Lunar Army

From: Gian Gero (
Date: Fri 31 Mar 2000 - 19:09:54 EEST

>Subject: The Glorantha Digest V7 #486
>Date: Thu, 23 Mar 2000 11:45:05 -0800

>With all of the adventurers
>trying to pillage the Rubble, the sword temple seems to have more
>business>than the priests can handle, so they allow other masters access to
>the>training grounds.
> >------------------------------
>Bob Stancliff

I agree, Bob.

>Subject: Lunar military cults

(Random snips follow)

>However, the first thing to remember about the Imperial Army is that it
>is>composed of heterogenous units. It is not the Roman army or even the
>Greek>army. It is way more varied than either of those. I prefer, if one
>must use>a historical model, to consider it similar to the Seleucid army.

Good, but...
One thing that always intrigued me about Gloranthan warfare is the almost
complete absence of War Chariots. Still this device was well used by many
ancient armies, up to the diffusion of Bridle/saddle and other serious
cavalry gear (in the early middle ages, after the fall of the Western Roman

Empire, I deem).

Spanning from the first Hyksos chariots to the late Germanic chariots, we
have a "shelf-life" for the RW War chariot of about 20 centuries!!
Is it possible, I wonder, that in Glorantha they are almost totally absent??

But there are phalanxes (shelf life about 15 centuries), heavy cavalry (ten
centuries), hand crossbows (5 centuries)... ?!?

Sorry for the digression, Martin.

>The basic building block of an Imperial army is the regiment. There are no
> >permanent higher tactical bodies.

What do you mean, here, by "permanent"? Regional dislocation (such as the
three regiments in Prax) doesn't count as a tactical body in case of Praxian
rebellion, IYO?

>The Tarnils officer corps specialise in
>unifying their divergent commands into a cohesive force.

I like that one! That's what you call an "inclusive" cult, isn't it?

>In some respects they are similar to the Brigade commands common in the
>US>army today - the command has no fixed units under it, rather it is
>assigned>units based upon its mission.

Good. This is useful also to limit the senior officer's influence over
his/her troops. Crassus, Pompeus and Caesar are bad examples of this
politics not being properly applied. That was a major cause in the fall of
the Roman Republic, so I suppose the Lunar Emperor will not act so

>>Uncommon, officer rank and of noble birth. Many Dara Happan regiments
>>are>commanded by Polaris officers. Unlike other war cults, they tend not
>>to form>any elites composed entirely of their cult. It is strictly an
>>officer cult.>It specialises in generalship and strategums.

I like this one: Polaris sees things from the upper side ;-)

>Very common. Forms both the unifying officer corps for the Imperial
>Army>_and_ the rank and file for many units. Some elite units are
>entirely>Tarnils. Tarnils is also very common in house troop formations
>and as>mercenaries.


>The Bodyguard unit of Shargash is assigned permanently to Raibanth,
>ostensibly to guard the Golden Proxy, but really to keep them away from
> >Glamour.

Aha: exactly what I said above. Divide et impera is especially true
_inside_, not merely as an offensive tactic.

>In Alkoth, of course, he is king, but they Alkothi army is kept
>split among the Heartlands and Cavalry corps and S's worship is not
>common>outside of those units.

Shargash cavalry could well be composed of war chariots, IMHO.

>Very common among DH units. He is a popular regimental deity, even for
>the>rank and file. Officers follow him, though usually of lower rank or
>cerebral>method than the Polaris units. He is however a parochial deity
>and is>disliked by Tarnils for the cults resistance to Lunar Inclusiveness.

The poors' wargod.

>Widely spread worship among some specialiist formations of the Empire. The
> >Humakti of the Empire are Carmanian Knight-Killers and are often used by
>the >Empire as shock troops (both in terms of impact and fear
>generated!).>However, the cults darkers leanings has kept them out of the
>higher officer>corps and thus any real power.

A condottiere could possibly lead this units. Are they similar to the Black
Horse Mercenary Troops?

>Followed by the chivalric Lion Shah tradition, mostly in the central
>Carmanian noble houses. He is also venerated by a unit of the

Interesting: much Persian, bull and lion, idea. Any unit equipped with
griffins (Persian sphynxes)?

>Strongly worshipped as an active wargod only in the Red Lands. A couple
>of>very nasty units of the Imperial forces are YA but her worship
>usually>becomes common in the Heartland when nomads are a raiding.

Only in the Redlands? Never on the Hungry Plateau? :-)

BTW, Are the Carmanian Knights a kind of cataphracts?

>Sky captain and commander of Sky Marines for the Moon Boats. Doesn't get
>on>too well with the Yestendos cult who crew them or the Vargari cultist
>who>empower them.

Good. I like this one, too.

>He certanly is important but not the generic war god, except for
>Orlanthi>culture, and then he is more of a specialist. Orlanth is the
>generic war god.

Seems right to me.

>If you only have Cults of Prax to go on, it seems that
>the 7Ms are the core of the Empire.

Yeah. That's a limitation, indeed. Even if you simply own GoG: no more than
the Seven Mothers, the Red Goddess and Etyries. Severe Orlanthi bias: about
twenty Orlanthi deities are detailed in that (much useful but incomplete)
book !!

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