Mountain Kin Ethnicity in The Sagas | World Anvil

Mountain Kin

Our blood is that of the mountain hard and cold so we may do what we must to keep our people alive. - Denob Tribesmen
  The natives that live on the harsh landscape that is The Spine that prefer to stay on them to remain safe. Only to come down to plunder the wealth of the lands below them to survive when they have to.

Naming Traditions

Feminine names

Jentu, Frena, Kemi, Lenena

Masculine names

Wugran, Hedru, Kedenthar, Imen


Major language groups and dialects

Derun   Oru   Vasfa

Culture and cultural heritage

Decedents of the Barbarians

  All of the Mountain Kin are descendants of barbarians that once lived in the lowlands as they like to call it. Until they were chased out by the nations that rose to power and decided they were not welcomed in their lands. Those who fled from total annihilation went into the mountains to rebuild their lives as best they could in forming new tribes and adapting to their new harsh environment. Often carrying some of their tradition so the old cultured did not die out.  

Children of the Mountains

  The Mountain Kin are connected to the mountains they live on to a great extent as they consider them their only home where they can live free from those who would see them wiped out or enslaved under their rule. It is here that they can live their lives freely despite the dangers that dwell on them. There is also a spiritual aspect to it as well, as they believe that their ancestors have become a part of the mountains themselves to watch over them when they need to and aid them in times of struggle. For the mountains have given them the strength to live on and never fall to weakness.

Shared customary codes and values

Survival the Strong

  Due to their harsh conditions they only believing that the strong can survive and the weak will perish. Any child born deformed or frail will often be thrown from the mountain as feeding any extra mouth to feed is not a luxury they have and every piece of food counts for survival. That also goes with anyone who becomes a cripple or has none of the right qualities to be strong. They are either killed or ousted from their tribe as they are not worth caring for.  

Waste Not Want Not

  Everything is used in their services to their fullest extent as resources are scarce while living upon the mountains. When an animal is hunted everything is used from it with meat for food, bones for tools along with many other uses. In doing so the likelihood of survival is increased for an entire community to live on for another day.  

Way of the Mountain

  Like their ancestors before them, they have become spiritual and believe that the mountains they live on are living things and that Spirits are all around them from the wind to animals they follow a path that all must take that has been decreed by the mountains. This rule is often that of survival and the strength of one's will to face any challenge that lies before them for life and death are intertwined that may determine one's fate. Along with whatever you kill belongs to you as you were the one responsible for taking the life of another.

Average technological level

They have very little advancement due to their inability to harvest and produce advanced resources. With their only advancements being in the form of stone weapons and tools. The use of bone is also considered an advancement as well as it is used in tools and building as well. Though their ability to strong armor with animal hide and bone give the adequate protection from weapons. Along with their ability to make medicines from the various plants and animals help them as we to remain healthy.

Common Etiquette rules

Whenever greeting someone one must raise their weapon above their head as a sign of peace especially when visiting another tribe. It is also proper to greet the chief of one tribe to report what they have brought back to the tribe so it is properly distributed. Whenever food is given out children and pregnant women are given food first for they need more nourishment than any other member of the tribe.

Common Dress code

There is no dress code as they only wear animal furs to keep warm. So men and women wear the same thing as they have no luxuries to wear something different.

Art & Architecture

Much of their buildings are huts, tents, and the occasional cave that they dwell in. Often made of bone and animal hide to shelter them from the cold. But they are known for their imagery of their history often on cave walls and stone often carving them in long after they are gone. They often show it as well with its engravings on weapons and tools and tattoos.

Common Customs, traditions and rituals

Great Hunting: Right before the winter comes to the mountains a tribe will scourer the mountain in search of food to feed their people during the much colder months as it becomes too difficult to hunt as the temperature become too cold for anyone to hunt in.   Right of Leadership: Whenever a chief shows any sign of weakness it put the entire trip in danger as their neighbors will take advantage of it. That is why anyone can challenge the right to lead the tribe by challenging the chief in single combat and if they win the old chief is killed to remove and future threat to the new one's rule.   Gol'en: It is not uncommon for conflict to happen between the tribes as many grudges have been held between them for a long time. But when a Gorol'en has been declared. Meaning grudge both tribes participating will fight each other then if they ever cross one another. This often happens when some unforgivable act has been committed that cannot be easily forgiven.   Raiding: It is not uncommon for tribes to go raiding when resources are scarce for why should they not take what they need to keep themselves alive. It doesn't matter if they are other tribes or settlements from down below if they want it they will take it.

Birth & Baptismal Rites

To be born in the mountains means they must be strong to survive them. There is nothing to celebrate for being born into such a cruel world as even the life of a newborn can be taken at any moment. It was from here that a newborn shall be taken away from their mother before even being breastfed to be examined by shamans of the tribe to see if they are healthy. Those who are healthy shall taste ice before being given back to their mother so they will remember the discomfort to prepare them later in life and the mark of the tribe on their forehead to become a member of it. Those who do not pass shall be thrown from a cliff and forgotten for there is no place for weakness.

Coming of Age Rites

Life is never comfortable in the mountains even for a child must endure hardship that often surrounds them. Though small they will often be given small tasks to help out when they can until they become old enough to travel around the mountains without a problem. It is at the age of twelve when they are large enough they are sent out on their first hunt to prove that they are now able to fend for themselves without depending on others often being referred to as the " Trial of the Strong" to determine one's determination and strength to do what must be done to survive. once they come back with a kill they will consider an adult of the tribe and be given a tattoo of the tribe's symbol to prove that they are a member of it.

Funerary and Memorial customs

There is nothing glamorous about a Mountian Kin funeral, when someone dies they are not given any great honors for they are pointless. Instead, their bodies are just set on fire using a flammable substance known as Grucma to be used as warmth for the tribe, as wood is scarce and a good fire is difficult to make. Everything thing they once own is stripped even the clothing they wore for use by the tribe and once their body is gone their spirit will join their ancestors on the mountain. With only a figure painted of them for all that lived after know that they live as one of many whose names will slowly be forgotten but once lived.

Common Taboos

Weakness: Life in the mountains is not easy and it is often every one of themselves, that is how it has always been for those who live on the mountain. Those who are unable to keep up or suffer any injury that makes them a liability are no longer looked after by their tribe as they cannot afford the resources to keep them alive.   Wastefulness: Nothing goes to waste on the mountains and to waste something can cause suffering amongst the tribe as it can be used for several things. Not using everything of something that has to offer means that that they care only for themselves and not the rest of the tribe.   Laziness: All must do their part to survive and there is no place for those to lounge around do nothing while the life of the tribe as if they were a pig. They must pull their weight and do what they must to keep the tribe alive or be thrown out of it.

Common Myths and Legends


Beauty Ideals

It is often physical and not looks as for both genders as strong physical appearance means that they can hold their own and will be able to properly raise a family and provided for them.

Gender Ideals

Men and women must work together to ensure the survival of their people. They will often share the burden and learn everything from the other such as hunting, foraging and even caring for children. When one is tired the other will take their place so they can rest for all must being willing to take part in their survival.

Courtship Ideals

There is nothing simple about someone wanting to find a mate for themselves amongst the mountain kin. For it cannot be forced or bought in any way as it must be earned by both sides. Both find an attraction to one another and not just desire as it must be a union of trust and compassion for them to survive. Those who care for one another are willing to do whatever they can to aid one another when they need it.

Relationship Ideals

The bond between spouses is strong of what greater gift can be shared than warm in a cold place such as the mountain. Both will stand by each other when they need to and help each other survive. For it is a vow to one another to share each other warmth as they sleep through the harsh night together. For warmth is the only love that they know in this world and allows them to remember that beyond the harsh cold they live through there is someone that will give them comfort.
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Cover image: Barbarian by Daria Rashev


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