early seshnela, kralorela

From: Peter Metcalfe <P.Metcalfe_at_student.canterbury.ac.nz>
Date: Tue, 03 Jun 1997 23:32:20 +1200

Joerg Baumgartner:

Me>>The fact that the Basmoli dwell in "cities" means diddley-squat (such
>>hidden information from the Book of Kings BTW can be found in the
>>Genertela Book) with respect to the rest of their technology or level
>>of culture (to wit iron armour and sorcery).

>The source you mentioned states nothing about iron armour on either side,
>and mentions sorcery for both. In fact, the famous sorcerers in this
>conflict all are Pendali...

It's helpful to remember exactly *when* the Book of Kings was written. At that point in time, the precise, nay even the general specifics of Malkioni religion had not been sorted out. A parallel example is Jonat's Saga which Greg says at the back of Trollpak (RQIII edition) is wrong in that one type of troll would be now described as a Darkness Spirit. Thus attempts to prove that the Pendali are a nation of civilized sorcerers are fatally flawed methinks.

>>For all we know, their
>>level of sophistication would be no better than the Rathori or the
>>Shan Shan Hsunchen. IMO the Basmoli empire was based on the conquest
>>of sedentary peoples and so they lived off the latter's labour.

>As I understand Greg's intentions for the Dawn Age and earlier, this usually
>is not the case. At least I got rebuffed when I suggested a similar theory
>for the Vingkotling entry into Genertela.

But there is evidence for the Basmoli migration and there is no evidence for a Vingkotling 'migration'. To wit:

        'Ancient Seshnegi documents demonstrate clearly that
        the language spoken by the Hsunchen Basmoli invaders
        of the second century is essentially identical to the
        language spoken by the relic tribes surviving today
        in Ralios and Prax.  The noted Jrusteli scholar Dakon 
        Ven Dalorin demonstrated in 998 that the Basmoli living 
        in Tarien (who may now be extinct) also spoke this same
                Glorantha Book: Lanuages p34.

(Yes, the chronological points are interesting).

        'In Pamaltela, the Basmoli only know that their god
        marched northwards with a horde of followers, and still
        await a triumphant return'

                Gods of Glorantha p44.

So the Basmoli are one of the exceptions IMO.

>The Pendali are an indigenous culture whose founder - a son of Basmol -
>married the daughter of Seshna Likita, and their children founded the
>Basmoli kingdoms.

Non sequiter. King Froalar also married Seshna Likita and founded the Serpent Kings Dynasty but nobody would suggest that the Malkioni are indigenous to Seshnela. Furthermore Lords of Terror (p86) mentions that an ancient Seshnelan dynasty (extinct before the Dawn) worshipped Sidana. Since Sidana is a patron of incest which is not AFAIK a Basmoli practice, it seems to me that the Basmoli supplanted the Sidanings when they invaded.

>>We know the Pralori similarly 'oppressed' the people of Wenelia at the

>You mean the Mraloti hsunchen there?

The Wenelians were Haralding Orlanthi (or at least King Vathmai was).

>>back on the Motherland, the Brithini who are even more outmoded
>>than the Dawn Malkioni, have successfully managed to repulse
>>at least two invasions.

>Much later, unless you call the retreat of the glaciers towards the
>Dawn as a successful repulsion of an invasion.

But the Brithini have not changed since the Silence was lifted thus the 'much later' comment is irrelevant to the original point.

>>Why should the Basmoli be wearing armour? The True Basmoli needs
>>aught but his skin IMHO.

>The Pendali did wear armour. QED.

This from the Book of Kings again? I don't believe it for the same reasons mentioned above.

>What you call "True Basmoli" was what the exile people became after being
>pushed out of Tanisor as well.

And somehow degenerated into carbon copies of their lifestyle before they started to learn sorcery? Surely this would have started ringing alarm bells?

JB>>>The Six-Legged Empire was doomed as long as it relied solely on its

>>>mounted forces to win their battles, since horses get sick on the
>>>plains of Jolar quickly.

Me>>Um, then how _did_ the six-legged empire manage to conquer the
>>plains in the first place?

>With a ready supply of yet undiseased horses.

Where from? Bear in mind that the Horse start to get sick as soon as one goes into the Laskal forest. Thus by the time they get to the plains, they would be next to useless. IMO the horse sickness is a curse brought about by either the Doraddi or the Empire of Errinoru.

[Silver Empire]

>Lemmesee. The True Hrestol Way got to power about 150 to 200 ST. The Brithos
>invasion occurred less than 200 years after the civil war in Seshnela had
>subsided. The Seshnela visited by Arkat around 400 was torn in civil war
>between lots of minor kingdoms, Gerlant's being the most prominent.

I don't think there was a civil war - the Serpent Kings died out and then the True Hrestol Way took over in a violent coup d'etat. Perhaps the Serpent Kings were killed in the Second Century Basmoli invasions? We know that the Dangam confederacy expanded eastwards from the Genertela book so he could have pushed the (Tanisorian?) Basmoli into the Seshnelan lands.

>The Dari confederation had conquered Tanisor around 265, and held even parts
>of Seshnela until his assassination in 307. In 350 it was resurrected.

>This suggests that the great unified Silver Empire lasted (in Ralios, at
>least) for about 60 years. Sounds very much like the conquests of one
>powerful king, only to be lost by his son when he tried for Brithos.

I presume from the loss of Safelster and Tanisor that the Silver Empire's forte was primarily naval. This would explain why it managed to hold onto Akem and plant colonies in Jrustela despite the loss of Tanisor to Dari. (After all England lost Calais yonks before it became the Empire on which the Sun never set).

I note that the process of political integration of Malkioni Fronela begins circa 385 ST (according to Codex 2). Given that when Arkat lands, Arolanit is composed of City States, I'm inclined to believe that the disaster of the Brithos expedition took place within ten years _after_ the Sun Stop and its abject failure lead to the complete political disintegration of the Silver Empire. Note that Gerlant is purging other _dynasts_ (and not nobles) of their lands. This fits the emphasis given to the Silver Empire in the Jrusteli monomyth (p11 Gods of Glorantha).

James Frusetta:

>Though I actually _do_ like the idea of tossing trollkin in the way of
>missile fire. A fine trollish martial arts skill, IMO, similar to
>arrow catching/deflecting and suitable for wizened troll sensei.

Not really. Why do the Uz play Trollball? Drop kick is all they need.

>but Golden Bow may
>well offer the spell -- meaning that Elves (assuming they worship Golden
>Bow) would have access to (arrrrgh!) a re-usable smart missile spell.

I don't think the Elves worship the Golden Bow cult of the Pentans. The two hardly ever interact and when they do, it's usually hostile in nature (ie Skyburn). The elves may know of a bow spirit that offers similar magic (Tobasta Greenbow springs to mind) but I doubt that they would worship Golden Bow.

Stephen Martin:

>I beg to differ -- I don't recall the source (Joerg, where's your
>index?), but one published source states that the God Learners took the
>obscure PoIM and expanded it into a larger, more important organization.

Glorantha Book p24

        'Nor did anyone notice immediately the subtle changes
        which occured in Kralorela when the God Learners replaced
        the Ancient Empire with their own version of draconic
        powers by adopting and expanding the previously obscure
        Path of Immanent Mastery'.

[Thang Chow, Emperor of Kralorela]

>>Page 33, illustration sidebar text, I'd say this
>>Thang Chow is rather apocryphal.

>Quite apocryphal, since it was not in the original Wyrms Footnotes
>article by any means, and is nowhere else in print.

I'm surprised by this as I thought that the artwork looked as though it had been in the original Wyrms Footnotes article. Might it not have been in the Dragon Pantheon? (Not that I have access to either).

>Hey, maybe Thang Chow is the
>FDR Emperor, since the consensus seems to be that Shang-hsa (MHNBC) was

Looking at the Kralorela writeup, I note for the City of Chang Tsai:

        'In the Second Age, thanks to God Learner meddling, the
        Ogre King and the Legion of Red Bones seized control
        of this city.  After the Closing it was liberated by
        Thang How of Fuknama.'

Presuming that it's a mispelling, the suggestion seems quite probable as after the Closing, the False Dragons Ring was still in charge of Kralorela for another 150 years. In addition, the suspiciously God Learner-like rune on his bathrobe would damn him. Additionally the Kralori writeup implies IMO that the false Emperor is a native Kralori as they appointed him rather than selected one of their number to be emperor.

To explain the passage, I think originally the city was held by conservative Mandarins who refused to acknowlege the authority of the New Dragons Ring. Being unable to take the city, the New Dragons Ring conspired via some Huan To intermediaries with the Ogre King to take the city from behind. After the Closing, Thang How decided to kick the Ogre King out.

End of Glorantha Digest V4 #459

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