Flag of the Belkian Empire
Government: Constitutional Monarchy
-Emperor: Malcolm the Conqueror (1300-1315)
Conroy VII (1941-1984)
William I (1984-Present)
-Consul: Alexander B. Nichols (1996-Present)
Population: 275,000,000 (2nd)
Largest City: Stoneguard (7,538,000 people)
Other Major Cities: Hammerfall, Palisade, Pyranaium, Malcolmsberg, Springpine, Palatine
Belkia is a nation comprising of most of southeast Hesperia. It is one of the Great Powers and has a foothold on almost every continent. Belkia has the world’s largest standing army and a military tradition going all the way back to the first Emperor, Malcolm the Conqueror.
Like the other Hesperian nations, Belkia rose from the ashes of the Annukanian Empire. Belkia’s military tradition has been with it from the beginning. Its name finds origin in what the Annukanians called the region Bel Tia, or “Land of War”, due to how fiercely the natives fought with both the Annukanians and each other.
When The Fall occured, Bel Tia was ravaged by the eruption of Mt. Pyranaium. According to the Journey of Amnius, the epic poem about the founding of Stoneguard, an Annukanian general named Amnius led his soldiers and their families north from the ruins of the provincial capital, Tarkenon. They eventually settled on a hill along the Sistrian River. Amnius ordered the construction of a stone wall to protect the village from attackers. From the wall, the village got its name- Stoneguard. Over time, the simple cobblestone wall was rebuilt and expanded, eventually becoming the nigh-impenetrable structure it is today.
With contact with Anu’kh lost, the Annukanian administration in Bel Tia crumbled and the regions fragmented into smaller city-states and kingdoms. By 800 AF, the major states were the Kingdom of Pyranaium, in the east, the Duchy of Springpine in the north, the Principality of Palisade in the west, and the Amnius’s Kingdom of Stoneguard in the central part of the region. Capton was controlled by Arpello and the Duchy of Hammerfall was a vassal of the Prettanic Empire.
The ascension of Malcolm to the throne of Stoneguard in 1279 would change this. At this time, the Kingdom of Stoneguard was convulsed by civil war. After putting down the Sistrian Revolt, Malcolm realized that the best way to control the Stoneguard military class was to focus their fighting energy away from each other and instead at something else. In 1280 Malcolm declared a “Great Crusade” to unify Belkia under the Kingdom of Stoneguard. Over the next 20 years, all of the Belkian states were subdued. On January 30th, 1300, Malcolm “the Conqueror” was crowned first Emperor of Belkia.
Upon becoming Emperor, Malcolm began fixing the problems that affected his kingdom. He abolished the military class and created a standing army of professional soldiers. Most of these new soldiers were not of the nobility. The old military class became the new officers of the Belkian Army, and these officers swore loyalty to the Emperor-and the Empire- above all else. Malcolm also abolished serfdom and instituted a new legal code that declared all citizens equal under the law and gave all citizens the right to run for the Assembly and the Consulate (the elections were still heavily in the favor of the nobility and it took until 1916 for a person not of the nobility to be elected Consul.)
In 1455, The Cerorians under Gaius Hamlius revolted against the Prettanic Empire. Seeing an oppurtunity to weaken Belkia’s current rival, Emperor Malcolm III ordered Belkian soldiers to be sent to aid the Cerorian rebels and to invade the Prettanic Empire.