Thieves' cant

Just as it sounds, this is the secret language of the thieves, allowing them to encode hidden messages in seemingly normal conversation. It works with most languages but works the best with common as that is the language it is normally taught in. Thieves' cant is a fluid tongue, shifting and changing with each new generation to come, becoming more efficient and secretive.

While the verbal aspect of this speech is more fluid, the written symbols are on average pretty stagnant. They use the same base symbols to show houses that are guarded, warded magically, and easy pickings. The same symbols for magic houses, libraries, safes, rich houses, and places best not to take from. They even have several different symbols for houses and buildings that are already being cased or that belong to different thieves and their guild. These warnings either prevent unwanted rivalries or serve to ignite wanted rivalries.

Between differing guilds the fine points of this language shift and morph to fit their needs, but the base, as always, stays relatively the same. This is useful when other thieves need to both identify the original writer and decipher its meaning. These small differences serve as calling cards between the guilds.

Thieves' cant originally started out as a completely pictorial language, all the symbols being made from circles and lines in varying positions. As its commonality grew and it became more famous, its usage demanded more and so the language morphed to fit its needs. People began assigning words to the symbols, creating strange phrases to be pushed into normal conversations to let out secrets they don't want the common folk to pick up on. This verbiage shifted to match the region of where it originated but the original purpose stayed the same.
Root Languages


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