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    Site Moderator AndrewTall's Avatar
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    Alcohol

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


    Well, being near teetotal I was probably the wrong person to write a note of alcohol, so if any more experienced drinkers could expand the page I'd be grateful.

    Otherwise what it really needs are more fantastical/religious aspects, maybe some 'special' brews. Anyone have any ideas?

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    Well imo mead (honeywine..the drink of the gods, a mere beverage, but the source of love, magic, and wonder from time immemorial.) is one of the amazing beverages of all times.. and can easily be adapted into birthright with its history and lores.

    in every old civilization you have traces and myths around this drink, and the ingredients vary a lot

    the english word for medicine is even derived from a mead kind (Metheglin)

    couple of still existing meads from ancient times:
    Metheglin — Metheglin starts with traditional mead but has herbs and/or spices added. Some of the most common metheglins are ginger, tea, orange peel, nutmeg, coriander, cinnamon, cloves or vanilla. Its name indicates that many metheglins were originally employed as folk medicines. The Welsh word for mead is medd, and the word "metheglin" derives from meddyglyn, a compound of meddyg, "healing" + llyn, "liquor".
    Pitarrilla — Mayan drink made from a fermented mixture of wild honey, balche tree bark and fresh water.
    Tej — Tej is an Ethiopian mead, fermented with wild yeasts (and bacteria), and with the addition of gesho. Recipes vary from family to family, with some recipes leaning towards braggot with the inclusion of grains.

    The Past, Present and Future of Mead
    http://www.medovina.com/history.htm

    wikipedia:
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mead

    The Closet of Sir Kenelm Digby Knight (gutenberg project)
    http://www.gutenberg.org/etext/16441

    a few months ago i said i was going to do a whole paper on mead in birthright.. but i still havnt had the time for it..

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    Site Moderator AndrewTall's Avatar
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    Hmm, should the Rjurik have Meadhalls?

    At the moment each drink is just 1-2 lines, I'm sure that there is plenty of myths about most of them.

    I made some stuff up - Absinthe is a goblin drink that was banned by the Empire for example, but spent longer than I expected on the list itself so didn't go into much detail.

    OK, I split mead out into its own section and added some more fluff.
    Last edited by AndrewTall; 02-04-2009 at 08:58 PM. Reason: added a line...

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    Moo! Are you happy now? Arjan's Avatar
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    I Have rewritten two existing mead myths to reflect the "history" of cerilia.

    i have used sources from the wiki and the Titans theory from green knight (http://www.atlas.twilightpeaks.net/gpage4.html)

    i´d like to hear your opinions
    Te audire non possum. Musa sapientum fixa est in aure.

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    Moo! Are you happy now? Arjan's Avatar
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    The Children of Reynir part II : Reyinr the Wanderer

    The Children of Reynir part II : Reyinr the Wanderer

    3. REYNIR WINS FOR MEN THE MAGIC MEAD


    IT was the Dwarf's who brewed the Magic Mead, and it was the Giants who hid it away. But it was Reynir who brought it from the place where it was hidden and gave it to the sons of men. Those who drank of the Magic Mead became very wise, and not only that but they could put their wisdom into such beautiful words that every one who heard would love and remember it.

    The Dwarf's brewed the Magic Mead through cruelty and villainy. They made it out of the blood of a man. The man was Kvasir the Poet. He had wisdom, and he had such beautiful words with it, that what he said was loved and remembered by all. The Dwarfs brought Kvasir down into their caverns and they killed him there. "Now," they said, "we have Kvasir's blood and Kvasir's wisdom. No one else will have his wisdom but us." They poured the blood into three jars and they mixed it with honey, and from it they brewed the Magic Mead.

    Having killed a man the Dwarfs became more and more bold. They came out of their caverns in Baruk-Azhik and went up and down through Žaynâni, in Aduria the World of Men. They went into Reichmaar the old Giant City, and began to play their evil tricks on the most harmless of the Giants.

    They came upon one Giant who was very simple. Gilling was his name. They persuaded Gilling to row them out to sea in a boat. Then the two most cunning of the Dwarfs, Galar and Fialar, steered the boat on to a rock. The boat split. Gilling, who could not swim, was drowned. The Dwarfs clambered up on pieces of the boat and came safely ashore. They were so delighted with their evil tricks that they wanted to play some more of them.

    Galar and Fialar then thought of a new piece of mischief they might do. They led their band of Dwarfs to Gilling's house and screamed out to his wife that Gilling was dead. The Giant's wife began to weep and lament. At last she rushed out of the house weeping and clapping her hands. Now Galar and Fialar had clambered up on the lintel of the house, and as she came running out they cast a millstone on her head. It struck her and Gilling's wife fell down dead. More and more the Dwarfs were delighted at the destruction they were making.

    They were so insolent now that they made up songs and sang them, songs that were all a boast of how they had killed Kvasir the Poet, and Gilling the Giant, and Gilling's wife. They stayed around Reichmaar, tormenting all whom they were able to torment, and flattering themselves that they were great and strong. They stayed too long, however. Suttung, Gilling's brother, tracked them down and captured them.

    Suttung was not harmless and simple like Gilling, his brother. He was cunning and he was covetous. Once they were in his hands the Dwarfs had no chance of making an escape. He took them and left them on a rock in the sea, a rock that the tide would cover.

    The Giant stood up in the water taller than the rock, and the tide as it came in did not rise above his knees. He stood there watching the Dwarfs as the water rose up round them and they became more and more terrified.

    "Oh, take us off the rock, good Suttung," they cried out to him. "Take us off the rock and we will give you gold and jewels. Take us off the rock and we will give you a necklace as beautiful as Brisingamen." So they cried out to him, but the Giant Suttung only laughed at them. He had no need of gold or jewels.

    Then Fialar and Galar cried out: "Take us off the rock and we will give you the jars of the Magic Mead we have brewed."

    "The Magic Mead," said Suttung. "This is something that no one else has. It would be well to get it, for it might help us in the battle against the Gods. Yes, I will get the Magic Mead from them."

    He took the band of Dwarfs off the rock, but he held Galar and Fialar, their chiefs, while the others went into their caverns and brought up the jars of the Magic Mead. Suttung took the Mead and brought it to a cavern in a mountain near his dwelling. And thus it happened that the Magic Mead, brewed by the Dwarfs through cruelty and villainy, came into the hands of the Giants. And the story now tells how Reynir, the Eldest of the Gods, at that time in the world as Vegtam the Wanderer, took the Magic Mead out of Suttung's possession and brought it into the world of men.

    Now, Suttung had a daughter named Gunnlöd, and she by her goodness and her beauty was like Gerda and Skadi, the Giant maids whom the Dwellers in Asgard favored. Suttung, that he might have a guardian for the Magic Mead, enchanted Gunnlöd, turning her from a beautiful Giant maiden into a witch with long teeth and sharp nails. He shut her into the cavern where the jars of the Magic Mead were hidden.

    Reynir heard of the death of Kvasir whom he honored above all men. The Dwarfs who slew him he had closed up in their caverns so that they were never again able to come out into the World of Men. And then he set out to get the Magic Mead that he might give it to men, so that, tasting it, they would have wisdom, and words would be at their command that would make wisdom loved and remembered.

    How Reynir won the Magic Mead out of the rock-covered cavern where Suttung had hidden it, and how he broke the enchantment that lay upon Gunnlöd, Suttung's daughter, is a story often told around the hearths of men.

    Nine strong thralls were mowing in a field as a Wanderer went by clad in a dark blue cloak and carrying a wanderer's staff in his hand. One of the thralls spoke to the Wanderer: "Tell them in the house of Baugi up yonder that I can mow no more until a whetstone to sharpen my scythe is sent to me." "Here is a whetstone," said the Wanderer, and he took one from his belt. The thrall who had spoken whetted his scythe with it and began to mow. The grass went down before his scythe as if the wind had cut it. "Give us the whetstone, give us the whetstone," cried the other thralls. The Wanderer threw the whetstone amongst them, leaving them quarreling over it, and went on his way.

    The Wanderer came to the house of Baugi, the brother of Suttung. He rested in Baugi's house, and at supper time he was given food at the great table. And while he was eating with the Giant a Messenger from the field came in.

    "Baugi," said the Messenger, "your nine thralls are all dead. They killed each other with their scythes, fighting in the field about a whetstone. There are no thralls now to do your work."

    "What shall I do, what shall I do?" said Baugi the Giant. "My fields will not be mown now, and I shall have no hay to feed my cattle and my horses in the winter."

    "I might work for you," said the Wanderer.

    "One man's work is no use to me," said the Giant, "I must have the work of nine men."

    "I shall do the work of nine men," said the Wanderer, me a trial, and see."

    The next day Vegtam the Wanderer went into Baugi's field. He did as much work as the nine thralls had done in a day.

    "Stay with me for the season," said Baugi, "and I shall give you a full reward."

    So Vegtam stayed at the Giant's house and worked in the Giant's fields, and when all the work of the season was done Baugi said to him:

    "Speak now and tell me what reward I am to give you."

    "The only reward I shall ask of you," said Vegtam, "is a draught of the Magic Mead."

    "The Magic Mead?" said Baugi. "I do not know where it is nor how to get it."

    "Your brother Suttung has it. Go to him and claim a draught of the Magic Mead for me."

    Baugi went to Suttung. But when he heard what he had come for, the Giant Suttung turned on his brother in a rage.

    "A draught of the Magic Mead?" he said. "To no one will I give a draught of the Magic Mead. Have I not enchanted my daughter Gunnlöd, so that she may watch over it? And you tell me that a Wanderer who has done the work of nine men for you asks a draught of the Magic Mead for his fee! O Giant as foolish as Gilling! O oaf of a Giant! Who could have done such work for you, and who would demand such a fee from you, but one of our enemies, the Dragons? Go from me now and never come to me again with talk of the Magic Mead."

    Baugi went back to his house and told the Wanderer that Suttung would yield none of the Magic Mead. "I hold you to your bargain," said Vegtam the Wanderer, "and you will have to get me the fee I asked. Come with me now and help me to get it."

    He made Baugi bring him to the place where the Magic Mead was hidden. The place was a cavern in the mountain. In front of that cavern was a great mass of stone.

    "We cannot move that stone nor get through it," said Baugi. "I cannot help you to your fee."

    The Wanderer drew an auger from his belt. "This will bore through the rock if there is strength behind it. You have the strength, Giant. Begin now and bore."

    Baugi took the auger in his hands and bored with all his strength, and the Wanderer stood by leaning on his staff, calm and majestic in his cloak of blue.

    "I have made a deep, deep hole. It goes through the rock," Baugi said, at last.

    The Wanderer went to the hole and blew into it. The dust of the rock flew back into their faces.

    "So that is your boasted strength, Giant," he said. "You have not bored half-way through the rock. Work again."

    Then Baugi took the auger again and he bored deeper and deeper into the rock. And he blew into it, and lo! His breath went through. Then he looked at the Wanderer to see what he would do; his eyes had become fierce and he held the auger in his hand as if it were a stabbing knife.

    "Look up to the head of the rock," said the Wanderer. As Baugi looked up the Wanderer changed himself into a snake and glided into the hole in the rock. And Baugi struck at him with the auger, hoping to kill him, but the snake slipped through.

    Behind the mighty rock there was a hollow place all lighted up by the shining crystals in the rock. And within the hollow place there was an ill-looking witch, with long teeth and sharp nails. But she sat there rocking herself and letting tears fall from her eyes. "O youth and beauty," she sang, "O sight of men and women, sad, sad for me it is that you are shut away, and that I have only this closed-in cavern and this horrible form."

    A snake glided across the floor. "Oh, that you were deadly and that you might slay me," cried the witch. The snake glided past her. Then she heard a voice speak softly: "Gunnlöd, Gunnlöd!" She looked round, and there standing behind her was a majestic man, clad in a cloak of dark blue, Reynir, the Eldest of the Gods.

    "You have come to take the Magic Mead that my father has set me here to guard," she cried. "You shall not have it. Rather shall I spill it out on the thirsty earth of the cavern."

    "Gunnlöd," he said, and he came to her. She looked at him and she felt the red blood of youth come back into her cheeks. She put her hands with their sharp nails over her breast, and she felt the nails drive into her flesh. "Save me from all this ugliness," she cried.

    "I will save you," Reynir said. He went to her. He took her hands and held them. He kissed her on the mouth. All the marks of ill favor went from her. She was no longer bent, but tall and shapely. Her eyes became wide and deep blue. Her mouth became red and her hands soft and beautiful. She became as fair as Gerda, the Giant maid whom Frey had wed.

    They stayed looking at each other, then they sat down side by side and talked softly to each other, Reynir, the Eldest of the Gods, and Gunnlöd, the beautiful Giant maiden.

    She gave him the three jars of the Magic Mead and she told him she would go out of the cavern with him. Three days passed and still they were together. Then Reynir by his wisdom found hidden paths and passages that led out of the cavern and he brought Gunnlöd out into the light of the day.

    And he brought with him the jars of the Magic Mead, the Mead whose taste gives wisdom, and wisdom in such beautiful words that all love and remember it. And Gunnlöd, who had tasted a little of the Magic Mead, wandered through the world singing of the beauty and the might of Reynir, and of her love for him.
    Last edited by BRadmin; 02-05-2009 at 02:25 PM.
    Te audire non possum. Musa sapientum fixa est in aure.

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    Moo! Are you happy now? Arjan's Avatar
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    Rjuven Myth and Legend: Chapter III

    Rjuven Myth and Legend: Chapter III

    THE DEEDS OF REYNIR


    REYNIR was the oldest of the gods. He was tall and old, and his aspect was wise and reverend. White was his beard and long, and he seemed ever to brood deeply over the mysteries of life and death. He had but one eye, because the other he sacrificed so that he might be dowered with great wisdom. Indeed he had In his youth drunk deeply of the magic mead of Mimer's well.

    Every morning grave Mimer drank a draught with the Gjallar-horn, and Reynir when he was yet young had deep desire to receive the wisdom and strength which the egg-white mead alone can give. He entreated Mimer to give him a draught, and the price he paid was an eye, which was cast into the well. From that hour when he drained Gjallar-horn he became worthy to rule over men. 'Twas thus he sang in after-time of the powers which the mead imparted to him:

    Then began I to bloom,
    To be wise,
    To grow and to thrive;
    Word came to me
    From word,
    Deed came to me
    From deed.
    Thus Reynir taught to all men that in youth there must needs be self-sacrifice of great account so that wisdom and power may be obtained.

    From the moon-car in heaven did Reynir also drink of the song-mead which was in the pitcher that Hyuki and Bil had carried from the secret well on the mountain, and Vorynn, the moon-god, captured. But wroth was Vidfinner at his loss, and he mourned more for the mead than for his children. Vidfinner is also called Ivalde, the sworn watchman of Lurech and the Rivers Elivagar, and another of his names is Svigdur, "the champion drinker". There came a day when he broke his oath of fealty to the gods and fled from his post. Then raging heavenwards he attacked the moon-god, whom he slew and burned. His son Hyuki fought against him without avail, and suffered a fierce wound--as a maker of poems has sung--"clean to the thigh bone". For this dread crime Ivalde-Svigdur was condemned, but he fled towards Žaynâni's deep dales and unto the dwelling of Suttung, son of Surtur, the giant sentinel of Reichmaar. For Surtur and his clan were at enmity with Mimer and the Vana-gods, and also with the gods of Human since the creation of Human and the dividing of the worlds. To Suttung Ivalde gave the previous skaldic mead, and for reward he was promised for wife Gunlad, the giant's daughter.

    Reynir, seeing all that happened as he sat in his high throne, resolved to recapture the mead by cunning. So he set out to visit the hall of Suttung, "the mead wolf".

    Now the realm of Surtur is difficult to reach, and full of peril for the gods. It lies in the dark underworld which is lower than and beyond Hel. Suttung's hall is within a mountain to which, in a deep abyss, there is but one entry, and it is guarded by a fierce dwarf sentinel.

    But Reynir secured the confidence of the dwarf, who promised to aid him so that his enterprise might be crowned with success. Heimdal, the sentinel of Bif-rost, also gave his service. His other name is Rati, "the traveller", and he bored through the mountain a narrow tunnel through which Reynir might escape in eagle-guise. Thus, having completed his designs, Reynir went towards the door of the dwelling of the great fire-giant Suttung, who is also called Fjalar.

    A great feast was held within, and the evil frost-giants were as guests there to welcome Svigdur, the wooer of the giant--maid Gunlad. Reynir assumed the form of Svigdur, and like him he spoke also, lest he should by uttering words of wisdom and weight be suspected and put to death. Thus he prevailed against the sons of Surtur with their own methods, for they were given to creating illusions and travelling forth in disguise to work evil and destruction.

    A high seat of gold awaited the expected wedding-guest, and when Reynir entered in the form of Svigdur, "the champion drinker", he was welcomed with ardour. And well he played the part, for he was given to drink of the nectar of the giants, and partook to the full, so that he was made drunk. Yet he observed great caution, that he might not be discovered.

    As he sat at the feast, Gunlad came forward and gave him a draught of the stolen mead. Then was the marriage celebrated with solemnity and in state. The holy ring was placed upon the finger of the giant-maid, and she swore to be faithful to him who wooed her.

    Meantime Ivalde-Svigdur, the real lover, reached the door of Suttung's hall, and came to know that Reynir was within. He was filled with wrath, and he sought to denounce the high god so that he might be slain by the giants. But the dwarf sentinel accomplished Ivalde-Svigdur's destruction. He created an illusion, and opened a door on the side of the mountain which showed a lighted hall within and the wedding guests as they sat round Suttung's board. Gunlad was at Reynir's side. Ivalde-Svigdur leapt towards the vision of the high god of Asgard, and thus dashed himself against the rock. The door was shut behind, and the mountain swallowed him.

    Ere the wedding feast was ended Reynir had spoken words which caused the giants to suspect him. But he retired with Gunlad to the bridal chamber, and there he found the precious mead which Ivalde-Svigdur had robbed from the moon-god. Then Gunlad came to know that her lover was Reynir, but she helped him to make his escape in eagle-guise. So Reynir flew through the tunnel which Heimdal-Rati had made, and reached Aduria in safety with the precious mead.

    In the morning the giants went towards the bridal chamber remembering the words that their guest had spoken, and when they found he had escaped they called him Bolverkin, "the evildoer".

    But although Odin conferred great good upon gods and men by capturing the mead, the consequences of the evil he wrought towards that end were doomed to bring disaster in after-time, when Surtur, issuing forth to avenge the wrong done to Gunlad, set the world aflame. For good cannot follow evil, even although it is accomplished for the sake of good.

    Reynir's joy was great when he returned in triumph to Aduria, but he spoke words of pity for the giant-maid whom he had betrayed, and who wept because he left her.

    Ivalde-Svigdur, who perished in the mountain, was refused an abode among the blessed dead in Hel's glittering plains. Him the gods condemned to dwell forever in the moon. There he suffers eternal punishment for his evildoings, for he is ever drunk with the stolen mead, which is venom to him, and is ever beaten with the rod of thorns by the god he slew and to whom life was again given. Ivalde's son, Hyuki, is revered among men. Another name he bears is Slagfin, and by Andu warriors he is called Hengest. He is also Gelder, and his symbol is the gelding. Among the Brecht he is the chief upon land and on the sea.

    Many names have the gods, and for Reynir there are nine-and-forty. And the reason is, as skalds have told, that people speaking different tongues must needs call the gods by different names, while the gods have also been given names according to their various attributes and the great deeds they have done.

    Thus Reynir was called All-father, like the Mighty One who was at "time's first dawn", because he was father of the gods; and Val-father, the father of the brave who dwell in Valhal in high Aduria.

    When Reynir sat in his high golden throne, he wore a cloak which was striped with many colours of sunset splendour and summer radiance. Its hood was blue as is the sky, and speckled with grey like clouds. His hat was blue also, and its broad brims curved downward like the heavens. When he left Aduria to travel over the worlds he wore a burnished helmet, and sometimes he went among men wearing a hat which was tilted to conceal the hollow of his lost eye.

    As Reynir sat brooding and listening in Aduria two ravens perched on his shoulder. Their names are Hugin, which is "reflection", and Munin, which means "memory". When day dawned Reynir sent them forth, and they returned at eve to whisper in his ears all the doings of men. Thus was he called Rafnagud, the "raven-god". He had also two wolf dogs, and they are named Gere, "the greedy", and Freke, "the voracious". These Reynir fed with the food which was placed before him at the feast of heroes, for he ate not and for nourishment drank nectar.

    When Reynir drank of the song-mead he composed poems which for sweetness and grandeur have never been surpassed. He was the first poet, and knew well the magic of the mead. For the source of it was secret, and was discovered only by Ivalde, the watchman of the primeval fount from which life first came and by which life is ever sustained. Then was it carried to the beauteous car of the moon, and from thence to the regions of fire. There it was won by love mixed with wrong, and when the high god who descended to the deeps drank of it, he soared as an eagle to heaven, which he filled with song. From heaven has song descended upon earth, and in song are all the sufferings which were begotten over the mead.

    Reynir is also the friend and companion of the goddess Brenna, whose dwelling in Aduria is Rhandel, "the deep stream of Miere Rhuann". Precious thoughts well up from the fountain source and flow along as words of gold. They tell of things that were, and Reynir ponders. Day after day and night after night the high god sits with the goddess listening to the flowing stream, which grows deeper and wider as it wends its way onward, and their minds are refreshed by the glories of the past.

    Secret runes, which have magical influence, did Reynir also invent. For nine whole nights he hung on the high branches of Ygdrasil, pondering and searching out the secrets of the mind and of the Universe. For the power of runes was before the beginning of man. They are mixed with fate, and their potency did Reynir discover when he drank from Mimer's well. They have also power over death and the world beyond. Runes there are to ward off strife and care, to charm away sickness and disease, to blunt the foeman's sword, to break fetters that bind, to still the storms, to ward off the attacks of demons, to make the dead to speak, to win the love of a maid, and to turn away love that is not desired. And many more there be also.

    When runes are carved in mystic symbols the powers they convey are given to the weapons, or to the men that bear them, for they govern all things and impart power to conquer and power to subdue. He who has a certain desire shall achieve it if he but knows the rune which can compel its fulfilment, for the runes come from Reynir, the chief ruler of the Universe, the god most wise. His power and great knowledge are enshrined in them.

    Next to Reynir the mightiest of the gods was his nephew Anduiras, whose mother was Aurorae, "Titaness of Upper Air and Cold" and father Aether, “Titan of Air and Storms”. In Aduria was built for him a great mansion called Bilskirnir, with five hundred and forty halls and a roof of shining silver. He drave forth in a car which was drawn by two goats. Three precious things were his possessions: the great hammer Mjolnir, which struck fire from the mountains and has slain many frost giants; the belt of prowess, which gave him threefold strength; and his mighty iron gauntlets, which he put on ere he could wield his hammer.
    Last edited by BRadmin; 02-05-2009 at 02:27 PM.
    Te audire non possum. Musa sapientum fixa est in aure.

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    Site Moderator AndrewTall's Avatar
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    They sound good Arjan, but it might be worth softening the giants vs Aesir/Vanir side & Ragnarok comment - although keeping giants as an enemy sounds ok I'm not sure how common the Asgardian world view is.

    I'd swap villainous dwarves for kobolds as well - and have this myth be the basis for the kobolds exclusion from the surface - the dwarves are still mainly a good race in BR, all the more so given the neutral/evil slant put on elves and the absence of most halfings, all gnomes, etc so they don't quite fit the myth.

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    Ehrshegh of Spelling Thelandrin's Avatar
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    Those are pretty awesome, Arjan! I assume you had a modicum of assistance from traditional Norse stories?

    Ius Hibernicum, in nomine juris. Quidquid latine dictum sit, altum sonatur.

  9. #9
    susanmathew
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    Alcohol & Stress

    Research and population surveys have shown that persons under stress , particularly chronic stress, tend to exhibit more unhealthy behaviors than less-stressed persons. Stressed people drink more alcohol, smoke more, and eat less nutritious foods than non-stressed individuals.

    Many people report drinking alcohol in response to various types of stress, and the amount of drinking in response to stress is related to the severity of the life stressors and the individuals' lack of social support networks.

    Alcoholism is a complex medical condition that is believed to be caused by a number of both hereditary and environmental factors. While stress is not considered to be a cause of alcoholism, stressful experiences may lead to relapse of the disease in those who already suffer from alcoholism.

    that alcohol actually increases the stress response by stimulating production of the same hormones the body produces when under stress.

  10. #10
    Ehrshegh of Spelling Thelandrin's Avatar
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    I think the above woman is a spammer. Hmmmm.

    Ius Hibernicum, in nomine juris. Quidquid latine dictum sit, altum sonatur.

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