Another ancient manuscript from the early Dawn Age. Again I think this might date to the Wisconsin era.
The Seshnegi were marked culturally by an inspiring burst of growth over the realms of the 150 years ruled by the Serpent Kings. Despite the wars of expansion to fill their granted land the Seshnegi found time to develop arts to a high pitch of quality. Their society was tuned to a high degree of compassion through its flowering ages, believing that if a man should give its life for a country then the country should give its life for him. The ridiculous Scorpion men wars were fought over that right, but the rigidity of that foreign policy proved a solid and trusty front for the highly nationalistic peoples of Seshnela. Even before their culture had filled the lands of Seshenla they had already began expanding to fill the lands surrounding it.
During their later expansion period the energies of Seshenla were naturally directed outwards rather than inwards, and the development of the arts of any sort stagnated in growth, but expanded geographically. The superior posture and obviously superior lifestyle of the Seshnegi attracted foreigners wholesale, despite the semi privileges of their half-citizen status. After a couple of generation the old civilizations would be gone, replaced seemingly forever with the Seshnegi culture, complete with freedom-fighting knighthoods and snake-worshiping priestesses.
Seshnegi expansion was successful because of the superiority of its culture in one respect, but this was supported by the superiority of its pantheon. The gods of Seshnela were a synthesis of the dominant cults of the land, whereupon it was the royal policy of serpent kings to select one temple as the dominant one in the land and raise its status. Thus there was a balance between the five elements which was available to the battlefield magicians of the Seshnegi. This flexibility was denied to most of the foes of the Seshnegi, and even the oddest foreign deity would easily find a way into the sprawling “lower pantheon” of the Seshnegi empire.
Militarily, the Seshnegi army was very flexible at its earliest stages. In the reign of the Serpent Kings the Knighthood were trained in all arms and, although they were famous and greatly successful for their body armor and heavy spears, tribes of the interior they often scrambled up hills in armor to fight their enemies.
Around the year 250, when overseas imperial expansion demanded a much larger army of professionals, there was a major reform in the Seshnegi and allied armies, so that the once all-purpose knights were divided into mounted and foot types, plus foot archers. The absence of foot mounted archers is explained by the obvious lack of any such deity even among the multitudes of lesser deities in the Seshnegi pantheons. Such an absence can only be explained as deliberate, if subtle, intervention by the god involved, and cause for this grudge can be found in the old story about when Warera, wife of the Founder of the race, snubbed Jaralitor, virgin of the Sun, the fire rider armed with a bow which so many nomad types pray to. Such distantly removed mythical events often reverberate that way through history.
Seshnela found solid conquests in nearby lands, and also through the coastal and river-bottom lands of Fronela. They penetrated through to the central lakes of Ralios, but were staunchly fought by the barbarians beyond that. While they were friends with the Triolini races the Seshnegi even carried invasion as far as the southern edges of the Empire of the Wyrm’s Friends, but the Sea/Land wars which destroyed the Seshnegi navy left the invaders stranded and later they surrendered.
It was in Fronela that the first major clash with anything of a power approaching their own came to Seshnela. That was the contact between the traders of the Seshnegi and the Empire of the Wyrm’s Friends in the barbarian lands of Fronela, beginning a conflict which would last for 175 years. These were the Fronela Trading Wars.