Anansie

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The Sultanate of Anansie

Ruler: Asad hai Draco, son of Tzepesh hai Draco Religion: Taw’hid (Translates as ‘The Worship’)
The region of Anansie is a large city with various nomadic tribes that travel in the region known as The Wastes. The desert is a cursed land, where very little grows and water magic is forbidden – any moisture drawn to create water pulls from the people and plants that exist there, killing them. The people of Anansie are called Hinde, even though they have not been in Hinde for generations.

The desert nation of Anansie was once a city that existed in a region nestled between Hinde and the Heartlands, along with the cities of Enoch and Tajima. A powerful Aria was released within the region during a battle with the demon Ravana, which went completely out of control, pulling the three cities into another plane, and from there into the fertile valley south of Anaitha, on the island of Kith Kanaan. The destructive forces tore the valley apart, turning it into a desert, with Anansie the northern-most city, closest to any other civilization.

The desert nation was controlled by a sultan, who was advised by a vizier. The city was fiercly proud, facing each adversity with an infinite strength that comes from a people having to fend for themselves in a heartless land.

Near 1002 AE, the sultan of Anansie had yet to find a son suitable for marrying his daughter, Fatima. Contests were held, and while the celebrations did not go smoothly, in the end Tzepesh hai Draco, the ruler of Threshold presented himself a worthy heir. Within a year a magical plague struck the city, released from the ruins of Tajima. The sultan fell during the plague, poisoned by Tzepesh Draco so that the city could have solid leadership and survive the plague and what was soon to come.

Not long afterwards, Tzepesh, now sultan of Anansie, had an effective fighting force prepared for the invasion from the Southern Wilds. Ravana's daughter, Torahime, had risen and amassed an army, preparing a two-prong attack against the city of Anansie, attempting to infiltrate the nobility while sending her monsters and undead to distract the forces. While the attack was repulsed, and Torahime slain, a number of diplomats from Aranous were also killed.

When Aranous self-destructed, the undead and infernal creatures that fled the region's destruction descended upon Anansie. Faced with an attack from the east as well as the south, Tzepesh declared the nation lost and ordered the retreat of the citizens to the north. The city of Anansie is now a bastion within the desert, where soldiers continue to fight against the invading creatures of the south. While it would normally be considered a losing battle, Tzepesh and his daughter Lilith hai Draco have kept the invading forces from completely overwhelming the region.

Beliefs

The people of Anansie never encountered Joshua, who arrived to assist the people of Adonai after Anansie and her two sister cities came to Kith Kanaan. It is, in fact, the encountering of Anansie which convinced the Joshuites that Kith Kanaan was the place promised to them by Joshua – though the people of Anansie are not entirely certain of this truth. The people of Anansie revere the prophet Suleiman, , the sultan who was said to have been graced with impossible wisdom by Adonai. Their stories explain how Suleiman was able to save his people by learning the secrets of the Elemental Lords, binding them with oaths, then using those oaths to turn the elementals against Ravana. The people of Anansie accept Joshua as the prophet of the Joshuites, but not necessarily of the people of Anansie. They hold faith in the six articles of belief, an expression of the beliefs of the people of Hinde before the coming of Joshua, laid out when Adonai’s Angels spoke to Suleiman. The Songs of Solomon are a series of prayers and songs written by Suleiman, and is companion to the Book of Circles, two central parts of the Anansie people. The religion of the Anansie are much more practical and harsh than those of the Joshuites. Punishments for Sin are enacted by removing the offending part, and executions are accepted. Slavery was accepted in Anansie, including the binding and servitude of elemental spirits for a period of up to one thousand years, plus a day.

  1. Belief in Adonai, the one and only one worthy of worship (tawhid).
  2. Belief in the prophets (nabi) and messengers (rusul) sent by Adonai.
  3. Belief in the Books (kutub) sent by Adonai.
  4. Belief in the Angels (mala’ika) of Adonai.
  5. Belief in Judgement (qiyama) and Resurrection (rebirth in the Third Garden).
  6. Belief in Destiny / Fate (qadar).

Culture

The Wastes is a perpetual desert in the central region of Kith Kanaan, cursed at the time of Anansie’s appearance in the distant past. The people of Anansie followed a strict religion, central to the worship of Adonai – the same god that is worshipped by the Joshuites. The Anansie are a proud people, full of spirit and with a love of music and dance. They hold to a fierce code of honour, but respect cunning. Currently, the Sultanate does not exist, as the lands of Anansie have been at war for over two decades, fighting against the minions of Ravana, the Queen of Demons. Anansie has all but fallen, though the Sultan has kept the demons from truly taking the land. The people of Anansie have scattered north through Kith Kanaan, and hold to their faith as the core of their identity.

Marriage

Polygamy was accepted in Anansie, and a person's status was partially dependant on how many wives they could afford. The first wife was in charge of the household and had final say over all other wives, and the husband was allowed to keep a harem. It was considered wrong to take a wife if the husband was unable to afford to sustain the family as a result.

Cultural Taboos

Honour: The people of Anansie had an incredibly fierce sense of honour, which often was shown by men attempting to prove themselves superior than those around them. This code of honour often manifested as arrogance to those outside, but personal honour was seen as incredibly important.

A person dishonoured was 'not a man', and was expected to exact vengeance against the person who wronged them. This often resulted in blood fueds beween families which could span generations. While most families expected the men to handle blood fueds, women have proven exceptional assassins, avenging families long thought destroyed.

Touch: It was considered improper for a man to touch a woman that he does not 'own' or who is not a relative. As such, women were often kept at some distance from strangers, or hidden away when guests had arrived. Servants were considered fair game, but only if they offered themselves first.

The Ban of the Desert

Water magic is explicitly forbidden within the sands of Anansie. Water magic that is used there pulls moisture from the region, and can destroy the water producing plants that still exist, or drain the underwater tables, draining the very few oasis that exist. If there is no ready source of water, the magic sucks the moisture from the nearest animals or people, slaughtering caravans or individuals to fuel the spell. This Ban enforces itself regardless of what form of magic is used, exacting a supernatural penalty.

Prejudice

The people of Anaitha follow the path of Taw’hid. While they accept the Joshuites as brothers in faith, they do not feel their brethren follow as strict and true a path as they, themselves, walk. They do not accept other faiths, but will be polite to those who practice false religions as long as such religions are not brought into their homes or among their people. Being rent from their homeland, the people of Anaitha have accepted the hospitality of other nations, and have carved out places for themselves where they can worship without interference from foreign faiths, and keep their culture intact. They do not preach their faith, as proselytising is forbidden. Instead, like their Joshuite brethren, they believe that walking a true path is a far better example than any words spoken. The people of Anansie do not trust anyone from the Southern Wilds, nor anyone who practices Necromancy or Infernalism, and consider use of the Aria a profanity worthy only of having one’s tongue removed.

Inspiration

Combine Islam with the stories of the Arabian Nights. Anansie balances aspects of the Middle East and India. Living under the Curse of the Wastes, the people of Anansie accept that Adonai punishes those who break faith with him, but is ultimately forgiving of the truly repentant. The people of Anansie are also respectful of the Elemental Nobles, treating the elemental folk with respect and dignity, but never with reverence. Only Adonai, and Adonai alone, may be revered. Characters of this Nation are either adults who have until recently been active in the war to the south of the Shire, or who were only children when Anansie was attacked. Most characters who have connections to Anansie should not take this Nationality, but should instead take an allegiance to Anansie instead.

Common Names

Last names are unusual for the people of Anansie, as the names can change depending on what the person is talking about. The prefix i-<location> followed by the name of a location means ‘the person from <location>’, such as i-Anan (the person from Anansie). A person may have a descriptive title, using Al as ‘the’. Thus someone may use Al-<title>, such that Al-Nisr (the eagle) as a last name. al-<name> may also mean ‘the house of’ or ‘the tribe of’, such that al-Ghazi means ‘the house of Ghazi’. ibn- and bin- means ‘son of’, and may be used for creating a last name. The father’s name is, so bin-Imaran means ‘son of Imaran’. bint- means ‘daughter of’, and usually uses the mother’s name, so bint-Fatima is the ‘daughter of Fatima’. Only the first-born daughters may be offered to take the father’s name as their last name. Beni means ‘the family’ and thus can be used to represent one’s family, so Ahmad al-Ghazi is ‘Ahmad, the son of Ghazi’ and Beni Ghazi means ‘The Ghazi Family’. abd- means ‘slave’. Slavery is accepted in Anansie, and a person may be named abd-<person> to represent who the owner of the slave is. Usually slaves are treated with respect, almost a part of the family. At the death of a family elder, it is not uncommon for slaves to be released, though a number offer themselves to the household for the next generation, as food, clothing, and income is almost guaranteed, where a homeless slave could starve. A variant is abd al (or abd ul) which means ‘slave of the <family name>’. Abdul is not a name in and of itself, and has no meaning alone.
min- means ‘from’, and is often used by priests or people of faith and piety. It is usually connected to a hallowed location or to one of the angels of Adonai or another sacred figure. min-Suleiman is not uncommon, though very few would use min-Adonai. abu- means ‘father of’, and is uncommon unless one’s son is extremely well-known. umm- means ‘mother of’, and is usually used only if the daughter of the family is of great renown. sitt- is a title only used for powerful and respected women, such as the Sultan’s Daughter (sitt-Lilith).
Thus, depending on the circumstances, you may hear someone use a different last name, depending on the person they are speaking to. This can go a long way to determining how someone feels about another person, as the more they trust and like another, the more person the name they use for themselves and for others.

Examples Ahmad i-Anan ‘I am Ahmad of Anansie’ would mean that the person doesn’t really know who they are talking to. Ahmad al-Ghazi ‘I am Ahmad of the House of Ghazi’. This informs the listener that Ahmad is a member of the Ghazi family – this could be anywhere from a dozen to a hundred people, and shows that Ahmad is showing off his family, or that Ahmad does not wish the person to know where in the Ghazi family to look for him. This is more personal than than ‘i-Anan’. Ahmad ibn-Ghazi ‘I am Ahmad, the son of Ghazi’ would be used for someone who might know who Ghazi is, or that the speaker respects the person enough to give a family name, thus narrowing down who Ahmad is if they ask for him later. This is more personal than ‘al-Ghazi’. Ahmad ibn-Ghazi abu Faris ‘I am Ahmad, the son of Ghazi, father of Faris, my son’. This is an example of showing off, and usually used when the speaker is in a good mood and giving praise to his family. This indicates not only who Ahmad’s father is, but that his son is well known and probably famous. It is polite to then speak well of the son – even if you’ve never heard of him.
Male: Ahmad, Aman, Bade, Baqer, Cairo, Eyad, Faris, Fathi, Gazali, Ghazi, Hamal, Hashim, Imaran, Ismail, Jafari, Jihan, Kadeem, Khalil, Latif, Lukman, Malik, Mohsen, Namir, Nibal, Omar, Osman, Qamar, Quasim, Raimi, Rashid, Salim, Shadi, Taifa, Thaman, Uday, Ulema, Wafa, Waseem, Yaser, Yazid, Zaide, Zain
Female: Aisha, Atalaya, Baina, Bayan, Cairo, Chaka, Dalila, Damali, Eman, Farah, Fatima, Ghada, Giza, Halima, Hessa, Inara, Isra, Jalia, Jaunie, Kalila, Karida, Lamis, Lilith, Malika, Mona, Naida, Nasira, Qiana, Qismah, Rashida, Raziya, Shakira, Sheba, Tasnim, Tazara, Ulfah, Umaymah, Vega, Walidah, Waseemah, Yamha, Zaina, Ziya

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