Syrene's Wisdom is located in Syrwatch in the Highborn territory of Casinea. Custodianship of Syrene's Wisdom grants an Imperial title; a seat on the Imperial Bourse; and a seasonal bounty of valuable ilium.
In the silver mines above Syrene there are sometimes found brilliant blue seams, no more than a few inches long, that dull chisels upon the first strike. Although these seams are small and difficult to work they yield a constant supply of Ilium.
Much of the time it's groups of silver miners who are tasked to work the Ilium seams, whenever a new seam is found. These miners are notoriously dour, grumpy, and pessimistic. Some wit once commented that they had "an almost Varushkan mien!" and to this day some wags still refer to the area around Syrene's Wisdom as "Southern Varushka". The humour is probably misplaced; mining ilium from Syrene's Wisdom is a punishing duty, due more than anything else to the dangers involved in working the mines. Indeed, on several occasions through the Empire's history, questions have been raised in the Senate about their continued operation.
The primary problem is that the mines near Syrene are prone to flooding. Sudden, vicious floods roar through the mines, quickly killing the unprepared, and halting all work until the waters subside. Sometimes the waters recede quickly, other times they remain high for several days. When they do subside, strange figures are sometimes glimpsed in the mine. The common wisdom is that these are the spirits of drowned miners, but some scholars suggest that there may be a less spectral explanation. They disagree on specifics however; some claim they are creatures of the realms drawn to the mine and it's ilium, while others suggest they are hitherto unknown creatures from deep within the earth. None of these beings has ever been captured, and accounts of their appearance vary wildly, but there does appear to be a connection between their appearance and the floods; there are very few stories of their being glimpsed save in the days immediately after a flood.
Regardless, scholars tentatively agree that the floods are connected in some fashion to the pools of nearby Syrene, which are known to be of interest to several eternals - although the reason for this interest has never been properly explained.
A great deal of energy has been spent trying to predict the occurrence of these freshwater floods, and with some limited success. While roughly three-quarters of the floods can be predicted a week in advance, there are still numerous incidents where a flood occurs with minimal warning - and once every few decades a flood takes place with no warning and usually leads to tragic loss of life. It has been eighteen years since the last such surprise flood. The miners believe they are probably overdue, and this leads to a particularly grim atmosphere in the mine and the surrounding villages.
The Bourse Seat
The Seat has no particular responsibilities; they simply receive a bounty of ilium which is theirs to do with as they will. If Syrene's Wisdom were to be threatened in any way, it would be the responsibility of the Seat to deal with those threats. Likewise, if any particular opportunity were to arise related to Syrene's Wisdom, the Seat would expect to be consulted as to how that opportunity might be resolved.
Seat on the Bourse
Custodianship of Syrene's Wisdom comes with a seat on the Imperial Bourse. For the most part, this Seat comes with no additional responsibilities. It is an Imperial title that grants the right to participate on the rare occasion when the Imperial Bourse as a body is required to make a decision.
Bounty of ilium
The Seat has control of a source of ilium which they receive directly. They can dispense this resource as they choose. Production is 7 rings of ilium every season.
As with all ilium Bourse seats, the holder of the title is determined during the Spring Equinox. As an Imperial seat, any Imperial citizen may participate in the auction and hold the title.
|Spring Equinox 383YE||The Marches||Edwin de Warrenne||150 thrones|
|Spring Equinox 382YE||The Marches||Misha Kemi||120 thrones|
|Spring Equinox 381YE||Hepzibah of Reumah's Redoubt||90 thrones|
|Spring Equinox 380YE||Falko von Temeschwar|
|Spring Equinox 379YE||The Marches||Kendrick Tyke|
|Spring Equinox 378YE||The League||Marko von Temeschwar||48 thrones|
|Winter Solstice 376YE||The League||Silvio de Tassato||10 thrones|
This title is currently held by Edwin de Warrenne; it will be reelected at Spring Equinox 384YE. The table to the right shows the citizens who have been elected to hold this title in the years since Empress Britta died.