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createvmind
Senior Scribe

490 Posts

Posted - 23 May 2007 :  02:10:54  Show Profile  Visit createvmind's Homepage Send createvmind a Private Message
Hello All,

I have a rather simple question I think, how many pages of writing does one get out of a jar of ink, do you have any exotic inks you cold speak with cost possibly, I know you mentioned something about squid ink before I think. Trying to determine when my dear PC will run out of ink since he's always writing things down yet never buying more ink.
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Jamallo Kreen
Master of Realmslore

USA
1537 Posts

Posted - 23 May 2007 :  03:12:30  Show Profile  Visit Jamallo Kreen's Homepage Send Jamallo Kreen a Private Message
quote:
Originally posted by createvmind

Hello All,

I have a rather simple question I think, how many pages of writing does one get out of a jar of ink, do you have any exotic inks you cold speak with cost possibly, I know you mentioned something about squid ink before I think. Trying to determine when my dear PC will run out of ink since he's always writing things down yet never buying more ink.



The prohibited, banned, and thoroughly naughty Volo's Guide to All Things Magical has much information on such things as giant squid sepia and what-not. It's free at Wizards. Someone will probably post a link to it within the next day or so.


I have a mouth, but I am in a library and must not scream.


Feed the poor and stroke your ego, too: http://www.freerice.com/index.php.

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turox
Learned Scribe

USA
145 Posts

Posted - 23 May 2007 :  03:19:54  Show Profile  Visit turox's Homepage Send turox a Private Message
This would be the place Jamallo is talking about. Wizards Download Page

Turox Antas Dragonslayer -
"People will believe anything they want to believe, or fear to believe."
Wizard's First Rule: Chapter 36, Page #397, US Hard Cover (revealed by Zeddicus Zu'l Zorander).
Explanation by Zeddicus Zu'l Zorander: "People are stupid; given proper motivation, almost anyone will believe almost anything. Because people are stupid, they will believe a lie because they want to believe it's true, or because they are afraid it might be true. People’s heads are full of knowledge, facts, and beliefs, and most of it is false, yet they think it all true. People are stupid; they can only rarely tell the difference between a lie and the truth, and yet they are confident they can, and so are all the easier to fool."
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Jamallo Kreen
Master of Realmslore

USA
1537 Posts

Posted - 23 May 2007 :  03:25:31  Show Profile  Visit Jamallo Kreen's Homepage Send Jamallo Kreen a Private Message
quote:
Originally posted by The Hooded One

Hail and well met, fellow scribes. Ed responds to Jamallo Kreen re. this: “Ed, would "consort" then be the answer to my query about what those who are bedded, but not wedded, are called. In 1358, would Laeral have been described as Khelben's "consort" in polite circles? What about impolite circles?”
Which is itself a followup to JK’s earlier post: “Well met! Ed, tell us, if you will, what the polite forms of address are in various lands for those who are openly bedded, but not wedded. For instance (and I use feminine forms solely because European languages are geared towards considering a female participant in a love {or sex} relationship as subordinate to a male): how does one introduce one's acknowledged mistress if one is known to be married to another person?

(snip)

So saith Ed. Who warmed me up a bit at the end, there. What he says about being formally introduced is quite true; I recall a Realmsplay session at which two Knights of Myth Drannor were revealed when a tapestry fell during a feast, both nude and making love energetically, and the servant glided forward to calmly introduce them by name, and the term: “evident companions of the moment to each other.”
love to all (and frequently!),
THO




Oh, Gentles, you amuse me so!

The question remains, though, as to what a male who was the bedmate (but not husband) and the possible social inferior of a woman would be called? I'd think that in Cormyr and Waterdeep (especially) folk would be unwilling to introduce some bloke as "Lord Antsinpants" only because he's intimate with a woman who may very well have a title of her own. (As in my earlier post, "Her Royal Majesty, the Simbul of Aglarond ... and boy toy.") Do please enlighten us further, Master of the Green Wood, and dear Lady Herald.




I have a mouth, but I am in a library and must not scream.


Feed the poor and stroke your ego, too: http://www.freerice.com/index.php.

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Jamallo Kreen
Master of Realmslore

USA
1537 Posts

Posted - 23 May 2007 :  03:32:35  Show Profile  Visit Jamallo Kreen's Homepage Send Jamallo Kreen a Private Message
quote:
Originally posted by Kuje

Ello's Ed,

I was curious about if you could supply some differences between the pirates of the Nelanther Isles and the pirates in the Sea of Fallen Stars and Realmspace pirates.

Specifically, I was wondering if you could details some superstitions of the three types, plus any pirate codes that they have? I could use some of Earth's pirate superstitions and codes but some of them make no sense for FR, so I was hoping for some FR answers.

And no, I wasn't watching Pirate's of the Carribean. (sp?) I was reading some history books on pirates of our history, just in case someone asks. :)



Whilst waiting for Ed, one could do worse than read the Conan RPG supplement, The Pirate Isles, which has a full page of the customs and superstitions of three (four?) major pirate groups of the Hyborian Age. While in no way directly related to the Realms, one might find something there which would be worth injecting into a game session.

To clarify, by "pirate codes" do you mean piratical contracts and charters, or piratical signalling systems? Both are covered in Darlage's book, and a clarification might elicit an answer from Ed which is more "on point" (and, hopefully, includes even more lore than requested!).




I have a mouth, but I am in a library and must not scream.


Feed the poor and stroke your ego, too: http://www.freerice.com/index.php.


Edited by - Jamallo Kreen on 23 May 2007 03:46:42
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Jamallo Kreen
Master of Realmslore

USA
1537 Posts

Posted - 23 May 2007 :  03:36:04  Show Profile  Visit Jamallo Kreen's Homepage Send Jamallo Kreen a Private Message
Well met!

I've been reading The Further Adventures of Beowulf this week, and I have a question about the wintery scenes at the beginning of "B and the Wraith": when writing it, Ed, were you influenced by Algernon Blackwood's "Wendigo"? You both seem to have captured (what I imagine is) the true feel of a northern, wintery clime, whether Canada or Scandinavia.


I have a mouth, but I am in a library and must not scream.


Feed the poor and stroke your ego, too: http://www.freerice.com/index.php.

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Jamallo Kreen
Master of Realmslore

USA
1537 Posts

Posted - 23 May 2007 :  03:43:08  Show Profile  Visit Jamallo Kreen's Homepage Send Jamallo Kreen a Private Message
quote:
Originally posted by turox

This would be the place Jamallo is talking about. Wizards Download Page



Merci.

Does anyone know why Volo's Guide to the Sword Coast isn't available as a free download when three other Volo books are?


I have a mouth, but I am in a library and must not scream.


Feed the poor and stroke your ego, too: http://www.freerice.com/index.php.

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createvmind
Senior Scribe

490 Posts

Posted - 23 May 2007 :  03:51:23  Show Profile  Visit createvmind's Homepage Send createvmind a Private Message
Hello again,

As a slight add-on to my most recent question, Ed how would you describe the effects to a player suffering Wisdom or Intelligence damage for first time and the difference between the two, and do you visualize Charisma damage as more than just damage to one's apperance? iF a person suffers Wis and Int damage will one effect mask the other so the person may be unaware of how badly they are affected.

This is more in regards to non spellcasting classes who obviously become aware rather quickly due to spells affected.

Thanks
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Wooly Rupert
Master of Mischief
Moderator

USA
30340 Posts

Posted - 23 May 2007 :  04:14:16  Show Profile Send Wooly Rupert a Private Message
quote:
Originally posted by Jamallo Kreen

quote:
Originally posted by turox

This would be the place Jamallo is talking about. Wizards Download Page



Merci.

Does anyone know why Volo's Guide to the Sword Coast isn't available as a free download when three other Volo books are?



Volo's Guide to Waterdeep isn't free, either. And Volo's Guide to Baldur's Gate II isn't available as a download, at all.

Candlekeep Forums Moderator

Candlekeep - The Library of Forgotten Realms Lore
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-- Candlekeep Forum Code of Conduct

Editor and scribe for The Candlekeep Compendium

I am the Giant Space Hamster of Ill Omen!
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Kuje
Great Reader

USA
7915 Posts

Posted - 23 May 2007 :  04:27:33  Show Profile  Send Kuje an AOL message  Click to see Kuje's MSN Messenger address  Send Kuje a Yahoo! Message Send Kuje a Private Message
quote:
Originally posted by Jamallo Kreen

quote:
Originally posted by Kuje

Ello's Ed,

I was curious about if you could supply some differences between the pirates of the Nelanther Isles and the pirates in the Sea of Fallen Stars and Realmspace pirates.

Specifically, I was wondering if you could details some superstitions of the three types, plus any pirate codes that they have? I could use some of Earth's pirate superstitions and codes but some of them make no sense for FR, so I was hoping for some FR answers.

And no, I wasn't watching Pirate's of the Carribean. (sp?) I was reading some history books on pirates of our history, just in case someone asks. :)



To clarify, by "pirate codes" do you mean piratical contracts and charters, or piratical signalling systems? Both are covered in Darlage's book, and a clarification might elicit an answer from Ed which is more "on point" (and, hopefully, includes even more lore than requested!).




Eh, my fault. I meant basically a pirate code of conduct. The book I was reading had a sample of a pirate code. I.E. no woman on board, less they were slaves or there to be.... raped. Or an another example, who got what plunder and how much, etc.

For some of us, books are as important as almost anything else on earth. What a miracle it is that out of these small, flat, rigid squares of paper unfolds world after world, worlds that sing to you, comfort and quiet and excite you... Books are full of the things that you don't get in real life - wonderful, lyrical language, for instance, right off the bat. - Anne Lamott, Bird by Bird

My Goodreads page: http://www.goodreads.com/kuje

Scribe for the Candlekeep Compendium

Edited by - Kuje on 23 May 2007 04:31:52
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Jorkens
Great Reader

Norway
2950 Posts

Posted - 23 May 2007 :  10:39:15  Show Profile Send Jorkens a Private Message
On the subject of the Nelanther pirates. I just got to thinking; in the 2ed. Campaign setting the pirates where described as consisting mainly of humanoids, whilst later the Nelanther pirates became a human organisation. I am curious as to what where the original pirates in Eds campaign?
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The Hooded One
Lady Herald of Realmslore

5043 Posts

Posted - 23 May 2007 :  15:00:13  Show Profile  Visit The Hooded One's Homepage Send The Hooded One a Private Message
Hello again, scribes. I bring you Ed’s response to Zandilar’s query on behalf of those on (gasp) the OTHER forums: “Heya, Passing along a question from those other forums... some regulars would like to know what the difference between the title Coronal and King/Queen are. They would also like to know anything you can tell us about what other royal/noble titles that are held by the elven people.
Thanks!”
Ed replies:



I’m afraid I can’t delve deeply into other elven noble and royal titles, thanks to NDAs (most of my lore on the subject was submitted to TSR, now WotC, years ago, and thus belongs to them; it can’t be published except by them). However, I can answer the narrower aspect of this question, to whit: in the Realms, the terms King, Queen, Prince and Princess all have elven linguistic roots, and are still used by elves of many communities. A few ancient elven titles were revived in Cormanthyr in reverence to the “lost glories” of elder elven realms. These include:
• Coronal (literal meaning ‘wise elder’ but really meaning: chief justice, mayor, and later emperor) pronounced: “core-OH-nul”] [plural form: coronals]
• Lusabrar (literal meaning ‘sword of the people’ but really meaning: war-leader; that is: A war-leader or commander rather than THE war-leader or commander-in-chief, because there would usually be multiple lusabren) [pronounced: “luhss-AB-rar”] [plural form: lusbaren]
• Mraerital (literal meaning ‘vigilance of the people’ but really meaning envoy, herald, and observer; watching, witnessing [including formal agreements], and gathering intelligence openly, never stealthy spying) [pronounced: “mur-AIR-it-all”] [plural form: Mraeritar]



So saith Ed. Creator of Myth Drannor, these titles, and indeed Ye Whole Balle of Waxe.
love to all,
THO
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Skeptic
Master of Realmslore

Canada
1273 Posts

Posted - 23 May 2007 :  15:18:31  Show Profile Send Skeptic a Private Message
quote:
Originally posted by The Hooded One

I’m afraid I can’t delve deeply into other elven noble and royal titles, thanks to NDAs (most of my lore on the subject was submitted to TSR, now WotC, years ago, and thus belongs to them; it can’t be published except by them).


Could Ed suggest an "From the archives" series to WoTC for the new Digital Initiative ?
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The Hooded One
Lady Herald of Realmslore

5043 Posts

Posted - 23 May 2007 :  15:27:27  Show Profile  Visit The Hooded One's Homepage Send The Hooded One a Private Message
I discussed just this with Ed, and he told me he's been far too busy with major WotC projects (as you know, from the sudden disappearance of "Realmslore," "Waterdeep News," and "Border Kingdoms" entries) to talk to anyone at Wizards about this...yet.
However, he certainly intends to talk to folks at Wizards; for one thing, there's that entire city of Teziir article to get into the hands of Realms gamers somehow, if there's no room for it in the last few print issues of DRAGON.
So, stay tuned . . .
love,
THO
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AlorinDawn
Learned Scribe

USA
312 Posts

Posted - 23 May 2007 :  15:39:11  Show Profile  Visit AlorinDawn's Homepage  Click to see AlorinDawn's MSN Messenger address Send AlorinDawn a Private Message
Man....we need a definitive hardback from WotC on the elves of Faerun. Someone go smack them and make WotC comply! I know it's a dead horse that's been kicked well past freshness, but I can't help think that they aren't listening to the thuds. Out with the "super hardback half adventure half source book and bring back the source book of years past.

Currently reading: Eyes of The Dragon by Stephen King

Long live Sniffy Wigglebottom
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Skeptic
Master of Realmslore

Canada
1273 Posts

Posted - 23 May 2007 :  16:42:25  Show Profile Send Skeptic a Private Message
quote:
Originally posted by The Hooded One

I discussed just this with Ed, and he told me he's been far too busy with major WotC projects (as you know, from the sudden disappearance of "Realmslore," "Waterdeep News," and "Border Kingdoms" entries) to talk to anyone at Wizards about this...yet.
However, he certainly intends to talk to folks at Wizards;



Projects already announced (like KoMD trilogy, Grand history of the realms, Undermountain, etc.) or other projects ?

Edited by - Skeptic on 23 May 2007 16:43:14
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Jamallo Kreen
Master of Realmslore

USA
1537 Posts

Posted - 23 May 2007 :  18:34:12  Show Profile  Visit Jamallo Kreen's Homepage Send Jamallo Kreen a Private Message
quote:
Originally posted by The Hooded One

I discussed just this with Ed, and he told me he's been far too busy with major WotC projects (as you know, from the sudden disappearance of "Realmslore," "Waterdeep News," and "Border Kingdoms" entries) to talk to anyone at Wizards about this...yet.
However, he certainly intends to talk to folks at Wizards; for one thing, there's that entire city of Teziir article to get into the hands of Realms gamers somehow, if there's no room for it in the last few print issues of DRAGON.
So, stay tuned . . .
love,
THO



Teziir? Where? Where? Where?!

I just had my players go through the Teziir adventure from Pirates of the Fallen Stars, but turned it on its head so that the PCs passed through Teziir after it was raided, and then laid a clever ambush for the pirate fleet just off the coast. Not quite as written, I know, but I always tell my players not to rely on published materials, if only because PCs can (and will!) change how Realms events unfold, and if they don't, I do.

At the moment the leaders of Teziir aren't quite sure whether to be grateful to the PCs for capturing Vurgrom "the Mighty" and his fleet, or furious because the PCs now have all of the plunder taken from Teziir and won't give it back (and have, in fact, already sold all of the grain which was stolen from Teziir to Tuigan-harassed Telflamm, whose rulers are buying up every scrap of food which they can lay their hands upon).

Since kuje has asked questions piratical, perhaps Ed may be induced to tell us the various "national" rules for returning stolen pirate booty. I would expect Calimshan and Cormyr to insist upon the return of stolen wealth recaptured by "privateers," simply beause they are strong enough to demand the return of what they see as theirs. Other than loot plundered from the mighty naval powers, is there any sort of legal rule or general principle of war which enables small (and relatively defenseless) cities, such as Teziir, to assert their rights of previous ownership versus those two sacred laws of adventuring, "Finder's keepers, losers weepers," and, of course, "Possession is nine-tenths of the law"?


I have a mouth, but I am in a library and must not scream.


Feed the poor and stroke your ego, too: http://www.freerice.com/index.php.


Edited by - Jamallo Kreen on 26 May 2007 19:06:12
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Jamallo Kreen
Master of Realmslore

USA
1537 Posts

Posted - 23 May 2007 :  19:38:15  Show Profile  Visit Jamallo Kreen's Homepage Send Jamallo Kreen a Private Message
I've a question regarding the Archivist class. Ed's made it abundantly clear in the past that divine spells must come for Powers (gods or powerful demons or devils), so how does the Archivist fit into the scheme of things? Is he a cleric of Oghma or Thoth or whomever, or does he cast arcane versions of divine spells, or has he sussed to the fact that all magic on Toril is Weave- (or Shadow-)weave based, and that it is possible to go through the motions of a divine spell and obtain a spell-like effect without the intervention of either deities or demons? Inquiring DMs want to know!



I have a mouth, but I am in a library and must not scream.


Feed the poor and stroke your ego, too: http://www.freerice.com/index.php.

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Foxhelm
Senior Scribe

Canada
592 Posts

Posted - 23 May 2007 :  20:37:33  Show Profile  Click to see Foxhelm's MSN Messenger address  Send Foxhelm a Yahoo! Message Send Foxhelm a Private Message
quote:
Originally posted by Jamallo Kreen

I've a question regarding the Archivist class. Ed's made it abundantly clear in the past that divine spells must come for Powers (gods or powerful demons or devils), so how does the Archivist fit into the scheme of things? Is he a cleric of Oghma or Thoth or whomever, or does he cast arcane versions of divine spells, or has he sussed to the fact that all magic on Toril is Weave- (or Shadow-)weave based, and that it is possible to go through the motions of a divine spell and obtain a spell-like effect without the intervention of either deities or demons? Inquiring DMs want to know!





It has been explained with the article here:

http://www.wizards.com/default.asp?x=dnd/frcc/20070509

Eytan Bernstein is explaining all of the alterntive class with these articles. Included are Archivist orders to Savras, Oghma and Thoth. Including uses Archivist without using the class.

Ed Greenwood! The Solution... and Cause of all the Realms Problems!

Edited by - Foxhelm on 23 May 2007 20:52:36
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The Hooded One
Lady Herald of Realmslore

5043 Posts

Posted - 24 May 2007 :  15:30:18  Show Profile  Visit The Hooded One's Homepage Send The Hooded One a Private Message
Hello again, all. This time Ed responds to Mandras, re. this query: “Hello Ed, Could You help me out with a minor detail about Sword Coast area:
What does the banner and trail signs of Baldur's Gate Merchant's Guild look like? I have not been able to find these in any official material.
Best Regards, Mandras”
Ed replies:



Many trading costers and caravan companies operate through Baldur’s Gate, but aren’t guilded in the city, and many of the merchants of the Gate aren’t guilded. The Merchants’ League has an elaborate coat of arms but is NOT a guild, and has flown an everchanging assortment of banners over the years (usually changing to mark a new discovery); the banner currently in use is a long pennant displaying three simple horizontal stripes: two metallic ones with a scarlet one between them.
Baldur’s Gate has no single “Merchant’s Guild” (though it once did), but rather has a history of unstable (short-lived, merging and collapsing, not very powerful) guilds (and there’s evidence that the local temple of Gond and various city leaders work to keep things that way, wanting to avoid a local situation of powerful, well-established guilds). There are currently nine local guilds.
The most powerful is the “Dark Guild” (of thieves, assassins, smugglers, and fences; see FRA for more details), that has no banner and no trail signs, but uses mud to mark city walls with a recognition symbol (meet here, this is the place to “hit,” look for a message here) consisting of an X with a barbed fish-hook running straight down from the center of the X, twice the length of the X-strokes, and then curving down, around, and up to the left.
The Gate is also home to (listed in descending order of wealth, size, and prominence) the Harborhands’ Guild, the Shipwrights Guild, the Wheelwrights’ Guild, the Seafarers’ Guild, the Mercantile Guild, the Weaponsmiths’ Guild, the Leatherers’ Guild, and the Falconers’ Guild.

Harborhands’ Guild: a large and busy guild of hard-working, “hand me no foolishness” dockside and warehouse loaders and unloaders (much wealth, can sometimes be roused to political interference or just to trash the home or shop of someone who’s seen as actively evil towards others in the city); banner: blue field, triangle of black stacked chests cradled in two cupped, brown hands; trail sign: three identical stacked chests, in a triangle (one centered atop two).

Shipwrights Guild: a small, wealthy, quiet association of ship-builders and “refitters” (repairers) and sailmakers (who for years have employed spies to watch over all manner of city dealings, so as to quietly invest in a great range of things; the true rival of the Dark Guild, who have several times fought the Dark Guild to a truce behind the scenes by hiring outlander adventurers, especially wizards and poisoners, to “beat the Darks at their own dirty games,” and as a result are respected and largely left alone by the Darks today); banner: triangle of white (sail) on a blue field (sea), brown hulls superimposed on shield: bowsprit-to-left side view of hull, with cross-section or “head-on” second hull astern of first; trail sign: stylized ship (hull with bowsprit to the left, bellying arc of sail “floating” above it (no mast or rigging shown, bulge of sail is to the left).

Wheelwrights’ Guild: busy fellowship of makers and repairers of wagons, carts, and capstan and pulley wheels for cranes, ships, and mills (little political will or common clout, more of an excuse to gather to drink, gossip, and complain than anything else); banner: light brown, side-on wooden wagon wheel of heavy construction and six spokes, on a white field; trail sign: wheel (circle of six spokes).

Seafarers’ Guild: registry of sailors, with rankings related to experience and training, and pay rates to match (established by merchant fleet owners and private ship captains to keep pirates off crews, and is now a front for the Dark Guild, who also wants to keep pirates off crews and thus out of influence in Baldur’s Gate); banner: blue field, diagonal strand of light brown rope, upper left to lower right, grasped in middle by dark brown right hand (back to viewer, fingers and thumb hidden, arm beyond wrist not shown); trail sign: triangle (sail) crossed by diagonal upper-left-to-lower-right line (rope).

Mercantile Guild: successor to the “Merchant’s Guild,” this is a loose association of shopkeepers who meet to determine common sizes, weights, and measures, accepted local nomenclature (what is “fresh”? what does “custom-crafted” really mean?), and measures (like the local law to ‘move on’ after a time) to keep street-cart vendors from competing equally with shopkeepers without paying the same fees and taxes; banner: brown ship on calm blue sea, with bowsprit to the left and hull heaped high with gold; trail sign: circle of ten coins around capital letters “BG.”

Weaponsmiths’ Guild: small, tradition-bound guild of local makers of armor, bladed weapons, and wooden handles for all manner of weapons and tools, primarily concerned with establishing and enforcing standards and labelling “inferior outland goods” as such (almost exclusively human male membership, who hold many hard-drinking meetings at their hall); banner: dark gray face-on warriors’ helm on a light gray field; trail sign: plain shield outline with “BG” written inside it (in capital letters).

Leatherers’ Guild: makers of boots, saddles, and more recently gloves, belts, scabbards, and harness for all manner of draft beasts and mounts (large and fractious fellowship of “upstart” non-human and female members challenging a few haughty old families who want to remain in control; there’s much arguing over tanning, proper leathers and design); banner: scarlet field with stylized brown side-on saddle (capital letter “D” with straight back uppermost, curve at bottom, entire shape “filled in”) crossed by a vertical line of three gold coins; trail sign: outline of tall boot, toe to left, with “BG” written across top in capital letters.

Falconers’ Guild: despite its name and heraldry, this guild really represents not just the four falcon sellers/breeders/trainers in the city, but also all manner of adventurers, hireswords, sages, wizards for hire, and alchemists (and spends much of its time fighting the influence of the local temple of Gond); banner: blue field, with red chevron (point to the left) on it, and on that a black falcon’s head, side-on with beak to the left and one gold, black-pupilled eye staring out at viewer; trail sign: “V” of spread falcon’s wings, with capital-letters “BG” written where they meet.


So saith Ed. Who is still struggling to get some of his many, many projects finished.
And an apology to all scribes: I may have misled you regarding the Spin A Yarn 06 story. Ed certainly sent it off back in October, but never received any word that it had been received (nor a bounceback of his e-mail). Exhibiting remarkable foolishness, I trusted the WotC website search function to check for it (nothing in Nov or Dec, but a hit in January), and never surfed to the actual page, to read its electronic version (I read the original when visiting Ed). Now it doesn't even show up in the search strings, so I guess it was a mislabeled flag - - or it DID get put up, but has since been lost.
Hmm. Stay tuned.
love to all,
THO
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The Hooded One
Lady Herald of Realmslore

5043 Posts

Posted - 24 May 2007 :  15:36:04  Show Profile  Visit The Hooded One's Homepage Send The Hooded One a Private Message
Skeptic, your question: "Projects already announced (like KoMD trilogy, Grand history of the realms, Undermountain, etc.) or other projects ?" is quite understandable, but it's also one of those "Ed can't answer for NDA reasons" queries. Which stance, of course, is really an answer in its own right.
love,
THO
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Kuje
Great Reader

USA
7915 Posts

Posted - 24 May 2007 :  16:05:59  Show Profile  Send Kuje an AOL message  Click to see Kuje's MSN Messenger address  Send Kuje a Yahoo! Message Send Kuje a Private Message
My thanks on the SaY06 update. Will wait to see if it appears or if either of you get word on what happened with it.

For some of us, books are as important as almost anything else on earth. What a miracle it is that out of these small, flat, rigid squares of paper unfolds world after world, worlds that sing to you, comfort and quiet and excite you... Books are full of the things that you don't get in real life - wonderful, lyrical language, for instance, right off the bat. - Anne Lamott, Bird by Bird

My Goodreads page: http://www.goodreads.com/kuje

Scribe for the Candlekeep Compendium
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The Sage
Procrastinator Most High
Moderator

Australia
31690 Posts

Posted - 24 May 2007 :  16:24:53  Show Profile  Send The Sage an AOL message  Click to see The Sage's MSN Messenger address  Send The Sage a Yahoo! Message Send The Sage a Private Message
quote:
Originally posted by The Hooded One

And an apology to all scribes: I may have misled you regarding the Spin A Yarn 06 story. Ed certainly sent it off back in October, but never received any word that it had been received (nor a bounceback of his e-mail). Exhibiting remarkable foolishness, I trusted the WotC website search function to check for it (nothing in Nov or Dec, but a hit in January), and never surfed to the actual page, to read its electronic version (I read the original when visiting Ed). Now it doesn't even show up in the search strings, so I guess it was a mislabeled flag - - or it DID get put up, but has since been lost.
Hmm. Stay tuned.
love to all,
THO
I had a feeling it may have been something like that, which was why I suggested the web error earlier.

Anyways, I'm looking forward to any news. My thanks THO.

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The Hooded One
Lady Herald of Realmslore

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Posted - 25 May 2007 :  02:02:48  Show Profile  Visit The Hooded One's Homepage Send The Hooded One a Private Message
Hello, all. This time I bring a lore reply from the Master of the Realms to scribe Jamallo Kreen, regarding this post: “Ahem. A series of questions, Ed, if you don't mind: will you please describe for us the process of wine-making in Faerun and in the Utter East from grapes to drinking jack (or tankard or mug or -- rarely -- glass)? Wine bottles are repeatedly mentioned in Realms fiction, and I think corks have also been mentioned, but putting wine into bottles and then corking the bottles is a very advanced and sophisticated (if simple) technology, yet it exists in Faerun, doesn't it? What about in the Shou empire? Are there certain regions which are known internationally for producing fine wines? Are "vintage years" ever declared and marked on the bottles, or is the year always marked -- or never? Is wine aged in wooden casks, and if so, do some areas still use amphorae? Do wine bottles have standardized paper (or parchment or whatever) labels, unique to a particular grower or reegion or shipper? If wines are labelled, are wines from some regions or of some varieties more highly prized than others? When grape wine is transported by ship or by caravan, perhaps across hundreds of miles in varying weather conditions, how is it shipped? (In a game mechanical context, in the Conan RPG book on piracy, loot is classified according as various forms of "cargo," and in most cases a cargo common in one region is considered "uncommon" and thus ten times more valuable in some other region. Does that translate well to the Realms, i.e. if a pirate in the Dragon Reach nets a cargo of local Cormyrean wine, is he going to have a more valuable wine if he sells it in Chessenta, or is he just going to have a hold full of vinegar?)
In "civilized" cuisines, is it commonly recognized that some wines, or types of wine, go better with some foods than with others? (I insert an aside here, in light of this week's episode of "Desperate Housewives," and considering what is coming out of Maztica nowadays: a celebrated wine expert once compiled a list of foods with suggested wines to accompany the food, and the list included this entry: "Chocolate -- No wine goes with it.") To venture a bit aside, since some brandies most definitely "go" with" chocolate, is the distillation of wine into spiritous liquors practiced in Faerun, or are the various liquers sipped by the gossips of Cormyr something less than eighty proof? Aurora sells distillation equipment in her catalog's wizard's section, but has anyone ever thought to distill wine, and if so, when did that momentous breakthrough first occur? If alcohol is distilled, is it recognized as an external wound cleaner and an antiseptic (a "blood purifier," perhaps), or does it remain an alchemical curiosity?”
Ed replies:



A large series of questions, indeed. :}
I’ve covered most of these queries elsewhere in many places over many years, so I’m going to give a fast, “light” version of specific replies here; the important thing to remember is that wine-making is just as varied and sophisticated in the Realms as it is in the real-world (minus all the most modern plastic and metal apparatus), okay?
In general, wine is grown locally on poor soils (clay, hillsides, etc.) just as in the real world, grapes are gathered and pressed (by treading barefoot on them in vats), then poured through loose-weave cloth screens to get rid of most of the skins, then doctored with honey (for sugar), blending, etc. and left to ferment in wooden casks, and later (usually after harvest, as winter draws in) “aired” into pans for further blending or treatment, and transfer into smaller travelling casks and containers (such as, yes, amphorae and other clay vessels, glass bottles, “handkegs,” and so on). Wine is usually drunk by the mug (wooden or ceramic) in poor rural areas, flagon (metal cup), jack (horn or horn-shaped metal or ceramic container, the latter sorts often fashioned with “feet” to let it stand upright), or tallglass (drinking-vessel made of blown glass).
Yes, bottles are corked, or stuffed with whittled wooden corks; either sort is then sealed with wax, and sometimes then “oversealed” with pitch.
So yes, all of this goes on in the Realms. I disagree that this is a “very advanced and sophisticated technology.” Modern real-world practitioners and especially “wine snobs” have made it so, but they’re really refining or arguing over the details of very simple processes that have been done for centuries, and can be done by anyone (albeit with many “exploding bottle” and “tainted wine” disasters until one learns what to do and not to do); reeds will serve as tubing, wine won’t go bad if it’s not kept too long (and most wine in the Realms is drunk “raw” or within the same summer and autumn as it’s made), and so on. Hey, if my Dad could make wine (with me helping, as a child) and my aunts help on the farm doing it when they were four, five, and six years old, respectively, in an era before thermometers, electricity, the ability to make vacuums, and so on (as a “light sideline chore that can be entrusted to children,” it can’t be THAT sophisticated, right? And before anyone dismisses that with a comment that “the wine must have been utter swill,” I respond: occasionally, but usually it was as good or better than most of the fine wines I’ve sampled all over the world or have in my own cellar. [And believe me, I can play the “piquant and amusingly presumptuous, but with a nutty nose and a disarmingly candid bouquet of dried lavender; my refined palate detects just a hint of crisp winter mornings and a bottom of well-ripened peach” game with the best of them.]
Now with all of that said, plunging back into the Realms: the Shou empire goes in for sweeter and strong fortified drinks (the fruit, berry, and honey equivalents of zzar and mead); what many of us real-world types would term “liqueurs.” In the Heartlands, lots of “clarry” (blended wine dregs) and “winter wine” (in winter, bring out the wine to let it freeze, in containers that won’t shatter, then rake out the ice, so as to remove water and make the result stronger in alcohol) is drunk, but there are areas of upland Tethyr, Turmish, and the Tashalar known for producing fine vintages. These are indeed more highly regarded (and highly priced) than other wines, but the accent is more on prizing individual vintners whose output you come to like (and the Realms has no appellations controllees or the equivalent, passing rules about labelling or what can go in to wines).
Some producers mark years on the bases of bottles, more for “use first against spoilage” reasons than for anything else, though certain vintages are regarded as superior to others - - but although the wealthy do amass wine cellars, vintages are seldom large enough to last long (a twenty-year-old wine is more a memory than something sold for large sums, and everyone in the Realms regards wine as something for drinking and enjoying, not investing in [as a collector, over time] or rhapsodizing over).
So there are no “standardized” labels and agreed-upon definitions, though most wine is marked with a wax “vintner’s mark” (like signet-ring impression) and there will be chalk marks of the realm of origin and usually of the year. If the wine is considered special by the producer or the seller, it may get a fancy, stuck-on-with-wax paper label proclaiming it to be “Belarar’s Boldest” or whatever.
Most wine that is transported long distances is carried by ship or wagon, in casks of various sizes, from the handkeg to large one-to-a-wagon casks (and some palaces and city guild warehouses have gigantic, immobile vats into which smaller containers are emptied, for later local tapping). Again, some areas have prized wines (something that changes with wars, storms, and fashions) that are more valuable elsewhere because of scarcity and perceived quality (or snob appeal, as in “anyone of TRUE quality among the nobility of Waterdeep is ONLY drinking thus-and-so this season! Be just as grand as they are by laying down coin for some yourself!”). In general, to answer your specific example, local Cormyrean wine might fetch a few sp/cask more if sold in Chessenta, but no more than that [both lands produce abundant and generally good local wine, but nothing widely considered outstanding across Faerûn], and it will be a hold full of vinegar if it’s kept too long at sea in hot weather, or dumped on one of the Pirate Isles for a season in an attempt to sell it at the tail end of winter, when cellars are running low and good “fresh” drink is scarce, UNLESS that storage is in a cave, or buried in peat out of the sun, or otherwise controlled in temperature and humidity to acceptable ranges.
Yes, many Faerûnian cuisines recommend certain sorts of wine for cooking (drizzles, sauces, marinades, and soup ingredients) as well as accompaniments to food. (And re. the wine expert’s list tale you cite: balderdash. There are in fact books covering which wines go best with which chocolates!) Following that aside: there are indeed distilled liquors in Faerûn, and most of the said drinkables consumed in Cormyr and Waterdeep are decidedly strong (though there are also mild, low-alcohol, very sweet “dessert” sorts for hot days and light repasts). When distillation started is lost in the mists of time; it may well have been practiced by one of the races that came to Faerûn in early eras. The Realms enjoys the full range of distilled spirits as drinkables, and they and “pure” alcohols are indeed widely used as external wound cleaners and antiseptics (the Faerûnian term is “purges” or “taint-purges”). I can’t recall if a scene I wrote years ago, of a sword-wound being “sluiced clean” with drink, was edited out before print, or not - - but I do recall writing it. :}



So saith Ed. Who did indeed have a formidable cellar (I believe it’s mostly been drunk or given away now, as both he and his wife take medications that alcohol doesn’t play well with, these days), and lives near several superb wineries.
love to all,
THO

Edited by - The Hooded One on 25 May 2007 02:06:50
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Mandras
Seeker

Estonia
51 Posts

Posted - 25 May 2007 :  08:14:34  Show Profile  Visit Mandras's Homepage Send Mandras a Private Message
Hello again Ed.

Thanks for Your reply about Baldur´s Gate merchant guilds. The data is truly appreciated.

Another question, if I may:

I am considering DM-ing a campaign in Amn and it´s surrounding regions (Southern Sword Coast mostly) and I am in a dire need for interesting, not well known, evil-aligned secret organization or cult to be used as main antagonist for PC-s.

The Cult I am looking for should be non-religious (it could be pseudo-religious as is the Cult of the Dragon), nor highly magical in nature (its leadership should not include high-level mages), it should be centered around humans (leader is human) and should have considerable mercantile and monetary powers. It would help if the main philosophy of the cult is strange or weird.

As my players have read a lot of Forgotten Realms materials I am looking for something that has not been published before or is mentioned very briefly in official materials.

Are there any such organizations that match my description active in Amn region?

Best Regards,

Mandras

"The pure and simple truth is rarely pure and never simple."
Oscar Wilde
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