Haedrasian Customs
The Haedrasians are, without a doubt the most dominant race that Allornus has ever seen. Their empire spans nearly half of the known world, and their influence reaches well beyond their vast borders. Haedrasian legions are the pre-eminent military power in all the world, their farmlands turn out mythic plenty, and their patron Divhi sits upon a massive throne at the heart of their empire, willing to take up arms in their defence and bring divine fury to the fray against mere mortal foes.

Rule by Divhi

Absolute power in Haedrasia stems from the earthly Divhi Haederas, but the running of the Empire is left to his descendant the Imperator, who has been drawn from the blood descendants of the Divhi since before the founding of Haedrasia, and who always takes the name Haedrian upon his ascension.

Theocracy and The Imperators

In Haedrasia priests are the only authority, and wield secular and spiritual power as one. All offices greater than citizenry require that the occupying individual also be ordained in the Imperatry Temple, and priests who hold generally bureaucratic or secular roles have the dual duty of tending to the souls of their follower. Members of any other faith are not tolerated or allowed in any position of power, and lictors will quickly expunge them.

The Great Houses

Of course Haedrasia can tolerate no challenge to the Imperator's rule, but nor can it squander members of the imperial line lest the Imperator fall heirless. And so the various members of the Imperator's family, all of the divine blood of Haederas, are confined to a single province of the empire on pain of death. Here, left to their own devices, they created the most powerful economic institutions in the Empire after the Imperatry Temple of Haederas - the trade consortium Great Houses.

Military Power

Man for man the Haedrasians are not the finest warriors to be found, but they rank amongst them. As a body theirs is not the finest army to be found, but it is a close second. Compared to the vast population of the empire, the legions are a small force, but the empire is massive and so they are still countless many. Their weapons are not the most advanced or finely made, but they feature some lethal advancements. The Haedrasian legions may not be the finest example of any one aspect of war in the world, but they excel at all, and this makes them the single most dangerous army to be found. All but unstoppable when they advance.


Since their domination by the Magocracy the Haedrasians have hated magic. They see it as a perversion - one that automatically brands any practitioner evil, corrupt, and dangerous, and special branches of the church, known as lictors, spend their time and energy hunting down suspected magicians, investigation subject peoples' religions for signs of magic, and executing those they even have a healthy suspicion of. Such oppression is the price the Haedrasians pay to be free of the taint of magic. And almost no one is immune to thorough investigation by the lictors.

Citizens and Subject Citizens

In Haedrasia there is a very clear line between Haedrasian citizens, and free people of other races. A mere Haedrasian citizen, a labourer, a beggar, all except a criminal, outranks even the most lofty of subject nobility. Firstly no myr may ever be a subject of the templarate, they must leave on pain of death, though they may visit border settlements to trade, or pass through. Subjects can practice their own religion, but if it is suspected of containing magic it will be outlawed. Subjects may not gather privately, nor form large groups publicly. They may not own or work metal into tools or weapons without special dispensation. They have lesser legal rights, and are more heavily taxed. They are not free to leave Haedrasia, but may move around within it.


The Haedrasians might dominate their subject people to the point of impotence, but they detest slavery, and insist that all mortals deserve to be free, though most subjects would insist that their lot is not freedom. This even extends to myr, and though they will not allow any myr to live within the borders of Haedrasia, they refuse to see them enslaved, driving out the Ghan's Vargör slaves rather than see them indentured when they expanded into the east.

Age of Majority

Haedrasian men are eligible to come of age at fourteen, but they must all complete a task to pass into manhood. Boys must all go to their local temple of Haederas on an appointed day in their fourteenth year, and be set a task of manhood by a layman. This usually consists of a number of contests - races, wrestling, mock combat and the like - and as each boy shows the traits the layman is looking for he will remove them from competition. At the end of the day those who succeed are inducted as full members of the temple, and men, and those that fail must go home in shame to return the next year. Sometimes a cripple, runt, or some other unfortunate will live his entire life a boy. Girls have no such formal ritual, and are generally considered worthy of marriage and womanhood after their first menstruation.


Any citizen in Haedrasia can own a freehold on property, essentially meaning he has a contract to lease it from the empire at a set price for a set period. Anything impermanent on that land is also his own, such as animals or produce, though a further lease must be paid to exploit goods such as minerals or timber.


Haedrasians follow the pattern of primogeniture, with the understanding that while the lion's share of a father's assets go to the eldest male, the father must by law make allowance for all of his sons to live in a manner commensurate of their rank, thus a family who had fallen upon ill fortunes might find that the eldest son very occasionally receives the least inheritance, or little more than his siblings, because the available assets no longer represent the family's rank.


Women in Haedrasia are very much secondary to men. A woman cannot hold a lease, join the legions, or join the priesthood, and so she is left to the life of a wife and mother, or a servant. Women can become artisans, and many do, and they can also rise practically on par with men through the great houses however, giving some women a path to power. But even a powerful woman will find herself looked down upon, and thought of as weak and in need of protection by a man, even one of lesser station (though he'll likely have the sense not to say so).


It is every healthy man's duty to bring at least one healthy son into the world to serve Haedrasia once he is gone, and so most families arrange marriages for their sons.

Betrothal and Contract

Generally a family with a daughter wants to see her well kept, so they look for a desirable husband to pair her with, and they will promise all manner of gifts to make their daughter a more attractive prospect than any other proposition a man might have. It is a man's right to choose a wife, and not that of his family, but generally his mother will have his ear in such matters, and so the mother and son are courted by the prospective bride's mother in order to attract a good husband. Once a marriage is done it cannot be undone save by one party's death, and even then unless the relationship bore no sons, neither party can ever remarry.

The Ceremony

The wedding ceremony begins with a celebration, during which the legal and religious requirements are met, involving prayer and declarations before an officiating legate. It brings the two households together, new property is introduced, and there is the underlying promise of children. The typical upperclass Haedrasian wedding is as an lavish affair as the bride's family can afford, the day carefully chosen by consulting divine calendar so as to maximize fertility. Once the wedding is agreed upon, the groom gives his future wife an iron ring. During wedding ceremony this is replace with one of precious metal. The bride and groom exchange water and fire (exactly how varies from region to region) and then gifts are given to family and friends, and the bride is taken in a joyous with a procession to her new home and carried over the threshold by her father. The marriage would then be consummated in the bride's new home, with conception expected that night.


It is to be expected that a man of any standing will keep a mistress or two, and while he would not shame his wife by doing so openly, she would not shame him by acknowledging his extramarital activities. After all, carnal release and marital affection are very different commodities.


Of course, Haedrasians can only marry Haedrasians, and half-castes are never acknowledged as citizens. Haedrasian men are permitted to keep subject peoples as mistresses, though this is a taboo in some regions and generally not spoken of, but they will never wed one, nor accept a half-caste child into their household.


Unlike other lands in Allornus, in Haedrasia it is acceptable for a father to embrace any bastard son (and technically daughter, though there is little example of this) into his family should he so choose, with no stigma attached. Similarly a bastard child not of his father's household still carries no shame for being a bastard, he simply has no paternal family, and is entirely the province of his mother's side. A child carrying it's mother's family name is a sure sign of a bastard birth. Of course, it goes without saying that the bastard must be a pure-blooded Haedrasian.

Tasks of Forbearance

The Imperatry Temple encourages its adherents to maintain their purity and worthiness by testing their will, their endurance, and their loyalty by frequently testing themselves. Denying behaviour, food, rest, pleasure, or really any personal sacrifice of that sort for a time is seen as a way to build a strong faith, and to reaffirm devotion of Haederas. Those who fail in their task of forbearance are expected to forcibly purify themselves with flog, hair shirt, or some other form of punishment, favouring that which leaves scars. While individuals are invited to set their own tasks, those who have transgressed and seek to return to the fold of the earthly Divhi's favour might seek advice on an appropriate task from a priest, and in either case they will share their intent, and their success or failure with the priest. If they lie about such things before Haederas' alter, then purity is forever lost to them. Better to suffer a penance than to be impure, worthless to the world.


The Haedrasians are, in a way, a pragmatic people, but they respect the living, and show that respect for the living in remembering them after their death, knowing that they are only at rest until Haederas says otherwise, destined to wait to join his army of the end times, or else join with the earth of Haedrasia, and make her richer and stronger still.

Funerary Rites

If a body is not of sufficient prestige to be preserved then Haedrasians bury their dead in massive familial plots. Individuals do not have graves of their own, but rather lie under the marker of their entire family within a planned mass grave. Those who die without family, or far from home, will start a new plot for their family in that place, or else be given a new family in death, added to all the other unaligned and given the last name Haster, or 'reborn' in place of their own.

Mummification and Interment

Traditionally the most revered and admired Haedrasians, (the priests, members of the Imperial family, decorated legionaries and the like) are preserved after death. Bodies are dried in a warm, dry aired vault, salted, oiled, perfumed, and have their organs removed through the sinuses. Then they are bound in wrappings of durable silk, always of a bloody crimson with a bejewelled hauberk, of the value of which denotes the individual's standing, on their shoulders and their favoured weapon or tool in their hands. Myth says that on the day the empire fails, Haederas will stir and raise the honoured dead to fight by his side, and reform Haedrasia anew. Then, and only then, will he ascend from the world.


A quirk of the entire Haedrasian people seems to be the men's love of the pipe. Long, ornate pipes of clay or timber, or bone of amazingly ornate design are passed down through families for generations so that a son might enjoy the same pipe as his great grandfather of an evening, and a great deal of coin is spent on a good pipe, to impress one's peers. Generally dry pressed hemp, one of Haedrasia's two backbone crops, is smoked, but the mixtures, including dry petals from flowers, fruit peels, juice, and all manner of other fragrant or colourful additions are countless and often dazzling. Women often smoke a pipe also, though they will usually adopt the habit much later in life than a man.