The gradual advance of Opulensi colonists far outstripped the advance of the Opulensi Empire itself; the numerous city-states that have broken off of their motherland have managed to thrive beyond the traditional maps of the civilized world. Leun is by far the furthest east of these, a state with almost no natural enemies for the time being. It has discovered a people called the “Acaya” to the northeast; these have become profitable trading partners.
It was said that Leun was started by a major Opulensi expedition in the Leunan Sea, looking for, as always, trade. Presumably, they became shipwrecked at the capital of Leun, and founded the city right on the spot, roughly around 130 SR (Seshway calendar). Initially, a council, made of the various captains, together with a tiny bureaurcracy modeled after those of Opulensi, if only for fimiliarity, held order as the city itself was established, and secured, and afterwards, dealt with managing the livelihood of the fledgling country as it slowly developed the previously untouched wilderness. Given what could barely be called more than a large outpost that contained only a few hundred, or maybe a few thousand people, depending on what sparse natives they could recruit for manpower, this was indeed, a very slow process.
A few years later, and much to the council's surprise, a small native kingdom to south was discovered, on the island now called Utene. Desparate for help of any kind, trade was soon established, and much needed foodstuffs was brought in to the capital, whose nearby lands, mostly sub-arid, weren't suitable for effective farming. Predictably, most of Leun quickly became fed by grain from Utene, and when a series of particularly deep droughts hit the region in general, grain shipments stopped being recieved from Utene, as they struggled to feed their own mouths, as did Leun, although to a far worse degree, its own farms quite failing to meet demand. With the entire region threatening to riot into anarchy, its was determined that largest force possible attack, occupy, and most importantly, secure the food sources of Utene. Of course, the largest force possible was a little under 300 men, armed with what the fixed supply of iron Leun could supply. However, using the merchant trick much like the Second Empire centuries ago, Utene was captured, and fairly bloodlessly at that, the people being surprisingly submissive to the men with "shiny spears" (Iron). Despite this triumph, many died during that hard time.
It was during this time however, or maybe a little after, that the king became the great ruler of Leun, possibly from the very captain who took Utene. Regardless, the transformation of the head of Leun into a monarchy marked the beginning of its yet unchecked ascent. The original council itself incorpating itself as the nobility of Leun, along with the few men already wealthy men of trade. Yes, by about 155 SR some say, solid contacts with the west were re-established, and trade, the lifeblood the world (at least from Leunan point of view), began flowing again. Coupled with successful crops leading to a population boom, Leun begin expanding in its own right, establishing a merchant outpost to aid trade with the west on the small island of Myroza to the west of Leun. The cape of Afra was also claimed, as well as the numerous islands between it's point and Utene, and several islands beyond it, one of which, Actas, turned out to be far larger than first thought, being even bigger than Utene after further exploration around the coastline and inland.
Speaking of exploration, the next major phase of Leunan history, if you would call it that, was led by exploration, as the unknown dark shroud which surrounded Leun from many angles was eagerly lifted by many young explorers of the new generations of Leun. Most importantly, this led to the discovery of the Acayan peoples and their city states to the north. A people with a strong passion for law and fairness, their republican nature was as quickly forgotten as their openness to trade was remembered. Instantly, hundreds of Leunan ships, if not all Leunan ships, could be seen at some point in their numerous journies, unloading and uploading their cargo at the many Acayan cities.
Leun however, was not the only state interested in Acayan products, and soon Western powers, namely the Opulensi and Nahari, begun trade with Acaya, with Leun perfectly situated in between to reap the benefits. This truly marked Leun's enterance into the world as a viable power, and while it certainly couldn't match up against the likes of the Opulensi, it could certainly control the only thing it could care about, the east-west trade route. In fact, much of Leunan expansion after the discovery of Acaya was dictated by way to further control the trade route. An outpost was established directly bordering the most southern Acayan city Isycha, while the trade town of Asardias was established just around point of Auona, and soon became the third largest city in Leun, after the capital itself and Utene (the city is named after the island). Additionally, because it seemed the only route to Acaya was around Utene to the north or south, complete Leunan control was established over the strait (of sorts), all islands being claimed for kingdom. Indeed, Leun so completely controlled the trade routes that even the mere existence of Acaya only became common knowledge to civilization of the west decades after they had acquired the products which were Acayan made.
By this point, over 100 years and 5 generations after the founding of Leun, for once, nothing notable happened in Leun. No new civilizations were discovered, nor particularly bad economic times befell the unfortunate, and maybe that was the best, for simple expansion, development, and trade certainly fit the ever growing ranks of Leun just fine.
Leun, The Empire Edit
Towards the last quarter of the third century (Sesh calender), with the noticeable decline in trade from the west, mainly due to the collapse of the Trilui, King Duras, seventh king of Leun, who had ascended to the throne only months before this became apparent, sought to improve Leun's own economy, largely still subsistence farming, given her precious addiction to trade, into one that could depend on itself if need be. Crops that Leun had previously traded, namely the surplus crop of cotton, were planted in Leunan land, which was surprisingly receptive. Formerly ignored lands north/northwest of the capital were exploited for their salt reserves, discovered only recently. Buoyed by this success, Duras, confident that within a few years that Leun itself could contribute to the east-west trade route, or even replace the link the chain the west once provided, declared the new Leunan Empire, crowning himself Emperor. It was a new age for Leun, if only, as many hoped, for their pockets and livelihood alike, that the west would stay to witness it.
Rather featureless, the main geographical feature of Leun is the many islands to the south of the continent on which the capital of Leun resides. Two of which, Utene and Actas, can be noted for their larger than average size. The climate of Leun is largely sub-tropical, although most land north and including the capital gradually slip into what can be classified as sub-arid land, land that is much less throughly populated than its tropical counterpart.
Leun is your typical monarchy as can be found through the world of the east (classifing it in which would make Leun the east of the east), which can come as no shock, given that for ease of fimiliarity, Leunan goverment has always been modelled after that of their ancestors, the Opulensi.
King Virennas (144 SR - 160 SR)
King Cesarion (160 SR - 186 SR)
King Myro (186 SR - 189 SR)
King Julion (189 SR - 215 SR)
King Ruman (215 SR - 258 SR)
King Afral (258 SR - 271 SR)
Emperor Duras (271 SR - 280 SR) [Became emperor in 279 SR)
Foreign Relations Edit
Because of Leun's relative isolation, foreign relations have been a hard thing to come by for Leun throughout it's early history, but with the blooming of the east-west route, peaceful contact with other countries which compose of that route, the Nahari, Opulensi, the Merchant states (Leheb, New Kalos, Ichan, Erlias, Tars, Cynta), and the Acaya have been cordial throughout their existence, if only because none dare interrupt the lucrative trade route.
Another facet of Leunan society again modelled after the Opulensi, the armies of Leun are largely composed of levies complemented by a small elite core, and it must be noted that due to the small population of Leun, her armies are also relatively small compared to those which clash in the west. On the other hand, The Leunan navy is truly the pride of her military, numbering some 75 ships, it completely dominates all Leunan waters. While some may say it is almost completely untested in actual warfare, it regularly patrols against pirates, and with the many merchant ships traveling the long distance between Acaya, Leun, and the west laden with valuables, more and more are being encountered and dealt with. This has in turn led to calls to increase the size of the navy, which are sure to be answered.
Completely dominated by trade until recently. Leun still makes most income off the east-west trade route, and generally its economic fortunes follows those of the trade route. Other than trade, Leunan economy is still basic subsistence agriculture, but as mentioned, in the recent decades surplus crops like cotton have been introduced, and with the apparently favorable land for cotton and the such in or within Leunan possession, they are gradually increasing in terms of output. Additionally, Leun, has minimial, but extant iron mines, mostly used for local demand, as well as salt mines, which like the surplus crops, are gradually growing in total output. The official Leunan currency is the Ru, named after King Ruman(reign 215-258), who oversaw a particular period of economic growth.
Economic Statistics Edit
130 SR: 100 Ru
150 SR: 500 Ru
200 SR: 1,500 Ru
230 SR: 3,250 Ru
280 SR: NK?
Due to all Leunans today being descendents of either the original expedition or one of the many many natives assimilated into the general population (most of who can be found in the southern portions of Leun), Leun can be considered mostly Opulensi, with a minority of Arta Xorti, originally sailors and/or labours recruited for the expedition, who are themselves being assimilated, if at a much slower rate then the natives.
While nominally Indagahor, the religion itself is more of old relic in Leunan culture. Obviously, survivial played more importance in early Leunan society than religion, which was some what ignored, and never came back as a focus. However, should the collapse of the west trend eastwards, that may well change.