The Gorean World

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'Gor,' he said, 'is the name of this world.  In all the languages of this planet, the word means Home Stone.' He paused, noting my lack of comprehension.  'Home Stone,' he repeated.  'Simply that.'

'In peasant villages on this world,' he continued, 'each hut was originally built around a flat stone which was placed in the centre of the circular dwelling.  It was carved with the family sign and was called the Home Stone.  It was, so to speak, a symbol of sovereignty, or territory, and each peasant, in his own hut, was a sovereign.'

'Later,' said my father, 'Home Stones were used for villages, and later still for cities.  The Home Stone of a village was always placed in the market; in a city, on the top of the highest tower.  The Home Stone came naturally, in time, to acquire a mystique, and something of the hot, sweet emotions as out native peoples of Earth feel towards their flags became invested in it.'

My father had risen to his feet and had begun to pace the room, and his eyes seemed strangely alive.  In time I would come to understand more of what he felt.  Indeed, there is a saying on Gor, a saying whose origin is lost in the past of this strange planet, that one who speaks of Home Stones should stand, for matters of honour are here involved, and honour is respected in the barbaric codes of Gor.

'These stones,' said my father, 'are various, of different colors, shapes, and sizes, and many of them are intricately carved.  Some of the largest cities have small, rather insignificant Home Stones, but of incredible antiquity, dating back to the time when the city was a village or only a mounted pride of warriors with no settled abode.'

My father paused at the narrow window in the circular room and looked out on to the hills beyond and fell silent.

At last he spoke again.

'Where a man sets his Home Stone, he claims, by law, that land for himself.  Good land is protected only by the swords of the strongest owners in the vicinity.'
Tarnsmen of Gor page 26

Gor is a series of books written by the author John Norman from the mid 1960's up through 2001 with 26 current titles. They tell various stories about a world parallel to earth that is slightly smaller than earth and shielded from view by way of the "Priest Kings" who are the rulers of the planet. Priest Kings are essentially large praying mantas like creatures who possess very advanced technology including but not limited to: space travel, video surveilance, long distance weaponry, the ability to destroy whole cities at once, and the ability to shield the planet of Gor. Gor itself is comprised of many peoples and in many ways poses many similarities to the lands of ancient greece.

Slavery is common on Gor, in fact it is a pivotal part of the society of Gor. But everyone in Gorean society has a place in it. Free People both men and women have what are called Castes or Clans. These Castes are livelihood and what a person does for the betterment of their city/village/camp/lodge/holding. There are many of these Castes ranging from Initiates(priests), Warriors(soldiers), Physicians(doctors), Builders(builders), Scribes(writers) to name a few. But those are just the five High Castes, there are many more lower Castes. Slaves are not permitted Castes because they have no rights on Gor.

There are many cultures on the world, many of which are reminiscant of the cultures of Earth but they all engage in slavery. There are Torvaldslanders who bear a striking similarity to the vikings of earth. Taharians who are very similar to the people of the middle east. People of the Ukungu who are described much like the tribes of the congo. Tuchuks and Wagon peoples of the plains who are very similar to the mongols of the east. Red Savages are described exactly like the native americans of north america. Those of the cities of Gor are most closely likened to the people of ancient greece, things are very similar between the two.