In order to become an Archmage, an wizard of sufficient power must challenge the Archmage's Council for the ownership of a specific Sphere of power. The Spheres are not fixed: magic is always evolving. Each Sphere is an area of power that the wizard in question absolutely "owns" and has intense knowledge and exceptional skill using.

Sometimes a challenger arises for a specific Sphere and the challenged must defend themselves against that challenger. Other times, an Archmage may designate a Sphere Heir and give their sphere to their successor, who sometimes must immediately defend it. Sometimes a Sphere will lay fallow for years before another comes to claim it. Sometimes a brand new Sphere is determined and this usually causes a massive shake-up in the Council as everyone jockeys to discover what this change means.

Ownership of a Sphere is predicated on continuing practice and mastery of that Sphere. If an archmage chooses to pursue other paths, sometimes they will relinquish a Sphere in order to focus on their new area of interest. An archmage who does this is called a Wanderer. Sometimes Wanderers return and claim a new Sphere. When this is done, the Archmage is called an Arch-Master or Mistress.

Anyone who ever attains a Sphere on the council is called a Magus, and may claim that title forevermore, despite what happens further to them.

The Mindstone recognizes and keeps track of all Sphere assignments and claims, and is the official object of record for all Archmagistry.
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