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 A brief history and travel guide of the colovian west, part 1

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Zinitrad



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Age : 22
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PostSubject: A brief history and travel guide of the colovian west, part 1   Wed Mar 11, 2015 2:41 am

Colovia: A Brief History and Travel Guide to the Cyrodiilic West, part 1; The Torellian Highland.


[select excerpts from chapter one of the guide book 'Colovia', by Sylvester Mydrol]

To begin our journey through my homeland, I think its best we start with perhaps one of its most famous regions, the home of Sancre Tor and the Birthplace of Emperor Reman, Torellia.

Geography

Known as Torehlent in the old language of the highlanders, which literally translates to 'hill-land', Torellia is better known simply as the Colovian Highlands. Both names are apt descriptors for this region, composed of steep and rocky hills and canyons that descend from the meeting point of the western Jeralls and the mountainous hills that divide eastern Hammerfell from Cyrod. As they roll southeast they become smaller and smaller, eventually giving way to the Torellian Valley, a large expanse of flatland boxed in by the hills and the Great Forest. It is here that Chorrol can be found.

Chorrol

While certainly not one of the largest ones in all of ancient Colovia, The Kingdom of Chorrol certainly was the largest in Torellia. Though its hard to be certain, it is believed by archaeologists and historians that it was founded by the once-nomadic Torellians for a simple purpose: to be a hub for the brewing of beer. Even today the fields of the Torellian Valley are filled with wheat, barley, and breweries, and if you purchase a colovian beer from an inn, you're very likely drinking an old Torellian recipe.

The small valley kingdom first became known as the seat of County Chorrol during the rule of Reman, when he consolidated the many facets of the Colovian Estates into powerful Counties. With the exception of the interregnum, in which Chorrol frequently was an independent kingdom, Torellia has remained a County ever since.

Cultures and Natives

It will never be known whether the ancient nedes actually settled Torellia, or whether they ignored it in favor of warmer climes upon travelling through the Pale Pass. The Ayleidoon made sure of that, as they crushed nearly all evidence of ancient nedic society in Cyrodiil. As such, it is unknown who the first colonists of the highlands were.

The peoples who would settle the hills surrounding the Sancre Tor post-slavery were like any other ancient Cyrods; they were tribal bands, families bound not by blood but experience as slaves- Few of the first Cyrod's knew who they were bred from anyways. Those ex-slaves who moved into Torellia adopted a pseudo-nomadic lifestyle, once centered around a clan hill, also known as the Tor, or the Dor- both of which are valid spellings. Ancient Torellians followed annual or semi-anual migratory patterns, in which they wandered throughout the valleys herding cattle. The cycles ended and began at the clan hill, where the clan would bury those who had died during that year, and where they would celebrate those who had been born.

The hills are littered with small tombs and simple burial chambers, often just caves with bodies placed in simple wooden coffins. The remnants of this practice can be seen in the mausoleums often held by modern torellian nobles. Perhaps the most famous example of a Torellian hill tomb was the one Reman commissioned to be built at Sancre Tor (see Reman, pg. 36.)

Ethnic Torellians are often easy to identify, as most Torellian surnames are simply the names of their ancient clanhill, a remnant of a bygone era. Gessildor, Cuptor, Mercador- if you've seen a name like this, you've likely seen a Torellian.

Perhaps one of the most notable (and notorious) Torellian celebration is the Torehlendfesitta, or the Hill-Land Festival. Its origin is believed to date back to the early first era around the time of Chorrol's founding, as a sort of replacement of the nomadic hill celebration for the stationary brewers. Tradition holds that the date of the Torehlendfessa, the twelth of Rain Hand, was the date the city was founded- filling in the position of the beginning of a migratory cycle.

The culture of the Torellians has mostly faded over time and homogenized with the Heartlanders and the Southern Colovs. As far back as the interregnum, the families who still practiced nomadic life were few and far in between. Hundreds of tombs throughout the hills have been untouched for centuries, and most ethnic Torellians have no knowledge as to which hill is the hill of their family- some don't even know what a clan hill is.

As with every other part of Colovia, Torellia is a land of ebb and flow, and colovians of all varieties can be found somewhere or another. Cyro-Nords and Bretonics have historically been significant portions of the populations, but Waldics, Kvetchi, and even Abeceans can be found. Since the 'taming' of Morrowind that came with the third era, Chorrol became home to one of Cyrodiil's dunmeri enclaves. The 'Ashtown', as it is called, has never been quite as resistant to change as Skyrim's infamous grey quarter, but it still holds its own little flair.

Food and Drink

Perhaps my favorite part of traveling is being able to sample the local flavor. The cuisine of the Torellians is simple and hearty, and shares much in common with the Cyro-Nords. Sausages of different varieties are staples- there is a suasage for practically any form of meat available, including pig liver. The local cheeses are very sharp, and in some cases have a slight bit of tang to them. Breads and baked treats are very common, as wheat and barley are a always produced in excess to satisfy the demand of beer. As stated earlier, beer is a staple drink, though the wine from the south and the mead from the north are common sights within their bars.

Reman

Emperor Reman Dor is perhaps one of the West's greatest sons. Though his birth parents are a controversial subject, it is known that Reman grew up a hill nomad, raised by his supposed adoptive mother, Sfetianna, or as she's known in Nibenese myth, Sed-Yenna. Much of Reman's formative years are a great mystery, and there are tremendous gaps between his childhood in the hills and valleys of Torellia, and his great victory in the Jeralls.

It is no coincidence that Reman chose the name Dor to represent his lineage. For he was a Torellian, and as a Torellian his clan name denoted his hill. But Reman was not just of any hill, he was of The Hill, Sancre Tor. Near the end of his life Reman ordered the construction of what would be his clan's burial chambers, the mausoleum of Sancre Tor. Though now a derelict and haunted ruin, in its prime it was an opulent and massive structure, housing the remains of Reman and all of his verifiable bastards.






(Originally posted by me here: http://www.reddit.com/r/teslore/comments/2tv85e/colovia_a_brief_history_and_travel_guide_to_the/ )
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