The Velgan Empire is the Kingdom of the Tsars and Tsarinas. The Velgan Empire roots are in the Kingdom of Maskeva which grew to prominence during the Age of Blood; it was through blood and occasional diplomacy that the Tsar created the Velgan Empire forging together a vast array of peoples into one of Runetalras’ great kingdoms.
GeographyThe Velgan Empire is one of the two most southerly kingdoms in the known world, the other being its neighbour to the East the Kasari Dominion. To the Empire North are the Free States and Kingdom of Selu’Qidar. The Velgan Empire is composed of diverse terrain, ranging including vast woodlands, steppes, mountain, and permafrost. Within these lands authority is divided amongst the Grand Kingdom of Maskeva, The Grand Duchy of Pskev, the Duchy of Bryvelg, Duchy of Belga, The Duchy of Donieper, Duchy of Urrek, The Free City of Novgomir, the Imperial City of Oxengrad, the Province of Caedvin, Province of Karthaig, and Province of Agdane with the Tsar as the supreme ruler of all.
PopulationHumans are the significant majority with the Velgan Empire, they are made up of the Great Velgans, White Velgans, Palemen, Donars, and Kasari. There are a significant number of dwarves, elves, halflings, and gnomes, with a smaller numbers of dragonborn, tiefling, half-orcs, goliath, aasimar, and firbolgs, as well as a number of monstrous races.
ReligionThe official state religion of the Velgan Empire is the Ebon Flame, a sect of worship to the Radiant Lady, it is the popular religion within the Empire, and the only one that can be legally worshipped. The dogma of the Ebon Flame is based upon a hatred of the nonhumans, as well as the belief that the Radiant Lady is the only true faith. The Ebon Flame believe that those who are born with magic or learn its arts are cursed, but can be redeemed through devout faith and service to the country. Despite the illegality, there are other deities and faiths worshipped within the Velgan Empire, some of these are the Seldarine is the most popular pantheon among forest gnomes and elves, and the Morndinsamman among dwarves and rock gnomes. Likewise the Draconic Pantheon are favoured among the draconic races.
Racial RelationsThe Velgan Empire has remarkably and notoriously bad relations between races. The Elder Races have a long history of being opposed, abused, and conquered, a feature that is firmly still the case. Discrimination against nonhumans is entrenched in the legal system of the Velgan Empire, as they are official second class citizens, who are restricted in terms of employment, ownership, and even where they are permitted to live. Additionally, nonhumans have fewer and worse legal recourses when a crime is committed against them by a Human. The majority nonhuman provinces also face much greater taxes and restrictions against them.
Views on MagicThe Velgan Empire believes that magic is an unpredictable risk, but its use is more than justified in service to the Tsar. The Velgan Empire is a signature to the Toc’vastil Accords, but only tacitly conforms to it, allowing various leniencies; providing Bastille Mages prove their loyalty to the Tsar and Empire they are given more freedom that mages in virtually any other kingdoms, are permitted to leave the Arcane Bastille for pre approved amounts of time, and some are even freed from the confines of the Arcane Bastille system itself. Mages who are not loyal can be subject to the same abuses seen in other kingdoms.
PoliticsOfficially the Velgan Empire is a constitutional monarchy, however, in effect it is an absolute monarchy which only pays lip service to constitutionality. The Empire does have a legislative body, the Zemsky Sen'orov, but it lacks the ability to challenge the Tsar as they can override any decisions or laws they pass, as they require the Imperial Assent. The Zemsky Sen'orov is made up of the boyars from the Great and White Velgan authorities; those being, the Grand Kingdom of Maskeva, The Grand Duchy of Pskev, the Duchy of Bryvelg, Duchy of Belga, and The Free City of Novgomir, the rest being imperial territories without representation. There is a great degree of independence granted to the components of the Empire. So long as conflict remains minimal among them, they remain loyal to the Tsar, and pay their taxes and tributes.
International RelationsThe Velgan Empire is not known for its skill of diplomacy or its ability to use soft power, instead it is oft seen as a brutish Empire which seeks to use its considerable force to strongarm preferable conditions. The Empire maintains remarkably and historically bad relations with the Kasari Dominion, and when the two are not at war they are on the brink of it.
EducationMost of the population of the Empire are uneducated, while some gain education from the Church of the Ebony Flame they are the lucky ones. Nobles or the wealthy are reliably taught by a mixture of religious, conventional, and magic tutors.
Gender, Sexuality, and InheritanceAs a result of the Velgan Empire being made up of several kingdoms, duchies, and povitz there are differences in views on gender and sexulity, whilst most are generally homogeneous the povitz of Agdane, Caedvin, Donieper, and Karthaig differs significantly from many of the generally accepted views elsewhere within the Velgan Empire. Within the Velgan Empire the society generally accepts two genders, male and female. It is also not generally accepted that a person can identify as a gender which is different to their biological sex; whilst those that do face social stigma. This is not to say that people of other gender identities do not exist, indeed they are more common within Agdane, Caedvin, Donieper, and Karthaig. There are also strict gender roles throughout much of the Velgan Empire. Men take on physical roles which range from physical labour to martial pursuits, however, the halls of economic, financial, and political power are almost wholly the domain of men. Women are generally relegated to the roles within the context of the household, raising children and taking on jobs which can be performed in the home such as weaving and looming. This differs within Agdane, Caedvin, Donieper, and Karthaig where gender roles are less defined. There is little sexual freedom throughout much of the Velgan Empire, a direct result of the dominant religion, the Ebon Flame, which decrys homosexual acts as an abominantion and sin. These acts, and people whose sexual idenities differ to hetrosexaulity certainly exist but face discimination. The customs regarding inheritance and landownership are rather uniform throughout the Velgan Empire. Male-preference primogeniture is customary, although not binding, for most nobles. A man's eldest son is his heir, followed by his second son, then his third son, and so on. In theory, the youngest son is followed in the line of succession by the eldest daughter. A man's daughter generally inherits before her father’s brother. When a ruling lord dies and leaves no clear heir, his widow might lay claim upon his lands and rule until her own death, and in such a case, might name an heir by herself. This differs within the Caedvin and Karthaig where the eldest child regardless of sex inherrits. Individuals like experienced adventurers and mages are often spared the worst of this system as a result of the power they oft possess.
InfrastructureIn the major Velgan cities aqueducts and wells deliver water to commoners, the wealthy, and nobles alike, in the wealthy sectors well developed sewer systems deliver refuge into the rivers, and roads are paved. Outside of the major cities villages and towns are linked by dirt roads, sewage systems are unheard of, and wells or lakes are the only reliable source of ‘clean’ water.
Agriculture & IndustryThe Velgan Empire is an agricultural powerhouse, producing large amounts of cereal grain, wheat, flax, and other agricultural products. The Velgan Empire also possess an abundance of iron, tin, wax, and livestock, particularly cows. The Industry is less advanced, and broadly speaking manufactured products are inferior to that of the other great kingdoms.
The Tsar loves, and the Tsar punishes the wicked
Kingdom of Maskeva 3:Blood
Velgan Empire 21:Contempt
Velgan Empire 21:Contempt
Velgan Kingdom, the Maskeva Empire
Head of State
Head of Government
animal furs, animal hide, Timber, Fowl, Cereal Grains, Iron, Fish, Dyes, Tin, Cattle, Nickle, Precious Stones and Gems, Bees Wax and Honey, Horses, and low quality manufactored goods.
Yew Wood, Adamantine, Cocoa, Coffee, Incense, Ivory, Jade, Spices, Suger, Tea, Mithral, Arcanium, Dimeritium, Ironwood, as well as extra-regional foodstuffs
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