A GUIDE TO PRINCIPALITY OF NAERIEProper Name: The Principality of Naerie
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The Principality of Naerie sprawls along the coast of the Azure Sea, south of the Iron Hills and west of the Hollow Highlands. Majority of the land consists of gently rolling hills and flat plains. This troubled nation has been known by many names. The Scarlet Brotherhood named it the Obedient State of Idee when they held sway here, but before the Greyhawk Wars it was known as the County of Idee, and was a member of the Iron League. Nowadays it is part of United Kingdom of Ahlissa and ruled by House Haxx, a noble house whose fortunes have soared after the Greyhawk Wars. It's head, Prince Barzhaan Haxx is efficient, pragmatic and (some say) unemotional leader who takes his task of protecting these lands very seriously.
Humans in Naerie are predominantly of Oerid-Suel extraction, with few flans included. A Rhenee or a Perrenlander is an incredible oddity here. Demihumans exist in small enclaves, mostly halflings, but also some dwarves and elves. Orcs and half-orcs are part of the mercenary forces serving the Prince. Some half-orcs make a living as labourers or smiths in the city of Naerie or the larger villages. Raiders of mixed humanoid origin are also found in the wilderness. Common people in Naerie are mostly farmers, fishermen, hill men and miners. Many are followers of the Oeridian agricultural deities.
The ruling nobility is divided into six greater Houses and a score of other noble families. Most nobles worship Zilchus, Heironeous or even Hextor, though other Oeridian or Suel gods are venerated as well. The principality has three notable resources - food, gold and copper. The south of the country is extremely fertile and produces much of the foodstuffs that Naerie trades with other nations. Naerie has some mineral resources, mining copper in the northwest and gold in the northeast. Banditry and piracy (mainly by Scarlet Brotherhood) are the two traditional scourges of trade in Naerie, and military campaigns to clear the highways are launched yearly. Some ship building material is also traded away though various reasons prevent large scale harvesting of timber from Menowood. Cattle breeding is the trade of choice for House Haxx and an ambitious program is underway to make cattle a prominent resource of Naerie.
Most of the population lives in thorps around major cities. This leads to large concentrations of people around the six large towns (Naerie, Gornor's Cove, Ekehold, Minetha, Poelitz & Felten). The roads between these settlements are well maintained and protected but many smaller roads are less so. The fact that Naerie has a small population means that the plains offer refuge to any number of monsters and brigands where the local authority cannot reach them easily.
For more detailed history of the region, you should go to download section and read our regional gazetteer.
History: Many years after the Rain of Colorless Fire that destroyed the Ancient Suel empire, Suel from the house Zelrad arrive to an area which would later become the South Province of Great Kingdom. Having established a peaceful contact with Flan Kingdom of Ehlissa, the Zelrads build their first settlements and slowly expanded into present day Naerie. Zelreds were surprised to find other Suel already living in these lands. These Suels had fled their empire decaces earlier yet had no trouble in allying with Zelreds. Over the centuries Zelreds expanded their areas, conquered all other Suel settlements of the coast and even asserted vast control over Ehlissa during it's decline. however, their success would not survive the coming of the Aerdy.
After series of skirmishes and wars, collectively known as "Zelrad Wars", Azharadian the Great conquered all lands of present day Naerie. Their last stronghold of Karnosa in Iron Hills resisted until -60 CY before falling to the Aerdy and signaling the end of Zelrad Kingdoms. Some say that Zelrad mages has experimented with Oerthblood magics in Iron Hills which enabled the relatively small settlement to resist the might of Aerdy for a long time. Eventually these lands became part of the Great Kingdom and prospered greatly. Land was rich and easily farmed and surrounding lands were at peace. Aside from few internal turmoils, Idee was at peace until Great Kingdom went into decline.
In 447 CY Idee broke away from Great Kingdom with other southern states and formed the Iron League. While Iron Hills offered a formidable natural barrier, Idee was the state that bore the brunt of Great Kingdoms aggression and many battles were fought on the northern border which eventually led to completion of Eddri Line, a series of fortifications that protected Idee from northern attackers. Continuous warfare ultimately changed Ideean military doctrine to favor defense and concentration of forces on the north. When Great Kingdom entered it's death throes, this doctrine proved it's weakness.
Over the years Scarlet Brotherhood had sent it's own men to infiltrate Ideean armies. With many of their own men in positions of power, collapse of Ideean armies was ensured. Vital coastal areas were defended by second grade troops or local peasant militias. They had no hope against the savage Hepmonalander warriors, hobgoblin troops and elite monks of the Scarlet Brotherhood. Internal sabotage, assassinations and false orders decimated the elite Ideean troops in the north. Most of the local nobility were killed with one notable exception being Coriell Eddri who was saved by his bodyguards and managed to flee to Irongate. Scarlet Brotherhood then put it's own agents to rule baronies and started to establish Suel Supremacy.
Meanwhile, South Province of Great Kingdom had avoided much of the chaos that engulfed Great Kingdom. It's ruler, Graf Reydrich was intelligent, ruthless and pragmatic, something the Overkings of Great Kingdom had not been for a long time. He knew he possessed some of the greatest fighting forces in Eastern Flanaess and was not about to leave them unused. While Brotherhood fortified its hold on the south, Graf Reydrich looked to Idee as a way to expand his territory and turn it into a true empire. Reydrich he launched his own spies and assassins against the Brotherhood in Onnwal and Idee, eliminating scores of their agents. Some argue that Reydrich’s actions were the reason why Brewfest rebellion in Onnwal in 586 CY was so successful.
That same year, the armies of South Province marched into Idee, quickly conquering northern half and putting Brotherhood troops to the sword. Most of the captured Brotherhood troops were killed in mass executions organised in Foelt but hundreds were kept in captivity and used as slave labor to rebuild areas devastated by occupation. Reydrich had planned to move into Onnwal as well but heavy fighting and bad weather delayed his plans. Pleased nonetheless, Reydrich told one of his generals to be prepared to march into Tilvanot Peninsula by year’s end over the bodies of Scarlet Brotherhood’s finest assassins, spies and savages. The general returned to Reydrich quarters later that day to find the archmage dead, apparently slain during the act of casting another spell against Brotherhood leaders. The general fled to Nyrond where his story was made public for all to hear.
Into this power vacuum stepped a coalition of military officers and nobles who briefly attempted to establish a realm of their own, renaming South Province the Kingdom of Ahlissa. Several members of this Oligarchy were slain by Brotherhood agents in 586-587 CY, but enough Oligarchs survived to oversee the complete reconquest of Idee by the end of 586 CY. With the founding of new United Kingdom of Ahlissa, lands of Idee were made part of Ahlissa. The rulership was granted a general who had overseen the conquest of Idee after Reydrich was assassinated. His name was Barzhaan Haxx.
Of course, some Ideaans never greeted Ahlissan troops as liberators. A group calling themselves ‘Idee Volunteers’ staged attacks against Ahlissan troops. These attacks posed little threat to the Ahlissan forces and did little to increase the popularity of Volunteers. Most people were happy to see Brotherhood gone and continue their lives under Ahlissan rule. In 592 CY a large group Idee Volunteers were killed, including their founder Staceus of Felten, in Battle of the Hollow Highlands when Ahlissan forces surrounded them on the edge of the Hollow Highlands. Only few survivors managed to flee. Idee Volunteers lost much of their support with the signing of Naerie Compact between Onnwal and Sunndi where said nations recognised Ahlissan ruler over lands of Idee in return for military aid and economic relations.
This caused much outcry and many said that is was merely a final humiliation by the other Iron League states who did not assist Idee in any way when it was fighting against Scarlet Brotherhood. A relative calm has been maintained in Naerie all the way to 597CY but clashes with Idee Volunteers and Scarlet Brotherhood naval forces continue.