In North America, the concealed magical world and its unique culture is known as the Magimundi (magical world). The Magimundi is highly organized and consists of five provinces: Destiny (Northeast US and Eastern Canada), Solaris (Southeast US, and Caribbean), Baja (Southwest US, Mexico and Central America), Thunderbird (Pacific Northwest US and Western Canada), and Mishipeshu (Midwest US and mid-Canada). Each of these Provinces is governed by a Justice; the five justices of each region together form The Council of Five, who serve as the highest court and governing body of the North American magical world. Justices appoint Magisters, who oversee North American Magical Agencies (such as the Magister of Metallurgy who oversees each province’s mines of magical ore) or the governing of a province itself (such as the General Magister of Solaris Province, who handles the day-to-day governing of the province on behalf of its Justice.) Magisters appoint ranks of other provincial officials, who are responsible for all official matters in the region. These officials are known as Alcalde in the Solaris and Baja regions, and Fonctionnaires in the other regions. The Alcalde and Fonctionnaires directly interface with the rest of the Magimundi.
There are a few areas that operate independently of the Provinces. The cities in Alaska, and the northern areas of Canada are neighborly to the Thunderbird Province, and connected by commerce, but not under direct Provincial control. Likewise, the further south into Central America, the less influence the Baja Province has over the lives of the magical communities there. Perhaps most interestingly, is Virginia Isle, the floating island said to have been lifted into the air out of the sea by the magic of Virginia Dare herself, which is entirely autonomous to either the Solaris or Destiny Provinces.
Each province has a magical primary school, listed briefly below:
- Destiny Province; Providence Preparatory Academy for the Advancement of the Arcane Arts (P2A4)
- Solaris Province; Magnolia Sun School of Sorcery
- Mishipeshu Province; Great Plains School of Magical Arts
- Thunderbird Province; Lewis & Clark Institute of Magic
- Baja Province; Flower Mountain Escuela Mágico
The Rival School: Imperial Magischola of Massachusetts Bay
The first Magischola founded in North America was the Imperial Magischola of Massachusetts Bay. Begun in 1623, shortly after the founding of Plymouth by the Separatist Puritans, the school is known for its strict adherence to conservative magical traditions practiced in Europe. Its founder, Galahad Theocratus Bombastus Leodegrance, was a pious and upright wizard who disapproved of the Renaissance Reforms that ushered in the era of egalitarianism in European wizard culture.
Along with other like-minded male wizards, Leodegrance sailed on the Fortune to the New World in order to escape what they saw as an irrevocably corrupted magical culture and to establish a school that reflected their values. They believed that magic is best left in the hands of rational minded men, like themselves. The “savage” indigenous people of North America, regardless of their own magical talents and culture, would further bastardize the magical traditions and even dilute magic itself. Imperial Magischola was created to be a haven away from such mixing, muddling and miscegenation, and faculty and students believe that the school has the appointed role to uphold true magic, and to preserve its proper use, for what purposes and by whom.
Originally a school only for male wizards, Imperial began admitting female students in 1885 after the Destiny Province Justices determined that separate schools were not equal. The Justices noted that continued dominance of males in positions of leadership throughout the Magimundi was perpetuated by the exclusivity of certain schools, whose graduates were cherry-picked for positions of power. Rather than comply with the decision, Imperial sought recourse by appeal to the Council of Five, and even shuttered its doors for three years in protest. Male students continued to be taught unofficially in the homes of the professors, their salaries paid by wealthy Unsoiled Heritage families.
To force compliance with the desegregation decree, the Council of Five sent Marshals to Imperial Magischola in 1890 to escort the first female students onto the campus. There, this handful of pioneering young women — from Unsoiled Heritage families and accompanied by personal bodyguards — were assigned by their advisors to the Healer path, which was deemed appropriate for women. Female students and their allies continued to fight for equal opportunity, and now Imperial Magischola has women studying all five Paths, though Artificery is still largely dominated by male mages. The student population now approaches gender equity, with 55% male-identified students and 45% female, and prominent female wizards hold professorial and administrative appointments, though none have been headmaster.
Official documents state that Imperial’s segregated past is behind them, but insiders know that there are two Imperials: one for male students and one for females, with the informal networks of power continuing to favor males. Female students have embraced this reality and have created many sisterhood organizations that support each other. Recent powerful female graduates who have risen to power in the wizard world — such as Renate Von Rickenstein, the ambassador to the Czocha Conflux and Hecate “T” Henderson, chief alchemist at the Bureau of Metallurgy Alchemy and Crystallography — have founded endowed professorships for female wizards and scholarships for young women of exceptional promise and economic need.
Imperial is a prestigious school that only admits students from the most prominent wizard families after a rigorous application and vetting process. The school’s population is composed primarily of students from Unsoiled Heritage families that can trace their lines back to well-known witches and wizards from acceptable magical traditions. Those selected to the school are known as the Eligeri — the chosen or the elect. Imperial Magischola is divided into four residential colleges or courts, each following their own magical traditions:
- Callimachus Court — Study of philosophy, magical theory, ancient languages, runes.
- Ptolemy Court — Study of astronomy, divination, arithmancy, and cosmology.
- Agrippa Court — study of magical law, administration, jurisprudence, ethics, and magical warfare.
- Paracelsus Court — study of alchemy, herbology and botany, hermetics, and toxicology.