In this series I will be looking at each of the individual nations of Faerûn in turn, in alphabetical order. This series is based around the status of each nation as of 1371-72 Dalereckoning (at the end of D&D 2nd Edition and the start of 3rd Edition). The maps are drawn from The Forgotten Realms Interactive Atlas CD-ROM and their respective 1st and 2nd Edition sources. They are not necessarily current for the 5th Edition of the setting (which is set c. 1496 DR).

A map of Lapaliiya and Tharsult. Please click for a larger version.


  • Ruler: Shaliim Wyrmslayer, Overking of Sheirtalar
  • Capital: Sheirtalar (pop. 52,135)
  • Settlements: Abreon (4680), Dungar (931), Ilyaport (1923), Ithmong (46,729), Lapalgard (3701), Lhazantal (925), Lushpool (17,265), Malaxer (4103), Mierskar (1617), Ormpur (24,612), Sammaresh (21,912), Sheirlantar (7306), Uzurr (10,305), Zashuma (1399)
  • Population: 1,217,642 (94% human [50% Shaaran, 36% Calishite, 12% Tashalan, 1% Chulant, 1% Halruaan], 2% yuan-ti, 2% rock gnome, 1% wild dwarf, 1% misc.)
  • Population Density: 8.13 people per mile², 3.14 people per km²
  • Area: 149,820 miles² (388,032.019 km²)
  • Military: Local militias, mercenary companies
  • Languages: Common, Shaaran, Tashalan, Alzhedo, Halruaan
  • Religion: Bhaelros (Talos), Chauntea, Deneir, Eldath, Garl Glittergold, Gond, Ilmater, Kelemvor, Lliira, Selûne, Silvanus, Tempus, Tiamat, Umberlee, Waukeen
  • Exports: Olives, pearls, roe, seafood, spices, wine, wood
  • Imports: Armour, beef, gems, fruit, iron, jewellery, pottery, weapons
  • Sources: Serpent Kingdoms (Ed Greenwood, Eric L. Boyd, Darrin Drader, 2004)


  • Ruler: Merchant oligarchy
  • Capital: Urbeth
  • Settlements: Aunthurr, Chastel, Funearil, Nlintar, Tunumbar, Zoana
  • Population: Unknown
  • Area: 7069 miles² (18,308.63 km²)
  • Languages: Common, Shaaran, Tashalan, Alzhedo, Halruaan
  • Religion: Waukeen, various
  • Exports: Food, mercantile services
  • Imports: Everything
  • Sources: Perilous Gateways: Portals in Ruins (Robert Wiese, 2002), Ed Greenwood’s comments (link), Realmslore: Tharsult (Ed Greenwood, 2022, via Patreon)


Lapaliiya, also known formally as the Lapal League and colloquially as the Cities of the Seabreeze, is a coalition of city-states and townships located along the south-eastern coast of the Shining Sea, at the eastern end of the Chultan Peninsula where it joins the mainland of southern Faerûn. The nation extends from the south-western edge of the Shaar to the bay known as the Dolphingulph (Dolphin Gulf) and inland as far as the Mhair Jungle and the Bandit Wastes to the south; the Dun Hills, Misty Vale and the hills known as the Wormbones in the east; and the Delphin Mountains to the west. The nation is a loose coalition effectively chaired by the Overking of Sheirtalar, the largest city in the realm and nominally its capital.

The Lapal League is made up of the large cities of Sheirtalar (the Shining City), Ithmong (the Stormwracked City), Lushpool (the City of Shimmering Pools), Sammaresh (the City of Dancing Dolphins) and Uzurr (the City of Toiling Monks); the smaller settlements of Malaxer, Abreon, Lhaztanal (the City of Smiths), Zashuma, Dungar, Ilyaport and Sheirlantar; and the frontier fortress of Lapalgard, which guards the trade route across the Bandit Wastes towards Halruaa. Each city contributes to the defence of Lapaliiya in different ways, and each city has an appointed civic deity, a patron god whom is worshipped in that city over all others. The city-state of Ormpur, located just to the north of Sheirtalar, is nominally completely independent, but in recent years has come increasingly under the influence of its neighbour and is often now counted part of its domain, complete with its own appointed civic deity.

Nearby Tharsult is an island kingdom located in the Shining Sea. The Isle of Spices lies south of Calimshan, west and north-west of Lapaliiya and north-east of Thindol and Tashalar, making it a perfect centre for trade and commerce. The kingdom consists of the main island of Tharsult and the smaller island of Umbarra (now a haven for rich merchants and pirates, who have built palatial estates there) just off its eastern coast. The geography of the island is made up coastlines where chalk cliffs are commonplace, and lots of farms producing foodstuffs. The larger towns and the capital city of Urbeth are noted for being immense storage sites, where goods from across southern Faerûn await further transit. These cargo yards, in some cases, dwarf the nearby settlements. The Tharsen are noted for scrupulously believing in the sanctity of trade, no matter the point of origin, and ensuring the security of their customers’ goods. Much of Tharsult’s defence is expended on ships to protect the trade routes to nearby cities. The amount of wealth that passes through Tharsult is remarkable, and the Tharsen have had to employ a new method of counting money in the form of statuettes, each of which is worth a substantial amount of gold.


The region of modern Lapaliiya was once the domain of the Sarrukh, the legendary Creator Race who ruled the empire of Mhairshaulk which extended along the southern shores of the inland sea known as the Pourounkorokale (now the Shining Sea) some 36,000 years ago. The Sarrukh declined and their civilisation eventually collapsed, with the species either dying off or departing Toril for another plane. They left behind the species they had created, the most notable of which were the yuan-ti, who inherited their realm around 33,500 BDR (Before Dalereckoning). The yuan-ti mostly kept to themselves in the jungles and did not care about the doings of outsiders.

Around 17,600 BDR, the elves enacted the Sundering, splintering the continents apart. The parts of Mhairshaulk which extended into what are now the continents of Maztica and Katashaka were destroyed, and the yuan-ti suffered grievously. They reconstituted their power on the newly-formed Chultan Peninsula, particularly the Black Jungles and Mhair Jungles, and enslaved the human tribesfolk who had been trapped on the peninsula during the Sundering. These people, who made their homes in villages around the inland Lapal Sea, became known as the Lapal people. Some sources suggest that the Lapal, or their ancestors, had been blended with Sarrukh stock to create the yuan-ti in the first place, but the truth of the matter remains unclear.

The Lapal people were so long under the yoke of the yuan-ti that the very idea of rebellion may have seemed alien to them. But in 2809 BDR, several new human tribes arrived in the west of Chult, having been led to Faerûn by couatls out of Katashaka. The Eshowe, Tabaxi and Thinguth were proud and free peoples who fought off yuan-ti attacks on their newly-settled lands, to the amazement of the Lapal. This inspired the Lapal to start their own rebellions. Finally, in 1732 BDR, the Lapal won their freedom in a great uprising and migrated west, north and east out of the jungle altogether. The Lapal people soon established new settlements stretching from the south coast of the Chultan Peninsula into the western edge of the Shaar.

Despite moving clear of the jungles and establishing towns and even cities, the yuan-ti didn’t entirely let them go, and especially in areas close to the jungle homes of the yuan-ti, raids and skirmishes continued. Lapal raiders settling in the north-western part of the Shaar, near what are now the Border Kingdoms, had also started striking across Talagath’s Gauntlet, into what are now the eastern parts of Calimshan, bringing the two powers into conflict for a time.

In 690 BDR, the continuing threat of the yuan-ti convinced the Lapal tribes and townships to ally together as the realm of Lapaliiya. They adopted Sheirtalar as their capital. Conflict with Calimshan was replaced by trade, commencing in earnest around 569 BDR and resulting in the young kingdom becoming enriched. Soon, the western Lapal tribes who had not joined the new nation established a kingdom of their own, Tashalar, in 553 BDR. This resulted in a golden period when all three nations flourished and trade across the Shining Sea peaked. This period ended in the Empire Plague of 375-370 BDR, when almost a third of Lapaliiya’s population was killed by disease.

The yuan-ti established their new empire of Serpentes in the Mhair and Black Jungles in 304 BDR and invaded Lapaliiya and Tashalar, which were both still broken by the aftereffects of the plague, which had reduced the population of both nations. By 189 BDR both nations had been conquered. They remained under yuan-ti occupation until 10 DR, when the yuan-ti emperor Sseth disappeared without trace, sparking panic and then rebellion. The uprising began in Tashalar and spread eastwards. By 34 DR all the cities eastwards to Sheirtalar had been liberated and the Confederation of Tashtan founded, which incorporated both Tashalar and Lapaliiya into a single polity.

Tashtan endured for some two and a half centuries until the rogue Magister, Ergith “Kingslayer” Klavulgrun, slew a dozen Tashalaran merchant-lords who set on the nation’s ruling council in 276. The resulting leadership crisis left the realm in a state of civil unrest and unable to resist the advance of the Qysara Shoon V of the Shoon Imperium, who ordered the annexation of the region in 285. The town of Untisczer launched a failed rebellion and Shoon V used the event as an excuse to conquer the entire region as far west as Tashalar.

Lapaliiya began to reassert its independence during the reign of Qysara Shaani, who was more interested in events closer to home, and in 436 Sheirtalar rebelled. For a time it appeared successful, but in 438-440 General Hakam yn Sarak el Sallah unleashed the Seven Burnings campaign against the region, brutally sacking six Lapaliiyan cities before fighting their way into the Shaar and crushing tribal rebellions in that area.

Lapaliiya again became a Shoon possession, but only for a decade; in 450 Amahl Shon VII was killed by Tethyrian rebels and Shoonach destroyed, heralding the collapse of the Shoon Imperium. Lapaliiya officially regained its independence in 451. However, the nation endured as a loose coalition of independent townships rather than a close-knit nation. This changed in 656 when the threat of the gnoll tribes of the Shaar encouraged the founding of the Lapal League, again with Sheirtalar as its capital. The Lapal League mounted several punitive expeditions to destroy the gnolls before they could become a serious threat. Over the next few centuries Lapaliiya’s main threat came from the Shaar, as bands of Shaaran nomads would form and invade the kingdom, usually not getting very far or being absorbed into the general population.

In 1142, a group of yuan-ti mages, the Coiled Cabal, led an invasion of Lapaliiya and Tashalar. Lapaliiya and Tashalar sent a large number of archmages to fight off the invasion, but for unclear reasons (possibly yuan-ti intrigue) the two groups ended up fighting one another as well as the yuan-ti. At the end of three months of furious spell-combat, several cities along the coast had been destroyed and the three sides fought to a standstill in the war known as the Rage of Wizards. The yuan-ti retreated and in 1147 the rulers of Sheirtalar and Lushpool formed a new alliance. Haliim, the leader of the new alliance, gained the title of Overking. Within a few decades most of the traditional lands of Lapaliiya had been reunified under the Overking, but not by violence. Instead, distrust of magery following the Rage of Wizards saw the cities each appoint a “civic deity.” Worshippers of that deity would pray for protection and aid, effectively replacing the power of the mages with that of clerics. However, by making each city dedicated to a different god, no one clergy would gain dominance or power of any others, avoiding creating a theocracy.

In 1260, an overeager Overking launched an invasion of Halruaa to try to seize its magic. He formed an alliance with the inhabitants of the Bandit Wastes and marched down the Talath Pass. However, the Halruaans effortlessly defeated them with their superior magic, skyships and more formidable military. Lapaliiya subsequently agreed to pursue trade rather than warfare with Halruaa.

The history of Tharsult is considerably less well-known, but it is known that the island was at one time dominated by the yuan-ti before they were forced to retreat. It is believed that the Lapal colonised the island and founded the earliest trade ports on the city, and by the time that the triangle of trade between Tashalar, Lapaliiya and Calimshan began, the island had already become a major centre for trade. In recent centuries the island kingdom has consolidated its power as the major “sorting centre” for trade goods in southern Faerûn, with goods flowing into the island and back out again at an impressive rate. The island kingdom maintains a strict policy of neutrality and non-interference in business transactions, whilst also cracking down hard on corruption and piracy.


Lapaliiya is a somewhat loose-knit nation where the cities share a common history and religious and cultural ties, and have a very long history of cooperation against outside threats, be they yuan-ti, Calishites and Shaaran raiders. Each city has a large degree of autonomy, but are also united under the rule of the Overking of Sheirtalar. The Overking usually rules with a light touch, only calling on the other cities for aid when needed. The opinions of the other rulers are consulted in the Grand Council, where the rulers of Sammaresh, Ithmong, Lushpool, Sheirtalar and Uzurr can meet to debate policy.

The current Overking is elderly and failing, but his eldest son, Prince Shaliim, is vigorous and proven as a warrior and adventurer with the group known as the Wildblades. Shaliim spent many years wandering Faerûn and even other worlds, doing battle with various forces, until he settled down in 1357 to rule the city of Lushpool as Prince Royal. Lapaliiya’s future seems to be in safe hands.

Lapaliiya has good relations with Tashalar to the west, with which it shares a common history, and cooler but cordial relations with Calimshan to the north and Halruaa to the south-east. Lapaliiya has a complex relationship with the yuan-ti of the nearby Mhair Jungles. Officially, yuan-ti and related species are barred from Lapaliiyan soil and an endemic hatred, if not paranoia, about yuan-ti infiltration has spread through the general population. However, it is an open secret that some yuan-ti operate behind the scenes in various cities, most notably in Lushpool, where the Hazim’tar clan have considerable influence. Various Overkings have judged that it may be better to involve the yuan-ti in Lapaliiyan affairs as a way of integrating them and avoiding open warfare as in the past, especially as Lapaliiya is now probably too large and powerful to be militarily conquered by them.

Tharsult’s governance is considerably less well-known, but it is believed that the island is dominated by powerful mercantile interests. The governing body is known only as “the Council,” and consists of fourteen known members and seven hidden members who secretly travel among the people, monitoring conditions on the ground and ensure that policies are carried out properly.


Following the Rage of Wizards in 1142 DR, the popularity of mages in Lapaliiya took a severe hit and wizards were effectively barred from the nation for some years. Even today, almost 230 years later, mages are unpopular and looked upon askance in the streets. To ensure Lapaliiya’s magical protection, the nation instead adopted the civic deities, with each city choosing a patron god. That god is worshipped above all else in that city, a mighty temple was raised in their name and their clergy given special favours and appointments. In return, the clergy are expected to provide magical defences and support to each city. This unusually transactional take on faith has proven exceptionally successful.

As a major centre for trade for southern Faerûn, Waukeen is believed to be the most popular deity in Tharsult.

Civic Deities of Lapaliiya

  • Abreon: Lliira
  • Dungar: Chauntea
  • Ilyaport: Umberlee
  • Ithmong: Bhaelros (Talos)
  • Lapalgard: Tempus
  • Lhazantal: Gond
  • Lushpool: Eldath
  • Malaxer: Silvanus
  • Mierskar: Deneir
  • Ormpur: Tiamat
  • Sammaresh: Selûne
  • Sheirlantar: Kelemvor
  • Sheirtalar: Waukeen
  • Uzurr: Ilmater
  • Zashuma: Garl Glittergold

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