The Court of Duurgard
The Court of Duurgard was founded as a charitable secret society in 2003 by self-styled ‘principled individuals who have known enough war to desire peace’ in the nation of Castamere. It was named after the sword Duurgard, weapon of the Castamerian King Aelric, and intended to model Aelric’s principles of honor, diplomacy, and aiding one’s fellow man.
While King Aelric himself was never a member, it is said that he was so moved by their principles that, when approached, he gave the sword Duurgard itself into their keeping, with the words: “I believe, with the help of men and women like yourselves, that I will never need this weapon again.”
Membership was always exclusive, as meetings were held in secret: new members were selected by the group not on the premise of birth or status, but on how well an individual’s life was seen to uphold the ideals of the Court.
The Court of Duurgard served through much of the next several decades as a group of philosophers and scholars on the confederate system of government, as well – perhaps most importantly – as a charitable organization, giving moneys and other supplies provided by the members to the poor and those affected by natural disasters or other crises.
The group had fallen into greater obscurity by 2050 Z.R., its ideals less popular in the modern Castamerian court in particular – a court strongly focused on King Aethor’s philosophy of ‘realpolitik.’ They continued to serve as loyalists, harshly against rebellion in any form, but were conscientious objectors of the new direction of the Confederacy.
These views, unfortunately, were considered quite dangerous and potentially subversive in the time of the True Sons Rebellion.
The primary headquarters of the Court of Duurgard is currently believed to be located somewhere in Nordenfell – where the government’s ideals more closely align with the Court’s own – though they have members and meeting places throughout the Confederacy.