Title: Anpagan men
Post by: Smith in Exile on 25 March 2004, 19:40:00
This is the first entry on Anis-Anpagan, the southern Nybelmarian human nation. As usual History is still to be added in a far future...
I had this almost done for quite some time but I was waiting for coren to finish his tribe, yet I decided to avoid as much as possible the mentions to Zhun and post it (I need to move on to the other entries). So coren, I guess we'll coordinate these histories somehow when you'll finish those entries... Edited by: Smith in Exile at: 3/27/04 0:13
Title: Re: Anpagan men
Post by: Smith in Exile on 25 March 2004, 20:40:00
The "Anpagans" are all the human peoples living on the Anpagan peninsula of the south Nybelmar. They are a mixture of mainly two different ancient Nybelmarian tribes. One of them is of Korweynite origins and the other one shares the same origins with the Kassite nomads and all the other barbarian tribes living west of the Zharkanion Peaks. The kingdom of Anis-Anpagan was forged during the end of the first Korweyn Empire, by an exiled lord of Kormendale, Narve. Previously korweynite provinces, under the leadership of Narve they declared themselves independent and after the fall of the first Korweyn Empire they even claimed to be the rightfull heirs of the Fallen Seat. The treaty issued between them and Ehebion in 3196 b.S. marked the beginning of the Dark Age of Nybelmar as the two kingdoms parted the southern continent in two areas of influence. Anis-Anpagan's age of domination on the mainland ended with the rise of the second Korweyn Empire when they lost a lot of territories to the new imperial Seat. Following a century of chaos and civil war, they finally emerged as a republic to become in time a center of culture and civilisation in the southern lands, an alternative to the new power of Kormendale.
Having two different tribes at their origins, the Anpagans retain characteristics from both of them. Usually they are taller than the Korweynites but smaller than the Kassites, their skin is of darker colour than the Kassites but lighter than the Korweynites. Waved brown hair and eyes of a bright green colour seem to be also one of their most common features.
Coat of Arms
A gear encircled by a vine-rose on a light blue background is the general Anpagan banner. The gear represents their cunning spirit and fondness for everything of mechanical nature, while the vine-rose (a unique species of rose, cultivated in all of their settlements for its rare beauty and perfume) stands for their continuous strive for welfare and luxury.
The southern tip of Anpagan peninsula up to the Delren river, bordering the Venlaken Enclave in the west, along with all the islands south of peninsula, summarize the current territory of the Anis-Anpagan Dominion. During the Dark Age of Nybelmar though, they controlled a greater area inland, up to the dwarven city of Tyr Faerath in the north and the Raneshar river in the east.
The most common thing that anyone in Nybelmar would tell you about Anpagans will be that they are a bunch of very talented people, yet their "talents" are only surpassed by their laziness. There are even special jokes having the Anpagans as a symbol for an often absurd laziness. Actually this image might be caused by their everpresent goal in anything that they do, which is to achieve personal comfort at all costs. And indeed they would go to any length for that.
They are a peaceful people, often described as of a "mild spirit", very friendly by nature and less disposed to the extreme behaviours caused by the strong faiths of their neighbours (Korweyn and Ehebion). Perhaps even as a result of this, their famous atheistic views might be founded.
Their culture has its own specific, but they have "digested" a lot of influences during the time. Most important they have "borrowed" the Doctrine of Essences from the Korweynites, strip it of the religious content and set it at the base of their own system of beliefs. Their Magic Guilds (or Schools) are all founded on this particular doctrine.
The Anpagans are also fond of anything of mechanical nature. They are the most skilled inventors in Nybelmar, although not always their devices really have practical means. In fact, building and inventing mechanical devices is a form of art for them (especially devices that produce a motion - any kind of motion). They do not build statues, or monuments in their cities, but complicated mechanical devices that move without the need of permanent intervention. Their highest goal in this respect (never achieved though) is to invent a device that once started it will never stop. The richest Anpagans have built even their castles and palaces according to this art form, and if in the times of the Kingdom the most valuable castle was the invincible one, during the more peaceful times of the Republic the owners were competing one another in building the most complicated systems of doors, levers, gears, corridories, stairs, secret chambers and clues using all the known tongues of Nybelmar, systems called for some reason castles or palaces.
Also, another thing worth mentioning about them would be that they never felt responsible for the deeds of their ancestors - as opposed to the Korweynites or Murmillions - their society being very centered on individualities. Therefore concepts like "right" and "wrong" are, so to say, at least relative, when viewing the Anpagans. For instance, their famous treaty with Ehebion, which secured a relative peace and their domination over almost half of the former Korweyn Empire, was labeled as "dealing with demons" later on - a reason for "playing ashamed" in their diplomacy for a certain period of time. Or, what was later called and revered(!) as "The Scam of the Century", when in 1423 bS, an Anpagan trader smuggled a shipment of tobacco from the Moon Hills, closed a deal with a local Fragrance Alchemist to "enhance" it and then sold it overseas in Zhun for an exorbitant price: a whole Juggernaut filled with orc slaves for just four crates of tobacco. Or, to give a third example, the huge scandal from 1001 bS. when the Dominion's Navy Appointed "lost" almost the entire fleet (meaning that he sold it piece by piece in Kaleman, for his own personal profit, obviously); he gathered a huge fortune this way, his family being even today one of the richest in Anpagan, yet he was never trialed and even more than this, he is now actually seen as a hero who caused a much needed renewal of the Dominion's Navy.
Always built to enhance personal comfort, their houses are very spacious, containing many rooms - each with a specific purpose. Usually every individual must have an own room (a general rule broken only by the younger couples or the very poor families), beside that, there has to be a room for preparing the food, one for eating the food, a storage room, and, of course, a guest room. For these reasons building and renting large villas with similar apartments has become a flourishing business in any Anpagan city - almost all of the middle class citizens living on such rented places.
Many might consider the Anpagans as superficial natures, as they always have adopted "the latest in fashion", meaning their newest discoveries from their explorations, or the specific clothing of a certain influential nation. Apart from that they also like to improvise on a given clothing style, the result being often quite far away from the original. However one may observe certain trends in their taste, even if they change with each generation.
Eating is perhaps one of the most treasured moments in the daily life of an Anpagan. Actually there goes a saying telling that to make the Anpagans happy you only need to keep their bellies full - then should it be the end of the world, they will not care less. They spend a lot of time cooking and even more time eating. Also they see it as an obligation to invite every visitor they have to a lavish dinner - an obligation that is almost obsesive for them, as often they can be quite annoying with their repetitive dinner invitations. Huge banquets are held at the end of each week, where enourmous quantities of food are eaten - they are also accustomed to regularly throw up during a dinner so that even more food might be "enjoyed", and they deviced special tools and recipes to help them in this matter.
Food was never scarce in the Dominion, their lands being the most fertile perhaps in all Nybelmar. Also their various trading agreements always assure very large stocks of ingredients (from the usual rice to the most exotic fruits), helping their cuisine to be truly the most diverse in all the continent. No one has ever attempted to gather all the recipes in a single book and it is believed that no one will ever be able to, and with the natural inventivness of the Anpagans beside their true passion for eating, new things, new combinations will always appear.
The Anpagans were never considered as "true" wariors and although they have some expansionistic ambitions they always tried to avoid military aggressions. "They are too lazy to go to war" as the other nations are mocking them. Nevertheless, as their strongest point was always diplomacy, they often based it on intimidations. Therefore, even if they see themselves as peaceful people, merely defending their independence, wars haven't avoided the Dominion. Still, they prove to be best only at defending an already occupied position.
As the time passed they made more and more heavy use of various war machines (with the whole range of ballistae and catapults plus numerous other strange inventions). They are also using heavy cavalry, their horses wearing special armours covering almost their entire bodies. Contingents of crossbowmen and pikemen, make up for the rest of their ground armies.
Anis-Anpagan is also the competing sea-power of Aca-Santerra for the southern seas, therefore their Fleet is the pride of the Dominion. It is known that the waters south of Nybelmar behave very strange, with alternating strong winds and periods of total calm, without any distinguishable pattern. As a consequence the Anpagan ships make less use of sails and concentrate on rowing power - an excellent tactic for defending their shores (especially from the Santerran fleets) yet not so efficient on the far seas to the northeast. They use a vast array of galleys, from the common single rowed galley to triple and even quintuple rowed ones. If the crews of the common gallyes are composed only by sailors, the larger galleys make use of "slaves" (imported slaves - mostly from Zhun, or convicts - which are not actually slaves, as they are free to leave after their punishment is over) or "serfs" (recruited from the poorest classes with promises of "large" payments for their families at home).
A notable sight on the southern shores would be the Anpagan Golem Juggernaut, a huge five rowed galley also having three masts, powered by specially designed golems provided by the Magic Guilds. Although very slow and bulky these "monsters" can pack a huge firepower, not to mention their devastating ramming force. Originally the Anpagans tried to use slaves for these huge ships but the maintainance costs and the supplies needed were really unaffordable even for the wealthiest, but still, even after the Mages' intervention, they remained extremely expensive.
Their society is oriented towards the welfare of the middle class. In the beginnings Anis-Anpagan was a "classical" kingdom with a minority of "noble" clans ruling the majority of the population. All this changed after the Republican Wars in the XVth century bS. Since then they have built a society organized by trade guilds (meaning that a certain group of people with similar occupations decide to gather themselves in an organization, to support it from their own finances and to trust that it will relentlessly pursue their interests as a group) abolishing any titles or rights given by birth. Of course they still have a "high class" but this has no more to do with nobility, wealth being the only criterium for making such a difference. Apart from the guilds and this "high class" there can still be found a layer of outcasts (especially in the large cities) sometimes living in a state of extreme poverty. Slavery doesn't officialy exists in the Dominion although the slaves from other nations are regarded as "merchandise" and thus their use is permited. A similar form to slavery does exists though, the ones called "serfs" who due to their desperate state of poverty decide to sell a certain number of their years to a certain "employer" so that their families could benefit from that payment.
The Anpagans have a guild for anything, ranging from the Cultivators to the High Mages of the Ansaran Island. No matter the trade of each of their guilds no one is above the others and they all have a special place in the Dominion's Assembly. However there are three guilds standing out from the other by virtue of their extreme wealth and influence: the Traders Guild, the Mage Guild and the Sea Companies. Each of these are organized in several "subguilds" and they were always interconnected by various deals and interests. Critics of the Dominion's system had always compared them with the mythical three-headed monster (the Bala'ur) defeated by Narve at the founding of the Anis-Anpagan Kingdom: three heads and yet a single body, a single will to dominate.
The educational system is also directed by the guilds, each of these having its own schools. The military is organized by the same system: each guild has the obligation to train soldiers and to build and maintain defensive facilities in their area of activity. An interesting observation would be the absence of a clerical class from the Anpagan society. There are clerics activating in Anis-Anpagan (especially in the rural area) and they are organized, but they are not recognized as "guilds" and therefore they do not have the right to engage in lucrative businesses as clerics - they actually live at the mercy of their followers or from other various guild-related businesses. Another interesting aspect would be the Guild of Historians who were once just a branch of the powerful Mage Guild but become independent during the IVth century bS - they are actually seen as a "parasitic guild" earning their income at the expense of the other guilds. A special status we can also observe for the Vine-Rose Club (basically a guild of the bards) since each and every Anpagan truly believes that they are natural born poets - it is the only guild without a definite structure but with a huge number of members; they also have representatives in the Dominion's Assembly fiercely guarding what they call "intelectual property".
Since their founding (in 3200 bS) to the XVth century bS Anis-Anpagan was a Kingdom ruled by several dinasties. The century of turmoil that culminated with the Year of Darkness has brought them to the decision that they should never let the fate of the nation in the hands of a single person. Thus the Anis-Anpagan Dominion was born, a republic that managed to endure to our present time. The nobles were stripped of titles and rights and their lands were parted among the newly established Guilds. The country is ruled by the Dominion's Assembly, a legislative forum formed by representatives from each of the guilds and backed up by a huge bureaucratic apparatus. This Assembly is also naming the "Appointed" - those trusted with the responsibility of overseeing the execution of laws in various fields of activity. In times of war, but only when the security of the Dominion is threaten one of the military Appointed is entrusted for a limited ammount of time with the task of governing the nation - yet this Appointed doesn't have the right to modify any of the previous laws. An interesting mention would be that the judicial branch of their government is a part of that bureaucratic apparatus backing up the Assembly.
Trade is one of the strongest points of the Anis-Anpagan Dominion and they would go to any lenght to protect their routes and agreements. Actually they have monopoly over the trade with the south-western tribes and especially over the Cities of Zhun, yet they do not compete with Tyr Faerath on this matter (having different areas of interest). Other than trading with the western tribes they also intermediate various deals between the eastern nations - competing with Aca-Santerra on this front. They also always financed piracy in the Kaleman Islands, encouraging the smuggling of these Islands' finest products.
A very talented people, they export mainly the products of their technology, from which stand out especially their refined perfumes, quality fabrics and enhanced tobaccoes. Apart from these, not once they sold military technology as well and worth mentioning here was the entire fleet sold to Kaleman by Deran Basco, the Navy Appointed in 1001 bS, or the Golems traded by the Mage Guild in Zhun to support their uprisings.
With the discovery of the routes to Sarvonia they started to claim a foothold on the Crimson Isles hoping to open even more horizons for their thriving nation.
Various crops and livestock, excellent ship-building wood and rather large deposits of copper and iron ore in the Dolion mountains.
Holidays, Festivals and Observances
They have a lot of celebrations, in some areas of the Dominion being one held in each and every week. Yet they are always celebrating historical events, never making open use of religion. Nevertheless there are several celebrations common throughout all the Dominion like the new year's eve, the beginning of the rainy season or the first week of may when they comemorate the founding of the old Anpagan Kingdom by the Korweynite lord Narve.
Title: Re: Anpagan men
Post by: Ta`lia of the Seven Jewels on 26 March 2004, 09:26:00
Ha, Smith, if I were born in Nybelmar and could choose my tribe, I would surely become a member of these people!
Have only skimmed through your entry. When do you think, the first contact to Sarvonia was made? And has all to go via Crimson islands?
There magic could be similar to those of Ximax - as an atheistic magic.
***Astropic of the day***
Title: Re: Anpagan men
Post by: Smith in Exile on 27 March 2004, 17:51:00
I'm glad you liked it - right now they are my favourites too
The Crimson Islands and the sarvonian discovery should be discussed at the Sarvonian timeline, I think... As for their atheism I will detail that in their religion entry - with the new system ban at the magic forum I'll just avoid detailing too much about their magic, but enough to make it different from Ximax.
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