Fantasy Germanies

This post is about Fantasy Germany, but before we get to that, here’s a reminder to go support The Midderlands Kickstarter: it’s got 24 hours to run as of posting this. It’s not not-Germany but it’s definitely Warhammer!

The latest newsletter from Triple Ace Games announced that late next month (August) they’ll be Kickstarting a Holy Roman Empire sourcebook called ‘Satan’s Playground’ for their alt-history Gothic swashbuckling game All For One. Per the newsletter:

France is not the only country beset by demons. For 20 years, the Holy Roman Empire has been torn asunder by religious war stirred up by the forces of Hell and the greed of man. All for One: Satan’s Playground takes characters into a land ravaged by strife, famine, disease, and witchcraft – a land where honor means nothing and survival means everything.

I’ve got the Ubiquity version of this and many of the PDFs and it’s very fun, so I’ll definitely be backing this, but it did make me realise we have a lot of fantasy Englands, Frances, Arabias and Scandinavias, but how many fantasy Germanies are there?
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The Midderlands: A Weird and Perilous Setting, Kickstarting Now!

We interrupt your regularly scheduled programming, for a bit of promotion…

That’s too strong a word, since I’m not involved with this KS other than as a backer, but I think it must be of interest to anyone here reading about WFRP or Zweihänder. It’s a Kickstart for a, “green-hued, dark-fantasy, old-school mini-setting and bestiary set in a twisted middle-England.

Here’s the video (warning: dubstep, but please don’t hold that against the project):

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More Magic Books

A few weeks ago I posted some images and a link to an eighteenth-century book of magic. Meanwhile, the Newberry Library in Chicago is looking for help to transcribe some magical books from the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries, so they’ve digitised the images and put them online. That means that you also get transcriptions of the otherwise difficult to read text. Here’s some instructions for talking to spirits:

The Book of Magical Charms, fol.10r, image 13 (excerpt)

To Speak with Spiritts
Call their names Orimoth, Belmoth Lymocke]
and Say thus. I coniure you by the names
of the Angels + Sator and Azamor that
yee intend to me in this Aore, and send
unto me a Spirite called Sagrigit that
doe fullfill my comanding and desire
and that can also understand my words
for one or 2 yeares [?]; or as long as I will.

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The Early-Modern German Court, Part 3/3

The third and last part of this overview of the offices of the early-modern German court covers religion, culture and government.

For Part One go here, and for Part Two go here.

The court’s religious community could either consist of the narrower court itself, in which case religious ceremony took place in the Hofkapelle [court chapel] or Hofkirche [court church] or it might include the wider community that surrounded the court, in which case the Hofkirche also formed its own parish. The church was under the authority of the Hofprediger [court preacher], who was responsible for services as well as the moral condition of the court. Occasionally, court churches were also monastic or conventual churches.

Music was extremely important at court. It was under the authority of the Kapell or Konzertmeister and both smaller and larger orchestras provided music at mealtimes, chamber music and music for religious services. Trumpeters in particular took part in virtually every court occasion. Apart from the actual musicians, vocalists etc, there were also technical personnel, such as instrument makers, copyists etc.

From the end of the Middle Ages, court poets (Hofdichter) were common in England and France, but only occasionally appeared in German courts.

From the late 17th and then in 18th centuries, the name Hofmeister described the tutor of the sons of high aristocrats. These teachers had graduated from the philosophical or theological faculties of the universities, travelled with the court on its journeys and often attained high office.

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