Joined: 05 Mar 2008
|Posted: Sat Oct 10, 2009 4:15 pm Post subject: Brodert Quink's studies of Thassilon
|Much of the lore of ancient Thassilon has been lost: what does remain has been gathered from barely legible carvings on the surviving monuments or extracted from the myths and oral traditions of Varisian seers and storytellers.
What we do know about Thassilon is that it was a vast empire ruled by powerful wizard-kings. The sheer size of the monuments they left behind testifies to their power, and the unnatural way many of these monuments have resisted erosion and the march of time testifies to their skill at magic. Shoanti barbarian tales, passed on by storytellers for thousands of years, remember the wizard-kings as the Azghat, a pantheon of war-bringers and punishers of the dishonorable. Most Varisians remember the wizard-kings as demons and speak of them only in hushed tones. Those of Chelish descent are able to cast a more objective eye over the legends.
Most sages place the height of the Thassilonian Empire at 7,000 to 8,000 years ago, but I believe the empire was even older, based on my studies of the Old Light at Sandpoint. I believe the empire collapsed no sooner than 10,000 years in the past.
There are three theories for its collapse:
The Aboleth's Revenege: One theory is that aboleths destroyed the empire in a long-delayed retaliation for the king-wizards' theft or corruption of aboleth glyph and life-creation magic. Evidence for this theory is sketchy at best, as most scholars are unwilling to consult primary sources among the aboleths.
Thassilon and Beyond: In time, the law and charity of the early empire gave way to corruption, cronyism and the summoning of aberrations from beyond the planes. The madness of these unknowable creatures warped all they touched, turning the rune magic of Thassilon into a mockery of its former glory. Without its magic, inherently corrupted Thassilon fell apart into squabbling fiefdoms. Unfortunately, no one can prove a change in the quality of the empire's magic, which is long since lost.
Revolt of the Giants: This theory holds that the rune giants who serves the Runelords and secured their power revolted against their masters and destroyed the Empire. Then the rune giants wandered into the north, never to return. Some scholars including myself believe this was a symptom of the empire's fall, not its cause.
The seven-pointed star appears to be one of the most important runes of Thassilon. The star itself is known as the "Sihedron Rune" and signifies not only the seven virtues of rule (generally agreed among scholars to have been wealth, fertility, honest pride, abundance, eager striving, righteous anger and rest) but the seven schools of magic recognised by Thassilon (divination magic was not held in high regard by the ancients).
Much of what is understood about Thassilon indicates that its leaders were far from virtuous and many scholars believe the classic mortal sins (greed, lust, pride, gluttony, envy, wrath and sloth) rose from corruptions of the Thassilonian virtues of rule.
Running: Rise of the Runelords Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Core Rules