Playing with Language – Intro, or The Noctuinad

I love words. Language, varying languages, dialects, translations, and etymology as a whole.I have an English degree and I’m fluent in English (duh), at a speaking-level in Polish, and have a passing knowledge of varying words in a dozen other languages from Spanish to Japanese. This helps with the whole writing thing 🙂

And in more ways than just the obvious. Sometimes I use specific names, the meaning behind words, or what words can mean for certain people in my work (this isn’t of course just me, many writers and artists do this). Some of the time this is on purpose, while other times I realize the meaning only after I’ve already chosen a name and go with it.

(Now, a few of these first ‘Playing w/ Lang’ entries are probably going to be repeats of stuff I’ve mentioning before. Mostly because I can’t remember exactly what I’ve said already, but also because I want it all filed officially with categories [I keep forgetting to use them aside from with the Scenes]. As I’m writing this I realize I could also probably do a similar ‘Playing with Mythology’ where I expand on the varying legends, myths, religions, and miscellaneous inspirations for my world and magic.)

I’m fairly bad at naming places. I love naming people (shout-out to!), but places are always hard for me. Which is why I kinda cheated with naming my world and realms: I looked through random scientific names for animals, plants, and insects and picked the pretty ones. Rarely I took into consideration what the Greek or Latin name might mean. For some things it doesn’t matter, for others it might be amusing in hindsight, and some things were just so perfect after I realized the meaning I’m a little embarrassed to confess it was an accident.

First thing’s first: The world
Noctuina as a name I picked mainly because of the beginning of the word, ‘Noct,’ meaning night. I’ve always loved the darker side of fantasy and I wanted to imply and showcase that my world would involve that. In reality it is a subtribe of a type of moth.

So why is my blog The Noctuinad? Now, I confess here I’m not sure I did use the suffix entirely right, but the idea was to add the Greek ending -ad “meaning “derived from,” “related to,” “concerned with,” “associated with” ( oread), introduced in loanwords from Greek ( Olympiad; oread), used sporadically in imitation of Greek models, as Dunciad, after Iliad” (

Mine would fall into the “used sporadically in imitation of Greek models” part.

With realms I did similar.

Clandestina actually has a fairly obvious meaning that I totally blanked on when picking it. It just looked ‘pretty’ and ‘right’ to me. Only later on did I realize it’s related to the word ‘clandestine’ meaning hidden or secret (especially if the activity of thing is illicit). Works well between the fée and necrocræft going on in the realm.

But those terms are entries for another time. Right now I’m going back to the Scene (which has its own variation of a Slavic word, hence me thinking about Playing with Language in the first place) and Delphinium. If I get bored tonight I may do another quick Playing with Language specifically about Larkspur. I put a few ‘clever’ things in there.

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