One of the most prosperous nations on the continent, the Scepteres of Tarshiin is situated on Nybelmar's Western Bay, sandwiched between the vast seas to the West and the rocky teeth of the Germon Doilth to the East. Tarshiinite historians debate as to the root of the name 'Scepteres' amongst Tarshiinite academics, though the most common theory is that it sprung from the Tiquaitan. As the 'Scepterera' was an ornate crown considered as a symbol of sovereignty due to its association with the Tiquaitan King, the phrase 'Scepteres of Tarshiin' was derived to express Tarshiinite dominion over these specific areas. However, others think that the phrase might actually have been a Tiquaitan joke. Since the word 'Sceptereri' referred to the gifts that were given to a newborn baby, some believe the phrase 'Scepteres of Tarshiin' patronises the Tarshiinites, suggesting that the Tiquaitan merely allowed the child-like Tarshiinites to do what they liked with the lands given to them.

Though Tarshiin's past is laden with deception and atrocity against their neighbours, the Tarshiinites are first and foremost an intellectual people, and this aspect has shaped their state immeasurably. Famously abstinent from archaic magic unlike the majority of its neighbours, the pragmatism and resourcefulness of its citizens have formed a political juggernaught, making underestimation of Tarshiin's potential very dangerous.

The Scepteres of Tarshiin are among the most powerful and affluent nations of North Western Nybelmar due to their well-established trade links in lucrative industries, Tarshiin notably being the greatest exporter of gold in the entire West. Coupled with their economic prosperity, the Tarshiinites have advanced from their humble beginnings as farmers into a cultured and sophisticated people, originally modelling their society somewhat on the now dead Kingdom of the Tiquaitan. It is through a well-established balance of rationality and passion that the Tarshiinites have achieved their seat of power within the North-Western Peninsula. Further, due to the multiplicity of their strength, the Tarshiinites make either an invaluable ally or formidable foe - the Tarshiinite's have little time for neutrality.

Description. The Scepteres of Tarshiin are characterised by an odd combination of rustic serenity and buzzing activity, reflecting perfectly the Tarshiinite philosophy that things in motion are the essence of beauty. Specifically the nation can be divided into a number of distinct scenes:

Location. The Scepteres is located in Nybelmar's Western Bay, north of the overground holdings of the Trumarim and south of the Kazai Morchin-I. It holds the most of the Western Coast of any of the nations, with perhaps the exception of the Inami wastes, though the general chaos of the region somewhat excludes them from holding the title of 'civilised nation'. As mentioned before, the relatively thin strip of land is sandwiched between the choppy Western seas and the domineering peaks of the Germon Doilth. Return to the top

Coat of Arms/Sign. The official insignia of the Scepteres of Tarshiin, as well as the symbol of the Tarshiinite Priesthood, is simply three vertical parallel lines spaced an equal distance from one another. Though there are no specific colours associated with the coat of arms, the shade is important: if the lines are darker than the background, the insignia is representative of the state, while if the lines are lighter than than the background, the insignia is representative of the priesthood.

While there is no preset heraldry, certain schemes can be associated with certain provinces, cities or even important buildings. The Grand Temple in Shintee, for instance, uses banners pure white lines set against a Goldspun silk background. As such, any delegation or convoy flying these colours within Tarshiin commands almost immediate respect, while in foreign lands they are usually received as an omen of impending war due to the Priesthood's aggressive reputation.
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People and Culture. The population of the Scepteres of Tarshiin, as one might guess from the name, is predominately made up of the Tarshiinite men. However, the lands that constitute the nation have historical ownership from two other tribes, the Tsohamin and the (now extinct) civilisation of the Ancient Tiquaitan. In modern times though, the Tarshiinites marginalise the Tsohamin to the extent that now the largest community of Tsohamin actually exists within the Municipen di Fa, where they are free from persecution.

Despite the Tarshiinite aggression displayed against the Tsohamin since the end of the Republican Wars, the shared roots of the Tarshiinites and Tsohamin are still reflected in mainstream Tarshiinite culture, perhaps most notably the architecture of their oldest cities, where architects abided by the spiritual doctrines of the Kunijen faith, which the Tsohamin still follow today.

State Organization. The governing of Tarshiin is separated into three very distinct authorities that co-exist with one another: the Jartanic government, the military and the priesthood.

Climate. The citizens of Tarshiin enjoy a very favourable climate. Flanked by the domineering peaks of the Germon Doilth, the Scepteres is sheltered from the ravaging winds of the Municipen but still manages to inherit the crop-quenching rainfall that blesses the agricultural heart of the Kazai Morchin-i throughout the colder seasons.

The settlements of Tarshiin, particularly along the coast, experience pleasing amounts of sunshine from the arrival of spring to the fall of autumn, creating a warm but precipitous middle of the year, creating a number of romantic vistas along airy Tarshiinite streets punctuated with bursts of skin-warming showers

However, at any time in the year there is great variation in the temperatures. While the injera bathed sands of the Tarshiinite beaches can reach somewhere between 2.5 and 3 periks at the peak of summer, the northeastern foothills of the Doilth can drop to even less than half a perik, as the warmth of the Western Sea currents dissipates into the easterly lowlands. At the upmost limit of the foothills, at such high altitudes where one becomes dangerously close to the Germon Doilth themselves, it can become bitterly cold. In the past it has been so cold that in the depths of winter one of the most awe-inspiring phenomena graces the brink: a dusting of snow, which most Tarshiinites or Tsohamin will only see once or twice in their lives. Return to the top

Economy. The Scepteres of Tarshiin is rich in both resources and industrious inhabitants, and is perhaps a prime example of how nature's bounty can be cultivated and harvested without scarring the land irreparably (as, for instance, could be seen in the mass deforestation of Zhun). Distanced from their origins as small-scale crop-growers, the Tarshiinite economy classically centred around four main trades: ink, silk, sea-salt and honey. However, after the dust settled at the end of the Tiquaitan Republican Wars, the Tarshiinites inherited the crown jewel of their fallen foe, the Lakes of Kimka. Through their expansion upon the existing infrastructure established by the Ancient Tiquaitan, the Tarshiinites quickly became the principle exporters of gold throughout Nybelmar. As the monopolies of Tarshiin grew in size, flushing wealth into all of the Scepteres' provinces, the economy of the state became more and more prosperous.

There is an odd balance between entrepreneurship and state control in the economy of Tarshiin. While anyone with sufficient investments can capitalise on the bounty of Tarshiin for their own financial designs the main impediment to expanding business in the nation is land ownership. Though no different under the law from a commercial landowner, huge regions in Tarshiin belong either directly to the provincial governor or one of the consortia affiliated with the Grand Temple. As such, while there is no such thing as a completely worthless piece of land within the Scepteres, laying your hands upon can pose the greatest challenge. Return to the top

Resources. The territories making up Tarshiin are rich in resources:

Production. When contrasted against the number of resources within Tarshiin, the number of finished products created by the Tarshiinites is relatively low. Tarshiinite silk, particularly the Goldspun Silk of the Goldworm, is a highly prized fabric both within and outside of the Scepteres, developing a specific rivalry with Gondolsilk. Finished inks, which come in a variety of colours, are another principle export of Tarshiin.

Not much is done with the collected gold by the Tarshiinites beyond smelting. Most Tarshiinite gold merchants make their trade in the easily stored gold bars- allowing other creative types to do with it what they like. There is, however, a very niche market for coloured gold in the continent, and as such there are dedicated craftsmen in Kimka concerned solely for its production. An even smaller market within the province is that of damascening: once a popular art form, it has declined in popularity in the last two centuries.

Tarshiinite alchemy is also one of the most advanced in all of Caelereth. While much of the nation's formula and products are kept secret, a few examples of Tarshiinite ingenuity reach other nations: consisting mainly of pastes for cleaning teeth.

If the Tarshiinites are proud of anything, however, it is their skills in invention. Possessing some of the most skilled and precise engineers on the continent, Tarshiinites are famed for their production of everything from incredibly accurate thermometers to running hot water to tindersticks, a wondrous invention that ignites a small piece of wood with the smallest amount of effort.

The height of Tarshiinite engineering, however, is their weaponry. While the well-disciplined infantrymen of the Tarshiinite army form a ruthlessly effective fighting force in themselves, the Tarshiinite military is famed for the wide array of devastating siege engines they employ. Their naval masterpiece, the Dreadhammer Warship, is so effective in battle that only two were sunk in the ten year Gondol-Tarshiin conflict. However, offensive technology is not always for sale, though military engineers from Tarshiin have historically been in high demand from nations such as Orcal during times of war. Return to the top

Trade. The Tarshiinites are one of the principle partners of the Faen Merchants, both exporting and importing from the various trading houses that their neighbours operate. The primary exports of Tarshiin are bulk quantities of silk, gold, ink and sea salt. Though most trade is conducted directly with the Faen (who use their wide web to find costumers for the goods) it is possible to trace where the products end up. While gold tends to carry weight in a number of luxury-loving nations throughout the continent, coloured golds (particularly Rose and Turquoise gold) are a particular fancy of the Aesterans of the Northern Bay. Silk and ink are particularly popular with the Zhunite Citystates of the South, with salt and honey being purchased in high quantities by Tarshiin's longstanding ally the Amorai. In addition to their penchant for the rather domestic products of Tarshiin's economy, the Amorai are also the only other nation with whom the true bounty of Tarshiinite alchemy and technology is shared, with a small proportion of the Amorai armies being equipped with hand-held incendiaries and the (admittedly small) Amorai navies being stocked with Warships that are remarkably similar to Tarshiinite designs, though enquiring whether the Amorai bought a navy from their ally rarely receives a simple answer.

Furthermore, independent of the coventional Faen trade web, Tarshiin also holds a number of trading contracts directly with the Trumarim, where the dwarven Rock Oil (essential for Tarshiinite heating systems) is traded for exceptionally large amounts of gold.

Imports are an integral part of Tarshiin, with large parts of their culture being dependent on goods unavailable in the Scepteres. The first love of any Tarshiinite is alcohol, and it is probably a solid claim that the Tarshiinites drink more Jinn than the Morchini who make it; morning, noon and night. The more sophisticated types within Tarshiin, however, have developed tastes for more exotic drinks. As such, both Zhunite grape and rice wine are particularly popular imports. In addition, Tarshiin is one of the few markets in Nybelmar where foreign liquor is actually available (mainly through Gondolwenmith intercontinental trade), and as such Vhodka, Wisk-Away and R'unorian brandy can be found if you know the right places to look.

As well as satisfying their expensive tastes for alcohol, Tarshiinite cooking also involves larges amounts of frying and as such they are a huge importer of Zhunite olive oil.
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Military. Tarshiin represents one of the major military powers in North-Western Nybelmar. The Tarshiinite military is a noted institution both within and outside the Scepteres. The most common way of attaining affluence and social standing in the nation involves distinguishing oneself in combat. Distinction, however, is difficult with the extreme skill and discipline of the military, with each serving armsmen receiving excellent education in both the practicalities and tactics of combat.

Religion. While each respective tribe of the Scepteres has its own religion, the Tarshiinite attitude of domination towards the Tsohamin is not any different with regard to faith. As a result, the Kunijen (Appeasing the Spirits) faith of the Tsohamin has a very low prevalence Religious iconography and shamanic rituals are more prominent in Municipen di Fa, where the largest population of Tsohamin live and where they are much freer to worship whatever they like.

While religion is an enormously important aspect of Tarshiinite life, it was not always so cemented. In fact in simpler times, many ages ago, both Tsohamin and Tarshiinite alike revered the spirits of the Kunijen Pantheon. Even in modern Tarshiin the influences of their previous religion are evident: Tarshiinite roofs have the curved pagoda design people once believed attracted Karkuni (Fire Spirits, ones associated with good fortune), and Tarshiinites still continue the practice of hanging wind chimes on the edges of windows, residual practices from the belief that the twinkling sound kept Suukuni (Water Spirits, associated with harm) away.

However, from the time the Tarshiinites began to idolise their enormously advanced Northern neighbour, the Tiquaitan, they distance themselves from their humble origins with the Tsohamin, and more or less abandoned Kunijen. Imitating the atheism of the Tiquaitan, Tarshiinites began to invest more and more of their time in advancing their civilization.

However, considering the impact of the Priesthood's arrival (See the appropriate State Organization section) the Tarshiin had little trouble in accepting the dogma that had cured the largest crisis they had ever known, the Blackthroat Fever Epidemic.

 Date of last edit 24th Turning Star 1670 a.S.

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