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Light-Bringers Before 1669?

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  • Light-Bringers Before 1669?

    So assuming that the Light-Bringers are not a very young Refinement in-setting, what was there material association before Hennig Brand boiled down urine looking for gold in 1669?


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  • #2
    Where do you have any info about Light-Bringers? I do not remember them anywhere in PtC 2E...


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    • #3
      There's the Phosphorum refinement.The last one in the Refinement section


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      • #4
        I'm reasonably certain that most of the Refinements existed long before the metals they're named after were discovered, especially given that they're meant to teach and expand upon aspects of the human condition. The only problem is Promethean is rooted in alchemy, of which we know plenty of from the Middle Ages and the Renaissance, and very, very little of the different occult traditions it grew out of like the Cathars and the Gnostics.

        For example, I seriously doubt that the Refinement of Iron or Gold didn't exist before those metals did- for creatures looking to become human, understanding and living amongst humans seem fairly crucial to their goals. And in terms of Ferrum, the idea of bodily perfection equating spiritual perfection is just about older than dirt. Nuada of the Tuatha De Dannan couldn't be king after losing his hand because he was no longer 'pure', the Fomorians were evil because they had physical defects, the Netjer were described as having bones of silver, flesh of gold, and eyes of lapis lazuli. The ideas have changed, but they're pretty much older than dirt.


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        • #5
          Maybe historical Prometheans were associating Refinements with Elements? But then we would only have 5 Elements, not 10 of them...
          Last edited by wyrdhamster; 10-24-2016, 09:42 AM.


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          • #6
            However, you could argue that some of them match up- thematically, if not ideologically.


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            • #7
              It's also good to remember that, at some point, there was no Pilgrimage. There was Hope, there was Torment, there was loneliness... but no such thing as a Pilgrimage or a New Dawn. The Seer changed all this by succeeding the first Pilgrimage, becoming human, and infusing the Azothic Memory with a sense of certainty.

              There's no date to the completion of the first Pilgrimage, so one could argue that it was completed during the middle age, thus why the various Refinements have strong associations with Alchemy - maybe the Seer was a strong believer of Alchemy and unlocked the secrets of the Pilgrimage through it


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              • #8
                Originally posted by wyrdhamster View Post
                Maybe historical Prometheans were associating Refinements with Elements? But then we would only have 5 Elements, not 10 of them...
                Well that could work for the Basic Refinements, which have existed pretty much as long as Prometheans have - but by the time the Greeks, Indians, or Chinese developed their five element systems, you'd also have all of the associated metals.

                Phosphorus, and now that I think about it - Cobalt, are special cases as though materials were discovered in Early Modern history rather than Prehistory.

                If you're looking at the Dark Eras chapters for example, the Neolithic era would be the only one without all the other named substances (and in that one I wouldn't treat any of the known Lineages or Complex Refinements as existing yet - just Extemporae and Basic Refinements, and without Azothic Memory, they have no shared names).


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                • #9
                  I got also idea on gems as previous Refinements association. If Elements would be Basic, maybe Gems were for Complex?


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                  • #10
                    Well, the Neolithic Mages had Paths named for parts of the natural world (Blood-Wise, Sky-Wise, etc.), so I assume ancient Prometheans would do the same. For example:
                    • The Path of Mortals (Argentum)
                    • The Path of The Desert (Cuprum)
                    • The Path of Stone (Ferrum)
                    • The Path of Fire (Mercurium)
                    • The Path of Thunder (Stannum)
                    • etc.


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                    • #11
                      Originally posted by malonkey1 View Post
                      Well, the Neolithic Mages had Paths named for parts of the natural world (Blood-Wise, Sky-Wise, etc.), so I assume ancient Prometheans would do the same. For example:
                      • The Path of Mortals (Argentum)
                      • The Path of The Desert (Cuprum)
                      • The Path of Stone (Ferrum)
                      • The Path of Fire (Mercurium)
                      • The Path of Thunder (Stannum)
                      • etc.
                      I wouldn't do any past that - let the Complex Refintements be later discoveries in the eras the known Lineages were emerging. Though that means drop the Path of Fire (Mercurius is complex) for something for Plumbum. Centimani remain the Path of Flux.


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                      • #12
                        I guess this topic will have to be addressed in the Dark Eras Companion, since we have medieval and early modern Promethean material coming.


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                        • #13
                          Originally posted by wyrdhamster View Post
                          Maybe historical Prometheans were associating Refinements with Elements? But then we would only have 5 Elements, not 10 of them...
                          You could use the philosophical elements of Medieval Alchemy, but they only ad three more to my knowledge. Mercury, Salt and Sulpher.


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                          • #14
                            While certain mystical significance was put on four or five (depending on geography) "elements", there certainly were a lot more than five elements known. The seven metals of antiquity covers all refinements except phosphorus and cobalt (and flux) and also had some mystical properties that was used in alchemy:
                            https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Metals_of_antiquity

                            Salt and sulphur could've been the names for the two missing refinements that for some reason were renamed before modern times.

                            Of course, this is largely a Hellenistic/European-centric take on it. Those seven metals were all known before the end of the bronze age (together with zink, arsenic (metalloid) and antimony; other potential names for the "missing" refinements) so it's quite possible for many other cultures to also use those names, but I doubt say Indian Prometheans would use the same names before near-modern times and the increased global spread of information.


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