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Librarian, member Damiane de
by Lady Calarriel Nevone
Peer of the Realm
The Cassiline Brotherhood is an order
of priests who swear allegiance to the Precepts of Cassiel.
Cassilines share an affinity with the Yeshuites, still worshipping
the One God but believing also in Elua and his companions. Cassiel
didn’t break faith with the One God, but only turned away in shame.
The Cassilines believe Cassiel took up the duty the One God
neglected: loving the son of Yeshua’s blood. Cassiel, alone among
the eight compainions, took no province of Terre d’Ange as his own,
choosing instead to remain at Elua’s side as he traversed the world,
a choice for which Cassiel believed himself eternally damned.
Cassiel has no temples, but the Cassiline Brotherhood was founded
The Cassiline Brotherhood is highly respected and held in deep
regard. The Brotherhood is so respected that, for many years, the
ruler of Terre D’Ange was guarded and protected by Cassiline
Brothers. To be a Cassiline means to protect and serve, a philosophy
that is ingrained in all members of the brotherhood. The Cassiline
Brotherhood traditionally encompassed only men; however, in the last
several decades women have been allowed admittance to its halls. The
life of a Cassiline is hard and rigorous, requiring intensive
The Cassiline Order is a harsh one, far more rigorous and stern than
that of Naamah. Training for the Cassiline Brotherhood takes ten
years. After training is complete, the apprentice takes vows to
become a Brother. As a Cassiline Brother, members are sworn to only
draw their weapons to defend their lives or to protect their
companions or wards. Cassiline Brothers are also only allowed to
draw their sword to kill and thus fight using only daggers.
Cassilines also protect themselves with steel vambraces. Serving as
a shield, the vambraces are used to deflect blades and even arrows.
Cassilines also take a vow of celibacy upon joining the order, an
oath that, if broken, will result in expulsion from the Brotherhood.
As a Brother, Cassilines must perform their duties for five years
and have the duities judged exemplary by the Prefect, the head of
the Cassiline Brotherhood, before newly pledged brothers are given
permission to visit family.
The Cassiline fighting style is graceful and fluid, taking years to
master. All Cassiline forms, barring one, have names drawn from
nature. Forms include Birds on the Wing, Mountain Streams, and Trees
Bending in the Wind, each a description of what the Cassiline does
while in the form. Members of the Cassiline Brotherhood practice
training forms every day to continue to hone their fighting skills.
The fighting style is centered on symmetry and balance and designed
for efficiency in tight quarters. The Cassiline fighting style is a
circular one which requires Brothers to visualize their fighting
space in spheres. The inner sphere is known as a Cassiline’s own
space and the outer sphere is an opponent’s. If there are multiple
opponents, there are multiple spheres. Each sphere is defined by its
own quadrants which are marked and measured like hours on a sundial.
The final sphere is that of the Cassiline’s ward. It is the
Cassiline’s duty to protect their ward at all costs. The final
strike the Cassiline Brothers are taught is to be used as a last
resort. The move named the Terminus is performed by the Cassiline
throwing his right-hand dagger to slay his ward, while slitting his
own throat with the left-hand dagger.
* The above mentioned history and explanation of the Cassiline
Brotherhood is drawn from information provided in the Kushiel series
by Jacqueline Carey. The history does include the decision to bring
women into the Brotherhood which is not in the series, however, is
described through our community site.