Federated Union of Durnstaal
Motto: "Iba prostredníctvom ohňa sa zo železa môže stať oceľ"
(Only through fire can iron become steel)
|Recognised national languages||Caticeze-English|
|Recognised regional languages||Charnek|
|Darina Husa III|
• City-state of Duern
|circa. 400 B.C.|
• Confederacy of Duern
• Federated Republic of Durnstaal
• 2020 estimate
|GDP (nominal)||2019 estimate|
• Per capita
|Antipodes||The Federation of Vulkaria and The Dominion of the Sanguine Church|
|ISO 3166 code||101|
The Federated Union of Durnstaal, most commonly known as Durnstaal, is a nation in the Coalition of Crown Albatross located on the continent of Adula. The nation shares land borders with Saudi Jiddiya, Alcarres, New Elkland, Vitosium, Alonnisosa, and Wyomia and a maritime border with Mulfulira via Lake Gravenna. It controls the western shore of Lake Gravenna, the southern shore of Lake Lovap, the northern shores of the Bay of Morevo, and the area in-between including much of the Kalater mountain range. Its capital is Durnen and its largest city is Piva. Durnstaal is a Constitutional Monarchy lead by Czar Darina Husa III while the primary legislative body is the Kolspatz headed by Prime Minister Boyan Simic. The name Durnstaal is derived from the Middle High Durnian words "Durn" meaning land or world and "Staal" meaning gathered or united, literally translating to "United Land".
The area that Durnstaal now controls was once the site of several minor trading kingdoms situated on the Bezdekia Road. Many artifacts from early steppe nomad societies can also be found throughout the area, suggesting regular migrations from the north. The country is majority Orthodox Christian with significant minorities of Catholics, Eianists, and Muslims present in many major cities. The nation maintained an isolationist worldview for the majority of its history before becoming more involved in international politics following the Aurelia War. Durnstaal's military policy has regularly come under international scrutiny due to the nation's role in the controversial intervention into the Jiddiyan Civil War in 1991 and the nation's brutal response to the Winter Uprising in 2008. The nation maintains close relations with its neighbors and hosts the headquarters for CATA and CAMDA.
- 1 History
- 1.1 Founding and Oligarchy (400 B.C.)
- 1.2 The First Fracture (213-341)
- 1.3 Growth and First Conquest (341-367)
- 1.4 War with Yuran
- 1.5 Foreign Invasions
- 1.6 Duernian Conquest of the West (1055-1113)
- 1.7 Century of Peace (1140-1242)
- 1.8 The Second Fracture
- 1.9 The Confederacy of Duern (1580-1629)
- 1.10 The Third Fracture
- 1.11 The Federated Union of Durnstaal (1756-)
- 2 Geography
- 3 Demographics
- 4 Politics
- 5 Culture
- 6 Economy
Founding and Oligarchy (400 B.C.)
The history of the Federated Republic of Durnstaal begins in 400 B.C. when the earliest known records list the founding of Duern on the present-day site of Durnen. We know little about these settlers but it is believed they were an off-shoot of one of the many groups of steppe nomads which regularly migrated through the area. The settlement grew in size over the following few centuries reaching a population of around 5,000 by 200 A.D. and forming close trade relations with the nearby trade city of Yuran (modern day Novada), gaining direct access to the Bezdekia Road. At this time, Durnstaal was governed by an oligarchical council made up of leading members of society, usually the heads of major families or the wealthiest citizens. By 200 A.D. the council had grown to include 15 people before the system started breaking down.
The First Fracture (213-341)
Tensions in the council of Duern had been rising for some time when the Fracture occurred in 213 A.D. It is unknown what issue was discussed that day, but by the end of the meeting twelve councilmen were dead and the meeting hall was on fire. Soon, the three surviving councilmen: Agilulf Grossg, Erwin Fuchs, and Aliprand Eklund; had consolidated their supporters and attempted to impose martial law, starting a three-way civil war that would divide the city for 128 years. The factions, lead by their respective leaders' families would make and break alliances with each other continuously until a smallpox outbreak in 338 decimated the local populace. The Eklund faction experienced disproportionately few cases, allowing them to overpower and subsume the other two factions over the next three years, beginning the first royal line of Duern.
Growth and First Conquest (341-367)
Under the rule of the Eklund Dynasty, Duern began expanding out across the nearby countryside, subsuming many of the small settlements that had previously been trading partners. When Aliprand Eklund died in 364 A.D. , Duern directly controlled the entirety of the Curat River and had begun spreading up the coast of Lake Gravenna. Aliprand's successor, his son Berthold Eklund, continued the growth by expanding Duern's borders north before coming into conflict with the city-state of Dravun. Increasingly frequent border skirmishes combined with worsening trade relations eventually led to Berthold declaring the first general call to arms, forming the first ever true Army of Duern. Berthold, leading an army of 2500 citizen soldiers, marched up to Dravun and gave them a choice: submit to his rule or he would take it by force. Dravun refused surrender, prompting one of the earliest sieges in Adula's history. The siege lasted 5 weeks and ended in Duernian victory. With the conquest of Dravun, Duern held direct control over both routes the Bezdekia Road took around Lake Gravenna which caused an economic boom in the wake of the campaign.
War with Yuran
Rising Tensions with Yuran (367-386)
After the conquest of Dravun in 367, Berthold began expanding northwest, taking control over the rest of the Cohn Lowlands. Duern's rapid growth brought it into direct contact with the land's belonging to the city-state of Yuran. The two city-states had been trading partners for several centuries, but both had seen similar growth over the preceding decades and were roughly equal in strength. Border skirmishes were commonplace but open warfare did not begin until 382 shortly after Berthold Eklund died of disease, likely malaria, and was replaced by his son Davor Eklund. Davor's inexperience and young age of 14 caused Duern to look weak, leading to Yuran pushing out along the Kalater mountains to take the rich mining settlements in the area. Over the next 4 years Yuran would take mining settlements one-by-one through either military conquest or diplomatic means until they had extended halfway to the Curat river. Davor, meanwhile, spent the years trying to build up stronger diplomatic relations with surrounding states, Yuran included. These relations would prove valuable in the future, but in the present further weakened his public image. The breaking point came when a diplomatic convoy sent to Yuran was stopped by Yurani forces near the border. The soldiers confiscated the diplomatic gifts, personal valuables, and cart horses of the convoy and ordered them to return to Duern. When Davor learned of this, it is said that he silently stood, signaled for his advisors and military leaders to follow him, and was not seen in public for 3 days as he planned their response.
The First Battle of Kolbt Valley
When Davor emerged, the general call to arms was sent out and Duern's standing army of 2000 was joined by 10000 citizen soldiers. The force marched on the towns lost to Yuran over the preceding years and quickly reclaimed most of them. Soon, however, they were met by a Yurani army in the Koblt Valley. The Yurani were 11000 strong and supported by mercenary cavalry recruited from the north, leaving the forces equally matched. The two forces clashed on August 8th, 386, in the largest battle either side had ever seen. Hundreds died in the fighting and thousands on either side would die from their wounds. By the end of the day, Duern had lost over 3000 soldiers with Yuran seeing similar losses. The battle ended as a stalemate as the remnants of both armies returned home. A centuries-long near-continuous state of warfare between Yuran and Duern had just begun.
The Stalemate (386-921)
The 535 year period from the First Battle of Kolbt Valley to the Siege of Katlin Castle is known overall as the Stalemate as, despite the near-constant conflict with other powers and each other, both nations failed to make any lasting and significant gains on the other. The growth of the Bezdekia Road from several minor trade routes to a well-mapped transcontinental network by the 600's C.E. only served to further strain relations as Duern coveted Yuran's access to the Albarine Sea through the Bay of Morevo while Yuran likewise coveted Duern's control over both routes around Lake Gravenna. The Stalemate would end in 921 C.E. with the fall of Katlin Castle to Duernian forces under Czar Aleksandru III, leading to the capture and execution of the Yurani King Lupiz Kradomir and his eldest son Drazc Kradomir. In the chaos of the civil war that ensued between the two surviving heirs, Duern captured the city of Yuran itself and razed it to the ground.
The Great Horde Invasion (423-483)
The northern border of Duern was often crossed by nomadic raiders from the north, but this was limited to minor raids and skirmishes. That changed with the rise of Gavlyn Khan in 420 A.D. A large force of united tribesmen surged south across the border, taking control of many villages and towns. The use of mounted archers by the raiders, now known as the Great Horde, allowed them to easily outrun and outmaneuver the Duernian forces they fought, inflicting massive losses. Pressure from inefficient governance on the Great Horde and from Yurani expansion against both groups limited further warfare to skirmishes and raids similar to the original border situation by 435 A.D. The next major military action occurred in 462 when a large force of raiders began pushing into Yuran territory, prompting Duern to launch a campaign into the lands of the horde. This campaign, led by Roald Eklund, failed utterly, decimated the Duernian forces, and ended the Eklund dynasty. The resulting power struggle allowed the Great Horde to push far deeper into Duern, even raiding Duern itself several times in 467. The power struggle ended when Stanislav Aleksandru, a general in the army, took power in 469. Widely regarded as the greatest tactician in Durnian history, General Aleksandru reorganized the military and developed new tactics to combat the raiders, including incorporating mounted troops into the Duernian forces. Over the course of 7 years, Duern had regained control over the majority of the territory lost and killed Gavlyn Khan at the Battle of Antkowiak Ridge. The resulting split in the Great Horde led to severe infighting and a near-total loss of governmental control over the captured lands. The final vestiges of the Great Horde, led by Gavlyn Khan's son Kepek Altan held out in the fortified town of Dayhurst until 483 when they escaped across Lake Lovap, ending the threat once and for all.
Emmirian Invasion and Conquest (644-1042)
The invasion of Duern by the Emmirian Empire began in 644 A.D. when an Emmirian army besieged and took a string of small forts along the border in a well-coordinated assault. By 645 A.D., the border region saw regular skirmishes between Emmerian and Duernian forces as the Emmerians slowly pushed into Duernian territory, taking several strategic forts and mines along the northern edge of the Kalater mountains. By 700 A.D. the Emmirians had pushed all the way to the Curat River and had begun pushing up into Notoso, threatening Yuran as well. In 870 A.D. the Emmirian victory at the Battle of Eckrinburg opened the way for Emmirian expansion across the Curat River, leading to further territorial losses as Duern lost all direct access to the Kalater mountains by 975 A.D. A siege on Duern itself in 1002 A.D. marked the turning point of the invasion after Czar Aleksandru III repelled the Emmirian forces, preventing a total conquest of Duern. After this, the Emmirian Empire entered a state of decline and began recalling military forces from the frontier, preventing any further territorial gains. A campaign by Stanislav Aleksandru IV pushed into the lost territory and retook Eckrinburg in 1010 A.D. and began slowly pushing the remaining Emmirians back along the Kalater mountains, regaining control of the border lost centuries prior in 1026 A.D. Several attempts were made by both sides to push across the border over the next decade, but neither made any significant progress. The death of Czar Aleksandru III during a failed campaign in 1042 led to his son, now Czar Aleksandru IV, to enact The Decree of the Southern Gap, ending the notion of further invasion southwards.
Duernian Conquest of the West (1055-1113)
Zoranite Rebellion (1112-1115)
Several years of relative stability followed the expulsion of the Emmerians as quiet hostilities between Yuran and Duern renewed, both now much more prepared to deal with outside threats. The next threat would come from within, rather than without however, in the form of Sveta Zoran. After losing her father, husband, and two brothers in the war against Emmiria, Sveta became very angry with the Duernian government and began spreading ideas of discontent and rebellion around Duernian lands, soon gathering a large following. The first overt military action began as a tax revolt in the farming town of Malkov Findrich in 1111 which grew into a full-scale peasant revolt by 1112 with thousands joining in. The rebels, now known as Zoranites, soon began clashing with the Duernian military to disastrous results. By 1113, the rebellion had mostly been defeated with any remaining rebels either quietly returning to their civilian lives or going into hiding with their leader Sveta Zoran. They engaged in terrorism, espionage, and crime in their attempts to subvert the people's trust in the government. Before they could do much, however, Sveta and several of her close associates were captured alongside a group of smugglers they had hired, leading to them being recognized and executed for their crimes. Sveta Zoran's execution effectively put an end to the Zoranite Rebellion and the last remaining active Zoranites were defeated in 1115.
Duernian Conquest of Yuran (1119-1139)
The sacking and razing of the city of Yuran by Duernian forces in 923 A.D. directly led to the fracturing of Yuran into smaller warring states. Already weakened by civil war after the deaths of both King Lupiz Kradomir and his heir Drazc Kradomir, the many cities and towns across Yuran began fighting both Duern and each other as order collapsed across the kingdom. Duernian forces began taking large swathes of territory in the next few years, splitting the remaining lands of Yuran in half in the process by 1125. The campaign to take the southern half of Yuran began in 1129, but failed to make progress for several years due to raids from the northern half of Yuran. The fall of the north came after the Seige of Provka Bulwark in 1135, during which the fortification was sold out by Yurani heir apparent Morok Kradomir in exchange for being elevated to a position of power in the conquered Yurani lands. With the north subdued, the south fell quickly and was under Duernian control by 1138. A series of small rebellions and insurrections were subdued shortly afterwards which culminated in the capture and public execution of Morok Kradomir by forces under the command of his brother, Rukar Kradomir in early 1139. Rukar Kradomir disappeared after this and is believed to have fled on a ship to Albarine, possibly in an attempt to raise an army to invade Duern.
Century of Peace (1140-1242)
The Second Fracture
The 5 Kingdoms Period (1242-1580)
The War of 4 Kings (1564-1580)
The Confederacy of Duern (1580-1629)
The Third Fracture
The War in the North (1625-1639)
The Durnlaka Wars (1633-1738)
The Federated Union of Durnstaal (1756-)
Durnstaal's geography is overall mountainous with large changes in elevation between the north and south of the nation. The climate becomes drier the closer to the center of the nation you travel with several small patches of desert along the northern face of the Kalater mountains. The nation experiences rainfall in two separate systems, the north fed by Lakes Gravenna and Lovap and the south fed by the Albarine Sea. The lowest elvation is -2m above sea level and the highest is Drukov Point which sits 2,821 m above sea level. The intersection of three tectonic plates beneath the Kalater Mountains causes regular but minor earthquakes.
Durnstaal's geography varies across the nation and is generally divided into five distinct zones: The Cohn Lowlands, The Novada Highlands, The Stretch, The Interior, and Notoso. The Cohn Lowlands include the rolling hills and dry grasslands bordering Lake Gravenna and Lake Lovap in the northeast. The Novada Highlands include the dense forests and elevated plateaus that run along the western border. The Stretch encompasses the Kalater mountains and the habitable valleys and hills that run along its northern edge. The Interior is the rocky, mountainous region at the center of the country. Notoso includes all Durnian lands south of the Kalater mountains.
The Federated Union of Durnstaal is majority Orthodox Christian with 65% of the country claiming membership. Catholic Christians form the next largest group with 21% of the population. Third is Eianism with 5% and finally Islam with 4%. The remaining 5% claim no religious beliefs.
The large Christian majority in Durnstaal can be traced back to ancient times when Orthodox Christianity first emerged in the area before spreading west along the Bezdekia Road. In contrast, the majority of the Islamic populace can trace their recent lineage back to nations such as Saudi Jiddiya and Emmiria rather than being local converts.
Despite the large amount of Christian influence, belief in mythological creatures such as vampires and rusalki is common among the populace. Such beliefs have become intertwined with the Christian faith to the point of becoming common knowledge. For example: many wells, water fountains, and even pipes are commonly stamped with protective charms to ward off wandering berehynias from making their home in the water source, a practice dating back to medieval times.
The official language is Durnian but the Caticeze dialect of English is widely used and accepted across the country as well. Durnians living deep in the rural interior of the nation tend to speak a dialect of Durnian known as Charnek, which in some places has diverged enough from Durnian to be considered a unique language. The rising ownership of televisions and further expansions of information systems in the interior has helped homogenize the language somewhat but a language barrier still exists.
Oblasts of Durnstaal
Major Cities in Durnstaal
Minor Cities in Durnstaal
The primary legislative body is the Kolspatz. It is bicameral with a lower house, the House of Citizens, and an upper house, the House of Elders. The House of Citizens introduces, debates, and votes on legislation. It consists of 184 legislators known as Representatives voted into office by the voters of the districts they live in. It is overseen by the Prime Minister. The House of Elders reviews, debates, and votes on legislation passed by the House of Citizens. It consists of 64 Elders nominated from the House of Representatives and voted into the office by their peers.
The Prime Minister of Durnstaal is the head of government and oversees the House of Citizens. He is the head of proceedings and introduces any bills being discussed to the assembled Representatives. He is responsible for appointing ministers and is part of the approval process for new Elders. The Prime Minister is voted into office from the Representatives and must have served in the House of Citizens for at least 2 years and be 25 years of age or older to be eligible for the office. The current Prime Minister is Boyan Simic.
The Czar is the head of state and mostly acts in a formal or ceremonial role. Some of the main duties of the Czar are opening sessions of the Kolspatz, welcoming foreign dignitaries, and maintaining correspondence with the Prime Minister. The Czar also bestows official titles and regularly grants audience to legislators who wish to consult with him. Due to tradition stemming from medieval laws forbidding a Czarina to hold power, the Durnian monarch is referred to as a Czar regardless of sex. The current Czar is Darina Husa III.
The military of the Federated Union of Durnstaal is split into 4 branches: The Army, Navy, Air Force, and Coast Guard. Altogether, the Durnian military commands 132,951 soldiers(2020).
Army: The Combined Forces of the Union (CFU for short) is the largest branch of the Durnian military with 81,002 active-duty personnel(2020). The branch was founded in 1756 as the official army of the newly organized Federated Republic of Durnstaal. It is centered on infantry with armored vehicles being used mostly in support. APCs and IFVs make up 85% of the armored fighting vehicles with the remaining 15% consisting of a limited number of tanks. In times of peace the majority of the force acts similarly to other nations' national guards with only specialized armored and amphibious units remaining on standby. Operates 14 bases across the country.
Navy: The Federal Navy of Durnstaal is the third largest branch of the Durnian military with 17,397 active-duty personnel(2020). The branch was founded in 1756 as the official navy of the newly organized Federated Republic of Durnstaal. The modern navy consists of 58 commissioned ships including: 2 cruisers, 6 frigates, 9 corvettes, 8 destroyers, 3 submarines, 2 minesweepers, 13 replenishment vessels, and 17 miscellaneous auxiliary craft. The branch also commands a small force of aircraft used in maritime patrol and search-and-rescue roles. Operates 4 bases across the country.
Air Force: The Durnstaal Royal Air Force (DRAF for short) is the second largest branch of the Durnian military with 27,210 active-duty personnel(2020). The branch was founded in 1951 in response to the Aurelia War although Durnstaal was not a belligerant. The force consists mainly of air superiority fighters and transport aircraft with a focus on close-air support of ground forces. The DRAF works closely with the CFU in a transport role and many Royal Coast Guard airplanes and helicopters are serviced by DRAF mechanics. Operates 8 bases across the country.
Coast Guard: The Royal Coast Guard of the Union (Royal Coast Guard for short) is the smallest branch of the Durnian military with 7324 active-duty personnel. The branch was founded in 1823 as a naval force that would guard Durnian waters while the Federal Navy was deployed. In modern times the force has been reoriented almost entirely towards search-and-rescue operations, drug busting, and patrolling trade lanes through the Albarine Sea. The Royal Coast Guard will work with other branches if necessary but prefers to remain independent so as to not drag resources away from other branches in the event of war. Operates 3 bases across the country.
Central Intelligence Bureau: Also known as the Hlavný Spravodajský Úrad or the "Hlav Sprav" for short. Durnstaal's main investigative agency. They operate internally and deal with federal crimes such organized drug trafficking, human trafficking, and in recent years terrorist threats.
Travel and Trade Administration: Also known as the Správa Cestovného Ruchu or the SCR for short. Sets regulations and guidelines for crossing the border and distributes passports and official papers.
Office of Atomic Energy: Also known as the Úrad pre Atómovú Energiu. Regulates the use of radioactive materials, the operation of nuclear reactors, and the proper disposal of radioactive waste products.
Office of Diplomacy and Foreign Affairs: Also known as the Úrad Diplomatov a Zahraničných Vecí or Interiér for short. Handles the diplomatic service and manages interactions with other nations.
Office of Aeronautics: Also known as the Úrad pre Letectvo. Sets regulations for air travel and airport security and manages registration of new aircraft and airports.
Cosmic Travel Administration: Also known as the Správa Kozmického Cestovania. Oversees all aspects of space travel and tracks stellar objects for scientific and safety purposes.
- Founding member of Central Adula Trade Agreement (CATA)
- Founding member of Central Adula Mutual Defense Agreement (CAMDA)
The sports enjoyed in Durnstaal are wide and diverse, trending equally towards tests of physical and mental prowess. The top five officially regulated and televised sports in descending order of TV ratings are: soccer, tennis, chess, archery, and horse racing.
The annual Einhelt League Championship is the most viewed sporting event in Durnstaal, with an estimated 27 million viewers in 2019. The soccer tournament, usually held from mid April to early June, see's soccer teams from all across Durnstaal compete against each other for a chance to win fame, glory, and the Einhelt Cup.
The first movie theater in Durnstaal opened in Piva in 1945 followed by one in Durnen two years later, but Durnstaal's movie industry dates back at least two decades prior as a backdrop for other nations' movies. Before the advent of modern CGI, the town of Silbernestal was a popular backdrop for movies set in the early 1800's due to the area's desert conditions and old structures giving it the appearance of a frontier mining town, a setting difficult to shoot in the 1920's. Durnstaal's own movie industry began in 1944 with the grand opening of Cruxley and Malik Cinematography by Cruxley Puchta and Malik Jablonski. A string of movies grossing somewhat well kept C&M in business but they saw little growth. That changed with the release of the wildly successful Abenteuer Krauss, which grossed P£382 million and caused rapid growth of the industry.
- Pamätný deň- April 3: A day of remembrance for those lost during war and veterans injured in combat.
- Union Day- August 26: Celebrates the founding of the Federated Union of Durnstaal in 1756. Often celebrated with family outings and feasting.
The diverse set of cultures which joined together to form Durnstaal have created a wide variety of names and naming conventions which have evolved and joined together as the country grew. The majority of names follow the pattern of Given Name, Surname and middle names are uncommon but growing in popularity. For a list of common first names and surnames in Durnstaal, click here!
The Federated Union of Durnstaal's economy is heavily based on processing raw materials and automotive manufacturing. The nation mines coal, iron, copper, aluminum, assorted ferroalloy metals such as manganese and chromium, and uranium in industrial quantities of which the vast majority is refined within the country and used in local industry. Durnstaal's logging industry focuses mainly on Highland Cedar and Duern Linden of which there is high demand for exports, especially due to Duern Linden's use in furniture manufacturing. The country farms very little for export; most arable land that isn't used for growing cowpeas and sweet potatoes is grazing pasture for the country's large sheep population which produces roughly 72,000 tons of wool annually which is then split between Durnstaal's textile industry and exports. Oil from rigs on Lake Gravenna is refined into kerosene, gasoline, diesel fuel, and other petroleum products in large amounts. Durnstaal's manufacturing sector is centered around a thriving automotive industry centered on semi-tractors, buses, and mid-size sedans. Diesel locomotives, satellite telephones, small aircraft, and plastics all make up significant portions of the economy as well.
The nation's largest imports are lead-acid batteries, concrete sand, dairy, and natural rubber while its largest exports are raw plastic, automobiles, diesel fuel, processed softwood, and wool cloth.
Airports: As of September 2020, Durnstaal has 22 officially registered airports of which 3; Woronoff International Airport, Alaric Central Airport, and Saint Callidus International Airport, regularly handle large international flights. Small aircraft are commonly owned and operated throughout the countryside, mostly for use in crop dusting and transnational transport.
Rail: All active railroads in Durnstaal are part of the Durnstaal Transnational Railway which extends from the ports on the Bay of Morevo up along the western border to Amarjel, along the northern border to Zabevgorod, and down along the eastern border to Durnen. Major rail yards and roundhouses are present in Piva, Novada, Amarjel, and Zabevgorod with smaller ones in Durnen, Steunhal, Durenko, and Kavyat. As of 2020 the DTR encompasses roughly 35,000 miles of track and 342 bridges.
Road: The Durnstaal Highway System is modern and connects the nation's major population centers. A winding web of smaller interconnected roadways extends across the deep interior, connecting the smaller towns and settlements that dot the area. Plans for expanding the highway system into the interior have been proposed and delayed several times in recent years.
Water: The cities of Piva, Kavyat, and Durnen all house major ports which service thousands of cargo and passenger ships annually. The country's one major river, the Curat River, is still used in a limited capacity for cargo transport between the deep interior of the nation and Durnen.