The First 500 Years - From camp to colony to free city
DemographicsThe population are predominantly Mor, reflecting the town’s origin, though when compared to their cousins it is clear that there is a streak of Taru in their ancestry reflecting interbreeding in the early years of the settlement. Other races from elsewhere in Tarusia and further abroad are represented in the trading and mercantile classes and areas of the town reflecting its long history as centre of trade for the surrounding areas.
You'll find all sorts of folk here, but mostly we all stick to our own. Mixing for business is fine - we're all here for business, but personal gets tricky. Each to their own way and don't force on others - it works for us... mostly.
GovernmentIn its days as a part of the Empire, Orris had a council comprising the heads (or nominees) of the main guilds, representatives of the “granted” districts, and movers and shakers who could influence their way onto the council through wealth or usefulness. This was nominally chaired by the Emperor’s representative (often absent except for the oath taking period each winter). Following the Empire’s collapse this council is now lead by a triumvirate who serve overlapping 3 year terms with the senior of these taking a first among equals role.
DefencesInitially the settlement was defended by a pallisade but as the town grew, it expanded beyond that and it’s line now forms one of the main roads. With no immediate threat and hopes of expansion the landward side is only defended with bank and ditch. From 1136 there has been a boom across the inner harbour but it has had little use and if called for now many doubt that it would be functional.
Industry and TradeIn its early years boat and ship building predominated, though these trades have now left for areas where the timber supply is closer. Fishing remains a major food source but the wider economy and prosperity of Orris is now delivered by trade with the town acting as a major “wholesale” market for marine merchants of the surrounding lands. This position was secured when the Merchant Mages of Naros set up their first branch outside the Sea of Strange Lands here.
Guilds and Factions
by Ed Andrew
The once mighty forests were largely felled in the area surrounding Orris in the first few centuries of it's existence. Following the migration of the shipbuilding industry to the east in the town's third century there has been some reforestation but the land is now cultivated. The seas around Orris remain a rich source of fish though this is now less widely eaten than it once was following overfishing of the Taruvian Herring.