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Discussion in 'Machiavel: Ambition' started by Ravana, Oct 9, 2011.

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  1. Ravana

    Ravana Istar

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    This thread is intended to give a home to things I've written that you don't need to know. :D

    Whether or not you want to know them is up to you. Nor am I about to tell you that nothing in here might prove useful to know some day. I just wanted to be clear, for those less enamored of my prose, that the contents of this thread are purely optional. I'm probably not even going to bother sticking it, since the top of the forum is starting to get a bit crowded as it is.

    The opening post is on a topic which, just possibly, might come near and dear to your hearts in the ensuing days: astrology. Assuming, that is, you can trust the predictions of astrologers to be accurate. I'm also going to move the (already much-traveled) forms of address back out of "Dramatis Personae," since it was always labeled "optional" to begin with.

    The one future topic I know I'm going to address is heraldry within the empire. Beyond that… flora and fauna? Historical linguistics? Philosophy? Who knows. I'm open to suggestions.

    CONTENTS
    #2 Astronomy and Astrology
    #3 Forms of Address
    #4 Some Events of Historical Interest:
    - Partition of the Maritsa Inheritance
    - the War of the Infants
    #5 Some Events of Historical Interest (2)
    - the Disintegration of Malodbord
    - the Compromise of Hofchradel
    #6 to #8 Title LVII of the Imperial Code of Law
    [other titles of lesser amusement value, but greater importance to players, may appear in the future]
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Oct 11, 2017
  2. Ravana

    Ravana Istar

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    ASTRONOMY and ASTROLOGY

    This planet has quite the dynamic night sky. For starters, it doesn’t have one moon… it has four. There are four visible planets, one nearer the sun, the other three farther out. As might be expected, patterns are seen in the stars: ten signs that lie along the celestial equator constitute the zodiac. As might also be expected, you know nothing whatsoever of astrophysics, so the following descriptions reflect what you can see… and what others, both “scientific” observers (astronomers) and “mystical” ones (astrologers), see in them.

    Each entry begins with the most common name of the body or constellation, followed by alternate names and a brief visual description. For interpretations… consult an astrologer. I understand there’s finally a new official one at court.…

    Luminaries (sun and moons):

    The Sun: Lord of Increase
    - appearance: duh

    Silvernight: Warden of Time
    - appearance: a lot like our moon, though smoother in appearance; 24 day orbit

    Shadownight: Dark Teacher, Companion of Owls
    - appearance: a grayish moon that rotates slowly; one-third is much darker than the rest (almost black), creating odd “phases” (for instance, a “double crescent,” when full with the dark part centered); 38 day orbit

    Raven’s Eye: Window of Souls
    - appearance: a small, yellowish moon; 11 day orbit

    Dancer: Chaser of Hours, Handmaid of Storms
    - appearance: a tiny, icy-bright body that occasionally flashes nearly any color in the prism; brightness varies considerably, following no apparent pattern, sometimes appears to “twinkle” while watched; has an eccentric, highly tilted 7 day orbit with noticeable precession, which allows it to appear nearly anywhere in the sky, not just equatorially
    - [Astronomical note: this is a moon, but it doesn’t appear any larger than a point of light–in other words, just like a very bright planet–so it gets classed as a “wandering star” by some observers. Astronomers in this setting have established heliocentricity, and Dancer’s behavior can’t be explained the same way the other wandering stars are; on the other hand, its behavior can’t be explained the same way the other moons are, either.…]

    Wandering Stars (planets):

    Herald: Morning Star, Evening Star, Harbinger
    - appearance: brilliant white, 71 day solar orbit; only planet closer to sun

    Beggar’s Pebble: Fool’s Gold
    - appearance: smallish, dim gray-white, occasionally flashes golden-yellow; 451 day solar orbit

    Warrior’s Tear: Widow’s Jewel
    - appearance: brilliant orange-red; 571 day solar orbit.

    Ice Maiden: Desire’s Mirror
    - appearance: blue-white, brighter even than Warrior’s Tear; 763 day orbit

    Zodiac:
    Ten signs taking up (roughly) equal parts of the sky along the celestial equator. Since there are twelve months, the signs and months don’t match up: each month is 30 days, while each sign covers 36 days. The signs don’t match up exactly with the year, either: the new year begins halfway through Bear. Where two names are fairly equally common, they are separated by or; where there are less common names, these are given in parentheses.

    A “map” of the zodiac appears in “Visual Aids.”

    Compass or Rose
    Panther (Leaping Cat)
    Swan (Goose, Heron)
    Ox or Bull (Goat)
    High Crown
    Fish or Whale
    Dragon or Serpent
    Fountain or Iris
    Hawk (Eagle, Falcon)
    Bear

    Other (possibly) Important Signs:
    All of these are formed by combinations of stars within the zodiac and stars in other signs.

    Keeper’s Sword
    Axe of Fate or Justice
    Great Square
    Great Triangle
    Spindle

    The Houses:
    These are completely confusing to anybody who isn’t an astrologer, because they aren’t based on anything observable. (Which also means they don't behave the same as houses in real [sic] astrology.) If you really want to know, consult a professional.

    Tears
    Winds
    Leaves
    Words or Promises
    Quiet or Rest
    Clouds or Mist
    Fire or Smoke
    Webs or Ghosts
    Song

    ---

    [Wow… that got amazingly brief, once I'd removed all the interpretation data from it. What I sent Silver Pegasus was almost six times as long.… Perhaps more detail will get added later. Though that might also take some of the fun out of it. :p ]
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Oct 11, 2017
  3. Ravana

    Ravana Istar

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    FORMS OF ADDRESS

    Here is the expanded list of forms of address for dignitaries, according to the latest rolls from the Ministry of Court and Protocol, in order of (approximate) precedence. (No, you don't need to have these memorized in order to play: this is just for adding depth and verisimilitude to the game.) "Your X" is correct when addressing someone in person or in writing, "His/Her X" when they're being announced. If the word "your" is in [brackets], it's optional (and usually dispensed with). Certain titles do not change with the gender of the holder: the current Lord Chancellor is female, but would never be referred to as "Lady Chancellor," nor addressed as "Your Serene Ladyship." (And you'd be putting your future at risk if you addressed her as "Your Highness," even though she is one.)

    Spouses of nobles always receive the same title as the person they're married to, unless they happen to have a higher one already—no one gets "demoted" through marriage. On the other hand, it is always proper to refer to someone by his own title, even if he's married to someone with a higher one. The only exception to this is the person married to the reigning emperor/empress, who is always referred to as "Empress/Emperor Consort" when being mentioned in third person. (Also, when counting reigns, the title of the monarch changes gender but the count stays the same: thus there was a "First Emperor" and a "Third Emperor," but no "Second Emperor," since the second monarch was an Empress. This should cause no confusion, since the consorts don't get counted up; they're simply "Empress/Emperor Consort of" whoever occupies the throne.) Children and other blood relatives of a noble all receive either "gracious lord" or "highborn," unless they happen to be princes; since anybody born to one of the princely lines is a prince, there's never any reason not to give them a "highness." Note, however, that if someone is a prince royal and has another title, it will generally be the other title they get referred to by: for instance, about half the dukes of the empire are also princes royal, but it is more appropriate to address them as dukes than as princes.

    If you happen to forget a form of address, all persons can be spoken to directly by using their title—but here "title" includes the land it is they're rulers of… and it does not includes their given name. Thus, if you can't remember if the Marquis of Torgevegn is a "noble grace" or just a "grace," you may address him as "Marquis Torgevegn"; if you address him as "Marquis Gurtur," you'd best have a sword handy. (Actually, calling him "your grace" would be promoting him anyway; that's just an example.) If you are of higher rank than the person you're speaking to, then you can use title plus name, though the other style is still appropriate (and more formal); you can also use the name of their realm without the title attached (i.e. just "Torgevegn")… again, if you rank them. Under no circumstance would you ever address a noble by his bare name: that's an insult not even the emperor can get away with. If you happen to not know someone's rank, be as polite as you can, admit your ignorance immediately, apologize for being so stupid as to not recognize who they obviously are, and accept correction.

    There is no "method" for remembering the titles, and longer isn't always higher. Thus a duke is "your grace," but both archdukes (higher) and marquises (lower) have another word tacked on to their titles. "Noble" added to "excellency" or "lord" means up a step; added to "grace," it's down one. "Regal" normally implies "reigns autonomously," and is added to princes regnant; however, it was already part of the address for a count when counties palatine were created, so they got another word ("most") tacked on, whereas the duke palatine ended up with "eminent" rather than "regal," through whatever accident of history.

    These are only the titles as they're used within the empire. The kingdoms tend to have the same usages, except that their monarchs refer to themselves as "emperor"—they still claim to be the emperor, after all. Foreign nobles below the level of monarch generally receive the courtesy address of "excellency" if they come from someplace too barbaric to have adopted the empire's standards. Some consider this rude, but unless you're visiting their court, they're probably going to be badly outnumbered and in poor position to object strenuously.

    Note also that there's no guarantee this is a complete list: given the way the empire works, new titles and addresses could be inserted (or deleted) from day to day. In particular, note the absence of religious titles, as those are still in progress.

    And note finally that if you actually use any of these in real life, you'll almost certainly be wrong.

    •••

    • emperor, consort = your imperial majesty
    •• don't forget the "imperial": "royal majesty" or just plain "majesty" is for monarchs outside the empire

    • officer vested with Imperium = your worshipful lordship
    •• legates, intendants, and tribunes; viceroys can also be referred to as "your regal lordship"

    • crown prince (assuming there is one) = your imperial highness
    •• same as with emperor

    • great officer = your serene lordship, regardless of other titles
    •• does not change with gender

    • elector = elector, though most will accept whatever other title they bear (all are princes or dukes)
    •• yes, duke electors do feel this is a more exalted title than their ducal title; the princes may or may not

    • prince (heads of the three lines of Helderau, Erchevold-Herzerik, and Maritsa) = your serene highness
    •• note that all three are also princes regnant; use this address instead

    • prince regnant (that is, the ruler of an actual principality) = your regal highness

    • prince (other; aka prince cadet) = [your] highness

    • privy council member (other than great officer) = your exalted lordship
    •• does not change with gender

    • archduke = your serene grace

    • grand duke = your illustrious grace
    •• the present Grand Duke despises this, preferring a simple "your grace"

    • duke palatine = your eminent grace

    • duke = your grace

    • minister (of the crown) = your eminent lordship
    •• there are a bewildering and ever-changing number of these—today there happen to be 11, or 12 if you count the Grandee of Imperial Sinecures
    •• does not change with gender

    • marquis = [your] noble grace

    • governor (of a region) = your honorable lordship
    •• as with ministers; there are 10 of them, and that number rarely changes

    • count palatine = [your] most regal excellency

    • count = [your] regal excellency

    • lord mayor (of an imperial city) = your distinguished lordship
    •• …and there are 32 of these

    • viscount = [your] noble excellency
    •• presumably, a viscount palatine would be "most noble excellency," as "noble regal excellency" is so ugly no one would want it (and "least regal excellency" ought to require no explanation)

    • baron = [your] excellency

    • baronet = noble lord

    • lord = my lord (not "your lord"), or highborn
    •• there had to be one obvious one, right?

    • knight of an order (officer) = venerable sir (all ranks)
    •• if you happen to be part of the same order, it's plain "sir"

    • knight of an order = distinguished sir

    • knight banneret = noble sir

    • knight bachelor = sir, or sir [name]

    • knight errant = notable sir
    •• as this is a title bestowed by a duke, marquis or count rather than by the empire, it's usually safe to ignore… at any rate, ignoring it is safer than calling one "errant sir"

    • cavalier = cavalier, or cavalier [name]

    • military officer = by rank (i.e. "captain")… and never "sir"—those are knights

    • subordinate of great officer, privy councilor, or minister, regardless of level = your lordship
    •• same goes for mayors of imperially chartered towns
    •• other officials = if you don't know if they have another title, "your lordship" is usually safe

    • esquire = squire, or squire [name]

    • gentleman = mister/miss
    •• always "miss," married or not
    •• assumes you feel the situation calls for politeness; they're so far below you it hardly matters, right?

    • other civilians you feel inclined to be polite to = master/mistress (for craftmasters, scholars, lawyers, doctors, or other leading professionals), mister/miss (for anyone)

    • anyone else = you talk to them at all?
     
    Last edited: Jan 28, 2012
  4. Ravana

    Ravana Istar

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    SOME EVENTS OF HISTORICAL INTEREST

    Eventually, there will be a timeline, as well as more "encyclopedia-entry" pieces such as the below (all of which may or may not migrate to a different home). Since these two happen to be good to go, I figured I'd get them out now.

    ---

    The Partition of the Maritsa Inheritance:
    Maritsana, the fifth of the Last Emperor’s six children, was assassinated halfway through the Civil Wars in the year 302. She had in many ways been the most popular, especially in her reluctance to enter the wars themselves–her line didn’t contribute meaningfully to the chaos until, and largely as a result of, her death. The lands she had received as part of Palagyr’s bequest lay for the most part in the center of the empire, and included the Summer Capital. She had married one of the empire’s most powerful nobles, the Duke of Hezelzeklar and Turingdor, lands lying on either side of her bequest; together, they made up the largest single block of land in the empire.

    When the Second Imperium was formed in 312, the electors and Curia expressed discomfort with the idea that any of the royal lines should control the capital cities, and rather than relocate them they requested the lines donate them in perpetuity to the Crown. The ever-canny Princess Maritsela agreed almost immediately–and with surprisingly few conditions attached–and promptly volunteered her forces to “liberate” the Winter Capital, which then lay on Helderau lands. These forces were already embarking at the headwaters of the Saxachar River when word came that Angrid’s heirs had acceeded in similar fashion. That line got their own share of revenge later when they separated the gold-mining region in the southeast of Maritsdor and joined it to Crown Reach during Helgrid’s reign. (Though the price of that revenge might be considered high, since the Helderau line, which had never held the throne before 348, has not held it again since 355–with maneuvers such as this one being high among the reasons.)

    The Duke’s powerful maternal family demanded that a scion of their own line receive the eastern duchy–Hezelzeklar–though in the end, following his death in 323, it actually became the core of two duchies, Herchevar and Zanarvec, along with a piece that went into the making of Trebidascu. A hint of its former outlines can be seen in the imperial Region that was renamed Maritszeklar in honor of the line (and as a bit of revenge). The western duchy was his to do with as he pleased, however, and he chose to provide a sound basis for his wife’s line rather than cling to the lesser glory of perpetuating his own. The title of Duchy of Turingdor was merged with the Principality, and Maritsdor was created.

    Maritsana’s children wisely chose not to divide their realm among future generations, as the other lines did–apart from the small principality in the southwest (Darvingdel), which had already been specifically reserved to her second child, who had married the viscount of that region. Instead, the younger ones sought fiefs of their own through marriage, often outside of the empire. They were powerless, however, to prevent the first emperor from granting the Count of Cunedor’s petition to separate his lands as a county peculiar–precedent was against them, as neither of the other lines had high nobles that were vassals (all remaining titles were held directly by the princes). They forestalled any similar conflict over the Viscounty of Ludostein by freeing it themselves when they occupied the throne a couple years later. (The viscount was surprised: he had not actually considered such an application–indeed, many feared the Maritsa would try to reverse the liberation of Cunedor. This is part of what made Maritresa such a popular empress.)

    ---

    The War of the Infants:
    The year 337 saw the first of the events that led to the most complicated tangle on the entire royal genealogical tree. Winigret, mother of the man who would become the Tenth Emperor, Nikovar, his brother Sebeschar, and their two sisters, lost her first husband, their father. Two years later, she remarried, to Hudelbert, Duke of Saxar, himself a widower (none of his descendants from his first marriage survive today). By him, she had one son, Tergiv, in 340; the next year, she died. A year after that, Hudelbert married yet again–to Winigret’s younger sister, Seligret; she in turn bore him twin girls in 343… and the next year, he died. Seligret remarried in 345, and cranked out four more children; however, that marriage had no effect on what happened as a consequence of Hudelbert’s death.

    What did happen was this: Seligret somehow persuaded Hudelbert to accept some very unconventional alterations to the standard noble last will–or, according to some, altered it herself, or forged it outright. Specifically, the will stated that rather than his duchy descending to his oldest child, then four-year-old Tergiv, it would be divided between the twin girls she had given him, Angrebuda and Clothilde… and that their half-brother would receive none of it.

    This was a problem for a number of reasons; for starters, there was strong prejudice in the empire against nobles dividing their lands–which, after all, was what had led to the Civil Wars. In this case, doing so was an even bigger problem, since Saxar was one of the Electors. Whatever other problems there were, and whatever other resolutions might be arrived at, one thing was absolutely certain in everybody’s mind: the Electors were not about to give votes to both daughters… or else there would be a mad rush among the other Electors to divide their lands as finely as they could in order to pack more of their own relatives into the Electorate. And there was no reasonable way to choose which one the vote should go to.

    Neither were any of Saxar’s vassals willing to give up the influence inherent in having their overlord be one of the Electors. So they promptly raised troops and set out to “reconquer” the opposite half of the duchy, on behalf of whichever one-year-old heiress they now fell under. This, however, had problems of its own, the biggest one a largely impassable ridgeline separating the north and south halves of Saxar. There was a narrow stretch of valley along the Saxachar River across from Crown Reach that could be used; the river itself, however, was interdicted by the royal navy in an effort to contain the conflict. So the counts and their followers went around the other end. The problem here was that “the other end” wasn’t part of Saxar at all: it belonged to the duchy of Dravuchim, whose duke wanted nothing to do with the conflict.

    One of his counts, however, did: the Count of Torgen favored the southern party, and when forbidden to allow their troops passage, he rebelled against his own duke, with the result that beginning in early 345, Dravuchim became the main battleground where forces heading either direction tended to encounter one another. The empire did little more than try to keep the conflict from spreading beyond this: Emperor Vidigyr was already ailing (he would die the next year), the Duke of Dravuchim was not terribly popular with his peers, whereas, like him, none of them wanted to have anything to do with the fiasco either. So the war was allowed to run its course over most of the year, until it became obvious that neither side was about to win, barring external help–and many lesser nobles, in addition to large numbers of mercenaries had already entered the lists on one side or another: inevitably, had the conflict gone on, one or another duke would be bound to get dragged in as a consequence of having a vassal involved. At which point the Curia stepped in to put a stop to the conflict.

    The first thing they did was to declare that the Electoral dignity of Saxar was forfeit as a result of the division (and the second thing they did was get a law passed stating it automatically would be in future cases); that removed much of what was being fought over. It had been considered likely from the outset of the war that this would happen, and that it would probably be granted to the powerful Duke of Bergeheim. However, in the interim, the Duke of Malodbord–a “rump” duchy to Bergeheim’s north that had lost much of its lands in the Civil Wars–died without heirs, and Bergeheim claimed, then forcibly annexed, what was left, on behalf of his son, whose by-then dead mother was the next senior member of the Malodbord line, in the process cutting out other existing claimants. The Curia used the annexation as an excuse not to further engross Bergeheim’s powers by adding an Electorate to it; instead, they gave it to the rising but still much more limited power of Vahir-Dascu.

    Then they began to redraw borders. The new duchies of Hedan-Saxar and Nieden-Saxar received most of the lands originally bequeathed them; however, one viscounty was taken from Hedan-Saxar and fused with one belonging directly to the rebellious Count of Torgen (who lost his higher title), to create the County Palatine of Markovar as a buffer zone between them; the city of Saxenfurt was likewise removed from Hedan-Saxar and made a Free City on imperial lands. Hedan-Saxar was “compensated” by receiving the northern extension of Dravuchim; Dravuchim in turn was “compensated” by receiving the smallish County of Uldenvahir from Nieden-Saxar; Nieden-Saxar, which had not lost any other lands to the adjustments, was not compensated at all, leaving all three participants with slightly less land than they started with.

    The now two-year-old duchesses were aware of none of this. They got to hear all about it growing up, though. Prince Tergiv still didn’t get anything; he was taken in by the household of his older half-brother Prince Sebeschar, where he also was regaled with the details as he grew, and to whom he transferred what loyalty he had to give, since no one else would partisan his cause.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Oct 11, 2017
  5. Ravana

    Ravana Istar

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    SOME EVENTS OF HISTORICAL INTEREST, installment #2

    The Disintegration of Malodbord:

    Following the Civil Wars, this middling-size duchy was split by the border with Vaesthegnar. The part the empire lost was melded into the freshly-minted duchy of Mittelvald; what remained to the empire became a “rump” duchy. In the meantime, however, Angrid, the oldest of the Last Emperor’s six children, had “separated from” (put out to pasture) her first husband, the Count of Helderau, in order to shore up her dynastic pretensions by marrying a duke… Hermer of Malodbord. He died two years before she did, leaving behind a single heir, Raidalf (she had others from her first marriage, and even those from her second use the line’s name of Helderau, though they aren’t actually related to the old count). He did a little better, siring three children before his death in Year 339. His son only reigned five years, though, before being killed at age 28, and had no offspring; Raidalf’s second child, a daughter, had died four years earlier in childbirth; her only heir was a nine-year-old son. Most felt the duchy should descend to Raidalf’s third and last child, who was at least old enough to rule; however, the husband of the elder daughter—who also happened to be the Duke of Bergeheim—claimed the duchy on behalf of his son. Malodbord was in little position to resist its powerful southern neighbor (though it tried), and one short, sharp conflict later, it was absorbed into Bergeheim.

    The annexation produced two other noteworthy consequences. Prior to it, there was considerable sympathy for the notion of giving Bergeheim an Electorate—one had just come open (see the War of the Infants, above)—but afterwards, the duke’s peers were in no mood to reward his blatant expansionism with further power, and instead it went to Vahir-Dascu. The other followed a decade later, when Tringard was elected to the throne; a descendant of a younger brother of Hermer, he chose to raise the issue of liberating Malodbord, and when Bergeheim refused, he raised an army to force the issue… and became the shortest-reigning empire on the books when it was wiped out.

    •••

    The Compromise of Hofchradel:

    Which led to the single biggest political change thus far in the short history of the Second Imperium. The Electors were already working on selecting their third emperor in rather less than two years, and there was little consensus as to who to turn to. Even when one party had managed to accumulate four votes for a compromise nonentity from the Maritsa line, they were stonewalled by the other two lines and the Duke of Vahir-Dascu, who flatly refused to have anything to do with a Maritsa on the throne at that moment.

    Until one died. Nezeleth, Princess-Regnant of Herzerichsborg had received the Electorate following the death of her father Terens in Year 349. She wasn’t supposed to: the Clothildan line had adopted a practice of direct descent for the dignity, and she had an older brother, Kording. Now, history is full of nobles who have received colorful and sometimes unflattering cognomens, sometimes applied in life, more commonly after their deaths, and in general to keep clear which “Charles” or “Henry” is being talked about: thus, hearing about a “Henry the Lion” surprises no one; “Charles the Fat” and “Charles the Bald” might be applied during their lifetimes, by historians if not to their faces; one imagines that “Charles the Simple” and “Henry the Quarrelsome” were called something else in conversation.

    However, when even your contemporaries openly refer to you as “Kording the Goatf---er,” odds are no one is going to let you help choose who (or what) gets to be emperor. Nor did they. (As far as anyone could tell, he never noticed this omission.) So the Electoral dignity, and leadership of the Clothildan line, was passed on to his sister, Nezeleth. And then she died, right in the middle of the election of 355. But she had a son of legal age: he inherited the dignity and leadership of the line, right?

    Problem one: his father was a duke, Osirfritz of Eszerthagn. And while several dukes were Electors, none was the head of a line. (The Maritsa line still maintained the co-title “Duke of Turingdor” for its head, but only as a historical footnote, just as the head of the Helderau line was still a count. The “duke” does not attend Curia, nor exercise any of the other prerogatives the title might allow.) And problem two: Nezeleth had another sister, Vengrith, who promptly put her own claim in… with the support of most of her line. Both sides could point to precedents: on the one hand, the young Evrefritz was the next in lineal descent; on the other hand, the dignity had already just skipped one “proper” descendant, and nothing said the line couldn’t revise the way they did things.

    In such circumstances, the views of the other Electors and of Curia weigh heavily, the more so when there isn’t an emperor to override them. The view of the Electors was that if Vengrith received the dignity, they’d remain deadlocked—though that same deadlock prevented them from being able to bestow the dignity themselves, as doing so required unanimity. The view of the Curia was, for the most part, that one of the lines was attempting to do one of their own out of a legitimate inheritance… but at the same time, they saw the same problem in reverse: they didn’t want the head of a line to hold a duchy any more than the Clothildans wanted a duke to head them up.

    Osirfritz presented a solution to the assembled nobility meeting in the Imperial City of Hofchradel: Princess Vengrith should be given the option of accepting the Electorate, but forfeiting the leadership of her line and having her heirs be disallowed as candidates of the throne, or surrendering the Electorate to Eszerthagn in favor of becoming head of her line. The other Electors split along the lines they’d been divided on since before Nezeleth’s death; Duke Osirfritz convinced a willing Curia to adopt the Compromise and require the choice. To the surprise of no one at all, Vengrith chose the latter. In the process, she was also required to relinquish the territories that were associated with the dignity, and the (sub-)line of Erchevold-Herzerichsborg became thereafter the line of Erchevold-Herzerik. So now, instead of three royal lines having votes, only two do; at least in theory, the dukes could now control the succession without the cooperation of any of them.

    Osirfritz had a reputation as a brilliant diplomat and courtier even prior to the Compromise of Hofchradel, which only further enhanced it. He was in fact so smooth and competent that it was some time before anyone realized that while Vengrith would have forfeited her heirs’ rights to be elected to the throne if she chose the Electorate, nothing in the compromise said that the duke’s heirs would forfeit the right to be elected if they received it.…
     
  6. Ravana

    Ravana Istar

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    Title LVII [of the Imperial Code of Law] [part 1]

    Preamble:
    The provisions of this Title of the Imperial Code concern the appropriateness and admissibility of raiment of diverse sorts worn by persons entering or residing in Imperial Palaces. Nothing in this Title shall be taken to hold precedence over the sumptuary laws of the empire. Neither shall anything in this Title be taken to establish law or practice in any part of the Empire other than the Imperial Palaces.

    § 1: No garment, accoutrement, accessory or ensemble composed of a rigid substance shall project farther from the wearer’s body than his arms may reach.
    • 1.A: This shall remain true during the entire time said garment, accoutrement, accessory or ensemble is worn.
    • 1.B: This prohibition remains true of any garment, accoutrement, accessory or ensemble composed of a rigid substance, even in such cases where the garment itself displays a degree of flexibility on account of joints, links, wires, braids, or other contrivances, or where the rigid substance is attached to a non-rigid one permitting flexibility.
    • 1.C: Individual, specific and time-limited exceptions may be granted to performers who require the employment of such costumes or devices, who can document said requirements in writing, and who can make accommodation for the safety of their audience. Applications for such waivers must be submitted to the office of the Master of Entertainments, and should be addressed to the Department of Mishaps for expeditious review, along with copies to the offices of the Master of Palace Ceremony, Supervisor Superior of Housekeeping (and, if the performance is to take place out of doors, the Groundskeeper Captain of the Imperial Palace), Inspector-General of the Imperial Palace, and the Captain-General of the Imperial Guard, for review and comment.

    § 2: The wearing of garments, accoutrements, accessories or ensembles containing bladders which may be compressed to generate sounds approximating those of gustatory or eliminative processes is prohibited.
    • 2.A: The wearing of garments, accoutrements, accessories or ensembles containing bladders which may be compressed to generate secretions approximating those of gustatory or eliminative processes is prohibited.
    • 2.B: The wearing of garments, accoutrements, accessories or ensembles containing bladders which may be compressed to eliminate the actual products of the aforementioned processes is prohibited.

    § 3: No living creature shall be worn as garment, accoutrement, accessory or ensemble, irregardless of whether it is
    • (i) mammalian,
    • (ii) avian,
    • (iii) reptilian,
    • (iv) amphibian,
    • (v) marsupial,
    • (vi) piscine,
    • (vii) arthropod,
    • (viii) invertebrate,
    • (ix) or any combination thereof,
    • (ix) or is of an order of life completely unknown to the zoological sciences.
    • 3.A: This law shall be applied regardless of how such creature might be attached, restrained, contained, or otherwise presented.
    • 3.B: This includes instances wherein the creature is not attached, restrained, or contained in any manner.
    • 3.C: Neither shall the wearing of more than one creature, whether of like or differing species, constitute an exception to this law.
    • 3.D: In particular, those wearing garments of silk are required to verify that it is not still in the process of being spun.
    • 3.E: The foregoing applies equally to all types of silk, not that of the silkworm alone.
    • 3.F: Should a reasonable question be raised regarding the precise relationship of any creature (or creatures) vis-a-vis a person (or persons), it shall be assumed that it is the creature(s) that is (are) the accoutrement(s) unless it can be positively demonstrated that the creature(s) deliberately and of its (their) own will donned said person(s). Should such a case arise, the creature(s) will be removed from the Palace, though the accoutrement(s) may remain.
    • 3.G: In the event that both wearer and worn are creatures (howsomany of either there may be) governed by the provisions of this Section, all such shall be removed simultaneously.
    • 3.H: Pursuant to an enquiry initiated by His Highness Prince Heveric, His Imperial Majesty wishes that reassurances to all concerned subjects be enumerated herein that the “trouser snake” is not prohibited by the foregoing portions of this Title.
    • 3.I: The Dean of the Collegium Imperial is instructed, together with such members of his faculty whose expertise he sees most fit to call upon to assist him in the endeavor, to produce a more satisfactory nomenclature for the previously unknown species of serpent His Highness’ efforts have recently brought to light in our southeastern lands.
    • 3.I(a): Addenda: as well as for the
    (i) “lesser trouser snake”
    (ii) “greater trouser snake”
    (iii) “broad-headed trouser snake”
    (iv) “green trouser snake”
    (v) “mottled trouser snake”
    (vi) “ringed trouser snake”
    (vii) “painted trouser snake”
    (viii) “striped trouser snake”
    (ix) “pinstriped trouser snake”
    (x) “checked trouser snake”
    (xi) “paisley trouser snake”
    (xii) “horned trouser snake”
    (xiii) “coarse-scaled trouser snake”
    (xiv) “nocturnal trouser snake”
    (xv) “blind trouser snake”
    (xvi) “marine trouser snake”
    (xvii) “arboreal trouser snake”
    (xviii) “flying trouser snake”
    (xix) “winged trouser snake”
    (xx) “feathered trouser snake”
    [N.B. It appears His Highness was the honest victim of a deception in this instance, or in any event failed to notice the amputations. In recognition of His Highness’ ongoing efforts in the field of zoology, the Collegium Imperial has acquiesced in accepting a portion of His Highness’ proposed name, which shall henceforth be known in the Empire as the “trouser emu.”]
    (xxi) “naked trouser snake”
    (xxii) “migratory trouser snake”
    (xxiii) “short-tailed trouser snake”
    (xxiv) “long-tailed trouser snake”
    (xxv) “tailless trouser snake”
    (xxvi) “fly-eating trouser snake”
    (xxvii) “trouser salamander”
    [N.B. Instruction (xxvii) repealed. The Collegium Imperial reports that His Highness correctly identified the candidate, and has sent a report to His Highness congratulating him on his acumen and confirming his proposed nomenclature, while regretfully informing him that salamanders are not snakes.]
    (xxviii(1)-xxviii(11)) various species of Mustelid for which “four-legged trouser snake” has been proposed, other descriptors (such as fur color) notwithstanding;
    (xxix) “short-eared trouser snake”
    (xxx) “reticulated trouser snake”
    (xxxi) “articulated trouser snake”
    (xxxii) “vermiculated trouser snake”
    (xxxiii) “trouser amphisbaena.”
    • 3.J: Cognizant though We of the initative, diligence, zeal and unwavering dedication to the advancement of zoological sciences demonstrated by the Collegium Imperial in pursuit of their lengthy and far-ranging quest, We must nonetheless, in keeping with past practice, instruct them to produce a more satisfactory nomenclature for the previously unknown species of serpent for which they have proposed the name “venomous trouser snake.”
    • 3.K: Garter snakes still count as snakes, no matter what they've been trained to hold up.
     
    Last edited: Mar 11, 2012
  7. Ravana

    Ravana Istar

    2,012
    292
    83
    Title LVII [part 2]

    § 4: Pursuant to an enquiry initiated by His Highness Prince Heveric, and deceptive nomenclature notwithstanding, there is no taxonomic relation between the trouser snake and the peacock, which remains prohibited by § 3 of this Title.

    § 5: The wearing of garments, accoutrements, accessories or ensembles composed in whole or in part of uncooked meat is prohibited.
    • 5.A: This law shall be applied regardless of the species from which said meat was taken.
    • 5.B: For the purposes of this Title of Imperial Code, and without establishing precedent either inferred or implied in relation to any other Title of this Code, nor for any other legal, ecumenical or philosophical debate that may in future be presented before any authoritative body of the Empire, anything possessed of the power of locomotion shall be regarded as yielding “meat.”
    • 5.B(i): Addendum: shellfish shall likewise be regarded.
    • 5.C: For the purposes of this Title of Imperial Code, and without establishing precedent either inferred or implied in relation to any other Title of this Code, nor for any other legal, ecumenical or philosophical debate that may in future be presented before any authoritative body of the Empire, no differentiation shall be made between those tissues normally held to be “flesh” and any other internal organ.

    § 6: The wearing of garments, accoutrements, accessories or ensembles composed in whole or in part of cooked meat is prohibited.
    • 6.A: This law shall be applied regardless of the species from which said meat was taken.
    • 6.B: This law shall further be applied regardless of method of preparation of said meat.

    § 7: The wearing of garments, accoutrements, accessories or ensembles composed in whole or in part of fur is permissible,
    • 7.A: provided:
    • 7.A(i): the fur has been removed from the animal that originally bore it.
    • 7.A(ii): the fur has been properly treated and preserved, so that it does not bear any fleshy component that would otherwise violate § 5 of this Title.
    • 7.B Clarification: The fur cannot be attached to some other living creature prohibited by § 3 of this Title, regardless of whether this is to another example of the same species or of any other species.

    § 8: The wearing of garments, accoutrements, accessories or ensembles composed in whole or in part of leather, hide or skin shall be permitted, provided they conform to the specifications of § 7 of this Title.

    § 9: The wearing of garments, accoutrements, accessories or ensembles composed in whole or in part of scales, feathers, bones, shells, exoskeletons, cartilege, whiskers, eyelashes, hair, beards, nails, or other external body coverings shall be permitted, provided they conform to the specifications of section § 7 of this Title.

    § 10: The wearing of garments, accoutrements, accessories or ensembles composed in whole or in part of horns, antlers, tusks, hooves or teeth shall be permitted, provided these have been removed completely from the creature that originally bore them, and do not violate any other provision of this Title, viz. § 7 and § 9.

    § 11: The wearing of garments, accoutrements, accessories or ensembles composed in whole or in part of complete specimens of any species whatsoever is prohibited, even under the circumstances of the specimen’s being deceased and therefore not governed by § 3 of this Title, saving only if the specimen has been properly preserved by a competent taxonomist.

    § 12: The wearing of garments, accoutrements, accessories or ensembles composed in whole or in part of any portion of a human being is expressly prohibited, irregardless of its conformity to any other Section of this Title.
    • 12(a) Addendum: wigs are excepted from the foregoing, provided they fully conform to other Sections of this Title.
    • 12(b) Addendum: dentures are excepted from the foregoing, provided they fully conform to other Sections of this Title.
    • 12.A: Clarification: this section shall only apply to deceased human beings, in whole or in part, or to parts removed from living ones. The wearing of complete living human beings is permissible.

    § 13: The wearing of garments, accoutrements, accessories or ensembles composed in whole or in part of vegetables, fruit, or both, is prohibited,
    • 13.A: save as it meets the following qualifications:
    • 13.A(i): if the vegetable or fruit has been harvested within the past three days;
    • 13.A(ii): if the vegetable or fruit was not already past appropriate time of harvest, whether or not visible, olfactory or other externally notable signs of decay are evidenced;
    • 13.A(iii): if the vegetable or fruit shows no indication of harboring insects, arachnids, snails, slugs, worms, or other vermin;
    • 13.A(iv): if the vegetable or fruit can be verified to not harbor other fauna naturally prone to consume said vegetable or fruit, or any of the aforementioned vermin these might naturally host, notwithstanding the efficiency of camouflage demonstrated by the pygmy chameleon, verdant flying fox, or lesser broccoli ape, all of which appear to require particularly careful inspection on the part of the wearer to detect their presences;
    • 13.A(v): if the vegetable or fruit shows no indication of bearing mold, fungus or other secondary growth not inherent to its own life-cycle;
    • 13.A(vi): if the vegetable or fruit be in such condition that neither juice nor pulp might be liberated therefrom while employed as a garment, accoutrement, accessory or ensemble;
    • 13.A(vii): if the manner in which the vegetable or fruit be employed as garments, accoutrements, accessories or ensembles be such that the foregoing is not a reasonably predictable occurrence, e.g. as footwear.
    • 13.B Addendum: the wearing of garments, accoutrements, accessories or ensembles composed in whole or in part of vegetables, fruit, or both shall be permitted in the case of these having been properly dried or otherwise preserved in such a way as to guarantee they do not violate any of the foregoing provisions save that of time of harvest.
    • 13.B(i) Addendum: the foregoing qualification shall not apply if the method of preservation is by way of conversion into sauerkraut. The wearing of garments, accoutrements, accessories or ensembles composed in whole or in part of sauerkraut is prohibited.
    • 13.B(i)(a) Addendum: the foregoing paragraph is hereby extended to pickling of all sorts, irrespective of the fruit or vegetable so pickled, or the method employed in so doing.
    • 13.C Addendum: the wearing of garments, accoutrements, accessories or ensembles composed in whole or in part of vegetables, fruit, or both shall be permitted in the case of their never having been harvested in the first place, provided they do not violate any of the other provisions of this Section.
    • 13.C(i) Clarification: or § I. of this Title.

    § 14: Pursuant to an enquiry initiated by His Highness Prince Heveric, and deceptive nomenclature notwithstanding, it is acknowledged that crab apples are not made of crabs, and so are permissible as garments, accoutrements, accessories or ensembles, provided they conform to the provisions of § 13 of this Title.

    § 15: Pursuant to an enquiry initiated by His Highness Prince Heveric, and deceptive nomenclature notwithstanding, it is acknowledged horse apples are not made of horses, so § 3 of this Title does not apply to them. However, they are likewise not made of apples, so § 13 of this Title does not apply to them.
    • 15.A: The wearing of garments, accoutrements, accessories or ensembles composed in whole or in part of horse apples is prohibited.

    § 16: Pursuant to an enquiry initiated by His Highness Prince Heveric, and deceptive nomenclature notwithstanding, it is acknowledged that cantaloupe have no animal component, and so are permissible as garments, accoutrements, accessories or ensembles, provided they conform to the provisions of § 13 of this Title.

    § 17: Deceptive nomenclature notwithstanding, sea cucumbers are not vegetables.

    § 18: The provisions of § 13 of this Title shall likewise apply to flowers.
    • 18.A: Deceptive nomenclature notwithstanding, foxgloves are flowers, and thus fall under the permissions and limits of this Section.
    • 18.A(i) Clarification: exemplars of genus Digitalis are flowers. Foxes worn as gloves are not.
     
    Last edited: Mar 11, 2012
  8. Ravana

    Ravana Istar

    2,012
    292
    83
    Title LVII [part 3]

    § 19: Deceptive nomenclature notwithstanding, jellyfish are not made of jelly.

    § 20: The wearing of garments, accoutrements, accessories or ensembles composed in whole or in part of jelly is prohibited, even if the jelly has been prepared from substances otherwise permitted by this Title.
    - 20.A: The foregoing law shall similarly apply to instances where the words “jam” or “preserves” may be substituted for the word “jelly,” all else being held equal.
    - 20.B: The foregoing law, and all others contained within this Title, and indeed in all Titles of the Imperial Code, shall hold equal force irrespective of the actual form a given word takes in some other language.

    § 21: The wearing of garments, accoutrements, accessories or ensembles composed in whole or in part of chrysalises, open or unopen, is prohibited.
    - 21.A: This law shall be applied regardless of the aesthetic value of the species expected to emerge therefrom.

    § 22: Deceptive nomenclature notwithstanding, butterflies are not made of butter.
    - 22.A: The wearing of garments, accoutrements, accessories or ensembles composed in whole or in part of butter is prohibited.
    - 22.B: The wearing of garments, accoutrements, accessories or ensembles composed in whole or in part of dairy products other than butter is prohibited.

    § 23: Pursuant to an enquiry initiated by His Highness Prince Heveric, it is acknowledged that toadstools are indeed not made of toads; thus, consonant with this Title’s other treatment of deceptive nomenclature, it is admitted that toadstools are not covered under any of the foregoing Sections of this Title.
    - 23.A: The wearing of garments, accoutrements, accessories or ensembles composed in whole or in part of toadstools is prohibited.

    § 24: Deceptive nomenclature notwithstanding, mushrooms are not made of mush.
    - 24.A: The wearing of garments, accoutrements, accessories or ensembles composed in whole or in part of mushrooms is prohibited.

    § 25: Deceptive nomenclature notwithstanding, sea urchins are not in need of His Highness’ well-known and laudable charitable endeavors, or at any rate not so much so that they require emergency nourishment at Palace tables.

    § 26: Notwithstanding the circumstance that the Collegium Imperial is not quite sure just what platypi are composed of, they are nonetheless capable of self-locomotion, and therefore fall under the provisions of § 3 of this Title.

    § 27: Deceptive nomenclature notwithstanding, the feather boas are permissible only if the feathers have already been plucked or the boa is dead.
    - 27.A: In the latter circumstance, the provisions concerning the wearing of “meat” shall apply.

    § 28: The wearing of wheeled footgear within the Palace is prohibited.
    - 28.A: The wearing of wheeled headgear within the Palace is prohibited, save only as the wheels are for ornament and not employed in or as a means of locomotion.
    - 28.B: The wearing of wheeled handgear, breeches, doublets, jackets, cloaks, pauldrons, vambraces, greaves, stomachers, bustles, codpieces or nose cozies, alone or in any combination, including combinations involving items named previously in this section, within the Palace is prohibited, save only as the wheels are for ornament and not employed in or as a means of locomotion.
    - 28.C: Pursuant to an enquiry initiated by His Highness Marquis Prince Munsimer of Erchevold-Torgenrik, Grand Master of the Order of the Royal Bloom, on behalf of the various Orders of Chivalry in the Empire, it is confirmed that spurs are not covered under the prohibition against wheeled footgear, and shall be permitted to the extent that they conform with the other provisions of this section, viz. that they are not employed in or as a means of locomotion.
    - 28.C(i): Pursuant to an enquiry initiated by the Equerry Major of the Imperial Palace, the foregoing paragraph is clarified as follows: while being employed in locomotion is indeed the function and purpose of spurs, this in no way alters the foregoing, as the normal and proper method in which they see such employment is already prohibited under other Sections of this Title, viz. § 3. It is therefore the opinion of the Law that spurs worn within the Palace proper are functioning as ornament.
    - 28.C(i)(a): Pursuant to an enquiry initiated by the Equerry Major of the Imperial Palace, the foregoing two paragraphs are further clarified as follows: both the employment of spurs in locomotion, and the admission of living creatures upon which they are normally so employed, shall be permitted in such portions of the Imperial Palace and grounds as said creatures might be expected to be found in the performance of their commonly accepted functions and notwithstanding their status as “interior” or “exterior” spaces, viz. stables, coach houses, mustering and drill yards, riding arenas, race tracks, and such paths as have been designated for the use of such traffic by the office of the Groundskeeper Captain of the Imperial Palace, along with any future facilities constructed with the intent of admitting such creatures.
     
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