Xian Society

Civil society in Xian is divided into three large groups- the commoners, the scholars, and the princely ones. The divisions are deep and very clearly marked, and anyone who spends any time in the city will be acquainted with them in careful depth.

Commoners comprise roughly 98 percent of the citizens of Xian. They are foreigners, peasants, fishermen, artisans, and other lesser folk who have not distinguished themselves in the service of the city-state. Adventurers are generally considered to be of the commoner class unless they are of exceptional distinction, in which case promotion into the daifu class is a possibility. Commoners can generally expect a reasonably fair hearing when pressing a case against another commoner, and most magistrates won't take bribes against them unless it's a very good bribe. Attempting to get justice against one of higher station is generally a lost cause unless the offending scholar is greatly disliked or the victim can move the jury to sentimental pity. No commoner with any sense ever tries to proffer a case against a princely one- they'd be lucky to escape with their lives for such insolence.

The scholarly class, or the "daifus", composes a little less than two percent of the populace, with the status awarded to the scholar, his or her spouse, children, and parents. Grandchildren return to commoner status unless they or their parents acquit themselves fittingly. A daifu may not necessarily have anything to do with education, and instead have acquired the rank through public service. They alone are permitted to wear jade ornaments at their belt, and this sign is invariably flaunted lest a commoner mistake them.

No more than two hundred people in Xian bear the august rank of "princely one", or "zhuhou"- the Junzi, the Hundred Magistrates, and the leaders of the army, navy, and city watch. They and their immediate families alone are permitted to wear the blue-buttoned cap of a zhuhou. Commoners tend to avoid them at all cost, as their will is utterly unquestionable by one of so lowly an estate. Very rarely, a great hero will be elevated to this estate. This has happened only six times since the founding of the city.

Unless otherwise stated, the content of this page is licensed under Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 License