View Full Version : Symbols of Kingship

2010-10-21, 05:35 PM
I would like to put together a short side adventure for my campaign. It includes three magic items that were once owned by a powerful mage king. I am thinking that a king needs a crown and a scepter (maybe a rod). I haven't thought of the third item yet, but I would want it to be kingly.

The PCs in this game are almost 7th level, so I wouldn't want them to get their hands on something too powerful (so I would lean away from the Rod of Lordly Might :smallbiggrin:).

Any thoughts?

2010-10-21, 05:36 PM
Grail? (I'm just think of that one scene at the end of Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade; obviously don't make it a simple clay cup.)

Maybe a ring?

2010-10-21, 05:39 PM
The Regalia of Might, perhaps? I think it's three things. Or you can use the Cup and Talisman of Al'Akbar It's only two things, but with a crown or scepter it's three.

2010-10-21, 05:46 PM

Here is a picture of some crown jewels. It has a rod, a crown and that ball thing (no idea what it's called) and every time someone mentions crown jewels these three items pop into my mind.

2010-10-21, 05:50 PM
The clothing is also important. Purple cloaks were a common sign of kingship way back in ancient times.

Roland St. Jude
2010-10-21, 05:54 PM
It's called a sovereign's orb or globus cruciger. That'd be pretty sweet, though I'd probably replace the cross with some symbol from the setting (like a sun disk of pelor or what-have-you).

My though was more toward the purple cloak as @^ said.

2010-10-21, 05:58 PM
A mirror or crystal ball! If he's a mage king, he needs to scry. :D

2010-10-21, 05:59 PM
A king would not use something as mundane as a mirror or crystal ball.

It would be a special pool that requires it to be filled with quicksilver, and it would give scrying bonuses!

2010-10-21, 06:09 PM
The Regalia of Might
The Cup and Talisman of Al'Akbar

Where are these found?

2010-10-21, 06:10 PM
Any thoughts?

There are plenty (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_mythological_objects) of them in the real world.

Including a couple of mirrors. And Britain has a stone (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Stone_of_Scone).

You can pick almost anything and justify it. Somehow.

2010-10-21, 06:16 PM
The Regalia of Might are in the BoED and the BoVD. There's a set for each alignment. I don't know where the neutral set is to be found.

The cup and talisman...Hell, I'm not even sure they converted those to 3.5. They'd probably be in a Greyhawk splatbook, if anywhere.

EDIT: My google-fu is only turning up 1e/2e and 4e references to the Cup and Talisman. Sorry.

2010-10-21, 09:34 PM
The neutral regalia of might can be found in the Arms and Equipment Guide, versions of the other two can also be found. I would recommend a signet ring for one of the items.

2010-10-21, 09:38 PM
A mantle would round out the kingly trifecta with the crown and sceptre.

2010-10-21, 09:42 PM
I know he was a mage, but how about a sword that the king gifted to his champion.

A sweet cloak that gives a charisma bonus and a deflection bonus might also be nice.

2010-10-21, 09:42 PM
How about the Throne itself (not the porceline one)?
Song of Ice and Fire series, when the King united the 7 kingdoms, he took the swords of his vanquished and had them forged into a throne.
Yes, they were still sharp hundreds of years later, enough to cut someone. And a king who lazed around in the chair was likely to hurt himself on all that metal, because the king had said "A king should not sit easy in his throne". Another bit of folklore was that the throne would reject anyone who was not fit to sit in it (unworthy, or not the real heir), and it would reject them by cutting them.

If a king is going to scry his country, he should have a large map room of his country built. Perhaps 10 miles per foot. Then he could go to the map, walk among the map even, and have the map zoom in on what he wished to see. Maybe zoom in close enough to see individual men.

Or how about the Vest of the Archmagi in the MiC. It's 200k to purchase. An item intended for Epic characters is very nearly a minor artifact I believe. Add in a caveat that only the true heir to the throne/ the rightful king may wear the Vest. Anyoen else who does is driven insane, or perhaps sickens and dies.

2010-10-21, 09:49 PM

Here is a picture of some crown jewels. It has a rod, a crown and that ball thing (no idea what it's called) and every time someone mentions crown jewels these three items pop into my mind.

That "ball thing" is CLEARLY the Holy Hand Grenade of Antioch.

Whereupon the Holy Might of The Holy Hand Grenade of Antioch is Thusly Clearly, Rightly and Demonstraelably Demonstraeted (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=apDGPl2SfpA)

2010-10-21, 09:57 PM
It seems like the King's signet (ring) would be pretty important.

2010-10-22, 12:28 AM
Well, kings always seem to have those balls adorned with gems, with the little cross sticking out, so an orb adorned with the symbol of your deity of choice seems like a solid idea. Better yet, imbue it with powerful explosives. Hehehe...

2010-10-22, 12:57 AM
Remember, the purple cape was restricted to royalty because purple dye was rare and hard to acquire, with sea-dwelling mollusks being the only source. In a society with magic, it is not unreasonable to say that all colors are readily availible to anyone, and make the cape a more fashionable color. This way, the focus can be on the richness and rarity of the fabric (such as a silk no magic can accurately reproduce, if possible).

To find out more, click here (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tyrian_purple).

The Big Dice
2010-10-22, 05:02 AM
Surprisingly, the item in the Crown Jewels (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Crown_Jewels_of_the_United_Kingdom#Other_items) that they'd want to rescue from a hypothetical fire isn't a crown, a sceptre or a sword. It's a spoon.

Admittedly the spoon date back to the 13th century and is used in the coronation ceremony to anoint the new monarch, making it one of the more important pieces in the collection.

For a different set of things to collect that belonged to a mage-king, you could try the spoon, the ingredients for the sacred oil and the holy ampulla (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Holy_Ampulla) that the oil is held in for the ceremony.

2010-10-22, 07:13 AM
There is a variety of items that have served as the central regalia in various countries. The three classics that are common to pretty much all of Europe is the crown, the orb and the scepter. That does not mean they are the only ceremonial items used by monarchs of course, big, ornate and utterly impractical swords are popular too, so are various idiosyncratic items various countries have. Leaving Europe my knowledge gets sketchier, but i know that the regalia of the Japanese imperial family is the mirror, the sword and the rosary beads and in China yellow was the color of the emperor.

I wouldn't be able to tell what the symbolism behind any of these specific items are, just that they are the signs of rulership. The important thing is that they are traditional and symbolic, however, rather than the practical or monetary value they represent. Making ornate versions is a good way of showing off the wealth and power of your monarchy, though.

2010-10-22, 07:36 AM
It's called a sovereign's orb or globus cruciger.

That just sounds dirty. :smalltongue:

2010-10-22, 08:28 AM
My vote is for Orb, all the way. "Crown, Orb and Sceptre" is the traditional set (which is why the Crown, Orb and Sceptre of Might exist in D&D). Just use google images to look up Crown Orb Sceptre, you'll see what I mean. Sure, the monarch has other items: swords for knighting people, cups for drinking out of, a throne, robes, cloaks, ermine, spoons... but for a pseudo-European fantasy monarch, Orb is the way to go.

Of course, if you want to emulate a different culture, the Imperial Regalia of Japan is a good place to start (another 3 part set): that's a sword, a mirror and a jewel.

2010-10-22, 01:44 PM
It seems like the King's signet (ring) would be pretty important.

Or do one better and have the actual official seal of the realm.