“Everyone, except God Herself, has a price. What’s yours?”

Tassonians are rightfully proud of their Church and their Navy, and keenly praise the virtues of both in all corners of the old and new worlds.

The Holy Isles of Tassanos are an economic powerhouse with a mighty navy! The Tassonian Archipelago is the closest landmass in Sollundom to the New World, Osternheim. They trade all over the known world and are able to buy the finest weapons and goods. They are home to the centre of the Sollunian religion, which is led by the married Pontiffs. They are devoutly religious, wtih a large aristocratic clergy and missionary societies. Both churches are equally powerful in Tassanos; gender relations among Tassonians vary greatly, dependent on a given family’s denomination. Their weapon of choice is the pistol or carbine, and their clothes often feature ruffs. Their national colour is Green.

Recently

The Holy Isles of Tassanos have been abandoned by the Matrial Pontiff, in favour of the Iskans’ newly constructed Summer Palace. In retaliation, all noble Tassonians have been obliged to convert to the Patronic faith or be stripped of their titles.

Tassonian leadership now find themselves beset by potential foes: the Iskans over this matter, and the Padricians over their Emperor’s excommunication.

Not all is bleak for the Holy Isles however, as their resettling of Angheimer refugees from the Black Shores has netted them a boost to their trade fleets and the alliance of the Angheim Throne against the Padricians. The merchants of Tassanos also stand poised to take full advantage of the new strictures allowing the purchasing of noble titles.  

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Playing a Tassonian Character

Values

  • Self-Discipline: As home to Her representatives on Atlas, Tassonians have absolute faith in God Herself. This of course reflects in their individual and collective piety, and they are a devoutly, expressively religious people. They have a great diligence in carrying out any duty they take on, and once given, their loyalty is absolute.
  • Passion: Often mistaken for open antagonism by foreigners, Tassonians’ certainty of their place in the world lends them a fiery passion. They know that they are justified in their beliefs, their ideas, their endeavours. Their certainty lends them courage and charisma that is outmatched in all of Sollundom.
  • Competition: Their confidence and faith make Tassonians very much capable of obedience, but they are not sheep who will allow themselves to be defeated easily. A Tassonian will never shirk a challenge, whether it be a friendly invitation at competitive liturgical analysis, or a vicious street duel. They are not simple showoffs, but they place great value on proving themselves to anyone and everyone.
  • Liberty: A Tassonian is free to make of their life whatever they will. The Church teaches that God Herself gave humanity free will, and that repentance is only meaningful if it is given freely. The Tassonian spirit reflects this, and any Tassonian is expected to make - and take responsibility for - their own decisions.Values

Failings

  • Fanaticism: Tassonians cannot abide heresy, defiance or insult. That means they can tend towards overzealousness. While they strive for peaceful conversion - to religion or to opinion - they are no sticklers about employing harsher measures where necessary. The Tassonian Inquisition is just one outgrowth of this tendency, and it is reflected in their personal demeanours as well.
  • Evangelism: Most Tassonians are so confident in their beliefs and abilities that they will constantly attempt recruit others to their cause. A Tassionan will rarely agree to disagree. As a nation, they see their mission as the civilisation of the whole world, eventually hoping to bring all the heathens of Atlas under the auspices of Tassonian ideas.

Inspiration

Real-world Inspirations

  • Mediterranian merchants and explorers, focusing on expanding trade in exotic goods rather than settling new lands.
  • Spanish “passion”, religious enthusiasm and orthodoxy, the Inquisition, naval supremacy
  • English privateers, fashion, military drill, naval supremacy
  • The militaries of the Napoleonic Wars
  • The Italian clergy, the Papacy in particular, but less overtly corrupt than the Borgias and the Medicis.

Six Typical Tassonians

  • The Prince-Bishop: a noble who took up the cloth, a person of God Herself who seeks to spread the word of Sollun and lead their flock to righteousness.
  • The Merchant Lord: commanding a fleet of mighty ships, defender of the realm and commander of a force of marines capable of opening any port that needs encouragement.
  • The Greencoat: a devoted, well-drilled soldier with a lifetime of regimented prayer and practice. Keen as mustard and without fear.
  • The Privateer: an officer in the pay of a Merchant Lord, aboard a ship with the mission to intercept and interfere with other Lords’ trade.
  • The Wandering Preacher: a common priest, humble and studious but full of fire at the pulpit; preaching the Gospel to all that will hear it.
  • The Dockside Trader: a simple merchant, making an honest living selling wares from all across the world. Silks, sweets, spices, maybe you can get them, or maybe you have some just here in the back.

Things to avoid

  • Monty Python: Nobody expects the Spanish Inquisition. Nobody wants the Spanish Inquisition. Please leave the comfy chair behind, this is a serious game.
Costume

The national colour of Tassanos is green. Their palette is characterised by bright colours; richly dyed flat colours accented with white or yellow to indicate the individual’s religious affiliation. Tassonians show their wealth through quality of materials more than through quality of workmanship.

Jewellery of any kind is common in Tassonian fashion, as they are no slouches about displaying their often-considerable personal wealth.tassonians

Tassonian clothing features ruffs at openings and about the neck in particular, with plain but exotic fabrics predominating. Ornamentation like embroidery or roping is around the edges and not a feature. Garments should be cut with a pointed, v-shaped waistline, emphasising a triangular figure - then expanding out again at the hips into breeches or falling skirts.

Soldiers on campaign might wear uniform peascod vests or coats such as those worn by the Spanish during the Thirty Years War.

Tassonian fashion takes inspiration from Elizabethan and Jacobean fashion of the Shakespearean era, particularly the ostentatious parts of Spanish and English styles.

Headwear from the mid-Renaissance, such as the rounded conical early top hats, small tricornes, french hoods, and the like are appropriate for Tassonians.

More

The Holy Isles of Tassanos are an archipelago of large and small islands capping the Southwestern corner of Sollundom. With only a small portion of its land attached to the continent, Tassonians are able to stand distant from their fellows and from each other. They people of the region have long been seafaring, and until recently were able to claim the greatest edge in exploration - having been outdone by Angheim's discovery of the New World named Osterheim, they now seek to reestablish naval dominance.

The Tassonian mainland is rugged and mountainous, with alpine ranges extending into the sea in a series of peninsulas and islands that reach West into the sea. A handful of major trading ports give access to the continent, serving as hubs for goods brought in from across the world. The Mainland and the large Northern islands are quite temperate, with snow falling only on the highest peaks in winter. The smaller Southern island chains enjoy a mediterranean climate with hot summers and very mild winters.

  • The island called God’s Isle is the home of the Pontiffs, the sacred heart of Sollundom. For Tassonians, religion is a simple fact - borne out by the creation of this island by prophets of God Herself - and upon God's Isle, ritual is woven into all elements of life; from the street preacher to the faith healer to the ordained priests of the Matrial and Patronic Churches, God's Isle flourishes with worship.
  • The Mainland territories skirt the Southwestern border of Padrice, and Tassionian mainlanders exhibit many of the same qualities of hospitality and earnest warmth. As home to the largest port cities in Sollundom, the shrewd mainlander merchants are among the wealthiest and best-informed in the world. Vessels from all corners of the globe make berth in these cities, bringing exotic goods, ideas and people that make the Mainland rather cosmopolitan. Many a merchant prince got their start here.
  • The self-disciplined people of the Islands of the Merchant Princes are the engine that drives Tassonian commercial success. Somebody has to turn the rich silks, ebony and spice brought back from foreign parts into finished goods for trade, and it is these people who perform that role. They owe their allegiance to whatever merchant has purchased their island, and trade their work for shelter and protection. The trading companies sailing from the Islands are the greatest source of goods from afar.
  • The Tassonians who inhabit the Rocks are an unusual lot; these seafaring folk dwell on islands too small or too barren to attract the attention of the great merchant princes. Living on these stark islands, all the Rock-dwellers have are their ships and their freedom. Quite aside from the unbridled hostility of the locals, the shoals and the reefs of the Rocks are known as some of the most dangerous waters on Atlas and vessels both Sollunian and Heathen fear to tread there - and so the Rock-dwellers are some of the greatest sailors in the world. Despite their proclivity for piracy, the locals are a devout people and regularly make the pilgrimage to God's Isle.

Governance

The official rulers of Tassanos are the married Pontiffs of the Matrial and Patronic Sollunian Churches. In practice, day-to-day rule of Tassanos is a complicated matter. God's Isle is carried out by an appointed Holy Council, individual islands are ruled over by merchant princes wealthy enough to purchase the license for them, and the great cities of the Mainland are ruled by councils of merchants and guilds - while the wild lands of the Rocks are essentially unclaimed. Due to the impractical complexity of this system, Tassanos is one of the least authoritarian nations in Sollundom.

Nobility

Tassonian nobles are a mix of prince-bishops and merchant lords. While much of Sollundom’s nobility are devout adherents of the faith, Tassonian nobility really take it a step further; Tassonian laws do not prevent clergy from inheriting, so many of Tassanos’ powerful families are headed by influential bishops and cardinals. Those which are not are often heads of wealthy trading companies, commanders of large fleets which bring in exotic trade goods from the South and the Near East.

Navy

Tassanos’ merchant lords each maintain their own fleets, and compete to have the grandest. Even the people of the Rocks can put a host of ships to sea. As a result, Tassanos’ naval power is unequalled and their sailors are the finest in all the world. Their merchant marines are drilled to perfection, known for their fearlessness and equipped with the best weapons money can buy. Tassonian Captains enforce strict discipline over their sailors and marines, brooking no disobedience. They patrol the waters of Sollundom and beyond, serving as a wooden wall keeping Heathens from the sealanes South and West.

Army

The mainland Tassonian army is small and well-regimented. While they don’t often see combat, their discipline and courage are famed throughout Sollundom. Tassonian passion and faith create a potent mixture on the battlefield when it is called for; trust in their drill and their leaders means that the average soldier has little fear when it comes time to test their mettle. Mostly though, they engage in exercises or are stationed at outposts along the Northeastern borders.

The majority of Merchant Princes also maintain their own, small military forces and the people of the Rocks put together wild raiding bands should they feel the urge.

The Blood

The Tassonian Blood is moderately potent, not as paltry as the black-clad Iskans but nowhere near as commonplace as in Angheim. Tassonian nobles have the advantage of being divided up neatly by bodies of water, and practicality usually prevents them from meaningful competition over territory within Tassanos’ borders. Instead, they are content to send their fleets forth to compete on their behalf. When they do fight, it is over more personal matters.

Religion

As the seat of the Pontificate, the Tassonian Church is THE Church. Priests of both the Matrial and Patronic Churches are everywhere, with displays of faith and devotion being frequent parts of public life. The Tassonian passion is evident in their practice of religion, and their merchants carry not only trade goods but also missionaries and crusaders to far off lands. They are also the diligent in rooting out heresy and witchcraft: Tassonian inquisitors is respected and feared as God Herself’s implement on Earth.

Commerce

Tassonian commerce is primarily the enterprise of trading companies headed by merchant lords. Each commanding a fleet of whatever size, they compete for trading rights at foreign ports to gain the most profitable result they can. The merchant lords purchase territorial monopolies, and handsomely profit from the exclusive trade rights that entails. That doesn’t mean a lack of piracy, though; the most common threat to Tassonian merchant ships is another Tassonian vessel - sometimes operating independently and sometimes with a letter of marque from a competing merchant lord. Less-wealthy merchants occasionally form a consortium to run a ship and break into the market.