The Uniform of the Jinteaci Guard
'[The Elatendea,] How noble could it be truly considered when it is merely the garb of spendthrifts and rakes who laze away on military pensions?"The Elatendea is recognisable to most Currean people as the uniform of the corrupt yet highly respected Jinteaci Guards - the regiment who have protected the countless Larramendi monarchs of Cuerero since its inception, 447 years ago, and continue to do so. Many of the lower classes desire to one day be clad in such garments. However, very few achieve such a dream due to the rules and regulations imposed and maintained throughout its storied history.
"As the Jinteaci have begun accepting some to their rank by merit rather than birth [and expanded into the lower classes of Cuerero]. How do those at the top expect those lucky, scant few into paying such a hefty sum for unimportant and clunky decorative vestments, especially when times are tough as they are now with all these famines and plagues?"
The Elatendea is comprised of many components, up to twenty-five depending occasionally on circumstance or standing within the hierarchy of the guards. However, one can catagorise all the layers into 4 categories:
In Cuerero, and its neighbouring states, male undergarments are simple. They consist plain linen (or wool) braies (called Telima), scherts (Protabic), and hosery, known as Pabina. They are the cheapest section of the uniform because of their simplicity. And with this simplicity, many pranksters throughout the years have tried to have the clothing dyed a more eccentric colour.
Over their undergarments, a guardsman - as specified in The Uniform Code - should wear a plain, white tunic as it is the least noticeable when underneath the bright, yellow officer coat, embellished with a large pauldron on each shoulder. Although, with the passage of time, they have grown a more decorative than functional feature. Most of the outfit otherwise is plain yet made with the most immaculate of fabrics available, to look presentable besides a monarch yet not outshine them.
Even though Armour is a misnomer for such cosmetic pieces, many in Cuerero refer to the Pauldrons and Poleyn as such. These items are specifically crafted by the elite Faber Family of blacksmiths. They also craft the rapier that goes alongside the ensemble.
Many of the guardsmen have Ilusiona. These are to be worn on one's person in 'a discreet manner'. Because of the ambiguity of this rule, where they are worn depends upon the soldier. However, the most common place they are worn is tucked in beneath belt. Guardsmen also wear clasps, capes and a set of white gloves when in the monarch's presence.
One of the most recognisable parts of the Elatendea is the hat that accompanies it, although it is merely a modified form of the standard hat worn by officers. As on the standard hat, there are fours pieces of fabric, 2 of each of the national colours, as a representation of patriotism. There too is a Camidant upon the helmet as standard. However, the most remarkable part of this hat is the feathers upon it.
The two feathers come from the Menadas Bird, the national bird of Cuerero not only for its colours.
Attached to the feathers, it is a mix of beads, whose symbolism has been lost over the years and has become merely an aesthetic addition to the costume. Those beads once used to be diamonds and other jewels, however, as the Jinteaci have grown to accept a rare few members upon merit, this has been phased out due to concerns over their cost.
"I'd say that even something most archaic evolves and adapts to their times. Otherwise, they will fall away. But whether it be in obscurity or not is not a question I could answer as I am mortal."
- The adding of a second, blue feather to the hat
- The addition of decorative clasps
- The addition of a cape
- The almost constant wearing of rapiers
More functional changes
- The addition of pockets where needed
- The reducing of garments that need to be produced by specific tailors
- The changing of jewels to beads to reduce cost
- The relaxing of laws regarding specific fabricsBesides that, most of the changes have been to comply with the military uniform of the era. Although, military uniform rarely changes drastically so the guards can often get away with older garments. However, it is not ideal. Nonetheless, certain aspects of the Elantendea are unchangeable. Whether it be through history, concessions or royal decree.