Traditions

The First Tradition: Masquerade: This tradition aims at witholding the secret of Kindred existence from the knowledge of mortals. A vampire who violates this Tradition by revealing their existence to mortal society, or performing supernatural acts within sight of mortals, puts the entire vampire species at risk, and may be punished with the Final Death. The Camarilla has embraced this tradition as the founding principle of the sect. The Sabbat, as part of its war against the Camarilla, usually does everything in its power to break this Tradition, short of actually revealing the existence of vampires to humanity at large. Even the Sabbat is smart enough to fear the power of several billion mortals put together.

The Second Tradition: Domain: This Tradition establishes the right of all vampires to claim domain – this includes both geographic territory and a number of mortals (or “herd”) large enough to sustain a vampire without breaking the First Tradition (usually somewhere between 10,000-100,000 mortals). Though the Tradition says a vampire may not be questioned within their own domain, this is rarely respected except in the domain of a Prince or Archbishop.

The Third Tradition: Progeny: The Tradition of Progeny restricts the creation of new vampires via the Embrace by requiring that the would-be sire first obtain the permission of his vaguely-qualified “elders”. In Camarilla territories, this usually means the Prince; there is no such requirement holding back the Embrace in the Sabbat.

The Fourth Tradition: Accounting: If a vampire gains the right to sire progeny, they are then held accountable for that childe’s behavior – this is the Fourth Tradition. A sire is deemed responsible for their childe’s behavior, and thus must guide and teach their progeny in the ways of the Kindred. Naturally enough, this entails teaching – and enforcing – the Six Traditions, as well as guiding the childe through the politics of the World of Darkness until they are capable of standing on their own two feet. Clans interpret the role of the Fourth Tradition in various ways; the Gangrel, for example, rarely bother teaching their childer anything. The childe is supposed to learn everything they need to know on their own.

The Fifth Tradition: Hospitality: Along with the Second Tradition, the Fifth Tradition of Domain is meant to secure the chain of command of vampires within a city. A vampire, upon entering a city where he is not known, is supposed to present themselves to the “eldest” of that city; for the Camarilla, this means the prince and/or primogen council. The Sabbat has too many nomadic packs to make this Tradition worth anything in that sect. If this tradition is broken, the stranger might be driven out of the city or, in cases of extreme vampiric over-population, be executed.

The Sixth Tradition: Destruction: Like many other codices of laws, the Kindred have a prohibition against murdering their own kind. The Sixth Tradition says that Kindred may not kill another without the explicit permission of the eldest, who will decree that a blood hunt is called upon the vampire to be destroyed. In the Camarilla, the Sixth Tradition is usually reserved only for the most blatant, sadistic, and heinous breaches of any of the other five Traditions. The Sabbat follows more of a “dog eat dog” philosophy: if you are not strong enough to survive, then you deserve whatever you have coming to you.

Traditions

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