History of Starblaydia
As a land, Starblaydia has always been populated in one form or another, from simple prehistoric tribesmen through thundering Medieval warlords up to the high-tech, stylish and modern present day. Starblaydia's ancient history is reflected in the culture of today, from politics to sport and everything in between. The nation itself, however, was only designated as 'Starblaydia' from the 19th Century on as an Imperial colony, but soon it emerged as from under that veil and took its first steps on the road to becoming a world power.
- 1 Prehistory
- 2 Under the Romanic Empire
- 3 Independance
- 4 Under the Britannic Empire
- 5 Independance Renewed
- 6 Starblaydia Emerges
10,000 - 1,000 BC
In the earliest days of its history, Starblaydi historians, scientists and archaeologists have gelaned that the simple 'Urjal' people were the most significant tribe, making simple but intricate pottery and manipluating bronze for simple sword- and spear-type weapons. For thousands of years these people lived on the Starblaydi plains across the nation in various clans. They hunted and fished and occasionally made war on each other, but the greatest achievement that would be felt throughout history was that the Urjal tribes learned to tame and ride Horses, something that would echo down the ages in Starblaydi culture. They also constructed burial mounds (known as 'Barrows') for their honoured dead, burying their fallen warriors with ceremonial swords.
Seaside northern tribes began to construct barges and ships, crewed vessels for fishing and transport up and down coastlines & lakes; only simple coracle-type boats had been used previous to this advancement.
The wheel was soon discovered and used to make better pottery and even chariots. Mounted warriors were known to have been used, primarily as a status symbol, though they also became devastatingly effective in combat. Religion was seen to hold a definte power over the tribes. Spirituality, Gods of the Elements and the 'death-world' are strong mystical beliefs.
Tribes living in and migrating to Starblaydia in this period include the Urjal, Yahn, Zauma and Nevehim.
Circa 1000 BC
The wandering Starblaydi Tribes are finally shown to be ruled over by single Kings and Lords. The myriad of differing clans are merged and enveloped by the bigger, stronger and more influential ones. The more notable Rulers of the time include:
King Gar-Halad (first among the Halad) ruled over the foothills of the mountains. His fierce, warlike, fur-clad Halad people were the scourge of Southern Starblaydia, descending from their huts and caverns to rampage across the more fertile plains and lakeside. They had a reputation for weapon-making, the fires to warm their hearths soon adapted into smiths' furnaces.
King Tivoli of the Jhan; Ruling the fertile South-Central valleys and plains, the Jhan had the mastery of the abundant horse population and as such were probably the most powerful clan at the time because of their martial strength through their cavalry. They painted themselves for war, and dyed their hair a brilliant white with lime to call upon the powers of the gods in battle.
The Urjali people lived in the land to the north and east of the Mountains, north of the Jhan. Their mostly agriculture-based lifestyle did not lend itself easily to war, but they were still the most numerous of the tribes in the land. Ruled by King Gorthar and his council of warriors and mystics, they held the most land. They tattooed themselves heavily in all aspects of life, with later generations creating caste-specific tattoos.
The Taa were a far simpler people than the other tribes, seemingly wishing to merely fish the Great Bekk Lake, as they called it, and live in Peace. Their Chieftain Shoriso was seemingly as powerful as a King, but used his influence to help his people, lending the Taa an idyllic lakeside lifestyle, shielded as they were by the Jhani cavalry.
Populated from many Phoenician traders and seafarers, the Phaena were the Northern-most tribe who lived by the sea. They plied the coastlines with trading ships and explored the seas and surrounding islands. Sea-Lord Hirthai ruled over a large fleet and well-defended group of towns in the northern-most tip of the land.
A Recognisable Feudal society had emerged, particularly among the Jhan, who had documentation of all aspects of life. The course of Starblaydi history can be said to have really begun at around 1,000 BC, with documented evidence of 746 BC as being the seventh year of King Tivoli's reign.
It was at this time that the first recorded inter-tribe warfare took place. Tablets and scrolls point to general historical conflicts, but it is in the conflicts of the South that the first stories of battle are recounted. The Halad clan were beginning to mount almost daily attacks on the Taa. Knowing they were unable to stop the slaughters, Taa Chieftain Shoriso sought out King Tivoli in an attempt to win protection by the Jhani warriors against the Haladi raids. A twenty-four-year-long conflict began as the Jhan defended the Taa’s lands, and in turn their own, from King Gar-Halad’s raiders.
It was the supremacy of the Horsemen of Jhan that turned the tide. Even against the marauding ferociousness of a menacing, axe-wielding, sheild wall of Halad, the speed, skill and devotion of the Jhani Cavalry broke them time and time again, forcing them back into the mountains.
The Halad as a military force were eventually destroyed by the Jhan in about 732 BC. A huge army of Cavalry and armoured Legions (some using newer, better-made iron weapons but mainly still with bronze arms) crushed the Halad and forced the few remaining Halad towns and villages to swear fealty to the Jhan. The ageing Taa Cheiftain Shoriso also pledged his people’s allegiance to King Tivoli of the Jhan, giving the Jhan control over the entire southern-half of the land. Tivoli was now the most powerful man in the land.
Migrating Celtic peoples began to settle in Starblaydia, bringing with them the knowledge of iron-working. They were soon swallowed up into the culture and the new Iron tools and weapons made the tribes more powerful than ever before.
Feature: Jhani Cavalry
- Armed with a Bronze sword and heavy Bronze-tipped spear, armoured with a circular wood, leather and metal shield; both horse and rider covered in bronze-studded leather. The combination of mobility, armour and weaponry proved to be a winning blend, especially when added to the innate horsemanship and martial prowess of the Jhani. The Jhani still dyed their hair a brilliant white with lime to call upon the powers of the gods in battle, making them a fearsome sight on the battlefield.
An estimated one million people live within the borders of what was modern-day Starblaydia - before its expansions into Nemya and Aquiliana - the largest proportion of them being within the borders of Jhan.
It was also around this time that Chivalric Knights were first documented. Lords, Nobles and the other descendants of the victorious Jhani Cavalry had forged themselves a code of honour to govern their behaviour, known as the Fam’dai (Path of the Warrior). Over the next four-hundred years the Daii (Chivalric Warriors) would grow to become the most potent force in the land as they took up the highest positions in Jhani society, both government and military.
Under the Romanic Empire
Around the time of the birth of Christ, the first full-scale conflict for nearly 1,000 years begins as the Romanics tried to conquer more land and expand their empire. Legions of Romanic soldiers and auxiliaries invaded the lands of Jhan, Phaen and Urjal through the northern coastline, striking the Phaena first and hardest on land and at sea.
The well-trained and equipped Legions landed in the north and quickly defeated the Phaena and most of the Urjali, only being thrown back by the determined Daii, protecting their lands. The Phaena and Urjali were immediately ‘Romanicised’ and put under Romanic ‘protection’. The Romanics could not, however, spread south, barred by Mountains and fearsome Jhani Daii lined up across the plain. Romanic civilisation slowly supplanted indigenous ways of life and flourished in new military and urban centres as well as in the wider countryside.
By the fourth century, the North of the country was a prosperous Romanic province named Sideria. The South of the country, however, continued to be beyond the frontiers, and the control, of Romanica. It wasn't long, however, before the Romanic Emipre fell inwards upon itself, collapsing at the source and leaving its outlying provinces and colonies bereft of support. As Romanic lands were now freed, the people were left with choices to make. Many took up arms in bands, warlards were made and invaders, too, came to carve up Sideria.
They were thrown bacck, however, by the greatest legend in Starblaydia, a semi-mythical warrior-king who unified the Jhani and the Siderians into one nation, one that would later be called 'Starblaydia'. That man was King Oberyn.
Feature: The King Oberyn Legend
- He was probably never in fact the King of Jhan, but he did command one of its greatest armies. Having spent much time in Sideria, as the Romanics called the Provinces of Urjal and Phaen, Oberyn knew first-hand of the Romanic culture. As more people migrated into Sideria, the Romanics were being harassed by barbarian hordes at home, and had to withdraw their troops from their occupied territories. With much of Phaen and Urjal largely undefended, they were easy prey for nearby raiders that had previously been kept at bay by the Romanics.
- As Sideria degenerated into anarchy, Oberyn and an impressive, now mythical, sword that the Romanics knew as Fulguritus Acinace, the Lightning-struck Sabre, appeared. He led the forces of Jhan across the nation and the Romanicised Phaena and Urjali living in Sideria followed him. Victory after victory followed until the whole region was pacified and merged to form Jhanna-Sideria. The new country's name showed to all that Sideria was now attached to Jhanna, the capital of the Jhani people.
- 'King' Oberyn was the first true Lord-Protector of the nation, his title being merely informal, but his responsibilities were deadly serious. He, in fact, protected the people of Jhanna-Sideria from themselves, enforcing co-habitation and co-operation upon them. The eagle of his banner spread its wings to Jhani and Siderians, protecting them all with a combination of devastating mounted shock-troops and legions of compact infantry.
Circa 700 AD
Romanic styles began to take hold in the southern province, and therefore the Government, as increasingly-integrated Romanic descendants from Sideria gained far higher places in society, centred around the capital of Jhanna. As the Romanic Empire had fallen, hindsight showed the people of the south what benefits it had truly brought to their northern neighbours.
Circa 1000 AD
A partly post-Romanic, partly Jhani nation had to come to terms with itself in a greater sense as it attempted to create a sense of national identity as Jhanna-Sideria. Large ships are built to carry men and materials across the seas to explore and discover more about the world for themselves, to explore and trade with those around them.
Jhanna-Sideria is torn asunder in a brutal civil war, sparked by the increasing oppression of Jhani peoples by Romanic-descended rulers. The Daii noblemen rose up against the oppression and the nation is once more split in two, for the first time in almost a thousand years.
Feature: 15th Century Civil War
A thousand years of history had still not completely merged the Jhan and Siderian peoples. The Daii still had a Feudal and quite pagan iron grip on the South, while the North was more Christian and ‘civilised’. Both sides were arrogant and believed their path was the true one. As north fought south, the old characteristics came to the fore once more. Hard-hitting and skilful Daii Cavalry was the hallmark of the Jhannan armies, while the Siderians relied on well-drilled and solid infantry.
Both sides tried for outside assistance, but none was forthcoming for the Jhannans. The more ‘civilised’ Siderians received extra arms, funds and attaches to aid them in their cause. This aid balanced out the innate martial advantage of the Jhannans and insured a bitter and bloody war that claimed many lives, along with famine that nearly finished off the country as a whole.
The Civil War between the Jhannans and Siderians peters out into skirmishing, as the Siderians have been pushed northwards, out of what is modern-day Starblaydia and beyond. With the Daii controlling most of the country, and unofficial surrender is adopted, with the Daii taking most of the spoils.
Jhanna-Sideria is whole once more, but not really united as the Jhannans take their turn at running the nation with an Iron grip. Once more the Siderians were ruled by 'protectors', this time it was the Daii in the south rather than the Romanic Empire. With peace and rule, however, came complacency. The Daii began a slow decline from this point on, never again regaining their true power as the most potent warrior-knights in the land.
Lord Hajataii, the ruling Daii leader at the time, instigates the 'Protection of the Land' Act, and is declared 'Lord-Protector' by the artistocracy who ruled the nation. This Act echoes through the ages to the present day, as it was from this point that Saevion Starblayde took his authority to become Lord Protector in the twentieth century, near five-hundred years later.
Various Lord-Protectors come and go over the years, though their decadence and notoriety vary greatly, the noble office of Lord-Protector slowly becomes degraded into the position every greed, megalomaniacal, power-hungry nobleman desires.
It is the rise of the middle classes in the following years that signals the end for the Daii and their Lord-Protectors. With an burgeoning economy increasingly driven by trade, foreign Empires came calling to Jhanna-Sideria. Some brought the threat of force, which the arrogant all-powerful Daii dismissed. Others brought the promise and threats of religion, which the ordinary people dismissed too. Then, finally, the Britannic Empire brought something the people could use. Trade. With the ever-growing coastal towns doing an excellent business in trade, the merchants and entrepeneurs, as they would later be known, were the people with real wealth and power.
As trade increased exponentially between Jhanna-Sideria and the Britannic Empire, the middle-classes became ever-more rich and influential. The few remaining Daii clung hopelessly to what they beleived was 'their' country, though it was increasingly run by merchant oligarchs and foreign investors.
It wasn't long before Jhanna-Sideria's true value was known to other foreign Empires, who soon tried to take advantage of it. Even the Daii realised that invading Empires could soon crush and dominate their comparatively-puny nation, so the Britannic Empire were officially invited to take over the protection and running of the nation. Little did they know how complete that takeover would become.
Under the Britannic Empire
Starblaydia is born
As the Britannic Empire flooded the small nation of Jhanna-Sideria with troops, merchants and other means of Government Control, they installed a Governor who also took the purely-nominal title of Lord-Protector. Though the previous owner of the title had commanded little more than a band of brigands large enough to protect his mansion from theives and peasants, the new Lord-Protector had a great building constructed to house the workings of a colonial nation.
Soon tired of the nation they now owned being named after a combination of a single sprawling city and an obscure word from a barely-used language, the Britannics decided to re-name Jhanna-Sideria. There had been no great Britannic pioneer-entrepeneurs in the land, so there was no-one and nothing obvious to name the country after. After a brief perusal through some ancient texts, suitbably translated, they decided to name the country after an ancient sword. Comparable to the mythical King Arthur and his sword, the new Governor wondered who on earth would not want to live in a country named after their own barbaric version of Excalibur? With the sword called the Starblayde, Starblaydia was born.
Miltary installations, Schools, Universities, Churches, Factories and Ports were all constructed to heave Starblaydia into the following centuries. The proivince of Victoria was named for a famous Britannic monarch of the time, while the city of Corinth was built on the sight of an impromtu football match between some Starblaydi natives and the Corinth Casuals amateur military team.
The Global Wars
The Britannic Empire was heavily involved in two massive wars in the first half of the twentieth century. Up until then, Starblaydia had been a quaint little colony of the Empire famous only for golden trinkets and mythical heroes. Starblaydi soldiers, however, were quickly drawn into fighting across the globe twice in the space of forty years. Though no fighting came anywhere near Starblaydia itself, it soon became clear that, even during the Second of the Two Global Wars, the Empire could not afford to retain control of Starblaydia. Thus, independance was granted after public pressure.
The Britannic Empire handed control of Starblaydia over to a new Parliament on August 23rd, 1946, quite rightly celebrated as Starblaydia's Independance Day.
A Troubled Start
Starblaydia was not a happy place after the initial joy, co-operation and nationalistic spirit that Independance had brought. Without the Britannic Empire to maintain its strict controls over the nation, much of Starblaydia degenerated into violence and thuggery, with the Parliament practically helpless to control the entire nation at once. By 1968, a new generation of Warlords and their private armies of varying strengths held sway over various parts of the land, with the only truly civilised parts being in the Basian Valley, containing the cities of Jhanna, Basia and Tabeck.
In the 1970s, however, one man from Jhanna was elected to the Starblaydi Parliament who was said to be a Warlord himself. Though almost all records from that time are lost, we know that he was the man who would become the first true Lord-Protector of Starblaydia in over a fifteen-hundred years. What his original name was, no-one knows, or no-one is prepared to tell. Once he had won the support of enough of the Parliament and the army, he began to cajole, coerce, bribe, intimidate, assassinate all his opponents, even meeting a few of them on the field of battle.
By April 1972, Starblayde had brought the volatile country to heel. He declared himself Lord-Protector of Starblaydia, following in the grand tradition of Starblaydi leaders.
To Be Completed
This History of Starblaydia essentially follows real-world timelines for events such as the Roman and British Empires and the Two World Wars. However, as Starblaydia makes no claim to exist in the 'real' world, names and events have been suitably changed to reflect an imaginary-history of an imaginary-nation.