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Politics and Empires

The people of Dirt have been subjected to autocratic rule from countless regimes, small and large, for millennia.

Since around eight thousand years ago, with the rise of the early Haftens and the Heinela, the power balance has shifted back and forth across the continents, as despotic rulers attempted to control a fragmented society.

Dirt is an underpopulated world and in some areas, especially in Bind, communities are often far from each other, making trade difficult and law and order almost impossible.

Probably the most successful of the empires was the Heinela  (hay-in-AY-ler), though the Haftens were wider spread.  The Heinela feudal society with its built in hereditary structure based around the twelve families, produced stability rewarded with a loyalty system.  However, those at the bottom, the serfs and the slaves, had little opportunity of advance.

The Haften empire was far more war-like.  They were great builders and used slavery as a weapon, but they were beset with internal arguments in their bloody Haften council.  Much of the territory they claimed as their own they hardly controlled at all, even to the point of not collecting taxes from local barons and war lords. 

Later, the system of the Prelature in The Prelates produced, surprisingly, a more peaceful existence, but it was driven by uncompromising religious ideology that in some areas was enforced not just by the Prelate or the Priests but by the traditions of the community itself.  In less liberal societies women were often second class citizens and progression in society was by favour not by merit.

 

The Heinela

One of the oldest dynasties, the Heinela was a feudal dynasty united under a monarch selected from one of Twelve Families. Later became the Heinela Cwendrin

The Haften Empire

The first of the continent spanning empires was built around a council started by two warring families.

The Prelature

The political and religious forum behind the system of Prelatehoods

 

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Dirt in the time of Farthing

Johnson Farthing grows up in one of the more liberal Prelatehoods.

The Church of the True has little influence and the Prelate is more interested in his own greed than anything else.

Other Prelatehoods are more oppressive, however, especially in the North.

In Bind, the society has become very fragmented and has been since the fall of the old Haften Empire a thousand years before.  Citizens there are probably freer than in The Prelates, but they suffer far more from banditry and general lawlessness. 

Dirt is a confused and uneven place at this time, ripe for revolution, but also vulnerable to any new empire hungry interests.