Jul. 10th, 2009

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Inheritance. The Edessans have raised the practice of establishing an heir to something of a sport. Speculating on the subject is one of their favorite topics of conversation, as are potential marriages and betting when the emperor will finally kick the bucket. Debating whether or not it will rain takes a very poor fourth.

Edessans believe a mother contributes more to the constitution of her offspring and therefore the mother's bloodlines must be strong, whereas a weak father might be overcome. Loukas and Eleutherios are both children “of the blood,” meaning that they were carried by Eugenia herself rather than one of her wives.

This puts Loukas and Eleutherios in a privileged position in the inheritance game. The rest of their siblings have Kommene blood, but only through one of Eugenia's brothers, set with the task of impregnating her wives. This gives them a better chance at inheriting than their siblings and Loukas has a better chance still by mere fact that he is older. Edessans don't use birth order to establish inheritance, but all else being equal, they'll choose the oldest worthy sibling.

Male husbands are at a disadvantage in this respect as none of their children have the full advantage of their blood. They are particularly careful in choosing female wives so as not to introduce weakness to the line. They may also occasionally adopt the child of a sister.

An archon need not formally declare an heir. Some put it in their will but refuse to tell anyone who, thereby guaranteeing their children's good behavior. Some declare one early in order to groom them for the position. If they do declare an heir, a small ceremony is held, the child's name is recorded in the records hall and the child is given the title elarchon.

Both Loukas and Eleutherios are gunning for that position, and the older they get, the fiercer the competition becomes.
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