Feloran Successor States
For thousands of years the Feloran Empire stood as the central legal and economic authority in the Southern Hemisphere, eventually imparting its name to the continent. After the failed Northern Invasions (1610-1815 NE), the Feloran Empire disintegrated into several independent authorities, with the four largest successor states each claiming to various degrees to be the true continuation of the Empire. Much of the continent, particularly within the former Empire, is devoid of settlement due to sharp population decline and the difficulty in accessing the Feloran interior. Though in principle some may share direct borders, much of the interior space between the States is abandoned and lawless, but there are still more than a few places where one can safely travel between States without leaving the safety of civilization. The Feloran Empire had a centralised economic system, with a central Treasury in Soren under the authority of the Empire, with an appointed academic or merchant in 20-year terms. Hypothetically, the central currency still exists, however each successor state has taken to minting its own coins using unique designs to their cultures. Legally, all coins are interchangeable with each other, however many prefer to exchange their coins for exclusively Dotharan-minted or Northern pieces when travelling off continent, and Elven communities still harboring bitter feelings towards the North often refuse to accept Northern coin. Bartering is common among the rural communities of elves, humans, orcs, and a smattering of other races outside of the successor states and in the Eastern Steppes.
Most of the Feloran peoples of the world live within one of the four successor states. It is a culture that values personal enlightenment, which can come off as smug superiority to others, and has long been a keeper of history and knowledge of the known world. The Ëlhyæan faith likewise endorses personal spiritual journey, and is structured as an guiding authority responsible for the dissemination of spiritual, arcane, and mythological knowledge to the Feloran people. Anyone – Feloran or otherwise – is able to follow Ëlhyæan practice as it is a set of principles and faiths with no requirements for membership nor a central figure or leader. Feloran is the dominant language, however urbanised areas in Inner Felora and frequent travelers also speak the Common pidgin, an import from the Galisean trade routes. Since the collapse of Imperial Authority and retreat of Crown Rule to the Sovereignty of Soren, there has been a divergence in the four states in the Feloran identity and the incorporation of new cultural values from Qua'adar and previously-fringe elements of Feloran societies. Felorans have not imposed many rules on themselves or divided themselves into strict classes. There is a vague deference to "authority", be it in the form of an Emperor, teacher, elder family member, or the village guard. Personal freedoms are sacrosanct to Felorans, however an accompanying set of social and environmental rules, with rituals and festivals to put them into practice, keep most Felorans believing in the value of living the path of "lightest touch" – wherein decisions are to be weighed in how they effect the environment and others. This has lead to difficulty for Felorans outside of their home communities, as they prefer follow their own rules and settle problems among themselves, unbeholden and in place of local custom or law. Feloran families are both large and small; there exists the large extended family and community, which assists in raising children collectively, while individual parents live with their children. In some states, the smaller family unit includes up to 6 generations of people, and the eldest is an honored head of the family, though they hold little power over their kin. Artistically, Felorans are theatrical and pensive. Common artistic expressions are poems, which are often compiled into anthologies and published; musical composition, which often includes setting one's or someone else's poetry to music; and storytelling, which takes on the theatrical form of plays and the pensive form of novels. There is also a notable sculptural tradition, however it's scope and practice is dying out due to it's historical connection to the Imperial architectural schools. Felorans are net exports of art, as many Feloran writings and compositions are part of the cultural fabric of other societies in Felora, while many of the well known ones are sought and traveling performers from across the world.
Only the eldest of giant families in the far north of Galisea, who's rule over their domains are unfathomably ancient, share the honor of a thousands year old history with the Elves of Felora. Their origins lay in the four major economic and political centres of the extinct Empire of Felora: the spiritual centre in the Province of Ekora, the trade capitol of Til Formen'ya, the artistic and intellectual centres of the Provinces of Sarendia and Erintrel, and the Imperial Capital. Through it's well-refined and complex bureaucracy, the Feloran Empire utilised the strengths of its various provinces by coordinating their economic activity with remarkable efficiency, with its ancient canal system, and a network of well paved and patrolled roads linking the Province of Ekora and other regions not reachable by boat. However, the rapid succession of crises faced by the Feloran Empire, starting with the Drowning of Antiokus and culminating with the Sacking of Soren, fractured it's imperial bureaucracy and military beyond recognition. The collapse of the Empire caused the largest population decline in recorded Feloran history, with almost 55 million Felorans living across two continents on the eve of the retreat from the north, to less than 15 million in the aftermath of the Sacking of Soren. Genocidal reprisals against Felorans in parts of Galisea, violent attempts by the Imperial Army to quell unrest in Feloran cities and retake lost Galisean ones, and attempts in filling the power vacuum by many of the Empire's former subjects greatly weakened the bureaucracy that sustained such a large population. With not enough hands for the planting season and no system to distribute what remained of the stockpiles, those who survived the fighting faced famine. In some cases, cities with more than a million inhabitants became ghost towns overnight, and the densely settled Inner Feloran region became abandoned wilderness in the course of barely one Feloran childhood. Only the Dotharan Alliance has rebounded and surpassed pre-collapse population levels, largely due to the influx of Qua'adaran humans from Galisea, many of whom were themselves fleeing the chaos in the wake of the Feloran withdrawal. The Sarendian Trust is projected to have regained it's population within one elf generation, while the Ekoran Conclave and Sorenian Sovereignty have lagged in rebounding from the Feloran Mass Famine, the Sovereignty in particular at around 55% of imperial-era population levels. Since the Mass Famine, there have been three notable developments in Northern Felora. Most dramatically the Dotharan Alliance – due to a liberal attitude towards outsiders, coupled with groundbreaking civil rights and personal freedoms – has seen the emergence of a half-elven majority population and governing class, which has had repurcussions in the halls of Lumora. Secondly, the Republic of Erintrel was annexed by the Republic of Sàrèn and later reformed into the Sarendian Trust. Lastly, and most secretively, the Sovereignty of Soren has been caught on multiple occasions infiltrating the societies in and manipulating the states of Northern Felora, in perhaps a long running scheme to reforge the Feloran Empire.
Demography and Population
No comprehensive census has been carried out since the dissolution of the Feloran Empire, however estimates from the University of Qua'adar and University of Melnor place the total population of the four Feloran Successor States at 15,900,000 inhabitants. Most live in Inner Felora, around the Grand Feloran Canal and related network, or along the Illebel Highway in Ekora. Outside these regions within successor state borders, the population is sparse, with small communities near useful resources or protected geographies. Much of the continent is devoid of any communities (with any ties to the sucessor states). Inner Felora is densely populated, though lesser now than in the Imperial Eras, thanks to the great distance and speed that can be traversed with the Grand Feloran Canal, and the efficient irrigation system it supports. Birth rates have almost rebounded to pre-famine levels, and there are few abandoned cities or settlements remaining along the Canal. Older generations are comparatively smaller, due to the legacy of war and famine, but rate of death has stabilised in the last 250 years.
The Feloran Successor States occupy three disparate noncontiguous territories. Moving east to west, the Serene Conclave of Ekora has the largest of the three, taking up most of the Jolli Steppes at 1,210,900 square kilometers. The Inner Feloran states are divided in two, with the Dotharan Alliance and Sorenian Soveriegnty in the east making up 542,400 square kilometers, and the Sarendian Trust in the west at 267,800 square kilometers. In total, the Feloran Succesor States have 2,021,100 between them. The majority of Feloran territory is either humid or semi-arid, with variations therein between rainforests in the Dotharan Alliance and Sarendian Trust, grassy windswept steppes in the Ekoran Conclave, and fertile floodplains in the Sorenian Sovereignty. The Dotharan Coast becomes rockier the further northeast one sails, and the coasts of Erintrel and Ekora on either end of the continent are equally rocky. Mountains and the outskirts of the Jolli Steppes seperate the eastern Inner Feloran and Ekoran regions.
Feloran successor militaries are, broadly speaking, products of the legacy of Imperial Rule. Historically, it was the Feloran military that enabled their continent-spanning empire and early successes in overseas provinces. The specifics of the size and organisational structure of the military have long fluctuated in Feloran history, and the successor states are no different. In general, Feloran armies are broken down into Oyemörn, Fèlmörn, Tèlmur, and Mörn Dolīn divisions, and each successor state favors one type over the others. The Sovereignty of Soren has maintained the historical priorities of a small, professional force of Oyemörn, the Empire's ancient brigades meant for extended offensive wars, and Tèlmur divisions consisting of trebuchets meant for breaking sieges, an increasingly anachronistic configuration due to the adoption of Galisean gunpowder by other Feloran states. The Fèlmörn division, meant for defensive wars fought near or on Feloran soil, and in peacetime patrolling the border and primary continental trade routes, is the dominant division of the Sarendian and Ekoran militaries. The Dotharan Alliance, being a thalassocratic state, favors the naval division Mörn Dolïn, and has expanded the navy into multiple divisions, making it a distinct organization from the other divisions. The Tèlmur and Dolïn divisions have undergone technological revolutions in the last 150 years. Adoption of gunpowder by many Feloran adversaries has caused the successor states of Dothara, Sarendia, and in a few cases Ekora, to overhaul the composition of the Tèlmur, replacing counterweight-based trebuchets for gunpowder-based cannons. Modern navies, like that of the Dotharan Alliance, are moving towards cannon-based ships over boarding or ramming-based designs, and internal leadership independent of that of the army. Additionally, the Oyemörn and Fèlmorn in some states have been kept outfitted with firearms, in lieu of the traditional pike, but have continued the basic division and discipline of old.
Being the remnant of the last surviving ancient civilisation in the world, the Feloran Succesor States enjoy some of the most advanced technologies known to intelligent mortal beings, and indeed the Cyrenic and Aeillan societies in the northern continent are the only known ones on par with the Felorans. The Felorans exported many technologies to the rest of the world, such as lanteen rigging and the trebuchet. Felorans made some of the first oceangoing ships, and their designs lineage continues outside of Felora by the Republic of Artenos, as well as the Khedevite of Qua'adar, both part of former provinces of the Empire. Felora is home to some of the oldest surviving academic and religious institutions in the world, endowing the society with great stores of knowledge of the scientific and the arcane, of history and myth. The University of Melnor educates brilliant minds from across the continents, and it's academic rigor and methodology is a benchmark for academia far and wide. Feloran industry is beginning the earliest stages of an industrial revolution, as new knowledge from the north trickles into Felora and combines with the ancient knowledge of the Empire.
Most Felorans practice Ëlhyæa, the animistic faith originating from the Serene Temple of Ekora, which continues to be the center of the faith. Once, there were thousands of temples, shrines, and outposts maintained by scholars and clerics, headed by a Temple Druid, scattered throughout the Feloran Empire, however many of these were abandoned after the collapse of the Empire and have fallen into decay or been repurposed by locals. Still, the Ekoran temple continues to teach Clerics, support the spiritual journeys of Druids and general practitioners alike, and dispatch Druids to head the various temples and their respective religious shrines upon request from the locals. The faith holds the most power and sway in Ekora, as the Temple City is the sovereignty for most of the Jolli steppes. Other faiths are present, particularly Galisean faiths brought by northern settlers, however the most developed faith practised in the successor states indigenous to the continent besides Ëlhyæa is the D'jo Orcish religion of the Ashar Rhema. In fact, the two religions have a shared history and development that makes distinguishing certain aspects of their respective mythologies difficult, and indeed there are many points of contention. Only the old faith of the Vöth, an ancient rival and enemy of the Feloran Empire, is forbidden, though in more modern states its more of a cultural taboo than a legal prohibition.
Trade & Transport
The Successor States maintain an internal system of commerce centered around the historic trade routes of the Feloran Empire. The ancient Grand Feloran Canal connecting Til Formen’ya, Lumora, and Sarendia continues to be the backbone of internal travel and commerce in Northern Felora. Although much of the canals have deteriorated, in their prime it was possible to traverse all but the Eastern Steppes by boat. Most foreign trade takes place out of Til Formen’ya, however Sarendia and Ekora maintain respectably sized ports of their own. Ekora in particular maintains it's position as gateway to the Carabar Peninsula in the far eastern part of the continent. From the merchant-dominated citystates of the Dotharan Alliance, cargo is shipped on mostly Feloran Dotharan (some of the most advanced sailing vessels in the known world) and Galisean Qua'adaran merchant vessels, dominating cross-Tealastrian shipping routes. Dotharan control of these routes have made them incredibly wealthy and influential, to the chagrin of the withering Imperial power in Soren. Trade with neighboring land nations is mostly along the ancient highways linking former client states and provinces of the Empire, with each successor state trading with various settlements of humans, dragonborn, and orcs. The various independent canal settlements often act as middling powers between the Sorenian and Sarendian states, having control of many segments of the Grand Feloran Canal. Trade with the Kingdom of Daramar is more sporadic, though there is an increasingly disused road into the Kingdom.
Imperial Legacy States, Feloran Legacy States
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