High Roanian is the traditional language of the Roanians. Almost impossible for non-Roanians to speak, it relies heavily on body-language for context and moods.
Written High Roanian Edit
Standard High Roanian resembles a series of bars, with 'tone' indicated by the presence of small dots.
The above is the Standard High Roanian for Home, Ra (pronounced Rah). 'Hand' (calligraphic) High Roanian is left mostly to private items such as journals and notebooks, or some of the less accessible religious texts. As such, copies are extremely difficult to obtain. Few Roanians can read handwritten High Roanian, and even less can write it.
The bars, with the gaps, always indicate the same letters. The first arrangement in Ra will always be an 'R'. However, depending on the position of the dots the same set of bars can mean the home planet (Rai), fortress (Raa), or house (Rae).
While Standard High Roanian is in fact one of the easier languages to learn in the galaxy, teaching or attempting to teach a foreigner (any foreigner) is a crime under Roanian law, and works for galactic dissemination will always be in galactic standard. Roanians themselves are almost universally bilingual, capable of flipping through a newspaper in Galactic Standard as easily as one in High Roanian.
Spoken High Roanian Edit
Spoken High Roanian is very, very widely spoken throughout the Divine Imperium. Everywhere a single Roanian lives, someone speaks High Roanian. Even the allied races have picked up a few words. For all that, however, visitors will almost never hear a word spoken in High Roanian. Two Roanians could be deep in conversation, and if a foreigner comes within earshot and they notice they will almost instantly switch to galactic standard, sometimes in the middle of a word. The sole exception is, of course, if they're talking about the foreigner in question.
High Roanian is unusual, however, in that it is almost physically impossible for non-Roanians to learn it. Its reliance on the eyes and the dimming and brightening there-of would make it difficult for humans to take part in a conversation without the use of high-powered lamps and blinkers, a most unconvincing (and to the Roanians, insulting) substitute.
A short Roanian glossary Edit
(All these words have been used in the hearing of non-Roanians previously, though it's unsure to what extent the meaning is correct, considering the above contextual problems.)
A/Ai/Ahun Light (believed to be 'light' in a physical sense, such as a lamp, 'Light' in a spiritual sense, and a derivative meaning 'Light' in a personal sense, 'good', 'ethical'.)
Ceyn/Kyen Yes (could also mean 'no')
Cyen 'light', in a weight sense.
En No. (always means 'no'.)
laela (pronounced 'leilaeh') night, dark in a physical sense.
Lis Blessing, blessed, bless (contextual)
Mnynu Dark, in a spiritual sense (evil, chaotic). Almost unpronounceable for non-Roanians. (Y is a consonant here)
'Low Roanian' Edit
The fact that the Roanians themselves refer to their language as 'High Roanian' has led some in the past to posit another language, 'Low Roanian'. Such a language, it's surmised, would be the explanation for why Roanians themselves are unable to read the works of the Shadowlords without a desperate struggle for context and certainty. Low Roanian, according to these theorists, would be the language of Roanian magic and pre-Imperial Rudan.
Roanian Galstandard Edit
Alternatively, 'Low Roanian' might be a reference to the Roanian way of speaking galstandard, in which vowelsounds such as Ai and Ae are normally lengthened, vowelsounds such as I (in 'is', for instance) are shortened drastically, and L is normally very strongly intoned.