‘The Archaic language is a collection of runes and symbols that are subtle reminders to those who know it, of the sounds, the shapes, as well as the thoughts or ideas they represent. Not sound nor neither shape nor thought alone will suffice. All components are required for the complete Archaic word or whole idea.
A moderately clever and imitative man might learn the sounds, or even reproduce them with high precision in some fashion, and still never see a flicker of magic. Why? The corresponding thought is not in his head at the exact time he utters the sound, nor is he likely to have with him the right materials, if required, or hold them in the right positions, or even position his body in the right way, for even the body itself, with its intricate paths of chi and flowing rivers of life’s energy may form the right material, patterns, shapes, or essential components of the Archaic tongue. This language was not, is not, and never will be about mere sounds. It’s far more encompassing than that, and it’s all terribly complex. Even a clever man, taught by another clever man already well versed in the Archaic tongue, might take years of study and practice and merely begin to get it right.
But once they begin to grasp the connection of sound and idea, of material and position, once it takes hold, once it starts to work for them, look out. Each success burns its pathway into the brain, making a home for the proper thought of the correct shape, establishing the proper memory, giving the brain a clearer image of what works – for it has worked – they know it worked – it does work – they saw it work – and the certainty it will work again is not to be underestimated should they wish to reproduce the effect.
After someone gets the gist of it, they can only get better at it. So they practice this language, they practice these little cantrips in the Archaic tongue. It may have taken years to achieve this level of understanding, but now that they are there, if they continue to work hard, they may go far. The more fearful amongst the masses often suspect they may go too far, but that’s another story.
Yet there is an awful lot of it, this Archaic tongue. More than the gods know. It is part of the universe, after all, an aspect of the whole of all creation, a fundamental part of a macrocosm of grandeur and majesty beyond the realm of complete mortal understanding. Even ancient dragons still marvel at its intricacies, and long-lived elves are eternally fascinated by it. Suffice it to say – given its voluminous nature – it’s handy to write it down, what little you do know of it.’