From PathfinderWiki

Gateway to the East
Satrapy of the Keleshite Empire
Qadiran, Qadiri1

The westernmost province of the Padishah Empire of Kelesh, Qadira (pronounced kah-DEER-ah)2 is a kingdom with the power of the sprawling Casmar empire at its back. Qadira is Kelesh's doorway to the Inner Sea region, and is perhaps the single most valuable piece of real estate on Golarion. Rivers of spice and gold flow through its capital of Katheer, and Xerbystes II, the satrap of Qadira, boasts that his kingdom holds the wealth of any other three on the Inner Sea.3


A Qadiran horselord.

The lands now known as Qadira were not always under the control of the Padishah Emperor. The original inhabitants were related to both the Keleshites of Casmaron and the Garundi of northern Garund. A nomadic people, they survived by breeding goats, and following seasonal migration patterns between the mountains in the east and the ocean to the west and south. They intermingled with the native genies and other elemental creatures of the land, the aftereffects of which can still be seen today in the high percentage of naaris,4 undines, sylphs, and oreads in the population of Qadira.56

Near the end of the Age of Destiny (-78 AR),7 Keleshites first invaded Qadira and raised the emperor's green flag of conquest with the Black Blade of War crossing its field. After two years, the Emperor of Kelesh, Adalan IV formalized the conquest and added the Silver Blade of Kings to the flag. He made Qadira a satrapy of the empire under the rule of Satrap Cerush in -43 AR.857 Tensions with neighboring Taldor began soon thereafter, first flaring into open (if sporadic) conflict in -4 AR.9 Within 100 years, a border camp of Omash was established, the Plains of Paresh were settled, and a tense border was established along the frontier with Taldor. The border was fortified with a 100 stone watchtowers, but the Keleshites bided their time and didn't invade, waiting for a sign of weakness from the Taldans. Skirmishes between the two nations continued for centuries, eventually leading to Qadira seizing the town of Gurat from Taldor.10 During this time, the original Qadiran nomads slowly began to adapt Keleshite culture and customs and settled in its growing cities.11

It would take another 1,500 years before Qadiran satraps significantly expanded its borders. In 1532 AR, Qadiran agents toppled the weak Pharaoh Menedes XXVI and annexed Osirion in Kelesh's name. During this time, Xerbystes I bargained for the still-current system of government; the satrapy was now hereditary with full power within the borders, with a vizier installed to advise on the Padishah Emperor's will for external matters. Direct Qadiran control of Osirion would continue for almost 700 years.108

In 1540 AR, a spawn of Rovagug named Volnagur was defeated over the Zho Mountains.12

By 2217 AR, the worship of Sarenrae was flourishing in Keleshite Osirion, with the Cult of the Dawnflower pushing for independence from the Padishah Empire. The satrap of Osirion attempted to put down the uprising, but failed to do so, and in 2253 AR Osirion became an independent caliphate with Keleshite rulers.8

Wars and uprisings were not the only things to trouble Qadira, and natural disasters have been a problem as well. The most devastating of these was the great earthquake of 2920 AR, which killed tens of thousands of Qadirans.10

In the 41st century AR, a succession struggle arose in Kelesh. Forty Qadiran princes left in 4067 AR for Casmaron to support their claims, but the conflict took another 15 years to fully resolve.10

War with Taldor

Qadira has been at war with Taldor numerous times throughout its long history. The war drums of Katheer have been silent since the beginning of the Age of Lost Omens, but Qadira has never stopped waging its wars. Gold is its weapon now, spices its shield, and its incredible trading power is its armor.3 The last great war with Taldor began in 4079 AR when a Qadiran and Keleshite army of 40,000 crossed the southern border of Taldor in order to take advantage of the upheaval and the relocation of the Taldan military due to the Even-Tongued Conquest in the west. This war lasted over five hundred years, not ending until three years before the end of the Age of Enthronement in 4603 AR. This period became known within Qadira as the Ghevran Victories.10


A Qadiran rides a horse.

As ruler of a distant province of a vast, sprawling empire, the satrap of Qadira does not have all the power he desires, but is still a political force to be reckoned with. In order to maintain his position every year, Satrap Xerbystes II has to send thirteen golden bulls and three hundred concubines to the heart of the empire, but for a man as rich as Xerbystes II this is nothing. His power is curtailed by his vizier, Hebizid Vraj, directly appointed by the Padishah Emperor himself. While Xerbystes II has complete power within the borders of Qadira, as a satrap he has little control over events outside his border; matters like how to handle piracy, trade, and war are controlled by the Padishah Emperor himself via his vizier. Unfortunately for Xerbystes, the Padishah Emperor does not want war and therefore the vizier restrains Xerbystes' lust for yet another war with Taldor to the north.10 Xerbystes II attempts to sate his desire for conquest by charging his special noble advisors, known as the Peerless, with near-impossible tasks and quests,1013 strengthening the 100 stone watchtowers on the Qadira-Taldor border, and achieving his goals through more subtle means.11


All Qadirans are conscripted for two years of military service.14

Foreign relations

Since the peace treaty of 4603 AR, Qadira has maintained a tentative truce with Taldor, although the two nations are highly suspicious of one another.158 Recently, Xerbystes II has had to quiet his saber rattling towards Taldor since the newly energized and powerful Grand Princess Eutropia has come to the throne.11

Qadira is on generally good terms with the undead nation of Geb and the city of Katapesh across the Obari Ocean,1617 although it is still on rocky terms with the nation of Osirion, whose rulers remember the centuries of Keleshite domination of their country.18

While foreigners are welcome, all are expected to register with the government as soon as they enter the country. Impersonating a citizen of Kelesh is not tolerated.19


Despite having productive mines and other natural resources, Qadira's economy relies heavily on foreign trade, both to the interior of Casmaron as well as with the Inner Sea region. Its major trade routes include the Golden Path, the overland route to Katheer, the North Tack, a sea trade lane that begins at Sedeq and follows the northern coast of the Inner Sea to Corentyn in Cheliax, and the Obari Crossing, a sea route the connects the Inner Sea to the distant nations of Iblydos, Kelesh, and Vudra via the Obari Ocean.2021 Qadira, like the other nations of the Golden Road region is a major importer of wood and finished goods.22


A hunter follows tracks in the deserts with her lion animal companion.

Qadira is a dry land, and the sand of its many deserts hide its ancient ruins. To the east lies the vast continent of Casmaron and the sprawling Padishah Empire of Kelesh, of which Qadira is but the westernmost satrapy. Qadira lies along the trade route known as the Golden Path, which brings goods overland to and from Casmaron. Qadira's coastline along the Inner Sea and Obari Ocean forms its southern and western borders. Only the northern border of Qadira is connected directly with another nation of Avistan. It is this border that has caused them the most grief, as it connects with Qadira's ancient rival, Taldor.2324 To the north of Qadira lies the vast, wilderness expanse of the Whistling Plains.25


Qadira's human population is overwhelmingly Keleshite, although significant numbers of expatriate Taldans live there as well.2627 Beyond the bustling caravan cities, Qadiran towns and villages are modest in size and face the constant challenge of defending themselves against wild giants, fearsome draconic creatures, irate elementals, and various other desert-dwelling beasts. Occasionally, these settlements manage to coexist harmoniously with these enigmatic creatures. An example of such harmony can be found in Gurat, a haven of learning where a cyclops prophet known as the Mouthpiece of Gurat imparts invaluable wisdom to the satrap, safeguarded by a thousand deaf soldiers.11


Due to its millennia-long contact with the various elemental races, Qadira has the largest concentration of geniekin in all of the Inner Sea region.28 Even today, geniekin children are born to otherwise ordinary human parents who have no idea they had any kind of distant elemental ancestry. Legends also tell of a hidden, independent settlement of geniekin living high in the Zho Mountains protected by powerful illusion magic.11


Caravans of Qittaj catfolk can also be found roaming between the cities and oases of Qadira and those further afield in Kelesh. These devotees of Sarenrae are itinerant wanderers who can most often be found congregating around the bustling marketplaces of the cities they visit.29

Society and culture

Qadira's peoples are known to be questioning, persuasive speakers of both Taldane and Kelish languages, and enjoy haggling over transactions. Qadirans hold familial ties and representation of utmost social importance, and rely on patronage to engender trust of strangers and foreigners between groups.19 Gifts and hospitality are sacred obligations to Keleshites, and guests are expected to provide gifts to hosts.14 Most Qadirans are renowned for their powers of persuasion, self-assuredness, a penchant for luxury and high status, and a strong sense of honor and generosity. Hospitality is both sacred and structured, with breaches of etiquette potentially leading to deadly feuds. This code of conduct even extends to those involved in criminal activities.11 Most Qadirans favour horse racing as the sport of kings, treating champion jockeys as other lands treat war heroes.30

The common people of Qadira share the same pride as their leaders, and it's well-founded. Every day, they witness their shores welcoming an influx of visitors who marvel at the wonders of the Keleshite empire. These wonders range from animated siege engines and flying carpets to groups of genie mercenaries and enormous elemental-powered sandships gliding through the dunes on unseen winds. Caravans arrive daily in Katheer, showcasing creatures and knowledge that remain unseen in the western lands. The Venicaan College of Medicaments and Chirurgery expertly melds magic and medical science to educate the most skilled healers for thousands of miles.11

The wealth of Absalom, and more importantly, the trading opportunities proffered by control of the great city, has long drawn the gaze of the satrap's most powerful merchant princes. Many Qadirans are ready to leave their deserts behind for the promise of lustrous Absalom gold.3


Qadira has only two major holidays: Kaliashahrim and Batul al-Alim. The first celebrates the Padishah Emperor and Qadira's allegiance to the empire, while the second commemorates the birthday of a popular romantic poet of the same name.31


The church of Sarenrae is the official religion of Kelesh, and by extension Qadira.14 It is by far the most popular religion in Qadira, even though two factions of her followers clash behind the political scene. An aggressive sect agitates for further military expansion, primarily in Taldor. Younger and junior members have banded together opposing this path, seeing their goddess as primarily interested in tolerance and redemption, not war and conquest. The government and the public-at-large seem unaware of this schism, which could flare up into open fighting at any moment.10

The church's recent determined campaign to eliminate slavery, a crusade seemingly on the verge of success, has rendered its priests unwelcome in slave-trading harbors such as Sedeq. In these ports, where bottled jaathooms,32 jabalis33 imprisoned in amber, humanoid captives, and caged monsters all occupy the auction block, the church's emissaries face resistance.11 This anti-slavery movement gained a powerful ally when the abolitionist Deena al-Parishat married Satrap Xerbystes II in 4720 AR to become shahiyan,34 spurring speculation that she would inspire him to abolish slavery.3536

Other popular faiths in Qadira include those of Irori37 and Rovagug.38

White Feather

A new secretive cult has begun arriving in Qadira from the east. Known as the White Feather monks, they preach pacifism. This puts them at odds with the satrap, who has them closely watched. He fears that their ideology might spread to the greater public, which might put his future war plans at risk. The church of Sarenrae sees these monks are possible allies, but is still unsure of their true motives.10


Paizo published two books on Qadira: Qadira, Gateway to the East and Qadira, Jewel of the East.

For additional as-yet unincorporated sources about this subject, see the Meta page.

  1. Paizo used "Qadiri" as an adjectival form, and in a few instances as a demonym, in early 3.5 and Pathfinder First Edition Pathfinder products. This includes The Inner Sea World Guide and Council of Thieves Adventure Path. Subsequent works have consistently and exclusively used "Qadiran" for both.
  2. Erik Mona, et al. “Appendices” in Campaign Setting, 247. Paizo Inc., 2008
  3. 3.0 3.1 3.2 Joshua J. Frost and Nicolas Logue. (June 17, 2008). Exploring Paizo's Pathfinder Society Organized Play, Part 4, Paizo Blog.
  4. Paizo referred to ifrits as efreet and naaris as ifrits until the publication of Highhelm. See also Rage of Elements pg. 3 and Pathfinder Core Preview pgs. 2, 13, 18.
  5. 5.0 5.1 James Jacobs, et al. The Inner Sea World Guide, 150. Paizo Inc., 2011
  6. Jessica Price. “History of Qadira” in Qadira, Jewel of the East, 6. Paizo Inc., 2017
  7. 7.0 7.1 Brian Cortijo. Qadira” in Qadira, Gateway to the East, 3. Paizo Inc., 2009
  8. 8.0 8.1 8.2 8.3 James Jacobs, et al. The Inner Sea World Guide, 35. Paizo Inc., 2011
  9. Erik Mona, et al. Shining Kingdoms” in World Guide, 122. Paizo Inc., 2019
  10. 10.0 10.1 10.2 10.3 10.4 10.5 10.6 10.7 10.8 James Jacobs, et al. The Inner Sea World Guide, 151. Paizo Inc., 2011
  11. 11.0 11.1 11.2 11.3 11.4 11.5 11.6 11.7 Erik Mona, et al. Golden Road” in World Guide, 54–55. Paizo Inc., 2019
  12. Clinton Boomer. “The Spawn of Rovagug” in The Final Wish, 55. Paizo Inc., 2009
  13. Brian Cortijo. Qadira” in Qadira, Gateway to the East, 5. Paizo Inc., 2009
  14. 14.0 14.1 14.2 Jessica Price. “Introduction” in Qadira, Jewel of the East, 3. Paizo Inc., 2017
  15. James Jacobs, et al. The Inner Sea World Guide, 183. Paizo Inc., 2011
  16. James Jacobs, et al. The Inner Sea World Guide, 75. Paizo Inc., 2011
  17. James Jacobs, et al. The Inner Sea World Guide, 91. Paizo Inc., 2011
  18. Erik Mona, et al. Golden Road” in World Guide, 56. Paizo Inc., 2019
  19. 19.0 19.1 Jessica Price. “Introduction” in Qadira, Jewel of the East, 2. Paizo Inc., 2017
  20. James Jacobs, et al. The Inner Sea World Guide. Paizo Inc., 2011
  21. James Jacobs, et al. The Inner Sea World Guide, 203–204. Paizo Inc., 2011
  22. Erik Mona, et al. Golden Road” in World Guide, 53. Paizo Inc., 2019
  23. James Jacobs, et al. The Inner Sea World Guide, 152. Paizo Inc., 2011
  24. James Jacobs, et al. The Inner Sea World Guide, 204. Paizo Inc., 2011
  25. Joshua J. Frost. Taldor, Empire in Decline” in Taldor, Echoes of Glory, 9. Paizo Inc., 2009
  26. James Jacobs, et al. The Inner Sea World Guide, 15. Paizo Inc., 2011
  27. James Jacobs, et al. The Inner Sea World Guide, 19. Paizo Inc., 2011
  28. James Jacobs, et al. The Inner Sea World Guide, 11. Paizo Inc., 2011
  29. David N. Ross. Catfolk” in Ancestry Guide, 17. Paizo Inc., 2021
  30. Erik Mona, et al. “Chapter 1: Characters” in Campaign Setting, 24–25. Paizo Inc., 2008
  31. James Jacobs, et al. The Inner Sea World Guide, 248. Paizo Inc., 2011
  32. Paizo referred to jaathooms as djinn until the publication of Rage of Elements. See Rage of Elements pg. 3 and Pathfinder Core Preview pg. 2.
  33. Paizo referred to jabalis as shaitan until the publication of Rage of Elements. See Rage of Elements pg. 3 and Pathfinder Core Preview pg. 2.
  34. Amirali Attar Olyaee, et al. Andira Marusek” in Legends, 12–13. Paizo Inc., 2020
  35. Matt Morris. Xerbystes II, Hebizid Vraj, and Deena al-Parishat” in Legends, 120. Paizo Inc., 2020
  36. Matt Morris. Xerbystes II, Hebizid Vraj, and Deena al-Parishat” in Legends, 122. Paizo Inc., 2020
  37. James Jacobs, et al. The Inner Sea World Guide, 222. Paizo Inc., 2011
  38. James Jacobs, et al. The Inner Sea World Guide, 225. Paizo Inc., 2011