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The Caliphene Republic, otherwise known as the Federation of Caliphene, is a pro-Regalian Qadir state in New Ceardia. Though recently ravaged in a war with pro-Qadiriyye rebels known as the Heraatz, the nation is one of the more prosperous outside of the Ailor realms. The republic regularly suffers from unbridled belligerence from their neighboring states and therefore sees itself occupied with matters of war and diplomacy. Nevertheless, it is a vital port within the trading circles of the Great Middle Seas and often serves as a gateway between Ailor and Qadir realms. Foreigners dub the republic as “The Mosaic Land” on account of the region’s colorful cities and deep-set fascination in mosaic art.

HistoryEdit

The region of the Caliphene Republic was first settled centuries before the Cataclysm. Archeological evidence suggests that it was one of the first Qadir nations to be formed outside of Farah’deen. It was relatively unremarkable and arranged more as a march between New Ceardian states and the Qadir states. Caliphene was formed as a vassal state of the early Qadiriyye in the year 98 B.C. and suffered from relative obscurity for most of pre-Cataclysmic history.

The Caliphene Republic was formed decades after the Cataclysm, and marks its official year of foundation in 50 A.C. Prior to the Cataclysm, the region that would come to be known as Caliphene was connected to Farah’deen though low expanses of land that stretched from the modern southern coast to an older northern coast that had been reduced during the Cataclysm. Soon after the event, large swathes of displaced water made its way from the northern continents towards the arid landmasses that would become Farahdeen, Farah, and southern New Ceardia respectively. After five decades of non-correspondence from the Mansuriya from the Farah’deen continent, the region’s Aqtas (rulers equivalent to counts) declared their independence and formed the Caliphene Federation.

In the century following Caliphene’s formation, many foreign Ailor nations (particularly the Ceardian daughter-states) formed friendly relations with the republic due to their lack of hostility. In time, the republic found stalwart allies from Ceardia, Silver Shores, and the Regalian Empire, that would aid in the defense of its sovereignty against various Qadir states. The Republic also grew as a result of trade relations, relying on periods of prosperity from both Silver Shores and Regalia to further their interests. Come the second century after the Cataclysm, the region found itself relatively undisturbed and economically powerful. In 230 A.C. and for the next fifteen years, the region was embroiled in a small-scale civil war between north and south for the reconsideration of its sovereignty and the swearing of its fealty to Farah’deen to stop the hostilities. The Republic chose to continue to defend its independence and entered the latter half of the second century with reinvigorated national pride. Many citizens attributed their continued autonomy to the Regalian Empire, thereby increasing the nation’s local popularity. During 260 A.C., a large chunk of the steppe lands once owned by small Qadir states like Mooriyye and Al Alus were absorbed by the republic, thereby creating its modern borders and increasing its administrative control of the landmass by 20%.

Entering into the third century after Cataclysm, the Caliphene Republic suffered from exceptional amounts of hostility from Qadir states. In the year 293 A.C., a radical faction of pro-Qadir reignited the issue of the republic’s independence and quickly reverted to violence. Funded by Qadir states, most notably Mooriyye, the Heraatz rebels (as they were called) managed to take the Caliphene highlands and turn many of its gorges into natural fortresses against nationalist forces. Only with the intervention of the Regalian Empire in 303 A.C. was the Heraatz rebellion crushed. As of the present day, Caliphene currently attempts to rebuild from its war and has found itself in the unique position of receiving an onslaught of diplomats and traders from lands beyond the Southern Unknown.

EtymologyEdit

The Caliphene republic finds its name’s origins from the regional name as given by early Mansuriya settlers from before 150 A.C. The word is a corruption of the Qadiriyye words for “Northern Reach”. Caliphene was kept and used by the region’s rulers as the name of their new republic in the year 50 A.C., and the name remains unchanged to this day. As for Caliphene’s capital’s name Ashanna, was the commonized form for the city’s old name “Al-Shannath”

GeographyEdit

The Caliphene Republic consists of a large mainland with three offshoot peninsulas stemming from its eastern coast. It shares similar geographical features with the neighboring states of Silver Shores and Al Alus. Geological formations divide the nation in two, between the highlands and the lowlands; both halves have distinct climates and environments of their own. The lowlands are further divided into the respective peninsulas that reach into the waterways between New Ceardia and the Qadir states. Each peninsula, the lowlands, and the high lands are historically arranged into separate administrative regions and have their boundaries marked by rivers and mountains.

Within the Caliphene highlands, the topography is mountainous and casts a stark contrast from the arid wastes of Al Alus. The flatter hills support small clusters of temperate forests that stretch to the divide between high and low regions. Along the central areas of the landmass exist a range of stacked cliffs and canyons that transition abruptly to the lowlands. These lowlands are plagued with dry expanses of steppes and plains. The peninsulas that branch from these steppes have a more forgiving landscape, featuring both mountain and river that run from the centers of the lands to the sea. Many gorges and fords scar the terrain, appearing near invisible from ground level.

ClimateEdit

As the region is wedged between two vastly different climates, the Caliphene people enjoy frequent rainfall and short winters. Temperatures are similar to the Rim Isles and Vultaro in the Regalian archipelago. Perhaps the most characteristic weather conditions of the region are powerful gusts that are formed from the meeting of arid and temperate climates. The more desert-like regions of the lowlands suffer from extreme sandstorms in the summer as a result of strong winds, which can flay the skin from travelers who wear too little.

Notable LandmarksEdit

  • Churey Tutare
The Tutare gorge is the most famous, and the most significant of hydrographical features in the region. It carves a significant wedge in the highland’s borders and therefore serves as a vital connection between north and south. As the Tutare’s river grows closer to the western coast, it grows in size to the point where large ships can comfortably sail upriver until they are deep into the landmass of the Caliphene realm. The Churey Tutare is also home to Ashanna, the region’s capital city. The Tutare’s waterways are connected to the Yellow Sea through a large river known as the Ereshan river which originates in the Tutare.
  • Bacan Muriba
The Bacan Muriba is a remarkable geological formation of high political and navigational importance. Muriba is the tallest of the five Bacan mountains that dot the northern reaches of the Caliphene highland’s borders, and is characterized by its gentle upwards slope and dramatic cliffs that run off from its peak. It serves as a home to the Khalack Muriba, a lofty fortress that doubles as the republic’s council hall for regional meetings of high importance. In times of great crisis, the entirety of Bacan Muriba is transformed into a fortification specifically reserved for the Aqtas and their families. The Khalack built upon Bacan Muriba is also of high archaeological importance due to the evidence of ancient settlement from before the time of the Mansuriya. When unused for political purposes, foreign diggers from around the world chip away at the various ruins found nearby the castle.
  • The cities of Ashanna, Meressa, Sarashann, and Presarre.
With much of the Caliphene region dominated by steppes and highlands that are unsuitable for urbanization, there are four cities where the region concentrates its population. Each Caliphene city has a dock with access to the sea, along with agricultural establishments spanning from its outskirts in every landward direction. The population ratio between city to countryside is much more balanced than other Ailor nations, much like other Qadir states.

GovernmentEdit

The Caliphene Republic is arranged like a typical republic, where the five regional Aqtas meet to discuss the region’s affairs and make decisions democratically. Each Aqta governs an administrative region where they actively choose and interchange urban representatives from among the populace. While officially the republic consists of five council members, each council member represents a dozen or so advisors or mayors in extension. The system occasionally finds itself locked in indecision if tensions between each Aqta’s advisors are high. These periods often end in short bursts of violence and intrigue whereupon the Aqta is often forced to replace many members of their council at the behest of their colleagues.

Prominence and power from the locals of the Caliphene republic are decided in an oligarchy where the region’s most successful and popular members tend to rise. The cities are therefore administered or even ruled by oligarchs appointed by the ruling mayor. These oligarchs are the closest titles to nobility within the region, for landed titles are strictly kept within the grasp of each ruling Aqta. Many Caliphene merchants and aristocrats therefore have self-styled titles referring to their various accomplishments, ranging from unremarkable to ridiculous.

Despite being advertised as ‘Pro-Regalian’ and ‘anti-slavery’, the nation has a firm bracket preventing most non-Mansuriya from ascending the social ranks. Ailor tend to inhabit the lower classes, while the Allar and Mekett who have found refuge in the state have no luck with increasing their wealth. It is therefore understood that most non-Qadir are lowly paid labor workers who are better fit to toil under the sun.

List of RulersEdit

  • Before 50 A.C. - Aqtas that served the Qadiriyye Sultanate
  • 50 - 78 A.C. - The Aqta families of Ardall, Livann, Sanawar, Murikem, and Neretta.
  • 78 A.C. - Neretta family overtaken by Jascint family
  • 145 A.C. - Livann family dies out, replaced by Mednar family.
  • 267 A.C. - Sanawar family unlanded for treason, replaced by Uraellan family.
  • 303 A.C. - Mednar family killed by Heraatz rebels, replaced by Kersanna family.

Foreign RelationsEdit

Due to the precarious positioning of the Caliphene republic, it makes allies where it is possible. Up until recently, Caliphene was relatively cordial with its neighboring Qadir neighbors of Mooriye and Al Alus. However, due to various political attacks against Caliphene’s sovereignty, Mooriye has been solidified as the nation’s most disliked enemy. Al Alus and Caliphene maintain trade agreements, though court rumors suggest that the Caliphene Aqtas may make a move to attack Al Alus and attempt to take its lands before the Qadiriyye Sultanate recovers from its invasion of the Regalian Empire. Caliphene and Silver Shores have a healthy relation, where they trade often and provide military assistance to one another at a moment’s notice. Caliphene is fiercely supportive of the Regalian Empire, though their loyalty has wavered due to the late reaction of the Empire against the Heraatz rebels. It is understood in foreign courts that the republic has a very high opinion of itself, which does not reflect its generally disliked opinion in other nations. The Aqtas therefore have to rely upon monetary appeasement to maintain their relations.

MilitaryEdit

Caliphene’s military consists mostly of registered soldiers who work much like levies during times of war. Men (and sometimes women) will often sign themselves underneath a commander during peace times and are mustered into their respective regiments during times of war. The military organization takes inspiration from the Mukhari armies of the Qadiryye Sultanate, and therefore is consisted of both genders in a various arrangement of land regiments. Due to the various privileges associated with signing into the army, the region finds no shortage of eager enlistees. Every soldier is provided their own set of armor and weaponry, made by the craftsmen of Ashanna. These armaments are of unusually high quality for standard service, contributing to the nation’s reputation for quality weaponry and armor. While Caliphene’s land armies are of renown and strength, they have little use outside of the Ceardian continents due to the lack of an organized navy at the disposal of the Aqtas.

Economy and TechnologyEdit

The Caliphene Republic has historically enjoyed prosperity due to its adaptable attitude towards trade and innovation. Ashanna, the capital city of Caliphene, is oftentimes associated with technological pioneering and high population counts as a result of the state’s economic strength. In regards to technological progression, the nation has a relatively high ranking in the known world for innovation. Taking from metalworking cues from the Silver Shores, Caliphene craftsmen regularly pave the way for the higher standard of weapon and armor manufacturing. Much of this wealth is spent on the state, paying for construction projects and lavish gifts to foreign rulers. Unmentioned to foreigners is the state’s reliance on cheap manual labor provided by Allar refugees and indoctrinated Mekett.

In the trading realm, Caliphene owes its prosperity more to its open ports more than the various commodities produced within the land. Despite this, Caliphene crafts such as armor and jewelry are highly prized in foreign nations and therefore fetch a high price in the market. Caliphene leatherworks are perhaps the most famous exports from the region, and make regular appearances in both armor and casual clothing. Other contributions to the world market include the Ashannan red dye, created from a plant that grows exclusively on the Caliphene steppes.

DemographicsEdit

The demographic makeup of the Caliphene Republic is one of the most varied in the world, owing partly due to the large number of Allar and Mekett workers who make up for a large portion of the lower-class population. In accordance to the historical Ailor prejudice against the Nelfin people, they are persecuted heavily in the region for superstitious or radical reasons. As a result, Elven populations are few to none in the region.

  • 63% Mansuriya Qadir
  • 18% Ailor
  • 12% Songaskia Qadir
  • 4% Allar
  • 2% Mekett
  • 1% Other

CultureEdit

The republic’s culture is a distinct combination of Ailor and Qadir. Though the culture’s origins are deeply inspired from the traditional Qadiryye people, it has been tempered and formed by decades of interaction and association with other Ailor realms. Qadir still dominate the majority of the region’s population, and the region identifies more with nations from Farah as a result.

  • Clothing
The fashion styles within the Caliphene Republic are easily identified by lavish decoration and little to no exposure of skin. Due to the impracticalities of wearing little clothing in the Caliphene steppes, most articles of clothing are tight around the limbs and suited for the local climate. Cloths of lighter weight and material are used to prevent the collection of heat, and are woven into intricate patterns of grape vines and flourishes upon the piece. Maroon and deeper reds (Known as the Ashannan Red) feature heavily in most clothing. Full vests are currently in season, where a colored leather vest with an asymmetric parting is placed over the clothing.
  • Food and Cuisine
Food within the Republic is considered exotic and sometimes dangerous amongst foreign commentators. Snake flesh, goat meat, and bell peppers feature heavily in most dishes, and are regularly accompanied with various soft cheeses and wines made from the boons of the peninsula. Most foods are characteristically spiced, often giving an unforeseen kick of heat to unwary tongues. The Caliphene Republic also produces coffee beans, which are further processed into the popular drink known to many as Kaffe.
  • Art
The identity of Caliphene’s art is dominated by elaborate mosaics created from otherwise worthless minerals of vibrant colors found in the highlands of the region. These are often arranged to depict simplified scenes of landscapes and cityscapes, and are akin to stained-glass art pieces in appearance. These mosaics are found in framed pieces and house floors alike. Painting is also prominently featured in the Caliphene art scene, signified with bold colors and city-related imagery.
  • Architecture
The constructions in the region of Caliphene have an interesting, perhaps otherworldly flair stemming from the diluted combination of Qadir designing features and New Ceardian ethics. Simple geometric patterns are built into the various flourishes and embellishments around the edge of walls and windows. Towers appear regularly even in the most humble of houses, which are utilized as a base for chimneys that run along every floor of the house. In addition, multi-story balconies are found often on townhouses and more upscale constructions. Bold colors such as blue, yellow, and green find themselves being used upon the walls of houses rather than uniform white cob that is used in Ceardian buildings.
  • Entertainment
The people of Caliphene find much of their entertainment from the regional phenomena known as ‘traveling casinos’. These elaborate establishments often ‘unpack’ at public areas such as plazas, taverns, and communal halls, where they provide well-decorated stalls where citizens can come to play an array of gambling games that range in complexity from simple dice to intricate machines known as ‘flit-slots’. Entire social communities can form from a location’s traveling casino. Where gambling and socializing cannot do, brothels and elaborate foreign markets tantalize the traveler and resident alike.

ReligionEdit

The Caliphene Republic follows Unionism, and has adopted various customs from its Qadir heritage to distinctify it from other sects of Unionism. Most notably, the Caliphene people depict the Emperor as a face upon the sun, smiling benevolently over their people. Many also have open-aired shrines in their homes for their worship of the Emperor. There exists a pilgrimage location within the Caliphene Republic known as the “Redemption of the Aqtas”, where an elaborate monument marks the location where the rulers of Caliphene met with the Emperor of Regalia to acknowledge his divinity. Many foreign pilgrims make their voyage to the Redemption to pay their respects.

SymbolsEdit

Caliphene’s nation symbol is a smiling sun rising over wavy seas. The colors featured in the coat-of-arms is red, light blue, and gold. Families from Caliphene are also prone to adding the same simplistic waves into their coat of arms as a background.

TriviaEdit

  • Many Caliphene architects are bitter over the exposure of the Al Alus architectural scene, where many spiteful workers dub the palaces of the aforementioned state as “tacky, uninspired, and ultimately excessive”.
  • Caliphene’s second most populous city, known as Meressa, is known for their decadent brothel and escort scene. Proprietors of these establishments claim that Regalia’s most popular courtesan’s establishment, the Hidden Dragon, was heavily inspired by the customs and cultures of Meressa’s escorts.
  • During a particularly brutal siege at the Khalak Muriba, defenders uncovered a previously undiscovered hall deep underground and proceeded to use its open ceiling as a sewer cistern for soldiers. Shortly after the end of the Heraatz war, archeologists discovered that the cistern was in fact a prayer hall built in times before the Mansuriya colonization of Caliphene’s region.
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