Wandrels

You find one folder gathering elements from the Almanach of Peoples of the Cylinder. A small tag on the side of the folder specifies that the encyclopedia was published in 5539 and was compiled from internal sources of the Library   The Wandrels are a large nomadic people present in the northern part of the Cylinder, down to the Crescent Sea. They are one of the 3 major ethnicities that compose the Merinos City-state human population.   Wandrels are typically described as taller and slimmer than average humans. They tend to have a particularly pale skin, and naturally sleek grey hair. Blue eyes are very present among the Wandrels, while orange and yellow eyes are almost non existent.   Sometimes called the "Merchants of the world", Wandrels are known to actively trade with a wide array of nations and ethnic groups. They are notably responsible for most exchanges of goods from sedentary cities to the Pleener nomads, who actively avoid to approach those cities in person. In addition to their commercial implications, Wandrels heavily meddle in politics with both nomadic families and the aristocracies of major sedentary groups, there again acting as a linking point between two otherwise separated worlds.

Naming Traditions

Unisex names

Gender is an absent feature of the Wandrel societies. Thus, every names given to children are unisex. Names are usually based on natural features found around the birthing tent, depending on the season.  
  • Mintel
  • Seed
  • Mapleseed
  • Flower
  • Alder
  • Alderdash
  • Ash
  • Ashen
  • Oaken
  • Birk
  • Byrcher
  • Berry
  • Redberry
  • Mintel
  • Redmint
  • Basil
  • Cloud
  • Holly
  • Hornleaf
  • Inkwood

Family names

Family names among the Wandrels are mostly linked to the social status of their ancestors, as well as some virtue-based nicknames.   Over the time, the names evolved toward a more flowing prononciation :
  • Shefferd
  • Slyrunnah
  • Bravelie
  • Smother
  • Cook
  • Shamanner
  • Healah
  • Upstream
  • Bluebottom

Culture

Culture and cultural heritage

Although the Wandrels have many unique cultural customs, one of its main heritage is the secured currency it developed, the Shadow blocks, Wandrel currency

Shared customary codes and values

Nomadic lifestyle

Although some families have partly settled in cities, most Wandrels live a fully nomadic lifestyle. They usually move in communities of a few dozens to a hundred individuals with various cattle, and trade with the nearby farms and town. A lot of Families almost constantly move, never having their housing circle at the same spot for more than ten days. However, the Family speed is usually different from the speed at which individuals can move. A lot of Wandrels tend to move a lot throughout the day, and to lead or follow their housing circle by afar. It is far from uncommon for a single Wandrel to move fifty kilometer per day, thus allowing them to get back to eat and sleep at their circle even from quite far away.    

Wandrel Family

Among Wandrels, life revolves around the idea of community, and the major social structure of the Wandrels is Family. The Family is as much defined by one's ancestry, as by one's living community. It is as much an important value, that even inside a Wandrel housing circle, individuals introduce themselves first with their family name, before adding their first name or nickname.

Art & Architecture

Although they are traditionally nomadic, Wandrels do have a specific architecture. The standard Wandrel settlement is called a Tulou. It is circular often more than fifty meters in diameter so as to host the whole Family, with the first floor only occupied by arches and pillar holding the second floor. The center of a Tulou is often a small tower several levels high. It is used for family gatherings, internal trade, and entertainment. The external circle of the building consists in several individual habitats, ranging from the size of a smal sleeping cocoon to large isolated room depending on the individual.   Material-wise, most Tulous are made to be easily assembled and disassembled. As such, they are most often composed of cloth and ropes, with wooden planks for the main structures. However, it is known that at least since the beginning of the 5th millennium AR, families have been building more permanent settlements. These buildings, although based on the same plan as the regular Tulous, are made out of clay, bricks, and hard wood, and are thus much more durable. Wandrel families building permanent Tulous either tend to move periodically from one to another, or use them as fortresses in case of skirmish with an other family.   The most well-known permanent Tulous nowadays are mostly built by the Merinos City-state, and, although they remain structurally similar to Wandrel Tulous, serve an entirely different function. These Tulous are more community stops for the various Merinian traders and wanderers, and their inhabitant are only rarely linked by family ties.

Funerary and Memorial customs

Wandrels think that one's head is its connection between the physical and the spiritual world. For that reason, upon one's death, the head is separated from the body, and is placed in a salt or sand jar. Depending on the cultures, the body is then either ceremonially burned, or buried while being filled with ghostpowder. The head, however, is carried along with the group. It is considered that while the head is drying, this last journey allows one's to leave its tribe peacefully. Once the head is fully dry, the jar is usually buried, and a memorial landmark is thereby placed.

Ideals

Gender Ideals

Wandrels descended from Nordic cultures, that did not have social genders. This absence of gender remained in their society, as their nomadic livestyle required minimal specialization.

Major organizations

Wandrel Nation
Diverged ethnicities
Encompassed species
Languages spoken


Cover image: by Pouaseuille

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