Nobles of the Courts of Argost
The noble structure of Argost is in its infancy and there are many who are still learning what it means to be a noble or what it means to be in another faction with the nobility now having influence and authority that may have been taken away from them. Though all were affected, the Knights of Argost are the ones most deeply affected. Many duties of the knights with regard to land and resource management, along with the day to day life of commoners, have become the domain of the nobility and this has caused some strife and ill feelings between some within the two factions.
The nobility of Argost are the exemplification of soft power. Though there is a ranking structure based on title, influence with the King, the royal family, and other factions, it’s purely political as nobility have no direct authority over members of other factions. However, if a knight, Black Star member, or army officer decided to tangle with a noble there would certainly be ways that a noble could make life difficult for them. If someone earns a noble’s ire they might find that those who work their estate are less than productive or the goods they were looking to sell have lost value at the markets or an important person at court is no longer available to them.
Noble Titles of Argost
Titles: Male/Female/Gender Neutral – “Manner of address”
King/Queen/Monarch – “Your Majesty”
Prince/Princess/Princet – “Your Highness”
Marquis – “Your Grace”
Viceroy – “Your Grace”
Duke – “Your Grace”
Viscount/Viscountess/Viscount – “Your Excellency”
Earl – “Your Excellency”
Count/Countess/Count – “Your Excellency”
Baron/Baroness/Baronex – “Your Excellency”
Lord/Lady/Lairde – “My Lord/Lady/Lairde”
Esquire – This title is used at the end of one’s name. It is the most junior noble title and is used by family members who are new to the noble duties of their family regardless of age.
Player characters may not start at a rank higher than Lord/Lady/Lairde.
Nobles sometimes adapt unusual or even unique titles but use their station as well. For example: Archduke Julian, Duke of Bellows Falls.
Though nobles wield soft political power, many nobles are also powerful warriors or spellcasters. Priests are most commonly found in this faction.
For a character to be a Noble of the Courts of Argost they must have purchased the Noble secondary header.
There are several notable families that make up the majority of the noble houses within Argost. Your character can be no closer than nephew/niece/cousin to the main branch of the family with the highest title. You may also be from a banner house of that family or a minor noble house within the domain of one of the major houses. If you choose to play a minor house, you should consider what kind of relationship the house you created has with the major house in the area from the strongest of allies to the most hated of political rivals.
Nobles and noble houses have colors of their own. However, nobles may adopt colors that fit them personally. Each house has a symbol or symbols that are associated with them and individual nobles decide which, if any, they want to display.
Each of Argost’s most noble families, listed below, controls a portion of the kingdom called a Canton. Though the Cantons take up a large portion of the kingdoms, not all the land is within a Canton. There are royal holdings, free holds, knight holds, and other areas.
The Wickes are an old family that predates the founding of Argost. The Wickes have a distant connection to the Keswicks but despite this, they are not one of the more influential houses. They are extremely wealthy and have been for a long time. The family’s reputation has not always been sterling largely due to being outmaneuvered in the political arena or caring too little about the political arena. Currently, the family seems to be poised to be more influential than ever. The family has a long and distinguished history of service in the army. When the nobility was created, the Wickes were given domain of the area to the east that border The Wild Plains.
Gold is the house color and the house symbol is the fox.
The Penningtons reached the height of their power and influence just before the war with Cardiria began. Queen Mother Persephone Keswicke is of the Pennington line and brought many of her family members into the royal guard and into the courts. The Penningtons are arguably the most powerful family within Argost. When the nobility was created, the Penningtons were given given domain in the area surrounding Argost City.
Red is the house color and the lion is the house symbol.
The Brightons hail from the southern tip of the nation and ruled that area before allying with Argost and dedicating themselves to their new country and the crown. For generations, there are many native to that area that see the Brightons as sellouts at best and traitors at worst. They have been the target of rebels who seek to see their ancestors’ land independant again. In stark contrast, the Brightons are deeply respected throughout the rest of the kingdom. The family has a long history of service to Argost and might have contributed the greatest number of knights to the kingdom over its history. The Brighton’s domain is their ancestral home at the southern tip of the kingdom which includes the infamous Rivard Junction. Though they have the least wealth of any of the major families, when the Brightons talk people listen.
Many of the Brightons claim shared lineage with the great dragons of ancient times. Some claim that the blood of the wyrms that runs through their veins gives them special perceptions and powers. Many Brightons are of the dragonborn culture and take their lineage very seriously.
Blue is the house color and a dragon is the house symbol.
The Ackermans have the largest domain of any of the noble families. They oversee the northwestern part of Argost, which is where the overwhelming percentage of the agriculture takes place. The family has a reputation for compassion and fairness and are known to not only to fight for but advocate for those of lower social standing. The common folk love the Ackermans. In the courts, there are some that see them as “bumpkins” and because of that the Ackermans don’t have the pull at court that they should based on their wealth and the importance of their domain.
Brown is the house color and sheaf of wheat is the house symbol.
The Rathberns are seen as aloof and above the fray of the common people and their needs and concerns. The family is one of the smallest of the major families but they are extremely wealthy and are very influential with the royal family and the courts. Their domain is the western coast where most of the fishing in the kingdom is done. The family also has within its domain the only canneries in the kingdom and developed that technology over six decades ago. Historically, members of this family have served as Knights of Allegiance to the near exclusion of every other order and faction. Before the creation of the noble structure most were merchants that walked in the circles of the wealthy, influential gentry. The cities within their domain also have a reputation for being rather rough and tumble.
Green is the house color and an octopus is the house symbol.
The Harlows are unique amongst the major families in that for at least the last three generations of the family nearly all members of it are adopted into the family. While the head of the family has always been a blood relation of the previous head, with perhaps one other blood relative, they adopt members into the family so its leader can focus on their duties. The Harlows have domain over the rugged country at the northeast corner of the kingdom. Nearly all of the mining in the kingdom is done in the Harlow’s domain. Also, the only known route directly from Cardiria to Argost comes over the Ice Shelf and into the Harlow’s domain. The Harlows are known to be able to walk in all circles with poise and strength. They are respected in both the courts and with the common folk who work the mines and live in their domain.
The Harlows are known for their magical prowess and are often consulted as masters of arcane magic. Wizards of this house nearly always wear masks and some other members choose to wear them as well.
White is the house color and a princess cut gem is the house symbol. Opals are often prominently displayed by members of House Harlow in many different cuts and jewelry types. The house colors and their heraldry is reflective of the snow-covered lands they hail from.