Bellakar is a Black Númenórean Kingdom to the west of the Harad Mountains and south of Umbar. Bellakar is the most powerful of the Black Númenórean states, and stretches from the Port of Dûsalan in Mardruak to the Bay of Tulwang in the south.
Bellakar is one of the oldest Númenórean colonies, but only gained independence at the end of the Second Age with the Fall of Númenór. Around the 400-500 Third Age, they suffered a devastating revolt ending in the conquest of Bellakar by the Tedjin mercenaries. Around the year 700, a lord named Zimrukhor Tumakveh siezed the throne and enslaved the Tedjin. After Joam-Tuv's successful revolt in the 900s, the Tumakveh were reduced to the lords of the petty fiefdom of Tarkhesh.
In the 1000s, Qadjadar collapsed, and the patricians of Ûrêzâyan formed the Second Entaile, an oligarchy that lasted briefly before being overthrown by the Third Entaile from Hazaj Tollin. This, too collapsed quickly, and the Fourth Entaile was formed in 1307, centered in the city of Nilulonde. The Fourth Entaile lasted much longer, and was only supplanted by the Fifth Entaile of Korlea in 1677 after the Nykkean rebellion. As of the War of the Ring, the Kingdom of Bellakar is embroiled in a war with Umbar over the region of Mardruak.
There are three distinct cultures in Bellakar: the urban Black Númenórean Bellakarani, the mixed-blooded Bellakaze, and the coastal native Bellanarod.
The Bellakarani are the Black Númenórean ruling class of Bellakar. Descendants of the original colonists of Bellakar, they take great pride, often arrogance, in their history.They often build great libraries to house their knowledge, and are some of the best seafarers in Middle-earth.
The Bellakaze are the most prolific inhabitants of Bellakar, and comprise a fair 60% of the population. They are a mixed-blooded race, descendants of the Númenórean settlers and the native Bellanarod. They share a similar appearance to the Near Haradrim or Haruze, and Bellakaze women are considered some of the most beautiful in the world.
The Bellanarod are the Apysani natives of coastal Bellakar, and ruled over the land before the coming of the Númenóreans. The Bellanarod are a populous but dying culture; more and more Bellanarod are adopting Númenórean customs.
Three religions are dominant in Bellakar: Batan an-Izindi(Path of Eru), Kâthasaptha(Infinite Wisdom), and the Cult of Ishtra.
Batan an-Izindi Edit
Batan an-Izindi originated as sect of Kâthasaptha founded by the Imam Izindubeth. He was said to have recieved a revelation from Eru himself after 5 days of meditating in a cave on the Holy Mountain Urud an-Khibil. After gaining many followers, he was forced to flee from his home city of Joam as the local ruler persecuted him. He preached in Hazaj Tollin for many years, and convinced the Prince of Hazaj Tollin to raise an army and attack Joam. After his victory, he was said to have rode all the way from Joam to the grand city of Ûrêzâyan, where he ascended directly into the Timeless Halls of Eru.
Batan an-Izindi's beliefs rest on the Five Pillars of the Revelation:
Faith: This is performed by saying the Declaration of Faith everyday. "There is no god but Êru, and Izindubeth is the Messenger of Êru."
Prayer: Batan an-Izindi pray five times a day, always facing the Holy Mountain Urud an-Khibil.
Charity: Batan an-Izindi followers must give a small percentage of their income to the poor.
Fasting: During the Holy Month of Râghêru, Batan an-Izindi followers fast during the day.
Pilgrimage: All Batan an-Izindi followers are expected to make a pilgrimage to Urud an-Khibil at least once in their lives.
Kâthasaptha is a syncretic form of Eruism, equating the native Moon Goddess Ladnoca to Eru and other Haradrim deities to the Valar and Maiar. Kâthasaptha was founded long before Batan an-Izindi, and although Batan an-Izindi has become the most widespread religion in Bellakar, Kâthasaptha is popular in the southern region of Bellazen.
Cult of Ishtra Edit
The Cult of Ishtra is a polytheistic religion, centered around worship of the chief goddess Ishtra, Goddess of the sea and love. Her cults span many forms; some dedicated to sailing, some to fishing and fish, and some dedicated to sex and sexuality. They all, however, share an open-minded and egalitarian view on life. The Cult of Ishtra is most popular across the Bay of Tulwang from Bellakar, but is the major religion in the cities of Ûrêzâyan and Bûr Esmer.