The Aslan are a major race of
beings with an established interstellar empire
spinward and rimward
of the Imperium; in addition,
numbers have settled within the Imperium. The Aslan have been Imperial
(although rather passive) in the wars against the Solomani. Major contacts with the
in the Spinward Marches
the result of trading missions which gather rare or valuable goods for
to the Aslan Hierate.
Aslan stand roughly human-sized,
2.0 meters in height and weighing about 100 kg. They are
four-limbed, upright, bipedal carnivore/pouncer stock originally
a solitary arboreal existence. They evolved on the world Kuzu, situated 135 parsecs
The earliest Terran explorers
in them a vague resemblance to the Terran lion, and they have been
(by Terrans) as lion-like ever since, although there is very little
similarity. The derivation of the word Aslan is unknown.
are two sexes, male and female. The most notable external difference is
increased size and mane of the former. Females outnumber males by 3:1.
Aslan have a single highly specialized dewclaw under each thumb which
back jacknife fashion into a horny covering in the base of the thumb
palm. They also have good night vision and a heightened sense of
A vast Aslan-dominated empire (the Aslan
lies far to rimward, but Aslan themselves have ranged well beyond its
with many settling within the Imperium and attaining full status as
As citizens, they subordinate themselves to Imperial authority,
they have remained culturally separated from human society. Aslan
in the Imperial armed forces; they achieve nobility;
they pay taxes; they run businesses.
Aslan Society: The Aslan are a warrior race, proud, noble, and
to those in authority above them. An individual Aslan is usually
member of a family of from 2 to 12 individuals under a patriarchal
Several families will combine into a pride with one family
dominant. A number of prides form a clan, again with a top pride.
from military organizations and the ruling council (within the
the clan is the highest social-political organization among the Aslan.
A deep-seated territorial instinct causes the Aslan to have an
(from a human standpoint) concern with land. For male Aslan,
land is a major goal in life. An Aslan's stature is determined by
amount of land he (or her husband) controls, or by the amount of land
by any higher lord the Aslan may be vassal to. The lowest classes
Aslan are landless, and provide the farmers, laborers, craftsmen, and
workers. A holder of a large territory will often grant authority
it to vassals (usually sons, brothers, or male relatives by marriage)
administer the land in his name.
The sexes have very different roles in Aslan society. Males (in
but the lowest classes) are concerned mostly with military) operations,
of territory, and political affairs. Females are concerned with
industry, and the accumulation of knowledge. Upper class males
little conception of money and are literally incapable of functioning
a technological society without aid, so they are thus seldom
without the supervision of a wife, mother, or other female relative or
For instance, a typical Aslan mercenary unit will be organized by a
married female, who will then assign its operation, for a share of the
to an unmarried female relative. The battle commander and most of
troops will be unmarried males (many of them also relatives) hired with
promise of land grants (and the opportunity to gain honor and
in combat); however, staff, operations, supply, and intelligence
will generally be female.
The extremely deadly nature of any combat between Aslan has led to a
ritualized pattern of behavior designed to reduce conflict. Aslan
very polite, and while most have learned to be patient with non-Aslan,
fights still occur. Disputes between individuals are handled by
patriarchs; disputes between families are handled by the pride leader;
between prides are handled by the clan leader.
See also Aslan Border Wars, Aslan Calendar.