Aquans Ethnicity in Tellus | World Anvil


"Aquans" is a blanket term for any intelligent people who require the support of the planet's oceans and seas. Known around Tellus (disparagingly) as "fish people", the stereotype could not be further from the truth. The variegate physical makeups and physiological needs of those who would be termed "Aquan" outnumber those deemed "terrestrial" by an order of magnitude, perhaps even more.

Naming Traditions

Feminine names

Marina, Ariel, Lorelei, Sirenna, Nerida, Thalassa, Coralia, Undine, Oceana, Aquarina, Pearlina, Kaiya, Nixie, Selene, Azurea, Mystara, Tritonia, Saphira, Naida, Delphina

Masculine names

Neptune, Triton, Aegir, Nereus, Kairos, Thalassar, Calypso, Marinus, Caspian, Oceanus, Poseidon, Lirael, Coralus, Abyssian, Ceruleus, Nauticus, Echion, Aquilo, Thetis, Ondine, Sygg

Unisex names

Marin, Kai, Azure, Ocea, Nere, Coral, Tide, Wave, Aqua, Selu, Ariel, Lore, Siren, Nix, Saphir, Pearl, Thal, Rina, Naida, Delphi

Family names

Aquamara, Deepfin, Seastar, Whalesong, Coralshade, Marinewind, Pearlbane, Wavecrest, Kelpthorn, Lumenshine, Tidewalker, Shellheart, Anemone, Fishscale, Narwhal, Seacharm, Saltmist, Sirensway, Seahaven, Coralbloom


Major language groups and dialects

Shared customary codes and values

The love, and a fierce protective pride, of the ocean pervades all of Aquan society on almost every level. It is the main contention between the Aquans and the Terrestrial ethnicities. They will, likewise, often harry vessels that pollute the waters, whether they have paid their passage or not.   Nowhere in the The Warmwind Sea is it safe to wontonly throw garbage overboard. 

Common Etiquette rules

Presenting the palms of both hands to someone is a gesture of friendly greeting, and there are several quite terrestrial seeming gestures using the hands. However, the subtle language of the tail and its myriad movements is a complex system of interactions between Aquans that, frankly, make conversation with terrestrials seem dry and unevocative by comparison.

Common Dress code

Dress is an incredibly diverse custom, yet a few things unite the disparate cultures. One of those things is a multitude of colors. The people of the oceans love bright colors and arresting fabrics. They are, also, prone to showing off a lot of skin, and strutting while they do it.

Art & Architecture

Aquan art tends toward the tempestuous and dramatic, except for a few notable exceptions. And yet, it is delicate and precise, taking complete control of the medium and method. Squid ink line art is a common theme, with the clever people using wide kelp leaves as their canvas. They likewise use kelp to make complex tapestries, and ritual knotwork. The Aquans simply adore seascape paitings.
Dance1 is another artform the aquans take great pride in, many women remaining uninterested in a man who cannot dance as a mating partner, or a life partner. Most men will go to great lengths to learn at least a semblance of aquatic ballet at some point in their lives. Sculptures contrived of bleached corals, found throughout the oceans, are often used as centerpieces for great dance displays, which can go on for upwards of three hours, spanning up to three hundred particpants, depending on the festival or occasion. Whale song and crystal instruments are incorporated into the display, which is meant to show off the flashy, rainbow-in-the-right-light scales festooning the young men's powerful tails.
They spend months eating special, "shiny scale" diets, and liberally rub ointments, unguents, salves, and liniments into their bodies to "shine up".   It's a bro thing.

Foods & Cuisine

Cerulean foods and food culture is a deep set cultural phenomenon. it is one of the things that helps bind the disparate peoples together. To the right, one can find a fine example of a menu from a Mezzofathom cafe.


Beauty Ideals

Cerulean jewelry and make up is a million-septim-a-year business, and while the vast amount of that money is spent by the royalty, every single Cerulean has some piece of jewelry. Coral, polished shells, and precious stones are ritually presented to people at some point in their lives; be it a situation of young love, or a polished shell engagement ring so thoroughly buffed that it would flouresce in the chemical lights of the empire's streetlamps.

Courtship Ideals

The people of the empire are romantics at heart, and accompanying one another to artistic events is considered the pinnacle of a thoughtful night out. Operatic whale song reviews, for example, are very popular in Mezzofathom.

Relationship Ideals

The people will find a life partner, with whom they wil share a caring and lifelong bond. But traditionally, they will also find themselves a 'side peice' while they are young (women and men alike).

1 Cerulean women will very often shell out good money for a professional tail dance.
Encompassed species
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Languages spoken
The Cerulean Trench
A deep, deep area of the The Warmwind Sea , the sheer sides of the trench harbor homes, businesses, and common areas, built by a huge consortium of Merrow that went on to form their own empire in 4840NG.