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Durpar was a merchant kingdom of the Shining Lands in Southeast Faerûn that rested southeast of the Beastlands along the coast of the Golden Water.[2][15] The once-glorious nation that experienced great decline throughout the 15th century DR.[3]

Description[]

Despite its hot and humid climate, Verdant farms surrounded the Golden Water, the shoreline of which was given to the mansions of the luxury-loving ruling merchant elite of the kingdom.[citation needed]

Geography[]

The land of Durpar comprised the cities and surrounding lands that wrapped around the bay of the Golden Water.[16]

It was protected from the intense storms of the Raurin to the northeast by the Giant's Belt and Dustwall Mountains,[2][7] and separated from Estagund to the south by the Curna Mountains.[15]

The continent of Zakhara was located to the south of Durpar, on the opposite side of the Great Sea.[17]

Geographical Features[]

The shimmering bay known as the Golden Water

Mountainous regions of Durpar were notable sources of the animate plangent crystals used to make prosthetic limbs.[3]

Bodies of Water[]

Forests[]

Mountains[]

  • Raurin Gap, the path between the Giant's Belt and Dustwalls that housed the foreboding monolith known as Adama's Tooth.[23]

Society[]

When a man is among his friends, he should enjoy his wealth. When a man is trading, he should trade.
— Maxim of Jeradeem.[24]

The society of Durpar wholly revolved around business.[25] Everything from national defense[26] to the national government was treated as some sort of financial transaction. The only ideal held in higher regard than the increase of personal wealth was adherence to tenets of the Adama or "The One",[27][28] the philosophical ideal[29] and societal code of honor that dictated how the Durpari people conducted themselves in business and their daily lives.[7]

Beyond these rules however, citizens of Durpar generally lived free and open lives with little influence from the government,.[14] excessive taxes or extravagant bureaucracy.[30]

Inns in Durpar were worth visiting as there were nightly entertainments in every house. All foreigners were welcome, so long as they had wealth and knew how to conduct themselves.[citation needed]

Culture[]

A citizen of Durpar with a prosthetic arm form from plangent.

While public displays of wealth was a common tradition among the Durpari people, exhibiting riches that were not truly theirs was unacceptable, as was hiding away that which rightfully were.[24]

Durpari fashion, such as their coral jewelry[31] and style of decorative fillet, could be found in civilized realms beyond the kingdom's borders. It was made available to people of the Heartlands by means of the Aurora's Emporium retail company and their expansive catalogue.[32]

Literacy[33] and multilingualism was considered very important among the Durpari people. Most merchants of Durpar could converse in common, Thorass, Akalan, Midani, Dwarvish, halfling and several others.[24]

Religion[]

The Adama taught that all deities of the Faerûnian pantheon and beyond were all parts of the same singular entity.[31] Some recognizable deities were worshipped in the nation's cities, albeit under different names: Gond, the god of invention and artifice became Zionil,[8] Oghma, the god of knowledge and inspiration became Curna,[9] and Selûne, the goddess of the moon became Lucha.[10]

Because of this dynamic, Durpar's citizens were taught not to hate foreign religions and it enjoyed the label as being one of the most tolerant lands in all the Realms.[28]

Government[]

While the nation of Durpar remained a "merchant kingdom", terminology dating back to its old history,[34] it was governed along with Var and Estagund[29] for much of its history by the ruling body known as the Nawab Council of Durpar.[18] It was composed of the heads of the eleven wealthiest mercantile houses or chakas. The Grand Nawab served as the head of this council, an individual that was included among the wealthiest people in all Faerûn.[2]

While a chaka had to accumulate a great amount of wealth to earn a seat on the council, it was thought to be impossible without maintain good and honest business practices, as laid out by the code of the Adama. The Nawab Council itself conducted their affairs with strict adherence to the Adama, and while they may have schemed and acted against their own rivals, service of the public good always took precedence over individual financial interests.[27]

Individual communities each had their own eleven-seat council, upon which sat the heads of local, less-influential chakas.[14]

As of the late 15th century, rulership of Durpar was taken over by the powerful Datharathi chaka, which had emerged triumphant over the others after years of conflict.[3][7]

Trade[]

Durpari traders were highly skilled compared to others on Toril and liked to use their trading skills. In general they detested fraudulent or thieving behavior.[35] For many years, the nation received and traded in goods from all across Toril,[35] traveling across land in great caravans[1] as far away as the towns of Delbyl[36] and Zindalankh in the Endless Wastes,[37] settlements in Zakhara across the Great Sea,[31] and even the far-western continent of Maztica beyond the Trackless Sea.[38]

It was possible to find a much wider selection of items in Durpar than virtually anywhere else in Faerûn.[35] The nation exported a variety of goods that were considered exotic in other founds, such as beans used for brewing kaeth,[38][12][39] and delicacies that were made from Maztican imports.[40]

Following its lengthy decline, the last cities of Durpar only managed to trade with nearby Estagund and the returned empire of High Imaskar.[7]

Currency[]

Durpar minted its own variety of trade bar, known as the Durpar Vellim.[41][42]

Defenses[]

For much of its history, Durpar eschewed a regular standing army and opted to entrust their security to a number of privately-hired mercenary companies.[26]

As of the late 15th century, the remaining cities of Durpar were defended by the goblinoid army commanded by the dominant Datharathi chaka.[3][7] Bands of adventurers were often hired on as well to keep at bay the monstrous armies of the nearby Beastlands.[43]

History[]

Early History[]

During the Age of the Proud Peoples, approximately 6000 years before the erection of the Standing Stone, the lands of Durpar were considered a mere territory of the ancient Imaskari empire.[44] When the empire fell in the −2488 DR, the people of the Durpari subject-state fell to chaos and savagery,[31][45][46] a state that would continue for millennia.[34] Eventually, nearly all of the Durpari barbarians were slaughtered by the invading Mulhorandi empire.[31]

Fortunately the remaining Durpari, the lands across the Golden Coast were united as the singular Kingdom of Durpar in the Year of Clipped Wings, −623 DR, under the leadership of Maharajah Udandwi.[45][34] The strength of the grew as centuries progress, as it formed alliances with Veldorn and Gundavar,[45][47] and opened up trade with Mulhorand to the north.[45][48] As the philosophical teachings of Satama became widespread across Durpar and the southern realm of Var circa the Year of Able Warriors, −256 DR,[citation needed] a collective shift took over the region, and it came to be known as the "Lands of the One".[31]

As a sign of what would plague the region for many centuries to follow, growing hordes of monsters overwhelmed the coastal cities of Veldorn throughout the 2nd[48] and 3rd centuries DR.[45] Despite the best efforts of the Durpari armed forces to hold these armies at bay, the city of Vaelan was sacked by a force of monstrous werebeasts in the Year of the Dun Dragon, 245 DR, and upon thousands of refugees fled into the cities of Durpar for safety.[49]

Years of Prosperity[]

When the heirless Maharajah Waileen V died in the Year of the One's Tears, 428 DR, the nation's first high council was established to steward the kingdom until one could be named.[50][51] After decades of conflict between numerous chakas vying for power and control, the High Council was officially named the governing body for the mercantile monarchy.[50][52]

The nation was briefly invaded by Dambrath in the Year of the Gnashing Tooth, 553 DR.[53]

In what has been celebrated as one of the greatest feats of commerce in the nation's history, the exalted Jeradeem Seltarir successfully negotiated the acquisition of the royal throne of Estagund in the Year of Crimson Magics, 1026 DR,[50][54] for a price of 24 gems,[29] approximating 1,000,000 gp in value.[citation needed] The celebrated union of the two nations led to new military victories against the monstrous occupying armies to the south, taking back the cities of Vaelantar and Assur from a collective of beholders, and seizing Ormpé from the clutches of demons in the first years of the 12th century.[50][55]

Despite these successes, Durpari forces remained unable to wrest control of much of Veldorn to the northwest, leaving closed the trade routes leading to Mulhorand.[56] A second failed attempt was made in the late 13th century DR, but it too failed after a mere three–days trek into Veldorn.[14][57] Following this defeat, the leaders of Durpar swore to never again force their armies to march upon the bestial creatures and horrific monstrosities of Veldorn,[58] the country that came to be known as the Beastlands.[3]

Great Decline[]

The 15th century saw a stark turn in the fortunes and fate of the Durpari kingdom. Some time following the Spellplague, the monstrous of the Beastlands, as Veldorn had come to be known as, march south upon the Shining Lands. Many of Durpar's cities were ravaged by the assault, and lay in ruin as of the Year of the Ageless One, 1479 DR.[3]

To help stem the destruction and chaos, the influential Datharathi chaka banded together with several lesser merchant houses and allied themselves with the Iron Eye goblins from the Curna Mountains. When some of the Durpari chakas broke with their treaty, the Merchant Wars broke out throughout the nation, with the Datharathi emerging victorious. By that time, only the city of Vaelan remained as the only thriving city in Durpar,[3] and the kingdom as a whole remained in a precarious state of existence.[43]

Notable Locations[]

Ruins[]

  • Old Vaelan, all that remained of the former city to hold the name "Vaelan" was an underground dungeon complex that served as the lair of the vampire lord Saed.[23]

Settlements[]

  • Assur, a thriving seaside town[citation needed] that was leveled by giants and rebuilt as a naval outpost.[3][7]
  • Flyndagol, the militarized city that stood on the border of the Raurin desert.[59]
  • Heldapan, the kingdom's capital city leading[33] up to the late 14th century DR.[14]
  • Lastarr, formerly part of Estagund, this independent city was not considered part of the Durpari kingdom despite being within its borders.[59]
  • Morvar, a culturally diverse city that housed great populations of the nation's demihuman races.[60]
  • Orpher, the coastal settlement whose chaka originated as an adventuring company rather than Durpari family.[59]
  • Vaelan, Durpar's newest capital built on the western shore of the Golden Water remained the center of center of Durpari civilization during its darkest days.[3][23][7]
  • Turelve, the city that facilitated north-bound exports and served as a bulwark against the monsters of the Beastlands.[60]

Inhabitants[]

In addition to the large population of ethnic Durpari, the nation was home to many halflings, notable groups of city-dwelling half-elves,[25] along with gnomes, dwarves,[30] and Kenku.[3]

Appendix[]

External Links[]

References[]

  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 Scott Bennie (February 1990). Old Empires. Edited by Mike Breault. (TSR, Inc.), p. 9. ISBN 978-0880388214.
  2. 2.0 2.1 2.2 2.3 2.4 2.5 Ed Greenwood, Sean K. Reynolds, Skip Williams, Rob Heinsoo (June 2001). Forgotten Realms Campaign Setting 3rd edition. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 198. ISBN 0-7869-1836-5.
  3. 3.00 3.01 3.02 3.03 3.04 3.05 3.06 3.07 3.08 3.09 3.10 3.11 Bruce R. Cordell, Ed Greenwood, Chris Sims (August 2008). Forgotten Realms Campaign Guide. Edited by Jennifer Clarke Wilkes, et al. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 118. ISBN 978-0-7869-4924-3.
  4. Tom Prusa (1993). The Shining South. (TSR, Inc), p. 2. ISBN 1-56076-595-X.
  5. Rob Heinsoo, Logan Bonner, Robert J. Schwalb (September 2008). Forgotten Realms Player's Guide. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 156. ISBN 978-0-7869-4929-8.
  6. Reynolds, Forbeck, Jacobs, Boyd (March 2003). Races of Faerûn. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 110. ISBN 0-7869-2875-1.
  7. 7.0 7.1 7.2 7.3 7.4 7.5 7.6 7.7 Rob Heinsoo, Logan Bonner, Robert J. Schwalb (September 2008). Forgotten Realms Player's Guide. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 94. ISBN 978-0-7869-4929-8.
  8. 8.0 8.1 Julia Martin, Eric L. Boyd (March 1996). Faiths & Avatars. (TSR, Inc.), p. 62. ISBN 978-0786903849.
  9. 9.0 9.1 Julia Martin, Eric L. Boyd (March 1996). Faiths & Avatars. (TSR, Inc.), p. 131. ISBN 978-0786903849.
  10. 10.0 10.1 Julia Martin, Eric L. Boyd (March 1996). Faiths & Avatars. (TSR, Inc.), p. 134. ISBN 978-0786903849.
  11. Tom Prusa (1993). The Shining South. (TSR, Inc), p. 47. ISBN 1-56076-595-X.
  12. 12.0 12.1 Jeff Grubb, Julia Martin, Steven E. Schend et al (1992). Aurora's Whole Realms Catalogue. (TSR, Inc), p. 132. ISBN 0-5607-6327-2.
  13. Tom Prusa (1993). The Shining South. (TSR, Inc), p. 60. ISBN 1-56076-595-X.
  14. 14.0 14.1 14.2 14.3 14.4 Thomas Reid (October 2004). Shining South. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 119. ISBN 0-7869-3492-1.
  15. 15.0 15.1 Map included in Ed Greenwood, Sean K. Reynolds, Skip Williams, Rob Heinsoo (June 2001). Forgotten Realms Campaign Setting 3rd edition. (Wizards of the Coast). ISBN 0-7869-1836-5.
  16. Thomas Reid (October 2004). Shining South. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 109. ISBN 0-7869-3492-1.
  17. Ed Greenwood, Julia Martin, Jeff Grubb (1993). Forgotten Realms Campaign Setting 2nd edition (revised), A Grand Tour of the Realms. (TSR, Inc), p. 5. ISBN 1-5607-6617-4.
  18. 18.0 18.1 18.2 18.3 Thomas Reid (October 2004). Shining South. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 112. ISBN 0-7869-3492-1.
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  21. Thomas Reid (October 2004). Shining South. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 110. ISBN 0-7869-3492-1.
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  24. 24.0 24.1 24.2 Tom Prusa (1993). The Shining South. (TSR, Inc), p. 58. ISBN 1-56076-595-X.
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  27. 27.0 27.1 Thomas Reid (October 2004). Shining South. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 116. ISBN 0-7869-3492-1.
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  29. 29.0 29.1 29.2 Tom Prusa (1993). The Shining South. (TSR, Inc), p. 55. ISBN 1-56076-595-X.
  30. 30.0 30.1 Tom Prusa (1993). The Shining South. (TSR, Inc), p. 57. ISBN 1-56076-595-X.
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