Solentse is one of the larger towns in the Solurian Empire, and is located south of Gosd and west of Tibeth. Solentse is a major waystation and trading depot for the southern Shire, and is a valued port for ships traveling from Grib to Sol. Solentse is known for its iconic southern wall which lights up brilliantly at night and for the tower which resides at the end of this wall.
Solentse was established in 1022 when the location was discovered by a small Gribban naval group that became shipwrecked on the shores during a large storm. When a merchant vessel from the Solurian Empire rescued the sailors, the location was used as a temporary base to repair and sustain the small coalition of men and women. When the ships had been repairs, some decided to stay behind and establish a small colony for the Solurian Empire. When the go-ahead was given by officials in the Gribban Compact, land was officially broken and the colony was established. The town began with a single small dock and a few homes built high on the land, and developed its quintessential layered image from there, with homes being built on one of the three levels present in Solentse. Near the docks, a small partially underground marketplace was established to allow for quick transfer of goods brought in by trade ships. When the market nearly caused a collapse of the homes above it in 1047, it was reinforced with stone by stone masons brought in from Sol itself.
Solentse became known to be useful during the rainy season as a waypoint between first Grib and Gosd, and later on between Tibeth and Gosd. Unfortunately, it also became known for the large variations of wildlife that lived on the island, sometimes even clocking in at double the normal species’ size. During the year 1192, attacks on the townspeople by rabid wildlife, mainly wolves and bears, began to occur in the town itself and on the borders of the town, so an effort was made to build a heavy duty wall around the town. While construction of the wall went well for the first few weeks, attacks on the lumberjacks by the wildlife stalled the process, and the wall was left half complete during the rough winter months. Lumber was imported from Gosd when it became obvious that the forest could not be cut down further. Woodcutters from Gosd helped establish solid foundations and reinforce the wooden palisade free of charge when they learned of the hardships of the townsfolk. Thus, in mid-1200, the wall was finished, and the townsfolk were safe once more.
By 1207, however, the town had expanded too much, and was crowded in by the rough wooden wall that kept the people safe, so the mayor sent a request for funding to Sol with the intent of getting further wooden barricades established. This request was met with a suspiciously high amount of enthusiasm, and a group of engineers and stonemasons arrived in the south to establish a larger and more fortified wall. After nine months work, the large wall had been built to the south, separating the town from the rest of the island chain. When the first addendum to the Treaty of Grib was passed by the Solurian Empire and the Gribban Compact allowing for higher trade, the reason behind the enthusiasm was shown. With this addendum, taxation on trade between the two empires was lowered to near-nothing, meaning both Solentse and the Solurian Empire at large would benefit greatly from the increased trade through the now safe and secure walled in town. Eventually, the tower and fort of Solentse were added to protect against bandit raiders who were brave or mad enough to fight through the wildlife to attack Solentse from the land.
Development in Solentse was aided by the close shipping relation it had to Tibeth, as most of the iron going from Tibeth’s iron ine went to Solentse, and from there, to Sol. Thus, Tibeth developed a high population of Solurians who moved from Sol to Solentse to Tibeth in search of wealth. This is what led to the complete domination of Solurian landowners in Tibeth by early 1207. Trade with Tibeth and Grib flourished, and likely contributed to the fourth and seventh addendums to the Treaty of Gosd, both of which dealt with regulations on land ownership and trade negotiations between the Gribban Compact and the Solurian Empire.
By 1532, Solentse had become a well established trade town, and with the ninth addendum to the Treaty of Gosd, was officially named a trade and resupply waypoint between Grib and Gosd for the Gribban Compact. With this came the expansion of the dock areas to include a large fishing dock and two larger trade docks. Despite this expansion, there was still not enough space for the plentiful amount of fishing boats, so most simply docked at various points along the walkway proper. Also during 1532, the implementation of the lighting on the walls was done, to allow for guards on the wall to see possible encroaching enemies, whatever they might be. This wall of light that turns on at night eventually became iconic for those visiting Solentse.
The town continued expanding from trade until the Solurian Civil War of 1717.
Solentse in the Civil War
Solentse was one of the main points of contention when the Solurian Civil War of 1717 occurred, as it was a major supply depot and waystation for travel in the southern Solurian Empire. Early on in 1717, the Avetissmens attempted to take Solentse by sea in the First Naval Battle of Solentse, but failed due to an emergency force sent from Sol to prevent this. The defeated force of the Avetissmens split in two, with half retreating to Tibeth after hearing of the successful surprise attack, and the other half fleeing to the continent south of Solentse. Small repairs were made to what ships remained, and the remnants were ordered to raid troop transports, supply ships, and other such convoys in the waters and lands near Solentse.
These [Avetissmens]] forces successfully avoided defeat or capture for most of 1717, until they joined with a new Avetissmens force and assaulted Solentse in the First Battle of Solentse in late 1717. When this attack failed, the main force retreated once more into the south and continued to harry the Solurian Empire’s forces, but this time with larger numbers. When reinforcements came from Tibeth in early 1718, another attack on Solentse was attempted while the Solentse naval fleet was raiding an Avetissmens supply to Tibeth. The Second Battle of Solentse failed when the sea forces could not take the docks in time, resulting in Solentse’s resident military forces nearly catching them by surprise after defeating the land attack on the main gate of the wall. With the majority of their land forces defeated, the remaining Avetissmens attack force fled by sea to the south.
This time, naval reinforcements from Mar joined with naval forces fromSolentse, which were returning from their unsuccessful raid, and sailed south to end the ambushes once and for all. With the vicious Naval Battle of Grobbub Bay, the remnants of the Avetissmens naval force were crushed, and the groups of raiders and pirates were eliminated from the southern continent. This defeat enraged the Avetissmens forces in Tibeth, many of whom had friends or family fighting in that area. However, it set up for the cascade of losses which would lead to the end of the Solurian Civil War of 1717. When the Naval Battle of Grobbub Bay concluded, some members of the Avetissmens were taken prisoner for questioning. On the way to Solentse, however, they managed to escape during a powerful hurricane and by pure chance survived and were picked up by a merchant vessel that was smuggling goods to Tibeth.
With them, they brought plans for a naval attack on Tibeth that was in the works for late 1718, having secretly stolen them from the ship they were imprisoned on. Unfortunately, this theft was never discovered as the ship capsized in the hurricane the prisoners escaped in, and the plans were thought lost. Thus, when the naval forces of Solentse sailed out to meet Gribban Compact naval forces from Zvez, and lay in wait to ambush Tibeth, the lead military Avetissmens members decided to bait an attack by sending an attack force to lay siege to Solentse. As the Siege of Solentse began, nearly at the same time the Naval Battle of Tibeth occurred.
Left unprepared for the naval assault, Solentse quickly fell into a dangerous spot, and the defenders were pushed to their limits. After twenty-three days of siege, the defenders of Solentse were beginning to fail. The docks and the far western portion of the city fell on the night of the twenty-fourth day, but past that the defenders stood strong, spurred on by fear and determination. Despite this, both sides knew a miracle was needed to prevent the fall of Solentse.
This miracle occurred when, by pure chance, Tibeth fell early due to heavy rebellion in the mines at the same time as the land attack from the naval forces began. The miners, who had no idea an attack was occurring, carried out a daring plan that had been almost 5 months in the making, and managed to split the Avetissmens force’s attention enough to lead to total loss.
Thus, on the morning of the thirty-first day of the Siege of Solentse, reinforcements from the newly liberated Tibeth took the Avetissmens forces by surprise, decimating the attacking force and saving Solentse. Immediately after, a messenger from Gosd arrived reporting the beginning of an attack, the Second Battle of Gosd, which had occurred nearly nineteen days ago when the messenger first left. After immediately setting sail and following nineteen days of hard ocean, the emergency force of the Solurian Empire and Gribban Compact’s naval forces which had defeated the Avetissmens in Tibeth and Solentse were expecting the worst. That Gosd could hold out nearly forty days was not a thought that had crossed any mind in the impromptu fleet.
However, on the forty-first day, the naval force arrived at Gosd to find the flag of the Solurian Empire still standing tall. Some ships that remained with the Gribban navy in Gosd then returned to Solentse, while the rest went on to the Siege of Mar.
From late 1719 until the end of the Solurian Civil War of 1717 in early 1720, Solentse endured no further battle, and worked instead on rebuilding its defenses and homes.
Today, Solentse is a popular location for its extensive hunting and trade possibilities. In 1807, the very southern portion of the island’s wild forest south of Solentse was declared a nature preserve. However, this left a wide stretch of forested area between the reserve and the wall of Solentse that was open for hunting. Hunting regulations were put in place early in 1808, as the effects of the intense hunting were already showing on the island. Since then, hunting season in the summer has been popular, as the elite hunters of the world work gather to take part in the Solentse Annual Hunting Competition.
Besides the hunting, the trade of Solentse is another aspect that is booming. With Solentse lying on the most valued trade route, from Grib to Sol, it is no wonder that the majority of incomes in Solentse relate either with trade regulations or dock work. The small tax on goods also brings in a fair amount of money, which has made Solentse fairly rich and well developed. Often, the two major docks of Solentse are filled, with further ships waiting out to sea for their chance to unload goods or resupply.
One newer aspect of Solentse that has emerged is the breeding of a rare species of wolf that was resident to the island Solentse was founded on. Early in 1987, Some of the residents on Solentse who were professional animal handlers for the military ran across the species of wolf, and decided to begin the domestication process. Their work has continued into the modern day, with some results looking extremely promising. However, it is fairly obvious that a lot more work needs to be done.
Solentse Annual Hunting Competition
Since the addition of hunting regulations in 1808 that prevented excessive hunting on the island of Solentse, hunting has mainly revolved around the prestigious Solentse Annual Hunting Competition. In this competition, the top hunters from around the world arrive on Solentse to compete for the prize trophy in their category. There are categories for each of the native species of super-sized animal that are resident to the island, but since the domestication efforts of the wolf breed the wolf category has lost popularity to many.
During the first two months of summer, the few competitors race to hunt the largest breed of animal in the category they are taking part in. Most popular are the bear, cougar, and deer categories, which each draw nearly 30 to 40 of the world’s top hunters. Due to the size and aggression of the wildlife, not all hunters return, even from the deer category. Nonetheless, hunters see this competition as the ultimate test of skill. The 97th annual competition taking place in 2018 is expected to be the largest yet.
However, some protests have occurred during the months leading up to the 2017 competition, leading to worries that protests will increase in size or frequency as the 2018 competition draws closer.
Solentse Hunting Records
Esteemed records of the kills and displays of models of the animals are viewable at the Solentse Hunting Museum. The Museum showcases the names of the hunters responsible for the world record breaking kills and the holders of the current world records, and offers a comprehensive tour.
Due to the influence Solentse has in the trade routes in the southwest of the Solurian Empire’s waters, the population is much higher than the other towns in the Empire’s holdings. When the census was taken in 2016, the population of Solentse was roughly 2.2% higher than the previous Solurian Empire-wide census in 2012.
Solentse, much like Sol and Rigel, has a large percent of the permanent population being Human, Solurian, Primalian, or Gribban; with 49533 Humans, 105708 Solurians, 12879 Primalians, and 35867 Gribbans being recorded in the most recent census as permanent residents. The remaining population is made up of Enpeecee, with 12576 recorded, Sammichians, with 7278 recorded, Enderians, with 3407 recorded, Acadians, with 1576 recorded, and Laurelii, with 702 recorded. The total permanent resident population in Solentse is 229,526, as of the latest census.
One interesting point is that the percentage of Primalians is the highest out of all population centers in the Solurian Empire likely because the challenging wildlife that is huntable.
The main religion of the town of Solentse is the Solurian Sect, which was introduced very shortly after Solentse was initially founded in 1022. In the current day, the Solurian Sect is by far the majority religion in Solentse, with 90.6% of the population marking it as followed on the optional portion of the census. The remaining percentage of the population marked other religions, non-religious, or preferred not to answer on the census forms.
Due to the widespread belief in this religion throughout the Solurian Empire at the time, the Solurian Sect became the majority of Solentse in 1032, only a ten years after its founding. Almost a year later, in 1033, the Solurian Sect was made the official religion of Solentse. Oddly enough, despite the heavy influence of the religion, no specific spot for worship was made while the town grew, instead opting to go for a route much like Gosd, where the surrounding wilderness and individual worship is used rather than one central gathering area. This is likely due to the heavy influence the Gribban Compact’s original religion had, before the conversion to the Solurian Sect. The same settlers who founded Solentse were traders from Grib, after all. Only four towns or cities have this different method of religious worship, with Solentse being one of the four and the other three being Grib, Gosd, and Zvez.
Like Gosd, however, recent pushes have been made by the public to make a central worshipping temple. This effort is likely to be lumped into the effort to refurbish the Solentse Hunting Museum and the docks.
One thing Solentse shares with Sol is the majority political party, the Collaborative Solurian Party, or the C.S.P. Unlike Gosd, which has its own political party, and Tibeth, which has a dark military background and thus votes primarily for the Principal Sol Compact (P.S.C.), Solentse is a fairly moderate town. This can be reflected in its medieval building design and the freer religious views the town has. Since Sol and Grib are two major voting percentages for those that vote for the C.S.P., it is not surprising that the trade center between them follows much along the same route in voting.
For those that chose to fill out the political affiliation sections on the 2016 census, the C.S.P. held majority support at 82.3%, with 9.1% for the S.N.G. and the remaining 8.6% supporting the P.S.C. Recent protests against the hunting competiton in Solentse are likely to tilt more support towards the C.S.P. and the P.S.C. since the S.N.G. and their efforts to abolish nature preserves are likely to paint them in the wrong light. In the most recent census form, 93% of Solentse’s voting population filled out the optional political affiliation forms.
The military climate is a reflection of that in Sol and Grib, as is seen in other aspects of life in Solentse. Like Sol, Solentse has a designated area for military presence, being the tower and the wall, and the small military dock that accompanies them. The military members often reside either in the tower and the attached barracks or in their own homes in Solentse. The police have taken the effort to wire the town’s security cameras to the tower in the military portion of the town, and a dual police and military force mans these video feeds 24/7 in the event something is to occur.
The military history of Solentse is quite varied, mostly taking place during the Solurian Civil War of 1717, so there is a large amount of pride taken in the fact that Solentse played such a large role in the war, even today. Signs of the battles that took place in Solentse can sometimes be found, such as a rusted gun or sword or unexploded ordnance, but are often handled by military officials rather than police officials. Unexploded ordnance is gotten rid of every second Monday of the month, with emergency pickup crews working in the previous weeks to safely collect and transport explosives or dangerous objects to the clearing site.
Since 1937, collection has noticeably dropped off as the number unexploded ordnance that is to be found has dropped off significantly. However, efforts are being turned towards the wilderness on the island, as raiders and remnants of the Avetissmens forces often retreated there to fend off efforts by the Solurian Empire to kill them off. Some hunters who have reported running into undetonated ordnance have helped spur their effort along.
Besides this collaborative effort, the military and police forces in Solentse are separate, and each focus on their own sectors of influence. While off duty, the members of the military in Solentse tend to stay out of trouble, so tension between the police and military in Solentse is very low.
Solentse was started in early 2015 by Master_Chief on an unknown date. Work continued until it was finished early into 2016, and the warp /warp solentse was established. Solentse has a rail station that is ready to be connected to the rail line out of Sol. Possible additions to the landmass or the docks are expected sometime in 2018.