In a world much like our own (basically, identical humans, points in history, etc) where humans live 80 or so years, we have developed a wide array of languages around the planet as well as very different accents in each language. In fact some accents are so different that it can actually be difficult to understand each other even if you are speaking the same words.

How would an immortal speak with his fellow human? Would he try and have an identical accent as to the current person he is talking to? Would he develop his own personal accent that sounds like none other? Would he retain the accent of his time and sound out of place to the people he talks to?

I would like to know how such a man/woman would be in this situation from different places in time such as:

  • The Stone Age
  • The Middle Ages
  • The 21st Century

How would these 3 different immortals from these 3 very different times converse with someone in the near future from us such as the year 3000?

How would they converse if they found each other?

The immortals are human in all but how they age, meaning: They are born normally. They grow and age normally until they reach their peak, like their mid twenties to thirties or what have you. Once they reach their peak they stop aging, their cell's are replaced as rapidly as they die, this does NOT include huge losses of cells such as limb loss, so if the immortal loses an arm or a leg, it's gone for good. They scar normally and they also can still get sick, though I would imagine that they would heal at a more rapid rate.

I haven't decided how I want their memory to be, I'm leaning closer to them remembering everything, however answers are more than welcome to assume they can't store everything indefinitely and will eventually start to forget things for good.

  • $\begingroup$ The language the immortal speaks would most likely change, so that would be a major factor. $\endgroup$
    – HDE 226868
    Commented Oct 16, 2015 at 0:57
  • $\begingroup$ Do the immortals live through time? So the stone age man was born first but he lives for thousands of years until the 21st century man is born etc..? $\endgroup$ Commented Oct 16, 2015 at 0:59
  • $\begingroup$ Correct, the immortals are human in all but aging. They were born in their respective times so the man from the stone age would be the oldest. $\endgroup$ Commented Oct 16, 2015 at 0:59
  • $\begingroup$ Are they open about being immortal? If they are trying to hide their lack of aging, I imagine they would rapidly pick up accents like we put on new clothes. $\endgroup$
    – Cort Ammon
    Commented Oct 16, 2015 at 1:53
  • 3
    $\begingroup$ From personal experience my accent in my mother tongue tends to track that of the people around me. I went to the USA and although the locals "loved my accent" when I returned to the UK I had a pronounced US accent which took a few months to fade. So I'd expect an immortal's speech to track that of the mortals around him. $\endgroup$
    – nigel222
    Commented Oct 16, 2015 at 9:05

2 Answers 2


It only takes a few years at most to learn a new language, and if you were present for the entire development of those languages, you would be fluent. Odds are that the first two immortals are fluent in nearly all languages, or at least on their continent, it really depends on if they moved. as for accent, I've developed an accent that isn't my natural one before from talking to people with that accent and that only took half a year or so, so odds are that the immortals accents are that of the people around them.

What also matters is their mindset, I they have accepted change (as thy probably have over thousands of years) then they will probably also act and talk generally like the people of the current age. The 21 century immortal may not have accepted change yet though, and may have the same mindset as the old man down the street who keeps repeating 'back in my day...' these kinds of immortals would probably speak in a more proper and formal way, preferring not to use slang and popular phrases.

Then there is their opinion of man, they most likely have one of three perspectives;

  1. they despise man and their inability to learn from there mistakes and selfishness,
  2. they believe they are higher than man and not a part of man,
  3. or they could enjoy the change and development of man over time, their achievements and learning up to this 3000AD.

That's a basic and bland summary but I hope it helps.

  • $\begingroup$ i tryed to focus on the two questions you proposed, being: 'How would these 3 different immortals from these 3 very different times converse with someone in the near future from us such as the year 3000?' and 'How would they converse if they found each other?' as well as the other smaller ones. i didnt think you wanted to know logistics of immortality $\endgroup$
    – XenoDwarf
    Commented Oct 16, 2015 at 2:56
  • $\begingroup$ no no, you seemed to understand what I wanted, another answer was making assumptions on what type of immortals they were supposed to be, I didn't think it would matter, but if it influences the answer than I thought it would be needed, so I edited the question to contain how the immortals worked more or less. $\endgroup$ Commented Oct 16, 2015 at 2:58
  • $\begingroup$ ok then im glad if i helped out anyway. $\endgroup$
    – XenoDwarf
    Commented Oct 16, 2015 at 3:00
  • $\begingroup$ What would be really fun is when 2 of these immortals converse with each other and possibly revert to talking in some ancient dead language that was an old favorite of theirs splicing in words from other languages, communicating thoughts and ideas that no single language through the ages had the proper variety of words to communicate :) $\endgroup$ Commented Dec 5, 2016 at 16:08

This is a difficult question to answer without making at least a few assumptions.

Immortal means you don't die, but how does this process actually happen;

  1. Cells die and are replaced with 100% efficency
  2. No cells die and no cells are replaced.

Each of these have issues; If all cells are always replaced then you can chop of an arm and it would grow back, making an infinite (and quiet disgusting) food source - and reading conservation of energy. If no cells ever die then what happens when you get shot, is your skin impenetrable? Etc.

I'm going to assume that we're somewhere between the two processes, closer to option 1. Our cells die and are replaced but some what slowly.

So my first point of concern is memory. Humans have a lot of storage in their heads, but it's not finite. If you don't use a language for a very, very long time it may become lost to you. This differs in the option 2 as once our brains have reached capacity we simply can't learn any more.

If we stick to option 1 a likely course of events is each immortal will easily be able to talk to their contemporaries but will eventually forget their earlier languages.

So a stone age man can certainly speak to our 21st century guy, but the stone age man could intentionally use an older language if he wished to cancel something from the 21st century guy.

Accents are a strange thing. You can pick them up almost overnight or never lose them after leaving home at age 8. However I would suspect the immortals would pick up a trick or two over the years when it comes to controlling their voice. Impressionist can make themselves sound like they're from Oz or Ohio, usually within the same sentence if they want to show off. Our immortals would likely be able to do the same; their 'natural' accent would probably be based around where they have spent the majority of their time over the last few years, but they could easily switch to another accent at a moments notice.

  • $\begingroup$ Thanks for answer, I added more details to the question to hopefully flesh it out a bit more and get rid of some ambiguity of the question. $\endgroup$ Commented Oct 16, 2015 at 2:50
  • $\begingroup$ "not finite" -> "not infinite"? $\endgroup$
    – Charles
    Commented Nov 11, 2015 at 19:57

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