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Ethnography Focus: Notes on Antalians and other M-Indo-Europeans

by Giulio Caroletti

The Aharians are the Mystaran equivalent of Indo-Europeans, and like their real world counterpart they have a complicated history.

The Aharians are divided in five subgroups, each of whom is the equivalent of one major Indo-European group. These are:

1) Valharians
The Valharians are the equivalent of the Balts. They are among the first to have had contact with the M-Finns; thus their descendants (Lietuvans and Litoniesu, the two populations of Littonia, created by Geoff Gander) are the population with most blonde hair and blue eyes on Mystara, along the Antalians.

2) Daharians
Daharians are the equivalent of the so-called "European group", which includes all Slavic, Italic/Latin and German populations. I have created the Daharians as a means to explain the existence of Skandaharians without touching the issue of whether they were or not the ancestors of Antalians - this, especially since there are almost 1600 years (and a Nuclear Catastrophe) between the presence of Skandaharians on Skothar and the rise of the Antalian culture on Brun. The Skandaharians and the Antalians would be two separated branches of the original Daharians.

Along with the Valharians, the Daharians are the Neathar that most mixed with the M-Finns, bringing the blonde hair and blue eyes feature in the Neathar genes - especially the Antalians are the testimony of this occurrence.

The "Antalians" rose on Brun around 2400 BC. When they are brought to the Hollow World (around 1700 BC), they had already divided in three subcultures: the Antalians proper, those that are saved by the Immortals, and that are the equivalent of Proto-Germans, and then two offshoots, the Thantalians (southern Antalians, equivalent to Proto-Latin/Italics) and Vantalians (western Antalians, equivalent to Proto-Slavic).

Around 1700 we probably have Antalians in the area from the Great Bay down to Heldann; the Vantalians in western Norwold, around the lakes area and in the northern part of Denagoth; the Thantalians in the Northern Reaches.

When the humanoid hordes descend, most of the Vantalians push their way westwards into the Midlands, becoming the ancestors of the Yevo and other M-Slavic populations of the Western Brun and Midlands area populations created by Christian Constantin and Adrian Mattias.

One group of the Vantalians, called Vatli, moves southwards into Ethengar. During the next millennium, they live as nomads (M-Gypsies), reaching ultimately the Five Shires and then Karameikos, where they mix with the Traldar bringing the Slavic element that change them into Traladarans. They could be also used to create a M-Gypsy culture (the Darine of James Mishler could be an offshoot that during their migration passed through Sind - there is room for whatever you want to do with them, as there is a blank of almost 800 years of their history!).

The Antalians are probably cut in two. The northern Antalians become the Norwold barbarians; the second group moves to Wendar (the human population of Wendar is mostly of Antalian origin and they are said to be relatives of the Northmen and Heldanners) Heldann, Vestland (among them a tribe known as the Hattians) and Ostland. The Thantalians, pressed by their northern relatives, live in Soderfjord and on the northern mountains and regions of Ylaruam. Among them are the original Thyatian and Kerendan tribe.

When the Nithians conquer the Northern Reaches, they deport most of the population. The Thantalian are almost all destroyed and absorbed, with the exception of Thyatians and Kerendans, brought to the southern continent. The Antalians are greatly reduced in number; most flee to Heldann or Ostland, to live free of the Nithians. In Vestland and Soderfjord, the population will always be sparse and barbaric, until the colonisation brought by the Cnutes of Ostland in the second half of the first millennium AC.

A last note: part of the Antalians of 1700 BC would probably have left westwards, crossing Denagoth and the Norwold mountains, and reached areas of central Brun where they became the barbarian tribes that were the ancestors of current Eusdrians.

3) Dunharians
Dunharians are the equivalent of the Earth's Celts. They probably lived in the areas that go from Ethengar to Soderfjord around 2500 BC. When the Ethengarians (around 2000 BC), Humanoids and Antalians arrived in the region around 1700 BC, they fled west and east, dividing into two major groups.

The Eastern Dunharians (that I call Dunael, according to the name given to them by James Mishler) fled to the Isle of Dawn, where they originated the local Dunael of Dawn (those that live nowadays in the areas of Caerdwicca, Furmenglaive, and whose names are like those of Earth's Scotland, like McRhomaag and so on).

Somehow, part of these Dunael arrived on Davania. Here they probably mixed with some other Neathar population (not belonging to any of the groups indicated by the previous articles) and became the Thratians. This would mirror what happened in Great Britain when the invading Celts mixed with Pre-Indo-European populations, similar ethnically and linguistically to the Picts that still lived in Scotland in Roman times. This would preserve the Celtic feeling of the Thratians, but at the same time justify two Canon facts (reported in the "Hollow World" and "Wrath of the Immortals" sets): Diulanna was part of a tribe of Neathar of Davania, and Neathar lived in Davania around 3000 BC.

The western Dunharians, whom I call Carnuilh, according to the name and the ideas proposed by Chris Cherrington on the MML, became the ancestors of barbarian tribes of northern Brun and Midlands. One of these tribes later arrived in the Savage Coast and became the Robrennians. Marco Dalmonte also suggested that some Carnuilh could have stopped in the southern regions of Wendar during their journey westwards.

4) Dulharians
The Dulharians would be the M-Greek element of the Known World. Unfortunately, there is much debate and speculation on the origin of this M-Greek element. There are three possible, major hypothesises, I'll present both and credit the authors, and then I'll tell you which version I will use for my Ethnographic Project.

a) The Dulharians evolve into the Taymora. The Taymora city-states are modelled on ancient Greek. When Taymora sinks, part of the Taymora refugees reach Karameikos (source: "PC2 Sea People"). When the Traldar, a Nithian clan, reach the lands of nowadays Karameikos, they lose rapidly all their culture, and mix and adopt the Taymoran language, becoming in fact M-Greek of the Heroic Age after the recovery of knowledge brought by the Hutaakans. [Marco Dalmonte, Verro Diabolico, from Italian Mystaran Board]

b) Suspension of disbelief: Traldars, which are inherently Nithians and thus M-Egyptians, become M-Greek, changing language and customs without need of a complicated explanation.

c) The Taymora are M-Phoenicians, and not M-Greek. However, the Dulharians (M-Greek) live in western Nithia at the time of the rise of the Nithians. The Nithians rise in the Delta area, and then expand westwards, conquering and assimilating gradually the Dulharian population, and in part sending expeditions. One of these expeditions involve the Traldar, sent to Karameikos. The expedition is led by a Nithian prince and his family, but most of the population is made up of slaves of Dulharian ethnicity. When they succumb to the climatic harshness in Traladara, the Nithian element is lost, and the population is both ethnically and linguistically Greek for about 90%. The few Taymora remnants of Karameikos are absorbed, but they do not provide major contributions (except maybe for the alphabet). [Agosta/Caroletti]

Personally I go with option c. In any case, the change from Traldar to Traladarans has been explained in the section that deals with Antalians, above.

The Milenians (direct descendants of the Traldar) and Minaeans (direct descendants of the Milenians), instead, continue to speak a Greek language even to present day.

5) Dravharians
The Dravharians are the ancestors of the Dravi, from which the Urduk descend, and thus they bring the Indo-Iranic elements to Mystara. The Sindhi are descendants of a mixed Oltecs and Neathar population further mixed with the Urduk; clearly, being Indian, they speak a Dravharian language, and thus they have been included in this section.

Non canonical populations like the Darsi (M-Persian) and Midannites (M-Mitanni) of the Yezchamenid Empire (created by Christian Constantin) are also Dravharian descended.


A1. Valharians
--> A1.1 Valemen
----------------------> A1.1.a Lietuvans
----------------------> A1.1.b Litoniesu

A2. Daharians
---------------> A2.1 Skandaharians
---------------> A2.2 Antalians
-----------------------------> A2.2.a Antalians
-----------------------------> A2.2.b Thantalians
-----------------------------> A2.2.c Vantalians

A2.2.a Antalians
---> Hattians
---> Northmen
---> (central Brun barbarians)
---> Eusdrians
---> Norwolders (barbarians)
---> Durran
---> (+Dunharians) Durrankin
---> (+Atheniese) Darokinians

A2.2.b Thantalians
---> Thyatians
---> Kerendans

A2.2.c Vantalians
---> Yevo
---> Zuyevans
---> Vatli
--> (+ Traldar) Traladarans

A3. Dunharians
---> A3.1 Proto-Dunael
---------------> Dunael
---------------> (+Neathar) Thratians
---> A3.2 Carnuilh
---------------> (western barbarians)
--> Robrennians

A4. Dulharians
---> (+Nithians, Taymora) Traldar
----------------------------------> (+Vatli)
--> [Traladarans]
----------------------------------> Milenians, Minaeans
----------------------------------> Cynidiceans, Atheniese, Salonikans

A5. Dravharians
---> Dravi
---------------> Urduk
---------------> (+ Urduk & Oltecs) Sindhi
---------------> Darsi
---------------> Midannites


If you have taken a close look at the table above, you have surely noticed the presence of some populations that I have not mentioned in my article. This is because they could be very confusing, and I prefer to write about them here, separately.

The history of Darokin has some internal contradictions. We know by GAZ10 that in 1254 BC the city of Akorros is destroyed by humanoid migrations, however in GAZ11 it is said that in year 800 BC there are no permanent settlements in Darokin, how is this possible?

Moreover, the Darokinians are a mix of many populations and their names, toponomy and language doesn't point us in any familiar direction. We have Celtic sounding names, English sounding names, Nordic sounding names, Latin sounding names, and Greek and Slavic.

How can we solve this issue? Here is a proposal. The dates are just indications, what I want to point out is the ethnical background, not the exact historical dates.

1) The first humans to enter Darokin are Traldar arriving from Karameikos. They build Athenos around 1350 BC. Then they expand northwards, colonising the western part of Darokin, up to Akorros, their northern settlement, built to trade with the Sindhi.

2) Akorros is destroyed around 1254 by the arrival of Red Orcs from Wogar's migration. The Red Orcs wage war against the Atheniese, pushing them south and confining their realm into the Malpheggi.

3) The nomadic Vatli arrive in Darokin.

4) The Atheniese are beaten and escape to the Five Shires (somewhere between 950 and 800). It could be cool to have a sort of King in Exile somewhere in southern Five Shires; with all the chaos and various kings and warlords in the region it would not be a problem, I think.

5) After 800 BC, the Atheniese manage to reclaim the Malpheggi. They rebuild Athenos.

6) In these years, another two populations arrive in Darokin. I don't have exact dates. These would be: a Dunharian tribe that had lived in southern Ethengar, trying to avoid total destruction by the hand of hostile Yellow Orcs and Ethengarians, and that ultimately leaves its homeland; and an Antalian tribe, called the Durran (M-Anglo-Saxons) (their name means more or less "the brave" in ancient proto-Anglo-Saxon). When the Elves arrive, these tribes settle west of the Canolbarth area, and are helped by the Elves against the Orcs. The two groups mingle and become the Durrankin, among their cities are Favaro, Darokin. The Vatli pass through the Five Shires and reach Karameikos.

7) The Doulakki, eastern Traldar of Thyatis, fleeing the Thyatian invaders, build Cynidicea and Salonikos.

8) Alliance between the Durrankin and the Atheniese. Akorros area reconquered by the Alliance. Akorros rebuilt with its original name. Town of Ardelphia ("brotherhood") founded by the Alliance as a sign of peace.

9) Reign of the Attleson. Birth of Darokin.

10) In the following centuries, in the Salonikos area we have Alasiyan and Thyatian and Traldar influence.

Thus we would have in Western Darokin a Darokinian language, a sort of Anglo-Saxon meets Celtic with Greek influences instead of Latin ones, a sort of para-English, but with far more Celtic influence, and without the Latin one.

In the Selenica area (remember from GAZ11 that the Selenicans consider themselves historically and ethnically not like other Darokinians) we have a cosmopolitan population whose language is probably a M-Sabir (Sabir was the Lingua Franca of the Mediterranean Sea, a mix of Latin, Arab and various other languages).

The fact that Darokin has a Thyatian official language, as in the "Mystaran Almanac", could come from the needs of the Darokin Diplomatic Corps. I'd say that the Darokinian and the Thyatian are both official tongues, while the Selenican is not. This is done on purpose, to encourage the diffusion of the Thyatian, a neutral tongue, as it is the Common Tongue of the Known World, instead of using the Selenican as a trade tongue, something that could be dangerous and increase the power and centrifugal tendencies of Selenica.