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This link was gracefully allowed by the owners of The 3 Moons Tavern.
"In leaving the Thing Field I saw, in the distance, a high, snow-capped mountain, steep, sharp, almost like the blade of a bent spear. I had seen it at various times, but never so clearly as from the Thing Field. I suppose the Thing-Field might, partly, have been selected for the aspect of this mountain. It was a remarkable peak.
“What mountain is that?” I asked.
“It is the Torvaldsberg,” said Ivan Forkbeard.
“The Torvaldsberg?” I asked.
“In the legends, it is said that Torvald sleeps in the mountain,” smiled Ivar Forkbeard, “to awaken when, once more, he is needed in Torvaldsland.”
"Marauders of Gor" page 180
"The Torvaldsberg is, all things considered, an extremely dangerous mountain. Yet it is clearly not unscalable, as I learned, without equipment. It has the shape of a spear blade, broad, which has been bent near the tip. It is something over four and a half pasangs in height, or something over seventeen thousand Earth feet. It is not the highest mountain on Gor but it is one of the most dramatic, and most impressive. It is also, in its fearful way, beautiful."
"Marauders of Gor" page 220/1
The Stream of Torvaldsland
"The stream of Torvald is a current, as a broad river in the sea, pasangs wide, whose temperature is greater than that of the surrounding water. Without it, much of Torvaldsland, bleak as it is, would be only a forzen waste. Torvcliffs, inlets and mountains."
"Marauders of Gor" page 34
"Torvaldsland is a cruel, harsh, rocky land. It contains many cliffs, inlets and mountains. Its arable soil is thin, and found in patches. The size of the average farm is very small. Good farms is often by sea, in small boats. Without the stream of Torvald it would probably be impossible to raise cereal crops in sufficient quantity to feed even its relatively sparse population. There is often not enough food under any conditions, particularly in northern Torvaldsland, and famine is not unknown. In such cases men feed on bark, and lichens and seaweed. It is not strange that the young men of Torvaldsland often look to the sea, and beyond it, for their fortunes. The stream of Torvald is regarded by the men of Torvaldsland as a gift of Thor, bestowed upon Torvald, legendary founder and hero of the land, in exchange of a ring of gold."
"Marauders of Gor" Page 55
"The most famous rune stone in the north is that on Einar’s Skerry, which marks the northland’s southern border."
"Marauders of Gor" page 229
"I had heard of this stone. It is taken by many to mark the border between Torvaldsland and the south. Many of those of Torvaldsland, however take its borders to be much farther extended than the Torvaldsmark. Indeed, some of the men of Torvaldsland regard Torvaldsland to be wherever their ships beach, as they took their country, and their steel, with them."
"Marauders of Gor" page 45
Skerry of Vars
“Where is the Skerry of Vars?” I asked.
“It is five pasangs to the north,” said Ivar Forkbeard, “and two pasangs offshore.”
"Marauders of Gor" page 269
"The Skerry of Vars is roughly a hundred foot, Gorean square. It is rough, but, on the whole, flat. It rises some fif teen to twenty feet from the water. It is grayish rock, bleak, upthrust, igneous, forbidding."
"Marauders of Gor" page 270
"Ax Glacier was far to the north, a glacier spilling between two mountains of stone, taking in it’s path to the sea, spreading, the form of the ax. The men of the country of Ax Glacier fish for whales and hunt snow sleen. They cannot farm that far to the north. Thorgeir, it so happened, of course, was the only man of the Ax Glacier country, which is usually taken as the northern border of Torvaldsland, before the ice belts of Gor’s arctic north, who was at the thing-fair."
"Marauders of Gor" Page ?105
~ INLETS ~
"Thorstein Camp, well to the south, but yet north of Einar’s Skerry, was a camp of fighting men, which controlled the countryside about it, for some fifty pasangs, taking tribute from the farms. Thorstein of Thorstein’s Camp was their Jarl. The camp was of wood, surrounded by a palisade, built on an island in an inlet, called the inlet of Thorestein Camp, formally known as the inlet of Parsit, because of the rich fishing there."
"Marauders of Gor" Page 147
Inlet of Green Cliffs
“Boy!” cried the Forkbeard. The boy looked at him. The Forkbeard threw him a golden tarn disk. “Buy a bosk and sacrifice it,” said the Forkbeard. “Let there be much feasting on the farms of the Inlet of Green Cliffs!”
"Marauders of Gor" Page 150
Inlet of Iron Walls
"“Look,” he said, “there is Hafnir of the Inlet of Iron Walls."
"Marauders of Gor" Page 189
"An Ahn later the Forkbeard, accompanied by Ottar, keep-er of his farm, and Tarl Red Hair, now of Forkbeard’s Land-fall, inspected his fields."
"Marauders of Gor" Page 102
~ LONGHOUSES ~
The Hall of Svein Blue Tooth
"The hall of Svein Blue Tooth was of wood, and magnificent. The interior hall, not counting rooms leading from it on various sides, or the balcony which lined it, leading to other rooms, was some forty feet high, and forty feet in width, some two hundred feet in length. It, on the western side, was lined with a great, long table. Behind this table, its back to the western wall, facing the length of the hall, facing east, was the high seat, or the rightful seat, the seat of the master of the house. It was wide enough for three or four men to sit together on it, and, as a great honor, sometimes others were invited to share the high seat. On each side of this high seat were two pillars, about eight inches in diameter, and some eight feet high, the high-seat pillars, or rightful-seat pillars. They marked the seat, or bench, which might be placed between them as the high seat, or rightful seat. These pillars had been carved by craftsmen in the time of Svein Blue Tooth’s great grandfather, and bore the luck signs of his house. On each side of the high seat were long benches. Opposite, on the other side of the table, too, were long benches. A seat of honor, incidentally, was that opposite the high seat, where one might converse with the host. The high seat, though spoken of as “high,” was the same height as the other benches. The men of Torvaldsland, thus, look across the table at one another, not one down upon the other. The seat is “high” in the sense of being a seat of great honor. There was, extending almost the length of the hall, a pit for a “long fire” over which food was prepared for re-tainers. On the long sides of the hall, on the north and south, there were long tables, with benches. Salt, in its bowls on the tables, divided men into rankings. Those sitting above the salt were accorded greater prestige than those sitting below it. If one sat between the salt and the high seat, one sat “above” the salt; if one sat between the salt and the en-trance to the hall, one sat “below” the salt. At the high-seat table, that at which the high seat sat, all counted as being “above the salt.” Similarly, at the tables parallel to the high-seat table, smaller tabies flanking the long fire on both sides, the tables nearest the high seat counted as being above the salt, those farthest away being below the salt. The division, was made approximately at the third of the hall closest to the high seat, but could shift, depending on the numbers of those in attendance worthy to be above the salt. The line, so to speak, imaginary to be sure, but definitely felt as a social reality, dividing those above from those below the salt, was uniformly “drawn” across the width of the hall. Thus, it was not the case that one at a long side table, who was above the salt, would be farther away from the high seat than one at one of the center tables, who was “below” the salt. In Ivar Forkbeard’s hall, incidentally, the salt distinctions were not drawn; in his hall all being comrades in arms, all were “above the salt.” Svein Blue Tooth’s holdings, on the other hand, were quite large and complexly organized. It would not have seemed proper, at least in the eyes of Svein Blue Tooth and others, for a high officer to sit at the same table with a fellow whose main occupation was supervising thralls in the tending of verr. Salt, incidentally, is obtained by the men of Torvaldsland, most commonly, from sea water or from the burning of seaweed. It is also, however, a trade commodity, and is sometimes taken in raids. The red and yellow salts of the south, some of which I saw on the tables, are not domestic to Torvaldsland. The arrangements of tables, incidentally, varies in different halls. I describe those appointments characterizing the hall of Blue Tooth. It is common, however, for the entrance of the hall to be oriented toward the morning sun, and for the high seat to face the entrance. None may enter without being seen from the high seat. Similarly, none are allowed to sit behind the high seat. In a rude country, these defensive measures are doubtless a sensible precaution. About the edges of the hall hung the shields of warriors, with their weapons. Even those who sat commonly at the center tables, and were warriors, kept their shields and spears at the wall. At night, each man would sleep in his furs behind the tables, under his weapons. High officers, of course, and the Blue Tooth, and members of his family, would retire to private rooms. The hall was ornately carved, and, above the shields, decorated with cunningly sewn tapestries and hangings. On these were, usually, warlike scenes, or those dealing with ships and hunting. There was a lovely scene of the hunting of tabuk in a forest. Another tapestry, showing numerous ships, in a war fleet, dated from the time of the famine in Torvalds-land, a generation ago. That had been a time of great raids to the south."
"Marauders of Gor" Page 186/187
"The smoke from the fire found its way high into the rafters, and, eventually, out of the holes cut in the peaked roof. Some of these were eighteen inches square. Light was furnished from the cooking fire but, too, from torches set in rings on the wall, backed with metal plating; too, here and there, on chains from the beams, high above, there hung large tharlarion oil lamps, which could be raised and lowered from the sides. At places, too, there were bowls, with oil and wicks, with spikes on their bottoms, set in the dirt floor, some six inches from the floor, others as high as five feet; this mode of lamp, incidentally, is more common in the private chambers. It was not unusual, incidentally, that the floor of the great hall, rich as it was, was of dirt, strewn with rushes. This is common in the halls of Torvaldsland. When the Forkbeard, and I, and other followers, many of them bearing riches, entered the hall , we had been given a room to one side, in which we might wash and dry ourselves before the feast. In this room, unusual in halls, was a window. I had put my finger against it, and pressed outward. I was not paned with glass, but with some sort of membrane but the membrane was almost as clear as glass. “What is this?” I had asked the Forkbeard. “It is the dried afterbirth membrane of a bosk fetus,” he said. “It will last many months, even against rain.” Looking out through the window I could see the palisade about the hall and its associated buildings. The palisade inclosed some two acres; within it were many shops and storage houses, even an ice house; in the center, of course, reared the great hall itself, that rude high-roofed palace of the north, the house of Svein Blue Tooth. Through the membrane, hardly distorted, I saw the palisade, the catwalk about it, the guards, and, over it, the moons of Gor."
"Marauders of Gor" Page 191/2
"The hall was light. I had not understood it to be so large. At the tables, lifting ale and knives to the Fork-beard were more than a thousand men. Then he took his way to the bench opposite the high seat, stopping here and there to exchange pleasantries with the men of Svein Blue Tooth. I, and his men, followed him. The Blue Tooth, I noted, did not look too pleased at the Forkbeard’s popularity with his men. Near him, beside the high seat, sat his woman, Bera, her hair worn high on her head, in a kirtle of yellow wool with scarlet cape of the fur of the red sea sleen, and, about her neck, necklaces of gold."
"Marauders of Gor" Page 195
The Hall of Ivar Forkbeard
The hall of Ivar Forkbeard was a longhouse. It was about one hundred and twenty feet Gorean in length. Its walls formed of turf and stone, were curved and thick, some eight feet or more in thickness. It is oriented north and south. This reduces its exposure to the north wind, which is par-tlcularly important in the Torvaldsland winter. A fire, in a rounded pit, was in its center. It consisted, for the most part, of a single, long room, which served for living, and eating and sleeping. At one end was a cooking compartment, sepa-rated from the rest of the house by a partition of wood. The roof was about six feet in height, which meant that most of those within, if male, were forced to bend over as they moved about. The long room, besides being low, is dark. Too, there is usually lingering smoke in it. Ventilation is supplied, as it is generally in Torvaldsland, by narrow holes in the roof. The center of the hall, down its length, is dug out about a foot below the ground level. In the long center are set the tables and benches. Also, in the center, down its length are two long rows of posts, each post separated from the next by about seven feet, which support the roof. At the edges of the hall, at ground level, is a dirt floor, on which furs are spread. Stones mark sections off into sleeping quar-ters. Thus, in a sense, the hall proper is about a foot below ground level, and the sleeping level, on each side, is at the ground level, where the walls begin. The sleeping levels, which also can accommodate a man’s gear, though some keep it at the foot of the level, are about eight feet in length. The hall proper, the center of the hall, is about twelve feet in width."
"Marauders of Gor" Page 90
"The two bond-maids, stripped, too, like the others, for the feast, Pretty Ankles and Pouting Lips, struggled down the length of the smoky, dark hall, a spitted, roasted tarsk on their shoulders. They were slapped by the men, hurrying them along. They laughed with pleasure. Their shoulders were protected from the heat of the metal spit by rolls of leather. The roasted tarsk was flung before us on the table. With his belt knife, thrusting Pudding and Gunnhild back, Ivar Forkbeard addressed himself to the cutting of the meat. He threw pieces down the length of the table. I heard men laughing. Too, from the darkness behind me, and more than forty feet away, on the raised level, I heard the screams of a raped bond-maid. She was one of the new girls. I had seen her being dragged by the hair to the raised platform. Her screams were screams of pleasure."
"Marauders of Gor" Page 91
"At the foot of the ground level, which is the sleeping level, which lies about a foot above the dug-out floor, the long center of the hall, on the floor, against the raised dirt, here and there were rounded logs, laid lengthwise. Each log is ten to fifteen feet long, and commonly about eight inches to a foot thick. If one thinks of the sleeping level, on each side, as consti-tuting, in effect, a couch, almost the length of the hall, ex-cept for the cooking area, the logs lie at the foot of these two couches, and parallel to their foot. About each log fitting snugly into deep, wide, circular grooves in the wood, were several iron bands. These each contained a welded ring, to which was attached a length of chain, terminating in a black-iron fetter."
"Marauders of Gor" Page 97
"Male thralls are chained for the night in the bosk sheds. Bondmaids are kept in the hall, for the pleasure of the free men. They are often handed from one to the other. It is the responsibility of he who last sports with them to secure them."
"Marauders of Gor" Page 99
Culture and Traditions
Map of Gor (Link gracefully allowed by the owners of The 3 Moons Tavern)