Eleven Kingdoms (fictional)
|Deryni novels location|
|Notable locations||Gwynedd, Torenth|
|Notable characters||Kelson Haldane, Camber MacRorie|
The Eleven Kingdoms is a fictional collection of nations that serve as the primary setting of the Deryni novels of Katherine Kurtz. Although the exact number of sovereign kingdoms varies through the literary history of the novels, the term remains in use throughout the series.
The Kingdom of Bremagne is located at the western tip of the southern half of the continent that is home to the Eleven Kingdoms. It is founded in the mid-sixth century, when the Count of Magne succeeds in conquering the neighboring states. The Bremagni Church rises to prominence over the next century, eventually dominating the ecclesiastical landscape of the Eleven Kingdoms, but its influence is ultimately broken when Count Augarin Haldane establishes the Kingdom of Gwynedd in an effort to secure the independence of his local clergy. Despite a rebellion in the ninth century, Bremagne remains a largely peaceful realm, rarely engaging in any international conflicts with its neighbors and reaping the prosperous bounty of its rich fields and mild climate.
Nestled between the lands of Howicce, Meara, and Gwynedd, The Connait consists of a collection of sovereign states with no single ruling authority between them. Throughout the centuries, the various states of The Connait have fought many battles and wars over the exact boundaries of their lands, resulting in many generations of highly trained warriors that are often hired as mercenaries by other lands. The independent lands of The Connait include: the Principality of Pardiac, the Principality of Arbroath, the Grand Duchy of Calam, the Duchy of Llangan, the Duchy of Cyby, the Duchy of Gaël, the Bishopric of Tyburn, the Free Republic of Fenwick, numerous counties and baronies, and several abbeys. There is a reference in KKB to a "Council of Princes", which indicates that the various states of the Connait may have formed some sort of federation.
Howicce and Llannedd
The United Kingdoms of Howicce and Llannedd are located at the southwestern tip of the Eleven Kingdoms. Llannedd lies south of The Connait and west of Gwynedd, while Howicce occupies the land between Llannedd and the Atalantic Ocean. After more than four centuries as independent kingdoms, King Colman I of Howicce marries Queen Gwenaël of Llannedd in the eleventh century, and their son eventually inherits both crowns. Despite having a single monarch, each realm remains a sovereign nation with its own government and peerage, united only by the monarch who sits upon both thrones. However, the differing laws of succession in each kingdom leave open the possibility that the two lands may eventually become separate. Howicce's crown may only descend in the male line; Llannedd permits succession in the female line.)
The lands of Kheldour lie to the north of Gwynedd, located on the far side of the Rhendall Mountains. The sovereign Principality of Kheldour is established in the mid-sixth century, but it is eventually conquered by King Festil I Furstán of Gwynedd in the early ninth century. Kheldour remains a vassal state to Gwynedd for the next eight decades, until Earl Sighere of Eastmarch invades the land shortly after the Haldane Restoration. Sighere later swears fealty to King Cinhil I Haldane of Gwynedd, and the lands of Kheldour are incorporated into Gwynedd as the Duchy of Claibourne.
Meara lies along the coast of the Atalantic Ocean at the western edge of the Eleven Kingdoms, bordered on the north and east by Gwynedd and The Connait to the south. It is founded as a sovereign principality in the seventh century, but generations of internal conflict and strife prevent the realm from any significant expansion. Meara becomes a vassal state of Gwynedd in 877, but the Mearan royal line continues to govern the land for the next two centuries. In 1025, the eldest daughter and heiress of the last Mearan prince marries King Malcolm Haldane of Gwynedd, but many Mearan nobles refuse to acknowledge her marriage or Gwyneddan dominion over their land. A string of Mearan Pretenders rise up over the next century in an attempt to secure independence for the land, but a series of military expeditions by Malcolm and his descendants succeed in maintaining Gwyneddan rule in Meara. The last Mearan Pretender is eventually defeated in 1124 by King Kelson Haldane, and the last scions of the old Mearan line renounce their claims to the Mearan throne in 1128. That same year, the lands of Meara are incorporated into Gwynedd as the Duchy of Laas and the Duchy of Ratharkin.
The ancient land of Mooryn is located in southern Gwynedd along the northern coast of the Southern Sea, bordered to the east by Torenth and to the west by Llannedd. It was founded as a sovereign kingdom in the sixth century, and the Kings of Mooryn succeeded in steadily increasing the size of the realm over the following two centuries. In the ninth century, the royal line of Mooryn joins with the royal line of Gwynedd when Festil II Furstán-Festil marries the daughter of the last King of Mooryn. Following her death, the lands of Mooryn are incorporated into Gwynedd as the Duchy of Corwyn and the Duchy of Carthmoor.
Orsal and Tralia
The Isle of Orsal is located in the Southern Sea, near the delta of the River Thuria. The same river forms the southern border of Tralia, an expanse of land on the mainland that lies between Torenth to the north and the Kingdom of R'Kassi to the south. Orsal is established as an independent state in the early sixth century, and its rulers soon adopt the title Hort of Orsal as their formal appellation. Orsal succeeded in conquering West Tralia in 588, but the land was later included in a dowry and eventually became the sovereign state of Joux. In the mid-ninth century, the last Prince of East Tralia dies without heir and bequeaths his realm to Orsal, prompting all successive rulers to use the title Hort of Orsal and Prince of Tralia. The central location of the lands of Orsal and Tralia in the Eleven Kingdoms makes the realm a powerful force in commerce and trade.
- Katherine Kurtz and Robert Reginald, Codex Derynianus (Second Edition), ISBN 1-887424-96-2