Geography & History
The Principality of Corwyn occupies the south-eastern part of The North Kingdom, an island landmass about the size of the modern UK, blessed with a temperate climate. The neighbouring state to the West of Corwyn is the Barony of Eldred. Both share a common language and a history of human settlement going back 800 years. The southern part of their common landmass (the North Kingdom) is generally one of rolling hills and grasslands, still heavily forested in the wilder parts. Eldred tends to be a little wilder and less fertile, especially along its storm-tossed western coast.
The North-Western most province of the Kingdom is The Principality of Gwynedd (see the details for Edwyn's campaign)
Eight centuries ago, the human settlers and their demi-human allies drove out more monstrous races from the fertile lowlands. These "monsters", including many of the goblinoid races, now inhabit the wilder more isolated locales, such as deep forests, mountains and of course cave and tunnel complexes.
The original founder of the Principality was Prince Corwyn, who rid his liege's kingdom of a troublesome dragon. He was granted the south-eastern lands to settle with his peeple in payment. Corwyn adopted the Red Dragon banner (Y Draig Goch). His son, the first Prince Emrys, led the attempts to drive back the monsters and make the land safe for civlised folk.
Over most of Corwyn's history, the Principality has been a rival to the Barony of Eldred. There have been many border skirmishes, cattle raids and the like. During the period 300-400 years ago, this became a full-fledged border war. However, for the last 100 years the two nations have enjoyed an uneasy peace.
The state religion of Corwyn is worship of Heironeous, the lawful good deity of Chivalry, Justice, Honor, War, Daring and Valor. His holy symbol is a lightning bolt. The royal family and all nobles and most landed and wealthy people practice the religion of the Archpaladin. Most noble PCs from Corwin, especially paladins and fighters, are likely to worship Heironeous.
They may well follow The Heironean Code, which consists of three sets of duties:
- Duty to the People. This duty stresses courage, justice, mercy, valor, protection of the weak, and faithfulness to church superiors of officer of righteous law.
Duty to the Arch-paladin. This duty stresses obedience to Heironeous himself, devotion to the church, generosity, championing good against evil, putting the needs of the church and the faith above those of mortals.
Duty to a Lady. This duty pertains to the concept of courtly love, devotion to one's beloved, and respect toward all women in general.
The faith of Heironeous is a very militaristic one, launching crusades against evil and championing causes.
Clergy: Priests of Heironeous often travel the world on orders from their superiors to seek out and destroy evil. Their favored weapons are the longsword and battleaxe.
However, amongst the less well-off, Pelor is the god of choice. Pelor is the neutral good god of the Sun, Light, Strength, and Healing and is actually worshipped by more humans in Corwyn than Heironeous. Pelor is a popular choice among player character clerics because he is the only god of the main pantheon with the healing domain. He is known as the Shining One, and the Sun Father and as the creator of much that is good. His holy symbol is a face in a sun.
The Principality of Corwyn is intolerant towards any evil religions. Most non-evil religions are tolerated and allowed to practice as long as they don't encourage any activity against the interests of the state.
In the Barony of Eldred, however, the state religion and only widely practiced religion is that of Saint Cuthbert of the Cudgel, god of Retribution and the combative deity of Wisdom, Dedication, and Zeal. For a long time, Eldred did not tolerate chaotic individuals or their religions at all. These days chaotic individuals are tolerated as long as they do not practice their religion, preach, or openly use divine magic of a chaotic deity.
Saint Cuthbert's priesthood is divided into a number of orders including the following:
- The Chapeaux, whose symbol is a crumpled hat, seek to convert people into their faith. Paladins of Saint Cuthbert, known as Votaries or Communicants, have an honorary position in the Order of the Chapeaux. Their role is not just to convert others, but to actually fight enemies of the faith.
The Stars, whose symbol is a starburst, seek to enforce doctrinal purity among those already dedicated to the saint. Most are lawful neutral, and they do not shy from using mind-reading magic in order to ensure that even the private thoughts of their flock are pure.
The Society of the Sanctified Mind focuses on ridding the world of evil psionicists. It was founded by a cleric of Saint Cuthbert named Sir Jeremy Costineux, after his home village was enslaved by illithids. This society is a knightly order rather than a strictly religious one, and people of a wide variety of character classes belong to it.