Kalvin Liao

Kalvin Liao (2492[1] - d. 13 March 2530), nicknamed "The Mad" and "The Devourer", was a Chancellor of the Capellan Confederation during the Age of War. Often cited as the archetype of the Capellan "Mad Chancellor", his reign was characterised by bloody purges and costly foreign wars.[2]


Early Life[edit]

Coming to power after decades of peace and prosperty in 2520, the handsome and intelligent Kalvin Liao was considered to be a portent of a better future. One of the first accomplished MechWarriors at the age of 28, he had styled himself as protector of the weak.[3]


Upon assuming the throne of the Capellan Confederation from his uncle Hendrik, he quickly discarded the congenial mask he had worn all his life, and used his position to indulge himself in all kinds of vices.

To further his own personal wealth, he used the Maskirovka to investigate wealthy nobles for treason. Upon acquiring or manufacturing such evidence, the noble would be quickly murdered or blackmailed out of his fortune, which would be added to the Chancellor's personal fund. Still not satisfied, he established the Courts of Philosophical Inquiry to help with his personal crusade against "traitors" (which would eventually include his own father). One of their first victims was his predecessor, Hendrik Liao. Denounced by the Duke of St. Ives and judged guilty by manufactured evidence, Kalvin had his uncle killed not even two years after assuming chancellorship.[3]

A failed assassination attempt by a young noble from Nanking in 2523 gave Kalvin Liao an excuse to grab even more power. After publically drawing and quartering the would-be assassin, the Chancellor's ire turned against possible co-conspirators. The same year, assorted mercenaries killed 10% of the House of Scions, who Kalvin held responsible for the assassination attempt. A year later, the House was closed altogether, and finally in 2525 the paranoid Chancellor deeply cut the rights of all Capellan nobles, instead instituting a military government, the Diem, which was only answerable to him.[3]

Foreign Wars[edit]

In 2518, Kalvion Liao was introduced to Mesillia Allard, daughter of the Duke of Andurien, during a state visit. While Mesillia was largely unimpressed by Kalvin, he in turn became obsessed with her. Although he kept his obsession secret until his assumption of the throne, after his rise to the post of Chancellor he immediatly started bombarding the Duke of Andurien with marriage proposals. Despite several hundred of them asking - and some demanding - the hand of his daughter, the Duke refused them all.

Frustrated by his lack of progress, Kalvin Liao forced through a decree legalising polygamy and distracted himself with marrying his first three wives. By 2527 he had married twenty-six women, including Ariana Calderon, daughter of the Protector of the Taurian Concordat. His unrelenting courtship of Mesillia remained unsuccessful however, and in a manic fit the increasingly unstable Chancellor ordered all his wives executed for treason. Enraged, the Concordat attacked Capellan border worlds in a bloody series of raids known as Ariana's War.[4]

Finally fed up with his unrequited courtship, Kalvin Liao launched the Second Andurien War in 2528 in a mad attempt to win both Mesillia Allard and Andurien.

Death and Legacy[edit]

As the Second Andurien War escalated into a dozen more systems and Mesillia disappeared during the fighting on Andurien, Kalvin's mental health deteriorated further. His reign of terror was finally ended at the hand of one of his own guards, a Red Lancer on March 13 2530. It would be up to Kalvin's sister Mica who had lived in exile to pick up the pieces. [2]


The Periphery (sourcebook) implies that Ariana Calderon was Kalvin's first wife, but the House Liao Sourcebook indicates she may have been one of his first three wives. There is no record of any children by these 'wives' surviving.

Preceded by
Hendrik Liao
Chancellor of the Capellan Confederation

Succeeded by
Mica Liao


  1. House Liao Sourcebook - Liao Family Tree
  2. 2.0 2.1 House Liao (The Capellan Confederation), p.39
  3. 3.0 3.1 3.2 House Liao (The Capellan Confederation), pp.36f
  4. The Periphery (sourcebook), p.20