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Old 05-14-2021, 01:15 AM   #41
hal
 
Join Date: Aug 2004
Location: Buffalo, New York
Default Re: Mageborn are like Coins - Worldbuilding TL 3

Hi all,
For those who are interested in the Coding:

This is the "historical" tenant generation code that I used based on actual historical Rolls used for taxes. It is varied from the original Harn Manor tables in that it grants less land to the tenants of the manor (Village). Historically, the demense (the Lord's fields) ran about 1/3rd of his total acres, with the tenants getting the remaining 2/3rds.

Virgate is by definition, 30 acres of land. Thus a half virgate is 15, a quarter virgate is about 8. Farmers are by definition, Freemen rather than serfs.

Craftsmen are also freemen. This doesn't mean necessarily that there aren't serfs who can't practice some form of craftsmanship, it simply means that these individuals are usually "guilded" craftsmen.

Villein are serfs holding 30 acres of land, etc.

Cottars are those serfs who hold less than 5 acres of land.

The last unexplained category is the "Super" version of either Villein or Farmer. Purchasing land is not exactly possible unless the Lord ratifies said "purchase". For serfs, this is a permanent change to the contract for the Serf family and the Lord. For "Farmers", the contract is usually for 7 years or less, for the use of the land. A Lord could refuse to renew the rent of his land to the freeman. By custom, rent was generally about 1/3rd of the land being farmed's production to the lord. Harn Manor does it a little differently
Over time, these land contracts could change such that a relatively wealthy individual can amass sufficient land in excess of 30 acres. In general, the land sold would be a perch or a rod rather than an acre, but over time, these add up.

If you see a mageborn with 1/4 villein as their social status, it could mean that they're the child of someone who holds about 8 acres of land. If the Mageborn is an actual head of household, then the mage himself owes the obligation. Either way, until his Lord accepts a manumission fee in exchange for his freedom, he is still a serf with obligations.


Code:
Public Function GetHistoricTenant(ByVal DieRoll As Integer, ByVal Kingdom As String) As String
        Select Case DieRoll
            Case 1 To 10
                GetHistoricTenant = "Craftsman"
            Case Is = 11
                GetHistoricTenant = "Virgate Farmer Plus"
            Case 12 To 13
                GetHistoricTenant = "Virgate Farmer"
            Case 14 To 16
                GetHistoricTenant = "1/2 Virgate Farmer"
            Case 17 To 18
                GetHistoricTenant = "1/4 Virgate Farmer"
            Case 19 To 25
                GetHistoricTenant = "Small Farmer"
            Case Is = 26
                GetHistoricTenant = "Villien Plus"
            Case 27 To 44
                GetHistoricTenant = "Villien"
            Case 45 To 71
                GetHistoricTenant = "1/2 Villien"
            Case 72 To 78
                GetHistoricTenant = "1/4 Villien"
            Case 79 To 90
                GetHistoricTenant = "Cottar"
            Case Else
                If Kingdom = "Slave-owning" Then
                    GetHistoricTenant = "Slave"
                Else
                    GetHistoricTenant = "Cottar"
                End If
        End Select
    End Function
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Old 05-14-2021, 05:43 AM   #42
hal
 
Join Date: Aug 2004
Location: Buffalo, New York
Default Re: Mageborn are like Coins - Worldbuilding TL 3

Custom of the Manor
Each Noble was entitled to some extent, to find his own way when it comes to running his manor. However, customs to some extent, began to take on the character of "Local law" as it were. To the point, solutions to problems found by one Lord may not be the same fashion of problem solving used by another. Thus it came to be that each manor's customs might differ from others in some minor way.

I think it will be interesting, to presume that if there are 10 manors/villages involved, that each of you who wants to resolve an issue - should be able to do so in a way that is independent of your neighbors.

Thus - EACH of you, as Nobles of a Manorial Fief, who wants to put forth problems and/or solutions, are free to do so, but realize, as Lords of your own village, you are obligated to protect your people, honor their contracts with your forebear, and preserve their rights as passed down to their children. The phrase "me and mine" as well as "thee and thine" effectively recognizes that these contracts are binding on not just you, but your children, not just them, but their children.

So, let's take for example, the universal "education" you may want to instill in the children of your serfs.

By law, any man, regardless of his contractual obligations to his lord, may run away to a town or to a mine, and after one year of residing within the confines of the town or mine, be freed of said obligations. The more capable you make your serfs, the more "marketable" their skills will be to the extent that if they run away to a town, they can get a job. There are recorded instances, where a Serf's offspring was granted permission to leave the manor in exchange for a yearly sum (sometimes as little as a capon) and the Lord was unable to collect on that debt. More importantly, he was not able to get the individual to return to the village. As a result, the family usually ended up having to pay that fee. A serf who runs away, could very well be setting his family as hostages to the Lord's displeasure.

In order to manumit your serf from servitude, it often required the Lord lead the serf to a Hundred, a place that handled the administrative information, and recorded that the serf had been freed of his obligations. Courts cost money.

So, feel free to assume the personae of a Lord. If you want to try and BOND a mageborn to your service (household service), you're going to have to find a freeman mage willing to enter into that kind of contractual labor situation. If the free mageborn create a guild to protect not only themselves, but to regulate their brothers and sisters - then that will be another factor to consider.

If you note in the sample village I gave up thread, there was a fee paid by the craftsmen. This fee is to own essentially monopoly rights within the village. If there is to be a "Wizard's Monopoly" within a village, you, as world builders, are going to have to decide just what that monopoly entails. Same with Alchemists. Just remember however, that GURPS allows for what essentially works out as - lower wages. This is called "Struggling" for normal levels of income, or "normal income" for those jobs that normally garner "comfortable wages".

So - if you want to insure that your mageborn are bound to your land and unable to legally leave the manor - you may want to strongly consider what it will take to KEEP them there. If you want a Healing mage on hand for your family, you may have to consider what it will take to incorporate them into your house hold. If after say, three times, you accepted a year's income as the manumission fee for a serf, trying to charge more than that for the fourth one may run into the "Custom of the manor" motif where the villagers claim you are violating the custom of the manor. If you're willing to foot the bill for training the mageborn for new spells - do that often enough, and it may become a custom of the manor that the Lord is expected to foot all fees involved in that. If you promise the mageborn freedom after 10 years of service, and enforce that often enough - that may become the expected custom of the manor.

Also remember - as Lord, you can over-ride the customs and the villagers won't have any recourse for their complaints. They can't go to a King's court and complain. On the other hand, they can also deliberately slack off in their work or even sabotage it (Hopefully without getting caught). Flip side, you can refuse to safeguard their safety. Back and forth it goes...

So, for each problem you see, or each "idea" you want to try - I'm going to say GREAT, give it a shot and see what happens.

Eventually, I'm going to suggest events that may occur on any given Manor where the Lord may have to intervene as its leading administrator. Court cases may arise over failures on the part of mages. A man or woman may accuse a mageborn of some malfeasance.

As Lord of your lands, you may want to find a trained mageborn (aka Wizard or Mage) for your household. That means you can either find a freeborn mage in a nearby town, or maybe troll the nearby villages for an available mageborn for your household. Every COIN (aka Mageborn) spent working for a Knight's household, is one less mageborn for the needs of the Village. If you routinely utilize the mage to heal the villagers at your expense, that may become...

Custom of the Manor.
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Old 05-15-2021, 12:45 AM   #43
StevenH
 
Join Date: Feb 2008
Location: Portland, Oregon
Default Re: Mageborn are like Coins - Worldbuilding TL 3

SimVillages

I was looking into what tools the villages have at their disposal. I did some googling, and came up with the following info. I figure it might be of use to get a big picture of how the villages might interact, both with each other and with any external entities.

Per Hal's notes:

Basic topography is sort of like southern England
Basic natural resources are like southern England
I am also assuming that the basic climate is similar to southern England as well, however it happens (Great Conveyor, jet stream weirdness, the gods, or just plain old luck).

Now, that's a decent enough shorthand, but our SimVillages are not actually in southern England, and Things Will Be Different than Earth's England. After all, we have magic, and that changes decisions people make, which means our world's history will be different. Similar in many ways, perhaps, but different in the details.

Historical England Land uses:

Arable land: 25%
Permanent crops: 0%
Permanent pastures: 46%
Forests and Woodland: 10%
Other: 19%

Geological: coal, petroleum, natural gas, limestone, chalk, gypsum, silica, rock salt, china clay, iron ore, tin, silver, gold, lead.
Agricultural: arable land, wheat, barley, sheep

The UK has large coal, natural gas, and oil reserves




I’m going to change the above numbers a little, taking some land from Arable and Permanent Pastures to add to Permanent crops.
The new amounts will be;
Arable Land: 23%
Permanent Crops: 4%
Permanent Pastures: 44%
Forests and Woodland: 10%
Other: 19%

Arable land is used for crops that are annually harvested. Permanent crops are crops that are not resown every year, such as grapes, coffee (which only really grows in equatorial areas), and orchards. Permanent pastures are lands used for grazing for livestock (cattle, sheep, swine, horses). Forests and woodlands are sources of lumber, either wild or cultivated (sometimes pollarded or coppiced).

Coal: used for heating buildings, cooking food, producing building materials (such as bricks, tile, cement, lime and plaster), manufacturing glass and paper, forging iron or producing dyes and soaps.

Note: it takes 20kg of charcoal (600MJ) to make 1kg of iron (medieval techniques weren’t very efficient).[3]

Wind and water powered mills: used for paper production, wood sawing, glass polishing, and cement production, in addition to hammering, running the bellows, grinding grain, and threshing. Washing and grinding iron ore, drainage of mines, ventilation, wire-drawing mill, slitting mill, and the tilt-hammer[1]. (Interesting note: the prevalence of water power being used for industry resulted in an uptick of lawsuits regarding navigation rights vs power rights in the 1300’s.)

Petroleum: Used for tar, bitumen, asphalt (caulking, jewel setting, mosaic setting, adhesive, embalming, mortar, waterproofing agent)

Natural Gas: I am going to assume there is no way to capture and use this, although the ancient Chinese managed to use bamboo pipes to pipe into into homes.

Limestone: mortar, building blocks, concrete, whitewash, agricultural fertilizer, soda-lime glass, smelting ore

Chalk: agricultural fertilizer, writing implement, pigment

Gypsum: plaster, fertilizer, sculpture, construction blocks, mortar, binder in clays, brewing (adds hardness to water), dough conditioner (source of dietary calcium), cement, gesso (scribing and illuminating manuscripts), mead production, used in mushroom cultivation

Silica Sand: glass, beads and jewelry, bowls, drink ware, stained glass windows, abrasive, polisher, hourglasses, cement, concrete, plaster, grouting, paint, sandbags (flood protection, rather than military defense), water filtering

Rock Salt: food preservation, seasoning, food production (butter, cheese), often a lucrative trade good. Most salt was made by evaporating brine at the coasts, then refined by redissolving, filtering, and re-evaporating it. Pretty labor intensive, it was often very expensive.

China Clay: pottery, porcelain, medicine, rubber*, paint, paper, cosmetics.

Iron Ore: iron, steel, blast furnace (using mills to increase draft and thus temperature, invented in Europe in 1350AD)

Tin: alloyed in bronze, brass, pewter;

Silver: plates, dishes, bowls, glasses, mirrors, silverware, buttons, decorative objects, jewelry, coinage, medicinal uses, water purification, spoilage reduction [2]

Gold: decorative objects, jewelry, thread, buttons, coinage

Lead: construction of monuments, statues, buildings; plumbing; alloys. Note that the plumbing is not necessarily as bad as it could be—calcium carbonate deposits will form on the inside of the pipes, resulting in less lead ending up in the water supply, as long as the water doesn’t just sit in the pipes.

A note on apprenticeships:
“The want of affection in the English is strongly manifested towards their children; for after having kept them at home till they arrive at the age of seven or nine years at the most, they put them out, both males and females, to hard service in the houses of other people, binding them generally for another seven or nine years. And these are called apprentices, and during that time they perform all the most menial offices; and few are born who are exempted from this fate, for every one, however rich he may be, sends away his children into the houses of others, whilst he, in return, receives those of strangers into his own.”
So we might want to have any “mage detection” happen at age 7, when apprenticeships began.


Question: has anyone thought up the idea of replacing the hammers in a hammer mill with flails to create the threshing mill?
Question: has anyone thought up the idea of a cradle scythe?
Question: What/Who exists outside of the 10 villages? Are there any enemies that may need to be dealt with, or at least prepared for? Is there any reason for mages to learn war magic as opposed to "make our lives better" magic?


*Dandelions are actually a pretty good source of latex, so it’s possible that rubber could see some applications (especially with alchemy involved)

[1] https://www.engr.psu.edu/mtah/articl...technology.htm
[2] https://www.savorsilver.com/history-mystery-silver/
[3] https://www.lowtechmagazine.com/2011...ial-times.html
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Old 05-15-2021, 05:43 AM   #44
hal
 
Join Date: Aug 2004
Location: Buffalo, New York
Default Re: Mageborn are like Coins - Worldbuilding TL 3

Quote:
Originally Posted by StevenH View Post
SimVillages

I was looking into what tools the villages have at their disposal. I did some googling, and came up with the following info. I figure it might be of use to get a big picture of how the villages might interact, both with each other and with any external entities.


Question: has anyone thought up the idea of replacing the hammers in a hammer mill with flails to create the threshing mill?
Question: has anyone thought up the idea of a cradle scythe?
Question: What/Who exists outside of the 10 villages? Are there any enemies that may need to be dealt with, or at least prepared for? Is there any reason for mages to learn war magic as opposed to "make our lives better" magic?
Hi Steven,
Threshing Mills appear to be TL 4 overall. Conceptually, they COULD have been invented earlier, but it appears they didn't show up until after the Feudal age was largely winding down.

Cradle Scythe is also a TL 4 implement, and thus, not operational in this.

What exists outside the 10 villages. I suppose if one wants to possibly get into the idea of utilizing the idea of a "Town" that these 10 villages support, I've got no objections to that. If you want to go with a town of maybe 1,000 to 3,000 people, we can later on introduce that concept. For now, what I have is focused mostly on the Agricultural life and the medieval life in general.
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Old 05-15-2021, 06:44 AM   #45
hal
 
Join Date: Aug 2004
Location: Buffalo, New York
Default Re: Mageborn are like Coins - Worldbuilding TL 3

Where I'm at with coding:

Hi All, status report:

I can now generate all four stats for NPCs. I can generate magery levels based on the 10:1 ratio of lower magery levels vs next highest magery level. I'm seriously considering writing the code so it will handle not just 10:1 ratios, but any whole value ratios you might care to write - 10:1, 8:1, 7:1 or even 3:1.

I can also generate the age of the character. Within less than an hour from now, I plan on adding the ability to foretell the NPC's fated year of death. I'm even considering the idea of turning the year of death into the following format:

999/99 where the first three digits are the julian date of death and the 99 is the age of the character the year of his death. For instance, I could roll 015/51. The NPC will die (if player characters do not intervene) 51 days past his 51st birthday. If you guys want me to toss in a Military time for the character's death, I can add that as well. Simple matter of generating a Fractional day value and conver it to hours and seconds.

So, what say? What would you like?

Also, would it help to give the NPC mageborn actual Names? That wouldn't take all too much work to do either (Which do you want, French or English Names? I only have those two in a complete list).

And finally:

Per GURPS 3e, newly crafted characters should not be able to have more than 2x their age in skill points.

If I generate the age of a character, I would like to propose that the NPC mageborn is entitled to 2 character points per year in spells for every year of age past 12.

Drat - not finally...

How important is the stat "IQ+Magery" to those in this list? Do you want me to put it in the output for ease of reference?
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Old 05-15-2021, 11:26 AM   #46
StevenH
 
Join Date: Feb 2008
Location: Portland, Oregon
Default Re: Mageborn are like Coins - Worldbuilding TL 3

Quote:
Originally Posted by hal View Post
Hi Steven,
Threshing Mills appear to be TL 4 overall. Conceptually, they COULD have been invented earlier, but it appears they didn't show up until after the Feudal age was largely winding down.

Cradle Scythe is also a TL 4 implement, and thus, not operational in this.

OK. So this world somehow managed to follow the same accidental technology pathways that we did, despite entirely different initial states. ;-)



Quote:
Originally Posted by hal View Post
What exists outside the 10 villages. I suppose if one wants to possibly get into the idea of utilizing the idea of a "Town" that these 10 villages support, I've got no objections to that. If you want to go with a town of maybe 1,000 to 3,000 people, we can later on introduce that concept. For now, what I have is focused mostly on the Agricultural life and the medieval life in general.

So, no external threats to Life In SimVillages. We don't need to worry about stockpiling weapons, or training anyone to use them. We can focus our nation's budget solely on farming, internal trade, and trade with The Town. What about taxes? How much of the surplus goods have to go to the Local Lord, and how much goes to the Town Lord? And is there anything above the Town Lord, or is he/she The Ruler? And who pays for infrastructure (roads, bridges, docks, whatever limited healthcare facilities there may be, funerary services, charity, legal institutions, public facilities, etc)?
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Old 05-15-2021, 11:41 AM   #47
StevenH
 
Join Date: Feb 2008
Location: Portland, Oregon
Default Re: Mageborn are like Coins - Worldbuilding TL 3

Quote:
Originally Posted by hal View Post
Where I'm at with coding:

Hi All, status report:

I can now generate all four stats for NPCs. I can generate magery levels based on the 10:1 ratio of lower magery levels vs next highest magery level. I'm seriously considering writing the code so it will handle not just 10:1 ratios, but any whole value ratios you might care to write - 10:1, 8:1, 7:1 or even 3:1.

I can also generate the age of the character. Within less than an hour from now, I plan on adding the ability to foretell the NPC's fated year of death. I'm even considering the idea of turning the year of death into the following format:

999/99 where the first three digits are the julian date of death and the 99 is the age of the character the year of his death. For instance, I could roll 015/51. The NPC will die (if player characters do not intervene) 51 days past his 51st birthday. If you guys want me to toss in a Military time for the character's death, I can add that as well. Simple matter of generating a Fractional day value and conver it to hours and seconds.

So, what say? What would you like?

Also, would it help to give the NPC mageborn actual Names? That wouldn't take all too much work to do either (Which do you want, French or English Names? I only have those two in a complete list).

And finally:

Per GURPS 3e, newly crafted characters should not be able to have more than 2x their age in skill points.

If I generate the age of a character, I would like to propose that the NPC mageborn is entitled to 2 character points per year in spells for every year of age past 12.

Drat - not finally...

How important is the stat "IQ+Magery" to those in this list? Do you want me to put it in the output for ease of reference?

When you code it, make it so you can vary the % mageborn. Not because we will need it with this first experiment, but for the future. When I was doing my initial demographics, I kept getting too few mages to support the kind of world I wanted to run. Maximara earlier mentioned the trope of relatively common magic items. I kept ending up with too few enchanters to have more than a handful of items nationwide, which would have completely messed up the economics of magic per the book, and I am too lazy and not enough of an economist to rebuild all of that.

While I didn't want magic items to be falling out of everyone's pockets, I also didn't want them so rare as to be the cause of every adventure. (If a PC ended up with a magic item, everyone and their uncle would be trying to get at it, as it would be priceless and any person down on their luck who managed to get it would be set for life. That's one hell of a motivation to spur anyone with an ounce of ambition to go after it.)

As for naming, yes, it would be good to name them. I don't have an objective opinion on whether it's French or English though. The names I use for human NPCs (and PCs) tend to not be from anywhere specific and where they are recognizable I change the spelling a bit.
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Old 05-15-2021, 11:43 AM   #48
hal
 
Join Date: Aug 2004
Location: Buffalo, New York
Default Re: Mageborn are like Coins - Worldbuilding TL 3

Hi All,

Just sent out a copy of my "Prototype" mageborn generator. I'm happy with it for now in that it generates everything that I wanted to including age, magery value, four stats ranged 8 to 13, along with...

Indirectly, the hour, day and Year of an NPC's fated Death day. What I've done is make it so that it adds a 3 decimal point value in addition to the integer value of the age. So something like 42.013 years of age means that the person was born 42 years, 4 days, 17 hours, 57 minutes, 17 some seconds ago.

Their death day will be treated the same way, such that one can tell when death will come knocking at the NPC mage's door. If this were an actual campaign, I'd simply treat it as the dire moment that can potentially end in death absent any extenuating circumstances employed by the player characters (ie magic, wishes, miracles, etc). Should the NPC survive, I'd simply reroll their fated death, looking for how much longer they will survive (ie, the death date has to be in the future, with a random die roll, you have to reiterate in a loop, until that happens.) My plan is that if the NPC is due to die at a near future date, to roll vs HT. If the HT roll fails, the issue is likely to be sickness or something like that. If they survive their HT roll, then the cause of death is likely to be an accident or outright attempted murder, etc.

As it is now, the process for assigning magery levels works equally well for Magery 1,2,3 the old way, or Magery 0,1,2,3 the new way.

The only other thing left to fiddle with regards to the random NPC generator is to finish up the Naming module (If Female, give it a female name, if Male, give it a male name, and give it a surname).

Since creating a database of what I expect will be some 6,000 names or more - chances are good that I'll have to keep that out of the release version of the app to those who want it. I will however, set it up to read a simple text file with a format: F:<name> or M:<name> or S:<name> so that you can build your own list of names to import.

Well, off to bed I go.
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Old 05-16-2021, 12:14 AM   #49
StevenH
 
Join Date: Feb 2008
Location: Portland, Oregon
Default Re: Mageborn are like Coins - Worldbuilding TL 3

I was looking through the Meta-Spells (while working on my Enchantment Modifiers for Equipment GCS library) and noticed how difficult they were to learn. And likely how difficult they would be to figure out in the first place.

Following along with my previous post about available resources in the area, has anyone made a list of available spells? What's the local ethnothaumatology?

With so few mages, and even fewer with Magery 3, I suspect that the MetaSpells are likely not to have been discovered. So I don't think there will be any mages with Delay, Hang Spell, Link, etc. What about Gate spells? Have they been invented yet (or given by the gods, or wherever spells come from)?

We also have a hard limit on how many spells can be learned, based upon age. Which means that even if the mage focuses on a narrow set of spells, they won't get too far up the prerequisite chains. Which brings up another question. The average modern person works 2000 hours per year at their job. If their job were to learn spells and how to cast them, how many of those hours would be applicable to the 200 hour per point for skill purposes? Is the assumption that only a tenth of those hours actually count?



Given how tough magic is to learn, it's possible that no one has lived long enough or become good enough to get past any spell requiring, for example, 10 spells. Which means those spells likely wouldn't have been invented yet.

Anyway, just some thoughts. But we should figure out what the available spell list is so we can "spend" our mages appropriately.




Edit: Well, it would seem that part of the answer is available: according to Hal, we use Magic 2e for our basic spell list. I'll have to go through my copy and see if, given our constraints, all of those spells could be learned, or if some of them haven't been invented yet.
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Last edited by StevenH; 05-16-2021 at 08:40 AM.
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Old 05-16-2021, 12:10 PM   #50
Polydamas
 
Join Date: Jan 2006
Location: Central Europe
Default Re: Mageborn are like Coins - Worldbuilding TL 3

Quote:
Originally Posted by hal View Post
Hi All,

Just sent out a copy of my "Prototype" mageborn generator. I'm happy with it for now in that it generates everything that I wanted to including age, magery value, four stats ranged 8 to 13, along with...

Indirectly, the hour, day and Year of an NPC's fated Death day. What I've done is make it so that it adds a 3 decimal point value in addition to the integer value of the age. So something like 42.013 years of age means that the person was born 42 years, 4 days, 17 hours, 57 minutes, 17 some seconds ago.
This does get into circular logic: the spells that this generation of mages can learn locally depend on which ones the previous generation of mages knows. Demographics depend on things like healing spells, magical water purification, and contraception.

I note that GURPS Banestorm has wood-block and movable type printing, and presumably paper. Oddly, they say that Sahud has movable type and the Christian lands wood-block printing, when historically wood-block worked better for Chinese characters and movable type made more sense for alphabets and abjads. They don't seem to say whether the Moslem lands have solved the problem that Arabic is a cursive script so hard to print with movable type. For all the noise which has been made about theology, the real problem with printing the Arabic script seems to have been that the results looked ugly.

The Banestorm was before the Western Schism, before Pope Innocent III, and before the Mongols sacked Baghdad for the first time, so its Christian and Islamic theology is likely different from in our world.
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Last edited by Polydamas; 05-16-2021 at 12:13 PM.
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