Continental Excursions; Geldenreich

Time for an in depth analysis of the most complex and powerful human state in Partum, the empire known as Geldenreich. Divided into four separate parts, the politics of Geldenreich have always been overly complicated. Each of the four parts is considered an Archduchy, and each of them has their own royal house. The heads of each house are called Princes, and vie for the right to serve as Emperor if elected by the nation’s electors. The Emperor serves as such for their entire life and upon their death the electors determine which of the four Princes will step into the roll next.

Schlosswald is the seat of the Imperial capital, and boasts a total of ten electors. The Archduchy is known for its’ wealthy cities, impressive castles, and cultural accomplishments. There are more people in Schlosswald than in the other three Archduchies but this has not been translated into more political power for the electors. What has helped is the great wealth of the banking families in Schlosswald. The money that flows from Schlosswald serves to enrich all of the other principalities. Schlosswald’s nobility can field tremendous amounts of infantry in times of war.

Gyepekmark is the heart of Geldenreich, a land of vast grasslands and huge estates run by fiercely patriotic dukes. There are twenty electors that represent Gyepekmark, and while it would seem that having so many would all but guarantee the Prince of Gyepekmark would always be elected to serve as Emperor, the politics are not quite so straightforward as this. The people of Geldenreich have never allowed pettiness to overrule the good of the Empire. Gyepekmark is known for the tremendous strength of their mounted nobility and cavalry that spend a great deal of their time fighting the barbarians in the east. The frontier on the eastern end of Gyepekmark is as rugged and ruthless as it gets.

Horske-Oblanski has fourteen electors, and they represent the industrial core of the Empire. This is also where the most food is produced for the entire country. Minerals are mined from the mountains in the north and it is here that Geldenreich maintains a number of fortifications to keep the chaos of the Wenigzustand from spilling into Geldenreich. The most reclusive of the Archduchies, Horske-Oblanski conducts almost as much trade as the much wealthier and urbane Schlosswald.

Zaleznemark is the smallest of the Archduchies, and has eight electors. These almost always vote as a block, however, showing much more solidarity as a group than is typically found in the other principalities. Their neighbor to the north is Lusatia and the religiously fervent knights of Zaleznemark share many of the cultural traits of the Lusatian paladins. The knights of Zaleznemark construct massively strong castles to defend against the eastern barbarians and pride themselves on being among the heaviest infantry anywhere in Partum. They can be found throughout Geldenreich as leaders of smaller militias because Zaleznemark boasts the longest and proudest militaristic heritage found anyplace in Geldenreich.

The Church in Geldenreich has five electors of its own, highlighting the influence that this institution has within Geldenreich. The Church has always been a key to unity within the four otherwise distinct and ethnically diverse Archduchies. All told there are fifty-seven electors that serve on the Council of Heintz-Zustand, informally known as the Heintz Fifty-seven. They manage to catch up on everything that needs doing even though they are primarily tasked with selecting the next emperor.

*stifled laughter*