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Before the formation of the Empire, three sisters lived in [[Highguard Territories#The Necropolis|Pharos]]. Members of the patrician families of the [[Highguard]], each was a powerful magician in her own right. Dissatisfied with life in the city, and sickened by the chaos of the time of turmoil, they took their extended families - their extensive households - and left. They travelled to a new home on the opposite side of the [[Bay of Catazar]], said to have been revealed to them by the divinatory magics of the three sisters. Freeborn storytellers still recount the epic tale of the exodus of the three tribes.
 
Before the formation of the Empire, three sisters lived in [[Highguard Territories#The Necropolis|Pharos]]. Members of the patrician families of the [[Highguard]], each was a powerful magician in her own right. Dissatisfied with life in the city, and sickened by the chaos of the time of turmoil, they took their extended families - their extensive households - and left. They travelled to a new home on the opposite side of the [[Bay of Catazar]], said to have been revealed to them by the divinatory magics of the three sisters. Freeborn storytellers still recount the epic tale of the exodus of the three tribes.
  
By the time the Empress began her crusade to unite humanity beneath her banner, the Freeborn were much as they are today – a disparate people of sprawling, extended families spread over three tribes, with each tribe tracing an unbroken matrilineal line back to one of the founders. While each family and each tribe treasured their individual freedoms, they were bound together into a loose nation by a shared heritage and by carefully negotiated contracts and treaties. Initially the tribes were suspicious of the Empress and hostile to the interests of the powerful Highborn priests that backed her. But after several meetings with prominent tribal leaders, the Empress acquiesced to their wishes and they agreed to join the nascent Empire.
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By the time the Empress began her crusade to unite humanity beneath her banner, the Freeborn were much as they are today – a disparate people of sprawling, extended families spread over three tribes, with each tribe tracing an unbroken matrilineal line back to one of the founders. While each family and each tribe treasured their individual freedoms, they were bound together into a loose nation by a shared heritage and by carefully negotiated contracts and treaties.
  
The demands of the Freeborn played a key role in the formation of the early Empire. They were instrumental in slavery being outlawed and it was their insistence that each Nation would set the means to select their own Senators. Their most significant contribution was the creation of the [[Egregores]], ensuring that every nation was able to preserve its traditions. They were unable to convince the priests of Highguard to acknowledge the central role of honesty in a virtuous life, but they are enormously proud that their influence ensured that their ideas of individual freedom and responsibility became a central part of the Empire's identity.  
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Initially the tribes were suspicious of the Empress and hostile to the interests of the powerful Highborn priests that backed her. After a long negotiation between the Empress and prominent tribal leaders, they agreed to join the nascent Empire. The Freeborn negotiators were instrumental in slavery being outlawed and it was their insistence that each Nation would set the means to select their own Senators. Their most significant contribution was the creation of the [[Egregores]], ensuring that every nation was able to preserve its traditions. They were unable to convince the priests of Highguard to acknowledge the central role of honesty in a virtuous life, but they are enormously proud that their influence ensured that their ideas of individual freedom and responsibility became a central part of the Empire's identity.  
  
 
Since that day, the Freeborn have been able to present themselves as traders backed by the full weight of the Empire. It is something they use shamelessly to their advantage when dealing with foreign powers. The stability provided by the Empire has allowed the Freeborn to sail far beyond their territories, bringing in great wealth to all the nations.
 
Since that day, the Freeborn have been able to present themselves as traders backed by the full weight of the Empire. It is something they use shamelessly to their advantage when dealing with foreign powers. The stability provided by the Empire has allowed the Freeborn to sail far beyond their territories, bringing in great wealth to all the nations.

Revision as of 21:49, 5 August 2012

Before the formation of the Empire, three sisters lived in Pharos. Members of the patrician families of the Highguard, each was a powerful magician in her own right. Dissatisfied with life in the city, and sickened by the chaos of the time of turmoil, they took their extended families - their extensive households - and left. They travelled to a new home on the opposite side of the Bay of Catazar, said to have been revealed to them by the divinatory magics of the three sisters. Freeborn storytellers still recount the epic tale of the exodus of the three tribes.

By the time the Empress began her crusade to unite humanity beneath her banner, the Freeborn were much as they are today – a disparate people of sprawling, extended families spread over three tribes, with each tribe tracing an unbroken matrilineal line back to one of the founders. While each family and each tribe treasured their individual freedoms, they were bound together into a loose nation by a shared heritage and by carefully negotiated contracts and treaties.

Initially the tribes were suspicious of the Empress and hostile to the interests of the powerful Highborn priests that backed her. After a long negotiation between the Empress and prominent tribal leaders, they agreed to join the nascent Empire. The Freeborn negotiators were instrumental in slavery being outlawed and it was their insistence that each Nation would set the means to select their own Senators. Their most significant contribution was the creation of the Egregores, ensuring that every nation was able to preserve its traditions. They were unable to convince the priests of Highguard to acknowledge the central role of honesty in a virtuous life, but they are enormously proud that their influence ensured that their ideas of individual freedom and responsibility became a central part of the Empire's identity.

Since that day, the Freeborn have been able to present themselves as traders backed by the full weight of the Empire. It is something they use shamelessly to their advantage when dealing with foreign powers. The stability provided by the Empire has allowed the Freeborn to sail far beyond their territories, bringing in great wealth to all the nations.

No member of the Freeborn has ever sat upon the Imperial throne, but they have always had a strong presence and loud voice in the Senate. The Freeborn believe that it is in the Senate that true power lies, and that the best Emperors have accepted this and served as figureheads and administrators rather than policy makers. Popular prejudice paints the Freeborn as poor politicians – a slur that several of them embrace. Their blunt frankness combined with a tendency to want to get to the point of any argument does not endear them to their political opponents, but they make up for this directness with a tendency to produce powerful and impassioned orators.