Holy Circle of Jora

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The Holy Circle is essentially a guild for spell-slingers who follow the teachings of Jora, goddess of knowledge. Because of the great power magic-users can wield, the Holy Circle has been charged by the city of Khelekeska with oversight of all uses of magic. Use of the dangerous and forbidden arts of necromancy and entropy are strictly monitored, and so is the use phantasm magic because of its potential to influence or damage the mind in unseen ways.

Guide, Instruct, and Monitor, The Circle Knights Are Here for Your Protection, A Bastion of Magical Knowledge

Purpose

The Holy Circle is charged with locating magically talented individuals regardless of the magical background. When someone with a talent for magic is found they can be admitted to the Holy Circle, or they can have their talent expunged. For those who view magic as a curse, removing their natural ability to wield magic is a traumatic but necessary evil. For those who are admitted to the Holy Circle, education on a wide variety of magical topics and talents is offered, from Alchemy to Wizardry. However, since tuition can be expensive, those unable to afford to pay for their education usually gain only the most basic understanding of their magical talents and must work off their debt through service to high level mages of the Circle.

License to Cast

Full-fledged members of the Circle in good standing have license to use magic for their own benefit or on behalf of the city state of Khelekeska. Apprentices are permitted to practice their magic only within the protected grounds of the Holy Circle of Jora's Academy of Magic. The reason is that the academy grounds are heavily warded to prevent runaway spells and summoned creatures from escaping the grounds and harming the local populace. Apprentices have not yet proven master sufficient to guarantee the safety of others, so the only safe place is a magical school.

This restriction is viewed by the Triumvirate as the same as for any training facility. Archers practice on an archery field. Warriors practice their trade on training grounds. Therefore magical professions, which can be even more dangerous absolutely must have a similarly safe place for practice.

The Dormitories

Separate quarters are prepared for practitioners of wizardry and sorcery, although all accommodations are technically coed. But since it is very rare for a female to wield wizardry and equally rare for a male to wield sorcery, it's still effectively divided on across gender lines.

Training

Acolytes of divine magic must attend classes and abide by the rule of practicing magic only on academy grounds until they are judged to be worthy of the Temple and made a full-fledged priest or priestess, but they live at the temple with the other initiates and the priesthood. Temple priests have their own rules regarding aptitude and graduation from Acolyte status but support the Holy Circle and its important task by sending its young initiates to the Academy.

Witchcraft is not taught at the Academy of Khelekeska because the goals of a witch cannot always coincide with the goals of the Holy Circle. This is because witches have made a pact with a greater power, be it fae or demonic, and it is the will of this patron that must take precedence for a witch. Since the Circle cannot trust them, and because it is unlawful for an unlicensed mage to practice magic outside the Academy, witchcraft is illegal by default. Witches tend to be quite adept at hiding among normal people. Their marks are often not easily discovered and identified as they are for sorceresses. However, their tendency to be agents for deadly, corruptive powers makes them an enemy feared by the public. When a witch is discovered or rumored to be active, the Holy Circle dispatches the Circle Knights to deal with the matter by finding the witch and neutralizing his or her power. If neutralizing their power proves impossible, then the matter is settled by the edge of a blade. For, as Arch-Wizard Falinor once said, "Witches are made, not born." It requires a conscious act, a desire to make a deal for power at any price for an individual to gain powers of witchcraft.

It's worth noting that druidic magic is also not taught at the Academy. This is largely the domain of tribal people who are do not dwell within the bounds of the city state.

The Ten Masters

Each school of magic is led and taught by a master of that school of magic. Although magical domains granted to priests and priestesses by their link to their gods cannot be directly instructed, practitioners of priestcraft usually find classes in similar schools of wizardry and sorcery to be very helpful.

The title of master is granted to the headmaster of each school of magic regardless of gender.

One of the masters is then selected by their own membership to serve as Archmage. The Archmage serves a three year term and then may elect to step down or state a desire to continue service. The council of masters then either votes to reinstate the Archmage or they will vote on a replacement.