There is a wide variety of different magical traditions ranging from tattooed barbarian wizards to hermetic wizards studying in dusty libraries to bardic wizards casting magic through music.  While the methods of casting magic differ, the basic principle remains the same.  Wizards wield arcane magic by learning and mastering metaphysical laws of the universe using techniques taught from mentor to apprentice for centuries.     The majority of wizards in the Third Age are trained by independent solo mentors in one-on-one apprenticships.   Most wizards learn their craft via years of study under a mentor and most wizard mentors, regardless of their magical tradition, chooses to train one apprentice at a time, or in rare cases two.  Wizards may nobly seek out apprentices they think can strengthen their magical tradition and use their powers wisely or they can select apprentices that they think they can easily manipulate and exploit.  A lot of wizards are purely mercenary taking on apprentices with rich parents willing to pay lots of gold to train their sons and daughters in magic.       Others are trained by a wizard in a formally recognized feudal covens.  In most cases it still boils down to a single wizard apprenticing a single student.  The difference is that the apprentice is occasionally tested by her mentors peers and not just her mentor.  Covens do this to make sure their would-be members meet minimum standards of excellence in order to preserve the coven's power and reputation.     The least common means of a wizard learning his craft is via magic schools.  This rare means of magic is becoming more common as many princes have taken to bankrolling magic schools in the hope of leveraging their patronage to gain the loyalty of many wizards at once.   Magic schools in Scarterra are not like Hogwartz which averaging eight hundred students at any given time. A typical Scarterran magic school has at most five or six instructors and at most two dozen students at any one time.

Broad Overview of Wizarding Traditions

  All wizards study ancient metaphysical laws to manipulate the forces of arcane magic, but they don't all use the same techniques. In theory, every wizard puts his or her own spin on arcane magic but most wizards fall into the broad traditions below.     Aesthetic hermetic wizards unlock their magic through rigorous practice, study, and great self-discipline. They strive to be able to cast magic with as few external tools as possible.     Body wizards, also called tattoo mystics are a magical tradition associated with barbarians and savages. They unlock their magic through study and mediation, but also testing themselves physically and pushing their bodies to the limits. They rely on ritual tattoos and scarification to help them channel magic.     Classical hermetic wizards unlock their magic through rigorous practice and study and lots of reading and practice of ancient tried and true formulas memorized from books and scrolls which they rely on heavily.     Folk magicians blur the line between wizard traditions as they develop their magic through a combination of memorizing oral lore, reading written lore, self-discipline, meditation, and occasionally communing with otherworldly beings.     rune casting wizards use runes as the primary method of spellcasting. Usually this means they carry a pouch of runes and brandishing them as part of spell casting but runes can be ritually traced, carved or chanted to cast spells.
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