Chorae

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greatbigsky

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« on: August 28, 2013, 09:34:25 pm »
Hi everyone, I am new here.  I have been reading for a while but just now posted.
I have just finished The Thousandfold Thought and can't wait to start the next book!
I apologize if this has already been covered somewhere, I did look to try to find it.  My husband and I were talking and we both wonder; why do the sorcerers not wear some kind of armor?  It seems that chorae work by skin contact with someone with the Mark.  Why not wear some type of armor or other body covering to help prevent this skin contact?  Does Bakker ever address this?
Thanks in advance and thanks for the fascinating forum!
Cheers

Francis Buck

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« Reply #1 on: August 28, 2013, 10:33:54 pm »
Welcome, and this is a good question. I vaguely remember some discussion of this over on Westeros.org, but it was awhile ago. Bakker does address it later on to some degree. I think the issue has been left purposefully vague. Sorcerers (particularly very powerful ones) seem to get affected by chorae even at a distance, but I don't think we've seen someone die from one without direct skin-contact, which does make me wonder why some kind of armor isn't employed more often (I don't know how much you want spoiled so I won't say anything specific, but the issue is brought up eventually, though for me personally it actually created more questions than it answered). 
« Last Edit: August 29, 2013, 02:01:22 am by Francis Buck »

Wilshire

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« Reply #2 on: August 29, 2013, 12:22:16 am »
My take is that schoolmen are more philosopher than warrior. They study all day in dimly lit rooms and memorize spells and such. Take dear old Akka for example, he's a fat middle-aged man. I just can't see him getting very far in full platemail armor.

At least that is the way I always justified it. Schoolmen tend to think themselves invincible and tend to be full of themselves. It could just be a big ego that gets in the way.
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Somnambulist

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« Reply #3 on: August 29, 2013, 01:25:41 am »
I also believe it might have something to do with societal caste prohibitions.  The warrior caste has access to arms and armament with nary a question raised because they need those items to fulfill their duties.  I doubt jnan would allow for cross-caste access to the accoutrement of other castes.  Certainly caste-menials would not be allowed arms and armament.  I think when you become a schoolman, you're automatically prohibited from owning or at least displaying certain items, armor probably being one of them.
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« Reply #4 on: August 30, 2013, 12:04:01 am »
Welcome to The Second Apocalypse, greatbigsky. Or posting here, anyhow :).

I think the opinions offered so far miss some crucial bullet-points of interaction and balance of power. Wilshire almost raises it but then segues with a joke.

The Scholastic Wars have been fought in Earwa and humanity's Few won. Moreover, the only people who own Chorae are caste-nobility as Somnambulist suggested.

Though we know very little of the actualities of the Scholastic Wars, I'd hazard that in Earwa's historical notation consequences of the existence of the sorcery is a common fulcrum. We have the Shriah calling a holy war against the Schools, which marks the only point of an organized attempt at fielding Chorae against Sorcerers in the current age of Earwa.

I figure there was no generative moment for the advent of armor for Schoolmen because the Schools have only fought eachother, otherwise. Though there might have been some attempts during the aforementioned wars...
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Wilshire

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« Reply #5 on: August 30, 2013, 01:01:26 am »
One thing that gets me is that in the beginning it was said the chorae are basically the most valuable thing in Earwa. Something about the marriage dowry of two royal families being the only suitable occasion to give/receive such a valuable and precious artifact.

Then, 5 books later, everyone and their brother has a chorae and some people have several,
Quote
not to mention the great chorae hoard hold and the legions of sranc/bashrag that apparently have them

Or chorae bowman!? That really is the one that kills me. You actually have bowman shooting arrows tipped with the Tears of God (HA the god weeps and the sky rains righteous water, but i digress).... That would be like shooting the entire wealth of Nations into the air per volley.

Sounds to me a bit like a renege.

Anyway, I was serious about the ego thing. Schoolmen could be whole cities in a few days, but they refuse to do any menial task with their power. I seriously doubt they would stoop so low as to wear the armor of a lowly soldier.
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Somnambulist

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« Reply #6 on: August 30, 2013, 06:22:59 pm »
Anyway, I was serious about the ego thing. Schoolmen could be whole cities in a few days, but they refuse to do any menial task with their power. I seriously doubt they would stoop so low as to wear the armor of a lowly soldier.

This point is actually born out in the major battle scenes at the end of TTT.  The Scarlet Schoolmen are virtually surrounded by shield bearers to deflect incoming charae, yet would not deign to protect themselves with armor of their own.  Plus, they were all relatively old(er) and would most likely find it more difficult to step into the sky, or even move about generally, wearing heavy armor.  I think you touched on this earlier with the Akka comment, as well.

I'll buy that.
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« Reply #7 on: August 30, 2013, 10:58:29 pm »
One thing that gets me is that in the beginning it was said the chorae are basically the most valuable thing in Earwa. Something about the marriage dowry of two royal families being the only suitable occasion to give/receive such a valuable and precious artifact.

Then, 5 books later, everyone and their brother has a chorae and some people have several,
Quote
not to mention the great chorae hoard hold and the legions of sranc/bashrag that apparently have them

Valuable in the Three-Seas, contemporaneously of the Holy War. Also, greatbigsky did mention reading only to TTT - though this is the notorious Misc. Chatter.

Or chorae bowman!? That really is the one that kills me. You actually have bowman shooting arrows tipped with the Tears of God (HA the god weeps and the sky rains righteous water, but i digress).... That would be like shooting the entire wealth of Nations into the air per volley.

Sounds to me a bit like a renege.

I think there is a quote referencing their collection after battles. Even still the Scarlet Spires almost certainly would affect their collection, if they weren't systematically scavenged by the caste-nobles.

This point is actually born out in the major battle scenes at the end of TTT.  The Scarlet Schoolmen are virtually surrounded by shield bearers to deflect incoming charae, yet would not deign to protect themselves with armor of their own.  Plus, they were all relatively old(er) and would most likely find it more difficult to step into the sky, or even move about generally, wearing heavy armor.  I think you touched on this earlier with the Akka comment, as well.

I'll buy that.

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EkyannusIII

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« Reply #8 on: October 16, 2013, 06:11:32 pm »
Randumb question - could a Chorae be sterilized and then surgically implanted using high medieval medicine? Keep in mind that these things are only possessed by the elite, so the best medical care of the day would be available to them, not the butchery of the village medicine man.
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if Kellhus was thinking all of this, he's going to freak out when he get's back and Kelmomas is all "i lieks to eatum peeples da"

the whole thing is orchestrated by Kellhus who is wearing a Bashrag as if it were a suit

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« Reply #9 on: October 16, 2013, 07:12:55 pm »
Sure, why not? I mean, we might have to suspend judgement concerning rejection of metals implanted in the skin and complications and death associated with toxicity but...
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Garet Jax

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« Reply #10 on: October 16, 2013, 08:17:21 pm »
I think I read it in TTT and can't remember clearly, but did the Inchoroi make the Chorae themselves after learning of the Aporos or was it the Nonmen that they seduced who actually made them?

At work again... getting my Bakker fix.

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« Reply #11 on: October 16, 2013, 09:24:49 pm »
Lol, I just posted this in another thread but:

Quote from: Cu'jara Cinmoi, 2005
The Aporos is something I want to flesh out further in future books. The basic idea is this: the Quya first developed the Aporos in the prosecution of their own intercine wars, but it was quickly forbidden. The arrival of the Inchoroi allowed several renegade Quya to pursue their sorcerous interrogations, leading to the production of tens of thousands of Chorae, which were used throughout the Cuno-Inchoroi wars.

Also:

Quote from: TTT Glossary, p545
After the disaster of Pir Pahal, the Inchoroi had seduced the practitioners of the Aporos, who had been forbidden from pursuing their art. Poisoned by knowledge, they devised the first of the Chorae to render their master immune to Cunoroi magic.
« Last Edit: October 16, 2013, 09:27:24 pm by Madness »
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Wilshire

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« Reply #12 on: November 28, 2013, 02:21:34 pm »
No other Cish uses either Skype or BFoLF in the entire series that we are aware of, neh?

Not the same but Inrau's sorcerous punching speed?

I'd like to point out that Kellhus didn't use any sorcery when he fought the thing.

I love when Kellhus fights the skin-spies through Caraskand... so epic, gall.

I mean, sorcery is cool and all but...

It seems to me that useing sorcery to agument your own person like Inrau did would make someone like Kellhus unstoppable because it circumvents the immunity of the chorae barer.
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« Reply #13 on: November 28, 2013, 05:22:40 pm »
Why? It's Sarcellus', non-Chorae having, companion skin-spy who gets his heart ripped out...
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Wilshire

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« Reply #14 on: November 28, 2013, 05:40:34 pm »
Why? It's Sarcellus', non-Chorae having, companion skin-spy who gets his heart ripped out...
Sure but it seems like a general rule that the chorae only makes you immune to the metaphysical. Pick up a rock and throw it with sorcery and it still hurts. I can't imagine why this wouldn't extend to the body of the caster.
I guess the schoolman would still have to worry about being hit by the chorae. Wouldn't want to plunge your hand through a suit of armor and clip a chorae on your way in. Instasalt.

Still though moving at hyper speeds would have a lot of advantages.
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