|Nation||New Natanan (sovereign city-state)|
|Featured In||The Stormlight Archive|
”[Au-nak] represented a dead kingdom that had been reduced to a single city-state on the eastern coast of Roshar with a few other cities as protectorates.— Navani on Au-nak and New Natanan
Location and Geography
New Natanan is the easternmost city of the Rosharan continent. In lies on the shores of the Ocean of Origins, on a large peninsula jutting out of the Frostlands, a sparsely-populated and mostly lawless region in the south-east. New Natanan's position makes it the first settlement to be hit by an arriving highstorm as it comes on land. The news of a stormwall are sent out to other kingdoms from there via spanreeds.
There have been several attempts in the past to find a river passage between Alethkar and New Natanan, one of which resulted in the discovery of the Parshendi by Alethi explorers. However, so far it appears that the only way to access the country is either by a land caravan or by sea.
The region New Natanan now lies in was once part of the Silver Kingdom of Natanatan, with its capital in Stormseat. Following the catastrophe that created the Shattered Plains, the country slowly fell apart, until it was reduced to a single settlement -- New Natanan.
By the War of Reckoning, New Natanan had become a valuable trade hub as the biggest city on the eastern coast. Prior to the war, Dalinar had taken a small force through it to claim the Shattered Plains for the Kholins. Within a few years, the Natan had an ambassador, Au-nak, in the Alethi warcamps. Jasnah and Shallan's ship was sunk on its way to the city, as it was from there that caravans travelled to the Plains.
When the Everstorm first appeared, New Natanan was the first major city to be struck by it, although Dalinar and Navani tried to warn its people of the new storm. Though its uncertain whether they believed the message, the Natan confirmed the existence of the Everstorm to the Thaylen after it had passed over them.
Though Dalinar invited New Natanan into his coalition, they were initially coy, playing for time. However, they agreed to join after king Taravangian brought Jah Keved and Kharbranth into the alliance. From then, the Natan ambassador to the Alethi became the city-state's representative in Urithiru.
The Natan people have pale blue skin and wooly white hair. A local myth claims that this is the result of an ancient Natan queen, Tsa, having children with the blue moon, Nomon. In reality, their odd skin tone comes from the Natan being part-humans and part-Siah Aimians. This mixed ancestry gives them a some other benefits, although what they are is uncertain.
Some Natan dye their hair, though only a few locks of it, in vivid colours, such as dark red, possibly to denote some kind of rank or social status. Their names have several forms, including the common one and a high one - for example, a high form of the name Au-nak is Nak-ali.
The Natan are largely Vorin, although their particular variety of Vorinism differs from what is practiced elsewhere. In addition to worshipping the Almighty and the Heralds, the Natan appear to revere the moons, with Nomon as the most important. Some Alethi ardents consider the Natan to be almost pagan, and sometimes question how devout they really are when out of the sight of "proper" Vorins. Nonetheless, New Natanan is considered one of the important Vorin states by the high-ranking church officials, and their religious leaders are included in any discussion regarding the doctrine.
Apart from the religion, the Natan follow at least some Vorin customs. The leaders of New Natanan have occassionally claimed the first dahn, the highest rank a Vorin lighteyes can hold. Their language belongs to the Vorin family, same as the Alethi and Veden, although it is noted as dying out, implying many, if not most Natan don't actually speak it.
Despite being one of Roshar's smallest nations, New Natanan holds great political importance in the region. It's the largest city on the shores of the Ocean of Origins. As such, any ships sailing through it stop there to rest and resupply, and there's always trade happening. New Natanan is also important for predicting the highstorms, as it supplies the other states with information on any new one making landfall.
Additionally, the city provides the easiest way to reach the Shattered Plains, with numerous caravans traveling between it and the Alethi warcamps. New Natanan's importance extends even to the matters military -- any force holding the city would find it an excellent staging ground for an invasion of the Plains. The Natan are well-aware of all this, and have sent an ambassador to the warcamps on the Plains to curry favour with the Alethi lighteyes.
The Natan claim to be the inheritors of the ancient Natanatan, and believe that they should be in charge of the Oathgate in Stormseat, Natanatan's ancient capital. However, they do not possess enough political or military power to enforce this claim.
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