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The Dwendalian Empire is a nation on the continent of Wildemount[1], dominating the western half of the region of Wynandir. Founded thirteen generations before the events of Campaign 2[1], roughly 432 P.D.[2][presumed], the empire has slowly encompassed territory of the continent and now mainly minds itself.

The capital of the Dwendalian Empire is Rexxentrum[3], a massive city more than twice the size of Emon.[4]

Dwendalian Empire

official map of the Dwendalian Empire by Deven Rue

Geography Edit

Marrow Valley Edit

The Marrow Valley is a formerly independent[1] region under the control of the Dwendalian Empire. Notable locations here include:

Zemni Fields Edit

The Zemni Fields is a formerly independent[1] region now under the control of the Dwendalian Empire.

Truscan area Edit

The city of Deastok, home of Taryon Darrington, is located within the Truscan area.[8][9]

Amber RoadEdit

See Amber Road. The Amber Road is a major north-south highway that passes through Zadash, Alfield, and Trostenwald.

Environment Edit

The climate in the central part of the Dwendalian Empire is similar to that of the real world's Central Europe and Western Russia. Farther south is warmer.[10]

Society Edit

Demographics Edit

Trostenwald is a small town in the Marrow Valley, with Allfield to the north being even smaller. Zadash is the second-largest city in the Dwendalian Empire, being the center of not just the Marrow Valley, but also the entire empire.

In Zadash and other regions previous ruled by the Julous Dominion, before falling conquered by the Dwendalian Empire, some of the cultural practices and beliefs had initially been merged and adjusted to enable a more stable integration with the laws, and rules of the empire.[11][12] Reflecting this fact was in how the peoples of the empire and those that enforced its rule were progressively more tolerating and more willing to bend the rules as one headed further away from Rexxentrum towards the outskirts of the empire.[13]

Politics Edit

The current head of state is King Bertrand Dwendal. By the time of the second campaign, King Bertrand is in his 68th year[14]. His law is absolute throughout the kingdom.

Whether or not he created the law himself, King Bertrand has been known to enforce the kingdom's ban on necromancy, as he prepared to seize the estate and lands of Sylas and Delilah Briarwood once they had been accused of practicing the forbidden magic. The citizens appeared to greatly distrust the school of necromancy, as a mob razed the Briarwood homestead to the ground shortly after, leaving the couple presumed dead.[15]

In exchange for protecting its citizens from chaotic horrors and shadowed evils beyond its borders, the crown of the Dwendalian Empire demands that its citizens pay it tithe, follow its laws, worship its gods, and bow to the installed local leadership (known as "Lawmasters", such as Norda in Trostenwald). This accord has led to a prosperous century, primarily for the Dwendalian political elite. Otherwise, most citizens of the Dwendalian Empire are left to their own devices. However, tensions brew beneath the chafing watch of the Crownsguard.[1][16]

Tensions are also rising with the land of Xhorhas, which borders the Dwendalian Empire to the east. In the past, the Dwendals have mostly left Xhorhas to its own devices.[17] However, there is unrest at the border caused by incursions of creatures from the east.[1][18] The creature Kylre, who caused multiple deaths in the town of Trostenwald, is presumed to have come from Xhorhas.[19]

Tithe collectors Edit

Every six months, tithe collectors (known to the commoners as "Reapers") went through the empire, each usually escorted by a couple Crownsguard. They were recognized by their black cloaks with gold trim. Reapers would go building to building, business to business. They inspect ledgers, ask about each business, look at the means in which they're living, and then make an estimation of what each Dwendalian citizen would owe for the biannual tithe. Reapers would then collect the money and then move on their way. Officially, this process was so each citizen could contribute to the military spending and social programs of the Empire as a whole. Unofficially, this was also used as a means of inspecting for any illegal activity and anything that goes against the Crown. Often, a lot of people got arrested for illicit goods and activities discovered while tithes were being collected.[20]

Religion Edit

Every temple in the Dwendalian Empire is government-owned and government-run. Religious practices are considered a social taboo, and the Empire looks down on divine magic with general disdain.[21] Worship of unapproved deities (e.g. The Changebringer) results in imprisonment, on charges of "idol worship".[22][23]

In Zadash, worked into the government structure, heralds ran each shrine. They all held sermons and gave counsel to anyone who required it.[24]

The Current Approved Dieties

History Edit

Expansion Edit

The Dwendalian Empire has slowly spread to encompass its neighbors - namely, the peoples of the Zemni Fields and the Marrow Valley - before finally conquering the Julous Dominion. Now, all of Western Wynandir is controlled by the Dwendalian Empire.[1]

Zadash was the last remaining bastion of the previous government over the Marrow Valley. However, eventually it was conquered and the whole Marrow Valley became a province of the Dwendalian Empire. With the conquest of the Marrow Valley, Zadash is now the most central city and is the second largest city in the kingdom. Thus, this has made Zadash an important center for travel and trade.

War With Xhorhas Edit

On the third of Fessuran 835 P.D.[25] word had reached Starosta Wyatt of Zadash that The Ashguard Garrison at the Brokenveil Bluffs had fallen to the Krynn Empire. With accounts numbering the dead at over 1000, war had been formally declared against the invading forces and on the wastes of Xhorhas.[26]

Trivia Edit

  • When Matt described the Truscan area of the Dwendalian Empire as the "Truscan Empire", it is possible that the Truscan Empire was one of the many neighboring rivals that bordered the Dwendalian Empire in the past. The Truscan Empire might have even been the previous government that ruled the Zemni Fields (similar to how the Julous Dominion ruled over Zadash and the Marrow Valley).
  • It is unknown if the Dwendalian Empire approves of any religious holidays (even for the Empire's approved deities).

References Edit

  1. 1.0 1.1 See "Curious Beginnings" (9x01).[citation needed]  Matthew Mercer gave an overview of the continent and its inhabitants.
  2. Based on the number of years of a male human generation in real life (source).
  3. See "The Gates of Zadash" (9x08) at 2:39:58.
  4. See "Disparate Pieces" (9x04) from 3:31:25 through 3:32:00.  Matt talks about Rexxentrum.
  5. See "The Gates of Zadash" (9x08) at 0:10:09.  In his recap, Matt notes that the party are still in the Marrow Fields on their route from Trostenwald to Zadash via Alfield.
  6. See "The Gates of Zadash" (9x08) at 1:31:01.  The party headed deeper into the Marrow Fields en route to Zadash.
  7. See "Disparate Pieces" (9x04) at 3:32:00.  Liam contrasts the size of Zadash to Rexxentrum.
  8. See "Daring Days" (7x02) at 0:45:30.  Matt gives Tary's home city, initially calling it the "Truscan Empire".
  9. See "One Year Later..." (7x11) at 1:24:05.  Matt corrects Truscan Empire to Truscan region and Dwendalian Empire.
  10. Matthew Mercer clarified the climate for Wildemount and the Dwendalian Empire (source).
  11. See "The Gates of Zadash" (9x08) from 2:37:39 through 2:38:55.  Matt gives a brief history of Zadash.
  12. See "The Gates of Zadash" (9x08) at 2:38:07.
  13. See "The Gates of Zadash" (9x08) at 2:39:47.
  14. See "Curious Beginnings" (9x01) at 0:18:13.
  15. See "A Musician's Nostalgia" (3x14) from 1:02:33 through 1:03:18.
  16. See "Steam and Conversation" (9x09) from 0:56:20 through 1:06:22.  Beau and Fjord attend a meeting of discontents.
  17. See Critical Role: Tal'Dorei Campaign Setting, p. 99.
  18. See "The Howling Mines" (9x06) from 0:41:37 through 0:44:53.  Bryce complains about the incursions from Xhorhas.
  19. See "The Midnight Chase" (9x03) at 1:06:12.  Molly recalls hearing about toad-like demons from Xhorhas.
  20. See "The Hour of Honor" (10x12).[citation needed]
  21. See "Critical Role: Tal'Dorei Campaign Setting".
  22. See "Curious Beginnings" (9x01).[citation needed]
  23. See "The Hour of Honor" from 3:31:30 to 3:31:47.
  24. See "Steam and Conversation" (9x09) from 0:42:53 through 0:43:03.
  25. See "A Favor in Kind" (10x04) at 2:59:58.  Also Confirmed by Tal'Dorei Campaign Guide.
  26. See "Harvest Close" (10x05) at 2:25:32.