Greyhawk: Return to the Classic
Kingdom of Furyondy
Furyondy, properly known as the Kingdom of Furyondy, is a feudal kingdom of the Flanaess, and a successor state of Ferrond.
Originally part of the Viceroyalty of Ferrond known as Furyon, Furyondy claimed independence from the Great Kingdom of Aerdy in 254 CY. The nation’s first king, Thrommel I, was crowned that same year. In 288, the Furyondyian capitol was moved from Dyvers to Chendl. Dyvers would eventually secede from Furyondy in 526 CY.
Ferrond most often refers to the former Great Kingdom province known as the Viceroyalty of Ferrond, or the general region where its successor states now lie. The Viceroyalty of Ferrond was a vassal state of the Great Kingdom of Aerdy, ruled by a viceroy in the name of the Overking. The capitol of the Viceroyalty was the city of Dyvers. The Viceroyalty of Ferrond consisted of the modern-day states of Furyondy (Furyon), Highfolk, Perrenland (the Quaglands), the Shield Lands, Veluna (Voll), and the hilly regions northeast of the Vesve Forest, known then as part of the Northern Reaches.
Modern Furyondy is bordered by the Nyr Dyv to the east; by the Veng River, Whyestil Lake, and the Vesve Forest to the north; and by the Velverdyva River to the south and west.
The Noble Council Provinces
Ruler: King Belvor IV
Standing Army: 850
The Royal Capital of Furyondy, Chendl, lies within the Fairwain Province. Although Fairwain is very small, measuring only thirty square miles, it is said to be one of the most beautiful places in the Flanaess. Fairwain has been cultivated with exotic flora from all over the continent of Oerik.
The Royal Capital of Chendl is located at the center of Fairwain, and is the true gem of the province. Chendl is a most magnificent city, designed from the ground up with architectural elegance and precision. Chendl is strongly walled and has wide canals, hanging gardens, broad boulevards, elegant sculptures, and ample public parks. Continually flaming lanterns shine brightly along the boulevards and the King’s magnificent magical garden floats some three hundred feet above the Royal Palace. Access to the King’s garden is by two bridges of delicate white arches. These bridges are guarded by some of the King’s own House Regiment officers. Atop the magical garden, at the highest point, is a flagpole that flies the King’s personal standard when he is at his home. The Palace is a majestic building of gold-veined white marble with a central gleaming transparent dome filled with exotic plants and birds. The Palace grounds hold a temple to Heironeous, the God of Valor. The noted bard Diambeth writes, “The City of Greyhawk may claim to be the Gem of the Flanaess, but I name Chendl to be the Diadem.”
Chendl was laid out by master architects and extensively planned. The city was designed to replace Dyvers as the capitol of Old Ferrond. Chendl has no slums, nor any recognizable lower social class housing. Indeed, it can cost a traveler between 5 and 10 Gold Wheatshafts per week to stay here in even modest accommodations. The current population is over 15,000 individuals; any more and the city would likely be crowded. Because of the limited available space, immigration is closely monitored. Anyone wishing to become a citizen of Chendl must prove his or her “verifiable worth” to the city government first. They must have skills or capital to start a business. Anyone who can pay for lodging is welcome as a visitor in the city.
The citizens of Chendl are very law abiding. A well-trained police force patrols the city. Chendl is a place to wine and dine, sniff the scented gardens, see the opera, and gamble at casinos and gaming houses. All casinos are safe to visit and mostly honest. Royal regulations forbid high-stakes gambling in most locations, but there are plenty of outrageously overpriced restaurants and expensive taverns to spend the gold in. Chendl’s social castes are always a concern to the locals. The “old blood” nobility and the Noble Counsel representatives are at the top of the list, Knights and lesser nobles second, skilled artisans and the very richest merchants third, other artisans and merchants next, and everyone else last.
Chendl has a sordid side to it, but not a very large one. The Thieve’s Guild here is struggling to survive given the vast numbers of militia and other solders. Only the most daring of rogues can make a profit in this city. The commoners and the nobility alike know that outside the city there are “secret” clubs that cater to high rollers, those outside the nobility, and deal in narcotics and houses of ill repute. It is also a known secret that these clubs are run by the Thieve’s Guild, and that their house percentages are considerably higher than legal casinos.
Heironeous is the major faith in Chendl, and High Priest Garaeth Heldenster is a major ally of the King. Those outside of the noble class tend to favor Cuthbert, and that church’s leader, Canon Redankin Desmart, supports the King’s policies. Other notable religions include Rao, Trithereon, and Delleb.
Chendl has a garrison strength of 850 men, including some soldiers of Kalinstren and the King’s own personal forces. These troops, of course, can carry any weapons they need throughout the city, though any other heavily armed figures will likely be closely watched. Three trusted military commanders, Generals Gallantren, Bemedior, and Yemanien, stay within the King’s complex and command the troops in Chendl. They are technically subservient to Grand Marshal Derek Strongblade, but he does not spend much time in Chendl and commands little control over them.
Barony of Kalinstren
Ruler: Baron Kalinstren
Standing Army: 7,200
This Barony has suffered the most because of King Belvor’s continuing struggles against Iuz the Evil. There are more border skirmishes and battles fought here than anywhere else in Furyondy. This realm has lost nearly one-third of its lands to the evil empire over the last century. Baron Kalinstren is the foremost advocate of launching a direct war against Iuz’s kingdom.
Baron Kalinstren, a strong devotee of Trithereon, has few friends in Belvor’s court or among his fellow nobles. Only Jakartai of Crystalmist is on good terms with him. Kalinstren’s uncompromising attitude does not do his cause any good, and even Belvor wouldn’t be sorry if the Baron perished in one of his forays.
The orderly folk of this province live in a state of chronic fear and tension. They are jumpy, nervous people who try to avoid contact with anyone they do not know. Morale is not poor, for the growth of defenses here is rapid. However, many people have relatives who have disappeared into the clutches of Iuz’s forces and the nightmares about their fates haunt them. This is hardly a happy land.
County of Crystalreach
Ruler: Count Artur Jakartai
Standing Army: 3,900
Two years ago the previous provincial rule, Count Paulus Halpern, was lost and believed killed by raiders from Iuz. Since Halpern died without issue, Belvor moved to install a new ruler. His choice, the mighty Shield Land’s exile Artur Jakartai, was a daring one. Belvor knows Artur is an ally, and considered, rightly, that the other provincial rulers wouldn’t object too loudly.
They agreed, for several good reasons. First, Halpern is not known with certainty to be dead, so Jakartai can be said to be a “provisional” ruler. Belvor pleaded that putting an indigenous Furyondian in charge might result in major turmoil if Halpern were ever recovered. Second, the other provincial rulers didn’t like Halpern anyway, since he was an overbearing, cowardly, and very snobbish individual. They are not too sorry to see someone else in charge. Third, Jakartai is a genuine war hero who fought along the length and breadth of the Furyondian borders with the Bandit Kingdom. The loyalty of those who fought with and for him is absolute. It would be hard for any noble to oppose such a man. Fourth, Jakartai is known to despise the old leaders of the Shield Lands for their blinkered prejudices. This could be of benefit to Belvor if the Shield Lands or Nyrond tries to rise against Furyondy.
Jakartai is known to rely heavily on Furyondian advisers, especially Halpern’s Priest Jalquayne of Heironeous, who is his representative at Belvor’s Noble Council, as he was for Halpern. This is reassuring to the other provincial rulers. Jakartai also behaves in a modest and deferential way to the other rulers. His clumsiness and social naiveté is actually endearing to them, disarming their usual snobbery. One exception to this is Countess Rhavelle, who considers him vulgar. All in all, this appointment has been a political triumph for Belvor.
Viscount of the March
Ruler: Viscount Luther Derwent
Standing Army: 3,500
The most populous of Furyondy’s provinces, the March is a breadbasket for the rest of the kingdom. Its fields are lush and the land is productive. Traditionally, the March’s merchants have been the trading experts of Furyondy. People here know and trust the value of what they are buying.
This reflects the preoccupation of the ruling house. Luther is a grim faced and unsmiling man with a very sharp mind. He has made his fortune through trade, and the Derwent family, together with a handful of other powerful, intermarried, families, own most of the land and wealth here.
Luther is a pragmatist, a tight fisted man who is very adept at staving off Belvor’s demands for more money. Privately, he feels that if Iuz goes to war it will be a protracted affair and the Crystal River forms a more defensible southern retreat than the Flare Line. Luther truly believes that pumping all of Furyondy’s resources into the Flare Line defenses is a strategic blunder. Luther’s second wife, the nervous and much younger Alistacea, is not someone to oppose her husband, although his twin sons Petronian and Timarn tend to favor the King.
Luther is not well liked by other nobles, but he is respected for his skill and coolness in argument. He loathes Baron Kalinstren and considers that a “foreigner” should not have been given the Crystalreach to rule.
Luther’s representative at Noble Council is the scribe Telemmand, and expert procrastinator who refuses to make and decisions until he has discussed matters fully with his dour, pragmatic, liege.
Barony of Littleberg
Ruler: Baron Jemian
Standing Army: 3,000
Second in population and wealth only to the March, the Barony of Littleberg is likewise a fertile land, but its farmers grow a greater diversity of crops than their grain growing eastern neighbors. Littleberg has always had a reputation for industry, inventiveness allied with common sense, and the decency and kindness of its folk.
Littleberg also has an unusual population mix. In its northern regions dwell half of Furyondy’s 4,500 olves, immigrants from Highfolk and the Vesve Forest. Enclaves of noniz are found at Claw Gorge and Greylode also.
This lack of insularity compared with the March is reflected in its ruler, Baron Jemian. Jemian is a reverer of Rao, and his influential wife Scheredenn favors Pelor, and while Jemian secretly sympathizes with his King’s predicament he is ever mindful of the need for caution in planning. Jemian believes that Furyondy’s future will not be secured by military efforts, but by uniting its nobles, and he makes overtures to the others to negotiate their differences with the King and unite behind him. However, Jemian lacks the charisma and will to be a true political force. He is, in truth, too pleasant and self-effacing a man to be a real power broker.
Duchy of the Reach
Ruler: Duke Bennal Tyneman
Standing Army: 1,800
This long, narrow strip of territory has a unique atmosphere, simply because it borders on so many different lands. Highfolk, Veluna, and Verbobonc all border on the duchy, in addition to Littleberg and the Gold County. This is a free wheeling, free spirited province.
Caronis is a major trade and travel center, with merchants and other people moving up and down the roads to Veluna City and Mitrik. Velunese influence is a stabilizing factor in the duchy. Duke Tyneman prefers the open and free wheeling atmosphere of his duchy. He is a reverer of Olidammara and a self-indulgent hedonist whose lands lie hundreds of miles from potential war and strife. Tyneman is no fool, but he doesn’t understand much of war and the grim lecturing of Belvor and his generals bore him to distraction.
Tyneman avoids most political wheeling and dealings, liking only nobles who are fun to be with, notably Countess Rhavelle. Tyneman has so far refused to raise taxes at Belvor’s request, claiming that this might lose trade to Verbobonc which is a plausible excuse.
The Gold County
Ruler: Countess Kyaren Rhavelle
Standing Army: 1,200
The Gold County is the least populated of all Furyondy’s provinces, but it is rich indeed. Its name partly derives from the many rich minor nobles who are attracted here by relatively low taxes, as well as the sunflower-like plants, growing on the plains, which are harvested for their seed oil.
Countess Rhavelle is a cunning woman, posing as an almost ingenuous socialite while actually possessing very sharp wit and insight. She admires Belvor’s craftiness, but she does not believe that Furyondy will face war for many years. For this reason, she stands steadfast against supplying extra revenue to the crown, and she has a good justification.
Rhavelle considers Duke Tyneman an effete ninny and Luther Derwent a wet blanket. She is wary of ambitious Baron Butrain of Willip, and dislikes the northern provincial rulers. She most admires Baron Jemian, but in truth the Countess is highly self confident and very reluctant to ever admit that she might be wrong.
Social mores play a dominating role in the Gold County. For example, merchants are only permitted to wear simple, dark cloaks and attire so as not to compete with the vivid styles of their noble superiors!
Barony of Willip
Ruler: Baron Xanthan Butrain
Standing Army: 2,500 troops, 4,500 navy
The Barony of Willip is a vital strategic region of Furyondy. Willip is the first port of call for almost all visitors arriving across the lake from Greyhawk, Urnst, Nyrond and points beyond. Willip itself is the largest settlement in all of Furyondy and its baron plays a pivotal political role.
Baron Xanthan Butrain is resistant to further increases in taxation, but he also knows that since Belvor pays for the navy, and the navy brings vast revenues into Willip, that he is beholden to his King on that score. Should the navy be, say, increasingly diverted to a developed Gold County port as a base, the barony would suffer economically. Butrain thus plays a waiting game. He insists on agreements between all provincial rulers before he will agree to raise taxes to fund the northern provinces, knowing this is unlikely to happen.
The Barony of Willip has some quirks compared to most of the rest of Furyondy. Criminal law here is termed canon law and may only be administered by priest of the faiths of Cuthbert or Zilchus. This often means long delays waiting for trials. Most taxes have odd names. For instance, the Noble Tax for lesser nobles is the “Baron’s Gold” and the Freesword Tax is called the “Blade Coppers”.
Lastly, Butrain has a nemesis. His cousin Gregen claims the title of baron. The true bloodline is disputed. Gregen is believed to have fled to Admundfort, where Iuz may be using him as a puppet to justify any planned strike against Willip. This is rumor that Butrain has never tried to quell. It is said that only the King knows the truth.
The people of Furyondy have a couple of festivals that are unique to their nation. The Growfest Eel Run is a festival held in Furyondy every year, mainly in the town of Caronis. The festival marks the migration of a large number of Lake Quag elvers (young eels), which swim down the Velverdyva River to the Nyr Dyv.
The Goose Fair is an annual market fair that is held in the city of Willip. It takes its name from a local breed of geese and features many diverse entertainments, with traders arriving from many lands. The festival has also given its name to Willip’s market district, its called “Goose Yards.”
As of 591 CY, the population of Furyondy totaled 1,481,800 persons, the vast majority being humans of chiefly Oeridian stock. Elves, halflings, dwarves, and gnomes make up less than 20% of the total population.
The most popular deities among Furyondians are Heironeous, Rao, Saint Cuthbert, Mayaheine, Zilchus, Trithereon, Fharlanghn, and Beory. The King himself used to be a Paladin of Heironeous before he was forced to lay down his call so that he could pick up his brothers crown.
The most widely-spoken languages in Furyondy include Common, Velondi, Elvish, and Halfling.
The Kingdom of Furyondy is a hereditary feudal monarchy. The power of the kingship is limited by the Noble Council. Since 288 CY, the nation’s capitol has been Chendl.
The nobility of Furyondy traces its origins to the Viceroyalty of Ferrond. An amalgam of the feudal and the colonial, the Viceroyalty had a two tiered system of titles.
First in order of precedence was the Viceroy, appointed by the Overking of the Great Kingdom in Rauxes. While the Viceroyalty eventually grew into a hereditary title, it never lost its character as an administrative post. The Viceroy of Ferrond ranked in the Rolls of Precedence of the Great Kingdom just under a baron and this only because the Viceroy was the Overking’s chief servant in the West. Practically, as the Viceroy ruled from Dyvers and rarely visited the Great Kingdom, this slight was insignificant.
All local rulers answerable to the Viceroy in Ferrond were styled Thanes. Both a feudal and an administrative title, the Thane was less than a true noble but greater than a mere civil servant. The Thane owed typical feudal obligations to the Viceroy but did not enjoy full recognition as a feudal noble, being subject to recall to Dyvers at the Viceroy’s whim. Among the Thanes, precedence was determined by the size of an individuals land holdings for which they were responsible.
Over time, the Overking, with or without the Viceroy’s consent, would grant noble titles and lands within the Viceroyalty to Thanes or nobles from the Great Kingdom, who might or might not ever take up actual possession themselves. By the time of Furyondian independence, there were, thus, a welter of noble titles within the Viceroyalty with no order of precedence other than that of the Great Kindgom, to which allegiance was no longer paid.
With the founding of the Kingdom of Furyondy, every Thane and noble sought to establish his or her independence and preeminence within the new order. Thanes, fearful that true nobles would seek to absorb their lands, assumed titles they believed suited their holdings. The King of Furyondy was forced to accept the resulting hodge-podge of titles or risk civil war within the newly declared kingdom.
In Furyondy proper, the Seven Families were those nobles or former Thanes who successful pressed their claims to precedence. The result was an absurd system where a baron was a title of equal dignity with that of a duke or count or viscount. Every title was declared of equal quality and equivalent in the Rolls of Precedence within Furyondy. In essence, a noble title was meaningless beyond indicating rule of a large area of the country. In consequence, the crown of Furyondy was perennially weak as the Seven Families asserted a defacto palatinate status within a loose union that was Furyondy.
There has been a constant struggle between the Monarchy and the nobility for power. The kings and queens have in the past been as little as figureheads or as much as total monarchs. The power of the crown has in a very real since depended on the power of the individual who would wield it.
Furyondy is made up of eight provinces ruled by hereditary nobility, one of which is governed directly by the monarch (Fairwain Province). The other seven noble families are collectively known as the “Seven Families.” These noble fiefdoms are: the Duchy of the Reach, the County of Crystalreach, the Gold County, the Viscounty of the March, the Barony of Kalinstren, the Barony of Littleberg, and the Barony of Willip.
Dukes – There are only five Dukedoms – Reach, March, Kalinstren, Gold Country and Littleberg. These are the last survivals of the Seven Families of Furyondy. Each Duke or Duchess is sovereign within their lands, answerable only to the King. A Duke or Duchess holds the unique right to contest the King’s call for troops or taxes in the Knightly Conclave. Dukes and Duchesses may create all subsidiary titles within their lands. Dukes and Duchess are addressed as Your Grace.
Counts – Counts, except for the Count of Crystalreach which is a direct tributary title of the King, are the chief nobles of the Dukedoms. They may create all subsidiary titles within their lands. They are addressed as My Lord.
Barons – Barons, except for the Baron of Willip which is a direct tributary title of the King or a title vested in the Dauphin, are created subsidiary to any greater noble. They are the least of the Greater Nobles and may only create Lords and Knights. A Baron is addressed as Excellency.
Viscounts – A Viscount may only be created by a Duke or a Count. A Viscounty is often created for the heir of a Duke or Count, or as a favor to a loyal Baron. A Viscount may only create Knights, practically limiting their estates. A Viscount is addressed as The Honourable.
Furyondy’s chief of state is King Belvor IV, who has ruled since 537 CY and has produced no heirs nor taken a queen.
The King – The King of Furyondy is the principle noble of the realm and, along with the Queen, Dauphin, and the Princes and Princesses of the Blood, is the only noble who may be styled royalty. All other nobles are ultimately answerable to the King. Only the Dukes may appeal to the Knightly Conclave, whose decision is final, a request of the King for levies or monies. The King within the County of Crystalreach and the Barony of Willip may create all subsidiary titles. The King is addressed as Your Majesty.
The Queen – The Queen of Furyondy is usually the consort of the King. A Queen may, however, rule in her own right if born the first child of the King. Furyondy follows strict primogeniture in matters of succession. A Queen of Furyondy may also rule as Regent for the Dauphin if he or she is underage at the time of the King’s death. The Queen is addressed as Your Majesty.
The Dauphin – The Dauphin is the designated crown heir of the Kingdom of Furyondy. A Dauphin becomes crown heir only upon investiture as Baron of Willip upon attaining their majority. The Dauphin enjoys all the rights and privileges attendant upon the Barony. The Dauphin is addressed as Your Royal Highness.
Princes and Princesses of the Blood – Royal heirs other than the Dauphin are styled Prince or Princess. The title is purely honorary and no feudal obligations or privileges attach to the title. Landless, Princes or Princess are often advantageously married off to the greater or lesser nobility. To avoid this, it is not uncommon for Princes or Princesses to strike out on their own as adventurers to build their own lives according to their own dictates. Princes and Princesses are addressed as Your Royal Highness.
The king’s lesser nobles, the Seven Families, are represented by the Noble Council, which keeps the king’s power in check. All important royal decrees must be garner the support of the Noble council before being executed.
Below the Noble Council is the Knightly Conclave, a parliamentary group of minor nobles which considers any issue desired, then offers its opinions to the king.
Lords – Lords may be created by all superior nobility, except a Viscount. A Lordship is the fundamental organizational unit of the feudal system in Furyondy. A Lord is a superior Knight, who often is owed fealty by some number of other knights but may not create knights of his or her own. A Lord is addressed as Your Lordship.
Knight – A knight is the most basic unit of the feudal system in Furyondy and the lowest of the noble ranks. A knight holds fee directly from the noble who created him, although he or she may be landless. A knight’s fee may be transferred between superior nobles with no right to object. Practically, this is limited by the desire of greater noble lords not to see their holdings ripped apart by an uncontrolled subinfeudation. A knight’s greatest right is to sit in the Knightly Conclave, that advises the King and passes on any Ducal challenge to a call from the King for levies or taxes. A knight is addressed as Sir.
Thane – Although an ancient and obsolete title, not recognized in the Furyondy Rolls of Precedence, some nobles will still style themselves Thanes if they are descended from a particularly illustrious ancestor who was one of the Thanes of the Viceroyalty of Ferrond. There is no proper form of address for a Thane; it was customary to address a Thane as My Thane.
Furyondy’s coat of arms is blazoned thus: Party per bend gules and azure, dexter three crowns in bend or, sinister a decrescent argent.
Furyondy is noted for its foodstuffs, cloth, gold, wines, fish, and shipbuilding supplies.
The Furyondy standard coinage consists of the platinum paladin (pp), gold wheatsheaf (gp), electrum knight (ep), silver sheridan (sp), and copper common (cp).
Furyondy’s nationwide road system was at one time one of the best in the Flanaess. Much of it lies in shambles, however, due to the nation’s coffers being drained by the Greyhawk Wars of 574-584CY and the Great Northern Crusade of 586-588CY.
Much waterborne traffic takes place along Furyondy’s rivers and across the Nyr Dyv. Whyestill Lake and the Veng are rarely used, however, due to the ever-present threat from the Empire of Iuz to the north.
Furyondy has one of the most impressive armies in the Flanaess. Augmented by adventurers and mercenary bands, the full might of Furyondy’s national infantry and cavalry forces stands at roughly twenty thousand soldiers, with roughly the same amount raised by local lords.
Taken together, then, Furyondy is easily capable of fielding a force of 20,000 men without disrupting the economy of the nation. Twice this number is reasonably sustainable and three times this number is possible with a full mobilization. Only during the Great Northen Crusade has the entire nation mobilized.
A note must, of course, be made of Furyondy’s traditional allies. Troops from Veluna, particularly clerical forces from religious orders that span the two countries, serve frequently with Furyondian forces, usually when there is open conflict with to Iuz. Highfolk similarly supplies companies of elven archers and rangers which act as scouts and elite borderers. While small in overall number, these bodies of troops provide valuable specialist service that is much respected in Furyondy.
The Furyondian Guard
Stationed in and near the capital of Chendl, the Furyondian Guard serves as the King’s personal body of troops, a crown guard.
By itself, Furyondy fields perhaps the most capable, and certainly the most battle tested, army in the Flanaess. In combination with Veluna and Highfolk, Furyondy is the preeminent military power in the Flanaess. King Artur’s patronage of independent knightly orders promises to only increase Furyondy’s striking power on the battlefield. Iuz has, no doubt, taken concerned account of his southern neighbor.
The Furyondian Royal Navy patrols the Nyr Dyv, protecting the coasts from dangerous monsters and pirates. The navy is based in Willip at the largest dockyard in the Flanaess, the Willip Arsenal.