"Development on Galeria will be significantly slowed, as I have started to develop another fantasy world, which is currently taking priority over Galeria. Thank you for your patience. Drastic revisions of this page may occur in the future. --Twentyfists
Galeria is a large world, a physical place of habitation for the mortal races suspended in the insubstantial river surrounding it where the Allmaker makes His home. Galeria is a land of diverse cultures and races bound together by a common creation, but not much else. The land is rife with the potential for creation or destruction, as the world acts as a magnet for divine magical energy, drawing such energy from the All-Sky and from the ground itself. This energy and the effects it has on the mortals that call Galeria home has acted as the singular driving force behind Galerian history, causing and ending all of the many large conflicts that can be found in Galeria's past.
Galeria was one of many worlds created by the being known as the Allmaker. The Allmaker is an omnipotent being who set in motion all of the universe. When the Allmaker decided time would begin, it would, and when it was, the Allmaker set in motion a divine plan to establish an entire universe. Thus, the Allmaker raised his "hands" and commanded the existence of all worlds in the universe, as well as the celestial river to flow between them and allow eventual contact, although such contact is far beyond the grasp of the Galerians. Once the Allmaker saw that his plan was in motion, he created a massive celestial hierarchy, in which a group of incredibly powerful beings would head a massive hierarchical oligarchy of spiritual creatures while overseeing the creation and maintenance of the universe's many worlds. It was these creatures that would become the gods of the Galerian pantheon and their underlings who would become the "Others" associated with these gods.
From the outset, Galeria appears to resemble Earth is many aspects, saving of course that the arrangement and shapes of its continents are noticeably different. However, those who have been trained in the art of manipulating celestial and terrarial divine energy, known as magic, will quickly realize Galeria's major difference from Earth: Galeria practically bleeds magic. The land is filled with energy, so much so that it has become second nature to the planet's inhabitants. Such an enormous surplus of energy has had its effect on the land--its presence has led to the creation of many natural anomalies. Although most of these anomalies are hardly noticed, some have become famous because of their location, size, or just how the magic manifested. Some of these anomalies included the burning kelp forest found at the bottom of the Kandian sea or the floating rocks in the far reaches of the Borskel Mountains.
Galeria is comprised of a variety of medium-sized landmasses surrounded by oceans and seas, with many archipelagos and singular islands to be found in-between. The largest continent is known as Neglon, and it is nearly twice the size as the other three Galerian continents of Priskan, Bettony, and Sanskill, which are all of similar size. Of all the continents, however, Bettony and Sanskill are the most civilized, as Priskan is too cold for many settlers and Neglon's harsh forests, mountain ranges, volcanoes, and deserts have made anything more than Bettonian and Sanskill colonies all but impossible.
If Galeria was rolled out like a map and stretched flat, with the Isle of Cetla's center as the meridian line, one would see the seas and lands of Galeria in greater detail. To the far west of Cetla sits the massive land mass of Neglon, its large mountain ranges standing out as a terrestrial bas-relief. Just east of that landmass sits the Skarrn Archipelago, an island chain that served as the initial stepping stone of Bettonian colonists headed west. Surrounding the Skarrn Archipelago and extending out to the east sits the Heskith Sea, a fairly placid ocean which rarely suffers from storms, although, when it does, the storms are of such great intensity that they can sometimes swamp entire cities. East of the Heskith sea lies the Isle of Cetla and, just east of that, the continent of Bettony. To Bettony's southeast sitsthe continent of Sanskill. To the far north of Bettony lies the continent of Priskan, a land of indescribable beauty locked in the grasp of a frigid perpetual winter.
Galeria is home to a wide variety of creatures of many varying descriptions. Some are small enough to fit in a human hand, while others are large enough to be mistaken for hills. Galeria provides a home for many creatures, some of which resemble typical Earth animals, while others seem to be created entirely from the gods' fancies. Galerian scholars from many different regions and races gathered together in the Scriptorium have compiled a Bestiary of Galeria, in which they list and describe in great detail the plethora of animals that live in Galeria.
Races and Their NationsEdit
Life comes in many different shapes and sizes. However, Galerian scholars have established that certain types of life are, by the decree of the gods, naturally more advanced or sophisticated than others. These types of life have been categorized as "Races". Such categorizations are as follows:
Humans are Galeria's most populous race by far, due to their great diversity and adaptability in the face of trouble. These creatures typically stand at a height of around 5'7'' to 6'2'', although some have been recorded as standing as short as 4'10'' or as tall as 7'1'' full-grown. They typically weigh around 120 pounds to 210 pounds, although some specimens have been recorded to be smaller or larger. Humans stand on two legs and sport two arms with which they can manipulate objects around them in a great deal of ways. This race has become the most populous and widespread, and, thus, has created the standard weights and measurements used in trade and common speech. They typically speak languages from the Beton language tree, although they may speak radically different dialects based on geographical location. Standard Beton has become the Galerian trade language. Humans originate from the continent of Bettony, specifically its western half, although there are unconfirmed reports of humans living in the jungles in Neglon. Humans are not magically inclined by nature, but they have the capacity to learn how to manipulate magic, and many great magicians have come from human stock. Human nations include the nations of the Holy Althen Empire, the Vespachian Republic, the Cetlan Clans, and the Obu Theocracy.
Elden are a unique race of creatures. Unlike other races, which were created separately at Galeria's creation, elden were created during an early period of human magic use. An Eld is created when a human is directly exposed to too much magical energy too soon. Once an early mage passes the threshold of magical energy that he or she can contain, either one of two things will happen. The mage will either transform into an eld, or die. These results depend primarily on how much energy they have absorbed. Although both processes are quite painful, the process of becoming an eld can usually be survived. Originally, the creation of the elden race was kept secret to prevent a public outcry, but this did nothing to stop early mages, and thus, eventually, the elden were revealed to the world. Elden resemble humans to a great extent. However, their limbs are more willowy, their bodies more slight. Their skin is paler and their faces are more narrow, with thinner faces, more defined features, and they sport noticeable pointed ears. Elden are smaller than humans, with none standing taller than 5'9''. Elden are by nature a magically-inclined race, and are naturally gifted in manipulating magical energy. Although elden typically sport their distinctive features, elden have the ability to change their features at will, changing the color and tone of their skin, the definition of their features, the shape of their body, and, in small degrees, their height. Elden are typically very passionate, willful, free-spirited creatures who cultivate a healthy disdain for rules and regulations. Elden have no nation to themselves, instead living under the rule of the Holy Althen Empire. The elden are not happy with this arrangement and are gearing up for a separation. Independent elden enclaves can also be found in Cet lands, in Vespachia, and in the Borskel Mountains.
The haracan are a race of human-like beings that live on Bettony's western coast and on the plains and deserts further inland. Haracan resemble humans in many aspects, and many smaller specimens can be mistaken for a human at a distance. However, haracan share several distinct differences with humans. The most noticeable of these differences is clearly the haracan's height compared to a human's. An average human stands at 5'4'' to 6'2'', while a haracan may stand from the comparatively diminutive height of 5'11 to the towering height of 7'6'', although some have recorded as being even larger, even unto 9 feet in height. Haracan also have a darker skin tone than humans do, and their hair, especially those around Obu lands, has a very different texture and consistency. Haracan rarely cut their hair, instead letting it lengthen and then braiding it into complex knots, wrapping it up in turbans, or letting it clump together into dreadlocks. A typical haracan spends approximately a year and three months in the womb, while a human spends only nine months there. Haracan age slower than humans do, with many reaching their puberty in their late teens or early twenties. A haracan is not considered an adult until it reaches thirty years of age. A haracan also has a very deep voice, much like a human bass or baritone, although some may be deeper. When a haracan talks, it sports a distinctive lisp, which immediately indicates it as a haracan. Haracan are stubborn creatures with a fiery temper and very particular desires. They intend to do things their way, or not at all. They are blunt and are not gifted in the fields of diplomacy or tact. However, they make up for this by being incredibly skilled warriors, almost without peer. Haracan war parties are capable of eliminating forces many times their size and can fight for days on end with minimal rest or food, and yet they will not show signs of fatigue. Haracan only live under the rule of one state, the Zarathan Hegemony.
The cernnuni (singular "Cernnunus") are a race of humanoid beast-creatures that reside on Sanskill's central plains and its sparse forests. Although the many different types of cernnuni appear very different from each other, all share similar characteristics. All cernnuni are bipedal, furred mammals who group themselves into tribal groups that then are grouped together in the Cernnunus Confederacy. When most Bettonians think of a cernnunus, however, they think of the large horse-like cernnunus that Bettonian and haracan explorers first came into contact with during the expansion period of United Bettonian history. However, other cernnuni exist. Massive hard-headed, rough-furred cernnuni can be found in the very center of the Sanskillian plains, while more bull-like cernnuni can be found further away, and deer-like cernnuni can be found in the forest at the edges of Cernnunus Confederacy territory. Although heights vary greatly between tribes, the average cernnuni height is 6'2'' to 8'6'', although others may be shorter or taller depending on their genes. Cernnuni speak in a soft, lowing native tongue, although their voice grows harsher and louder depending on their mood. This harshness and volume usually characterizes cernnunus speech when they speak the Bettonian trade language, as many cernnuni find Bettonian to be a difficult language to speak. Cernnuni live in "nomadic villages"--villages made of tall grass strands and light woods that can be picked up and moved easily. Cernnuni are also renowned as amazing warriors due to their amazing strength and speed and their tough skin. Because of these gifts, Cernnuni are prized as guards for trading interests abroad and as mercenaries for foreign armies. Cernnuni are also acclaimed as being one of very few races that has been able to truly beat back a haracan advance, and experience has shown that a skilled cernnunus warrior is able to defeat a haracan in single combat. Typically, cernnuni are calm, level-headed, almost docile creatures. They often are willing to compromise and value peace above all other things. However, in combat, cernnuni become raging war machines that churn over the field of battle, destroying everything that gets within reach of their weapons.
The th'rall are a secretive race of magical shape-shifters that live in the frigid northern mountains of Priskan. Due to the limited amount of contact between the th'rall and the other races of Galeria, little is known about the th'rall. However, the mage-scholars at the Scriptorium have managed to compile a limited amount of information on the th'rall. The th'rall are a race of magically-inclined creatures that require a "feeding" mechanism in order to change their shape. In their natural state, the th'rall are large, craggy-skinned green creatures with large bulbous eyes and long sharp claws and teeth. However, most outsiders will never see a th'rall in this form, as the th'rall typically shape-shift into a variety of different forms, all depending on their personal preference. However, they cannot maintain their chosen form indefinitely, as their shape-shifting ability hinges on a second crucial th'rall magical ability--the ability for the th'rall to sap and drain away the youth and life of other beings. Although most other th'rall are immune to this ability, other creatures are not, and so the th'rall must venture outside of their frigid enclaves in order to feed off of other creatures. The th'rall seem to live in an as-of-yet unidentified nation consisting of several small, self-sufficient communities hidden in the Priskan mountains in which all th'rall are considered equal, although certain th'rall may receive station and recognition due to their deeds. The th'rall are noted to be a cold and calculating race, although the validity of this assessment remains to be seen.
More races to come when I feel like updating this section. I grow weary of documenting race after race, however.
Religion in GaleriaEdit
Due to the great diversity of culture in Galeria, many different religions flourish. Most, if not all of these religions, however, resemble in one way or another the organization of the Celestial Hierarchy, although most of these stories are corrupted by cultural or historical interference.
Humans worship a wide variety of religions, mostly depending on where these humans live. The Holy Althen Empire worships three gods known as the Triumvirate, who, according to Althen theology, guide the course of the empire and oversee what happens to it. The gods of the Vespachian Republic share many similarities to the Triumvirate, although this group, the Cinnacari, are a much larger group of gentler gods who each oversee specific aspects of Galeria. The Cetlan clans, like other human groups, believe in a polytheistic system of gods similar to the Cinnacari, although these gods are simpler gods who each guide a specific Cetlan clan.
The Obu Theocracy contains two major religions in its lands. Many of the simpler folk and those who refuse to bow before the theocracy worship gods that are identical in all but name to the Cetlan gods. However, the dominant religion in Obu lands is the monotheistic worship of Natu, a creator god who is at times caring, while at other times vengeful. The Natu Priesthood quickly spread across the Obu lands, no doubt due in part to the military might behind its missionaries.
Major Historical EventsEdit
Years in Galeria are measured by Scriptorium scholars in years before and after the foundation of the Scriptorium, which are marked as ante-Scriptorium and post-Scriptorium, or AS and PS, respectfully. Years measured before the foundation of the Scriptorium are counted moving backwards (2 AS occurred before 1 AS).
- ? AS--Creation. No exact date has been set due to differing opinions as to when or even how creation occurred.
- ~5000 AS--Historical records are beginning to be kept, either by word of mouth or through writing. However, their accuracy is suspect.
- ~4650 AS--An event in cernnunus history known as "The Passing" occurs, which, according to the cernnuni shamans, was the act of a minor god that transformed the cernnuni from dumb brutes into an intelligent race.
- ~4600 AS--Bronze is first discovered by haracens; humans copy technique of forging bronze soon after.
- ~4500 AS--Humanity begins to band together into small warring kingdoms as opposed to wandering tribal groups.
- 4430 AS--Magic is discovered by humans, who begin attempts to control and utilize it.
- 4417 AS--The first of the haracan great kings, Sathak I, ascends to power above his small clan and begins efforts to unite the warring haracan clandoms.
- 4390 AS--Magic is first succesfully used by an unknown human priest, who levitates a small rock by magical means.
- 4378 AS--Sathak I's successor, Sathak II, unites all haracan clans into one haracan nation.
- 4349 AS--The first great human kingdom, known in the histories as "Collulm", is founded.
- 4255 AS--Haracen mage-king Olan III discovers offensive capabilities of magic.
- 4156 AS--Early haracen explorers return from a northern voyage telling stories about monstrous "wildmen" and "flightless dragons". These are believed to be the first reliable reports regarding the th'rall.
- 3984 AS--Collulm falls due to attacks by Cetlan armies during a period of internal strife.
- 3814 AS--Low-grade iron is first discovered in the hills of northern Bettony.
- 3761 AS--Haracen smiths discover how to forge iron. Humans copy technique soon after.
- 3634 AS--The sword begins to take on a more sacred connotation in Bettonian life, marking the beginning of the religions beliefs that lay as a precursor to the Triumvirate.
- 3501 AS--After centuries of strife, humanity bands together and creates the second great Bettonian kingdom, Althen, in the northwest portion of Bettony.
- 3428 AS--The first institute of magical learning, the Althen College of Sorcery, is founded.
- 3399 AS--Althen magicians and scholars discover a technique for refining iron. Althen begins to experience a period of rapid growth.
- 3387 AS--Haracen king Uthan IV is killed in battle by an Althen spellsword, marking the end of the kingdom first created by Sathak II.
- 3382 AS--The final remnants of the first Haracen kingdom fall. Haracens rearrange into warring clans.
- 3343 AS--The Cetlan clans organize themselves into a loosely-affliated confederacy and join into the kingdom of Althen.
- 3300 AS--Haracen clan lord Zarathan takes control of other haracen clans and creates Zarathan Empire.
- 3271 AS--After years of fighting, human king Aleksander I invites Zarathan Empire into Althen, creating Kingdom of Bettony.
- 3238 AS--Bettonian sailors land in Saskill and are met by primitive tribe of cernnuni.