Althaea

Althaea, ca432 Burchard, Barric Haywood, Cartographer

Althaea is a large continent to the east of Cyril, and is the largest continent in the known world. Despite its size, it has a considerably smaller population than Cyril because of its strained history, and is mostly untouched forests and mountains.

Althaea was originally populated solely by dwarves, but they were slowly pushed into the Aled Mountains when human colonists arrived from Cyril.

Althaea is made up of two countries separated by the natural barrier of the Aled Mountains. Legend states that when Althaea was still ruled solely by dwarves the provinces of Althaea were named for their masters; however, during the Insurrection of ~300 Burchard during which the dwarves were driven by human colonists into the mountains, brothers of the largest colonizing family became bitter rivals and each set out to conquer the continent. Neither succeeded in their goal, but one brother, Farin, conquered the lands west of the Aled Mountains, and his brother Camidon conquered the east. The rivalry between the two nations continued long after the deaths of the brothers, and only the natural barrier of the Aled Mountains restricts all out civil war; random clashes between Fariners and Camidons still occur on occasion.

The capital of Farin is Hawley. It is the second largest city in Farin, and is the seat of the governor. The largest port city—and largest city in general—in Farin is Irons. It houses several million people, mostly human, who thrive on seafaring trade with the other port cities along the coast. The economy grows on legitimate trade between the cities of Farin and Cyril, though piracy and smuggling factors in as well. Cyril’s Brotherhood of Eventide as safe houses in Farin, and much of the illegal activities in Farin are set in motion because of the pirate kings of Canton.

The capital of Camidon is Arcton, which is on the northern coast. It is the largest city in Camidon, and is the seat of the governor. The largest port city in Camidon is Harris. It is considerably smaller than Arcton. The economy grows on legitimate trade between the cities of Camidon and Cyril, though piracy and smuggling factors in as well. Cyril’s Brotherhood of Eventide and the pirate kings of Canton have very little power in Camidon.

After the Insurrection and subsequent colonization of Althaea, some humans in the area chose not to live in the bustling cities along the coast. Many chose to go further inland and adopted some of the culture of the land-dwelling dwarves. They call themselves the People, but the settlers call them wild men. They live off the land and worship deities of nature, and have abandoned the western civilization brought in from Cyril. They are generally peaceful but will war with the other human settlers if they invade their lands, giving them a fearsome reputation. The population of wild men is considerably lower in Farin than in Camidon.

What dwarves do exist after the Insurrection live in strongholds deep within the Aled Mountains. They are slowly rebuilding their culture and their race, as their population was nearly eradicated in the past, and are ruled by iron-fisted monarchies and guild castes. There are countless small dwarven strongholds, but three major ones that rule the dwarven trade and culture. The largest is known as Sturmaug; the second is Eisermar; the third is Steidrach. The Aled Mountain range is the only known place where griffins will nest and breed.

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