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Minbari society is divided into various social groups or clans which consist of a number of closely allied families and each clan is itself aligned to one of the three castes; worker, warrior and religious. Individuals are born into the castes and clans to which their family belongs, though at a certain age, if the calling of their heart demands it they may leave their caste and be formally adopted by a clan of another caste.
- Eighth Fane of Tredomo: The Eighth Fane of Tredomo was the religious clan to which Sech Turval belonged.
- Fire Wings: A warrior clan that were the first to use flying machines in battle.
- Moon Shields: A warrior clan that were traditionally a mounted force.
- Night Walkers: A warrior clan that were primarily foot soldiers with expertise at traveling during the night. In ancient times, they followed up behind a mounted force of soldiers.
- Star Riders: The oldest of all the warrior clans, in ancient times the Star Riders were a mounted force that used the stars to help guide them.
- Tenth Fane of Elleya: The Tenth Fane of Elleya was the religious clan to which Delenn and Callenn belonged.
- Third Fane of Chudomo: A Religious clan that had served with honour since around 1591.
- Wind Swords: The most militant of the warrior clans, jingoistic to the point that they would do anything to defend their world, even bypassing the circles of authority. In ancient times, the Wind Swords were a mounted force probably with an emphasize on sword fighting.
- Mir: A proud line of the Religious Caste from the Tenth Fane of Elleya. Delenn of Mir could trace her heritage back to Valen himself.
- Dosh: The family to which the warrior Rashok belonged.
- Zir: The family to which the religious caste Nukenn and his son Anla'Shok Tulan belonged.
- Kort: The family to which Shakiri, one time Shai Alyt of the Warrior Caste belonged.
In the time before Valen, all of the warrior clans had its own fighting force and often fought against other Minbari in a never ending series of civil wars. When the Shadows came Minbar led the fight against them, however the military clans continued to fight amongst themselves over tactics and strategy and who was best qualified to lead the battle, very nearly costing them the war. When Valen appeared aboard a mysterious space station his first act was to unify the Minbari government by forming the Grey Council, after which he unified the military by forming the Anla'Shok, a fighting force made up of warriors from all of the military clans.
Trained in the customs and traditions drawn from all of the clans, but made into a something new and unique to the Anla'shok. Most importantly each Anla'shok would no longer swear allegiance to his or her own clan or fight only on its behalf, but they would instead swear allegiance to the Entil'Zha and fight only on his behalf.
Under Valen's leadership, the Anla'shok were the most effective fighting force the galaxy has ever seen, though Valen recognized a danger in this. Knowing that without an enemy to fight, such a group could become restless and dissatisfied, and that if the wrong person became Entil'Zha in that situation, that dissatisfaction could be used to turn the Rangers into an army of conquest and power.
After the war was won, rather than disbanding the Anla'shok, thus taking away the unifying symbol of the Minbari military and risking the clans sliding back into a collection of warring factions, Valen gave the Rangers a new mission. Valen knew that one day the Shadows would return and so he assigned the Anla'shok the role of watching the frontiers for whispers of their return while leaving the other warrior clans to cooperate and defend Minbar under the leadership of the Grey Council and the Council of Caste Elders.
The system stood for a thousand years after Valen travelled beyond with the Warriors keeping the Anla'shok in trust as part of their debt to Valen, though over the long centuries their numbers dwindled and were eventually seen as a relic and an embarrassment to the Warrior Caste. Though no enemy would threaten Minbar like the Shadows once did, the Warrior Clans were not idle and at one point fought off an attempted Streib incursion into the Minbari Federation.
The Warrior Clans were again called to war in 2245 when Chosen One Dukhat was killed aboard the Grey Council ship Valen'Tha in the disastrous first contact with the Earth Alliance. The incident was precipitated when the warrior Satai Morann gave the order to approach the alien ships with gun ports open, according to Warrior Caste tradition, a gesture of strength and respect. The Human Captain took it as a prelude to an attack and opened fire. In the ensuing war, Shai Alyt Bramner of the Star Riders clan led the warrior clans in a conflict that would beat the Humans back all the way to their homeworld. However, at the Battle of the Line the Grey Council inexplicably ordered all ships to cease fire and issued an order to surrender to the nearly obliterated Earth forces.
This unexplained order, when victory was easily within their grasp deeply stung the pride of all warrior clans, leaving them bitter and resentful, made even worse by the rumours that the order had originated from the Religious clans. Sineval, one of the Warrior Alyts even went so far as to commit suicide rather than obey, causing his crew to take their ship and go into self-imposed exile.
|The following is based on The Mongoose Publishing RPG books and contradicts canon sources.|
Mongoose Publishing makes reference to three further Warrior Caste clans:
- Dark Knives : existing during the last Shadow War, this aggressive clan of warriors challenged Valen's leadership of the Minbari with their leader fighting him in armed combat. However, the Dark Knives leader was defeated and he along with his clan left Minbari space where they became known as the Shadowsouled after becoming servants to the Shadows. They are referened in "The Minbari Federation" sourcebook.
- Blood Song : existing at the time of the last Shadow War, the entirety of this clan defended a Minbari space station that served as their headquarters against the Shadows but were all killed when the Shadows struck. The loss of the station would have crippled the Minbari had Valen not arrived with a replacement and the entire Blood Song clan was honored for their sacrifice. They are mentioned in both "The Minbari Federation" sourcebook and "The Rangers" guide.
- Sun Lances : this clan operated in the Minbari Protectorate and were the least known of the clans. They were stated to be a close devotees to Valen and provided some support to the Anla'Shok. A mention is made of this clan in "The Drakh" sourcebook.
Furthermore, "The Minbari Federation" sourcebook makes reference the formation of a splinter clan from the Wind Swords called the Storm Blades that were formed after the end of the Earth-Minbari War. This group of rogue members of the Warrior Caste opposed the decision to surrender at the Battle of the Line and seek to re-ignite hostilities with Earth.