The primary cults of Sartar are those of Orlanth and Ernalda. More than two-thirds of all Sartarites are dedicated to one or the other cult, and the cults are so closely associated that they can sometimes be thought of as a single cult of Orlanth and Ernalda. Almost everyone else attends the major sacrifices of these deities as associate members or as lay members.
The other Lightbringers (Chalana Arroy, Eurmal, Issaries, and Lhankor Mhy) are collectively the next most important group of cults. These cults are closely associated with the Orlanth cult, as their temples are mainly found in Sartar’s cities.
The Earth Goddess is assisted by her family, most noticeably Babeester Gor and Maran Gor. Asrelia and Ty Kora Tek have small cults in Sartar, and are found mainly at the larger Earth Temples of Clearwine and Boldhome.
Yelmalio serves as the solar deity for Sartar. His main temple is the Sun Dome Temple in southern Sartar, but has smaller, although still significant, temples in Alda-Chur and Boldhome.Humakt is the most important war god in Sartar, although Storm Bull and Babeester Gor are also significant. Several tribes have Humakt as an important patron god, while Storm Bull is more popular near the Praxian plains. The Storm Bull cult serves as a link between the Orlanth cult and the Praxian tribes.
Although the Lunar Empire is gone, there are still pockets of Seven Mothers worshipers throughout Sartar, particularly in the cities. These cultists usually worship in secret, with the temples built during the Lunar Occupation mostly destroyed. Nonetheless they still quite numerous, and are nearly equal in numbers to the Yelmalio cult.
Daka Fal is also a significant cult in Sartar, as many worship their ancestors as their primary magical protection. Ancestor worship is often incorporated into other cults, with ancestors worshiped as heroes and cult spirits.
Argan Argar, Eiritha, Engizi, Heler, Kolat, Odayla, Yinkin, and a few other significant deities (that appear in the RuneQuest rules) have very small cults and in many cases their worship is usually combined with that of Ernalda and Orlanth. There are even several small temples to Uleria, although her worship is mainly by lay members. The few Rune masters of these cults may travel from associated temple to associated temple to perform sacrifices and lead worship. Collectively, membership in these cults constitute less than 5% of the population in Sartar.
The Orlanth Rex cult provides a superstructure for the Orlanthi religion. Most tribes have their own Rex cult, and Sartar is the Rex cult for the kingdom. Sacrifices are offered at the Flame of Sartar in Boldhome and the Prince serves the high priest of the cult.
Other Minor Cults
There are many other minor cults in Sartar, most with only hundred or so initiates in total. These minor cults can be treated as spirit cults, but are often headed by a senior initiate or a priest of an associated cult instead a shaman.
Some minor cults include:
- Great-Bearded Bran
- Chalk Man
- Elk Woman
- Fire Top
- Golden Lamb
- Great Weighty
- Horned Owl
- Lant Ulfar
- River Horse
- Sartar the Builder
- Sheep of Luck
- Silver Deer
- The Six Sisters
- Swan Mother
- White Bull
- White Raven
Among the Torkani, I would expect to find: Argan Argar, Kyger Litor, Xiola Umbar. You would be right to see Argan Argar. Not Kyger Litor, because they aren’t trolls. Nor Xiola Umbar, because it is a marginal cult, and Chalana Arroy has support at the intertribal level. Argan Argar, Orlanth, and Ernalda are the main tribal patrons, with Humakt, Creek, and Heler all being important minor cults.
The Torkani are Orlanthi, but Argan Argar is their tribal patron deity. The cult has enabled the Torkani to have a cautious friendship with the trolls of the Indigo Mountains. However, the tribe controls several important holy sites to Orlanth and Humakt and those gods are important to the tribe. The tribe controls the main road to Pavis.The Siganti tribe of Torkan’s Last Fort dominate tribal affairs. Hundara Nightbeam, daughter of the previous queen Yrsa Nightbeam, is the current tribal ruler.
But the Torkani are HUMANS not trolls. So Kyger Liter is not one of their tribal deities.
Eiritha not Uralda. Uralda was the Old Heortling name of a cow goddess from the period before contact with Prax was resumed. David Dunham thought that would be a better name for the 1330-era settlers in KoDP than Eiritha. But it is now 1625, and we have more than a century of intensive interaction with the Praxians. And so Eiritha is her more commonly used name in Sartar.
That “tame Sun god” rebelled against the Sartarite tribes and the Princes of Sartar in the 1550s. Fortunately Monrogh Lantern revealed that said “tame Sun god” is actually Yelmalio and the rebels settled down at their Sun Dome temple and became quite reliable.
Argan Argar, Eiritha, Engizi, Heler, Kolat, Odayla, Yinkin, and a few other significant deities have very small cults and in many cases their worship is usually combined with that of Ernalda and Orlanth. The few Rune masters of these cults may travel from associated temple to associated temple to perform sacrifices and lead worship. Collectively, membership in these cults constitute less than 5% of the population in Sartar.
And this is a key point – these cults are small.
Most of these spirit cults in Sartar have an associated priest running them.
Vinga? Vinga is a subcult of Orlanth. I didn’t break things out into Thunderous, Adventurous, Four Weapons, etc.