Ethnicities in Drevstran
Since the time of the Triple Monarchy (18th and 19th centuries), Drevstran has been divided both on religious and national lines. Famously, Vilvo Orbraggar, founder of the first Republic of Drevstran, proclaimed the united country to be a "Bi-national secular republic" in reference to the Lushyods and Ludz people. Since then, other nationalities have been officially recognized in Drevstran althought the law differenciate between diasporas and national minorities. The latter are allowed to be represented by state-recognized associations known as Kisbergi önkormanitat or Minority collectivities. These associations can manage public theaters, libraries, scientific and cultural institutions, and offer legal counsels alongside other services. All in the purpose of protecting and keeping alive their minority' traditions and customs.
The National Minorities
The Lushyods are originally a Ugric people who, through successive migrations, came to conflict with the Ludic principalities and chiefdoms that had succeeded to the Tervigian Empire. The Lushyods ultimately successfully pushed south and settled in the Furodomark, a region of south-west Drevstran. From this first proto-state two kingdoms emerged : the Drevstag and the Lushyodorstag.
Since the Triple Monarchy, Lush and Lushyod have lost their political meaning as while the Tri-crown was an union between the Lushyodorstag and other principalities, with the former as the dominant partner, it did not retain any national characteristic. Since then, Lushyod is used strictly in a socio-cultural manner to speak of Lush-speaking minorities both within and outside of Drevstran.
The Lushyod minority represent roughly 40% of the total population of Drevstran or around 18 million people. This number include Vörönyak jews as they speak Lush as their native language and have adopted many Lush customs and aspect of the Lush culture over the past 800 years since the Alban crusades. Otherwise, Lushyod are culturally very closely tied to the Docetic Faith, an Heterodox Sarpetic religion which remain dominant in the territories of the ex-Lushyodorstag. It's in these same territories, like the Furodomak, the Mredenzag, or the Azdrheg mountains, that the Lushyods represent the absolute majority of the population with over 90% of the inhabitants of these western regions identifying as Lushyod and speaking Lush as their native language. Lushyods also represent the majority of the population along the northern border and the Sevr river valley, north of Angrast.
The Ludz or Ludzians are a Ludic Ethnic group native to Drevstran. They are related to other Ludic people such as the Polnitsians, the Lusatians, the Biele, and the Ostrozavans, even sharing with the latter a common language. They represent 45% of Drevstran population (around 20.25 million people) and are the absolute majority on the Belisarian coast with more than 90% of the population in each prefecture with a coastline on the Belisarian Sea.
For most of their history, the distinction between Ludz and other Ludic people was never really made. The word come from the Kingdom of the Drev but was used by the Lushyod elite to refer to every Ludic tribe and communities under their domination. Afterward, the Drev River Valley became part of the Velikoslavian Empire and many Ludic people migrated southward, merging with the populations already present and raising no concern from the Empire' lords themselves of varied Ludic origins.
The modern Ludz identity is thus considered by historian to be a 18th century creation by the Triple Monarchy. Despite the Drev River Valley and the Belisarian Coast legally remaining part of Velikoslavia, they had been inherited by the Lushyodorstag king Farza IV (1635 - 1703) on a personal basis. To re-affirm his control over these new territories, he forced the Aletheic Arch-Presbyters to adopt of the Oecumenic Treasury, in use in the Lushyodorstag, and created many schools to increase literacy among the people in an effort to dissociate these lands from the rest of Velikoslavia. Naturally, lessons were given in the Oecumenic Treasury' language : Ostro-Ludzic, washing away the previous centuries of linguistic divergence between Drevstran and Ostrozava.
As the Lushyods are tied to Doceti Nazarism, the Ludz identity is profoundly rooted within the Aletheic Church. Ludic people of different confession within the Triple Monarchy retained their own culture and customs, separating themselves as Biele or Lusatians instead.
The Biele are a Ludic Ethnic group native to southern Drevstran and northern Brumen, more specifically to the Klastory mountains. They distinguish themselves from their Ludz neighbors by their dialect, known as Bieltzyna, a survivance of a Ludz language that preceded the Oecumenic Farzaid Reforms of the 18th century, and by their religion : Alban Nazarism. Until the Triple-Monarchy, this religious heterodoxy made them the targets of many religious persecutions from Velikoslavia.
During the first republic, Biele were considered a Ludz sub-group rather than their own minority. It's not until the second republic that they were legally allowed to constitute their own Collectivity. To this day, Alban Lauras in the Klastory play an important role in the communal and cultural life of the Biele, tying together the pastoral communities with their settled counterparts.
In modern days, there is less than 300,000 native Biely-speakers but additional 200,000 to 300,000 individuals proclaiming themselves "of Biely ancestry" who either learned Bieltzyna in their adulthood or do not speak the language at all. They are not included in official census as they only take First language into account. As such, the Biele represent around 0.5% of the total Drevstranese population. Although they are in close contact with their Brumenese counterparts (estimated at around 500,000 people).
The Lusatians are a Ludic population inhabiting mostly the modern Duchy of Lusatia in Garima but with an historical presence in Furodomark. They are the descendents of the Vestrozavians and Suebians Luds who inhabited the Furodomark, Morinia, and Suebia before the arrival of the Lushyods when they were integrated by force into the Lushyodorstag. During the 11th century, the Holy Aulic Empire conquered Ludic-dominated territories from the Lushyods and established the Duchy of Lusatia.
Lusatia remained an Alban Duchy dominated by local Lauras and monastic congregations until the Alban Crusades whereas the Duchy rose up in revolt against the Empire because of ongoing religious persecutions against non-Fabrian religions. Defeated, many Lusatians fled to the Lushyodorstag where they were settled back to the border. Part of the historical Lusatia were conquered back by the Lushyods and remain to this day within Drevstran.
Lusatians remain to this day divided between the Fabrian and Alban faiths. In Drevstran, there is still around 125,000 Lusatians, overwhelmingly Albans, who managed to keep their traditions alive and remain in contact with their counterparts across the border. This fraction of the total population (0.28%) has nonetheless acquired "Minority" status because of their historical presence within the Lushyodorstag and on the frontier.
Jewish people first arrived in the Alban Pentapolis around the 10th century AD. These Kulpanitsan jews lived essentially within restricted ghettos in the urban settlements such as Barbellon and established trans-kulpanitsan trade relations with other jewish communities in Ostrozava, Polnitsa and the Holy Aulic Empire, building one of the largest jewish population in the world during the Eastern Renaissance. It lasted until the Vykopal Dynasty and other shift in the political life of Eastern Belisaria made life for jewish communities more and more difficult. Many Kulpanitsan jews exiled themselves to Yisrael and their population in eastern Belisaria fell drastically.
In the Lushyodorstag, however, jewish populations remain high to this day and while the famous Vörönyak jews are counted in official census as "Lushyods", Kulpanitsan jews are recognized as a minority with their own Collectivities and their own first language : the Tzilzina, a judeo-ludic dialect specific to the Kulpanitsa area. There's officially 2 million Kulpanitsan Jews living in Drevstran or 4.5% of the population. They essentially live within the ancient Alban Pentapolis, (especially Barbellon), Angrast, and Pristlav where they've replaced greek-speaking jewish communities during the 18th and 19th centuries.
Ostrozavans are an ethnographic Ludic group closely related to the Ludz. While they're not recognized as a national minority, they're nonetheless one of the largest minority in the country after the Lushyods, the Ludz, and the Kulpanitsan jews and the largest diaspora recognized by the Republic. This sizeable presence across the Kulpanitsan can be explained by both the ancient and recent history shared by the two countries.
Contacts between the Lushyodorstag and High Voivodship of Ostrozava were first very distant, each pre-occupied by their own conquests and expansionists efforts. They would however come to blow during the Emendatic Wars where Ostrozava attempted to take back the Alban Pentapolis and Azdraï away from the Lushyods to re-unite the entire Alban world. The war ended in 1320 with the death of Prince Gabriel, heir of Ostrozava, in battle and the Lushyods return to Barbellon.
With the end of the "Alban dream", the Lushyodorstag continued to proclaim itself as a Nazarian state with no further precision over the exact denomination. The climate of religious tolerance, built to avoid rekindling an Alban uprising. In 1405 the Lushyod King Lazar V, organized an oecumenical council between Docetic and Alban Nazarians which gave birth to the Bible of Pyrovegy that was quickly adopted by both churches and spread all around Lake Kulpanitsa. This bible was also written neither in Latin, Greek nor in Hebrew, but in the Barbellon Dialect of Ostro-Ludzic, the Kulpanitsa lingua franca of the time. The Bible of Pyrovegy thus kept both side of the Lake linguistically and culturally close, marking the beginning of the Eastern Renaissance.
More recently, the Crimson Revolution of 1909 led to a wave of refugees, noble or otherwise, from Ostrozava to Drevstran. Barbellon became the natural hub of these newcomers, often radicalized against the new Prime Republic. Rytieriroz militias would end up finding in these exiled an important recruitment pool for their cause. Pan-albanism thus remained an important ideal for the Ostrozavans of Drevstran. This has created the modern image of the Diaspora : urban, conservative, religious, pan-albanist, anti-socialist, and extremely bitter. This "old fringe" still exist but their descendents, unless radicalized, tend to no longer share in their values while new wave of Ostrozavan migrants arrived in the 90s and 00s with less negative opinions on socialism and the Republic. All these social categories, that can't stand each others, combined represent around 1.17 million people or 2.6% of the total population and are essentially centered around Barbellon.
The Arazi are another Ludic group with a noticeable presence in the country. They're from Arazija, the southernmost republic of Ludvosiya and one which share a border with Drevstran. They speak Arasski, a language commonly classified as Ludic but which has been heavily influenced by the Gothic language of Tervingia.
Arasski speakers arrived in Drevstran during the Velikoslavian era alongside many other Ludic ethnicities who migrated south after the integration of these new territories following the fall of the Sevromark. After 1690 and the creation of the Triple Monarchy, Many of these Ludic people had blended and through their adoption of iconoclast Aletheism, of Ostro-Ludzic, and of the Gothic alphabet they became known as the Ludz people. Arazi however managed to retain their Iconodulism, keep their language, and preserve their traditions through continuous contact with their northern "motherland".
Following the creation of Ludvosiya, many Arazi fled southward to escape the religious persecutions of the new regime. Afterward, the Republic of Arazija and Drevstran kept strong economic and cultural ties, much moreso than with other Ludvosiyans republics. Nowadays, more than 700.000 Arazi permanently reside in Drevstran (1.6 % of the total population). They reside mainly in the Azdrheg mountains, close to the border with Arazija, but also in Angrast and Pristlav where they have their own historic neighborhoods, built around the church of Cyprian the Messenger and the church of Unconcealed Knowledge respecitvely.
Koraks are another ethnographic Ludic group from the Republic of Arazija. Historically, they're the descendents of the first Ludic tribes who were settled in the region by Tervingia before they were conquered by the migrating Arazi. Like the latter, they are supposed to have been present in the Duchies of Drevstran and Yugstran before they were inherited by the Lushyodor King and merged with the Lushyodorstag as the Triple-Crown. But contrary to the Arazi, this first community was integrated into the Ludzic identity when they adopted the Iconoclasts and Oecumenic teachings promoted by the Triple-Monarchy.
The current Korzki diaspora mostly stem from the 19th century mass immigration that followed the wide scale religious persecutions launched by the newborn Ludvosiya and was further enriched throughout the 20th and 21th centuries by migrants from Arazija, especially as Koraks were often forced to move away from the cities as costs of livings skyrocketed. In 2022, official census recorded around a million Korzki native speakers with Drevstranese citizenship and permanent residence or 2.2% of the total population. They are especially present in Pristlav and across the northern Sevromark where they have acquired a stereotype for being most blue-collar workers in farms and factories. They are also reputed for being as religious (and open about it) as their Arazi relatives with whom they share the Aletheic faith.
The Dzamarsk, also sometime known as Jutzods in Lush or Travellers, are a mosaïc of people who migrated from southern Ochran and arrived in Eastern Belisaria sometime during the 14th or 15th centuries. The first Dzamarsk thus arrived in the valley of the Drev as it became part of the Velikoslavian Empire. After the Ludvosiyan Revolution in the 18th century, Dzamarsks present in Drevstran were not deported to the ethnic republic created for them by the new federation and a second wave of Traveller fled to become permanent residents in Drevstran. Relations between the Ludvosiyans, Drevstraneses, and Gresniy Dzamarsk clans continue on to this day, with some clans continuing to live cross-borders.
Like in other countries they reside in, they're heavily discriminated, both by Drevstran' institutions and society at large. There's close to 225,0000 "Travellers" with permanent residency and/or Drevstranese citizenship, around 0.5% of the total population. While the majority of these Dzamarski have sedentarized and adopted Ostro-Ludz as their native language, many continue to live either nomadic or semi-nomadic lifestyle, taking jobs as agricultural daily workers or as circus showmen. These nomadic people live in temporary or semi-permanent camps which have been described as "squalors" by observers. Their lifestyle and poor material conditions have led to a strong association between Traveller camps and criminality with derogatory terms such as Zlodeji kurshiat (Chicken thieves).