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Cordon Sanitaire.png

Over two centuries since Mousillon was officially disgraced by the King of Bretonnia, the Cordon Sanitaire has been gradually built up around the duchy's borders.


By order of the king, more than two dozen towers encircle Mousillon whose sole purpose is to watch for bands of peasants leaving Mousillon. Bretonnians are certain that a peasant from the duchy must surely carry the Red Pox and would be the source of another outbreak if they were permitted to leave the duchy. Thus, the towers stand along Mousillon's few roads, game trails, and paths, using natural terrain to make sneaking past them difficult if not impossible. To ensure their continued success, soldiers regularly patrol the gaps left between the towers. And where the soldiers cannot go, they leave it to the natural dangers of Mousillon's countryside (Undead, Orcs, and worse) to do the dirty work.[1a][1b]

Each tower serves as a checkpoint along the Cordon. Like a small fortress, each is self-sufficient, having the means to grow its own food and keep food animals on hand for slaughter. About once every three weeks, the attached duchy sends supplies and fresh troops. Governing each is a castellan--usually a knight charged with capturing and questioning any peasant who tries to cross the Cordon from Mousillon into the neighbouring duchy, especially into Lyonesse and Brionne. In truth, relatively few peasants venture out of Mousillon (many do not realise there is a world outside their village, let alone the duchy), and the Castellans find themselves instead fighting bands of outlaws and racketeers moving contraband from the city through the Cordon. Beneath the castellan, there is a small garrison of ten to twenty Militiamen, though some are staffed by knights (about twenty percent of all the towers).[1b]

King Louen Leoncoeur takes the Cordon very seriously and has reinforced some of the Cordon's small garrisons, as well as encouraging Questing Knights and Knights Errant to assist in patrolling of Mousillon's borders. It is rumoured in the highest circles the Cordon is being reinforced in response to a new claimant to Mousillon's dukedom and that Louen is hoping to either contain a new army being forged in Mousillon or pave the way for an invasion of the duchy by royal forces.[1b]

In spite of the Crown's renewed interest, the average Cordon watchtower is a rather dismal place, lonely and isolated, staffed by a knight acting as castellan and a few Men-at-Arms. Knights and nobles are assumed to be on honourable business and can normally move freely across the Cordon, as can commoners or foreigners if they are specifically permitted to do so by the duke of a neighbouring duchy. Others, however, must run the Cordon. The Cordon cannot physically prevent everyone from crossing through, but the journey is still dangerous as travellers without authority can be killed by the forces of the castellans--to this end a few criminals in Mousillon specialise in moving people and cargo through the Cordon, using hidden passes and the occasional corrupt soldier in a castellan's staff to gain safe passage out of the duchy.[1b]


  • 1: Warhammer Fantasy RPG 2nd ED -- Barony of the Damned
    • 1a: pg. 19
    • 1b: pg. 20