“The limits of my language mean the limits of my world” – Ludwig Wittgenstein
Elves have been a staple of fantasy roleplaying games for ages beyond those many of us today have witnessed. Through the years, so many mystical elements have been both uncovered and attached to them that it is no wonder why they hold a special place in the hearts and minds of us roleplayers.
Paramount to successfully roleplaying an elf where they exist in today’s MMORPGs is knowing at least a portion of their language. From simply knowing a common greeting to being able to carry on full conversation will do wonders for your roleplaying, both in the eyes of your fellow roleplayers and in your own mind.
I don’t think it’s too far a stretch to say that, if it were not for J.R.R. Tolkien’s creation of an elvish language very early in his philological career, which led him into writing The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings, roleplaying and RPGs would not exist as they do today, or may not even exist at all. It would take someone who has thoroughly studied Tolkien’s languages for a solid four years at any of the worlds’ best universities to better explain his work, and I am not that person. All I can do is provide you with a few links to web resources I think roleplayers should know and refer to often.
The Elvish Linguistic Fellowship
“The Elvish Linguistic Fellowship (E.L.F.) is an international organization devoted to the scholarly study of the invented languages of J.R.R. Tolkien .”
Two elven player-character races exist in the World of Warcraft canon, each with their own language. Here are links to help your RP language with Darnassian (Night Elves) and Thalassian (Blood Elves).
Of course, Dungeons & Dragons has elves. Their language is based heavily off Tolkien’s work, as with probably every iteration of elvish created since his time. Sadly, though, I could only find the following quality links regarding their language. There needs to be many more.
Just to add in another elven genre, here are a couple links to elven speech relating to that race as it is known in Warhammer Online. Good stuff!
Finally, the following links are general entries pertaining to elven speech. Good for all-purpose use or if you are inspired to create your own elven language.
Racial speech is a very quick way to identify yourself as a roleplayer, and the positive and fun effects it can bring to your game time is immeasurable. Plus, unless you are playing a MMORPG based in the 21st century of today’s real life as we know it, all roleplayers should be speaking in game in the language of their avatar. Please send your favorite elven language links to me at rolecraft AT gmail DOT com. Role on!
Roleplayers! Have you taken The RoleCraft Roleplayers Survey? I’m just attempting to broaden my basic knowledge of rolepayers and those who read RoleCraft. You can find it at (http://www.misterpoll.com/polls/346190). Would you please take a few minutes and participate? Thank you!