Language and writing

So I am having a huge problem with Languages being used in a certain way and I wanted perspective.

What irks me is having a Greek of 6 or 7 to substitute and basically get away with not having to have a Attic or clasic Greek of 4 or 6 to read or write books. Now I grant you that you can speak with someone using the basic language modifiers are and such, but reading and especially writing I think you should be required to have the specific language.

If you have a Italian as a natural language, then spend xp to raise that to a 7... that cost you 65xp, which goes beyond the 50xp you would spend buying a Latin of 4. This deters people from simply being from Italy.

But Greece is different. Some takes Greek as a natural language. They have a 5 for free. Now to read magical text you need a 4 in Attic or classic Greek. But if you raise you natural Greek to 6, well you get an effective score of 4 in Attic Greek for 30xp. And then if you raise your Greek to 7 spending 65xp for an 75xp Ability.

Now if not simply because the XP abuse bothers me, but also a couple of observations. First WHERE the hell would you learn a Greek of 7. Second, simply because you can speak Italian or Greek really really well does not mean you know the grammar or alphabet of Latin or Attic or Doric Greek. Attic Greek and Macedonian have alphabets different from Greek... and even fewer letters for than matter and some of them even shaped and pronounced differently.

I am by no means a expert on these languages and as such I may well be hugely ignorant and mistaken, but something does not sit right with me in using the abilities this way.

Do others ever come across this and how do you use your languages in your game?

I was just looking at this the other day.

Sundered Eagle (p. 29) has it that with Romaic Greek of 6 you can read with an effective classical Greek of 4. It also states that to write in classical Greek, you must have the actual classical Greek language; no amount of Living Language: Romaic Greek will let a person write in Dead Language: Classical Greek.

So yes, a Theban magus can get by with only investing 30xp into Living Language: Romaic Greek instead of 50xp into Dead Language: Classical Greek, provided that he's happy to never write a book in the language in his life.

If such a magus doesn't have either Latin or Classical Greek, his master needs a slap and he's going to struggle. No writing is nasty: no tractatus for trade, no letters to friends, no lab texts that are readable by anyone else... ouch.

Ah thanks.

I had thought that not having the language would not allow you to write in it but I kept looking through the Sunder book and could not remember where I had read it. Then for some reason I looked through Ancient Magic which then totally got me lost :laughing:

This is what I wanted to see. So awesome, thanks.

But consider one thing, a major thing actually:

How do you find good sources to take language from 5 to 7?
I bet it is easier to find level 4 Summae for the new language!
Otherwise you're stuck with Practice or Exposure, unless you can find those rare teachers with so ludicrously high language skills.

you forget about tractati ...


Tractatus is Latin 5
Tractati is Latin 4


But you're right. I'm sure lots od poets wrote useless texts that can be used to learn a language. In fact, one might argue that any text in a language can be used to learn it (maybe with a reduced quality?)

Are there many grammar books on Attic Greek? I doubt it.


Presumably some - written by hermetic magi. They (and ther apprentices!) will need them.

Only as long as you can understand the text somehow. Otherwise i think any XP would be more likely to end up in "Profession Code and cryptomaster" or something... :mrgreen:

Well, despite my 5 years Latin in school my language skill is more to 1 than to 4 ...
And damn that u-declination!