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FAQ / Life on Pern / Craft Information / Harper Craft

Last updated 30th July 2007 by Eimi

Harper Hall History & Description at Emerald Falls Hold

The Harper Hall at Emerald Falls Hold has been in existence for a little over a century, but the harper presence has been there since the Hold's founding. The original building was a small stone structure, housing four classrooms and a few small sleeping rooms. Here, the children of the Hold and nearby cotholds gathered for lessons. Several journeyfolk, under the supervision of one master, used it as a home base as they visited outlying areas. Occasionally a likely apprentice would be found, and would serve at the Hold until travel could be arranged to the Harper Hall in the North.

With growth of population and expansion of territories, it was decided that a Hall was needed in the South, both to aid in education of the general population, and to identify and train new crafters. Several locations were considered, but the presence of ready lumber at Emerald Falls decided the matter. The Hall sits a good quarter candlemark walk from the Hold, making it easily accessible to the residents.

From the original structure, wings were added in the four directions of the compass. The Hall now resembles a cross, with the North Wing housing vocal music and art, the West instrumental (including workshops), the East Wing housing and offices for craftsmen, and the South the kitchens, laundry, and staff quarters. The original edifice is now a Great Hall, used for dining and performance, with adjoining rooms in each wing reserved as classrooms for local children. Construction of the newer portions of the Hall was of stone. Inside, a combination of wood paneling and padded fabric have been used both to soundproof, and to supply appropriate acoustical properties to the practice rooms.

The Hall is large enough to house up to forty-eight apprentices in four large dormitory rooms. Junior journeymen are housed in ten double rooms, and senior journeyfolk in twelve single rooms. Hallmaster, Hallsecond, and Master of Apprentices each have suites of rooms, while five additional masters have large single rooms with private baths. Of course, only dire need or event would bring all harpers assigned to the Hall within the walls at one time. Usually at least a half of the journeyfolk are on teaching rounds or special missions.

It should be noted that the Harper Hall at Emerald Falls has traditionally followed the lead of the Southern Craftmasters, banning female crafters. Harpers trained at the more liberal Weyrs and Northern Halls are generally not accepted by those at Emerald Falls Hold's Harper Hall.

Note: In the third Turn of the current Pass the Harper Hall changed its policy on female crafters. As a result, some irrate Holders in a drunken rage set fire to the Hall. This lead the Harper Hall to move to Dolphin Cove Weyr where it currently can by found. They continue accepting not only female crafters, but also have established special classes for dragonriders wishing to continue their craft out of gratitude for all they have done for the Hall. However, as the Weyr expands, it remains to be seen if this will be a permanent arrangement or not.

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