Andoran (pronounced ann-DOHR-ann)1 is a nation of the people, governed by the principles of Common Rule that grant every citizen a voice in elections that chose their representatives to the government. Andoran holds the reins of its own destiny in the strong hands of its people; it considers itself the birthplace of freedom.2
Andoran is located on the northern coast of the Inner Sea. The nation is separated from its western neighbor, the empire of Cheliax, by the Aspodell Mountains. The Five Kings Range perform a similar function in the north, serving as a barrier between Andoran and the nations of Druma, Isger, Kyonin, and the Five Kings Mountains. To the east lie the nations of Galt and Taldor; much of Andoran's eastern border lies within the Verduran Forest, and follows the flow of the Sellen River.3
The nation can be divided into five general regions: the capital city of Almas and its surrounding countryside; the coastal Arthfell region; the agriculture-rich Carpenden Plains; Darkmoon Vale, dominated by the Lumber Consortium; and the fey-contested Verduran Forest.4
Andoran's interior is dominated by plains and hills and what remains of the heavily logged Arthfell Forest. Darkmoon Vale in the northwest is dominated by Droskar's Crag, a massive volcano that serves as the southernmost point of the Five Kings Range.35
- See also: Timeline of Andoran
The Taldan Fourth Army of Exploration explored and mapped the region in 1683 AR.6 Impressed by the area's abundant forests and other natural resources, Taldor invaded in 1707 AR. Under the command of General Khastalus of Corentyn, the native peoples were put to the sword and Andoran became the westernmost province of the great Taldan Empire. The coastal city of Augustana was founded the same year, and the new invaders quickly began felling the trees of the extensive Arthfell Forest to feed the rapidly expanding Imperial Navy. By 1750 AR, nearly all Taldan vessels were built in Augustana. The rise of the Andoren Navy and shipping industry began a new golden age of exploration for Taldor, eventually leading to the founding of colonies not only in Avistan and Garund, but also far-away Azlant and Arcadia.3728
Sixth Army of Exploration
The forests of Andoran were not the only things that Taldor exploited. In order to launch its disastrous Sixth Army of Exploration, the Taldan government conscripted thousands of local Andoren militia members, and sent them off on commandeered ships to Garund. Most died over the course of the next nine years, and Taldor's ill-advised attempt to lay claim to central Garund finally came to a calamitous end with its defeat by the forces of the Gorilla King in 2089 AR.69
In the year 4081 AR, the region cut its ties with the Taldan empire. The move was prompted by Aspex the Even-Tongued of Cheliax, who sought to add the region to his fledgling empire in what would become known as the Even-Tongued Conquest. Facing challenges of corruption and decadence from within, as well as an invasion by Qadira across the empire's southern border, Taldor was forced to cede Andoran to Cheliax without a single battle.372
Under Cheliax's rule, Andoran flourished for hundreds of years. Merchants in towns and cities grew rich exploiting the country's bountiful natural resources until their power rivaled that of the hereditary landed nobility. Despite its economic success, the nation still had its share of challenges: hobgoblin attacks in the northwestern wilderness, pirates on the open seas, druidic and fey troubles in the Arthfell and Verduran Forests, and disrupted trade with its colonies in Arcadia. These setbacks were temporary, however, and did little to deter the nation's growth.2
Andoran prospered as a part of the empire of Cheliax until 4606 AR. The death of the empire's patron god, Aroden, resulted in a power struggle among the nation's various noble houses. This civil war ended with House Thrune claiming control of Cheliax in 4640 AR.3710
House Thrune, a noble line dedicated to the service of Hell, demanded strict obedience and servitude from the citizens of the empire. Initially, the ruling body of Andoran followed the mandates of Cheliax's new queen, judging that the populace was not ready for another conflict after three decades of civil war. There was, however, only so much obedience to Egorian that the Andoren people could stomach. After nearly thirty years of infernal dominance, the People's Revolt erupted in 4669 AR. Andoren merchants rallied the common folk behind the egalitarian principles of the Galtan philosophers Darl Jubannich and Hosetter and declared their independence from the empire, casting aside the noble class' right to rule and establishing rule by the will of the people: the Common Rule. Unlike in the later Red Revolution in Galt, the Andoren firebrands did not demand the death of all nobles, instead offering them a choice: remain as citizens of the Inner Sea region's first democracy, or be exiled. Their lands and holdings became property of the state in either case and were immediately sold off to those who had supported the People's Revolt.311 In the end, Andoran was established as the first representative republic in the Inner Sea region.12
The newly established nation abolished the practices of slavery and servitude, and embraced the belief that all are equal. These ideals were codified in the Associative Act of 4669 AR, written by the first members elected to the People's Council (see Government below). The act safeguarded not only the legal rights of citizens, but also enshrined a progressive economic emancipation. Andoran continues to embody these ideals to this day, concepts they attempt to force upon other nations with what many feel to be idealistic and imperialistic fanaticism.311
Soon after its founding, a contingent of gillmen visited the newly established democratic nation. They presented the government with the keystone of the Arch of Aroden, which they had dragged there from the bottom of the Hespereth Strait, symbolizing their support for Andoran's commitment to freedom and equality. The gift was incorporated into the Archstone Monument and placed near the western end of the Field of Concord in Almas.13
The parliamentary democracy of Andoran (and Andoren society as a whole) are built on three principles: the tolerance of all benevolent religions, a transparent government, and an efficient, prosperous system for trade.11 To ensure that all are treated fairly and that no one abuses the power of their office, public servants in Andoran are regarded with a measure of suspicion and subject to regular scrutiny.3
The People's Council
The nation's ruling body is a group of 350 representatives known as the People's Council. Based out of the capital city of Almas, these individuals are elected by the nation's populace every five years. Andoran is divided into numerous municipalities, each of which is allowed to elect a single representative to the Council. Additionally, every major guild in the nation is also granted a representative. These individuals are responsible for overseeing all aspects of the nation's government, from the selection of mayors for each municipality to the running of Andoran's military forces.314
The Supreme Elect
The People's Council is led by the Supreme Elect, a position appointed by the Council's members following each election. The Supreme Elect manages the nation's Executive Office, and acts as the mayor of the city of Almas. The People's Council also selects a supreme vicar from the local clergies of Abadar or Erastil. This individual serves primarily as an adviser to the Supreme Elect. The supreme vicar also acts as the bishop of Almas, and oversees the actions of all Andoran's faiths.315 Andira Marusek was elected in 4716 AR to succeed Codwin I. Coming from a background in both the Twilight Talons and as the general of the Steel Falcons, she is one of Andoran's youngest Supreme Elects and has made international abolition of slavery a principal tenet of her administration.16
Andoran's military is augmented by an elite military force known as the Eagle Knights that are divided into several branches, each focused on different aspects of the nation's foreign and domestic policy. The branches include the Golden Legion, the Steel Falcons, the Twilight Talons, and the Grey Corsairs.17 These divisions are not well understood outside of Andoran.12
The Eagle Knights personify Andoren idealism, serving as unwavering and devoted warriors who pledge to safeguard not just their nation but also its principles of freedom (particularly manumission), equality, and justice. Distinguished by their distinctive blue-and-gold uniforms and eagle emblems, they are easily recognized in the Inner Sea region, thanks in large part to the patriotic narratives of their bravery shared by loyal Andorens. Although some of these stories are evidently embellished to enhance Andoran's reputation, they still reflect the essence of the tales: Eagle Knights are characterized by their nobility, honor, and unwavering commitment, willing to sacrifice their lives for the people they represent.17
The Eagle Knights of the Golden Legion have a solemn oath to safeguard Andoran's frontiers and act as an elite permanent military force to bolster the standing Andoren military. As such, they are the most frequently encountered members of the Eagle Knights within the borders of Andoran. Their duties range from supervising military training drills to performing ceremonial drills during holidays and handling investigations of national importance.17
The Steel Falcons within the Eagle Knights play the role of Andoran's international ambassadors, journeying across the Inner Sea region to promote the principles of shared governance and actively opposing oppressive rule through both advocacy and action. Steel Falcon squads also embark on global missions to liberate enslaved individuals, disrupt slaving operations, and persuade foreign authorities to denounce slavery practices.17
The often-overlooked champions of the clandestine, the Twilight Talons division of the Eagle Knights operate discreetly, executing covert assignments deep within prominent slave operations, within the courts of rival nations, and amidst concealed political entities bent on undermining Andoran or its founding principles.17 The Andoren government officially disavows knowledge of their existence and actions.12
Serving as the maritime extension of the Steel Falcons, the Gray Corsairs' main objective is to offer secure transportation for Steel Falcons venturing to different regions within the Inner Sea region. In reality, the ships and mariners of the Gray Corsairs actively patrol Andoran's coastline, working alongside the navy and operating as clandestine privateers. They engage with slaver ships and any other vessels whose intentions jeopardize the freedoms and rights of the Andoren populace.17
Being the only country in the Inner Sea region with open, democratically elected leaders, Andoran's relations with its more autocratic neighbors is generally poor. Foreign powers worry that their peasantry might desire freedoms similar to those earned by the people of Andoran as a result of the People's Revolt. This fear is reinforced by Andoran's efforts to spread its cultural, mercantile, and philosophical beliefs beyond its borders. The nation even exhibits a willingness to bring its military might to bear when no other means of accomplishing this goal remain.3182
Taldor's resurgence under Grand Princess Eutropia is met with less enthusiasm in Andoran than in other nations. Despite Eutropia's numerous reforms and enhanced diplomatic efforts, she remains a hereditary monarch who quashed a popular uprising.12
Andoran has been closely monitoring Cheliax's recent vulnerabilities, and there is widespread speculation that the two nations might be on the brink of war. This sentiment has been fueled by Andoran's leader, Supreme Elect Andira Marusek, a former Steel Falcons general renowned for her staunch opposition to the Chelish slave trade.12
Andoran exercises caution by closely watching the missteps of its neighboring nation, Galt, with the aim of avoiding a repetition of those errors. The nation is determined to prevent a violent revolution that could jeopardize the progress it has made in the past few decades.12
During the People's Revolt, revolutionaries opened all of Andoran's prisons and freed its slaves, partially on ethical grounds, and partially to bolster the Revolt against foreign and domestic anti-revolutionary forces. These abolitionist ideals continue to this day, with the Andoren government forbidding any trade in sentient creatures, as well as sending out agents to undermine slavery abroad. This brings Andoran into conflict with the primary states supporting slavery in the Inner Sea region, particularly Cheliax, Katapesh, Osirion, and Thuvia. Because of this, Andorens in general are seen as troublemakers abroad.2 Katapeshi slavers in particular has been in the crosshairs of the Andoren government for the past decade, after Codwin I and the People's Council made it legal to board and sink Katapeshi slave ships in 4704 AR. When the Gray Corsairs sank three of these ships the following year, it began what some call the Andoren War Against Slavery.19
Andoran is a nation with abundant natural resources, and ships carrying lumber, minerals, and other goods frequently leave the cities of Almas and Augustana for destinations throughout the Inner Sea region and beyond. Additionally, the nation's three leading exporters, House Goldfield, House Naran, and House Vaylen, operate large and profitable banks within the region. Andoran's banks provide readily accessible and affordable credit to the nation's people, though any who seek to exploit this system are exiled as traitors.320
Andoran profits from resources beyond its borders as well. Artifacts and resources originating in exotic locations such as Osirion, the Mwangi Expanse, and even Azlant and Arcadia are gathered and sold. These goods are sometimes rare, often difficult to locate and obtain, and many groups fight one another to possess them. Despite the risks involved, these items generate significant wealth for Andoran. Competition in this field has also been growing with the neighboring states of Cheliax and Taldor.32
The human population of Andoran is primarily of Taldan extraction, with halflings the most common non-human race.212223 Andoran also has the largest concentration of kobolds in the Inner Sea region, and also one of the largest populations of empyreans.24
Above all else, the citizens of Andoran are passionate about their country and their freedom. A history of being under the thumb of foreign powers, first under Taldor and then Cheliax created a resentment that grew with time. Over the course of centuries, Andoran's resources and the people's independence were slowly worn away, until it grew to be too great to be tolerated any longer. The proud people of Andoran claimed their nation's sovereignty, and are determined to prove to disbelievers that the concepts of freedom and equality that they hold will remain strong in the face of any hardship.25
The people that inhabit the nation of Andoran are also highly opinionated, often holding differing perspectives on how best to preserve their nation and spread its influence. That said, almost all Andorens share certain beliefs in common. These include that arguments and discussions should be based on merit, rather than half-truths or falsehoods. They also believe that all people have a right to have their voice heard, and one should be judged on one's actions above all else. Finally, everyone is entitled to their opinion so long as it is not that of a foreign power. By embracing and preserving these beliefs and others like them, the people of Andoran hope to ensure the survival of Common Rule and the freedom it brings for many generations to come.25
Famous throughout the Inner Sea region, the seemingly harmless Lumber Consortium has its roots in a pre-independence criminal organization, and the consortium's economic clout remains unmatched. Longstanding connections between the consortium and members of the People's Council have led to debates regarding the necessity of implementing safeguards against the corruption of elected officials. Strangely, these protective measures never seem to materialize.12
For additional as-yet unincorporated sources about this subject, see the Meta page.
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