Adam's Mark
The distinctive features of human nature, which come down to language and abstract thought. It is lacking in common fays (fays other than mortalborn or angelblood but can be given to them in various ways. It cannot then be taken back.
A descendant of Adam and Eve, a standard mainline mortal human. I'd just say "human," but many fays are biologically human (some of the time, at least) and jinn can be as well, and there used to be pre-Adamite humans. Actually, most of the time, I do just say "human."
(Manx, pron. "ad-heen") Celestial spirits who neither fell and became demons nor became confirmed in grace and remained angels. The Grigori are an important group of adhene. Some adhene have become fays and their descendants are also reckoned adhene. They are generally beautiful and fully human-looking, and are often styled elves.
The setting includes extraterrestrials, taken from or inspired by C. S. Lewis's Space Trilogy. Additional species are also an option.
Anima Mundi
Spirit is older than matter and gives rise to matter. The Anima Mundi is the spiritual aspect of the natural world. Elementals, the Animal Powers, the Fairy Mark, the Dreaming, the Noetic Plane, and the Whispering Gallery all arise from the Anima Mundi.
A fay who used to be an angel or is descended from a celestial spirit—angel, demon, or adhene. They are generally beautiful and fully human-looking, and are often styled elves. See Adhene, Eldar, and Sidhe.
Animal Powers
Oversouls and yaoguai taken together.
When you become aware of your level of prana, you can accelerate your prana generation and increase your prana-carrying capacity by practicing deliberate austerities such as vigils, fasts, meditations, mantras, or more drastic things such as cutting.
Avignese Catholic Church
A Sundered branch of Christianity, founded in 1417 in response to the Great Schism. See The Sundered Church.
Base Earth
Earth as we see and know it. It specifically does not include nearby territories in other dimensions (see Zone), the Dreaming, or the Noetic Plane.
One of a clan, the benandanti, of Italian astral werewolves. All benandanti are capable of astral projection; the women do so in human form; the men do so in wolf form. Benandanti who are Grand Normans are a privileged minority, their powers and services being in demand.
A society of Sundered people, usually small and secret from the unSundered world, dedicated to dominating their nation through some occult instrumentality. Whether they know it or not, and they usually do not, they are the default human agents for the Tyranny of their nation. (Note that "nation" is used loosely.) See N.I.C.E. Other notable Cabals are the Tech Barons, P'o-lu, los Amos del Sur, and the Perfected Catholic Church. They are pitted against the Orders.
Descendants of Cain, much given to mad science and mutation. Most live off base Earth.
Celtic Catholic Church
A Sundered branch of Christianity, forming over the seventh and eighth centuries, found in many Sundered Irish populations. See The Sundered Church.
A transformation of a man into the half-equine monster by magic derived from the Horse Oversoul. Centaurs remain mortal and Adamite. Grand Normandy has had a centaur cavalry since 1943.
Channel Fays
Fays belonging to the court of Webney, a small island in the English Channel, well-concealed by glamour. The Channel Fays are the fairy patrons of Grand Normandy. Many Channel Fays actually live in England, Wales, and France.
The native language of Grand Normandy, a creole of English and French, with borrows from many other languages.
Cryptic nation
The survival of an extinct or failed regime, with supernatural elements that allow it to hide behind the Sundering from public notice. See Grand Normandy, Outer Russia, and the Sunset Empire for examples.
Dare Lodge
The American Order, presenting itself as a variant Masonic lodge. Most are Roanoac Indians.
Department of the Ulterior
The American sunder guard, the secret organization charged with keeping the American government safe from supernatural interference.
The name, in some forgotten Semitic language, for the old gods. The singular is "dhenanom." The "dh" is a voice dental fricative, the sound at the beginning of "that."
The realm of deep dream, below the level of individual dreams, a chaotic domain shaped by the human collective unconscious (in the parts human dreamers frequent), and even more specifically shaped by the presence of human dreamers. There are colonies of fays, jinn, and ghosts in the Dreaming.
Eclipse Directorate
The French sunder guard, the secret organization charged with keeping the French government safe from supernatural interference.
Those sidhe who heeded the call of the Valar to leave base Earth. Some were waylaid, some came back for a while. Often styled elves. Their history is described by J. R. R. Tolkien.
(Old Solar, pl. eldila) Multidimensional energy beings who are also angels (or demons). The are described in C. S. Lewis's Space Trilogy.
A sub-individual spirit-like thing that can be conjured from the spiritual aspect of a physical element or phase. There are elementals for fire, air, liquid, metal, glass/stone, mixture/colloid, and polymer/"flesh."
Currently used to designate fully human-looking, generally beautiful fays. Most angelblood fays are styled "elves."
Collectively, those territories dominated by fays. Most of them are in zones other than base Earth.
Fairy Mark
Humans who have been turned into fays are said to have been given the Fairy Mark, which is a kind of pallium. There is no undoing of this. See Troop.
A class of immortal shapeshifters. The original, "common," fays are the afterlives of high-intelligence, magic-prone animals. Fays also some include the angelblood and humans who have been made into fays. See also Adhene, Angelblood, Eldar, Mortalborn, Sidhe.
The fay approximation of teleporting, the power by which they can, for instance, fly from Scotland to the wine cellar of a French noble in a moment. Flitting can "put a girdle round about the Earth in forty minutes" and go almost anywhere, but it cannot penetrate airtight places, and there may be problems with things like sacred ground.
A magically self-enforcing command; if you disobey, the spell inflicts some specified punishment. Laying a geas costs leaven. See also Oath.
Ghosts can be lingering souls or orphaned ka'u, the latter being in reality mindless. As long as they linger, they retain some slight connection to matter, even if only to a wisp of air. Therefore, they can be captured, bottled, and snorted (for the sake of their prana, leaven, and memories), and there is a brisk Sundered trade in ghosts.
Illusion produced by the magical manipulation of light and sound. It is generally fragile and dispersed by wear or rough handling. It is also, of course, discoverable by touch, or by any way of noticing that the spell is running. Cf. Seeming and Shapeshift.
The setting is based on the Christianity of the Inklings and therefore includes God as conceived by Christian theology: the Creator, omnipotent, omniscient, omnipresent, perfect in love and righteousness. It is not dramatically useful to have Him on stage much.
Magic done by appeal to spirits, not by powers possessed by the magician themselves. Generally ceremonial magic. It segues easily into idolatry, and the spirits in the market for it are mostly infernal. Cf. Magia.
Grand Normandy
One of the largest, oldest, and most successful cryptic nations, founded in 1453 as a continuation of the Angevin Empire under the Plantagenets. It has twin seats in England and France and is the main rival of the Sunset Empire.
The British sunder guard, the secret organization charged with keeping the British government safe from supernatural interference.
A group of two hundred angels under the command of Semyaza, set to watch over the latest round of sapient life on Earth, jinn and humans. At God's behest, they bred with the jinn, raising up the dhenanonim, the old gods. They then went on, without divine sanction, to breed up the nephilim among humans. This was a major screw-up and they were demoted to adhene.
"Deep Heaven," outer space, is inhabited by a large population of eldila. There is, or was, a frontier around Earth, at the orbit of the Moon. No "dark eldila" (demons) left and only "bright eldila" of a military caste (ministering angels) entered. Infernal opinion had been that other celestial powers would not or could not come in; this was demonstrated to be untrue by the events of That Hideous Strength, third book of C. S. Lewis's Space Trilogy. In addition, within the orbit of the Moon or in the adjacent areas of the Noetic Plane, there is Paradise, where the souls of the blessed reside.
The society of the damned. Since the Space Trilogy puts Heaven in outer space in a literal manner, this setting puts Hell in the depths of the Earth, in some physical sense, as far as possible from the besieging heavens. The nature of Hell defaults to that suggested in The Screwtape Letters, therefore it includes aspects of "annihilationism": the damned can be destroyed by being eaten by stronger damned spirits; see Spiritual Predation. Note also that, following Lewis's inclusivist views, no one is damned for not belonging to the right religion or for failing to check all the boxes on a sacramental checklist: you have to work at being a right rotten git in order to destroy your own spiritual integrity and be damned. The default state of humans is saved, much to the devils' annoyance.
Historical magic
The kinds of magic and occult sciences that people actually believed (and believe) in, as distinct from more spectacular, "cinematic" forms of magic.
Also "djanni." One of the jann, an animal native to Earth's ionosphere, also called the Sphere of Fire or the Empyrean. They are made of plasma, ionized gas, fire, and are as various as terrestrial animals.
Also "djinni." One of the jinn, an intelligent animal native to Earth's ionosphere, also called the Sphere of Fire or the Empyrean. They are made of plasma, ionized gas, fire, and are intensely magical.
(Egyptian, pl. "ka'u") Your astral body considered apart from your consciousness, formed from all, or almost all, the prana in you. If your consciousness is active in it, you're doing astral projection, but if you cast a ka without your consciousness, it can still do a great deal—everything you can, in terms of magic or ghostly action. It has your memories and attitudes, and it can acquire new information, but it cannot learn new skills or change attitudes. Most people consider that one is responsible for the actions of one's ka. At the end of its run, you can pull the ka back in and sync memories. Some ghosts are orphaned ka'u. Many forms of magic are based on fractional, edited ka'u, including magic wishes. See also Geas, Oath, Pallium.
An ancient and widespread group of Sundered scholars who study the Sundered world. Not all are mages, not all are human, and they are not particularly good or evil. Or infallible. But they are a generally useful resource and fairly free with their information (and misinformation). Nowadays, they publish many of their findings in Acta Kerdeana, available on line.
A soul's prana-generating capacity. It is transferable. One recovers from loss of leaven slowly, if at all, and is psychically impaired in the meantime. Being stripped of leaven kills one or renders one undead.
At one point identical to the court of King Arthur Pendragon, but now a small secret society with the mission of protecting Britain from spiritual attack, as described in That Hideous Strength, third book of C. S.Lewis's Space Trilogy. They are the default human agents for the Principality of Britain, and are the type case for Orders.
Mad science
Thematic magic where the theme is science and technology. Many mad scientists don't realize they are doing magic; they believe in their crackpot theories, which work for them.
Magic performed by one's inherent or learned supernatural powers, distinguished from goetica.
A pallium that confers authority and magical power of command.
The Animal Powers of the sub-sentient animals, most notably of insects. The maphgia are part of the reality behind the idea of insectile fairies, together with the habit of true fays of taking insectile form on occasion.
An informal term for a pallium. See Adam's Mark, Fairy Mark.
Transformations of humans into the half-piscine monsters by magic derived from the Fish Oversouls, compounded of many different kinds of fish. Merfolk remain mortal and Adamite. They are one of the most widespread transformations.
(Grand Norman) The big world, le monde majeur, the world of both prosaic and esoteric, natural and supernatural, events. Someone who lives in the monde-major is a mondain-major, or un mondain-majeur or une mondaine-majeure, according to gender.
(Grand Norman) The little world, le monde mineur what we would call the ordinary world, the world minus supernatural events. Someone who lives in the monde-minor is a mondain-minor, or un mondain-mineur or une mondaine-mineure, according to gender.
A category of fay: those who started out mortal, human, and became fay later. The important distinctions among mortalborn are whether they are captures or volunteers, taken living or dead, Trimmers or not.
The hybrid offspring of a human and a celestial spirit. The spirit is usually a demon or an adhene. Nephilim are usually "supercharged," being large and preternaturally athletic and magical.
The National Institute for Co-ordinated Experimentation, a conspiracy to take over Britain and then the world, masking as a think-tank in post-WWII England. As known only to its topmost echelon, it had non-human (demonic) backing. It is described in That Hideous Strength, third book of C. S. Lewis's Space Trilogy. It is our type-case for a Cabal.
Noetic plane
Similar to the Dreaming but a domain of memory and planning and so more orderly, less chaotic.
Nymic Magic
Magic based on names, especially True Names, and, by extension, words and "words of power," and magically binding oaths and geases. Adamites, humans, have an edge in nymic magic because our Stewardship gives us the right to bestow True Names.
A magically self-enforcing promise; if you break the promise, the spell inflicts some specified punishment. Similar to a self-imposed geas, but does not require expenditure of leaven. The magical economy is strongly dependent on oaths. It is very common for even quite ordinary, but Sundered, people to bind themselves with an oath, swearing "by my name," "on my honor," "by [Insert Supernatural Patron Here]," or the like.
Old gods
Hybrid children of jinn and angels, raised up by divine mandate to oversee intelligent life on Earth after the jinn fell into mutual strife and humans fell from grace. They, too, failed, rather spectacularly, and have since died out, though some creatures may have traces of their "blood." They are the reality behind the Indo-European pantheons. Also called dhenanomim.
A society of Sundered people, usually small and secret from the unSundered world, dedicated to protecting their nation from spiritual attack. Whether they know it or not, they are the default human agents for the Principality of their nation. (Note that "nation" is used loosely.) See Logres. Other notable Orders are les Chevaliers de Charlemagne, los Caballeros de San Diego, and Geroldseck. They are pitted against the Cabals.
Outer Russia
A small cryptic nation, founded in 1917 as a continuation of Czarist Russia. It has its main seat far out on the steppes and is basically a client of Grand Normandy.
The source and destination of the souls of most sentient but sub-sapient animals of a given taxon. It is both a pool of life-force and a collective unconscious for the taxon it supports. It is also a rational person in its own right, but only when using a yaoguai as an avatar. Oversouls may have multiple simultaneous avatars. Oversouls and yaoguai together constitute the Animal Powers.
(Old Solar, pl. "Oyeresu") A very powerful eldil. In C. S. Lewis's Space Trilogy, each Oyarsa was ruler of a planet in the Solar System. This setting has enlarged the scope and each Oyarsa rules whole classes of planets. Our Oyarsa is fallen and known as "the Bent One," "Melkor," or "Morgoth." This setting does not identify him with Satan, but as a subordinate demon. The Oyeresu have deputies or legates on Earth who raised up the old gods, the inspirations for the Indo-European mythologies.
A ka-based spell that is cast on a subject to endow them with a package of skills, powers, and knowledge. The Fay Mark, Adam's Mark, the Vampire Pall, various monster-hunters' marks, and even godheads are all examples. Pallia make a permanent change to the soul of the subject and cannot be undone. See also Mantle.
Holy people who are, secretly and unwittingly, agents for Heaven. When one dies, they are immediately replaced by another, because, if there are not enough of them on Earth, our net righteousness sinks below a critical level and God ends the world.
The thing that is neither spirit nor matter but connects them, the glue between the will and the world, the agency behind magic. It is also known as mana, numen, vis, chi, ki, foyson, baraca, and so on. It's spell points. It can be traded around and stored. Individuals can hold a characteristic amount of it and regenerate it at a characteristic rate.
The guardian angel of a nation. See Daniel:10:20-21. The Principalities do not divide up the world by national boundaries, however; language groups are a closer demarcation, but still don't match. The Principalities use the Orders as their readiest human agents. They are opposed by the Tyrannies.
The older and less used of the two elven languages described by J. R. R. Tolkien, originally used by the Eldar and now used as a scholarly language among fays and their associates.
A Sundered Indian tribe, descended from the Roanoke Indians and the famous Lost Colony. They supply most of the members for the Dare Lodge, America's Order and can loosely be identified as the Order themselves.
A transformation of a man into the horned and tailed monster by magic derived from the Mammal Oversouls. Satyrs are always adult males, remain mortal and Adamite, age normally, and are prone to ADHD, alcoholism, poor impulse control, and general gutlessness. Their only "superpower" is enough endurance and digestive fortitude to get by on browsing leaves in a forest, in most weathers. They are one of the least successful transformations, and the condition is contagious.
Scorpion Folk
Transformations of humans into the half-scorpion monsters by magic derived from the maphgia, the Arthropod Animal Powers. Scorpion Folk remain mortal and Adamite, but are ageless, physically super-powered, and magically powerful. They are one of the oldest and most successful transformations, but rare.
Seelie Court
Not really an organization, but a school of thought among fays that Adam's Mark is a desirable thing to have, so commerce with, and recruiting of, Adamite humans is something to encourage. This does not necessarily work out well for humans.
A powerful illusionary spell that, in effect, commands the subject, "Act as if you were something else." A seeming always changes the outward appearance and may, depending on level of power and skill used, change the subject's mass, strength, endurance, and sensory and motor abilities. A seeming is detectable as on-going magic, can be undone by disenchantment, and will, eventually, run down if not re-charged. Cf. Glamour & Shapeshift.
Serpent Folk
The race of intelligent archosaurs that inhabited Earth during the Mesozoic. They long since successfully concluded their history and ascended, but a remnant remained or returned; see Sirrushim.
A shapeshift or transformation is a spell that truly alters the subject. The subject now really is a frog or whatever, and the spell is no longer running. Another shapeshift is needed to restore the subject. Even so, the original or true form of the subject is written in their history, so it is always easier to change them back. In this way, people can survive being turned into trees and back. Stones, not so much. True shapeshifting is beyond the power of human mages. Cf. Glamour and Seeming.
(Gaelic, pron. "shee-eh") A fay descended from celestial spirits and common fays, analogous to a nephil. They are generally beautiful and fully human-looking, and are often styled elves. The Eldar are sidhe.
The younger and more used of the two elven languages described by J. R. R. Tolkien, originally used by the Eldar and now used as a fay lingua franca.
The surviving or returning remnant of the Serpent Folk. The three leading clans of sirrushim are the Lung of eastern Asia, the Nagas of southern Asia, and the Dragons of western Asia and Europe.
A transformation of a man or woman into the multi-species monster by magic derived from the Animal Powers. Sphinxes remain mortal and Adamite but are unaging. They come in many variations, combining features of lion, bovine, and eagle, and are magically powerful.
God gave us Adamites the job, and therefore the authority, to take care of Earth. A right hash we have made of it, but we still have that Stewardship, which gives us an edge in some supernatural situations—usually an obscure or slight edge, but an edge. This is is most clearly seen in nymic magic and its use of True Names.
Sunder guard
A secret government organization for protecting a prosaic, mundane government from supernatural interference.
The luck that hides magic. Try to bring the supernatural to public attention and bad luck will make you fail. Try to hide the supernatural from public attention and good luck will help you. No one knows why.
Sunset Empire
The largest and most recent cryptic nation, founded in 1946 to continue the British Empire when it was dissolved. It is world-wide but centered in London and Shimla. It is the main rival of Grand Normandy.
Taken name
A name other than their True Name that a person (human or not) uses and answers to. Having a Taken Name protects one from nymic magic to an extent.
Tech Barons
The current American Cabal, who believe themselves to be trading with extradimensional entities, through which they acquire ultra-tech (see Mad science) wherewith to rule the nation and beyond.
Thematic Magic
A "cinematic" form of magia that lets you do a wide range of feats within the selected theme. The theme can be just about anything: a living species, a material, numbers, a form of energy, etc. Thematic mages tend to be obsessive; their obsession with the theme is the channel that directs the magic.
(noun) Any of various anatomically semi-human monsters of mythology, produced, in this setting, by transforming mortals, using magic derived from the Animal Powers. See also Centaur, Merfolk, Satyr, Scorpion Folk, Sphinx, all of whom started out as ordinary humans.
A human soul, damned but not evil enough to consign to hell. They are often recruited by the fays.
A band of fays psychically united by having a shared pool of leaven. Troops can do powerful, high-scale magic but can run amok. Wild Hunts are an example of out-of-control troops. Mortals become fays by being joined to troops.
True name
A being's most spiritually official name. A baptismal name is an example. See Nymic magic.
The infernal opposite number of a Principality, the besetting devil of a nation or culture, with the goal of corrupting it. The Tyrannies use the Cabals as their readiest human agents.
Various bizarre creatures, legends even to the legendary, rumored to be souls of things that should not be born until the next cycle of creation.
Not really an organization, but a school of thought among fays that humans are generally bad news for fays, Adam's Mark is not desirable or not worth the price, and so commerce with, and recruiting of, Adamite humans is something to avoid. This does not necessarily result in active hostility toward humans.
One of the Valar (Sindarin), also known as the shelihim (Hebrew), the deputies, described as the "Wraiths" in That Hideous Strength, the third book of C. S. Lewis's Space Trilogy. These spirits are the representatives on Earth of the Oyeresu and Dominations, angels in charge of the course of nature. Each represents the natural, metaphysical, moral, and esthetic character of its patron, here on Earth. These beings are the patrons of the old gods. Their dealings with the fays are described by J. R. R. Tolkien.
One who uses the skill of robbing others of prana or even leaven. Vampires may be alive or dead, embodied or spectral, and they may (and usually do) use some more palpable vehicle to drain the energy: blood, breath, body heat, etc. Vampirism can be a learnable skill but is most often a psychic disease transmitted by pallium, called a "pall" in this case.
(Latin, pron. "vees") The name for the agency also called prana commonly used in Grand Normandy and other circles with connections to medieval Europe.
A language originating in Doggerland during the last ice age and still widely spoken by fays in northwestern Europe.
Western Catholic Church
A Sundered branch of Christianity, similar in organization, but not culture, to Eastern Orthodoxy. See The Sundered Church.
Whispering Gallery
A term tossed off by Lewis in Perelandra for an extension of the idea of a collective unconscious. All created minds, even those of angels and demons as well as humans, aliens, and animals, "leak" at a low level, so that, "though no news travels unchanged yet no secret can be rigorously kept." It is a principle in counterpoise to the isolating principle of the Sundering.
A London-based clan of hereditary mages descended from Dick Whittington of legend. The family magic centers on bells, cats, and London. They are the most powerful esoteric group in London.
World Intelligence Taskforce
An umbrella organization for several sunder guards working through the UN.
An animal that has reincarnated many times with the result that it blossoms into full sapience and magical power. The most famous examples are the kitsune, magical foxes of the Orient. A yaoguai may go on to become the avatar of the Oversoul for its species; consider those mythical figures who are simply Bear or Coyote or Raven, or, of course, the King of the Cats. Oversouls and yaoguai together constitute the Animal Powers.
(Grand Norman) Other worlds, other dimensions. Some are cosmic in size, like the zone of base Earth but most are small, the size of a continent or less. Any zone other than base Earth is an "alter-zone" in Grand Norman terminology. Remote and obscure ones are "out-zones."

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