Tuesday, November 3, 2015

The Lodge of Registered Swordsmiths

During the reign of Bónu the God-King, in the second generation of the first Aeon by dwarven reckoning, it was forbidden that smiths should make swords except those who were registered within the imperial guild. This was for the uncomplicated reason that it reinforced central authority and fostered morale amongst those officials ranked high enough to be allowed to bare a sword. Over time the prestige of being a registered Swordsmith caused certain jewellers and ironworkers who never intended to forge arms to seek registration with the guild. Eventually, after noble families began buying their way into the guild, the badge of a Swordsmith meant less about one's ability to craft a blade and more about social rank. By the third aeon the lodge of registered Swordsmiths is an initiatory system with 180 ranks and four houses. The rites all refer back to the trade and the symbology all speaks of smithing with the use of a heavily layered jargon accrued over 3000 years. 
The meeting halls of the lodge, spread across the land, are known for their abstruse architecture and vivid frescoes.
Also each hall contains nesting chambers layed out for rituals reenacting chapters of the society's mythology: the high prototype is stolen from Mozji, Bónu grants the cornerstone of the grand lodge, the forging of the blade of perfect knowledge, Queen θekil learns how to cut both ways, and of course the cautionary tale of the unregistered blade's failings. The ritual reenacting of these scenes, often graphic, is also the core of the initiation process.

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