Servant of Ironies Profession in Manifold Sky | World Anvil

Servant of Ironies

The Servants of Ironies, also known as the Priests and Priestesses of Ironies, are the religious clergy of the Church of the Unexpected.



Prospective Servants of Ironies must be members in good standing of the Church of the Unexpected who demonstrate an appropriate level of understanding of Church doctrine and religious scripture. Applicants to the position must be vetted first by the head Servant of their local temple, followed by the head regional Servant.

Career Progression

If the applicant meets all requirements for recruitments into the position of Servant, they are apprenticed to the local temple for a number of years until they have demonstrated that they have demonstrated a deep enough degree of familiarity with the Church's doctrine, texts, traditions, and rituals that they can become a fully-fledged Servant of Ironies. Barring major malfeasance or a purposeful break from the Church, the title of Servant of Ironies adheres to the applicant for the rest of their life.   Newly minted Servants of Ironies almost always begin as specialists, as the local temple in which they apprenticed is almost always a specialist temple. Many Servants of Ironies chose to remain specialists, as this affords them a stable position and only requires a passing knowledge of the faiths associated with other members of the pantheon. Those wishing to become generalists, however, spend the time required to become more acquainted with the other deities, eventually demonstrating that they can carry out the required duties of other cults within the Church. At this point, these Servants appeal to the regional Church leader (or next highest available generalist) to become recognized generalists.   The Church of the Unexpected remains regional and overall hierarchies based on the degree of experience of each Servant within it. When a high-ranking member of the Church dies, the next person in line with regards to experience - usually gauged by number of years served and degree of generalist knowledge demonstrated - steps into that member's role. Servants may chose not to advance in rank, a choice most often made by itinerant generalists wishing not to be detained in their quest to minister to the distributed masses of the faithful, but the history of the Church is replete with tales of Servants forced to advanced by a sense of duty to the institution over their own desires for autonomy. Servants of Irony who set aside their own wants for the greater good of the Church of the Unexpected, on the other hand, can look forward to beatification should they prove efficacious in their tenure.

Payment & Reimbursement

The Church of the Unexpected provides each Servant of Irony a monthy stipend from Church coffers, though, as the material needs of the Servant are largely provided for, this is seldom a very large stipend. As the Church's income is almost completely drawn from donations, the size of Servant stipends is directly tied to both the wealth of the region in which they serve and the penetration of Church activities into the local cuture; this provides a potent incentive for the Servants of Irony to put their best efforts forward in terms of their duties.

Other Benefits

Servants of Irony and their immediate families are taken care of by the Church of the Unexpected, with a basic level of housing, food, and sometimes medical care provided by the Church in order to help the Servants focus on their primary purposes: ministering to the faithful and evangelizing to the non-faithful.



The Servants of Ironies are charged within ministering to the Unexpector faithful and promulgating the widespread belief in the House of the Unexpected pantheon, including: In the course of their religious duties, Servants of Ironies are also important for the administration of important cultural institutions within the New Voxelian culture, whether present in Voxelia itself or in its diaspora population (i.e. in the Free Faces League).
For example, itinerant Servants of Aquardion in particular are common sights on the battlefields of the War of Reunification, where they attend to the spiritual needs of the deceased and the families they leave behind. In another example, the widespread cult of Cosmeon manifests throughout organizations dedicated to the exploration of far-flung parts of the Manifold Sky, including the Navigator's Guild (in the form of the Order of Cosmeon), the Burning Hearts Social Club (with their many Seeker of Misfortune), and the Sorority of Solace. In the latter instances, Servants of Cosmeon often attach themselve to expeditions as a means of providing a sense of security in tradition despite the dangers at hand.
Compass Rose.png
Guild Compass Rose by BCGR_Wurth

Social Status

Aside from the usual differences beetween different faith groups, Servants of Ironies have been known to stir up controversy in the past due to the way in which their profession interfaces with issues surrounding the War of Reunification. On the one hand, many citizens of the Coalition of Breakaway Colonies retain a belief in part or all of the House of Ironies pantheon, and these individuals need someone to minister to them. On the other hand, Voxelia is both the founding place of the religion and lays claim to the title of "true scions of the Gods of Irony" in their civic symbolism.  
Voxelian Standard by BCGR_Wurth
The Church, for its part, has been known to minister to the people from both sides of the War all at once, with temple guardians occasionally forced to remove supplicants who quarrel on these grounds within the sanctuary.   The appearance of split loyalties and the itinerant nature of many Servants makes them disliked by non-believers in these regions, with accusations of spying or the dissemination of anti-war propaganda being common accusations laid against them. Voxelia remains more open to the Church despite these accusations - partially as a matter of cultural pride and partly in the vain hopes of actually turning the Church to the purpose of spreading pro-Voxelian sentiment - but is not entirely immune from the occasional controversies created by such suspicious sentiments in the public consciousness.
  To combat this perception, the Church of the Unexpected maintains a doctrine of official non-interference in political affairs. The Church itself advocates for universal moral positions, but holds no official stance with regards to the policies of the various nations in which it is established. A Servant may advise on the religious permissibility of a course of action, or prognosticate on religious matters in ways which might intersect with political issues, but must not directly advocate for political positions unless doing so in the capacity of a native-born private citizen of the place in which they are ministering (eschewing the appearance of official endorsement). Itinerant Servants, being always outside of their homeland, must avoid all appearance of partiality.


As Unexpectorism is intimately tied to the cultural history of the New Voxelian ethnicity, most Servants of Ironies are of New Voxelian Heritage.   Around one quarter of all Servants of Ironies are 'generalists,' a term encompassing those Servants who are versed enough in the religion to minister to any member of the faith, regardless of cult or affiliation. Generalists tend to be well-educated individuals and trend older than their specialist counterparts. They often take on regional leadership roles within the Church, as they can effectively manage the affairs of multiple temples pursuing multiple dimensions of the faith at once. Three quarters of all itinerant Servants are generalists, as itinerant Servants cannot know which cult the people they minister will belong to beforehand.   Three quarters of all Servants of Ironies are 'specialists.' a term encompassing those Servants who chose to serve - and minister to the followers of - individual members of the House of the Unexpected pantheon. A sizeable majority of specialist Servants are of the same sex as the member of the House of the Unexpected they serve, though there is no official doctrine requiring this; generalists are free of any such expectations. The most sex-exclusive groups of Servants are those of Lyvianne (female) and Veldrin Vance (male). The Servants of Zevtwill have the most equal distribution in this regard, as Zevtwill's association with seduction, trickery, and the subversion of rote expectations make him appealing to gadflies of all stripes.


The Servant of Ironies profession was created as a consequence of the doctrines espoused by Sokalyx the Learned in the Incunabula of the House of the Unexpected near the beginning of written history in The Human Arc. Sokalyx realized that there would have to be a formalized, organized religious institution to grow the faith and maintain doctrinal purity through the ages. At the same time, Sokalyx also realized that there would be groups of people within the then-forming Old Voxelian Empire who would only be reached by appealing to their pre-unification religious sensibilities.  
To this end, Sokalyx not only established the Church as the arbiter of religious affairs and established a codified cannon of scripture, but he also made the first distinction between generalists and specialists and between temple Servants and itinerant Servants in terms of Church duties. The maintenance of order and doctrinal purity would be maintained by temple generalists, disseminated by itinerant generalists, and upheld among niche populations by specialists paying homage to the deities in a more narrow fashion. This broad arrangement remains in effect to the modern day, though more leeway has been granted to each caste within the Church hierarchy to promote better flexibility in the face of competing religious beliefs - especially the varous Epicyclism beliefs rising to prominence in the modern era (such as the Way of the Biocosm.
Linearist Logo by BCGR_Wurth
Seal of the Unexpected by BCGR_Wurth
Alternative Names
Servant; Priest(ess)
High (within human territories with some historical connection to Voxelia)
Famous in the Field

Related Articles

  • Manifold Standard Calendar - a calendar which, among other things, lists a number of Church-related holidays administered by Servants of Ironies.
  • Veldrinalia - a holiday celebrated by the Servants of Veldrin Vance and his followers.
  • Vyozha - a card game, originally made for the divinatory purposes of Servants of Lyvianne, which has now expanded beyond its religious context.

Cover image: by BCGR_Wurth


Please Login in order to comment!