Origin of the Cleric Class

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Origin of the Cleric Class

Postby Havard » Mon Sep 21, 2009 8:18 pm

I just came across this little tidbit:

Old Geezer wrote:Ahem. I was there.

In CHAINMAIL there were wizards that functioned as artillery.

Then there was Dave Arneson's first miniatures/roleplaying campaign. Some players were 'good guys' and some players were 'bad guys' and Dave was the referee.

One of the 'bad guys' wanted to play a Vampire. He was extremely smart and capable, and as he got more and more experience he got tougher and tougher.

This was the early 70s, so the model for 'vampire' was Christopher Lee in Hammer films. No deep folklore shit.

Well, after a time, nobody could touch Sir Fang. Yes, that was his name.

To fix the threatened end of the game they came up with a character that was, at first, a 'vampire hunter'. Peter Cushing in the same films.

As the rough specs were drawn up, comments about the need for healing and for curing disease came up.

Ta da, the "priest" was born. Changed later to 'cleric'.

The bit about edged weapons was from Gary's reading the old stories about Archbishop Turpin, who wielded a mace because he didn't want to shed blood ("who lives by the sword dies by the sword").

In other words, it came about the same way that 90% of the D&D rules came about :

WE MADE UP SOME SHIT THAT WE THOUGHT WOULD BE FUN.


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Re: Origin of the Cleric Class

Postby Hugin » Mon Sep 21, 2009 9:22 pm

Interesting little read, Havard. Thanks.
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Re: Origin of the Cleric Class

Postby Big Mac » Tue Dec 15, 2009 3:05 am

This should be (but isn't) on the Cleric article on Wikipedia.

Where did you get this from, Havard? And who is Old Geezer?
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Re: Origin of the Cleric Class

Postby Havard » Tue Dec 15, 2009 9:53 am

Big Mac wrote:Where did you get this from, Havard? And who is Old Geezer?


Yikes, I forgot to provide the source didnt I? It's from some thread at rpg.net. Old Geezer is Michael Mornard, who was a player in both Dave Arneson's and Gary Gygax' original campaigns.

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Re: Origin of the Cleric Class

Postby snorri » Tue Dec 15, 2009 11:23 am

To be confirmed too, but some clues in FFC let think the Priest was first a Wizard - we suggested that point in OD&D Blackmoor's (long) discussion. http://odd74.proboards.com/index.cgi?board=blackmoor I'll try top found it back. Dave stated several time that classes were rather undefined in Blackmoor. Even wizards seems to have first a fighter rank.
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Re: Origin of the Cleric Class

Postby Havard » Wed Dec 16, 2009 10:24 pm

Good input as always Snorri! :)

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