I thought the point of this thread was a general reference list of all the types of building that COULD be found in a settlement. It isn't really relevant whether ordinary schools existed or not; some towns MIGHT have had schools, and so they should be included in the list.
As an aside, I also strongly suspect that schools did exist in towns in the past, they just weren't as common as we know them today. I haven't verified this, so it might be wrong, but: in Muslim society, children would often go to the madrasa, where they would receive instruction in both religious and non-religious matters; schools have existed in Christian countries for centuries, and I would be very surprised if the same wasn't true of China, India and Japan, not to mention other places.
One thing to consider, though, is that schools were not always located in schoolhouses. I could easily imagine that in some rural village in, say, England, a charitable vicar would volunteer to teach the children inside the Church or Town Hall. It was a less formal, more fluid arrangement than now.
Some really interesting stuff here. Thanks to Green-Pilgrim for starting this thread. I want to do a smaller town, and hopefully I can master a 3-D look to it by doing illustrations for the buildings. The recent featured work by Blaidd Drwg is an excellent example of what I'll be trying to do - (only I'll be working on a smaller scale). This is very helpful - the part I like most about that featured map is how each building is detailed.
It's a fair point that you COULD potentially find a school, but by that same principle you COULD potentially find a "Dragon Breeder" and any other number of miscellaneous buildings. I was going more along the lines of it isn't typical to find a "school" as for the general fantasy setting (medieval English type era combined with high fantasy), as you yourself have correctly identified, most "schools" were done in monasteries, mosques, etc. Schools have differed over the years and have indeed existed in one form or another, Spartans were taught to fight and read, but given that they had a warrior culture I wouldn't say this is the typical "school" that most people would identify with and is probably more accurate to the listed "Warrior School". The variations of different types of school are all dependent on too many factors to be listed.
There's no parameters to the list (era/high fantasy/technology level/culture) so the list is pretty much endless anyway.
i just find it difficult to undestand how a palce without the resources or inclination for a mundane university to then have a wizards school, which to all intents and purposes would be a far more exclusive and intense version of what medieval/reinassance universities/colleges were. just seems odd to me
Acyually I don't think its necessarely the way you said, Depending on the world a wizards school could be "more mundane" than a mundane school (if that makes any sense).
Originally Posted by vorropohaiah
At this point I agree with what was already said here: till where my knowledge goes, there were not many "mundane schools" where children went and learned math and reading/writing. From what I know there were specific schools where children would learn the basics and a specific skill (fighting, priesting, knighting, and others "ings" :P).
Schools/education would be established by:
- Specialty organizations/guilds out of their own pocket
- Those who wish to spread knowledge/religion
- The state through taxes
If your ruler isn't bothered about bringing public education to the masses and considers knowledge/education but another tool by which to keep the poor and uneducated under heel, then they wouldn't fund a public school. Whereas guilds and specialty organizations probably have a direct control over their pupils and/or train them for a specific purpose which suits the organizations/guilds needs, or (which is more typical) it is considered more of a private school and people would have to pay to join it.
this i like, a lot, though again a specific point. very characterful, though still i dont see why, if one is including a table of generic things, mundane 'schools' would be left out in favour of the more esoteric.
Originally Posted by Yospeck
then again we may be arguing semantics. my natural tendency is to assume a very low-magic world. this list might be a more traditional high-magic setting, in which case fair enough
I haven't gone through the whole list of buildings on this list, but it seems kinda funny that schools have become the battleground of choice in this thread.
In response to Yospeck and the comments since: you're right, the list is endless. That's why I was reluctant to comment on this thread before, and why I doubt the usefulness of this list (no disrespect meant to the original poster). Perhaps a more useful thing would be, instead of a list, a glossary of town buildings - give each building a short description that explains its historical background.
Here's a couple of small lists I previously compiled. They contain a mix of both modern and medieval/fantasy locations. There may be a couple of duplicates between the lists.
Government (Admin positions)
Emergency Services (Fire)
Animal Barding & Harnesses
Middle man/ broker
Combat/ Martial Arts instructor
Power production/ storage specialist
Animal control/ handler
gambling hall owner/operator
Agricultural tools, implements
Art stores and artist materials
Boots and shoes
butchers and meat dealers
Cigars and tobacco
carpets and rugs
lumber and wood
coffee and tea
curios, antiques, novelties
drugs and medicines
Flour and feed
Furs, leather, and hides
Hardware, stoves, cutlery
Harnesses and saddles
Ice and ice powder
Milk and dairy
Music and instruments
Oil, paint, wallpaper
Produce and provisions
To continue and expand on this thread I'm working on a list of trade guilds within a capital city within a Pathfinder Campaign.
So far I have:
Scribal (Paper making, record keeping, book production, etc.)
...and that's where I drew a blank.