The Bravani are a nomadic people who live deep in the forests of Remaria. Their history is older than the Principality itself, and they lay claim to being the original inhabitants of the region. They live a simple life, travelling the forests and occassionally trading with those who live in the Remarian coastal plains. They have more contact with the city of Borvalam and the town of Arborton, and it is actually unusual not to meed a Bravani when visiting these settlements. Long before the forming of the Principality of Remaria, or even the Malavian Confederation, the forested foothills of the region were dominated by groups of tribes who lived off the land. While the coastal tribes were discovering agriculture and forming settlements two thousand years ago, the forest tribes continued to live a more simple life. It was a brutal life in the shadows of the mountains, surrounded by thick forests filled with all sorts of predatory creatures. The forest folk grew strong, savvy, and resilient as they competed for survival. Some of them banded together, eventually leaving the forest or clearing way for their own settlements. Borvalam and Arborton were two such places tamed by the forest folk, although the coastal tribes have long since joined them and thinned the blood of their descendants by way of interbreeding. Many remained in the forests, however, continuing in their traditional ways. They grew and changed over time, becoming civilized in their own way. Still, they prefer to travel the land and live off of it rather than settle down and tame it. Those descended from the forest tribes are generally referred to as the Bravani. Most of them still reside in the forests, traveling the land and retaining the traditional ways of their ancestors. They have a more olive colored skin than their coastal-dwelling neighbors, and almost exclusively have straight, black hair. The Bravani are looked down upon by outsiders, and in return they do not trust anyone who is not Bravani. They have a reputation as thieves and scoundrels, although troupes of performing Bravani actors and musicians are often a welcome sight at town festivals.
Count your coins after meeting a Bravani.
Common Remarian Saying
Major language groups and dialects
While most of the Bravani speak the Rikenian language common throughout the region, the Bravani have their own tongue as well. Their language sounds familiar and foreign at the same time to many. The original language of the forest tribes began to mix with that of the Rikenians and Argastilani long ago as the tribes interacted with their southern and northern neighbors. Some traditional words fell out of use while foreign words were added to the vocabulary. Some were changed, as is especially the case with most Argastilani words - many of which are now shortened versions of the original syntax.
Shared customary codes and values
Each clan of the Bravani is a close-knit family unit, and therefore handles their own internal affairs as would many families. There is a matriarch - called a Bunica - who makes most of the decisions for the clan. There will also be a male authority figure - called a Goya - who will be the oldest able-bodied male in the clan. He will be in charge of the day-to day affairs and defense of the clan when necessary. The young among the Bravani are expected to heed the words of their elders, especially that of the Bunica and the Goya. To disrespect ones elders, and especially those who lead the clan, is considered a great sin among the Bravani. In some cases, repeated exhibitions of insolence can lead to exile from the clan itself.
Common Etiquette rules
It is customary among the Bravani to invite strangers into their camp. They are a sharing people, and taking care of each other is how they survive. Should one be wandering the forest and come upon a group of Bravani, they will normally be treated kindly so long as they show respect to their hosts. Causing harm to a guest, disrespecting or causing harm to a host, or refusing to offer hospitality without just cause are all considered grievous breaches of etiquette.
Art & Architecture
While the Bravani have no stationary architecture in their culture, they do have lovingly carved wagons and collections of textiles, artwork, and other luxury goods which they unpack whenever they make camp for an extended period of time. These accouterments can easily turn a simple camp of wagons and tents into a sort of outdoor palace, complete with fine silver candelabras and even some simple furniture.
Average Weight:150 lbs
Average Build:Slender to Athletic
Common Hair Colors:Black
Common Eye Colors:Dark Brown, Grey, Green
Typical Skin Tone:Pale Olive
Surnames:Cervenak, Haluska, Racz, Lakatos, Bango, Kaleja
Male Names:Eladon, Gallius, Vandilo, Riley, Wifton, Silvanus
Female Names:Ethelinda, Leonora, Maarah, Tillie, Rhoda, Vertina
A note on Bravani nicknames.
Almost all of the Bravani will carry nicknames from childhood throughout their adult life. Because of superstitions regarding the power of true names, they will only give these nicknames when meeting outsiders. Normally only those of the immediate clan will know a Bravani's true name. These nicknames are usually the names of plants or animals. Common Bravani nicknames include Acorn, Tulip, Flower, Petal, Seedling, Blackbird, and Cardinal for females; and Raven, Crow, Fox, Spider, Hawk, Falcon, and Newt for males.
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