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    Canonfire :: View topic - Religion of Almor
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    Religion of Almor
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    Journeyman Greytalker

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    Tue May 31, 2005 1:42 am  
    Religion of Almor

    Just a quick question: I didn't find in LGG or WoG box anything about the official of the late Prelacy of Almor, though WoG states there's a national feeliing of freedom and justice mixed with religious concepts. This reminds me a bit of Trithereon, but I really don't know if that CG god was the one worshipped by Prelate Kelvontand the rest of the nation. Can you shed any light about this?

    thanks :-)
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    Victor Caminha
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    Tue May 31, 2005 4:44 am  

    Given the prevailing faiths of the Great Kingdom and Nyrond, Almor is likely to have been a mix of Pholtus (LGood flavour), Heironeous and Pelor.

    Tritherion strikes me as being too anti-establishment to be a formal state religion.

    P.
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    Tue May 31, 2005 8:01 am  

    I don't know off the top of my head, but you might want to check out Ivid the Undying, as that covers several locations in old Almor.

    Good luck!
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    Master Greytalker

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    Tue May 31, 2005 8:35 am  

    Given the overall peaceful nature of the Prelacy, I would lean towards Pelor as being the principal pre-Wars deity. After all, weren't Almorians renowned for healing Nyrondese and Imperial soldiery alike?

    EDIT: Perhaps The Marklands has more. There wasn't much about pre-Wars Almor in Ivid the Undying.
    CF Admin

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    Tue May 31, 2005 8:59 am  
    Which Era?

    Wykthor wrote:
    Can you shed any light about this?
    Wykthor, which time period are you talking about. As you can imagine, Almor has experienced several major changes over the years. Are you looking for post-war Almor, 595 CY, or earlier?
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    Don (Greyson)
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    Tue May 31, 2005 10:09 am  

    Quote:
    EDIT: Perhaps The Marklands has more. There wasn't much about pre-Wars Almor in Ivid the Undying.


    Actually, The Marklands has 3 pages on Almor, Ivid has 7. I also checked under the brief Almor entries in the '83 box and FtA and it's not there, either.

    If it's not in Ivid, then I don't think it's ever been officially stated. Maybe there's something written up for Living Greyhawk on it?
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    Tue May 31, 2005 1:10 pm  

    Sorry, Don. I should have explained it better. I was aiming at the Pre-War Almor.

    I can agree with both theories about about Trithereon lack of structure and Pelor's charity, but still I'm not wholy convinced :-)
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    Victor Caminha
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    Tue May 31, 2005 1:11 pm  

    Curious, I never thought about this before...

    Information is sparse but I did find a site that claims the Prelate was a follower of Heironeous (LG) and Heironeous was the state-sanctioned (but not required) religion.

    http://www.cmc.net/~rtaylor/greyhawk/almor.html

    The major religions of pre-war Almor were Heironeous (LG) and Pholtus (LG/N).

    The Pholtus Patriarch declared Ivid a heretic and Almor was considered a western bastion of faith...no purge of pholtus priests.

    IMHO the make up of Almor was a mixture of Heironeous (LG), Pholtus (LG/N) and Pelor with Heironeous (LG) providing the noble warrior martial ethic among the ruling elite, Pholtus (LG/N) providing the moral certainty and moderating martial excesses with Pelor softening the harshness of zealots.

    Producing a martial but law-abiding compassionate national ethos.

    Just a thought...
    Apprentice Greytalker

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    Tue May 31, 2005 11:50 pm  
    Almor

    I would choose Nerull. In my campaign i took the part of Ivid the Undying that states that no one knows what is going on there after Duke Szefferin took over and made it into a place dominated by undead legions and demons. After what happened there during the Wars, it seems to me that it would be a necrotic-active area that is to be avoided at all costs!

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    Wed Jun 01, 2005 12:44 am  

    Nerull - post conquest and pre the Nyrondese reclaimation perhaps.

    But given that most of the humans in the region would have been Aerdi (soldiers of the armies that destroyed the Prelacy) - I'd lean more towards Hextor or Erythnul or fiend worship (Pazerel or perhaps Ahmon-Ibor). Of course Szeffrin's Almor was so short lived and the land in such chaos that discussions of an offical or majority faith during this period are probably moot.
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    Wed Jun 01, 2005 7:05 am  
    An Idea

    Wykthor wrote:
    I was aiming at the Pre-War Almor.
    Considering the history of Almor, I would suggest the following as a description of pre-war Almor. I like the chart that Crag found, and what I am suggesting draws on it.

    The Crandens gain control of the eastern Nyrdi lands and name them after their general and Grand Prince, Almor. Almor, a soldier and patriot, establishes a strong theological order based on his patron, Heironeous. After decades of passive rulership by the Cranden's, they eventually gave their sovereign rights and rulership responsibilities to an enclave of churches - a prelacy. This political and bureaucratic ecumenical council was composed primarily of priests of Heironeous, Pholtus, Pelor, with lesser seats held by priests of Zilchus, Rao, Beory, Delleb, Celestian and Zodal. Heironeans always maintained the seat of Prelate and High Priest of the council and generally directed the prelatal council, but the other preists cerainly held influence and power. There was definitely religious freedom, assuming a citizen did not worship a fell power or one that denied rights to another.

    Thus the Prelacy of Almor maintained until it was wiped out by the Great Kingdom. Its members were tortured and slain by Szeffrin's cruelest henchmen, if they survived the Day of Dust.

    There ya have it, one interpretation. Happy gaming
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    Don (Greyson)
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    Wed Jun 01, 2005 8:00 am  

    Here's another point in favor of Pelor: the device of pre-Wars Almor depicted the sun (Pelor's symbol) rising over the battlements. If Heironeous were the "state" religion, I would expect to see his silver lightning bolt incorporated in some fashion. Besides, Almor was not a particularly militaristic society anyway, so I find Heironeous to be a tough fit. Almor was a peaceful land, which makes its devastation at the hands of Ivid equal in atrocity to the destruction of Alderaan.
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    Wed Jun 01, 2005 9:24 am  

    Actually DMPrata, the Sun symbol is also the Imperial Aerdi symbol, since Almor was a new province of the GK, Almor heraldry is a nod toward that Imperial heritage, as are the other provincial heraldry within the empire (see Nyrond, Ahlissa and North)...not a Pelor religious connection.

    So the lack of a "silver bolt" makes sense because when Almor was created as a separate province, it wasn't a religious state but a new Cranden controlled Imperial province.

    Almor may have been a peaceful society but the small nation was always ready to mobilize, see the speed with which Osson had a force prepared to march east hardly an act of a unprepared nation.

    As for the chart in my former post: Pelor description empty, suggested line: Healers, popular worship, particularly in the Southern regions.


    Last edited by Crag on Wed Jun 01, 2005 9:31 am; edited 1 time in total
    CF Admin

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    Wed Jun 01, 2005 9:24 am  
    Valor and Daring

    DMPrata wrote:
    Besides, Almor was not a particularly militaristic society anyway, so I find Heironeous to be a tough fit.

    Yea, I was considering that issue, too. Nyrond holds closer to the militaristic notion of Heironeous than Almor, definitely. But, I was thinking of Heironeous' other aspects in 3rd Edition terms. Namely honor, daring and chivalry. Ideals culminating in and exemplified by Osson's Raid. Sure, war and its martial principles are the major ideals associated with Heironeous. But can those aspects be subordinated during times of peace, to be prevailed upon by ordered society based on chivalry and honor? That's how I imagine Almor figuring in the Invincible One.

    But, I guess it is a tough fit, no matter how I try to spin it. Perhaps Nyrond, Furyondy and Shield Lands are where the bastions of Heironeous reside in mass.

    I do like the Pelor idea, except that he is of Flan origin. That is something I think can reconciled, though.

    What about the Oeridian agricultural gods, Atroa, Wenta, etc?
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    Don (Greyson)
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    Wed Jun 01, 2005 9:38 am  

    Since the Prelate was Heironeous, perhaps in Almor that meant his worshipped was seen as an "officier faith" for the "ruling elite and warrior elite" not the everyday grunt as in Furyondy or Nyrond.

    A faith for the social cream of society?
    Master Greytalker

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    Wed Jun 01, 2005 9:43 am  

    Crag wrote:
    Since the Prelate was Heironeous, perhaps in Almor that meant his worshipped was seen as an "officier faith" for the "ruling elite and warrior elite" not the everyday grunt as in Furyondy or Nyrond.

    A faith for the social cream of society?


    Do we have any canon reference to the Prelate following Heironeous, or is this assumption just based on Russ Taylor's site?
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    Wed Jun 01, 2005 9:53 am  
    Re: Valor and Daring

    Greyson wrote:
    DMPrata wrote:
    Besides, Almor was not a particularly militaristic society anyway, so I find Heironeous to be a tough fit.



    But, I guess it is a tough fit, no matter how I try to spin it. Perhaps Nyrond, Furyondy and Shield Lands are where the bastions of Heironeous reside in mass.

    I do like the Pelor idea, except that he is of Flan origin. That is something I think can reconciled, though.


    I imagine the people of Almor got on much better with the indigenous Flan populations than did other nations, such as Nyrond, Aerdy, Urnst, Keoland, Sterich, Ratik, etc. The Almorian ideals of religious tolerance probably allowed for Pelor and other Flan gods to be worshipped by the Oeridian/Sueloise peoples without too much difficulty. Following the ideals of faith was far more important than squabbling over which deity was actually revered.

    Militarily speaking, I see pre-Wars Almor as a military lightweight, down in the cellar with the likes of Onnwal and Greyhawk, both of which have/had poor-quality military forces. Commandant Osson's mission, as I understand it from talking to Gary Holian, was to divert the Aerdi forces from Almor itself, as Almor wouldn't last six months against the colossus that was the Great Kingdom's combined army in the Wars. Almor collapsed like a house of cards against Ivid's armies, and then Nyrond was all by its lonesome against the Great Kingdom. It was mentioned in the 1983 folio that Nyrond had military regiments in Almor-would it need to have done that if Almor could stand up to Aerdy on its own?

    And for the record, I doubt either Nyrond or Aerdy would have tolerated a strong military state between them. I think Almor relied more on its reputation of being "everyone's friend", and so gosh-darn nice that no one would want to attack them. That worked even against the Aerdi for a while, but it was all for nothing once Aerdy came back with a vengeance in the 580s.
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    Wed Jun 01, 2005 1:08 pm  

    I like the co-rulership of multiple good faiths, especially the meshing of Heironeous and Pholtus (I like Pelor, but that wouldn't instill a competition as both are sun gods?). The inclusion of Zilchus and Rao is tempting too. My thanks to you :-)

    I'll be away until next week - I'm going to the national convention of RPG here!
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    Victor Caminha
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    Wed Jun 01, 2005 1:33 pm  

    I just think it's odd that the question hasn't crossed my mind before...*shrug*
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    Thu Jun 02, 2005 2:26 am  

    The Sun of Aerdy, which appears on a lot of heraldry of former parts of the Great Kingdom is drawn from the worship of Solan, the Oerid name for Pelor, if you accept the work of Mr G. Holien of this parish.

    It ties in with the Prophecy of the Hidden Empress (Johydee) who told the hetmen of the Oerid tribes that a great destiny awaited them in the "lands where the sun had its birth". Hence the Great March of the Aerdi to the Solnor ("the Birthplace of the Sun") Ocean and the founding of the first Aerdi cities along its shore (Rel Astra, Roland, Ountsy, Mentrey and Pontylver). The Sun was therefore incorporated into the arms of the Kingdom of Aerdy, many of its provinces (such as the North Province and Almor) and (IMO) the arms of the Celestial Houses, including Rax-Nyrond (and, thus, by extension the Kingdom of Nyrond).

    As for Solan - in time, he's probably come to be known more widely as by his Flan name - Pelor, as the peoples and cultures of the Flanaess mingled.

    As for the religions of Almor - I'd definately see a ruling council of faiths (the Council of Divinities) - Heironeous (Justice and Chivalry), Pholtus (Law and Order), Pelor (Mercy and Compassion) being the main three - perhaps represented by the Heterarchs of Justice, Law and Mercy respectively - a mirror of the three main Patriarchs in the Great Kingdom (Pholtus, Zilchus and Hextor) and headed by the Prelate.

    So:

    Prelate - elected by the Divines.

    Heterarchs of Justice, Law and Mercy - heads of churches of Heironeous, Pholtus and Pelor respectively; chosen/elected from within their churches.

    Divines of the Council - heads of the lesser faiths and other senior and respected priests and theologians.

    Zilchus, the Velaeri (the Oerid agricultural gods), Delleb and other faiths would have supporting roles. The church from which the Prelate was drawn may have rotated or, as in the Catholic church, may have been subject to an election by the senior clerics of the Council of Divinities (with the associated rounds of horse trading etc that go with such events).

    I see the Pholtines of Almor as being the more moderate sects of that faith - since the more strict and dogmatic types would have gone to the Pale, while those interested in power or in fighting the good fight to attempt to save the rule of law in the Great Kingdom would have remained in Aerdy. Thus, I don't see them having as big a problem with Pelor as their Palish brothers might.

    Since it's creation (IMO about 447 CY in the second throes of the Turmoil between the Crowns), the Prelacy always lived in the shadow of the threat of invasion by the Great Kingdom. So there would have been a martial component to the society. However - I agree with what was said above that this would have taken the form of a small noble and officer class (as opposed to say the Yeomanry, where the general citizenry are trained for war). This small, but influential class would have been the main wellspring for the worship of Heironeous. I've always seen the Archpaladin as being a very elitist sort of god - worshipped by nobles and officers more than the common soldier. So, while Osson, his officers or even or one of the Prelates might have been Heironean*, the general tenor of the realm would have been more peaceful and pastoral - more in line with Pelor, who I see being the major god of the common Almorian.


    * - IIRC this was Anarkin - mentioned in one of the early Dragon articles on the Flanaess - who apparently both succeeded Kevont and was succeeded by Kevont (ie Kevont ->Anarkin -> Kevont -> Day of Dust).
    LG has got around this apparent wrinkle of Canon by saying Anarkin was elected to replace Kevont during the War of the Golden League (around 578-580 CY), the low grade war between the Great Kingdom and the Golden League (Iron League + Nyrond and Almor) that served as the prelude to the Greyhawk Wars in the east. If he was a Heironean, he may have been selected because he was more martial than poor old Kevont (who I see as being a Pelosian). Once the War of the Golden League was over, Anarkin may have resigned (for reasons best known to himself) and Kevont was reelected.
    Master Greytalker

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    Mon Aug 08, 2005 1:07 am  

    Just to clarify this old question -- I was reading the GREYtalk archives and came across an old post of Gary's confirming that Heironeous was indeed the state religion of Almor.
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