A lexicon for the World of Darkness
A staggering amount of terms, euphemisms and slang have been created
for use in the World of Darkness. This colorful and evocative language can
add enormously to your live roleplaying experience but it can be overwhelming
to a new Player.
The following is a collection of some of the terms employed in Atlanta
Interactive Theatre. Most Kindred educated competently by her Sire would
have at least a passing knowledge of these terms. Preference for terms varies
greatly from clan to clan and caste to caste. Older Kindred are often more
likely to employ archaic terms and flowery allusions while younger ones prefer
more novel terms and contemporary slang. There is a sharp distinction
between the words used by the Anarchs and those employed by elders. Using
the wrong word in the wrong circumstances is often considered a serious breach
Highly knowledgeable humans, ghouls and other creatures might also possess
this information. If in question confer with a Storyteller before making
V Vulgar Argot: Popular
slang terms of the youngest of the Kindred, many of which are considered
Anarchs by their Elders.
C Common Parlance: Contemporary
terms among Kindred and conservatively raised younger Kindred. Most
Kindred may have been exposed to these terms and concepts and accept
them in normal conversation
A Ancient Tongue: Old and elegant
terminology utilized by the Elder Kindred and those wishing to seek their
favor. Often considered stuffy and impractical by younger Kindred.
A | B |
C | D | E |
F | G | H
| I | J | K |
L | M |
N | O |
P | Q | R | S
| T | U | V |
W | X | Y | Z
V Alleycat: A vampire
who does not have a haven of any kind, but instead resides in a different
place each night. Also used to refer to those Kindred
who feed off the homeless and other street people.
C Anarch: A rebel among the
Kindred, one with no respect for the
Elders. Many of these Kindred
form radical Coteries dedicated to anti-organizational
activities. Some cross the line complete and join the
A Amaranth: The act
of devouring the lifeblood of another vampire. See
A Ancilla: A mature vampire. These
Kindred have proven themselves deserving of the full
right (and responsibilities) of the vampiric community but they have yet
to survive the travails and accumulate enough power to be considered
Elders. One who is not yet an Elder
but no longer a Neonate.
C Antediluvian: One
of the oldest Kindred, a member of the third generation.
These beings remain hidden from the world and are said to be the architects
of the Jyhad.
C Archon: Powerful agents
of the Justicars. They are usually dispatched to
maintain Camarilla rulership, track down fugitives,
and enforce the Traditions.
A Autarkis: A vampire who refuses to be part
of Kindred society and does not recognize the
Domain of a Prince.
V Banking: The practice,
most widespread among younger Kindred, of taking blood
from blood banks. Chilled blood so long removed from the body is less satisfying,
but some Neonates delight in entering a blood bank
and drinking to excess. This is seen by many Princes
as a breach of the Masquerade. A Banker is one
who makes frequent use of this practice.
C Barrens, The: The areas of a city that are
devoid of life, such as graveyards, abandoned buildings, industrial wastelands,
C Beast, The: An allusion
for the drives and urges that prompt a vampire to become entirely a monster,
forsaking all humanity and existing only to satisfy those drives and
C Becoming, The: The moment a mortal becomes
a vampire; the metamorphosis from Kine to
Kindred. Also called "The Change".
V Blister: A vampire who contracts an infectious
disease, and subsequently spreads it on to each donor from whom she
C Blood: The vampire's heritage. That which
makes a vampire a vampire. Or simply the actual blood.
V Bloodline: The
vampire's heritage traced through her Sire.
C Blood Bond: A mystic
state of servitude and extreme affection that occurs when one consumes the
blood of a Kindred on three distinct occasions.
V Blood Doll: A Vessel
that is regularly fed upon and has become quite addicted to the usually
pleasant sensation resulting from feeding. See
C Blood Kindred: The relationship between
vampires of the same lineage or clan. Analogous to the human term 'blood
C Blood Oath: The most potent bond that can
exist between vampires; the receiving of blood in an acknowledgment of mastery.
If this process is repeated the drinker will become mystically bound to the
feeder through the Blood Bond.
C Book of Nod: The "sacred"
book of the Kindred detailing their races' origins
and early history. Supposedly comprised of the words of
Caine and his Progeny. Though
never published in its entirety, fragments are known to exist in different
languages and collections
C Brood: A group of vampires gathered around
a single leader (usually their Sire or
Regnant); often a specialized form of a
Coterie. The original thirteen clans are Broods, after
a fashion, albeit scattered across the world and the millennia.
V Butterfly: One who mingles among the high
society of mortals, and only feeds upon the wealthy and the famous.
C Caitiff: A vampire
with no clan; often considered a derogatory term. A vampire can be caitiff
by birth (she does not belong to any of the recognized clans) or by deed
(ejected or forsaken by the clan that Embraced
C Caine: The supposed
progenitor of all vampires. Vampirism is said to be the curse set upon
him for the murder of Abel.
A Cainite: A vampire; a descendant of Caine.
C Camarilla, The:
A global organization of Kindred dedicated to maintaining
a rigid code of rules called the
A Canaille: The bulk of mortals, especially
that element of it that is the most unsavory and lacking in culture. See
A Cauchemar: A vampire
who feeds only on sleeping victims and prevents their awakening.
V Casanova: A vampire
who delights in seducing mortals but not killing them, and who takes only
a little blood, erasing the victim's memory of the event when she is finished.
There are rumors that the original Casanova was or is a vampire, but this
is not generally believed.
V Change, The: The moment
and the process of becoming a vampire. See Becoming.
C Childe: A term for young, inexperienced,
or foolish vampires. True Childer have no rights in
Kindred society until released by their
Sire after a period of education (see the
C Clan: A group of vampires who share certain
mystic and physical characteristics because they are descended from the same
C Coterie: A group of
Kindred who protect and support one another against
A Consanguineus: One of the same lineage
(usually a younger member).
A Cunctator: A vampire who avoids killing
by drinking shallowly and taking too little blood to kill the prey.
V Damned, The: The immortal,
undead race. All the vampires as a whole.
C Diablerie: The
cannibalistic behavior common among Kindred, involving
the consumption of the life blood of another vampire. Though despised among
the Camarilla, it is often employed to gain the power
of the consumed. See Amaranth.
C Domain: The fiefdom
claimed by a Kindred, most often a
Prince, invariably a city. See
V Donor: A potential or past source of blood,
typically a human.
C Elder: A
Kindred who has survived the tumultuous period of
power struggle and danger common to younger vampire. Although these powerful
being are often over 300 years of age they are merely entering a new arena
of competition and strife.
C Elysium: Among the
Camarilla these places are where
Kindred meet. They are often declared in such places
as galleries, clubs, theatres or other places of culture. Aggression is expressly
forbidden in these places.
C Embrace, The: The
act of being made into a vampire. Usually a mortal is drained of her own
blood to the point of death and then fed a measure of
V Farmer: A derogatory
term for a vampire who keeps animals for the purpose of feeding. See
V Fief: A sarcastic term
for the Domain or clan of a
C Fledgling: A young, newly created vampire.
A Footpad: One who feeds of the derelicts
and the homeless, and who frequently does not have a haven of her own.
C Gehenna: The impending
Armageddon hinted at in Kindred lore. This final war
between all vampires will supposedly take place when the
Antediluvians shall rise from the earth and devour
all their Progeny. Some even believe Gehenna to be
C Generation: The number of steps between
a vampire and the first vampire (rumored to be Caine).
These Progeny were the 2nd generation, their progeny
the third and so on. The youngest and weakest are 13th. Later generations
are rumored to exist but they are probably impotent and feeble.
A Gentry: A
Kindred who hunts the nightclubs, districts of ill
repute, and other places of entertainment where mortals seek to pair off.
C Ghoul: A servant created
by allowing a human to drink vampiric blood. Ghouls often have a small measure
of vampiric powers but are limited in many ways.
A Golconda: The state of being to which some
vampires aspire, in which a balance is found between opposing urges and scruples.
The slide into bestiality is halted, and the individual reaches some kind
of stasis. Considered a myth by most.
C Haven: The place where
a vampire sleeps during the daylight hours; generally a jealously guarded
V Head: A vampire who feeds upon those under
the influence of a drug so as to feel the effect. The term Head is used
with a suitable prefix if the vampire prefers a particular drug. See
V Headhunter: An Elder
who hunts other Kindred for their blood. See
Rogue and Diablerie.
A Humanitas: The degree to which a
Kindred still retains some humanity.
C Hunger, The: An aspect of The
Beast that drives Kindred to consume blood. Over
time The Hunger drives a Kindred to consume more and
more potent blood (animals, humans and then finally other
C Jyhad, The: The shadowy
war being waged among the Elders. In theory all the
Kindred and much of the world are merely pawns in
this ancient conflict that will climax with
C Justicar: One
of the seven representatives of the Camarilla selected
from each clan. These agents organize and assign the
Archons to carry out their will of the
C Kindred: A vampire.
Many Elders consider even this term to be vulgar, and
prefer to use a more poetic word such as Cainite.
C Kine: Mortals; the
descendants of Seth. Often used in opposition to Kindred. The expression
Kindred and Kine means "all the
world". Includes ghouls but not Lupines.
C Kiss: To take the blood
of a mortal, or the act of taking blood in general. The term refers to the
intense and, often, irresistible pleasure a vessel feels when fed upon by
A Lextalionis: The
code of the Kindred, allegedly created by
Caine. It suggests biblical justice; an eye for an eye,
a tooth for a tooth.
V Lick: A vampire. See
A Life, The: A euphemistic term for mortal
blood taken as sustenance. Many Kindred regard this
term as "prissy".
A Lineage: The bloodline of a vampire, traced
C Lupine: A werewolf,
a breed of shape changers who often clash violently with the
C Lush: A vampire who
habitually feeds upon prey who are under the influence of drink or drugs
in order to experience the sensations thereof.
A Man, The: The element
of humanity that remains in a vampire, and which strives against the base
urgings of The Beast. Rarely used.
C Masquerade, The:
One of the most central and important of the
Traditions. The effort to hide the existence
of Kindred from the mortals in order to prevent another
C Methuselah: An elder vampire who no longer
actively dwells among other Kindred.
These ancient and immensely powerful creatures either slumber in
Torpor or wage the Jyhad. Usually
4th or 5th generation.
C Neonate: A newly created
Kindred, often just released from her
A Osiris: A vampire
who surrounds himself with mortal or ghoul followers
in a cult or coven to better obtain sustenance. The practice is less common
than it once was.
A Papillon: The red-light
district; the area of the city made up of nightclubs, gambling houses and
brothels; the prime hunting ground of the city.
A Praxis: The right of
Prince to rule, as well as the rules, laws and the
customs enforced by a particular Prince.
C Primogen: The leaders of a city, or the
ruling council of the Elders. Usually composed of an Elder from each of the
represented clans in the city. Primogen usually impose a varying degree of
influence on the Prince of a city.
C Prince (m. or f.):
Among the Camarilla, the single
Kindred who lays claim to the
Domain of a city, administrating it and interpreting
and enforcing the Traditions. The
Prince's rulership can stem from support, personal
power, charisma or all of the above.
C Progeny: A collective
term for all the vampires created by one Sire. Less formal,
and less flattering, is Get.
V Rack, The: The hunting
ground represented by nightclubs, bars, and other places of entertainment
where mortals seek to dance, drink and pair off.
V Rake: One who habitually uses the Rack
is a Rake in vulgar argot; Papillon and
Gentry are progressively older terms for the same.
A Regnant: One who
has a Blood Bond over another
Kindred, through giving said
Kindred blood three times.
A Retainers: Humans who serve a vampire master.
They are generally either ghouls or mentally Dominated
by their vampire master. This control is sometimes so complete that the mortals
are unable to take any action of their own volition.
A Riddle, The: The essential dilemma of a
vampire's existence; to prevent the occurrence of greater atrocities, one
must commit evil deeds of a lesser nature. "Beasts we are lest Beasts
A Rogue: A vampire who
feeds upon other vampires, either out of need or perversion.
C Sabbat, The: An
organization of vampires in opposition to the
Camarilla. While the claim to support freedom and
internal loyalty, they are renown for their cruelty, inhumanity and evil.
V Sandman: A vampire who feeds only upon
sleeping victims. See Cauchemar.
C Sect: General name for one of the primary
groups among the Kindred, such as the
Camarilla or Sabbat. Other,
smaller sects probably also exist.
C Sire: The parent/creator
of a vampire, used both as the female and male form.
A Siren: A vampire who seduces mortals, but
does not kill them and takes only a little blood after putting the mortal
into a deep sleep.
V Slumming: The act of feeding from the homeless
and derelicts. A vampire who does so exclusively is a Slummer.
V Stalker: A mortal who hunts the
V Tease: A term sometimes
used for a female Casanova (q.v.).
A Third Mortal: Caine,
the progenitor of all vampires, according to popular
Kindred lore and the Book of
A Thrall: A vampire
who is held under a Blood Bond and thus under the control
of another Kindred. See
C Torpor: A deep, sleep
like state Kindred enter. It can occur after taking
grievous damage or among the oldest Kindred for periods
V Turf: The city or sections of a city that
vampires might try to claim for themselves. See Fief
The: A code of laws laid down by
theCamarillaupon its formation.
Kindred are held to strict obedience of these
laws and may be destroyed for violating them.
V Vegetary: A sarcastic
term for a vampire who refuses to take the blood of humans, but relies instead
on that of animals. See Farmer.
C Vessel: A potential
or past source of blood, typically a human.
A Vitae: Blood.
A Wassail: The final
release and the last frenzy. Wassail occurs when the last vestiges of humanity
are lost and a vampire plunges into madness.
C Whelp: A contemptuous term for any young
vampire; originally used only in reference to one's own
A Witch-hunter: A mortal
who searches for vampires in order to kill them.
A Whig: Name for a vampire who possesses
an obsessive interest in mortal fashions and current events.