Wednesday, 15 March 2017

Terrae Vertebrae: The Empire

There always was going to be an empire. Rome, Italy, Byzantium and Iberia layer upon one another. This truly has stepped away from the national epic; it would be difficult to have Aeneas or Achilles coexisting with Lancelot, Roland and Eric the Red. That said, nothing should stop our heroic band of adventurers from venturing into the dungeons of fallen pseudo-Troy.

The Nirvanite Imperium.  Set on the broad plains below Nicquardy, as they spread away from the mountains of the Spine, and down to the mountain boundaries of the desert and the a

Rome/Byzantium with an edge of China. Mortuary ancestor cult modeled on Spanish Easter Week procession with death masks.  

 Nestorians vs. Monophysites. The Works of Procopius. Marco Polo in the Court of Kublai Khan. The Pillow Book. Definite edge of decay. Costume-early modern leading edge fashion or weird old ceremonial costume. Classical ruins- both city centres where the old forum still stands but also old Troy/Mycenae like hill top forts. 

(Home of Both Rites. Coexistence as controlled by Emperor. Population tend to MR) [The Emperor. Renounces name on Coronation. Not given formal name until death, based on deeds during life – Crusader V, Fleetmaster II, Lawgiver VI. Those that die without great deeds to their name – Heir X. Wicked  - Tyrant VII. Last Emperor: Architect III. Senate, courtiers, bureaucrats, layer on layer of formality and etiquette]

The Novopolis – The 'New Cities' of the Nirvanite Imperium. Less Imperial presence. Trade, art. Italian city states. Fantasy Venice, &c. The Lies of Locke Lamora-esque ‘alchemist’s Paradise?’ Separatist rumblings. Lots of ‘In the Emperor’s Name’ ironic jests. 

Home of the Unified Rite.

[Dukes and Burghers. Some populist Dukes recently proclaimed due to Merchant success; more Doge Like]

The Estates Immaculate – The Imperial City, Pleasure Grounds, Centre of the Manifest Rite.
Surrounded by The Pylons of Macrobius. Boundary markers.  Gets weird inside. Ancient dynasties of seneschals, ancient rituals. Very Gormenghast.  

Inspirations include Virconium. Julie Taymor’s Titus - a city set about by ruins and ancient customs, where the past overwhelms the present.  Marco Polo in the Court of Kublai Khan. The Pillow Book. An edge of Warhammer 40K or The Book of the New Sun would not be inappropriate.

Ancient religious elements still exist. Rumours of infidel cults. Imperial Cults, &c. exist – spun off from ancient, less than entirely Church approved beliefs.

Kapelleron – The Frontier Region. Spanish-like climate, fauna, flora. The Reconquista. Think also Guerrilla warfare.  Also an angle of Mormon & other Wild West settler (but esp. the weirdness of the Latter-Day Saints)/Boer frontier faith (doesn’t abandon 'Spanish' ‘catholic’ rosaries, saintly cults. &c., but has that degree of isolated fundamentalist development) – complete with growing separatist sentiment against uncaring/sinful imperial cities. Crusades. Arid hills. Monument Valley.  Hemingway. Heavy anti-heresy, infidel as response to neighbors. 

[Ruled by a Duke, with a certain degree of autonomy from the Imperial Court. His subjects can be just as autonomous.]

The Trade Cities  The bits that aren’t the Novopolis on the Coast/borders. Dramatically more cosmopolitan. Lankhmar-esque. Sizable non-Pseudo-European population – even as aristocrats and officials. Manueline architecture? Variety of leaders. Compare with Portugal, Cadiz, Aragon.
Really called “Lameravis”.

Everywhere else:  Sleepy, prosperous, loyal towns. Not quite flyover country; local interests are bitterly guarded. The lords and merchants hear news of the Novopolis and its doings, or have relatives in Kapalleron and can fall under the sway of one or the other.

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