The Kingdom of Grundholm
A Kingdom in the western Katerian Empire.
Early HistoryEarly Grundish history can be categorized by warring tribes and clans. The land in Grundhold is mountainous and makes travel both in and out difficult and dangerous. Due to this there was little to no contact with the outside world. However in the early 3rd century Revellundian Missionaries began travelling into the mountains in order to spread the faith of the early Oparium Temple. This was of particular interest to them as they believed Mount Brammogan to be a blessed mountain, and therefore believed that those that lived upon its slopes could be blessed people. One of these expeditions was accompanied by a Katerian prospector and adventurer named Faustus of Scarinium. A blacksmith and miner by trade, Faustus believed that the Grundish mountains might be home to useful or valuable minerals. During one such trip he discovered that the Grundish blacksmiths burned an oily looking black rock in order to heat their metal. Recognizing this as the same coal used in Katerian steel foundries. His suspicions confirmed, he immediately set off for Imperial territory. After arriving in Vennaeburich in Revellund he spoke with a General of the 7th Legion, who gave him 3 cohorts of legionnaires and 600 laborers for the promise that he would provide them with a new source of iron. With this force he founded a small town on the slopes of Mount Brammogan and named it Rulbenium. There he struck the earth and found a rich source of coal and iron.
Clan ConflictsSeveral years after the successful establishment of Rulbenium Faustus was approached by members of the Staerani clan, a group of locals from the Gerund Valley. The Staerani ask Faustus for help because they have heard tales of the great strength of Imperial warriors. The Staerani had recently been pushed out of their home by a rival clan, and wished to take it back. In exchange for more laborers to work in his mines, Faustus agrees, and marches his legionnaires along with the Staerani warriors across the mountains to the valley. The rival clan, the Barkani, meet them at a crossing on the Adlestrom river. The leader of the Barkani, whose name has been lost to history, is said to have rode into the battle on the back of a great Roc. With the help of the legionnaires and Faustus the Staerani won the battle, slaying the Roc in the process. As a symbol of this great victory, the Staerani took the Roc as their sigil. Faustus personally slew the Barkani leader, and in recognition of this, the Staerani offered themselves as vassals to him. After some discussion, they named him their first King. They resettled the area, and built a new city, which they named Staeranburich. Faustus, newly crowned king, takes two crossed bars of iron as his sigil, to represent his humble origins. In honor of his people he made his banner green, to represent the valley, and black, to represent the coal that they mined from the hills. Finally, he changed his name to Folcher, so as to better represent his people.
Kingdom of GrundholmKing Folcher spent the next couple of decades expanding his domain through alliances and military conquest. Nearly 20 years after his meeting with the general in Vennaeburich an emissary arrived from the Katerian Empire, curious as to his progress. Upon seeing his success, the emissary sped back to Revellund to report the news. Hearing of this marvel, Emperor Varius I decided to personally come and meet Folcher. The two met in Rulbenium, now a bustling mining town, and Varius offered Folcher two entire legions in exchange for fealty and a promise to provide iron to the Empire. Folcher agreed and spent the rest of his life conquering mand of the lands surrounding the Gerund Valley. His descendants continued this and for the next three centuries the new "Kingdom of Gerundholme" conquered surrounding lands and clans. During this time they engaged in a massive build up of infrastructure, following the imperial tradition of building roads where ever they conquered. As promised, many mines were opened, and production of iron and eventually steel took root.
First War with VergneouIn the early 5th century Grundholm's territorial ambitions brought them into conflict with a newly forming nation across the Bergent river. The new "Kingdom of Vergneou" had ambition on on the same territory as Grundholm, and for a time the nations engaged in an extended period of raiding. After a time the King of Grundholm went personally to oversee the raids. After one particularly humiliating defeat he decided that it was time for a full-scale invasion of the Kingdom of Vergneou. Upon seeing the size of the Grundish host the King of Vergneou realized that he didn't have the men to win, and so travelled to the Kingdom of Kateria and asked to be inducted into the Empire. The Emperor, somewhat taken aback, but pleased, agreed and ordered Grundholm to back down and go home. He then arranged a marriage between the two ruling houses in order to quell resentment. In the late 5th century Grundholm provided large amounts of manpower and supplies to the campaign against the Kingdom of Alberon. This campaign failed, but was overall rather successful for the Grundish, who spent a large amount of time looting cities in southern Gowland and Northern Vearland.
War of SuccessionIn the mid 8th century Grundholm's King, Berengar II, died, leaving 3 sons behind. Before his death he stated that each will receive an equal amount of his Kingdom. And so the Kingdom was split. The eldest brother, Karl, was given the middle of the Kingdom, containing the capital and most of the Grund valley. The middle brother, Hartwin, was given the eastern reaches of the Kingdom, and the youngest brother, Wilhelm, was given the west. Within three years Grundholm was embroiled in a violent civil war for the throne. King Hartwin arranged a marriage with Princess Avila of Thallund. With this newfound alliance he used men from Thallund to defeat his two brothers and reunite the Kingdom. After his victory he ordered the construction of a massive cathedral in Berkenshof as recompense for his kin-slaying.
War of the NecromancerDuring the War of the Necromancer Grundholm focused on a containment policy. When news of the undead reached Sternberg, the current king, Sigmund I, ordered the construction of a huge number of castles and defenses. During this time he emptied the Grundish coffers entirely, and took out large amounts of loans from the banks of the Gnomelands. Due to this period of excessive spending the Grundish economy boomed, leading to mass immigration from the harder hit regions of the Empire. Ultimately this would prove to be massively destructive due to the spreading plague. The large amounts of massed people made for a fertile breeding ground for the disease. When the massed undead reached Grundholm they found large numbers of half-built undefended castles. The majority of people retreated farther into the nation. Radzim the Burnt, a lich and general of the Army of the Dead, led his forces deep into Grundholm, eventually laying siege to Sternberg itself. Many would die during the siege, including King Sigmund I, his son Alfwin II inherited the throne. During the siege Radzim would be heavily wounded by a force of Oparium Templars lead by Sir Theudofrid of Barinherz. This wound apparently scared Radzim, as he fled the siege with his army, running north into Thallund. He was met by a Thallish army to his north, and what remained of the Grundish forces gave chase from the south. They met in the Kurbistal valley, and Radzim was struck down by Sir Gisulmund Eichenhart, a minor Thallish Knight. Gisulmund founded the town of Eichenburg on the spot in which he slew Radzim. After the war King Alfwin would spend the remainder of the nation's coin attempting to rebuild. Due to the massive destruction he would end up defaulting on his loans, causing a recession in the Gnomelands and the collapse of several major banks. It would take Grundholm nearly 200 years to recover.
First War against Kotimaa and the SilencedIn the late 12th century the Katerian Empire went to war against the Kingdom of Kotimaa due to an attack on the Kingdom of Triechel. During this time Grundholm received massive subsidies from surrounding nations in exchange for providing them with high-quality steel weapons and armor. This influx of money was the final push that allowed the nation to return to its previous state, as they reopened mines and foundries that had lain dormant for centuries. Reconstruction finally began in earnest, and the economy and population boomed in the period thereafter. Several years later the first invasion of the Silenced occurred. This affected the Grundish harder than other nations as much of their nation's labor was performed underground. While the rest of the world fought with the Silenced for less than six months, the Grundish continued fighting in earnest for nearly two years. The fighting would end with the death of a Silenced matriarch and their retreat back into the darkness below. Due to this conflict the King of Grundholm, Folcher IV, would order the completion of the fortresses that his ancestor had ordered. The construction of this "Ring of Iron" as Sigmund I had dubbed it, would once again mobilize the nation, and make Grundholm an even less appealing target in times of war.
Second War against the SilencedIn the Mid 14th century the Silenced would once again invade the overland. Grundholm, now stronger and richer than it had been during the first invasion, and also in the midst of a war with Revellund, was one of the only nations to weather the invasion with relative ease. The Grundish had been recieving reports for some time that something was stirring beneath them, as a result, they had set guards around the entrances to their mines, and trapped the deepest tunnels. Though they had attempted to spread the news of this, their neighbors did not listen. The traps caused the Silenced great amounts of difficulty in their ascent to the surface. Once it became clear that an invasion was indeed taking place the Grundish withdrew their forces from Revellund and began preparing for the new war. When the Silenced reached the surface they met heavy resistance from the prepared Grundish forces. An assassination attempt against the Grundish King failed, and the nation held strong. For the next 6 years the fighting waxed and waned, with the Grundish weathering the tide. With the war over, they found themselves one of the most powerful nations in the Empire due to the relative lack of destruction, they would maintain this position for many centuries.
Thallish Civil WarIn the late 17th century the Kingdom of Thallund faced a massive succession crisis due to the unexpected death of the vast majority of its nobility during the Massacre of Castle Lenztanzen. Grundholm watched as the Empire's bread basket tore itself apart in a bloody civil war. Over the next 20 years Thallund had no less than 8 Kings, the nation descended into almost complete anarchy. In an effort to end the madness, as well as an attempt to garner personal power, Prince Rudolf of Grundholm, the third son of King Gotthard I, announced his claim to the throne through ancient heritage. With his father's armies behind him Rudolf set about making Thallund his own, and was celebrated for it. After two decades of war he finally set the land to peace, and allowed it to rebuild once more.
War against VergneouIn the fall of 1878CE Prince Alphonse of Grundholm died at a tournament in Verngeou. Following his death Alphonse's father, King Sigmund III, would call for a declaration of war. The current High Marshal, Lord Gregor Von Grimmelshausen, blocked the King's request from being carried out, instead sending it to a vote by the Grundish House of Lords. Immediately preceding this vote, the armies of Vergneou sacked the city of Vielhause in south eastern Grundholm, leading to a unanimous vote in favor of declaring war.
Head of State
The official currency of Grundholm is the Imperial Griffon, a set of coinage on the Gold Standard.
Grundholm exports large amounts of metal goods, of particular note is the arms and armor produced there.
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