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The Family

Despite losses in the last three hundred or so years of Oberon’s Reign in Amber, the Eric Interregnum in Amber, and then during the War Between the Powers, House Helgram is one of the more populous Houses in Chaos: there are roughly five hundred known members of the Family who would be considered “Cornelian” and are, or could potentially be, Logrus capable. There are another thousand or so more distant cousins who still bear the Family name, but are unable to walk the Logrus for one reason or another, perhaps because of a higher proportion of non-Cornelian blood or an inability to shapeshift. In addition to these are the numerous House demons.Due to external pressures during the last thousand years (Chaos time), which made it significantly more dangerous for younger Helgrams to travel outside Chaos and the associated Black Zone trading realms, the House turned inwards to train and safeguard its future, and to better prepare its children for life both inside and outside the Courts. The Helgram Academy, and its development from an average private school into a premier educational establishment, is one of the most visible signs of this.

Since the War Between the Powers, House Helgram has started looking outwards once more. This has been particularly noticeable at Amber end of the Universe, where a number of Clarissa’s descendants are active participants in affairs there, and have invited a number of Helgrams to join their staff.  Of course, with any family of considerable size, there is a wide range of abilities between its members, and not all of the younger members make a particularly good impression on either members of the other Houses. Hence “Lazy Helgrams” has become a common derogatory term in certain quarters.

House Helgram is best known for its arcane skills and knowledge, and produces many of the best mages in the Courts. However, some of its members also take after their more military Hendrake ancestors. The Helgram-Hendrake alliance is one of the strongest in the Courts.

The Senior Line

Unlike many of the other Houses, Helgram Grand Dukes are surprisingly long lived, given the dangers inherent in living in the Courts, and there have only been four Grand Dukes in its history.

The current Senior Line comprises all descendants of Grand Duke Graham the Younger and his wife Joan, through their five daughters. This, in turn, is split into the Ducal Line, and the other Senior members.

House succession allows the title to pass through the female line, if there are sons in the next generation. Therefore, when Graham died during the Patternfall War, the Grand Ducal title passed through their eldest daughter, Clarissa, to her eldest son, Bleys. He tried to juggle his responsibilities as Grand Duke with those as a key advisor to King Random for about five years Amber time/fifteen years Thelbane time. In the end, however, he decided that, for the good of the House, he would step down as Grand Duke, in favour of his eldest surviving son, Ian.

The Ducal Line

The Ducal Line is now that of Grand Duke Ian and his descendents, and is well established and populous. As such, barring some unforseen disaster, there seems little likelihood of further succession through the female line for at least the next three generations.

For more details about the members of the Ducal Line, click here.

Other Members of the Senior Line

As well as Clarissa, Graham the Younger and Joan had four other daughters: the Duchesses Rosemary, Athena (the current Chancellor of the Helgram Academy), Marguerita and Juanita. Were the unthinkable to happen to the entire line of Grand Duke Ian, then Rosemary’s sons would be next in the succession.

For more details about the other daughters of Graham and Joan, , click here.

Cadet Branches

Graham the Younger was the elders of a number of siblings, and these are either the respective heads of the cadet branches of House Helgram, of have been succeeded as such by their children.

  • Duke Daveth
  • Duchess Matilda
  • Duke William
  • Duke Henry (deceased)
  • Duke Stephen (deceased)
  • Duchess Eleanor
  • Duke Richard
  • Duke John
  • Duke Edward

To differentiate them from the Senior Line, descendants of these siblings will usually either hyphenate their surname with the first name of their ancestor, or take it as a second given name (either on its own, or with a patronymic). For example, Jowan Daveth-Helgram, grandson of Duke Daveth; Ronan Uilliam-Helgram, son of Uilliam, an illegitimate child of Duke William; or Llewellyn Stephenson-Helgram.

Brief descriptions of all of the children of Graham Senior and Mairead, and the Cadet Branches, can be found here.

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