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  1. RULING: THE CROWN v. KAROLY DATE ARGUED: 14 Tobias’ Bounty 1760 PRESIDING JUSTICES: The Duke of Sunholdt KCHE, Chairman Mister John Huss, Associate Justice Jasper Cardinal Renzfeld, Associate Justice PROSECUTION: Mister Joseph Adler J.D. SSE, Solicitor-General Sir Frederick Armas KHE J.D. SSE, Prosecutor Mister Johnathan Ivory, Assistant Prosecutor DEFENSE: Mister John Everard Pruvia J.D. SSE, Defense Attorney THE OPINION OF THE COURT; By unanimous decision, the Supreme Court has elected to acquit the defendant on all accounts, by virtue of a lack of evidence for any specific charge. The witnesses presented by the prosecution entirely failed to prove, without doubt, that the defendant was guilty of any of the accused crimes. The defendant pleaded innocent on all counts, and despite arguments by the prosecution that the Bench failed to engage in clarifications in the defense’s opening statement, the Courts affirm that any such lack of clarity could not have had significant alteration to the outcome of the case, by unanimous decision. Notable, however, is the request of members of cabinet for the resignation of the Chief Justice, Sir John d’Arkent, for his ineptitude and failure to allow these clarifications that the prosecution felt severely damaged their case. The Courts of Law are not beholden to the executive branches of government, including the Solicitor-General, and even the Archchancellor. The Courts are instead beholden to the Senate, who may issue impeachment, as a check on the power of the Imperial Courts. These Courts have had two trials of major consequence, and both ended with the defeated side condemning the Court. The Supreme Court is, however, appointed by the Cabinet and confirmed by the Senate, both of which are extensions of the Emperor’s will. As His Imperial Majesty’s shield against the critical and varied matters of jurisprudence, it suffers the ire of the populace in judgement, popular or not. In this way, we preserve the integrity of the Emperor’s personal jurisprudence. Should the Courts succumb to political ire whenever an unpopular ruling is made, the Courts will instead be a whimsical body, and complete failure. The Honorable, Sir John d’Arkent, KCHE Baron of Selm, Duke of Sunholdt Chief Justice of the Supreme Court The Honorable, Monsignor Jasper de Sarkozy Associate Justice of the Supreme Court The Honorable, Jan Haas Associate Justice of the Supreme Court
  2. P O N T I F I C U M H I S T O R I A “B O O K O F T H E P O N T I F I C A T E” A U T H O R E D B Y Y . B . K A R A K U L A K I N C O N J U N C T I O N W I T H T H E I M P E R I A L A S S O C I A T I O N THE EARLY CHURCH I. & II. High Priests St. Evaristus I and St. Clement I PAPAS EVARISTUS PRIMUS ET CLEMENS PRIMUS The first heads of the Holy Faith appointed by the successor of Horen, Owyn I. III. High Priest Sixtus I PAPA XYSTUS PRIMUS IV. High Priest Alexander I PAPA ALEXANDER PRIMUS V. High Priest Pontian I PAPA PONTIANUS PRIMUS VI. High Priest Stephen I PAPA STEPHANUS PRIMUS VII. High Priest Paul I PAPA PAULUS PRIMUS VIII. High Priest Paul II PAPA PAULUS SECUNDUS IX. High Priest Sixtus II PAPA XYSTUS SECUNDUS X. High Priest Liberius I PAPA LIBERIUS PRIMUS It was under Liberius I when the great Priestly See of Pontian I was ravaged, the archives of the Faith lost, and the Priesthood destroyed. Whilst the majority of mankind still heralded the faith of Horen I, there was no singular Head of Faith until the High Priest Marcus; instead , the Church’s dogma was governed by various clerical circles who acted as peers. What little is known about the Church prior the Sack of Pontia was due to texts saved in his escape. XI. High Priest Marcus I PAPA MARCUS PRIMUS The first and last leader of the Faith under the line of Horen, he was appointed in the reign of St. Daniel whom sought to restore the Priesthood after centuries of decentralized clergy. He proved able and competent in swaying the various religious circles to submit to his authority. XII. High Priest Bernard I PAPA BERNARDUS PRIMUS The first non-human leader of faith and the first recorded leader of the Faith under the usurper Perea and Sheffield dynasties, before which the Church was held in high regard by the line of Horen. Bernard was of halfling origin and relatively mild-mannered. XIII. High Priest St. Everard I PAPA EVERARDUS PRIMUS The progenitor of House Hightower, Everard I was the last High Priest of a unified Oren. He died a martyr, attempting to prevent the non-believer Sheffield king from abolishing the Church entirely. After his reign the kingdom splintered, causing the Church to be absorbed into the Phoenix Kingdom of Renatus and lose a great deal of power and influence. The First Interregnum The First Interregnum was caused by the split of Oren into Hanseti, Renatus and Salvus. THE RENATIAN PONTIFICATE XIV. Prince-Archbishop James I PAPA IACOMES PRIMUS [James Hightower] The first of the Renatian Pontificate, James I was the son of Everard I and was appointed to the position of Leader of the Faith by the Lord Regent Reynard Lycian. His carnal desires and greed was well-noted by peers, as he often wasted away church funds on courtesans and masquerades. XV. High Pontiff Pius I ‘the Bloody’ PAPA PIUS PRIMUS CRUENTUS [Gideon Silverblade] The second of the Renatian Pontificate, Pius I was a high elf born of the noble House Silverblade under the name of Gideon. Instated by the newly-crowned Godfrey of Horen. Famed for his lechery and libertinism, Pius was known to have impregnated several noble ladies and was notably violent and bloody in his behaviour. XVI. High Pontiff Bl. Adeodatus I 'the Simple' PAPA ADEODATUS PRIMUS GRACILIS [Boiendl Silverblade] Adeodatus was also of House Silverblade, born Boiendl Silverblade. Having been significantly less problematic than his two predecessors, Adeodatus’ reign was stagnant however peaceful. He was a pious and charitable mystic, who spent much of his church tithes tending to the poor and sick. However, he is infamous among tavern-folk for the wild-stories of his reign; a famous fresco of the era depicts him running about in his undergarments through the streets, his speech was cluttered with abrupt and offensive shouting, and his attempts to regulate and legalize prostitution in Oren stirred deep controversy among reactionaries and conservatives. This eccentric nature prove to be his downfall, as many of the clergy demanded the more disciplined and orthodox Lucien to take upon the papal laurels, and soon enough, the simple Adeodatus I resigned from his post. Despite his outbursts and oddities, he was recognized for his piety upon his passing and later beatified, for his goodwill and simple nature. XVII. High Pontiff St. Lucien I 'the Good' PAPA LUCIUS PRIMUS BONUS [Velwyn Ashford] The fourth and final of the Renatian Pontificate, Lucien I was Velwyn Ashford, a member of the Order of the White Rose who was a prominent reactionary and human supremacist. A pious High Pontiff who believed wholeheartedly in fulfilling God’s work, Lucien’s reign was uneventful however during it the Church’s good reputation was restored and various significant theologians were fostered under his tutelage. GODDARD’S DYNASTY XVIII. High Pontiff Owyn I PAPA OVENIUS PRIMUS [r. 1435-1444] [1378-1444] [Goddard Carrion] The controversial successor of Lucien I upon his exile, Owyn was one of the more notable heads of the Faith. Throughout Owyn's long and tumultuous reign, he acquired large tracts of land and political power for the Church not seen since the days of High Priest of Pontia. In modern times as then, he was reputed by many as corrupt and ambitious, and is more notable for his achievements in secular policy than in the faith. However, to others, he was acclaimed for his contributions to the Siegmundic prophecy. The Second Interregnum The Second Interregnum was caused by the abolition of the Pontifical throne by Owyn I, a deeply heretical move which was immediately resisted by clergy. XIX. Blessed High Ecclesiarch Radomir I PAPA RADOSLAUS PRIMUS [r. 1444-1448] [14??-1456] [Francis-Joseph Carrion] The only head of the Faith and the Church being called High Ecclesiarch due to his extraordinary nature of ruling as a King and High Pontiff during varying periods of his lifetime. Born as Franz Joseph Carrion, Radomir is an extreme reformist who aimed to mold the Church into a tool of both power and precision so it might spread the word of God by the sword and the cross. However, his reforms had led to radical bills such as the Bull of Dibley, and as a Pontiff is condemned for attempting to make the Pontificate hereditary. He soon realized his folly and amended his bills, but later resigned due to frustration of his abilities. Over a decade later he inherited the Orenian throne as King Francis, before being butchered in the Franciscan Massacre. XX. High Pontiff Lucien II 'the Unready' PAPA LUCIUS SECUNDUS IMPARATUS [r. 1448-1451] [141?-1451] [Signus Cross] High Pontiff Lucien II reigned as High Pontiff after Radomir. He was the first High Pontiff elected by the Ecclesiastical Synod, the college of Bishops convened to choose a successor to Radomir in the wake of his leave. Lucien II was a Lucienist that sought to expand the Church's presence in Oren. He oversaw the establishment of the Order of St. Lucien and the assimilation of the Teutonic Order into the Church, as well as reviving a tradition of regular mass and fasting in the significant cities. However, during his reign his neglect to manage his subordinates led to his lack of political sway and, according to some, his death as he was assassinated through poison. XXI. High Pontiff Regulus I PAPA REGULUS PRIMUS [r. 1451-1457] [1399-1457] [Castus II Winter] A relic of Godfrey's era, the imperial traditionalist Regulus was unanimously chosen by the Ecclesiastical Synod to take control of the Faith after the death of Lucien II. During his reign, many doctrines were established and clarified, yet his issues in unifying the various sects, and later openly tolerating and patronizing Darfeyist and Rovinist plots had led to the brutal Franciscian Massacre and a sharp decline in moral authority. His station was brought under heavy scrutiny after its lead role in overthrowing the Carrion dynasty and replacing it with the Chivay dynasty. Regulus retired and abdicated his title shortly after Emperor Peter I's coronation. THE DARFEY ERA XXII. High Pontiff Bl. Pius II PAPA PIUS SECUNDUS [r. 1457-1457] [1418-1457] [Michael John Mary of Longueville] “Pro Deo Et Patria” Pius II is known for being the shortest-lived head of Faith, his reign lasting a paltry six months. While of outstanding learning and particular renown, this staunch member of the Rovinist-Lucienist fellowship soon found himself deposed in favor for the notorious John of Darfey himself. He was hunted down and killed by his former colleagues after trying to resist his deposition, known for little else other than being a pawn in their political machinations. XXIII. High Pontiff Paul III 'the Wicked' PAPA PAULUS TERTIUS MALUS [r. 1457-1460] [14??-14??] [John Jrent] There are few held in such high contempt in the Church histories as the figure "John of Darfey", a bastard of low cunning and malevolent intent. Little is known about the Jrent's early clerical career, but his rise to prominence began under Radomir I where he found himself appointed as the Bishop of Corazon. From thenceforth, John of Darfey utilized political connections to severe and poison the human state, fostering deep sectarian issue and dissent which culminated in the Franciscan Massacre. However, growing resentment against his political dogma and abuse of clerical authority led to his deposition by the Chivay government. The Third Interregnum The Third Interregnum was caused by the abolition of the Church at the hands of Robert Chivay and the institution of the Reformed Communion, a caesaropapist tradition presided by High Patriarch Thomas I, which greatly curbed the rights of the clergy. Church activity waned until the Vibian Coup, and the Canonist Church was restored by the will of Thomas I. THE KEEPERS OF THE REFORMATION XXIV. High Pontiff St. Daniel I 'the Reader' PAPA DANIEL PRIMUS LECTORES [r. 1471-1512] [1441-1512] [Siguine Otovic Barrow] The longest reigning High Pontiff in recorded history, Daniel I began his pontificate as little more than an adolescent and ended it a withered man. He witnessed three wars and the fall and return of a unified humanity; the Schism War, arguably the most significant of the three, revolved around the distrust faced against him due to his Carrion blood. However, despite the war and strife surrounding humanity, Daniel was a notable pacifist of weak constitution, choosing to the quill for his battles over blade. He earned the church lands and kept its sovereignty and neutrality throughout the period’s crises, establishing the Church’s presence as one significant yet apolitical; a mediator in disputes and center of higher learning. Prior Pontiffs largely relied on an inconsistent oral tradition to reference and minister faith, but under the reign of Daniel, liturgy, holy scrolls, dogma and histories were chronicled for posterity, enabling the priesthood a far greater understanding of faith and tradition than ever before. He is characterized for his passion for scholarship and academia, evoking a new literary tradition among the clergy, earning him the moniker ‘the Reader.’ XXV. High Pontiff Bl. Sixtus III ‘the Lewd’ PAPA XYSTUS TERTIUS IMPUDICUS [r. 1512-1518] [148?-1518] [Theodosius Yurison] Having ascended to the position of High Pontiff following a controversial election, Sixtus III sought to further progress conversion of the Elven subjects of the Kingdom of Oren and to make more efficient the Church, who's attendance has seen better days. He did indeed make great strides in conversion, founding a mission in Malinor with the help of Abbot Radovid of Blaviken. Unfortunately, before all his goals were accomplished, he was assassinated by an unknown man, becoming a martyr for the faith. XXVI. High Pontiff Bl. Daniel II 'the Old' PAPA DANIEL SECUNDUS VETUS [r. 1518-1525] [1434-1525] [Cordal Winter] The only man to have ever been crowned as the leader of the faith twice, Daniel II (the past High Patriarch Thomas I) sought to finish his late predecessor's work, though he failed in that regard. He was successful in other areas however, commissioning a crusade upon the Lesser Tarchary and with the help of his Pentarchy, founded what was to be Luciensport. Daniel II furthermore spearheaded efforts to end the Owynist Cults cropping up within Kaedrin. He died in his sleep, of old age and mild renown. XXVII. High Pontiff Bl. Everard II 'the Wise' PAPA EVERARDUS SECUNDUS SOPHES [r. 1525-1537] [1489-1537] [Edmond Sarkozic] The second Pontiff to be unanimously chosen by a papal conclave, Everard II attempted to reassert papal influence, and justly govern the church entrusted to him by GOD’s faithful. He did so with efficiency and under his reign papal influence expanded greatly. Everard confirmed Papal Dominance with the crowning of John Horen I as Holy Orenian Empire, following the untimely assassination of Guy de Bar. With the arrival of the Cordobonese Exiles, the creation of the Inquisition, and the establishment of the Patriarchy of Laurelin, Everard's reign was one of expansion. He was killed by clerical dissenters within the Garden of Adricho. He was slain beside Adrian of Kaedrin. With his death, he left behind a legacy of expansion and strength. XXVIII. High Pontiff Bl. Lucien III PAPA LUCIUS TERTIUS [r. 1537-1546] [1519-1546] [Ferdinand Maurice Paul Eric Ximena Asturias Bolivar] The first Pontiff to appear from the stock of Cordobonese exiles, Lucien made some reforms towards bringing a less slothful church which worked to some degree of effectiveness. He controversially made enemies in the realm of Oren, but supported their war against the Dwarves, and Dunamis. One of Lucien's only acts of note was his conversion of Lord Protector Nafis Yar. Lucien III died in his bed after being beaten in battle by a horde of Orcs. LOOSE FOOTING XXIX. High Pontiff Tobias I PAPA TOBIAS PRIMUS [r. 1546-1552] [1514-1552] [Oliver II Blackwell-Greymane] One of the last of the line of Blackwell, once lordly vassals of the House Winter. A man with a kind heart who loved GOD and sought to do good in His name, Tobias I struggled largely with disagreements with his own Synod, among whom Charles Francis Horen was his primary malcontent. Among the declaration of Lorraine as a Holy Land and the Annulment of King John of Vandoria’s coronation, Tobias attempted to exert his will in unprecedented ways, which led to his support both from nobility and clergy to nearly disintegrate entirely. He passed away from illness, the last years of his reign extremely stagnant. XXX. High Pontiff Daniel III ‘the Mad’ PAPA DANIEL TERTIUS DELIRUS [r. 1551-1562] [1526-157?] [Charles Francis Horen] The son of Emperor John I, Daniel III ascended to the pontifical throne namely for his ties with the Empire and secular powers. Controversial and disliked amongst the orthodox clergy, Daniel III is marked in his policies in restricting the rights of the Church in the Empire’s favor, as well as attempting to place the Church under the Empire’s control near the end of his reign. Through a vote of the Cardinals, Daniel III was ripped of his vicaral vestments and sent to exile in Aeldin. XXXI. High Pontiff Theodosius I PAPA THEODOSIUS PRIMUS [r. 1562-1567] [1543-1567] [George Nikovich] The High Pontiff Theodosius I was told to be a man of Raevir birth. A decent priest, when compared to those before. His reign being of a low caliber due mostly to inexperience. A classical man of the Crow, he cared little for his role, continuing the stagnation seen by his predecessors. He, with pressure from his own Synod, revoked the revelations of Daniel III. His reign ended suddenly however with his death, noted as strange due to his younger stature. THE SIXTAN LEGACY XXXII. High Pontiff St. Sixtus IV ‘the Scholar’ PAPA XYSTUS QUARTUS PHILOLOGUS [r. 1567-1577] [1518-1598] [Benegar Gotthold] A man of the holy book, Sixtus IV’s reign is marked by reforms in clerical mass and ceremony, as well as his patronage to theological studies. He is remembered for his initiatives in institutional reforms, a circulation of the first modern Canonist Catechism, and the renewal of the mass with the publication of the Missa Sixtina in 1574. However despite his holy nature, Sixtus IV disliked the secular responsibilities and abdicated after ten years on the Pontifical Throne, instead retiring for the rest of his days in a monastery. He was canonized a saint in 1671. XXXIII. High Pontiff Lucien IV PAPA LUCIUS QUARTUS [r. 1577-1578] [154?-1578] [John of Luca] Lucien IV, known specifically for being the second shortest reigning Pontiff in history. During his year-long reign he was noted as being ignorant of many basic clerical principles, and for his radically brutal Flamenist ideals, committing many to the flame for abstract reasonings. He was then slain within his own estate by a lone Dwarf. XXXIV. High Pontiff Everard III PAPA EVERARDUS TERTIUS [r. 1578-1585] [15??-1585] [Bernard Baruch] Everard III’s reign was characterized by its stagnancy. Very little happened beneath the Pontiff’s watch, save the renewal of Metz, and the expected duties of one in such a respected office. This neglect however reared its head during the eve of the Pontiff’s death, the Immaculate Throne taken by the Raev Exarch, Yaroslav of Vsenk. XXXV. High Pontiff Theodosius II ‘the Boorish’ PAPA THEODOSIUS SECUNDUS RUSTICUS [r. 1585-1588] [15??-1588] [Iaroslaus Vasilev] Theodosius II, before known as Yaroslav of Vsenk, was noted for his wicked election and his eventual demise. His Pontificate, certainly an improvement on the last, also ignored older clergymen and propped up the less experienced, causing dissolution. His lackluster performance in politics was also plain, excommunicating the Emperor which ultimately lead to his deposition. XXXVI. High Pontiff Adrian I PAPA ADRIANUS PRIMUS [r. 1588-1598] [15??-1598] [Lothar Sarkozic] High Pontiff Adrian I, originally named Lothar Sarkozic, saw the task in restoring orthodoxy and integrity in the Canonist Church as a result of the political and ecclesial fracture of his predecessor. A man of simplicity and doctrinal sobriety, Adrian pursued to resume the traditions of the Church. His Pontificate sought a return to normalcy, a theme that would be overshadowed by the ensuing Coalition War and the schism brought upon by the so-called Lotharic Communion. THE WOEFUL DECADE XXXVII. High Pontiff Bl. Daniel IV PAPA DANIEL QUARTUS [r. 1598-1603] [15??-16??] [William Nicholas Frable] “Canonist and Proud” A product of the institutional church, Daniel IV rose to the pontificate as the presumed heir to the Immaculate Throne from his previous post as Vice Chancellor. His reign saw the continual schismatic efforts of the True Faith, an amended Lotharic Communion and an emphasis a call to revitalize the primacy of the Canonist Church through a number of counter-reform documents and the imposition of the title Fidei Defensor to the King of Hanseti-Ruska, Marius I. XXXVIII. High Pontiff Bl. Owyn II ‘the Unfortunate’ PAPA OVENIUS SECUNDUS IMPROSPERUS [r. 1604-1606] [156?-1606] [Rory Othaman] Taking the name in honor of Exalted Owyn, Rory Othaman was elected and tasked with mitigating the stigma of divided humanity in lieu of the rising political tensions between the Kingdom of Courland and their schismatic church, the Kingdom of the Westerlands and the Owynistic sect, and the Kingdom of Hanseti-Ruska and the Church of the Canon. Despite his intentions for a reunification, Owyn II was assassinated by Courlanders in his attempts to sue for peace in the city of Aleksandria. XXXIX. High Pontiff Lucien V PAPA LUCIUS QUINTUS [r. 1606-1610] [15??-16??] [Alexander Gray] An elderly man deeply enthralled in spearheading the cause of reunification, Lucien V continued the efforts of his predecessor, most notably in the formation of the Canonist League to counter schismatic entities. He quickly supported the return and the restoration of the House of Horen. His Pontificate saw the end of the divide in faith among the Kingdom of the Westerlands in which the Canonist Church was recognized once more. THE BLESSED TIMES XL. High Pontiff Bl. Clement II PAPA CLEMENS SECUNDUS [r. 1610-1622] [1585-1622] [Sebastian Sarkozic] “Deus Persto” Elected in a decade that saw the reformation of the Holy Orenian Empire, Clement II ascended the Immaculate Throne having mended the schism that had wracked the Canonist Church in the two preceding decades, his reign saw reforms that reunited the polarization within the clergy and dogma. XLI. High Pontiff Bl. Everard IV ‘the Diligent’ PAPA EVERARDUS QUARTUS SEDULUS [r. 1622-1643] [1555-1643] [Joseph Baldemar] “Miserando Atque Eligendo” At sixty-seven, Josef Baldemar was elected to the mantle of the Holy Canonist Church following the full reunification of the Church from two decades of schism. Among his first priorities was to combat the Xionist cult who saw steady increases in proselytization. Coupled with feuds with the Daelish and Norlandic pagans, Everard IV reinstituted the Order of Saint Lucien to restore Canonist primacy. During his Pontificate, reports of persistent blasphemy and clerical endangerment from the Kingdom of Santegia were reported, and following news of impending apostasy by their king, the High Pontiff declared a crusade. Following the fall of Emperor John VI, the High Pontiff was placed as Imperial Regent. To prevent continued war, Everard recognized the Kingdom of Renatus and the Kingdom of Marna and dissolved the Holy Orenian Empire, consecrating a tripartite humanity. To stabilize human discord, Everard IV declared the Peace and Truce of God in his encyclical Pax Dei et Treuga Dei. XLII. High Pontiff Clement III PAPA CLEMENS TERTIUS [r. 1643-1648] [1603-1662] [Jack Amador] “Fide Et Ordo” Having served in the capacity of Vice Chancellor and groomed closely under the tutelage of his predecessor, Clement III was the ‘heir-apparent’ to the Exalted Throne. His reign saw the tensions between the tripartite social order which began to deteriorate with growing anxieties of a Renatian hegemony and the discontent of the Haensetian kingdom. He is most notably remembered for his efforts in forging diplomatic ties with the Apostolic See of the Exalted and the Dominion of Malin as well as his leniency toward the Rashidun faith. His Pontificate casted a period of tolerance and dialogue with great emphasis on ecumenical relationships as well as moderation within his contemporary political realm. Amidst mounting secular pressure, he abdicated the Pontificate after six years. XLIII. High Pontiff Bl. Jude I ‘the Hammer’ PAPA IUDAES PRIMUS MALLEUS [r. 1649-1672] [1616-1672] [Elphias Stem] “Sunt Etiamnum Fidelium” As an astute clergyman and Archbishop of Jorenus, Elphias of Metz ascended quickly and was elected High Pontiff Jude, the first of his namesake. His task was defined by his ability to repair the credibility and image of the Church as a result of its perceived recession. He is dubbed as being one of the most prolific authors to hold the Pontificate and is noted for his steadfast institutional reform. Beginning with the abolition of priestly appointments to diocese, the High Pontiff instituted direct appointment of priests to bishops as well as introduced a census for the presbyterate. Jude also codified a renewed liturgical rite, a common Credo for the Church, and declared the Year of the Faithful and the Jubilee of Priests to celebrate the vitality of the Church’s mission. In addition, he is responsible for the certification of the Order of Saint Everard, the Order of the Exalted Throne, the Sisters of Saint Julia, who at their peak was among the largest orders in history, and Chantry. All of which aforementioned demonstrated a performative work for his vocational talent. Among his other contributions is his consolidation of relics recovered during his Pontificate. He is noted for his strong orthodoxy especially on his objection to lay investiture and promoting priestly authority and on his heavy enforcement with the Order of Saint Lucien. He also promoted ecumenical dialogue with the Rashidun faith in the recognition of a concordat of good will. XLIV. High Pontiff Bl. Siegmund I PAPA SIGISMUNDUS PRIMUS [r. 1672-1693/1720] [1625-1725] [George Vankovich Radovic] “Velykyy Plan Jest Wypaczony Przez Povstannya” A staunch champion of orthodoxy in the vein of his predecessor, Siegmund I’s policies reaffirmed a variety of traditional values from priestly marriage to sacred textiles, and protected the practice of the then-unpopular Ruskan Rite. His reactionary crusade against Reiter incursions into Canonist domains at the behest of the Dominion of Malin struggled on for several years before fizzling out into a de facto white peace. During the late 1680s through early 1690s, however, His Holiness neglected the administrative and judicial aspects of his position to focus on his grand theological works, The Books of Siegmund I. This came to a head during the investigation of Imperial Prince Cassius Horen, who was suspected by the Synod of massacring a troupe of monastics during a missionary excursion to the Princedom of Rhosenyr. Despite a lack of physical evidence and eyewitness testimony to place him in Rhosenyr at the time, Siegmund excommunicated him nonetheless. This tactless move enraged both Emperor Aurelius I and the Electoral Synod, who both attempted to depose him in 1693. After declaring his deposition contrary to the laws of the church, Siegmund declared the Heartland Schism against his detractors and fled into the wilderness with the contents of the Church’s reliquary, not to be seen again for twenty-five years. THE SCHISM PONTIFICATE XLV. High Pontiff Bl. Daniel V PAPA DANIEL QUINTUS [r. 1693-1702] [166?-1702] [Elwood of Carolustadt] “Unitatis In Nostra Aetate” Following the deposition of High Pontiff Siegmund I, the Electoral Synod nominated their Vice Chancellor, Elwood of Carolustadt, to take up the mantle of the pontificate in such tumultuous times. A paragon of Epulonism, Daniel V’s reign was marked by his close interactions with his flock of laity. While initially labelled an Aurelian puppet by several Highland factions, Daniel managed to win over the majority of the Imperium through a combination of his tranquil, diplomatic demeanor, and a benevolent open-door policy. This, however, would be his downfall, as Daniel was assassinated in his own See by a heathen feigning desire for baptism. XLVI. High Pontiff Bl. Pontian II ‘the Silent’ PAPA PONTIANUS SECUNDUS TACITUS [r. 1702-1714] [1656-1724] [Theodoric Andrew Bracchus] “Ex Umbra In Solem” Archbishop Theodoric of Markev, Lord Keeper of the Imperial Privy Seal and Professor of Theology at the Imperial Theodosian Academy, was the clear candidate to succeed Daniel V, if only due to his peers’ inexperience in ecclesiastical office. Pontian II spent the majority of his pontificate within the walls of the Holy See, poring over ancient theological documents and upkeeping the church’s several estates within Reza. While this resulted in a well-populated diaconate, a lean yet effective priesthood, and the grandest ecclesiastical library since the See of Pontian I, Pontian II’s introspection came at the cost of his public presence. During his reign, several Pertinaxi atrocities, including the Burning of Ves, proceeded unimpeded by the church, and alchemical and arcane abominations roamed the streets of the Empire of Man. Just as he was beginning to address this grievous issues via the establishment of the Order of Saint Rudolph, Pontian resigned out of wariness, unable to bear the burden of the Immaculate Throne any longer. XLVII. High Pontiff Everard V ‘the Josephite’ PAPA EVERARDUS QUINTUS JOSEPHUS [r. 1714-1720] [1678-1720] [Thomas Wick] “Deus Caritas Est” An ambitious, young Hanseti friar, Father Thomas Wick won his election unanimously by promising an end to the moral decay rampant among the streets of the Empire of Man. While this appeared to be a promising start, Everard’s agenda soon dispersed to ashes as he became embroiled in the War of Two Emperors. In his fervor to promote the cause of his preferred candidate, Joseph I, Everard not only excommunicated Emperor Godfrey II, but the entire Pertinaxi lineage. As the Josephite legions began to crumble under pressure by Renatian forces, the middling Wick soon found himself at odds with the return of the deposed High Pontiff Siegmund I, forcing the Heartland Schism to the forefront of ecclesiastical thought. During the Council of Ves, both Siegmund I and Everard V agreed to resign their claims to the High Pontificate, and assist in the election of a new pontiff. THE REKINDLING XLVIII. High Pontiff Bl. Daniel VI ‘the Holy’ PAPA DANIEL SEXTUS SANCTUS [r. 1720-1737] [1686-1737] [Guy Haas] “Unitatis In Nostra Aetate” When Father Haas called together the Council of Ves, his only expectation was that a resolution between the Siegmundic and Everardian churches be formed, for the sake of ecclesiastical unity in a new era. However, due to his prized non-partisanship during the proceedings, Guy found himself unanimously elected High Pontiff during an impromptu election. During his seventeen-year reign, Daniel VI enacted reforms unprecedented since the days of High Pontiff St. Sixtus IV. A catechism, a marriage registry, and a book of saints were all republished during his tenure, as well as a comprehensive tome of ecclesiastical law to clarify dicey intricacies of church procedure for generations to come. In addition, a flock of eager students and courtiers found their place at the Holy See, where His Holiness offered generous lodgings to all who wished to study the canon and become members of the clergy. This golden era of ecclesiastical scholarship and community presence would eventually come to an end, however, with Daniel VI lying bedridden with gout for several years before his eventual passage to the Seven Skies. XLIX. High Pontiff John I PAPA IOANNES PRIMUS [r. 1737-1744] [1679-1744] [Ernst of Curonia] “Deus Super Omnia” An aged relic of the Heartlander Schism, Ernst of Curonia was selected to succeed Daniel VI due to his unparalleled forty years of experience as a member of the clergy. Despite his distinguished tenure, however, John I soon struggled with the administrative duties of his position. The few binding edicts that he issued were dismissed by contemporary scholars due to their outdated ideas and basic record-keeping errors. The stress that accompanied these public gaffes, combined with that brought on by the ongoing war between the Holy Orenian Empire and the Alliance of Independent States, likely contributed to John’s death in 1745. L. High Pontiff Pontian III PAPA PONTIANUS TERTIUS [r. 1745-1752] [1683-1752] [Ide Haraccus] Pontian III formerly reigned as Serene Prince of Ves, and was the primary author of the Codex Iuris Canonici Danielus Pontifex, the church’s current compendium of law. Grappling with substantive issues such as lay coronation and radical laity, Pontian attempted in vain to increase ecclesiastical authority within the secular realms of humanity. It was during his construction of a new monastery in Helena that His Holiness was assassinated by an unknown figure. LI. High Pontiff James II PAPA IACOMES SECUNDUS [r. 1753-] [1712-] [Godric Virosi] “Veritas Dei Vincit” A talented theologian and scribe prior to his ascension, High Pontiff James II is most notable for his role in the human expedition to Athera, leading up to the recovering of the lost verses of Auspice, and the subsequent publishing of the Holy Canon.
  3. xboxersz

    Alchemist's Guild

    ((MC NAME: xboxersz Discord: Cash4Gold#1763)) Name: Yusuf Karakulak Age: 18 Race: Human Reason For Joining: To further my studies in natural philosophy in a formal, academic environment. Affiliation: N/A
  4. MC Username: xboxersz Discord: Cash4Gold#1763 Which Category you wish to work on: Tech-Power Why you wish to work on that Category: I’ve completed coursework in the foundations and history of science/technology, and have a brief history of work experience that includes the maintenance of considerably large machines. It’s a field that I have a vested interest in, and I’d enjoy the opportunity to examine how the IRL development of technology interacts with arcane, alchemical, and mundane aspects of the server lore, along with overarching server themes. What you want to see from that Category: I’d like to establish the limits of LoTC technology in a manner that opens it up organically for even further development and discussion later on in the server’s arc. The problem with setting static limits to technological progress is that some players will immediately begin to charge towards that limit to reach it as soon as possible. Once such a static limit is reached, players and characters will lack room to grow, and then stagnate and lose interest. I’d like to see a dynamic techlock with milestones that can be reached over time with research and development by player groups. As time goes by, a wider breadth of devices should be available for development by players, instead of simply them hitting a static ceiling within a few months.
  5. Jasper casts his vote.
  6. Official Update After a recount conducted personally by the Secretary of State for Civil Affairs, the Imperial Office of Civil Affairs hereby reaffirms that the results of the elections are correct and valid. Jasper Cardinal Renzfeld, Secretary of State for Civil Affairs
  7. From his seat upon the electoral dais, Jasper Cardinal Renzfeld rises to place his slip of parchment into the voting receptacle. As he approaches, the cardinal’s mouth opens for a brief moment, but the courage he was able to muster during the last synod does not return to him. Silently, he drops his vote into the bucket before beginning a muted return to the remaining congregation of electors.
  8. IMPERIAL COUNCIL OF STATE RECRUITMENT NOTICE For the Secretary of Foreign Affairs and Secretary of Intelligence Issued and Confirmed by His Imperial Majesty, Peter III Antonius, 14th of Godfrey’s Triumph, 1739 His Imperial Majesty is searching for qualified candidates to fill the roles of Secretary of Foreign Affairs and Secretary of Intelligence, both crucial administrative positions within the Imperial government. Each position is accompanied by room and board within the Imperial court, a state-of-the-art workspace, a seat upon the Imperial Cabinet, and a small annual stipend. Those who meet the qualifications below and are interested in one of these positions should submit a résumé to the Department of Civil Affairs for review ((Discord: Cash4Gold#1763)). Succeeding an application window of three months, candidates who have passed the initial round of review shall be contacted for an interview. SECTION I SECRETARY OF FOREIGN AFFAIRS DUTIES: The duty to ensure the continuing good relations of the Holy Orenian Empire with the foreign nations of the continent The duty to report on the relationships which the Empire maintains with the states of the world The duty to provide for the welfare of Orenian subjects who should travel abroad, negotiating peacefully with foreign states for their continued safety, and making such incidents known to the Council of State as should be known The duty to ensure the loyalty and stability of the Empire’s foreign holdings in a manner consistent with the Emperor’s peace The duty to sustain the contentedness of foreign subjects and vassals, measuring their welfare against that of the state, and to never prejudice them to costly and weakening rebellion The duty to inform the Crown and the Cabinet of the customs of their subjects so they may better administer them The duty to organize meetings with foreign dignitaries, and to periodically travel to foreign lands in the Emperor’s name, acting as his favored ambassador and negotiator. The duty to negotiate and establish treaties on behalf of the Holy Orenian Empire, as the Emperor’s peace may demand PREFERRED QUALIFICATIONS: 15+ years of experience in foreign diplomacy or trade Master-level or doctoral-level degree in a field related to international studies, the humanities, or the social sciences Close familiarity with the ruling regime of states bordering the Holy Orenian Empire Working knowledge of all documents signed between the Holy Orenian Empire and foreign governments from 1720 onward Willingness to work abroad for up to four months out of each year SECTION II SECRETARY OF INTELLIGENCE DUTIES: The duty to safeguard the unity and security of the realm before considerable threat has arisen The duty to oversee covert action and special operations in line with the Crown’s policy objectives The duty to create material which inspires proper action among the Imperial citizenry The duty to obtain reliable and actionable intelligence of interest to the Crown The duty to belay attempts at subversion by identifying enemies of the Crown both foreign and domestic The duty to inform the Crown and Council of State, within the scope of intelligence, in regards to political matters PREFERRED QUALIFICATIONS: 15+ years of experience in state governance, journalism, academia, or related fields 5+ years of military service 5+ years of experience with matters concerning national intelligence Master-level or doctoral-level degree in the humanities, engineering, medicine, the arcane arts, or a related field Working familiarity with the vassal states of the Holy Orenian Empire and their leadership Willingness to work abroad for up to four months out of each year
  9. His Eminence Jasper Cardinal Renzfeld, Ph.D., M.Div., approaches the ballot box with vigor, clutching a folded slip of parchment in his hand. Glancing back as he submits his anonymous vote, the young Sarkozic addresses his fellow electors. “Your Eminence, as a lay member, and a, erm- A junior member of this, ah… Body, I understand that my words may not yet carry significant weight. However… As His Holiness’ personal secrea- Ahem, secretary, during his final days, I, uh, believe that I may perhaps shed some wisdom upon our proceedings today.” After taking a moment to emit several hacking coughs into his hand, Cardinal Renzfeld continues with a confidence not seen during his introduction. “High Pontiff Daniel VI was a kindred spirit, a spry theological mind, and a humble servant of all GODly creatures upon the mortal plane. He brought unity to GOD’s humble servants during a period of significant strife, and bestowed upon the Holy Canonist Church a new age of excitement and progress surrounding the scriptures and traditions of yore. The successor to such an eminent figure within the annals of history should be one of similar stature, holding the virtues of charity, faith, fidelity, humility, diligence, temperance, and patience close to his heart. With this in mind, I host no regret in informing you that I’ve submitted my ballot in support of Peter Cardinal Helena. There are few members of the clergy with more humble beginnings than the Cardinal Helena. For a humble mudlarker to not only excel in his seminary training, but earn a Ph.D. in Canonical Ethics, is an astounding feat. No less incredible is this thoughtful, upstanding cleric’s ascension not only to the Electoral Synod but to the seniormost post in the Imperial court, advising the Lord Protector on matters not merely secular, but ecclesiastical and ethical in nature. I’m confident that His Eminence would perform the duties of the Vicar of GOD with grace and aplomb, and with enough thought, I have no doubt that you will reach the same conclusion I did.” With that, Cardinal Renzfeld quickly removes himself from the dais, making his way back down to the rest of the gathered cardinals.
  10. A small conclave of the elderly residents of Sutica, after receiving news of this supposed ascension, spit out their tea in bewilderment. “That’s not how it works, that’s not how any of this works.”
  11. ((MC-Name: xboxersz)) Character Name: Hannes Age: 18 Race: Human Hometown: Renzfeld Possible Goals to achieve: Improved knowledge of botanical taxonomy Wanted Role/Job: Secretary ((Discord: You have it))
  12. All Good Things... “Whmmmmp!” It was to this sound that High Pontiff Emeritus Pontian II awoke in the depths of night, from within his vacation villa hidden amongst the Rezan countryside. Comfortable in solitude, the aging clergyman had dismissed his personal retinue upon his retirement from the Immaculate Throne, only requesting their company during travel or major ceremonies. This, unfortunately, meant that the disembodied sound alarmed none but Pontian himself, and as such, he was to investigate the matter personally. Slipping from his bedspread, Pontian gripped fiercely at his cane, before embarking on a difficult journey down the staircase towards his front door. But alas, the nature of his twilight disturbance would forever remain unknown to him, as upon Pontian’s descent to the second step, his well-worn, poplar walking stick, stricken with a large crack down the length of its body, finally snapped in twain, casting his body down the remainder of the flight of stairs. When a sole attendant finally arrived to receive the High Pontiff Emeritus’ outgoing mail, he was appalled to find the poor wretch motionless, crumpled at the bottom of the stairs, still in his silken nightgown. For Pontian’s fellow members of the Pontifical Curia, such tragic news was processed swiftly, and his remains were embalmed and interred within the crypts of the Blessed Basilica of Saint Rudolph. *Amongst the towns and cities of humanity, small pieces of parchment are distributed to the public, with more officially notarized copies sent to the courts of major nobility.* “It is with solemn countenance that the Holy Canonist Church announces the death of High Pontiff Emeritus Pontian II due to an unforeseen accident, and implores all Faithful to join us in prayer for his immortal soul. Born Theodoric Andries Bracchus, High Pontiff Emeritus Pontian II was raised in Markev by his family, the cadet House Bracchus de Ruyter. After a brief period of managing his family estates, he received the sacred sacrament of ordination in 1683, before a variety of diocesan assignments in Adria, Haense, Curonia, and the Crownlands of the Empire of Man. During his considerable tenure as a clergyman, he was an active participant in the Arberrang investigation and the Schism of 1693, and even served as Lord Keeper of the Privy Seal for Emperor Augustus I Horen succeeding a post as Imperial Election Commissioner. The reign of High Pontiff Pontian II, brought about by the untimely assassination of Bl. High Pontiff Daniel V, was marked by concord amongst GOD’s people, and a return to the simple, traditional values of times past. Such peace was assisted by his strong personal relationships with the realm’s secular leaders, such as King Wilhelm Devereux of Curon, Imperial Archchancellor Edward Morris, Duke Paul Varoche of Adria, and Emperor Antonius I Horen, who he coronated in 1707. For laymen during the Pontianic Era, the clergy was known to be a bastion of virtue and humility, with little unnecessary interference in the lives of its Faithful. However, as his private and studious nature would abet, Pontian quickly grew weary of the duties of the Immaculate Throne, leading to his resignation in 1714. In his personal life, Pontian was an unwavering patron of local artisans and artists, even commissioning a portrait from Empress Helen Elizabeth Horen herself. He was known as one of the most prominent scholars of humanity, studying at the Academy of Holm and holding academic positions in theology at the Academic Union and Imperial Theodosian Academy. Many of his secular views were inspired by his heartlander brethren, including the redeemed Ser Septimus Bracchus, prominent statesman Bl. Prince-Bishop Claudius Bracchus, and the controversial parliamentarian and tradesman Fabius Bracchus. During his final years, Pontian’s singular lament was the desire for more familial interactions. Within the Holy Canonist Church’s ecclesiastical records, High Pontiff Pontian II shall henceforth be granted the epithet ‘the Silent’, for his patient and unassuming mannerisms, and aversion to the fanfare of public ceremony. It is our hope that his diligence, willpower, and stoicism inspires such venerable traits in the contemporary Faithful.” REQUIESCAT IN PACE. ☩ Theodoric Andries Bracchus de Ruyter, 1656 - 1724 Pontifex Maximus Pontianus Secundus, MDCCII - MDCCXIV High Pontiff Emeritus Pontian II (r. 1702 - 1714) EX UMBRA IN SOLEM
  13. From outside Saint Rudolph’s Basilica, High Pontiff Emeritus Pontian II offers the new High Pontiff a thunderous round of applause. “A splendid choice, indeed!”
  14. SECUNDUS TAURUM AUREUS SANCTUS JORENUS SECOND GOLDEN BULL OF JORENUS 2nd of Horen’s Calling, 1714  His Holiness Pontian the Second, High Pontiff of the Church of the Canon, Metropolitan of Judeburg, Successor to the High Priesthood of the Church, Supreme Pontiff of the Church of True Faith, Keeper of the Canon, Missionary to Aeldin and Svatum, High Servant to the Exalteds’ Testaments, Humble Servant of the Faithful and Vicar of GOD doth decree… TABLE OF CONTENTS: SECTION I - DIOCESAN RECONSTRUCTION SECTION II - SYNOD APPOINTMENTS SECTION III - CURIAL APPOINTMENTS SECTION IV - BEATIFICATION SECTION V - CANONIZATION SECTION VI - NULLIFICATION SECTION VII - HOLY ORDER OF SAINT RUDOLPH SECTION VIII - ABDICATION SECTION I - DIOCESAN RECONSTRUCTION As the Church continues its leal service to the continent of Arcas, the following changes have been established. THE ARCHDIOCESE OF JORENUS - Encompassing the Kingdom of Haense and its respective lands and minor vassals. Administered by HIS EMINENCE, CAIUS THE ARCHDIOCESE OF RHODESIA - Encompassing the Dual Kingdoms of Renatus and Marna, their respective lands and minor vassals. Administered by HIS EMINENCE, ZACHERY THE METROPOLITANATE OF LENDUS - Encompassing the Diocese of Villavia and the Diocese of Curonia. Administered by HIS EMINENCE, THOMAS THE DIOCESE OF CURONIA - Encompassing the Kingdom of Curon and its respective lands and minor vassals. Administered by HIS GRACE, ERNST THE DIOCESE OF VILLAVIA - Encompassing the Principality of Vilachia and its respective lands and minor vassals. Administered by HIS GRACE, BORIS SECTION II - SYNOD APPOINTMENTS The following elevations to the Synod have been made and are held as such. TRIARCH OF THE CANON; HIS EMINENCE, ZACHERY TRIARCH OF THE CANON; HIS EMINENCE, THOMAS TRIARCH OF THE CANON; HIS EMINENCE, CAIUS The Triarchy is appointed and authorized with the governance of the Church through the will of HIS HOLINESS, PONTIAN II SECTION III - ECCLESIASTICAL APPOINTMENTS To bolster the Curia of The Most Holy Mother Canonist Church upon the continent of Arcas, the following appointments are reaffirmed and reconfirmed. VICE-CHANCELLOR - HIS EMINENCE, CAIUS NUNCIO TO THE PONTIFICATE - HIS IMPERIAL EXCELLENCY, EDWARD MORRIS PONTIFICAL SECRETARY - HIS EMINENCE, THOMAS SECTION IV - BEATIFICATION We the Pontificate, by our Apostolic authority and jurisdiction, does hereby recognize the following additions to the communion of those beautified for their extraordinary model of piety and glory to the Holy Mother Church: His Lordship Ser Laurens de Ruyter shall be styled as Blessed Laurens de Ruyter for his benevolence and generosity, and faithful service to the faithful in Haense. In 1676, Blessed Laurens de Ruyter vanquished and was slain by a pair of Elvish magi attempting to assassinate Blessed Robert Lothar Barbanov, saving his life. Father Claudius Bracchus shall be styled as Blessed Claudius Bracchus for his exceptional statesmanship, and dedication to the practical application of GOD’s virtues. A former Prince-Bishop, Blessed Claudius Bracchus gave loyal service to the Holy Canonist Church, Imperial Parliament, and Duchy of Adria before his untimely demise in 1690. His Eminence Alexander Frederick Horen shall be styled as Blessed Alexander Frederick Horen for his passionate defence of the faithful, and brief but effective tenure as Bishop of Cyrilsburg. His devotion to GOD was such that he left his previous position as Lord Keeper of the Privy Seal to be ordained a priest. SECTION V - CANONIZATION We the Pontificate, by our Apostolic Authority does grant approbation for the following sanctifications to the communion of saints for their extraordinary models of piety and glory to the Church of the Canon: ☩ Blessed Publius Bracchus shall be styled Saint Publius of Petrus in recognition of his unparalleled service to GOD, His church, and His people. Declared the patron saint of military officers, mercenaries, and deacons, Saint Publius’ virtue shall henceforth be symbolized by a bronze chalice. Born of a mercenary and a baron's daughter, Publius Bracchus had been driven from his country estate by bandits into service of the Reformed Kingdom of Oren, before beginning a long and illustrious career in the military. Following an enduring service leading the Second Akovian Regiment until its reformation under Vanir rule following the death of King Vydra, he shortly was enrolled into the Order of Saint Amyas. During that service, Publius helped improve the reputation of militant holy orders by insisting on repentance and confession rather than execution for the sins of non-humans, and he was soon made privy by King Olivier de Savoie. Serving as the first Lord Steward of Felsen, Publius enjoyed a reputation of being both kind-hearted and highly motivated, often promoting the values of canonism to the metropolitan city. His faith, like many others, was tried by the Duke's war - even losing a Cousin he had sided against, Count Jace Bracchus, after Jace was caught in an extramarital relationship with a nun. Following Jace’s execution, it is said that Publius had made many offerings to the church on his own behalf, hoping to preserve his soul. Never losing heart, Publius then intervened against the genocide of Highlanders and the Raev by offering refuge to all clergymen of Adria and old Haense following the death of Siguine Barbanov. Protection of the clergy led to a broader protection of Highlander laity, who had been mercilessly killed due to racial hate from Savoyard and Lotharingian Heartlanders. After undoubtedly saving many lives, his son Deacon Aemolius' death in a raid led him to defend all members of the church. Growing older, more of Publius’ children would join the church and also form the de Ruyter family in respect to their mother's culture, as his second wife's children were designated the heirs of the Barony of Aesculus. Amongst such descendants were Saint Johannes de Ruyter, Lord Magistrate Laurens de Ruyter, Blessed Ser Laurens de Ruyter, and High Pontiff Pontian the Second. Serving as the first Arch-Chancellor of the Quintus under Emperor John Frederick, Publius played a key role in mending the rifts of humanity, often citing its chosen status aneath the Canon as the primary reason for political unity. These efforts came in a timely fashion during perhaps one of the most pivotal wars in history - the Eighteen Years’ War. Battling pagans and heretics alike from Vandoria, Urguan, old Haria, and many other long-extinct nations, it is said Publius Bracchus eventually retired due to old age. Appearing only once after his retirement from the privy council as he assailed Rocco Romstun for his repeated disrespects of the passing Emperor John Frederick, it is said that he died of natural causes in the Anpalais palace soon after having an audience with Emperor John Sigismund. ☩ Blessed Rudolph of Markev shall be styled Saint Rudolph of Markev, for his exemplary scholarship and devotion to the canon over the course of several decades as a prominent clergyman. Represented by a silver key, Saint Rudolph is established as the patron saint of redemption, musicians, and beggars. A quiet, introspective minister of middling origin, many of the personal details of Rudolph Wagner’s life are lost to time. The majority of knowledge about his life comes from his written works, and the public records of the Holy Canonist Church. By the time of Rudolph’s ordination in the mid-to-late seventeenth century, he was already an established Highlander tradesman for several decades. In 1686, he published his first political treatise, Pax Cordis (Common: “Peace of Heart”), which was immensely popular amongst clergymen of the time. In 1689, he gained his first official post within the clerical hierarchy, as Bishop of Cyrilsburg. Following the deposition of High Pontiff Siegmund I, Rudolph was promoted to Archbishop of Jorenus and Pontifical Secretary under Blessed High Pontiff Daniel V in 1693. It was during his tenure as Pontifical Secretary that Archbishop Rudolph published the compilation of his life’s theological work, Hymnal and Prayers of the Canon. A collection of hymns, parables, and prayers, Hymnal and Prayers of the Canon quickly proved to be a valuable tool in both liturgy and the education of the faithful. Tragically, Rudolph resigned from his clerical posts due to poor health in 1700, and died soon after due to gout. SECTION VI - DECLARATION OF INVALIDITY It has been brought to the attention of the Immaculate Throne that the Writ of Bastardization and Disownment, as issued by Adrian de Bar in 1531, contains invalid clauses. The referenced clauses are included herein: “The marriage and matrimony of matrilineal type between the individuals Frederique de Bar and Otto Rovin is declare null of its matrilineal clauses, all offspring born from such a union to be known thus as simply ‘Rovin’ rather than ‘de Bar’. These actions come as punishment for the sordid acts levied by this bloodline against the whole of the house; it is necessary to remove an arm that rots so as to save the greater body, and so is that the decision of His Excellency, Adrian de Bar.” The rite of matrimony is a sacred one, and alteration of the initial conditions of a marriage can only be performed by a member of the College of Bishops, or the High Pontiff. Thus, because this declaration of nullity was only performed by a secular authority without approval by a relevant member of the Holy Canonist Church, it is invalid, and its contents are not binding. The offspring born of Frederique de Bar during her marriage to Otto Rovin legally possess the surname Ashford de Bar, not Rovin. SECTION VII - HOLY ORDER OF SAINT RUDOLPH Due to pressing temporal issues that endanger the safety of the canonist faithful, the Holy Canonist Church henceforth establishes the Holy Order of Saint Rudolph to defend GOD’s flock from threats both secular and ecclesiastical, and to investigate crimes against ecclesiastical law. The Holy Order of Saint Rudolph (OSR) is defined to possess sects both militant and inquisitorial, under the supervision of a singular Grandmaster. An ordained Grand Chaplain is also necessary to maintain the ecclesiastical and moral standing of members of the OSR, and report to the Grandmaster concerning liturgical matters. The Holy Canonist Church henceforth appoints Father Otto of Judeburg to the post of Grandmaster, and Archbishop Zachery of Carolustadt to the post of Grand Chaplain. SECTION VIII - ABDICATION To the Canonist Faithful, As I look back upon the last decade, I am filled with a paternal pride at what GOD’s people have accomplished. The reconstruction of the Empire of Man upon a new continent, the renewal of passion for virtuous living amongst our brethren, and the construction of unsurpassed facilities to honor the Exalted, host the sacred rites outlined in the Holy Scrolls, and to house those downtrodden and in need of assistance. We have made great strides towards true devotion, and even without the foresight of the Exalted Siegmund, it is clear to me that the future only holds more success for His chosen peoples. “Verily, brother, the Lord GOD is the Most Incomparable, and none can surpass Him, for He has no equal. And verily thou must find satisfaction in service of thine own realm, the realm of all men.” (Owyn, 7:6) Just as GOD decreed through the Exalted Owyn, I have found great satisfaction in service to the realm of man. During my tenure as High Pontiff, I have overseen the re-establishment of independence of the Holy Canonist Church from undue secular influence. I have filled the ranks of the church with a legion of scholars, warriors, and servants, and updated our records to reflect the decades of prosperity between their last compilation and the present. However, the burden of the Immaculate Throne is a heavy one, one which manifests itself harshly upon those who take up the position of High Pontiff. I am no exception, and although I number only fifty-and-eight years upon the mortal plane, I feel the aches and pains of those centuries-old. With looming troubles upon the horizon that require the tenacity and energy of a more youthful man, it has became clear that it is time to pass off my position to another. Thus, in accordance with the procedures established by Blessed High Pontiff Clement III, High Pontiff Daniel IV, Saint High Pontiff Sixtus IV, and others before them, I hereby declare my abdication from the Immaculate Throne on the Second of Horen’s Calling, 1714. The Immaculate Throne shall persist in a state of Sede Vacante until the Electoral Synod chooses another candidate to fill the position. GOD bless and keep the lot of you, and may you walk in His light. Yours lovingly, High Pontiff Emeritus Pontian II ☩ IN NOMINE PATRIS, et Horenus, et Exaltus Honorem. Amen. ☩ REJOICE! GOD’S FAITHFUL TOIL NO LONGER. EX UMBRA IN SOLEM
  15. Reading over the document from his quarters in the Holy See, High Pontiff Pontian II’s lips tug downwards into a frown. “The Nordengraders receive religious freedom and political clout in the Empire once more, hmm? I hardly need wonder what the next step in this cycle of appeasement and betrayal will be.”
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