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TRALDAR (Kingdoms of the)

Location: Western spur of the World Spine Mountains, continent of Iciria, large peninsula between the Southern Atlas Ocean and the Gulf of Aztlan, west of the Schattenalfen, east of the Merry Pirate islands. HW

Area: 84,524 sq. mi. (218,915 sq. km.).

Population: 500,000 in several independent kingdoms, each centred on one town averaging 5,000 residents.

Languages: Traldar, Milenian, Neathar.

Coinage: None (barter only).

Taxes: Levies in kind of goods and corvée labour as determined by kings.

Government Type: Autonomous and fractious monarchies in a loose alliance.

Industries: Agriculture, herding (sheep, goats, cattle), mining, fishing, piracy.

Important Figures: Tiradon (King of Corescos, human, male, F18).

Flora and Fauna: Black bears, brown bears, beholders, boars, bugbears, lions, smilodons, centaurs, chimeras, cockatrices, giant crabs, cyclopskin, dinosaurs, dolphins, dragons, dragon turtles, dryads, gargoyles, hill giants, stone giants, cloud giants, storm giants, mountain giants, gnolls, gorgons, griffons, hags, harpies, hippogriffs, hydras, liches, giant lizards, manticores, medusas, mermen, minotaurs, pegasi, phoenix, pterosaurs, rocs, skeletons, snakes, sphinxes, giant spiders, unicorns, wolves, zombies and especially rabbits.

Further Reading: Hollow World boxed set, previous almanacs.

Description by Theukidikies the Historian of Corisa.

The Traldar share some things in common with the civilised Milenians, but they are a feuding and squabbling people, who spend their time stealing chickens and raiding their neighbours rather than asking questions about the mysteries of the cosmos.

The Land

The Traldar live in rugged, forested mountains along a series of peninsulas that jut, like stubby fingers, into the Atlass Ocean, marking the western end of the World Spine Range and bifurcating the Atlass Ocean between north and south. Despite their equatorial location, the weather is cool and temperate, moderated by both the mountains and winds blowing in off of the sea. The lands are not fertile like those of Milenia, but are adequate for the crops and olive groves of the Traldar and for their herds of sheep and goats, and the fishing in the surrounding seas is good.

Though the region is small, its meandering coastline means it has a long seashore, and most Traldar cities are located near it (though often a few miles from it, with a satellite port village-a legacy of their experience with and as pirates). The main town is usually located on a hill nearby, with a walled palace and temple area at the summit and the town surrounding it also walled.

The People

The Traldar people look like Milenians, but with slightly lighter skin, with brown and red hair being common but also some blond-haired members, which are regarded as special. Both men and women wear their hair long, with the men often sporting beards or moustaches, and the women wearing their hair in tails if married but unbound as maidens. Both sexes wear tunics and sandals, with the men's garment reaching their knees but the women's worn like a gown, all dyed in bright colours. The Traldar speak a language somewhat similar to Milenian, but the Traldar are not Milenians, as much as they try to ape our ways.

The Traldar nation is divided into numerous squabbling petty city-states, each ruled by a tyrant or king. They make their living growing crops, herding, fishing, exporting wine, olive oil, and wool and raiding each other and their neighbours. Their culture resembles the Heroic Age of Milenia from the time before the empire in that they, like the Antalians, revere foremost brave and great warriors, and the virtues of the hero, and their epics and bard's tales centre on the deeds of these heroes. Like the Antalians they begin training in the warrior arts at a very young age, but they also cultivate exercise and fitness like the Milenians do. They are also excellent sailors, making up in skill what their ships lack in technology, sacking towns up and down the coast, but mainly those of the Azcans, who are not a seafaring people. In confrontations with the nearby Merry Pirates they usually come out on the losing end, as they do with the fleets of the empire, but none can doubt the courage of their seamen.

As I said, the Traldar nation is disunited and squabbling, with there always being a war pitting one or more cities against another. But there have been times in history when the Traldar have been united behind one king, or in a league, in the face of some danger to their lands. Such leagues and kingdoms generally last until the threat is gone, and then the Traldar go back to feuding among themselves. The faith of the Traldar centres around Halav and Petra, and is not too different from the religion of Milenia, though somewhat more rustic and with backwards rites, smaller temples, and less beautiful shrines.