The Grand Order of the Third Marshall (Correllian: Велики Орден Трећег Маршала (Veliki Orden Trećeg Maršala); Jaedonstonian: Үшінші Маршаллдың Үлкен ордені (Üşinşi Marşalldıń Ülken Ordeni)), or the Grand Order, is a small military state on the northern coast of Verusia, bordering the Federation of Jaedonstan and the Monarchial Capitalist Bassarian Federation.
The Grand Order is a recognized independent state in the region, but it’s politics, government, and economy are heavily influenced by the neighboring Federation. The Correlli, the national currency of the Grand Order, is tied directly to the Federation’s Libit. In addition, the Federation’s Vizior has a strong sway in the Grand Order’s politics, sometimes able to even directly control the policies of the Third Marshall and his choices.
The capital and largest city of the Grand Order is Starikralj, which is also the industrial capital of the nation. The nation is a high producer of timber and raw iron. In addition, it has recently begun drilling for oil off its northern coast. It has a controlled economy, consisting of a strong government control over market prices and trade tariffs. However, there are numerous corporations and firms, but many of them have strong ties with the government.
Correlli (Correllian: Коррелли) is a blanket term for the various similar cultures of the northeastern Jaedonstonian cultural corridor. Correlli comes from the Correllian word for “same” or “familiar”, but the word “correlli” now means “family” or “unified”, making it a national symbol of the unity of the nation and culture.
After the northern migration of the Harrat tribe in the late 6th century, the northern peoples of the Correllian region organized and formed various smaller tribal nations. It was not until the formation of the Harraat Kingdom and the Heeta Kingdom that larger governments formed in the region. During this time, the stronger, more unified Correlli culture began to rise through the ranks of society. By the 14th century, they had become part of the ruling families of both the Heeta and Harraat kingdoms, as well as many of the smaller counties and duchies. In 1572, two brothers, Spiridon and Rodavan, became the kings of Heeta and Harraat. However, Spiridon died without an heir, causing a succession crisis. Rodavan claimed the throne of Heeta over his uncle, Andreij. For eight years, the two kingdoms warred, killing thousands and involving many of the surrounding independent counts and dukes. By 1580, Andreij had been completely defeated and all his allies had capitulated.
The Battle of Vesikgrad, 1583
The Kingdom of Correlli, having been formed by Rodavan, became the strongest power in the region. The Federation was still forming its colonial empire to the south and had only a few separated settlements near the Correlli border. The Correlli began to conquer all the small, independent counties and duchies around them. To their east, the Bassarian Kingdom was also growing at this time; the Correlli continued to grab land but avoided interacting and interfering with the Bassarians. After a few decades, after the reign of Rodavan and his son, Davizi, the Correllians had completed their conquest of the neighboring nations.
In 1650, the Kingdom of Correlli began an expansionist conquest of the northern peninsula, called the Marstijer Peninsula, to the northeast of the Correlli mainland. This conquest brought the Correllians into direct conflict with the small, yet fierce Flandarians. The small Duchy of Flandars, established from unknown tribes, had existed from the 12th century. The lands were rich in raw iron ore, which the growing Correlli needed to fuel their armies and development.
The short war, a bloody and fierce affair, was marked by the vicious defense of the Flandarian people. The only entrance to the land was through a small strip of wetlands. The Flandarians managed to halt the advance of the Correllians for months before the blockade caused the starvation of the defenders. In 1651, the Correllians broke through the defenses of the Flandarians and captured their capital within days. The Flandarians were completely conquered and annexed.
The Kingdom of Correlli continued to prosper and grow for the next half-century. By the dawn of the 18th century, the strength of the economy and military had made the Correlli strong in the region, more powerful than the tribal nations around them and even the Bassarian Kingdom. This powerful military had begun, however, to create its own political culture within its ranks. Many of the commanders were more powerful than the royal court. This led to the eventual overturning of the monarchy in Correlli.
The military had become more powerful than the central feudal government of the Kingdom of Correlli since the 17th century. In the early 18th century, a powerful collective of generals bound together and began to plan the overthrow of the government. They gathered the loyalty of the majority of the military and ensured the neutrality of the remainder. The king of Correlli at that time, Davidi IV, trusted the military and was completely unaware of the plot.
The generals, who had appointed Field Marshall Filip Hakaz as their leader, planned to destroy the monarchy and replace it with a military junta. Their plan was set for the annual military parade in May of 1722.
Directly after the parade, the elite forces of the First Marshall’s guard charged the throne room where the king was sitting with his court. Slaughtering the courtiers and the queen, the guard held the king prisoner until Hakaz arrived. Hakaz executed the king personally and took the crown from his head and placed it on his head. He gave orders that the other generals be summoned. As they came into the throne room, the guard slaughtered them, leaving only one supporter of the First Marshall.
The military junta complete, the First Marshall declared that the nation would be known as the Grand Order of the First Marshall. This Grand Order would be in control of the nation as a military state, supported by the army and enforced by the same.
For decades, the Grand Order built up its military and stability. The people became comfortable with the economic and political policies of the Grand Order. The First Marshall died, leaving a military general as an heir. It became tradition that the First Marshall of the Grand Order would be the most tactically brilliant or powerful general in the army. The military became the only politics available to the people; many joined simply to better themselves.
The Grand Order prospered from the industrial revolution of their more powerful southern neighbor, the Federation of Jaedonstan. The Grand Order began to grow into a powerful nation, especially in trade. The northern sea was open for the economically minded Grand Order, who took advantage of the weak trade and needy nations with limited southern access and trade. The Grand Order became a production powerhouse, becoming the regions richest ironmongers. The Federation also had a strong trade route through the Grand Order, using it as a path to the Solutiz Ocean and the rich ocean trading opportunities there.
After a century of peace, the Grand Order, a powerful nation, attempted to conquer land from the Federation and threaten their trade monopolies. This was the beginning of the First Federo-Marshall War on June 3, 1896.
The Charge of the First Cavalry by Jukallin (1899)
The Federation began to adopt the smash and run technique of the Grand Order. Unable to sally forth in large numbers like before and strike at the Federation army, the Grand Order stuck to its trenches. But even there was not safe. The Federation used the night attack and strike tactics against the Grand Order, breaking their lines and opening dangerous holes in the enemy lines. These were taken full advantage of by the Federation troops. Within weeks, the Grand Order was no longer able to keep up a steady defense in the face of charging Federation troops and broke in May of 1897. Mutinies and riots broke out among the Correllian troops, incited by both Federation spies and insufferable conditions. Weeks would find the Grand Order defending the territory near the capital city, hopelessly outnumbered and outmaneuvered by the Federation army. As the First Marshall began to negotiate a peace treaty with the Federation generals, he was ambushed one night by a large mob of angry soldiers and officers. Promising to abdicate the throne, Lilitz was immediately replaced by the army favorite, Jalo Varneer. Varneer immediately surrendered unconditionally on August 4, 1897, ending the First Federo-Marshall War.
The Federation completely decimated the political and economical landscape of the Grand Order. Reestablishing the Grand Order in December of 1897, it placed a Federophile and Federation sympathizer, Hualik Vealiyrk, on the throne of the First Marshall. This was humiliating to the Grand Order’s powerful and elite generals, those who were next in line before the war. Only a few years after Vealiyrk became the First Marshall, he was assassinated in his sleep. The Federation continued to appoint First Marshalls until the fall of the Grand Order of the First Marhsall in 1919.
Under the Federation, the Grand Order flourished economically. The Correlli, previously linked to the worth of the very rare red iron ore of the marshlands, was now tied to the worth of the Federation Libit, a gold standard currency. This boosted the Correlli in the world’s market, especially in the northern trade nodes. This, coupled with the strong attraction to the Solutiz trading opportunities, flooded the country with Jaedonstonain traders and investors. The massive iron mines soon became a valuable resource to the Federation and dozens of firms began to invest in the infrastructure and industry of that raw resource.
This caused the majority of the Grand Order’s economy to flourish, but also bred a reliance on the Federation’s economic stability. Without the Federation’s assured stability, the Correlli would have collapsed after the First Federo-Marshall War.
By the turn of the 20th century, the Federation had completely dominated the Correllian economy. The years leading up to the Black Depression were filled with rampant spending by the Grand Order’s government. As firms began to invest more and more in the Correllian economy, the spending tripled, and the private sector began to lend to the government. This only increased the danger of an economic collapse.
February of 1911 dawned, the verge of the Black Depression. The Grand Order was plagued by the same rampant selling and crashing of the market that the rest of the nations in their region. By the end of February, the Grand Order was completely desolate economically. The Federation’s crash caused a domino effect, resulting in the retreat of hundreds of investing firms and companies. This further decimated the economy in the Grand Order.
The Grand Order was hit hard by the Black Depression. Its economy, so heavily reliant on the Federation’s economy, was completely shattered. Hundreds of thousands lost jobs and prices skyrocketed. Thousands of people starved; hundreds died in months. A movement of independent syndicalists began to rise in the south of the nation, in the heavy production centers of the Grand Order.
A group of Syndicalist revolutionaries blockading a street, 1919
The People’s Order immediately seized all the means of production and redistributed them to the workers. For several years, the People’s Order continued to close of their nation and controlling the economy. The nation recovered somewhat from the Black Depression, after being cut loose from the Federation’s sinking economy. However, the peace did not last.
On March 3, 1923, the Federation declared war on Correlli to retake control of the Correllian region. The People’s Order, ready for such an attack, rallied their army and forces, bolstered by patriotic workers. The attacks of the Federation were brutal and heavy, and the Correllian forces were pushed back and lost the southern region of their nation. There, the heavy defenses of the Correllians managed to hold the enemy for two years. However, the Federation became unable to continue the war after residual economic ramifications of the Black Depression haled them. After a ceasefire of about two years, the Federations, in May of 1925, began the war again. However, the Illian conflict began not too long afterwards. Drawing the Federation away from the war in the east, the Illian conflict forced the Federation to halt its war with the People’s Order and sign a temporary peace treaty, which established the Grand Order of the Second Marshall, a Federation puppet state.
The peace lasted only a few months, and the Federation, once again, invaded the People’s Order. By this time, however, Federation-supporting insurgents had risen up in the People’s Order, causing riots and havoc These insurgents, armed by the Federation, quickly began to destroy the infrastructure and order of the military and government of the People’s Order. Soon, mobs of ordinary citizens joined the insurgents and the People’s Order was overrun. Two months later, the People’s Order was forced to surrender to the Federation and become completely annexed by the Grand Order of the Second Marshall.
The Grand Order of the Second Marshall, born from the ashes of the Second Federo-Marshall War, was bound closer to the Federation than the First Marshall had been. The new Grand Order had a founding document that, practically, placed the power of the executive entirely in the hand of the Vizior. He was permitted to appoint the Second Marshall, and the Grand Order was subject to laws passed by the Senate. This was a more humiliating state for the Grand Order to be in. Completely crippled by the Federation, it continued to hobble along after the war.
A few years after the war, the Federation finally removed itself from complete control of the Grand Order and returned to heavily investing and controlling the economy. The Grand Order was permitted to rebuild its army and navy, and it did so rapidly. By the mid-20th century, the Grand Order had returned to much of its former glory as a military and economic power. The 1950s and 60s were a time of great prosperity for the Grand Order. The Federation’s decreasing political involvement was a boon to the Grand Order’s political and economic development.
By the 1980s, the Grand Order had grown almost politically independent of the Federation. The Vizior no longer appointed the Second Marshall and the military was free to build and train an army. The Federation was too preoccupied with creating a powerful trade and economic empire to worry about the mobilization of the Grand Order. However, the tide would soon turn against the peaceful Federation as the Grand Order prepared for war.
In the 1980s, the tensions in the west with the Illians grew daily. Soon, there would be all-out war. The Grand Order, preparing for this, marshalled its armies, ready for a strike against the Federation. On December 3, 1984, the Grand Order declared the Third Federo-Marshall War on the Federation of Jaedonstan to gain its full independence and to force the Federation out of the northern trade circle.
The Federation, in the middle of mitigating the disaster in Illia, was completely unprepared for the war. Unable to mount any sizeable defense for the first few weeks of the war, the grand Order managed to make good progress. However, they were plagued by Federation militia forces as they pushed deeper into the Federation. Soon, the federation army arrived, supported by the might of the Federation Air Force. The Grand Order was pushed back to their border, where fierce fighting took place. Heroes on both sides fought valiantly for their nation, but, in the end, the Grand Order was forced to break and fall back.
As the Grand Order retreated, the Federation began to force towards the Correllian capital. Within the city, tensions began to rise as the Federation forces rapidly approached. Starved of supplies and necessities, three hundred people within the city began a riot, calling for the surrender of the Grand Order and relief. The July Revolt spurred the Federation to push even harder against the Correllian defenses. Finally, the Federation arrived at Starikarlj and began a long siege to capture the city.
Federation troops moving through Starikarlj
With the end of the war, the Federation began to slowly withdraw from the Grand Order. Wishing to replace the provisional government, Vizior Horace Uzet appointed Correllian general Gaiiv Feltin on September 14, 1985, the longest reigning official appointed by a Vizior.
Under Feltin, the Grand Order prospered. Federation and Bassarian investors flooded in after the Third Federo-Marshall War, investing in new companies and firms and bolstering old ones. By the 1990s, the Grand Order had mostly recovered. Not wishing to create friction with the Federation, the Grand Order has refrained from training a large army, though its smaller contingent is some of the best trained in the world. The Grand Order began a program of mercenary troops in the 2000s, selling their well-trained soldiers around the world as special troops and shock forces.
A Flandarian soldier preparing to defend the border
In the months that followed, the Federation negotiated a peace treaty between the Grand Order and the Flandarians. It stipulated that the Flandarians would be recognized by the Grand Order, but that the Flandarians would be considered a puppet state of the Grand Order. The Flandarians accepted the peace but rejected the final clause in favor of full independence. The Grand Order, urged by the Federation, retained control of the land they had conquered and set up an active military border, cutting the Flandarians off from all land-based interaction. The Grand Order also continues to raid the Flandarian ships entering the harbor, but have left the foreign ships to carry out trade.
Since the war with the Flandarians, the Grand Order has remained neutral in many conflicts across the globe. However, their famous Correllian Corps has fought in conflicts as mercenaries in many places over time. The Grand Order is now a peaceful military nation, hoping to remain neutral in all conflicts.
The Correllian landscape is mostly covered in forests and hills. The Polovina River splits the nation in half and is home to the capital of Starikarlj, which rests upon its southern bank. To the north, tree covered mountains give way to the marshland of the Flandars. To the south, more wooded mountains end near the Grand Order’s border with the Federation. The mountains of the Grand Order are rich in both iron and copper ore, which are traded regularly. The Federation also maintains a small number of gold mines in the southern mountains.
The Grand Order is mostly made up of Correllian and Jaedonstonain people. 92% of citizens identify as Correllian; 4% identify as Jaedonstonian; and the remaining 2% are mixed Flandarian and foreign cultures. The main religion of the Grand Order is the worship of Junak, the Correllian god of war. His worship revolves around the proving of strength and prowess, for both men and women. Only a small percentage of citizens identify as followers of this religion; most of those are members of the Correllian Corps. Most citizens are able to speak the Correllian language fluently; those who cannot speak it as a second or third language. Citizens are required to take a Correllian literacy test before becoming a full-fledged citizen.
The Grand Order is a unitary authoritarian military state. The leader, the Third Marshall, is a complete dictator. He is empowered to pass laws for any city or county in the entire nation. As commander of the military, he is also permitted to declare war and negotiate a pace at any time. In practice, the Third Marshall delegates power to lower ranking officers. Generals and colonels are in command of cities and counties, allowing the Third Marshall to control and effectively run the nation.
The Third Marshall has been the same general, Gaiiv Feltin. His heir apparent is a brilliant tactician, General Iluav Davidisine, who has the support of much of the military already. The Federation is also a strong player in the politics of the Grand Order, though the Senate has not issued any policy about the Grand Order since 1991.
The Correllian Guard, the guards of the Holy See of Ghrevenon
The Correlli culture is a mixture of old Jaedonstonain culture and the now extinct Harraat culture. After the migration north of scattered Jaedonstonian colonies and Harraat tribes, the two cultures and languages merged to create the Correllian culture group. This culture is widely diversified. Traditional foods range from fish and birds cooked with mushrooms and water-based grains in the marshland to goatmeat and cheese in the mountains to corn and beef in the south. The traditional garb of the Grand Order is a white, open shirt, covered by a red vest, and black leather pants. The white and red, reflecting the purity and blood of Correllian soldiers, are usually reflected in the women’s red skirt and white blouse. The black pants of the men signify sacrifice, as the man of the household is expected to sacrifice everything to honor and protect his family. Men sometimes also wear the traditional mач (mač), a sword short sword worn strapped to the thigh.
The Correllian Corps preforming on the Day of Victory, 2018
The Correllian military is one of the most powerful and influential militaries in the world for its size. Only around two hundred thousand men, the standing army of the Correllians is one of the strongest and respected militaries in the world. In addition to its army, the Correllian military also has a decently sized air force and a small naval force. All armed forces swear allegiance and are commanded by the Third Marshall. The Third Marshall derives his power form the support and loyalty of the military, so becoming part of the elite Correllian Corps is the only way that Correllians can participate in politics.
Correlian troops training in a desert setup