Penned in for most of its length by the Centric Sea on one side and the Spiny Mountains on the other, Greltor Province is almost entirely covered by the expanse of the Yalthar Jungle. The lack of available land, the harshness of the tropical climate and the strong adherence of the native Yaltharmians to their traditional way of life, means that this province is one of the poorest in the Empire of Turelion.
Like all provinces with the Empire , the administration of the Province is overseen by a Satrap, who is theoretically responsible for management of all areas of Greltor. To aid them in this, the Satrap of Greltor Province has a staff of provincial officials and administrators who oversee the bureaucracy of all things, from the state of the road network to the taxes levied on fish imported to the province.
Demography and Population
Greltor Province has one of the smallest populations of all of the provinces of the Empire of Turelion. The predominant ethnic group in the Province are the Yaltharmians, a multi-racial group whose traditional way of life revolves heavily around living within and in harmony with the Yalthar Jungle, the word Yaltharmians literally translates to the children of the Yalthar. Though many Yaltharmians now live in the towns that have been constructed since the takeover of the area by the Empire of Turelion, but the vast majority still live in their traditional communities within the jungle, a fact that means that Greltor’s population is very dispersed. As the majority of Yaltharmians live more subsistence based lifestyles within their traditional communities, the majority of the population of Greltor Province is broad-brush categorised by the Imperial Bureau as being ‘lower class’, or perhaps more specifically, lower income. Most of the people who live in the more formally established towns and cities are categorised as being middle to upper class, and most of these people represent people who have moved to the Province from other parts of the Empire to make a living for themselves.
In the simplest terms, the territory that comes under the auspices of Greltor Province is the same as that covered by the dense, thick rainforest, the Yalthar Jungle, which stretches from the border with Langstrom Province in the north, where the jungle gives way to the coniferous woodland of the Grunwald Forest, all the way to the shores of the Centric Sea to the south at the southern end of the continent of Hunar. To the east, the border of the province ends at the coast, with the area of the Centric Sea beyond being administered by Pelenar Province, whilst to the west, the border of Greltor is predominantly the foothills of the Spiny Mountains in its northern and central regions, and the eastern shore of the Masseen River in the southern region. As the width of the Province is rather restricted in its northern and central sections, it is far easy to control and manage the ever encroaching jungle, which means that the vast majority of Greltor’s settlements are located there. Most of the southern section of the Province, a much larger expanse of the deepest, virgin jungle, the Ascar Giss, which literally translates into Turelite as the Snake’s Belly, is left almost completely undeveloped. Attempts have been made to establish settlements in the Ascar Giss, but these attempts, bar a few settlements on the coastlines have all ended in failure, partly thanks to the harshness of the jungle climate, partly due to the creatures that dwell there.
Like all Imperial Provinces, Greltor has access to its own standing army of Provincial troops, who are dispersed across the province in garrisons, ready to be called upon as needs be. For the most part, these troops act as town and city guards and police forces for the areas they are stationed to. In times of crisis, the Satrap can mobilise units in the Provincial Army from their garrisoned stations to become mobile units that can be deployed were necessary. The Provincial Army has units of infantry, cavalry, artillery and Firewings at its disposal, as well as a dedicated naval force to protect its coasts. The Command Headquarters for Greltor’s Provincial army is in the Provincial Capital Jakott.
Whilst the The Imperial Church of Canthartism predominates in the coastal towns and cities, amongst the smaller coastal communities and within the majority Yaltharmian communities, the predominant religion is one called Shoshan which revolves around a belief in deities that manifest themselves as spirits of creatures found within the Yalthar Jungle. This faith is one of the major reasons why the Yaltharmian people treat their jungle home with such respect as to upset its natural balance would be to upset the spirits, bringing ill fortune and misery.
Agriculture & Industry
The majority of the Province’s population, including almost 90% of the Yaltharmian ethnic group live subsistence lifestyles within the Yalthar Jungle, which when combined with the fact that there is not a lot of available land for farming and the general resource base of Greltor is either lower than the other Provinces, or the resources available are harder to access than elsewhere, means that the Province is one of the least industrially developed in the Empire of Turelion. A few, more specialist industries have grown up in the province, almost all of which are driven by non-natives who have moved into the area. The main two of these industries are the capturing of exotic animals, native to the Yalthar Jungle, which are then sold on as pets, curiosities, or wild animals for use in Imperial arenas throughout the rest of Kelbonnar; and the harvesting of wood for use in the decorative arts. Although the Yathar Jungle, as its name suggests is teeming with trees, most of them are unsuitable for industrial uses, being either too hard or too soft. Instead, they are harvested in smaller numbers for more specialist uses, the production of fine furniture etc. There is also a growing number of spice plantations that are appearing in and around the towns of the Province, which produce chillies, pepper, cinnamon, nutmeg and a variety of other aromatics that are exported widely across the Empire.
Trade & Transport
Greltor is one of the most poorly connected Provinces of the Empire of Turelion. Access to the Province can only really be gained through the port towns that are widely dispersed along the coasts, most of which are so close to Pelenar Province that any ships moving in and out of them, especially trading vessels, are prime targets for the Kelrik Pirates. Many ships will delay their arrival or their leaving of Greltor Province, sometimes by months so that they can sail in convoy, and hope that by sheer numbers they will dissuade the Scourge of Pelenar from attacking. In addition, so far no route has been found through the Spiny Mountains that directly links Greltor to Norgantho Province to the west, nor has any road been built to directly connect Greltor to Langstrom Province to the north. There is only one official Firewing port in the Province, located in the Provincial Capital of Jakott. Though it is possible to fly by Firewing between the coastal towns of the province, the abundance of tall trees, the difficulty of navigating the terrain and the generally poor state of any areas put aside for the landing and taking off of Firewings means that only experienced pilots, ideally born and raised in the province, should attempt this. There is a road network that exists between the coastal towns, but the reality of constantly fighting back the Yalthar Jungle from reclaiming any area cleared for a road means that they are poorly maintained and in many cases non-existent. Most people would only choose to travel by road as a last resort, preferring to travel by ship between the coastal settlements. Accessing the settlements of the Yaltharmians, which are almost always within the jungle itself is especially difficult and a journey to one of them can only be made by canoe, if you are lucky and your destination is alongside or near a water course, or by hacking through the jungle to your destination. In addition, no road building or transport links by land have ever been attempted through the Ascar Giss, the southern part of the Province as the region is too wild and dangerous to allow this.
Whilst the towns and larger settlements of Greltor have access to the same style of schooling most of the other Provinces have, where you pay to have your children educated and there is no universal access to free education. There is only one House of Learning in the province, which is located in the capital Jakott. Because the only established schools are within the towns constructed since the formation of the Province, the majority of Yaltharmian communities have no access to them, but given that they have educated their own children in their own way for millennia, this poses no cause for concern to them.
The Snake Coast / Land of the Coiled Serpent
Related Ranks & Titles