Re: Elder Races

From: Joerg Baumgartner (
Date: Tue 20 Jan 1998 - 21:57:00 EET

In Glorantha Digest V05 #337 Panu Pasanen replied to
> Stephen Martin:
>> There used to be. However, at the end of the First Age they started a
>> number of wars (dwarfs versus trolls, elves versus dwarfs, trolls versus
>> everyone), and by the end of the Second Age the three greatest Elder
>> Races were so reduced in population and strength that they were relegated
>> to secondary roles in Glorantha.

> Good point. It somehow bothers me, that although Gloranthan history
> etc. is unique, most common cultural and historical themes are
> so blatantly regognizable from even here.

Hey, this is the point of calling them Elder Races. If they were vibrantly
active everywhere, there would be little mystery or subtle sense of loss of
an earlier, better time, the kind of fascination such races incur.

> Having amazons on island
> somewhere far away(DoP POV) reminds me of ancient greek stories, again...

Only because you are from a background where this theme is reported only by
the Greeks, and because our languages use the ancient Greeks' terminology. I
find those Trowjangi amazones closer to the Brasilian legends. Consider:
Western (Kethaelan) sailors entering a jungle area in the search of
valuables, and faced with vicious female warriors. Not even the Babeester
Gor presence in Esrolia had them prepared for such opposition...

> The point is, that Elder Races are not common. They are as wondrous
> as a Gold Dragon in the ToG, and handled with care. Why? They could
> well be living next door to you. When 200 kg uz comes to loan
> a cup of sugar, how can you say no?-)

That's because multi-racial cultures (and I don't mean mere differences in
skin coloration) work out only in very special relationships, usually with a
dominant and a dominated partner. Elamle, the Kitori tribe, Dark Esrolia, or
Old Pavis were carefully constructed cases of coexistence, the First Council
even more so. More often than not, racial needs and preoccupations make a
lasting merging of different races problematic, or oppressive. Where
Enlightenment of any sort (like the Lightbringers' Compromise for the 1st
Council, or the EWF philosophy for places like Old Pavis) that enables this
wears off, the situation changes from peaceful Elamle to warring Onlaks. It
is a major miracle that Elamle has lasted as long as it does...


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