The History of Allacoa begins with the arrival of the first hominid populations between one and two million years before present. Archeological research confirms that modern Homo sapiens arrived in the region roughly 12.000 years before the Plague. The difficult terrain and thick forests favoured the formation of independent city-states, linked together by trade networks. This very decentralized organization, however, made them an easy target for the great expansionist empires of Melania in the last millenium before the Plague.
Allacoa was conquered by the expanding Empire of Afrazure in 176 BP and later, starting on 176 AP, the area was integrated into the Maurestani colonial empire. From 268 AP onwards, Allacoan rebels joined forces with other Afrazurean militant groups in a series of campaigns against the Maurestani government, culminating with the partition of Afrazure in the second semester of 299 AP.
Following the partition of Afrazure, Allacoa was administred by the Yellow Free State through an UNVCOCN mandate under the name Yellow Melania. The regime was terminated in August 299, when the independence of Allacoa was declared, although YFS troops continued to hold until October.
Despite the legacy of over thirty years of civil war, Allacoa has since independence remained a stable multi-party democracy.
Archeologists have suggested that early hominids, such as Homo erectus vexiliensis, roamed present-day Allacoa between one and two million years ago. Modern Homo sapiens, however, only reched the region in the early 12th millennium BP. These were the ancestors of the modern Alawi ethnic group, arriving from present-day UudangWuu. Modern research indicates those were hunter-gatherer nomadic populations, with no organized political unit above the extended family. The forerunners of the Kutu and Mdele peoples arrived between the 9th and 8th millennia BP, also hailing from what is now UudangWuu. For most of their history, those groups left few complex archeological remains.
Localized shifting weather patterns arround the 2nd millenium BP made the hunter-gathering lifestyle unsustainable for large populations. This prompted the emergence of the first urban centers, the oldest of which is now known as Alasati, a complex of temples and residential buildings erected by Alawi peoples near present-day Kisqa, dated to around 2.000 BP.
Alasati is believed to be among the earliest organized polities and cities in Melania and projected its power among the nomadic populations of the western coast of what is today Allacoa. The modern name of the country derives from this early site.
The City-States eraEdit
Alasati was merely the first of the early Allacoan civilizations. The difficult terrain favoured the development of several isolated city-states, linked together by complex trade networks and a common family of animist and/or polytheistic religions. The exact social make-up varied from city to city, but normally consisted of a small aristocratic class, assisted by a religious strata, ruling over a large population of peasants and the nomadic groups and minor tribes in the immediate surroundings. Soldiers armed with clubs and iron swords formed a distinct military caste, while merchants, serving as the lifeline between the various independent cities, formed a powerfull middle class.
The political configuration also varied from one city to another. Although most were absolute hereditary monarchies, certain city-states were theocracies or aristocratic republics. A number of smaller, isolated cities, mostly on the Tsatali mountains, developed a form of direct democracy. Rivalries between the city-states also travelled along the trade routes.
These enmities, as well as the isolation and the lack of coordination between the various city-states, were exploited by the first major empire of Melania: the Zangan Empire. The Zangans, who controlled a good part of central Melania from their capital of Zamuzi, invaded the Tsentral Plateau on 820 BP. Another wave arrived from the north and slowly conquered the more developed coastal regions from 815 BP until 792 BP. One by one the armies of the Allacoan city-states were destroyed and their cities either conquered or coerced into joining the Zangan fold.
The grand city of Alasati was completely razed by the Zangans, who founded the nearby port of Kisqa. From there, the Zangan Empire would, over the next few decades, launch a number of more-or-less succesfull invasions of Nuarmia.
The Zangan invasion also introduced the Mounist faith to Allacoa. Several syncretic interpretations quickly appeared, mixing Mounist tenets with the traditional customs of the area. Mounism, in one form of the other, became the religion of the majority of the urban population of present-day Allacoa by 600 BP, while animism remained the norm among the nomads and the hunter-gatherer tribes.
The Tsatali Mountains, however, were never fully conquered by the Zangans and became home for several still-independent city-states. Starting on 790 BP, the fear of a Zangan breaktrough led to the formation of loose confederations of city-states for mutual defense. This strategy prevented a Zangan conquest of the region until the Empire started to succumb to internal turmoil in the 690s BP. Slowly, the Allacoan militias in the coastal regions and in the Tsentral Plateau began to attack the Zangan garrisons and formed their own confederations in the Tsatali model.
The last Zangan troops left Allacoa in 672 BP, while the old rivalries between the city-states were revived. The major cities continued to link their allies and vassals into confederations. Lesser cities that entered one of these confederations gained prestige from their association with the top-tier city-state, and maintained peaceful relations with other members of the same alliance. Conflicts between the different alliances became common, resulting in periods of ascent and decline, even though most confederations were short-lived. Among the more enduring were the Shada Confederation (525 - 391 BP), the Nkoro (443 - 350 BP) and the Azikwe Confederation (359 - 175 BP).
The first non-Melanian group to reach Allacoa where the Stervians, who arrived circa 550 BP. They quickly established themselves within the overall Afrayenne society, becoming an important component of the merchant class.
The prosperity enjoyed by the strongest of the Allacoan polities, the Azikwe Confederation, soon attracted the attention of the nearby Afrazurean Empire.
Afrazurean conquest and the Daam periodEdit
The Empire of Afrazure (Afrazlala: Afrazah), to the east of the Azikwe Confederation, was unified by the Dulaid dinasty circa 300 BP. The last ruler of the dinasty, Ellijah IX, died in 198 BP without an heir. This prompted a civil war amongst several rival noble houses. Eventually, a new dinasty was established under emperor Masaq I, of the House of Bin Mounir, in 182 BP. The new emperor immediately set his sight on the Azikwe Confederation. The Afrazurean invasion lasted for six years and, despite all efforts, the Confederation eventually fell to the larger armies of the empire.
Over the next decades, the remaining alliances and independent city-states of Allacoa were conquered by Afrazure. The territory was incorporated into the empire and divided into a number of provinces, each ruled by a daam (a term normally translated into Ingallish as "duke"), a non-native nominated by the imperial government. Among the duties of the daams were collecting taxes for the emperor and mustering troops whenever called. Despite this, for the first century of Afrazurean rule, the Allacoan cities and the tribes of the hinterlands were able to preserve their way of life to some extent.
In 73 BP, emperor Youseff IX passed away. His designated successor, Mahmoud II, proved too weak to maintain proper control over the extensive territory of Afrazure. The daams seized the opportunity to essentially act as independent warlords, raising taxes against the local population and maintaining private armies at will. These armies would queel occasional local rebellions as much as be put into action against rival daams in regional wars for control over profitable trade routes or local rivalries. The policies of the daams also caused several localized famines, as peasants had to give most of their produce to the local daam.
Thus, from 73 BP until 123 AP, although the emperor was officially the ruler of Afrazure and every daam swore loyalty to him, he was largely a marginalised, ceremonial figure.
The lessened imperial control also allowed for some of the daams to launch slave expeditions deep into the territory. Stervian slavers, for instance, decimated hundreds of native villages in order to capture new slaves, which were then transported abroad. From 100BP until the beginning of the Great Plague, over 350.000 natives from the entire Afrazurean Empire were transported to the Samuelonian colonies of the Malvadorias.
The People's EmpireEdit
Rebellions against the daams' rule were often small and local, easily defeated by the warlords' armies. The first uprising to have a true pan-Afrazah character was Yohannes Mawuni's rebellion in 121 AP.
Mawuni, a prince of a minor Kutu tribe in what is now the Allacoan province of Topiwaki, led a delegation of chiefs to the provincial capital of Benikowa in order to lodge a protest against the drafting of local men in the daam's army, as well as the oppressive taxation policies. The daam responded by executing half of Prince Mawuni's entourage, while he himself fled the city and returned to his tribe.
The massacre prompted Mawuni to organize a revolt against the daam's rule, together with other dissatisfied tribal chiefs, city aristocrats and military leaders. In April 121 AP, makeshift militias began overrunning local garrisons. Mawuni's army entered Benikowa on the 2nd of June, deposing the daam and installing a loyal governor in his place. By the end of the year, the revolt had already spread to the western coastal plains and also into the mountains of Ataraki, while hundreds of thousands of peasants joined the ranks of the rebel armies.
Qocha, the main city of the Tsentral Plateau, fell to rebels based on the Tsatali mountains in January 122, while the main column, aided by cavalry and camel-mounted troops, quickly advanced along the coast, capturing Kisqa (February 122), Chaqa (May), Mkukipya (August) and Wamanda (November). By the end of the year, other pockets of rebellion would also appear in the remaining Afrazurean-occupied areas, such as Zanga and even in the southern provinces of Afrazure-proper.
A minor setback for the rebels came in January 123, when a combined force of Imperial troops and the armies of the Buwisi and Garakwe daams succesfully repelled the simultaneous attacks against Waka and Daskal, forcing Prince Mawuni's armies to retreat and reorganize at the west bank of the Jimbhuli river. Another offensive began in March. Waka and Daskal fell in April, followed by Tewezi (July), Mlipuko (August) and Mulengi (September). After the rebel victory at the Battle of Sotakhi, outside the city of Mazingira, on the 19th of November, most of the remaining daam's armies defected to Prince Mawuni's side. The road to the imperial capital, Medhiou, was open.
Mawuni entered the city meeting only light resistance from the Imperial Guard. On the 1st of December, rebel armies stormed the Imperial Palace and deposed the weak emperor Mahmoud II, whose rule had lasted for half a century. Mawuni was acclaimed by the people of Medhiou and crowned as Yohannes Medhiou, Emperor of All Afrazah and Afrazure. Although minor pockets of daam rebellion continued in Afrazure-proper until 129 AP, the new Emperor faced no significative resistance.
Emperor Yohannes initiated a series of major reforms. The armies of the daams were integrated into a new Imperial Army, organized along modern lines, while the warlords themselves were deposed and replaced by governors elected by the tribal leaders and city nobles from each province. He also devolved more powers to the old city-states and tribal communities. The oppressive taxes of the daams were also repelled. These achievements, together with his humble origins, granted him the sobriquet "The People's Emperor".
Yohannes understood the need for modernization, in order to strenghten Afrazure's resistance to both internal threats and the colonial powers of Eras and Longerath. He visited the newly-established [[Mauretania]|Empire of Maurestania]] several times during the fist decade of his rule and, at first, considered the neighbor a Melanian ally against colonial encroachment. Inspired by the Maurestani advances, Emperor Yohannes founded the first universities in the Empire - the University of Medhiou in 131 and the University of Kisqa in 132 - while also embarking on a programme of industrialization of the country, focusing mainly on shipbuilding and mining.
Yohannes I died in 163, after four decades of rule, and was succeded by his 24-year-old son, Meneliq I. The new ruler, who also came to be known as a "People's Emperor", continued the modernizing programmes his father had put ing place.
Unfortunately for the new Emperor, Maurestani attitude towards the Afrazurean Empire took a drastric turn. Maurestania's Office of Colonial Affairs, established in 95 AP, began directing the Empire's foreign policy towards an expansionist path, aiming on conquering new lands, peoples and markets through Melania and Nuarmia.