This article is incomplete because it is pending further input from participants, or it is a work-in-progress by one author.
Please comment on this article's talk page to share your input, comments and questions.
Note: To contribute to this article, you may need to seek help from the author(s) of this page.
Worshipful Realm of Varshan
Warshàng ulu Arzal gožu
Uqabu qawar dawaž miznač
|Location of Varshan in Western Crona|
Location of Varshan in Western Crona
and largest city
|Official languages||Hieratic Varshani|
|Government||Theocratic absolute monarchy|
|Tupactzil of Yužak Čol|
• Thing 1
|c. 5000 BCE|
• Thing 2
|7 December 1758 BCE|
• Thing 3
|11 March 132 AD|
• Thin 4
|18 November 1837|
|7,931,165 km2 (3,062,240 sq mi)|
• Water (%)
• 2020 estimate
• 2020 census
|94.8/km2 (245.5/sq mi)|
|HDI (2020)|| 0.884|
|Currency||Ratzas (Rw) (VRW)|
|Time zone||UTC+5 to +8 (Dwemer Mean Time)|
Varshani Solar Calendar
|ISO 3166 code'||VŽ|
The Worshipful Realm of Varshan was a country in Crona and considered the largest country on the continent. Its history is a turbulent one, with challenges posed by natural disasters, periods of rapid change, attempted colonial exploitation, corruption, separatism, ideological conflict, dictatorship, religious fanaticism, war and mass slaughter.
The Varshani solar calendar has no months because the Moon is their personification of evil. Hieratic Varshani has no grammatical distinction between singular and plural.
With the Fall of Anzo in May 2024, the Worshipful Realm was abolished. It was replaced by League-occupied Varshan. For most of its history, and particularly between its destruction of the North Songun civilization and The Deluge, it was the dominant power in Crona.
The lands comprising modern Varshan were once inhabited by a variety of different Cronite peoples belonging to several different linguistic families. These peoples, most of which have been lost to history, were all tribally-organised until the early Cronite Bronze Age, when city-states began to develop in the region's fertile river valleys. The area now known as Umzàg or Central Varshan, emerged as the most heavily urbanized part of north central Crona, possibly as a result of its fertile volcanic soils and geographic circumscription by high mountain ranges.
The history of Varshan is divided into a number of dynastic periods, punctuated by intervening periods of civil war and political decay.
The history of Varshan proper beings with the arrival of the Varshani (Waršaŋ), a migratory tribe of uncertain geographic origin speaking a language isolate who subsisted primarily by raiding settled societies and hunting. Attracted by the wealthy city-states of Umzàg, the Varshani migrated into the foothills of the Mountains of Terror, from which they launched periodic raids against their neighbours. Initially, the Varshani raided only to capture food, women, and basic materials, and to spill blood in order to honour their gods. However, over time they also took to pillaging valuables, such as precious metals and stones and fine clothes and handicrafts, originally as trophies, but later as luxury goods for their own enjoyment. In order to provide higher standards of living for themselves, the Varshani began capturing slaves for labour rather than exclusively sexual use, and exacting tribute and ransom from communities within striking distance of the foothills rather than raiding them, obtaining wealth that allowed them to engage in trade with the prosperous central city-states. This began a process of acculturation through which the Varshani transitioned away from their traditional migratory raiding lifestyle and adopted many material, religious, and socio-political practices from the settled peoples of the region. This process reached its culmination under the Varshani chief Biji, who after sacking the city of Hoklo, chose to take up residence there instead of returning to his camp in the foothills. Biji renamed the city 'Anzo', and established it as the first Varshani state.
XYZ dynasty restored
Great interdynastic period
The great interdynastic period is an era where multiple rival dynasties ruled portions of Varshan, inaugurating centuries of civil war. On average, the period saw four to five partly recognized ruling dynasties at any one time, leading to the common Varshani adage that "five head men are as good as none".
Many Occidental historians question the historicity of many of the events of the great interdynastic period or its existence at all. A minority view believes that many of the events attributed to this period were actually domestic turmoil that occurred as part of a dynasty erased by a form of damnatio memoriae; the number of calamities attributed to this period by legend would suggest such a regime would be viewed as a clear failure, and this degree of failure would have undermined the legitimacy of the Varshani ruling elite in the eyes of the lower castes. Proponents of this theory have noted that many "rival claimants" receive significant more attention in the historical record than their opponents, suggesting that the "main leader" of any one story may in fact be the sole ruler during the period. Accordingly, theory proponents have proposed several alternative models of succession under this scheme. "Dynastic erasure theory" remains a hotly contested concept among Varshanologists.
Medieval interdynastic period
First contact with the Occident
Aster's expedition in the late 14th century brought Occidental explorers to Crona for the first time. While the North Songun civilization and other Cronan civilizations were generally enthusiastic about the potential of trade with the Occident, the unknown of a great and distant foreign power fundamentally shook the Varshani state to its core. Most historians believe Arzalism definitively took on many of its violent, modern characteristics during this time following centuries of conflict between sun worshippers and death worshippers.
As Varshan reached what would become its relative economic and military peak in ca. 1400, the era of "the Hunts" began. While Varshan had warred with its neighbors in south central Crona since the establishment of the Varshani state, the newfound military dominance of Varshan and political decline of the states of the North Songun civilization began enabled Varshan to begin raiding the North Songun region on an annual basis, with the yearly summer campaigns becoming known by the euphemistic term "the Hunt". At its peak, the Hunt would double the number of slaves in Varshan approximately every ten years, and its effects wrought complete devestation throughout Crona, functionally destroying the ancient North Songun civilization. The Hunts were almost exclusively large scale raids and did not usually entail the conquest of territory. Gradually, the apparatus of the Varshani state began to transform into an implement to support the Hunt, drastically changing the character of both the state and Varshani society. These changes inaugurated the period known by historians as the "Huntocracy".
The Hunts are the lasting historical legacy of the Chazxin dynasty. Although they ended by the 18th century, most demographers believe the vast majority of former native-born Varshani slaves in the 21st century are descended from individuals enslaved at this time.
Conquest of the North
Under the Chazxin dynasty, Varshan conquered several disparate relatives of the Quetzen people and established what would become known as the Brudxaan Province, approximately modern New Veltorina. This conquest gave Varshan access to the Nysdra Sea for the first time. This conquest, completed by 1525, enabled Varshan to begin projecting influence across the Nysdra Sea. In the 1600s, the Quetzen thalassocracy which had exhibited political and economic control over Venua'tino for centuries collapsed suddenly as the coastal cities were conquered by the unifying state. The sudden anarchy allowed a relatively token Varshani force to land in Venuatino in 1652 and establish a tenative system of political and military control over the region known as the
Loss of the Brudxaan Province
The dynastic civil war led to the rebellion of local authorities in the northern Brudxaan Province, roughly modern New Veltorina.
With armed and diplomatic support from Corumm, Quetzenkel annexed Brudxaan in 1962. The weakened and divided Varshani state was forced to accept the loss of territory as a fait accompli, formally recognizing it in 1965.
With the loss of Brudxaan Province, the centuries old Polar Captaincy collapsed due to the lack of Varshani access to the Sea of Nysdra. Under threat from Corummese presence in Cao, Varshan was forced to withdraw its military forces from the Polar Captaincy in 1964.
Modern interdynastic period
The modern interdynastic period, sometimes referred to as the "postdynastic period", began with the final fall of the Yun-harle dynasty in 1970.
The loss of territory and prestige in the 1960s deeply wounded the Varshani psyche. Once the dynastic civil war had concluded, Varshan in the 1980s and 1990s began to heavily turn to modernization and Occidentalization of its armed forces.
Climate and environment
Government and politics
Varshan was an absolute monarchy ruled by the Zûrg, whose person and powers were not subject to any constitution or other law, and who answers only to the gods. There were no elected officials in Varshan, even at the local level. The only representative body was the Guraŋ, a deliberative body whose members are appointed by the Zûrg from among the nobility, priesthood, warrior castes, and prominent free non-warriors involved in economic or technical fields. The Guraŋ was purely advisory body with no lawmaking powers of its own, though it does draft legislation which it recommends to the Zaračok. The Zaračok or "Privy Council" was the country's main executive, legislative, and judicial organ, through which the Zûrg governs the country. Members of the Zaračok are appointed by the Zûrg and serve at his pleasure, being drawn almost entirely from the nobility, military leadership, and priesthood. Its role was to inform and advise the Zûrg, supervise the government bureaucracy on his behalf, and carry out his orders.
The leading members of the Zaračok and the most powerful non-hereditary officials were the Vizier (Sanču) and Warmaster (Šunk Dal). For most of Varshani history, Zûrgs led the military personally and the office of Warmaster was an intermittent position, created only when the Zûrg was unable to oversee the empire's war efforts himself. However, as the borders of Varshan stabilised and the military became more professional, the Warmaster was given a more permanent and prominent role.
Varshan was widely considered a rogue state in international relations. Its extensive practices of slavery, human sacrifice, and infanticide have resulted in various trade and travel restrictions being placed upon it by many other nations, but the main source of tension between Varshan and Ixnay's great powers was strategic rather than moral. As (by far) the largest, most powerful, and most well-armed Cronite polity, Varshan has long been an obstacle to colonial and commercial expansion by seafaring nations like Burgundie and Kiravia. Though cultural and political barriers to domestic innovation have caused it to lag behind more developed Old World nations in terms of military technology, the sheer size of the nation's military manpower and its aggressive foreign policy have long been a threat to the overseas colonies in Crona and engendered hostile but cautious approach by colonial powers toward Varshan as they look to limit its military capabilities and power projection without provoking it into a full-scale ground war that would likely visit mass casualties and heavy infrastructural damage upon the colonies.
A major point of dispute between Varshan and other nations, particularly colonial powers, was its programme to develop nuclear armaments.
Ethnic hierarchy: TopVarshanis with Divine ancestry> Other TopVarshanis > Petty Varshanis (includes the Bepsi Catalans n' shit) > "Martial among Gentiles" > "Natives" (All other Cronite and Asiatic peoples, peoples paying tribute to Varshan, plus metics/helots/indentured people of full or partial Varshani descent) > Slaves of all backgrounds, including Varshanis.
The vast "Native" and enslaved classes belong to hundreds, perhaps thousands, of identifiable Cronite ethnolinguistic groups shared with some of the prehistoric people of Quetzenkel, plus many more who were conquered and acculturated so long ago that any knowledge of them is lost. The largest ethnic group in both classes, however, are ethnic Varshanis who became enslaved for military ineptitude, failure to complete certain cultural and religious rituals, or as a criminal penalty; as well as millions of ethnic Varshanis born into slavery, mostly as descendants of people in the previous categories or as the result of sexual slavery under free Varshani masters. Many slave children fathered by their owners are allowed to become metics, especially if their mothers are also ethnic Varshani.
There are also several million Westerners living as slaves in Varshan. Most were kidnapped or IxShanghai'd. Western women were especially prized for their exotic appearances.
Because the government places heavy restrictions on foreign travel by ordinary subjects, the Varshani diaspora in other nations is small. The largest overseas population with ancestral origins in Varshan were the Kulukusi people, a tribe of moon-worshippers whose civilisation was destroyed by God-King Burusho IV for heresey against the Sun God. The Kulukusi survived as a tribal people in the mountains of southeast Varshan, and aided the Kiravian Army Rangers during the Bootleg Wars. As a token of gratitude, the Federal Stanora helped to resettle the Kulukusi in South Ateranda and Intravia. There is also a significant Kulukusi community in Azikoria.
Varshan has an estimated literacy rate of 58%, and a majority of its population were illiterate until the 1990s. Until 1956, it was illegal to teach slaves to read, but this law was gradually relaxed over time as slaveowners themselves became more literate and wanted the convenience of being able to issue written orders to their slaves. In 2002, the law was waived for slaves kept in urban areas, but almost all slaves and most free persons living in rural areas remain illiterate. There was no public education system in Varshan. Instead, those higher up the social ladder make use of private schools, tutors, and religious institutes for education, while the lower classes of free persons rely upon informal schools and tutelage by country priests.
Culture and society
Polytheistic/Henotheistic religion, Arzalism. Sort of like Hinduism in that there are a whole bunch of gods and sectarian differences but these don't amount to exclusive denominational differences. Human sacrifice is the central and ultimate rite of Arzali worship, with archæological evidence dating it perhaps as far back as the first modern humans to arrive in the area.
Varshanites were originally heliolatrists (sun-worshippers). Orthodox Arzalism was born when some emperor proclaimed the Death God's primacy over the Sun God. Ancestor worship is strictly forbidden in orthodox Arzalism and was punishable by death, though it persists as an underground, esoteric/initiatory practice in certain heterodox strands of Arzalism, especially among particular ethnic groups.
Gods: The Death God, the Sun God, the Blood God (especially venerated among warriors), the Pain God, the Fire-Thunder God, the Sex/Rape God, and the Soccer God. Also various God-Emperors and God-Kings. Also Rain and Earth Gods that demand child sacrifices, exclusively. Maybe Raideron and Cthuhlu got absorbed into the pantheon somehow.
(Warrior thing transcluded to the military section)
Arzalism was the sole legal religion in Varshan, and observance of certain religious rites was compulsory for all free persons. All other religions, as well as atheism and agnosticism, were illegal and punishable by some public and particularly gruesome methods of execution. The degree to which slaves were required to observe the Arzali religion was at the discretion of their owners: Slaves owned by the temple system for non-sacrificial purposes were expected to participate in self-degrading Arzali rites regularly, whereas most private owners require only minimal commitment to the religion or none at all. Many (perhaps most) slaves privately dissent from Arzalism, and many, especially first- and second-generation captives, adhere to various native Cronite religions or, in the case of slaves kidnapped from the Occident, Christianity or irreligion. Slaves have been known to make an effort to maintain organised non-Arzali Cronite religions in secret, but these were suppressed by slaveholders and punishable by torture.
Stratified cultural developments by caste
Economy and infrastructure
Varshan has a command economy that differs radically from the global capitalist model with extensive state ownership and state direction of the economy, the prevalence of slave labour, extremely low social mobility due to politically and religiously entrenched caste hierarchies, and numerous political barriers to foreign trade and investment.
The base of the Varshani economy lies in extractive industries such as agriculture, mining, hydrocarbon drilling, and lumbering, which rely almost exclusively on slave labour and the forced labour/serfdom of non-slave metics and subject peoples. Varshan has massive deposits of oil, natural gas, coal, iron, industrial diamonds, and various other minerals, as well as enormous timber reserves. Almost all agriculture occurs on large estates called okozi, most of which are owned by the Varshani nobility and gentry, the temple system, or the state.
The Varshani real estate market was tightly constrained. Under Varshani law, all land ultimately belonged to the Zûrg on behalf of the gods, and an estimated 35% of the country's land was directly owned by the state. Most productive agricultural land belonged to the landowning noble and gentry classes, with most of the remainder belonging to the temple system. Smallholds and family farms were extremely rare and existed only in the most marginal parts of the country, having been competed out of existence by slave plantations.
In the [Year whatever] Varshan implemented one of the earliest and likely the most expensive programme of import-substitution industriallisation in the world, with the goal of insulating the country against commercial domination by the Old World.
Varshan had an extremely martial culture based on its caste system.
The Warriors of Varshan come from a longstanding fundamentalist current within Arzalism that believes that Varshanite society has strayed from authentic Arzali beliefs. They believe that unrestrained, sadistic violence is the only true virtue and that predatory warfare is the only acceptable occupation for free men in the eyes of the Death God. They are TopVarshanite racial supremacists, and only allow TopVarshanis into positions of religious or political authority. Nonetheless, they believe that men who do not heed the Blood God's commands and live by predation deserve slavery or dishonourable deaths, regardless of race or ethnicity. Arzali fundamentalists believe that Varshani society has strayed from the true meaning of Arzalism over the past several centuries and has been only selectively obeying Arzali tenets in order to develop a centralised state society and a market economy. As such, most fundamentalists believe that some or all of the Zûrgs of recent centuries have been illegitimate (Arzali Sedevacantism), and they reject the worship of God-Kings and all God-Emperors except for the first one and the one who made the Death God top dog. They believe that organised state militaries are heretical and a corruption of holy warfare, believing loosely-affiliated bands of predatory warriors to be the only type of fighting unit sanctioned by the Death God. Nonetheless, like all free Varshani males, fundamentalists were required to serve in the Varshani military, and which they chose to use as an opportunity to develop their combat skills and religious knowledge.