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From: Michael Andre-Driussi <mantis@sirius.com>
Subject: (urth) 5HC: Annese primitives
Date: Thu, 30 Nov 2000 11:15:17 

I know we've all been through this before, but here's a new catalogue drawn
mainly from "A Story."

Each group has a biome or environment that they stay in, and other biomes
that they make incursions into.

"Trees" are found at desert oaises.  They can talk in real time; they can
send dreams.  They are lords of their little patch of green.  They are like
Tolkein's Ents, in a way, but I don't know if they can move (anecdotal
evidence at Frenchman's Landing makes them sound like dryads).  I get the
sense that Hill People socially sanctioned procreative activities are
usually conducted at an oasis: thus the oasis is their mating ground.

"Priest" is found in a cave.  Like a Tree, he is lord of his area, but also
a dispenser of wisdom for boys-becoming-men.  Gives very powerful dreams in
exchange for offerings of food.

"Hill People," aka "Free People" are in the hills in Winter, in the
mountains in Summer.  They are tribal, organized into small groups.
Pre-agricultural hunter/gatherers in a harsh landscape.  Their skin color
is described as "dust" and "brown"; their hair is dark, fine, and straight;
their eyes are green.  They definitely will not eat Marshmen, but maybe
they will eat Shadow Children (the Shadow Children seem to chide Sandwalker
for his boast that he will eat them; then again, maybe Flying Feet ate most
of the one he killed?).  The oasis is their mating ground, the cave is
their college, the cliff is where they run any of their members who talk
theocratic stuff.  They leave night offerings for Shadow Children.  They
are thus something like fairies, more like oreads (hilly nature).

"Marshmen" aka "Wetlanders" are in the meadowmeres.  Their skin color seems
lighter than that of the Hill People.  As boys become men they are seared
with fire on the sides of their heads (so their hair grows in a "Mohawk"
crest) and scarred on shoulders and thighs.  They are slavers, taking Hill
People for sacrifice (with ritualized cannibalism) and priesthood.  They
are trappers rather than hunters: they lure Shadow Children (for
"everyday-style" feasting).  They have a larger scale of organization than
any of the other groups, having many people (a hundred?); they have a
star-oriented theocracy, with contempt for the mundane world around them.
They are proto-scientists, experimenting with disection of human corpses;
they are arboreal architects, building their woodhenge-style observatory;
they are the most "technologically" (such as it is) developed of the
groups.  They are trolls, more or less. (In a "colonial" reading they might
be seen as Europeans.)

"Shadow Children" aka "mock men."  They seem dark and weak.  They are
organized into small bands of odd (or is it prime?) numbers (1, 3, 5, 7,
etc.).  (It isn't clear what happens when they have an even number, due to
loss: but I suspect that the names "Hunter" and "Hatcher" are always
assigned to such oddmen out--that is, they aren't names in the "5 member"
set of names.) They move through all the biomes, it seems.  Nocturnal.
Telepathic and doped to the gills.  They go into the rocks when day comes
in the desert.  They will eat Marshmen quite happily, and they will likely
eat Hill People.  They project the planet cloaking spell/song.  They are
ghouls, pretty much; but they avoid the ghoul-bear (or maybe that makes
perfect sense!).


*More Wolfe info & archive of this list at http://www.urth.net/urth/

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