Evmache is the Octatheistic goddess of battle, defense, parenthood, and the home. She is often represented by dogs and the color orange. The current leader of the Phalanx of Evmache is Aegis Livia Pavise, a former Xiphos.
Though Evmache's nature is understood by most to be defensive, throughout Octatheist history, one sect of Evmachenes, the Belligerent, considered it their holy duty to conquer other galactic civilizations. The justification being that they considered it necessary to bring others under their rule in order to protect them. More radical Belligerent believed conversion to also be a necessary part of this process.
For millennia, the Belligerent were a fringe or at most small minority among the greater Phalanx of Evmache, but around 2000 years ago their influence started to grow, until 1900 years ago when, with the ascension of Aegis Cicero Cavius, the Belligerent were the ruling faction withing the Phalanx and began to assert their will over the galaxy. The rising Belligerent provided a rallying point for more militant elements of other Octatheistic churches, many of whom joined in the Evmachene war effort, splintering their own churches. The Belligerent's forces would go on to conquer more than two dozen systems surrounding the Evmachene home territory.
The Belligerents' reign ended 118 years after the ascension of Aegis Cavius with his death in battle, along with that of many of the Belligerent Strategoi who supported him, allowing Ahaetulla Juvenia, a Sibyl, to be elected Aegis and end the Phalanx's attempted conquest. With the leading party disbanded, the warring factions of the other churches were quickly reigned in. The systems and planets conquered were evacuated of Evmachene invaders and returned, with restitution demanded to be paid to the citizens by the other churches and several interstellar treaty organizations, which were only finally repaid in full as of 300 years ago.
The reign of the Belligerent has had a lasting impact on the trajectory of the Evmachene church and of the Octatheon in general. For some who were conquered, it is a dark chapter in their history books, but others have longer lives, and longer memories. Outside of their sphere of influence, some longer-lived folk still think of the Evmachenes as hawkish conquerors, eager to convert everyone to their faith, and for some of them, that opinion extends to the whole of the Octatheon. The Phalanx since have dedicated themselves to appearing as docile as possible, and doing what they can to foster goodwill and repair their image.
The label "Belligerent" is extinct within Evmachene politics. The scant few who have similar beliefs to the traditional Belligerent now call themselves Polemics. Ironically more influential are the Aichmetes, the remnant and descendants of the remnants of the old Belligerent. Now splintered from the Phalanx entirely, the Aichmetes, who some outside the Octatheon call a cult, operate more as a terrorist organization than a religious one. In the last decade alone, they are believed responsible for a disruption in the main power generation system on the Gnoteric capital station Nebula and the sabotage of the main terraforming center on Amayo's Heart, as well as an attack on last year's Forum, itself disrupted by the Gnoteric Anax Sigma.
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