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Thorass, or Old (Auld) Common[5][4], was an old human language, the original trade language of Faerûn[5][6] and the direct ancestor of Common.[5][4]


Thorass was similar enough to modern Common that it could be directly translated into the latter language, though it would have a jarring form and archaic vocabulary. It had a base 10 numbering system.[5]


By the second half of the 14th century DR, few were literate in Thorass, with some exceptions in the southern parts of Faerûn.[5] For example, in Amn, as late as 1370 DR, all official business was still conducted in this archaic language,[7][1] and even its warriors were required to speak the language.[6] The dialects of Common used in court in Tethyr[8][1] and Erlkazar[9][1] had stronger influences from Thorass than elsewhere, and the city of Zazesspur maintained its own variety of the language as well.[1] Like in Amn, business in Durpar was often conducted in Thorass.[10]

Because the Shadovar who returned to Toril in 1372 DR were from an earlier time, some of them still spoke Thorass as a second language.[11]


An unknown scribe eventually developed a written alphabet for Thorass. While the language had almost fully died out from common use by the end of the 14th century, the alphabet survived and was used in languages such as Common, Chessentan, Rashemi, and Uluik.[4]


Thorass was thousands of years older than Common, having come about because of trade along the Lake of Steam from the early Calishites and Jhaamdathans.[12][2] It was thus derived from the ancient language of Jhaamdathan mixed with Alzhedo.[2] There was also a great deal of evidence that Thorass was derived in part from older incarnations of Jotun, the language of giants.[3]

It was classified as belonging to the Central Thorass subgroup of the Thorass group of Faerûnian languages.[1] Because it was derived from Jhaamdathan, Thorass was a cousin of modern Chondathan, since Chondathan was directly descended from Jhaamdathan.[13]


See Also[]


  1. 1.00 1.01 1.02 1.03 1.04 1.05 1.06 1.07 1.08 1.09 1.10 1.11 1.12 Thomas M. Costa (1999). “Speaking in Tongues”. In Dave Gross ed. Dragon Annual #4 (TSR, Inc), p. 28.
  2. 2.0 2.1 2.2 2.3 Reynolds, Forbeck, Jacobs, Boyd (March 2003). Races of Faerûn. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 85. ISBN 0-7869-2875-1.
  3. 3.0 3.1 Ray Winninger (September 1995). Giantcraft. Edited by Karen S. Boomgarden. (TSR, Inc.), p. 27. ISBN 0-7869-0163-2.
  4. 4.0 4.1 4.2 4.3 Ed Greenwood, Sean K. Reynolds, Skip Williams, Rob Heinsoo (June 2001). Forgotten Realms Campaign Setting 3rd edition. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 85. ISBN 0-7869-1836-5.
  5. 5.0 5.1 5.2 5.3 5.4 Jeff Grubb, Ed Greenwood and Karen S. Martin (1987). Forgotten Realms Campaign Set (Cyclopedia of the Realms). (TSR, Inc), pp. 8–9. ISBN 0-8803-8472-7.
  6. 6.0 6.1 John Terra (February 1996). Warriors and Priests of the Realms. Edited by Steven E. Schend. (TSR, Inc), p. 56. ISBN 0-7869-0368-6.
  7. Steven E. Schend (August 1997). “Book Two: Amn”. In Roger E. Moore ed. Lands of Intrigue (TSR, Inc.), p. 4. ISBN 0-7869-0697-9.
  8. Steven E. Schend (August 1997). “Book One: Tethyr”. In Roger E. Moore ed. Lands of Intrigue (TSR, Inc.), p. 5. ISBN 0-7869-0697-9.
  9. Steven E. Schend (August 1997). “Book Three: Erlkazar & Folk of Intrigue”. In Roger E. Moore ed. Lands of Intrigue (TSR, Inc.), p. 2. ISBN 0-7869-0697-9.
  10. Tom Prusa (1993). The Shining South. (TSR, Inc), p. 58. ISBN 1-56076-595-X.
  11. Richard Baker, James Wyatt (March 2004). Player's Guide to Faerûn. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 14. ISBN 0-7869-3134-5.
  12. Reynolds, Forbeck, Jacobs, Boyd (March 2003). Races of Faerûn. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 82. ISBN 0-7869-2875-1.
  13. Reynolds, Forbeck, Jacobs, Boyd (March 2003). Races of Faerûn. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 86. ISBN 0-7869-2875-1.