ADDLE-COVE - A not-particularly
friendly way to call someone an idiot, as in, "Did you hear what that
addle-coved wizard wanted us to do?" Also a noun: "He's an addle-cove!"
ANARCHIST - Another name for a member
of the Revolutionary League.
ANTHILL - City or town.
ASTRAL CONDUIT - A wormhole through
the Astral Plane connecting the Prime Material Plane and the Outer Planes.
ATHAR - A faction in Sigil, also
called the Lost. Its members hold that there are no true powers. The local
priests would like to see them get lost (see "lost", below).
BANG AROUND - To hang around, or spend
idle time in. Between adventures, bashers sometimes "bang around the
BAR THAT - An almost-polite way to say
"shut up," or "don't talk about that." It's quick, to the point, and can
be used as a warning: "Bar that, Janos, there's Dustmen over there."
BARMY - Insane. As in, "The winds of
Pandemonium'll drive a body barmy if he stays too long." Barmies are
insane folks, especially those in Sigil, who've been "touched" by the
impossible bigness of the planes.
BELIEVERS OF THE SOURCE - A faction in
Sigil, also called the Godsmen. They believe that everyone's got the
potential to be a power.
BERK - A fool, especially one who got
himself into a mess when he should have known better.
BIRDCAGE - A cell, prison, or anything
that compares to it.
BLEAK CABAL - A faction with
despondent members and a view that says life is meaningless. Also known as
the Bleakers, the Cabal, and the Madmen.
BLINDS - The dead-ends of the Mazes,
it also means anything impossible or hopeless, as in, "He'll hit the
blinds if he tries lying to the factol."
BLOOD - An expert, sage, or
professional in any field. A champion gladiator can be a blood, as can a
practiced sorcerer. Calling someone a blood is a mark of high respect.
BOB - The business of cheating
someone, whether it's of their cash, honor, or trust. Good guides in Sigil
warn a cutter when someone's bobbing him. Thieves boast that they "bobbed
a leatherhead on the street."
BONE-BOX - The mouth, named because of
its teeth, fangs, or whatever. "Stop rattling your bone-box," is telling a
berk to lay off the threats or bragging.
BOX - A rogue modron that has taken up
residence in Sigil.
BRAIN-BOX - This slang refers to a
berk's head, usually in a crude or uncomplimentary way. "Go soak your
brain-box," is a common idiom, while "He banged his fool brain-box on it"
means a berk finally figured something (obvious) out.
BUB - Booze, wine, or ale - usually
cheap and barely drinkable.
BUBBER - A drunk, especially if he,
she, or it has fallen on hard times. Bubbers don't get any sympathy from
BURG - Any town smaller than Sigil, in
size or in spirit - at least that's how folks from Sigil see it. Other
bodies don't agree.
CAGE, THE - A common nickname for
Sigil, used by locals. It's derived from "birdcage," so it's a pretty
harsh judgment on the place.
CAGER - A native or resident of Sigil.
CANNY - Smart or talented.
CASE, THE - The house or place where a
cutter lives. Has a positive connotation as a nice or decent place.
CELESTIAL - An intelligent being
native to the Upper Planes. Includes aasimon, archons, eladrin,
guardinals, and more.
CENTER OF THE MULTIVERSE - A place
that doesn't exist; there is no true "center of the multiverse." No matter
where a body stands, he's at the center of things (at least from his
CHANT, THE - An expression that means
news, local gossip, the facts, the moods, or anything else about what's
happening. "What's the chant?" is a way of asking for the latest
information on a basher's heard.
CHAOSMEN - A nickname for the
CHIV - A weapon, usually something
with a blade.
CIPHERS - A nickname of the
Transcendent Order faction, used because most folks don't know what
they're talking about.
CLUELESS, THE - The folks who just
don't get it, usually primes. Use this on a planar and there'll likely be
a fight. Also an adjective, like calling someone a "clueless berk."
COLOR POOL - Portals on the Astral
Plane that give access to the Prime as well as the Outer Planes.
CONIES - Victims of the cony-catchers.
CONY-CATCHERS - Con-men, tricksters,
or thieves looking for someone to peel.
CROSS-TRADE - The business of
thieving, or anything else illegal or shady. "A cross-trading scum" is a
thief who's probably angered the Mercykillers.
CUTTER - A complimentary term that
refers to anybody, male or female. It suggests a certain amount of
resourcefulness or daring, and so it's a lot better than calling someone a
DARK - Anything secret is said to be
dark. "Here's the dark of it," is a way of saying "I've got a secret and
I'll share it with you."
DEAD, THE - Another name for the
DEAD-BOOK - A body in the dead-book is
dead. Some people have others "put in the dead-book."
DEADER - Anyone in the dead-book.
DEFIERS - Another name for the Athar.
DOOMGUARD - A faction in Sigil that
believes in entropy and decay. Also called the Sinkers.
DUSTMEN - One of the factions of
Sigil. They believe everybody's dead. Also called the Dead.
FACTION - One of the 15 philosophical
groups that rule Sigil.
FACTIONEER - A general term for any
FACTOL - The leader of a faction.
FACTOR - One of the factol's high-up
advisers or a body who's dedicated his life to the faction. Usually in the
highest position of power in a faction, and often considered for the job
of factol if the old one steps down or is otherwise removed.
FACTOTUM - A dedicated member of a
FATED, THE - A faction that holds that
if they've got something, it's because it belongs to them. This doesn't
always sit well with others. Also called the Takers or Heartless.
FEEDING THE WYRM - The act of
executing a prisoner. Specifically, a unique type of execution carried out
by the Mercykillers.
FIEND - Primarily refers to baatezu,
gehreleths, hordlings, tanar'ri, and yugoloths, but sometimes includes any
intelligent being native to the Lower Planes (night hags, imps, quasits,
and the like).
FRATERNITY OF ORDER - A faction in
Sigil, also called the Guvners. They believe that knowing physical laws
gives a cutter power over everything. Not the kind of folks to argue logic
FREE LEAGUE - A faction whose members
live their lives as they please, with no allegiance to others. Some folks
figure that makes them untrustworthy right there, but they're pretty
useful as mercenaries. Also called the lndeps.
GARNISH - A bribe, as in "Give the
irritating petty official a little garnish and he'll go away."
GATE - Another term for a portal. All
gates in Sigil are generally called portals. This term is also used in a
general sense to describe any sort of passage between one plane and
GATE-TOWN - A burg on the Outlands
that has a gate to another Outer Plane. Each plane has one gate-town, and
the town often has the same basic appearance, outlook, and attributes as
the inhabitants, architecture, and terrain of the corresponding plane.
GHOST - A prime who visits the planes
via astral spell. Since it involves little physical risk on the prime's
part, it's often considered cowardly and even distasteful by planars (the
prime hasn't even deigned to come to the planes with his actual body). The
term "cord babies" is also used, though less frequently.
GIVE 'EM THE LAUGH - To escape or
slip through the clutches of someone. Robbing a tanar'ri and not getting
caught is giving it the laugh.
GIVE THE ROPE - What happens to
condemned criminals who don't manage to give the law the laugh. Usually
thieves are the only folks who use this term.
GO TO THE MAZES - A idiomatic curse
meaning "go away" and wishing a terrible fate upon the berk as well.
GODSMEN - Another name for the
Believers of the Source.
GRAYBEARD - A sage or scholar. This
term refers to the stereotypical wizened old man but can apply to any
GREAT RING, GREAT WHEEL - The Outer
Planes, often depicted in maps and diagrams (which are often misleading)
as a ring. This also refers to their infinite size, another allusion to
the endlessness of a ring.
GREAT ROAD - A series of permanent,
always-active gates scattered throughout the Outer Planes. The Great Road
connects all the Outer Planes, although the gates themselves are so spread
out that it's said it would take many lifetimes to walk the entire Great
Road. A few of the gates are linked by paths, but most are not connected
in any way.
GULLY - A potential victim of a peel,
a gullible sod.
GUVNERS - Another name for the
Fraternity of Order.
HARDHEADS - Another name for the
HARMONIUM - A faction of the planes,
also called the Hardheads. Its slogan could be, "Do it our way or no way."
HEARTLESS, THE - Another name for the
HIGH-UP - Powerful. This refers to a
spell, position, or anything else with plenty of power that can
theoretically be measured. Also a person of money and influence. Factols,
for example, are high-ups. It's bad form to call one's self this; it's a
phrase others bestow.
HIPPED - Stranded. "Hipping the rube"
means stranding someone by sending him through a one-way portal.
INDEPS - The common name for members
of the Free League.
INNER PLANES - The Elemental Planes
(Air, Earth, Fire, Water), Paraelemental Planes (Ice, Magma, Ooze, Smoke),
Quasielemental Planes (Ash, Dust, Lightning, Mineral, Radiance, Salt,
Steam, Vacuum), and Energy Planes (Positive and Negative). They are planes
of elements and energy, as opposed to those of concepts and alignment.
JINK - The goal of the poor: money or
coins. "That's going to take a lot of jink!" means an expensive bit of
KIP - Any place a cutter can put his
feet up and sleep for a night, especially cheap flophouses in the Hive or
elsewhere. Also, to "call kip" is to make a place a body's home, at least
for a while.
KNIGHT OF THE POST, KNIGHT OF THE
CROSS-TRADE - A thief, cheat, and a liar - clearly not a
compliment unless, of course, that's what the basher wants to be.
LANN - To tell or inform. See
LEAFLESS TREE - The gallows, which is
where some berks wind up after they've been scragged.
LEATHERHEAD - A dolt; a dull or
thick-witted fellow. Use it to call someone an idiot. Also an adjective:
"a leatherheaded sod."
LOST - Dead. "He got lost" means he
ain't coming back without a resurrection.
LOWER PLANES - Also called the dark
planes, or nether regions - the Abyss, Acheron, Baator, Carceri, Gehenna,
the Gray Waste, and Pandemonium, the planes of evil alignment. Fiends
inhabit these dismal planes.
MADMEN, THE - Another name for the
MAZES, THE - The nasty little traps
the Lady of Pain creates for would-be dictators. It's also come to mean
any particularly well-deserved punishment, as in, "It's the Mazes for him
and I can't say I'm sorry."
MARK - To make note of something, as
in "Spies guard the portal and mark who comes and goes." To be marked is
to be identified, as in "That berk was marked as a Guvner."
MERCYKILLERS - A faction of Sigil that
believes in absolute justice. Also called the Red Death.
MINDER - A bodyguard. As in, "He's not
so tough, but there's a couple of minders watching over him."
MUSIC - A price a cutter usually
doesn't want to pay, but has to anyway. As in, "Pay the music, or you'll
never find your way out of here." Not a literal amount.
NAMER - Someone who belongs to a
faction in name only, paying lip service to its philosophy but not
dedicated to its principles.
NICK - To attack, cut, or strike
someone, often used in threats. It's also used to indicate inflicting
other injury upon a sod, such as stealing from him, as in "I nicked him
good, and got his chiv."
OUT-OF-TOUCH - Outside of the Outer
Planes. A body who's on the Elemental Plane of Water is 'out-of- touch.'
This vernacular comes from Sigil, which is considered to be the center of
the multiverse by those who adopted this phrase.
OUT-OF-TOWN - Like the phrase above,
this one's used by Cagers to describe a body who's on the Outlands.
OUTER PLANES - The Abyss, Acheron,
Arborea, Arcadia, Baator, the Beastlands, Bytopia, Carceri, Elysium,
Gehenna, the Gray Waste, Limbo, Mechanus, Mount Celestia, the Outlands,
Pandemonium, and Ysgard. The planes of concept rather than element.
OUTSIDERS - Clueless primes who don't
yet know how things work on the planes (and especially in Sigil).
PARK YOUR EARS - To eavesdrop, spy
upon, or just simply listen intently. "He parked his ears in the Hall of
Speakers to keep up with the very latest chant."
PATH - A means of planar travel that
requires actual physical movement. Commonly known paths include the rivers
Styx and Oceanus, Mount Olympus, the World Ash Yggdrasil, and the lnfinite
Staircase of Ysgard.
PEEL - A swindle, con, or trick. It's
often used as a verb. Peeling a tanar'ri is usually a bad idea.
PEERY - Suspicious and on one's guard.
What a basher should be if she thinks she's going to get peeled.
PETITIONER - A mortal who has died and
reformed on the plane of his alignment and/or deity without memory of his
former life. A petitioner's ultimate goal is to become one with the plane
he's occupying, although no one (not even the petitioner) knows the whole
dark of this.
PIKE IT - A useful, all-purpose rude
phrase, as in, "Take a short stick and pike it, bubber."
PIKE OFF - To anger someone, as in,
"Once he discovers he's been peeled, he's going to be really piked off."
PLANAR - Any being native to a plane
other than the Prime Material Plane. These are living beings, not
PLANAR CONDUIT - A wormhole-like
connection that links two layers of the same plane, or (rarely) two layers
of two different planes.
PLANE-TOUCHED - A planar crossbreed.
Any offspring of a planar native and a human. Tieflings are plane-touched,
as are aasimar and genasi. Alufiends and cambions are also considered
PLANEWALKER - A cutter who travels the
planes looking for adventure, jink, or glory - a plane-traveling
adventurer. Usually, to refer to someone as a planewalker carries a tone
of some respect, for such individuals are considered capable,
knowledgeable, and experienced.
PORTAL - A doorway allowing passage to
(and possibly from) another plane. These are always found in bounded
spaces like archways, and always re- quire a key. Also called gates.
POWER - A being of incredible might,
drawing energy from those who worship it and able to grant spells to
priests. Also called a deity or god. Someone a body shouldn't ever mess
PRIME - The Prime Material Plane or
someone from that plane. Also a single prime-material world.
PROXY - A mighty servant of a power -
usually a former mortal servant of that power.
RED DEATH - Another name for the
REVOLUTIONARY LEAGUE - A faction in
Sigil that wants to see all the other factions destroyed. Also called the
RIDE - An adventure, task, or
undertaking. As in, "What's the ride today, boss?"
RUBE - A naive or clueless person, but
not necessarily a prime. Sometimes this term's used to describe any
RULE OF THREES - One of the
fundamental rules of the multiverse: Things tend to happen in threes.
SCAN - Look, listen, or learn. "Scan
this, berk," can mean "listen up," "look at this," or "check this out."
"Scanning the chant" is learning the latest news.
SCRAGGED - Arrested or caught.
SCREED - A monotonous tirade, or
someone who gives one. If used to refer to a person, it means someone who
speaks at length without any real knowledge, or simply an argumentative
person. As in "Don't listen to him, he's just a screed."
SENSATES - Nickname for the Society of
SIGNERS - A faction nickname for the
Sign of One.
SIGN OF ONE - A faction whose members
figure that everybody is the center of his own universe. Also called the
SINKERS - Another name for the
SOCIETY OF SENSATION - A faction that
believes life's got to be experienced to be understood. Also called the
SOD - An unfortunate or poor soul. Use
it to show sympathy for an unlucky cutter or use it sarcastically for
those who get into their own rnesses.
SODDING - A derogatory term used to
stress magnitude. A "sodding idiot" is an amazingly stupid berk.
SPARKLE - Specifically a diamond, but
also any gem.
SPELLSLINGER - A wizard.
SPIV - An individual who lives by his
wits (rather than having regular employment).
TAKERS - Another name for the Fated.
THOUGHT GUILD - An unflattering
reference to a faction, used by those who don't believe in factions at
TOP-SHELF - Great or best, as in "The
really top-shelf pubs are all in The Lady's Ward."
TRANSCENDENT ORDER - A faction in
Sigil. The formal name for the Ciphers, who believe that the truest
responses occur when a body acts without thinking.
TUMBLE TO - To understand, figure out,
or find out something. A body better tumble to the dark of Sigil before he
bangs around on his own.
TURN STAG - To betray somebody or use
treachery. Saying "He turned stag" is about the worst thing that can be
said about a cutter.
TWIG - To take a liking to, as in,
"One particular deva twigged to the idea of interfering with the Blood
UNITY OF RINGS - The theory that
everything forms a logical ring or circular pattern of sorne kind, as
illustrated by the Outer Planes in particular.
UPPER PLANES - Arborea, Arcadia, the
Beastlands, Bytopia, Elysium, Mount Celestia, and Ysgard. The good-
VORTEX - A passage between an
environmental extreme on the Prime Material and the corresponding
WELL-LANNED - Connected, in-touch, or
otherwise blessed with numerous friends, allies, and informants.
WIGWAG - To chat or talk.
XAOSITECTS - A faction in Sigil.
Another name for them is the Chaosmen, which does a pretty good job of
describing their point of view.
YAWN, THE - The state of being bored:
"This place gives me the yawn."