Halley's comet

So, i noticed that Halley's comet appeared in 1066. Great timing for William. And i loved that Shadowrun built a whole supplement around the year of the comet.

So what would you have for a story idea around this event in Ars?


1222 was also a Halley year, but I don't think there's been a main adventure published dealing with that.

It may be that there is an increase or decrease or just a shift in the amount of vis produced, due to disturbance of the passing comet.

Note that comets are sublunar phenomena in Mythic Europe. It may be that comets can be studied somewhat closely, if you can get high enough. On the other hand, maybe they are in fact aetheric, and appear between the planetary sphers.

Also, comets are not cyclical; they occur and disappear. It's probably a subject of much speculation why they appear.

They are often considered ominous, but magi may consider those omens to be varied or mixed, or possibly positive depending on other signs, such as astrological appearance.

Are they? I thought they were considered just another type of unusual "star" like the planets.
But I have very little knowledge about this, and I do not recall seeing anything in the rules leaning one way or another, so I may very well be wrong.

EDIT: apparently I was wrong, and Aristotle himself declares them atmospheric phenomena. Auram! Wow. Though Seneca claims Aristotle is wrong on this, and that comets are indeed celestial phenomena. This is a controversy with significant story potential!


Indeed! Perhaps a mad magus who intends to level (important political or religious target) using a Rego Auram ritual on a comet?

Funnily enough I was just recently contemplating some Atlantean magics with long ranging effects to affect asteroids in our modern setting game.

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I very vaguely recall that comets may be a form of Ignem, probably a higher form of pure fire, flaring in the upper air, but I don't know if I remember right and it seems there's debate.

Huh. If comets are indeed sublunar, I would think they should be subject to Hermetic Auram or Ignem magic.

Comets are discussed in A&A, page 28 in the right hand column.


Thanks. Without that hint I would not have thought to hunt for them under "Metereology" :slight_smile: Here's the relevant passage:

Comets have a different origin [from meteors] altogether: whereas meteors descend from the upper atmosphere to the lower, comets travel in the opposite direction. They are an earthly exhalation from a hot place, like a volcano, and their motion through the lower atmosphere creates heat and causes them to ignite. The light of a comet, unlike that of a meteor, is spread out behind it like long hair.

I think that they should be Auram, rather than Ignem, because they are a weather phenomenon - in the same way that rain is Auram rather than Aquam.

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