Places in the Realm of the Elderlings
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This article details the locations featured in Robin Hobb's fictional world, The Realm of the Elderlings, featured in her books The Farseer Trilogy, The Liveship Traders Trilogy, The Tawny Man Trilogy and The Rain Wild Chronicles.
Capital of the southern empire of Jamaillia, it is described as decadent and rotten, with a burgeoning slave trade. It is a city of gleaming white and appears on the nation's flag. The Satrap of Jamaillia resides in the palace here.
A trading city to the southwest of the Six Duchies. It is built on the Cursed Shores. The Bingtown Traders that inhabit it are the descendants of criminals and younger sons given land grants by Satrap Esclepius. The Bingtown traders are kin to the Rain Wild Traders and have strong trading ties. The Liveship Traders series takes place here. Recently Bingtown was able to gain large autonomy from the rule of Satrap Cosgo.
The capital of the Mountain Kingdom. Jhaampe is mentioned in the children's rhyme about wise men who travelled to Jhaampe town and what happened to them. Jhaampe is an inconstant city, made up of few permanent buildings. It comprises many areas for the nomadic mountain people to camp in, stay for a while, then leave again. There are a number of beautiful gardens which are tended by everyone in the city. Among the permanent buildings in the mountain capital is the palace, home of the Sacrifice of the Mountain Kingdom. This was made - or rather, 'grown' - by selecting a central tree, and planting several saplings around it. These trees are pulled in towards the central tree as they grow. When large enough, the tops of the trees are bound together and stripped of branches. The structure is then covered with barkcloth and coated in a kind of clay. This is painted in bright colours, often yellows, oranges and purples. Completed, the palace looks much like a closed tulip or crocus.
The capital of Buck and home to the royal family. Built on the coast, the site upon which Buckkeep is built has always been one where people have built their homes. It became a stronghold when the OutIslander who became King Taker captured and fortified it. The original Keep was made of wood. However, over time, pieces were steadily replaced with stone. Around the Keep is Buckkeep Town. Buckkeep would eventually become the Capital city of the Six Duchies, (lands conquered and settled by the royal Farseer line) Buck, Rippon, Bearns, Farrow, Tilth and Shoaks.
A treehouse city in the Rain Wilds and the largest city belonging to the mysterious Rain Wild Traders, Trehaug is built above the ruins of an ancient Elderling city. Because of the corrosive nature of the Rain River, Trehaug is actually constructed several feet above ground level - it is a city of complex tree-houses, supported by the forest through which the Rain River runs.
Trehaug is inhabited by the mysterious Rain Wild Traders, kin to the Bingtown Traders. The Rain Wild Traders wear veils due to disfigurements that are the price paid for living on the banks of the Rain River. The Rain Wilders recover magical goods from the ancient buried cities once belonging to the mysterious Elderling race; which they then trade with their Bingtown kin. This trade has led to them gathering a large amount of wealth.
A lost Elderling city, Frengong was buried in some sort of ancient disaster. Its ruins are the foundation of Trehaug, the city of the Rain Wild Traders. The Rain Wilders search the city for ancient treasures which they sell. The ruins are awe-inspiring (due to the glimpses they give of the Elderlings' civilization) but also threatening (due to the straightforward dangers of earthquakes, and the more complex dangers of dabbling in another civilization's magic).
The trade in magical goods has made the Rain Wilders wealthy, but the dangers that accompany it leave them vulnerable.
Home of "The Four" and the White Prophets. A hub of fortune telling and foresight. White Prophets are bred and raised here to do the biding of The Four. Beloved and Prillkrop were trained here. The Four encouraged citizens to pay for fortunes received in Clerres.
The icy islands located to the north of the Six Duchies. The complete geography of the islands is unknown to any but the Outislanders themselves as they are not depicted on any Six Duchies maps. Outislander maps are not made to an identifiable scale, so matching two maps together leads to confusion in size. The feared Red-Ship Raiders hail from the OutIslands. The OutIslanders refer to their kingdom as The Gods' Runes. It is not actually a unified country, with each clan enjoying significant independence.
A theocratic empire to the far south of the Six Duchies. Jamaillia is a kingdom that prides itself on being the source of all culture and wisdom in the world and indeed, its denizens regard everyone else as barbarians.
Jamaillia's ruler, the Satrap, is considered a living embodiment of the god Sa on earth. The Satrap's power is so expansive that the empire is often referred to as a satrapy. The current Satrap is Satrap Cosgo.
Chalced is south-west of the Six Duchies and is ruled by a duke. It is a warlike state built on a slave economy. It raids along the edges of its neighbors, the southernmost duchies of the Six Duchies, Shoaks and Farrow and they raid back in turn. It asserts that all the land along the Cursed Shores, including the city of Bingtown is under its jurisdiction.
Located to the west of the Six Duchies, The Mountain Kingdom is not a true kingdom but a loose confederation of many tribes and nomads ruled by a "Sacrifice", a sort of servant-leader. The tradition of Sacrifice began with one woman who functioned as a sort of a judge or wise woman; able to settle disputes between the varying tribes of the mountains. The Sacrifice of the Mountain Kingdom lives in the city of Jhaampe. The word Sacrifice is taken quite literally when referring to the Sacrifice of the Mountain Kingdom, with numerous occurrences throughout their history of various Sacrifices giving up everything, even their own lives, to serve and protect their people.
Pirate Isles Kingdom
It is a new independent Kingdom located between Jamaillia and Bingtown. The kingdom is formed by the union of numerous settlements in the Cursed Shores and populated essentially by pirates and freed slaves. It was founded by Captain Kennit, and after his death, Queen Etta is the ruler of the Kingdom and Wintrow Vestrit is her counsellor.
The Six Duchies
The northernmost coastal duchy. Ruled by Duke Brawndy until his death during the Farseer trilogy, and then by his oldest surviving daughter, Duchess Faith. The main fortress is Ripplekeep. Bearns's folk are notable for being the most warrior-like of the Six Duchies folk. The duchy's colour is yellow.
The duchy from which the Six Duchies are ruled. The capital of all the Six Duchies is situated there. Buckkeep, the ancient fortress built from black stone, seat to the King and Queen, oversees Buck River and Buckkeep Town. Blue is the color of this duchy and the buck its sigil.
The duchy located to the south of Buck. Ruled by Duke Kelvar. The main city is Neatbay.
The southernmost duchy. Ruled by Duke Shemshy. Notable for its nearly constant border disputes and derivative hate of Chalced.
The northern inland duchy. Ruled by Duke Ram in the Farseer trilogy, and later by his daughter Flourish in the Tawny Man trilogy. Notable for its rich vineyards.
The southern inland duchy. Ruled by Duke Holder (the brother of Queen Desire) in the Farseer trilogy, and by his son Bright in the Tawny Man trilogy. The main city is the illustrious Tradeford. The duchy's colour is a deep gold.