The Dinacoli tribe (Re: Sartar and the Far Pont tribes

From: Joerg Baumgartner (
Date: Thu 20 Mar 1997 - 10:05:26 EET

In Glorantha Digest 305 John Hughes aka wrote (among excellent stuff about North Sartar):

> The traditionally Sartarite Dinacoli tribe joined with Ironfist during
> Starbrow's Rebellion in 1613, and have since joined the Alda Chur
> Confederation. They are minor players, and do not share the Tarshite
> language. Nobody likes them much.

Partly true. The Dinacoli had been part of the Jonstown City Federation after initially being a common enemy of the Jonstown tribes (a detailed account of this in the Jonstown Guide - plug, plug). They were a Tarshite tribe with strong light worship, and they definitely speak a Pelorian Theyalan dialect.

Of 1621 they worship Yelmalio (Divination from Greg for scenario of mine set in a Dragon Pass, yet unpublished), but the usual questions about the Elmal/Yelmalio schisma may be asked for the period before.

WRT the Yelmalio cult and its screwed-up geasa: IMO the Dinacoli are a fine example case for the tribal Yelmalio worshippers. The Dinacoli have no formal files, nor are they soldiers, they are warriors. Living in the lush Donalf Flats makes them prime candidates for an "Orlanthi" horsemen's people, stressing all the special ties the Yelmalio cult has to horses - an aspect almost totally missing in Praxian Sun County (except in Melisande's Hand, about the only use for horse empathy a Praxian Sun Domer might be able to think up) or even in "Sartarite" Sun Dome County - actually on former Kitori lands, thereby nominally a part of the Holy Country, but a land grant from King Tarkalor (nobody, not even Tarkalor, ever thought of them as a Sartarite people, IMO).

Reading KoS it becomes clear that all the horse related stuff is from the Elmal cult elements ("married Ernalda's horse-loving daughter"; ever seen an Aldryami on a horse?).

For a horseman, all these "don't wear armour of this type" stuff still is detrimental, but not that silly - not any more than for Humakti. Especially for horse archer skirmishers, like the Bush Children of Dragon Pass boardgame - in WB&RM these were marked as originally Tarshite units, and their name indicates they come from the Bush Range above Dwarf Run, but the Dinacoli could muster at least part of this troop.

The vast majority of tribesmen won't be mounted, though - at least not in combat. I view them as similar to the Celts of northern Italy, who rode into battle, but formed their "ranks" on foot, to charge whatever enemy made the mistake to wait for their "furor".

An interesting question is how the cults of Yelmalio and Orlanth Rex combine in their chieftains and king - after all, as tribal kings of Sartar they perform Orlanth Rex "classified" rituals.

Nobody likes them much - quite true, I suppose. Their mastery of horsemanship and horse archery makes them very effective raiders for cattle, which hardly will earn them any friendship. The Darkness-worshipping Torkani have a special enmity towards the Dinacoli, but the other Jonstown federates had their share of trouble with this tribe until Saronil pacified them. Only their surprise entry into the Sartarite host after Grizzly Peak made them acceptable to the Sartarites, and that only for 31 years.

<rant mode off>

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