Nobilization (Froturn)

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Nobilization was a process during which the High Elves of the Kingdom of Froturn experienced a drastic increase in quality of life, literacy, wealth and social mobility, allowing the plebians to adopt the lifestyle of the patricians, gaining access to luxuries previously afforded only to the elite. It was during this process, that High Elves were truly recognized as "High Elves" or "Noble Elves". The period in which this process of "nobilization" took place roughly corresponds to the Froturn's First Golden Age (or Age of Reformation).

Causes

It is universaly acknowledged, that the Golden Age of Maritime Trade between East and West following the Ocidental Trade Wars was a major contributor to the sudden rise of living standards in Froturn. Among other thing, spices like black pepper were no longer luxury products accessible only to the rich. Some historians "blamed" it on the increasing centralization and bureaucratization of the government, which was surprisingly competent at the time, making sure that the division of labour was done in a way beneficial to the populace. Others "blamed" it on quite the opposite, the government's relatively lax economical policies that allowed enterpreteurs to flourish.

Effects

Hygiene and health

Perhaps the most noticeable effect of the nobilization process was on hygiene and health. Everywhere around Froturn, public baths were opened, sewers were built to dispose of sewage, waste treatment facilities were built, aqueducts were built, ensuring access to hygiene and clean water. Bathing on a daily basis became the norm. Disease was drastically reduced.

Cuisine

The nobilization process had a big effect on Froturnish cuisine - before the process, the lower classes of consumed pork, beer, as well as bread and gruel made out of barley, rye and oat. All of these were seen as plebian food and beverage, and thus were phased out, as the plebians became wealthy enough to adopt the lifestyle of the patricians of old. Pork was replaced by beef, mutton or poultry. Beer was replaced by wine. Barley, rye and oat were phased out in favor of wheat, maize and rice. Gruel fell out of favour altogether and ceased being a part of Froturnish cuisine, with bread becoming the new staple food.

Arts

The nobilization process also had an effect on the Froturnish arts too. As the plebians experienced such an increase in the quality of life, that their lives would be considered the lives of kings compared to that of their ancestors, they sought to emulate the patricians by consuming "posh" arts. They began visiting theatres, art exhibitions, musical performances, all of which catered mainly to patrician tastes. Because they sought to emulate the patricians, they forced themselves to adopt their tastes as well, and thus what was previously the art of the upper classes, became the art of the whole nation.

Education and politics

The nobilization process also meant an increase in literacy: and a massive on at top of that. By 0 BEKE/AEKE, only the lowest of the low was illiterate. Compared to that, before the 7th century BEKE, only the elites could read and write. In fact, just a mere two centuries prior, not even all of the elites could read and write to begin with. However, with increased urbanization, trade, specialization, economic prosperity, also came the need for education. Schools were opened to teach people how to read, write and do basic mathematics. Eventually, the list of subjects began to include history and law. The first academies - institutions of higher education - also made an appearence, such as the Academy of Yanus. The government also subsidized the enrollment of veterans into the academy, so that after serving a set number of years and discharging, they could become the new intellectual class.

However, having a much more literate and educated population also naturally translated into a more politically aware population that wanted to have their voices heard. For this reason, the government gradually evolved from de facto absolute monarchy into a de facto constitutional monarchy where the main power was in the hands of the senate. Although the senators were - and still are - overwhelmingly from the nobility and clergy, the populace was happy that they finally had representatives who could discuss serious political matters before implementing them.

Military

In an effort to live up to the image of nobles, the patrician-emulating plebs had their oldest sons enrolled in the military, and instilled a sense of civic duty to themselves. Froturn's First Golden Age was - in spite of the lack of conflicts with outsiders, or real enemies to use their military against - an age of patriotism, and this meant that the military was full of eager recruits. Quite ironic, given how Froturn had no real enemies during that time period, thus making the army more of a deterrent. For this reason, the army was also used to build public works.