I was reading the description of adamic, and its power (not massive, but pretty impressive).
In reading the description of the process for back-deriving adamic, this appears not to require any magic or having the gift. Is there some magic required for doing the derivation? Otherwise, one has to ask why House Bonsiagus ha snot simply paid for the mundane services to get this useful tool re-derived and made available to the order. It would not cost that much. (One expedition and a couple of years of a couple of specialists.)
I am presuming from the description that the area lore is a limit on the level to which one can get the linguistic knowledge. And that the parent languages are also a limit? How do those limits interact with Puissance in area lore or dead languages?
That will vary by saga. In some a puissance with dead languages counts only towards one dead language, in some it counts towards all of them. Obviously if you are going to learn Adamic the second is the better saga.
Keep in mind some powers of Adamic, such as Naming, are not entirely reliant on having The Gift- so a mundane with Adamic could subtly influence the destiny of a child by naming it...
keep in mind that even after discovering one of the very dead languages, it will continue to take research to build your score in it, and to work on Adamic you would need to have level 6 in 2 of the derived and very dead languages which need to be reconstructed, plus area lore for a place which no longer exists...
The rules specify how to get the area lore for the long-gone location. Even if you can't have "affinity for area lore", it still only takes 15 seasons (4 years) for a mundane expedition to get the area lore 5. Then they come back, and as part of the arrangement teach the area lore to whomever is doing the language work. And the covenant that sponsors the expeditions takes all of the collected artifacts, many of which contain vis.
It ends up as something I wouldn't want to play. But part of the way the rules make it hard is that right now there is a military occupation. But 15 or 20 years ago that would not have been a problem.
It is medieval, so it's always military occupation, everywhere.
In a way, Mongol rule makes things easier. Those pesky sahirs have at least as much of a disadvantage, and are less likely to be able to cut a deal with Mongols or interfere with you, having just been crushed by them whilst failing to defend Islam (again!)
Really, all those pagan and semi-pagan Magi who revere a pantheon ruled by a Day/Sky-Father and Mongol devotees of Great Tengri might find a great deal of common ground.
"We are honored by your visit to our land. These tokens confirm your right to explore where you will under the open sky and announces that none shall be permitted to interfere, for you are honored guests of the Khan. We trust that you will extend our ambassadors to your home a similar courtesy."
"Interfere? Of course not! We agree that is not seemly for your eminences to sully the Gift of Great Tengri, with which you are so obviously and magnificently endowed, in the mud of mundane affairs. That is what our tumens are for. We merely ask for your blessing."
If your question is, "why hasn't someone in the Order of Hermes figured out Adamic yet," the answer is basically the same as with all the other ancient magics: it's not in the scenario as written.
Because the ancient magics are written so that a player can learn at least some of them over a course of a lifetime, it's altogether possible that another magus or maga may have learned them before. For whatever reason, in the ArM canon that knowledge has not been spread across the order.You could have it be part of a Mystery Cult; maybe that's what gives the Children of Hermes their surprising power.
I have often toyed with having an antagonist to the player magi have a form of ancient magic, such as an heir to the Hyperboreans seeking revenge or a Divine powered cleric who augments his Cursing using Adamic.
Thanks DeficientIntellego. That is indeed part of my question. And while I look for structural consistency, the answer "so that the game is fun" is a very valid answer.
I was also trying to check my understanding of what I had read. Looks like I had that part right.
To provide another perspective, I always generally assume that several traditions that would normally be "Ancient Magic" have already been integrated, taking the form of either Mysteries or even parts of vanilla Hermeticism, so the stuff that's left (along with whatever other Ancient traditions you design as an SG) are the things nobody's gotten around to yet. I mean, most non-Bonisagus magi have better things to do than research old traditions, and even magi Bonisagi and other-House magi who have similar interests have lots of competition from all sorts of other Breakthroughs to reach for; it's entirely possible that other things have just kept the Order magi who would have cared enough to integrate this stuff too busy, at least as of 1220. Plus, we have some 150 dedicated pages to read through to know everything relevant about the traditions, while magi might need several seasons of studying various related tomes just to prove their hunch that some of these traditions even exist.
You've got to keep in mind, from the perspective of an academic institution, even dedicated to finding these kinds of things, the Order is actually fairly small. It's been around for a long time, but they've had a lot of ground to cover in that time.
Just my own two cents.
I think if a Quest for Ancient Magic is a part of a saga sooner or later your probably going to encounter antagonists and/or potential allies on the same path as the PC's. Even if your characters aren't seeking out AM it can be a good hook to get them started. Not to mention that It's also a good way to beef up non-hermetics.
I wrote up a Cult of Hedgies with some access to Adamic that was started by a pair of gifted twins abandoned in the wilderness as infants.
Another "in game" explanation why none Ancient Magic have been integrated is that for a magus, there is no guarantee of success. Us as players/GM reading the material, we see the process to go through and the end results, and we can guestimate how long it will take.
If you are in the shoes of a magus - smart, but not omniscient or able to see the future - you got an idea, based on a sliver of parchment that possibly great knowledge lies here and there. But you need to dedicate an unknown amount of time and ressources, with the real possibility of never succeeding. And by the way, it might require leaving the safety and comfort of your covenant for years and years.
Only the most dedicated researchers will be willing to follow such path. And not all of them will have the skill sets and make the right decision to conclude their research.
Exechiel357, thqt is a good point. I guess what struck me in this case is that it wouldn't take a Magus to get the result. Of course, the conventional academic institutions as of 1220 do not have the resources or organization to undertake such endeavors.
There is of course the possibility that some academic has done some of the work. "The common roots of Latin and Ancient Greek" could be an interesting tractus on Cainite- could get you to almost a 2 ability level. The trick would be getting all the way back to Adamic. And the possibility of a sadistic GM who will let you develop these 'common root' languages but simply doesn't want Adamic I the game...