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Joerg

Clan tattoos, marriage, divorce and other separation

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I understand the adulthood initiation rites to bestow (at least the magical outlines) for the new adult's tattoos, and that includes his or her tattoos signifying their birth clan.

However, upon marriage, the individual marrying outside of (usually) her clan will join a new clan. Her clan tattoo will probably be added to, so that it encompasses the new clan's symbols, too.

I suppose there is something like a tattoo script to indicate "this is my clan that I married into".

So, what happens upon severance from a clan? Does the individual's birth clan tattoo get altered as a result of the marriage? (Basically, the individual bears the contract between the clans inked into her skin...)

What happens at a divorce, or when a temporary marriage runs out? (And is the number of children as the result of that marriage somehow integrated?)

Does an exiled clan member get their tattoo altered? A resheathed Humakti?

What would a serial monogamist outside of her own clan look like?

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5 hours ago, Joerg said:

I understand the adulthood initiation rites to bestow (at least the magical outlines) for the new adult's tattoos, and that includes his or her tattoos signifying their birth clan.

However, upon marriage, the individual marrying outside of (usually) her clan will join a new clan. Her clan tattoo will probably be added to, so that it encompasses the new clan's symbols, too.

Ohohohoho you are assuming she literally joins the clan. I doubt that. First of all, technically that would make their marriage incest.

In most of the world, women don't lose their clan when they marry, even when they join their husband's family permanently in historically (or currently!) patriarchal societies. For example, women in China, Japan, and Vietnam keep their surnames and have always done so.

I would suggest people wouldn't get their husband's blood inked on them. She might get ink for her children, though! Smaller clan markers for each child who makes it to their naming day or whatever.

Oh, and outlaws are 100% gonna get a giant brand right over their clan marker so everyone is clear they're free to murder this son of a bitch.

Un-Humakti? Do enough people survive unhumakting that there's a procedure for tattoo removal?

Edited by Qizilbashwoman
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53 minutes ago, Qizilbashwoman said:

I would suggest people wouldn't get their husband's blood inked on them. She might get ink for her children, though! Smaller clan markers for each child who makes it to their naming day or whatever.

 

A tat that grows with the child. There’s some good sense to that. Perhaps at each step of growth the child achieves, the relevant law speaker or god talker adds to the original.

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1 hour ago, Bill the barbarian said:

A tat that grows with the child. There’s some good sense to that. Perhaps at each step of growth the child achieves, the relevant law speaker or god talker adds to the original.

Maybe, depends on the clan, probably. Likely if your child turns out to be famous you'd elaborate on their birth tat, which would be somewhere near your own clan tat.

And men, too, are likely to have the same tattoos: fathers also love their children!

Esrolian nobles for sure have elaborate and elaborating child tats, but of course they are matrilineal so maybe it's whoever is the male parent figure who gets the child's tattoo on them.

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7 hours ago, Qizilbashwoman said:

Ohohohoho you are assuming she literally joins the clan. I doubt that. First of all, technically that would make their marriage incest.

Yes, and apparently so does Ian Cooper in his presentation of the Red Cow clan in The Coming Storm.

Basically, the loom house will be full of wives born in different clans. At least half the female priesthood will be married into the clan, even if you keep the main earth priestesses inside your clan (as is the - IMO rather rare - case with the Ernaldori Earth temple in Clearwine or Ernalsulva's home temple among the Malani).

7 hours ago, Qizilbashwoman said:

In most of the world, women don't lose their clan when they marry, even when they join their husband's family permanently in historically (or currently!) patriarchal societies. For example, women in China, Japan, and Vietnam keep their surnames and have always done so.

I didn't suggest that her birth clan be overwritten, but that her marriage clan be added to that tattoo.

A spouse in a different clan is supposed to give her (or his, in case of Esrolian marriages) loyalty to the clan into which the children are born. In all legal matters (other than divorce), the spouse is represented by the marriage clan. There might be a possibility (but not a necessity) for the birth clan to participate in ransom or weregeld payments (receiving as much as dishing out).

The Sacred TIme rites are (of course) performed at the site of the marriage clan.

Other than the guaranteed right to return to the birth clan in case of divorce or widowhood, how does the spouse retain her birth-clan membership?

7 hours ago, Qizilbashwoman said:

I would suggest people wouldn't get their husband's blood inked on them. She might get ink for her children, though! Smaller clan markers for each child who makes it to their naming day or whatever.

This actually might be sensible - you don't receive your hosting clan tattoo for initiating a year marriage, but upon bringing new life to the clan. A year's trial period should be enough to provide signs of offspring, and to revert to the birth clan afterwards if no offspring resulted.

7 hours ago, Qizilbashwoman said:

Oh, and outlaws are 100% gonna get a giant brand right over their clan marker so everyone is clear they're free to murder this son of a bitch.

That's the case for greater outlawry (aka "never come back"), but what about the lesser outlawry many anti-Lunar rebels accepted more or less pro forma during the occupation?

7 hours ago, Qizilbashwoman said:

Un-Humakti? Do enough people survive unhumakting that there's a procedure for tattoo removal?

Huh? I was talking about the ritual death (and separation) upon initiation to Humakt. Does this somehow alter the clan tattoo?

 

A similar case: what about warriors taking the service of a noble from a clan different from their birth clan? Do they wear some kind of tabard or ornament to signal their allegiance?

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3 hours ago, Joerg said:

Yes, and apparently so does Ian Cooper in his presentation of the Red Cow clan in The Coming Storm.

Yes, you're a Red Cow woman now, but you're not erasing your original bloodline. You in-married. You're within the clan and your fate is tied to its, but you still came from somewhere else and you aren't a local. Your clan tattoo is the sign of your bloodline; I still say "via child tattoos". Divorce does happen, and in some Orlanthi societies marriage isn't even that permanent.

A child might die (let's be honest, a lot of children die), but they are the true permanent markers of your membership in the clan, not the marriage, and some kind of child marker is the kind of real-world symbolism that we'd be likely to see.

Having the men do child tattoos too is just a nice touch to remind us they, too, can have ties to a clan through their wife's kin.

3 hours ago, Joerg said:

Huh? I was talking about the ritual death (and separation) upon initiation to Humakt. Does this somehow alter the clan tattoo?

That's the case for greater outlawry (aka "never come back"), but what about the lesser outlawry many anti-Lunar rebels accepted more or less pro forma during the occupation?

A similar case: what about warriors taking the service of a noble from a clan different from their birth clan? Do they wear some kind of tabard or ornament to signal their allegiance?

Hahaha omg my bad.

Yeah Humaktis'd get that adjusted. You are ritually dead to your kin and your reciprocal ties are severed. You are of no clan. I don't know, maybe part of the magic of the initiation removes it, an unprecedented thing!

But lesser outlawry and noble service would not require tattooing of any sort. That's just "do the crime/job, pay the fine/time" kind of thing. Maybe lesser outlaws have to shave their beards or cut their hair. Noble service folk would just wear some kind of identification on them as appropriate to their employer.

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Child tattoos might not be added until a child has survived a few years. I know of a number of cases were infants are not seen as having souls or a mind of their own until they reach a certain age, for example. It can be seen as psychological coping mechanism for infant mortality rates (I won't comment on whether it's effective or not). This absence of a soul/spirit (local emic terms apply) is also something that makes them extra vulnerable to spirit assaults, and hence is partially explaining the infant mortality rate to begin with). This is also why in some cultures a naming day (or one of several) is not shortly after birth, but at the time of the first teething, or after weaning, or other similar threshold.

Fathers tattooing to mark their children reminded me of the (sometimes) Arab practice of taking on names after the (firstborn) child (kunya). "Umm Ali" (Ali's Mother), "Abu Mazen" (Mazen's Father). It's not that I expect Orlanthi to practice this, but the tattooing functions similarly. There are probably parallels in polynesian cultures (given the prevalence of genealogical significance in tatau), but I don't know any specific examples.

Apropos of nothing, do bloodlines have their own tattoos, or only clans, btw?

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9 hours ago, Sir_Godspeed said:

do bloodlines have their own tattoos, or only clans

we're talking about Orlanthings, these people are covered in tattoos, i've no doubt there are some family tattoos as well. it's a massive collection of cultures inhabiting like 2/3rds of Genertela (and portions of Pameltela, where the Triolini thought it would be amusing to chuck some as an experiment). Even their gods aren't all the same; in Ralios Ehilm (Yelm) is a major deity on par with the second tier after Orlanth and Ernalda and most Pelorian Orlanthis are united around the Bear goddess Odayla, unsurprising given the importance of Uleria the Hunter for locals and the unsuitability of the regions they have been pushed into for significant agriculture.

Short and long: I'm sure they do. Where, I'm not sure.

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