Burning Strawmen pt.2: Nochet

From: Joerg Baumgartner (joe@toppoint.de)
Date: Wed 06 May 1998 - 22:27:00 EEST


Re: "We don't know if the Zistorite invasion of Esrolia was successful."

We know that the Zistorites conquered several cities at least. Esrolia
has between one and two dozen cities. I'd call that some success.

>>As for Nochet, _you_ claimed that the God Learners worked from

> I said there was a population of Malkioni there. I never said
> it came there by invasion.

Neither did I. The Nochet Malkioni predate the God Learners. They
needn't have been subjected to their unified Malkioni theory. In fact,
their resistance to do so might have started the pogroms incited by God
Learners eager to convert them (and carried through by non-Malkioni
natives), and later became a tradition.

Peter doubts that the Arkati (not OOO followers) were purged from Nochet
based on doubts whether the God Learners managed to conquer all of

>>Hey, the Lunars purged the Holy Country of the House of Sartar long
>>before they conquered even parts of it.

> And they missed Prince Temertain whom one suspects would have been
> the _easiest_ person to terminate with extreme prejudice.

Temertain also was fairly out of the way, kept no contacts to his
family, etc. Usually it is assumed that he stayed in the recesses of the
library when the purges took place, i.e. on temple ground and
unavailable for divinations. Alternatively, he may have been on a ship
traveling to a site sporting Brithini iron statuary, although he doesn't
seem to be the field-worker type - in that case, the effects of the
Closing would have prevented his followers' detection magics to work.

As a chemist working with treated waste water, I know that a purge
rarely is complete anyway.

>>We know that the God Learners purged as much of the cult of Arkat as
>>they could, IMO even when Arkat only was an ally fondly remembered.

> So why is there still a Cult of Black Arkat in Heortland?

Because they couldn't purge all of it, only as much as they could.

Absence of EWF evidence in the Machine Wars:

> Note that the sources speak of the Elder Races uniting. The
> Dragonewts (an Elder Race the last time I looked) are conspicious
> by their absense.

There are none living nearby, and neither were their interests touched
(unlike the elves who suffered from the poison smoke which was spread in
reaction to the weeds invasion).

I also note that none of the human heroes mentioned seems to have EWF

I suggested that Orlanth slaying Zistor was an Aroka replay, whereas
Peter proposes an Utuma ritual. I misunderstood his intentions:

>>Not done to another, but to oneself.

: 'Then the Dragon Emperor of humans was confronted by an
: evil spirit named Utuma who slew him'.
: KoS p188.

> Likewise see Nick Brooke's Webpages for how the Red Goddess
> had undergone the Utuma sacrifice (with the agent being
> Argrath).

You mean by committing ritual suicide-cum-advance to the next station,
Orlanth slew Zistor? That's not how it is reported.

> Surely 'But seriously' would have informed you that the preceding
> sentence was a joke?

Was utterly unexpected.

Peter says that the OOO became nice to hoomans only after pressure by
the EWF, and I claimed that he had human allies all the time.

> I'll bite. What are the human allies that he had after Arkat's War
> and where are they mentioned?

The Rightarm Islanders. In RQ Companion.

Peter and I were discussing Arkat's Command (early Second Age):
> After I quoted the RQ Companion to show that the OOO _had_ contested
> the rule of Dragon Pass,

An entire age later...

> Joerg deletes this without acknowlegement

To waste less bandwidth than this debate far besides my point ate up
anyway. Maybe I also deleted the reply in an effort to remain polite.
Happened to maybe half again the volume I sent to the digest...

> and then changes the goalposts!

Puts them back to where they were at the start of the match.

I'm not that interested in the minutiae on the sidelines, I'm interested
in results: (hopefully) coherent pieces of Glorantha information in a
(hopefully) readable form. The discussions on the digest are just a way
for me to get there.

>>>_After the Dragonkill War_

>>is not after the Gbaji Wars, and has nothing to do with Arkat's
>>Command. The OOO is facing an entirely new situation.

> Yes, but I quoted it to show that the OOO was capable of having
> interests in Dragon Pass which is something you _denied_.

I doubted (not denied) that the OOO had interests in ruling
Heortling-inhabited and -ruled Dragon Pass after the Gbaji Wars. I
denied his being over-anxious to collect Arkat's Command. And I still
don't see the Hendriki paying it, and see much more use in the
Heortlings providing lots of foodstuff rather than a few human
sacrifices. (OTOH, the Morokanth slave (and herdman) traders would have
been very popular in this time...)

> I've
> not even seen a reasonable explanation of why the Uz Lore quote
> which showed that the Shadowlands fought in the Tax Slaughter is
> wrong and I quoted that last week.

I never said the Uz Lore quote was wrong. I say that _your conclusion_
isn't the only truth to be found in the text _and could be wrong_. Is,

The quote says that armies from the Shadowlands fought. Not in the Tax
Slaughter event, but in the follow-ups, probably when excited Orlanthi
went for any trolls in sight. This needn't mean that the OOO collected
Arkat's command, only means that Heortlings and trolls fought for a
while. Perhaps even only Heortlings and Kitori humans...

The development of Nochet, and population of Esrolia.

>>>The City of Nochet has not yet achieved the distinction of being
>>>a major metropolis it has now. Hence I believe the population
>>>[of Esrolia] is somewhat lower [in the first age] than is now.

>>The city of Athens grew without Attica becoming more densely settled
>>(in fact, it was depopulated during that growth).

> If this is a reference to the Peloponesian War

More a general comparison. The war happened to fall into part of that

> this is by no means comparable to the model posted
> for Nochet (to wit: it increased in population as Esrolia itself
> increased).

Which is a model I don't accept as firm truth - the population of
Esrolia may well have been at half its current (1620ies) size at the
time the size of Nochet was given.

>>BCG says that Nochet began to
>>grow rapidly when the Waertagi made it a preferred trading place.

> And there is a limit to the size of the urban population in
> Esrolia based on the surplus grain. No matter how much trade
> passes through it, Nochet is still dependent on the grain of
> Esrolia.

It's even worse: Nochet is dependent on an even larger grain surplus,
not only to feed itself, but to export the stuff. This explains why its
growth was delayed compared to the population growth of Esrolia. Which
was my point all along.

>>>>Fishing and water fowl provide additional
>>>>sources of food, so that they didn't have to settle apart from each
>>>>other to find optimal farming conditions [...].
> ^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^
>>>Which are hardly primary sources of food.

>>This would surprise the Pelaskites among their population.

> I was speaking of the farming community as anyone can infer from the
> context. The farmers are going to derive most of their food from
> their crops and not fishing and water fowl.

The farmers usually rely on a mixture of husbandry and field cultures
for their food. In Orlanthi lands, the husbandry grazes the commons
between the villages' fields, and the woods beyond. In fertile Esrolia,
there are few if any pasture commons in the river valleys. However, as
real world examples as well as Pelorian ones show, in river valleys the
farmers tend to supply their animal-derived food from water fowl,
fishing, and other things usually connected with French or Cajoun
cuisine. Sometimes the fishing and the farming is distributed between
different ethnic groups (as is the case in Peloria, Weeders and

>>The Lhankor Mhy library in Nochet has been accused of being heavily
>>God Learner-infested.

> Who is saying this?

IIRC Nick Brooke has, among others, on the RQ-Daily.

The texts claiming that Issaries and LM were favourite cults of the God
Learners lead us to believe this, and the context of the scholarly riots
does as well. Which is why I reacted with surprise to your proposals.

>>This means that there are sources of early Jrusteli origin buried
>>deep within the library. If I want to incite scholarly riots, I
>>could just claim that valuable knowledge in these sources is
>>withheld from the customers of the library.

> And why would the Jrusteli lose knowlege of their own sources and be
> forced to dig it up in Nochet U?

Strawman. The Jrusteli would accuse the local temple to withhold
knowledge copies of which were widely distributed at home in Jrustela.

> And whatever happened to God Learners and Grey Sages having a
> good scrap about the nature of the Gods (cf digests passim)?

Didn't you catch the accusation that all this Grey Sage scrap against
Jrusteli notions about the nature of the Gods and related topics was a
reaction against their own involvement in preparing these theories?

Quite a bit like the Nuernberg process excuses.

>>There is no need to involve Malkioni craftsmen or merchants in
>>scholarly riots at all.

> Strawman. I stated the malkioni population to support a local
> malkioni school.

A continuous existance of which as an organisation independent of the
Great Library I don't believe in.

Generally available education is contrary to the Malkioni society.
Malkioni Universities are restricted to wizard caste members in
mainstream (non-idealist) sects. Wizards teaching certain castes the
knowledge needed for their duties happens either in the worship services
(something useful has to go on there), or during the training going on
for their caste members (e.g. recruit knights or soldiers).

> It was the teachers of this school that was doing the rioting.

Sez who, besides you? Do you have any specific sources? Do you have an
interesting write-up for this?

> Nowhere have I stated that craftsmen or merchants were involved in the
> rioting.

Craftsmen and merchants made up the bulk of the Malkioni populace in
Nochet. Scholars would have been a definite minority within the Malkioni
minority. Granted, you don't need many rioters to find some publicity,
but when the Persian students protested (sometimes violently) against
the Western policy vs. the Ayatollahs, nobody spoke of scholarly riots.

I said that <hypothetic mode> if the riots involved Malkioni students
</hypothetic mode>, the only use would have been an excuse for a

> Except there were three such riots in Nochet and none of them
> coincide with the Esrolian invasion of 842. One even took
> place _after_ that crusade.

The first RW crusade started about a year or two after wandering
preachers spread the word that christian pilgrims had been molested in
Jerusalem. You don't get "quick" response times like in the Gulf War
(several months, IIRC) in an ancient society. Even less so with a feudal
system of warfare. Most RW crusades were several years, if not decades,
in planning.

I said that the Nochet scholl of Draconic speech wouldn't have survived
the spread of Hunting and Waltzing bands.

> The problem with the H&W bands is that it converts the hearer
> to the EWF. The God Learners were intent on getting the secrets
> of the EWF and incorporate it into the Monomyth without getting
> converted.

Well, they failed. Vistikos was an absolvent of their school, and
numerous other early practitioners became Hunters and Waltzer type
teachers as well. This is like "teaching illumination" and expecting the
pupils to remain orthodox.

> They persisted even unto the fall of the Empire when
> 'hundreds of God Learners' are stated to have lost the knowlege
> of spoken Auld Wyrmish.

Which could include GL-friendly Lhankor Mhy scholars. See above.

> So IMO the Draconic School remained in place and was a centre for
> reverse-engineering the magical secrets of the EWF.

If so, it was an utter failure.


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