Circle of Heroes
Statues in honor to the heroes of the land, circling an eternal flame
"This is where the greatest of us rest. They say their souls still inhabit these monuments, that's why we pray to them."
The Hrastfolk had a very different culture if compared to the rest of the Archani, but as they grew together, most of their cultures mixed and merged. Maybe the greatest symbol of that is the Circle of Heroes, an ever-expanding set of statues surrounding an undying flame, in honor of those who, in any way, helped Archana move forward and stand strong.
Purpose / Function
The CircleThe statues are arranged in a C shape, a circle with an opening towards the Oaken Hall. Each statue carries a plaque with the name and accomplishments of the represented person and is carved in a minimalistic style, showing the most defining features of each historical figure. The images are 1.5 times the height of each figure, and adding the supporting base with the plaque, the statues are around 3 meters high each.
These statues also often serve as graves. When the hero represented by the statue dies, they are cremated and their ashes put into an urn, which goes inside the hollow in the base of the statue. There are a few whose remains didn't meet this destiny, such as Lady Amice Lionhart, who's been buried behind the Springdrop Sanctuary's waterfall.
The Undying FlameA great pyre-sized fire pit in the heart of Hrastgar, the Undying Flame, as the name suggests, is a magical fire that never goes extinct. The reason behind that is unknown, as the first leader of the Hrastfolk, who started the flame, claimed it was the will of their ancestors who died during The Calamity. For the Hrastfolk, it represents the unfaltering spirits, unwavering courage and unbreakable will of themselves and their forefathers.
A war broke out between both settlements, eventually. Under the ruse that the Hrastfolk were ambushing and killing their travelers and scouts, Nouvemond advanced towards Hrastgar to conquer them and expand their territory. This war lasted much longer than it should, enough to one day a diplomatic group shed light on the true motivations behind it. The schemer behind the war ended up dead, and with that, both peoples proceeded to end this war with a treaty of peace. As part of Pact of the Oaklands, Nouvemond gifted Hrastgar stone from Vilennor, so they could build a monument to peace. As it was the Hrastfolk's culture to honor and pray to their ancestors, it was just fitting that they would use that stone to build the Circle of Heroes to honor the most important people from both Hrastgar and Nouvemond, as a symbol of their conjoining cultures.
In cultureThe Hrastfolk have always had great respect for their ancestors, and this was only accentuated by the Circle of Heroes. Believing their souls still inhabited their remains and the statues containing them, the Hrastfolk created the habit of praying to these heroes, much like saints. This evolved into their customs, and now it is common to pray to a specific hero asking for their favor or just to pay respects.
Current statues and related worships
7 CE ~ 18 AE
Restless discoverer of The Veins, which brought wealth to the kingdom.
Domains: Travel, Exploration, Good Luck
Raymond Vilennor was the discoverer of The Veins, and died shortly after the expedition. Thanks to his heroism, the city of Vilennor was built and the kingdom was able to take advantage of all the wealth the mines provided, guaranteeing the prosperity of the land. Prayers to the Pathfinder often revolve around good luck during travels and journeys, that no harm may come to those who seek his protection, and that they may stumble upon good findings.
25 CE ~ 52 AE
Founder of Hrastgar, bravely resisted with her people during the unjust war against Nouvemond.
Domains: War, Strategy, Motherhood
Hailing from the northern lands of Europa, Hilde guided her people away from the cold and to the Archan Heartland, founding the settlement of Hrastgar. Through the next few decades, her bravery and determination inspired her people to resist the attacks from Nouvemond that sought to take away their lands. Warriors pray to Hilde asking to lend her ferocity and cunning in battle, so they can outwit and out brawl the enemy.
Baard Nordrum, the PeacesingerBuilt in May 3, 68 AE
43 AE ~ 97 AE
Founder of the Traveling Notes, exposed the unjust war and brought peace to the Nation.
Domains: Music, Peace, Unity
The War of the Oaklands started under a false accusation against the hrastfolk. Baard Nordrum, the grandson of Hilde Nordrum, decided to act and spread the word of such falsity through his songs, eventually winning the people of Nouvemond's support and exposing the corrupt commander behind the war. Bards have the Peacesinger as their patron, following his steps and carrying his legacy.
65 AE ~ 101 AE
Master blacksmith of the Guild, discovered the magical forging techniques.
Domains: Smithing, Rituals, Focus
Considered the "mother of the Craftsmen Guild" although she was far from founding it, Kendra was an amazing blacksmith. Her dedication to her craft was beyond anything the other smiths could achieve, and that quickly earned her the spot as the best the guild had to offer, maybe even to this day. But what made her mark in history was the discovery of a technique used to craft items with basic magical properties. Kendra's blessing is sought mostly by the Guild's dwarves and anyone in love to their work, as they believe she may grant them the skill and dedication to improving beyond what they normally could.
283 AE ~ 356 AE
Moved by the struggles of the people, formed the Resistance against the Artalgnian Empire, bringing independence to the kingdom.
Domains: Willpower, Resolve, Courage
Leader of the Resistance that liberated Archana from Artalgne, Lady Lionhart was a bastion for all that the Archani stood for. Unwavering will and unbreakable courage were her defining traits. Although it is known she was buried at Springdrop and not inside the statue, people still often go to her monument to pray to her, as it has become a custom with the other ones. They often pray to her asking for strength to withstand hardships and face impossible odds, to lend them her resolve and dedication.
291 AE ~ 352 AE
Designed the Diamond Walls, the bastion of hope that no enemy could ever breach.
Domains: Engineering, Mathematics, Warfare
One of the first to be considered a dwarf and often seen as a symbol of their virtues, Cyrus was the mastermind behind the design of Fort Edgemourn's reconstruction. He studied countless books of the old world, translating all by himself to learn some of the old techniques of engineering. With a vast knowledge of military strategy and engineering, he devised the Diamond Walls. Prayers to Cyrus ask for the ability of comprehension, that one might find the path to grasp wholly the subject they study.
King Charles Maine
285 AE ~ 366 AE
First King of Archana, united the land without shedding a single drop of blood.
Domains: Diplomacy, Leadership, Protection
The first King of Archana, Charles was able to achieve many great deeds of diplomacy and leadership. He was able to unite every city nearby to firmly establish the Kingdom of Archana and created various treaties and organizations to help the land defend itself from a number of threats. His blessing is sought to help people find common ground and work together despite their differences.
For proving the Kingdom with the knowledge and guidance towards its prosperity.
Domains: Magic, Knowledge, Guidance
Praised as the most powerful of the Heroes, the Truthseeker is a faceless helper, an entity that appeared many times through Archana's history to give guidance to the people. They were involved in many of the most important events in the kingdom, and the unexplainable always seems to accompany them. Prayers to the Truthseeker ask for enlightenment and guidance, a cry for help to see the right path one must follow.
/*Hero of Archana*/
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