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The Songweavers
Type: College/Guild
Alignment: Spontaneity 3, Freedom 4, Tolerance 4
Headquarters: Delemri, Gartania; Hyrend, Ardeste
Leader: Shaolynn Rhapsody
Membership: 1200 performers
Motto: "Love, laugh, live"

The Songweavers is a bardic college, the source of many of the world's most enjoyable songs, stories, dances, and plays. The minstrels which fill its ranks are creative, entertaining, sociable, and outgoing. They delight in the applause earned for their work. Songweavers have appeared in royal courts, inns, squares, and festivals, and some travelers have been blessed with their talents on the road.


While stories have been around as long as speech, the college was founded in 515 in the Age of Knowledge. It was originally formed in Hyrend, the largest city and capital of Ardeste. At first, it was little more than a guild for like-minded Vidari bards to collaborate and critique each others' work. After a few hundred years, their purpose became more grandiose and expanded operations to instruction of writing in many forms: stories, plays, and songs. A formal campus was set up for the Songweavers in Hyrend in 1201 of the Age of Knowledge. In 1795, a second campus was built in Delemri.

In its nearly 4,000 years of operation, the college has held in its ranks countless talented performers. For much of this time, these were Vidari and Half-vidari, but there have been some Men, Apsarava, and Firnoy. Rarer still are the Evengar minstrels, but there have been a few on record.


The Songweavers operate out of two college campuses. Each campus has many facilities, notably a collection of lecture halls which double as auditoriums with fine acoustics. They also each have libraries containing a gigantic collection of books and other publications, containing history, instruction, stories, plays, and songs. The Minstrel Laureate and faculty also have offices on the campuses.


While the Songweavers is mostly comprised of alumni, it does have a functioning school. Occasionally, alumni donate to the college, but more often than not, income is derived from student tuition. Students today pay 1000𝕤 annually to be instructed in their courses. Income pays the salaries of mentors, faculty, and performers who play at the college's campuses.

New Members

New members of the Songweavers may apply before the first of the year. Since the Songweavers believe in tolerance and expression, very few students are turned away. New students are invited to appear at the campus of their choice (either in Gartania or Ardeste) at the beginning of the Midsummer festival, when the school year starts.


Criticism is necessary and encouraged, but outright slander, or ridiculing the work of other students is met with disdain and in some cases punishment. Students who fail to abide by the beliefs of the organization are reprimanded and sometimes expelled. The college and guild (at the direction of the Minstrel Laureate and faculty) can expel members either temporarily or permanently for any reason.

As part of the guild, members receive some benefits. First, the wide fame and recognition that comes with the title of Songweaver. Secondly, any event performed under the sponsorship of the guild admits members free of charge.


The Songweavers are most importantly concerned with expression through the performing arts: song, writing, dance, and storytelling. They believe in freedom, tolerance, and creativity. They encourage current and past students of the college to fly in the face of what has come before them, if only to improve the arts themselves. Many (if not most) of the Songweavers revere Alnarya for her dominions of art and music.


A student is instructed for five years before they are considered a graduate. At this time, they are proclaimed full-fledged members of the guild, and considered alumni of the college. There are no ranks per se in the guild, but the college itself has positions. The dean of students and leader of the guild is referred to as the Minstrel Laureate, currently Shaolynn Rhapsody. Instructors are invited and appointed, drawn from the ranks of the guild. It is a high honor to be considered to share one's art.

The guild itself has people of all professions in its ranks, not just entertainers and performers, but those who support them, including seamstresses and tailors, instrument makers, painters, and carpenters.