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Sometimes referring to themselves as the children of the Hiperu, the people of Mahat have no unified name to call themselves, especially since people living along the Hiperu have different cultural backgrounds. People are more likely to call themselves by what city they are from (a man from Sareeb is more likely to call himself a Sareeban than a man from Mahat).

History

The history of Mahat is one spanning around 3,000 years. The northern people living in the Lake Mahat were warriors and would often send raiding parties to both the Sea and Mountain Mahats. When one such raiding party ended in the death of the Sea Mahat King's wife and children. The King, Neema, led an army against the Lake Mahat. Eventually Neema succeeded in uniting both Mahats.

This unstable unity lasted about 1,000 years. During this time there were civil uprisings as well as invasions from the Mountain Mahat. Eventually however the Lake and Sea Mahat strengthened their unity and managed to conquer the Mountain Mahat, bringing the third nation into their empire.

Pyramids

Although popular for hundreds of years, pyramids did not reach the pinnacle of their existence until the reign of Paref Kaiyes. For around 700 years after the three Mahats were unified together, the people of Mahat knew unprecedented peace and countless temples and palaces made from imported marble and gold were designed and built. Every generation saw the tombs of Parefs become grander, and the pyramids they were buried in became more massive. Kaiyes decided his pyramid would be the greatest of them all. It is said he nearly bankrupted the kingdom to build a cluster of grand pyramids in the Sea Mahat, and that he had to send his daughters and wives to work in brothels just to cover the costs.

Kaiyes pyramid still stands today and the crowing jewel of Mahat accomplishment.

The Drowned Queen and the Burnt Queen

Sometimes referred to as queens, sisters, or mothers, the legend of the Drowned Queen and the Burnt Queen tells the story of twins, both wives of the Paref, who fought each other to have their own son be named the Paref's heir. Their adversary eventually led to the deaths of their sons, and the very city itself. Others believe that a change in the flow of the Hiperu led to the city being flooded.

Either way, it was during this time (around 1,800 years after Neema) that the Lake Mahat was essentially lost. No longer able to support a large city, only fishermen and a scarce amount of farmers remained along the shores of the lake.

Intermediate Periods

Twice over the next thousand years Mahat has a period of instability. First, after the loss of the Lake Mahat, and the loss of all the Paref's heirs, civil war breaks out with different families fighting for the throne. After around 200 years of war, the Mahats are united under one Paref again.

After this Mahat became a more militaristic nation, and expanded their territory to include the lake lands to the southwest and the mountain slopes of Matawe to the northwest. Their campaign s successful for around 500 years, until their move too far north and meet the Esybian people.

The significantly smaller nation of Esybe was dedicated to the art of warfare. With Mahat being so spread out they weren't able to hold back the surprise attack. Esybian warriors managed to invade Mahat and claim the Paref's crown for themselves. The Esybians retain control for nearly 200 years, but with the nation of Mahat secretly plotting against them it was only a matter of time before they were deposed.

Amotefen VI

Modern Era

Thess' son, Rama, is known by most to be the greatest Paref who ever lived. During and after his rule with his wife, Khaferti, Mahat has been at peace, rich and prosperous.

Hierarchy

Paref

Ruler supreme of Mahat, he is a living god, who is reborn again and again in his son, to pass along his wisdom. The Paref's word is absolute law, however the Paref generally does not take care of affairs of state, or ride into battle.

King

There are two kings (of the Sea Mahat and the Mountain Mahat). Although they technically have power over all those beneath them, it's very rare that they actually do anything, leaving most of the word for the tzati.

Tzati

There are four types of tzati, the first is in charge of royal courts and estates (there are three of these), another in charge of military affairs, another in charge of temples, and finally two in charge of the civil government.

  • Palace Staff - The palace staff consists of thousands of people, from servants to hairdressers, tailors, wig makers, guards, doorkeepers (for the harems), musicians, and so on.

Djoti

There are 42 djoti, one for each district in the Sea (12) and Mountain (10) Mahat, and the 20 district between both. They act as governors in the districts and live in a separate city from the tzati.

  • Keti - Within each community a keti is chosen to act as judge and enforcer of the Paref's laws.

General

The military general usually takes his orders directly from the Paref and is personally appointed by the Paref (it is usually a member of his family).

  • Officers
    • Enlisted men (guards)

Temple Overseers

They go out to ensure the 42 great temples and hundreds of lesser temples are being properly cared from. They decide is a temple needs more or less funds or priests.

  • High Priest
    • Priests

Religion

In the Novels

Orope

Mahat plays a large role. Tersh and Kareth, helped by Samaki and Tiyharqu, travel across Mahat and encounter people both common and royal.

Physical Descriptions

  • Ladies of the court are described as walking "with their backs straight and chins high, wearing ornate wigs and tunics that went down to the ground, with sky and golden threads."[1] As well as being "covered in silks and jewels, tight golden collars around their necks. There were so many jewels dripping off them... it must be heavy and uncomfortable. Strangest of all, they wore some half-melted lumps on the tops of their heads."[2]
  • Servants of the court are described as wearing loincloths, but female servants usually wear "sheer white tunics, revealing their breasts and dark nipples beneath. They wore wigs of black braided hair."[1]
  • Guards of Mahat are described as wearing "no shirt... [and] clean white linen skirts pleated in the front, the folds revealing a bright sky cloth underneath, and belted with a bronze buckle at the waste. On their heads they wore white linen nemes, a headdress that covered their foreheads and went down to their shoulders, like a mane of perfect white hair. For weapons they held black spears, the tips bronze, and curved bronze swords hung on their belts."[3] In Sareeb the guards are described wearing the "familiar pleated white linen skirts, each belted at the waste, bright amethyst being revealed in the folds, and on their heads they wore nemes of the same colour. Each one held a black spear tipped in bronze, bronze short-shorts hanging in their belts. They looked like living versions of the statues they walked beside."[1]
  • Common people in Sareeb are first seen wearing "dirty tunics," having "stubble... on their heads" and looking overall "dishevelled."[4]

References

  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 Chapter: "Sareeb, You have no control over your pawn. It goes where the sticks tell it" (p.69)
  2. Chapter: "Nepata, The soul wanders" (p.139)
  3. Chapter: "The Sea of Sand, Gods do not need protection – only men do" (p.27)
  4. Chapter: "Sareeb, You have no control over your pawn. It goes where the sticks tell it" (p.66)