Testament of Baldergash Document in Excilior | World Anvil

Testament of Baldergash

Lies, set to paper, become legend

We've weathered pypyrus and razers and Trials and leviatons. But it's that damn Testament that will finally be the death of this world.
Meng Zhuan, Hetmaan bailiff, 3568 AoG
he Testament of Baldergash is a satirical, faux-religious compilation of supposed first-hand accounts of the acts of Baldergash Sparcsylver. It was written by the 21st-century cognoscenti Kadir Ammanar in the Lancian capital of Courdes, and completed in 2051 AoE.
Because the entire piece is designed to be a parody of the world's religions, it is simultaneously ridiculous and bombastic. Ammanar's central deity, Baldergash Sparcsylver, has a name that sounds silly to most cultures. The mere fact that he has a last name at all - implying a given name and a family name - strikes some as odd, since Baldergash is supposedly the only supreme being in a monotheistic universe, with no parents and no family and no progenitors of any kind. A portion of the book is written from Baldergash's perspective and some of his prose are deliberately low-brow. When he's not speaking in vague, song-like, dream scenarios where he waxes poetically about the wonders of his own creation, his vocabulary turns simplistic and his perspective is typically that of a petulant, power-hungry child.
Many of Ammanar's world-building choices are so affronting that he would have certainly been executed for heresy if he had written these things about a deity, any deity, that was, at that time, recognized by any other culture. For example, in the Testament's creation myth, Baldergash brings Excilior into being - and in fact, all of the universe - by sharting it out his glorious arsehole. As he continues sculpting his creation, it becomes apparent that there is no object - big or small, plant or animal or mineral - that cannot spring forth from his beatific sphincter.

The central theme of the Pontificous Rite is to love Baldergash - and screw everyone else.
Lawson Myner, Guilian constable, 2804 AoR
  • Folly of intellect and initiative
    Willful Ignorance
    Baldergash himself repeatedly laments the constant need to correct and save his sheeple. Their many shortcomings can usually be reduced to, "If they hadn't been trusting in the flawed abilities of their measly brains, this tragedy could have been entirely avoided." He also speaks of the mind as a "danger" and often characterizes it as a corrupting influence in the body, leading humans to all manner of doom. In his songs (apparently sang out to the universe, in general) he expresses great frustration over the fact that everything would be perfect for his sheeple, if only they would sit back and trust him to handle everything. It's only when they stubbornly insist on doing things for themselves that he's forced to step in and set the universe back on his chosen path.  
  • Fiat nature of truth
    Because He Said So
    At times throughout the work, Baldergash is asked directly - by his Witnesses, or by successive generations of Witnesses during dreams or visions - how they can truly know that he is god, or how they know that his works are real. His response is always consistent: "You know this to be true because it is written in the testament." On several occasions, his subjects go on to ask him, "But who wrote the testament?" And his response is always, "I wrote the testament." This is never explored further by the Witnesses. But it is taken on principle that anything in the Testament of Baldergash is unassailable truth. That the definition of truth is: that which is written in the Testament. That the act of writing something into the book is the equivalent of making it true. This has since been confirmed and codified by Baldergash's acolytes with the simple aphorism: "It is true because Baldergash said it is true."  
  • Devine ubiquity
    Baldergash is everywhere, at once. He is right here, right now, observing as you read this account. There is no matter in this world that is too large or too small for his involvement. And, ultimately, every outcome is only allowed to occur because Baldergash wished it to be so. The glass of water that you spilled over breakfast? That was Baldergash's doing. The coin-flip that landed on tails three times in a row? Also Baldergash. When your favorite team loses a local sporting match, it is because Baldergash hates their newest player and wanted them to lose.  
  • Faith over works
    Blind Faith
    Faith is the greatest virtue of the sheeple. The most saintly souls in Baldergash's lore are those who never deigned to ask a single question of him or his church. Inquiry is the hallmark of a weak and suspicious mind. It's the manifestation of doubt - and doubt of Baldergash's glory, in any form, is the ultimate evil. This does not mean that the church will not tolerate questions. In fact, they encourage anyone who is struggling with their faith to ask whatever questions are weighing on their mind, and to ask for any evidence that would help them to make their own conclusion. That's why Baldergash gifted all humanity with the Testament. The Testament is all the proof anyone could ever need to realize his greatness and achieve perfect faith. The Testament is the answer to any questions one might have. How can anyone know that Baldergash is the one-and-only god? Because it's written in the Testament. How can anyone find evidence of the miracles that He has worked? They're written in the Testament. The Testament is all the evidence that any questioning soul should ever need. To question further is to signal a grave weakness in the mind of the questioner.  

The mere fact that people are actually worshiping that fairy tale is the greatest miracle that Baldergash has ever created.
Eline Erland, Bishop of the Priori of Syrus, 2929 AoR
here are numerous miraculous feats recorded throughout the work. Many of them were attributed directly to Baldergash, while others were manifested through his Witnesses (attributable, of course, to the splendorous wonder of Baldergash). Nevertheless, some of the miracles are cited more often than others. The following are just some of the incredible acts that are taken as empirical proof of Baldergash's supreme divinity:
  • Bro-tastic
    When Yapenes, the oldest son of Eneas the Witness, was planning to celebrate his graduation from cognoscenti training, a grand feast was prepared. But on the eve of the feast, a miscreant broke into the kitchens and stole every ounce of vintage earmarked for the festivities. When Yapenes realized what had happened, he fell to ground, writhing in agony and tearing his clothes. For, if his buddies were not able to get mind-numbingly hammered at his feast, he would lose social status and be ridiculed - probably for hours. Just when the guests started arriving and all seemed lost, Baldergash descended from his porcelain throne and told young Yapenes to fear not. With the snap of his fingers, Baldergash converted all the water in the canteens to the best, tastiest, and most divinely-potent vintage that anyone had ever imbibed. Yapenes's buddies continued the party for three whole days. By the end of it, two of them had died from massive alcohol poisoning. It would prove to be the greatest event in Yapenes's entire life.  
  • Vision of Baldergash
    King Ruman was a young and promising ruler, beloved by all his subjects. So it was a great shock when, at the tender age of 26, he choked on a tuber and died. Although it was too late to save the expired monarch, the aberrant morsel was eventually dislodged from his throat. And when it was, all of the attendees of Ruman's court were in awe to see that the tuber bore an uncanny resemblance to the beneficent Baldergash Sparcsylver. This put the hearts and minds of the realm at ease, and everyone wholeheartedly agreed that good King Ruman would have been thrilled to meet his end in the service of this historic miracle.  
  • Clockwork Miracle
    Baldergash's followers had endured an epic drought, brought about by some anomalous flare-up of Excilior's star, Syrus. The devastation this wrought upon the land was unequaled. More than half the population had perished. And the duration of this cataclysm - 17 years - had previously been unthinkable. Certainly, many prayers, over those previous years, had been offered up to Baldergash. But with 17 years of misery already under their belts, the city leaders commanded all remaining citizens to gather under the mighty arbyr in the town center and pray. They were to pray, continually, for Baldergash to show pity on them and end this catastrophe. And they had resolved to stay at it - as long as it took - until their god had answered their prayer. It took 17 long days. And many dropped out from exhaustion, or underlying cynicism. But at the end of the 17th day, Baldergash looked down in satisfaction at his adoring subjects and decided that it was finally time to reward their faith. He came upon them in the form of a giant rain cloud. In fact, he dropped so much rain, that it flooded the city for three days and killed another 10% of the remaining population. And they were ecstatic, because they had been blessed by their god - so much so, that they enjoyed favorable weather for another 230 years. And it was all because of Baldergash's merciful and miraculous intervention.  
  • Gambler's Fallacy
    Symus the Witness was an ardent fan of his local scatterball team. In fact, he was so confident in their athletic superiority that he took the liberty of placing a massive wager, to be paid in the inevitable event that they won the league title. And all of this would have been fine, except that in the championship match, his team found themselves down by three goals as time was nearly set to expire. Symus was an absolute wreck. He cried effusively. He vomited the greasy lunch he had enjoyed with the other fans before the game. He was filled with the dread of having to tell his wife and their kids that they would all be moving out of their plush abode and working in the mines from here forward. The looming catastrophe was of such epic scale that he actually lost his buzz. With the fatal seconds ticking off the game clock, he finally fell to the ground, began writhing in the mud, and screamed his desperate pleas to Baldergash to somehow correct this aberration of sport. Before he could even finish his whiny little cry, he was startled by a huge cheer that rose up from his fellow fans. His team had scored a goal! But... it would be meaningless, because they were still down by two goals with barely a minute to play. Another roar came from the home crowd when the opponent's best digger was sent off for unsportsmanlike conduct. Although this may have felt academic, the home team responded mere seconds later by knocking home another goal. And now they were only down by one goal with half a minute left. Incredibly, fifteen seconds later, they tallied the tying goal on a maneuver that involved at least four separate instances of blatant, unabashed cheating. And the referees never saw it! The home crowd was apoplectic. Everyone assumed that the game was headed for extra time. But the home team had different ideas. In a maneuver that has become a permanent fixture of scatterball lore, the undersized spotter Cogger O'Cogger struck an improbable pass that must have sailed more than 75 meters through the air. When it finally came down, it shot through the legs of one defender, between the clenching hands of another, and it finally caromed off the arse of an unsuspecting teammate who didn't even realize that the ball was headed his way, and was waving to his girlfriend in the crowd. The misdirection from his backside gave it just the proper angle necessary to dribble across the goal line mere milliseconds before time ran out and the final bell rang. The crowd went wild. And as Symus collected his winnings, he realized that he had possibly witnessed The Greatest Miracle That Baldergash Had Ever Wrought.  


Kadir possesses the most curious ability to paint someone as a complete asshole - without them even realizing they've been insulted.
Mayva Oyver, Lancian cognoscenti, 2043 AoE
mmanar wrote the Testament as a rhetorical device intended to expose the circular and illogical premises that were promoted by local spiritual leaders of his time. In his notes, he points out that it is generally impossible to disprove any religious contention because the religion itself is founded on a series of fantastical and ethereal concepts. No matter how unlikely, it cannot be thoroughly disproved that there is a planet in the universe made entirely of marshmallows. And no matter how unlikely he deemed the entire enterprise of religion to be, it could not be completely disproved that there are magical omnipotent beings "out there", somewhere, who are doing... something to affect human endeavors. And therefore, he came to realize that debating theologians directly was a pointless waste of time.
Rhetorical Device
But he seized upon the idea that it is possible to highlight the absurdity of religious dogma merely by shifting the focus to an entirely-similar analogy. One that mirrors all the faults of organized religion, but still sounds ridiculous to most human ears, merely because they weren't indoctrinated in the analogous idea since birth. So rather than try to discredit the ideas of someone else's god, he would simply point out that his god - Baldergash Sparcsylver - was also an all-knowing, all-powerful, omnipotent, and benevolent deity who created our world and everything in it. And there was nothing that anyone could do to prove him wrong.   Any time someone suggested that he should pray to their god, he affected a look of genuine shock and confusion, and asked them with all earnestness why they would ignore The One True God, Baldergash Sparcsylver. When they exclaimed that their god was obviously the legitimate god because it was chronicled in their sacred texts, he would chuckle and point out that they obviously hadn't read the Testament of Baldergash. Because if they had, they would know that Baldergash is, unquestionably, our only lord and savior. And when he was lectured that he would certainly suffer an eternity in hell because he failed to convert to their religion, he would warn them, with grave concern, that Baldergash Sparcsylver does not suffer fools lightly, and that, if they don't see the error of their ways and begin praising him right now, they will most certainly suffer an agonizing fate in eternal flame.

Document Structure


I don't feel so good.
Baldergash Sparcsylver, Testament of Baldergash, 2051 AoE
espite the book's name, the majority of its contents are not purported to be Baldergash's direct words. It's divided into three major volumes that essentially play out in reverse-chronological order. The books are as follows:
  1. The Testament of the Witnesses to the Testament of the Witnesses to the Testament of Baldergash Sparcsylver
    This is the largest volume and there is considerable evidence to support the theory that content has been tacked onto it by various parties over the years. It is an extended account of those "second generation" Witnesses who experienced miracles accredited to Baldergash Sparcsylver. In Ammanar's initial draft, it's believed that all of these accounts were from characters who were contemporaries of the first Witnesses. As such, their narratives take a common form of, "Baldergash's Witnesses spread the Perfect Word to me, and in turn, this is what I have witnessed as a result of His benevolence." In later chapters, the tone and the overriding patois seem decidedly more modern. The fact that these chapters haven't been found in any of the early copies of Ammanar's work makes it quite likely that they were actually written many years after his death and appended to the tome.  
  2. The Testament of the Witnesses to the Testament of Baldergash Sparcsylver
    Baldergash surrounded himself with a number of followers and, at times, basic minions. These hangers-on came to be known as Witnesses. Baldergash repeatedly gives them direct instructions like, "For you are witnesses to my beneficence. And all the days of your life shall be filled with the satisfaction of knowing that you have known me. Now go forth and spread my joy to all the miserable wretches of humanity." Indeed, this book is a series of those Witnesses' accounts as they scatter throughout the planet and replay the wonders they have experienced while in Baldergash's holy presence. The chapters in this book all employ a predictable naming convention: The Account of Japeto the Witness, The Account of Eneas the Witness, etc.  
  3. The Testament of Baldergash Sparcsylver
    These are the reputed writings of Baldergash himself. This book is the least coherent of the three. It begins in rambling verse, in a discombobulated style, that is apparently designed to reflect the nascent mind of the burgeoning god. It is filled with joyous outbursts where Baldergash wonders at his own creation - or when he berates his own creations for not performing in a way that pleases him. Apparently-deep thoughts are frequently cut off midsentence as the deity becomes suddenly aware of some miscreant that requires punishment. By the latter stages of the book, Baldergash seems to have coalesced into a role approximating a more "traditional" godhead. He speaks in sage tones and espouses grand wisdom for the consumption of his swarthy followers.

Historical Details

Public Reaction

Our colleague Kadir has created quite the charming little fairy tale. It's a bit crass, and it won't be leaving any lasting mark on the world. But if you're in need of a good chuckle, I highly recommend it.
Jeynne de Sysel, Lancian cognoscenti, 2056 AoE
mmediately after publication, the Testament sparked no acclaim. In fact, the book was barely known, by anyone, for years. But this is understandable - and completely in keeping with the publishing practices of the day.
Gradual Adoption
It's not known exactly how long Ammanar took to complete his first copy, but it's presumed to be at least several years. That copy would have been painstakingly written, by himself, by hand. The finished pages would have been transferred to an assistant for binding and the completed tome would have been returned, after a period of weeks, to Ammanar, for him to do whatever he chose. Amongst the cognoscenti of this time, it was not uncommon for such a project to be nothing more than someone's personal labor of love. And the resulting book was often seen as simply a personal keepsake. In Ammanar's case, he's known to have immediately placed the book for "public" perusal in the klyster's library. But an unheralded book sitting on a forgotten shelf of a klyster library is only one step away from being completely unknown.


Let the cognoscenti spin their fanciful yarns. No one's listening. And it's of no concern to Our Lord Syrus.
Bretnon Brinon, Priori of Syrus elder, 2061 AoE
he Testament's legacy can basically be divided into two camps. In one camp, the book has been treasured as a valuable and unrepentant commentary on the state of the church, and on the broader impact of all religions. Cognoscenti and other learned souls have cherished it as a powerful rhetorical device when faced with the nonsensical dictates of religious zealots. Although the book cannot be directly credited, in any way, with undermining established theological structures, it is nonetheless seen as a priceless weapon for anyone who has found themselves at odds with the church's teachings.
Tragic Consequence
In the other camp, Ammanar's prose eventually had the exact opposite impact that he or his supporters might have hoped for. In a cruel twist of historical fate, this text went on to form the basis of the Pontificous Rite of Baldergash Sparcsylver. And that religion can easily be assigned direct blame for the death of millions of innocent people. Although Ammanar couldn't possibly have foreseen this tragic development, it's inevitable that some have come to associate him personally with the atrocities that have been committed under the banner of his (originally) make-believe religion.
TESS-tuh-ment UVV BAHL-dur-gash
Manuscript, Religious
Authoring Date


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