The Principality of Illaria
Motto: Prin credință, pace; Prin pace, prosperitate
(Illarian: Through faith, peace; Through peace, prosperity)
Illaria in North-central, Northeast Meridon
• Crown Princess
|Ecaterina Brândușa Albescu|
• Prime Minister
|House of Peers|
• Independence from the Valden Empire
|August 18th, 1791|
|206,576 km2 (79,759 sq mi)|
• 2018 census
|172.673/km2 (447.2/sq mi)|
|GDP (nominal)||2018 estimate|
• Per capita
The Principality of Illaria (Illarian: Principatul Illariei), also known as Illaria is a Unitary Elective Constitutional Monarchy located in the Northeast Meridon region of the Greater Meridonian geopolitical region. It is an ethnically homogeneous state with a handful of ethnic minorities, mostly from neighboring nations, also residing in Illaria, particularly in the border regions. The Principality of Illaria is the last holdover state from the Valden Empire and is one of the few states in Greater Meridon that maintains a functioning monarchy, and the only one to have a functioning noble class. Illaria is one of the poorer nations in Eastern Meridon but is a developed nation, and is better developed than many other Meridonian nations.
Humans first arrived in modern Illaria little over 15,000 years ago as roving bands of nomadic hunter-gatherers migrated north from the drying conditions south of the Wolfbriar Mountains. Agriculture came relatively late to the region with nomadic tribes remaining a prominent feature of the region, particularly in the interior until just 6,000 years ago. The first settlements, largely mixed agricultural and fishing villages would arise along the coast of Lake Ekora around this time. Later in the Ancient Period, agriculture would spread southward particularly into the Taravale, where the first substantial areas urban would eventually be founded. As the population of the region grew, towards the end of the Classical Period and a global cooling trend saw Illaria's own agricultural output decrease. The people living on Lake Ekora increasingly took to river piracy, raiding the settlements further along the coast of Lake Ekora and down the river Edelweiss. Later, they would launch raiding expeditions along the East Coast of Meridon. In particular, Rosalínea, the Verdean Imperial city in the area became a common target for these raids.
As time went by, and rain returned to the area, raiding activity became increasingly uncommon with cross cultural trade becoming more frequent. The region's first major political entities would come into being towards the end of this period with warlords establishing organized fiefdoms. The region would come under control of the expanding Valden Empire in the Ekoran campaigns of 1332-1348, with Valden nobles taking control of the fiefdoms of the area and establishing the five duchies of the Imperial Elector Principality of Illaria. Over the next few centuries native Illarians were vigorously repressed by the ruling class of Valden nobles, which resulted in a greater sense of cultural unity. It was during this time, that the Illarian identity
As the Valden Empire began to disintigrate in the 18th century, a home rule movement in the five duchies took root, with the independent Principality of Illaria being declared in 1791, though the southernmost duchy remained in Valden hands. Illaria would industrialize rapidly during the 19th century, though it would lag behind the major world powers in this respect. Illaria would remain relatively uninvolved in foreign politics, though it would join in alliance with Isarlé. The failed invasion of Illaria, by Valden would mark the beginning of the Valden War, and although a subsequent invasion attempt would force the government to flee, Illaria would be part of the victorious Outer Powers, regaining the lost duchy of Trimor upon victory. Illaria would be spared invasion during the Second Valden War, and would align itself with the United Nations of Finorskia during the Fino-Capisarian Cold War. In the 21st century, Illaria was a founding member of the Meridonian Union and has encouraged the development of Northwest Meridon.
Illaria is considered a developed nation, though it is somewhat behind its neighboring nations of Capisaria and Finorskia, possessing the seventh largest economy in Greater Meridon. It has fairly densely populated with a comparatively small landmass, compounded by the fact that much of Illarian territory is mountainous and poorly suited for human development. Illaria strives to maintain good relations with its larger neighbors, as well as maintaining trading relationships with other Meridonian nations. It was a founding member of the Meridonian Union, and is a partial member of the Northwestern Economic League, as well as being a full member of the Hadradstadt Pact.
- 1 Etymology
- 2 History
- 3 Geography
- 4 Demographics
- 5 Government
- 6 Economy
- 7 Military
- 8 Law Enforcement
- 9 Human Development
- 10 Culture
The term Illaria means literally, Land of the Illar people which is itself a reference to the early Post-classical status of people living in the region being regarded as raiders by their neighbors. When the Five Duchies that would become Illaria were subsumed into the Valden Empire, the people suffered intense discrimination at the hands of the occupying Valdens as a result of their earlier activities. This resulted in the adoption of the term Illarei (Illar peoples) by the early Illarians as a mark of pride and cultural cohesion by the late 17th and early 18th centuries. The demonym for citizens of Illaria is Illarian or Illarians.
Early Illar Settlements
Humans would first arrive in Illaria as part of a northward migration from south of the Wolfbriar Mountains roughly 15,000 years ago as drying climates made living conditions for southern tribes of hunter-gatherers more perilous. These early tribes would densely settle Illaria during the relatively warm and wet period of Illarian climatological history, and remained hunter-gatherers for longer than other groups in the area. As antiquity continued, agricultural settlements would begin to arise, first along the southern coast Lake Ekora, and then Southward down the Taravale before spreading through the entire region.
Towards the end of the Classical Period, climate change caused the Illarian region become much cooler and drier, and as a result, the first few years saw some of the most intense crop failures in recorded history, and numerous urban areas were abandoned during this time, with most surviving settlements being on Lake Ekora, with only a handful of towns and cities remaining in the Taravale, and even fewer in the interior proper. As food supplies continued to dry up, many of the peoples near Lake Ekora searched for other sources of food, initially building ships to travel down the River Edelweiss in search of fish, but eventually to take food, by force, from other settlements.
The first recorded Illar raider attack occurred in 776, sacking a farming town on the south bank of the Edelweiss. Further attacks would take place up and down the river, coupled with the seizure of trade ships traveling the river. These successes would be the result of the construction of Illar ships which were effective in the placid waters of Lake Ekora as much as the River Edelweiss, and became increasingly portable over land when major waterfalls impeded travel downriver. Later attacks would spread out of the Edelweiss estuary to the coast of Valden. A common target became the Verdean colony of Rosalínea which was sacked forty times from 1006 to 1060 until the governor of the colony reached an accord with the pirates of Haddel Greybeard for trade of resources instead of raiding attacks. Burghers in other areas would follow suit, slowing the rate of raids dramatically during the 12th century.
Illar warlords would start to centralize power in the early 13th century as agricultural outputs rose and major cities sprang up around the coast of Lake Ekora and the Râcasă river. These warlords consolidated power in urban areas, and their relatively large population of able bodied soldiers to seize control of farmlands in the surrounding area. No one warlord however, managed to seize control of the entire region. As the Valden Empire unified east-central Meridon in the 13th and early 14th centuries, ambitious Valden Emperors looked towards the lands to their Northwest, launching the Ekoran Campaigns in 1332.
Valden forces initially struggled in the hilly terrain of eastern Illaria. As the army broke into the Taravale however, the Valden armies quickly attacked, and conquered several major holds. The remaining independent warlords would amass a combined force to defeat the invaders. The warlord armies and the Valden Army clashed in the battle of Timionburg in 1345, where the warlord armies were crushed, and resistance to the Valden invasion for the most part, crippled. Valden forces would face intense popular resistance, bolstered by remnants of the forces warlord's could assemble, but completed the conquest of the region at the Siege of Ogrezeni in 1348. The Valden Emperor would work swiftly to integrate the new territories into the Valden Empire, placing Valden nobles in charge of many key estates in the region, and setting up the five duchies of Terenland, Seeland, Westliche, Lupeberg, and Demarsch under the Elector Principality of Illanland.
The new Valden nobility would struggle to maintain complete control of Illanland throughout most of the 14th and 15th centuries, facing frequent peasant revolts and increased rates of highway robbery. A succession of Valden Emperors responded with increasingly aggressive crackdowns and eventually, attempts to repress revolts by launching purges against Răscumpărare practitioners, the majority of the Illar peoples. Thousands would die in the purges, and tens of thousands more would flee Illaria, spreading Răscumpărare throughout Northwest Meridon. It was around this time, that the exonym of Illar began to be adopted by the local population of the region, as a sign of cultural unity.
Early Modern Period and Independence
With the ascendancy of an Emperor from Illanland in 1592, Valden policy towards the Principality underwent a significant change. The Principality was given, for the first time since the conquest, a measure of autonomy. Additionally, restrictions on natives joining the nobility were largely lifted throughout the early 17th century. Over the next few decades, the nobility of the territory became increasingly of Illar descent, and pressure on the Valden Empire began to weaken. As Enlightenment philosophy spread throughout the Meridonian Continent however, a native rule movement began to arise among the Illar nobility, and a growing class of bourgeois Illar peoples in the urban areas of the region. The movement remained underground however, for the 17th and most of the 18th centuries.
As the Valden Empire began to disintegrate under a tide of liberal revolutions, the Illar native rule movement grew in strength; and became increasingly public in its agitation against the Empire. The Empire attempted to maintain order by sending Imperial troops to protect agents of the crown. In the 1790s, however, the back of the Empire broke when the movement, increasingly centralized under the authority of the "People's Duke" Adrian Brândușa Mormont, staged labor walkouts, protests, and eventually riots, bombing attacks, and even attacks on Imperial troops until on August 18th, 1799, the four of the five Duchies declared their independence from the Valden Empire, though the fifth, Lupenberg would remain under Valden rule. The four duchies, renamed Taranar, Vestelor, Lacmar, and Estmar then formed the Principality of Illaria under the rule of Adrian Brândușa, who was elected and crowned as Crown Prince Adrian I of Illaria.
Industrialization and the Valden War
During the 19th century, the Principality of Illaria would industrialize somewhat slowly in comparison to Valden, Capisaria, and Verde with more traditionalist factions among the peerage rejecting measures to develop industrial infrastructure in an attempt to reduce the power of the bourgeois class. As a result, Illaria became somewhat reliant on trade with other nations in North and Northwest Meridon particularly to keep up with the rapidly advancing military technology in the region. Illaria would remain neutral during the Carlosian War, in spite of Verdean attempts to secure an alliance with them in exchange for regaining the lost Duchy of Lupenberg; as they were largely incapable of prosecuting a war with their limited military force.
After the conclusion of the conflict, the reigning Prince Adrian III Brândușa realized the inadequacy of the Illarian Army in comparison to the vast, and heavily armed militaries that had fought the war, and immediately pushed for a major industrialization and rearmament campaign to establish Illaria as a credible power on the international stage. The Taravale became a site of rapid industrialization, with the armaments industry getting a focus for the crown. It was also during this time, that Illarian nationalists would became increasingly militant in Lupenberg, regularly assassinating Valden officials and bombing government buildings. These acts would be responded to with force, and hundreds of Illarian nationalists would be executed in the region. The violence would escalate throughout the end of the 19th century and into the 20th, earning the region the name "The Triangle of Death".
The Valden War would begin in 1923, in Timova when Prince Hildebert Udo Gwerde was assassinated by Illarian nationalist Sorin Adrianus Cocesceu. The reigning Illarian Princess, Helene I Brândușa attempted to defuse the situation, but failed when the Valdens presented an ultimatum demanding the reintegration of Illaria into Valden. Illaria would resist multiple Valden invasion attempts in 1923 before being successfully invaded over Lake Ekora by Nordlander forces in the winter of 1924. The Illarian government, and part of its Army would be withdrawn from the country continuing the war as the Illarian government in exile until Illaria proper was liberated in 1930, with the war ending a year later. Illaria would survive the war intact, and reclaiming the fifth Duchy, which was rechristened Trimor, with the Treaty of Tallonius.
After the conclusion of the Valden War, the Illarian state set about rebuilding the nation from the destruction caused by the invasion, occupation, and liberation of Illaria. In spite of early troubles, the Illarians managed to more or less restore their nation by the end of the decade. Illaria was however, cowed by the influence of the increasingly belligerent State of Valden, now ruled by the Valden Popular Worker's Party (VVV Party); as well as growing distant from the Federation of Capisaria. As a result, Illaria remained neutral in the Continuation War, though it was forced to sell weapons to the Valdens throughout most of the conflict.
After the end of the Continuation War, and the death of Helene Brândușa in 1952; the new Prince, Alexandru II, championed a policy of national self-reliance and independence from the major powers in Greater Meridon. Under this directive, the Illarian parliament embarked on several development, and modernization programs; with the most notable being the creation of the Illarian welfare system, the National Electrification Program, and the Army Modernization Program, which were intended to rapidly expand the Illarian economy as well as, especially in the case of the Army Modernization Program, securing Illarian against outside influence. The efforts to achieve total independence came to an end however, in the late 1960s when Alexandru II died, as political interest in continuing the projects declined after geopolitical conditions became more stabilized under the Finorskian Union.
The reign of Alexandru II's successor, Mihai I was relatively peaceful and quiet under a succession of stable centrist and centre-right governments. The 1990s however, would see fairly significant changes as pressure from more leftist elements of Illarian society moved to abolish the nobility, and even the monarchy. Mass protests swept the major cities of Illaria throughout the decade until Mihai negotiated with the protestors to create a system by which the influence of the nobility would be phased out through popular sovereignty. As a result, several county-level lordships were abolished by referenda in the late 1990s and the early 2000s. Though attempts to abolish the Duchies of Taranar, Estmar, and Vestolor, were made, they failed to pass. Citing failing health, Mihai I abdicated the throne in 2016, to be succeeded by Ecaterina I, who has prioritized modernizing the education system and greater integration into the Meridonian Union.
The Principality of Illaria has a total land area of 206,576 square kilometers, and is located in Northeast Meridon, sharing land borders with Göke, Capisaria, and Platnos. Illarian geography is largely composed of rolling hills and valleys in the east, which gradually become rugged and more mountainous Illaria is nominally a landlocked nation, but has a long coastline with Lake Ekora, and access down the international river Edelweiss. Illaria has suffered from some environmental degradation, but has since engaged in initiatives meant to curb and reverse damage caused by industrialization, and mitigate the effects of global climate change.
Climate and Physical Geography
Illaria is primarily humid, with a generally continental climate, most precipitation occurs during the cooler months of the year and generally is a mixture of rain, snow, and ice sourced from Lake Ekora, though some precipitation originates from the South Meridonian region during the summer. The Western and Southern borders of Illaria are very mountainous given the presence of the Wolfbriar Mountain range. The Râcasă River, and its water shed dominate the hydrography of Illaria as it is by far the largest river in the Principality. Illaria's highest point is Montură Şofran standing at 5,779 meters in height, and its lowest point is in the Râcasă valley at 164 meters.
Biodiversity and Conservation
Illaria, while not desolate, is rather lacking in extensive biological diversity, and is home to only 1,500 species of animal and vascular plant, with grasses being generally the most common form of plant life in the nation. Environmental protection was historically a nonissue, however, in recent years the government has spent considerable effort to protect the natural environment from further damage, and to restore many areas in Illaria. The Principate Ecological Protection Agency is the government apparatus responsible for the protection of the environment, and receives substantial funding to operate.
According to its most recent, 2018 census, the Principality of Illaria has a population of 35,670,150 persons and is relatively stable with an average growth of .006% per anum over the course of a decade. Illaria is ethnically homogenous with nine tenths of the population being ethnic Illarians. The Principality of Illaria officially recognizes Răscumpărare as its official religion which is followed by slightly more than two thirds of the population with Diternalism being the second most common religion, practiced by 20% of the population, the nonreligious represent the third largest group with 11% of the population being non-religious, other smaller religious groups, primarily traditional animist belief systems compose the rest of the religious communities of Illaria. Most of the population identifies as being lgbt, with the overwhelming majority of these people living within traditional Răscumpărare family structures.
Illaria is fairly urbanized with almost three fifths of the population living in urban centers. Slightly more than two fifths of the urban populace lives in the twenty largest cities. There are currently over one hundred urban centers that can be considered cities by Illarian standards (having populations of over 15,000), twenty seven cities with populations of over 100,000, twelve with a population of over 500,000, and six with a population of over one million. Illaria is densely populated with most of the population concentrated in the central Duchy of Taranar, and the eastern Duchy of Estmar, with the Duchies of Tirmor, Lacmar, and Vestolor being comparatively sparsely populated by comparison.
Largest cities or towns in Illaria
The Principality of Illaria is a Unitary Elective Constitutional Monarchy with most power invested in the elected General Assembly. Minority rights are guaranteed by the Constitution, which is periodically reviewed and amended as required. The Prime Minister operates as Head of Government at a national level, with the monarchy (titled Crown Prince or Crown Princess) being head of state and Commander in Chief of the Armed Forces; and low legally empowered judiciary. There are three levels of government with the National Government having the greatest power invested in it. Beneath the nation are the Duchies which are functionally powerless on the legislative level outside the national House of Peers, and the local governments. There are two branches of government:
Legislative: The legislative branch is divided into the General Assembly, which is elected once in a period of five years, and the House of Peers, which is largely appointed. The General Assembly maintains most of the power in common legislation of Illaria, passing legislation and having power of purse in Illaria, and can remove a Prime Minister with a vote of no confidence. The House of Peers by comparison has far less power in the day to day running of the state, but does jointly participate in the amending of the Constitution, and is responsible for electing the next Sovereign of Illaria.
Executive: The Executive is embodied by the Prime Minister, who is appointed by the General Assembly after each election, and the sovereign of the Principality, who is elected by the House of Peers when the prior sovereign dies, abdicates, or is otherwise considered incapable of discharging the duties of the monarchy. The Prime Minister also appoints a number of government ministers to assist in the administration of the state, who are confirmed by the General Assembly. The sovereign of Illaria by contrast has comparatively little legislative power, with their chief duties by the Prince or Princess' Speech, by which they can suggest the priorities of government, being the Commander in Chief of the Illarian Armed Forces, and acting as chief diplomat for Illaria.
The Constitution outlines the role of government, its interaction with local governments, and the powers of the monarchy. It is generally reviewed and amended once every twenty years, or if required. The Constitution also enumerates the rights of the citizenry, and the responsibilities of nobility and the monarchy.
Parties and Elections
Elections for the General Assembly occur once every five years, or in the event a snap election is called by the Prime Minister. All citizens over the age of eighteen may participate in the general election. The election is conducted in a proportional fashion with each half percent of the vote representing a single seat in the General Assembly. The Prime Minister is then elected by the General Assembly. The House of Peers is nominally unelected with the Peerage being represented by Meritorious Peers (appointed by the the General Assembly or the Monarchy in exchange for service to the nation), the Religious Peers (members of the clergy), and the Hereditary Peers (inheriting lords of the Duchies and Counties). However, in recent years, there has been greater elective influence in the House of Peers as Hereditary Lordships have become abolished at an increasing pace at the county level; Religious influence in the Peerage being increasingly cut down by Constitutional reform; and more Meritorious Peers being appointed by referendum. The Monarchy is elected by the House of Peers, and not by the populace. In the General Assembly, the Prime Minister, who breaks tied votes, traditionally sits at the head of the house, with the governing party or coalition sitting to their right; the opposition sitting to their left, and independents sitting at the other end of the house.
Currently, government is ruled in coalition by Social Democratic Party, and the progressive Reform Party, with two parties in opposition, the Socialist Party, and the centrist Răscumpărarist-Liberal Party. The current Prime Minister is a social democrat. Though party members may sit in the House of Peers, it is nominally expected to be a non-partisan assembly, above the banal influence of party politics.
Illaria seeks to maintain positive diplomatic relations with all of its neighbors, seeking to keep the peace, and maintain a relatively open and extensive trading relationships with the outside world. Illaria has had some political tensions with Göke as a result of its poor treatment of ethnic Illarians in the Göke-Illarian border regions, and historically was involved in numerous wars in Greater Meridon, largely within the context of being a member principality in the Valden Empire. Illaria maintains Embassises in all Meridonian nations barring Stipekia, Snoaga, Murmusa, and Diamante, and maintains ambassadorial consulates in Stipekia, Diamante and Murmusa. Illaria is a member of the Meridonian Union, the Northwestern Economic League and the Hadradstadt Pact.
The Illarian economy operates under a capitalist model with industry being most held by private corporate entities with industries concerning national defense being the notable exception. Union presence is very strong in Illaria with various trade and craft unions operating in the Principality. The Illarian government has largely relied on unions to balance out corporate interests, and has a relatively lax regulatory regime as a result. Illaria trades substantially with Finorskia and Capisaria as well as other developed nations in Meridon and many sectors of the Illarian economy is reliant upon this trade. Illaria is a part of the Meridonian Currency Union and uses the Meridonian Unit, exclusively, as its currency.
The Illarian labor force has some 21,402,090 persons in it. The Illarian state is the largest single employer in the Principality, employing some 16% of the population, 3,360,128 persons. Consumer goods manufacturing, retail, and medical, represent the next largest industries employing 12%, 11%, and 8% of the economy respectively. Most of the Illarian economy is unionized with nearly 75% of the workforce being members of various unions, guilds, and other organized labor groups.
Unemployment and Poverty
Illaria is one of the wealthier nations in Meridon with relatively low levels of poverty and high standards of living. Most people who are impoverished are generally also unemployed with roughly 820,000 persons being classified as living in poverty, and 749,073 persons formally claimed as unemployed. Persons living close to the poverty line are far more common however, with nearly 2,300,000 people living at a near poverty level.
Illarian infrastructure is well developed, though it lags behind its Capisarian and Finorskian neighbors. Overland transport is largely done via the extensive rail network of Illaria, with roads handling intracity and personal transport. Air travel is somewhat common in the Principality with short distance flights between major Illarian cities occurring on a daily basis, and the international Airports at Cochest, Ilcarheshti, Timova, and Pantelimon servicing persons from all round Greater Meridon and beyond. Illaria is a landlocked nation, but is maintains a single major port over Lake Ekora, which handles cargo traffic from Finorskia. Communication is done largely via fiber-optic cable and over the air networks. Energy is largely provided via the burning of fossil fuels, mostly natural gas, largely imported from abroad, though renewable sources of energy are rapidly becoming more common.
The Illarian government is financed entirely through taxation, and controls roughly 30% of the total economy of the Principality, however, a not insubstantial portion of this economic control is locked into noble assets, with the various estates of the duchies and of the Royal Family being effectively governmental assets. Though the duchies and counties do receive a significant amount of funding for the maintenance of their holdings, the national government takes in all of the tax income in Illaria.
The Principality of Illaria maintains a modest defense force referred to as the Illarian Principate Defense Force (FDPI) which operates under the authority of the monarchy. The military is divided into three branches; the Principate Ground Defense Force (FDGP), the Principate Air Defense Force (FDAP), and the Principate Lake Defense Force (FDLP). The Principate Defense Forces are almost entirely funded through the state, though some funding comes from the Royal Family, in order to maintain their right of commandership; and it is staffed by volunteers during times of peace. There are currently 44,588 people serving in the Illarian armed forces, with 32,184 serving in the ground force, 10,218 in the air force, and 2,186 in the aquatic force. The Illarian State spends roughly .6% of the national GDP on its armed forces, and had a budget of $7,344,127,184 NSD in FY 2018, with roughly 70% ($5,140,889,028 NSD) of the budget going to the ground force, 25% ($1,836,031,796 NSD) to the air force, and 5% ($367,206,360) to the aquatic force.
Illarian law enforcement is largely done at the local level with county and municipal governments providing for law enforcement offices. Illarian local law enforcement generally handles beat policing, traffic enforcement, and most investigations. Supplementing the local police branches is the Illarian Principate Gendarmerie which is responsible for high risk situations and major or inter-jurisdictional crimes as well as guardianship of major buildings and the airports in Illaria. Lastly there is an Illarian lake patrol which is responsible for providing customs and border enforcement over lake Ekora. There are 303,196 persons serving in Illarian law enforcement agencies, and law enforcement receives a budget between them of $12,240,211,972 NSD.
Illaria is a developed nation according to the Meridonian Economic Development Index. In respect to most of its neighbors, namely Capisaria and Finorskia however, it is a relatively backwards. In some respects this has much to do with the nobility of Illaria, and its traditional opposition to universalization of public services, and the continued operation of tiered, and costly services, particularly in the healthcare sector.
Education in Illaria is present in both public, and private forms, and is mandatory for all citizens under the age of 15. Mandatory education can be attained for free from public schools, other education however is paid for privately, though some state subsidies exist for needy families. As of 2018, adults in the Principality of Illaria have a literacy rate of 95%, with older citizens tending towards lower literacy rates than younger, and with very little difference between the sexes.
Healthcare in Illaria is generall provided by private means, under a multi-payer system. Providers are generally privately owned hospitals and clinics, and are paid for by health insurance. There are a handful of private health insurers that issue health insurance that supplements or replaces the state funded public health insurance. Healthcare in Illaria is equivalent in outcome to most other developed nations, but is more expensive as well. The average life expectancy of citizens of Illaria is 72 years of age.
The daily life of a citizen of Illaria is somewhat more spartan than that of the average Finorskian or Capisarian, partly due to religious conviction, but also due the relatively weak economy of Illaria in comparison to that of its wealthier neighbors. Still most Illarians lead relatively modern lives with personal electronic devices being relatively common, and, in rural areas, frequent ownership of motor vehicles. Similarly, indoor plumbing and electricity are likewise near universal with only a small handful of households lacking in these things, often on the wishes on their inhabitants.
Illarian culture was impacted heavily by that of other nations to the east and south. A notable exception to this is the uniquely monotheistic Răscumpărare faith which is dominant in Illaria, and can trace its origins to the coastal raiders along Lake Ekora. Illaria was also famously the birthplace of Grunge music, in contrast to more traditional melodically driven folk music. Illarians traditionally built in the Rosalinic style, but recent construction is built along the more Capisarian influenced, neo-futurist style. Illarian diets are likely to be vegetable heavy, with many dishes forgoing meat entirely, soups, most notably Borscht are also common. Along the coast of Lake Ekora seafood is more common. Illaria lacks a major sporting culture barring its national pastime, Baseball, and to a more limited extent football.