Nine Duchies of Men

The Nine Duchies of Men

Political Entities

The Nine Duchies of men stretches all across the great southern peninsula. Made up of Calipha, Blackwater Marsh, Moor, Fharlanghn’s Rest, Stron, Branton, Sif, Stormreach, and Degan City, Each duchy consists of the city for which it is named, as well as the surrounding territories. While they are all part of the same kingdom, small wars and battles between them over territory rights is not uncommon.

Degan City: The capital of the Kingdom. Degan city is host to the Mage’s Academy, and is a work of mathematical wonder. Exactly symmetrical in every way, the city is constantly clean and glows with a brilliant silver light. To the north of the city’s hinterland, across the hills, lie the clan lands. While technically a part of the Degani territory, the Clan Lands are largely under their own control, and should be considered as autonomous.

Stormreach: This city lies to the west of Degan City, across the Frozen Wastes, and few travel here unless they have to. The people of Stormreach tend to be shorter and darker of skin than most other humans, and are viewed with mistrust by many within the Nine Duchies. Their city lies at the base of Marduk’s Perch, an active volcano. Its volcanic activity brings much needed heat to the people of the city, and it’s violent eruptions have an element of magic to them. There is a considerable industry in Stormreach manufacturing magical cloth, particularly cloaks of protection.

Sif: The bread-basket of the Kingdom, Sif lies in a vast plain to the West of the Durnish Mountains. The city of Sif is the only one on the plain, and the rest is dedicated to farms and pastures. Sifish society is communal, with the political leadership elected on a 7 year cycle. Military protection is handled by the Druids.

Stron: The strongest naval power of the Kingdom. Stron is highly aggressive, and seems to have more resources and power than their small land holdings would allow. They have their own special unit class, the Stronish Marine, who is essentially a water based Ranger.

Branton: One of the two duchies inhabiting the central plateau, Branton holds the largest gold mine in the Kingdom, and thus is one of the most wealthy. They are allied with, and strongly supportive of, Degan City. The city of Branton itself in a small valley in the Durnish Mountains. The entire valley is walled off, and on the far side of St. Cuthbert’s lough.

Fharlanghn’s Rest: The other duchy of the central plain. Fharlanghn’s Rest is host to the Bard’s College, and most of its economy revolves around this.

Blackwater Marsh: Built in the marshes of the northern plains, Blackwater Marsh was once a stop for Xen smugglers on their way south. The city itself is comprised of several islands, and is divided into four districts, controlled by the Druids, Priests of Xan Yae, Moorish Securities, and Voodoo Priests.

Calipha: On the edge of the Great Northern Desert, Calipha is a kind of “Arabian” city. There you can find a guide to take you through the dangerous process of crossing the desert, which is magical and enormously treacherous.

Moor: The second-strongest duchy, after Degan City. Moor is home to Moorish Securities, the institutionalized thieves guild. All thieves must belong to MS, or risk certain death. Moor is a grape growing region, and also holds one of the largest iron mines in the kingdom. Moor is in open war with the Druids.

The Druids: The Druids were given all forested lands by Degan the conquerer, and have administered them ever since. Moor has recently challenged their control of the forests in their land, and there is now open war between the two states. The Rangers are an elite fighting force under Druidic control. The vast majority of the peasantry follows the faith of the Druids, known as the “Old Faith”.

About ten years previous, the duchies united in a war of conquest. They defeated the armies of the Xen Empire to the north, and those lands are now open to colonization. Many military commanders and heroes now have vast holdings in the north, but a great much of it remains wild and untamed.

The Calendar

The sun travels once around the world in 364 days, visiting the 12 Lairs of the Zodiac in an appointed round which never varies. The Great Moon (Luna) waxes and wanes in fixed cycles of 28 days each, upon which our months are based; while the Handmaiden (Celene, the small aquamarine satellite) follows a path which shows Her in full beauty but four times each year, thus showing us the time for our Festivals. When both Mistress and Handmaiden are full, things of great portent are likely to occur, depending upon the positions of the five wandering stars in the Lairs, naturally. For complete details of Astrology, I recommend the reader to such texts as Selvor the Elder’s SECRETS OF YE SKYE REVEALED or Yestro Bilnigd’s ASTROLOGY, DIVINITY, AND MANKIND

DAYS AND MONTHS OF THE YEAR

The standard week of seven days has the following days:

STARDAY      Work
SUNDAY       Work
MOONDAY      Work
GODSDAY      Worship
WATERSDAY    Work
EARTHDAY     Work
FREEDAY      Rest

Our campaign typically begins on Starday.

The Dozenmonth of the moon and the four Festivals are:

Needfest
  Fireseek
  Readying
  Coldeven
Growfest
  Planting
  Flocktime
  Wealsun
Richfest
  Reaping
  Goodmonth
  Harvester
Brewfest
  Patchwall
  Ready'reat
  Sunsebb

Each month has twenty-eight days. Each Festival is 6 days long.

Nine Duchies of Men

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