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Old 03-15-2019, 02:37 PM
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General Overview of the City of Greyhawk

General OverviewGreyhawk, named for the small grey hawks which populate the region, was originally a trading outpost on the Selintan River specializing in local wood and woven garments. In time the town developed strong textile and meat-packing industries. Eventually, Greyhawk came to be ruled by a warlord, who took the title "Lansgraf of the Selintan". His son was then married to the Gynarch of Hardby's daughter. The nuptials formalized a political alliance that served as the basis for rule over the Lanstadt of Selintan, an area that eventually became known as the Domain of Greyhawk.

In 4 CY, Greyhawk came under the domination of the Great Kingdom of Aerdy and remained so while strong Overkings ruled from the Malachite Throne in Rauxes. By the third century CY, the Great Kingdom's influence over the city began to wane as the Overkings fell into evil ways and their hold on distant provinces became increasingly tenuous.

Rise to prominence, decline and recovery

Circa 310 CY, the mage Zagig Yragerne emerged from the Wild Coast and bribed his way into a seat on the Directing Oligarchy. Soon after, the Oligarchs elected Zagig Lord Mayor.
Greyhawk subsequently rose in fame and prominence under the leadership of Lord Mayor Zagig. He instituted legal reform, developed a new currency, fortified the walls, founded the city's first university and embarked on a major building program. Most notably, he directed the construction of nearby Castle Greyhawk.
Although Zagig, later known as Zagyg, became increasingly erratic over time, his rule is generally considered to be the most effective in the Free City's history and brought widespread prosperity to the region. Much to the annoyance of Dyvers and other rival cities, Zagig proclaimed Greyhawk to be the "Gem of the Flanaess," and did much to ensure this moniker was justified. Unfortunately, the "Mad Archmage" suddenly disappeared in 421 CY, leaving no clues regarding his whereabouts, and no heir to inherit the title of Lansgraf.

In 498 CY, after decades of Zagig's absence, the Lanstadt was therefore abolished, the title of Lansgraf permanently retired, and the Free City's Directing Oligarchy assumed political authority. The new Lord Mayor Paerinn officially proclaimed Greyhawk a free city, though it had been effectively independent of the Great Kingdom's rule for over a century.

Soon thereafter, the city lost its claim over Hardby and the Wild Coast, as the leading women of Hardby broke from Greyhawk and established the ruling office of Despotrix. This loss of lands sent the Free City into economic decline, a situation that persisted for several decades. Fortunately, the discovery of treasure in the dungeons beneath Castle Greyhawk and other nearby locales set off a gold rush of sorts, and Greyhawk's economic fortunes recovered substantially in the latter half of the sixth century.

Geography

The Free City of Greyhawk is located centrally in the Flanaess, which is the easternmost part of the continent of Oerik on the world of Oerth. The city controls a large swath of land along the Selintan River from the Nyr Dyv south to Woolly Bay most of the Cairn Hills, parts of the Gnarley Forest, the northern Wild Coast, and parts of the Abbor-Alz. The entire region is officially known as the Domain of Greyhawk. The Domain is bordered on the east by the Abbor-Alz and its western border lies within the Gnarley Forest. The area south of Greyhawk City along the Selintan is known as the Plain of Greyhawk.

Religion

The Free City of Greyhawk hosts temples and shrines to many deities, including Beory, Boccob, Celestian, Corellon Larethian, Ehlonna, Fharlanghn, Garl Glittergold, Heironeous, Istus, Kord, Kurell, Lirr, Moradin, Norebo, Obad-Hai, Olidammara, Osprem, Pelor, Pholtus, Procan, Ralishaz, Rao, Saint Cuthbert, Trithereon, Ulaa, Wee Jas, Xerbo, Yondalla, and Zilchus. The worship of evil deities and fiends is forbidden, and such cults, though they may have followers, do not have a public presence. Evil religions that have established a base in the city in recent memory include those of Incabulos, Iuz, Nerull, and Vecna.

Military

The Domain of Greyhawk's military forces, though technically under the Lord Mayor's authority, are usually commanded by the Domain's highest-ranking military officer, the Captain General of the Watch, who also sits on the city's Directing Oligarchy. The current Captain General is Tigran Gellner.

Greyhawk's forces consist of several units, including: The Cairn Hills Force, led by Commander Schinus Balint. The Greyhawk Mountaineers, led by Commander Carstane Geronten. The Hardby Marines, led by Commander Wilbrem Carister. The Narwell Headhunters. The Safeton Garrison, led by Commander Turin Deathstalker. The "Water Rats."
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Old 03-15-2019, 02:37 PM
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The Wards of Greyhawk
The Craftsmen's WardThis quarter of the Free City is one of the most peaceful, lacking the wild taverns and crowds of most other districts. The Craftsmans’ Ward is home to hardworking people and their families.

Its major features are the guildhalls for many of those craftsmen and women. The Craftsmans’ Ward has its share of taverns, but these are quiet, neighborhood places. Most of the customers recognize each other and the proprietor—who is usually the owner. Strangers are treated cordially, but any unruliness arouses the resentment of the entire establishment. The City Watch, while not a great presence here, is not neglectful.#

The houses here are small. At first glance one might think they are crowded uncomfortably close together. Upon closer examination, the buildings all seem to fit snugly together, while leaving a surprising amount of space between them.

The hallmarks of each tradesperson can be seen on the front of the house: an ornately carved balcony and railing for the woodcarver, a wide, sweeping stairway for the carpenter, an imposing facade of granite for the stonemason, and so on. Weavers, painters, metalsmiths, and the like use an example of their craft to decorate the front of the house—a tapestry, unusual color scheme, or metal rack of tools, for example.

While some of these artisans work for employers and travel to a different location for their job, the majority work in shops within their homes. Consequently, a great number of different businesses can be found in the Craftsmans’ Ward.


College and University QuartersThe city district that houses Greyhawk’s universities, colleges, and schools is referred to by two names: “Clerkburg,” as a reference to the students, tutors, scribes, and clerks who live here in great numbers; and “The Halls,” meaning the large, airy buildings that typically house the schools.

Though it is not apparent from outside the quarter, Clerkburg is an area of plants, grassy yard, and small parks. It is second only to the Garden Quarter in the number and variety of its greenery. The City Watch does not neglect Clerkburg. Generally a patrol arrives within 2d6 rounds of a summons. The People’s Constables tend to avoid Clerkburg, to no one’s disappointment.

An interesting feature of the quarter is the outside seating, or veranda, available at most of the small taverns and eateries. It may be squeezed precariously between the building and the street, barely wide enough for a single row of tables, but this outdoor dining area is required of any successful eating establishment in Clerkburg.

In fact, the major attractions of this district to the citizenry of the city are these street-side tables. On Godsday with nice weather, the streets of Clerkburg swell with folk from all over the city, coming to enjoy their meal in the fresh air. Clerkburg is not a thriving business district—most of the buildings not used for schools are the residences of students and instructor.


The High QuarterWhat a grand array of buildings and personages await the fortunate traveler who decides to stroll down the Promenade! What marvels of architecture! What splendid grace and beauty, such impressive style!

The grand edifices of the Free City’s High Quarter are, in general, mansions that would be fit for the ruler of most political entities.

In Greyhawk, however, such homes are the just rewards for successful merchants, important ambassadors, the city’s own Directors, and others of wealth and station. The mansions sprawl over large estates—an equivalent amount of property might hold the homes of 1,000 souls in the cramped confines of the Old City. Stores and shops are not found in the High Quarter; the residents can usually find everything they need at the city’s High Marketplace.

The only businesses in the quarter are those gambling houses, taverns, and clubs that cater to a wealthy clientèle. The noble district is the best illuminated of the city’s quarters after dark, for each mansion maintains a lamp on the road before it, and the city maintains other lamps at frequent intervals along each thoroughfare. In addition, the guard patrols of the city watch are diligent and common in the High Quarter. A standard patrol will arrive within 1d6 round following any loud cry of alarm in the High Quarter. Also, the private agents of the night-watchmen are employed throughout the High Quarter, sometimes to watch a single mansion, and other times to patrol a region of several estates. When the night-watchmen from such roving patrols, they go in groups of five, accompanied by two great hounds (war dogs).

The roads of the High Quarter bustle with crowds only on the occasions of parades and festivals. The quarter receives a lot of traffic every Starday, attracted by the grand array of booths and stalls in the High Marketplace. Otherwise, the quarter is quiet, with only a few people moving about at any one time. These travelers are nobles in carriages, on horseback, and afoot, their servants (with or without their masters), craftsmen hired to work in the High Quarter on their way to and from the job, and many others.

Travel is allowed to and from the High quarter with no restrictions, but a visitor to the quarter who appears to be up to no good (loitering about, acting furtive, associating with known criminals, etc.) is quickly accosted by a guard patrol. If the visitor can produce no good reason why he is in the High Quarter, he is escorted out with orders not to return without a valid purpose


The Garden QuarterThe Garden Quarter sits right above the High Quarter, In truth, an untutored observer could not tell where one district ends and the other begins. But the boundaries are clearly defined in the collective social consciousness of the city’s elite.

If the estates in the Garden Quarter tend to be a little smaller than their uphill neighbors, if their statuary is less exquisite and the architecture more plain, these deficiencies are more than made up for by the brilliant profusion of blossoms grown here. The sweeping expanses of manicured beauty have given the quarter its name and its character. On a pleasant spring day the fragrance of lilac is carried by each passing breeze, while in summer a stroller can sample the dewy aroma of the lilies, and so on.

The patrols of the city watch are as diligent and common here as in the High Quarter, though there are fewer hired security agents in the Garden Quarter. There are no shops in the Garden Quarter, save for the region of the Marketplace. Several fine inns and clubs offer fine cuisine and often gambling to wealthy patrons.


The Foreign QuarterThis is the most crowded quarter of the New City, not just because this is the residential district assigned to all those who have not inherited or adopted Greyhawk citizenry, but because it is a nice place to live. It offers a variety of eateries and taverns, as well as tiny shops of many unique types.

It has long been city policy that visitors who take up residence in Greyhawk should not be allowed to inhabit certain areas, particularly places adjacent to the city wall. Thus, all foreigners who actually rent a residence (as opposed to taking a room in an inn, even for many weeks) must find such a residence in this quarter. Of course, foreign nobles and official guests of the city are exempt from the restriction. Foreigners are not permitted to purchase property in the Free City. After seven consecutive years of residence (at least six months each year) in the city, a foreigner can apply for citizenship. Provided he has two citizens to vouch for him, and no record of troubles with the watch or any influential guilds, citizenship is granted.

Certain of the Foreign Quarter’s shops and inns retain a distinctive character reflecting their owners’ origins. But for the most part this district has blended very well into the rest of the Free City’s character.

The City Watch is here, but not in any considerable numbers. The People’s Constables on the other hand, are a common and bothersome presence during daylight. At night, the Nightwatchmen’s Guild puts regular patrols through this and the neighboring River District. In many ways it is representative of the city in miniature, with its diversity of shops, its theater (the Pit), and its mix of people from all places and all levels on the social scale. Indeed, the Foreign Quarter even has its own nobility, in the form of The Duke. Every type of business can be found in this quarter. Problem is though if you asked someone where to find what you are looking for, half the time the directions are wrong.


The Old CityThis maze of alleys, shacks, boarding houses, and everything else is the true soul of Greyhawk. Herein lie the city’s roots, and herein also live its most volatile citizens. The Old City, separated by the Black Wall from the New City, has taken on a life all its own.

If the New City should suddenly disappear from the earth, the Old City would function much as before. The same cannot be said for the reverse. The Old City sees less of the City Watch than do its neighboring districts. Crime and misery are commonplace here, but so are gallantry and decency. Thieves control the bulk of the business ventures and other activities, but nowhere else is the proverb “honor among thieves” more in evidence.

The Nightwatchmen maintain two regular stations here, and many families devote a proportion of the precious incomes for the additional protection provided by the guild. And the Nightwatchmen in the Old city take their duties very seriously indeed—their fee is always money well spent. The City Watch patrols are scarce to nonexistent, but the Nightwatchmen usually respond quickly, but only when the alarm is raised by one of their clients.

The People’s Constables are a major nuisance here during the day, nit-picking every possible weapons violation, subjecting disreputable-appearing characters to searches, and quoting an assortment of vague and obscure regulations. ( “And that’ll be another two silver, oaf—you should know better than to blow your nose on the same street as waves the city banner! Be thankful I don’t run you in!”)

The balance of power in the Old City centers on the Thieves’ Guild, which controls the major sources of income here, except for the Public Bath, which is owned by the city. The Beggars’ Union is a force to be reckoned with in the Slum Quarter, however, and the Merchants and Traders are also well represented in the Old City. The patrols of the City Watch move unchallenged here during the daytime, but at night two patrols always march together. Even then they remain on the lighted thoroughfares and other major avenues. The border within the Old City between the Thieves, Labors’, and Brewer’s Quarters is ill-defined.


The River QuarterThis most riotous district is centered around the great curving avenue known as the Strip. With its taverns, brothels, gambling dens, and worse, the Strip at night is a cacophony of noises, a shadow land of flickering torches and blazing lamps. And always, day and night, it teems with drunks and toughs, river men and city folk. Always there are many who fight at any implied slight, and never are there enough patrols of the City Watch to keep the peace.

People’s Constables are common during the hours of daylight, especially near the Cargo Gate. There these tin-pot enforcers of law and order nab many people just off the river, before they have a chance to adjust to city life. Naturally, adventurers love it here. Lodgings are cheap, and news from the world beyond is plentiful. There are numerous merchants and innkeepers willing to relieve a traveler of his heavy load of treasure.

Behind the Strip the River Quarter is a mixture of boarding houses and warehouses. While much cargo brought up the river is stored on the wharf, many small warehouses are offered for rental here as well. Cargo moves quickly in the lively economy of the Free City, so a load generally remains in a warehouse only for a week or two.
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Old 03-15-2019, 02:38 PM
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The Thieves GuildTo the general citizenry of Greyhawk, the thieves are everywhere and into everything. There is little you can do within the city that won't be spotted by the thieves and reported to their masters.

Anything that is lost or goes missing in the city is blamed on the Thieves Guild ("those damned thieves have been at the cheese in the larder again") and Greyhawk mothers will even tell unruly children who refuse to sleep that the thieves will come in the night and steal them away.

The Greyhawk Thieves Guild has become part of the myths and legends of the Flanaess. It has become, in the many tales that are told around campfires and in taverns across the continent, the very epitome of stealth, cunning and thiefly excellence. The reputation of the city itself as a den of thieves has spread far and wide over the course of the city's history, and travelers will be warned off by innkeepers and tavernkeepers many hundreds of miles away with terrible stories of the guild's ruthlessness, and the thieves' amazing, almost supernatural ability to part you from your riches.

The guild is organised into sections corresponding to each of the city's quarters. The membership of the guild in each normally remain in that quarter.

The High QuarterThe High Quarter maintains only a small contingent of thieves, but what they lack in numbers they make up for in skill. Only a few of their member are ever active in the city; most are engaged in missions elsewhere in the Flanaess.

Membership in the High Quarter is believed to total no more than 20, all are literate and multilingual, and receive the very best in training, equipment and magical aid. It is rumoured that a legendary thief known only as "Shadow", a master of disguise who was recently responsible for the liberation of the Jacinth of Inestimable Beauty is one of the High Quarter's Guildmembers.


The Garden QuarterAs with the Hugh Quarter, this part of the Thieves Guild has only a small membership and rarely engages in actual thievery. The Garden Quarter Guild specialises in blackmail and extortion, and is not above occasional kidnapping. It is believed that around 30 guildmember thieves operate in the Garden Quarter, and all use their skills to spy upon the wealthy and influential.


The River QuarterThe River Quarter is the busiest region for guild activities within the city. Thieves Guild business here tends to be fairly straightforward with few subtleties.

The guilds activities in this region include muggings and pickpocketing in the alleys and taverns on the Strip, burglary, pilfering from the warehouses along the wharves and smuggling.


The Thieves QuarterTraditionally the driving force behind thieving activities in the Free City, the part of the Thieves Guild operating in the Thieves Quarter also takes responsibility for the training of apprentice thieves and the administration of the entire guild.


The Artisans QuarterThieving activities in the Artisans Quarter are largely confined to collecting protection money from businesses within the quarter and stealing from those who don't or won't pay up. The Artisan's Quarter maintains only a small number of indigenous thieves, relying on the other quarters' thieves guild to provide extra manpower as required.


The Foreign QuarterThe Foreign Quarter is an exciting place for thieves. Few of the quarter's inhabitants are Greyhawk natives and fewer still are offered any kind of protection by or from the Thieves Guild. Thieving activities here often degenerate into a chaotic free-for-all as gangs of thieves work through the crowded markets and streets pocketing everything that isn't nailed down.


The SlumsTraditionally this area is the exclusive domain of the Beggars Union, but the thieves do maintain a small presence here. The Slum Quarter thieves are largely agents provocateur, skilled in rabble-rousing and recruiting whenever the guild needs a bit of extra manpower.
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Old 03-15-2019, 02:38 PM
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The Guild of WizardryFounded in 393 CY by Zagig Yragerne, the so-called Mad Archmage, the Guild of Wizardry is the principal seat of magical research and training in the Flanaess.

Membership in the Guild of Wizardry is open to all wizards of any race or alignment. Membership fees are relatively high at 100gp a year, but the benefits outweigh the material cost. Guildmembers receive instruction at 10% less than normal cost and, depending on their tutor's assessment, can expect the very best choice of new spells. The guild also carries an extensive stock of spell components available at reduced prices and also a store of magical items for sale to guildmembers.

Discounts and prices can vary considerably from guildmember to guildmember. The guild also accepts commissions for the production of customised magical items.

The dwarven porters are responsible for the security of the Guildhall and are charged with maintaining order within the walls. Guests are allowed in at the express invitation of a Guildmember, but their names must be entered in the guest book before dusk the previous day.

Within the Guild is located the Guild library.

The Guild LibraryThe library of the Free City's Guild of Wizardry is purported to be the finest collection of magical tomes on Oerik. The library itself is a vast, windowless hall filled with rank upon rank of shelves that stretch from floor to ceiling and groan beneath the weight of many centuries of accumulated magical knowledge and theory.

Guildmembers are only allowed access to a particular requested spell after the request has been approved by a senior guildmember -- and in the case of spells greater than 4th level, with the additional consent of Guildmaster Kieran Jalucian himself.

In addition, a charge is levied for each spell to be copied. The cost varies from 100gp to 1000gp per spell level, dependent on the guildmembers standing within the guild. The library is officially closed at dusk and opened at dawn.

The library is a dark and gloomy place where the shadows seem to have a life of their own. Visitors are sure they are being watched by someone or something at the edge of their vision.

Last edited by Tarus; 03-15-2019 at 02:43 PM.
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Old 03-15-2019, 02:39 PM
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The Roc and OliphantThis boisterous tavern is a favourite of students, renowned for cheap drink and ample portions of tolerable food. It is busy at mealtimes, and during most evenings. Earthday evenings are the wildest, usually with music from some group of minstrels or bards. Since most colleges do not hold classes on Freeday, the carousing goes on until well past midnight.

The large building consists of a huge main room heated by a central fireplace, and several smaller rooms to each side. The kitchen is in the rear. The whole place has a distinctive odor combining woodsmoke, stale beer and human perspiration.
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The Grand CitadelThe Grand Citadel occupies the dominant ground within the city walls, overlooking all quarters of the city from its position on a low rise. The great, stone edifice dates back to Greyhawk's earliest days, when it was erected as a bastion of defense for all the city's residents.

The citadel serves as the prison in which the most hardened of criminals -- barbarians, thieves, half-orcs and the like -- are incarcerated. The walls, originally designed to prevent intruders from entering the castle, serve quite adequately as a means of preventing escape as well. The brutal guards hired to enforce the imprisonment are none too bright, but manage their tasks effectively.

The huge blockhouse of the prison occupies the northern portion of the Citadel courtyard. To the south stands an even larger building called simply the Redoubt. Within the walls of the Redoubt are found the quarters of the City Watch and the offices of its commander, Sental Nurev, as well as those of the Constable of the City, Derider Fanshen. There also is the City Arsenal, containing a large store of armanents for use by the masses that would be levied into the militia in the event of an emergency.
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