Atop the Shoulders of Giants
The Holy States
The Holy States is the title used to refer to the combined kingdoms of Golir and Keland, as well as several of their closest allies. The merging of the kingdoms into a single state – in name if not in practice – was a result of the marriage of King Saul Elward II of Keland and Queen Helena Ariana Tisid of Golir in the year 1577. Subsequently, in the year 1611 Saul and Helena retired from their thrones on the 33rd anniversary of their eldest son Nathanial’s birth – to whom both thrones were left. Nathanial’s first decree as High King of the Holy States was that the two lands would maintain their cultures and their laws with few exception and thus appointed his cousin Tidiolkras to be Royal Steward of Keland to rule the northern kingdom with the oversight of the High Regent. Furthemore, neither Nathanial nor his parents ever formally combined the nations under law or under flags, a fact which has gone a long way to pacify would-be opponents of the combined state.
The monicker “Holy States” came prior to the combination of the two lands. It was first coined by the pilgrim, historian, and playwright Hal Assar Am’Lalsim in the year 1499 as a commentary on the surprisingly devout population of Golir, Keland, and the Olu Lansi. It was first made to associate with the marriage of Elward II and Helena Tisid when the queen’s grandmother, Aliktrad of the City of Gold, said famously to the assembled crowd “I expect the joining of these Holy States is a foreshadowing of a far greater faith to come.”
Shortly after the formation of the East-Sea Alliance in 1622, High King Nathanial held a conference to which he invited the most senior member of every community council in the Olu Lansi, the Royal Steward of Keland, the Chief of the Khalram, and an envoy of representatives from the Confederated Tribes of the Selkir. The conference lasted three days, at the conclusion of which a concord of alliance was signed between all attending parties except the representatives of the Confederated Tribes. The alliance was “For the purposes of mutual profit and protection in matters of trade and warfare as involves such neighbors as may outnumber these like-minded states.” It will be the opinion of most historians in centuries yet to come that it was this, the seventeenth day of autumn Nadan 1622, on which The Holy States first earned the title “Empire.”