Halfling Body Language Language in Seori | World Anvil

Halfling Body Language

Halflings are used to living and thriving in a world where almost everyone is much bigger than them. One of the primary ways halflings survive the big world is to form very tight cultural and familial ties. They are so in sync with each other, that they are able to express and understand complicated ideas hidden in the little twitches and shifts of their faces and bodies. While not able to convey such complex messages as verbal language, or even some other forms of sign language, halfling body language has the unique benefit of being almost totally unnoticeable by anyone who can't understand it.   While incredibly difficult for non-halflings to learn, it is possible, especially if taught while young. The Tealeaf sisters found significant success teaching their particular form of body language to the urchins and orphans of Boloxol during their early rise to prominence in that city's underworld. The ability to communicate silently, even while speaking with or listening to others was one of the most significant advantages their nascent operations had over others, gaining the sisters and their recruits the reputation for being psychic, or otherwise supernaturally intuitive. The Tealeafs don't discourage these rumors.   In its most simple form, halfling body language consists of meaningful looks, minute facial expression, and small gestures that can all be hidden among the usual twitchiness typically associated with halflings. Many scholars agree that the widespread use of the body language among halflings could be at least partially responsible for their reputation for being unable to sit still. Others point out that halfling adventures tend to be twitchy even without others who understand the language around, though.   More complicated versions of halfling body language exist, but they are not universally understood. Generally, though, different group of halflings can quickly learn the basics of each others more advanced languages, and, as such, halflings are one of the few races with no substantial language barrier between different groups. These advanced usages focus on subtleties in the common portions, ascribing meaning to small variations in signs. Examples exist of body languages that can express complex abstract ideas and use multiple tenses, although these are by no means common. There even exist records of halfling bards who composed epic poems entirely in body language, and performed them is interpretive dances, layering many meanings and implications over each other. These compositions are considered to be among the greatest examples of artistic expression in Seori's history, and yet are generally only comprehensible to halflings, and only those who are closely related to the artist will understand the full meanings.

Geographical Distribution

Halfling body language is an integral part of halfling life, especially among the larger peoples of the world, and as such, it is used throughout the world, where ever there are groups of halflings. There has been some adaptation and spread beyond the halfling community, especially among the members of thieves guild, who adapt certain elements into their particular codes and cants.


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Aug 19, 2023 08:42

I love the idea of halflings communicating with their bodies as much as their words. Especially seeing the language as something that can be taught to others and seeing it as a way to incorporate stories into dance intrigued me. Great work, thank you ^^