Kanjite

From World of Charun

"Jade requires chiselling before becoming a gem."
- Old Kanjite saying

Kanjite
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Kanjite


Contents

Description

The Kanjite live in an ancient, mystic society, ruled by a queen and the Hatriya warrior caste. They have conquered the better part of the Eastern Lands, save the northern steppes where the Tengar rule.

Founded in the Second Age, it is today the oldest of all surviving realms, with the possible exception of the Mórail Sun Glade. The old caste system remains, though the Imperial Caste dominates and those in it are made up from all castes, with loyalty to the Sapphire Queen and talent as the only perquisites. What is known about the society comes mostly from Imperial merchants and officials visiting Port Murajo. Magic and worship, it is said, are closely watched, with mage-assassin Vipers eliminating any threat to the Sapphire Queen.


Life expectancy and Fertility Rate

Adulthood: 15 years
Life expectancy: 70 years
Maximum lifespan: 120 years
Total fertility rate: The average number of children born to a female over her lifetime is 4-6.


Etymology

The meaning behind the word "kanjo" that "kanjite" is derived from is lost in history. However, scholars suspect that it is an old, honourary title used in the tribe that the founding queen, Balahpa, belonged to.


History and Origins

No records can reveal when Humans appeared in the Eastern Lands. What is known is that they could flourish as the rulers of the continent, without Mórail, Urman or Sauroids threatening their existence. Kanjo was one of their early realms. It was founded by a great warrior-queen by the name of Balahpa in 5332 II, quickly becoming a military force to count on under her rule. However, the territory they lived on was poorly suited for farming and during the follwing 500 years the Kanjite were more or less dependant on their neigbours for resources they lacked themselves, mainly agricultural products. It all changed when Kanjo broke all agreements and declared war on their neighbours in 5860 II, which led to a conflict of epic scale known as the War of Supremacy. When the dust cleared, the Kanjite stood as victors, with only the Tengar in the northern steppes still undefeated.

Controlling three quarters of the continent, as well as its resources, resulted in a furious growth in wealth and power for Kanjo. More than a millenium later, they only hold half the continent. They not only lost the old Nar-Ago lands to the Tengar -- they barely bothered to contest them. Meanwhile, they are ruled by a mysterious Sapphire Queen and her hand-picked Imperial Caste. It would be a serious mistake, however, to underestimate Kanjo, as there are very few anywhere in Charun who can rivel them for knowledge, wealth, or prowess.


Appearence

The Kanjite have black hair, brown eyes and light brown skin which gets easily tanned. Their priests are shaven-headed, regardless of gender. Kanjite men have long hair, which those of low and middle class wrap into turbans. Beards and moustasches are fairly common, with clean-shaven chins being popular among the young. The men wear loose-fitting trousers and sandals, along with either a vest or a loose tunic, with a broad girdle wrapped around their waist.


Language

Kanjan is an indigenous language, not related to other tongues.


Society

Governmental Form

Society is strictly organized in a system of five castes:

  • The Imperial Caste consists of the governing apparatus of the Sapphire Queen. All are picked for a combination of ability and unquestioned loyalty.
  • Vipra consists of the priests and scholars of Kanjo. They are the link between the mortals and the gods, thus considered the highest of the non-imperial castes - even above the Hatriya. However, they seldom interact directly with society and they are not allowed to own anything in person.
  • Hatriya are the warrior and ruling caste. All officers, officials, judges are Hatriya. They are considered nobility and the upper-class of Kanjo.
  • Ishya consists out of merchants, soldiers, magicians and artisans. They are the middle-class of Kanjo.
  • Ashudra is the agricultural, hunter, fisherman and labour caste. They are considered the lower-class of Kanjo.

Those who are outside the caste structure are known as Adava, or "invisible". Thieves, prostitutes and basicly all not making a living in a way fitting to the caste system are considered to be Adava. It is legal to kill any one of them in cold blood, with or without reason. The Yao people no longer form part of the adava... there are none left anywhere within Kanjo. All of them have either fled to the west, been sold into slavery in the west, or else were slaughtered (on or off the battlefield).

Kanjite society is culturally rich -- the same caste system which isolates its people from each other determines that, in addition to a very specific inter-caste protocol, each caste itself has its own mores and practices which are kept up with and evolve over time. Even the songs or poems a Kanjite knows are dictates by the caste into which he or she was born. Of these, the Ishya middle class is the most likely to see easily-traceable variations of fashion over time, particularly where tastes in music and artwork are concerned. The Ishya and Ashudra castes for the most part tend to be more easygoing than their social superiors when amongst their own peers, and while the Ishya are most likely to interact with foreigners, both castes tend to be more accomodating of western barbarians' social blunders than other Kanjite.


Economy

Kanjo is a fairly self-contained land of great richness. It has a well-developed agriculture, a textile industry, and an abundant supply of precious minerals. It also produces valuable spices, drugs and cosmetics.

Trade with the Western Lands further incrases the wealth of the nation. Most of it takes place on Merchant Isle, which is located immediately when passage is gained through Ormhand's Gap. The island is operated by an independent ruler whose security is guaranteed by Ulvhavn, where they ship all their goods for export. These are then bought by visiting Northman merchants, who transport them further to various ports.


Army

The Kanjite Imperial Army holds a staggering 70 000 soldiers, which makes it the largest force upon Charun. The army is led by commanders from the Hatriya caste, who have since birth been indoctrinated for the task of serving the Sapphire Queen.

More about: Royal Army of Kanjo


Technology

One would think that the Kanjite, being culturally dominant in the Eastern Lands, would possess a level of technology roughly equal to similarly-stable powers such as Mubuluk or the Isles. This is not the case. Kanjite technology is for the most part unremarkable -- the caste system and its emphasis on solving problems with specialized labor leads to an intellectual culture of "training the man" rather than "inventing a better tool." Kanjo is therefore marked by sophistication and elaboration of technique, rather than by technological innnovation. It is common to find specialists within Kanjite society who possess nearly unearthly skills at one specific practice -- and have absolutely no interest or ability in anything else.


Culture

Diet

The food of the Kanjite consist of parched grain and cakes, milk and milk products, and various fruits and vegetables. Consumption of meat is also common, at least among the upper classes.


Customs

Kanjite society is characterized by an agricultural lifestyle, but cattle rearing is quite common as well. Cattle and cows are held in high esteem, frequently appearing in religious hymns where goddesses are often compared to cows, and gods to bulls.

Water equals life for the Kanjite, as the fire represents death. Therefore birth is given underwater, in special containers, while the dead are burned in large funeral pyres along with private possessions.


Marriage

The Kanjite practice polygamy, where men are allowed to take as many wifes as they can support. Marriage across castes is not allowed, and such behaviour is punished through death. In order for a marriage to be valid it has to be blessed by a Kanjite priest of the Vipra caste.


Clothing

Kanjite women dress garments known as "sari". The sari is long strip of unstitched cloth, ranging from five to nine yards in length, which can be draped in various styles. The most common style is for the sari to be wrapped around the waist, with one end then draped over the shoulder. The sari is usually worn over a petticoat. Most women wear facial decorations in the form of paint and piercings. The facial decorations identify the caste they belong to.

Both sexes favour bright colours and jewellery to the extent they can afford it.


Arts

While Kanjo may lag behind the Isles and Mubuluk where technology is concerned, Kanjite artwork is in high demand across Charun and is widely acknowledged as both sophisticated and well-executed even amongst the Mórail -- any merchant who can obtain printed Kanjite silks for his booth is likely to do so. Hundreds of generations of various artistic traditions, with their own variations in style over the ages are all well-preserved and can be produced by Kanjite craftsmen as desired. Ironically, even the artistic traditions of the Tengar, Yao, and Nar-Agi can be found here and there within Kanjite art, though they tend to be niche specialties, and the Kanjite versions tend to be higher-quality than even the originals. It is well known amongst collectors hunting for Nar-Agi ceramics that specimens which are "too good" are more likely to be recent exports from Kanjo than actual antiques.

Epic poetry is a known fashion among castes in Kanjo, though the subject matter tends to vary wildly depending on the caste in question. With thousands of years of more or less stable history, there are literally hundreds of well-developed epics with variations which can be tracked by scholars. Naturally, the majority of them tend to be known by the Ishya and Adava (the former being particularly fond of various romances, and the latter tending to include any poetry it can find as a means of currying favor and making a few coins in the process).


Games

The Hatriya and Ashudra castes are both noted for their love of various games. The Hatriya specifically are fond of games of strategy involving ceramic tiles. These range from phenomenally-simple games involving a throw of the dice to move various tiles, to staggeringly-sophisticated games requiring years to master. "Go," which originated prior to the War of Succession among the Yao and Nar-Agi, survives amongst the Hatriya caste and is quite popular. The Ashudra caste tends to play more games of chance than of strategy, though gambling games involving the clever arrangement and rearrangement of stacks of tile are also very popular.


Weapons and Armour

It is not permitted to carry weapons unless serving in the army. The Hatriya are the exception, they are obliged to carry a curved sword, very much like a scimitar, and a dagger at all times. When battle approaches, they ride horses and don thick iron plates which cover their entire body. Some are armed with a lance and some with a sword. Kanjo barely noticed the cataclysm, and while the quality of its arms was never exceptionally high, it also has suffered no losses to its traditions, either. Arms of contemporary manufacture are therefore just as likely to be high-quality as Kanjite antiques.

Hayforks, hammers and other tools used in labour are allowed, as is the bow and arrow for the hunter.


Religion

Religion has a central part in Kanjite society, influencing everyone from the lower castes all the way to the queen herself. Both New Powers and theOld Gods gradually introduced by the Mórail are worshipped, all of whom are held as equals. The most common practice outside the Vipra caste of priests is the worship of several gods.

The following deities are woshipped within the castes:

  • Vipra, the priest caste. The priests do not, out of obvious reasons, worship several gods. Each priest dedicates himself to one deity alone. All powers worshipped among the castes have priests within the Vipra caste. The exception is the gods exclusevily foung among the Adava.
  • Hatriya, the ruling warrior caste worship mainly Tridhaman, who is the patron god of the Hatriya. Some also pray to Slaine, Haerian and Bhaaru.


Statistics

Location in Charun: Kanjo

Population: 1.500.000

Settlements: Balahpur (capital) 500.000, Gundagar 300.000, Jasaikal 120.000

Army: Royal Army of Kanjo: 70 000 soldiers

Government form: Absolute Monarchy


Player Characters

Kanjite names for your character: Kanjite Names


Faction

The Kanjite are part of the Civilized Faction, along with other human cultures and the Mórail.


Genetic Modifiers

Easterners are wiry and lithe, but lack the sheer muscle-power of some of the larger races.

The Easterner heritage has the following ingame effects:

Ability Modifiers:
+1 DEX, -1 STR


Cultural Modifiers

Hierarchic Society:
Generations of tradition have made those of the Kanjite well aware of their rank and station, as well as those of the people above and below them. Customs, respects and greetings proper each, and the necessities of respect, honest or false, have made them even-headed and even-tempered. Where ever they go, they can find their place and keep it with proper respects. The Kanjite gain a Skill Bonus: Diplomacy +2, Lore +2.


Classes

The Kanjite have the following cultural classes, which they can choose from during character creation. Following levels may be taken in the general classes (rogue, mystic, warrior) or in the cultural class chosen during character creation.


Languages

Native Tongue: Kanjan
You can always speak your native tongue as long as your INT is above 0, but you will not have any "language slots" at INT 7 or lower.
If your INT is 7 or lower you will not be able to understand languages other than your native tongue, regardless of whether you know them or not.

Faction Common Tongue: Islean
At INT 8 you will be given your first language slot, which if starting with INT 8 or higher will always be used for your faction's common tongue. If the native tongue is the same as the faction tongue, the slot can be used for a secondary language.

Secondary Languages: Tengaran
At INT 10 and each 2 INT after that you will be given another language slot, which can be used upon entering the game for the first time to pick a language from the secondary languages list. Language slots may also be used later to learn new languages.


Back to: Races | Human | Human Ethnic Groups | Easterner

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