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Kotte (The Kalmar Union)

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Kingdom of Kotte
Timeline: The Kalmar Union
Flag of Kotte No coa
Flag Coat of Arms
Capital
(and largest city)
Kotte
Language Sinhalese
King Parâkramabâhu XVI
Population 13,949,150 
Currency KLV

The Kingdom of Kotte is a small autocratic monarchy in South Asia, comprising much of the southern half of the island of Lanka. Its sole land border is with Jaffna to the north and east though two European and one Leifian countries have autonomous treaty-trading ports within its borders. The capital is Kotte and the population around 14 million.

The Head of State is King Parâkramabâhu XVI.

The official language is Sinhalese.

The currency is the Kotte Lankesvara (KLV)

History

Inhabited for at least 125,000 years the island of Lanka is largely split by ethnic lines and the Kingdom of Kotte represents the Sinhalese population. Despite its island status it was not completely isolated; Lanka was known to the ancient Greeks (as Taprobanê) and a low lying causeway connected the north to the Indian mainland until around 1480. Embracing Buddhism in the 3rd century BC it exported cinnamon to the Romans and Cleopatra VII's son Caesarion apparently attempted to reach Lanka before his murder.

Early medieval Lanka was a remarkable advanced place with considerable engineering feats such as dams and aqueducts being constructed. However invasions from southern India, from the Chola Emperors and Kalinga Magha, would break apart the Lankan kingdom and lead to the establishment of the Jaffna kingdom in the island's north. The south meanwhile began to form a series of shifting and ephemeral kingdoms of which Kotte eventually proved the most long-lasting.

Conflict with the Chinese treasure fleets would lead to a change of dynasty within the kingdom and during the height of Parâkramabâhu VI's reign the entire island was once again under unified rule. His death would begin breakup the union until Kotte only held the western coastline. Here Portugal would arrive in 1503 beginning a period where the Kotte kings warily accepted the European's presence in the ports whilst resisting their attempts to move towards outright control. Their help would allow the slow conquest of the other Sinhalese kingdoms in the south while Portugal maintained a virtual monopoly over the kingdoms' exports. This would cease following the Lisbon earthquake of 1755 which would financially ruin much of Portugal's overseas possessions. Leon and Luxembourg had already installed themselves in Jaffna and now Aragon bought out Portugal's main possession at Colombo, whilst Galle would go to Denmark and eventually Matara was taken by Vinland.

All these possessions are held by guaranteed by a series of treaties which allow the holders autonomy within a small section of the cities and there has been a small growth of Aragonese, Danish and Vinlandic expatriates in the respective cities. The granting of rights to three somewhat competing countries allowed Kotte to remain independent although the focus on spices, tea and coffee exports to Europe and Leifia has to a large degree stifled all other forms of industry

Schools, particularly Danish and Aragonese, were setup during the early 20th century to help improve standards of education in Kotte but fears of Christianisation and erosion of tradition culture led to a spate of anti-western rioting and many were closed. Even so the education provided has led to a growing bureaucracy in the kingdom and a growth in calls for democracy.

Continued rivalry with Jaffna has erupted in frequent wars, the last in 1986 however tensions are usually dampened by the European presence and the annual Lankan Games sponsored by Luxembourg and Aragon, with its mix of traditional and western sports, has helped channel rivalry into a slightly less deadly form.

Government

Kotte is governed by a Royal Council with the king and his ministers ruling without recourse to the population, though increasingly this is coming under pressure to liberalise.

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