|House Bonisagus, as the House most interested in the mechanics
of magic, have developed a terminology all of their own to describe magic.
Other Houses find conversations between Bonisagus magi as incomprehensible as
- Auras and Aura Theory.
Any given aura of any type has three important aspects to a Bonisagus:
its Flux, its Resonance and its Stratification.
a) Auric Flux: This is the internal cycle of an aura; the
difference, for instance, between day and night, or peak to trough. Flux is
defined as the difference in resonance between peak and trough in an aura
cycle; an aura showing significant flux (>20% of its mean level) is
referred to as Tidal. Flux is measured in Change in Resonance (DmQ or
b) Auric Resonance: This is the frequency of optimum magical
resonance for an aura; in game terms, its score. It is measured in
milliThaums (mQ) and is defined as the median point of an aura's flux.
c) Auric Stratification: The formation of Regio or levels
of reality in an aura. Stratification occurs when a single aura resonates
at more than one level.
d) Thaums: The unit of measurement of magical potential. The unit
of reference is the aura of Durenmar, which at median flux resonates at exactly
1 Thaum. The standard unit of measurement is the milliThaum (mQ)
As an example, we will take a magical aura which in game terms has an aura of 5
with no associated Regio. It cycles to 6 at midnight and 4 at midday. To a
Bonisagus, this would be described as follows:
The Aura resonates at a median of approximately 500
milliThaums, with a delta of about 170 milliThaums flux on a diurnal cycle with
peak at midnight and trough at midday. The aura resonates only at this level;
there is no stratification.
There are two competing theories for how Auras form;
Fluid Vis Theory and
Probability Well Theory. For further data
on these two theories see the Excerpts
from the Library of Durenmar sections on the two theories.
A Special Note for Followers of Probability Well Theory: Those who
regard Auras as Probability wells measure their depth in terms of
change in local rigidity modulus of normality, (DRmodN) which
usually gives a similar figure to a resonance as the same baseline
(Durenmars Aura) is used in both cases. DRmodN is usually expressed as a
fraction; in the above example, a proponent of Probability Well Theory would
describe the same Aura thus:
The Aura resonates at a median DRmodN of approximately
0.5, with a flux of about 0.085 either way on a diurnal cycle with peak at
midnight and trough at midday. The aura resonates only at this level; there is
Probability Well Theory is not actively taught at Durenmar, though the
theoretical leaders of the House are not prepared to dismiss it out of hand.
- Spells and Magic in General Use
Formula (pl. Formulae): Hermetic, formulaic spells, esp. when
referring to commonly used and well known spells such as Pilum of Fire or
Equivalent Formula: A spontaneous spell designed to duplicate a
nonHermetic magical effect
Abbreviated Formula: A rapid spontaneous casting of a formulaic
spell under emergency conditions (referred to by the unenlightened as a
Utility: A spell designed to effect other spells, eg. Waiting
Spell, Watching Ward, Spell
Analysis Suite: A group of spells all designed to be cast
together, complementing each other.
High Art: Vim
Our Little Ritual: The Parma Magica
Destabilisation: loss of control (botch) of a spell or procedure.
Pook-O (more correctly, Pook-U): Perseverance and Wisdom are the
Keys to Understanding - quoted by Bonisagus to their less enlightened brethren.
Often shortened to Pook, and used as a mild expletive.
At One with his Magic: A polite euphemism for
- General Bonisagus Terms:
The First House: House Bonisagus
Artificers: Commonly used to refer to House Verditius but can
apply to any magus who makes items
The Faculty: The ruling council of the House
The Universal Theory: Hermetic Magic
Talking Shop: Theorist slang for a Tribunal meeting
Dilletante: Theorist slang for a Trianomist
LabRat or Retort Head: Trianomist slang for Theorists
Pottering, or The Solitary Vice: Trianomist slang for Laboratory
Black Art: Diabolic or Hierarchic magic
Theurgy: Church magic, i.e. miracles, etc.
Our Master: Bonisagus
Our Lady: Trianoma
Archaeothaumatology: The search for the antecedents of magic in
the Cult of Mercury, Greek history and Egypt. Refers also to the activities of
- The Myth and the Reality of Bonisagus Hobbies
It is something of a joke among the other Houses that for all their power and
knowledge, Bonisagus magi havent the first clue about some pretty basic
matters of human interaction. While it is true that according to the teachings
of Bonisagus the desires of the flesh can be a distraction from the
concentration required for true Art, it is far from true that the House
consists solely of dirty old men and lecherous pederasts. Most committed
members of the Trianomist tradition are fully aware of the uses to which a
handsome face and smooth moves can be put and are not in the least bit
backwards in using them wherever necessary. Owing, however, to the tendency in
the Theoretical tradition to take apprentices of a bookish, solitary nature
then train them in hothouse conditions for fifteen years before a career that
as often as not is spent entirely in the lab, it is no wonder that a certain
percentage of theoretically inclined Bonisagus magi are perhaps not entirely at
their ease around members of the opposite sex.
This has led to the myth of the Byzantine Pornography; the fallacious story
that hidden in the Great Library of Durenmar is a cache of texts from
Constantinople displaying acts better imagined than described, over which the
senior Bonisagus pore with an entirely unhealthy glee. This story has been
aggravated by Archmage Mausolus, who does indeed collect Byzantine texts, and
numbers some extremely dirty books among his collection. The behaviour of one
Archmage, however, should not reflect on the rest of his tradition, even if
they do tend to be perhaps a touch on the naïve side regarding the ways of