Clan of Year Keepers
Here are relevant references from the Books where the Clan of Year Keepers is mentioned.
I make no pronouncements on these matters, but report them as I find them.
Arrive at your own conclusions.
I wish you well,
A consequence of the chronological conventions of the Wagon Peoples, of course, is that their years tend to vary in length, but this fact, which might bother us, does not bother them, any more than the fact that some men and some animals live longer than others; the women of the Wagon Peoples, incidentally, keep a calendar based on the phases of Gor's largest moon, but this is a calendar of fifteen moons, named for the fifteen varieties of bosk, and functions independently of the tallying of years by snows; for example, the Moon of the Brown Bosk may at one time occur in the winter, at another time, years later, in the summer; this calendar is kept by a set of colored pegs set in the sides of some wagons, on one of which, depending on the moon, a round, wooden plate bearing the image of a bosk is fixed. The years, incidentally, are not numbered by the Wagon Peoples, but given names, toward their end, based on something or other which has occurred to distinguish the year. The year names are kept in living memory by the Year Keepers, some of whom can recall the names of several thousand consecutive years. The Wagon Peoples do not trust important matters, such as year names, to paper or parchment, subject to theft, insect and rodent damage, deterioration, etc. Most of those of the Wagon Peoples have excellent memories, trained from birth. Few can read, though some can, perhaps having acquired the skill far from the wagons, perhaps from merchants or tradesmen. The Wagon Peoples, as might be expected, have a large and complex oral literature. This is kept by and occasionally, in parts, recited by the Camp Singers. They do not have castes, as Goreans tend to think of them. For example, every male of the Wagon Peoples is expected to be a warrior, to be able to ride, to be able to hunt, to care for the bosk, and so on. When I speak of Year Keepers and Singers it must be understood that these are not, for the Wagon Peoples, castes, but more like roles, subsidiary to their main functions, which are those of the war, herding and the hunt. They do have, however, certain clans, not castes, which specialize in certain matters, for example, the clan of healers, leather workers, salt hunters, and so on. I have already mentioned the clan of torturers. The members of these clans, however, like the Year Keepers and Singers, are all expected, first and foremost, to be, as it is said, of the wagons namely to follow, tend and protect the bosk, to be superb in the saddle, and to be skilled with the weapons of both the hunt and war.
Nomads of Gor Book 4 Page 12
The institution of Love War is an ancient one among the Turians and the Wagon Peoples, according to the Year Keepers antedating even the Omen Year. The games of Love War, of course, are celebrated every spring between, so to speak, the city and the plains, whereas the Omen Year occurs only ever tenth year. Nomads of Gor Book 4 Page 115
"Your coming and going with the Wagon Peoples," said Kamchak, "has spanned parts of two of our years."
I looked at him, not really understanding. What he said, of course, was true.
"The years," said Harold, smiling, "were two the Year in which Tarl Cabot Came to the Wagon Peoples and the Year in which Tarl Cabot Commanded a Thousand."
Inwardly I gasped. These were year names - which would be remembered by the Year Keepers, whose memories knew the names of thousands of consecutive years.
"But," I protested, "there have been many things of much greater importance than those in these years the Siege of Turia, the Taking of the City, the Election of the Ubar San!"
"We choose most to remember Tarl Cabot," said Kamchak.
Nomads of Gor Book 4 Page 343