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Holy Country, Silver Age Heroes, and Belintar...


jajagappa

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12 hours ago, Nevermet said:

Also, Maniria gets a divine flood once per age, it would seem.  First the destruction of Porluftha, then the sinking of Slontos, and then whatever the Hero Wars Flood takes.

Blocking Magasta's Pool with a huge block of troll-chewed ice.

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Simon Phipp - Caldmore Chameleon - Wallowing in my elitism since 1982. Many Systems, One Family. Just a fanboy. 

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8 hours ago, Nevermet said:

I am not currently aware of such a piece that is written.  However, it is something I need to either find or write.  I don't even have disorganized thoughts about this, but here are some mythical elements I know should probably be accounted for in the discussion (I'm sure there are others):

  • Maniria is a land people keep going to, rather than coming from.  This includes a land goddess, Ketha, the land goddess of the Holy Country, who left the Holy Country during the Storm Age.  I don't have a full handle on the consequences of this, but it seems very noteworthy.
  • Maniria is where Heler swore fealty to Orlanth after rescuing them from Aroka.
  • Just as there are multiple floods, is there something like the Goddess Switch and/or the reading of the Book of Secrets that can be identified for the other Floods?

1. Lots of people came from Maniria. To begin with the Pralori and the Entruli. 
2. There might be a local story to that effect, or might not. But I think the more common location for that story is in Dragon Pass or South Peloria.

 

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On 3/10/2021 at 3:39 AM, jajagappa said:

The Holy Country as a real, manifest "HOLY" Country!  You (well your grandparents, maybe your parents, assuming a PC in 1625) could have met the gods! 

I have a question there (or I have misunderstand the point) :

Where are / were the gods and you, when  you meet them?

does that mean the gods are "really" here, among the people in the mundane world ?

or is the holy country a mix of godtime and mundane world, because of Belintar nature/magic/ceremonies, a kind of gateway between the two worlds ? something like *you* are in a full time heroquest including all the holy country and all the people ?

 

 

 

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3 hours ago, Sir_Godspeed said:

Didn't the Umathelans and (human) Jrusteli in part come from Maniria?

The Olodo - the first humans to settle Jrustela after the Dawn - had been carried there on Waertagi ships, from Maniria. They moved onward to Umathela without Waertagi help/hindrance when the people of the sons of Nralar encroached on their territories.

So yes - the Umathelan Orlanthi have Entruli origins.

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Telling how it is excessive verbis

 

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Jeff's next post on the 2nd Age:

KETHAELA - THE SECOND AGE
The Shadowlands continued their political existence through the next five centuries as the world changed all about them. The Waertagi were driven from seas by the navies of the Jrusteli priest-magicians of the Middle Sea Empire. The Empire of the Wyrms Friends formed in Dragon Pass. Both of these organizations were co-existent with a philosophy of magico-religious scientism wherein bands of heroquesters consciously penetrated the Other Side to serve their own needs. In the Shadowlands these needs were filled sufficiently by the ways of Argan Argar whose Palace of Black Glass was ever open to those who dared to enter. In the Shadowlands, the ancient powers and heroes remained strong.
Both the Jrusteli and the Empire of the Wyrms Friends sought to maintain a loyal power base in Kethaela. It is, after all, the crossroads of the continent, and though every power lusted for it and occasionally made a military or magical bid for it, none wished to close or ruin it.Thus the Shadowlands filled political, religious, and mythical needs, and remained intact.
The hubris of the great experimental empires wreaked great destruction on the peoples of Kethaela. Scholarly Riots erupted frequently in Nochet, as followers of the Knowing God were outraged by the use the Jrusteli made of their knowledge. In 849, the Goddess Switch in Slontos caused widespread famine in Esrolia. In 907, the Two Year Winter brought snow to Caladraland and even the Islands. Ten years later, the Windless Typhoon devastated Esrolia and Caladraland (although Heortland was undamaged).
During the disintegration of the great experimental empires, the Shadowlands grew stronger as the Only Old One played upon their weaknesses and needs. The Only Old One turned to destroy those foes who lived nearest to him. These were the cities of Jadnor and Lylket, both of which fell to local forces, and the Clanking City, source of so many legends.
The Clanking City was built at the tip of the Left Arm Islands by the inheritors of Jrusteli knowledge and magic. There the residents put their minds and ideas together and discovered some wondrous properties. They built mechanical war machines and mass produced magical items of war. Around 907, they awakened Zistor the Machine God, a great mechanical being that could move about, think for itself, work magic, and even reproduce itself. All the ancient gods howled against this outrage and thus began the final downfall of the Jrusteli as all of their foes allied for this one purpose. Many peoples, human and otherwise, came to tear down the city, and for ten years the city successfully resisted all attacks. Its final destruction is the inspiration for epic literature.
In 940, the Closing reached Kethaela and shut it off from the seas, ending the Jrusteli threat. In 1035, the Hendriki seized parts of Esrolia. Through cleverness, marriage, and conquest they took control of the coastal cities of Rhigos and Storos, but Nochet kept its independence.
In 1042, the Empire of the Wyrms Friends destroyed itself. The Only Old One supported the remaining peoples and gave particular aid to the liberated Beast Peoples. He extended his protection far into the lands to the north and west as well.
In 1050, Lodril erupted in rage and fury out of the Vent. The focus of his devastation was directed towards Slontos and the God Learners, whose lands sunk beneath the seas, but eruption shook all of Kethaela. Human life was nearly extinguished in Caladraland except for a few pious families who took shelter in the Solung Plateau. A ten-foot-tall wave of earth passed through Esrolia, knocking down almost everything, followed by a smaller ripple. The resulting ash cloud blotted out the Sun for the rest of the year and the subsequent famines brought all of southern Genertela low.
Many humans fled to the land of Kethaela when the Invincible Golden Horde approached from the north after 1100. They found homes, but were never able to achieve political independence, and disappeared from history, absorbed into existing tribes. In 1120, the Invincible Golden Horde tried to destroy the ancestral nest eggs of the original dragonewts and triggered the Dragonkill War. The Dragonkill was named for what the monsters did, not what they received. Countless True Dragons flew to Dragon Pass and exterminated all human life in that ancient land. A line of stone crosses were raised by the dragonewts, to mark off where humans were forbidden to pass.
 
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Posted (edited)

And Slontos in the 2nd Age:

Now it is worth looking at Slontos at the same time:
SECOND AGE
The Second Age began slowly through all the world, and little of great note occurred for many years. The Pralori lands grew more populous and there was great cooperation between them and the River Otters.
The River Otters were an ancient and shy race which had heretofore preferred the sanctuary of isolation. As a people they were known, and many individuals had been noted in the previous Age. But they were badly hurt by the Gbaji Wars, for the otters were among the first peoples betrayed by the evil god and slated for destruction.
The otters were friendly with the Pralori, and with them established a genial and informal network of communication in the fens and upon the rivers.
The newtlings at this time dominated the coastal regions, the Mournsea Bay, and the river mouths. They were more friendly with the coastal peoples. The newtlings had a scattered population which was loosely organized under an ancestral theocrat.
The coast regions past Pralorela were the first place to gain international interest. With newtling and Triolini aid they often attacked the coastal shipping which went past. This eventually angered the king of Seshnela whose tax revenues were being reduced. He sent a brother, an army, and a fleet to suppress the raiders. He did, and also established a naval base of his own. His name was Nelom, and he was the first of many people to bear the title of Prince of Slontos.
Slontos was the name of this land given by the Seshnegi. The Seshnegi were part of the greatly expanding Jrusteli, or God Learner, Empire. They had great resources at their command and exploited them mercilessly. The aristocratic warriors of Slontos quickly captured most of the best lands in the Slontos peninsula and islands, and began planting colonies along the rich rivers of the region.
There was much conflict between the Slontans and the Pralori. The Elk People and the Otter Folk were no match for the Slontan wizards though. The barbarians were driven back from the rivers. They often were ruled by the valley dwellers as well, and some discovered that it was better to live in peace with these rich owners of plenty than it was to fight and raid them. Many Pralori joined the forces of the invaders, and their cultures joined and blended.
Slontos was eventually ruled by an Archduke whose powers were imperial in nature. His main occupation was to collect taxes, guard his shipping, and fight off the occasional raider who had not accepted the Jrusteli way of life.
The Archduke kept reasonably good relations with the Only Old One of the Shadowlands. This ancient demigod ruled a nation of trolls and others and made his land a dark and superstitious place, jealously guarding the divine wonders beyond their border. There were certainly wars, some even terrible, but no Jrusteli even managed to conquer the trolls who could simply run away, deep in impenetrable holes, where they would await their allies from Dragon Pass. These allies, members of the Empire of the Wyrms Friends, rode upon dream dragons and brought dragonewts and Beast Men. These creatures, once allies of the god Gbaji, were more than the Jrusteli dared to conquer, and so the Empire of the Wyrms Friends maintained an uneasy peace with the Jrusteli Empire. Their major difference was that one was sea-based, the other land-based, and so the worst confrontations of colliding cultures was avoided.
The Jrusteli did establish some colonies in the fringes of the Shdaowlands. Jadnor, Lylket, and Zistorwal were the best known.
The people who moved up the Noshain River were called the Thomali. Thomal was an old leader whose people ruled the regions south of the Noshain, and whose people carried their traditions northward into the valley and befriended some of the peoples. The northernmost region of their lands was called the North March where it bordered the Pralori lands, but the Pralori and natives called it Thomali.
The rulers here were generally worshipers of the god Malkion, the presiding deity of the Jrusteli beliefs. They exploited the many resources they found, often using novel methods which they learned from some faraway land. In Thomali the rulers became experts at draining the marsh with dykes and canals, exposing huge expanses of rich land for farming. Thomali was a rich and expansive place in those days. The major drawback for the Pralori was that the Jrusteli of Thomali far preferred their old newtling allies over the otters, who were forced further and further upriver for refuge.
The fault of the Jrusteli Empire lay in its lack of respect for the world and for the elder powers. They defeated them in magical and physical battles, then thought they could bend and contain those primeval forces as desired. They tried to do so, but the ancient gods bent only so far before snapping back with a crushing blow wherever they were blocked.
The sea creatures were the most hurt by the Jrusteli a few centuries earlier, and they were among the most crushing in vengeance. They enlisted or tricked the aid of Zzabur, the god of sorcerers, who in turn cheated them of their desires for his own ends. Before the wizard’s curse struck them, though, the sea people had done their work.
The places which supplied most harm or insult to their foes were struck the worst. This included all the major naval centers in the west of Genertela. Among them were the Seshnela peninsula, Jrustela, and the Slontos peninsulas. In each case and unyielding force of demigods sailed ashore and caused immense energies to be freed which shook these lands, toppling cities and slaying many thousands. They produced great rituals which summoned hidden powers of the deep. Tidal waves paved the land, sea and windstorms pound the coasts, volcanoes erupted and showered the land with fire and ash, and finally the Earth Mother herself groaned and turned over. Sramak, the sea, cheered and rushed in to cover her. The land sank, waters rushed in, and another civilization was lost at the bottom of the Mournsea. The mouth of the Noshain River was moved another hundred kilometers inland.
The wizard Zzabur closed the oceans to all surface trade. This wreaked the Slontos economy long before they were ruined by war and magical catastrophe. The Archduchy was broken by internal dissent. Thomali, sensing the disaster brought on by their rulers, rebelled to establish themselves apart from the destruction to come. Instead of the gods delivering their works, the humans did it. The leaders were killed, their city ruined. Without central organization, the canal and dykes fell into disrepair, and the fertile expanses of exposed marshland was once again claimed by the spirits of the marsh.
The disaster which sunk Slontos devastated the peoples of Pralorela as well. Many refugees crowded the small towns and villages seeking aid. Other inland tribes, including the normally quiescent elves of Tarnin’s Forest, grabbed the opportunity to plunder their traditional enemies.
The end of the Second Age found Pralorela once again in the state in started in. A fear of the ocean was upon the people now too, for it had once been a couple of hundred kilometers away but was now upon their doorstep.
 
Jeff's Note 1: So if you remember my comment on Jadnor and the Volior River, that ends up being roughly the border between the Middle Sea Empire and the Empire of the Wyrms Friends. Called Kotor, this area is alternatively a battleground and an exchange of ideas and goods. It plays an important role in the transmission of the Monomyth between the Jrusteli and the Empire of the Wyrms Friends.
 
Jeff's Note 2: I suggest you keep an eye on that area was Kotor in the Second Age as it becomes the Solanthi and Ditali lands in the Third.
 
Jeff's Note 3:
As an additional aside, remember that EVERY HUMAN that resided in Dragon Pass in 1120 is gone by the end that year. There are no human tribes in Dragon Pass that have an unbroken history to before the Dragonkill. There are a few temples that claim to have been active during that time (Shaker's Temple, Puppeteer Troupe) and their claims are likely true, but it could also mean that their members were not human at that time.
So if you are living in Sartar in the Third Age, you are not likely the descendants of Ogarvaltes or Ulanin or whoever. Any more than modern Poles are the descendants of the Vandals.
 
Jeff's Note 4: It also suggests that the Maniria Orlanthi are even more Monomythed Lightbringers. With some Hsunchen and Malkioni stuff woven into it. But very recognisable.
 
Jeff's Note 5: the river otters are intelligent otters, not hsunchen
 
Edited by jajagappa
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4 minutes ago, jajagappa said:

Jeff's next post on the 2nd Age:

KETHAELA - THE SECOND AGE
...
 

This is an interesting version of the Holy Country text in the RQ2 Companion, amended by a few paragraphs from I think the Glorantha Book of the Genertela Box (which were picked up in the Guide).

It has a lot less detail than the regional history in the Guide, which inherits quite a few facts from the Stafford Library books.

 

Kotor as a land of cultural exchange is an interesting take, after earlier mentions (e.g. in the Seshnelan Kings List) only presented the region as the battleground (or perhaps staging area) of the magical conflict between the God Learners and the EWF.

For two groups apparently that much at odds with each other, one has to wonder why the small stretch of Kotor has so much bigger importance than the rather long border shared in Ralios.

6 minutes ago, jajagappa said:
 
Jeff's Note 3:
As an additional aside, remember that EVERY HUMAN that resided in Dragon Pass in 1120 is gone by the end that year. There are no human tribes in Dragon Pass that have an unbroken history to before the Dragonkill. There are a few temples that claim to have been active during that time (Shaker's Temple, Puppeteer Troupe) and their claims are likely true, but it could also mean that their members were not human at that time.
So if you are living in Sartar in the Third Age, you are not likely the descendants of Ogarvaltes or Ulanin or whoever. Any more than modern Poles are the descendants of the Vandals.

That's easily remedied with an earlier paragraph quoted from Jeff's 2nd Age Kethaela section:

19 minutes ago, jajagappa said:

Many humans fled to the land of Kethaela when the Invincible Golden Horde approached from the north after 1100. They found homes, but were never able to achieve political independence, and disappeared from history, absorbed into existing tribes.

This gives a certain build-up time for the people inhabiting the ruins of the dragonspeaker cities (falling apart where the dragon magic failed to uphold them) to pack the necessities and move south, out of the way. I wouldn't be surprised if this influx of new refugees flared up another revival of Aventus' foreigner laws in Hendrikiland.

Interestingly, it seems that about half of the Quivini immigrants from the south were Hendriki rather than other type clans that moved out of Belintar's new regime. At least at the time of writing up the various types of Orlanthi clans in WF15, maintaining a clan memory of one's origins from before the Kingdom of  Orlanthland appears to have been the norm.

 

Given the migration history of the Vandals, I wouldn't be surprised if only half of the people who took over Libya under Geiserich had ancestors from the region of modern Poland. The pre-Dragonkill displacement of population from the Pass is quite similar to the re-settlement of Polish nationals from what would become the Ukraine SSR to the areas abandoned by German nationals following WW2.

Many a family with a refugee or forcible resettlement background will know how some (often slightly toxic) memories and desires for what was lost will be inherited by future generations. Refugees as well as other migrants tend to cluster in the places that offer them shelter, and to create quite conservative communities to deal with the change that was brought onto them with the relocation. How many European-descended North Americans will identify by their immigrant ancestors' European homelands despite having hardly any experience of modern life in those places?

 

Back to Glorantha, it is quite possible that the majority of the people in Malkonwal is descended from the Orgorvaltes, Koroltes, Stravuli, Liornvuli, Vestantes etc.. Aventus' Foreigner Laws show clearly that already at the start of the fifth century, there were many immigrants not descended from the Garanvuli (like Hendrik and his followers) but from the more northerly Heortling tribes populating the Heortland Plateau, people who (futilely) fled the Bright Empire after the Battle of Night and Day, and again when the dragonspeakers started to establish themselves on the ruling council of Orlanthland, turning it into the EWF. Quite a few will have opted out of Isgangdrang's persecution of Old Way Traditionalists in the EWF and have chosen to take religious refuge with their cousins under the rule of the Only Old One. The famine of 1042 (exacerbated by the opportunistic raid of the Sairdite/Dara Happan/Carmanian anti-dragon coalition) would have sent waves of refugees south, too, after the draconic crops and livestock deteriorated and became unsustainable when the Dragonspeakers experienced their collective utuma and their magic faded away.

The 78 years after the disintegration of the EWF saw a few minor new tribes in the region, and also an expansion of the Hendriki hegemony all the way into what later was known as Old Sartar. Even so, the amount of manpower the Hendriki king took with him to make a stand against the Invincible Golden Horde was minimal, compared to the degree of mobilisation of the Pelorian invaders. The immense Horde must have bared the lands they traversed like locusts, sending yet another wave of desperate last-minute refugees before them, fleeing certain starvation as the only alternative to enslavement or painful death as the northerners were bent on retribution for (2 or 3, at most) centuries of draconic domination (ending a century or two earlier).

 

The Hendriki remained the dominant tribe in Heortland, but I would be surprised if their numbers approached 40% of the total Orlanthi population after the Dragonkill. They had also experienced a significant drain of manpower in the Adustment Wars in Esrolia, probably more so than the non-Hendriki Heortlanders.

By these calculations, I would expect about ever sixth clan or bloodline in the non-Hendriki population of Heortland to be descended from Orgorvale and Ulanin, and a higher proportion among the non-Hendriki clans and tribes migrating into the ancient homelands of the Orgorvaltes tribe to move into Quiviniland. Clans with Koroltes or Stravuli ancestry may have ended up as Vendref.

Even if personal memories of ancient holdings or deeds may fade away, those same memories reinforced with the desires of the ancestors (whether as nameless group or as individual ancstor spirit guides)

Telling how it is excessive verbis

 

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I wouldn't say that the idea that the Ryzel Newtlings got along with the Slontan groups is surprising to me, but it never occurred to me.

 

2 hours ago, jajagappa said:
Jeff's Note 1: So if you remember my comment on Jadnor and the Volior River, that ends up being roughly the border between the Middle Sea Empire and the Empire of the Wyrms Friends. Called Kotor, this area is alternatively a battleground and an exchange of ideas and goods. It plays an important role in the transmission of the Monomyth between the Jrusteli and the Empire of the Wyrms Friends.
 
Jeff's Note 2: I suggest you keep an eye on that area was Kotor in the Second Age as it becomes the Solanthi and Ditali lands in the Third.
 

I missed his comment on Jadnor.  I assume it is somewhere in the FB group?

Also, my take on Kotorland: it probably has a very sparse population of remnant Haranding and Entruli groups.  They were probably semi-nomadic, as any settlement would have been taken over or destroyed by Esrolia or Slontos.  Countless battles and skirmishes between those 2 powers probably happened in Kotorland, but the Kotori probably had some trade with both sides, and as a result there was probably was indirect trade and interaction between Esolia & Slontos.  The alternative notion, that Kotor was a demilitarized zone devoid of human life save for armies marching into or away from battle, seems very unlikely to me.

As the survivors, the Kotori spread through most of Maniria, and a few generations later they come into contact with a weird Hero-Traveller from Ralios. 

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@Joerg, I suspect that Jeff's point about the Orlanthi of Dragon Pass is less about biological descent, and more about cultural continuity. Sure, there might very well be a significant portion of pre-EWF Kerofinelan descent of the migrants that eventually resettled Dragon Pass, but their traditions, customs and variant was by that point, likely thoroughly "Kethaela-ized"/"Heortland-ized", as it were.

I also think Jeff keeps pointing how relatively "quickly" people forget history for a reason. Any ancestral memory of pre-EWF Orlanthi life in Dragon Pass is likely incredibly garbled and synthesized. Some of the existing temples may provide some anchors of reasonably continuity, but even that's not a guarantee.

Pardon if I'm wrong.

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2 minutes ago, Sir_Godspeed said:

Any ancestral memory of pre-EWF Orlanthi life in Dragon Pass is likely incredibly garbled and synthesized.

It's the same as us having some memory of what occurred during the Black Death and the Renaissance.  Aside from those of us who've studied history, it's not much.

 

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2 hours ago, Nevermet said:

I missed his comment on Jadnor.  I assume it is somewhere in the FB group?

Yes, lots of comments to parse through to find some of the additional nuggets.  I think this is the short note he referenced that I missed:

Jeff Note: Now pay attention to Jadnor and the Volior River - this ends up being an important cultural mixing zone for the next thousand years.

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1 minute ago, jajagappa said:

Yes, lots of comments to parse through to find some of the additional nuggets.  I think this is the short note he referenced that I missed:

Jeff Note: Now pay attention to Jadnor and the Volior River - this ends up being an important cultural mixing zone for the next thousand years.

Well, yes 🤣

The Volior is definitely a boundary, though.

Most of Maniria, I would argue, is a "boundary space", with its western edge starting at the Tigronior in the Second Age, but extending to the Noshain river system after the Flood.

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25 minutes ago, jajagappa said:

It's the same as us having some memory of what occurred during the Black Death and the Renaissance.  Aside from those of us who've studied history, it's not much.

 

Because of Heroquesting and magic more generally, I suspect 3rd Age Glorathans have a better handle on (some) pre-Dawn events than things that happened 500 years ago.

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1 minute ago, Nevermet said:

Because of Heroquesting and magic more generally, I suspect 3rd Age Glorathans have a better handle on (some) pre-Dawn events than things that happened 500 years ago.

The annual repetition of religious ceremonies tends to reinforce these events.  Though likely as with oral storytelling, the events may subtly shift over the years so that you "know" it's the same story your ancestors followed, and yet, it's not.

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5 minutes ago, jajagappa said:

The annual repetition of religious ceremonies tends to reinforce these events.  Though likely as with oral storytelling, the events may subtly shift over the years so that you "know" it's the same story your ancestors followed, and yet, it's not.

Completely agree.

However, I would argue that the cosmology of Glorantha would create more of an "anchor" or "center of gravity" for repetition of religious ceremonies in the setting than what exists in our reality.  

 

....hmm.  Now that I wrote that, I'm less sure lol

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4 hours ago, Sir_Godspeed said:

@Joerg, I suspect that Jeff's point about the Orlanthi of Dragon Pass is less about biological descent, and more about cultural continuity. Sure, there might very well be a significant portion of pre-EWF Kerofinelan descent of the migrants that eventually resettled Dragon Pass, but their traditions, customs and variant was by that point, likely thoroughly "Kethaela-ized"/"Heortland-ized", as it were.

I also think Jeff keeps pointing how relatively "quickly" people forget history for a reason. Any ancestral memory of pre-EWF Orlanthi life in Dragon Pass is likely incredibly garbled and synthesized. Some of the existing temples may provide some anchors of reasonably continuity, but even that's not a guarantee.

Pardon if I'm wrong.

Glorantha is a world where people living in Kethaela or having left Kethaela for Dragon Pass are traumatized by the Dragonkill generations ago, even though the number of humans eaten by dragons is mainly the evil enemies and maybe a few survivors of the defenders left alive by them. The real trauma of the dragonkill to the Orlanthi was that the refugees were not allowed to return to their ancestral lands once the Invincible Golden Horde found its deserved resting place as ashes or in dragon intestines.

It is different for the Pelorian side - the Balazaring citadel kings descended from the hero have that decisive moment in their development when their rise to greater cultural heights was rudely interrupted by a greedy raid going completely haywire. Peloria lost a generation of able-bodied men to their greed and revanchism. Similar for those Praxians and Wenelians who entered the Pass in search for easy exotic plunder, but the losses in manpower were much more limited. The Hendriki lost a king and his personal warband in the defense of the Pass - possibly buying time for human refugees against the incoming Golden Horde. There may have been a few survivors to this last stand action that fell prey to dragonfire, but the majority of th

Famous or exotic ancestors define people's identity in the real world. There are US Americans who take pride in tribal Amerind ancestry, or who point to the pilgrim fathers they claim to be descended from, or who identify as a European ethnicity they have never lived with, except for their expat community several generations removed. A prominent politician in Germany claims Charlemagne as his ancestor.

Telling how it is excessive verbis

 

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9 hours ago, Sir_Godspeed said:

@Joerg, I suspect that Jeff's point about the Orlanthi of Dragon Pass is less about biological descent, and more about cultural continuity. Sure, there might very well be a significant portion of pre-EWF Kerofinelan descent of the migrants that eventually resettled Dragon Pass, but their traditions, customs and variant was by that point, likely thoroughly "Kethaela-ized"/"Heortland-ized", as it were.

I also think Jeff keeps pointing how relatively "quickly" people forget history for a reason. Any ancestral memory of pre-EWF Orlanthi life in Dragon Pass is likely incredibly garbled and synthesized. Some of the existing temples may provide some anchors of reasonably continuity, but even that's not a guarantee.

Pardon if I'm wrong.

Yes - and from time to time it is worth reinforcing the scale of Dragon Pass and the Holy Country. So basically, Dragon Pass is about the size of Northern California from the south shore of Lake Tahoe up to the Oregon border.  
USA_Overlay1.JPG.e80e8c9bbcd6422d9205c8e

So imagine plenty of refugees fled from the Sacramento Valley to Sacramento and down to places like Stockton or San Francisco, similarly plenty of folk fled from the coast to places like Medford. That's the scale we are operating on. These refugees spend the next two centuries in Esrolia and Heortland - and may not have been the ancestors of the people who returned to resettle Dragon Pass in the 1300s and 1400s. They aren't keeping some giant notebook about the secrets of ancient tribes from a thousand or two thousand years ago. They might have the equivalent of Claudius Ptolemy's Geography, with the names of places from the Second Age, but these are just names, with little attached to it:
image.thumb.png.d2757b0102011f539d516b5dd6342865.png
 

And so those early settlers might have referred to Ogorvaltesland, Storn, and Selkos - pretty quickly they replaced those names with more useful ones: Balmyr, Colymar, the Far Place. 
 

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The EWF evidently found it useful to establish a Dream Dragon to absorb the sovereignty magic that was to be had from Orgorvale Vingkot's daughter. I can only assume that the dream dragon had a cult and significant amounts of worship while there were dragonspeakers living in those lands, growing those strange crops called velt and kreet, which were reported as their main, very nourishing crops (Middle Sea Empire p.50). When the mass utuma of 1042 stopped all the magics that enabled these crops, worship to the dream dragon probably stopped as well, or became rather meagre propitiation.

The people who fled these lands (fleeing famine, or some sixty years later fleeing the unstoppable Invincible Golden Horde) may have remembered their lands as the lands of that dragon rather than Orgorvale and Ulanin, but the people they fled to had memories of the Hyalorings, and local myths about Ulanin, and likely his wife. (Or how else can we explain the Runegate Triarchy establishing themselves northwest of the Colymar clans?)

The Coming Storm asserts some ancestral memories, or ancestors remembering things, for the Red Cow clan. Identifying the ruins of Ulaninstead (a tell or settlement hill, some barrows, maybe a few remnants of cyclopean architecture jutting out of the vegetation) doesn't seem to have been that hard. So the myths were kept alive, and at least some descendants made their way back to the Quivin hills. (The Red Cow clan is presented as thrall-taking Axe Orlanthi rather than Hendriki in custom.)

Between their exodus and the return lay about 300 years, maybe only 220 or so.

That's about the time that has gone into the land since the Cherokee eviction from their ancestral lands. What is their memory of the Cherokee Trail of Tears? And yes, the Cherokee don't preserve any memories about how they entered the southern Appalachian ranges Andrew Jackson and his successor expelled them from. The notes of an early 19th century ethnographer are all that researchers can work from. Fleeing ancestral lands or seeking a new home far away always comes with a certain break in continuity.

Telling how it is excessive verbis

 

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And bringing the history up-to-date, here's Jeff's piece on 3rd Age Kethaela (with some overlap to earlier Belintar notes).

KETHAELA - THE THIRD AGE
After the Dragonkill War, the Only Old One proved himself to be a troll in magical contest with Kajak-ab Brain Eater and so shared rule of Dragon Pass with the leaders in Dagori Inkarth. This led eventually to the first troll civil war in Dragon Pass which weakened the Shadowland trolls greatly. The westerners called upon Lightbringer worshipers to free them from the Shadowlands and again the troll region declined in size.
With both seas and Dragon Pass closed to all useful trade, Kethaela was surrounded by poor kingdoms whose residents viewed the Shadowlands as rich prey. Internally, the humans of Kethalea fought amongst each other over the rich fields of Esrolia, until that conflict sputtered out in 1168. Though much of the former richness was gone with the absence of trade, much of value was carried off in plunder during those years. Yet no one invasion was more significant than the appearance of a single, lone stranger.
Belintar was a human being who swam ashore from the deadly sea at the Rightarm Island of Sindpaper one bright morning in the year 1313. He had great bearing and power, and quickly proved he was no mere pauper washed ashore. He undertook great trials and travels, and he made important friends quickly. His origins have remained unknown, though all hell knows that the Only Old One tried.
Belintar revealed that he had come to depose the Only Old One and liberate the land from darkness. He did this through the process of mustering ancient allies on Heroquests and opposing the magical forces which aided the Only Old One. Belintar called forth many of the Silver age heroes, plus others of a more recent or different origin. The process was long and difficult. At one point, Belintar was slain and completely devoured. But in the end, he succeeded. He met the Only Old One himself in combat and cast him down and cut him into pieces. Then he pulverized the Palace of Black Glass, covering all the Shadow Plateau with dense, heavy black sand which smothers most life. He made other changes in the land too: raising Loon Island and creating the City of Wonders in the center of the Mirrorsea; digging the New River to divert the Creek-Stream River to flow into the Lyksos River past Nochet, among others. He then took the title of God-King and began his rule.
The ascension of the God-King in 1318 also marks the beginning use of the term Holy Country to describe this land. Belintar first used it in his proclamation of rule and the tribes all about echoed it, for the land was kept holy by the rites arranged by the God-King. It prospered internally and cowed all who might think to invade it. It sent messengers and merchants outward to the west, through Nimistor to Ralios and beyond.
The Holy Country contained many old secrets which people sought. The investigations of the Jrusteli and the Empire of the Wyrms Friends had unleashed terrible powers which changed the face of the world. Heroquesting had explored and released many ancient things which were blamed for the terrible state of life in the Third Age. Thus, most people shied from investigation and heroquesting. Yet such forces cannot be suppressed by official decree nor unnatural fear once they are remembered, and folk across the continent again used them, carefully.
In contrast, Belintar encouraged exploration of the mythic paths that tied the Holy Country together. Belintar himself explored the Other Side many times and each time proved himself worthy of ruling over a part of the population. He divided the Holy Country into six sections – one dedicated to each of the five Elemental Runes, plus one for the Invisible God of the humanist sorcerers. None were equal in either size or splendor, yet each of them were filled with miraculous holy places whose names are known throughout the speaking worlds. They were:
  • Caladraland, the Sixth of Fire;
  • Esrolia, the Sixth of Earth;
  • Heortland, the Sixth of Air;
  • Right Arm Islands, the Sixth of Water;
  • Shadow Plateau, the Sixth of Darkness; and
  • God Forgot, the Sixth of the Invisible God.
At the center of it all was Belintar and his magical palace at the City of Wonders. From here, he arranged the rituals and ceremonies that tied the Sixths together and blessed the whole land.
The extensive cross-cult communication and interaction under Belintar’s patronage resulted in a mythical synthesis that defined the elemental progression as a continuous cycle rather than as a mere set of oppositional conflict. Belintar’s elemental synthesis enabled the six parts of the Holy Country to work together – not only politically and militarily, but magically and mythologically.
Under his enlightened rule, the gods of the Holy Country cooperated for the maintenance of the individual, the Holy Country, and the cosmos. The Holy Country became a land of myth and wonder, where the myriads of religious rites brought the gods down weekly, and where magical roads crossed land, sea, and air.
In 1336, Belintar “used up” his body the first time and the first of the Tournament of the Masters of Luck and Death was held, which resulted in his divine soul blessing a new body. The Tournament of the Masters of Luck and Death was part of Belintar’s elemental synthesis. It recharged and made necessary changes to the magical pathways that united the Holy Country’s mythological landscape.
 
Although the seas had closed, the merchants of Ralios still desired goods from the Holy Country. Bold adventurers set out from Ralios, through Pralorela, and eastward through Maniria, toward the fabled Holy Country. Over the years they settled several strongholds to look out for their interests. Over time they came to terms with their neighbors, either by conquest, absorption, or assimilation. A series of old chivalrous families, called the Trader Princes, held a chain of forts stretching from Bastis to Esrolia. Their farmers retain their worship of Orlanth without rancor towards (or interference from) their Malkioni overlords.
Dragon Pass had been closed to all humans by a powerful draconic curse in 1120, and since that time only non-humans had lived there. The Beast People, a polyphyletic people, were allies to the Only Old One and fought for him against the usurper, Belintar. When Belintar won and became God-King, the Beast People, like many others, chose to withdraw and observe from the safety of the curse in Dragon Pass.
What is interesting is that their hero, Ironhoof the Centaur, had already allowed some humans to dwell within their area. He had dubbed them the Grazeland Pony Breeders, and they were a peaceful people who loved horses above all else in the world. Whether this was known to the Only Old One is not known, but the God-King’s scouts who entered the land in 1325 were quite surprised. Ironhoof claimed that the human presence was an example of his personal magic, and that the God-King would do well to stay out of Dragon Pass. Belintar agreed, and the Stone Cross was erected to mark the boundary. Ironhoof was very proud and gained much fame for this, but the God-King never exhibited any territorial aggression and was pleased to have the Grazelanders and the Beast People as his allies to the north.
More settlers in Dragon Pass came from Heortland and Esrolia. Many of the Orlanthi sought to worship their gods without Belintar’s interference. Some gathered at the ancient sacred fortress of Whitewall and rebelled. Others left Heortland and resettled Dragon Pass.
Dragon Pass was eventually filled by other people as well, migrating from the north. They founded the kingdom of Tarsh in 1330 and fought a famous war against the growing Lunar Empire. During this time, the God-King resisted several invasions, and proved the immense power of his land. Belintar insisted upon strict neutrality in all things. Tarsh agreed, and so the Holy Country became a tacit ally.
Other kingdoms rose and resisted the Lunar Empire for a time, but Tarsh fell in 1490. Belintar supported Sartar’s quest to become King of Dragon Pass, and he aided that kingdom against the Lunar Empire. So, the neutrality of the Holy Country came, once again, into question. But this time there was a new factor, for the seas were now open.
Dormal the Sailor was an intrepid hero, fostered by the benevolence of the God-King’s rule. Upon the researches of others, he dared to brave the deadly seas. Others had tried often, and always failed, before him. Many methods had been tested. Dormal, with the guidance of his friends and the divine guidance of his heart, tried and succeed.
Dormal maintained that his success was built upon a few simple factors, and as long as they were maintained then other men could sail as he did. These factors include: ship design, a particular stout ship with sails; propitiatory worship, especially to the Water gods; and formal cooperation among the crew. Dormal drilled these things into his followers and, in 1580, sailed out from the City of Wonders west to the city of Handra, went across the ocean to the Three Step Isles, and navigated back to the Holy Country. A second fleet was built, and the hero went again to Handra to teach them his secrets. From there he sailed further westward, and Dormal the Opener spread his knowledge along the coast. His secrets were quickly institutionalized to become the Dormal cult, and the hero sailed westward into the sunset and legend. His followers continued onward, often with less pure motivations that their founder, and human navies once again roamed the waters of Glorantha.
The original fleet built by Dormal remained in the Holy Country. When Dormal left Handra, the Holy Country fleet sailed in, proclaimed the laws of the sea as determined by their fleet and magic, and proceeded to stake claim to the waterways of the area. Their claim extended westward and south to the coasts of Ramalia and the Three Step Isles, and to whatever eastward lands their exploratory vessels discovered. Colonies were established in Teshnos and Jrustela. However, after a fleet was sunk by the Kralori in 1588, Belintar decreed that his navy would conquer no more.
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And in association with the above, Jeff's notes on Maniria in the 3rd Age:

And what's going on in Maniria, you might ask.
The early Third Age was spent stabilizing the lands from the disasters that ended the Second Age. As is common in such turmoil, Chaos found the opportunity to strike and grow. Mallia spread wide her maw, broo raped their way to strength, and a small ogre kingdom tried to gain ascendancy along the Vankthi River before being smashed by otters, newtlings, and an unusual collection of werebeast magicians summoned for the special occasion.
The people sorted themselves into four generalized groups of people, based primarily upon their region and favorite deities. They spoke the same language and knew generally of their common heritage, but thought more of their immediate concerns rather than long-range ideals.
The first group were the coastal and island dwellers. They were mostly survivors from the sinking of Slontos and eked out a poor living with farming. Herding was more successful, but failed to provide enough wealth to support cities. The ruins of Hermat, an ancient Pralori city in ages past, were used as the seat of power. Their favorite god was Voriof, the Herding God, and Humakt was their god of war.
The second group were the tribes of the Noshain River through the fens. They favored Orlanth as King of the Gods, though they had no king themselves. They could not afford to worship the lesser deities of the Lightbringer Pantheon. They were, however, friends with the cult of Noshain, god of their river. Noshain’s cult was exclusively in the control of the otters who guaranteed or withdrew protection of the humans’ rafts and canoes. The playful otters did not bother to oppress with their position of superior communications, and so the peoples were peacefully knit together, plagued only by their daily lives and human jealousies.
The third tribe was the Sarbosi River peoples. They lived in tiny hamlets within the marsh and along the lower river, and in fishing villages along the higher, dryer portions. Their favored deity was Sarboai, the River God that they loved, but they also offered great propitiatory rites to the nameless Spirit of the Marsh, a formless and fearful entity which could control the mud sharks, crocodiles, will o wisps, giant frogs, giant herons, giant whirligigs, eerie mists, dense fogs, and mysterious sounds. It was the Spirit of the Marsh who caused the land to turn to reed and reed to turn to water in the spring, and then change all of the channels of a well-known river when no persons were there to know.
The fourth group were the conservative Pralori in the dryer parts of the region, living in small bands and following the herds of elk from hill to lowland each year. They still worshiped Pralor and Foundchild the Hunter God, and trusted shamans to keep them safe from trouble.
These groups spoke with the same accent, and they preferred to cut their meat in certain ways, or to use different rites in propitiatory sacrifices. But disunity was their most common feature. The Noshain group had at least twenty chieftains who each swore to his own independence, while the traditionalists in the hills were uncountable family bands who met and dissolved according to season or occasion. Their fractured independence was common to all of them.
Southward, beyond the rugged Soft Hills, the land of Ramalia was a larger grouping of Slontan survivors. The region was untouched by the disasters, but refugees and raiders had reduced their population. Many kinglets, often bearing ancient titles, waited in their quiet land, listening to philosophers wonder at their sorry fate, and each year beggared themselves with expensive sacrifices to the terrifying ocean in hope that they would be spared their ancestors’ fate.
To the west Tarnin’s Forest had grown in strength. The Aldryami reached from the Soft Hills to the southern edge of the Noshain River and New Fens.
The Elk Hills were, as before, the hunting grounds for barbarians from Pralorela and from Helby in Ralios.
To the east were the Wenelian barbarians. They were mostly forest dwellers, descended from mixed Pralori, Entruli, and Slontan stock. They were mainly Lightbringer worshipers.
Handra Liv was a slave from a land in Ralios, sold as a child to a boatsmith and as a youth to a boating company. She spent years at the oar, plying the rivers and lakes of Ralios until she and her fellows were swept up in the slave revolts of 1150 which swept the lakes of Ralios. Handra was one of thousands who plundered Helby and one of hundreds who managed to escape two years later when heavy horsemen arrived to settle the dilemma. Handra led a loyal band southward through the Elk Hills where some of them found their old people. Handra lived for a while among the traditional Elk peoples, but could not resist the call of the Sarboai River.
Handra went to a place she blessed as the Source of the River, and there found a shrine to Diros, God of Boats. This was also the ancient place where Diros had left the waters to trek overland, and so was already powerful with the spirit. Handra Liv then proceeded downriver, pointing to trees which Diros had shown her in a vision. These were chopped down and sent floating upon the river. Where they all landed was decreed another holy place, and that is the high point boats can sail, called Highwater. There Handra Liv built a boat from the wood she had gathered, and Diros was pleased to see another shrine set up. Then Handra sailed downriver to the mouth of the Sarboai, where it joins the Noshain. There she called together all the people and beings she could find, and together they made a wonderful floating temple to Diros. Handra taught people how to make better boats, and how to worship the boat god. She pleased the otters by making them supreme River Priests in their river, with no other race allowed, though other races are priests on the tributaries.
Handra Liv then sailed downriver with many craft, until they lost sight of both riverbanks and though they must be entering the dreaded ocean. The waters were both muddy and salty when the flotilla was attacked by a kraken and half the loyal boatmen lost. The magical effects of Zzabur’s curse took effect then as they abruptly found themselves sailing towards their river again.
There were some islands nearby and Handra Liv instructed everyone to land on them. They erected another temple to Diros there, the Mouth of the Noshain. The river god answered his summons, and told the prayers which he and Diros had once before made 270 kilometers away from there. A new pact was made, and Handra Liv was awarded High Priesthood of the Noshain.
Handra Liv ruled for 93 years. By that time there were many boats plying their ways along the rivers, aided and guarded by proper worship of the gods. Trade, meager as it was, moved along the waterways. Towns grew up, especially in the northern regions around Highwater where good trekked overland from Ralios.
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And more Maniria notes from Jeff:

About the year 1300 a previously sporadic trade emanating from the east, past Wenelia, began steadily entering the New Fens. This was carried overland by Issaries merchants from the Holy Country. This was an unheard of place, but people soon learned that a stranger had swum ashore from the inhospitable seas and, with much labor and several lives, established himself as a God-King, of the region and instituted a new way of life. The Shadowlands, which had been ruled by the Only Old One and his trolls since before the Dawn, was cast down forever.
Highwater became an important post along this land-based route. It was also the first site to fall to the adventurous nobles from Ralios who sought to get rich on the route. These Trader Princes established bases through the north of Pralorela and Wenelia to the Holy Country, and for centuries prospered. At first the occupation of Highwater caused consternation among the river peoples, but after wars and invasions proved their eternal cost the inevitable compromise was reached. The rulers of Highwater endorsed the river cult and the city became the unofficial capital of the region.
The press of civilization moved downriver and wherever there was trade or worship there were small towns. Better places fostered larger populations, and the Seven Isles, at the Mouth of the Noshain, was in an excellent position.
Seven Isles was puny by most city standards, but it was the largest city on the coast for many hundreds of kilometers. Its boats also ventured for short distances along the coast, and the residents made contact with newtling groups who lived even further away and who claimed to be in contact with the Deep Sea people, the Triolini.
In 1580 a ship, propelled by sails, approached the Seven Isles from the sea. It was larger than any boat men knew, and everyone recognized the craft of a god. Some thought it was Diros arriving once again.
It was not the god of boats but the god of ships. This was the craft of Dormal the Sailor, who brought new secrets and a cult to the city of Seven Isles. He offered to sell them the secrets, and a long period of peace, for great treasure and wealth. He received it, and kept his word, then recruited many young people and creatures for his crews and sailed off with two ships. Seven Isles quickly set up their religion, built a ship, and tested their faith.
Dormal’s words were true. No black fog enveloped them, no mysterious force turned them about. More ships were built and a small flotilla sailed eastward along the coast, towards the direction Dormal came from. They found other small cities like their own, who were also building ships but were slower since they lacked the resources of the Seven Isles. The flotilla reached the Holy Country, where Dormal came from, and paid homage to the God-King and the High Priest of Dormal.
Trade began, and was established with cities to the west as well. In 1583, an army from Ralios moved over the Elk Hills at the request of the Prince of Highwater, and landed into boats to sail south. The intent was to seize the Seven Isles and take control of all the resources of the Noshain. But there was quick resistance, and the invaders were destroyed. A Seven Isles force was sent northward and seized Highwater with aid from the citiens. The Malkion temple was razed and the ashes sent to the wind. An Orlanth Temple, with other shrines in it, was established.
Seven Isles continued its growth, but its leaders did break away from Highwater. The distance was too great, and Seven Isles profited from the inland contact but was rightfully preoccupied with the seas. Highwater lost its importance as a stop along a profitable trade route and dwindled in size. Most people moved to Seven Isles, or more popularly called Handra, which welcomed them and their wares.
When Sartar fell in 1602 many refugees moved south into the Holy Country, but for many there was no welcome for them there. Unrest grew, and many followed their instincts to Seven Isles. A considerable refugee population was established and many wandering exiles have found their way there.
 
Jeff Note: So one thing you should be able to glean from this is that the Trader Princes are "a series of old chivalrous families" reinforced by bold adventurers set out from Ralios.
 
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A few more notes from Jeff on FB:

So putting things in perspective, the Choralinthor is smaller than Lake Erie but bigger than the Marmara Sea.
So from Nochet you could see the towers of City of Wonders, if it wasn't that Holy Island was in the way. Or from Karse, if it wasn't that Sober Island is in the way. You can definitely see the City of Wonders from Seapolis and Rhigos.
It is about 72 km from Nochet to the City of Wonders, and only about 60 km from Karse to the City of Wonders.
If I recall there is actually a dangerous festival-competition where athletes swim from Nochet to Holy Island (12 km distance).
 
SO in the Third Age you get a movement of mixed peoples from Esrolia and Heortland into Dragon Pass. As the Beasts already occupied Beast Valley, the settlers Esrolians ended up either going into the Dragonspine Hills (and being forced to submit to the rule of the Grazeland Pony Breeders) or went into valleys around the Quivin Mountains. So the Sartarites are likely a mix of Heartlanders with Esrolians.
Because of the cataracts on the New River between the Runnel and Lysos Rivers, the Creek-Stream River is not as good a route as one might think. Beast People and trolls pose problems for caravans, which the route using the Sartarite roads avoids.
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