Zeder Geographic Location in Hallowed Legacy | World Anvil


Enter the Shadowed Jungle

Not much is known of Zeder from the outside. It is difficult to get through the black jungles even for seasoned travelers, let alone the casual seekers. It is not only that the forests are dense or the wildlife dangerous; the trees wander. Sometimes whole cities will be cut off from the rest of the country by an impassable wall of rosewood, neem, or banyan trees that were not there the day before. The trees actively move, and it is not uncommon to see young trees dragging themselves along on their roots to whatever business it is trees keep. This makes travel inconsistent at best, outright dangerous at worst. Most often the trees will go around buildings or structures to the path of least resistance, but not always, and often they will disregard roads. Sometimes the trade roads will be overgrown overnight, but ancient roads will suddenly be clear. Cities have been lost, found, and lost again. But one city has always remained constant, the capital city.   Goliam is a city which is beyond ancient. Zederians claim that the city was built by the gods themselves and it is the point around which the jungle swirls. The buildings are intricate and tall, every surface of the black and white marble carved with designs and stories. It also boasts the tallest known man-made structures in the world, with some towers reaching over seventy stories high. The smells of sandalwood, teak, cardamom, and clove permeate the air, mixed with the rich earth and spiced wood of the jungles. Every spare nook of the city is occupied by shrines and statues of the many, many Zederian gods, as well as foreign gods which have been adopted into their pantheon.  

Traditions and Peoples

The tales of the Zederian pantheon are popular even outside of their dark jungles, for the sheer drama they offer. Of the hundreds of deities, both great and small, two are the most widely known. Pita and his main consort, Hanere. It was said that in the time before time, Pita made the jungles and the city, and he had many consorts, each a goddess in her own right with duties and creations of her own. But there was one, Hanere, the goddess of darkness, birth, motherhood, and war, who loved Pita with all her heart. She was jealous of the other goddesses and so she conspired to keep Pita to herself. One by one, each of the consorts fell, while hunting, during battle, in accidents, they all died until only Hanere remained. They ruled happily for a long time, for they truly loved each other, but the children of the other goddesses suspected the treachery. They gathered evidence that Hanere had murdered their mothers and brought it to Pita. In his grief and rage, he threw Hanere from the realm of the gods. She landed upon the earth and there she stayed, haunting the jungles with her fury. And that is only one tale of many. Even still, the Zederian people are accepting of other religions to the point of adopting gods they like and adding their idols right beside those of their own.
Zederian people are bright, friendly, and warm as a general statement. They are welcoming of travelers and are even known to be on friendly trading terms with the savage elves. They love to wear extravagantly dyed clothes and glittering jewelry. Most keep their straight, dark hair long and braided and many have multiple tattoos. A common fashion is to get stylized tattoos of the favored few gods on the right hand. They also enjoy duels, though not often to the death. They enjoy them even to the point of it being their go-to method of settling disputes or bartering. Foreigners who participate in this tradition are highly respected but it is not expected of visitors to understand.   As the closest ally to Gehnnia, Zeder does a lot of trade with their neighbor, making Gehnnians the most common visitors to the jungle nation. Most trading cities try to stick to the edges of the jungle to somewhat mitigate the shifting routs as best they can, but there are those who brave the deeper jungles. There are no sorcerers to speak of, but there are priests and tree shepherds who do their best to chase off obnoxious trees from the major roads. The jungles are home to many predators that happily stalk travelers and the largest herbivores in the world, the haathee; great beasts with large ears, long trunks, and four tusks.
Alignment: NG   Capital: Goliam (800,000)   Notable Settlements: Seda, Ruta Varana, Hanere Utarana   Ruler: Dayaalu Kshamaasheel Shapath Lene Vaala Atal   Government: Dynastic Monarchy   Major Races: Zederian, Gehnnian, Vell'ellar   Languages: Zederian, Gehnnian   Religion: Polytheistic   Exports: Herbs, medicine, wood, furs, fish, spices, silk   Imports: Food, metals, luxuries


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