Aeai Language in Ethnis | World Anvil



Aeai (pronounced AY AY) is the oldest living language in Ethnis, with a history reaching back over 15,000 years. It is most commonly spoken among the Verin, though by sheer prevalence appears within non-Verin spaces as well.

From The Accounts of The Adventines

Even through the chorus of chaos thronging throughout the streets of the western midtown of Drat'n Metkrah, I heard a language which flowed and sang in all the ways which Sazasharanare struggles to.

At first, I mistook them for a street performance. A group of friends, all Verin, traveling together, seeming to sing to one another. It was only once they caught me staring and pulled a confused and excited face (I must be the first human they ever saw), that I realized that it's just how their language sounds.

"What language was that?" I asked our guide.

"Aeai," she said, before diverting my attention back to the museum looming ahead of us. "You can learn about that later. Aren't you here to learn about Aempis' many conquests, first?"

Adventine Sal Ritter
3rd Aempis Envoy, 2209 ES

Linguistic Predisposition

(Following the concept of Linguistic Relativity)

Aeai is an ancient tongue revised over thousands of years. It has numerous dialects and children, making it easy to discern someone's age by the linguistic standards they adhere to.

With a robust lexicon, countless adjectives, and complex conjugations, it's a linguistic rabbithole that lends itself to digging into a topic.

Birthright speakers tend to be a bit more deliberate and detail oriented, sometimes to a fault.

There's a reason I switch back and forth between languages in my work, and why all my most important dialogs are written in Saza, Ubiq, and Aeai with Pheraeai subsections: clarity.

It adds time, but history has shown us how badly translators can misinterpret an original work in translating it poshumously. I will not stand to have my postulations and precepts bastardized so easily by time.

Hierus Nomen
Philosopher, Author, Orator, Monolith

Relative Fluency

If you do not speak Aeai, but you do speak another language, you have some relative fluency, and can understand Aeai about as well as described below. If you do not speak any of these languages, Aeai is gibberish to you.


If you know Sazasharanare, you can grasp the basics of spoken language, such as what the subject is.

You understand gesticulations, but written word, idioms, and art are all lost on your remedial understanding of Aeai. You cannot speak it.

1 degree easier to learn

Saza is not pretty coming from the mouth of a native Aeai speaker. It makes them sound so cold. Aeai is a tonal language, but not in the same way Saza is, so most emotional affect is lost entirely.

Pair that wih how expressionless some Verin seem to make a habit of being, and you get a hint of why Saza and Aeai nations frequently butt heads.

— Sal Ritter


If you know Pheraeai, odds are that you already know Aeai. If somehow you don't, however, you find it an intuitive, albeit coarse language.

All aspects of Aeai are easy to grasp, but your communication is slow and halting and important descriptors are easily lost.

2 degrees easier to learn

The priestess, somehow, did not speak Aeai. She spoke to one translator, who translated it into Aeai for the next translator, who translated it to our guide in Saza, who finally translated it to us.

It was translated to me from our translator, whose native tongue is Spanish and whose English is basic. The length of each leg of translation varied widly, I can only guess at what rich details were lost.

It's a bit heartbreaking.

— Sal Ritter

If you do not know any of the above languages, Aeai is unintelligible gibberish.


Root Languages and Successor Languages are the languages which Aeai is adjacent to.

If you speak an adjacent language, learning Aeai is easier. Refer to the relative fluency section to determine how much easier it is.

Root Languages
Successor Languages

Communication Modifier


Haimarchy Majority
Sorrows Common
Pact Common


Letter Example As In Tongue
Ae Ay Faerie Center
A Ah Hat Center
BP B/P Subpar Center
EA Yuh Shut Center
O Oh Row Center
Ch Tch Cherry Roof
S Ss Snake Roof
Ph F Fire Low
L L Law Roof
R Err Hurrah Center
N N Nail Roof
D Dd Murder Roof
U Ew True Center
I Aye Eye None
Ei Ay Faerie Center

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Please Login in order to comment!
2 Dec, 2020 01:32

I love the quote by Hierus Nomen. If only everyone thought like him!

Emy x   Etrea | Vazdimet
5 Dec, 2020 18:59

He's one of the famed philosopher's of the setting, quoted even hundreds of years after his death. Someday he'll get his own stories!

Check out my summercamp by going here and checking out any of my gold-star articles!

8 Dec, 2020 12:48

Great use of the examples in the phonetics chart on this - it made it easier to understand :D

Creator of the dark fantasy world of Melior
12 Dec, 2020 18:19

I'm glad you are here to cover the languages cause my god, this is great!

Psstt... Hey you... Wanna read some of that Ethnisy Summer Camp goodness? Hit up my worldbuilding in the Ethnis Universe!
The Starred articles are my favorites!
13 Dec, 2020 14:03

This is probably the first time I actually understood anything when reading a detailed article about a language. That Hierus Nomen sounds like a great guy, love the sound of him.

Creator of Arda Almayed
31 Jan, 2021 00:49

I wanted to lean away from the standard conglang fare when creating this, as those are mostly accessible only to other conlangers. Instead, I wanted to focus on the experience of speaking these languages.   I'm glad you liked!

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8 Jan, 2021 19:10

I have an interest in the concept of linguistic relativity, so that drew my attention immediately. This concept is part of the Canadian national conversation among academics, because we are a bilingual country, and this influences culture as well as conversation. I know enough French to think the idea has merit; there are words in both languages that simply don't fully translate either way.   Tonal languages are also really interesting. This is a concept I didn't really grasp until I did the conlang challenge, but understanding it, it's easy to hear in some Asian languages.   I have some questions. One is -- how "tonal" is this? It's described as being "musical." Is it a matter of literally hitting certain musical tones? The languages that I'm passingly familiar with that are tonal sound, to the native-English-speaking ear, like child rhyming sing-song in its tonal changes; not exactly musical, but poetic, perhaps. Is this *literally* musical?   My second question is -- is there a dictionary for this? You seem to have all the hallmark elements of a fully-developed language here, and developing a rudimentary dictionary from this information would be simple. I can understand if you chose to hold off including it in the article until later; it's why I chose not to do a language article, because the last time I did, my dictionary was 4500 words on its own, never mind the article text. But I would be interested in seeing that dictionary in the future, if it exists.   Thanks for a really interesting read!

Author of the Wyrd West Chronicles and the Toy Soldier Saga. Mother of Bunnies, Eater of Pickles, Friend of Nerds, First of her Name.
31 Jan, 2021 00:59

There is a WIP dictionary, but it's going to be a while before I publish it as I personally avoid focusing on the parts of a language that are anatomical rather than cultural—most of that level of conlang is only of interest to other conlangers, and I consider conlanging to be more of an incidental part of Ethnis rather than a focus.   That said, the model of tonal I have in mind is that it's literally musical! Their alphabet song is sung as a scale of 14 or 15 notes, and the language sounds poetic, if not downright musical. How far I want to take that will be determined by deeper dives, but a poem and a song should sound one in the same!

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