Code of Nobility

The nobility of the empire are expected to live up to a code of honor, and face shame and loss of status should they be exposed breaking it. It is especially associated with the Knight class by the general populous, mostly because of epic tales of noble heroes, but it applies equally to governing and conflict. This reflects both the idealized code and it actual implementation.

  1. Be Stalwart in Loyalty to the Empire, to Family, and to Liege
    This point is pretty much straightforward in practice. Breaking it is treason, and is dealt with swiftly.
  2. Uphold the Honor of your Position and Name
    This point is much less clear. It is generally taken to have two main aspects – challenges must not be left unresolved, and behavior that is embarrassing or shameful to your family is not tolerated.
    The first aspect includes any formal challenges against your person or insults to you, your family, or your liege. Formal challenges are generally calls for a duel for some slight, which may be avoided if the challenged party admits fault and makes restitution. Details about duels may be added later. This also calls for resolving attacks on or damage to your (or your family’s or liege’s) honor, either by retribution or admission of loss.
    The second aspect covers any sort of crime or scandal, or any behavior otherwise unbecoming of a person of your age and status.
  3. Show Courage in Every Situation
    The main implication of this point is obvious, but it is also taken to imply that you must be capable of handling dangerous situations, and willing to for the sake of your people and liege. It does not prevent backing out of a confrontation that is obviously insurmountable, but does forbid a disorderly retreat.
  4. Act Always with Integrity
    This point forbids you from taking advantage of your title for personal gain. It also forbids using deceptive or otherwise underhanded tactics, but in practicality that is generally reserved for the battlefield. In more political contexts, misdirection, double-speak, and coercion are alive and well, but being caught in explicit duplicity is still incredibly damaging to one’s reputation.
  5. Treat your Subjects with Benevolence
    This point connects your personal honor directly with the well-being of your people. You are expected to govern your lands profitably and provide just resolution to conflicts within your governance. You are responsible for protecting your people from crime and disorder, famine, disease, natural disasters, and invaders both monstrous and otherwise. It also means showing kindness to individuals encountered (within reason), not just the population as a whole. This is part of why Knights are so popular with the general populace, as they tend to do the most travelling amongst the commoners, and are therefore seen as generous protectors.

This code is obviously Lawful and Good. Most nobles are actually Lawful Neutral, though, and a significant few are even Evil. Neutral Good nobility are not unheard of, but Chaotic members are almost entirely nonexistent in the high nobility. Those who are chaotic generally do not inherit titles, instead becoming Knights and occasionally throwing off the mantle of nobility all together, disowning their families for a life of adventure.

Code of Nobility

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