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Luari

From Dragon Eye Atlas

Luari is a northern culture prominent mostly in Grasalia.

It values strength and independence to the point where in some rural areas boys are still sent into the wilderness armed but alone to kill a wolf or bear and become a man. But Luari is also the only human culture where men and women enjoy equal status. Women hunt as much as men do and fathers are proud of and spend time with their children just as much as mothers do. Even in warfare do women participate. There are only a few activities that are segregated by sex: Women don't gamble, men don't fish or lay traps, for example.

Traditions

Combat Sports

A distinct Luari tradition that has fallen our of fashion in most other areas of the world is gladiatorial combat as a spectator sport. In villages and smaller towns, these are conducted between locals much like any sport, and typically with wooden weapons. Bruises and minor injuries are fairly common at these events and carried with pride.

Just like amateur sports, there is also a more professional level of pitfighting (as it is called at the middle, semi-professional level) or arena fighting (the highest, pro-level). These battles, sometimes 1-on-1 but more often 2-on-2 or 3-on-3 are fought with real armor and actual, though blunt, weapons. Local rules as to allowed hit locations differ slightly, but even if the head is disallowed, fighters generally wear helmets. Stabbing is also often not permitted.

Wounds of all severities occur in many of these fights, and several gladitors all over the Luari areas die each year. This violence is culturally excepted and considered entertaining, much like public executions elsewhere.


Battle

Even outside of sports, battle is glorified in Luari culture and dying in battle is considered an honorable death. For this reason, in times of war many criminals are given the option to atone for their crimes and gain their freedom by signing up as soldiers. Those who live to the end of the campaign are pardoned and have their honor restored.

Ordinary people respect their warriors and during war any soldier can expect to receive food and board when travelling towards the frontlines, and warriors leave their villages with a celebration and as heroes, and likewise are they welcome back. Luari are not battle-crazy - the average peasant will take up arms only if the enemy reaches his village and it must be defended by anyone capable.


Lucky Stones

A peculiar tradition of Luari culture is the belief in lucky stones. Typically semi-precious stones such as Quarz, Malachite, Tiger Eye, Lapis Lazuli and many others, these stones are believed to bring luck in various areas, often indicated by their colour. The exact meanings change from place to place. Red stones are often associated with love, or battle. Blue stones with harvest, fertility or trade. Yellow stones with friendship, family or loyalty. Green stones stand for fortunate travels, adventures, learning and knowledge. And many more.

Luari people often look for or buy such lucky stones when they wish for a small extra helping of luck, such as when embarking upon a journey or hosting a dinner for the extended family, or really any untypical somewhat important event.


This page is still incomplete and missing content or details that are planned, but have not been added yet.


Architecture

Most of the Luari lands are mixed or coniferous forests (taiga), which makes wood the obvious construction material of choice. Almost every building in Luari culture is made from wood, with the exception of city and castle walls.

sketch of Luari half-floor architecture

The most typical feature of Luari architecture, however, is the popularity of half-floors. In the hills and mountains of the southern Luari regions, where the culture possibly originated, this is simply a practical way to build on a slope. In a half-floor building, part of each floor is built at ground level and the other part is built half a floor higher, with a staircase in the center connecting all floors. So you would move from floor one to floor one-half, then to floor two, and floor two-half.

This style is now used even when houses are built not on a slope, with the half-height parts at the ground and top floors used as storage spaces or sleeping quarters. Sleeping in a half-height room needs some getting used to for foreigners, who regularily bump their heads on the low ceiling when standing up (the top floor is often under the roof, so the center of the room is just high enough to stand, but the sides are not).


Clothing

As a northern culture with harsh climate, most Luari clothes are practical and warm. Wool and linen are the most common fabrics, and leather is common for all classes of society.

There is little difference in the clothing between men and women, with a few exceptions: Women use hoods or scarfs to cover their heads while men wear hats. Only women wear sandals in summer, while men always wear closed shoes. And finally: Blue is considered a female colour and any man (typically foreigners) wearing blue fabric will be the target of ridicule.


This page is still incomplete and missing content or details that are planned, but have not been added yet.