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Author Topic: More details on Murmillions  (Read 1130 times)
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Smith in Exile

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« on: 05 May 2003, 09:27:00 »

About glyphwriting. I just thought of giving you a small picture on how I initially imagined those.

They are not like elven runes. Each rune stands for a sound => phonetical alphabet. Glyphs have more in common with styrash symbols though (like those of Ava and Coor that I saw in the language section). But they are pretty different of those also. That's because each glyph would stand for an idea, a concept. They are symbols indeed, but abstract symbols (otherwise they would be hieroglyphs), more or less arbitrary.
Glyphwriting is not the only writing style used by Murmillions, as only the sacred texts - actually not only the sacred, but every important text - are written in glyphs. There are no argumentations in glyphtexts, just statements. Explanations, interpretations, arguments, are written in normal alphabet and are considered a form of worship.

Let me take this for example. The "Sermons of Mari" is written half in glyphs, half in normal letters; and in normal letters we would have just the translation of the glyphs. With every edition of the Sermons new translations can be made, of course.
So, let's use this fragment:

"Blind me with your emptyness.
Close my eyes and
Take me to my Mistress."
- The Sermons of Mari ("Ressurection of Menemronn")

Let's say this is the latest edition. But in an earlier edition (few hundred years early) this fragment would look like this:

"Take away this world from me
And drown it into nothingness,
As I will open up my eyes inside
And I will meet my Mistress..."

So the glyph version of this fragment would have to comprise the following symbols:

- a glyph for blindness/exterior withdrawal/nightfall/fading away(of things)
- a glyph for hole/nothingness/void/(or that-which-has-no-name)
- (maybe -- a glyph for subject/first person)
- a glyph for slumber/imagination/gate to a dream or to the World of Mari/beginning of a dream
- a glyph for binary relation
- a glyph for Mari

They can be connected to each other - to form parts of the statement - in this case we could have the first two connected and then the last three/four connected. Or we can provide special connector signs... I don't know yet. Also I am not decided wether they should be written horizontaly or verticaly, I guess we should pick the best looking version :)   (although vertically sounds better now)
So what do you say?

Anyway I would be indeed happy if you would try your hand on some of these glyphs (as the runes are already a good work ;)  ). But of course, by their nature we cannot provide a font :)  I also removed completely from the people entry the description of the glyph of Mari, so if you have an idea in your mind...

[The more I think the more I agree it could be a good idea to make an entry about the Cults, in which I would describe this form of worshiping also (interpretation of glyphs), because I guess it would be a little too much to load Mari's entry with this stuff (too much information in one spot).
So we would have these entries:
- People(done)
- Mari
- Cults
- Arkhaeon Guild
- Cities
- History]

Edited by: Smith in Exile at: 5/4/03 4:39:28 pm
Smith in Exile

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« Reply #1 on: 05 May 2003, 09:32:00 »

This is just the beginning of my very first draft for the guild entry, but it containes some stuff about the Cults. Anyway, just read it, and tell me your opinion: should I keep it in the guild entry, or add more details (and maybe combining it with the glyph description) and make a new entry specially about the Cults.


The Arkhaeon Guild is a mysterious organization that gained a lot of adepts among Murmillions and eventually became very influential in their political life. In the more recent history it is rumoured that different branches of this guild are, more or less, secretely active far beyond the Sahdow Realm, reaching even other continents as well.
Murmillions worship a single goddess, Mari, which they believe that is able to manifest herself in many forms. Thus they dedicated a religious cult to each of these manifestations. The cults are not opposing each other as they are seen as different facets of the same issue. Also they play a very important role in the social and political life of the Shadow Realm: each Family is supporting a cult and through a common agreement among the cults Murmillion Kings or Queens are elected.
The Arkhaeon Guild appeared first as a new cult of Mari and gained very quickly enough adepts (due to an intense propaganda and preachings of the first Guild Leader, later known as Teor Kunran) so to be officially recognized by the other cults. In time though, it became clear that they were no ordinary cult of Mari, as their teachings and research interests were reaching beyond the common dogma. Thus issues appeared but they were solved by changing Arkhaeon's status: they became a moderator guild, an organization independent of the cults but with the given task of organizing the Cults' Council, and arbiters of theological disputes. Still many question marks float around their true intentions and origins, despite their established official status.

Description (Structure/Role/Goals)

Murmillion Cults have a pyramidal structure, the top spot being occupied by the most respected person in that cult. The rank is similar to that of a high-priest (special sermons and judicial duties and also a reserved place in the Council that elects the King) and is called "Kunran" - a title that is added to the name of the respective person. The Arkhaeon Leader is also called Kunran but that would be the only resemblance with the structure of the Cults.
Arkhaeon is organized in circles of power, each Circle having its own agenda. The control is issued from the center to the outer Circles, the closer to the center a Circle is the more power it has. An outer Circle is never aware of the goals or research of an inner one, but the inner Circles have the means for controlling the outer ones by issuing general directives. Each Circle has a level of initiation, so one can climb up in rank by passing these initiations. Each initiation makes new knowledges available or it can even bring a whole different world-view as in the previous one. To pass such an initiation, the neofit must prove in various tests the fact that is capable of comprehending the knowledge that awaits in the next Circle.

Since they have gained the official recognition, the Arkhaeon Guild are the ones that organize and moderate the Council although they do not have the right to vote on the election of a King. But they do have the right to arbitrate the theological disputes of the Cults and also they are the official librarians of the Kingdom. That means they are responsible for keeping and editing the official sacred Murmillion Books. And with the help of their extended knowledge, most of the times they have a real power for influencing the Dogma - a power which they used in every ocasion.


I know it ends "like an elephant" (sudden, I mean) but it's just the intro to a first draft...

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