According to the 5e Player’s Handbook, p123, Deep Speech is the language spoken by mind flayers and beholders. That’s it, that’s all the information we get on this language. What else can we glean from the official sources about this language.

First, speaking more broadly, deep speech is the language of aberrations. Start spawn, neogi, psurlons, aboleth, and other beholderkin are speakers of this language. Most of these things have a mouth, and many of the ones that don’t either can only understand the language or are telepathic.

The current player’s handbook also lists no script for this language. The 4e Forgotten Realms Players Guide states that the drow were the first to document this language. This is as a result of their close proximity to the mind flayers in the underdark.

I like to think that, given the body plans of creatures that speak this language it must involve a larger amount of gesture than most languages we think of. Tentacles and extra limbs are the norm for aberrations. The also tend to have rather unusual mouth-parts.

The hardest part of speaking Deep isn’t all the hissing and gurgling. It’s all the gesture meant to be made with tentacles. Bony human fingers just weren’t made to coil and squiggle like the tentacles of a mind flayer or a star spawn…

-Voivode Kohoutek

Who Speaks Deep Speech?

Creature Type CR Source Page
Aberrant Spirit Aberration Unknown TCE 109
Aboleth Aberration 10 MM 13
Aboleth Spawn Aberration 5 CRCotN 135
Alhoon Undead 10 MPMM 43
Alhoon Undead 10 VGM 172
Alyxian Aboleth Aberration 12 CRCotN 195
Balhannoth Aberration 11 MPMM 55
Balhannoth Aberration 11 MTF 119
Beholder Aberration 13 MM 28
Beholder Zombie Undead 5 MM 316
Belashyrra Aberration 22 ERLW 286
Berlain Shadowdusk Aberration 12 WDMM 283
Bodytaker Plant Plant 7 VRGR 226
Captain N'ghathrod Aberration 8 WDMM 250
Cassiok Shadowdusk Aberration 12 WDMM 287
Choker Aberration 1 MPMM 76
Choker Aberration 1 MTF 123
Chuul Aberration 4 MM 40
Cloaker Aberration 8 MM 41
Core Spawn Crawler Aberration 1 EGW 286
Core Spawn Emissary Aberration 6 EGW 286
Core Spawn Seer Aberration 13 EGW 286
Core Spawn Worm Aberration 15 EGW 287
Cosmic Horror Aberration 18 BAM 18
Death Kiss Aberration 10 MPMM 85
Death Kiss Aberration 10 VGM 124
Death Tyrant Undead 14 MM 29
Dolgaunt Aberration 3 ERLW 290
Dolgrim Aberration 1/2 ERLW 291
Dyrrn Aberration 24 ERLW 288
Elder Brain Aberration 14 MPMM 120
Elder Brain Aberration 14 VGM 173
Elder Brain Dragon Aberration 22 FTD 194
Eldritch Lich Undead 15 MCV1SC 6
Eye Monger Aberration 10 BAM 21
Eyedrake Aberration 8 FTD 199
F'yorl Aberration 0 IDRotF 183
Gauth Aberration 6 MPMM 133
Gauth Aberration 6 VGM 125
Gnome Ceremorph Aberration 5 IDRotF 303
Gnome Squidling Aberration 1/2 IDRotF 303
Goon Balloon Aberration 1/8 MCV1SC 9
Grazilaxx Aberration 7 OotA 29
Illithilich Undead 22 VGM 172
Intellect Devourer Aberration 2 MM 191
Lorthuun Aberration 9 OotA 141
Melissara Shadowdusk Humanoid 12 MM 281
Meloon Wardragon Humanoid 9 WDH 210
Mind Flayer Aberration 7 MM 222
Mind Flayer Arcanist Aberration 8 MM 222
Mind Flayer Psion Aberration 8 VGM 71
Mindwitness Aberration 5 MM 181
Mindwitness Aberration 5 VGM 176
Mr. Dory Aberration 10 GoS 246
Neh-thalggu Aberration 4 BAM 39
Neogi Aberration 3 MPMM 192
Neogi Aberration 3 VGM 180
Neogi Master Aberration 4 MPMM 192
Neogi Master Aberration 4 VGM 180
Neogi Pirate Aberration 3 BAM 41
Neogi Void Hunter Aberration 4 BAM 41
Nerozar the Defeated Undead 5 MM 52
Nihiloor Aberration 7 WDH 212
Podling Plant 1/2 VRGR 227
Psurlon Aberration 2 BAM 44
Psurlon Leader Aberration 6 BAM 45
Psurlon Ringer Aberration 1 BAM 45
Reduced-Threat Aboleth Aberration 10 TftYP 113
Reduced-Threat Beholder Aberration 13 TftYP 113
Reigar Celestial 8 BAM 47
Skum Aberration 5 GoS 254
Spectator Aberration 3 MM 30
Star Spawn Grue Aberration 1/4 MPMM 227
Star Spawn Grue Aberration 1/4 MTF 234
Star Spawn Hulk Aberration 10 MPMM 227
Star Spawn Hulk Aberration 10 MTF 234
Star Spawn Larva Mage Aberration 16 MPMM 228
Star Spawn Larva Mage Aberration 16 MTF 235
Star Spawn Mangler Aberration 5 MTF 236
Star Spawn Mangler Aberration 5 MPMM 229
Star Spawn Seer Aberration 13 MPMM 230
Star Spawn Seer Aberration 13 MTF 236
Ulitharid Aberration 9 MPMM 249
Ulitharid Aberration 9 VGM 175
Vertrand Shadowdusk Humanoid 12 WDMM 282
Whistler Aberration 9 JttRC 221
Xanathar Aberration 13 WDH 220
Xazax the Eyemonger Aberration 13 OotA 142
Zalthar Shadowdusk Undead 17 WDMM 286
Creature Type CR Source Page

What’s Next?

Learn more about how to price magical items from the Arena Gnomes at the Coliseum Market, and maybe learn about how to make a token for yourself. Or, maybe head over to Amazon and buy some cool stuff and support the DungeonSports Coliseum. For the Dominus!

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