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The various intelligent races of the Warhammer World speak different languages, and sometimes language can even differ within a race, as is often the case for humans. Languages are usuallyrepresented in writing with arcane symbols known as runes, which often also can have magical power.


Human languages:

Human languages, regardless of their origin, are often represented in-universe by modern spoken and written English.

  • Reikspiel is the language of the Empire of Man and is very similar in pronunciation and writing to modern German. Reikspiel is commonly spoken by merchants across the Old World regardless of their state of origin, due to the dominance of Marienburg - a former Imperial city - in the trade and commerce of the Old World.
  • Breton is spoken by the Bretonnians and is similar in pronunication and writing to modern French. In some ways it is reminiscient of Reikspiel since the Bretonnians' forebears were ethnically related to the human tribes that settled the Empire, but communication between the two is hard.
  • Estalian, similar in pronunciation and writing to modern Spanish and spoken by the people of the Estalian kingdoms.
  • Tilean, similar in pronunciation and writing to Italian, and spoken by the people of the Tilean city-states.
  • Kislevarin, spoken by the men and women of Kislev, and commonly also spoken in the northern parts of the Empire, particularly the provinces of Ostland and Ostermark. The language is similar in pronunciation, alphabet and structure to both Russian and Polish, as the nation of Kislev draws on both those real world cultures for inspiration. The nomadic Ungol tribes of the northern Oblast speak their own language as well.
  • Arabyan, possibly similar in pronunciation and writing to Arabic or other North African/Middle Eastern languages.
  • The languages of the Northmen. The human tribes of the north in the Old World and the Chaos Wastes - the Kurgan, Hung and Norscans - all possess unique languages. The Norscans most likely speak a language reminiscent in pronunciation and writing (if the Norscans are actually literate) to the Scandinavian tongues of Danish, Swedish and Norwegian, at least if one judges from the sound of their tribal names. However, all Northmen tribes also make use of the Dark Tongue of Chaos, primarily for ritual and/or religious purposes as they worship the Ruinous Powers as their chief deities.
  • It is likely that the Cathayans, the people of Nippon, the people of the Kingdoms of Ind and the people of Khuresh speak separate languages. These will most likely be similar to the languages of the real world nations their cultures were modeled on; for instance, in Cathay the people will most likely speak something reminiscent of Cantonese/Mandarin Chinese and in Nippon they will speak a language very similar to Japanese.
  • Ancient Nehekharan (see Undead further down the page).

Dwarf languages:

  • The Dwarfs speak Khazalid, while the written form of their language is known as the Klinkarhun (chisel-runes) and Aldrhun (old-runes). The magical runes inscribed by Dwarfen Runesmiths are distinct from the runes used in Dwarfen writing.
  • The Chaos Dwarfs speak a corrupted form of Khazalid.

Elven languages:


  • Halflings dwell in the province of the Moot in the Empire, and so speak Reikspiel just like their human neighbours.


  • Beastmen generally speak a corrupted and guttural form of the Dark Tongue of Chaos. This is a language that a sheep (with the proper intelligence) can learn, as some Beastmen lack proper speaking organs.


  • The main body of Greenskins, depending on their geographic location, tend to speak a gutteral and simplified form of the most common (and often simplest) language spoken in the area. In WAR and most Warhammer publications, this is represented as a corrupted pidgin form of modern English similar in pronunciation and accent to British Cockney slang.
  • The Savage Orcs speak a language consisting entirely of different intonations of the word WAAAGH!.


  • The Skaven speak a language known as Queekish. The language is spoken very rapidly and is almost incomprehensible to humans and the other intelligent races. Few Skaven are literate, but those who are use a script that resembles seemingly meaningless scratches made by rodents.


  • The Slann and Skinks speak a language of their own, but little else is known about it. This could be the language used by the fabled Old Ones. The Saurus and Kroxigor use grunts, shrieks, and roars to communicate, though they understand the language the Slann speak.


  • Ogres start life as unintelligent brutes and gradually take on the culture and sophistication of the people they are close to. For example; an Ogre who wandered in Araby may speak Arabyan. However, the Ogres themselves do have a common language - Grumbarth - which is notable for its array of terms relating to combat and eating and primarily spoken in the Ogre Kingdoms.


  • The Vampires take on the language of the place in which they live. And will also speak the language which they spoke before becoming a vampire.
  • The Tomb Kings and Liche Priests speak the ancient language of Nehekhara. Presumably this tongue is called Nehekharan or Ancient Nehekharan, and will be similar in pronunciation to the Hamito-Semitic languages in the real world like Ancient Egyptian or Coptic. Nehekaran also probably used a hieroglyphic writing system.

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