Page 1 of 2 12 LastLast
Results 1 to 10 of 17
  1. #1
    Site Moderator Sorontar's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2002
    Location
    Melbourne, Australia
    Posts
    3,942
    Downloads
    23
    Uploads
    1

    Hjalstone massacre

    Discussion thread for Hjalstone massacre. If you would like to add a comment, click the Post Reply button.

  2. #2
    Site Moderator Sorontar's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2002
    Location
    Melbourne, Australia
    Posts
    3,942
    Downloads
    23
    Uploads
    1
    How much of the BRwiki details about the Hjalstone Massacre are fan-fiction and how much is lore?

    Is it gospel that the conservative druidic church, the Emerald Spire of Erik, was founded by an ex-Haelyn priest, Moerel, the aide to Garth Andu and probably an Anuirean one at that? And that the more liberal Oaken Grove of Erik was founded before the Spire?

    This just doesn't sit right with me but I have no idea what is in the published Player's Secrets.

    Sorontar
    ps. Moerel is also a place and the name of 4 other NPCs!

  3. #3
    Member
    Join Date
    Jan 2006
    Location
    Qld, Australia
    Posts
    93
    Downloads
    24
    Uploads
    0
    From all the official material I have read, it was my understanding that the Emerald Spire was the original druid faith in Rjurik and there was a split because of different belief between the old ways and more modern ways. Thus the Oaken Grove were born from this split and from that day have watched over the settled Rjurik and the Emerald Spire have watched over the tribal and more wild Rjurik.

    Rest of what you have written sounds great though. Keep up the good work.

  4. #4
    Site Moderator kgauck's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2002
    Location
    Springfield Mo
    Posts
    3,562
    Downloads
    2
    Uploads
    0
    I recall reading somewhere about them occupying opposite positions. But without some explanation, there is no other points on which to pivot, and so its hard to justify. Plus its unnecessary. Its supposed to give a sense of change over time, but without some explanation, its just a burden.

    I'm all for the official line being that the ES has always been traditional, and the OG has always been more open.

  5. #5
    Site Moderator AndrewTall's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
    Location
    Chelmsford, Essex, England
    Posts
    2,305
    Downloads
    25
    Uploads
    0
    I also read the Spire as being the newcomer church although I can't remember where - which is why I wrote the massacre in the first place. I wanted to come up with an explanation to explain the apparent anomaly and a convert who 'went more native than the native' seemed the way to do it - if the Grove gained prominence over the druids of the Taelshore because it oversaw the integration into the empire (which would instinctively look for a unified hierarchical church since that is what they knew from Anuire) then the Spire would be comprised of the die-hard refusniks with independents (probably originally the vast majority of the druids) then slowly withering or being assimilated into the grove.

    The main problem I found was the rapid size and longevity of the empire - to have the sort of passion to organise two diametrically opposed hierarchy-based churches from the druids would require a traumatic event for the Rjurik, but that simply didn't fit with the growth model of the Anuirean empire which required the empire core to work through existing systems and power structures without seeking to alter core cultural features.

    Of course the line (wherever it is) may simply have been mis-remembered, or wrong in the first place - it wouldn't be the first time for either to occur. I wonder however about the longevity of the empire without an event to force the Anuireans away from a conversion based expansion model to an assimilation based model. The Massacre would 'prove' to even the most paternalistic (civilise the barbarians and reap their gratitude) Anuireans that trying to replace the gods (and thus most of the core beliefs) of the Rjurik had been a terrible mistake.

    One downside is that it does not agree to the timeline - I needed the massacre to be at the start of the Anuirean empire as given that the Anuireans have superior numbers, technology, magic and, probably, strategic and military skill a late 'change of heart' would occur after the Rjurik were ground into powder without some social imperative to stop the legions. The timeline indicates that Hjalstone become Dhoesone centuries after Deismaar - although that could simply be the name changing to reflect a long ago change in the realm, or a formal reallocation of Dhoesone from 'the northern provinces' to 'Anuire' by some long-gone imperial bureaucrat.

    So, do we post a FanFic banner? Is the interpretation controversial enough? I could always post 'counter arguments' or tweak it into a sage quote written by an imperial archivist to soften it.

  6. #6
    Site Moderator kgauck's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2002
    Location
    Springfield Mo
    Posts
    3,562
    Downloads
    2
    Uploads
    0
    For the two wings of Erik's faith to switch places on the life-ways question, they need some other great issue to pivot on. Such that the life-ways question becomes secondary long enough that a realignment can take place. But what is that issue? It can't be Anuire, because the Anuireans represent towns and trade, so have to go with the towns and trade faction of Erik too.

    I think it makes more sense, if one wants to highlight the Grove as the older temple, is that like the rest of Rjurik society it accommodated itself to Anuire and Anuirean occupation. And that the Emerald Spire was the reactionary refusal to accept the Anuireans and the things they represent (settlement, towns, trade, not to mention some values). This explains the timeline, the values, and doesn't require any realignments.

  7. #7
    Site Moderator Sorontar's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2002
    Location
    Melbourne, Australia
    Posts
    3,942
    Downloads
    23
    Uploads
    1
    Why does the history of the septs of Erik have to all be based around the history of Hjalstone? Why not just treat it a natural separation within the Rjurik culture?

    So something like this:
    • Rjuven follow Reynir, the hunter and explorer, as their god
    • Rjuven colonise NE Cerilia
    • at Diesmaar, Reynir dies and Erik is the new god
    • with the new god comes a reappraisal of the beliefs
    • The Emerald Spire is formed by the traditionalists
    • After a while, some disagree with the directives of the Spire due to trade, settlement and interactions with other cultures. They form the Oaken Grove wing of the church.
    • Belief in Erik continues strongly, but different High Druids read it differently depending on their congregation and their sept.


    This makes a lot more sense to me than some little invasion by some arrogrant imperialistic Anuireans that didn't affect all of the Rjurik Highlands.

    And didn't Roele have some magical items that help sway the minds of the Jarls anyway? The swords or something?

    pro-Rjurik Sorontar

  8. #8
    Site Moderator AndrewTall's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
    Location
    Chelmsford, Essex, England
    Posts
    2,305
    Downloads
    25
    Uploads
    0
    Well I admit that I had the idea that the Anuirean Empire did pretty much cover all the settled areas to one degree or another ;-)

    Personally I see the idea of there being one unified church prior to the empire as an Imperial mindset - I expect that the druids were simply not that organised beforehand.

    The Grove likely organised first simply because the church - in this case the grove - was expected to carry out certain roles by imperial society and so the druids in the area at least paid lip service to the entity - the governor needed a single figure to speak to on religious matters and that person was in effect the church.

    The Spire would then organise along more traditional lines to prevent the advance of the Grove and help care for the Rjurik in the less hospitable northern areas where a surplus in one harvest would inevitably be balanced by hardship elsewhere. Technically the organisation comes second but in terms of tradition it is older by far.

    I see the idea of jarls and kings along very similar lines, the Rjurik kings being jarls who simply happened to speak for other jarls in imperial matters rather than absolute rulers in the Anuirean model. This would help explain the difference in law holdings in Anuire and Rjurik to date - the Rjurik culture never really changed because they mostly just painted an Anuirean veneer over the rulership.

    It depends on how you see the Rjurik prior to the empire, I see them as a mostly organised around the clan/tribe with the result that almost all the organisation at domain level would be due to the Anuireans.

  9. #9
    Site Moderator kgauck's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2002
    Location
    Springfield Mo
    Posts
    3,562
    Downloads
    2
    Uploads
    0
    Quote Originally Posted by AndrewTall View Post
    Personally I see the idea of there being one unified church prior to the empire as an Imperial mindset - I expect that the druids were simply not that organised beforehand.
    I think there was a single Rjurik faith of Erik. It may have been organized very loosely, but without ideological division, they would have regarded one another and brothers in a cause and been able to come together when conditions warranted it. Certainly they did not have the top down, Book of Laws orthodoxy of the Imperial Temple, but there is a strong sense of unity among the Rjurik, and this would have been reflected in a single, highly decentralized temple.

    The Grove likely organised first simply because the church - in this case the grove - was expected to carry out certain roles by imperial society and so the druids in the area at least paid lip service to the entity.
    Lip service sounds so cynical. In human affairs the face of the organization is one's superior. Did the circle druid not value the aid, advice, and assistance of his provincial high druid? Did the provincial druid not value the aid, advice, and assistance of the grand druid of the realm? Did not the realm's grand druid not value the aid, advice, and assistance of the Grand Druid of the whole faith of Erik? I don't see the high druids becoming disconnected from the wilderness, from the people, or the teachings of Erik and becoming a thing to give lip service to.

    According to the BoP, the Emerald Spire is the older temple. I think the Oaken Grove is a response to issues of settlement, trade, and the issues which flow from such a life way.

  10. #10
    Site Moderator AndrewTall's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
    Location
    Chelmsford, Essex, England
    Posts
    2,305
    Downloads
    25
    Uploads
    0
    Quote Originally Posted by kgauck View Post
    Lip service sounds so cynical.
    Sorry, I was being sloppy. I see the assimilation as similar to the Africans with Christianity. They continued doing everything pretty much as before but with new tags to keep the new bosses happy.

    For example pre-empire the local druids all respect the wandering druid Johann whose piety and wisdom were famed. After the empire the Anuireans called Johann the 'prelate' and the druids who 'followed him' as the Oaken Grove church in, say, Namverg. Did Johann see himself suddenly as better than the other druids? Did they feel lesser? No. The empire simply formalised an existing relationship in a manner which it could understand, I doubt the Rjurik really noticed the impact in their day to day lives.

    Anuirean governor. Now look here chaps, I have a conundrum that requires resolution and I look to you, as community leaders for elucidation. Now then which of you is the most important druid?

    Druids. What do you mean important? Is the root more important than the leaf? The heart wood more important than the bark? All serve their purpose in the community, all are necessary in the circle of life lest it be broken and all suffer.

    Anuirean governor. But which of you leads, who is in charge?

    Druids. Why none of us are in charge, what could such a thing mean? The folk of Nonneverg are tended by brother Sven, sister Maria and her cousin Thor tend to Greendale, Johann wanders and all of us benefit from his wisdom, is that the answer you seek?

    Anuirean. Look here now I say; who do I ask about the mood of the people? About how they will react to this law or that? Who tells you that this hamlet hungers, this one has surplus and sees to the sharing? Who rallies the various clans when the goblins raid? Who mediates disputes between warring clans? I know that you all work together - so who organises everything?

    Druids. Well generally we all know what needs to be done and just do it. If we disagree with one another we have a good argument until its settled, if we can't agree we ask Erik for a sign and then either we agree, or the loser leaves for another clan. If we want advice we generally look to Johann I suppose - he is greatly blessed by Erik.

    Anuirean governor. Magnificent, sense at last! Johann is prelate from hence forth!

    Druids. Does it matter?

    Anuirean governor. Yes it matters by Haelyn! Order rules in heaven and it is incumbent upon all those of birth and station to ensure it rules on Cerilia also! Furthermore his Imperial Majesty has ordered me to work with the local prelate in the running of this province and I'm damned well going to do so! And without marching around every village to ask all of you what you think of this proposal or that!


    While I don't see the Rjurik druids as distant tree-huggers like the druids in many other settings, I don't see that the druids had a huge need for organisation - most threats the Rjurik faced were ones with clear solutions which could be resolved locally - since apart from anything else travel was hard making central authority difficult if not impossible to wield. As a result I don't really see that pre-empire the Rjurik needed a heirarchial church. In a community with a strong enough spirit people simply pitch in where needed and follow whoever sounds most sensible or interesting - and the Rjurik above all other cultures are notorious for a unified community spirit in the books.

Thread Information

Users Browsing this Thread

There are currently 1 users browsing this thread. (0 members and 1 guests)

Tags for this Thread

Bookmarks

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •  
BIRTHRIGHT, DUNGEONS & DRAGONS, D&D, the BIRTHRIGHT logo, and the D&D logo are trademarks owned by Wizards of the Coast, Inc., a subsidiary of Hasbro, Inc., and are used by permission. ©2002-2010 Wizards of the Coast, Inc.