"Ignorance is the first step on the road to
- Vaullian Proverb.
|Proper Name||The Enlightened State of Vaul|
|Ruler||His Supreme Grandeur, The Lord Thought Master of Vaul, Prime Minister Geldrich, the Brilliant, Keeper of the Lore|
|Demographics||Vaullian 82%, Human 12%, Saridian 5%, Other 1%|
|Languages||Vaulsk 84%, Chaddi 9%, Saradda 5%, Eshtari 2%|
|Capital City||Vaulstav (Population 52,750)|
|National Colors||Grey and white|
|Year Founded||850 CY|
|Natural Resources||Rice, fish and shellfish, limestone, marble, copper, coffee beans, cocoa|
|Manufactured Goods and Major Exports||Foodstuffs, shellfish, quarried stone, copper goods, coffee beans, chocolate, javika (drink), stour (drink)|
|Government Stability||Very stable.|
|Allies||Sarid, Chaddamar, Eshtar|
|Technology Level||Middle Ages|
|Primary Religion||Vaullian Mysticiam|
|Other Religions||Aerism, Chaddamar, Vejadism, Trodule|
|Climate||Temperate to sub-tropical|
|Approximate Land Area||1,460,000 square kilometers|
|Terrain||Plains, forested hills, mountains, some wetlands|
Vaul is the homeland of the vaullians. It is a peaceful land of philosophers and scholars, wide river valleys, rice fields, grand stone temples and gentle music. Here the vaullians celebrate their festivals, catalog books in their great libraries and discuss philosophy, magic and other great issues of the day.
Vaul is a great valley based around the long, winding Windward Bay. Grassy flatlands flank the bay and are, in turn, ringed by foothills and mountains. Windmills by the hundred dot the grassy broadlands along the banks of the Windward Bay. Broad river valleys and sweeping rice fields dominate the north. The south stretches of land are dominated by the Mael Ix Drablin in the west and the great Elarum Woods in the east.
As with much of eastern Aggradar, rice is a common food and an important crop. The vaullians eat rice in great quantities as the basis of every meal. Venison, mutton, beef and other meat products are much more rare here than in other nations as most vaullians are vegetarians and will not consume any food which has come, directly or indirectly, from an animal. Those vaullians that do consume meat tend to stick with fish and shellfish.
This large river valley is somewhat isolated by high mountains encircling the bay. This has allowed the region to develop both biologically and culturally with little outside influence throughout the centuries. Once this valley was one of the great provinces the Kytohan Empire. The province of Vaul was a region blessed with fertile soil and a mild climate. It was major food producing province for the province, famed for its orchards, vineyards, olive oil and various wines. Each province was ruled by a duke.
When the Sundering occurred, the cataclysmic energies unleashed swept over the world and devastated the Kytohan Empire. Land quakes hit, cities were toppled, tidal waves wiped villages from the coast, volcanoes erupted and torrential downpours destroyed crops. Months of ecological disasters tore the Empire apart. What remained of the Empire was fragmented, lost and leaderless. The survivors struggled to keep their Empire together. The province of Vaul was spared the worst of the tidal waves due to the long narrow curving shape of Windward Bay.
The Duke at the time was a man named Oduris. Remarkably, the Oduris line ruled uninterrupted for more then seven centuries after the Sundering and managed to keep the region safe from roving bands of pirates, bandits and leaderless armies. War, disease, famine and drought arose from time to time, but through it all the region prospered.
Throughout these early centuries, the people of Vaul began to change physically, as was also happening with other cultures around the world. The mutagenic effects of the World Storm had accelerated and altered evolution. With each generation, the vaullians became fatter, slower and more ponderous. Their spines began to curve and their heads drooped. Their skin became grey and wrinkled even as their minds deepened and intellects expanded.
In 715 CY , a military coup led by group of officers shook the kingdom which quickly devolved into a bloody civil war. Thousands died in many battles. During the civil war, many flocked to the church. One movement that had been gaining popularity was a branch of philosophies that were the precursor to modern vaullian mysticism. The usurpers eventually failed and peace was restored in 722 CY. Vaullian mysticism played a part and helped guide many government officials through the civil war and helped the nation heal when the civil war ended.
After the war, it was decided that a stronger government needed to be established. The King abdicated the throne and established the Cabinet... a group of ministers who would lead the nation. From their rank, they elected a Prime Minister. Over the centuries, new positions have been created and the Cabinet of Ministers has grown. They have guided Vaul since that time.
Other areas of the once mighty empire have arisen as new nations since that time. Wars have been fought across the continent. Dictators have come and gone. Through it all Vaul has strengthened itself with time. Like the vaullians themselves, Vaul is slow, careful, patience and persistent. It is now one of the wealthiest and most stable nations in all of Aggradar.
Vaul is ruled by a central council known as the Cabinet of Ministers. It consists of thirteen very old vaullians, thought by most to be the thirteen wisest vaullians in the land. These council members are elected to their positions by popular vote and serve for life (or until such time as they choose to retire). These thirteen vaullians have all distinguished themselves through public service, rank, honor, oration, charity and other accomplishments. After a life time of achievement and wisdom, they are invited to join the Cabinet. Any potential new member is voted on by the existing council, and all vaullian citizens.
|The Prime Minister||Oversees the Cabinet of Ministers|
|Minister of Guilds||Businesses, shops and guilds|
|Minister of War||Is the supreme authority overseeing all military forces, naval ships, militias, town guards.|
|Minister of the Treasury||Levies the taxes.|
|Minister of Ambassadors||Foreign relations. Oversees a group of ambassadors that maintain diplomatic relations with all surrounding nations.|
|Minister of the Homeland||Building roads, bridges, mapping the nation, dealing with threats to the general public.|
|Minister of Commons||Issues of the commoners.|
|Minister of Nobles||Issues of the nobles.|
|Minister of the Land||Agriculture, land disputes, mining rights.|
|Minister of the Sea||Settles fishing territorial disputes, oversees shipping, maritime laws.|
|Minister of Law||Is in charge of the prisons, law enforcement, security patrols in the capital city.|
|Minister of Philosophy||Serves as a liaison between the government and various philosophical, religious, academic and wizardly groups.|
|Minister of Academics||Oversees the academy, schools and other centers of learning.|
Vaul is a remarkably peaceful land. Every city and town has at least one court and magistrate (Vaulstav has several). Magistrates use telepathic powers and magic to assist them in determining guilt or innocence. Magistrates also oversee public projects, settle disputes and collect taxes.
Most vaullians can be described as pacifists. They are slow to anger and avoid violence when possible. However, Vaullians are not afraid to take up arms when forced to it.
Vaul has no standing national army and rarely has needed one. Its peaceful history has only been marred by full scale war a handful of times. Usually, this is against humanoid tribes that have gathered under an unusually powerful leader. Such wars are usually short lived.
During times of peace, every city and town has a small, but capable city guard that patrols the streets and provide a comforting presence to the citizens. Provincial militias patrol the countryside between towns and villages. Such guards and militia wear leather armor and carry passive weapons, blunt ended oaken staves, rope nets for apprehending criminals and the like.
In times of war, Vaullian soldiers wear very heavy, ornate metal armor and wield ornate traditional swords. These massive curved blades are covered in runes of vaullian magical power. Most vaullian soldiers are male. They are not fast, but they have a great constitution. Vaullians also combine magic and telepathic powers into their fighting style. Because of this, they are able to foresee their opponents actions. This makes them much more formidable on the battle field than most would expect.
Vaullian military ships are massive, broad bellied vessels with three masts. They are remarkably sturdy, able to withstand battering rams and sea storms. The vaullian navy currently has 82 of these vessels. The vaullian navy sees action year round as it must deal with storms, floundering vaullian fishing vessels, piracy on the high seas and the occasional naval assault from distant Sybrenar.
Vaul has a strong economy based on centuries old craftsmanship. Not every vaullian can be a master of philosophy or literature. Those vaullians who choose other paths often pursue excellence in arts and crafts. Vaullian craftsmen are known for quality, intricate detail and artistic beauty. Even a lower pair of boots, if crafted by a vaullian, will be of the finest leather and decorative. Vaullian craftsmen are very much concerned with tools and techniques that date back centuries. They typically work alone (with only a one or two apprentices). Although vaullian craftsmen may sometimes unite, such groups are quite small. Vaullians do not form guilds.
The most common Vaullian greeting, upon meeting or parting, is "Peace and Wisdom". Vaul has several schools and academies scattered throughout the nation. Many of these specialize in particular areas. The largest and most famous are located in the capital city.
The vaullians drink a very sweet, fortified wine called doeza (DOE-za). This wine is made from the fermentation of a local fruit which grows in great abundance in Vaul. After fermentation, it is spiced and then stored in great oaken barrels where it is aged for two years. Doeza is relatively mild compared to other alcoholic drinks.
Vaullians drink a lot of tea. They have several local varieties. They also smoke various types of pipeweed in large ornate wooden pipes.
Vaullians greet each other by bowing.
Vaullians indulge in many culinary delicacies and sweet desserts. Dates are a common after dinner treat as is a cup of tea or small glass of doeza. One of the favorite after dinner treats, for special occasions, is a caviar paste called masmarra which is made from the roe of the saridian razor crab.
Javika (pronounced ja-VIE-ka) is a concoction of brewed coffee beans, chocolate, cocoa butter and goat's milk. It is very thick, very sweet and a strong stimulant. The vaullians invented it and enjoy it as an after dinner dessert drink, but it is too potent for most people. The magrakians love it since it's strong enough for even their dull senses to be overwhelmed.
Another popular drink is stour. This is a thick, sour ale made from fermented tubers. It's a popular drink that originated in Vaul, but can be found throughout Aggradar. Stour comes from the words "stout" and "sour" which perfectly describes this ale.
The pursuit of art in all its forms - sculpture, painting, music - is considered of paramount importance and almost all vaullians pursue some artistic hobbies. The most important art of all, though, is writing. The written word, whether it be poetry, prose or philosophy, is held in such high esteem as to be almost venerated.
Vaullians take great pleasure in intellectual pursuits and many choose to study magic. For them, it is a form of art, a scholarly pursuit and a hobby. Vaullian wizards can become quite powerful if they choose to do so. However, many simply dabble in it out of curiosity or choose to specialize and study in a very narrow range of magic. There are several small, but very good arcane schools in Vaul and several accomplished masters of the craft. Vaullians use much of their magic to the betterment of their culture. Several have created wondrous works of art for their fellow citizens to enjoy. Others have written vast tomes of knowledge for the benefit of generous to come.
|Creedon||31,200||The second largest city in all of Vaul, Creedon oversees the vast stretches of farm land west of it. Ships from Creedon patrol the length of Windward Bay.|
|Irdyn||27,500||Irdyn is a peaceful city known for its red brick buildings, excellent gardens, wonderful statues and fields of fragrant flowers. Irdyn is also home to a small wizard's guild and school. This arcane institution hosts a gathering of vaullian wizards every autumn.|
|Brennag||23,100||Home of the legendary vaullian philosopher, Grepoc, founder of the Order of the Mind.|
|Drayden||16,700||Situated in the foothills of the Daemyr Mouhntains, Drayden is primarily a mining town.|
|Traudi||13,600||Situated at the most inland navigable point of the river. Beyond here, only small boats and rafts may proceed.|
|Praul||11,200||Home to a well known writing school that has produced some of the nation's greatest poets. Praul is also known for a yearly festival that celebrates the written word. Poetry recitations and writer's clubs are common here.|
|Otta||7,400||Situated at the mouth of the Standing Rock river, Otta has a good shipyard and port. Ships from Otta fish and patrol the mouth of the Windward Bay.|
Amiran, Aguilar, Adira, Asardonyth, Bernheim, Broanuwad, Cadadowarn, Chabot, Crierokith, Danalioth, Detlof, Erilauwon, Fytlan, Gwethgonnor, Heyda, Larinorr, Onidamadon, Pywan, Rhom, Sireli, Sloan, Thumar, Tasseni, Viras
The towns of Vaul surround a large inlet. Ships and boats of all sizes endlessly crisscross the inlet connecting several of the major towns and dozens of coastal villages. Because of this, Vaul actually conducts more travel and trade by ship that it does on its roads. Despite this, Vaul maintains a network of excellent paved roads. For more information, see the Travel and Distance page.
|Typical Travel Time|
|Vaulstav - Irdyn||Paved Road||242 km||10 days||7 days||5 days||2 days|
|Vaulstav - Traudi||Paved Road||247 km||10 days||8 days||5 days||4 days|
|Vaulstav - Praul||Paved Road||335 km||14 days||10 days||7 days|
|Vaulstav - Creedon||Paved Road||293 km||12 days||9 days||6 days||4 days|
|Vaulstav - Otta - by ship||Sea||914 km||10 days|
|Vaulstav - Brennag - by ship||Sea||387 km||4 days|
|Vaulstav - Kurebay - by ship||Sea||3,226 km||33 days|
|Irdyn - Brennag||Paved Road||295 km||12 days||9 days||6 days||3 days|
|Praul - Traudi||Dirt Road||363 km||16 days||12 days||7 days|
|Praul - Drayden||Paved Road||429 km||18 days||13 days||8 days|
|Drayden - Creedon||Paved Road||423 km||17 days||13 days||8 days|
|Drayden - Otta||Paved Road||377 km||16 days||11 days||7 days|
|Otta - Brennag - by ship||Sea||708 km||8 days|
|Otta - Creddon||Paved Road||527 km||22 days||16 days||10 days||7 days|
|Otta - Irdyn - by ship||Sea||770 km||8 days|
|Creedon - Brennag - by ship||Sea||220 km||3 days|
|Creedon - Irdyn - by ship||Sea||278 km||3 days|
This website was last updated October 5, 2021. Copyright 1990-2021 David M. Roomes.