Moon Stuff, etc.

Date: Fri 11 Oct 1996 - 14:24:00 EEST

Catching up again...

Neil Robinson asked:

> What have the Pelorians ever done for the Lunar Empire? We know the Dara
> Happans, being the old aristocracy, run the show. The Carmanians guard
> the western Empire. What do the Pelorians contribute to the Empire? I
> can't see that they contribute diddly-squat (that should set the cat
> among the pigeons 8-)!

The Pelorians provided a major contribution to the Lunar Empire's mystical
and "feminine" religion. The Pelandans of the Oronin Valley can be seen as
a gentle and artistic civilisation, and this is the source of "classical"
architecture (pillars, colonnades, etc.) -- the modern marble buildings
imitate the wooden structures of the First Age. They also contributed a
great deal to Carmanian culture, and *are* the western Empire which the
Carmanians guard. Hoplite warfare was invented in west Peloria; the Dara
Happans of the First Age envied Pelorian myth for its vividness and
character. And the Pelorians had more traditions of liberty and equality
than the Dara Happans or Carmanians ever evolved (rule by councils, origin
of the jury trials, etc.).

Pam writes:

> I had envisioned DH architecture more like Persian or Assyrian. It could
> have evolved, I guess.

Yep, sounds right to me. Early Lunar architecture could also have been more
"middle-eastern", with the modern classical stuff introduced during the
Carmanian Reconstruction, when the Empire was refounded by Magnificus and
Hon-Eel in the Fifth Wane. Dara Happans look sniffily down their noses at
the harmonious classical perfection of (e.g.) the Jillaro Acropolis, saying
how much they'd have preferred another chunky ziggurat...

> I kinda think of the LE as if India had reached out and administered
> Persia (Carmania?) and Assyria (DH?).

Or have a look at the Hellenistic sculptures from Bactria: Greek art and
Indian deities in an absolutely beautiful combination. Alexander's Empire
and the Byzantines are fun models for "orientalising classicism".

> The emperor is divine, but I don't think there's evidence of actual
> worship of him by anything more than a few of those high in the
> government - and I think that's particular to Moonson, as the son of
> the RM.

I think all Lunar subjects are counted as Lay Members in the Cult of the
Red Emperor, and all Lunar citizens are Initiates. (Though this is more
like "Yelm the Youth" or "Children of the Forest" initiation than the Real
Thing). Only career officials, Satraps and Senators and the like can go any
higher in the cult, and access real Rune Magics. Chris Gidlow's writeup of
the Cult of the Red Emperor should be in the next issue of Tales, the Lunar
Special, due out later this year.

Jane Williams asked:

> In KoS p135 (and probably many other places), we are told that Boldhome
> was built overnight, fulfilling an ancient prophecy. What was the
> prophecy?

We don't know, but in the Genertela Book I believe it said that Sartar
built his city to *defy* an ancient prophecy, as well as fulfilling it.
("He would be a brave man, who dwelt in a city above the apex of the
Dragonewt Roads"?). Maybe something like Achilles' choice of futures?

___ _____ _____
Rob, Sandy and Peter talked about Lunar Phase Goddesses.

FWIW, I think everyone's right. The Seven Mothers are each associated with
one phase of the Moon when they are worshipped in their own right, and with
a second phase on which they helped the Red Goddess complete a stage of her
Quest which corresponded to one of the seven preceding Lunar Goddesses.

                SEVEN RED

Full Half Yanafal T Verithurusa Teelo N
Crescent-Go Irrippi O Cerullia Jakaleel
Dying Moon Danfive X Gerra Deezola
Black Moon Jakaleel Rashorana Danfive X
Crescent-Come Teelo N Orogeria Yanafal T
Empty Half Deezola Natha Irrippi O
Full Moon Red Goddess Zayteneras Seven Mothers

So that, for instance, on the Full Half day in a holy week (Illusion week
in every season), ceremonies honouring Yanafal Tarnils are held in the
Temple of the Seven Mothers, attended by the High Priest of Yanafal of the
Seven Mothers, by Scimitars of Yanafal, and by any other Seven Mothers
initiates and lay folk who wish to attend. At the same time, the Seven
Mothers Temple's high priestess of Teelo Norri is participating in the
Verithurusan Rite at the Temple of the Red Goddess, assisted by (and
assisting) the initiates and priestesses of the Red Goddess.

On the Full Moon Day, all the priests of the Seven Mothers perform rituals
both at their own temple(s) and at the Temple of the Red Goddess. There are
processions, sacrifices, and much rejoicing.

In the Heartlands, where temples to the Seven Mothers (collectively) are
less common, the pattern would be the same as above, only with ceremonies
at temples to individual Mothers rather than at the single joint Temple.
I've been working on this for a possible scenario set during holy week at
Moonbroth Oasis, so my interest in the religious ceremonies is perhaps more
than is entirely sane or necessary...

It's also neat, because we now also have some obvious correspondences of
phase and symbol. Crescents for Jakaleel (Sickle Moon?) and Yanafal
(Scimitar Moon?), and a half'n'half for the dualistic Carmanian magus
Irrippi Ontor. But what the CoP 7M writeup said is still true.

NB: this has nothing to do with which day of the week any phase happens on.
For ease of reference, the 'traditional' and 'rotational' phases are:

                        TRADITIONAL, ROTATIONAL, RITUALS

Black Moon Clayday Freezeday JW - DX
Crescent Coming Windsday Waterday TN - YT
Empty Half Fireday Clayday QD - IO
Full Moon Wildday Windsday RG - 7M
Full Half Godsday Fireday YT - TN
Crescent Going Freezeday Wildday IO - JW
Dying Moon Waterday Godsday DX - QD

Simon Phipp writes:

> The Brithini believe that the Creator exists but do not themselves
> worship _anyone_. (In fact, looking at the Sog City writeup, it could be
> that the Brithini do not even recognise the Invisible God, but I am not
> convinced.)

One of my intentions in writing the Malkioni stuff contained in the Sog
City book and on my homepage was to reinforce the division between Creator
and Invisible God already explicit in the GoG Prosopaedia and What the
Wizard Says pieces. The Brithini recognise the Creator (an abstract first
principle, not a worshipable entity), but do *not* recognise the Invisible
God (an intervening, worshipable, compassionate entity). They think the
Creator made the world and left it ticking over just fine: it would be
presumptious and wrong to ask it for anything more. (Compare with their
attitude to Malkion adding to his Laws, in an article on my homepage). The
Invisible God was a God-Learnerism.

Gloranthan Fiction

It's been mentioned recently, so I'll bring this up: the Convulsion 3D
Programme Book (including Gloranthan fiction by Greg Stafford, Sandy
Petersen, Ken Rolston, Michael O'Brien, Eric Rowe, Chris Gidlow, Mike Hagen
and Yours Truly) is still available from David Hall. In fact, he says he
has lots of copies left, so don't worry yet about missing out if you want
to place an order.

Peter Metcalfe wrote, on Lunar Sources:

> Seven Mothers Cult Writeup: from Cults of Prax (although an updated one
> will probably be seen in the next Tales).

Probably not, alas. It looks like we'll print the cults of the Red Emperor
and Danfive Xaron, with Yanafal Tarnils held over to a future issue. But
this is all up to David Hall's editorial wit and wisdom. I can't question
his decision to cut my YT writeup, as the other two cults have much more
that's new and intriguing: we've all seen war gods before. I am still keen
to rework the CoP Seven Mothers at some date.

Saravan worries about taxing the Sartarites:

> The extra (I think very harsh) taxes levied by the Lunar conquerors must
> reduce the king's ability to maintain high quality guards full-time. I
> certainly don't think that many more fully trained warriors could be
> supported out of the king's pocket.

Fortunate, eh? Luckily there's also a shortage of fully trained Sartarite
warriors (since Boldhome, 1602), so those who survive are assured of job
security under benign Imperial rule. And the "harsh" taxes are spent on
educational projects, public works, and other things the old tribal kings
could never be bothered with...



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