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Humans

male human female human
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umans remember few of their own history. A reason may be the facts that humans even lead wars against other human cities (which resulted in the destruction of much knowledge), and only the richer or educated human societies or people teach their children reading and writing.

The first human writings have, at first, been a "simplified" version of elven characters and only few humans showed some interest in it: mostly kings and leaders, who wanted the possibility to send secret messages with a bearer who was unable to read (and know) the content of the message. Much later, a human king developed an easy–to–understand– writing based on simple symbols. It was capable of coding human, dwarven, elven as well as orcish tongues. It was told to all children in his country and because of its practical use became a common trading language. Old human dialects mixed with dwarven, elven, and some orcish words, and so, the now known common language has been formed. Humans speak the common language natively, sometimes influenced by local dialects.

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uman societies can take very different forms, dependent on the leadership and on neighbouring cultures. Some prefer to live amongst their own kind. To the most of them, the other races are strangers. This results from their short living span, compared to lizardmen, halflings, dwarves and especially elves. Amongst the uneducated, poor people, rumours about these strangers spread easily: Dwarves can turn everything (or everyone) into gold, lizardmen eat people, orcs steal and eat children, Elves can curse all people they don't like with a single look – this are common examples for these rumours. Other human societies are more open–minded and well–educated.

Humans seem to play an important role in trade. Many of their towns have been built along trade lines and roads, that way, they can offer rest and big trading places to all visitors. The most well know human societies are as follows:

"Barbaric" Cultures:

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eafolk (Norodaj) live in rougher, cold climates. They are dressed in furs, leather and rough, coloured cloth, wear long beards and prefer big swords, spears, axes and throwing axes as weapons. For writing, they use a rune alphabet similar to the dwarven one. They know the common language, but natively speak an own tongue, and some dwarven words. They inhabit rough, cold climated, often rocky areas between the sea and mountains. They often trade with dwarves, their neighbours in the mountains, and sometimes with lizards. Their main food source is the sea, they live from fishing and from herding sheep – and sometimes from raiding other human or orcish settlements located somewhere near the sea. They travel in long, agile rudder boats with only a thick cloth as roof and with a single sail. These boats have wolf heads at their tip, that can be used as a ram.

They pray to different gods, but their main gods are Tanora (Goddess of Sea), Irmorom (God of Trade and Craftsmanship) and Malachín (God of Battle and Hunting). They fear magic and some of them are afraid of elves: Travelling elven ships appear and vanish with the mist and with "unnatural" speed, without rudders. They are thought to be ghost ships.

Norodaj live in big family clans. The clan leader is determined in a contest of knowledge and fight, that is held if a leader becomes old. The winner of this contest, called "champion", than fights the old leader. In some rare cases this may be a fight to death. If the old leader wants to retreat, it is only a symbolic fight. The leader (or ex–leader) has the right to have up to three wives, all other men can only marry one time. Marriages last a whole life, "dishonoured" men who have been betrayed normally challenge the other man for a duel till death. If a man treats his wife or children badly, he will be exiled. Corpses of dead ones are burned in a ritual, on a pile of wood. The ashes are thrown into the sea and a small piece of the skull will be kept and mounted into the ram of a new boat. Every tribe has a spirit man, a kind of shaman or priest.

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lainfolk (Serinjah) live on big plains. They raise horses and cows, and live in loose villages with wooden houses. They are organised in clans and are known to be excellent riders, tamers, hunters and fighters. Serinjah prefer fighting with spears, bows, long swords, knives, throwing stars and throwing knives, and often wear hard leather or wooden armours. They seldom choose metal armours because of their weight and lack of flexibility. The Serinjah have developed a type of unarmed combat, where elbows, knees, hands and feet are used as effective weapons – some movements are a little similar to the acrobatics of elven war dancers.

The common language is known to the Plainfolk, but natively they speak an own ancient human dialect, and often a little elven tongue. They often trade with Elves, orcs and other humans. Their main God is Malachín, the God of Battle and Hunting, but they pray to all younger gods too. Serinjah Clans are always lead by three people: A young man and woman (often an amazon), and an old woman. The plainfolk believe in the power of the land, and some know druid magic well. Common magic is well known to them, some even prefer a life as sorcerer, witch or shaman.

Plainfolk humans do not know marriage but the promise to stay with one person. Dead people are buried in graves with small stones marking them, a celebration is held when grass has overgrown the grave: Live defeats death, nature wins and closes the circle of life.

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lainfolk (Ama–shoon) live in forest and plain areas near the Plainfolk. They are organized in tribes. These tribes are all female, expect of children aged below four. The male children older than four years are brought to a settlement of Serinjah, where they will be raised by their fathers.

Amazons live like and sometimes with Serinjah, but have devoted their life to fight and to protect the land. They follow the goddess Findari, the goddess of air (and the four winds). They are often experts with bow and spear, sling, swords and daggers, and throwing stars. They prefer hard leather or wooden armour and ride their horses bareback (without saddle), some of them may prefer iron armour too. It is said that an Amazon can also fight with her bare hands, if necessary. Amazons are lead by one female leader, who sometimes is a Findari Priest. Amazons tend to use aggressive as well as healing magic.

"Civilized" Cultures:

These cultures speak the common language natively. Common things: Marriages are meant for life, but can be released under certain circumstances.

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ightfolk (Salkamaerian)They live in towns, villages and castles. The origin of the Salkamaerian way of life is the old city Salkamar. It is also the origin of the common language and writing system.

The Salkamaerian way of life means respect, honour, and loyalty. It is a noble one. All children learn reading and writing. Slavery is forbidden by law and a military education is offered to all members of poorer families for free. The Salkamaerian kings and nobles are understand to be representatives of the people and are often wise and good regents. Cities are ruled by male or female lords; males and females have equal rights. The Salkamaerian culture is open to strangers, and without prejudice.

Salkamaerian poets, bards and philosophers are well known to the world, as well as Salkamaerian paladins, who fight for their honourable virtues and humanity. Zhambra, Oldra, Sirani, Elara and Malachín are the most supported gods in Salkamaerian towns.

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traightfolk (Albarian) They live in small towns, villages and castles. Their life is ruled by male nobles, these nobles own all land and the people on it. More than 90% of all people are bondsmen, the rest are nobles. A noble can call every bondsman he owns to arms or to personal service. Bondsmen who do not obey their commands, are often punished hard.

Albarian females belong to their husband or their father, and to their lord – the male nobles still have the right of the first night. Female goddesses are not prayed to in the Albaerian culture.

The Albarian way of life has its origin in the city Albar, it is a little older than the Salkamaerian way and developed into the opposite direction. Since bondsmen sometimes tend to start rebellions, areas with Albarian lordship have become a little rarer over time. The main gods vary in the different villages, nobles follow their own choice.

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reefolk (Gynkeesh) They live in independent towns, villages and castles. Slavery is forbidden by law, but sometimes very rich people tend to forget that without a second thought. Gynkeesh people are ruled by the free market, their towns are ruled by merchant guilds and town majors. Their armies and guards consist of paid mercenaries. Poor people live in slums, some become beggars or join one of the thief’s guilds. Most Gynkeesh villages have a population of mixed races. Gynkeesh villages are sometimes called "junkyard" or "pool of sin" for obvious reasons.

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