The Imperial Society for the Study and Preservation of Antiquities, Manuscripts, and Historical Curiosities and the Improvement of Knowledge (Rhenean Chapter)

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Commonly known as the Rhenean Antiquarian Society, but part of a larger Empire-wide movement, their goal is fairly clearly stated in the long form of their name: to study and preserve relics of the past and to expand the body of knowledge in general. The Rhenean chapter is one of the oldest, having been founded nearly fifty years ago. Currently it has about forty members, each of whom pays a membership fee of five imperials a month for the privilege of partaking of the society's resources and participating in their meetings. Regular meetings are held one evening a week, but the society's headquarters is accessible to members at any time for conducting research or meeting in smaller groups for informal discussion and libations. The dues pay for repairs and maintenance of the meeting hall, food and drink for members during meetings, and purchases for the society's library.

In the course of an ordinary meeting, one member will give a talk or lead a discussion related to their research, followed by a less structured hour or two of conversation, snacks, and socializing. Each member is expected to give a presentation at least once a year, in order to keep the society informed of their current status and any recent discoveries they may have made. As one might expect, the presentations range from fascinating to controversial to snore-inducing. The society values intellectual freedom very highly, and places no limits on what members are permitted to study or give presentations about, nor on the contents of the discussion afterwards - however, members are at least expected to be courteous to one another, even if they disagree (a goal not always achieved). Not every member attends every meeting, and indeed some are absent for lengthy periods of time, particularly if they travel widely for their research or are elderly and infirm.

The Society's Constitution

Members

The Library

The society's library is an idiosyncratic collection of material, comprised of donations from members, cast-offs from the Athenaeum and Castalia, and purchases made from the society's own funds. While it contains its share of ancient tomes and classic texts, it also includes less traditional material, such as complete or near-complete runs of each of Diablotin's major broadsheet newspapers, personal correspondence of historical figures that members have managed to get their hands on, advertising material for some of the theatres of the city, and so on. It also houses a collection of artifacts which members have collected over the years and donated to the society.

Public material

Private research

Note: Documents below are the results of individual research, and may only be known to the researcher(s) in question. Don't presume you know something if you didn't research it yourself and haven't been told about it yet!