Dendel’s stripes are a set of three bands on a Ghyllian’s carapace, differing significantly in color from the green that makes up the rest of the carapace. The colors depend on where the Ghyllian possessing them was born. Almost every city, from the largest metropolis to the smallest village, has its own distinctive set. They can instantly mark someone as a stranger, though relying on them wholly for identification is dangerous, and can lead to mishaps. Thirty members of the ill-fated Kortayal Trading Expedition stumbled into Iganefta and were all slaughtered because one of their members was sworn to have had stripes exactly like those of the dwellers of the Evesque Valley. It turns out that one stripe of white was mistaken for blonde. The official apologies Iganefta offered were not very well received by the trading company, which summarily collapsed before it could send off a nasty letter in response.
The currently identified colors present in the stripes are:
- alice blue, almond, amber, amethyst, antique brass, antique white, apricot, aqua, aquamarine, auburn, avocado, azure, banana, beige, beryl, bisque, black*, blanched almond, blonde, blue, blue green, blue violet, blueberry, bone, brass, brick, bronze, bronze yellow, brown, buff, burgundy, burlywood, burnt umber, canary, cardinal, carmine, carnation, celadon, cerulean, charcoal, chartreuse, cherry, chestnut, chocolate, cinnamon, claret, cobalt, cool gray, copper, coral, cornflower, cornsilk, cream, crimson, cyan, dandelion, dark blue, dark brown, dun, ebony, eggshell, emerald, fawn, fire brick, flaxen, flesh, floral white, forest green, fuchsia, gainsboro, gamboge, garnet, ginger, gold, goldenrod, grape, gray/grey*, green, hazel, heather, heliotrope, honeydew, hot pink, hunter green, indian red, indigo, ivory, jade, jet, kelly green, khaki, lavender, lawn green, lemon, lemon chiffon, light blue, light brown, lilac, lime, linen, loden, magenta, magic mint, malachite, maroon, mauve, mazarine, melon, midnight blue, mignonette, mint, mint cream, misty rose, moccasin, mustard, navajo white, navy, ochre, old lace, olive, olive drab, orange, orchid, outer space, patina, peach, peacock blue, periwinkle, pink, platinum, plum, powder blue, primrose, puce, purple, raspberry, red, red violet, reseda, rose, royal blue, ruby, russet, rust, sable, saddle brown, saffron, salmon, sapphire, scarlet, sea green, seashell, sepia, sienna, silver, sky blue, slate, slate blue, slate gray, snow, spring green, strawberry, sunflower, tan, tangerine, taupe, teal, timberwolf, topaz, turquoise, ultramarine, umber, verdant, vermilion, violet, violet red, virid, walnut, white*, wine, xanthic, yellow, zaffre
Each one of these must be recognized exactly for adequate interpretation of the stripes. Very few experts in striping intrepretation exist, and most of them work at Bute University teaching students their knowledge and playing guessing games at the local tavern.
The most prominent myth surrounding the stripes is that the larger and more brilliant, the more physically fit the Ghyllian possessing them. There is no evidence to support this, and those whose Stripes are less than brilliant often enhance their coloration with dyes.
Many cultures also proclaim that whatever Creator they believe created them marked them with the perfect colors to show their status above all others. Others were marked differently to allow discrimination. Sensible people ignore these claims, but a few zealots hold them near and dear to their hearts, often declaring war on anyone without their specific kind of stripes. They normally forget about it quickly enough, and a battle has never been fought because someone proclaimed their Dendel's stripes marked them as better then anyone else, an impressive accomplishment considering Ghyll's history.
The inhabitants of the area around Lake Crimin appear to have no Dendel's stripes, a characteristic which they share with many unscrupulous members of Ghyllian society who paint themselves such in order to avoid recognition. It is theorized that, in actuality, all three bands just happen to be green, but it isn’t certain. If so, it would be the only example of three stripes of the same color.
--Kalen Firth 21:44, 9 Jun 2005 (EDT)