The nation of Northire was a powerhouse on the southern half of the continent for thousands of years. The human population was divided into two classes: The Arcane, who ruled by the power of their spells, and the mundane, who had no magic. Though the ruling class of the Arcane squabbled amongst themselves for any advantage or power they could, they would always band together against the aggression of the Imperium to the north. Though they were conquered, they bided their time and once again became autonomous due to their arcane might and careful strategies.
At the time of the war, the Northirans were lending their might to both sides of the conflict, as their lack of a unified government meant their ruling class simply sided with who they personally chose, or remained neutral in the war.
When the great volcano was raised and erupted, the populace was forced to flee the centre of Northire and head to the east and north. When arcane magic died and the Maenad were born into the world, the eastern section of the divided land was conquered easily by the armies of Maryx to give rise to the Hobgoblin nation.
With the Imperium in the grips of the Rotting, the survivors of western Northire pushed northwards, claiming new territories to recoup those they lost. Now, Northire comprises the northernmost sections of old Northiran holdings, and the southernmost portions of the old Imperium.
Northire was a nation built on the primacy of the arcane. With their civil war between the arcane and the psionic during the war, the nation became bitterly divided. When psionics emerged as the only true power left in the shattered nation, there was a chance that a new culture would be born. However the victors had used their power to ensure that Northire survived, and simply supplanted the arcane practitioners as the new government. What started as a revolution for equality ended with a return to a status quo.
Northire now exists as a psionocracy, where those that are naturally gifted or rigorously trained in psionics are at a social advantage and "mundanes" are mostly expected to contribute in more traditional ways. Northirans have kept their opinion that those powerful in esoteric arts should rule those that are not able to wield such power.
Northiran culture has a strong focus on psionic talents and power. Those that can manifest powers or abilities are considered of a higher social class, and the government is mostly a loose alliance of individuals that have amassed power and influence. Those that are able to use psionics are called "Gifted" and those that are not are called "Mundane".
Other races that are naturally psionic, especially Maenad, are welcomed with open arms in Northire, though also monitored closely lest they try to wrest power from the existing human Gifted. It is not uncommon for a non-human to rise in prominence in Northire and gain influence.
Northiran culture has a strong focus on family, with an important distinction. Those that have shown promise in their childhood towards the psionic can be taken away from their mundane families and adopted by other Gifted to foster their talents. Those that are born into a gifted family but show not aptitude or gifts are often quietly sent away to live with distant relatives and live a more mundane life.
Northiran dress is sharply divided by class. Mundanes tend to wear drab colours in browns and other dark colours that are easily manufactured. The Gifted wear bright colours to denote their abilities, and tend to wear more ostentatious clothing. Northiran dress is also sharply divided along gender lines. Males tend to wear knee length skirts called Mbala during the hotter months, whereas women wear veils called Lomba over the face year round. These traditional garments vary from drab and simple through to ornate and colourful depending on social status.
Language and names
Northiran is a lyrical language, and is vastly different from the neighbouring languages of Imperial and Technocticlanese. Ophiduan scholars point to fractured records that dark-skinned humans began colonising the lands that would become Northire from across the sea approximately 3000 years ago, which would imply that the Northiran language is a transplant from another land.
Northiran names consist of a first name chosen by the mother and a patrilineal last name. Both given and family names consist of three syllables. For both genders, names are always pronounced in a staccato fashion. Male names often contain the letter U, and for females they are more likely to contain the letter I.
Male names: Abasum, Abdalluz, Amanum, Badriku. Benoka, Chatundam, Dirwesham, Fanakum, Ferasham, Gomasut, Hanifum, Hodarum, Ikunu, Janbika, Kumaru, Mahodum, Makotu, Nemokum, Okupa, Rahabuj, Safirim, Sulkanam, Ujima, Yahbutuz.
Female names: Adhami, Aishi, Bakari, Chanua, Dikina, Elawi, Endani, Firaji, Hadiya, Imaru, Jahira, Jehlini, Kaneni, Lishavi, Maliki, Niwarni, Ridiyu, Sanuri, Therani, Ujani, Ziwini.
Family names: Abona, Chamara, Dizamu, Gumaki, Inaku, Jizala, Kemfutu, Mnenware, Nzufura, Remkalbi, Selmenu, Uronoo, Zenbama.