the goddess of magic Mystra was killed, "transforming whole nations and altering creatures. In addition, parts of Toril have fused with its long-lost twin world Abeir, whisking away some countries and adding new ones. The Underdark is more open to the surface. Thay has become a nightmare land of death and the Elves, sensing the newfound connection to the Feywild, have returned to Faerûn in force".[35] The event moved the fictional world's timeline 94 years into the future to 1479 DR.[8] The Spellplague acted as "a narrative justification for design changes."[8]: 107 

In 2008, the Forgotten Realms also became the setting for the RPGA's sole living campaign, Living Forgotten Realms, replacing Living Greyhawk.

In 2011, the Neverwinter Campaign Setting was released which launched the 4th edition's first major multimedia release. The Forgotten Realms city setting spawned four novels by R. A. Salvatore called the Neverwinter Saga, a comic book, and a board game called The Legend of Drizzt, as well as two video games – the Facebook game Heroes of Neverwinter (2011–2012) and a MMORPG called Neverwinter (2013).[36] Laura Tommervik, from the Wizards of the Coast marketing team, explained the approach: "We use Neverwinter as the connective tissue across multiple product categories. The transmedia campaign is an opportunity for fans to experience the brand however they choose to".[36]

In 2013, Wizards of the Coast announced a year-long event called the Sundering which acted as a multimedia project to transition the Forgotten Realms to the next edition of the game.[37][38] This release included a weekly D&D Encounters in-store play event, a free-to-play mobile game Arena of War (2013), and a collaborative novel series: The Companions (2013) by R. A. Salvatore, The Godborn (2013) by Paul S. Kemp, The Adversary (2013) by Erin Evans, The Reaver (2014) by Richard Lee Byers, The Sentinel (2014) by Troy Denning, and The Herald (2014) by Ed Greenwood.[37][39] Liz Schuh, Head of Publishing and Licensing for Dungeons & Dragons, said:[40]

The Sundering is the last of a series of ground-shaking events. It really affects the whole world of the Forgotten Realms in a major way. You may remember when the Spell Plagues began, the two worlds of the Forgotten Realms, Abeir and Toril, crashed together. That created both geographic changes (the map of the Forgotten Realms and Faerun actually changed due to that collision), and also changed the way magic works. It changed the pantheon of the gods. The Sundering is all about those two worlds separating—coming apart—and the process of that separation is really the story that we're telling over the next year. At the end of this story arc, Abeir and Toril will be separate again, and many of the things that happened when they crashed together will go back to the way they were before. So magic will be much like it was before the Spell Plague. Markings that marked spell-plagued people and animals will fade and go away. It's really about moving the Forgotten Realms forward, but also about bringing it around to the most beloved and most fondly remembered Forgotten Realms.

The result of The Second Sundering, in game terms, was the transition from 4th edition rules to 5th edition rules of Dungeons & Dragons, published in 2014.[8][41]


When D&D 5th edition was published in 2014, Wizards of the Coast announced that the Forgotten Realms would continue to serve as the official campaign setting for its upcoming published adventure materials.[42][43][44] The village of Phandalin in the Forgotten Realms acted as the primary setting for the new 5th edition Starter Set (2014) which was published before the release of three new core rulebooks.[45] Tyranny of Dragons was the first multimedia storyline for the new edition and included two adventure modules, Hoard of the Dragon Queen (2014) and The Rise of Tiamat (2014), and an update to the Neverwinter (2013) video game.[8][46][47] The next two storylines, Elemental Evil which included Princes of the Apocalypse (2015) and Rage of Demons which included Out of the Abyss (2015), were also set in the Forgotten Realms.[8][48][49]

The first campaign guide for the new edition, the Sword Coast Adventurer's Guide (2015), was released on November 3, 2015, and only covered a fraction of the Forgotten Realms.[50][8] It describes the 2013 Sundering event, referred to as the Second Sundering in the book, and its consequences in game terms and lore.[51] The video game Sword Coast Legends (2015) published by Digital Extremes was also released in the same month as the tabletop campaign guide.[50][52]

5th edition details on "the rest of Faerûn had been untouched until the Tomb of Annihilation (2017), an adventure that leaves the northern Savage Coast for the southern jungles of Chult".[8]: 101 

Fictional setting[edit]

Main article: Faerûn

The focus of the Forgotten Realms setting is the continent of Faerûn, the western part of a continent that was roughly modeled after the Eurasian continent on Earth.[24]: 6  The lands of the Forgotten Realms are not all ruled by the human race, with populations of many humanoids races and creatures ubiquitous in fantasy fiction works such as dwarves, elves, goblins, orcs. Technologically, the world of the Forgotten Realms is not nearly as advanced as that of Earth; it resembles the pre-industrial Earth in the 13th or 14th century. However, the presence of magic provides an additional element of power to the societies. There are several nation states and many independent cities, with loose alliances being formed for defense or conquest. Trade is performed by ship or horse-drawn vehicle, and manufacturing is based upon cottage industry.


Main article: Abeir-Toril

The Forgotten Realms is part of the fictional world of Abeir-Toril (usually just called Toril[21]: 91 ), an Earth-like planet with many real-world influences and consists of several large continents.[53] It was first detailed in the original Forgotten Realms Campaign Set, published in 1987 by TSR.[54] The other continents of Toril include Kara-Tur, Zakhara, Maztica,[53] and other yet unspecified landmasses.[33] Kara-Tur, roughly corresponding to ancient East Asia, was later the focus of its own source book Kara-Tur: The Eastern Realms, published in 1988.[14]: 103 [55] There is also a vast subterranean world called the Underdark beneath the surface.[21]: 98, 138 [49]

In early editions of the setting, The Realms shared a unified cosmology with various other campaign settings called the Great Wheel. In this way each of the Dungeons & Dragons campaign settings were linked together to form one interwoven world connected by various planes of existence. With the release of the 2001 Forgotten Realms Campaign Setting, the setting was given its own distinct and separate cosmological arrangement, with unique planes not explicitly connected to those of the other settings.[33][56]

Forgotten Realms partial map


Religion plays a large part in the Forgotten Realms, with deities and their followers being an integral part of the world. Deities interact directly in mortal affairs, answer prayers, and have their own personal agendas. All deities must have worshipers to survive, and all mortals must worship a patron deity to secure a good afterlife. A huge number of diverse deities exist within several polytheistic pantheons; a large number of supplements have documented many of them, some in more detail than others.[57][58] Greenwood created a pantheon of gods for his home Dungeons & Dragons game, in his Forgotten Realms world, which were introduced in his article "Down-to-earth divinity" from Dragon #54 (October 1981).[59]

When the Forgotten Realms was published as a setting in 1987, the pantheon added Waukeen, the goddess of trade, money, and wealth, who was created by one of Jeff Grubb's players, and added to the Forgotten Realms by Grubb. Tyche was replaced with Tymora, and the elemental lords from Melniboné were replaced by Akadi, Grumbar, Istishia, and Kossuth.[60]

Much of the history of the Forgotten Realms detailed in novels and source books concerns the actions of various deities and The Chosen (mortal representatives with a portion of their deities' power) such as Elminster, Fzoul Chembryl, Midnight (who later became the new embodiment of the goddess of magic, Mystra[21]: 140 ), and the Seven Sisters. Above all other deities is Ao, the Overlord, who does not sanction worshipers and distances himself from mortals. He is single-handedly responsible for the Time of Troubles, or Godswar, as seen in The Avatar Trilogy.[61]


The setting is home to several noteworthy recurring characters that have gained wider reception, including:

  • The Companions of the Hall, a group of adventurers that were created by R. A. Salvatore[62][63] and introduced in The Crystal Shard (1988).[64][65][66] Each of these characters "fit into an RPG archetype".[67] They include:
    • Drizzt Do'Urden, a drow, or dark elf, ranger who is the main character of 34 novels.[64] Drizzt is noted for his commitment to friendship and peace, which is contrary to the stereotype of his people.[68] Drizzt as a character is often used to represent issues of racial prejudice, particularly in The Dark Elf Trilogy.[69][70] Drizzt is also troubled by the lifespan discrepancy between himself and his human romantic interest Catti-Brie.[71]
    • Wulfgar, a massive human barbarian;[72] in The Crystal Shard, Wulfgar's combat prowess is significant enough that along with Drizzt and his magic panther Guenhwyvar, they manage to "beat 25 giants by themselves".[64] As a character, Wulfgar exemplifies "the strong, honest, hot-headed young warrior hero type common to adventure stories and similar to Howard's creation Conan".[73]
    • Bruenor Battlehammer, a dwarven fighter who retakes Mithral Hall with the help of the other Companions.[64][67][74] He was one of the first friends Drizzt made upon leaving the Underdark and both Catti-Brie and Wulfgar are his adopted children.[75][67] Rob Bricken for io9 highlighted Bruenor as "a dwarf that hits pretty much every fantasy stereotype, including his desire to reclaim an ancestral home that his people were chased out of after they dug too far and awakened a monster".[64]
    • Catti-brie, a human archer who would later develop abilities as a spellcaster;[64][67][76] in The Crystal Shard, Drizzt referred to her as his soulmate.[64] Catti-Brie is favored by Mielikki, a goddess associated with forests and nature spirits, and she bears the deity's mark. Bricken argued that her characterization in The Icewind Dale Trilogy is limited,[64] while Aidan-Paul Canavan maintained that she becomes a "hero" only in later novels.[77]
    • Regis, a halfling member of the Companions, who behaves in the stereotypical manner of J.R.R. Tolkien's hobbits. Bricken noted that Regis is a rogue who "set himself apart a bit by carrying a crystal pendant he can use to charm people", though he is sometimes forced into dangerous situations and "ends up saving the day, Bilbo-style", such as in the final battle of The Crystal Shard.[64]
  • Elminster, a wizard also known as the Sage of Shadowdale;[78] he is "a founding member of the Harpers and one of the oldest surviving and most powerful Chosen of Mystra".[79] The Harpers are a semi-secret organization; Jonathan Palmer, for Arcane magazine, commented that they are "fighters for freedom and justice. Laudable".[80] Bricken described Elminster as "the most powerful, important, and smartest wizard in the Forgotten Realms, and one of the setting's most important characters [...] more Merlin than Gandalf, which makes him less enigmatic and prone to tomfoolery than other major fantasy wizards, which I count as a good thing".[81]
  • Volothamp Geddarm, a human adventurer who is famed within the setting Faerûn for the number of guidebooks he writes about the various regions within the Realms. The character's name is often attributed in real-world D&D publications as the in-universe narrator of said works.[82] Paul Pettengale from Arcane described him as "one of those characters that everyone's heard about, and one that just about every Dungeon Master must have been tempted to introduce to their campaign at some point or another".[83]
  • Khelben "Blackstaff" Arunsun, developed by Greenwood and game designer Steven Schend, is a character noted for his appearances in several novels set in the Forgotten Realms,[21][84] as well as the 2004 video gameForgotten Realms: Demon Stone.[85] A powerful wizard renowned for his namesake staff, in earlier editions he is the Archmage of Waterdeep, leading member of the Harpers, and one of Mystra's Chosen.[21] Prior to his death, Khelben passes the Blackstaff to his apprentice Tsarra,[84] who takes up residence at Blackstaff Tower in Waterdeep and inherits his memories and legacy. Writer Aubrey Sherman said he is an example for the importance of a wand or staff behind the conception of a wizard archetype and listed the character among D&D's notable wizards.[86][84]
  • Jarlaxle, also a character by Salvatore, was introduced in the 1990 novel Exile. He also appears in Promise of the Witch King, Road of the Patriarch and The Pirate King, as well as The Sellswords and the Paths of Darkness trilogies. Described by Christian Hoffer from as a popular and intriguing supporting character,[87] Jarlaxle is the charismatic and opportunistic drow leader of the mercenary band Bregan D'aerthe. Anglistics scholar Caroline de Launay characterized Jarlaxle as an independent character inclined to "subtle manoeuvres",[88] while Hoffer explained that he is an amoral villain who has "plenty of contingencies and secret plots".[87] When comparing the plot of The Dark Elf Trilogy to a game of chess, de Launay assigned Jarlaxle the role of the knight.[88] Theo Kogod, for CBR, wrote "in many ways, Jarlaxle is a dark reflection of the heroic and honorable Drizzt. He used lies, manipulation and cunning to rise as high as a male Drow could within his culture, but in the end, he also left his home behind. [...] In Waterdeep: Dragon Heist, Jarlaxle is trying to leverage himself to become accepted as a legitimate member of the Lords' Alliance. He is one of four possible main villains in the campaign".[89]
  • Artemis Entreri, a human assassin described by Bricken as "cold-blooded" and Drizzt's "equal in fighting and opposite in morality", a mirror image of how Drizzt would have ended up if he had remained part of the universally evil drow society instead of forsaking it."[90]
  • Gromph Baenre is Archmage of the city of Menzoberranzan, the City of Spiders. Gromph is a rival in power to the other archmages of the Forgotten Realms, such as Elminster and Khelben "Blackstaff" Arunsun. In a review of the 1995 novel Daughter of the Drow, Gideon Kibblewhite for Arcane, called Gromph the "only interesting character" in the book, describing him as "the bitter and twisted archmage", and lamented that "he rarely makes an appearance after the opening".[91]
  • Liriel Baenre is the daughter of Gromph Baenre; she originally belonged to House Vandree before her talent for arcane spellcasting was discovered by Gromph.[92] After being sent away to hone her magical talent rather than study as a priestess, Liriel uses a book given by her father to travel to the surface lands, where she encounters followers of the goddess Eilistraee, the Dark Maiden of benevolent drow, comes to possess the magical artifact known as the Windwalker, and eventually settle down on the surface world permanently. Liriel was created by Elaine Cunningham for Daughter of the Drow, and is described by Trenton Webb of Arcane as "the oddest Drow" due to her lack of traits deemed as stereotypical of her people.[93]
  • Erevis Cale, first introduced in the short story "Another Name For Dawn" published in issue 277 of Dragon magazine, is a pivotal character in novels by Paul S. Kemp, including The Halls of Stormweather, Shadows Witness, the Erevis Cale Trilogy, and The Twilight War trilogy. Originally a normal human, he accepts the gift of the Fane of Shadows in Twilight Falling and becomes a shade; being imbued with the essence of matter integral to the Plane of Shadow brings about drastic changes to his appearance and physiology. Don D'Ammassa described Erevis Cale as "a man tormented by questions of right and wrong".[94]


In his book The Fantasy Roleplaying Gamer's Bible, Sean Patrick Fannon describes the Forgotten Realms as being "the most ambitious fantasy game setting published since Tekumel",[1] and that it "may be the most widely played-in game setting in RPG history."[1] Similarly, in literature, the novels written in the Forgotten Realms setting have formed one of "the industry's leading fantasy series".[95] Over time these novels have gained "unprecedented popularity",[96] which led, as Marc Oxoby noted in his book, The 1990s, to the novels having an "extraordinary shelf life", remaining in print for many years.[96] This popular reception has also been reflected in public libraries; for example, Joyce Saricks states in The Readers' Advisory Guide to Genre Fiction that the novels have been among the most requested books by fans of the fantasy genre.[97]

Brian Silliman, for SYFY Wire, described the Forgotten Realms as "a classic fantasy backdrop" and highlighted that "at one time in our history, our world and this one were connected, but over time this magical realm was, well, forgotten. It is an ideal place for any D&D adventure, inspiring limitless possibilities for any smirking dungeon master".[98]

Philip J. Clements called the Forgotten Realms "highly popular", "an unusually well-developed D&D setting" and "more-or-less the flagship setting for D&D". He also noted that it has received the greatest number of supplements.[99]

The 4th edition update to the Forgotten Realms brought massive lore changes which were "tied to a number of other design philosophies" and the Forgotten Realms "simultaneously had become a grittier setting, on the edge of collapse, while also becoming a more fantastic one, full of wonder and mystery".[100] Jason Wilson, for VentureBeat, highlighted that unlike the Time of Troubles cataclysm, the 4th edition Spellplague cataclysm was "one players never embraced in the same manner as the earlier disaster".[101] Shannon Appelcline, author of Designers & Dragons, wrote:

[The 4th edition] Forgotten Realms Campaign Guide may be the most controversial D&D book ever produced by Wizards. That's entirely due to the large-scale destruction of the Realms. Similar updates have been tried by other companies — to reinvigorate settings, to make them more accessible to new players, or to make them more adventuresome. [...] It never seems to go well, because old fans feel left behind. With that said, some folks did love the changes, because the setting was now more playable, more accessible, more fantastic, and more PC centered. [...] Meanwhile, a series of adventures and novels called The Sundering (2013–2014) reversed many of the 4e changes to the Realms, but without rebooting the timeline. Instead, the Realms continues to evolve and advance, as it has since its earlier days.[100]

Salvatore was also publicly unhappy with the 4th edition changes to the Forgotten Realms. He said:[102]

[B]asically, we authors were handed a document and told how things were going to be. We were asked our opinions, but they mattered very little – the changes were being driven from a different direction. [...] To have characters that have built such a strong history, then have that upset on the orders of someone else was very disconcerting. I will admit that the abrupt changes forced me into an uncomfortable place, and from that place came some of the better things I've written, but I very much preferred the way it was done this time, with 5th Edition and the changes, where we, the authors, were told what was happening to the game and asked how we could make the world and the lore live and breathe it.

Aubrey Sitterson, for PC Magazine, included the Forgotten Realms in a 2015 roundup of the "11 Best Dungeons & Dragons Campaign Settings" and wrote "for most people, Forgotten Realms is synonymous with Dungeons & Dragons, and with good reason: it's the setting that played home to the massively popular Baldur's Gate video game, as well as R. A. Salvatore's Drizzt books. Currently, it's the only campaign setting actively supported by D&D makers Wizards of the Coast, which would be restrictive if Forgotten Realms wasn't such an incredibly diverse place, housing classic European middle ages tropes, as well as a heroic fantasy take on African, Middle Eastern, and other real-world cultures".[103]

Christian Hoffer, for, reported that Wizards of the Coast's 5th edition publishing strategy, which focuses on the Forgotten Realms and newer intellectual property for campaign settings, has created a rift in the fan base where some "feel that this push for new players has come at the cost of keeping the game's current players sated" by not updating campaign settings that "predate the Forgotten Realms". Hoffer highlighted that Wizards of the Coast has a much slower publication schedule than with previous editions with a focus on quality and profit and "the D&D teams knows that they have plenty of great campaign settings in their back pocket and are either actively developing more settings or have ideas for them further down the line".[104]

See also[edit]


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Languages forgotten realms

Forgotten Realms Languages

This language section replaces the Player's Handbook tables on page 123. Note that the following languages don't actually exist in the Forgotten Realms:
  • Gnomish (Gnome characters receive Common and either Elven or Dwarven)
  • Halfling (Halfling characters receive Common and either Elven or Dwarven)
  • Sylvan (Fey creatures speak Elven)
  • Celestial/Infernal (such creatures speak Supernal)
As a house rule, all adventurers receive one free regional language when created. This indicates the region where your character grew up.
These are the most common languages, spoken by a large number of people, making them fairly easy to learn.
NameSpoken ByScript
CommonHumans, halflings, tieflingsThorass
Daraktan (Orcish)Orcs and their conquered tribesDethek
Deep SpeechMind flayers, githyanki, kuo-toas, beholders, other Underdark horrorsUnknown
Dethek (Dwarven)Dwarves, galeb duhrsDethek
Espruar (Elven)Elves, eladrin, fomoriansEspruar
Ghukliak (Goblin)Goblins, hobgoblins, bugbearsDethek
Iokharic (Draconic)Dragons, dragonborn, kobolds, wizardsIokharic
Jotun (Giant)Giants, OgresBarazhad
UndercommonUnderdark civilizations - deep gnomes, drow, duergar, goblinsEspruar
These languages are common in certain areas. They originated from humans but occasionally members of other races learn them.
NameAreas SpokenIRL CounteprartScript
AlzhedoCalimshan, Amn, Tethyr, and surrounding areasSpanish/PortugueseThorass
AglarondanAglarond, Rashemen, ThayPolishThayan
BothiiUthgardt BarbariansScandanavian LanguagesNo written form?
ChondathanAmn, Cormyr, the Dalelands, the Dragon Coast, Sembia, the Silver Marches, Tethyr, the Western Heartlands, and the Vilhon ReachEnglishThorass
ChultanNative tribes of the Jungle of ChultSub-Saharan AfricaIokharic
DamaranCormyr through the Great GlacierGermanDavek
DambrathanDambrath, Halruaa, Luiren, Nimbral, the ShaarGreekEspruar
DurpariDurpar, Estagund, Var the Golden, surrounding areasHindiDurpari
IlluskanLuruar, Luskan, Waterdeep, Neverwinter, the Sword Coast North, some Uthgardt tribesIrishThorass
MulhorandiMulhorand, Thay, Murghôm, Semphar, and ChessentaAncient EgyptianSupernal Heiroglyphics
NethereseSpoken by Low Netheril - lands conquered by Netheril. The basis of modern Common, often found in ancient ruinsLatinThorass
ShaaranDambrath, Halruaa, Lake of Steam, Lantan, Lapaliiya, the Nelanther Isles, Sespech, the Shaar, Tashalar, Turmish, Unther, and the Vilhon Reach, Great Rift dwarves, Chondalwood and Wealdath elves, halflings of Luiren, and wemics.ItalianDethek
ShouShou LungMandarin ChineseShou
ThayanThay, Rashemen, AglarondRussianThayan
*These languages aren't exact counterparts, but it might help to think of them in that way.
These languages are either rarely-used or dead, or used by nations or races extremely hostile to civilized peoples, making them difficult to learn.
NameSpoken ByScript
AbyssalDemons, gnolls, sahuaginBarazhad
Drow ElvenDrow, subjugated racesEspruar
LorossHigh Netheril - Netherese enclavesIokharic
NethereseSpoken by Low Netheril - lands conquered by NetherilIokharic
PrimordialDjinni, Efreeti, archons, elementalsBarazhad
RuathlekSecret language of Illusionists, worshippers of LeiraRuathlek
SerusanSahuagin, aquatic elves, locathah, merfolk, shalarinNo written form?
SupernalAngels, devils, godsSupernal Hieroglyphs
Luca Lampariello, Tell Us About Yourself // An interview in Greek
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Master of Realmslore

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Posted - 21 Feb 2008 :  05:37:51  Show Profile  Visit DDH_101's HomepageSend DDH_101 a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Well, Common, as the name suggests is the most common language on Faerun. I guess you can say it's the English of FR.

However, many regions have their own dialects that vary a bit from Common. There are languages like Chondathan or Chessetan, the former from Chondath and the latter from Chessentia. There are some languages like Elven, Dwarvish, Infernal, Draconic that are race based language (basically what you learn when you were born due to your race).

Also, there is an ancient version of Common called Thorass which is very similar to Common but does have its own style. I think Thorass was used around the age of Netherese.

Anyways, this is all just out of my memory so any sages that see any mistakes in my post feel free to add info or correct me.

"Trust in the shadows, for the bright way makes you an easy target." -Mask
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Jamallo Kreen
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Posted - 21 Feb 2008 :  07:09:41  Show Profile  Visit Jamallo Kreen's HomepageSend Jamallo Kreen a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Sorry, but you have it backward. Chondathan, Illuskan, Damarran, Nar, etc. are languages. "Common" is surface "trade-speak," a "lingua Franca" or pidgin that enables people to express basic concepts and simple ideas. Thorass is "Old Common." The trade-speech of the Underdark is called "Undercommon."

"Common" isn't technically a "language" at all, but it has been a convenient gaming convention for forty years, and only a real hard-arse DM (such as I) would tolerate a character being unable to speak anything other than "Common."

Besides Ed Greenwood, Tom Costa is probably the most learned sage of Faerunian languages, and can explain the relationships of one language to another. He may be found, quill in hand, working diligently here at Candlekeep.

I have a mouth, but I am in a library and must not scream.

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Master of Realmslore

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The Sage
Procrastinator Most High

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The Sage
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Posted - 21 Feb 2008 :  18:04:44  Show Profile  Visit slay_4_pay's HomepageSend slay_4_pay a Private Message  Reply with Quote
I am aware of the various racial dialects, I'm talking specifically about human languages. So, someone mentioned Thorass and that made me remember a section in 2e FR box-set about languages in the realms. I went back and took a look. It mentions Alzhedo (the languae of Calimshan), High Shou (Kara-Tur), Midani (Zakhara), Mulhorandi (The Old Empires), Nexalan (Maztica), and Untheric (also Old Empires). This is helpful but does not completely answer my question. Also, I seem to remember that the different tribes of the far north, the Reghedmen and the Uthgardt have their own languages as well. But I could be wrong about that. Anyway, as was previously stated Common is a trade language, since it is a trade language it doesn't really seem plausible that it would be the native language of any one place. So my question still stands, What about the reast of the realms? Can anyone else shed any light on this, or I should I start digging through the old chamber stuff?
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The Sage
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Now discussing:

Is there a root language from which multiple Forgotten Realms languages were derived?

There are few rules of this kind in modern D&D; the game is designed to be easy to extend, but not to contain details that don't lend themselves directly to epic adventure (and never mind that several of Fafhrd and Gray Mouser's adventures stemmed from Mouser's ability to decipher ancient writings, after much puzzling).

One option I'd suggest for house ruling would be to look at real language similarity charts -- before there was Latin, or Greek, or even Hebrew, there was Indo-European, which ties together nearly every language currently spoken in Europe, the Middle East, and India. Hero System has a very good game-oriented language similarity chart, along with related rules that could be adapted without excessive effort. The language names are real, but it shouldn't be a major project to attach existing, real-world language families to hypothetical root languages like High Elven, Old Dwarvish, etc.

answered Jan 19 '17 at 18:28

Zeiss IkonZeiss Ikon

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