The Lord-Governorship is not a hereditary title, being an appointment granted in the Court of Courghais by the Overking. Thus far, no Lord-Governor has refused to surrender the office or establish a hereditary succession; most of them are, in any case, anxious to return to the civilized center of the Kingdoms of Foere once they have accumulated a modest fortune in the provinces. As a general rule for understanding the government of Aachen:
- If it is a high road, a bridge, or a court of law, a Regional Governor is in charge of it.
- If it is a city, the mayor reports to the Lord-Governor and to no one else (although the Regional Governor still runs the court system).
- If it is a town, it either reports to the Lord-Governor as a city (a “free town”), or is governed by a noble as part of the feudal system, although the courts remain under the supervision of the Regional Governor.
- If it is a piece of land, a wagon-trail, or a village, a noble of some rank is in charge.
Grain, wool, cloth, manufactured goods, cotton, furs, gems (common and semiprecious), silver.
The native Aachenlanders were absorbed into the Kingdoms of Foere when the province was established by King Macobert in the past. At the time, the Aachenlanders were a loose affiliation of tribes having been previously united under the Atlantean Empire, sharing a common language and trading among each other fairly peacefully. The original language of Aachen has entirely died out, first replaced by High Boros and then by the Common tongue, although it has left the Aachenlanders with a still-recognizable accent in their Westerling speech, and several idioms not found elsewhere, such as expressing “don’t wait too long” by saying, “don’t let fish eat you.” The entire region south of the city of Vermis was devastated by the vast wildfires spawned by the explosion of the Tower of Oerson, a wind-blown wave of flames that eventually spread all the way to the Matagost Peninsula, thousands of miles to the east. The city of Aixe was spared only due to its huge, lake-fed moat, and might still have starved to death in the ensuing famines if it were not sited directly upon a road leading to areas not affected by the fires. Untold thousands died from fire and famine in the rural areas of what would become the Province of Aachen; scholars estimate that the population of the area took 300 years to rebuild to its original numbers as they stood before the fires.
Demography and Population
The relative stability of Aachen as a province should not be understood to suggest that the countryside is nothing but a placid expanse of fields and cheerful peasants, although many such places exist, especially in the heartlands. Many forests spread through the region, harboring beasts dire and strange, and there are countless areas in Aachen that have either never been tamed or that have been allowed to return to the wild. In particular, the lower reaches and foothills of the Cretians and the Carrion Swamp are home to bandits and monsters alike. Settlements in these remote areas cling grimly to their existence in the face of these threats, receiving only sporadic, halfhearted support from those who boast of the province’s stability. The wilder parts of Aachen are home to tigers, which can be a threat to herding communities. The tigers of Aachen (often referred to as “leopards”) are spotted rather than the striped varieties more commonly found in lands of Ashenthorn, most likely a strain that has survived from the days when the land was covered with great forests.
Trade & Transport
As with the western region of Eastreach, Aachen is fairly well populated, with numerous farming towns and trading villages. A fairly extensive network of passable roads in the province allows even the smallest settlements access to large markets, so farms are generally large and prosperous in the Aachen heartlands. Moreover, Aachen’s internal governance is much better organized than its rather corrupt northeastern neighbor Eastreach, with fewer so-called “tolls” being extorted from travelers by petty nobles and pocket fiefdoms. Many of the small towns in Aachen hold great “fayres” during which peasants from the surrounding regions and traveling merchants from other towns congregate to buy and sell all manner of goods. Such fayres are often held three or four times per year. Unlike its neighboring province of Eastreach, Aachen does not enjoy a lucrative financial relationship with Westden (for which the Lord-Governors have been more than a bit resentful in the past). For this reason, the Lords-Governor of Aachen charge fairly extortionate taxes on foreign caravans heading to and from Westden — which is in turn one of the many reasons Westden conducts so much traffic by riverboat through Eastreach, skirting Aachen entirely.
- Founding Date
- 21780 A.E.
- Geopolitical, Province
- Theriven the Leopard
- Head of Government
- Theriven the Leopard
- Government System
- Monarchy, Elective
- Power Structure
- Feudal state
- Economic System
- Parent Organization
- Kingdoms of Foere
- The Borderlands