Kierath Ranamor
Memorial Library

.:| Quote |:.

"Honor isn't about making the right choices. It's about dealing with the consequences."
-- Kierath Ranamor

.:| Vornae Proverbs |:.

"I no naka no kawazu taikai o shirazu."
A frog in a well does not know the great sea.

"Ame futte chi katamaru"
After the rain, earth hardens

.:| Libraries |:.

Guide On How To Write A Guild Charter

Every Duchy seems to have several necessary guilds, such as the healer's guild and mage's guild, that provide essential services for the Duchy. Many Duchies also have other guilds that may provide a variety of services, such as weaponsmithing, message couriers, or even magical item merchanting. With all these potential guilds, there needs to be a way to keep track of and organize guilds, and in most Duchies, that method is the charter system.

Guild charters are usually kept on file with the Duke or legal scribe of a particular duchy, and they provide a way for the Duchy to keep track of who is doing what within the Duchy. There are several key elements that must be present within any well-written guild charter.

First, the name of the guild must be listed. There are not many requirements for the name, and in most places it can be as creative as the guild would like it to be, but it obviously cannot be anything illegal. For example, in most places, if you decided to name your guild the Necromancers Guild or the Thieves Guild, there is a good chance that your guild will not be approved, and an equally good chance you will be thrown in jail.

Second, the main location of the guild must be listed. This should be specific down to the city level. For example, it would probably not be good enough to say that your guild was located within the Barony of Capulus, but it would be acceptable to say that your guild was located within the city of Sercia in the Barony of Capulus. In many areas, it is permissible to then move the guild later on, but such changes usually have to be approved through the Duke or the legal scribe.

Third, the purpose of the guild should be listed. This requirement follows many of the same restrictions that the name of the guild does, and nothing illegal is allowed. Again, if you decided to say that the purpose of your guild was to, "hire out assassins to take out prominent nobles," your guild charter would not be approved and you would probably be thrown in jail. Essentially, when you are formulating a purpose for your guild charter, think about why you decided to form a guild in the first place. Did you want to heal others? Did you want to go treasure hunting? Did you want to provide massages? Any of these things could be a legitimate purpose for a guild.

Fourth, the guild should have its own set of by-laws. These should conform to the laws of the Duchy in which the guild is chartered. Usually, by-laws specify what requirements there are for guild membership, as well as what requirements there are for remaining in the Guild. They may also specify any relevant items specific to the guild. For example, in a weaponsmiths guild, they may specify how much gold weapons are to be sold for.

Fifth, the guild should have provisions for the choosing and removal of guild officers. Typically, guild officers are those below the guildmaster that help in the administration of the guild. Guild officers may include assistant guildmasters, guild scribes, and any other officers the specific guild sees fit to create. In most guilds, the guild officers are chosen either by the guildmaster or by a vote of the members of the guild. Guild officers are often removed in much the same way, though of course each guild is free to create its own policies in this area.

Sixth, the charter must list the internal structure of the guild. Most guilds are broken down into guildmaster, guild officers, journeymen, and apprentices. However, there is much room for creativity here, and in fact a great deal of guilds are broken down simply into guildmaster and guild members. The decision as to what structure to use must is best made by each individual guild.

Seventh, the charter must include a process for amendment of the charter. Typically, this process involves a majority vote of the members of the guild, but some guilds do it differently. In some guilds, the guildmaster can unilaterally modify the guild charter. If a charter is modified after it has been approved, the modification should be brought to the attention of the Duke or legal scribe for re-approval.

The eighth thing that should be attached to the charter is a list of the charter members of the guild. In other words, the original people who are bringing the guild into being should be listed here.

After all that has been completed, the guild charter is finished, and needs to be ratified and approved. Ratification requires that the guild charter be submitted to a vote of the guild members. If they ratify the charter, then the charter must be taken to the local nobility. For example, if I was trying to get a guild started in the town of Exeter in Therendry, I would have to take my guild charter to the Lord of Exeter in order to have him approve it. Once that is done, the last step that needs to be taken is the charter needs to be submitted to the Duke or legal scribe for approval. Once it has the Duchy seal of approval, the charter is an official document and the guild is an official guild.

It is recommended that several copies of the guild charter be scribed, so that the local nobility can keep one on file, the Duchy can keep one on file, and the guild itself can have one on file.