EGGWARE.XYZ: Worldbuilding June 2019 – Language

Xarcadia has been home to many languages in its time, but the Interzonal language is the common lingua franca. Interzonal is a semi-constructed language that was first designed sometime after the founding of Cosmopolis and is now the most widely-spoken language in the world. It is an extensive and complicated language that evolved from the pidgins first spoken shortly after the arrival of portals on Xarcadia; over time, the pidgins evolved into creoles and a council was established to guide the evolution of the language. Today Interzonal is spoken on some level by almost every person in the world.

Aside from speaking Interzonal, Xarcadians speak the native language of their zone as their mother tongue. Every zone has its own language which can vary wildly from each other. There are a few languages in common, such as the mutually intelligible Glacier Glades and Basaltic Summits languages, but for the most part each zone has its own unique grammar, vocabulary, and writing system.

What further complicates the language issue is the presence of thousands of dead, ancient languages. While the modern language map is a language for every zone and Interzonal, ancient Xarcadia was home to countless small languages that baffles historians to this day. The study of ancient Xarcadian history is a nightmare thanks to the overwhelming amount of untranslatable languages; decoding even a few fragments is a lucky break.

Strangely, many of these ancient scripts appear to have no direct connection to the modern languages. It is a struggle to find any form of coherent cross-zone etymology. It appears that the modern Xarcadian languages manifested on their own and pushed out all others.

With the rise of the Interzonal language, most regional languages have bent to accommodate innovations that were originally implemented in Interzonal. The writing system of Xarcadia is now based upon the system invented for Interzonal, as well as the tactile writing system for the blind. The Interzonal Sign Language, though convenient through sheer numbers, has massively crowded out zonal sign languages – some of which are on the verge of dying out. Some linguists worry that the influence of Interzonal will eventually lead to the loss of all other Xarcadian languages, resigning them to the same unintelligible history as the ancients.

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