This article gives a very short overview of the countries of Cresia. Cresia is a fictional fantasy setting where my fantasy -themed characters are located. The terms used to describe the nations may not be historically accurate if mirrored against the world we live in – don’t read too much into them. I’ll update this later with the appropriate sigils and heraldic motifs of each country.
Kingdom of Akron
Akron is an aristocratic monarchy ruled by a king. The position of the king is hereditary in nature and reserved for males only. Population is around 125.000 (80% humans, 10% elves, 5% dwarfs and 5% other demi-human races). The kingdom is divided into counties each ruled by a count or countess. The county of Witchlight Strand has a special autonomy but it still technically remains as part of the kingdom even though it is exempted from some laws and rules that govern the other counties.
Kingdom of Groam
Groam is an aristocratic monarchy ruled by a king. The position of the king is hereditary in nature; the eldest child of the king is always the new ruler and in case it’s a female, she becomes a queen. Population of the kingdom is estimated to be around 700.000 but there are areas where official census hasn’t been conducted ever. 75% of the population are humans, 15% are elves, 5% are dwarves and remaining 5% are other demi-human races. The kingdom is divided into five counties each ruled by a count or countess. Each county is further divided into several baronies ruled a baron or baroness.
Triumvirate of Ferria
Ferria is a democratic technocracy and ruled by a triumvirate of elected leaders each of which is called a king. Each triumvirate member is elected for a period of six years and an election for a new member is held every two years so that there always remains two more experienced members in the triumvirate when a new one is elected. Election is done by regional leaders called duxes. The country is divided into regions called cadalleions each of which is ruled a single lord (called a dux). Population of Ferria is 91.000 (80% human, 10% halflings and 10% dwarves). Elves are forbidden from entering the country by rule of law and punishable by death.
Kingdom of Crovascia
Crovascia is an aristocratic democracy. The ruler is named a king or queen and he or she is elected for life. Election is carried by a special council (called cephalov) of earls. Each earl of the country has one vote and a new king is elected when someone gains a majority of votes. Cephalov is assembled only when needed. The country is divided into 39 earldoms each ruled by an earl (no separate form of address exists for female earls). Population of the kingdom totals at around 290.000 but some of the islands have never been accounted for even if they technically belong to the kingdom. Some islands retain a form of autonomy in that they are exempted from paying taxes to the kingdom. The population is 100% human – no other races can ever be granted citizenship and even short-term visits of non-humans are barely tolerated by the islanders (in fact some smaller autonomous islands have rules in place to kill all non-humans on sight).
Kingdom of Crovania
Crovania is an aristocratic democracy. The ruler is named kron (male) or kronung (female). An elected ruler is elected for life and the election is carried by a special council (called kephalev) composed of erils (regional leaders of the kingdom). Each eril of the country has one vote and a new kron is elected when someone gains a majority of votes. Kephalev is assembled only when needed. The country is divided into 17 erildoms each ruled by an eril. Population of the country teeters at around 90.000 inhabitants 90% of which are humans and 10% dwarves.
Kingdom of Gruenroth
Gruenroth is a monarchic democracy. The ruler is a king (only males can be rulers) who is elected by a council of tribal chieftains, clan elders and warlords. The council meets twice a year for a fortnight of drunken brawling with the purpose of making rulings about the lands on matters that the king has not decided upon. Once in a while usurpers present themselves to be nominated as the king and the council then votes. The lands of Gruenroth are somewhat arbitrarily divided among the different rulers with no clear boundaries or even names since some of the clans are of nomadic nature. Small wars between neighbouring groups are commonplace. The kingdom is estimated to have around 100.000 people of which 85% are humans, 5% are halflings, 5% are elves and 5% are dwarves.
Kingdom of Argan
Argan is a monarchic democracy. It is ruled by an elected king (there has never been a female ruler but theoretically a female leader is allowed). Election is done by tribal chieftains. Kings serve until a new one is elected. The tribal chieftains convene should a would-be-king want to call forth an election or when the previous king has died and a new one must be chosen. Whoever loses the election, is beheaded there and then without a trial. The country is loosely divided into tribes some of which are of nomadic nature and each tribe is led by a chieftain. Argan has a population of 35.000, 90% of whom are humans, 5% dwarves and 5% halflings.
Kingdom of Montevoort
Montevoort is a meritocratic monarchy. The ruler is called a king or queen. The king is chosen for a period of four years by a council of earls among themselves. In the election event, all the earls present their deeds and merits in a marathon rally of speeches and usually the earl who is seen to have presented the most merits is elected as the new king. The country is divided into seven earldoms each of which is led by an earl. The capital city of the country is always the capital city of the earldom from which the king comes from and thus changes often prompting large structural reorganizations when this happens. The kingdom has a population of about 15.000 inhabitants, 75% are humans and 15% are dwarves. There is a small (around 800 inhabitants in total) elven community living in Montevoort but they retain an awkward and complicated form of independence and are thus not counted to be inhabitants of the kingdom.
Meritocracy of Tharia
Tharia is a pure meritocracy. They call their leader a tharkos (female title is the same). The country has a big one month-long celebration every five years and during that time whoever wins most contests will become the next tharkos. The contestants participate in many sorts of games, sports and tests that are designed to find out the most intelligent, eloquent, skilled, wise and fit contestant to lead the country. The country has no real inner borders and no actual aristocracy to speak of. Towns and villages are led by meisters. The population of Tharia is 12.000 (100% of whom are human; all other races are shunned by the populace – public lynchings are possible so travelers beware).
Island of Horna
Horna has no government. It is ruled by the strongest jaarl. The island has about two dozen jaarls who lead tribes of men. It is common that two or even three jaarls consider themselves to be the leader of Horna but usually such disputes are settled with contests of strength and martial skills when these jaarls happen to meet (and sometimes the loser gets buried and their tribe assimilated into the other). There are no other races than humans in Horna and all other members of other races are executed on sight. The population is estimated to be at about 10.000 but may wary significantly because the tribes are mostly nomadic and no official census has ever been held in Horna.
Dodeocracy of Myrna
Myrna is a dodeocracy. It is ruled by a council of 12 archmages known as the Dodecantil. Archmages are there for the life and when one dies, the remaining archmages informally choose a noteworthy sorcerer to be appointed into council. Only members of the council can have a title of archmage. The country is divided into 12 sections called dodeos each of which is under the rule of one archmage. There are 12.000 inhabitants in Myrna. 35% of them are humans, 35% are elves, 10% are dwarves and 20% a mix between many, many races some of which only exist in Myrna. All forms of religion are banned in Myrna and the penalty to practice religion is death by a special form of mana assimilation in which the person’s essence is disintegrated by magic and joined to the natural mana flows of the planet.
Autocracy of Nica
Nica is an autocracy. Whoever is the strongest witch or warlock will be the leader (called a witch queen or warlock king). There are no processes to determine to this: should an usurping witch or warlock emerges, he or she will try to kill the current ruler and if this happens, he or she is the next ruler. Nica has 70.000 inhabitants, 100% of which are humans. No other races are tolerated and are usually captured on sight and hauled to the capital city’s dungeons never to be seen again. Nica has no division into smaller governing units and each township has their own type of government reminiscent of independent city states. However, the current ruler has established a group called The Larissa’s Stone that make decisions about the country on matters that bore the current ruler.
Tyranny of Norodna
Norodna is an absolute tyranny. The ruler is called a tyrant. Ruler changes when a challenger kills the previous one in an unarmed challenge. The country has never been divided into smaller governing units and each population center is effectively an independent city state albeit one that pays taxes to the tyrant. Each population center has a leader called a kmet (kmetsha for a female leader) which is a form of tyrannical mayor. The kmets change in a similar manner than the tyrant does: in unarmed combat challenges. Norodna has 25.000 inhabitants, 75% of which are humans, 20% elves and the rest are some sort of undead creatures able to partially function in the society.
Collective of Zarkoi
Zarkoi is a democratic-dodeocratic collective. The country is ruled by a group of 12 elves (called simply the collective) who are appointed by direct elections held every 12 years. In the elections every elf present in the country and ability to write down their ancestry has the right to vote whomever they choose but usually there are candidates from which to choose. The voting extends to children as well and children who can not yet write down their ancestry due to age automatically donate their vote to their guardian (who is usually their mother which means that women have unusually strong say in who get elected into the collective). The country has only 10.000 inhabitants and is divided into elven tribes that are led by whomever happens to be the eldest of the lot. The leader is called simply the elder. 95% of the inhabitants are elves and 5% are a mix of others (some of which are various undead creatures somehow able to function within the society).
Flocks of C’Sar
C’Sar has no form of government. It’s geography ties it’s inhabitants to it so the rest of the world just call it a country and leave it at that. C’Sar is composed of flocks of birdmen each of which is led by the strongest of the flock but the flocks often times shatter into smaller ones or unite with others and thus the C’Sar flock leaders are always shifting. The “country” has no actual division into smaller governing units but in essence some species of C’Sar birdmen rule some areas and others other areas that happens to suite their species (for example, the small groups of owlmen live on the lowest areas of the inland where there are forested areas giving way to the rolling lands of Khemal). There are about 5.000 birdmen in C’Sar but this can change greatly since no one has ever attempted to count them. The inhabitants are 100% birdmen but scattered into hundreds of species. No other races are allowed in C’Sar: the birdmen do not accept even diplomats or emissaries from far away lands. The flocks are physically bound to the mystical mountain of C’Sar and any birdman who flies too far will eventually die from disease or malnourishment.
Empire of Margash
Margash is a democracy ruled by an emperor. The emperor can only be a human male. The emperor is chosen once every 25 years or if the emperor dies, then as required. The citizens of Margash over the age of 12 each has one vote to spend and votes are counted by specially appointed officials in each city and town. People from rural regions are required to travel to their closest location where votes are counted. The country is divided into 8 holdings and each is ruled by a meister. Meisters are officials directly appointed by the emperor upon his coronation and while the emperor has absolute power to nominate whom he sees fit, it’s a common practise to choose the new meisters from within the local populace. The country has a population of 25.000 humans. Non-humans can not gain citizenship and Margash law do not give them any more protection than a common rat. In other words, Margash is not a safe place to be if one is not a human.
Empire of Shina
Shina is a democracy ruled by an emperor (male) or an empress (female). The ruler is chosen once every 15 years, or if the ruler dies, then as required. The country is divided into 9 holdings each ruled by a meister. The meisters arrange for the citizens under their holding a chance to vote with the principle of one vote per one person above the age of 12. The meisters then inform the results of the votes to an election committee of 9 government officials called Ulrech which upon knowing the results arrange the coronation of the ruler. Meisters are appointed by the Ulrech and the members of the Ulrech are appointed by the ruler after their coronation. It’s common practice that meisters are not arbitrarily changed just for changes’ sake when a new ruler is elected. Instead the Ulrech nominate new meisters as need arises. The country has a population of 35.000 humans. Non-humans are denied citizenship and Shina law consider all non-citizens inferior to citizens. A citizen is always right if at odds with a non-citizen. Needless to say non-citizens are all the time in real danger while in Shina. However, humans can buy citizenship at a rather small fee but it does require a permanent place of residence (must be proven).
Triumvirate of Wolfort
Wolfort is an oligarchy ruled by a triumvirate of oligarchs. Every four years the triumvirate members must prove their wealth against wealthy usurpers. Whoever three have the most wealth are the new members of the triumvirate. Evaluating their wealth is done by a big gathering of guild leaders who appraise the candidates’ wealth when this wealth is not in the form of actual money. The gathering is a big, week-long festive event in the capital city. Wolfort is divided into 47 guildshires each ruled by one of the biggest guilds in the country. The masters of the guild effectively rule the lands as mayors. The guilds with the most wealth usually control most guildshires at any given time. The guilds are completely fiscally responsible for their controlled guildshires and required to pay an annual tribute to the triumvirate dependent on the populace controlled. Effectively the country does not tax each citizen as such but tax the guilds who control the regions. This is an unusual arrangement and taxes mandated to the common people can completely change when the controlling guild changes causing all sorts of confusion among the common people. Wolfort has a population of 75.000, 90% of which are humans, 8% are dwarves and 2% are assorted lycans.
Matriarchy of Wolfooge
Wolfooge is a matriarchy ruled by the eldest woman – called the matriarch – of the most powerful lycan clan. The ruler changes when a clan overthrows the ruling clan – usually by extreme violence but sometimes via other means as well. The country is divided among rivaling lycan clans into regions that have no special name in Wolfooge. The power balance of the clans shift monthly and while there are limited options for strategic alliances and diplomatic efforts between the clans, usually matters are settled simply by sheer force. This history of violence in Wolfooge also make the country extremely well known as one that produces absolutely fearsome warriors. The country has a population of around 50.000 inhabitants – most of which are lycans of some sort. Most common are human werewolves (25%) and elven werewolves (25%). Nobody knows how many of the inhabitants are lycans. The country has no discriminatory attitude towards other races – whoever has enough strength to hold their own can call Wolfooge their home.
Kingdom of Hali
Hali is an aristocratic monarchy ruled by a king (can only be led by a male). Hali has a long history of class separation separating the people into five castes: nobility, clergy, merfolk, commoners and cursed in descending order of importance. Only those of noble caste can become kings. Inter-caste marriages are forbidden by law (excepting noble houses who can choose their mates from other castes except the cursed caste). Clergy run the day-to-day life of the kingdom but follow the orders of the nobles. The merfolk are those whose livelihood and expertise has something to do with the sea, commoners are common people whose livelihood or expertise are land-bound and cursed are those affected by the hideous disease of lycanthrophy. Lycans are shunned are expelled from population centers living in desperate mixed herds of people in areas not really suitable for habitation. The country is divided into 56 Mahhashes each ruled by a Majaber (no term for females as they can not rule). Nothing much changes in the country regarding the Mahhashes and their Majabers. The ruling families of Hali are the same today as they were 350 years ago when one of the noble families was exiled from Hali after it turned out they were all lycans. Hali has a population of 70.000 (75% humans, 20% elves, 5% lycans).
Khanate of Khemal
Khemal is an aristocratic monarchy ruled by a khan (male) or khen (female). The country has a long history of aristocracy and the succession of the khan is an elaborate and complex law written as the khanate’s principal law 750 years ago. When a ruler dies, a new khan rises into power as dictated by this law. There has never been a coup d’etat in Khemal since the usurper would have to then overthrow the principal law of the country and risk a civil uprising or civil war. The country is divided into 24 Mahhashes each ruled by a Majakhan (male) or Majakhen (female). The families ruling the Mahhashes are equally bound the same rules presented in the principal law when a ruler perishes and a new one rises to rule. The rules are complex and disputes are settled by a Court of Principal Law composed of 19 learned wise old men who are called Majatresses. Their only purpose is to give rulings about how the principal law works. The country has 90.000 inhabitants. 55% humans, 25% dwarves, 10% assorted demi-humans, 10% lycans. Lycans are feared and shunned by the common folk and most of them live in travelling packs of few individuals going aimlessly from town to town.
Khanate of Mosia
Mosia is an aristocratic monarchy ruled by a khan (males only can become khans). The country has 19 ruling families from which the khan must come according to the written law of the land. Usually the families are engaged in bitter feuds spanning generations but miraculously there has never been a civil war in Mosia despite that. The khan of Mosia has no real power to speak and the actual power is wielded by the ruling 19 families. The country has no division into smaller regions but instead areas are recognised as being within the sphere of influence of one of the 19 families. This can change through complex wedding arrangements and such but the families have absolute control over the lands they call their own. The leaders of the 19 families call themselves using a wide variation of titles but by law they can not call themselves as khans. Mosia has a population of 35.000 inhabitants of which 85% is human, 10% is lycan and 5% is elven.
Mirhamate of Calishem
Calishem is an aristocratic monarchy ruled by a sovereign pair of rulers called Mirham (male) and Mirhames (female). The country is always ruled by a married couple: should either one of them become unable to rule, the right to rule ceases after a grace period of 9 months after which a new ruler is selected following a strict principal rule of law that dictates succession to the throne. The principal rule of law dates back to year 180 when Calishem was established. Mirham and Mirhames both have their own spheres of influence and they it is expected of them not to interfere with the rulings of the other. For example Mirhames controls the growth and nurturing of the people and it’s infrastructure while Mirham on the other hand controls military forces and the infrastructure needed to support them. Each aspect of government is succumbed to either one who can do decision without the other one if needed. This form of government works very efficiently as long as the ruling pair have common goals and mutual understanding of how things should be done. The country is divided into 17 regions called Agmirs and ruled by landed nobles called Agmirhams (Agmirhamesses for females). These nobles swear absolute loyalty to their Mirham and Mirhames by taking a special oath of loyalty (called Ter-Agmir) once they are granted their title. Calishem has a population of around 600.000. Calishem people have no aversions to persons of other races and embrace the possibility to learn from new cultures and races. Around 65% are humans, 25% are demi-humans of all sorts and 10% are a mix of exotic and often magical races.
Theocracy of Caheb
Caheb is an autocratic theocracy ruled by a Celiaf. The Celiaf is always male – women can not enter any important roles within the theocracy. The Celiaf is always the most celebrated of the clergy. Celiafs take a vow of celibacy and can not neither have or take a wife. Celiafs self-appoint themselves to this position by political maneuvering and persuading the potent clerics to his side. Celiafs are backed up by clerics who accept the Celiaf’s wisdom and the deity the Celiaf is subscribing to. Some Celiafs support a multitude of deities to secure a more wider footprint of the total count of clerics. The country is divided into 47 regions called Gehas each of which is ruled by a cleric whose title is determined by the deity he follows. The clerics pay an annual tithe to the Celiaf but otherwise have free reign over their lands. Clerics of differing deities treat their people in vastly differing ways and this makes inequality a major problem in the country. There are 650.000 inhabitants in Caheb, of which 75% are humans, 15% are dwarves, 5% are elves and 5% are lycans (mostly wererats).