|Official languages||Rotsir dialects|
|Ethnic groups |
|Government||Theocratic Tribal Union|
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The Rotsir are a seminomadic series of Sarnic tribes within a confederation commonly called the Rotsir Nation or the Rotsir Horde. Historically, the name Rotsiria was also used. The Rotsir inhabit the northeastern fringe of Erdara, a relatively isolated position that has facilitated unique cultural developments and allowed a traditional way of life to continue unmolested for much of history. The modern Rotsir confederation originated in the 18th century due to the work of the Great Peacemaker in reaction to a new wave of colonial incursion in the land. The foundations for the united identity of the Rotsir were lain by the Great Prophet, who established a new religious school that promoted the commonalities between various regional religious traditions. Although religion had always played an important part in public life and in politics, the Great Prophet's unification created a gradual theocratic trend that led ultimately to the establishment of the shamans as an omnipresent political force.
The Rotsir are a highly multicultural group, with several distinct cultures and regional histories within the greater Rotsir nation. Unification is a recent phenomenon, excepting the few conquerors who had briefly unified the area historically. While some Rotsir cultures developed agriculture, metallurgy, and urbanization, the majority of polities retained a traditional tribal and nomadic way of life and adapted technologies both from urban Rotsir cultures and from outside influences. The traditional base organization of Rotsir society is the Chiefdom , made of several clans, but ranking below alliances, unions, and (con)federations. There are 723 Rotsir chiefdoms representing a variety of traditional tribes, bands, villages, cities, and kingdoms.
The Rotsir represent a continuation of the regional population from at least the Upper Paleolithic, defined by particular genetic markers and a clear, yet prolonged, cultural evolution. The exact timeline of human settlement in the region is unclear, and varies greatly between estimates. The debate has been influenced by the related debate of the origins of the Sarnic peoples, and the location of the Sarnic urheimat, of which the Rotsir land is considered by some to be a contender. The lack of accessible infrastructure in much of the land, as well as academic narrowness, contribute to the difficulty of proper dating Rotsir settlement.
The modern Rotsir mostly retain a nomadic way of life, and have built an economy on livestock produce such as leathers, furs, horn, and dairy. There is also an amount of hydrocarbon exporting, which provides a significant share of Rotsir's GDP despite being relatively limited in scale. The tribal politics surrounding resource extraction are complex in nature, and permitting harvesting and trade of resources for sale to foreigners is often considered a form of gift-giving or charity by the authorities of the relevant chiefdom. This feeds into traditional tribal relationship models and perpetuates the native culture of debt and exchange through modern means.
Etymology and nomenclature
The name Rotsir predates the foundation of the modern confederation by centuries, and was previously a generic term translating to various concepts of culture, civilization, or the quality of being Rotsir. An alternative proposed translation is "Rotsirishness", though this has been criticized as tautological. The term originates from the words Rot [rɵːt], relating to biological relatives and most often translated as clan, gens, or family, and Sir [sʲir], referring to one's customary behaviors, often translated as a custom or a habit, but sometimes translated also as clan. Together, these form a phrase translating as the customs of one's clan, or one's inherited culture, and it is this that would become the umbrella term for the cultural and folk religious traditions of the Rotsir.
The Rotsir have two differing names for their land. The elder is Muv Atkutep-Xatlet, translating as "the Land of Midnight Sun". This is believed to be more ancient in origin, as it is a purely geographic and regional definition, and would be an easy identifier in contrast to more southerly lands and peoples. The second official name is Muv Rotsirev, translating as "The land of our heritage". Although this could have originated to contrast with nearby peoples such as the Kun, it is thought to be a more recent phrase pioneered between the time of the Great Prophet and the Great Peacemaker, invented to contrast with foreign customs and religions that were becoming more apparent in that era.
Some less-common names still used ceremonially or dialectically are believed to predate both modern names, and often refer to a mixture of geographic and mythological features that define the landscape of the area. Many of these are preserved in music, which was traditionally used as a medium for navigation. The development of these navigational songs may have contributed to building a common Rotsir identity, as they would rely on landmarks and identifications thereof that would be recognizable across cultural barriers, also establishing common mythological and spiritual features in the process.