Country Info: Zdunarova
|Terminology:||Zdunarovan (zdoon-ah-ROH-van)* people, one Zdunarovan, many Zdunarovans|
|Monarch:||Czarina Aleksandra III, born 976. (Alexandra Imperatrix Sadinae)|
|Coat of Arms:||Sable, on a pile argent a crown gules.|
A few centuries ago, the rulers of Zdunarosk held little more than that city and its surrounding land. But over the centuries, through conquest and marriage, the rulers of Zdunarosk – now known as the Czars of Zdunarova – have expanded rapidly, commanding an empire stretching from the western wastes to the borders of Kislevia, covering most of the lands that an Earthly visitor would call "Slavic". It includes various regions of similar culture to Zdunarosk, such as Lutenia, as well as more diverse regions such as the Steinlands (to the Empire's far east) which is almost Kislevian in flavor.
Zdunarova's expansion has not gone unnoticed by its neighbors, however. Kislevia and Bilgosh have watched their western neighbors gobbled up by the czars, and they are not stupid. Bilgosh, however, is not currently all that strong, and must now cast a wary eye upon the expansionistic Zdunarovans.
It is not certain what lies west of the Zdunarovan Empire beyond the Great Wastes. Those few travelers who claim to have survived the perilous crossing of the vast, barren plains to the west of Hesket bring myriad tales of strange peoples.
War with Bilgosh
Zdunarova declared war on Bilgosh in 1003, claiming to possess papers ceding some lands if the Bilgoshmen fail to protect their subjects against "substantial acts of aggression by monstrous beasts". Zdunarova captured lands in the northwest of Bilgosh and besieged the Bilgosh capital in March 1004. It abandoned its siege a year later, in part due to rebellions in the Steinlands duchies. The two sides reached peace in February 1006, as Bilgosh ceded its two northwesternmost baronies.
Rebellion in the Steinlands
During the war with Bilgosh, some of the dukes in the Steinlands, then the eastern part of the Empire, protested that they had "no cause to raise arms" against the Bilgoshmen and expressed reservations at sending troops. By July 1004 this resistance had turned to open rebellion in several duchies, and by the fall eight duchies were in arms against the Czarina.
The rebellion lasted for over three years, as the rebels sought to wear down the Imperial army, which faced exhaustion from the war in Bilgosh. The Imperial army captured three of the rebel duchies, but then lost two of them again when the Steinlanders went into debt to hire mercenaries and boost their army. By January 1008, with defections high and morale low, the Czarina's envoys met with the rebels and agreed to recognize the sovereignty of the seven duchies no longer under her control. Gravenia, which the Czarina's army had held onto, remained part of the empire.
Czarina Aleksandra III, born 976. She is well-known as an egotist who expects flattery. She is decadent, self-serving, and expansionist.
House of Katavasov
House of Alexov
Nikolai (989-995) - deposed the Katavasovs, killing or imprisoning most of the imperial family.
House of Katavasov (restored)
Aleksandra (995-) - restored the Katavasovs to the throne when she (with the assistance of Baron Ivan Vronsky of Kosnessky) raised an army and deposed the Alexov usurper.
Ruled by a Czarina. Under the Czarina are a number of very powerful Princes, Dukes, and Grand Dukes, each of whom is the liege of a number of Counts and Barons.
Zdunarosk is only one of many large cities.
"zoond-ah-ROH-vah" and "zhoon-dah-ROH-vah" are incorrect.