Thuria and Beyond
For hundreds of years, Nemedia has been notable for its tolerance of benign humanoids. In stark contrast to neighbouring Aquilonia, where life in mainstream society is difficult for non-humans, Nemedia enshrines tolerance and protection of certain races in the law of the land. Elves, notably, enjoy special protection. Under the terms of the Edict of Hanumar (286 YT), elves are direct subjects of the Nemedian king and, as such, may not be tied to the command of any particular noble. There is, therefore, no such thing as an elven serf in Nemedia. Some particular elven races native to Nemedian soil are afforded additional protection – the forest homeland of the Grugach in the north of the kingdom, for example, is protected by rangers under the direct command of the crown; the Valley Elves of the Numalian Hills are left to rule their own domain in peace.
Another elven race, the reclusive Grey Elves, even have their own kingdom, whose land officially includes Nemedian territory in the south-western corner of the country. The rulers of the Grey Elves enjoy good relations with the Nemedian king, who values their wise counsel and ancient wisdom and is therefore happy not to challenge their autonomy and privacy.
Along with Aquilonia, Nemedia is one of the two Thurian kingdoms at the heart of the Mitraic culture. Nemedian cities vie with each other to build the largest, most important and well-funded temples. Nemedian nobles, similarly, spend lavishly to position themselves as the most prominently generous supporters of the Church. It is, then, a source of great pride in Nemedia that the High Holy Father sits in Numalia than in neighbouring Aquilonia.
Even so, Nemedia is far more tolerant of alternative religions than Aquilonia, mainly as a result of the reverence for scholarly pursuits and philosophy which is at the heart of Nemedian nobles’ culture. Temples to other gods, if unobtrusive, are permitted in Nemedian cities. That said, the worship of Set is regarded in Nemedia with revulsion every bit as strong as in Aquilonia and other Thurian kingdoms.
At the start of our campaign in 1000 YT, the Nemedian throne is occupied by King Tarascus (born 953 YT).
The kingdom is divided into a number of provinces, each named for the city from which the province is governed. Each of these provinces is the domain of an Overlord, the hereditary head of a ruling family. Nemedia is a unified kingdom, with even the most powerful Overlords being theoretically subservient to the monarch. In practice, however, Nemedian kings must operate carefully in order to ensure the ongoing loyalty of the key Overlords from the largest and most important provinces.
An important contribution to the maintenance of law and order around the kingdom is made by seven knightly orders known collectively and informally as the Hell Knights. The oldest of these orders was created by Royal decree in 590 YT and the most recently created Hell Knight order (the Order of the Rack) was inaugurated in 745 YT. In theory, these orders are answerable only to the King. In practice, Overlords, the Church of Mitra and other powerful influencers cultivate relationships with particular orders.
The Yellow River marks the heavily forested eastern border between Nemedia and Brythunia. The Red River runs the length of southern Nemedia and forms the border between the kingdom and its southern neighbours, Ophir and Korunia. The Red River is fed by a number of smaller rivers whose sources are in the Numalian Hills, an area of wooded upland stretching to the south-west of the city of Numalia, after which they are named.
The mountains of the Border Range form the western border with Aquilonia. The northernmost tip of Nemedia includes the large Forest of Grugach.
The most important cities of Nemedia are:
Nemedia is home to the some of the oldest communities of dwarves, elves, gnomes and halflings in the Thurian lands. The kingdom’s natural tendency to tolerance is such that this land has never been gripped by the kind of puritanical purges of non-humans that were experienced in Aquilonia hundreds of years ago.
As a land with long-established settlements, well-developed agriculture and a relatively dense population, Nemedia is almost completely free of more monstrous, hazardous fauna. Forested areas, however, are home to wild boars, wolves, bears and the like.