Tideriders Ethnicity in The Ocean | World Anvil
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In the ten thousand years between venturing away from the vastland and settling in the Cluster Islands, many humans established a livelihood on the ocean itself.  Sailing became a family occupation, rather than an individual one, and those who spent most of their time traveling between islands became known as tideriders.

Naming Traditions

Unisex names

Tideriders do not differentiate names by gender; a child's name is typically chosen well before birth. The only firm requirements are that the name must be two syllables long, accented on the first syllable, and audibly distinct from any other name in the family.   The first syllable is usually taken from an Oceantongue word. The second syllable may also be, but is frequently picked from a set of commonly-used suffixes. A suffix may suggest a gender but does not indicate it; -u is often used at the end of names for girls and -al in names for boys, but aural aesthetics are a stronger consideration. A syllable may be taken from an existing name, but a name may not be reused in full until a complete generation has passed since the death of its previous holder.

Family names

As in most other human cultures, individual surnames are composed of the person's bloodline (matrilineal) and fleshline (patrilineal) names. Members of a family rarely use their surnames with each other, and use only their bloodline name with non-tideriders.  If a person leaves their family, they retain their full surname, but preceded with ex; if a person joins another family, they retain their original surname, but follow it with in and the new family's bloodline name.


Major language groups and dialects

Oceantongue is the common language spoken across all tiderider families. Each family also has its own argot, used when speaking amongst themselves while in the presence of outsiders.

Culture and cultural heritage

The social structure of a tiderider fleet is strongly influenced by the ancient River Culture villages. The family matriarch commands the mother ship. Adult family members are responsible for the smaller boats in the fleet, but mostly eat and sleep on the mother ship.

Shared customary codes and values

Tideriders provide the bulk of all passenger and cargo transport between islands.  No groundpounder is permitted to set foot on a mother ship, but a typical fleet will have several vessels available for hire.

Common Dress code

In addition to the ubiquitous belly wrap, most sailors wear protective clothing for their feet, head, and groin. Additional work-specific clothing may be used as necessary.

Coming of Age Rites

To be considered a full member of the crew, a young tiderider must pass five unannounced "fall checks". The youngster in question is tossed overboard without warning, and must recover from an uncontrolled fall into a controlled dive before touching the water.

Funerary and Memorial customs

In the event of a death at sea, the vacated body is tied by the feet to the mother ship by a specific length of rope and released into the water.  The ship puts out sail, and the rope is cut when it reaches its full length.
Parent ethnicities
Diverged ethnicities
Related Myths

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