Officially called the Four Realms Under One Crown, the Four Realms consisted of the Kingdom of Swynwr, Kingdom of Mangeni, Kingdom of Dahlgren, and the Kingdom of Tavallinen. The line of Dahlgren kings ruled as the One Crown, but the former rulers of Swynwr, Mangeni, and Tavallinen were allowed to retain their former royal houses as Archdukes. It was a land of many peoples and many tongues, held together only by the strength of the Dahlgren crown and the existence of the Empire of Vachen as a major rival.

Swynwr: The Old Right
The woods of Swynwr were the traditional dwelling-place of many nations of elves, most of whom had practiced subsistence agriculture or hunter-gatherer lifestyles. Though the most powerful groups elected from among their number a Queen Over the Wood, the first centralized administration was brought by Tavallinen when it invaded and conquered the area. The most powerful and most populous of the elven fiefdoms, Brenin, came to rule over the others in the years after the conquest. Though many humans and dwarves settled in Swynwr, it maintained the Old Right: legally, anyone who was not under the protection of an elven fief was subject to capture and the confiscation of their essence. The Old Right allowed the creation of enaid, soul-batteries, that were the center of elvish life; the husks left behind were turned into meirwon, used as thralls in armies and police forces. The One Crown generally turned a blind eye to the Old Right, including its plundering of other lands for candidates, in exchange for meirwon for the royal armies and a supply of enaid for weapons.

Mangeni: The Right of Strength
Mangeni was home to many dwarves, though it was not their homeland. They had arrived as adventurers and fortune-seekers from overseas before establishing themselves as rulers over a land that had once had only a sparse population of humans and elves. Their kingdom grew on its great natural wealth, and established a strong central administration. The dwarves of Mangeni brought from their homeland the concept of hawlcryf, rendered into Dahlgrish as The Right of Strength or the Right of Might. It holds that anyone unable to defend themselves is subject to the full depredations that anyone may wish to heap upon them. This took the form of robbery most often, but increasingly to the confiscation of whole people to work the mines. As with the Old Right, this was overlooked by the Dahlgren court due to the fantastic productivity of the mines. Mangeni was the only one of the realms to resist integration in a fierce campaign still known as The Branding.

Tavallinen: The Right of Unification
Tavallinen itself was a hodgepodge of human, dwarven, and elven petty kingdoms, but they were held in rigid order by the Right Lord of Tavallinen, who later became the Archduke. Prime and productive farming land, Tavallinen was the center of a robust trade with the other realms and had a reputation for producing fierce soldiers. The relationship was such that elves from Swynwr and dwarves from Mangeni were allowed to exercise their Rights upon the land as if it had been their own, though the punishment for doing so in error was very severe, typically death. It was Tavallinen that first subdued the unruly elves of Swynwr, and it was their royal house that, upon the extinction of the male line of Dahlgren, unified the Realms. Fittingly, due to its polyglot nature, the royal house has both dwarven and elvish blood.

Dahlgren: The Right of Rule
Long the most populous and prosperous of the realms, Dahlgren is so ancient that its origins are largely lost. Largely a realm of humans, it nevertheless boasted many regions and languages with long histories of animosity before their unification. The capital lay within its bounds, and its fields and factories were long some of the ablest producers out of any in the land. Dahlgren’s royal house stretched unbroken to the defeat of the Vachen Empire, of which it had once been a vassal. The last King married his daughter to the King of Tavallinen, only to see his sons fall to battle or illness. This led that king to declare the realms unified, though The Branding raged for twenty years before Mangeni was firmly under control. Moving the court to Dahlgren and leaving a cadet branch on the throne of Tavallinen, the king ‘s consolidation of power set the stage for 300 years of union.

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