Date / time : 28.12.2002 22:01
Author      : Raider
Title       : minotaurs
Plain size  : 20,2 Kb
The minotaurs are one of Krynn?s most misunderstood
They are a paradox, blunt and brutal,
yet subtle and gentle. They are classified with
the armies of Evil, yet some stand out as shining
examples of goodness. There is almost nowhere
on Krynn that you find creatures so enigmatic, yet
so eminently understandable. The reason that
there have been so few treatises written on the
subject of minotaurs is that the minotaurs do not
wish to be understood by scholars, from a vicarious
point of view. They feel that if you desire to
understand the minotaurs, then you should find
out about them for yourself. Their view is, ?If you
are unwilling to face the danger, perhaps you
ought not come at all. Once you get to know us (if
you survive that long), you?ll understand us, all

In the beginning, the Gods created the four principal
races: Ogre, Elf, Man, and Animal. The elves,
servants of Good, were for the most part placed on
the Ansalonian mainland, while the ogres mainly
resided on Taladas. Humanity existed on both
continents, a balance to both the Good and Evil
races. The ?accidental? races?the gnome-spawn-
originated on Taladas when Reorx first
created the gnomes. At this point, the course of
the world was proceeding relatively smoothly;
that is, until Hiddukel convinced Reorx to forge
the Graygem. When the gnomes released the
Graygem, it careened over the entire planet, creating
magical havoc.
One of the effects of the passage of the Graygem
was the creation of the minotaur race. Originally
an ogre clan of farmers and fisherfolk on the north-western
coast of the continent of Hosk, they became
frightful combinations of man and bull when
the Graygem shrieked over their villages one terrifying
night. This was called the Night of Cruel
Transformation. Understandably, this turn of
events horrified them, and they attempted to enlist
the aid of other Taladan ogre tribes in removing
the curse.
The other tribes reacted in a hostile fashion to
this new race, often raiding the minotaur villages,
and the ogres finally devised a plan to enslave the
?impure? breed. As a result, the ogres united to
bring the minotaurs under their domination. The
minotaurs recognized the superior numbers of the
other ogre clans, and, while brave, were not fool-hardy.
They realized that resistance would be
pointless, and the ogres enslaved them. This lasted
for less than five years.
During this time, an enterprising minotaur discovered
that individual ogres were no match for
her in battle. This minotaur, Messeritha by name,
was pleased to note that not all the effects of the
Graygem were negative, and, for a short while,
she embarked on an ogre-killing spree, killing

twenty ogres in her blood-lust. However, she was
thoughtful enough to realize that since the number
of ogres easily surpassed the number of minotaurs,
she and her minotaurish comrades would
be forced to devise a plan that did not call for outright
war. Under her guidance, the minotaur
slaves secretly built sailing vessels in the wooded
areas near the coastline. Word of the plan to escape
spread to almost all the minotaurs enslaved
by the ogres.
The minotaurs prepared themselves for their exodus,
and finally the last ship was complete. Although
none of the ships was as seaworthy as the
ones the minotaurs would later develop, none
sank immediately. At this point the minotaurs were
ready to leave?but not without exacting some
form of payment. Late one night, they rose up and
claimed the price of their slavery, ruthlessly
slaughtering their sleeping-masters. Entire villages
ran red with the blood of ogres.
Most of the minotaurs fled Taladas that night after
the massacre. However, there were a few who
had not been apprised of the escape (being seen
as untrustworthy or just weak), and who therefore
remained behind. The ogres took their revenge on
the minotaurs of this group, dealing extraordinarily
harsh punishments. A small group of the minotaurs
who had been left behind did manage to
escape to safety. Their descendants now inhabit
isolated areas of Taladas, still afraid to emerge for
fear of the ogre wrath.

The minotaurs on the ships sailed westward,
where they had heard of an unclaimed land, on
which they hoped they could live in isolation from
the rest of the world.
When they finally reached the eastern shores of
Ansalon, most of them settled there. Some,
though, claimed that the land was unsuitable, and
continued sailing. Nothing further was ever heard
or seen of them.
The minotaurs set up a small society and began
to create a new life for themselves by developing
colonies. To their dismay, they ran afoul of the
dwarven Kal-Thax Empire. The dwarves, recognizing
the minotaurs as some variety of ogre, demanded
unconditional surrender. The minotaurs,
again overwhelmed by sheer numbers, were enslaved.
This state of affairs was intolerable to the minotaurs,
who, reasonably enough, were unwilling to
have escaped the ogres only have the dwarves
capture them. They began to unite behind their
hero Ambeoutin, who promised to lead them to
freedom from the hated dwarves. He gathered together
a band of minotaurs and began attacking
small towns, murdering all inhabitants. Naturally,
the minotaurs were careful to cover their traces.
In fact, Ambeoutin?s band was so skillful at misdirection
that the dwarves could not discern what
or who might have been responsible for these
atrocities. Thus, to deal with the situation, they
sealed their borders, letting no creatures in or out.
A human Wizard of the Black Robes, attempting
to magnify the trouble in the Empire, determined
by occult means that the minotaurs were responsible,
and he threw in his lot with the minotaurs,
vastly increasing their power and maneuverability.
Although wildly successful after several attacks
on larger villages, the mage, Skythus, determined
that Ambeoutin and his band needed the aid of a
powerful magical item, the Axe of the Emperors
(see ?New Magical Items?) in order to succeed.
Ambeoutin immediately set out to find this Axe,
leaving Skythus in charge of the dwarven murder
The minotaur chief is said to have journeyed
alone through great peril to gain the Axe, finally
defeating a green dragon in single combat. Despite
the lack of true details of the search, it is
known that Ambeoutin, much the worse for wear,
returned in triumph with a glowing two-handed
axe. The minotaurs who had not yet fled their
dwarven masters immediately threw off their
shackles, and rushed to join the Army of Ambeoutin.
The dwarves quickly mustered their army and
marched on the minotaurs. The minotaurs, a vastly
smaller army, were nonetheless as capable as
any dwarven army five times their size. This was
fitting because the dwarves had mustered an army
almost exactly five times the size of the minotaur
army. The deciding factor of the war was the minotaurish
hatred of the dwarves. They fought as berserkers,
each eliminating ten of the enemy before
being felled.
The battlefield turned into a slaughterhouse.
The minotaurs butchered nearly every ablebodied
male dwarf then in the Empire. The minotaurs
commandeered the empty cities, sacking
and burning. Thus it was that the Kal-Thax empire
fell. When they had destroyed the seat of the
dwarven empire, the minotaurs began to move to
the eastern portion of Ansalon, hoping to reestablish
themselves as a free people.
When the minotaurs reached the coast, they realized
that if they were to be a power in the world,
they would have to establish a kingdom, and, following
the example of their former masters, they
decided to prey upon other races. They confirmed
Ambeoutin as the first minotaur king, for he possessed
more fighting skill and experience than any
other minotaurs. He took a wife, and sired twin
children, whom he called Mithas and Kothas.
Their father trained these two children in the fighting
arts, teaching them (almost) every trick he
knew. Thus, their fighting skills made each of them
a match for any other minotaur, even at a very
young age.
Due to the nature of minotaur society, the twins
knew that only one of them could survive to become
King after their father passed away. On the
day they passed the Rite of Initiation, Ambeoutin
disappeared, taking his Axe and the mage Skythus
with him. Legend holds that he sailed into the rising sun,
from which he hoped to force the secret of light.
The twins were taken to the Arena to decide the
kingship. They proved themselves to be exact
equals in the Arena, and so they split the kingdom
into two separate provinces. The two countries existed
peacefully (for minotaurs) for about 1500
years, their inhabitants sailing the coasts and tilling
the earth, with only occasional acts of piracy.
At that point, the Istar Empire came into being.
Once again, the Minotaurs were overwhelmed,
though at a severe cost to the Istarians, and the
minotaurs were stripped from power in their kingdoms.
This disastrous state of affairs continued for
several hundred years, for not only were the minotaurs
outnumbered, the Istarians had the powerful
Solamnic Knights on their side.
Finally, the Cataclysm descended upon Krynn,
which effectively ended Istar?s stranglehold on the
minotaurs. The minotaurs took this as a sign of favor
from the Gods, and sailed across the Blood Sea
to their old land, where they reestablished their
empire. Certain individuals, whose families had
worked the sea throughout the domination of Istar,
knew that lands existed to the east, ready to be
exploited. They parlayed this information to their
brethren, who enthusiastically set sail for this
?new? land.
Mat oth-Kithka, a descendant of Ambeoutin, led
an expedition of over thirty ships to Taladas. They
came ashore in Thenol, and overwhelmed several
villages. They filled their ships with booty and began
the trek back to Ansalon. They never made it.
The stories hold that the remains of this treasure
fleet is sunk in the coastal waters near Armach.
Several adventuring parties have gone searching
for these ships, only to return emptyhanded, with
heavy losses in life and investment.
Other adventuring minotaurs landed near Kristophan
in Southern Hosk, where they found easy
pickings. The humans obviously never expected
an attack by sea, for all their fortifications had
been built facing landward. The minotaurs, led by
Eragas the Brutish, quickly subjugated all the people
of Kristophan. Eragas proclaimed himself Emperor,
and he established minotaur law
throughout New Styrllia. All those who opposed
Eragas met him in the Arena to contest his claim.
All of them lost, and paid the price for their loss?
Eragas then moved to dominate the area surrounding
New Styrllia. This ambitious maneuver,
while not completed during his lifetime, earned
him the respect of all his people, and to honor his
memory (he fell in battle against a small battalion
of humans), the minotaurs placed his young son
on the throne without any of the formal arena battles
usually surrounding such an event. His son,
named in honor of the hero Ambeoutin, worked
to complete his father?s work, and swiftly and brutally
crushed the resistance put forth by the last
few human encampments in the areas, which in-
cluded Eragala (which formerly had been named
Crinos), Okami, and Highvale. He went even further
to push into the realm of the hulderfolk, but
was never completely successful, due to the misdirections
of the hulder, and Ambeoutin?s army kept
dwindling the longer he was there. However, he
ensured that the minotaurs kept pushing for more
land to their Empire. The Conquered Lands are a
recent addition.
This, then, is the history of the minotaurs. The
minotaurs have taken every opportunity to ensure
that their power increases at every step. They are
strong, intelligent, and devious. And above all
else, one thing is certain about the minotaurs: they
will never again allow themselves to be taken into
slavery?even if it means death. They have come
into their own, and will let no one deny them their

?Honor. Family. Strength. Without these, we
would be useless. Honor informs our lives and
gives structure to our society. It enables us to resist
chaos and enslavement. Family teaches us the virtues,
the ideals that make us minotaurs. It
sharpens the horns or it cracks them. Finally,
strength is that by which we triumph. It is the raw
power of life. Individually, each of these ideals is
valuable?but not strong enough. We forge them
together . . . and when this is done, we are well-nigh
Kuroth uth Simat, Tutor and Swordmaster to the Imperial Family

A minotaur will put his family above all else, even
the good of the state. They learned that, to trust
one another, they must first be trustworthy. Thus,
the minotaur?s word is his bond. Being descended
from ogres, they naturally knew the benefit of
strength from the very beginning of their existence,
and despise creatures who lack it.
While minotaurs outwardly take after cattle, the
animal they most resemble mentally is the wolf.
They see it as an honorable, societal creature, one
devoted only to its own kind, although it repays
favors to those owed. The wolf is a fierce creature,
relying more on the power of the muscle than on
any pacifistic tendencies. Furthermore, it takes
care of its own, yet can work with other creatures
as well. Besides its raw power, it has guile and cunning.
With qualities like these, how could a minotaur
not like the wolf?

Minotaurs stand roughly 7' tall, although they can
be as much as 1,5' taller. They weigh over 350
pounds on average. Their fur, which covers their
entire body, is generally fairly short, although
there have been some exceptions in the more
brutish minotaurs. Taladan fur coloring ranges
from whitish blond to black. It is, in short, exactly
over his entire body.
It is, in short, exactly the kind of fur one
would encounter on a cow (although
one would have to be either drunk or stupid
or both to mention this to a minotaur).

As well, many minotaurs decorate
their horns with beaten gold or brass, some
counting their various victories on rings placed on
the horn. These rings usually are engraved with
some sort of pictograms that describe the win.

To the minotaurs, there is nothing of more paramount
importance than honor. They adhere rigidly
and fanatically to their moral code, for if they
do not, it could mean their destruction. They have
carefully worked out this code over hundreds of
years, although to the casual observer, it might appear
that it had been conceived overnight. With
deeper examination, however, one can see that it
extends beyond just superficial levels.
The honor priority for a minotaur is first the
land?s honor, then his family?s honor, and finally
his own honor. A minotaur is considered the sum
total of all three of these. The reasoning goes like
this: if his nation is dishonored, then his family has
not been playing its part in upholding the state.
Therefore, he himself has not been exemplary in
his behavior, for he has allowed the honor of his
family to slacken. Thus, each minotaur carries a
heavy burden, for not only does he have to worry
about his own honor, he also must carry the responsibility
for his family, and from his family, the
responsibility for the honor of the nation.
Most minotaurs are very protective of their honor,
and will harshly dissuade other races attempting
to tarnish it. There is the occasional minotaur
who only feigns honor, who will manipulate all
who come across his path. Woe to the character
who commits himself to a deal with one of these,
for the dishonest minotaur will hold the character
to the word of the deal, while completely disregarding
his obligations in the matter. It is fortunate
that minotaurs such as these are usually spotted
speedily and forcibly relieved of their lives.

Might makes right. To be weak is to be wrong.
Anything that serves the state is right.
Honor is everything in life.
To be without honor is to be without life.
Family and nation before self. The individual
means nothing next to these two.
It is dishonorable to kill another minotaur except
in fair combat.
A minotaur?s word is his bond. Once given, never
broken. Any who do so are to be publicly dishonored.
Stamp out anyone other than minotaurs using
minotaurs as slaves. Do not rest until they are
Accept all responsibility for your actions.

Minotaurs have no respect for any race other than
their own, with the single exception of the dragons.
Whether chromatic or metallic, good, evil, or
neutral, dragons are one of the few sights on Krynn
that can fill a minotaur with awe. All others must
prove their worth to the minotaurs on an individual
basis. After all, each race, in general, is simply
a collection of scum to the minotaurs? eyes, and
each patch of scum must distinguish itself from the

Elves are effete dandies with no honor (due to
their guerilla tactics), and are usually not to be
The fact that they mainly use a distance weapon suggests
that the elves do not care that they slay their
enemies dishonorably, and, therefore, the elves
do not need to be treated honorably themselves.

Kender are vermin to be exterminated. They
have no regard for the property and honor of another,
and thus their own property and honor is to
be ignored. Under almost every conceivable circumstance,
kender are untrustworthy rodents to
be avoided, or, if possible, incarcerated and executed.
Minotaurs will use any excuse at their disposal
to rid themselves of kender. Since thieves
have no place in minotaur society, a race of
thieves (despite the kender claim that they are simply
?Handlers?) has no place in the minotaurs?
grand scheme of things. Because kender do not
even make good slaves (they keep slipping their
chains and escaping from the overseers), the only
fate for them can be death.

Of all the humanoid races on Krynn, the one
that minotaurs most respect (which is not saying
much) is that of the dwarves. They see the dwarves
as hardy little individuals, who have a devotion to
making sure their system works, placing it over
themselves. However, the fact that the minotaurs
were enslaved by dwarves so long ago still rankles
the minotaurish pride, and they still hate the
dwarves for that indignity. Despite this hatred,
though, the minotaurs respect the dwarves for the
fact that dwarves are such able fighters, and perhaps
one of these days some enterprising character
will be able to mend the rift between the
dwarves and the minotaurs. Then again, perhaps
the minotaurs? hatred is too strong. One never
knows until it is tried.

The minotaurs recognize that each race has
something valuable to contribute to the world of
Krynn. This is why, instead of exterminating them
all outright, they try to enslave these others (not
including the kender and the goblins).

The minotaurs see no value in peaceful co-existence,
unless they can be convinced
that it is detrimental to them to do otherwise.
They will do all in their power to see that
honorable members of these other races are given
favored treatment and good lives.

Minotaurs hold death in no special regard. They
neither fear it nor sanctify it. When it comes for
them, as, indeed, it must come for everyone, they
desire only to greet it in a way that will honor
them. They have no respect for those who whine
and bleat when they sense the approach of their
demise. On the other hand, someone who goes to
certain death calmly and with fortitude deserves a
great measure of respect, even though he might be
an enemy, and he will be honored after death.

This is not to say that minotaurs actively seek out
death. To the contrary, they love life very much,
and try to live each day to its fullest. Their view of
death is that it is a capstone to a life. When they
face unavoidable death, they want to make sure
that their lives end on a good note, one of honor
and glory. Ideally, their deaths should prove to
others the correctness of the minotaur way of life,
and how inevitable the minotaur destiny is.

Some of the more despicable cultists even commit suicide
merely to prove a point. The majority of minotaurs
regards these cultists as deviants and decadents to
be eradicated, as there is no honor in the taking of
innocent life.


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