[Glorantha]Pelaskos and Karse

From: Joerg Baumgartner <joe_at_toppoint.de>
Date: Thu, 30 Sep 2004 17:44:28 +0200 (CEST)

Sorry, premature reply button syndrom...

Jane Williams

>> There's tribes and Tribes. The four great Tribes (Volsaxi,
>> Jondalarings, Hurlant and Esvulari) are subdivided into
>> smaller groups which are called
>> (surprise...) "tribes" rather than superclans.

> Unless they're literate, the lower-case/upper-case distinction will be a
> bit difficult to follow.

I know...

> I'm all in favour of authentic confusion, but won't this make it a bit
> hard for us non-natives?

Exactly my feelings on the subject. However, google for "hendriki" and "nation" to witness past fires, such as the one starting with http://glorantha.temppeli.org/digest/gd9/2002.02/0006.html

Terra Incognita collected a number of my points as comments to his document


>> http://www.seedwiki.com/page.cfm?doc=City%20of%20Karse&wikiid=7069&wpid=

> And linked to from the "Karse" page of the WWWiki

Great, thanks.

>> I hope nobody minds if we take quotations from the mailing >> lists and insert them into the relevant Wiki documents?

> I doubt if I've said much of relevance, but by all means quote anything
> you fancy (well, assuming you don't take me way out of context or
> anything strange and malicious like that)

Ok. BTW, if anyone should feel that crucial context is missing, they are invited to add that (or make me do so).

>> That's a problem with the Illaro dynasty - too few
>> children for an extended royal clan, unless you pull similar
>> stunts to those legitimizing the majority of the Argraths.

> What, like blatant lies?

Call me an idealist, but then I believe that one cannot become an Argrath if one knows all four great-grandpas and great-grandmas for sure, unless one of those was a known royal family member or bastard. Kallyr is about the only Argrath with a known royal descent.

>>> I do like the swashbuckling, that's cool, although I thought >>> Humakti were grimmer than that.

>> See Jane's reply for tons of sense.

> ??? Can I quote you on that?

As a reply I can quote you, from above:
"I doubt if I've said much of relevance, [...]"

Karse definitely has its share of duelist Humakti. Its Humakt temple (bearing the guise of the mercenary hiring hall in Midkemia Press "City of Carse") does give regular Heortling services, though.

>> IMO a sacred marriage usually has a contest component (see
>> also Melisande's hand, Sartar wooing the FHQ), so an
>> ambitious bureaucrat would enter as a candidate or field a
>> champion of his own choice (who might be a player hero).

> And there's another scenario opportunity!

> Though also take a look at the River Ritual in Sun County. No
> competition there.

Still a hero having to prove himself.

>> Oh, as long as we get input from others and no red flag, I'm >> all for using the digest.

> Don't see why not myself, but I agree that you need the Wiki to sort out
> "final versions". After all, this is the *Glorantha* list, not one of
> the "don't scare the newbies" ones.

And as long as we churn out scenario opportunities, it would have been acceptable even over there.

>> I don't regard Jane's offer to set up the wiki for us as >> such, yet... ;-)

> Since you've done it yourself, I won't be bothering. Though the site
> you've used has been noted for future need!

Thank Guy Hoyle for finding it, e.g. by visiting his HQ-Greece wiki (also in the games directory).

Jeff Richard

> FWIW, I don't think that fisherfolk of the Mirrorsea fish solo. I
> suspect they build round-hulled wooden boats, powered by oars and a
> small sail. They presumably fish in small kinship groups. I have no
> idea what they fish for, but with given the Enjossi Salmon Man, I assume
> there are salmon in the Mirrorsea. And if they are salmon, better be
> real salmon (not that lousy Atlantic salmon stuff).

Not sure that can be the case - if Enjossi had heroformed a Pacific Salmon, someone else (a kid from that spawning) would have had to form the clan since he would have died somewhere in the Stream. ;-)

One catch I'd expect from soft ground like the drowned body of Esrola would be flounders or relatives of theirs. Some swarming small fish like herring or sardines, a couple of larger predators harrying these swarms, and a couple of oddities with elongated bodies or sprouting spikes like the Ysabbau. A number of strange, possibly seasonal fish with magical significance (e.g. a moon-shaped blowfish?).

Leaving real fish, various crustacians and mollusks, lobsters or crawfish, possibly a special form of jellyfish (real world's fabled chinese "swallows nests"), maybe even starfish, sponges or coral eggs.

>>I also see the Rightarm Pelaskans as following a pantheon (excuse the
>> term) of Spirits and Gods, where as those in Heortland and Esrolia would
>> more likely  be theistic. In Esrolia I would have him married to a
local daughter of
>>Esrolia, perhaps a Goose Goddess, Salmon Goddess or Similar. In Heortland I would
>>go for a daughter of Ernalda, further along the coasts god only knows who he
>>shares his hut with. I did have a Fish Wife cult somewhere, perhaps I could
>>dig it out.

> I'm not certain that the Pelaskites are that well-defined as a separate
> culture. I think that the humans that fish on the Mirrorsea worship
> Pelaskos and associated things, regardless of whether they live in
> Nochet, Karse, the Right-Arm or Left-Arm Islands.

Not sure I really agree. While it is true that the number of Pelaskites was fairly low at the dawn, several Heortling tribes were at least as much decimated. Southeast of the Esrolian rivers and southeast of Shadow Plateau, the only other humans (not reduced to roving family groups) were a handful of Ingareens in God Forgot and even less Garanvuli in Seriasdova.

> However, I think
> there social and family arrangements are probably defined by other gods
> or goddesses (Orlanth and Ernalda in Heortland, Ernalda and her husbands
> in Esrolia,

That's only where there would have been intermarriages. Real world examples from my area show "clannish" coastal fisherfolk right next to early 20th century cities - admittedly christianized, but otherwise having 700 years or more of history as a separate subculture. Meaning marriage arrangements which differ from the farmers in the hinterland, different emphasis in church services, etc. Quite often a separate language survived, too, as with the north Frisians.

> and whoever the Islanders worship).

Which brings us to the subject of Ludoch marriage customs, or what would be their example culture?

I'm game for admitting that the Pelaskites probably are quite "Theyalan" in culture, similar to city-dwellers of the region who have lost contact to the traditions of their distant rural kin. Still, the Pelaskites retain a large "rural" population, and probably there are twin villages along the Heortland and Esrolian coasts with main culture farmers who treat coastal fishing as an additional source of providing and Pelaskites who swim with Ludoch in some of their rites and who maintain small gardens, cabbage plots or similar to supplement their diet of fish.

>>> I see Pelaskos as a Darkness leader or cultural hero for a number of
>>> peoples along the sea coasts.
>>They aren't called Pelaskites for nothing.

> He taught folk to survive by fishing in the Mirrorsea. Stuff like war,
> marriage, kinship, rulership, etc, are probably the province of other
> gods. If I recall, there were only a couple hundred Pelaskites at the
> Dawn, so Pelaskos really didn't have to teach very much.

There were about as many Caladrians, and only about five to ten times as many Esrolians. That's not a number to indicate a featureless culture.

Still, I do suggest Dureving or Helering origin for the peoples who followed Pelaskos' ways through the Darkness, so we go back to an Orlanthi/Ernalding source culture with twists.

Apparently Greg was astonished about my deduction that Ernalda brought in Pelorian people (represented by her handmaidens and their fire husbands in Thunder Rebels) to her marriage to Orlanth in Kerofinela, so I may be way off the party line here as well. Thunder Rebels suggests that in the Storm Age, Dureving and some Helering tribes settled the lands (and drowned lands) of Maniria and the Solkathi Sea. Failure to mention lesser Storm tribes like the Sylilings and Talastari in that history suggests that other lesser tribes (not necessarily storm worshippers, such as e.g. the boat people on the Black Eel river or the Aramites) may have escaped mention, too.

>>So much as Heort refounds the Vingkotlings, there is a cultural hero >> who re-learns the Pelaskos mysteries?

> Whoa! No way is Pelaskos anywhere on the same scale as Heort.

Agree when it comes to I Fought We Won participation. But someone (probably not Pelaskos but a Silver Age hero) organized Pelaskite worship and otherworld activities after IFWW and the Compromise. It is possible that Heort visited Old Karse on his "dividing the living from the dead" tour, but I doubt he reached the Islands site (protected by the Mirrorsea Ludoch). It is possible that Hantrafal was along and showed how to worship through sacrifice. I am less convinced that Heort would have interfered with marriage customs etc.

> Pelaskos is just one of the hundreds of little deities that showed
little family
> groups how to barely survive the Darkness.

Apparently one of the more successful ones, since his followers managed to survive in more than one place, meaning that only one Pelaskite site could have benefitted from his presence.

I'm inclined to have Pelaskos die or disappear during the Greater Darkness, like the Thunder Brothers and the Weaver Women. If so, other survival helpers will figure in Pelaskite worship.

> I suspect that the
> Pelaskites became "Orlanthi" (like lots of other folk) during the Dawn
> Age. Sure, Pelaskos shows them how to eke out a living as fishermen,
> but the Theyalans showed them the Dawn.

And the first "Theyalans" to reach Old Karse were most likely Argan Argar traders sent by the OOO, back in the Gray Age.

What came first, Unity Battle or I Fought We Won? Was there any Pelaskite or Ludoch participation in either?

The "man rune of five elements" magic society from HQ-MoLaD seems to suggest that Ludoch are an accepted part. Do they refer to IFWW, or are they simply hung up with the man rune idea? They appear to be worshipping the holyness in Belintar's Holy Country.

>>But I think there is a "Pelaskite" strain in which he >>is more important.

> Yeah, I think they are called "Mirrorsea fishermen".

There is a society where every man is a fisherman as much as every Heortling man is a farmer. This is different from coastal Heortlings or Esrolians worshipping Pelaskos rather than Poverri as the fourth provider.

The "Gloranthan Military Experience" population numbers suggest Pelaskite ("insular") culture as a subculture in Esrolia, Caladraland, and possibly a minority in Heortland (15% "other"). (They also have the Grazelands with 80% Grazers and only 20% "other" left for Vendref, so the population distribution has to be taken with a goodly sized block of salt.)

> You know, we were talking about a new founding hero (similar to Heort's
> role for the Orlanthi) being needed. So how about Karse as the one who
> re-founds the secrets of fishing and good living, whatever. Pelaskos's

And then the place with the cyclopean walls which helped the people survive the Greater Darkness and earlier troubles was named after him, and the Rightarmers under Ludoch influence forgot about him (or her)?

One possibility, but one that needs some explanations.

--__--__-- Received on Thu 30 Sep 2004 - 12:07:13 EEST

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