Kelpen Kuuyik Ethnicity in Etharai | World Anvil

Kelpen Kuuyik

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Kelpen kuuyikar are a kuuyik ethnicity that lives in the kelp forests of Etharai. They are one of the shorter kuuyik ethnicities, tending to be a bit more nimble as well. They are not particularly strong swimmers, only used to the calmer and clearer waters of their homes.


Major language groups and dialects

The kelpen kuuyik speak a language in the same langauge family as other underwater languages, such as Delpar, Gedalp, and Kaltar. Their language is known as Estruei.

Art & Architecture

The kelpen kuuyikar enjoy bright colours and shiny decorations, which they create from the environment around them. They pick flowers from entangling kelp, and carve figures and murals into the sandstone that they use to build their homes.
Kelpen architecture is made primarily of sandstone, often with flat roofs filled with sand to allow for kelp to grow and other species to live on the tops of buildings. Their cities tend to expand outwards rather than upwards, with very few buildings reaching even halfway to the surface. Because of this, those travelling abovewater may find these cities difficult to spot, and some land-based species and ethnicities think of the kelpen forests as much more abandoned than they actually are.
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Common Etiquette

For the kelpen kuuyikar, it is considered rude to offer help to someone if they haven't asked. To them, it means that you think so little of the person you are offerring help to that you think they cannot complete a task that they are working on and cannot acknowledge that they need help. This is seen as belittling, and as though the person being offered help is being treated as a child. An important part of kelpen culture is that one must know their limits, and be aware of when to ask for help, especially since it will not be offered otherwise. This is something that is taught in youth.

Foods & Cuisine

Like other kuuyikar, the kelpen kuuyik enjoy many foods that other species find to be inedible. A staple of their cuisine is sand soup, a dish containing sand and different types of kelp in it. Many of their other dishes do also include sand, and the vast majority of them include kelp in some way, shape, or form.

Birth/Baptismal Rites

Upon birth, kelpen kuuyik babies are swaddled in blankets made of kelp. Throughout infancy, the majority of their clothing is hand-made by their parents or their community, and is made specifically for the child. Adults will gather to make kelpen clothing for their children, also using this time to share news and gossip with one another. Some groups will gift one another clothing for their children, exchanging their efforts with each other.

Coming of Age Rites

Among the kelpen kuuyikar, it is considered a coming-of-age event for a person to make their own eelkelp chariot, their primary means of transportation. Parents will teach their children how to operate these vehicles while they are growing up, and begin to show them the process of making one. Once they are familiar enough with the way that the chariots are made and ridden, they begin to craft their own. If it succeeds the testing to ensure that it is safe, they will then hold a ceremony known as eel gifting, where they will receive two pet eels to raise and train.

Death/Funerary Rites

Upon death, it is customary for kelpen kuuyikar to be buried at least 10 feet beneath the sands of the region, though often much deeper. This larger burial death is due to the nature of the sands in the area, and its capacity to shift and move, revealing things buried below. As such, in order to ensure that a loved one's body does not resurface, families will work together to dig a deep enough hole to bury them in. Additionally, it has become more common to encase the deceased in metal coffins, to make sure that they sink downwards and deeper into the sand rather than floating upwards towards the surface of the ground.


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Dec 28, 2023 14:08 by Dr Emily Vair-Turnbull

I love the bit about asking for help and it won't be offered otherwise. And the swaddling babies in kelp. :)

Emy x   Etrea | Vazdimet
Dec 28, 2023 14:21 by spleen

thanks :)

Have a wonderful day!
Jan 21, 2024 06:05 by Michael Johnson

Very nice. I like how you put such life into these people while using relatively few words. You've even made them clearly part of a larger world without letting that world intrude upon them. I especially like the eelkelp chariot. Thank you for this.

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Jan 21, 2024 14:26 by spleen

thank you for the kind words! i'm glad you enjoyed the article.

Have a wonderful day!
Jan 22, 2024 12:54 by Judith (she/her)

Love the coming-of-age rite! and how the geographically shifting sands lead to a specific burial rite.

Jan 22, 2024 16:38 by spleen


Have a wonderful day!