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The Lirendi Family

The Lirendis are a long, long line--like the Landises, they endured because of a practical attitude toward inheritance, adoption, etc. Early on they became adept at skillfully propagating their own legend. The first Lirendi king was a herald, which fact is all but shrouded in legend now, just as if the fact that the famed lily of the Lirendis was actually a stylized bee. That first Lirendi had discovered, in watching bees, that the notion of cooperation governed bees: that either kings became kings by bashing everyone else on the head and enforcing obedience, or by gaining loyalty other ways. The hive made the queen bee the queen, otherwise she was just a helpless insect. Just so the wise king remembered that kingship actually lay in the hands of the populace.

But also, like the queen bee, the king had to seem larger and better and quicker and stronger than anyone. The king had to inspire confidence as well as admiration and respect. So the Lirendi legend was quite deliberately invented and propagated by themselves, and their humble origins soon forgotten. But the Lirendis know (they are raised to know) and the heralds know--and there has always been a special relationship between the Colendi Guild and the royal family. The Lirendis' history parallels that of Colend, which arose in a river valley province of Sartor with indefensible borders, thus the practical solution: negotiation.

When Sartor fell and its outlying lands had to defend themselves, Colend coalesced into a whole, surrounding itself with friendly neighbors. This worked with all but the Chwahir, whose land was soil-poor, the climate harsh due to constant weather caused by the meeting of two great currents just off its corner.

Strife between Colend and the Chwahir is a constant in the background of Colendi politics, and was the cause of a Colendi mage group raising (at royal behest not just from Colend but from allies) the mountains surrounding Chwahirsland to keep them inside their own borders.

The Lirendi survived the nearly catastrophic results of that action, though for a time Colend nearly turned into a swamp as the great rivers flowing down from the Sartoran mountains to the strait were denied an outlet. Earthquakes joined swampy rains as a result. The mages of the Council were tempered by years and years of disaster-warding, especially detecting and easing quakes, but the result was the turning of the great rivers Eth and Alassa.

The city of Alsais was nearly swamped, it did end up being more watery than it had been, but the Colendi turned that to advantage, creating an enchanting city build on canals. After that the Lirendi left magic to the mages, and got on with life.

Some say their greatest period was directly after Lasthavais Dei married the Colendi king in a romantic story whose ballads are still sung all over the continent in many forms. Their son was the handsome, charismatic Matthias Dei, called Matthias the Magnificent, whose idea of spreading peace was to conquer an empire. Since his style of conquering was to ride out in fabulously designed war clothes, spending nights in a camp city that required an army of servants far larger than that making up his warriors, and wining and dining his enemies and seducing them into surrender (the rational choice of a sophisticated, caring ruler--why shed blood?) this empire-making does not figure in others' history as bloody as some empire histories.

After Matthias died, the enchantment gradually faded, and the empire was lost, though again seldom to war, more through negotiation, complicated treaties, and the like, leaving Colend with less land, but wealthier than ever.

the Lirendis have not all been beautiful, but after their death legend makes them so, and they all were raised to understand the importance of style. To preside over as sophsticated a court as that in Alsais, one must be an expert in courtly style.

The result has been very, very few violent changes of government, and it's unthinkable that any ruler of Colend (no matter how much power the ruler has, and this questions has ebbed and flowed to a surprising degree over the centuries) would ever be anything but a Lirendi.

Members of the Lirendi family

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Categories: Characters by Family || Lirendi Family || Colend

Page last modified on May 10, 2013, at 12:11 PM