Planescape Torment Glossary
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
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 Cage."
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
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
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
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 most Cagers.
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
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 perspective).
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 Xaositects.
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 berk.
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 Dustmen.
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 faction member.
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 faction.
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
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 with.
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 another.
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 learned intellectual.
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.
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 Fated.
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
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 garnishing.
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 "well-lanned".
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
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
MADMEN, THE - Another name for the Bleak Cabal.
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
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 petitioners.
PLANAR CONDUIT - A wormhole-like connection that links two
layers of the same plane, or (rarely) two layers of two different
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 plane-touched.
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
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 with.
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 Mercy-Killers.
REVOLUTIONARY LEAGUE - A faction in Sigil that wants to
see all the other factions destroyed. Also called the Anarchists.
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 non-Cager.
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
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 Sensation.
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 Signers.
SINKERS - Another name for the Doomguard.
SOCIETY OF SENSATION - A faction that believes life's got
to be experienced to be understood. Also called the Sensates.
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 all.
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 War."
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- aligned planes.
VORTEX - A passage between an environ- mental extreme on
the Prime Material and the corresponding Elemental Plane.
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
YAWN, THE - The state of being bored: "This place gives
me the yawn."