Sylvaneth Clan

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Sylvaneth Clans are groups of sylvaneth who are from the same birth grouping in their glade's soulpod groves. They form the primary social and familial units in Sylvaneth Enclaves, and are responsible for the muster of Wargroves in times of war.[2a][2b]

Naming

The clans draw their names from the sylvaneth racial memory and so their names often recall ancient deeds or lives from the earliest days of the Mortal Realms or perhaps even older. Clan members usually use their clan's name as part or all of their personal name.[1a][2a]

Size

Clans vary dramatically in size. The smallest might be only a few dozen sylvaneth podborn from a single soulpod grove, while large clans can control multiple enclaves and vast swathes of territory on their own, becoming akin to vassal kingdoms of the empire that is their glade.[2a]

The largest and oldest clans of a glade are often referred to as Root Clans, while the smallest or youngest are Branch Clans.[1b]

Disposition

Clans usually recall their parent glade in both coloration and philosophical outlook to some extent; for example, most Winterleaf clans tend to paler bark and a more fatalistic outlook than those of other glades, though exactly how these traits manifest will vary from clan to clan. Most clan members will be even more closely aligned in both colours and temperament.[1a][2a]

Structure

What is the law of the Wyldwood?
(Question of the Ancient)
To Protect Thy Own.
(Response of the Branchling)
And who is thy protector?
(Question of the Ancient)
The Queen in the Radiant Wood.
(Response of all)
[2e]

Lords of the Clan

The leadership of a clan is almost always a Treelord Ancient whose position is simply called Head of the Clan, though clans might refer to their Head of the Clan by a different courtesy title. The Head is accompanied by other Treelords, usually another Ancient responsible for the clan's history called the Loremaster and a more martial one called the Guardian who acts as the Head's bodyguard. The smallest clans may lack one or both of these lieutenants, while especially large clans may have multiple Loremasters and Guardians and perhaps other Lords of the Clan.[2b]

Much of the Lords of the Clan's time is taken up with the management and nurturing of the clan and its territory. They use their extensive knowledge of life magic to heal and protect, their excellent memories to mediate any disputes and remember every clan member and their deeds, and their mastery of the spirit-song and realmroots to communicate with their fellows over vast distances, ensuring that their clan is not caught off-guard by events elsewhere in the realm.[1b][2c]

In battle, these Noble Spirits take command of the wargroves.[2b]

Noble Households

Main article: Sylvaneth Household

The Noble Spirits of the Households form the standing army of the clan. When not at war, they patrol the borders, garrison the enclaves, and guard the vital soulpod groves. In battle, they form the main strength of the wargrove.[2b]

Most clans have about three Households to protect them, though the largest clans have many more and the smallest likely have but one.[2c]

Forest Folk

The majority of a clan will be Forest Folk, mostly dryads and their branchwraith matriarchs. The Forest Folk work tirelessly as they tend to the clan's territory; while they lack the skill and power of the Lords of the Clan, they can do more things at any one time, and their nature allows them to perform more delicate tasks. When at peace, they encourage life to grow or heal and watch over and maintain the clan's holdings. They perform these tasks individually and in groups, sometimes singing simple songs of life and other times enacting complex collective rituals.[2d][2e]

Their wide dispersal also means they often become the first to become alerted to invaders, and sometimes they simply terminate the threat before the broader clan becomes aware.[2e]

Sources