Citadel

A Citadel, in the Parthan sense of the word is a term used to describe a city-state.

The title finds its origins in antiquity, when Parthans lived in literally hundreds of disparate communities. The only ones that could properly claim independence were those with fortifications capable of keeping out rival warlords and roaving heroes alike. In those long-ago days, no Citadel could claim more than a couple thousand Parthans and their slaves. Today, however, most Citadels have a population of approximately ten thousand Parthans - men, women, and their children. They coexist with an even greater number of foreign artisans and slaves.

There are dozens of Citadels scattered throughout Parthus, but the greatest of them are the five Great Citadels: Aerlus, Galus, Kaurus, Tarantreia, and Sartha.

A Citadel is always ruled by a Primus, a dictator-for-life who is chosen for his position by priests of the Parthan Order. His power is limited only by his own skills and talent - and by the priests themselves, who convey the will of the gods themselves and cannot be refused.

To assist him in the task of ruling a Citadel and leader its armies, the Primus appoints a number of Archons. Each of these men serves not only as a political advisor and commander of men, but is given responsibility of a district within the Citadel's urban center or a portion of its domains outside its walls. Each such district is called a Thema.

The Parthans of a Thema live in neighboring agricultural or herding enclaves. Those in immediate vicinity to one another form groups called Fraternities, which only those Parthan men who are considered full citizens can attend. Through these gatherings comraderie and cooperation are promoted during peacetime. Each Fraternity elects a Tribune, who serves as their representative to the Archon, but also as the enforcer of the laws within their community.

War is a religious matter to the Parthans of a Citadel, and thus there are strict laws that govern the usage of weapons and armor. Only the Primus (who is chosen by the gods), the priests of the Order (who communicate the will of the gods), and the Agema Scholai (who guard the Primus) are allowed to be clad in armor within the boundaries of a Citadel in times of peace. If injustice occurs, a priest can summon as many Tribunes as he needs, who in turn summon as many members of their Fraternities as needed to see the crime punished. These men, too, can wear armor within a Citadel's boundaries at a time of peace. Any other who does so announces to all who see him that he is ready to wage war against the will of the gods - and is treated accordingly.

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