Bearded Priests of Norvos
Norvos is home to a group of “bearded priests” that train elite guardsmen. Unwanted children are given to the priests at a young age to enter training, which can be completed as early as the age of sixteen. At the end of a student’s training, a ceremony is performed in which the student “weds” his two-handed longaxe, which will be his principal weapon for life.
At the end of the ceremony, the priests brand an axe symbol into the center of the student’s chest. The student then takes “simple vows for simple men” consisting of “Serve. Obey. Protect,” and enters lifelong service to a master. The priests may send their students to serve rich individuals in distant lands. Areo Hotah, the captain of Doran Martell’s guard, is one such student.