Afrika is the second-largest continent in the World, and thought to be the place of origin of all furre civilization. Some of the earliest records of furre nations have been found in Afrika, and many societies in the modern day of EC still resemble those prehistoric roots.
Afrika today is a collection of thousands of distinct states and societies, some organized into pastoral hunter-gatherers and others into vast Empires.
The Roman Empire claimed that Africa lay to the west of Egypt, while "Asia" was used to refer to the Ottoman territories, Persia, and lands to the east. As Europeans came to understand the real extent of the continent, the idea of Afrika expanded with their knowledge and now includes all the real-world continent. This is a view reflected by furre scholars, and "Asia" now refers to India and the areas east.
The climate of Africa ranges from tropical to subarctic on its highest peaks. Its northern half is primarily desert or arid, while its central and southern areas contain both savanna plains and very dense jungle (rainforest) regions. In between, there is a convergence where vegetation patterns such as sahel, and steppe dominate.
Africa includes the Arabian Peninsula; the Zagros Mountains of Iran and the Anatolian Plateau of Turkey mark where the African Plate collided with Eurasia. The Afrotropic ecozone and the Saharo-Arabian desert to its north unite the region biogeographically, and the Afro-Asiatic language family unites the north linguistically.
Deposits of minerals range across the full spectrum of the rest of the world, though in the North of the continent gold and salt are of primary economic interest. Meanwhile in the South magickal ore has been discovered, though the full extent of this resource is yet unknown.
A large group of furre scholars believe that all of the world's civilizations originated in Afrika, via prehistoric migration. (Though some students of the Ancients civilization claim otherwise.) The North of Afrika has changed hands among many Empires, including incursions by Ottoman, Persian, and European military force. Most of this region is Kaetani Old Temple.
In the South, however, most furres belong to barter societies such the Khoisan peoples of the far South, and the large family clans of Bantu speakers in the middle region. Most of these people are extremely peaceful, and though may seem technologically primitive, they possess culture that stretches farther back into history than anywhere else in the world. This connection to ancient times is thought responsible for South Afrikan magicke, thought to be among the most advanced in the world by some.
Founded from the wreckage of the Empires of Ghana and Mali, this successor state conquered the region in the 15th century and stretched all across the Gold Coast in short order. An Empire of the gold trade, Songhai also places a heavy economic importance on salt, which to this day is often used as a form of hard currency among traders. The Songhai control a large part of the Sahara desert, able to traverse it unlike any other people of the world, and treat the vast wasteland as more of trading sea complete with ports of call and great opportunity.
The Songhai were challenged by Novare when the Imperium invaded the gold coast in the 16th century. They lost many landholdings in the North of their territory, but still remain strong in their Ghanaian main area. Songhai people are typically Kaetani, but like all places in Afrika, many non-Old-Temple, indigenous faiths still are practiced by many.
This large Ethiopian Empire is an unusual presence in the far east of Afrika. Though a homegrown Afrikan state, it holds the Rotaric sect of the Old Temple religion as its state faith, the result of Byzantine colonization during the dark ages. Originally a warring conqueror kingdom, Aksum has been at peace for some time, only recently taking up arms against the expansionist Ottomans.
Using the Horn of Afrika as its stronghold, Aksum has grown beyond the boundaries of its RL counterpart, and is an advanced society sheltered by the Ethiopian Mountains. Aksum furres are known as friendly and gregarious by their neighbours, but also fiercely defend their borders from outside meddling.
Egypt and the Ottomans
The ancient civilizations of Egypt and Nubia stretch back as far as history itself. Now a modernized trader-state, had its indigenous culture surpressed first by Persian invasion into its lands. The Persians made it a Sultanate of their Empire, and imposed the need of all Egyptians to convert from their ancient religion and become Kaetans.
Later, the Ottomans ruled Egypt with the same emphasis on Kaetani faith but with a brutal desire to pillage her resources and send her young men to war. With the Ottomans' Afrikan land holdings stretching across the North (Libya, Algeria), the Empire has a strong desire to push the Novari force in Morocco into the sea once and for all.
Many voices Egypt condemned the foreign powers and demanded independence for Egypt and a return to the old ways. The black plague killed nearly 30% of the Egyptian population, and many blamed the Ottoman war machine for creating the conditions that allowed this to happen. Egyptians began to depend self-rule.
The Ottomans refused these requests, angered by Egyptian ungratefulness in light of their gift of the Kaetani faith and imperial way of life. Egyptian scholars counter-argued that their nation was the true origin of the entire Old Temple faith.
Soon, the Ottomans had a full-scale rebellion on their hands, and before long they were ousted by a stunningly brutal coup d'etat in Spring of 1570. It is unclear how long this independence will last, or even what Egyptian plans are, however word now spreads that they have now finally chosen their first Pharaoh.
The Novare Imperium holds dominance over recently-conquered Gold Coast areas of Afrika such as Morocco and the Straight of Gibraltar. This latter they recently wrested from Spanish Castillian control. They sacked a great deal of cities that were at the time under Songhai control, and this has left the Southern Empire with a thirst for revenge.
Though not particularly interested in the far South, the Novare have been greatly aided by the rebellion in Egypt, which ousted their bitter rivals, the Ottomans, and split their Afrikan sphere of influence in two. This has created new opportunities for the Scanadinavian war machine, as their greatest rival is forced to back down.
Local tribes of Bedouin furres frequently harass the Novari occupying force and are in turn persecuted savagely by the Imperium. Recently, ambassadors of some Bedouin tribes have come to Elysia seeking aid and comfort.
Kingdom of Kongo
With much of the North embroiled in the sectarian conflict of Empires, the thickly-jungled Central Afrikan region has had a relatively free hand in their affairs. In the year 1400, a group of tribal princes of the Kvilu Valley struck an arrangement among each other to discern which of them was the most powerful. They took small armies across the Kwango River, and engaged in personal combat. Word of the spectacle had spread quickly among the nearby city-states, and many clans chose their proxy champions before the fight was over.
The winner's prize was to become Manikongo, the Lord of all the Land. Unfortunately, the last man standing was so jubilant from his victory, he became heavily intoxicated and fell to his death from the roof of his house.
The lesson in unity, unlike the short-lived Manikongo, was not lost however. Many of the clans that had assembled to watch the event were optimistic about the effect of unity in their tribes, and drafted an agreement to band together as one city state of "Kongo", dropping the "Lord" part entirely from their nation's vocabulary.
Kongo is the largest Empire in Afrika to be independent from the Old Temple entirely, and one of the largest "pagan" powers worldwide. Kongo continues to grow rapidly, comprising most of the thickly-forested Afrikan West, as long as almost all of central Afrika.
Much of the South of Afrika is unorganized into the types of Empires of the North. The Old Temple has had little exposure there, and Colonial interests in general have been repelled by small Southern armies possessing powerful magicke. The South is an embodiment of historical noninterference, its unique magicke and strong traditions able to eliminate the prospect of being colonized or enslaved by greedy foreign powers.
Many in the Afrikan South are organized into large family clans. There are several isolated societies of hunter-gatherers, but for the large part the South possesses advanced medicine and magicke. These societies possess a strong affinity for magicke, but tend toward distrust of technology, or cultural norms brought to them from the wider world.
Many societies in the South have something of a cultural prejudice against Kingdom-building, and so the area is generally unorganized with respect to political domains. This belief is informed by common religious beliefs, as well as observation of the disastrous situations of the North. Some city-states exist, also, but the large part of sub-Saharan geography is not politically claimed by any Empire or nation-state, and very few areas possess defended borders.
Much of Southern Afrika's dealings with Europe and Asia are through trade. The area is rich in precious metals such as nickel, zinc, and iron. Rich coal deposits, gold, and diamonds are also of great interest to faraway foreigners.
Most Southern Afrikan furres will speak some member of the Bantu language family, though calling them "Bantu" people would be a mistake. Though the region has many hundreds of ethnic groups, here are some of the largest:
Zulu - The Zulu have lived at the Southern tip of Afrika since around the 9th century. Zulu means sky, simply, and though the nation will not be known this way for another 300 years in the real-world, it is a convenient moniker for all the far-Southern people for use in EC. In-continuity, they are known to possess the most magicke of all the nations. They have been in the Southern Tip region for longer than any of the others, and have become increasingly reliant on their military, the result of repelling countless incursions into their land.
Xhosa - Originally renowned ranchers, they became a militarily powerful nation almost by accident and necessity. This group is newer to the tip of the South, and have had some unfortunate dealings with the Zulu to secure their eastern landholdings. Shaky peace has allowed them to take up cattle-raising again, but the Zulu wars are a romantic concept of interest to the young.
Shona - Shona people are the traditional agriculturalists of north of the Zulu and Xhosa lands (Zimbabwe, Mozambique), and enjoy a budding industry of trade with India and Persia. They long ago swore away from warfare with their neighbours, and relations are relatively good. They do however still practice magicke, despite a centuries-old decision not to do so.
Khoi/Saan The Khois and Saan bushmen are hunter-gatherers by trade, but rumour has it they possess some of the most potent magicke spells of anyone else in the region. Several Western scholars have put forward the idea that the Khoi and Saan have the closest facsimile of the magicke of the Ancients worldwide, and that Kingdoms should take an active interest in procuring their secrets. Fortunately, most of those Kingdoms are a bit busy with the Novari at the moment.