This page is part of the Kingdom of Abun
The Abunese culture is very rich and varied. Mostly consisting of the union between the traditions of the former Kingdoms of the South, the Abunese are known for their particular traditions that have very ancient origins.
Let's find out more about them with twenty facts that will help you to understand more their way of life.
The Abunese care about their hygiene
In Abun, cleaning and washing is considered a sort of ritual, called Irul (which means "cleansing" in Abunese), in which the Abunese must take a warm bath or wash their face, hands and feet two times per day: the first when he/she got up and the second one before going to sleep.
Usually, when the Abunese are in their private home, they must take off their sandals. Before entering their houses, they take them off and wash their hands and feet in a ceramic bowl called Ton'Hat (meaning "Purifier"). The Ton'Hat is usually made in ceramic or in bronze, while some nobles have a gold version. The bowl is filled with water everytime is used from a faucet located outside the house, and after it's been used, the water needs to be thrown out. Usually, the Ton'Hat is located outside the houses of commoners, while in nobles' palaces it can be found outside their private apartments, since the Abunese nobles take off their sandals only when they are in their apartment. The reason why they must take their sandals off while they're in their house is because private houses are considered to be blessed by the Gods, so the Abunese must walk barefoot in their houses, just like they do in temples. It's also important to take shoes off while being in the Throne Room of the Royal Palace and in the Royal Dining Room. Only Royal Guards can be exempted from the rule of being barefoot.
In Abun, scribes are highly regarded
The scribes are considered to be gifted people, since they can read and write in their language and sometimes in foreign ones too. Indeed, in Abun there's an high amount of illiterate people, especially in the low-class, because the Abunese schools, called "Houses of Life", are managed by the priests of Quaneth and they're basically private institutions.
In the middle-class there's a small percentage of illiteracy, and very few are the nobles who can't read or write. So, if someone studies to become a scribe, he will be highly respected and his job will be well paid.
In Abun, men and women have the same rights
Unlike the Zonizans, the Abunese don't consider women as inferior beings compared to men, but they're considered as a vital part of the society, because without them there wouldn't be new life nor human feelings. Abunese women can have political roles, own properties and can attend to the local people's assemblies.
During trials, they have the same rights of men. According to the "Law of the Ancients", there's no distinction between sexes and both men and women have the same rights.
Slavery in Abun (technically) doesn't exist anymore
In Abun, slavery has been always a controversial subject. During the 2228 years of existence of the Kingdom, slavery used to be legal in Abun until the year 2104, when king Cheoughtia Seruk of the Atris clan abolished it officially, although debt slavery still remained in the Abunese law, despite it was reformed in order to be applied only to war prisoners.
Before its abolishment, people had the right to own one or more slaves, according to their census. The richer the person was, and the more the slaves he could afford. They could be purchased at the slave markets that were held every Sulhat (the Abunese Friday), and were bought in a auction-like transaction. The slaves had to be well fed and treated well by their owners, otherwise they would have the right to leave their household. Some of the rich middle-class families used to have a male and a female slave, in order to let them have a family of their own, while the owner had the right to have sex with the female slave, and the male slave was allowed to do so with the owner's wife, as long as the wife wished so. It also was possible to become a slave in case of an unpaid debt: in that case, the slavery would've been a temporary measure, since the debtor would work for the debtee only for the timespan that would allow him to repay his debt, and then he would be freed.
Freeing slaves in Abun just required the permission of the owner and a "contract of freedom" signed both by the slave and its owner, under the supervision of a State Official. Currently, slavery has been officially replaced by servitude, which unlike slavery, is completely voluntary. Servants are paid with a monthly wage in Sids (the Abunese currency) or in nature, and they can have a pension from the state after they retire.
The Abunese calendar is "seasonless"
The Abunese are probably the only civilization that have a week splitted in seven days. Due to their hot climate, they don't have seasons and they only have four months that sign the rhytm of their agriculture. Each month is splitted in 100 days per each, meaning that the Abunese year lasts 400 days. There aren't leap years in the Abunese calendar, nor daylight saving time.
Their week is made by the following days:
The Abunese months are the following:
Hesul-At (the month of the Seed)
Waras-At (the month of the Rest)
Ankdan-At (the month of the Growing)
Rilen-At (the month of the Harvest)
The Abunese write their current date in various ways. Here are some examples:
35 Yado of Hesul-At, 2228 (DoM/DoW/MM YYYY)
2228 35/2/2 (YYYY DoM/DoW/MM)
35/2/2 2228 (DoM/DoW/MM YYYY)
35/2 of Hesul-At, 2228 (DoM/DoW MM/YYYY)
Hesul-At of Yado 35, 2228 (MM/DoW/DoM YYYY)
DoM - Day of the Month
DoW - Day of the Week
MM - Month
YYYY - Year
The Abunese have a complex measuring system
In Abun they have an advanced technique to measure things. It's called the Ia'Ar system, which is based on the name of the mathematician who invented this measure system, Samegh Awas of the Ia'Ar clan, in year 148, replacing the old measure system made by palms, feet, inches and arms.
The Ia'Ar, the main scale to measure distance is divided in three scales:
The Sotin-Ia'Ar, which is the smallest scale available (like the Earthling "millimeters")
For example, the lug size of an average Abunese bracelet is 22 Sotin-Ia'Ar, which are 22 millimeters on planet Earth.
The Visen-Ia'Ar, which is greater (like the centimeter).
The Awas-Ia'Ar, its name directly derived from the mathematician, representing the largest scale ever (similar to the Earthling "meters").
Weight is measured in three scales as well, the Naia. The smallest is the Sotin-Naia, then there's the Visen-Naia and the Awas-Naia, similar to the Earthling grams, kilograms and tons. Naia in Abunese language means "mass".
Speed is measured in Sul'Dra (which means "speed"), and is similar to the Earthling Kilometres. One Sul'Dra equals one kilometer.
To measure the size of an house, the standard adopted is the Feb, which is more or less equal to one square metre on planet Earth.
For example, an house that measures 30 Feb is equal to an Earthling house that measures 30 square metres.
Atheism doesn't exist in Abun. However...
The Abunese are very religious people. Although some of them might be less than others, they all believe that their planet and themselves have been created by a supreme God, Sinit, who spawned the other Gods as well, and they must fight against the absolute evil, incarnated by Hyar'Emar and his minions. However, there are some people who are critic towards them and try to see things in a less-religious way, without straying from their religion. Prince Faad is one of them.
In Abun the spoken word has the same value of a written document
If an Abunese promises something to someone, and he gives his word as a form of warranty, he must abide to it, because oral contracts have the same value of written ones, according to the Law of the Ancients. The reason behind this law is because not all the Abunese know how to read and write (and not all of them are able to write their own signature), so they either pay a notary in order to write the contract, or they make an oral contract.
In order to not let the parts forget about the contract, they take two stones, the Oshga and paint them with a particular symbol that only the two counterparts that make a contract can recognize. That symbol will make them remember about their pact, in order to honour it. If the pact isn't honoured, one of the parts can go to a court and make a trial against the counterpart.
The Abunese have a currency but they also barter their goods
The kingdom of Abun is one of the few states in the southern part of planet Nakti that accepts both coins (the Sid) and bartering as a form of trade. If someone doesn't have money or is too poor to have them, he can trade goods with something that has a similar value.
The Abunese postal system is very renown for its efficiency
It might seem strange for a civilization that according to an Earthling point of view, has a primitive way of life compared to us, but the Abunese have an efficient postal system.
Every city and village of the kingdom has its own postal office called Thervqua, Thervqua means "communications" in Abunese, that receives the mail from Enit, where there's the main sorting center, and delivers it to the recipients with the usage of the messengers, who usually travel on horses or chariots. This means that every city in Abun has its own civic address and every building has a civic number.
However, the mail in Abun could require from one week to eight months in order to reach its destination, according to the distance, because the Abunese don't have fast means of transportation (only chariots and ships).
The diet of the Abunese is omnivore, although low class people mostly eat vegetables, fish and seafood, The paupers eat meat very seldom, because it's too expensive for them to afford. Very few have the privilege to eat meat, mostly the shepherds and the ones that have a stable. While the middle class usually eats meat three times per month, and the nobles usually eat meat frequently, although they also eat vegetables and fish, some of them don't like seafood because of their odor.
One official language, many (very) different dialects
Every province of Abun has its own dialect, although the Abunese speak all the same language, but the dialects differ a lot from eachother, and some people don't speak other languages than their traditional dialect. For example, a Fazan who speaks only his dialect but not the Abunese, won't understand what a Faywarite says. The Abunese language, used as an official language throughout the kingdom, is the dialect of the Enit province, where the capital is located, and it's used as official language in all the provinces. The Abunese have their own alphabet, which is written vertically and is read from the left column to the right one, and their punctuation is very minimal, for example they don't have the question mark nor the exclamation point.
The Abunese wear light clothes due to their climate
The climate of Abun is hot and dry. Abun is mostly made by deserts with some oasis and savannahs, especially in the Enit province, and some scarce jungles such as in Sul'Asha. They don't have low temperatures and the Abunese winter is similar to our Spring, that's why the Abunese wear very little clothing.
Usually, the paupers wear simple cotton or linen skirts and sometimes leather sandals. Most of the paupers wear homemade jewelry made with coloured stones, leather and glass past. However, not all the paupers can afford a pair of sandals, and most of them walk perpetually barefoot, because in Abun, sandals are seen as upscale items. Middle class Abunese wear more complex outfits, such as multicoloured skirts, necklaces made by feathers or gold and earrings, while nobles wear layered skirts, luxurious jewels and headdresses made with feathers or gold pendants.
Usually, the Abunese men keep their chest bare, since their climate doesn't require them to cover it, although some of them wear a light scarf or a shirt usually made in linen. It's not common among nobles to be barefoot, indeed Kaliendra is also nicknamed "the Barefoot Queen" due to her refusal to wear sandals since she was a child, while it's more common to see barefoot people in the middle class.
Orphans and poverty in Abun
In Abun there's a high amount of orphans. Due to the past war with the Zonizans, there are a lot of them who grew in orphanages, which are run by the priests and they differ in conditions from eachother: some of them are well kept while other ones are old and run-down. There also are orphans living in the streets as beggars, and usually they beg for money as a living, some boys do petty thefts and the girls (especially if they've reached the age of the Sarenasha) dance in public or they work as prostitutes. In Abun, a common way to escape from poverty is to become a priest, while a girl can choose to become a priestess, a Wapi warrior or an "Ashath'Drau" literally a "pleasure lady", basically a prostitute working in brothels.
The Abunese architecture and their cities
The Abunese architectural style is a blend of Egyptian, Aztec and Cretese architecture. About the Enit Royal Palace, imagine the Knossos palace, mixed with some Egyptian and Aztec styling cues, and you've got a clear idea of Abunese architecture. Nobles and mid-class citizens live in houses made with stone bricks, while the paupers live in wooden shacks or mud houses.
The streets differ a lot in width. While the main ones (Enit is structured a bit like a Roman city) are large and intersect with eachother in a cross-like shape, the secondary ones are thinner and garbled. Usually the Abunese main roads are paved, although some secondary ones have just dirt.
The Abunese don't know how to make reflective glass
Mirrors are available in Abun, but they're different from the ones we have on our planet. The Abunese use highly polished silver, bronze or brass surfaces as mirrors, and usually the most expensive ones are the ones made with bronze and silver. There are mirrors made with gold too, but very few people have them, such as Kaliendra.
Dogs are common pets in Abunese households
The Abunese don't have a standard choice for a pet, however the most common one is the dog. "One of the most friendly creatures ever" according to the Abunese, but cats and mouses are also used as pets. In the middle and low class people usually have a bird as a pet. Horses aren't considered as domestic animals, but more as workers and they are treated like that. Peasants usually use them in agriculture, and sometimes they are replaced by donkeys.
How the Sid, the Abunese currency, is made
The Sid coins are made in a league of gold and copper, and they have an hexagonal shape. On the first side there's the profile of the king or the queen who's currently ruling (in our case, Kaliendra is the current queen) and on the other side there's a stylised sun, which is sacred to Say'Rada, the Abunese goddess of life and Patron of Abun. A single Sid coin weights 8 Sotin-Naia (8 grams). The Abunese coins don't have a hole in the center, but the Zonizan ones do.
An example of four traditional Abunese hats (with pictures)
There are various kinds of hats common in Abun. The most common one, both for men and women is the Uraya, an hat made by a linen sheet kept on the head with a leather wire and decorated with coloured feathers or pendants that can be either in glass paste or in other metals.
Then there's the Tas'Ar, usually wore by middle class and nobles, inspired by Aztec headdresses: http://c85c7a.medialib.glogster.com/media/44/443630a4c8728d4c6ee51c44fccb8ac72e095ae979ebcfd5fe6168486980c556/aztec-woman.jpg
Another kind of hat is the Irom, usually common in the Faza province, which is a folded sheet of linen wrapped around the head with a rigid base, similar to an Egyptian headdress. It can come in various colours and various decorations. It's also used by priests: http://galleryplus.ebayimg.com/ws/web/301132291689_1_0_1/1000x1000.jpg
Then there's an headdress that is usually worn by women, mostly in Faza and Faywar, although is considered as something fancy and exotic by the Abunese, the Hocah, an headdress made with pearls and glass paste: http://decotique.zoints.com/album/view/EgyptianFlapper-79252
The Abunese don't have surnames, but clan names
In Abun there aren't surnames as we know them on Earth, but they use their clan names as surnames, because the Abunese families are called "clans" and not "families". That's why -for example- Queen Kaliendra's full name is Kaliendra Wacha of the Ahkis clan. Since in Abun the first name is more important than the clan name, people are usually addressed with their first name, and they're called with their first name regardless of their social status. The same clan organization of family and surnames is adopted in Nylus too.
If someone grew in a orphanage, he might adopt the clan name of the first priest who took him into the structure, while if the orphan grew in the streets, he'll be simply known with his name and using his hometown as a sort of replacement for his missing clan name.
Appendix: The Abunese greeting forms
In Abun, people don't greet themselves as we Earthlings do (i.e. good morning, greetings, good day, hello, hi, etc.), but they have their own greeting phrases. The Abunese greet to eachother by bowing, as a sign of respect towards the others.
-Tay'Rat, the most common greeting form
Tay'Rat literally means "Good Life", and it's one of the most common forms of greetings used by the Abunese. On planet Earth, the usage of "Tay'Rat" is similar to our "Hello" or "Greetings". It can be used in both formal and informal ways. Usually, along with the word, the Abunese greet other people by bowing at them, and the one who's greeted must bow back as a sign of respect. Greeting someone by raising the hand mustn't be done with strangers, otherwise it might be seen as unpolite. A shortened version of the Tay'Rat greeting, similar to our "Hi", is "Ny'Hath" which means "Safe paths". Unlike "Tay'Rat", "Ny'Hath" is used only as an informal greeting.
-Tay'Sakel, Tay'Draban, Tay'Moyep and Tay'Burak. Greeting people in various moments of the day
Just like on planet Earth, the Abunese have different forms of greeting according to the moment of the day. In the morning, people greet themselves by saying "Tay'Sakel", which literally means "Good Sunlight". In the afternoon, they say "Tay'Draban", meaning "Good Passing of the Sun", in the evening, they say "Tay'Moyep" that means "Good Sunset" and during the night, they say "Tay'Burak", literally "Good Darkness". These greetings are the Abunese versions of our "Good morning", "Good afternoon", "Good evening" and "Good night". Like "Tay'Rat" they can be used both formally and informally.