Members of the British Aerial Corps.
Prospective aviators were trained from the age of seven with the Corps, with the eventual goal of becoming captain to a dragon. Aviators became captains only if, given the opportunity, a dragonet allowed him or her to place the dragon in a harness. Once done, duty tied aviator and dragon together forever. As a result, aviators lived an odd existence outside the traditional bounds of society, although the youth of good families were often given to the corps for training at age 7.
Because of their long training and dedication, aviators did not welcome the prospect of anyone outside the Corps attempting to harness a dragon, as William Laurence did in 1805.
Aviators formed an isolated society. Their mentality was very different from that of contemporaneous English society. In fact, many of their practices would be judged as scandalous by the people of that time.
The first major difference was the treatment of women. Because some British dragons (e.g. Longwings) would only take female companions, British Corps allowed women to become Aviators. In the past, such dragons had a female handler and a male captain, because women could not have a rank in the armed forces (they were refered to as 'Miss'). However, by the time Laurence joined, there was no difference in the way men and women were treated. They even wore identical uniforms, which in those times was unthinkable. The presence of women in the Corps had to be kept secret to avoid a scandal.
The second difference was the relaxed way in which aviators thought about family. They engaged in informal relationships, but few of them ever married. It was expected of unmarried women to produce children for the Corps.
The last issue was the attitude towards dragons. The society thought that they were savage and dangerous, and that it was best to keep them as far away as possible. However, the life of the Corps revolved around them. Dragons were cared for and admired as they symbolized power and respect. Unfortunately, when a dragon was unable to fight, it lost this status and was removed to the breeding grounds. If it was hatched with a deformity it was put to death. This shows that the fate of a dragon was determined by its usefulness. However, it has to be said that most British aviators were very loyal towards their dragons, to the point where aviator was judged mainly by the way he or she treated their dragon.
Even though the society was not aware of how the aviators really lived, it looked down upon them. They were thought to be almost as savage as their dragons, and because of that becoming an aviator was not considered a "respectable" career choice. Because of it, aviators formed a closed clannish society. They were cold to outsiders and very protective towards their own people, and perhaps most especially their dragons.