Brief Description: The Eshlar are the Architects on Atriana. They embody the ideal characteristics which compel them to create the most beautiful, grand, and functional structures on Atriana. They do not begrudge sharing their knowledge. The Eshlar believe if they teach their architectural skills and philosophy to others, then the values of artistry and function will spread, making the other species at least somewhat tolerable for the Eshlar.
Personality Traits: Intelligent. Artistic. Focused. Persistent. Stubborn. Belligerent toward anyone who does not embrace their philosophy.
Physical Appearance: Averages 2.6 meters tall. An Eshlar's neck sinks into its chest, revealing its mouth when talking or looking around. Its skin is made up of thick, hard plates sitting upon connective tissue and membrane that is flexible.
Natural Abilities: Resilient. Strong. Slow moving.
Unique Abilities: Eshlar can transform their hands and arms into various tools used in construction and architecture. Also, Eshlar have two opposable thumbs which provide them with utter precision in artistry.
Eccentricities: Eshlar are perfectionists. Creating something without the perfect balance of beauty, function and grandeur would be considered absurd and a waste of time to an Eshlar. Therefore, when another species contracts an Eshlar to design a structure, they are not always prepared to deal with the Eshlar's artistic temperament. An Eshlar will constuct, demolish, construct, demolish, and reconstruct again and again until it is satisfied with the exact results.
A high-ranking Tyrusin Warrior once contracted a famous Eshlar Architect to design and construct a grand and impenetrable defensive wall around his new fortress. The Tyrusin was relieved to see the Eshlar complete the wall just as the Tyrusin's enemies marched over the hill prepared for battle. The Eshlar, oblivious to what was about to ensue, tore down the wall to begin again. It was not yet perfect. These types of occurrences are common.
Natural Habitat: Mountains. Canyons. Volcanoes.
Current Eshlar Leader: Atriarch Cromas
Government: Eshlar tend to avoid or eschew politics whenever possible. They'll naturally fall into a student-teacher hierarchy when creating a large communally-built project, with the project's designer directing and the most experienced leading. Most other things, they prefer to leave to the legendary Eshlar common sense. Anyone routinely seeking conflict with or taking advantage of other Eshlar is seen as overly-impulsive or strange. Of course there are sometimes conflicts, as well as decisions or long-term plans that need to be made and carried out. In these cases, a Council of elder Eshlar will begrudgingly leave their work for a time, think deeply about an issue, and make a ruling. Councils are also convened to judge architectural and other creative contests, which the Eshlar love to hold and participate in.
There are six officially recognized Architectural Schools: Metholo, Karin, Diseera, Nokk, Viliscent, Jerysh.
: The ornate style of the Metholo carries deep meaning to most Eshlar. The style most often utilized in the construction of religious and gubernatorial structures, Metholo utilizes cavernous spaces, decorative thorning, flying buttresses, inscribed scripture, and other grandiose fixtures. While seen as superfluous by some outsiders, every facet of construction has meaning to the Architects of Metholo. Every piece is commemorative or thought to imbue the structures with certain attributes. Some Metholo structures are entire history lessons wrought of stone. Disciplines of Metholo often involve space, displacement, and airflow.
Karin: The Karin has an emphasis on collective defense, with fortified and bulky structures, nestled together in precise order and most often walled in. Creators of massive fortresses, the Karin are great for all things civil defense. Even at their most spartan, though, the Karin cannot help but be aesthetically pleasing and tasteful. The Karin grew out of an environment in which they had to stave off monstrous predators, against which no single Eshlar could survive. They are also masters of siege engineering, and share a long-standing friendship with the Unarra.
Diseera: A focus on clever and innovative overall designs with an emphasis on visual curiosity sets the Diseera apart. Often bordering on optical illusion, the Diseera is an esoteric and secretive order, and only the most intelligent and well disciplined Eshlar can take formal training. Diseera enjoy working with light, elegant materials to create novel and functional features such as retractable fixtures, secret doors, and transforming rooms. Diseera strive to optimize all available space. Diseera are conscious of overall form and try to preserve harmony amongst their buildings, neighboring structures, and the surrounding geography. Having grown out of the Diseeran Folds, a region of thin, intersecting hills laced under and through with esoteric novel.
Nokk: Cliff dwellers and burrowers who carve structures from solid rock and coax living rock to grow to their will. The Nokk create great interconnected cities in this fashion. The Nokk school is a formal institution but the style is most often associated with the Nokk Eshlar, who are more tribal than their urban cousins. The focus is on communal living and clustered, hivelike town complexes. Though Nokk grew out of a region of mesas, canyons, caves. Violent weather conditions topside and rising and falling rivers and floodlands below gave the Nokk a narrow zone in which to evolve. They are experts at support, digging, and mining. Many master sculptors have grown out of the Nokk school. The Nokk have enjoyed a friendly relationship with he Tyrusin who are fans of this style of architecture.
Viliscent: Evolved from the western peninsulas, where rainstorms and monsoon conditions are a constant, the Viliscent school of architecture features domes, bubbles, and swooping curves. Nary a hard edge is to be found on a Viliscent structure. A major sub-discipline of the Viliscent school deals with suspension and support, and many of their buildings features interesting elevation schemes. Sometimes these support legs are shock-absorbent or even retractable. The common materials of the school are pearlescent or porous rock. Often the material is living coral, which the Viliscent master can grow as they wish. While all Viliscent structures are streamlined and have delicate aesthetics, they are surprisingly resilient. The Lokai as a whole are great admirers of the Viliscent school of architecture. They have befriended the leading architects of the school.
Jerysh: The Jerysh shun stone and are always seeking new and innovative materials with which to build or grow into structures. The Jerysh School comes from the great verdant plains of the interior Eshlar continent. They create more miserable failures than all the other schools combined, but when they do find a new innovative technique or material, it quickly becomes a standard, instantly adapted by the other five schools. The Jerysh practitioners have cultivated and maintained strong ties with the Cavolon, a mutually beneficial relationship.
Last updated: November 11, 2003
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