A Queen's Desire
Founded in -1281 AR, Taldor once claimed numerous nations that have now grown to become powerful forces of their own within the Inner Sea region; Taldan explorers absorbed Galt into the empire and founded both Molthune and Lastwall. Other explorers founded Andoran after defeating the native tribes of the Arthfell Forest in 1707 AR. Many successes are attributed to expansionist military campaigns led by the Armies of Exploration.
Despite tremendous successes, Taldor suffered a number of serious blows during this period. Raiders from the Lands of the Linnorm Kings wreaked havoc on settlers in what is now western Cheliax, forcing a naval engagement in 2000 AR, which Taldor barely won. The Ulfen raiders counterattacked in 2003 AR, savaging Taldan colonies near the Arch of Aroden and demanding 100,000 gold pieces in exchange for hostages. Taldor capitulated, resulting in a peace treaty between the Ulfen king and the Taldan Grand Prince. Less than a century later, a disastrous campaign into the Mwangi Expanse by the sixth Army of Exploration led to the massacre known as the Battle of Nagisa. It was a failure that Taldor never fully recovered from.
Although these losses marked the end of any Taldan expansion into Garund, Taldor continued to strengthen its position in Avistan. The nation officially claimed Isger in 2133 AR, and Cheliax in 3007 AR, pacifying the Kellid tribes there.
This empire dominated the Inner Sea and southern Avistan, but its government soon bloated to the point where its rulers numbered in the tens of thousands. Over time the nation grew to a size that Taldor was unable to control; corruption spread throughout the government and those furthest from the capital city of Oppara began to revolt. Taldor’s military responded with brute force to quell the uprisings.
War and secession
Taldor’s history is marked by many wars. As Taldor’s military focused on crushing internal revolts, the long-time rival nation of Qadira took advantage of the situation and invaded in 4079 AR. Taldor, with Qadira’s army at the footsteps of its capital, recalled its armies from the outlying provinces in order to protect the nation. The resulting war, dubbed the Grand Campaign, lasted 524 years. It was during this conflict that the province of Cheliax, under King Aspex the Even-Tongued, declared its independence in 4081 AR. In what became known as the Even-Tongued Conquest, Aspex proceeded in annexing Andoran, Galt, and Isger. Unable to halt these secessions, Taldor signed a treaty recognizing Cheliax as an independent empire.
The loss of Cheliax and the war with Qadira severely affected the empire, and Taldor remains in decline even several generations after these events took place; corruption runs rampant through its bureaucracy, and its lower class has been stricken by poverty. Its prefectures fight border skirmishes, its noble houses fight one another, and its sparsely populated frontiers have become lawless. Taldor’s vast wealth is the only thing keeping the empire alive.