Joren van Raaf

Protector of the Faith and Overlord of Heskia Joren van Raaf (a.k.a. Blessed Joren)

A military leader of the Hurrite forces after the execution of Jahn Hurs, successfully fended off Menschan Ecclesial invasions of his lands. Famous for his innovative tactics and training which allowed his forces to face enemies which outnumbered him by a wide margin.

Physical Description

General Physical Condition

Made for war, Joren van Raaf was skilled in little else. Strong and muscular with especially strong forearms and an overhead swing that could cleave a man's head from his shoulders in a single blow.

Mental characteristics

Personal history

Son of prominent nobility in Heskia, Joren van Raaf was a veteran of the Battle of Nareux which was fought between King Reiner of Menscha and his Halsat counterpart King Romel II. The short war concluded with a mutual peace but van Raaf claimed a large amount of valuables for himself when he returned home. van Raaf was living in Drestadt and came to be in correspondence with a growing figure by the name of Jahn Hurs. van Raaf was not an inherently religious man yet Hurs' message of throwing off Ecclesial authority and a religion based on the individual's path toward salvation was something that spoke to van Raaf who became a loyal follower of Hurs.

After Hurs was tried and executed, van Raaf and his own followers fled the city and went west towards his homeland of Heskia in order to dodge imprisonment via their association with Hurs. It was in Heskia that van Raaf began mustering Hurrite forces and fought the first battle of the Hurrite Wars at Surome where he defeated Salic partisans and built up the Hurrite stronghold of Stol. van Raaf was a leading voice in the first Hurrite council of Stol where he represented the voice of the militant group of the order which advocated for total religious autonomy from Ecclesial control. At the council of Stol were other influential Hurrite figures like Katrien van Evre and the moderate leader Roel de Hartin.

It was after the Council of Stol that the fight truly began as van Raaf was tasked with defending the Hurrite lands from the now allied forces of Menscha and Tiranar, a prospect very daunting for the upstart rebels. With the de Marteau and Hohengoff crowns allied, van Raaf was forced to defend with an army consisting mostly of volunteered peasants and farmers. van Raaf's military innovations involved heavy reliance on the pike and crossbow, and on a mobile defense system based on moving carriages. Using these tactics, van Raaf assumed command of the defense of the city of Schauer against the combined armies of Tiranar and Menscha, led overall by King Reiner. van Raaf took up position outside the city on a ridge called Gordts Hill. On the 9th of Kaisie, King Reiner led a majority Salian assault force against the Hurrites on Gordts Hill. van Raaf had dug extensive defensive trenches and in combination with the Salian attack coming uphill, the Hurrites were able to inflict massive casualties on the attackers. Of the nearly 10,000 men attacking that day, the Salians lost nearly half that number and the over 100 Hurrite defenders lost less than forty men. After suffering such a shocking defeat, King Reiner abandoned the siege of Schauer and regrouped east, leaving van Raaf victorious.

At the end of 659, Reiner again attempted to march west into Hurrite lands in Heskia and took possession of the important town of Messen. The mainly Heskian citizens of the city killed a few of the Hurrites in the town but the city was closed to Reiner, whose army mainly were camped outside the city walls. Reiner's army began besieging the city and surrounded the Hurrite partisans. van Raaf was at the head of the Hurrite forces in the area and managed to come in contact with the Hurrite commanders inside the city. Though trapped, the defenders organized a battle plan with van Raaf who managed to execute an intricate sustained artillery barrage that produced heavy Salian casualties. van Raaf's soldiers broke through the battered Salian lines and forced them to retreat to the nearby village of Remaut and upon receiving reinforcements from inside Messen, van Raaf pressed his attack and decisively defeated Reiner's army. King Reiner lost 12,000 men, half of his entire army, and only escaped himself by rapid flight with his own royal retinue of mounted knights. What remained of Reiner's forces made a last stand in the town of Dupont. van Raaf ordered an assault and the town was stormed by the Hurrites. Contrary to van Raaf's orders, its defenders were put to the sword.

After repeated successes in defending Hurrite lands, van Raaf attempted a push east into Menschan lands. Leading a force of raiders, van Raaf conducted a scorched earth campaign against the Salians and terrorized the lands of Great Salia for five years. van Raaf's raids ended after he was recalled after the forces of Roel de Hartin defected and joined with the Halsats and began attacking the Hurrites. After van Raaf arrived, the two Hurrite factions fought Elst where van Raaf defeated the Hartins. However, van Raaf's vigorous campaigning took a toll on his health and he fell ill returning to Stol where he died of an unknown illness.

With the loss of van Raaf, the Hurrite cause weakened, and negotiations began with Menscha and Jurane. By 671, the Hurrites ceased their fighting and were granted religious freedom in Menscha and Jurane while having their practice barred in Tiranar. Joren van Raaf remains a divisive yet beloved figure in circles as his innovative methods of warfare were studied and utilized by his opponents and his great and resounding victories brought on a wave of adulation from Hurrite factions. van Raaf's successes and triumphs led to his immediate adoption as a folk hero to the Heskians and as a figure as high in renown among the Hurrite faction as that of Jahn Hurs himself. He is currently officially beatified in Hurrite circles and is among a small number of figures call "The Blessed Warriors of the Faith".

Personality Characteristics


Protect the gathered Hurrite faithful and beat back the Ecclesial and monarchical forces sent against him

Virtues & Personality perks


Vices & Personality flaws

Hot Tempered


Contacts & Relations

Early follower of Jahn Hurs
Contemporary and ally of Katrien van Evre and Roel de Hartin

Religious Views

Many aspects of Joren's religiosity cast doubt on the pious nature of van Raaf as he showed little outward interest in the Hurrite cause, especially in contrast to his contemporary Katrien van Evre. Nevertheless, van Raaf was a prudent man, and whatever his true religious leanings, he fought with the same zeal and dedication that was demanded of him as one of the faces of the Hurrite cause.

Social Aptitude

Solemn, gloomy, and a man dedicated to whatever task was put before him. Joren van Raaf was noted as a man of few words when away from the fields of war and very much the opposite when in his element. Van Raaf did not enjoy war whatsoever, yet he excelled in it because he was a wrangler of chaos, and war is chaos after all. Joren's solemn glare could ready the posture of a backwater peasant who had never seen armor before and his commanding presence proved an adhesive that kept his rabble of peasants and seasoned troops together during the violent struggle that were the Hurrite Wars.


Stoic can be a word to describe how van Raaf carried himself, never rattled or afraid and always ready to meet challenges. Joren's internal confidence in himself and his confidence in his methodology of waging war was something that rubbed off on his junior commanders and permeated all the way down to the rank and file of his army. He adopted a grandfatherly presence in his army and routinely leaned into such a role when situations necessitated it.


Raspy, low, and more akin to a grunt, van Raaf's gift was not in public speaking and he could do far more with his body language than he ever could with a long drawn-out speech.
(van Raaf's poor Hurrite peasant army, equipped with pike, pitchfork, spiked club, and halberd)    
(Heavily utilized and prized Heskian crossbowmen behind pavises)
Divine Classification
Date of Birth
21st of Modia
Date of Death
14th of Kaisie
606 A.E 670 A.E 64 years old
Circumstances of Birth
Son of the Heskian noble family of van Raaf
Circumstances of Death
Died of illness on the road back to Stol
Rissen, Heskia
Place of Death
Mirtz Village, Heskia
Dark Brown, One Eyed
Short, Blond, Thick mustache
Skin Tone/Pigmentation
200 lbs
Quotes & Catchphrases
"Only those who cower in their towers, bury their nose in scribling and close their eyes at blood call so fervently for it. War is pain and pain is best brief."
Hurrite Faith
Aligned Organization
Character Prototype
Jan Žižka


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