Map Lands of Fist

Korel, aka Lands of Fist

Banith was a seaside city in the Kingdom of Rool, on the Island of Fist. Its front street ran roughly east–west along the docks. When Ipshank first arrived there, he noted that "the town climbed shallow coastal hills, its roofs dominated by the tall jutting spires of the Holy Cloister and the many gables of the Hospice nearby. Beyond these, rich cultivated rolling plains, land once forested, stretched into the mist-shrouded distance."[1]


The Cloister of the Blessed Lady was the third most revered holy site on the island of Fist. Banith's economy primarily revolved around servicing (and fleecing) the pilgrims who came year-round to visit the otherwise unimportant city. The narrow Way of Obtestation leading from the docks to the cloister's copper doors was lined with shops, stalls, touts, and hawkers selling all manner of charms, healing stones, and holy relics. Further off the Way were food sellers, stables, inns, and other service providers.[2]


The city was occupied by the renegade 6th Army of the Malazan Empire who received the taxes collected from the town.[3] Matters of governance fell to Lord Mayor Estiel Gorlings.

The city's highest local legal authority was Chief Assessor Bakune who reported only to the High Assessor in Paliss.[4] Assessors investigated and prosecuted criminal and civil violations while the City Watch under Captain Karien'el patrolled the streets. Alone among the subject peoples of Fist, the Watch were permitted to carry shortswords.[5] Corruption was rife in the Watch and it was complicit in many of the crimes with which it was charged to prevent. Shakedowns of local businesses for protection money were common.[6] Those arrested by the Watch or chosen for prosecution by an Assessor were brought to the Carceral Quarter for imprisonment and trial.[7] Convicted prisoners were often sent to their deaths on the Stormwall.

The city's highest religious authority was Starvann Arl, Abbot of the Cloister. Answerable only to the Prioress at Paliss, the Abbot commanded the staff of the Cloister and had authority over the Guardians of the Faith. The Guardians were a militant religious order responsible for protecting the pilgrims and enforcing religious dogma with their iron-heeled staves.[8]

Banith was considered something of a backwater for ambitious government officials. Paliss, Thol, and Homdo were all more desirable postings.[9]


As a result of the Malazan occupation, the city had a significant population of mixed Malazan-Roolian blood. Many lived outside the western edge of the city in filth and squalor in a ghetto of shacks and huts. The city streets were littered with orphaned half-blood children who were unwanted, despised, and spit upon. Even the divines of the Sainted Lady and the Hospice turned them away. These children often fell prey to pimps and other predators.[10] It was said that women taking up with Malazan troops faced the risk of honour killings from their fathers and brothers.[11]


The eve of the new year was marked by the Festival of Renewal.[12] It celebrated the Lady's arising and her delivery of the people of Fist from the Stormriders. During this time the city was awash in nearly naked loincloth-clad flagellating pilgrims and parades of holy icons held aloft on cumbersome platforms. Some platforms carried children draped in white silk and dusted in red petals of sacrifice or drops of blood. All made their way to the Cloister where they would be cleansed and blessed.[13][14]

Notable residents Edit

In StonewielderEdit

Banith was plagued for decades by a series of ritualistic murders. Assessor Bakune investigated the crimes and compiled extensive files, but his work was hampered by the city's religious authorities.[15]

During the Festival of Renewal in 1167BS, the Malazan Expeditionary Force's fleet appeared in the harbour. Admiral Nok bluffed his way into occupying the city while awaiting High Fist Greymane and his army.[16] Lord Mayor Estiel Gorlings disappeared with the contents of the city's treasury while Abbot Starvann Arl and many of his acolytes perished in the Temple of the Lady.[17][18]

Assessor Bakune was made Lord Mayor by the occupying Malazans until he was jailed in response to insurgent activities.[19][20] After the Malazans departed, Banith fell back into the hands of General Karien'el and the local nobility. [21]

Notes and referencesEdit

  1. Stonewielder, Prologue, UK TPB p.27
  2. Stonewielder, Chapter 1, US HC p.56-57
  3. Stonewielder, Prologue, UK TPB p.27-28
  4. Stonewielder, Chapter 1, US HC p.59
  5. Stonewielder, Prologue, US HC p.22
  6. Stonewielder, Prologue, US HC p.29
  7. Stonewielder, Chapter 5, US HC p.241
  8. Stonewielder, Chapter 1, US HC p.59
  9. Stonewielder, Chapter 3, US HC p.168
  10. Stonewielder, Chapter 2, US HC p.94/119
  11. Stonewielder, Prologue, US HC p.23
  12. Stonewielder, Chapter 7, US HC p.375
  13. Stonewielder, Chapter 6, US HC p.338
  14. Stonewielder, Chapter 7, US HC p.376-380
  15. Stonewielder, Chapter 3, US HC p.169
  16. Stonewielder, Chapter 8, US HC p.402-406
  17. Stonewielder, Chapter 7, US HC p.387-389
  18. Stonewielder, Chapter 9, US HC p.451
  19. Stonewielder, Chapter 9, US HC p.451
  20. Stonewielder, Chapter 10, US HC p.516
  21. Stonewielder, Epilogue, US HC p.625
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