Seshnegi and Jrusteli

From: Joerg Baumgartner (jorganos@hotmail.com)
Date: Wed 11 Feb 1998 - 13:49:32 EET


Peter Metcalfe
>>>I believe that the Collapse of the Silver Empire happened _after_
>>>the Sunstop on the basis of Codex #2's mention that the Fronelan
>>>states are beginning the process of political integration in 385 ST.
>>>Why then and not when the Silver Empire fell?

>>Because the fall of the Silver Empire was a period of disintegration,
>>aka civil war?

>And what does 'process of political integration' mean to you?

Clearing up the shards of the prior destruction, with not too soft a
brush...

>When King Orios died without an heir, a bunch of Tarshites tried
>to re-establish the Tarshite Kingdom.

Yes. Despite Illaro's claims to have succeeded Orios within 5 years, the
civil war wasn't over until well into Illaro's sacrificial period, IMO.
And that the Kingdom of Tarsh wasn't really settled down afterwards show
the usurpation of Pyjeemsab's predecessor, and the turmoils after
Hon-eels interception.

>>Garrisons understaffed because the warriors have been
>>taken away on a campaign against the old centre of the empire (in this
>>case Brithos), and the barbarians on the border waiting to strike.
Local
>>potentates grabbing for power, allying with barbarians to beat
Malkioni
>>opponents... This could simmer for quite a while before a new order is
>>installed.

>And IMO this would be a good description of Malkioni Fronela in the
>years 385 to 650 ST (when Akem dissolves and Pomons joins Loskalm).
>Of course there were quite a few nasty wars along the way.

I'd start this already around 350 if that's the time the Silver Empire
faltered, otherwise we seem to agree. (!!!)

Kingdom of Tanisor:

>>I don't claim that [making people donate power to the leaders of the
>>Bright Empire] was a mystery of the Nysalor cult, but I think
>>that it was an aim of the missionaries who came to the West curing
this
>>outbreak of disease.

>I still disagree that the aim of the missionaries was to donate magic
>points to Dorastor.

Probably not to Dorastor, but to themselves. I don't really see any
idealists among the upper echelons of the 2nd Council or the Bright
Empire who would not think in terms of accumulating power, if only to
achieve the (once) idealistic goals they pursue.

>Tanisor and Dorastor lie on opposite sides of Dorastor. In
>between is the Dari Alliance which is not part of the Empire
>of Light. Therefore for the Dorastans to try and set up a
>'colony' in Tanisor is bound to run into problems with the Dari
>Alliance.

And lo - the Dari people were quick to join forces with Arkat when he
had overrun Tanisor.

>>To me it seems that the missionaries working in Seshnela had their own
>>agenda, and while I don't believe their enemies' propaganda literally,
I
>>doubt that their motives were pure. The Vampire Kings of Tanisor did
not
>>come from nothing...

>The Vampire Kings were created by the fear of Arkat IMO.

To me this sounds more like fear of death than fear of Arkat. Arkat may
well have taken the Wakboth role from the Vivamort myth wrt the
Tanisoran kings...

>The Empire of Light was similarly blameless yet D:LoD comments:

: 'The successes of Arkat in his approach to the heartland of
: peaceful Dorastor caused increasing alarm among the populace
: and leaders. The people panicked, grasping desperately for
: any remedy, leaving themselves open to the Temptations of the
: dark side. Thus, ironically, Arkat himself transformed a
: hitherto blameless people into the corrupt empire he had sworn
: to destroy'
: Dorastor: Land of Doom p9-10.

They also professed abhorrance about the practises of the Western
missionaries. Sorry, but while I do believe that Arkat did some pushing
further to the Dark Side, the tendency must have been there before.

Serpent Kings:

>>>The Serpent Kings (I wouldn't describe them as Malkioni)
>>>went all the way to Hrelar Amali where they added Temples to
>>>Orlanth and Magasta (according to the Jonstown Compendium).

>>The Compendium doesn't exactly say that it were the Serpent Kings who
>>built the temples. From what I recall out of hand from Hrestol's Saga,
>>the late Serpent King dynasty were hardly an efficient gouvernment.

>The New Hrestoli Way were closing down the Temples so they couldn't
>have erected the shrines.

The New Hrestoli closed the temples to Seshna Likita, it seems, but they
don't seem to have been uncontested.

>Furthermore the Dangan confederacy were occupying Hrelar Amali
>around 132 ST and there's no indication that they were displaced by
>the Seshnegi from Hrelar Amali after that.

The Dangan confederacy collapsed around 160 ST, leaving ample room for
Seshnegi entrepeneurs to establish themselves there only to be thrown
out by the Dari confederation.

>So IMO the Seshnegi occupied Hrelar Amali sometime during the first
century
>which removes your objection about the weak government of the late
Serpent
>Kings.

My objection to this first century date comes from their problems with
the Pendali/Basmoli who were not overcome before 105 ST (when some still
remained in Arolanit, but the peninsula proper had been conquered). Even
after that time, the modern duchy of Nolos was not yet part of Seshnela,
but was inhabited by some Tanier valley people (possibly Enerali or
Basmoli, or another "Hsunchen" people lost in the mists of time because
they took civilisation too serious before the Seshnegi recorded their
bestial origins).

Note that the classification of all people outside of Seshnela as
Hsunchen is a Seshnegi article of faith rather than historical truth, if
you read Hsunchen=uncivilized primitives. If you allow city-building
cultures, ok, but that's different from the modern definition of
Hsunchen.

>But the New Hrestoli Man by no means the same person as Hrestol
>IMO. What I meant wasn't propitiatory sacrifices but that the
>NHW relationship with the gods was more akin to demonology. After
>all Cults of Terror claims about the humanists:

: 'The Malkioni race founded the Wizards, who think they can
: shape the universe without _consent_ (my emphasis) from the
: Gods who are believed to rule everywhere else'.
: Cults of Terror p11.

Yeah. Yelm complained about Rebellus Terminus doing the very same thing.

>The Serpent Kings IMO carried out bloody sacrifices to their native
>gods. The NHW reaction was to put the gods in their proper place
>and rely on the power of their God to keep the other gods under
>control.

The bloody sacrifices aren't recorded anywhere, but don't seem unlikely.
The NHW still may have allowed "temples" where specialized wizards had
better chances to coerce appropriate otherworld beings.

Creative Heroquesting

>>We know that as early as 573 the God
>>Learners were able to rob the secret of Draconic Speech from the
>>barbarian cult of Drolgard, a cult they had no mythic relation to.

>There's no indication that they did it by creative heroquesting.
>All it says is that it was accomplished in a spirit raid.

That's another word for a "I rob your powers" HQ. If the usual Western
style of HQing is to bypass nameless guardians to rip off powers from
nameless opponents, the accuracy with which the Jrusteli ripped the
draconic speech from Drolgard seems a bit suspicious.

>The mythic relation IMO is a red herring here as cultures have always
>had the power to create new myths in response to new challenges.

Yeah. Where was the challenge to Jrusteli culture here? Why did they
raid this heroine?

>The Orlanthi myth of the 'Summons
>of Evil' is an excellent example of this. It's generic and could be
>used against anything evil but it is still within a myth and thus
>not Creative Heroquesting.

True. However, there has to be some exposure to the counterpart of the
interaction other than "there's unexplored mythic terrain, let's see
what there is to rob".

But I think I forgot the obvious way how Arkati secrets could have come
to Jrustela: there were Arkati (missionaries or settlers) on Jrustela
after Arkat's return. These may well have known about explorative

Heroquesting (outside of known myths, or known mythic terrain), and have
taken part in the early Jrusteli explorations. Somewhere on the way the
"never without respect" must have disappeared...

Joerg Baumgartner (via Hotmail)
mailto:joe@toppoint.de

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