Egypt consider themselves to be the greatest power in the known world. And they have good reason to. With more land and provinces than any other kingdom, not to mention the number of people who reside in those provinces, Egypt have a massive force at their command. The difficulty is the terrain, supplies and the range of mastery required to control such a broad area and diversity of people. Egypt may seem powerful, but the intricacies of each province are open to opportunity and corruption at every turn...
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Famed for the Karnak Temple right on the edge of the province and the souk on the bank of the river, many visit this province to spend time purchasing spices and gold from the vibrant souk which forms the heart of the province. Rich and flourishing, the buildings of Aksum reflect the province's great flow of income, sporting brick buildings instead of mud.
A province that borders the desert, the people of Anum have made it a habit of riding camels instead of horses, for the hump-backed beasts provide a greater form of transport across the dry, arid terrain of the desert. Anum itself is a bustling little province that warriors to artisans alike call home; most often because of several wells of fresh water available in the centre of its settlements. As a result, it is a great favourite of many foreigners to visit Anum to gain necessary wares before their return.
An easy-going province on the edge of the desert, the people of Benin encompass the very meaning of enjoying life. Every evening would see the people of the province gather around the main square at its centre where people will share stories and meals and children are introduced to the predatory falcons that the people of Benin are familiar with, using them in their day to day life for hunting rabbits and hares for meals. The women of the settlement focus on textile work that can be sold in markets in other provinces, while the men focus on raising livestock and are mostly shepherds.
Home to the temple of the Lioness Goddess Bastet, her temple is an anomaly in that it is split into two - one to worship Bastet, the gentle and benign cat and the other to praise Sekhmet, the dangerous and war-hardy side of the goddess. The temple is further surrounded on three out of four sides by water - a man-made lake, built to offer the goddess protection and supplied by rainfall. Worshippers pray to whichever side they need the benevolence of most at any one time, and many women make the travel to Bubastis to bow at the temple for safe pregnancy and childbirth, making the province home to many midwives and healers. Interestingly enough, the temple is also home to many cats, who are welcomed as divine beings within the province.
A place rampant with crime and death, Edwa is a province many avoid when it comes to visiting or even just passing through. Somehow falling through the cracks of law, the vast amounts of bribery and cheating happening in this province mean that many either think themselves above the law or are royal officials who do not deserve their seat and are merely in place for the gold they can line their pockets with. Trying to find a way out of the province proves difficult too, for its situation far from the main capital and surrounded three out of four sides by deserts, mean that without the right finances to produce the needed supplies, fighting the surrounding environment becomes impossible. And the officials see to it that such gold is never in the hands of those who wish to leave...
A large, time-telling temple stands as the main attraction in El Daihab. Built along the axis of the sun, twice a year, light will flood the innermost sanctum of the temple, illuminating three of the four statues of Gods worshipped within this temple - Ra, Amun and Ramses himself. The last god left in the shadows would be Ptah - which befits the mysterious creator god. Built by the Nubian tribes of Egypt, the people of El Daihab are of darker skin tone and sharper features as compared to other Egyptians, descendants of the native tribes of the more southern lands, their appearance now a mix of the two, favouring the Egyptian dominant features. The people of El Daihab are scholars and mathematicians, crafters and merchants. They believe in the application of skill and that time is precious.
Neighbouring the old capital of Egypt, Elminya's entrance is marked by a large gate entitled the Bab Zuewila, which is in itself a sight to behold. Tiny workshops are scattered throughout the province, where coppersmiths and artisans make and sell their wares. The smell of melting copper and smoke is prevalent throughout the air in the province, with many residents can often be seen sporting leatherwear to prevent burns as they work.
Famed for its great pyramids, Giza is the province closest to the capitol of Cairo and is the sacred home of the ancient necropoles of the pharaohs of old dynasties. Giza is one of the sandiest and most desert-like of the provinces of Egypt, and there is little there besides religious monks, smugglers and camel traders. Giza is not a place where people live but where they reach or pilgrimage from when crossing out into the deserts of the west.
A small coastal town on the edge of the sea, Itsmalia is known for being rich in fish and sea produce. The docks and quays of the province are always bustling with ships and boats. However, in recent years, Itsmalia began gaining traction in the eyes of those aiming for riches, when a mine brimming with semi-precious gems was found on the edge of the province.
Set upon the winding curves of the Nile river, Kabwe is backed by orange-hued dunes and a peaceful province where most people visit to take a few days off of the hustle and bustle of the main city. The dry atmosphere makes it perfect for growing and cultivating tea plantations, especially with the river providing the irrigation that enables the flourishing greenery.
Housing one of the biggest souk's in Egypt, Kafr El Ibsa's heart is its daily market where people from all surrounding provinces are able to bring their wares to sell. The souk supports wooden sticks holding up colourful textiles to block the searing sun as people shop. Everything from glassware to spices, fruits to cotton is sold here, and it helps that the coastal province is the first stop for many visitors on their arrival to Egypt.
Known for the Souq-al-Gimmal, otherwise known as a camel market, visitors to this province can see many camels being sold, originating from other provinces like Giza. Other livestock can also be found in the souk, but most visit Kilwa to gain good quality camels, be it for their travels or to add to their livestock. A heavy, musky scent hangs perpetually in the air of Kilwa thanks to the large amounts of livestock available here, and much of the province is made of vast, flat land in order to upkeep the animals.
A tranquil oasis amongst dry and sandy deserts, Kudos is a tonic to the regular Egyptian weather. With numerous freshwater springs and date palm plantations worked by farmers, the residents of the province stay, however, within the mud-brick citadel that dominates most of the view in Kudos. While the province may not be the busiest nor the most lucrative but it is considered a gem to the economy of the kingdom.
A rough, hardy province that houses more loud-mouthed and rugged males than it does anything else, Kumaan is now mainly a mining province rich in resources such as marble and alabaster - a main component for the statues the kingdom builds in praise to its Gods and Pharaohs. Despite it being a busy province, many owners of mines in the area still wish they would strike gold one day - the greatest and easiest way to achieve the richness they so desire.
A province that is near to other famous provinces, Kumut is a mix and a beautiful blend of tradition and relative modernity. A mix of vibrant colours and hardworking farmers, the province displays what is truly meant by a peaceful existence between people of different backgrounds. The buildings contrast each other, an eclectic mix of hieroglyphs and colours and many different dialects seem to meld together to perfect harmony in the evenings when people would roam the province after a long day.
A province built over the waters of the Nile river, many of the people living in this province are experts at using water vehicles such as riverboats and the occasional abydos, as it is their main form of transportation across the province. The end of the town opens up to the sea itself, which means Lungwa has a nice coastal breeze year round, making it quite a laid back province - if not for the fact that learning to swim is a very handy skill should you wish to visit.
The people of Luxfa are apparently as foolhardy as they are brave, for they are perhaps the only ones within the kingdom who are unafraid to perform the intricate art of beekeeping. Using hives out of clay or Nile mud, anyone visiting the province of Luxfa would see miles and miles of the human-made hives, which are moved up and down along the banks of the Nile depending on the time of the year, to allow the bees to pollinate flowers which are in season. This also means that Luxfa has beautiful blooms year long and is perhaps also why the flowers of Obsor - their neighbouring province - bloom so spectacularly.
A neighbour to Kudos, it is no surprise that Malimasi shares much of its neighbour's temperate climate. An oasis brimming with palm trees with donkey carts roaming the streets, the province houses one of the only natural-spring pools of Egypt, where many people go for its supposed medicinal properties. Locals also use the palm trees native to Malimasi to make wicker furniture and hats.
A small fishing village that has no claim to fame, Manopotapa however, boasts a spectacular view on both sides of the province. On the one side, one would be able to set eyes on the mighty Mount Sinai, a particularly magnificent sight at sunset. On the other side of the small village, the beautiful azure sea would provide a soothing respite to tired eyes.
Mansa's waters have long since been regarded as magical - purely because the ladies that originate from this province are far more beautiful and fairer then anywhere else in the kingdom of Egypt. With large eyes, long legs and a charm that exudes confidence, it is no surprise then that Mansa is also home to the largest number of pleasure houses - the largest of them being Lupanare, a building constructed solely for those seeking the pleasures of the flesh provided by the most beautiful women in the kingdom. Mansa is a province of distinct difference, beautiful, noble women, untouched and kept such for the nobility they aim to marry into and the most beautiful but lowest born of whores.
Mendes would be an otherwise quiet and unassuming town, if not for the incredible temple for Banemdjedet right in the heart of the city. Chunky columns and walls covered in painstakingly carved hieroglyphics and paintings, Mendes see plenty of devout worshippers flocking to them monthly, especially in the drier months where they wish for the god of the river Nile to watch over their crops and plantations.
Making its money from the various gold mines found in the heart of the province, Mirsa El Nasr is often known for being the choice smithies for the making of the royal nemes for the Kings and Queens of the kingdom. A province where the rich make their home, the buildings and manors of the province stand tall, proud and an extravagant display of wealth and this extends to the people that roam the street of this province.
A dangerous province situated far from the province, Momborah was picked to house the most dangerous criminals in Egypt, with the largest fortress built right on the edge of the province. Surrounded by either water or a wall too high and smooth to scale by themselves, the citizens so unfortunate to stay in Momborah they steer clear away from the fortress, from where screams and whips could be heard on a daily basis. It is also the place where the most dangerous of criminals are sent for exile, never allowed to return to life as a regular citizen. The flipside of this means that Momborah has one of the more effective labour forces of slaves in the land and produces rock and mason work in volumes others can only dream.
At the foot of Mount Sinai, Nabdorah has benefited greatly from the resources they excavate from the mountain and have earned a name for themselves by producing beautiful glass-blown items. Either used for decoration or actual daily usage, either which way, glassware from Nabdorah was known to be of the highest quality and highly sought after by many.
Slightly further away from Kudos lies Naqmis, a province which seemed to have taken a different form of activity - training monkeys. Specifically, attacking monkeys. With many of the creatures roaming, the people of Naqmis has come up with a unique way of using the creatures to help in their daily life. With a high rate of petty crime, it was only in recent years that the people of Naqmis have started engaging the help of the primates to assist guards in their duties. Another bonus to the strange choice of pet? Monkey brains are delicious and monkey faeces fantastic for smoking.
Perhaps one of the most beautiful yet small provinces near the old capital with little fruit orchards and vegetable gardens irrigated from Nile river water, Obsor is easily considered one of the most fertile provinces in the kingdom, especially when the province provides the most beautiful blooms year round. Many would come to Obsor for the choicest of flowers as offerings to the Gods or the dead, as well as to make ankhs for victorious kings and warriors. The people of Obsor have also been hired to tend to everything from palace gardens to temple gardens and everything in between.
A musically and artistically inclined province in recent years, it shows in the nightly music that one would be able to hear from various establishments or houses if one took a stroll down the main street of the province. Qalha's shops mostly sell varying arrays of artistic materials, be it paints or musical instruments alike. Many of the best dancers from Qalha also end up being hired to be entertainers within the palace.
Located on the Eastern Tip of the kingdom, Quesetta is another province perfect for a vacation destination. One of the few coastal cities that Egypt has, the province has a sort of peace and tranquillity otherwise not found in the kingdom and a beach that many visit to enjoy its salty breeze. Local shops often sell knick-knacks and accessories to entice tourists.
A quiet and sombre town, Ras Sufaga is home to a large temple which houses many deities and a main temple where many go to pray. As such, many priests have also moved to the province to call it home and are the ones summoned by the royal family to perform any process of embalming required to mummify the body of any royal who has passed on to the afterlife. Much of the province are also experts at pottery and specialise in creating the canopic jars which are widely used in the process of mummification. The province itself seems largely uniform and serious in tone and colour, reflecting the mood of the people in the province itself.
Not many stay in this bankside province of Rofah, largely because the province had recently been inundated by a moving band of hippopotamuses which has decided to make their home right at the edge of the province. As such, many houses sit abandoned from what was previously the western portion of their flourishing province of farmland and camaraderie. The remaining residents of Rofah situate their homes further away from the fierce, lumbering beasts and are always on the lookout for an angry hippo whenever they are out. Prior to the animal encroachment, Rofah is one of the largest provinces on the riverbank and the home of expansive clay and mud pits (hence the creatures' interest in it) and provides the majority of clay required for building in the cities.
A province which built a great deal of its identity on their patron goddess, children in Sais would play with small bows and arrows even at the age of five, and all were brought up to be adept hunters and trackers. The people of Sais are devout to their patron goddess, and many yet were experts at making tools for the hunters their province was so famous for, making the province famous for its highly skilled archers.
Mainly relying on farming and crops, Shedet grows much produce from cotton to rice. While the people of Shedet are humble and kind, they are hard workers who see the value of putting their full effort into ensuring their prosperous future. They do not mind the small mudbrick huts they live in and greet everyone they see with the same friendly warmth.
Sotte plays an important role in ensuring the safety and longevity of the kingdom, as the residents of this province are all well trained in the operations of the dam this province is built around. The dam played an important role especially during the rainy season, where it would redivert the waters of the Nile river to protect the main cities and the areas surrounding it from flooding. The people of Sotte are well versed with stone-masonry and are all deft with their fingers and hands, as well as being hard workers who think quick on their feet. Sotte is a large province that uses the redirected waters from the dam to irrigate large fields of rice and other much-needed crops for the kingdom.
Carved into the edges of Mount Sinai, the people of Talutt are hardy and tough from their daily climbs up and down the side of the mountain just to get daily necessities like water and resources. Used to colder weathers, Talutt's terrain makes it highly unsuitable for growing crops and as such, the people of Talutt have grown to be smart and intelligent when it came to ways to earn income; including their major trade in hillside animals like sheep and goats.
A province split by two by the Nile river, the Eastern Bank is a vibrant place with bright textiles and a bustling souk, while the Western Bank has vast plantations of sugarcane, a main export of the province. The farmers of the plantations work their farms over the week, before taking a boat to head over to the souk that opens on weekends to sell their wares.
A large necropolis located on the west bank of the Nile river, Zanzibar took over from Giza as the resting place of the fallen several generations ago and houses the royal tomb of the Egyptian rulers. The royal tomb makes for a highly imposing picture from the way it looms up to a large pyramid and the royal family posts guards at its entrance year-round to ensure the safety of their dead and departed. The terrain of this area is sandy but arable, and livestock is the most common thing grown on the lands, producing materials from which clothing and fabrics are made. Zanzibar is a small province and houses only the caretakers of the dead and their families, but the wives of such men are said to be some of the finest weavers and fabric-makers in Egypt. A Zanzibar shawl, for example, is an expensive and luxurious thing to own.
Positioned right on the edge of a gorge, Zefa has become a province culturally isolated from the rest of the kingdom, especially as they have, until recent years, only one way in and out of their landlocked province. The people of Zefta eventually developed their very own lifestyle and culture, especially as many foreigners choose to settle in Zefta to stay away from the wary eyes of the Egyptians. The unique culture developed and surfaced in their pottery and basketry making and in recent years, a pot or basket from Zefta is considered to be a unique gift indeed.