Also, Raptor Dan, I find some weird cognitive dissonance between your celebration of the superiority of the 'Ages of culture' leading to an absence of marriage practice and your previous assertion that your 'lack of tradition' is a virtue of your non-married common-law relationship.
You keep using that word marriage, and it's jarring to me. There's plenty of pair-bonding practice in Zalanthas, so much of it, that there is no real standard. It's not 'Ages of Culture' leading to an absence, it's Ages of Culture leading to an established norm you don't readily believe. Mate is the accepted term, sharing an apartment is basically normal city tradition when you're serious. I swear, I've overheard this argument you're making IG, as more educated nobles commented on the practices that Zalanthans have being a mimicry of their superiors. So, there's definitely not an absence, there's an abundance, it's just not what you want it to be. I applaud that, and you find cognitive dissonance between that, and my RL relationship, which I tried to use as an example of how lack of tradition doesn't mean lack of importance.
Btw, as someone who has been diagnosed as having bipolar affective disorder, and schizophrenia, you're going to find a LOT of cognitive dissonance is EVERYTHING I do. Take it with a grain of yellow salt, please. Tomorrow I'm going to be an entirely different person who might disagree with everything I've said or done before.
Edited to reread my responses, Erythil's:
Actually, now that I look at this, I don't think maybe you read my post very well. I didn't allege an absence of anything.
Despite all that, I've seen and played those who have varied traditions, unique relationship backgrounds, parents of 'one mother, six fathers' or 'one father, many women to breed with, who keeps the children, and the mothers leave'. I've also seen ring giving, or tattoos shared, blood rituals.
Don't box me in with your fifty years or less of experience when Zalanthan culture has had Ages to progress, and they're richer and more cultured and more varied that most of America, imho.
But that doesn't fit your desire for a 'codified, ritualistically or legally recognized pair-bonding' in Zalanthas, so i can see how it would be easy to ignore.
You're pointing out what you expect from a large urban mercantile society, and I think instead of thinking it as that, you could also think of it as a post-apocalyptic world ruled by dominating sorcerers who don't /want/ their lesser subjects to transfer property or lineage, OR imitate higher classes. /my input...?