Whatziz Language in Island Inquest | World Anvil

Whatziz (watz-zis)

Whatziz is the language of most of the written information written during the shattered History of Island Inquest and was purged from History and the Minds of Men on Last Day of the Great Order

It is as much a single language as it is a generic term for all languages from that period, as keeping them apart is nearly impossible.


Whatziz as a descriptor for the old language was coined by Scientists and Historians asking each other repeatedly: "What's this?" which, over time, was shortened to the Name commonly used today.

As comprehending one language or perhaps many languages while Magic is doing it's best to eradicate (or keep eradicated) all understanding a person has gained about it, is quite a tiresome task, has made the generic term of Whatziz stick.

Cultural relevance

The documents of the shattered History exude a quite unique charm of something forbidden and also mysterious. While figures such as the Storyteller repeatedly warn about researching their content further, there are just as many demanding a satisfactory conclusion that never seems to be reached.

One reason for the sorry state of the overall research is of course the practical complications any researcher has to overcome through guile and skill.

Overcoming Magic

The common historic Study is a round Room with a central lectern that is surrounded by as many writing desks and places for scribes to sit as possible. The task at hand is to use written vocabulary and grammar lists to decipher the text, shouting any success, and may it be only a single word, to the scribes. The scribes will try to quickly write down whatever they hear to capture the new information before Magic can intervene.

After long and tiring recording sessions, other teams of scientists take the collected notes and, through cross-referencing and comparison, try to decipher which random word or small sentence might be correct.


It's often hard to comprehend the lengths to which invested scientists are willing to go in an attempt to wrestle even the smallest bit of information from the old tomes and ledgers, which opens any studies to frequent critique and perhaps undeserving negative commentary.

A common point of dissatisfaction is that the quality of the created work is hard to appraise and quantify. Quite frequently full books on the topics that were regarded as completed have to be fully revised or discarded as something not much more worth than fabricated data.

The counter-argument to this is the notion that only through regular tests and approval processes, can the quality of new translations be guaranteed, which is, again, a hard to grasp logic conclusion for the average citizen.

Writing System

At least the used symbols and writing implements haven't greatly changed from the old times to now, making it easy to consume texts and records.

Geographical Distribution

Whatziz and its local variants were the lingua franca of Inquest until the Last Day of the Great Order. Documents and Records written in it can be found all around the Island.


Common Phrases

Some word combinations seem to have survived the purge of Knowledge and can be easily translated:

Frustrated outcry about a preventable minor accident such as dropping a pen or wiping a mug from the table
Now Continue with haste; usually said to command a child to bed
Verbal comment about receiving work that is not preferred by the individual
hoowerkraft eel
Generic Statement to the effect of generally not understanding another individual

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