Re: The Glorantha Digest V8 #233

From: Greg Stafford <>
Date: Fri, 26 Jan 2001 07:37:32 -0800

At 09:11 PM 1/25/2001 -0800, you wrote:

>Date: Fri, 26 Jan 2001 12:33:25 +1300
>From: Peter Metcalfe <>
>Subject: HonEel and Corn
>>b)She (and her priesthood) seem to have it in for the Red Emperor; is this
>>part of her nature (she sounds like an unplanned result of the Emperor's
>>hiding during the Sheng occupation), a response to the Emperor interfering
>>with her maize rituals, or something else?
>I really don't know the full details of this (or even why), but
>a philosophical division among the lunars seems to have occurred
>when HonEel inaugurated the corn rites.

It was very early. One of my unfinished novels is about precisely this. Greya the Stone Singer is the protagonist who eventually leads this reaction against HonEel.

>As is described in the Glorantha: Intro p199, corn actually comes
>from Bliss in Ignorance (imagine the Kralori reaction!) and requires
>blood sacrifices to grow well on the barren soil. IMO these rites
>are presided over by the Wizards of Gore dressed up as Xipec Toltec,
>our lord of flayed skins.
>In the fertile soils of Peloria, corn grows exceedingly well, but
>they still require blood. HonEel's rites are a far less bloody
Far less? Nope. Way boody.

>version but they still require a human sacrifice. No problem says
>HonEel. Convicted criminals, madmen and down-and-outs will be used
>as a sacrifice considering they don't do much else for the Empire.
That is what she says,but includes other useless members like old people, the stupid and the unemployed, cripples and most foreigners.

>This PoV however arouses deep revulsion among other Lunars. As a
>result of the wanton butchery of Sheng Seleris's reign, they are
>horrified by the concept of killing people because somebody thinks
>they are useless. They thus agitate against the corn rites, and
>eventually the Red Emperor supports them*. The corn rites are
>modified (corn women are used instead of human sacrifices) which
>lessens the bounty of the corn harvest and the protesting priestesses
>are exiled to Oraya. This is the origin of the grudge against
>the Red Emperor.

Maybe the corn rites are modified, but I think they were mostly contained to a few places.

>Since the Red Emperor has become a drunkard and caring for little
>else other than his parties, the Emperor's prohibitions have been
>become ignored as many lunars desire the wealth of the corn

The reasons are a bit more complex than this today,but will be explained int he HW epic.

>But if the current mask dies, the next mask might be active
>and once again condemn the corn rites and priesthood. So
>the Emperor's death could be a plot to remove the Emperor
>permanently from the scene. OTOH it could be a simple accident
>in which the Emperor wants to play the bad guy for a change
>and is killed with unfortunate results. Or even that his
>death was mundane but the Emperor decided not to return for
>reasons of his own choosing.

The Emperor had no problems being a sacrifice for JarEel's corn sacrifice, and his continued absence will be a very very big shock to everyone, especially to JarEel who is very upset about the loss. Part of her future behavior is explained by this terrible accident which she helps to create.
>Umm, a very good question for whichever version of Elmal/Yelmalio you
>are dealing with. Don't have an answer.
>From my perspective, this spell name is an artifact of RQ and not in
Glorantha at all. It was intended to be "see in dark."

>>And while I'm on the subject -- who was Yelmalio's mother, anyway?
>He was motherless, being an emanation from Yelm.
I'll back this, though in fact revealing the REAL source of Yelmalio is another part of the Lunar Mysteries to be uncovered in the Lunar HW Epic(s).
>>re: 3EB
>Can the analogy with the Gypsies be furthered with respect to social

Could be. I don't know enough about the gypsy social structure, nor care enough about the 3EB to determine that.

>>>Are they animists, theists or sorcerers?
>I can hardly picture them using grimoires like the Malkioni. Maybe their
>system of sorcery relies on oral lore (making it even more impenetrable to
>other sorcerers who'd like to steal their secrets).
That is right, as well as the "spells" contained on their equipments, etc. Sorcery requires a written source for their spells, but does not always mean "books."

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