Ardolath is the capital of the High Elves of Elatha. Hidden deep within the Dragon Spires mountain range in the region of Isdones, the city has never fallen to an enemy. Indeed, no enemy has even found the city and lived to tell the tale.
The city and the surrounding mountains are ruled by King Elathar III of House Mirloth, the 14th ruler of Ardolath since its founding.
Ardolath and its people remain haughtily neutral in all matters concerning Men, only involving themselves when the situation poses a threat to the elves. The nation does, however, maintain long-standing alliances with the elven nations of Linfalas and Menethorn.
Life and SocietyEdit
The inhabitants of Ardolath live in relative safety in their hidden mountain city, and their lifestyle reflects this. They enjoy many foreign goods, such as cheese and fruit from Balfor and perfume and wine from Linfalas.
All High Elves belong to an Elven House. These Houses - and its members - have specialized themselves in some trade, be it mining, farming, crafting, trading or war.
There are three Noble Houses - Mirloth, Elessar, and Narmiriel - and six Common Houses - Fanya, Hathollina, Lorindol, Mirmidh, Ondolinde, and Seregon. There used to be a fourth Noble House, Cuthalion, but the last known member was killed over two millenia ago.
(see Kings of Ardolath)
Major Geographical FeaturesEdit
The Dragon Spires are among the tallest mountains on Elatha, and are rumoured to be the home of numerous Dragons; hence the name. Two passes - the Blackfire Pass to the north and the Dragon Pass to the south - cuts through the Dragon Spires, enabling access to the region of Alayte, which lies beyond.
There are numerous Goblin tribes in the Dragon Spires, though they tend to keep to the northern and southern ends of the mountains out of fear of the Elves.
The city of Ardolath is built high in the Dragon Spires, between the two passes, and is hidden by both elven magic and the mountains themselves. Tall buildings and towers of white marble reach for the skies. The largest buildings are the headquarters of the nine Houses, as well the Royal Palace. The city is ruled by King Elathar III from the Royal Palace, but he generally leaves the day-to-day management to the High Council and the officials of the city.
A tall peak, the High Aerie is both a religious site and the home of numerous Great Eagles, long-time allies to the High Elves.
The Ithilinaer, or Moon Lakes, are believed to be the spot where the first High Elves awoke. They carry significant religious value to the High Elves, and it is forbidden, on pain of death, for non-Elves to enter the lakes or drink the water from them.
Soon after the Awakening, around 700 BI, Ardolath was founded by the legendary Anarion Cuthalion, the first king of the High Elves. Since then, the Elven city has dominated its surroundings.
The army of Ardolath consists of roughly 4,000 heavy cavalry, made up of young nobles, as well as some 18,000 elven infantry armed with bows and longswords. The army is part-time in times of peace, but full-time when war is brewing.