Amur is a large island sub-continent located in the sub-tropics of Aratasa. It's land area is comparable in size to Australia, measuring roughly 900 miles (1450 km) in extent from north to south, and 800 miles (1300 km) from east to west. The northern tropic of Aratasa passes through Amur close to the city of Jaitha on the Amsadhu river.
- 1 Geographic and climatic regions
- 2 Major Cities and Political Regions
Geographic and climatic regions
The southern part of Amur, from the southern coast to the river Amsadhu, is an old and heavily eroded plateau with an average elevation of about 600 m (1970 ft). There are broad, uneven areas of high elevation split by deep river valleys. The city of Virnas lies on a high bluff overlooking the river Maudhu near the center of this region.
The southern highlands are both hotter and more rugged than the rest of Amur. Rice is grown in the river valleys and some of the flatlands, while the hill are dominated by corn, sheep, and goats. The highlands have abundant sources of copper and silver, providing the majority of the metal production in Amur.
Amsadhu River Drainage
The central plains of Amur, stretching from the area just south of the Amsadhu all the way to the northern shore of Amur, is the largest, most populous, and most productive region of Amur. This region is extremely flat, having very little elevation change over its entire expanse, and is well-drained by the enormous Amsadhu river system with its tributaries, and secondarily by the Saru river and its tributaries in the northern parts.
The Amsadhu river drainage is the breadbasket of Amur, being ideally situated for rice production with broad, flat plains, a yearly monsoon and a well-developed system of irrigation which provide year-round water for agriculture. The majority of the rice in Amur is produced in the central plans, as well as many of the secondary crops (pomegranates, figs, oranges, lentils, chickpeas, etc.)
The north-eastern peninsula of Amur consists of the Gumadha Plateau, named after the major city of Gumadha on its southern shore. Similar to the southern highlands in geography, the plateau consists of an elevated plateau with an average elevation of about 1000 m (3280 ft), with steep drops from the plateau to the sea on all sides.
Like the southern highlands, the Gumadha plateau is mostly given over to corn production, with herding on the more rugged hilly portions of the plateau.
The western portion of Amur is dominated from north to south by the Evening Mountains, a very steep, geologically active mountain range. The Evening Mountains reach heights of over 4000 m (13000 ft), rising from the plains with an average elevation increase of 1000m over only 10km. The mountains are the only part of Amur which regularly receives snow, and the highest peaks of the mountains have year-round glaciers. The mountain range is only about 100km wide at its widest.
The Evening Mountains are sparsely inhabited and are not suitable for any form of intensive agriculture. The few inhabitants of the mountains generally raise sheep and goats and engage in sparse gardening of hardy breeds of corn and legumes.
The westernmost part of Amur is the coast which lies to the west of the mountains. The coast lies in the rain shadow of the Evening Mountains and received very little precipitation of any form, forming a long, narrow desert that runs the entire height of Amur.
The region is essentially uninhabited, though in times past there have been small communities of fishermen and ascetics who planted themselves on the coast.
Major Cities and Political Regions
The Seven Kingly Cities
The most politically important cities in Amur are known as the Seven Kingly Cities, because the rulers of those cities conventionally used the title darya, meaning "king", while the rulers of other cities typically called themselves majakhadir, meaning "great lord". The Seven Kingly Cities were the heart of the Seven Kingdoms, the major political divisions which preceded the rise of the unified Empire of Amur.
Each of the kingly cities had a sphere of influence consisting of the lands of the other khadir and majakhadir which were bound to send tribute and arms to the capitol. The borders of these spheres of influence were never precisely fixed and fluctuated frequently all the way up into the imperial era. With the rise of the unified Empire, the boundaries between the various kingdoms ceased to have much importance, but lesser cities still deferred to the kingly cities in most matters.
Sravi was the northernmost kingly city, one of the three located in the fertile central plains of Amur. The first Emperor Aidasa made Sravi the capitol of the united Empire and changed the name of the city to Majasravi. The patron Power of Sravi was Am, and its emblem was the rice stalk.
Gumadha, located on the north-eastern plateau of Amur, was relatively isolated and drew most of its power from its advantageous position for trade with Kalignas and the Dawn Islands. In the imperial era the emperors made Gumadha the site of their summer home, the Moon Palace, but Davrakhanda grew to dominate the trade with Kalignas. The patron Power of Gumadha was Jakhur, and its emblem was the white crescent moon.
Davrakhanda was located on the eastern coast of Amur. It was one of the wealthiest and most cosmopolitan cities in Amur, largely due to its dominance of the sea trade with Kalignas and the coastal trade routes with Jaitha, Virnas, and Patakshar. The patron Power of Davrakhanda was Ashti, and its emblem was the sea eagle.
Rajunda was located in the heart of the rich central plains of Amur. For much of the period of the Seven Kingdoms, Rajunda was the richest and most powerful of the kingly cities, commanding the most populous region of Amur and controlling the inland trade in rice and other agricultural products. Towards the end of the Seven Kingdoms period, an alliance between Sravi and Davrakhanda destroyed the city of Rajunda.
Jaitha was located on the river Amsadhu, at the furthest inland point in which the river can be successfully navigated by sea-going vessels. For this reason, Jaitha was the major inland port at which trade goods from throughout Amur sailing along the coastal route were disembarked onto land transport or the shallow barges which navigated the tributaries of the Amsadhu. The patron Power of Jaitha was Chaludra, and its emblem was a flame within a circle.
Virnas was located on the river Maudhu, near important sources of copper and silver. It was an important center of craftsmanship and trade for silver and copper throughout Amur, but in later eras it was usually weaker than both Jaitha and Patakshar. In ancient times its patron had been Ulaur (see Uluriya), but after the fall of the Heirs of Manjur the city was rededicated to Chaludra.
Patakshar was the southernmost major city of Amur, located on the southern coast of the island. It controlled the trade to the islands south of Amur, which were the major source of precious gems and spices. Its patron was Dhashi, and its emblem was a porpoise.
Other major cities
Tulakhanda was located on the northern shore of Amur, and was an important half-way point of pilgrims traveling to Ternas in the mountains.
Bhurnas was located at the western edge of the Gumadha plateau, and served as an intermediate port of call for travel between the peninsula and Davrakhanda.
Ghatmi was located some distance to the west of Rajunda. After the fall of Rajunda it became the largest and most important city in the interior of Amur, though it never had the political independence of its predecessor.
Ahunas was located in the hills south of Virnas, and was notable as a market town, a center of craftsmanship in copper and silver, and the mid-way point for the overland route between Virnas and Patakshar.
Uskhanda lay at the mouth of the Maudhu river, and was an important port of call for trade traveling by the coastal route between Virnas and the rest of Amur. It was also near several salt flats, the largest and most important source of salt in Amur.