Various odds and ends

From: Nick_Brooke@deloitte.touche.co.uk
Date: Wed 04 Sep 1996 - 04:06:29 EEST


____
Nils writes:
     
> Haragalan ports are usually protected by a fortified tower with a huge
> sunscope mounted at the top. Real doomsday weapons, reputedly capable
> of melting solid rock.
     
Lovely! Reminds me of Archimedes' engines at the Siege of Syracuse (did
anyone else see and/or enjoy that *atrocious* sword'n'sandal movie)...
     
_________
New Jonas writes:
     
> Where on earth is Argrath??? ... I couldn't help wondering if there's an
> official version of who exactly Argrath is and what he's been doing until
> 1624 S.T.
     
I'm not aware of any "official version". The "Garrath Sharpsword = Argrath"
camp is fairly persuasive, at least insofar as I can't see how some Praxian
(born and bred) Great Khan is going to be acceptable to Sartarite opinion,
whereas a plausible story can be cooked up for *this* Argrath. And it's not
impossible that Garrath Sharpsword could *be* Argrath White Bull...
     
Saying that "Argrath of Pavis is not *the* Argrath" is meaningless unless
you define *the* Argrath (presumably, "Prince Argrath of Dragon Pass"): as
described, this guy was certainly the Liberator of Pavis, which is all that
the name means. And his association with the New Teeth brings to mind the
Black Fang Gang, the Dragontooth Runners and Jaldon Toothmaker, all of whom
may be relevant to Argrath's career in Dragon Pass. (My latest thesis,
"Gloranthan History Through Dentistry", will shortly be rejected by all
major publishers...)
     
OTOH, who was that Orlanth priest called "Argrath Dragonspear" who is a
public figure in Adari and who officiates at Biturian Varosh's wedding in
1615 S.T., well within the era of Garrath Sharpsword? Maybe there is some
Orlanthi tabu on the officiating priest at a marriage going under an alias,
in which case (given the notorious efficiency of the Lunar Assassins) it
would seem, on the face of it, mind-bogglingly foolish for Argrath to take
on in such a role...
     
But this seems typical enough for any of the Argraths, so we'll let it
pass.
     
> The CHDP, being the only scientific contemporary source...
     
The CHDP was written *for* Argrath, for presentation as a wedding gift, so
I think you'd have a hard time claiming it was "scientifically detached".
Although I understand what you mean, you should *not* assume it's any more
accurate just because it's saying things in a format you want to read.
     
Part of the purpose behind the obscurity in "King of Sartar" was to make it
possible for different gaming groups to come up with their own version of
Argrath's story, without worrying about "maintaining consistency with the
One True official version". So, with that in mind, if you want to whole-
heartedly embrace (say) the CHDP story for your games, I can't see any harm
in that. But if you want to chuck that away and work out your own version,
that seems equally worthwhile, and possibly more fun.
     
The key dates you're missing before 1624 would be Garrath/Argrath's trip
around the Homeward Ocean on the Giant's Cradle, accompanied by Harrek and
the Wolf Pirates. *If* you believe that "Garrath = Argrath" (or "Garrath =
OUR Argrath"), that is. But there are *so* many hypotheses it hardly makes
sense to chop through them, *especially* as doing so might derail some
other campaign out there, which is why the uncertainties were written in in
the first place...
     
My own Argrath stories are on my homepage, at:
     
          <http://ourworld.compuserve.com/homepages/Nick_Brooke/>
     
in the Gloranthan Folktales index. I hope you enjoy them ("Argrath the
Stickpicker" has some colourful details about the various mooted Argraths).
At last sighting, "Argrath the Stickpicker" was going into "Heroes of the
King", though I understand Elvis also has a story in that collection...
     
_____
Sandy writes, erroneously:
     
> The debate goes on vs. Shamans and Sorcerers. For what it's worth, I'm
> continuing this discussion NOT in order to prove to Joerg the error of
> his ways, but also...
     
You mean "not SOLELY", I am sure!
     
_________________
Seshnegi Heraldry
     
I'm sure I've mentioned it before, but Joerg's post on the lion kingdoms of
early Seshnela brings this to mind. IMG, Seshnegi heraldry suffers from an
overdose of Gules, a Lion Rampant Or (and similar) designs. In the Dawn
Ages, before the modern rules of heraldry were dreamed of, things were far
simpler: an accomplished Knight of Seshneg would nail the hide of the first
lion he slew to his shield-front as a trophy. There are traces of this kind
of practice in Carmania.
     
Note also that Sir Richard the Tigerhearted's name may owe more to Cannibal
Cult-style rituals of devouring and absorbing the essence of one's prey
than is commonly recognised. And these, too, are found in Carmania.
     
Adding "primitive" chrome like this to clean'n'shiny Western Chivalry makes
me a very happy man indeed...
     
====
Nick
====

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