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ATLAS OF THE OLD WORLD
Introduction to the Old World
Welcome dear reader to the atlas of the Old World. Formerly called the Known World and the Dread Coast, the Old World is the seat of civilisation on the world of Mystara. It is the place where technology is at its peak. It is the place where art and music are awe-inspiring. Civilisation is almost everywhere, and it is rare indeed to walk for more than a day and not have any village or town to rest in for the night.
In this enlightened land, education is on the rise, and most people can read and write. It is an age of knowledge and discoveries. Even magic, once held secret by old mages in their remote towers, can now be learned through various schools and universities. Slavery is almost abolished, and most people are considered citizens of their nations, having the freedom to do as they please. Diplomacy is the favoured method of accomplishing one's goals, and savage brutality is almost non-existent.
Of course, this does not mean there is no danger to be found. Some places are still savage, such as the Atruaghin clans or the hordes of the Ethengar Steppes. Goblinoids can still be found almost everywhere, and their brutality is unmatched in the entire world. Even diplomatic nations cannot achieve everything with words, and therefore their armies march across the land. It is simply that, here, in the Old World, such events are normally much rarer than anywhere else on Mystara.
Instead of brute force, this land is ripe with intrigue and behind-the-scenes powers. Manipulations are everywhere, and strong guilds and organisations rule almost as much as the kings on their thrones. Those that think that adventure cannot be found here in the Old World simply aren't looking in the right place.
The Old World is a large stretch of land found in the southeastern margin on the continent of Brun. It is bordered by the Sea of Dread to the south, the Sea of Dawn to the east, the Great Waste to the west, and the Mengul Mountain Range to the north. Within this land are two dozen "nations," most of them enlightened, but a few still hold on to barbaric traditions. These nations have influenced every other corner of the world, and just as Mystara is the centre of the multiverse, the Old World can honestly be said to be the core or heart of Mystara.
Correspondents for the Old World
Here is our list of correspondents that give us detailed information on the nations, places, and events of the Old World:
Balinor "Silverblade" Audriel
Captain of the shadowelf army. During his adventures he travelled all over the shadowelf kingdom, in the Broken Lands and he even visited some nations of the surface world, like Darokin, Sind and Glantri. A quick fighter and accomplished skinwing rider, he took part in the invasion of Alfheim and in the siege of Oenkmar, where he was shot down by enemy forces. He is our eyes and ears inside the shadowelf community.
Formerly an explorer and a renowned archaeologist of the Old World, Christopher Dove has spent the last ten years teaching archaeology and ancient history at the University of Corun in Corunglain, Darokin. He has published famous essays on the Nithian and Milenian civilisations, and has made many interesting discoveries in the past years, the last one being the finding of the tomb of Nennaya-Sherat.
Now in his late fifties, this scholarly and well experienced fellow has agreed to join our cadre of correspondents on behalf of his student and our friend Ursula Bremen: he will cover the region of Wendar and Denagoth for the almanac this year.
A career officer in the Thyatian army, General Vannopolus has been stationed on the Isle of Dawn off and on for over a decade, first fighting against the Alphatian invasion and later as military administrator in the central highlands of Dunadale. His interests go beyond the military, and he has a reputation for showing concern for the welfare of the common people of Dunadale during his time there, and has now gained a good repute in Minrothad as well. This year he shares with us his impressions of the island nation of Minrothad, in addition to reporting on other areas.
Dromeda the Shadow
Dromeda is a streeter (a merchant who works without a set place of business) in Darokin City, who deals in information as her commodity (some say gossip or blackmail-fodder), acquiring interesting or useful pieces of knowledge about people, places, and companies within Darokin and selling it to whoever meets her price. She used to be a scout in the Darokinian army, and travelled widely throughout the nation in her duties.
The second son of a well-to-do Thyatian senator, Favonius is a bit of a rogue uninterested in the politics that his father takes part in; instead, Favonius took up the trade of a merchant with the help of a very rich uncle. His mercantile experience gives him much understanding on the Empire of Thyatis, as well as the various inland trade routes and coastal sea trade routes.
Favonius was recently freed from his captivity by the merrow and now describes to us the wondrous places he has seen. He is also the writer for the entries on Minrothad, Ylaruam and the Empire of Thyatis. It has been noted that his recent captivity has given Favonius a rather cynical outlook on life. We have finally gained access to Favonius's report on the Twaelar Merrow Empire.
A second-generation dwarf, born in Ostland, Gilor is by his own admission a "young punk" [what his elders would call a "troubled youth;" that is a young, aggressive and violent dwarf, who is resentful of authority. Ed.]. His youthful energy and enthusiasm, as well as his love for fighting, has led to his travels throughout the Northern Reaches, fighting for gold and fame. He has agreed to share his insights on Northern Reaches nations and culture in return for a small correspondent's fee.
A native-born Glantrian, Hempford will be giving us a closer look at the various principalities of that nation, and the people who live there. Hempford is proud to have been raised in the free territories of his homeland (those ungoverned by any single principality), and hopes to provide an unbiased viewpoint.
Hendrik von Gultzer
Freiherr Hendrik von Gultzer, descendent of a long line of Hattian noblemen, arrived in the Heldannic Territories in AC 1004 in search of opportunities. These he found in abundance. Entering the Heldannic Order, von Gultzer ascended the ranks quickly, until he reached a respectable position. Though he serves his superiors willingly, von Gultzer possesses about him a slightly irreverent air-one that has got him into trouble in the past. One would think that he entered the order only to profit from the additional privileges it provides him in this land, but he denies this of course. Today, he divides his time between running his estates in Kammin and Landfall, and corresponding for the almanac. In the latter function, he provides us with news from Heldann proper and Heldland.
The owner and publisher of this fine almanac, Joshuan Gallidox has taken leave as editor to once more visit far-away and interesting places. Describing himself as world traveller, pipeweed smoker, collector of knowledge and spinner of tales, the hin adventurer describes to us his homeland of the Five Shires, as well as the nations of Ierendi and Karameikos.
New almanac correspondent Larn Fastbuck is a tailor and merchant from Wereskalot, in Eastshire, where he lives with his wife Lori and three daughters.
Medu is a member of Clan Abakan of the Yugatai Tribe. He is a bratak who has trained under the auspices of none other than his tribal khan, Temur. He will provide the almanac with reports on the Ethengar peoples, their lands, and their ever-changing political situation.
Born in Selenica, Omar is a second-generation descendant of Alasiyan immigrants. An adventurer by trade, he has signed on with the Mystaran Almanac to provide us with inside information on the Emirates of Ylaruam. His ethnicity enables him to venture into the region that is now closed to all outsiders.
Ryu is a hsiao-an intelligent, owl-like creature-and a scholar in the ways of goblinoids. He hails from the forests of Vestland, and he and his companion Starkad Grimmson, a warrior from Soderfjord, will be bringing us all the information on the Great Migration.
Additionally, as Joshuan Gallidox Publishing is the primary backer of his expedition, we have convinced Ryu to send us information on all the nations through which they travel on their way, such as the Atruaghin Plateau and Sind.
Shaun the Elfin
Shaun of clan Grunalf is one of the most renowned artists and adventurers of the Old World. A well-travelled and knowledgeable elf, she has long retired from her adventuring career and now lives in Ierendi acting as kia'i (guardian) of the crown and member the Adventurers' Club. She is a formidable storyteller and has a deep passion for heroic tales. She has volunteered to tell us what she knows about the most exotic lands she visited in her life.
The second child of Emperor Thincol, Stefania is known not only for her strong will but her keen intellect. She killed her first husband on their wedding night, and even ran away from home, causing much gossip in Thyatis City. During the Great War she fought alongside her husband Anaxibius Torion, a former Thyatian gladiator and general, and earned her own general's spurs before he did. Stefania and Anaxibius rule the realm of Redstone. She is continuing her work on a history of her father's life, as well as fighting in defence of Thyatis alongside her brother, the emperor. None the less she fulfilled her commitment to provide reports for publication in the almanac, taking time to provide us with a description of Redstone and some of the surrounding communities, for which we are extremely grateful.
Little is known of Thurgood, save that he appears to be a gnomish revolutionary in the city of Serraine. Not an official correspondent, the Mystaran Almanac has nevertheless managed to secure some top secret information about the activities of the Grey Front and their flying city from his reports.
Ursula is a smart and experienced member of the Darokin Diplomatic Corps, giving her great insights into the political goings-on in Darokin and surrounding nations. Her connections also allow her inside information on the military activities in Darokin, Aengmor, and the Orclands, making her an invaluable asset to this almanac.
A very ambitious woman in her mid-30s, Ursula always manages to keep her ambitions in check. The duties of her job always come first.
Vadin Kalidasa is a scholar from the Mumlyket of Sindrastan in Sind. He will provide the almanac with inside information on the lands that are often referred to as "the Gateway to the West."
An adviser and supporter of Eusebius, Lady Romanones is one of the empire's special envoys. Her duties demand a considerable amount of travel throughout the region under Thyatian influence, and she has been kind enough to provide us with some unclassified reports of these areas, including an extensive description of the heartland of the empire this year. A strikingly beautiful but headstrong woman, Lady Romanones is a skilled negotiator known for her dedication to Thyatis and its interests. She is a strong proponent of reform in Thyatis, and of doing the right thing. Some of her detractors claim she is willing to use any means to achieve what she believes is right, but we can only say she deserves praise for the insightful reports she has graciously sent us. We know our readers will find her unique insight into the Thyatian mindset interesting. Though her writing is very pronouncedly favourable to the Thyatians, everything we have been able to check seems factually accurate.
AtlasACTIUS (County of)
AENGMOR (City of)
AENGMOR (Colony of)
ATRUAGHIN CLANS (Territories of)
BIAZZAN (County of)
BORYDOS (Protectorate of)
BUHROHUR (County of)
CARYTION (County of)
DAROKIN (Republic of, Borderlands)
DAROKIN (Republic of, Heartlands)
FIVE SHIRES (The)
GLANTRI (Principalities of)
GRÅBJERGE (Dwarf-Kingdom of)
HALATHIUS (County of)
HATTIAS (Duchy of)
HELDANN (Territory of)
IERENDI (Kingdom of)
JALAWAR (Mumlyket of)
KADESH (Rajahstan of)
KANTRIUM (Duchy of)
KARAMEIKOS (Kingdom of)
KERENDAS (Duchy of)
LUCINIUS (Duchy of)
MACHETOS (Country of)
MINROTHAD (Exarchate of)
MOSITIUS (Duchy of)
OSTLAND (Kingdom of)
PESHMIR (Rajahstan of)
RETEBIUS (Duchy of)
ROCKHOME (Kingdom of)
SCLARAS (Protectorate of)
SERRAINE (Flying City of)
SHADOW ELVES (Kingdom of the)
SHAJARKAND (Mumlyket of)
SIND (Rajahstan of)
SODERFJORD (Kingdom of)
TAMERONIKAS (Emirate of)
TEL AKBIR (Duchy of)
TERENTIAS (Grand Duchy of)
THYATIS (Duchy of)
THYATIS (Empire of)
THYATIS (The City)
TWAELAR (Merrow Empire)
VESTLAND (Kingdom of)
VYALIA (County of)
WENDAR (Elven Kingdom of)
YLARUAM (Emirates of)