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One of my players is beginning to craft scents. He started with products to mask a hunter's scent and is expanding into the more lucrative area of perfumes. A search of my pdfs revealed that perfumes are popular in the kinds of places you would expect (Lunar Empire, Esrolia, etc.), but is there anything else out there? A god or goddess with perfumes in their portfolio? A member of Ernalda's entourage, perhaps? A Minlister-type for crafting perfumes? A place in Sartar which specializes in production?

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Ib Nochet, the perfumers are associated with the Great Library. After all, a lot of knowledge is required to choose the methods and the resources.

There aren't many gods obsessed with scents. Other than Eurmal, that is, and while the work as a perfumer may expose you to similar stinks as Eurmal's farts, the product will hopefully be of a different kind.

Harmony may be involved in composing a pleasant odor out of the scents of various ingredients and ideally the natural scents emitted by the carrier. Does Chalana Arroy go into  aroma therapy?

Hunters or butchers may be involved in retrieving e.g. musk glands of certain beasts. 

 

 

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4 hours ago, Sir_Godspeed said:

The Lunars must have some god of pleasure or beauty or something. It would probably go under that. Illusion, maybe. Possibly even love. It's all conceptually related, imho. 

 

4 hours ago, Joerg said:

Ib Nochet, the perfumers are associated with the Great Library. After all, a lot of knowledge is required to choose the methods and the resources.

There aren't many gods obsessed with scents. Other than Eurmal, that is, and while the work as a perfumer may expose you to similar stinks as Eurmal's farts, the product will hopefully be of a different kind.

Harmony may be involved in composing a pleasant odor out of the scents of various ingredients and ideally the natural scents emitted by the carrier. Does Chalana Arroy go into  aroma therapy?

Hunters or butchers may be involved in retrieving e.g. musk glands of certain beasts. 

 

 

I'd say the Beauty/Illusion cults are the end users, but the Knowledge cults are the ones who make them. And Chalana Arroy also has alchemy as a cult skill.

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6 hours ago, Joerg said:

There aren't many gods obsessed with scents. Other than Eurmal,

don't forget Yinkin ! it is the dedicated god  for scent 😛

more serioulsy I like your idea about LM (maybe with some harmony god-dess / subcult association) for any "pleasant perfume" and Chalana (for therapy only)

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5 hours ago, Brootse said:

I'd say the Beauty/Illusion cults are the end users, but the Knowledge cults are the ones who make them. And Chalana Arroy also has alchemy as a cult skill.

Any kind of craft is ultimately tied to some kind of knowledge though. In this case, it's a craft to deliberately create a kind of beauty-enhancing "illusion", which was why I went with the latter, although it's not like it wasn't pretty off the cuff. Imho, the fragrance concocter must also understand the principles of olfactory attractiveness and be in tune with them.

Anyway, if there is established background on this, I'm not gonna argue too much.

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3 minutes ago, Sir_Godspeed said:

Any kind of craft is ultimately tied to some kind of knowledge though. In this case, it's a craft to deliberately create a kind of beauty-enhancing "illusion", which was why I went with the latter, although it's not like it was pretty off the cuff. Imho, the fragrance concocter must also understand the principles of olfactory attractiveness and be in tune with them.

Anyway, if there is established background on this, I'm not gonna argue too much.

Lanbril's cult in Pavis teaches how to make Stink Dust and Scent-Stop dust. And iirc Blue Moon's worshippers had some moth attracting scent. Afaik those are the only "perfumes" that are connected to specific cults in published works.

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In my Glorantha, lots of people make perfumes, but all use some form of alchemy to make them.

So, herbalists make scented concoctions to aid healing, Ulerians make candles and perfumes to set the scene, Vorians makes basic perfumes to attract the interest of young men, Ernaldans to make themselves feel good and to keep their men, Yinkini make strong perfumes to make themselves smell good and so on. Most of an alchemist's trade, in my opinion, consists of making perfumes, soap and other mundane items, very rarely do they make and sell magical potions.

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3 hours ago, soltakss said:

In my Glorantha, lots of people make perfumes, but all use some form of alchemy to make them.

As @Joerg noted, I accounted for perfumes in Nochet amongst the alchemists who worship Lhankor Mhy.

The Perfumed Houses.  A cluster of seven halls hold the Perfumed Houses under the Seven Scented Masters.  Using closely guarded and special recipes, as well as rare ingredients from the Holy Country and beyond, diligent and hard-working apprentices prepare the seven treasured perfumes and many lesser ones from the seven scents (floral, fruit, spice, musk, wood, aromatic, and green) that are sent throughout Glorantha.  Each house has perfected one of the seven perfumes and ensures that no one else learns their secrets.

However, I'm also sure that various temples have access to many of the ingredients needed.  Ernalda and Esrola temples grow flowers whose ingredients are sold - and then receive back finished perfumes.  Chalana Arroy temples grow many herbs needed.  Trade with the elves must be fairly extensive.  Hunters return with certain animals known for their musk.  And I'm sure temples such as Uleria or Yinkin have some secrets of their own.  

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On 10/19/2020 at 4:45 AM, Sir_Godspeed said:

The Lunars must have some god of pleasure or beauty or something. It would probably go under that. Illusion, maybe. Possibly even love. It's all conceptually related, imho.

When it comes to the Lunar Empire, I would imagine that there would be similar cults using perfumes. Uleria & Chalanna Arroy for similar reasons to those mentioned previously. Pelorian Earth worshippers will have the same desires/lust-for-life as their southern counterparts in Dragon Pass, with similar usage of perfumes & cosmetics, if not more, given the size of the Empire and it's current decadent attitude & ruler. 

High status Dara Happans would also use perfumes, for ceremonies or rituals and/or possibly even just to disguise the odours of the 'plebs', such as carrying a scented handkerchiefs, flowers etc. in our own world to mask unpleasant smells. 

Don't forget the city goddess Glamour. Magics exist to make you more appealing, but you may be proficient with them. Therefore her worshippers are definitely going to be heavy users of cosmetics and perfumes. There may even be a Perfumers' Guild in the city of Glamour, with either strong ties to the cult of Glamour or, imho, entirely controlled by the cult. In the latter case, woe betide any 'non-guild' perfumier who tries to set up shop in Glamour or it's suburbs. 

 

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The RuneQuest rulebook has the following prices:

  • Henna: 0.5L per application
  • Kohl: 0.5L per container
  • Perfume: 0.1 - 1L per application

So, your adventurer is unlikely to become rich. Assuming 1 application lasts a day, expensive perfume is likely to cost 294L per year. If you assume, say, a quarter of that is profit then you are making around 74L, so one good client might keep you in a reasonable standard of living.

 

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3 hours ago, soltakss said:

If you assume, say, a quarter of that is profit then you are making around 74L, so one good client might keep you in a reasonable standard of living.

And that's just one.  If you happen to be providing the perfumes and unguents for the Ernalda temple for the seasonal ceremonies... ☺️

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From my Casino Town Rumors (WIP):

Quote

19. The blue-skinned perfumer who operates The House of Hemrehana is from distant Garguna.

(F — he is actually from equally distant Polostan, the fragrant city of a thousand delights in Fonrit.)

Here's some more from that WIP:

19. The House of Hemrehana – the masarin trader Hemrehana is from distant Garguna and resides in Nochet, but maintains this establishment in Casino Town. It is overseen by one of her most trusted slaves, a blue-skinned Malubadou alchemist from the fragrant city of Polostan. The House of Hemrehana offers Fonritian scents, unguents and salves (and, some say, exotic poisons).

GM Notes: Hemrehana's perfume business in Casino Town is actually a cover for her scheme to corner the supply of ambergris. In Nochet, the price of ambergris has reached stupendous levels, with agents of King Guilmarn the Fat and the Golden Elixir Monks of the Dragon Tiger Hills furiously outbidding each other for any that comes on the market (the Kralorelan monks need it for their potions of immortality; the Seshnelan King loves to eat ambergris with eggs for breakfast). The wily Hemrehana has made deals with the local Ludoch, whose own undersea trading networks spread wide across the oceans. The transactions are made at predetermined times on an isolated beach an hour or so away from Casino Town, far from scrutiny.

 

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15 hours ago, jajagappa said:

And that's just one.  If you happen to be providing the perfumes and unguents for the Ernalda temple for the seasonal ceremonies... ☺️

In that situation, you are probably in competition with other perfumers, so your prices will be cheaper and your margins tighter.

I can see Glorantha as having client-patron relationships, where a rich noblewoman has their own perfumer, jeweller and so on, rather than having one crafter providing services to many people. That way, the noblewoman can have a unique style that isn't like anyone else's, instead of everyone having the same perfume and dresses.

Edited by soltakss
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2 hours ago, soltakss said:

In that situation, you are probably in competition with other perfumers, so your prices will be cheaper and your margins tighter.

I can se Glorantha as having client-patron relationships, where a rich noblewoman has their own perfumer, jeweller and so on, rather than having one crafter providing services to many people. That way, the noblewoman can have a unique style that isn't like anyone else's, instead of everyone having the same perfume and dresses.

Every individual noblewoman might be overkill, but we know that Esrolian Houses have their own coiffure at least. Sufficiently affluent houses may have retainer houses or individual retainers in those businesses.

But then, your house perfumer will be the person mixing the cocktail of scents that results in your individual perfume, but that person is unlikely to create all her scents or essences from every bit of raw material. There will be "industrial scope" perfumers or contract farmers extracting specific scents from their harvests and selling these to the mixologist perfumers.

With jewelry, I am somewhat less convinced, as there are likely to be fashions of styles that may require a different skill set than the previous fashionable style. Neo-Pentan cloak needles take different material than Bambara Maunde red coral brooches.

What I can see is political groupings having their go-to accessory providers, wearing the affiliation like a fashionable statement beyond house excentricities.

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