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Trollsylvanian History and Myth Topography and Customs Early History Middle Ages to Recent Times A note on the word "Troll" Outline of the Great Epic Topography and Customs The topography of Trollsylvania is largely flat, with many rivers. The many rivers caused the Trollsylvanians to become good bridge builders from early in their history. Trollsylvanians are accomplished lumberjacks and woodworkers. The exact location of Trollsylvania is difficult to determine, since the country was invaded numerous times and the inhabitants let the invaders through, in the vain hope that these people would simply keep going. Here the Trollsylvanians' legendary hospitality served them ill, as they were too polite to ask waves of invaders to simply leave. In fact, this was a spur to bridge construction, in the further hope that this would allow swift passage out the country for the invaders. The general borders are Elbonia, to the southeast, Freedonia to the west and southwest, and the Duchy of Grand Fenwick to the northwest. The fact that the height of offense weapons technology consisted of a stick (or schtick ) did not help much either. In fact, the stick is an important feature in Trollsylvanian culture (probably as a mirror of the trees ). Money traditionally consisted of sticks, quarterstaffs were the favored weapons, and stick tossing was a major sport. Food was often stick shaped. ( There is a common misconception that the Poles were confused with the Trollsylvanians; however, this is not the case. The Transylvanians, on the other hand, often are). The phrases "Speak softly and carry a big stick", and "I wouldn't touch you with a ten-foot pole" are almost certainly of Trollsylvanian origin. There are other, more obscure phrases from Old High Trollsylvanian, such as "Three houses do not make four rocks", or "Night is not as black as the inside of a woodchuck" (which is far more elegant in Old High Trollsylvanian). Although the nation is justly famous for its religious tolerance (Eastern Orthodox, Muslims, Roman Catholics, and Jews all live in harmony), most Trollsylvanian families keep a small doll in the household, a sort of household god or Penates. We know these as troll dolls. Early History The first evidence of occupation in Trollsylvanian territority dates back some 8000 years into the Neolithic period, and there are tantalizing hints that the Iceman lately found in the Alps might have been a proto-Trollsylvanian speaker. The southern region of the country also includes some Proto-Elbonian occupation layers. Trollsylvania first enters recorded history, fittingly enough, in the first work to call itself History, Herodotus' Histories. In one of his usual tangents, he describes a race of people to the North, who were heard to "live North of the Scythians, before the Great Ice, who squat beneath bridges". However, as they are described to be like Greeks in almost every other respects - i.e., they don't eat their own children, they didn't have one eye in the middle of their foreheads, they didn't copulate outdoors, -- it seems that Herodotus felt the whole thing a ludicrous fraud. The next mention of Trollsylvanians, and the first by name, is in Tacitus's Germania, in which he describes the first recorded incidence of a tactic that would serve the Trollsylvanians well. It seems the legions of Marcus Aurelius were seeking the fabled land of "Trollsylvanius", rumored to be the land of the Golden Fleece (which is the probable origin of the prophecy that the state that rules Trollsylvania will rule the world -- see below). The legions were told by a number people under bridges that they just needed to cross one more bridge before they arrived. The Romans eventually tired of this and went home. Middle Ages to Recent Times The most complete non-native account of Trollsylvania in the Middle Ages can be found in the Byzantine Chronicle of Dimitrios the Uncertain, who details the peculiar customs of government, local lore, and hygiene practices (always an obsession with Dimitrios). He links the Trollsylvanians with people mentioned in the Germania, and described the election of Kings (see below). Histories actually written by Trollsylvanians can be frustrating, as dates are not consistent. A Trollsylvanian historian might use four different date systems to describe five different events. The first written chronicle by Trollsylvanian history begins in the 5th year of King Trollodon the Great (aka Trollodon the Slob, Trollodon the Confused); who proclaimed "All Trolls are Good Trolls", and was crowned in the possibly mythical Trolls' Woods (ie, Trollsylvania, "Forest of Trolls"). Trollodon's reign is still the starting point for the Trollsylvanian calender. Trollodon (Old High Trollsylvania, "Ruling Troll") is remembered for his foolishness as well as his wisdom, such his order for all trees to grow quickly or be cut down. Such behavior almost certainly lead to the practice of "sending the King downriver", in which the Assembly of Elders would gather with King by the banks of the river Gurush by the capital of Idsuck, look at one another, and, saying "Well, that's it for him, then!", toss him into the river, effectively dethroning him. (Rivers were considered no man's land, open to all, which meant if a king were to fall in one, he was out of his realm, and no longer in power). Twenty-seven of Trollsylvania's 46 kings suffered this fate. In the great Elbonian War of 205, the Trollsylvanians managed to convinced the invading Elbonians that they had just passed the Freedonians on the road, who were headed for Elbonia (the opposite story was told to the Freedonians), thus again sparing Trollsylvania from a long occupation. Trollsylvanians, who know a good thing when they see one, were one of the few peoples to make a net profit on the Crusades. They didn't actually send any soldiers (Trollsylvanians being as religiously tolerant then as now), they simply raised bridge tolls five percent. Trollsylvania also managed to foil an invasion by Napoleon. Bonaparte's troops were also seeking for Trollsylvania, for it was foretold whoever ruled Trollsylvania would rule the world. The Trollsylvanians, aware of this prophecy, and having never encountered anyone whom they thought should rule the world, once again told the invading troops that the land they were looking for were just over the next bridge. Next thing they knew, they were in Russia, and up to their eyeballs in trouble. Napoleon's chroniclers presented Russia as the object all along, but the Trollsylvanians know better. Many artists over the centuries have been inspired by Trollsylvania. Grieg's famous "In the Hall of the Mountain King" actually comes from a Trollsylvanian folk melody. It is very possible that Kafka's "Metamorphosis" was a modernization (and deliberate misreading) of an ancient Trollsylvanian legend about a boy who transforms into a dung-beetle, and his father, who despised him. Outline of the Great Epic The folk hero, Mahgnoon the Great Guinea Fowl "whose great flapping wings are like a storm" is the main character in a saga of the search for the great Well-Bucket of Power, hidden from the ordinary, which will bring power and pestilence-free water to the pure of heart. The First Canto -- The Silent One sows the Seeds of Discord; Mahgnoon's Decent from the Sky The Second Canto -- Hunt for the Bucket, the Temptation, and the Deception. The Third Canto -- Diving Down the Well of Despair ("for only by reaching the end of despair can one find hope") The Fourth Canto -- The Return of the Bucket, and Rejoycing. To Trollsylvanian Heritage Society Home Page To Seattle Cacophony Society Home Page Written by Nick Fraser, with other members of the Seattle Cacophony Society, 1997. anitar@halcyon.com ----------- Trolls of Scandinavia can either be dwarfs or giants. They live in caves near the sea, or hidden in the mountains. Scandinavian fishermen are supposed to be terrified of trolls. The Troll is similar to the ferocious man-eating giant, except that it is considered smaller. Most trolls cannot tolerate sunlight and are turned to stone, or burst when touched by sunshine. Trolls are described as having monstrously ugly faces with huge tusks, enormous malshaped noses, and arms that hang below their knees. They are usually green or gray in color and sometimes scaly. Carnivorous creatures that prefer human flesh to all other types of meat, the trolls are very powerful and hard to kill, sometimes struggling ferociously even after having been literally hacked to pieces. -------------- ... ------------- The History of the Trolls Prologue: In the beginning when God created the heavens and the earth, the earth was a formless void and darkness covered the face of the deep, while a wind from God swept over the face of the waters. Then God said, "Let there be light"; and there was light. And God saw that the light was good; and God separated the light from the darkness. God called the light Day, and the darkness he called Night. And there was evening and there was morning, the first day. And God said, "Let there be a dome in the midst of the waters, and let it separate the waters from the waters." So God made the dome and separated the waters that were under the dome from the waters that were above the dome. And it was so. God called the dome Sky. And there was evening and there was morning, the second day. And God said, "Let the waters under the sky be gathered together into one place, and let the dry land appear." And it was so. And God saw that it was good. And there was evening and there was morning, the third day. And God said, "Let there be lights in the dome of the sky to separate the day from the night; and let them be for signs and for seasons and for days and years, and let them be lights in the dome of the sky to give light upon the earth." And it was so. And there was evening and there was morning, the fourth day. And God said, "Let the waters bring forth swarms of living creatures, and let birds fly above the earth across the dome of the sky." And God saw that it was good. And there was evening and there was morning, the fifth day. And God said, "Let the earth bring forth living creatures of every kind: cattle and creeping things and wild animals of the earth of every kind." And it was so. And God saw that it was good. Then God said, "Let us make humankind in our image." So God created humankind in his image, in the image of God he created them; male and female he created them. God saw everything that he had made, and indeed, it was very good. And there was evening and there was morning, the sixth day. Thus the heavens and the earth were finished, and all their multitude. And on the seventh day God finished the work that he had done, and he rested on the seventh day from all the work that he had done. On the eighth day ... Chapter I: The Naming And so it came to be that the spawn of Satan, the evil demon Bitchy de Napa, decended unto the newly created earth in search of victims for her evil schemes. With her ever present, and not quite so demonic co-equal demon, Sardonic the Cynical Olympian (Cynical for short), Bitchy hewed from the mud a place known as Lin Field. Soon the inhabients of this newly formed earth came to the Lin Field and begin educating their young of the true nature of the force. Soon the reputation of the Lin Field was so great that the leaders of the Great Clans of the North sent their young sons to learn the ways of the ancient humanities. From the Seattle Clan came two young warriors of lesser renown. From the Clan of the Scared Sheep came a warrior of even lesser reknown. From the AsT'oria Clan came a medicine man of many faces. From the Clan of the Sal'em came a warrior of seemingly infinate wisdom. And from the Clan of the Mac came a warrior of the least reknown. The arrival of these warriors from the Great Clans of the North came to pass. Bitchy and Cynical, reveling in the warriors awesomeness, were determined to teach these warriors the true nature of the Lin Field. Using the evil magic that had rested under the Lin Field since their decendence, the demons cast a spell over the brave warriors. The brave warriors were stricken down and were taken from the world. When they found themselves back they saw they had been transfromed in to ... THE TROLLS. Cast aside by the other inhabitents of the Lin Field, the brave trolls sought refuse in a Grotto they name Latourette. Bent on insuring that the trolls could never break the evil spell cast upon them, Bitchy perched herself above the enterence to the Grotto to keep her ever present presence on them. (Cynical settled herself in a den of sadistic weirdos down the block since she didn't want to share a bathroom with the other demons who rallied to Bitchy's banner) The spell so effecive, soon Bitchy could not tell the trolls apart. And she decided to name them. The trolls, united under the leadership of the once powerful medicince man from the Goonies Clan, were hence giving their identitiys. And so The Naming came to pass ... Dopey: The crack smoking troll from the Seattle Clan Stumpy: The speaker of the trolls from the Scared Sheep Clan of the Flatheads Frumpy: The troll of great words, and lesser wisdom from the Sal'Em Clan Grumpy: The defender of the Grotto from the Mac Clan Stompy: The other white Troll for the Seattle Clan The Troll King: The Self-appointed leader of the Trolls from the Great AsT'oria Clan And Bitchy saw that it was good. And there was lunch and there was dinner, the twenty five trillionth day. To be continued ... Untitled