is the third largest continent in the world of
world of Caelereth, located in the
southwestern area of the world chart. It is
about four weeks to the west of the Cape of Strata
measured in ship travel time. Most Santharians
don't know much about this continent beside what is
told in myths and legends. The nations of Nybelmar are said to control most of
the Western Seas and fiercely defend the trade on their routes over the ocean.
Location. The continent of Nybelmar is the westernmost landmass of the world of Caelereth. It lies about four weeks travel to the west of the Cape of Strata.
|Picture description: Map of the Continent of Nybelmar. Click on parts of the map to view detailed maps in full screen size (screen resolution of 1024x768 recommended). Map drawn by Koldar Mondrakken.|
Description. Nybelmar is the westernmost continent in Caelereth, often refered to as the "Lands of the Mystical West". Azan Melakh Dorim of Thalambath describes the discovery of the continent by Sarvonian sailors as follows:
"Stratania [the southernmost Sarvonian realm] ruled the Sarvonian seas for centuries before noticing an even stronger and superior power at the edge of the world. After several expeditions failed some brave sailors reached the Ferrath Islands, meaning "the foggy realms" in Santerran noble tongue or "Nybelmar" in Tharian. The wild and stormy ocean surrounding these islands is the most cruel water you may sail on but the ports are one of the most valuable harbors Stratanian ships ever entered. Ships which make it through the stormy sea may bring goods from unkown lands, uncompareable spice, precious stones, gold, silver, formed to beautiful sculptures or sharp blades.
The first Stratanians thought that the islands they discovered were only one big peninsula of another continent but now I can confirm, they were wrong. The archipelago from which these islands are the most northeastern part leads several thousand miles to the west and south. And beyond that another thousand miles I got word of an even bigger continent full of wonders and secrets..."
-- Azan Melakh Dorim, archivist of the library of Thalambath at the dawn of the third Stratanian expedition.
As reported by the brave
Archivar of Thalambath who joined the third
expedition of Strata a vast ocean, the Aetryam Sea, divides the two landmasses,
Sarvonia and Nybelmar. Nybelmar is the smaller continent, hardly as huge as
but nevertheless a rich and diversive continent.
The huge Wernam Archipelago whose southern end lies directly south of the powerful cities of Zhun leads in a long arch to the northeast. At the closest point it still is 750 miles away from the Nybelmarian mainland and served as stepstones for the Nybelmarian sea nations in their effort to explore most of the known world.
A huge mountain range splits this continent nearly into two halves: the enormous Zsharkanian Peaks, also called the "Halls of the Giants".
Halfway between the two continents of Nybelmar and Sarvonia lie the Ferrath Islands, nothing more than rocky islands in the midst of the Sea but their position has made it a most important supply and trading harbour between Sarvonia, Nybelmar and Aeruillin. The islands are autonomous but hardly independent from the major seafaring nations that want to keep this harbour open for their ships.
Another important archipelago are the R’unor Islands which lie on the western end of an archipelago wearing the same name. The R'unorian Islands lie between Nybelmar and Akdor but their inhabitants have managed to not only preserve their independence but also to establish a sea power that is able to protect their territorial and economic interests in their direct neighborhood as well as in the ports of Nybelmar.
Climate. Nybelmar is a very diversive continent with several climate zones and different ecosystems close together. From north to south you could roughly split the continent into four climatic zones fractured by the influences of mountains, wind and water. So roughly spoken the north has a moderate climate, the central and especially the eastern continent is mainly arid, then follows the tropical zone marked by the thick rainforests that cover these areas and a subtropical climate that dominates the densely populated southern regions of Nybelmar.
Races. The humans are the most numerous compared to any other race on Nybelmar. Strange enough that they nevertheless only populate the southern and northern coasts and only few of them live in the central region of the continent.
The elves are the most dominant race in central Nybelmar followed shortly by the orcs who created a stable realm in the west and are abundant in many regions of the continent as well. Another important group is unique to Nybelmar: the chyraskiss. A terrifying halfbreed of orcs and elves that date back to the War of the Chosen and now populate the ashlands, the Zshararath Mountains (in the Tharian tongue often referred to as the Zsharkanian Peaks) and territories west to it.
Many dwarven clans died in the War of the Chosen, most notably the Deep Dwarves that lived in the Ashlands before these regions earned this name. Their numbers are considerably low. The only notable settlements of dwarves lie in the hills around Fullwanooth and at the southern end of the Zshararath Mountains where the last of their ancient cities have survived the wars and endured the time. About dwarven clans in the east is little if at all known. Many other dwarves live in small communities in the kingdom of the humans to the south and have earned a reputation as the best smithes, artisans and jewelers of Nybelmar.
Realms. There exist many kingdoms at the continent of Nybelmar. The most important ones are listed below:
|Picture description: Political Map of the continent of Nybelmar, showing all great kingdoms. Map drawn by Koldar Mondrakken.|
Korweyn, the Great Empire of the Sun
Korweyn is called the "Great Empire of the Sun" as it is the biggest land power on Nybelmar controlling the better part of the southeast. After its glorious first dynasty fell under the hordes of the Shadow the empire was reborn in later times and regained most of its greatness. Its reputation and power is feared to the east and west, nevertheless they're the closest allies of the elves of the "Fallaenion Gaeldorioth", said to be the oldest – and wisest – nation in this part of the world. Korweyn is also the realm with the highest amount of other races' minorities and many gnomes and dwarves have turned the cities of Korweyn into prospering metropoli.
Being the greatest landpower has not stopped another nation of being Korweyn's fiercest enemy since one millennia: On the sea Aca-Santerra and Korweyn have waged war over any island found in the Western Sea for centuries now.
The High Kingdom of Aca-Santerra (roughly translated with "Our sacred Homelands") is the biggest naval power of the Western Sea if not the whole of Caelereth. It originally controlled most of the islands east of the continent in a loose federation till it set its foot on the fertile soil of southeastern Nybelmar. Since then it has been always an arch rival of Korweyn.
The Santerran kingdom stands on very religious fundaments controlled by a completely female priesthood that balances the otherwise male dominated governmental affairs. The priestesses of Santerra are feared by most sane people on Nybelmar. The Highpriestess of Barkhas, the highest God in the Santerran pantheon, is often referred to only as "the Seawitch" because of her powers over the Sea and the Weather.
Not appreciated by many personally, the Santerrans nevertheless control most of the trade lanes from the south to the north and beyond the continent and do a great job at it. Their cities are sprawling harbours for many ships from all parts of Nybelmar.
The Kingdom Anis-Anpagan
Anis Anpagan is a smaller kingdom that once belonged to the kingdom of Korweyn but after its first fall developed an independence and preserved it to the time being. In most aspects this realm can be described as moderate, nevertheless its expansionistic ambitions – that highly exceed their actual power base – make it a serious power in most diplomatic affairs.
The kingdom itself lives mainly from controlling the trade from the Cities of Zhun in the west to the kingdoms of Korweyn and Aca-Santerra in the east. As a natural thorn in Korweyn’s side they’re often a tolerated ally of the Santerrans.
The Cities of Zhun
In the west these cities are the only greater realms of the humans. Most are city states ruled by a council that control as much territory as possible in a day’s travel off the city gates. The Cities of Thun control most of the trade in the west and protect caravans into the heart of the continent to bring precious goods to their harbours. The biggest citystates are Cusca, Kimbar, Hostar and Marmarra. In times of war or disaster their lords meet in the city of Hostar to debate about solutions.
The Kingdom of Loreney
The Kingdom of Loreney is a small human kingdom at the northern coast, always at the brink to extinction because of orcs or rebellions. Its survival is only ensured by R'unor who see in it as a valuable source for grain, meat and other agricultural products and don’t want to lose their corn chamber.
Once the biggest elven realm after the fall of Fá'áv'cál'âr it was shattered through the tides of time and while it still remains a great realm the woods are now inhabitated by several elven factions and the unity that preserved the empire long after the War of the Chosen is gone.
What is now referred to as "Gaeldorioth" is only the center of the vast rainforest while the western parts are controlled by the so-called "Nightelves" who named their part of the forest the "Crystalwoods".
Not more than a small elven realm in the nowhere it has become a refugium to everyone seeking a new start, a sparkling stone of civilization in the wilderness. Ruled by elves who came from the Affaenath Woods (Autumn Forest) it developed into a multiracial melting pot which awakened the interest by the merchants because of the Hilldwarves that populate the immediate neighborhood and make Fullwanooth a fine source for steel, weapons and jewelery and many other wonderous goods done by the elven craftsmen of the cities. Also many gnomes can be found here, possibly second to only Korweyn and its many gnome districts in its cities.
Is the independent elven kingdom of the North. After the fires after the War of the Chosen the once great "Fallaerion Gaeldorioth" was split in two by vast plains of scorched earth and the smaller part became the "Fallaerion Affaenath", an own realm reigned by an elven lord. Like Fullwanooth this realm is in the middle of the wilderness and thus always endangered by all kinds of warfaring barbarians and so the borders are fiercely defended against strangers.
The Kingdom of Orcal is possibly the most powerful orcish realm in whole Caelereth. Located in the deep canyons of the Uiyujappath River they control the deserts north and east of this stream with its fertile river banks. They often – and enthusiastical – wage war against the cities if Zhun and rob caravans crossing the deserts.
Many legends are spread about these "Black Orcs" that seem to have developed something that has to be accepted as a high civilization – especially for orcs.
The Orcristh are feared for their fire mages and priests who are said to work bloody rituals in their vast temples. Whether this is true or not the kingdom that is ruled by a Godking in the city of Orcal is one of the major powers of western Nybelmar.
These harsh islands, sharp rocks sticking out of the wild sea, were sparsely populated by a tribe of elves till it was discovered by Nybelmarian explorers and used as a supply base till the discovery of Sarvonia by the Nybelmarians. Then the islands were quickly populated by human settlers, merchants and soldiers to entrench this place and make it a sufficient trading port on the way to Sarvonia and Aeruillin.
Offically the islands are governed by the governor of the city of Bendasia, inoffically the governor is controlled by Aca-Santerra, Korweyn and Anis-Anpagan as the islands are an important object of interest for all three nations. The Santerrans and Korweynites even have warships there, the Santerrans in an own war port at the northern island.
Tribes. Here's a short overview over all tribes of Nybelmar, sorted by races:
THE ELVEN TRIBES
- The Káirhím
These elves are the holders of traditions since the War of the Chosen living in the Gaeldorioth Forest. They are said to be the noblest of all elves in Nybelmar and they played an important part during and after the War of the Chosen.
- The Pheránrhim
The Pheránrhim live as an independent tribe in the Affaenath Forest. In later times they founded the city of Fullwanooth outside of their old territories.
- The Aelónrhim
The Aelónrhim are often called the "Lost" for their nomadic lifestyle in the Pallaeion Ullinoth. Most of their traditions were lost through the War of the Chosen, however they developed new ones. Together with parts of the Pheránrhim some of them founded the city of Fullwanooth.
- The Nightelves
In the civil war that ultimately broke the old empire in Gaeldorioth the Nightelves were the rebellious faction and at first the superior one. Now they populate most of the western parts of the woods called the Crystal Woods and make travelling through this area even more dangerous.
- The Fire-Elves
Predecessors of the Nightelves and leaders of a dark cult that initiated the Rise of the Second Shadow. Now only referred to a certain cult among the Nightelves.
- The Hill-Elves
A small faction that seceded in the civil war and escaped south to became a vital part of the Empire of Korweyn that accepted them as refugees. Populating the northern border of Korweyn they also make up some special units of imperial bowmen in the army and often get high in the ranks of the Empire.
THE HUMAN TRIBES
- The Korweynites
The Korwaynites are the founders of two vast empires. The originate from the end of the War of the Chosen when they lived in the Soho Mountains in the region of Gelm. With the rise of the Murmillions and the first Shadow Realm they expanded eastward and after long fightings were victorious and founded a vast empire that spanned many parts of Nybelmar.
Later the empire broke under its own weight and the Korweynite blood nearly extinguished.
But after some dark ages from the Kassites the last of the noble Korweynite would found the new empire, the Empire of the Sun.
- The Murmillions
Rough people populating the moon hills and the "Sickle" – Ehebion – under Kyras the Dark after the War of the Chosen. Later they founded the first Shadow Realm but were defeated later on. They remained stubborn and independent though some of them fell under the rule of the Santerrans when they forged their nation.
- The Esgathites (also called the Endi)
The Esgathites are followers of Enfastalos and one of the three ancient human tribes. With the fall of their leader they scattered over the southern coasts of Nybelmar and became a tribe of peaceful farmers and fishermen. Later they fell first under the rule of the Murmillions then the Korweynites. After the fall of the first Empire they became independent again only to be reconquered with the rise of the Second Empire of Korweyn. In general they now live as a peaceful part of Korweyn though Santerra has often sparked nationalistic feelings and supported revolts to gain control over their territories.
- The Kassites
The Kassites are a warrior tribe that came to the eastern part of Nybelmar just before the fall of the first Empire and were allies of the Korweynites. They remained autonomous and helped the rise of the second Empire whose elite soldiers are nearly all of Korweynite or Kassite heritage.
- The Santerrans
The Santerrans were formed out of many tribes that inhabited the islands east of Nybelmar though they claim that they immigrated from over the Western Sea and the islands were gifted to them by Barkhas their greatest god. Very religious and very nationalistic they became a major power not before the Rise of Darkness.
- The Deep Dwarves
These dwarves used to inhabit deep caverns and caves within the Zshararath Mountains where they built their cities. However these cities were destroyed in the War of the Chosen and nearly all of these dwarves died. However, the few survivors became the Plaindwarves in later times.
- The Plain Dwarves (Kavogerim)
These strange dwarves became famous as the leaders of caravans through the whole continent of Nybelmar. With the building of Fullwanooth they finally had a safe harbour, after centuries of living in the dangerous wilderness of central Nybelmar. Most of them wander the routes Fullwanooth-Tyrian Faerath-Korweyn through the dangerous ashlands.
- The Hill Dwarves
The Hilldwarves inhabit the hills between the Autumn Forest and the Omovain Taelath.
Information provided by Koldar Mondrakken