The Alamarri were one of the earliest human tribes, and the first humans to settle in south-eastern Thedas. They are the tribal ancestors of the Fereldans, the people who live in the nation of Ferelden. "Alamarri" is not a single tribe, but a loose coalition of tribes started by the Alamarri peoples. Besides the people of Ferelden (who are descended from the Clayne), there are the Avvar and the Chasind who exist in modern times.
History[edit | edit source]
Ancient times[edit | edit source]
The Alamarri first passed into Ferelden from the distant west in -1220 TE. They needed to find a new homeland because their original land was plagued by a demon. Some of the Alamarri moved into the mountains, and some into the swampy forest vastness and the tundra beyond it to the south now known as the Korcari Wilds. The hillmen became known as Avvars in -620 TE, and the folk in the swamps became known as the Chasind Wilders in -220 TE, an enigmatic people with shamanistic traditions and a great respect for magic. However, the Avvars didn't fully separate from the Alamarri until at least after the First Blight, as the Alamarri leader leading the Exalted Marches by the name of Maferath was an Avvar.
War with the Tevinter Imperium[edit | edit source]
Around -715 Ancient, the Alamarri were successfully invaded by Magisters. The Tevinters occupied the land that would later come to be known as Ferelden for five centuries. They built the Imperial Highway leading all the way to Ostagar. The Alamarri defended themselves, though not very well. The Chasind weren't as successful in battling the Magisters as the Clayne and the Clayne in turn weren't as successful as the Avvars.
In -620 Ancient the Tevinters established Emerius across the sea from the Alamarri lands, as a slave trade hub. They ventured into the Fereldan valley often and captured the locals, including the elves scattered in the area, but also humans such as Andraste and Radun.
Though their lands were occupied by foreign powers, the tribes continued to fight with each other in a constant civil war that was to last for another 700 years. Finally, in -180 Ancient the tides turned. As one people, the Alamarri consisting of Clayne, Chasind, and Avvars, had united against the invaders. The Imperium, weakened by the Blight, nearly fell to the barbarians led by the former slave Andraste and the armies of her Avvarian husband Maferath and the elven slaves led by Shartan who joined the Alamarri side in -171 Ancient. The Alamarri used the Tevinters' own Imperial Highway to lay waste to their lands all the way from Ostagar to Minrathous. However, when the Tevinters neared annihilation, Maferath made a deal with the Magisters who retained part of their nation. Andraste was killed as a result of the deal, and the Alamarri were given the land that makes today's Ferelden, parts of Orlais, and Free Marches.
Maferath's fall[edit | edit source]
With Alamarri claiming the vast lands spread across modern southern Orlais, Ferelden, Free Marches, and Nevarra, Maferath began the process of tightening the grip on the lands he conquered. For their help during the Exalted Marches, he gave the elves the Dales to call their own. However, Maferath, though ambitious, did not prove to be a successful ruler.
His troubles began when he would not let his army attack further into Tevinter territory, even after the Magisters managed to capture and kill his wife. His own people abandoned him when Archon Hessarian converted to the Cult of the Maker and revealed that Maferath is a traitor who let Andraste die in exchange for the lands. He was killed by his own three sons who split the Alamarri lands among themselves. However, they did not have much more luck than their father as the Alamarri waged yet another civil war.
Nevarra[edit | edit source]
The sons, unlike the father, did not make peace with Tevinter Imperium. One of the sons of Maferath became just another warring Alamarri chieftain. Another united Planasene peoples mainly spread around the city of Nevarra into the Kingdom of Planasene. The kingdom of Planasene didn't last long, as it quickly became known as Nevarra, sharing its name with the original city.
Orlais[edit | edit source]
The last son founded a kingdom as well, as he united Ciriane tribes into Kingdom of Ciriane. He called it "Orlais." The sons began unification of their lands so that they could stand against the Tevinters. Uniting the tribes of Ciriane, called the Grand Unification in -155 Ancient, wasn't taken well, especially since it was a foreigner doing the uniting. Under pretext of helping him unite the nation, a female Ciriane chieftain Jeshavis married the Alamarri ruler, but secretly she married his brother as well, plotting to have her husband killed so that Orlais could be ridden of outsiders. She succeeded as both her husbands killed each other and so began the long history of hatred between Orlais and Alamarri and another long period of civil wars for the Alamarri.
Civil wars and schism[edit | edit source]
During the Second Blight, Hafter, the first bann to be named teyrn, united the Alamarri tribes in order to drive back the darkspawn. After the Blight, the Alamarri leader finally ended the war with the Chasind Wilders over the control of Fereldan Valley.
Since then, powerful warlords known as "banns" led the Alamarri in near constant struggle with their fellow tribes as each bann sought to widen his territory and influence. The term "bann" comes from at least the Towers Age.
During the Towers Age the Chasind Wilders along with other "terrible things" were led by Flemeth's daughters, the Witches of the Wilds. This force invaded the north and were all but unopposed until the hero Cormac led an army of Alamarri fighters and Orzammar dwarves. After a long series of dreadful battles, the Chasind were all but destroyed, and the witches burned. To this day the Fereldans eye the south warily, regarding the Chasind with suspicion and hatred. Other accounts say there was never a war between Flemeth and Cormac to begin with, nor a Chasind invasion at that time. Some say that in truth, Cormac led a brutal civil war against his own people under the pretense of rooting out an evil corruption amongst its nobility. The legend of Flemeth leading an army of Chasind Wilders to invade the Ferelden lowlands was a lie spread afterwards, presumably to be used as propaganda when the wars between Ferelden's Alamarri and the Chasind eventually came.
Since then, the Chasind never left the swamps, nor did the Alamarri enter them. The Avvars took the hills as their land and the remaining Alamarri stayed in the Fereldan Valley and became known as "the lowlanders" to the Avvars and the "grasslanders" to the Chasind.
First Orlesian Invasion of Ferelden[edit | edit source]
In 4:80 Black, the Orlesian Empire invaded the Fereldan valley for the first time by crossing the Frostback Mountains, hoping to take advantage of Ferelden's fractured state. By 4:83, the Fereldan teyrns had set aside their differences to push the Orlesians back in a united front. The Orlesians' hope of taking the port of Highever was dashed when the fortress of Redcliffe held out too long and winter in the Frostbacks cut off their supply lines. By the spring, most Orlesians had either pulled out or been captured.
Ferelden[edit | edit source]
- Main article: Unification of Ferelden
Alamarri and mabari[edit | edit source]
The foreigners visiting Ferelden often remark that it smells of wet dogs. Whether that is true or not, one thing cannot be denied - Ferelden and dogs go together. According to Fenris, the mabari bred by mages decided to stay on occupied lands of the Alamarri after the Tevinters were ultimately driven back. Ever since then, the mabari have a strong presence in Fereldan lands. Many of the Alamarri tribes kept their own mabari, and since then the tradition was maintained by the Fereldan nobles.
Known Alamarri[edit | edit source]
- Calenhad, born in Highever
- Cormac, famous for his fight against the Chasind and Witches of the Wilds
- Bann Sarim Cousland, who took over the bannorn of Highever after Bann Elstan died.
- Teyrn Mather Cousland/Teyrna Haelia Cousland, who became a Teyrn after rallying an army against werewolves during the Black Age.
- Teyrna Elethea Cousland, the only Cousland Teyrna to hold the title both as an Alamarri, and a Fereldan; she fought against the unification of the tribes by the future King Calenhad Theirin, but ultimately joined Calenhad to retain her family's teyrnir.
- Dane, an Alamarri hero
- Luthias the Dwarfson, an Alamarri Berserker leader
- Elderath, chief of the northernmost tribes of the Alamarri after the First Blight and father of Andraste.
- Bann Conobar Elstan, husband of Flemeth
- Flemeth of Highever
- Hafter, the first teyrn
- Havard, the first of the Disciples of Andraste
- Heggar II, a prominent Alamarri, father of Maferath
- Elias Howe, one of the first to support the unification of Alamarri by Calenhad
- Maferath, a warlord in power after the First Blight, husband of Andraste
- Morrighan'nan, a chieftain of an Avvar clan
- Radun, a slave in Kirkwall whose murder incited a slave rebellion
- Ruadan, an Avvarian "shaman" and mage
- Thelois, a prominent Alamarri, mother of Maferath