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Kingdom of Aikthudr'zhur
Motto: Come, Listen to our stories
Anthem: Sun Over the Hills
and largest city
|Official languages||Nys’tat’en; Vhydaszi; Shatlo; Dorteth|
|Halein of House Ny'thudr'zhan|
• Prime Minister
|154,002 km2 (59,461 sq mi)|
|61.7/km2 (159.8/sq mi)|
• Per capita
Early Settlement and Pre-Kingdom Era (1000 B.C. - 399 AD)
The Aikkian coasts were first home to native lutryne groups, while the Atiovha mountains were later settled in 1,000 B.C. by exiled Vhydaszi Akuanists. The new arrivals lived a mostly pastoral lifestyle and primarily raised goats and sheep.
The original and largest settlement by lutryne and kemonomimi Akuanists was swept away in a flood due to a harsh rainy season and primitive dam constructions blocking the flow of water. The original city's name has been lost and only few historical records make mention of the settlement that was once located where modern-day Highdrilian sits. The handful of stone structures that survived the flood are now maintained by the Royal Society of Historical Services. The purpose of the structures is unknown, but historians have theorized that they were once either religious sites or small granaries.
The site was abandoned for several centuries until the construction of a second settlement, Lodrilia, which eventually grew into a large city. It was later renamed to Highdrilian by King Okford of Ny'thudr'zhan in 1550.
Around 800 B.C. the region saw an influx of Shatlo elves who had been pushed out of their homeland on the Oshombran Peninsula by Taragai and later Talveri pressure. They named their new home "Aikthudr'zhur," or literally, "The Eastern Places." The arriving Shatlo converted to Akuanism but maintained much of their existing hierarchy and cultural traditions. Their comparatively long lifespans allowed them to consolidate their power in the region, and many modern political dynasties can trace their roots back to these original settlers.
Shatlo settlements were distinguished by their use of brick and stone structures rather than the wooden buildings of the natives. According to surviving records, the Shatlo settlers remained largely segregated from other species, although there was trade between the different groups. The refusal of the elves to convert to Akuanism caused further tensions between the natives and the Shatlo.
Shatlo and the other native groups had risen to a boiling point. The lutryne and kemonomimi shunned the Shatlo elves and refused their access to the riverways. The intermixing of trade routes, riverways and passages being blocked off to the Shatlo practically isolated the elven villages from one and another. Based on the written records from a kemonomimi brewmaster living in a large city next to a series of Shatlo settlements. Shatlo was greatly enraged by the shunning and blocking off of established trade routes, the two combined causing a famine to spread across the Shatlo settlements.
The 'Shatlo famine' was marked by historically high growth within the lutryne and kemonomimi settlements, with high grain yields and fishing harvests. This only drove further tensions to the point of violence and raiding the smaller, richer native settlements. The Shatlo formed raiding bands and parties to pillage the Akuan settlements, though always attempting to avoid killing the Akuanists.
Ny'Sænuri clans within the region originally tried to act as meditators between the Shatlo and native Akuanists. However when the Shatlo raids start, the Ny'Sænuri didn't hold to the same standard as the Shatlo did with avoiding to kill. The rules of the Ny'Sænuri demanded all the raiders either surrender or be put to the sword.
Shatlo Conversion to Akuanism
Akuan Syncretism with Shatlo Culture
Creation of the Duchies and Ny'Sænuri Influence
In 400 A.D. Aikthudr'zhur was finally united by the House of Ny'thudr'zhan beneath the Gloaming Throne. The House was formally enshrined in the Akuan tradition and is supported by three powerful Shatlo elven families who symbolically surrendered their blades to the Ny'thudr'zhan and were in turn granted governance over their respective regions of the new Kingdom. This created a division between supporters of the new monarchy and Akuan Traditionalists, the latter of which cited Akuan religious positions on non-hierarchical governance in opposition to calls for centralization in the face of foreign influences.
The monarchists found an important political ally in local Ny'Sænuri clans within the kingdom, who supported the enshrinement and became the enforcement arm of the monarchy. Despite this the political divides lead to a period known as the Troubles. Though no violent uprising occurred, the Kingdom suffered from general discontent and passive opposition throughout its lands. support of other groups.
Ny'Sænuri Clans and the Royal Ny'Sænuri Clan
Ny'Sænuri Enforcement of the Monarchy
The Start of the Troubles
First Dwarven Migrations
The Kingdom experienced an influx of dwarven migrations in 539 A.D. These groups were largely welcomed in by the House of Ny'thudr'zhan in exchange for their political and military support against the Traditionalists. The new arrivals were settled among the mountains which had historically been difficult to project authority into and were a bastion of Akuan Traditionalism. The Dwarven migrations ultimately ended the Troubles and allowed the House of Ny'thudr'zhan to stabilize and legitimize its reign.
Dwarven Guilds and Conversion
Further Influence of Ny'Sænuri
Construction of the Ny'Thu'ken Transportation and River Tariff Network
Start of Construction of the Grand City of Highdrilian
Second Dwarven Migrations
A second wave of dwarven migrations took place almost a thousand years later in 1558 as a result of repression against dwarven groups by foreign governments. The Kingdom once again allowed entry to the new arrivals, but mandated conversions to Akuanism - A fact which served to reignite Traditionalist thinking which opposed forced conversion.
Era of Dual Kingdoms
Crushing of Descent Movements
Ending of Dual Kingdoms
Petite Nobility Decimation
Aikthudr'zhur first established a constitution in 1643 which created a formal parliament and implemented land reforms. The 1643 Constitution was a compromise between the Monarchists and the Traditionalists and served to define the role of the Crown and the nobility. The creation of the parliament helped legitimize the monarchy in the eyes of the Traditionalists and served to alleviate many of the renewed cultural disputes within the country.
Plague and Cryrian Imperialism
In 1767, Aikthudr'zhur by a wave of the Älemsi Plague which tore through the Kingdom and even killed several members of the Royal Family, including the King. This resulted in a period of isolationism and political dysfunction in the country, and a still-recovering Aikthudr'zhur came under economic and military pressure by the Cryria. The First Treaty of Highdrilian was signed in 1773 and forced the Kingdom to open up its economy and cede coastal concessions to Cryrian control. Cryrian interference in the Kingdom only intensifies as Leidenstad begins to monopolize the country's mining and logging industries. Aikthudr'zhur also becomes an important naval base for Cryrian projection into the Norsian Sea.
The Albertine government in Cryria later sought to consolidate its sphere of influence in North Novaris, and considered Aikthudr'zhur to be a part of its Nordenfästningen. In 1887 the Kingdom was pressured into ending restrictions on foreign agricultural imports. Almost immediately, cheap Cryrian agricultural goods flooded into the Aikthudr'zhur and forced many of its small farmers off their traditional lands and into the Cryrian-run mines to sustain themselves. Later that year, Cryrian-owned docks increased their fees on local fishing vessels, causing an explosion in anti-Cryrian riots in the capital. In the resulting Sack of Highdrilian, Cryrian forces reacted violently and the Royal Family was forced to flee into the mountains after the RCRN threatened to bombard the city. Cryrian troops briefly occupied the capital and sacked the Palace, while unrest exploded around the Kingdom. The looting of the Royal Palace became a long-lasting scar on Aikkian history, as numerous important artifacts were stolen and shipped back to Leidenstad by Cryrian troops. Among these were the Three Swords of the Aikkian Monarchy - The Sword of Generations, the Sword of Ancestors Past and the Sword of the Crashing Moon. These blades had been in the Royal Family since the formation of the Kingdom and were used in the enshrinement of new monarchs as a means of symbolically channeling the spirits of previous rulers. The swords were now delivered to the House of Leidensen as a means of ensuring Cryrian control over the monarchy and the Gloaming Throne's future inheritance.
The humiliation of the Sack and the loss of the swords served to unite many different factions within the country and turned local bureaucrats against Cryrian influence, thus prolonging the conflict. The situation was resolved in the Second Treaty of Highdrilian which allowed the Royal Family to return to the capital and saw Cryrian military forces withdraw back to their concessions. The officers linked to the worst of the violence were also recalled to Leidenstad. However, the Treaty also allowed for a Cryrian official to be appointed to the Royal Court and generally ceded further economic control to Leidenstad. Thus, Cryrian power in Aikthudr'zhur only expanded, while the root causes of the unrest remained unaddressed and continued to plague the Kingdom. Smuggling and tax evasion became patriotic acts against Cryrian domination, and the frequent burning of King Albert's images in front of the concessions became commonplace and served only to increase tensions between Cryrian officials and the local population.
Modern Era (1900 - ongoing)
Great War (1904-1924)
The advent of the Great War resulted in an accord between Queen Katharine and the Aikkian government. In exchange for Aikkian soldiers and support, the Kingdom would remove itself from Court affairs and allow the Kingdom to once again set its own tariff and trade policies at the conclusion of the conflict. Aikkian troops were primarily drawn from the impoverished interior and served under the Cryrian banner on numerous fronts, while Aikthudr'zhur itself remained an important naval base.
The end of the Great War sees the fulfillment of Katharine's bargain with Aikthudr'zhur. However, the escalating Cryrian Anarchy offered the Kingdom a chance to eject foreign influence once and for all. In 1923 Cryrian military outposts in Aikthudr'zhur were closed, and the Kingdom reclaimed the coastal concessions as well as full control of its own affairs.
With its independence restored, Aikthudr'zhur spent much of the 20th century recovering from the impacts of Cryrian influence. Under King Håkan renewed efforts were made to implement Akuan environmental ideals which ultimately resulted in a constitutional amendment that mandated at least 65% of the nation's forests remain intact. The Kingdom's geography favored hydroelectric developments, and a trend in favor of environmentalism continues today. In modern Aikthudr'zhur personal vehicles remain uncommon, and have transitioned entirely over to electric vehicles. By 2022 virtually all cars, trains and urban areas are powered by renewable sources.
The Three Swords were returned to Aikthudr'zhur in 2020 by the newly crowned Queen Ulrika II as part of Cryrian diplomatic efforts to re-engage with the Novaran mainland. The swords had by now resided in Cryrian possession for one-hundred-and-thirty-three years, with one of them coming into the ownership of the House of Tynam after a card game before being returned along with the others. The return of the blades was received with much fanfare and nationwide celebrations, and marked a new chapter in the still-strained Aikkian-Cryrian relations.
Only days after the return of the swords, King Håkan passed away in a boar hunt after reigning for one-hundred-and-ninety-four years. The monarch had been crowned at the age of six and legendarily refused to die until the blades were returned so that his heir could have a proper coronation. Queen Halein took the throne enshrined shortly after her father's coronation as the first monarch to grow up in the post-colonial era.
The largest source of energy source in Aikthudr'zhur is hydroelectricity, which is primarily drawn from the Sumac river that runs through the country. The Kingdom has made significant investments in environmentally friendly energy sources since the 1960s and expanded its energy goals to include more windmills and solar energy plants across the country by the 1980s. The government fell short of the objective by a large margin and did not achieve its goal until the 2000s.
Overall, Aikthudr’zhur remains carbon-neutral and is a net sink for greenhouse gasses. The Kingdom transitioned to electric vehicles starting in 2011, and by 2022 virtually all cars and public transit vehicles run on renewable energy. Aikthudr’zhur imports negligible amounts of oil for specific industrial uses.
Aikkian agriculture is primarily made up of forestry, animal husbandry(including sheep and goats) and wheat farming.
Forests are heavily protected by the government, and a minimal level of forest cover is enshrined in the constitution. Despite this, the timber industry remains important and its products are utilized for construction and furniture crafting within the Kingdom.
Animal husbandry in the Kingdom is mostly centered around sheep, which are raised principally for their meat, milk and most importantly wool. The wool industry is heavily subsidized by the government. The sector is also tightly restricted due to government limits on land clearing, and as a result it enjoys only limited growth compared to other countries.
Wheat and other food staples are subsidized by the government in order to maintain low food prices. While farming contributes relatively little to the national economy, it continues to hold cultural importance and is the center of many inland communities.
Fishing is the primary domestic food source. Salmon, tuna and shrimp are fished from the Norsian Sea. While the majority of food consumed in the country comes from imports, the fishing sector still provides a large percentage of the Kingdom’s diet..
Heavy industry is under tight regulations from the government and primarily consists of construction and other woodcrafts that utilize the nation’s timber. The construction industry is a comparatively large sector, particularly as the traditional Aikkian house is made out of wooden materials that must be replaced every 40 years.
The textile industry has historically been crippled by the legacy of Cryrian imperialism, which forced the Kingdom to import textiles from abroad. This persisted until 1904 when agreements with Queen Katharine allowed for the construction of domestic industry in exchange for soldiers to fight the Great War. To make up for lost time the government subsidized the creation of textile factories in Highdrilian starting in the 1930s. The textile industry is currently the only one which has exemptions from government environmental regulations.
The furniture industry also plays a central role to the economy. It largely outputs traditional handcrafted products made from recycled local materials that do not go to the construction industry.
Tourism is a huge sector of the Aikkian economy, and attracts a considerable sum of international tourists each year.
Aikthudr'zhur is rich with diverse natural attractions. Due to the government green policies and planning, virtually all of these are unspoiled by industry and largely affordable to foreigners.
The top Akkian tourist destinations are the Singing Forest, Crenel Swamp, Floria Gardens and the H.H Puffer Cenotes.
Despite a complicated relationship stemming from the colonial period, Aikthudr'zhur retains numerous economic links to Leidenstad. Cryria remains an important producer of renewable energy technology, and as such has played an important role in Aikthudr'zhur’s energy sector. Aikthudr'zhur is also an important customer for Cryrian electric vehicle manufacturers and imports significant amounts of machinery from Cryrian producers. Aikkian woodcrafts remain popular within Cryria, and Aikthudr'zhur is a common vacation destination for Cryrian tourists. Both the trade deficit and the impacts of tourism in Aikthudr'zhur remain a source of domestic controversy.