Three Lights in the Night.jpg
Lights in the darkness, shining across Urizen.


The Doyen of the Spires is an Imperial title bestowed upon a citizen of Urizen by a majority vote of magicians. The position was created by the Imperial Senate in Winter 382YE during the work to repair the Heliopticon network. The Heliopticon is one of the wonders of the Empire, but was significantly damaged by the fighting in Spiral, Zenith, and Morrow. The reconstruction effort replaced the central towers in Morrow and Spiral, and arranged for comprehensive restoration of towers across the nation. At the same time, following the proposal of Portia the Elder, a former Provost of the Halls of Knowledge turned Civil Servant, the functionality of the Heliopticon was greatly expanded. With new mirrors, and new methods of enciphering, the towers are now turned to the primary purpose of codifying magical rituals - making Urizen the largest college of magic the world has ever seen. The Doyen of the Spires guides the magicians and scholars of the nation, creating ritual texts via the unique collaboration of an entire people.


The Doyen is responsible for overseeing the codification of a single arcane projection, selected when they are appointed. The codification work is undertaken by the entire nation of Urizen, and facilitated by use of the Heliopticon network. Given that the effectiveness of this "college" depends on the number of Urizen magicians and scholars able to commit time to the study, the Doyen by extension has a vested interest in protecting the nation from outside threats.



The Doyen of the Spires can direct the magicians of a Urizen to research the formula of a new ritual so that it can be mastered. The ritual must already exist in the form of an arcane projection. Urizen can work on formalising one ritual at a time, and the research may take anywhere from a season to several years depending on the complexity and the number of people able to commit their time to studying the ritual. At the completion, the Doyen receives a ritual text suitable for use in mastering the ritual.

If research is not completed, the college keeps notes on their work so far, and may resume it at a later date from where it was left off.

Due to the nature of the "college", it is not possible to conceal the nature of the arcane projection being worked on from the people of Urizen or, by extension, the Empire.

OOC Note: The Doyen selects the arcane projection they wish to formulate by e-mail to Profound Decisions ( following the event they are elected. The final magnitude of the ritual text is not guaranteed to be the same as that of the arcane projection.

Patron of the Spires

The eternal Prospero serves as patron of the college, encouraging his golden spiders - each around the size of a sheep - to assist any scholars who might be stumped by a magical problem. When codifying a ritual the Doyen can call on the assistance of these heralds to speed up the process. Doing so requires payment in the form of orichalcum.

The first five ranks of additional research in a season cost 20 ingots of orichalcum. The next five ranks will cost a further 42 ingots (for a total of 62 ingots). The next five ranks will cost another 86 ingots, and so on doubling the cost and adding two ingots for each further additional five ranks of research within the same season.

Unlike the additional benefits provided a college of magic by a specialisation, this additional research speed is not restricted to any one magical realm - the Prince of Ties may favour Autumn magic but his spiders are able to assist in codification in all six magical lores.

This power cannot be used in the eternal Prospero is under the enmity of the Imperial Conclave, however.

A People United

The speed at which an arcane projection is codified depends on the existence of large numbers of Urizen magicians and scholars able to commit time to the study. Each territory that is part of Urizen and conencted to the others by the Heliopticon allows the Doyen to codify five ranks of magnitude each season.

In addition, following the hard decisions made in the wake of the liberation of the people of Zenith, and the decision to encourage them to settle in western Urizen, as long as Morrow and Redoubt remain part of Urizen the speed of codification is increased by a further 5 ranks. If Zenith were freed from the Druj, and became part of Urizen once more, this would not increase the speed of codification as the magicians of this territory are already working to support the Doyen from their new homes in western Urizen.

As of the time of writing (just before Spring 384YE following developments in Spiral), the Doyen of the Spires and the people of Urizen can codify an arcane projection in one season for every 20 ranks of magnitude it has.

Extensive Upkeep

Having the whole of Urizen function as a college of magic is expensive. The upkeep on the Heliopticon network, costs the senate the normal amounts for a college of magic, and an additional 5 Thrones for every Urizen territory contributing to the codification process. As such, with four territories effectively contributing and with the basic cost for a third college of magic being 25 Thrones, the upkeep cost is 45 Thrones each season paid by the treasury.

The current upkeep as of Spring 384YE is 20 Thrones; Zenith effectively contributes thanks to the refugee status of its inhabitants, and even though the Grendel control Spiral the Senate must foot the bill for maintaining the Heliopticon towers there.


The Doyen is elected in the Hall of Worlds by a majority vote of magicians. Every Urizen magician present has one vote, regardless of their mastery of ritual magic. Each candidate presents the single arcane projection that they propose to codify, and the one who receives the most votes becomes Doyen of the Spires and work begins on codifying their arcane projection. Alternatively, a candidate may propose to resume work on the codification of a ritual previously presented but on which work has not been completed.

The title can be only held by any Urizen citizen. The Doyen serves until their arcane projection has been codified, at which time the title is reappointed. They can be revoked by the General Assembly, the Urizen National Assembly, and by the Assembly of the Nine.

If the Doyen of the Spires is revoked, steps down, or dies, work on their arcane projection ceases. A new Doyen of the Spires may be appointed to continue their work, or a new arcane projection may be presented to the people of Urizen.

The Studies of Urizen

Due to the nature of the unique college, it is not feasible to conceal the nature of the work being done via the Heliopticon network from the people of Urizen or, by extension, the Empire.

  • Autumn Equinox 384YE. Ioseph of Phoenix Reach was appointed to codify Advent of Majesty (formerly known as Advent of Savagery). This very potent and ambitious ritual creates an Imperial enchantment flooding the entire Empire with Summer magic. The stargazers are particularly excited about this ritual, bringing them as it does one step closer to being able to experiment with the Omnihedron. Given the ritual is magnitude 200, however, it may be some time before anyone has a chance to perform it. Shortly before the Autumn Equinox 385YE, the magnitude of Imperial enchantments shifted, to 210, possibly as a result of the Barrens becoming part of the Empire. Urizen magicians were able to compensate for the changes - even though it may be slightly more difficult to perform, the ritual will take no additional time to codify. In Autumn 385YE, the Conclave voted to interdict the practice of "weaving an enchantment across the entire Empire", which has obvious implications for this codification. During the Winter Solstice 385YE, Ioseph was revoked by the Urizen assembly. The judgement applauded Ioseph, but deemed his research inauspicious given the Interdiction.
  • Spring Equinox 384YE. Marcus was chosen to oversee the codification of the ritual Quick Study (formerly known as The Wise Master teaches All), an Autumn ritual that enhances the ability of a College of Magic to formulate ritual texts. It became part of Urizen lore shortly afterward.
  • Winter Solstice 383YE. The codification of Unending Onslaught was managed by Spyridonakes. It became part of Imperial Lore shortly after it was formulated.
  • Summer Solstice 383YE. The mage Tenaes was appointed to oversee the codification of Regrow the Land's Heart an ambitious Spring ritual of magnitude one-hundred-and-twenty intended to infuse the territory of Spiral with Spring magic, encouraging new life and increasing the likelihood of children born in the territory expressing the briar lineage. Several modifications were made to the original arcane projection during codification, with the final ritual having a much lower magnitude. It became part of Imperial lore almost immediately after work was completed
  • Spring Equinox 383YE. The first person to hold the title of Doyen of the Spires was Ioseph of Phoenix Reach. They directed work on the Summer ritual Aspect of the Mountain. The work should have taken six months, but the influx of Urizen liberated from Zenith helped to speed the process along. In the end, Aspect of the Mountain was formulated in only a single season. It became part of Urizen lore shortly afterward.
Spring Equinox 386YECassius
Autumn Equinox 384YEIoseph
Spring Equinox 384YEMarcus
Winter Solstice 383YESpyridonakes
Summer Solstice 383YETenaes
Spring Equinox 383YEIoseph

Recent Elections

This title is currently held by Cassius of the Lighthouse at Nikephoros; it will be reelected when the current ritual being researched is completed. The table to the right shows the citizens who have been elected to hold this title in the years since Empress Britta died.