THE SANTHARIAN PROVINCE OF VARDÝNN

MAP - METROLPOLISES - CITIES - TOWNS - VILLAGES AND HAMLETS - BUILDINGS
PLAINS AND FIELDS - MOUNTAINS - BODIES OF WATER - WOODS - CAVES AND MINES - SCENERY

Vardýnn is one of the eight provinces of the United Santharian Kingdom, located in Southern Sarvonia. After Nermeran it marks the second northernmost province, comprising an enormous territory, adjacent to the Dark Sea in the west and the Ancythrian inland sea to the east. Prominent landmarks are the Hèckra volcano at the heart of the province, the Peninsula of Paragonj, the Island of Churican with its vast rolling hills, the Isle of Saenyhal, furthermore the wide heaths and fields on the mainland (the Heath of Jernais and the Aurora Fields) and a plethora of beautiful lakes (Aerelian Lakes).

Vardýnn with its ancient metropolis Voldar is home of the Erpheronians, a powerful and proud, yet war-hungry human tribe, responsible for major historical developments on the southern Sarvonian continent and driving force behind Santharia's colonization efforts. Other human tribes present in the region are Centoraurians in the west and Caltharians to the east, and of course the Helcrani with their own metropolis Milkengrad on Efirhal Island.  Located in Vardýnn's territory also lies the by far most largest and most mystical of all elven forests, the Thaelon, said to be the home of light elves that are invisible to the regular mortal's eyes, others say that this magical forest contains even portals that represent links to other worlds... The other elven tribe found in Vardýnn are the Aellenrhim, at home in the Bolder ("Forest of Knowledge") to the northwest, and while the Goltherrhim elves of the Goltherlon are extinct, Golgnomes have made their home in this forest due to the proximity to the Hèckra volcano, which serves their alchemical purposes nicely. The High Fores mountain range also harbours the dwarven Thrumgolz clan ("Pickhands").

Map. The map to the left shows the overview over the ten duchies of Vardýnn, the map to the right provides a detailed view:

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METROPOLISES
(25.000+ INHABITANTS)

The City of Milkengrad

MILKENGRAD, THE CITY OF

FIEF: UNKNOWN (DUCHY OF MILKENON); POPULATION: CA. 100.000
TRIBES: HUMANS (HELCRANI, CENTORAURIANS), ELVES (STYRANI), DWARVES (NERTERS), BROWNIES (MILKEN)

Milkengrad was the capital of the ancient kingdom of Centorauria and the metropolis of the Helcrani tribe. It is one of the largest cities in the Sarvonian continent. The city is built upon the Efirhal Island and dominates it. Milkengrad is widely known all over Santharia not only for the temperament of its residents but also for its extraordinary beauty that surpasses many other human cities in whole Caelereth. Elven influence is visible all around the city and in every field; in architecture, in the names, in the culture of its residents.

In Santharia Milkengrad can only be compared to the elven city of Elving, whose beauty is legendary as well. In everyday life the locals refer to Milkengrad simply as “the City” (and to the settlements in Helcrah as “the Villages”). The city’s population consists of a mixture of humans, elves and dwarves of Helcrani origin. However, one also can find other Centoraurians as well as many foreigners that earn their living in the metropolis of the western coast. Return to the top

 

VOLDAR, THE VARDÝNNIAN CAPITAL

FIEF: UNKNOWN (DUCHY OF GRAEYERWÝNN); POPULATION: CA. 150.000
TRIBES: HUMANS (ERPHERONIANS)

Santharian city (currently approx. 150.000 inhabitants) and capital of Vardýnn, one of the eight provinces which is located at the northwestern part of Santharia. Vardýnnian territories once belonged to the powerful Erpheronian Kingdom and also was the capital of Erpheronia before all the kingdoms of the southern Sarvonian continent were united in the Santharian Realm. Voldar therefore can be accounted to one of the most important towns of Santharia and has a gigantic history to look back upon. The coat of arms of the city consists of the gigantic Karovnean Eagle surrounded by the ring of the Injèrá, the Aér'aí'chanían sun, put in front of a divided combination of light blue and green colors. Return to the top
 

CITIES
(CA. 12.000 - 25.000 INHABITANTS)

JERNAIS, THE CITY OF

FIEF: UNKNOWN (DUCHY OF JERNAIS); POPULATION: CA. 12.000
TRIBES: HUMANS (ERPHERONIANS, CALTHARIANS)

Jernais is a city located on the Heath of Jernais between the Thaelon Forest and the Twinnean Peaks, in the Santharian province of Vardýnn. Though initially located on territory belonging to the former Erpheronian tribe, Jernais is now home to a connected community of mostly Caltharians, who maintain a happy and comfortable life in the city. The population of the city at the moment lies somewhere between 8.000 and 10.000 residents. With a laid back but caring government and a equality for all members, everyone enjoys a comfortable standard of living. The city is always full of activity and things to see, and is as colourful as the people who live there. Return to the top
 

The City of Salsair

SALSAIR, THE CITY OF

FIEF: UNKNOWN (DUCHY OF AURORA); POPULATION: CA. 20.000
TRIBES: HUMANS (CENTORAURIANS, HELCRANI, DARAN GNOMES)

Salsair is a large city of 20.000 people, mostly Centoraurian, found in the northern Vardýnn province of Santharia on the continent of Sarvonia. Where the waters of Lake Aelignós gently lap against the shore near the source of the Aelunn River, Salsair started out as a small fishing village. Over time it grew in size and importance, where it now serves as a wonderful summer retreat for the wealthy who want to enjoy the beauty of the lake. It also serves as a major hub for both fishing and agriculture in the area. Being part of the Aerelian Lakes system as well as on the Aelunn River, Salsair takes advantage of the water system to be a center of trade in Vardýnn province. Return to the top
 

TOWNS
(CA. 1.500 - 12.000 INHABITANTS)

SPARROWCLAW, PORT

FIEF: UNKNOWN (DUCHY OF GRAEYERWÝNN); POPULATION: CA. 6.000
TRIBES: HUMANS (ERPHERONIANS)

Port Sparrowclaw is a medium-sized town founded on the shores of the Peninsula of Paragonj in 730 b.S,, in the Duchy of Graeyerwýnn. Located in the northern Vardýnn province of the United Kingdom of Santharia, it dominates one of the larger openings into the Vardýnn archipelago and the mouth of the Vandrina River, making it an important port-of-call and trade hub for the duchy. A former Erpheronian town before the unification of Santharia, Port Sparrowclaw population (approx. 6000) is mostly Proudmen, but within recent years has seen a growth in settlers and merchants looking to profit off the local wealth. Return to the top
 

VILLAGES AND HAMLETS
(CA. 20 - 1.500 INHABITANTS)
No entries as of yet. Return to the top

BUILDINGS AND STRUCTURES

The Fortress and Enclave of Alvang ("All'valán")

ALVANG, THE FORTRESS AND ENCLAVE OF ("ALL'VALÁN")

FIEF: UNKNOWN (DUCHY OF ANCYTHARIA)
The desolate fortress and town of Alvang (once "All'valán", Styrásh for "Above the Dream") built upon an island in the north of the Ancythrian Sea has been the bane of most races for many long years. This dark monstrosity was created back in 110 b.S. during the Age of the Blood by the minions of the dark elven witchking, the Móch'rónn Saban Blackcloak. Since then it has been known to be the center for all dark elven activities. Now it has become deserted and run down after the alleged death of Blackcloak in the third century a.S. The dark fortress and town have begun to crumble after years of being abandoned as a result of the untamed forces of the powerful winds that blow across the island. Most think Alvang was the name of just the fortress, but since it has been abandoned and all other names were lost in the past, it has become a common habit among the people to call the fortress and, also, the town, Alvang. Return to the top
 

AVAEDHRA TEMPLE, THE

FIEF: UNKNOWN (DUCHY OF MILKENON)
The Temple of Avá in Milkengrad, also called the Avaedhra, is the only human temple that is devoted to the typically elven High Goddess of Avá the Beautiful. In this place human, elven and dwarven Helcrani honour Avá and Her Dream and study the past. The Temple is built at the eastern edge of Milkengrad’s greatest square, the Hypheralean Square (Square of the Singing Heavens). Return to the top
 

The Glistening Well of Goltherlon

GLISTENING WELL OF GOLTHERLON, THE

FIEF: UNKNOWN (DUCHY OF ANCYTHARIA)
The Glistening Well of Goltherlon is a small ancient well that lies deep within the depths of the Goltherlon Forest in the eastern side of the Vardýnn province of Santharia. Said to be nestled in a massive baych grove, the well is neatly hidden from all but the most curious seekers. Some of the local Golgnomes believe the well to be possessed of strange magical power, perhaps elven magic that still lingers at the structure after centuries of lonely existence. Despite the gnomish culture of reasoning and science over mystical energy, some betrothed Golgnome couples have established the belief that the well gives fertility blessings when visited. The true purpose of the well is not understood by contemporary scholars, and the Goltherrihm Elves have long left the forest and cannot be sought out for answers. Nevertheless, the well is a curious object of study by explorers and sages who seek to understand the well's strange power. Return to the top
 

PLAINS AND FIELDS

The Aurora Plains

AURORA PLAINS, THE

FIEF: UNKNOWN (DUCHY OF AURORA)
The Aurora Plains are known for holding an air of peace, though these plains have seen many wars and battles. Plants of all kinds grow up from the fertile soil, especially grasses that turn the plains a brilliant gold in autumn when the oak leaves are turning scarlet and yellow. Many flowers will bloom across the plain in spring, and winter has been known to leave frozen dew on the ground. The weather is very mild, and yields wonderful crops. Many believe that Jeyriall blesses this land. Return to the top
 

The Heath of Jernais

HEATH OF JERNAIS, THE

FIEF: UNKNOWN (DUCHY OF JERNAIS)
Located in the heart of Santharia's province of Vardýnn, the Heath of Jernais is a composite of heath, moor, and farmland approximately 100 strals long and 500 strals wide. Best known for its numerous flowers, its vibrantly coloured blossoms form the largest wild garden in Southern Sarvonia. Along the Vandrina River, rising between the blooms and grasses, is the city of Jernais and a cascade of small farming villages. The Milkengrad-Carmalad trade route crosses through the east and west borders of the Heath, providing travelers the shortest lateral passage through Vardýnn. Numerous starback deer have overgrazed the heathland, halting it from transforming into a woodland like the Thaelon Forest to the north. No matter how often the Heath of Jernais was scorched by the fires of nature, or by the fires of war, it has been restored each time with renewed vigor in the face of adversity.

The origin of the Heath’s name is traced back to ancient Erpheronia. It is a combination of the ancient Aerpheriane words “Jer“ (meaning “flower”) and “nais” (meaning “heath”). In Styrásh, the Heath of Jernais is known as “Prán Meríniás” (literally "Heath of the Flowers").
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MOUNTAINS

LOW FORES MOUNTAIN RANGE, THE

FIEF: UNKNOWN (DUCHY OF HELCRAH)
Weathered, huddled, grey-backed and ragged. The Low Fores are a truly ancient range of peaks situated just south of the towering and thunderous High Fores, separated by the Valley of the Fores. Much of the land between them is arid and parched stonefield, although some do call it home. The Low Fores do not boast the awesome height of their younger brethren, but they are no less impressive. They are oft-times billed with words such as “curmudgeonly”, “gruff” and the like; like slumped old men, one might be inclined to think. In truth, the Low Fores hold many mysterious secrets, some eerie, some dark. But always old, old and long kept.

Bustling within them are the reclusive Thrumgolz dwarves, a Thergerim clan that can also be found north in the High Fores. Whilst much of the surrounding hinterland is sparse and dry, surface settlements can be found in proximity, and the banks of the Rusik River lends to the southern march a touch of verdant life. Across the crags themselves, peculiar weather patterns creep according to some old law; deep mists hang in perpetuity across the Nengvale, and humid miasmas can be found appearing in scalding storms both port and starboard. Hidden beneath the lifeless Bone Valley that stretches east of them is a vast, sprawling and truly confounding series of tunnels, caves and caverns – some natural, some born of chisel and hammer – that the Thrumgolz Thergerim have since utilised to reach the distant High Fores, migrating in large numbers sometimes during their considerable history. Return to the top

 

HIGH FORES MOUNTAIN RANGE, THE

FIEF: UNKNOWN (DUCHY OF HELCRAH)
Jutting skyward in the heart of southern Sarvonia, the Fores are a formidable mountain range. Divided between the skyscraping peaks of the High Fores and the stolid upthrusts of the Lower Fores, they host some of the southern regions hardier peoples, who carve a living from its rocky edifices and harsh foothills. Stretching from the great Hèckra volcano at its northern march, then down to a stubble of staccato hills across the Plains of Truoor, the range skirts the western edge of the Ancythrian Sea and cradles the Goltherlon Forest against its shores. The peaks of the High Fores stretch tall, much more so than their Lower counterparts. Return to the top
 

BODIES OF WATER

The Aerelian Lakes

AERELIAN LAKES, THE

FIEF: UNKNOWN (DUCHY OF AURORA PLAINS)
The Aerelian Lakes, located in the Vardýnn Province of Santharia, are made up of six separate lakes: Saléstra, Aelignós, Evhodín, Melágria, Rhélean, and Codáth. The names of these lakes have been briefly studied by a handful of scholars of Vardýnn, who have tried to trace back to the etymological roots with limited success. The names, scholars say, have been melded by all the languages spoken in the area, including derivations of Styrásh and Tharian, even hints of Thergerim that may have traveled from the Fores.

Nestled just south of the Aurora Fields, the lakes are famous for their sapphire-blue colouration, but for the villagers that depend on them and their resources for survival, they serve as more than just a beautiful view: the lakes provide water and food, as well as a temperate climate with gentle seasons that facilitates fertile growth in the nearby Aurorian Hills. Return to the top

 

The Ancythrian Sea ("Devil Sea", "Witchking's Waters")

ANCYTHRIAN SEA, THE ("DEVIL SEA", "WITCHKING'S WATERS")

FIEF: UNKNOWN (DUCHY OF ANCYTHARIA)
The Ancythrian Sea is a large inland saltwater sea in Santharia, nestled between the Enthronian Province to the South and East, and the Province of Vardýnn to the North and West. From north to south the sea measures around 420 strals and has around 260 strals of maximum width measured from east to west. In opposition to its name, which comes from the Styrásh meaning “Silent Sea” (actually the original name was "ancí'thyrón", the Ancythrian Sea is not silent in the least, though it might have been calm in ancient days. Today it is the home to many undersea creatures, such as the cáeh'fish and khendochar, and home exclusively to the Ancythrian shark. The sea is more than abundant in fish, and the local fishermen are sure to take advantage of that.

The Ancythrian Sea is also a major trade route between the Enthronian cities, having a port at Cavthan to the east, and at Elsreth to the west. Aside from that the sea is home to the Enclave of Alvang, an isle shrouded in mystery, as it was the site of a great battle, also known as the “Witchking’s Night”. Many an adventurer is said to have sailed into the heart of the sea to discover its secrets, and has not returned. Because of this, the townsfolk of Cavthan for example have taken to calling the sea by fell names such as the "Devil Sea", or the "Witchking's Waters".
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WOODS

ARTAPHERANA, THE ("ELEMENTAL TREES")

FIEF: UNKNOWN (DUCHY OF MILKENON)
The Artapherana is a name collectively used for four unique and fascinating trees which can be found only upon the Efirhal Hill in Milkengrad. Each one of them appears to represent one of the four elements and has a personality of its own. A glow of colored light emanates from each tree, according to its element and, when winds blow from the Thaelon, a melody is heard, sometimes sad, sometimes joyful. This melody has the ability to create certain emotions to those who hear it and is used as a means of communication.

Their individual names of the trees are Aeolerin, Nertelyx, Hydraloth and Helpheran. The exact origin of the Artapherana is still unknown, but sages in the 4th century a.S. connect them with the League, a secret elven guild that played an important though subtle role in the Helcran development. Return to the top

 

The Bolder Forest

BOLDER FOREST, THE ("FOREST OF KNOWLEDGE")

FIEF: BOLDER STYCAL
TRIBES: ELVES (AELLENRHIM)
The Bolder forest ("Bolder" is a human rendering of the Styrásh name for the forest; Bóll'dáth or Bóll'dáth meaning literally "learning place", or "place of knowledge") is situated in the province of Vardýnn. Badly damaged by an orc raid during the Third Sarvonian War, the forest still bear scars, despite the Aellenrhim elves care deeply for their home. The forest is punctuated by settlement in the natural clearing by elven enclosures. The forest extends into the foothills of the Warnaka Mountains in the North, which shadow the forest from some of the expected rainfall. Humans in the neighbouring towns of Voldar and Nyermermys are still wary and suspicious of the forest since the orc raid, and rumours abound in the cities of the evil that dwells there. Return to the top
 

The Grove of Embers ("Nárfer'linlón")

GROVE OF EMBERS, THE ("NÁRFER'LINLÓN")

FIEF: UNKNOWN (DUCHY OF MILKENON)
Situated just east of Milkengrad in the Santharian province of Vardýnn, the Grove of Embers, or Náfrer'linlón (lit. "Ember Grove") as it is called by the Milken Brownies, is a lush, plant-filled area that is significant to the aforementioned group of Brownies. Teeming with life, it is also filled with the spirits of all of the Milken who think fondly of their connection to the Helcrani men. The Grove is a tribute commemorating the fateful meeting between the Helcrani and the Milken. The Milken annual Burning Festival is held here at sunset on the 10th Day of Burning Heavens, taking advantage of the glowing stones located in the center of the Grove, and at its entrances. Return to the top
 

The Thaelon Forest (""Sanctuary Wood)

THAELON FOREST, THE ("SANCTUARY WOOD")

FIEF: THAELON STYCAL
TRIBES: ELVES (ASTYRHIM)
The Thaelon Forest (lit. "tae lón", Styrásh for "Covered Wood", "Secret Wood" or more freely translated "Sanctuary Wood") is Santharia's largest forest, and may even be the biggest on Caelereth, comparable in size only to forests like the Shaded Forest in Northern Sarvonia or the Drifting Woods of Nybelmar. It is located in the northernmost province of the United Kingdom, Vardýnn, and stretches for sure over a 1000 strals from east to west and at least an estimated 300 strals from north to south. The enormous size becomes especially evident if you consider travelling times: It takes a fast courier no less 12 days to pass through on a secure route when on his way to Nyermersys to New-Santhala, and at least 15 days when riding along the southern border along the Vandrina to go from Voldar to Ephirn's Lake! The Thaelon is a tranquil and serene place, sacred to all elven tribes of Sarvonia. They are believed to have their mythological roots in these woods, and thus it is surrounded in mystery to all but the elves. However, how much the elves themselves understand of this forest remains unknown. Many elves believe it to be the centre of the world where the ancient Tree of Life, Eu'reóll, has its roots and thus it is supposed to be the place of origin of many things. Return to the top
 

CAVES AND MINES
No entries as of yet. Return to the top

SCENERY

The Isle of Churican

CHURICAN, THE ISLE OF

FIEF: UNKNOWN (DUCHY OF GANNILOS)
Churican, also called "the Isle of Churican" or "Churicán" (in Styrásh), rests just off the west coast of Sarvonia in Northern Santharia. Some believe its name to be a derivation of the Styrásh "Chró'uricán" for "Island (that is) to wave," or, more simply "Wave Land". Others argue that the first syllable might in fact derive from "chó", meaning "great". This would suggest that Churican's name actually derives from "chó'uricán", meaning "to undulate greatly". Located in the province of Vardýnn, it is an island blessed with both hills and plains across its fertile span, which measures approximately nine furlays from north to south and eight from east to west at its widest point.

Housing approximately 30,000 residents, the isle has fortunately weathered the storms of history; wars have come and gone, rulers risen and fallen, and kingdoms formed and faded, but it remains more or less as it has always been. Its grassy knolls are home to shepherds who watch over their flocks; its flatlands are covered in meldarapple orchards; its surrounding oceans are fished by the same families who have done so for generations. The people are friendly, yet cautious, but most will proudly claim that there is no place quite as beautiful, quite as fortunate, or quite as peaceful as the Isle of Churican. Return to the top

 

HEATHEN'S REEF, THE

FIEF: UNKNOWN (DUCHY OF GRAEYERWÝNN)
The Heathen's Reef is a natural, arcing formation of jagged rocks forming a barrier across the entryway into the Vardýnn province by sea. The Reef acts as a funnel for ships wishing to enter Vardýnn from the north, and access to Port Sparrowclaw, Brightborough and onwards to Voldar.

There exists a causeway threading through the rocks, close to the shore under Heathen's Henge, that experienced or foolhardy pilots can navigate to shorten the passage and make direct for Port Sparrowclaw. This opening cuts the travel time of the intrepid pilot greatly, but there exists dangers. Subermeged pinnacles can tear strong hulls to ribbons, and in the narrow parts, strong cross-currents can lead the ships directly into the larger islands. During bad weather the unpredictability of the wind will deter almost any captain from sailing through the channel, lest his vessel be torn asunder. Return to the top

 

   
 Date of last edit 13th Awakening Earth 1672 a.S.

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