Duchy of Sutherland
Hohenwerfen Castle
Hohenwerfen Castle as Duchy of Sutherland
REGION INFORMATION
Region: Duchy of Sutherland
Kingdom: Mobrin
Rulers: Crawford
Wealth: Large
Population: 943,000
Language: Daereni (Common)
Religion: The Light
Demonym: Suther
Primary Revenue: Timber, Gold
Cultural Niche: Horses
Weakness: Small Naval Force
MILITARY INFORMATION
Fortification: Trueborn Keep
Specialization: Light Calvary, and mounted Archers
Knights: 5,000 Heavy Cavalry(including knights), 8,000 Light Cavalry, 400 Siege Specialists(weapon crew and sappers), 800 Navy
Soldiers: 6,000 Heavy Infantry, 400 Rangers, 4,000 Archers, 1,700 Crossbowen, 2,000 Mounted Archers

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Overview

Sutherland is located to the south of Darfield, the Duchy of Sutherland consists of a great mountain range to the north, gently rolling plains, and woodlands. Sutherland has been made rich due to gold mines in the Pine Mountains. They are well known for their light cavalry, some of the deadliest and most fearsome horsemen on the continent come from Sutherland. The ducal family in Sutherland has had a tradition of breeding the finest horses a man could possibly have.

History

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The history of Sutherland has been variable and complex because scholars don't agree on the earliest parts. It is an area that has long been settled but originally by whom has been lost to antiquity. Wars of the past have wiped away records, keeps and castles sacked, lords replaced with new. What is well known is that Sutherland's people and their customs haven't changed a great deal over the past thousand years.

228 years ago as the empire had ceased and House Kilgour took the throne, a Knight of great renown of Sutherland had steadfastly given his support and troops to back the new King in Darfield. This man, Sir Jaymes Crawford, was uplifted as the Duke of Sutherland. This arrangement lasted nearly 100 years until the rule of Sir Kiddiam Crawford whom lost much ground to Kundari raiders. His King displeased with House Crawford's mismanagement, gave the Dutchy over to House Cullien.

For the next 30 years House Cullien fought the Kundari and tried to drive them out and rebuild Sutherland, only to loose their male line. A new knight of House Crawford raised an army of his own and with clever tactics, drove the Kundari from Sutherland shores. In a brilliant stroke, Sir Mavenwy Crawford married the eldest daughter of the former Duke and the King allowed the Dutchy to return to it's rightful line.

From then on Sutherland has mostly thrived and raised their breeding of horses from very good to the best. Some say by crossing northern destier stock with hot blooded Kundari horses. The herds have been managed with great success to produce the best bloodlines in Mobrin.

In 218 gold was discovered in the Pine Mountains of Sutherland where formerly silver had reigned as the primary metal for mining. At first it was spotty as nugget and flake were found in the streams until the sources could be located. By 222, mining shifted to digging and gold began to flow into Sutherland and up into the King's coffers in Darfield, elevating the Dutchy's status and wealth in support of the kingdom.

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In 224, Duke Pallow Crawford rode to support the King in war. With him he took roughly a third of Sutherland forces to fight the Laniveer in Lakeshore and Weston. Sir Pallow Crawford was killed in a flanking ambush. Sutherland forces with him were decimated to about half their former strength, forced to break and flee. Some rallied to aid at the Battle of Westgate while others went home to Sutherland.

Pallow's son Cedric was named successor. In 226 Kundari raiders were responsible for Cedric's mother's death and in 228 both Duke Cedric and his wife the Dutchess Terrwyn nee Kilgour were murdered in the sacking of Trueborn Keep. This assault was attributed to Laniveer ships and sell swords but others claim it was mere pirates. Whatever the case, many knights, men at arms, archers lost their lives, the keep was burned and what horses could be rounded up in the area were taken. The city for the most part was only mildly looted.

After the death of Duke Cedric, the last of male of House Crawford was elevated to Duke, a Knight of the Rioga by the name of Sir Ronan. Now it is up to Sir Ronan, Duke of Sutherland, to rebuild what has been lost and show that he can manage the Dutchy in good order. He must get himself a wife and heir.

Revenue

Sutherland coffers do not lack for coin even before the discovery of gold. Timber has traditionally been the primary export with the sale of very fine, well trained horses leading in revenue. Horses might easily go for a thousand gold coins each if they be well trained for use by Knights even if they are not the heavier destiers of the north. Other revenue has traditionally been generated from the sale of fine Sutherland leather and light weight cloth in rich colors.

In these darker days, the greatest wealth of Sutherland is the discovery of gold. Silver was already mined but gold in such abundance now fattens not only their coffers, but also the King's. Despite the recent losses of men, horses and the sacking of Trueborn Keep, gold will fuel rebuilding and brings men from afar who wish to be trained to fight by Sutherland Knights - and to be paid in Sutherland gold.

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Timber: The balmy weather and mild winters make the harvesting of timber a year-round industry in Sutherland. The forests grow thick with a variety of wood known for its sturdiness. Rarer trees are harvested for their unusual beauty and color and are highly sought after by woodworking artisans. As one would expect this has spurred a thriving wood working industry in Sutherland from furniture to musical instruments. The arts of veneer and wood inlay flourish with such resources to hand and are widely exported along with timber.

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Gold: A recent discovery in the foothills the Pine Mountains of Sutherland. It has proved both a blessing and curse. The highly sought after metal has increased revenue dramatically, but it has also brought an influx of hastily erected mining camps and many people looking to make a quick fortune. The Duke keeps a watchful eye on the foothills, prepared to make sure the lives of his people are protected. Gold shipments bound for Sutherland's coffers, and ultimately a good portion of that for the King's, are very heavily escorted by armed men, mounted knights and an array of finest archers. Shipments to the crown are taken by ship via the port at the City of Trueborn. A gold smiths were few in Sutherland but now there is amble metals for their crafts.

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Horses: The pride of all Sutherland are their horses. The Duke himself oversees the herds and makes all decisions regarding breeding and maintenance. The herds are protected at ll times by well trained and armed troops. Sutherland horses are prized for their stamina and agility and have been known to outlast heavy warhorses in battle. All members of the Ducal family are trained from an early age in horsemanship.

Sutherland horses are agile with short supple backs, strong haunches, thick regal necks especially on the stallions, with plenty of dense bone and clean joints. The most prized coat colors are dappled greys but all colors abound.

Beliefs and Culture

Sutherlanders are a militaristic, productive people who have a strong work ethic. They tend to be no nonsense, practical people and by far the least superstitious in beliefs outside of the worship of the Eight. Despite their close proximity to Sky Forest with whom they trade. There aren't any particularly strong or memorable legends for Sutherland as there are for the other southern counties.

The warmer climates in Sutherland lead to some differences from other Mobrin cultures. Fashion, for example, often favors looser, lighter fabrics that are more comfortable in the heat and easier to remove. At court, these garments would be considered inappropriate and out of place, but even the snobbiest of courtiers has to admit they are ideal for a Sutherland summer. Swimming in the sea, lakes, and other bodies of water is very common, and considered quite appropriate.

Gallery

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