History of Quatria
Though it may surprise modern Pantarcticans, the Shapes were not always at war. There was in fact a period before the Shape Wars whose peace, tranquility, and duration were unrivaled in all of pre-history.
During this marvelous epoch, the various Shapist societies developed each according to its kind, in endless variations expressing its underlying characteristics.
The Triangulons, for example, typically manifested as shimmering triangles in various groupings and configurations which changed according to the needs — and mood — of the moment.
This ranged from the more “pure” abstract Shapist geometric forms, to what Quatrians would later encounter in their more humanoid variants, and which was immemorialized in the classical art of that culture.
In joining together in certain mystical confirguations, the Triangulons, it is known, eventually begat the Rectangulons. And their societies, along with the Circulons (Monists), and Duogons, co-mingled harmoniously, exchanging forms at will and to the mutual benefit of all.
From this Happy Period came the development of the Runf-Mailaf alphabet, an ancient ur-script whose name remembers its two Pantarctican discoverers. This alphabet, in fact, had a vastly wider range of letter forms than any later or contemporary known alphabets. It is said in Quatrian myth that this alphabet contained all forms, and as a result, all possible words.
Here is a partial reconstruction of one segment of the Runf-Mailaf alphabet:
And a highlight on some of the parallels with out modern Pantarctican letter forms, which we inherited from our Pentarch ancestors, a sea-faring people:
One interesting thing astute observers will notice is that the modern Pantarctican symbol 💲comes from the ancient Shapist alphabet, along also with the suits of playing cards, ♦️ ♣️ ♠️ ♥️, the play and pause symbols ⏯, and so on and so forth.
Quatrian myth had it that for Shapist societies, this alphabet was more than just a system of writing, it was a literal record of entities held in fixed form, and whose sequences therefore were seen as real events, rather than simply depictions or or references to real events.
That is, of course, until the coming of the Shape Wars, which sundered this state of early harmony enjoyed by a world still young and untainted by pride, chaos, and despair.