[Glorantha] nobles and knighthood

From: Peter Metcalfe <metcalph_at_quicksilver.net.nz>
Date: Fri, 13 May 2005 15:24:24 +1200


Mikko:

>While on the subject I also take a more orthodox approach to the castes in
>the West. Greg must have been pretty confused about the basic feodal
>structure when he started writing his Glorantha stories in the University.
>Even in modern Glorantha the nobility don't seem to have much to do with
>their traditional occupation, warfare. Nobility as a purely ruling class,
>and knights as a totally separete class seems very, very confused to me.

It's because the Caste structure is closer to the Indian Caste of Merchants, Priests, Warriors and Peasants than to the Medieval Model. Secondly the Malkioni Nobility are not a purely ruling caste. They fight on the battlefield if they want to (even if they are Brithini). It is thought that in mythical times, the nobility were a purely ruling caste but the glory attached to military combat has seen the nobility turn upon on the battlefield from time to time.

For the Rokari, an insight in the difference between noble and knightly fighters can be inferred from the Saint Gerlant keyword. The Nobles do not learn the spells of Burn Wound Closed, Ignite Kindling, Defend Superior Officer, Surprise Ghost and Sword Cutting while the Knights do not learn the spell of Flaming Lance.

>Nobility are the elite arm in warfare. Knights are nobles, and nobles are
>knights.

Not so. While one could argue that knights are nobles, it is not the case that nobles are knights. In early medieval times, many titled nobility fought on the battlefield but were not knights.

>Just the implications for population structure are staggering. If
>nobles just sit in manors and castles and rule folk, the world will start
>to get full of superfluous nobility (good food, lower child mortality,
>long lifespan because of nutrition and light workload).

Plus bigger and better armies and more territory to rule over.

>Nobility that
>doesn't earn it's keep in war is a very strange concept.

It works in the modern world.

--Peter Metcalfe


Received on Fri 13 May 2005 - 07:00:22 EEST

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