Avenderohl is a large city located in the Steadfast Mountains region, about 100 miles away from the southern-most point of the Steadfast Mountain Range in the Gulf of Avenderohl. The city was started in the late years of The Second Age as a small fishing community, but quickly became a dock town, then a center of commerce and trade, continually growing in area, population, and wealth. For a long time it was the second wealthiest city in The World, but with the recent destruction of Gomeschein it now holds the number one spot.
Politics and Economics
Avenderohl is known as “the city of guilds”. Every business in the city pays dues to, and is regulated by, one or more guild. The business concerns of the city in general are overseen by The Guild Council, consisting of a chosen delegate by each of the city’s legitimate guilds. The cities illegitimate guilds are usually represented indirectly by these same delegates. The illegitimate guilds are allowed to exist, even though their activities are technically illegal, because the services they provide are very useful to the legitimate guilds; indeed, there is very little doubt that The Guild Council are the biggest clients of the illegitimate guilds. As such, the illegitimate guilds are afforded a degree of legal protection, and operate with varying degrees of transparency (the most tranparent being The Assassins Guild, which makes no effort to hide it’s presence).
The Legitimate Guilds
The Crafters Guild
The Vice Guild
The Financial Guild
The Service Guild
The Illegitimate Guilds
The Assassins Guild
The Thieves Guild
The Pirates Guild
The government of the city exists as a method to enact the wishes of The Guild Council, and to provide a sense of security and legitimacy to the city’s citizens (especially to newcomers). Political offices are apointed by the Council, and the Council also sets all laws an policies.
The city has a Watch and an army. The army is strong enough to repel most external attacks (though there have been concerns since the recent fall of Gomeschein), and the watch has proven very effective at protecting the citizens from the sort of crimes most other cities have to deal with. Acts of theft and violence in Avenderhol are almost always done by the Guilds, and are usually done out of sight of the common citizen, so as not to disrupt commerce. Most Avenderholians feel very safe walking the streets at night, and as long as they aren’t in trouble with the guilds, they are right to feel that way.
Avenderohl is one of very few cities left in The World which can truly be called independent; unlike most other cities, towns and villages, Avenderohl has it’s own army and city guard and so doesn’t require help from an external stronghold to defend itself. It’s thanks to the city’s great wealth, gained largely from heavy taxes on exports, imports, and internally operating guilds (the taxes themselves aren’t that heavy, it’s just so much business in done within the city that the coffers are always full) that Avenderohl is able to maintain it’s financial and political autonomy.
The highest political office in Avenderohl is the Lord Governer, a position currently held by Bardryn Ungart, a fact which has sparked a lot of controversy and discontent by the citizenry.