Arianna Pendragon (The Women of Sithein Book 2)
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Julius Caesar lands in Britain, then withdraws. Some of the original Wyck survived and, it is said, still live as ancient recluses with incredible power. Their descendants, many of whom remained in Britain because of the powerful magickal energies of the place, became heroes, druids, healers, witches, hards, kings and queens of varying power. These folk did not sit around talking ahout high magickal goals; they simply existed as mortals in a magickal land.
Some were Picts, and battled the Celts. The Celts, by the way, did not refer to themselves by that name; they referred to themselves by the names of their tribes. Others were Celts who eventually conquered their Pictish cousins, locking many deep within the Earth where, it is said, some still remain powerful, insane and royally carked. All around, the druids, poured forth dreadful imprecations that scared our soldiers. With this smattering of Wyck amongst their armies, the tribes of Bretons mounted an admirable defense againsr the organized might of the Roman infantry.
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Probably by way of damage control, Tacitus failed to mention the role the Wyck played. During battles, maniples of Roman infantry retreated with severe bums as their clothes suddenly burst into flame and spears splintered as they pierced Roman bodies.
Roman soldiers fell ill with cramps and strange diseases the night before a battle. The Roman Occupation So the fighting and the lovemaking apologies, Mother Boggan continued this way for years, with more people thrown into the pot. For instance, tribes of Gauls joined the Celts and Picts as they fled from Roman-occupied lands.
Then in A. Until then, few mages and shamans had taken up arms against each other except in petty dispute, generally preferring quiet, solitary lives over conquest and rule. This was not so for the Romans. They fought war after war, against wild enemies, natives strong with a warlike instinct among them; Boadicea, Queen of the Iceni, with a martial spirit as stalwart as any of you redcaps'; then the Welsh and Scottish tribes, and later the Bretons, British and Gaels.
The old Roman historian Tacitus observed one welcoming parry: "On the shore," he said,. Sacred Congregation members and Sons of Mitras early Celestial Choristers fitter into Britain; develop mixed feelings about pagan shamans' ways. Border raids by Scots and Picts. So the Romans were still putting down revolts almost a century after they first invaded Britain, faced with the unexpected fierceness and tenacity of an enemy defending its home turf.
Gaels and Picts conducted border raids until the Roman Emperor Hadrian, fed up with their insolence, used the might of Rome to build a 73mile wall along the length of the Scottish border to keep out the Gaels. He posted over 18, foot soldiers and cavalry, housed in 17 forts, along Hadrian's Wall. I leave the saga of the Gaelic fight to later speakers, hut on the Bretonic side of the wall, things became intolerable.
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Soldiers kept pouring into England until finally even the sage mages there tired and grew reclusive. It was time for some new blood. The Spread of Christianity I spoke earlier of the Traditions. One of the earliest in the Isles, aside from the Verbena who sprang from the Wyck , consisted of church mages who would become a Tradition called the Celestial Chorus.
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The earthy ways of the pagans appalled some, while others were fascinated by the potence and beauty of the shamanistic ceremonies. As they came to know the Bretons, their influence spread, and 80 years later these church seers began to establish cloisters and churches throughout the land, led by both Sleepers and mages. As some prophetic mages established churches across the Isles, their relations with the pagan mages soured.
Rivalries over places of power developed; prophets built churches atop ancient pagan henges and barrows; shamans smashed stone crosses carved by the hands of the church mages. Mages weren't the only ones affected. Though most prophets tried to tolerate diverse beliefs, a sad few sought to silence all discord. You fae suffered. You often located your mounds and trods in places of great beauty and magickal power, or perhaps they became such after you set up there.
From the prophets' view, these sites were perfect for erecting churches to honor their God, sometimes called the One. Fae and mages skirmished over these locales, and rumors spread amongst mages that you were demonic. Some church mages sought to expel you from your homes, some to kill you. The Spread of Christianity s s Proto-Celestial Choristers church mages of various sects filter into England.
Dream Realm of Camelot emerges. Church and pagan mages start rivalry over local paradigms. Pagan mages forced to withdraw as prophetic mages win over Sleepers to their paradigm. Christianity spreads via mortal missionaries. Romans withdraw from Britain. Angles, Saxons. Jutes invade and settle in Essex, Sussex and East Anglia. Verbena and other shamaas tried to negotiate with these magickal prophets, for the sake of their friendships with the fae, and sometimes it worked.
When it didn't, magus warred with magus, often in individual competitions. Fae sometimes became involved, although you typically first sent out tricksters, like you pooka that's right to escalate the inconvenience of living where mages shouldn't. By , the church mages resurrected the third-century Chi Rho symbol an early Christian symbol, originally pagan, and an abbreviation of the Greek word chreeston, meaning "auspicious" or "of good omen" and made it one of the many prominent symbols of the One's power.
It started popping up everywhere, annoying shamans, pagans and fae. By the end of that year, relations soured so that many pagan mages were forced to withdraw from the populated areas of England, The prophets convinced so many Bretons and Gauls that their views represented Truth-with-acapital-T that shamans found it difficult to practice their magick before unbelievers.
Pagan mages and their few followers retreated into the tough upland hillsides and northern fells near Carlisle, the bleak moors of Dartmoor, the caves and coves of Yorkshire, and the wild marshlands of East Anglia.
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They forged individual alliances with the native fae, and lived there in peace. As the church grew in strength and gradually lost its initial tolerance for diverse beliefs, the schism between the mage factions grew more bitter. Though not all prophetic mages supported the church, the majority did. Of them, only the minority became polemic enough to stir up feuds, I should note that the Traditions weren't known as such yet, but it is easier to refer to them by the names we know today. In the "civilized" areas of England and Ireland, the proto-Celestial Chorus held the upper hand, while the Verbena remained strong in the wilderness; the Order of Hermes simply hunkered down wherever they pleased, hermetics integrating themselves into the local towns and cities.
Early Ecstatic mages mages who believed and still believe in attaining enlightenment by pushing sensation to its very limits established a presence in Britain during the Roman occupation. Drawn by the faeries and the land's wild magickal energies, they formed a handful of sensual sects, some of which survive to this day as the Fellowship of Pan established in the s , the Acharne in the mids , and the Kiss of Astarte in the s.
Others joined the Verbena or founded the Seers of Chronos in the s. So England was gradually becoming a mix, not only of native fae, hut of mages from the future Traditions, and of Picts, Gaels, Gauls, Bretons, Romans and other peoples. Strife was everywhere, as cultures and beliefs collided. At the same time, England was becoming dynamic, its magickal energies pooling, the seed of great deeds germinating. In , the Romans up and left.
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Their capital, Rome, had been sacked by the Visigoths, and they needed all their soldiers at home. The Bretons' initial celebrations gave way to regret as the Angles, Saxons and Jutes heard of the end of the dreaded Roman occupation and decided they wanted England for themselves.
In , they invaded and settled in Essex, Sussex and East Anglia. So more people threw themselves into the mix, with more strife, more beliefs, more energy.
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And around this time, a great dream began to arise. Camelot How many images does it conjure, how many dreams? And the pursuit of some of them turn into wet uh, turn into fantasies for some, nightmares for others. More about that later. Sometime during the s or s, the Dream Realm called Camelot began to take shape. So much energy had coalesced around the events of the past to years the invasions, the newness of the other cultures that the British people began to search for political and cultural stability, unity People began to dream of Camelot.
I suggest you go to Tom John's presentation on Wales or Cymru for more on Camelot, because Wales is where it all began. For now, keep in mind that some people's search for Utopia doesn't always lead to bliss. War for the Black Torc Before the Saxons set up their seven kingdoms across Britain, you fae ruled many of the mortal lands.
Human tribes worshipped the sidhe as mysterious gods and even treated commoner fae like minor deities.
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This immense respect was lost after the entrenchment of the church. The mighty Oberon dates to this time, though he is an eternal spirit whose life and fate intertwines with the Dreaming in ways none of us may ever know. Many of the most powerful fae artifacts, including the Black Torc and some of the Treasures of Britain, date from this time, as well.
Some artifacts exist that are even older and immeasurably powerful dating from the Time of Legends. But that's a story unto itself, and they're all lost or carefully hidden now. It's said that an ancient ghille dhu, perhaps the Green Man, guards a cave filled with fae treasures, somewhere in the North Country.