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An introduction to our "magic".

Our original principles stated that there will be "scientific" rules governing this magic - some practitioners won't even call it magic, they will insist on regarding it as a science. There will be no simple (or complex) spells, no wands, no magical artefacts, no unicorns (well, maybe one, but you probably won't notice it, and it isn't magical), dragons, elves, dwarves, hobbits, etc. The magic is just something that some few people can do.
We don't have 'Spells' but practitioners of the magical arts will hum gently and rhythmically as they work, as an aid to the precise focusing of their enchantment.

For reasons connected with the religions that have developed in this world, the magic comes in several different forms. Though they share underlying principles, they have different purposes and different limitations.

  • To the Bakkomites, magic is a tool used by the priests to impress, awe and control the people and to punish wrongdoers (which means everyone who disagrees with a priest).
  • To the Ryadurans, it is a Gift of the Gods, useful for beautifying their temples and aiding their search for Truth - sometimes by sifting, with or without consent, through the beliefs and memories of those who are brought before them.
  • To Hibbonite priests it is a useful tool to assist in their drug dealing.
  • To the Digressionist Thaumaturges of the Southern Lands there is no such thing as magic - it is a science, that they call "Cognate Identity". Anyone who has studied a history of witchcraft from the Mediaeval Period of Old Earth will recognise the principles of "Like to Like, and Part to Whole". Such magic will also be familiar to anyone who has come across the Doctrine of Signatures, or the Powders of Sympathy described in Dava Sobel's excellent book "Longitude".
    That sort of magic was developed in "Shades of Gold", and is also used in some of our short stories in "Shades of Magic". Other aspects of this magic, and some of the social problems resulting from it, are also developed in "Clissa's Lay"
  • And to Nuomers and Acceptantists it is known as "Elemental Consuanginity", and through study of this art (sorry, 'Art' - capital A!) some few of them are able to become Illusionists, and to create great Art. This aspect of magic is the main theme of "Shades of Smoke", is mentioned in Shades of Gold and is developed further in some of the short stories in "Shades of Magic"