Ravenloft: Prisoners of the Mist

Public (OOC) => Roleplay and Gameplay Resources => Ravenloft Setting => Topic started by: Dhark on September 03, 2011, 09:43:03 AM

Title: Natives of the Core - at a glance
Post by: Dhark on September 03, 2011, 09:43:03 AM
This thread is for those of you who might like to play a native of the mists. As you will see natives are just as interesting & diverse as you could hope for.

While this thread will not give you every detail you might need , it furnish you with enough for character creation & role play, how much you research & invest in bringing your character to life is up to you.

If you wish to know more I reccomend Mistipedia (http://www.fraternityofshadows.com/wiki/Category:Domain)

Barovian resource thread (http://www.nwnravenloft.com/forum/index.php?topic=6563.0)

Gundarakite resource thread (http://www.nwnravenloft.com/forum/index.php?topic=1757.0)

At a Glance
Cultural Level -- Medieval (7).
Major Settlements -- Ramulai (300)*, Sly-Var (4,500), Toyalis (8,200).
Resources — wheat, barley, corn, cotton, olives, grapes, hazelnuts, opium, tea, goats, sheep, cattle, honey, copper, lead, iron, leather goods, cloth, arcane knowledge.
Coinage — soulorb (gp), moondagger (sp), bloodpenny (cp).

Hazlan is an insular domain where the folk are more concerned with their own squabbles than events in distant lands. The land's reputation as a place of magical power, however, draws the curious and the foolish. Hazlik apparently has little interest in making allies with his neighbors and is known to use captured spies for magical experimentation. Hazlan conducts some trade with Nova Vaasa and the Barovian village of Immol, but the Hazlani are generally not eager to invite outsiders to their realm.

The Hazlani can be divided into two distinct ethnic groups: the Rashemi and the Mulan. The Rashemi make up 99% of the human population and are considered the lower class. They have short, muscular statures and skin that ranges from light olive-tan to a deep, ruddy bronze. Hair color is usually dark brown or black, and eye color is almost always dark brown. Men keep their hair wild and wear bushy beards, while women work their long tresses into elaborate braids. Both genders dress in baggy trousers, tunics, or smocks and prefer earthy colors highlighted with dark reds, blues, and greens.

The upper-class Mulan are tall and slim with angular features and fine cheekbones. Their skin is pale and sallow, their eyes gray or light hazel. Mulan hair is naturally a dark blond, but both genders ritually shave their heads daily. They also remove what little body hair they have and cover their skin with elaborate tattoos. Men and women wear distinct designs by tradition, and receiving one's first tattoo is a sign of adulthood among the Mulan. Both genders wear cloth wrappings (Zarongs) instead of trousers or breeches and swath themselves in luxurious scarlet, purple or yellow robes. Women wear rigid vests, but men prefer to go about bare chested. Soft slippers and baroque jewelry complete the ensemble.

Class Relations:
In the Mulans’ eyes, class relations are simple: the Mulan rule and everyone else exists to serve them. Order is kept by well-treated Rashemi slaves trained in weapon use. As the Rashemi are divided into several different castes of differing status, mutual distrust keeps them from uniting in revolt.
There is a small middle class, made up of free craftsmen and merchants. Most are foreigners, their decedents, or the rare non-human. It is theoretically possible for a Rashemi to be given his freedom, though this is exceedingly rare. Hazlik, the wizard-king of Hazlan, has recently taken a Rashemi as his apprentice, though this hasn’t made the Rashemi more respected. If anything, it has made the life of the average Rashemi worse, as the angry Mulan take out their displeasure out on their slaves.

Attitudes towards Arcane Magic:
In the distant past, the Mulan considered the arcane to be a noble calling. When Hazlik came to power, he outlawed the practice of magic – prohibition lasted for almost 50 years. However, following the Great Cataclysm, Hazlik reversed his view, even encouraging talented Rashemi to study magic. The Mulan, always slightly distrustful of their ruler, view his magic program and mages with the same distrust, though many still risk ostracism to study magic. Rashemi usually view magic as a tool of their oppressors, despite the fact that it represents their best chance to rise above their status, and it usually is – most arcane-trained Rashemi are taught to think of themselves as better than their former peers.

Attitudes towards Divine Magic:
Most Hazlani are deeply religious, and the only religion allowed to be practiced openly is that of the Lawgiver (http://www.nwnravenloft.com/forum/index.php?topic=18979.msg221113#msg221113). The Mulan pray almost desperately to Him, hoping that their devotion will maintain His favor and convince him to keep them in power. The Rashemi turn to religion as an escape from their daily lives of drudgery. Even the oppressive doctrines of the Lawgiver give them the promise that their toil will be rewarded in the afterlife.

The Iron Faith (the Lawgiver): The Iron Faith is the state religion, and the only religion allowed to operate openly in Hazlan. Membership is not required, though it is strongly (and sometimes forcibly) encouraged. Many Mulan see the Faith as being key to their control over the domain, as it teaches its followers that their position in life is divinely ordained. The Faith also incorporates the deities of other religions into their pantheon – as either slaves or concubines.
Hala: Hala has found many eager followers among the Rashemi, and secret Hospices are found in almost every Rashemi community. Even the Rashemi who don’t follow the witch goddess are grateful for the help she provides. The followers of Hala in Hazlan are incredibly secretive – the Mulan try to stamp the religion out whenever they can, as they fear the hope it offers and the feelings of community and equality it generates.

Martial Characters:
The Mulan distain physical work and almost never become skilled fighters. Their Rashemi servants, however, are an entirely different story. Most Mulan have at least a handful of personal Rashemi guards, who are treated better than their other slaves, and sometimes held in high esteem. These guards often use scimitars or falchions. Rashemi overseers can also become quite skilled with whips as well. Other Rashemi are prohibited weapons, though they may learn to use daggers, quarterstaves or clubs.

Monks are slightly more common in Hazlan than other domains , they subscribe to an odd mix of Lawgiver theology & arcane mysticisum .

Rogues are almost exclusively Rashemi , the prosperous Mulani find thievery dispicable

Rashemi names are usually inspired by Turkish and Egyptian names, while Mulan names tend to be Persian- or Arabic-themed.

Rashemi Male Names: Alpagu, Cengis, Doukan, Haydar, Kubilay, Mengu, Nizami, Ozlan, Ragap, Toktamop
Rashemi Female Names: Adelet, Cemiyet, Cemre, Bengi, Feyza, Gunay, Julide, Roxelana, Sobehat, Zumrut
Mulan Male Names: Balser, Enevold, Hassan, Kyrill, Marcus, Momme, Ossur, Preben, Taico, Zoltan
Mulan Female Names: Alvina, Cattia, Elida, Helma, Kaisa, Leila, Malvina, Neya, Trine, Zilla


This language is described as having harmonious vowels.

Primary Language In: Hazlan, Nova Vaasa, Kartakass, Valachan

Secondary Language In: Barovia, Darkon, Invidia, Mordent, Graben Island, Liffe, Sithicus, Tepest, Verbrek

Sample Vocabulary:

good day: godaag
goodbye: afsked
yes: jao
no: ikke
help!: jaal!
leave this place!: afgaa herfra opstille!
magic: trolddom, trylleri
wizard: trolddommem
fire: skyde, arfbrand
man: mennekene
woman: kvinde
child: barn
life: liv
death: endeligt
love: elske, have kaer
music: musik, noder, tonlist
timber: třmmer
day: daag
night: natten
sun: solen
moon: moarne
town: byan, plads
inn: kroen
thank you: takk
spirit: spřkelse
tax: skatt
horse: hest
horseman, rider: hestmand
cat: kat
crime: forbrydelse
grass: graes
nobleman: ćdelmand
commoner: lavmand
merchant: křbmand
Title: Re: Natives of the Core - at a glance
Post by: Dhark on September 03, 2011, 09:44:01 AM
‍At a Glance
Cultural Level  --  Iron Age (3), though ruins in Forlorn reflect a Medieval (7) culture
Major Settlements --  None.
Resources (not exploited) — timber, iron, clay, salt.
Coinage — none.

Forlorn is not a settled land. The primary inhabitants are goblyns, horrid humanoid creatures that value little but strength and slaughter. Although generally lawless, the goblyns do pursue some organized goals, particularly the systematic destruction of the land's forests. They otherwise occupy themselves with petty power struggles, distracted only by the occasional captive outsider, whom they gleefully torture and devour. According to the druids, the goblyns were once men and women of Forfar, transformed into grotesque mockeries of humans at the culmination of the Year of Woe just as the land itself was transformed into a mockery of its former shape.

Forfarians are a hearty lot, husky at the waist and often barrel-chested. The Forfarian complexion is a creamy, pale while liberally scattered with freckles, which burns easily in the sun. Nearly all Forfarians have red hair, ranging in color from bright auburn to dark brown with only a subtle reddish tint to carroty blonde. Forfarians generally let their hair grow out, sometimes plaiting it into thick braids, though this unkempt style is more favored by the druids. Forfarian men sport thick facial hair, growing impressive beards and muttonchop sideburns. The druids take great pride in their red hair, claiming it to be a gift from the fey. Intriguingly, they suggest this magical heritage is what protected their ancestors from becoming goblyns in the Year of Woe.

Class Relations:
Most of the human population of Forlorn is a druid, and adhere to the loose religious structure of the druids. Their society is meritocratic and ruled by a democratic council of elders. Junior members suffer no stigma, aside from their lack of experience.

Attitudes towards Arcane Magic:
Forfarian wizards and sorcerers are almost unheard of, and most of them are related by either blood or marriage to the ApMorten clan. Those few magic users that exist in Forlorn are regarded with superstitious suspicion. Sorcerers in Forlorn tend to have bright red hair.
Bards are highly respected not only for thier talent with entertaining , but their role as lore keepers & historians.

Attitudes towards Divine Magic:
Many Forfarians are druids, and society tends to be run by elder druids. There are few clerics, though religion has become more popular in recent years. Many druids also have red hair.
Forfarian Pantheon: (http://www.nwnravenloft.com/forum/index.php?topic=18979.msg221112#msg221112) The worship of the old gods has experienced a resurgence since the settlement of Forfarmax, though few have felt the calling to the priesthood.

Martial Characters:
Forfarian histories tell tales of when the Forfarians were proud warriors defending a highland kingdom. Fighters are still respected today. Rangers are revered in Forlorn, but they are seen as having a death wish. Forfarian warriors tend to prefer spears and axes.

Forfarian names are Scottish-inspired.
Male Names: Bran, Brian, Caral, Conan, Donnach, Fionn, Garbhan, Kenneth, Kyle, Lachlan, Malcom, Nioll, Ross, Sionn, Taran, Wallace
Female Names: Agatha, Arline, Bonnie, Colina, Dona, Edana, Fenella, Fiona, Greer, Heather, Ina, Kenna, Morna, Nessa, Rhona, Una


Forfarians in Forlorn speak this language in exclusion to any other. Forfarians in other lands are taught this language alongside the native tongue of their adopted homeland. The Forfarian language is often described as "brogue."

In comparison to real world languages, Forfarian is analogous to Scottish Gaelic.

Primary Language in: Forlorn

Secondary Language in: Barovia, Hazlan

Sample Vocabulary:

daenacht haelgreetings
beannachd leatgoodbye
rach air falbh!go away!

Title: Re: Natives of the Core - at a glance
Post by: Dhark on September 03, 2011, 09:58:35 AM

At a Glance
Cultural Level -- Dark Age (5) to Chivalric (8 )
Resources — wheat, barley, rye, oats, hops, potatoes, carrots, cabbage, grapes, hogs, sheep, cattle, goats, chickens, dairy, herring, cod, flounder, sausage, beer, wine, timber, peat, gold, silver, copper, iron, lead, salt, gems, cloth, ceramics, perfumes, ships, arcane knowledge.
Coinage — crown (pp), skull (gp), bone (sp), chip (cp).

Darkon is the domain that is most similar to the standard D&D setting, styled directly after the world of Greyhawk. The inhabitants are surprisingly tolerant of demihumans and magic – even the hordes of undead that wander the land. Darkon also slowly steals the memories of foreigners that linger too long in the domain (about three months), replacing their memories and making them think that they’ve lived in Darkon for their entire lives, though the stolen memories return when the afflicted leaves the domain. It is considered bad form to talk about this Darkonian curse, however, and so few outsiders know about this.

The Darkonians have no common physical appearance; nearly every conceivable combination of stature, facial features, and skin, eye, and hair colors can be observed among them. Skin tones tend slightly toward fair to light tan, but this is hardly the norm. Despite this variety, all Darkonians tend to dress in practical garb, with men favoring a tunic and breeches and women a blouse and skirt. Earthen colors are preferred. Among nobles, both genders pride themselves on their elaborate cloaks and long boots and gloves.

The diverse Darkonians nevertheless take pride in their common heritage. Indeed, outsiders who settle in Darkon often find forgotten roots in the region, lending credence to the theory that Darkon was perhaps a historical crossroads for many farflung lands. The principal shared trait among the Darkonese is an almost fatalistic fear of the undead. Local legends speak of an Hour of the Ascension, when generations of the deceased will rise from the grave and claim Darkon from the living. All Darkonians are raised to believe and fear this apocalyptic scenario.

Perhaps because of the relatively large population of dwarves, elves, gnomes, and halflings in Darkon, prejudice against nonhuman races is not as widespread here as in other domains. Although races still tend to congregate with their own kind, the purely reactionary fear or hatred of nonhumans that dominates so much of the Land of Mists is largely absent in Darkon

The grim wizard-king Azalin Rex, newly restored to his throne in Castle Avernus, rules Darkon with an iron fist in a velvet glove. For nearly five years, Azalin was missing, vanished in the wake of the Requiem. He has only recently reappeared and is quickly moving to reestablish the firm rule he once enjoyed over his realm.

Darkon is large enough to have a thriving noble class, and the divisions between classes are wide. Most inhabitants are peasants, working to support the nobility, though there is a sizable middle class, and the guilds of the various cities hold great power (though not quite enough to take on the nobility). Despite the rigid social hierarchy, each Darkonian citizen is a freeman, with rights that even the nobility can’t take away. There is also opportunity for social advancement, and several noble houses are descended from peasants that distinguished themselves before their king, just as incompetent aristocrats can be stripped of their rank by Azalin Rex.

Women are expected to conform to traditional social norms, and those attempting to succeed in “masculine” jobs are usually dismissed as irrelevant. However, the wars with Falkovnia decimated the male population, and women can be found in traditionally male jobs, though they still start with a stike against them. You didn’t think that a place in Ravenloft would be completely free from prejudice, did you?

‍Attitudes towards Arcane Magic:
Darkonians lack the superstitious fear of magic that mars so many other lands. The arcane tends to be seen as a force of nature, neither friend nor foe to mortals. However, mages wield great power, and can snuff out life with a word and a motion, and normal people tend to feel a bit uneasy around that sort of power. Darkonian wizards, on the other hand, are taught to associate magic with secrecy and they jealously guard their secrets. Few mages openly display their abilities, only revealing their magic with a specific purpose – often to intimidate, control or destroy the witness.

‍Attitudes towards Divine Magic:
Darkonese tend to regard powerful, overt displays of divine magic much the same way that they reguard overt displays of arcane magic. Divine magic, however, tends to be less flashy by its very nature. While they recognize the use of the magic of the gods, particularly against the roving undead of Darkon, the divine tends not to intrude too much into the life of the average citizen. Funeral customs are incredibly important to the culture of Darkonians, and a death in the family may be the only time a person will actively seek out a cleric.

The Eternal Order (http://www.nwnravenloft.com/forum/index.php?topic=18979.msg221118#msg221118) This is the official religion of Darkon, and it possesses a strict hierarchy. It is particularly concerned with the dead, and has a number of holy days celebrating (or keeping at bay) their various aspects. The last high priest was killed when the city of Il Aluk was flooded with necrotic energy, and power struggles within the ranks have reduced the Church’s effectiveness, and many churches are effectively autonomous.

Ezra: Nevuchar Springs, on the eastern coast of Darkon, has become the home of the youngest Ezran sect. The sect is a particularly militant one, calling all to fight against the darkness, and stating that everyone not part of the good fight must be against it. Despite this, the call to fight against the darkness and the Church’s actions towards that goal have made this Ezran sect a very fast-growing one amidst the people of Darkon.

The Overseer (http://www.nwnravenloft.com/forum/index.php?topic=18979.msg221119#msg221119)The Faith of the Overseer appeared in the western coast city of Martira Bay less than a century ago. It stresses the need of community and offers hope for overall divine justice in an unfair world. The Faith depends on donations to maintain its orphanages and other good works, but it rarely wants for money as its mission of mercy and compassion has gained it a place in the hearts of the population of the west. However, the Overseer only provides justice after death – it is the living who must aid one another in this life. He does not grant divine boons, as they are tools of fear, not faith. The Faith decries idolatry. The Overseer does not grant spells.

‍Martial Characters:
Fighters are generally respected throughout Darkon, especially if they are serving in an official capacity, like knight or even a simple constable. The military is always in need of people to patrol the roads and keep them free from undead, and these brave men are honored by those they protect. Darkonians are a diverse bunch, and many different types of weapons are used within the domain’s borders. Recently, firearms from Lamordia have gained popularity.

Being a more standard fantasy realm, Darkonian names are not usually inspired by any one specific place on Earth.
Darkonian Male Names: Ardmor, Boyce, Estran, Gilos, Jakome, Ragnol, Tullus, Varian, Wat, Xanthus
Darkonian Female Names: Aldea, Catalin, Francesca, Gisele, Imogen, Margueritte, Ondyne, Serilda, Virdissa, Zezilia


The language of Darkon is both complex and highly structured. It has not spread far from Darkon's borders, but the immense size of the kingdom and its huge population are enough to ensure the significance of the language. Since Darkon has a large demihuman population, many of them mix Darkonese with their racial tongues. Many wizards have found that the precise definitions found in the language make for ideal magical writings.

In comparison to real world languages, Darkonese is analogous to Latin.

Primary Language In: Darkon, Necropolis

Secondary Language In: Falkovnia, Lamordia, Nova Vaasa, Liffe, Dominia, Tepest

Sample Vocabulary:

adiuva me!help!
abi!go away!
miraedivine magic, wonders

Title: Re: Natives of the Core - at a glance
Post by: Dhark on September 03, 2011, 11:21:36 AM
‍At a Glance
Cultural Level -- Medieval (7)
Major Settlements -- Harmonia (pop. 1,500), Skald (pop. 2,800).
Resources — timber, rye, barley, oats, beets, potatoes, radishes, cabbages, hogs, sheep, cattle, dairy, musical instruments.
Coinage — ballad (gp), dirge (sp), canticle (cp).

Kartakans are a lean, graceful breed of folk blessed with long limbs and angular, handsome features. Their skin is very fair and creamy, sometimes dotted with a few scattered freckles. Their eyes are always a startling shade of blue-violet. Kartakan hair is wavy and normally a flaxen blond, but occasionally a child with raven tresses is born. The rarer half-elves, products of Kartakans' interactions with their Sithican neighbors, display their elven parents' silvery hair. Men keep their hair long and wild, often growing it past their shoulders. Women allow their hair to grow all the way to their waists and likewise shun styling it. Neatly trimmed goatees and long, full mustaches are typical among men. Kartakan clothing is comfortable but dashing. Men and women alike wear blousy shirts and trousers, the latter tucked into high black boots. Women frequently wear short vests over their blouses, while men prefer full coats. Widebrimmed hats are popular with men, particularly among woodsmen and travelers. Clothing colors are vibrant, with brilliant reds, yellows, and blues being the most popular hues. Delicate embroidery is frequently used to decorate Kartakan garb. Jewelry is used sparingly; the sparkle of a single earring or ring is considered most attractive.

Kartakans are a warm, gregarious lot noted for their love of music and talent with song. Kartakans have rich, melodious voices - the kind granted to angels or sirens - and speak a variant of Vaasi heavily influenced by Sithican, a distinct dialect with a lyrical cadence that sounds best when sung. The people have a melody for every labor, a song for every occasion, and a Kartakan village at work or play is a veritable festival of music. These folk have a fondness for poetry and storytelling. Wandering bards are also a local institution, and some, such as the dashing Harkon Lukas, gain a celebrity of sorts. The arrival of a famous bard stirs a Kartakan settlement to celebration and passion.

The people of Kartakass love nothing more than a good story. Most can spin yarns easily, due to years of practice. As the wolves prowl outside at night, families gather at the hearth to exchange tall tales called feeshkas (meaning "little lies"). These tales are a Kartakan tradition meant to teach lessons and play on the gullibility of listeners. A visitor who asks a Kartakan a simple question is likely to hear a believable tall tale that sends him on a wild goose chase. The natives try the same tricks on each other and are good natured about being the victims of such a ruse. No one, however, deliberately sends a friend on a chase that may very well strand him in the wilderness at night.

Kartakans are content and thankful for the simple pleasures of life. They respect tradition, wisdom, and musical skill above all else. They fear little but the vicious wolves that stalk the domain, creatures that have been known to enter homes at night and drag slumbering victims from their beds. Legends speak of a time when the wolves disguised themselves as men, tricking unfortunate souls just long enough to leap on and devour them.

Class Relations:
Each settlement in Kartakass is ruled by a Meistersinger – sort of a combination of head bard and mayor. They are expected to oversee most parts of government in their town. They are also expected to hold weekly meetings in order to facilitate community involvement. Meistersingers are chosen by a singing contest held in midsummer, and anyone can enter. Winners, however, are chosen by the public, and competitors with unpopular politics may not win even if they are the best singer. The current Meistersinger also competes in the tournament, and a popular/talented Meistersinger can hold his title for decades, especially because the structure of the contest favors the incumbent. The power of the Meistersinger is checked by a publicly elected council.
The Meistersinger is a good example of the political situation in Kartakass. Society is largely egalitarian, and those in positions of power usually got there via a popularity contest. Singing ability is the easiest and most common way to gain popularity.

Attitudes towards Arcane Magic:
Sorcerers and wizards are very uncommon in Kartakass. Kartakans tend to believe any stories they hear about them, and so individual attitudes vary widely, depending on which collection of stories they believe.
Bards are quite common, and they are the backbone of Kartakan society. However, using arcane powers to enhance one’s singing or to put one in a position of power is considered ‘cheating’, and if discovered, public opinion will quickly turn against them.

Attitudes towards Divine Magic:
Kartakans in general are not particularly religious. Marriages and funerals are usually secular affairs, overseen by family members. Most Kartakans believe in the Ancestral Choir to some extent.
The Ancestral Choir (http://www.nwnravenloft.com/forum/index.php?topic=18979.msg221110#msg221110) This religion has no gods, instead revering their ancestors. The spirits of the dead are thought to eventually join with the Ancestral Choir, adding one’s voice to the celestial song – unless the soul is captured by the engelulve first. These “angel wolves” will drag any souls they capture back to the Dark Forest to forever be prey for the engelulve. There are a few clerics of the Ancestral Choir, usually serving to ensure that the traditions are passed on and to make sure that human souls are kept away from the celestial predators before they join the Choir.
Ezra: The worship of Ezra is not especially popular in Kartakass, at least in part because it represents a stratified social structure – a concept that most Kartakans abhor. Still, wandering anchorites tend to their small flocks of converts, and they often help to fight against the wolfweres and other monsters that plague Kartakan nights.
Hala: The Church of Hala maintains an unobtrusive presence in Kartakass. The witches have established a few hospices close to major settlements, but most Kartakans know little about these veiled witches beyond their role as healers, and few care to.

Martial Characters:
Kartakan stories usually involve a trickster character as the hero and most martial characters in Kartakass use Dex more than Str. The need for brawn is recognized, but Kartakans see nothing praiseworthy about it. Rangers rarely last long against the wolves. Many martial Kartakan characters prefer to use rapiers, often with a buckler or dagger in the off hand. Alternatively, some Kartakans become quite skilled in the use of daggers, often juggling them as part of their performance.

Kartakan names are usually inspired by Croatian or Greek names.
Male Names: Akil, Castor, Erik, Joshua, Kyros, Laszlo, Petros, Sandor, Theon, Zev
Female Names: Akrynna, Aleris, Henrika, Julianna, Katalyn, Kolette, Lelia, Meleda, Odelle, Zeta


This language is described as having harmonious vowels.

Primary Language In: Hazlan, Nova Vaasa, Kartakass, Valachan

Secondary Language In: Barovia, Darkon, Invidia, Mordent, Graben Island, Liffe, Sithicus, Tepest, Verbrek

Sample Vocabulary:

good day: godaag
goodbye: afsked
yes: jao
no: ikke
help!: jaal!
leave this place!: afgaa herfra opstille!
magic: trolddom, trylleri
wizard: trolddommem
fire: skyde, arfbrand
man: mennekene
woman: kvinde
child: barn
life: liv
death: endeligt
love: elske, have kaer
music: musik, noder, tonlist
timber: tømmer
day: daag
night: natten
sun: solen
moon: moarne
town: byan, plads
inn: kroen
thank you: takk
spirit: spøkelse
tax: skatt
horse: hest
horseman, rider: hestmand
cat: kat
crime: forbrydelse
grass: graes
nobleman: ædelmand
commoner: lavmand
merchant: købmand
Title: Re: Natives of the Core - at a glance
Post by: Dhark on September 03, 2011, 12:04:37 PM

‍At a Glance
Cultural Level: Renaissance (9).
Major Settlements: Ludendorf (pop. 930), Neufurchtenburg (pop. 760).
Resources -- rye, sheep, cattle, dairy, furs, cod, mackerel, herring, flounder, beer, sausage, salt, leather goods, furniture, and ships
Coinage --  the glutton (gp), the sable (sp), and the marten (cp).

Lamordians are lean, square-shouldered folk tall in stature and wiry in physique. Their skin is exceptionally fair but tinted ruddy from the numbing wind that seems to blow across the domain constantly. Eye color is almost always a shade of green or blue. Their straight or wavy hair is light blond to dark brown, though fairer hair is slightly more common. Men cut their hair to a medium length, usually to just above the neck, and keep it styled back. Women grow their hair long and either pin it up or weave it into twin braids.

Mustaches and beards are never seen on men, but muttonchop sideburns are quite popular. Clothing is exceptionally well made in Lamordia, but modest and somber. Men wear collared shirts, vests, and trousers, with wealthier men adding a waistcoat and scarf. Nobles often wear pointed black caps as well. Women prefer modest woolen dresses with high collars and frequently wear tight, white bonnets. Color is almost unheard of in Lamordian garb; black, white, and shades of gray are the only hues to be seen. Jewelry is never worn, even among the nobility, though noblemen carry accessories such as canes and pocket watches.

Lamordians are extremely hardy folk accustomed to the domain's savage winter storms and generally treacherous environment. These independent, hardy folk have learned to withstand the winters in good spirits. Blizzards may keep them indoors, but snow itself is no hindrance. They travel on skis, sleighs, and snowshoes. They persevere with calm determination, convinced that they can survive and thrive through sheer hard work and will. Unlike many folk in the Land of Mists, Lamordians are not at all superstitious. They are in fact rational almost to a fault and believe in tackling every problem with a common-sense solution. No church has been able to gain a foothold among the Lamordians, who are deistic or outright atheistic. They are skeptical of anyone who promises easy answers through faith or magic, which they see as crutches for a weak mind. Lamordians pursue humble crafts and try to savor the simple joys of life. They reserve their disdain for Victor Mordenheim, a somewhat shady surgeon and scientist who conducts strange experiments on his estate in northern Lamordia.

Several trappers live in isolated areas of the domain, as do a few miners, and some shepherds winter their animals on the leeward side of the Sleeping Beast. However, most Lamordians are craftsmen. They spend the winter months carving furniture and building musical instruments. As soon as the snow melts and the roads are passable, their work is exported to other lands. The goods bring an excellent price, a third of which goes to Baron von Aubrecker. The Lamordian diet is rich in protein and fat. A special pudding thickened with sheep's blood is a local favorite, and goat cheese is a dietary staple.

Lamordia is a frigid land where snow rests on the ground for nine months out of the year. Its people like to think of themselves as rational to the extreme – to the point of not believing in magic or monsters. Surprisingly enough, the domain is almost entirely free from the first, though plenty of monsters roam the domain– usually the result of the experiments of a mad scientist, who are all too common.

Lamordians are almost exclusively human. A handful of half-Vistani can be found in the domain. There are also a few dwarven settlements in the Sleeping Beast, the mountain range that dominates the domain. Very few other races inhabit the domain.

Race Relations:
Half-Vistani are reguarded with suspicion and a sneer of racial superiority. Non-humans are considered natural abnormalities and flawed branches upon the Great Tree of Life, the top of which is crowned by humanity. Perhaps the worst thing about this discrimination is that it is based in logical pseudoscience and is applied to with scientific rigor.

Class Relations:
The rule of the Aubrekers has always been light, and there are no other hereditary nobility. Each settlement is governed by a mayor, but most power is in the hands of a small elected council. Lamordian society is relatively egalitarian, and though there are still rich and poor, culture tends to downplay the differences – all classes dress similarly and eat similar food. The Lamordian people are a mostly law abiding people, a result of the combination of oppressive winters, relative prosperity, and their strict police force.

Attitudes towards Arcane Magic:
Most Lamordians outright deny the existence of magic and unnatural creature or – more commonly – dismiss them as natural phenomena that have not yet been fully explained. Those who do accept the existence of those who can affect these forces (mages and the like) see them as dangerous madmen, playing with forces beyond their understanding, akin to a savage playing with a barrel of gunpowder.

Attitudes towards Divine Magic:
Lamordians deny the signifigance – or even the existence – of the gods simply because they see no use for them. Commoners may or may not be deistic, but the educated are usually completely atheistic. Such physicians and philosophers argue that the universe (often refered to as “the Great Clockwork”) simply occurred as an inevitable natural event. The average Lamordian will treat an overly religious person as silly and irrational at best, a dangerous lunatic at worst.

Martial Characters:
Adventurers in general are viewed as shifty mercenaries with no honest trade. Fighters may be given some respect for their skills, though epithets such as “brute” are whispered behind their backs. The Aubrekers maintain a small militia, and the police are usually well respected in their communities. Halberds are favored by the militia and truncheons tend to be favored by the police. As the most technological realm in the Core, guns are quite popular among those few Lamordians who feel the need to carry weapons.

Lamordian names are usually German or Swiss in origin.
Male Names: Augustin, Berthold, Conrad, Dieter, Frans, Hubert, Juergen, Ludwig, Niklaus, Oscar, Rudolf, Stefan, Tomas, Werner, Yann
Female Names: Brigitte, Camilla, Daniela, Erika, Federica, Ingrid, Johanna, Katia, Mathilde, Pascale, Ramona, Sofia, Teresa, Ursula, Victoria


Lamordian is a flat and guttural language which superficially resembles a mixture of Darkonese, Falkovnian, and Mordentish. The Lamordian alphabet has hundreds of sounds such as dipthongs and slurs that would be considered entirely new letters in other languages. Lamordian has euphemistic compound words, odd idiomatic expressions, and a needlessly complex system of tenses and genders. Lamordians are very proud of their language and make it a point to correct foreigners who mispronounce a word or make a grammatical error.

Lamordian is analgous with the Swiss  Plautdietsch language of the real world.

Primary Language In: Lamordia

Secondary Language In: Darkon, Falkovnia, Dementlieu, Dominia

Sample Vocabulary:

goodendachgreetings (good day)
aufriese!go away!
fe'nunftrationality, reason
je'spanstphantom, bogeyman

Title: Re: Natives of the Core - at a glance
Post by: Dhark on September 03, 2011, 02:52:57 PM
Dementlieu (http://www.nwnravenloft.com/forum/index.php?topic=21844.0)


‍At a Glance
Cultural Level -- Renaissance (9)
Population -- 5,500
Major Settlements --  Mordentshire (pop. 2,600), Blackburn's Crossing, Tumbledown
Coinage --  mournepiece (gp), the weepstone (sp), saltpenny (cp).
Resources -- barley, wheat, hops, sheep, cattle, dairy, flounder, sole, sardines, lobsters, oysters, chalk, clay, ships. 

The Mordentish are lean, hearty people hardened by generations of fishing and sailing. Their skin tends to be fair and ruddy, though duskier tones are not unknown. Mordentish eyes are usually a faded blue, green, or gray. Hair color varies widely, with flaxen blond and medium brown being most common. Men cut their hair very short or grow it past their shoulders, often keeping it in a neat braid or ponytail. Women grow their hair exceptionally long, though those with curlier locks trim it to halfway down their backs. Clothing is woolen and durable and kept fastidiously neat and clean whenever possible. Men wear loose shirts with breeches and high socks; wealthier men also don waistcoats over their elegant, lacy shirts. Women wear long dresses close fitting on top and flaring below the waist. The Mordentish seem to prefer somber colors, either black and grays or dark hues of blue, green, yellow, and red. Ornamentation is shunned, though patterns such as checks or plaids are sometimes seen. Jewelry is rarely worn, as it is regarded as gaudy even among the nobility.

The Mordentish are simple, practical people who value common sense and established traditions. They do things at their own pace and are prideful of their ways. They are also superstitious folk who believe whole-heartedly in the supernatural, particularly the restless dead. They are not paralyzed by fear, however. The Mordentish have learned to respect and avoid haunted places lest the resident spirits seek out the curious in their homes. This strategy seems to work for them, at least most of the time. The Mordentish are polite and friendly toward strangers but always remain somewhat reserved. They guard their own secrets closely and have a knack for getting others to talk candidly without revealing much of anything themselves.

Mordent is the former home of Rudolph van Richten, the famed monster hunter and scholar of the macabre, now presumed deceased. Gennifer and Laurie Weathermay-Foxgrove, granddaughters of Mordent’s noble lord, currently manage van Richten’s herbalist shop in Mordentshire. The twins are themselves acquiring a reputation as dedicated sages and hunters of the supernatural, much to the distress of their father. They idolize their grim uncle, George Weathermay, renowned as Mordent’s favored prodigal son. A stalwart foe of evil, Weathermay rides a forlorn path across the Core in search of the minions of darkness.

Non-human races are thought to be at least partially of the magical world, and to associate with them is considered to be inviting ill fortune. A few dwarves have found markets for their crafts, and their dour manner fits well with the stern Mordentish. Halflings also share the Mordentish love of home and comfort, but are often looked upon with suspicion because of their wandering ways. This distrust of wanderlust, coupled with a similar distrust of magic, make Mordent an unfriendly place for the Vistani.

Though most of the noble families in Mordent have died out, there is still a distinct difference between the high and low classes. This difference tends to express itself in differences in speech and culture rather than in fashion – the Mordentish like to think of themselves as above such frivolities. Relations between the classes tend to be relatively good, though aristocrats tend to look down on the poor for their uncultured ways, while the poor often think that the rich put on too many airs.
Mordent has always attracted a few immigrants, particularly from the domains of the other Four Towers – Dementlieu, Richemulot, and Borca. The instability of Borca has encouraged a few Borcans to relocate to Mordent, despite the decline of profit caused by such a move. These Borcan immigrants actually fit in reasonably well, their naturally dour and serious natures fitting well with the equally dour and serious natures of the Mordentish.

Attitudes towards Arcane Magic:
The Mordentish do not deny the potential benefits of magic, they tend to hold arcane practitioners at arm’s length, treating them as potentially dangerous. However, this is not because they fear the practitioners (any more than anyone would fear a person with terrible destructive powers) – rather they fear what the magic user might attract. A common Mordentish proverb goes, “don’t visit evil and it won’t visit you” – those who seek to command powerful energies are also the most likely to be corrupted by these same forces.
No magical schools exist in the domain, and most native practitioners are those whose families could afford hiring a tutor, who are often foreign.

Attitudes towards Divine Magic:
Divine magic is widely accepted throughout Mordent, and it factors into the daily lives of most Mordentish. Those practitioners of divine magic are held in high regard, though this is usually tempered by which god they worship.
Ezra (http://www.nwnravenloft.com/forum/index.php?topic=18979.msg221115#msg221115) In this misty domain, it should come as no surprise that worship of Our Lady of the Mists is quite strong. Almost all Mordentish are members of the Church of Ezra of varying faith. The Mordentish sect is a relatively benevolent one, and it has seemingly little interest in politics. It is still quite powerful, and it serves as Mordent’s first (and best) line of defense against the forces of darkness. With the trickle of Borcans into the domain, a few small churches that practice the Home Faith have been founded in Mordent. The Church is also responsible for maintaining the domain’s large graveyards.
Hala (http://www.nwnravenloft.com/forum/index.php?topic=18979.msg221120#msg221120) There are a few Halan hospices in Mordent. The witches’ combination of arcane and divine magic is maginally acceptable to the Mordentish people, though most see it as playing with fire, inviting the influence of dark forces.

Martial Characters:
Fighters in Mordent are often members of the local militia who help defend their respective towns from wildlife, brigands and the rare monstrous threat. A few Mordentish make their lives as highwaymen, though they have a short life expectancy, and are often found dead with no visible wounds or poison in their system. Pistols and rapiers are the most popular weapons among those who can afford them.

Mordentish names tend to be English.
Male Names: Alfred, Allan, Allistair, Andrew, Arthur, Benjamin, Brian, Charles, Christopher, Cyrus, Daniel, Douglas, Edward, Elias, Elijah, Francis, George, Giles, Henry, Hugh, Ian, Irving, Isaac, James, Jeremiah, Jonathan, Joseph, Lawrence, Martin, Matthew, Matthias, Nathaniel, Neville, Nicholas, Oliver, Owen, Peter, Richard, Robert, Samuel, Silas, Simon, Stephen, Thaddeus, Theodore, Thomas, William
Female Names: Abigail, Alice, Alyson, Anne, Annabeth, Beth, Bridget, Candace, Charity, Chastity, Constance, Deborah, Dorothy, Elizabeth, Emily, Esther, Faith, Gennifer, Grace, Hannah, Helen, Hope, Jane, Judith, Julianne, Katharine, Lacey, Laurie, Lillian, Lucille, Lydia, Margaret, Martha, Mary, Mercy, Meredith, Nell, Patience, Prudence, Rebecca, Ruth, Sarah, Susanna, Tabitha, Virginia.


This language is separated into two distinct dialects with entirely different vocabularies and even different grammar. "High" Mordentish is spoken by the nobility, while "Low" Mordentish is spoken by the common folk. The mingling of these two dialects has created an incredibly flexible language that is widely regarded throughout the world as the language of literature.

In comparison to real world languages, "Low" Mordentish is analagous to Anglo-Saxon or Old English, while "High" Mordentish is comparable to French.

Primary Language in: Borca, Mordent, Dementlieu, Richemulot, Verbrek, Ghastria

Secondary Language in: Darkon, Dominia, Falkovnia, Invidia, Lamordia, Sithicus, Valachan

"Low" Mordentish Sample Vocabulary:
"Low" MordentishEnglish
wes thu halgreetings, farewell (lit. "be you well")
Ia! eala!ah! alas!
faran aweg!go away!
heathusigel, sôl, sunnesun
hűs, inn, tôcirhűsinn
feorh, gâst, scuccaspirit
holm, mereocean, sea
lyfthelm, mist, nipmist, fog
ćthelingnoble (noun)
bôkere, scôlerescholar
byrde, weligaffluent
begietan dun!get below! (a common curse)
carl, mann, rincman
fćmne, wif, ćwewoman
feorhgedal, swyltdeath
ator, lybbpoison (noun)
mynett, sceattmoney
bealudangerous, unwise
ceasterbuendfool, outsider, civilized person

"High" Mordentish Sample Vocabulary:

"High" MordentishEnglish
oh! hélas!oh! alas!
en allez vous!go away!
océan, merocean, sea
brume, brouillardmist, fog
savantnoble (noun), scholar
malinaffluent, astute
decendre!get below! (a common curse)
poison, toxine, veninpoison (noun)
NOTE: the two dialects are both spken freely & intermingled in Mordent, often the bias toward one or another depends on locality & to some extent hereditary factors
Title: Re: Natives of the Core - at a glance
Post by: Dhark on September 03, 2011, 03:07:31 PM
Richemulot [/u]

Cultural Level -- Chivalric (8 )
Population -- 45,300
Major Settlements -- Pont-a-Museau (pop. 16,500), Mortigny (8,200), Ste. Ronges (6,500).
Resources -- wheat, oats, barley, apples, potatoes, dairy, cloth, furniture, leather, ceramics, glass, weapons, iron and tin goods
Coinage -- scandal (gp), secret (sp), and rumor (cp).

The Richemuloise tend to be wiry folk, short in stature but athletic. Their skin toe is fair, ranging from milky pale to light tan. Blue eyes are quite common, but shades of green and gray are also seen. Richemuloise hair is sleek and straight, with colors running from honey-blond to dark brown. Black hair is seen only among noble families. Long hair is traditional for both genders, with men preferring to keep theirs in a single ponytail or braid. Excessive facial hair is considered barbaric for men, but thin, well-groomed mustaches are widespread. All Richemuloise dress comfortably and neatly, regardless of social status. Men and women alike wear loose shirts, which men keep open in front during warmer months. Men wear baggy trousers, women knee-length skirts. High, hard-soled boots are considered standard footwear for city folk. Daily clothing is rarely patterned or decorated, and colors tend to be drab whites, grays, and beiges. Jewelry is rarely worn, even among the nobility. For festivals and other special occasions, men of all classes don elegant waistcoats, while women wear flowing dresses that leave little to the imagination.
The Richemuloise put little stock in the superficial. They believe that a man’s significance is defined by what he knows - his skills and knowledge, and how he applies those assets. This attitude has created what seems to a remarkably unstratified society. Despite the size of the domain’s cities, no grubby beggars or other destitute poor are seen on the streets. Neither are there aristocrats clad in opulent finery and attended by entourages of servants. Indeed, almost all Richemuloise seem to be moderately comfortable. Property ownership is not a social watermark, as any Richemuloise family can take up residence in an abandoned building and call it home. Unlike many domains, Richemulot has a significant immigrant population. Folk from other domains often flee oppression or poverty in their homeland in search of the opportunities and free property in Richemulot’s cities.

In truth, it is not affluence that defines the nobles of Richemulot, but knowledge. While nobility is hereditary, the aristocratic families hold their power in the form of information, which is brokered and exchanged like a commodity among the Richemuloise elite. A prominent noble can wreak social and economic havoc with a single nugget of gossip. A cobbler who happens on an astonishing secret can become a noble overnight if he knows how to properly use this new influence. The intrigues of Richemuloise courtly life are dizzying in their complexity, and few outsiders could keep up with either their nuances or pace. Trading in knowledge can be a lethal pursuit, however, as more than one noble has buried a secret forever with a dagger or vial of poison.

Richemuloise society is obsessed with gossip and secrets, and the people are unusually nosy. The cities are largely empty, with more houses than there are people – this domain was devoid of people when it emerged from the mists, though it still sported large, crumbling cities. The inhabitants are all descended from immigrants, and the domain still attracts large amounts of immigrants today.

The Richemuloise tend to accept non-humans more readily into their society than members of other domains, though individual members may hold the prejudices of their ancestral domains. Unfortunately, non-humans often have to bear the brunt of “good natured” practical jokes and racial humor by native Richemuloise. Replacing all of the chairs in a Halfling house with normal-sized chairs is a favorite, if hard to pull off, prank.

Class Relations:
Early immigrants (and therefore the most established) came mostly from the other Four Tower nations – Mordent, Borca, and especially Dementlieu. The Dementlieuese have had the most influence on the culture of Richemulot. Immigrants still trickle in – Invidians trying to escape their psychotic lord, Borcans fleeing civil war and power-hungry nobles, and Falkovnians either deserting the military or trying to get away from an iron-fisted government.
Given its fertile soil and its skilled craftsmen, Richemulot is a rich country, though this is also possibly due in part to the domain’s low population. The capacity for social mobility in Richemulot is second only to that in Verdoyant, though it’s harder than rumors from other domains claim. Richemulot may promise a roof over everyone’s head, but the laissez faire economy encourages cut-throat business practices – resulting in a large underclass, and many indentured servants who have no hope of buying their way out of servitude. Still, many do make it, becoming wealthy merchants, or even being elevated to the ranks of the nobility. The opportunity for social mobility ensures that there is little class prejudice in Richemulot.

Attitudes towards Arcane Magic:
Unlike in most other domains, magic users in Richemulot rarely suffer persecution for their art. Though most immigrants cling to the attitudes prevalent in their home nations, their children are less likely to hold the same views. The majority of Richemuloise view magic as a tool, albeit a powerful one. Still, most mages tend not to openly display or boast of their powers, because many of the nobility tend to consider magic wielders to be potential threats.

Attitudes towards Divine Magic:
Divine magic users tend to be openly accepted on Richemulot, though powerful clerics are still closely watched by the nobility. While most inhabitants of the domain adhere to some faith, many tend towards open-mindedness when it comes to other religions.
Ezra Early immigrants brought the Mordentish sect into Richemulot with them, and it has remained the major religion ever since. A few early Dementlieuese immigrants brought the contemplative Dementlieuese sect with them, though the esoteric sect doesn’t have many followers. The influx of immigrants from Borca have brought the Home Faith with them, though the strict nature of the sect has meant that it hasn’t gained many converts. On the other hand, the Mordentish sect managed to gain converts, especially from the other sects. Given the religious freedom in Richemulot, it’s only natural that several Ezran cults have gained some small followings as well.
Hala Unlike in most other domains, witches of Hala operate in Richemulot without fear of reprisals from religious zealots from other religions. Hala maintains a peaceful ministry in Richemulot, and the common folk tend to be thankfull for the presence of Hospices in their communities. Still, worship of Hala has never gotten the approval of the nobility (it’s a well known fact that the Reniers regard them with suspicion), and the witches have yet to gain widespread acceptance.

Martial Characters:
The large crumbling cities serve as good training grounds for rogues. The combination of large cities and relatively small populations also means that most people know a member of the watch, and the large number of mysterious disappearances means that many individuals make sure to have some martial training. The Reniers have also been increasing the military, fearing a potential Falkovnian invasion. Private citizens tend to favor small weapons that are easy to carry, like short swords, daggers, light crossbows, and pistols, with rapiers being quite popular. Watchmen and the military favor short swords, polearms and muskets.

 Richemulot is a melting pot of different cultures, and most immigrants are from Borca, Dementlieu, Falkovnia, Mordent, or Valachan – most name their children with names from the homeland. The most established families are descended from immigrants from Dementlieu, and French-inspired names are dominant.
Male Names: Arnaud, Bernart, Crespin, Esteve, Folcault, Gauderic, Jaufres, Lambert, Michels, Peirol, Raimond, Sicart, Thibaud, Vicenc, Xavier
Female Names: Aidelina, Beatritz, Cecile, Danielle, Elianor, Felise, Garsenda, Heloise, Isolina, Lilianne, Margalida, Nicole, Reina, Sibelle, Verinne

Languge : Mordentish (see above)
Title: Re: Natives of the Core - at a glance
Post by: Dhark on September 06, 2011, 11:56:45 AM

At a Glance
Cultural Level: Chivalric (8 )
Population: 34,200
Major Settlements: Levkarest (pop. 7,500), Lechberg (pop. 4,500), Sturben (pop. 4,000), Ilvin (pop. 1,200)
Resources : wheat, rye, corn, potatoes, apricots, sheep, cattle, chickens, beer, wine, timber, iron, copper, lead, salt, marble, leather goods, usury, and culture
Coinage : nightshade (gp). hemlock (sp), and the foxglove (cp).

Borcans have average, athletic statures, with skin tones ranging from fair to creamy tan, and delicate hands. Hair and eye color ranges widely, but dark brown is common for both. Men of all classes keep their wavy hair at a medium length, allowing it to grow wild and roguish. Women grow their hair quite long, adorning it with thin ribbons and wooden or tortoiseshell combs. Borcans seem to age quickly, perhaps due to their harsh environment.

Clothing is utilitarian among commoners, with men dressing in loose shirts and trousers and women in blouses and medium-length skirts. Dull earth tones are the norm in such humble garb. Nobles, on the other hand, dress in baroque Dementlieuese fashions, though they shy from bright colors, preferring a black and white scheme accented with silver jewelry. Commoners and nobles alike don more colorful clothing exclusively for festivals.

As a people, Borcans have a sullen air about them, an attitude that has permeated all aspects of daily life. This is largely due to the crushing taxation most folk endure, combined with the cruel, arbitrary rule of Ivana Boritsi. The oppression has worn down what was once a lusty, life-loving attitude among Borcans, leaving a defeated people who go about their business with a resigned fatalism. A weary, pained look clings to their fshuffle through their tasks as if afflicted by a numbing poison. Their only respite is the grace of the goddess Ezra, whose largest and most influential sect of is based in the Great Cathedral of Levkarest.

Despite the corruption that plagues Borca, the realm is politically and culturally active. Although it is not the cultural equal of Dementlieu, Borca does export its rich traditions of visual arts, music, and architecture to other realms. Ivana has overseen the establishment of a trading alliance with the neighboring realms of Dementlieu, Mordent, and Richemulot. This has kept foreign wealth flowing into Borca, and thus into Ivana’s coffers. The four realms have also arranged a mutual defense pact to protect against the military aggressions of Falkovnia to the north. Borca is further plagued by clandestine incursions of Vistani-hunting mercenaries from Invidia. Although the gypsies are not loved in Borca, Ivan Dilisnya has warned that further threats to Borcan sovereignty will result in armed retaliation.

Class relations
Most minor families are sworn to other families – in effect, they are owned by the family they are contracting to. Small families can run the gamut from poor peasant families to rich aristocratic families contracted directly to one major family to those few rich families who manage to maintain a tenuous existence in the chaos, often playing the major families against each other, while trying to appeal to the poor. Minor families can be contracted to other minor families, sometimes who are only slightly more powerful. Families tend to be run on the lines of the mafia.

Almost all Borcans believe that power cannot be obtained without a contract - be it a contract swearing the fealty of one family to another, trade contracts, or the contracts between the citizens of one of Borca’s democracies.

Attitudes to arcane magic
As such, Borcans believe that arcane power comes from contracts with devils and demons, and react to anyone wielding it as anyone would react to someone who has sworn themselves to the service of a demon. However, few families would pass up an opportunity for more power, and covert magicians are often employed. Once a spellcaster is discovered though, they tend to quickly wind up on the receiving end of a lynch mob.

Attitudes towards Divine Magic:
Borcans believe that divine magic comes from a contract with the deity being worshiped, and judge the caster based on the reputation of the god. Most Borcans distrust gods other than Ezra.

Ezra: Borca is the home of the original sect of Ezra, almost all Borcans are members of the faith (or, at least, pay lip service), and the Church wields immense power

Hala: The Halans keep a few hospices, particularly in the rural west. Unfortunately, while Halans have never been actively persecuted by the Home Faith (Ezra), an edict was issued in 701 (a little more than 50 years ago) calling Halan beliefs “witchcraft” and “hag magic.” Though the edict was quickly recinded, Borcan’s attitude quickly grew cold towards the Halan faith, and they are often used as scapegoats when “panics” arise. They have not fared well in the current crisis.

‍Martial Characters:
Borcan nobles are in constant need of guards, however, most of these are seen as little more than mindless thugs, especially those who rely on Strength rather than Dexterity, and are paid to fight, not to think. Borcans revere cunning (though they detest thievery), and assasins and other stealth-based characters are highly valued (if not publicly-expressed) assets. Borcans tend to prefer easily concealable weapons like daggers and stilettos, though in recent years, firearms have become popular.

Borcans tend to have Italian and Croatian-inspired names.
Borcan Male Names: Arturo, Cheslav, Edik, Fredrik, Kiryl, Lorenz, Nicolo, Pietro, Raphael, Rodrigo, Salvatore, Sebastian, Stephan, Stepka, Vincenzo, Zivon
Borcan Female Names: Acquilina, Alena, Celia, Charlotta, Duscha, Illeana, Irena, Isidora, Katarina, Ludmilla, Miranda, Natasha, Oleska, Urola, Zinerva


The predominant language of Barovia, Balok is often described as having thick, guttural consonants and is not particularly pleasant to the ear. It is the language of ethnic Barovians, but is also the primary language of Borca and Invidia. The real life counterpart of the language seems to be Romanian.

Primary Language in: Barovia, Borca, G'Henna, Invidia

Secondary Language in: Hazlan, Kartakass, Richemulot, Sithicus, Verbrek

Sample Vocabulary

good morning; good day: bună ziua
goodbye: adio
yes: da
no: nu
help!: ajutor!
go away!: se duce!
night: noapte
gypsy; thief: tigan
ceatsă: mist; fog
om, oamensc: man
femeie: woman
child: copil
life: viata
death: moarte
love: iubire
poison (noun): méreg
conspire: comploia
money: bani
day: zi
sun: soare
moon: luna
town: oras
inn: han
betrayal: tradare
jealousy: geloize

To help flavour the native roleplay further, here is also a list of common Romanian phrases:

Standard phrases

Breakfast: "micul dejun" (MEE-kool deh-ZHOON)
Buddy / Friend: "prieten" (Pre-Eh-Ten)
Bye: "Pa" ("PAH")
       "Servus" [sehr-VOOS] (in informal occasions in Barovia (/Transylvania))
Damn it!: "La dracu!" (la Drah-coo)
Devil: "Drac" (Drahc)
Excuse me. (Getting attention): "Pardon" (pahr-DOHN) or "Vă rog" (vuh ROHG)
Excuse me. (begging pardon, moving through crowd): "Pardon" (pahr-DOHN)
Fine, thank you.: Mulţumesc, bine." (mool-tzu-MESK BEE-nay)
Go away!: "se duce!" (se du-ssa)
Go to the devil!: "Dudevilte dracului!" (Doo-Devil-Te Drah-Cool-e)
Good-bye: "La revedere" (lah reh-veh-DEH-reh)
               "adio" (ah-dio)
Good day: "Bună ziua" (BOO-nuh zee-wah)
Good evening: "Bună seara" (BOO-nuh syah-ruh)
Good morning: "Bună dimineaţa" (BOO-nuh dee-mee-NYAH-tzuh)
Good night (to sleep): "Noapte bună" (NWAHP-teh BOO-nuh)
Hello!: "Salut." (sah-LOOT)
         "Bună!" (BOO-nuh)
Help!: "Ajutor!" (ah-zhoo-TOR)
Hi!: "Ha!" (Hah)
Horse: "Cal" (cal)
How are you?: "Ce mai faci?" (cheh my FAHTCH)
I can't speak Balok [well].: "Nu vorbesc [bine] Balok." (NOO vor-BESC [BEE-nay] Bah-lohk)
I don't understand: "Nu înţeleg" (NOO oohn-tzeh-LEG)
I'm Hungry: "Mi-e Foame" (Me-ae fo-ah-may)
I'm Thirsty: "Mi-e Sete" (Me-ae set-te)
I'm Tired: "Mi-e Somn" (Me-ae sohm)
I'm Scared: "Mi-e Frica" (Me-ae fri-cah)
I'm sorry: "Îmi pare rău" (oohm pah-reh RUH-OH)
Is there someone here who speaks Balok?: "Vorbeşte cineva aici Balok?" (vor-BESH-teh CHEEH-neh-vah AY-eetch Bah-lohk)
Job: "ocupaţie" (ohcoo-pah-te-eh)
Knight: "cavaler" (Kah-vah-lar)
Lady: "doamnă" (Doam-nah)
Left: "stânga" (STOOHN-gah)
Look out!: "Atenţie" (ah-TEN-tzee-eh)
Lunch: "dejun" (deh-ZHOON)
Miss ______: "domnişoară _______" (DOM-ne-SO-ahra)
Mist / Fog: "ceatsâ" (seh-ah-tsa)
Mister ______: "domn ______" (DOMN)
My name is ______.: "Numele meu e ______." (NOO-meh-leh MEH-oo yeh ______.)
Name: "nume" (noo-me)
Nice to meet you.: "Încântat" (oohn-kahn-taht) or "Îmi pare bine" (OOHM pah-reh BEE-neh)
No: "Nu" (NOO)
Please: "Vă rog" (vuh ROHG; usually follows the request.)
Right: "dreapta" (DRYAP-tah)
See you soon: "Pe curând" ("peh cur-OOHND")
Straight ahead: "drept înainte" (DREHPT oohn-ay-EEN-teh)
Temple: "templu" (tem-ploo)
Thank you: "Mulţumesc" (mool-tzoo-MESK)
Thank you very much: "Mulţumesc mult." (mool-tzoo-MESK moolt)
What is your name? (formal): "Cum vă numiţi? (coom vuh noo-MEETZ)
What's your name? (informal): "Cum te cheamă? (coom teh KYAHM-uh)
Witchcraft: "vrajă" (vrah-jah)
Yes: "Da" (DAH)
You're welcome: "Cu plăcere" (koo pluh-CHAIR-eh)


Am I under arrest?: Sunt arestat? (SOONT ah-rest-AHT ?)
I'll call the guards.: "Chem garda." (kem Gahrd-ah)
Guards!: "Garda!" (Gahrd-ah!)
I haven't done anything wrong.: N-am facut nimic rău. (NAHM fah-COOT nee-MEEC RUH-oh)
I lost my bag.: "Mi-am pierdut valiza" (mee-AHM pee-ehr-DOOT vah-LEE-zah)
I lost my wallet.: "Mi-am pierdut portmoneul/portofelul." (mee-AHM pee-ehr-DOOT POHRT-mohn-eh-ool/POHRT-o-FEH-Loo)
I'm lost.: "M-am rătăcit" (mahm ruh-tuh-CHEET)
I'm sick.: "Sunt bolnav." (SOONT bohl-NAHV)
I need your help (formal "your").: "Am nevoie de ajutorul dumneavoastra" (AHM neh-VOY-eh deh ah-ZHOO-tohr-ool doom-nyah-VWAH-strah)
I need your help (informal "your").: "Am nevoie de ajutorul tău" (AHM neh-VOY-eh deh ah-ZHOO-tor-ool tuh-oo)
It's an emergency.: "E o urgenţă" (YEH oh oor-JEHN-tzuh)
I've been injured.: "Sunt accidentat." (SOONT ahk-chee-dehn-TAHT)
I need a priest.: "Am nevoie de preot" (AHM neh-VOY-eh deh preh-oth)
It was a misunderstanding.: A fost o neînţelegere. (AH fohst oh neh-uhn-tzeh-leh-geh-reh)
Leave me alone.: "Lasă-mă în pace" (LAH-suh muh oohn PAH-cheh)
Stop! Thief! : "Stai! Tigan!" (STAAY! HOHTZ!)
Where are you taking me?: Unde mă duceţi? (OON-deh muh DOOH-chets)


1: unu (OO-noo)
2: doi (doy)
3: trei (tray)
4: patru (PAH-troo)
5: cinci (cheench)
6: şase (SHAH-seh)
7: şapte (SHAHP-teh)
8: opt (ohpt)
9: nouă (NOH-uh)
10: zece (ZEH-cheh)
11: unsprezece (OON-spreh-zeh-cheh, usually shortened to just unşpe, OON-shpeh even in formal speech; similarly, for all numbers up to 19)
12: doisprezece (DOY-spreh-zeh-cheh)
13: treisprezece (TRAY-spreh-zeh-cheh)
14: paisprezece (PIE-spreh-zeh-cheh)
15: cincisprezece (CHEENCH-spreh-zeh-cheh)
16: şaisprezece (SHY-spreh-zeh-cheh)
17: şaptisprezece (SHAHP-tee-spreh-zeh-cheh)
18: optsprezece (OPT-spreh-zeh-cheh)
19: nouăsprezece (NO-uh-spreh-zeh-cheh)
20: douăzeci (DOH-uh ZETCH)
21: douăzeci şi unu (DOH-uh ZETCH shee OO-nu)
22: douăzeci şi doi (DOH-uh ZETCH shee DOY)
23: douăzeci şi trei (DOH-uh ZETCH shee TRAY)
30: treizeci (TRAY ZETCH)
40: patruzeci (PAH-troo ZETCH)
50: cincizeci (CHEENCH ZETCH, but often more like CHEEN-zetch)
60: şaizeci (SHAH-ee ZETCH)
70: şaptezeci (SHAHP-teh ZETCH)
80: optzeci (OHPT zetch)
90: nouăzeci (NO-uh ZETCH)
100: o sută (OH SOO-tuh)
105: o sută cinci (OH SOO-teh CHEENCH)
200: două sute (DOH-uh SOO-teh)
300: trei sute (TRAY SOO-teh)
400: patru sute (....)
500: cinci sute
600: şase sute
700: şapte sute
800: opt sute
900: nouă sute
1000: o mie (oh MEE-eh)
2000: două mii (DOH-uh MEE)
1,000,000: un milion (OON mee-LEE-ohn)
half: jumătate (joo-muh-TAH-teh, often shortened to joo-MAH-teh)
less: mai puţin (MY poo-TZEEN)
more: mai mult (my moolt)
number: numărul


day: zi (OH ZEE)
hour: oră (OH OHR-uh)
midnight: miezul nopţii (mee-EHZ-ool NOHP-tzee)
month: lună (OH LOO-nuh)
night: noapte (no-ahpte)
noon: prânz (proohnz)
today: astăzi(ah-STUHZ)
tomorrow: mâine (MUY-neh)
week: săptămână (OH suhp-tuh-MOOHN-uh)
year: an (oon AHN)
yesterday: ieri (yehr)


black: negru (NEH-groo)
white: alb (ahlb)
gray: gri (gree)
red: roşu (ROH-shoo)
blue: albastru (ahl-BAH-stroo)
yellow: galben (GAHL-behn)
green: verde (VEHR-deh)
orange: portocaliu (pohr-toh-KAH-lee-oo)
purple: mov (mohv)
brown: maro (mah-ROH)

Monsters / Foes

hag: hârcă (hahr-kah)
ghost: strigoi (strii-goi)
gypsy: tigan (tih-gan)
phantom: fantomă (fahn-toh-mah)
undead: imorţii (e-mor-tee)
vampire: vampir, vrolok  (vam-pihr, fro-lohk)
werewolf: vârcolac (wahr-coh-lahk)
wolf: lup (loop)

Title: Re: Natives of the Core - at a glance
Post by: Dhark on September 06, 2011, 12:08:58 PM

At a Glance
Cultural Level: Chivalric (8 ).
Major Settlements: Curriculo (pop. 1,000), Karina (pop. 2,300).
Resources:  barley, rye, hops, wheat, oats, potatoes, cabbage, grapes, hogs, wine, beer, sulfur, salt.
Coinage : drymark (gp), sweetpiece (sp), bitterbit (cp).

Unlike many domains, Invidia does not have its own distinct ethnic group. Most Invidians are of mixed heritage, with Barovian and Kartakan blood running strongest. As such, few generalizations can be made about their physical appearance. Invidians range from swarthy and stocky to fair and lean, but they do tend to have the best features of their ancestors. Invidian clothing is simple but aesthetically pleasing. Men wear tunics, breeches, and high boots. Women dress in loose-fitting shirts and layered skirts. Bits of sparkling jewelry are commonly worn by both genders, with tasteful, solitary earrings or rings predominating.

Invidians are infamous for their passionate personalities; it is not, however, a compliment to say that someone has an "Invidian heart." Invidians are hot-tempered and tempestuous, frequently allowing their passions to get the better of them. Marital infidelity is common, as are the grudges and spilt blood that inevitably follow. Bitterness is nursed for years over small (or even imagined) slights, and it is not unknown for violence to erupt even within families when tempers flare.

These stereotypical traits aside, the Invidians are solid enough people. They are hard workers who nonetheless like to enjoy the fruits of their labors and have little respect for either the stuffy or the lazy. The populace is generally divisible into a loose class system, although the delineations are not as sharp as in other lands. The rich still look down on the poor, but the nobility tends to be weak and ineffectual. Accordingly, the domain hosts a strong merchant middle class. Most Invidians hold a deep loathing for the Vistani. Although this might be overcompensation in light of Malocchio's anti-Vistani policies, their hatred is no less chilling.

The famous suspicious nature of the Invidians is the reason for the low population of non-humans – not only are most foreign (and therefore not to be trusted), their inhumanity also sets them apart. Given the famous Invidian temper, suspicions can quickly turn to anger, which in turn usually leads to violence. Lynch mobs form quickly in Invidia.

Tensions between Invidians and Gundarakites are also high – Barovia and Invidia split the old domain of Gundarak between them. The evil dictators of the domain, coupled with the suspicious and angry Invidians, did little to make the Gundarakites feel like part of society. Tensions came to a head when the current tyrant, Malocchio Aderre

Class Relations:
As in most places, the rich tend to look down upon the poor, while the poor consider the rich to be stuffy and decadent. There is some truth to these attitudes, for Invidian nobles (whose titles are either hereditary or awarded according to Malocchio’s whims) are notoriously ineffectual, and commoners tend to be both obstinate and ignorant. In the past, there was little distinction between the classes and society tended to be quite open, with ample opportunities to better oneself through hard work. This has changed during Malocchio’s rule, however, and the nobility is becoming more entrenched and entitled.

Attitudes towards Arcane Magic:
Invidians tend to be suspicious and fearful of magic. Most believe the arcane to be a dark, evil force. Mages must be careful about casting spells, lest the town watch show up with swords drawn and demanding explanations.
However, there is a place for the arcane in Invidia. A few hedge wizards practice their art in a few villages, so long as their spells are all helpful and they never charge too much for their services. A few more powerful arcane casters live deep in the wilds, secretly visited by Invidians in search of potions, divinations, or magical vengeance against rivals. Necromancy is the only form of magic that isn’t tolerated, and arcanists suspected of necromancy tend to be lynched quickly.

Attitudes towards Divine Magic:
Most Invidians claim to be devout, but few have time for religion in their daily lives.
Ezra: Most Invidians profess faith in one of the sects of Ezra – usually the home faith of Borca, but some prefer the gentler Mordentish sect or the militant faith of Nevuchar Springs in Darkon. There is only one church of Ezra in Invidia (on the road between Karina and Beltis), but there are plenty of wandering anchorites.
Hala: Hala has been worshiped in Invidia since time immemorial. Unfortunately, it has also been outlawed since the rule of Gabrielle’s predecessor, with known (or suspected) witches hung or burned. Still, worship of the goddess continues in secret, passed down from parents to their children. Their secrecy only fuels public distrust.

Martial Characters:
Surprisingly enough, Invidians aren’t terribly warlike. Gabrielle Aderre allowed the Invidian military to collapse. When she captured western Gundarak, she used a handful of skilled Invidian military adventurers. Malocchio maintains a small but well trained militia. He has also recently started to gather a small cadre of secret police. Invidian soldiers are taught to use longswords and crossbows. Crossbows and daggers are popular amongst the populace. Recently, a few elite cadres of soldiers have started being trained to use muskets, but their high cost keeps them out of the hands of commoners.

Invidian names are usually inspired by Ukranian or Polish names.
Male Names: Adi, Adrian, Badun, Costine, Dimitru, Gogu, Haslav, Horatu, Mikal, Petre, Radu, Vasili, Vaslav
Female Names: Ameli, Antoaneta, Celestina, Diona, Elena, Florenta, Gabrielle, Ileana, Ivona, Ligia, Lizuca, Marilena, Nicoleta, Ridicea, Teadora, Zina

Invidians primarily speak Balok.
Title: Re: Natives of the Core - at a glance
Post by: Dhark on September 06, 2011, 12:39:14 PM

‍At a Glance
Cultural Level: Medieval (7).
Population: 800
Major Settlements: None. Verbrek is sparsely populated, and most folk dwell in solitary farmsteads or settlements of fewer than twenty people.
Resources :  oats, barley, hops, cabbage, potatoes, peppers, cattle, hogs, chickens, dairy, mushrooms, timber, furs, beer, clay.
Coinage : none. Trade is conducted through barter in Verbrek, though some Mordentish and Richemuloise currency moves through the domain.

Verbrekers are a sturdy breed, short in stature but muscular. Their skin ranges from very fair and freckled to light tan in color, though it is typically weathered and toughened with calluses. A Verbreker's eyes are usually blue or green, and hair color runs from honey blond to medium brown, but auburn is not uncommon. Both men and women keep their straight hair long and unstyled, with men preferring to maintain a length just above the shoulder. Men often grow mustaches and beards, always together. Verbreker clothing is simplistic, loose fitting, and functional. Men wear trousers and tunics, while women dress in blouses and long skirts slit up the thigh. Many Verbrekers, male and female alike, wear hooded cloaks when outdoors. Shades of green and neutral colors such as white, beige, and brown predominate local garb. Folk from all walks of life carry a hatchet and knife at all times.

Verbrekers are at home in the wilderness, though their relationship with the natural world could best be described as an uneasy truce. Verbrekers have a healthy respect for nature, but that respect is tempered with a fear of nature's savagery. They stoically strive to carve out a corner of civilization along the banks of Verbrek's rivers, recognizing all the while that in the battle between humanity and nature, nature is likely to emerge the victor. In the meantime, they endure by learning the ways of their wilderness, thereby avoiding a senseless and early death. They value basic survival skills and are easily angered by urban folk who risk everyone's neck through their recklessness or ignorance.
The Verbrekers are not the true masters of the domain, a fact that they acknowledge with grim fatalism. Verbrek belongs to the werewolves, who have their own brutal tribal society. Raised on wolf myths and the occasional encounter with the lycanthropes, Verbrekers are taught to fear werewolves and avoid them at all costs. Now and then, on a moonlit night, a lone victim is heard screaming in the distance, dragged off by the bloodthirsty beasts. Verbrekers respond simply by double-checking the locks, throwing another log on the fire, and thanking the gods that they aren't the victims tonight.

Verbrek is home to a smattering of calibans, half-elves, and half-Vistani. Few elves live in the domain, as most find the neighboring domain of Sithicus much more nice and peaceful. The werewolves find halflings and gnomes to be easy prey, and they tend to either leave quickly or become hunted.
The Verbrekers don’t show much prejudice towards non-humans (or at least, those that aren’t werewolves). Anyone who is part of the community is accepted. Even calibans are relatively accepted. However, it is very hard to become part of the community, and Verbrekers are taught to fear outsiders from an early age. This is an understandable point of view, as any outsider could be a werewolf seeking to bring the community down.

Class Relations:
There is no higher authority linking all of the settlements in Verbrek. Each community is lead by whoever has proven they can lead it the best. Most Verbrekers farm, herd, or hunt and the only way to distinguish the wealthier members of society is usually to see who has the largest herd of sheep. Most Verbrekers are far more concerned with surviving from day to day than they are with accumulating wealth.
Once a man reaches the age of 14 or so, he is expected to go out into the forest, both as a rite of passage and to find a wife. Verbrekers see this as a test of courage, resolve, and resourcefulness. Usually, the boy finds the first unmarried girl of similar age, courts her, and they get married. Romance doesn’t exactly thrive in a land where the inhabitants see themselves primarily as prey for wolves. Any community that gets too large is subject to culling by the wolves, so each community practices population control, making sure that they have little population growth.

Attitudes towards Arcane Magic:
Verbrekers both respect and fear the arcane, and there are few spellcasters in the domain. They tend to distrust wizards, who study to learn magic, as they are representatives of civilization and will probably draw the ire of the werewolves. On the other hand, the inborn talents of sorcerers are seen as natural forces and useful survival tools.

Attitudes towards Divine Magic:
Druids are highly respected in Verbrek, as their magic stems from nature and also helps the community. Verbrekers don’t have much time for faith, and see few answers to their harsh lives in the prayers of clerics. Still, they acknowledge the usefulness of divine magic itself, and accept those who wield it (at least, to the extent that they accept anyone who isn’t part of their small community). Still, the Verbrekers don’t take the time to build cathedrals or temples, and the largest places of worship are small shrines in private homes.
The Wolf God: (http://www.nwnravenloft.com/forum/index.php?topic=18979.msg221123#msg221123) Despite the fact that the Wolf God (CE) is the most widely worshipped entity in Verbrek, no human communities have a cleric devoted to him. He is the god of werewolves, not humans, and he represents everything the Verbrekers hate and fear about nature. No sane human would ever worship or make a shrine to the Enemy of Man. Still, the Verbrekers attempt to placate him every chance they get in an attempt to keep them from being the wolves’ next meal.
Ezra: The domain is home to a few converts to the worship of Ezra. Surprisingly enough, the proselytizing Mordentish sect and their teachings of forgiveness and salvation aren’t very popular in Verbrek. Instead, they prefer the teachings of stoic guardianship and mercy for the wounded of the Borcan Home Faith have proved more popular, and those few converts tend to follow the Borcan sect.
Hala: Most Verbrekers who consider themselves to be religious also consider themselves to be followers of Hala. Tales have it that the Halan faith was first brought to Verbrek by a warlock in order to combat the werewolves. Needless to say, they are not very popular with the werewolves, and witches of Hala are hunted whenever possible. There sacred forest clearings are well hidden.

Martial Characters:
It is rare for a Verbreker not to have some skill in weapon use. Hunting and woodcraft make sure that their practitioners are skilled in the use of bows and axes. Fighters and rangers are common and respected in their home communities. The most popular weapons in Verbrek are bows, axes, and spears.

Verbreker names tend to be inspired by ancient Celtic names.
Male Names: Agnan, Cadoc, Drenig, Ehoarn, Gilduin, Herveig, Jaoven, Kerrian, Maugan, Privael, Riwallan, Sklaer, Teyrn, Vonig, Youenn
Female Names: Aven, Briganna, Enora, Flamenn, Goulvena, Joela, Kavanenn, Lennig, Maiwenn, Nevena, Paola, Rivanon, Sisilia, Vouga, Yuveot


This language is separated into two distinct dialects with entirely different vocabularies and even different grammar. "High" Mordentish is spoken by the nobility, while "Low" Mordentish is spoken by the common folk. The mingling of these two dialects has created an incredibly flexible language that is widely regarded throughout the world as the language of literature.

In comparison to real world languages, "Low" Mordentish is analagous to Anglo-Saxon or Old English, while "High" Mordentish is comparable to French.

Primary Language in: Borca, Mordent, Dementlieu, Richemulot, Verbrek, Ghastria

Secondary Language in: Darkon, Dominia, Falkovnia, Invidia, Lamordia, Sithicus, Valachan

"Low" Mordentish Sample Vocabulary:
"Low" MordentishEnglish
wes thu halgreetings, farewell (lit. "be you well")
Ia! eala!ah! alas!
faran aweg!go away!
heathusigel, sôl, sunnesun
hûs, inn, tôcirhûsinn
feorh, gâst, scuccaspirit
holm, mereocean, sea
lyfthelm, mist, nipmist, fog
æthelingnoble (noun)
bôkere, scôlerescholar
byrde, weligaffluent
begietan dun!get below! (a common curse)
carl, mann, rincman
fæmne, wif, æwewoman
feorhgedal, swyltdeath
ator, lybbpoison (noun)
mynett, sceattmoney
bealudangerous, unwise
ceasterbuendfool, outsider, civilized person

The people of Vebrek speak mainly Low Mordentish
Title: Re: Natives of the Core - at a glance
Post by: Dhark on September 15, 2011, 06:39:06 PM

At a Glance
Cultural Level: Medieval (7).
Population: 19,100
Major Settlements: Helbenik (pop. 3,500), Rotwald (pop. 4,400), Ungrad (pop. 1,500).
Resources : wheat, barley, hops, cherries, apples, peas, flower bulbs, hogs, sheep, dairy, salmon, trout, timber, furs, gold, copper, bows, furniture.
Coinage : pantherhead (gp), cateye (sp), claw (cp).

Valachani are tall, muscular people with wide shoulders and long, sturdy limbs. Their skin is typically a dark coffee brown, though colors ranging from a creamy tan to nearly charcoal black occur. Eye color is almost always dark brown, but the odd individual with unsettling bile-yellow eyes is sometimes born. Valachani hair is glossy black and worn long and straight by both genders. Men never wear beards or mustaches, but many grow long sideburns. Clothing is durable and simple, with both men and women preferring to go about in loose trousers and tunics often decorated with fringe and animal teeth. Faded black and white are the favorite colors, though these are accented with bold reds, greens, and blues. Valachani wear knee-high boots of soft leather throughout the year, even when not outdoors.

The Valachani are a stalwart people accustomed to a rustic life amid the domain's eerie forests. They personify the creatures of the forest in myths, reserving their greatest reverence and fear for the panthers, which are numerous and notoriously cunning. Valachani value perseverance and strong family ties but tend to be suspicious of "book learning" and the trappings of more advanced domains. A Valchani who does not know how to shoot a bow or survive in the wilderness is less than a whole person. Despite their individualism, the Valachani are social people with exceedingly complex rituals for life's milestones, including birth, coming of age, marriage, and death. Lengthy festivals mark these events in settlements. Handcrafted gifts are exchanged and wealthy Valachani attempt to outdo one another by obtaining the best foodstuffs and entertainment.

Valachan's ruler, Baron Urik von Kharkov, is a cold man who values obedience and his own privacy above all else. This stern aloofness does not endear the baron to his subjects, but the Valachani have learned to pay their taxes dutifully and thereby avoid the baron's attention and infamous temper. Von Kharkov demands petty servitude from random commoners on occasion, summoning them to Castle Pantara for a single night. Those who are summoned often return infected with the White Fever, a mild but debilitating flu that strikes many Valachani throughout their lives. Each year, von Kharkov forcefully takes a young Valachani woman as his bride; to date, the unfortunate soul he chooses has never lived out the year. These sinister facts only heighten fear of the baron and feed rumors that he truly is inhuman.
The baron's private army of enforcers collects taxes and rounds up anyone unfortunate enough to draw von Kharkov's ire. Expertly trained in swordsmanship and wilderness skills, these enforcers are monstrous sadists zealously loyal to their lord. The mysterious Lady Adelaide, the Veiled Mistress, commands them. Arrogant and astonishingly vicious, Adelaide shares the appetites of the baron. She can be bribed by the offering of a handsome youth, who usually emerges scarred without and within from the mistress's wicked attentions.

Despite the oppressive presence of the baron's minions, life in most Valachani settlements is peaceful. The most powerful nobles administer justice and arbitrate disputes as they see fit, but corruption is rare. Nobility is hereditary through the mother's side, and men rather than women marry out of their families. Although tradition dictates that nobles be respected and deferred to because of their wealth, commoners do not tolerate incompetence or weakness in their betters. Nobles who lack the guile to defend their positions are quickly eliminated and their assets divided among the remaining aristocrats. Serving in a settlement's militia is an honorable and profitable pursuit, as nobles reward service with wealth, titles, and arranged marriages.

Despite expanding trade with neighboring domains, Valachan retains a strong streak of independence. Baron von Kharkov apparently has little interest in establishing alliances with other realms. His enforcers patrol the domain's frontiers irregularly, equally likely to harass, rob, or murder curious travelers. Thus, the Valachani are left to forge their own bonds with foreign merchants. For now, the Valachani seem content to trade their wares and avoid entangling themselves in the affairs of other lands.

Legends say that any relationship with an elf or half-elf is doomed to add in tears and blood. Most people are naturally shy of dealing with them. This prejudice, coupled with the inherent snobbery of the Sithican elves, limits the number of elves in the domain, despite its shared border with the elven homeland. Halflings tend not to do very well in this domain that values physical labor so much. Gnomes also suffer from their stature, but they tend to gravitate towards Valachan’s few artisan jobs, and their skill and self-sufficiency is admired. Calibans are born with some frequency, but are usually then abandoned in the wilderness

Class Relations:
Everyone in Valachan is expected to pull their own weight, peasants and nobles alike. Anyone who can’t pitch in and work for the good of everyone loses the respect of those around him. Each community acts like a large family, with the leader acting as the patriarch of the village. Each village tends to secretly consider themselves superior to the others, and tries to demonstrate this in quiet, friendly ways.
Women are expected to act as the protectors of the household, and she rules over the household – even her husband, at least when he’s at home and not out working. Women are held in high regard in Valachan.
Education, on the other hand, is seen as completely useless. Any time spent learning is time that could be spent learning a trade or working in the fields – in other words, education takes time away from useful pursuits. Anyone with education are seen as useless fops.

Attitudes towards Arcane Magic:
Arcane magic is seen as the worst form of blasphemy against the natural order. Spellcasters are said to be in league with demons and spirits, and are regarded with terror. Any arcane spellcaster openly practicing can expected to be reviled, driven from villages by angry mobs, and arrested by von Kharkov’s secret police, the Black Leopards.

Attitudes towards Divine Magic:
On one hand, Valachani are contemptuous of the studying necessary to become a member of the clergy, which could have been spent in honorable pursuits like fishing or trapping. On the other hand, that time spent studying gives them power over animals, plants, humans, and spirits. They tend to respect the office, but it takes an exceptionally rugged priest to gain their respect. Unfortunately, powerful clerics tend to either disappear in the middle of the night or get torn apart by the panthers that stalk the night.
Yutow the Peacebringer, (http://www.nwnravenloft.com/forum/index.php?topic=18979.msg221124#msg221124) the Dead God: Yutow was originally a Green Man-type deity, who killed himself to end a terrible war that was devastating the land. He now watches over the domain from his home in the moon. His special servants are panthers, and they are said to enforce his will. He constantly tests his people, and other religions are seen as tests of faith sent by Yutow or misinterpretations of him brought on by the corruption of a sedentary lifestyle.
Ezra: The Church of Ezra maintains a moderately-sized church in Helbenik. The compassionate teachings have appealed to a few locals, and their self-sufficiency has earned them some respect. Von Kharkov hasn’t done much to meddle in the affairs of the church, but this is likely due to the fact that it isn’t very powerful.
Hala: The unobtrusive witches of Hala thrive in Valachan. They never proselytize, which would put them in conflict with the church of Yutow. They only help those who seek them out. Their naturalist faith and self-sufficiency appeals to many Valachani, who usually let them live in peace.

Martial Characters:
Martial characters of any time are respected in Valachan, as long as they are willing (and competent) to pitch in. The various villages are in constant need of protectors, and most men (and manywomen) have at least some training in the use of a weapon or two. Bows and axes are the most popular weapons in Valachan.

Valachani names tend to be inspired by Finnish or Swedish names.
Male Names: Aksell, Arkin, Audun, Brand, Davin, Egil, Erik, Jens, Kristen, Mikkel, Mogens, Morten, Morten, Nils, Oleg, Ragnar, Rurik, Skjold, Stefan, Trigue, Varik
Female Names: Aleksia, Andras, Birget, Dakin, Faiga, Falda, Grette, Katarine, Kristen, Liese, Magna, Nissa, Rakel, Reidun, Saffi, Semine, Sula, Unni, Vanja, Ylwa

The Primary language is Vaasi