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Guide to Knots

Any IC guided can be found here. This includes color info, the plot, and location-specific guides. The censuses and wing list can be found here as well.
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Guide to Knots

Introduction
Many passes past, Pern abandoned use of honorific titles, surnames, and middle names, instead favouring a visual method of identifying people living within Pern’s elaborate social structure. Since literacy was not a given, identification had to be denoted with visual symbolism, and simple enough to be taught to children and adults alike, across Pern. Instead, the identification took the form of color-coded knots and badges, with more complexly-knotted and looped shoulder knots indicating higher rank. They allow anyone on Pern who has been given the most basic education the ability to identify any given person’s rank at a glance, which is important in more traditionalist places– failure to identify a superior can result in punishment.

Since Pernese sites have a lot of conflicting information, this guide’s specifics apply only to TPA’s canon. After all, this is one of very few places you can have a rider-crafter or double impression!

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What are knots?
Shoulder knots, often shortened into just ‘knots’, are looped and knotted cords used for personal identification, telling, at a glance, where a person is from, what their profession is, and how highly-ranked they are, as well as if they have any bonded. They are attached to the shoulder via slipping over the sleeve and pinning at the top, and meant to be easily switched between outfits. People are required to wear either a badge or shoulder knots to indicate their position– they are most often worn to differentiate a person from Holdless folk. They’re considered highly official, and punishments for forgery of knots are grave– the crime itself is seen as identity theft. Punishments can extend to branding, exile, and execution in extreme cases.
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Shoulder Knots, In-Depth
The knots themselves indicate:

Residency

---- Indicated by one cord present in every set of knots, this is a twisted cord comprised of two strings twisted around each other.
---- Weyrs always include black as a secondary color.
---- Holds and Halls always include the primary color of the weyr under whose aegis they operate as their secondary color.

Profession
---- Indicated by a second cord, again comprised of two strings twisted together.
---- Shows what their profession or craft is.
---- If they are holders, shows whether or not they are blooded.

Rank
---- Indicated by the number of loops and by the decorations– tails and tassels both appear.
---- Craft ranks use strings falling and craft-colored tassels, whereas rank at a Hold or Hall will use loops– they can nest together.
---- In the case of Single loop: one goes around (under) the arm. In the case of Double/Triple: one goes under, the others on top.
---- Top loops on triple loops have different sizes to nest neatly with each other. The top loops are larger than a double loops'.
---- String/Tassel: hangs free from top of loops. Tassel/s hang down inside the centermost top loop.

Bonded
---- Indicates whether they have any bonded lifemates, and what color those lifemates are.
---- Takes the form of a thread wound around the rider/handler cord in the profession cord.
---- In the case of there being two lifemates, the first will be given a second thread.
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Cord Components

Primary Cord: Location
This cord is two strings twisted together. One shows the primary color of the weyr whose aegis it is under, and the other is a color of the Hold. Minor holds and cotholds will use the color of the more major hold they send their tithings to, and will have a thread of their own color twisted around the greater holds' to indicate that they are a part of but still separate from the differently-named and geographically-separate other Hold.

Secondary Cord: Profession
This cord is, again, two strings twisted together, and shows the difference between a smithcrafter and a scribe, and between a layman-rider and a rider who has been licensed in or has mastered a craft. This cord is single-colored in most cases, though bonded have either a second cord if they are also licensed in a craft. Some riders choose to drop their accreditations if their former – this is mostly seen in licensed farmcrafters, though fishers and other crafters may make the decision for various individual reasons– many apprentices to specialized crafts drop their apprenticeship before they have a chance to walk the tables, though that is less common in intervals.

If person in question has a bonded, they will have their lifemate's thread twisted with their rider or handler string. If a wherhandler has two bonded, the first thread will be accompanied by a second to indicate the older age and relative "senority" of being the first and primary bond, and the second bonded will be twisted around the other string. Firelizards are never put into the knots of their bonded.
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Loop Configuration: Weyrs
Riders show rank by design and complexity of shoulder knots, which represent both Weyr and the color of their dragon. They may also wear a badge indicating their Wing affiliation. Non-ranking residents wear a simple cord in Weyr colors.

Weyrfolk
---- Drudge: Loop under arm. Alternatively, a round badge with weyr colors may be worn.
---- Resident: Loop under arm. No badge may be worn as an alternative.
---- Candidate: Single simple loop under arm, pure white.
---- Asst. Headwoman: Loop under arm, one loop over, plus tassel in Weyr color.
---- Headwoman/Steward: Loop under arm, two loops over, plus tassel in Weyr color.

Riders/Handlers
---- Weyrling/Wherling: Loop under arm, lifemate thread.
---- Rider/Handler: Loop under arm, one loop over, lifemate thread/s.
---- Wing/Crewsecond: Loop under arm, one loop over, lifemate thread/s, plus tassel in wing color.
---- Wing/Crewleader: Loop under arm, two loops over, lifemate thread/s, plus tassel in wing color.

Weyrleadership
---- Asst. Candidatemaster: Loop under arm, one loop over, lifemate thread/s, plus tassel in white.
---- Candidatemaster: Loop under arm, two loops over, lifemate thread/s, plus tassel in white.
---- Asst. Wher/Weyrlingmaster: Loop under arm, one loop over, lifemate thread/s, plus tassel in black.
---- Wher/Weyrlingmaster: Loop under arm, two loops over, lifemate thread/s, plus tassel in black.
---- Junior Flightleader: Loop over arm, two loops over, lifemate thread, plus tassel in silver.
---- Flightleader: Loop over arm, two loops over, lifemate thread, plus two tassels in silver.
---- Junior Wherleader: Loop over arm, two loops over, lifemate thread, plus tassel in gray.
---- Wherleader: Loop over arm, two loops over, lifemate thread, plus two tassels in gray.
---- Junior Weyrleader: Loop under arm, two loops over, lifemate thread, plus tassel in bronze.
---- Weyrleader: Loop under arm, Two loops over, lifemate thread, plus two tassels in bronze.
---- Junior Weyrwoman: Loop under arm, two loops over, lifemate thread, plus tassel in gold.
---- Weyrwoman: Loop under arm, Two loops over, lifemate thread, plus two tassels in gold.




Loop Colors: Weyrs

Primary Loop: Location
---- Benden: Red and Black.
---- Fort: Brown and Black.
---- HR: Dark Blue and Black.
---- Igen: Yellow and Black.
---- Ista: Orange and Black.
---- Semaca: Brown and Red.
---- Telgar: White and Black.

Secondary Loop: Profession
---- Resident: Primary Weyr Color, plus craft if applicable
---- Candidate: Pure White, plus thread in craft color if applicable.
---- Rider: Black, plus craft if applicable
---- Handler: Gray, plus craft if applicable

Bonded Threads: Lifemates
---- Gold: Gold
---- Bronze: Bronze
---- Brown: Brown
---- Garnet: Garnet
---- Blue: Blue
---- Green: Green
---- White: Cream
---- Mutation: Violet
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Loop Configuration: Holds
Holders indicate their Hold with a round badge showing the heraldry or with a shoulder knot of the appropriate colors. Lord and Lady Holders, and their blood wear a thread to show whether it is a major or minor Hold (gold for major, silver for moderate).
Holders
---- Drudge: Loop under arm. Alternatively, a badge with hold heraldry may be worn.
---- Resident: Loop under arm. No badge may be worn as an alternative.
---- Asst. Steward: Loop under arm, one loop over.
---- Steward: Loop under arm, two loops over.

Holdleadership
---- Blooded: Loop under arm, one loop over, metallic thread.
---- Alternatively, a metal-ringed shield with hold heraldry may be worn (silver for minor holds, gold for major).
---- Holder’s Heir: Loop under arm, one loop over, metallic thread, one metallic tassel.
---- Alternatively, a small enamelled crest may be worn.
---- Lady Holder: Loop under arm, two loops over, metallic thread, one metallic tassel.
---- Alternatively, a small enamelled crest may be worn.
---- Lord Holder: Loop under arm, two loops over, metallic thread, two metallic tassels.
---- Alternatively, a large enamelled crest may be worn.




Loop Colors: Holds

Primary Loop: Location
----Major Hold: Primary Hold Color and Primary Weyr Color.
----Moderate Hold: Primary Hold Color and Primary Weyr Color.
----Small Hold: Greater Hold Color, with thread wrapped around in Primary Hold Color, and Primary Weyr Color.

Secondary Loop: Profession
---- Resident: Primary Hold Color, plus craft if applicable
---- Rider: Black, plus craft if applicable
---- Handler: Gray, plus craft if applicable
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Loop Configuration: Crafts
Crafters show rank with shoulder cords in craft colors, complexity increasing with rank. A round badge may also be worn to show the craft affiliation.

Crafters
---- Apprentice: Loop/s bound at top with white, single central band in craft color runs through, short string hanging down.
---- Journeyman: Loop/s bound at top with craft color, single central band in white runs through, long string hanging down.
---- Master: Loop/s bound at top with craft color, two strings hanging down.

Craftleadership
---- Craftsecond: Loop under arm, two loops on top, Loops bound at top with two bands of craft color, tassel between bands.
---- Craftmaster: Loop under arm, two loops on top, Loops bound at top with three bands of craft color, tassels between bands.




Loop Colors: Halls

Primary Loop: Location
----Major Hall: Craft Color and Primary Weyr Color.
----Minor Hall: Craft Color, with thread wrapped around in Greater Hold Color, and Primary Weyr Color.

Secondary Loop: Profession
---- Resident: Craft Color
---- Rider: Black, plus craft if applicable
---- Handler: Gray, plus craft if applicable

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Craft Colors
---- Harper Hall: Bright Blue
---- Healer Hall: Medium Green
---- Smithing Hall: Bright Red
---- Mine Hall: Copper
---- Beast Hall: Dark Yellow
---- Farmer Hall: Dark Green
---- Vintner Hall: Wine Red
---- Glass Hall: Aqua
---- Fisher Hall: Sky Blue
---- Weaver Hall: Lavender
---- Tanner Hall: Dark Brown
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Loops for Transients
Transients are non-stationary members of Pernese society that carry out the crucial role of resource and information transportation, as well as bringing culture from Hold to Hall to Weyr. Traders, Performers, Runners, and Caravanners all have professional cords that they wear, similarly to the craft cords of other crafts. The location thread is, instead of a bicolour of hold/hall/weyr, a simple, undyed flax-colour to indicate their mobile nature and lack of obligation to tithe to the weyrs, combined with a two-coloured cord to indicate affiliation with a specific wagon train– they are treated, in a way, like moving Holds or Crafthalls.

A Note About The Holdless
Unless they fit into at least one of the above categories, holdless do not qualify for knots. Holdless are not transients, crafters, refugees, drudges, or cotholders– they are outside of the social fabric and structure of Pern, and outcasted by society. They are not allowed to wear knots or badges, and branded are not allowed to approach Holds, though those that aren’t criminals will still likely find that being accepted as a Holdless to be difficult at best and asking for a brand at worst.
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