Make your own free website on Tripod.com

The continent of Ansalon is approximately 1,300 miles from east to west, and 900 north to south. Ansalon is the primary setting for the Dragonlance Saga®, and is the location where all the Dragonlance novels are set. As such, much more is known about Ansalon that is known about the other continent of Krynn, Taladas. In fact, few Ansalonians know of the existence of Taladas. Before the Cataclysm, an event precipitated by the Kingpriest of Istar, Ansalon was a solid land mass. Great plains ran from Silvanesti and Balifor in the east to Ergoth in the west. In addition, the Blood Sea used to be fertile lands, which were farmed and which made the now decimated city of Istar prosperous. The Cataclysm changed everything. When the firey mountain struck Krynn, it created the Blood Sea, separating the Minotaur Isles from the rest of the continent and plunging the plains of Istar far beneath the waves. The northern peninsula, near Kalaman, was forced up from the bottom of the ocean. Ergoth split into two separate isles, and the southern Ergothian and Solamnic plains became the New Sea.


Solamnia

Solamnia is the heart of the continent of Ansalon. It covers just under half of the land mass of Ansalon -- 500 miles worth. Solamnia has just about every geographical feature: fertile plains, three mountain ranges (the Vingaard, Dargaard and Garnet), the longest river (the Vingaard), and the most important city, Palanthas (also known as Palanthus).

From Coastlund in the west, across Gaardlund, Nightlund, Hinterlund and further east to the Estwilde, live a variety of people -- mostly humans, but small bands of ogres and draconians are far too common. Originally located in the center of the Ansalonian continent, Solamnia is now very much a sea-going state because the Cataclysm dumped three oceans around its borders.

Palanthas
The city of Palanthas was once considered to be the center of all learning. The city is divided into two parts: Old City, the building contained within the spokes of the protective wall, and New City, the buildings added when Palanthas grew out of its walled enclosure. A port city built on the Bay of Branchala, Palanthas contains one of the two remaining Towers of High Sorcery, this one protected by the Shoikan Grove, as well as the Great Library of Astinus.

Palanthas was the only city that was truly spared by the first Cataclysm; many refugees from the rest of Ansalon came to the circular city in an effort to find answers and a better life. Following the War of the Lance, the Temple of Paladine was erected in Palanthas, and it became the center of worship for the gods of good. The Blue Lady's war brought the first real threat to Palanthas in over three centuries: remaining draconian troops and chromatic dragons under her command attacked and destroyed much of the ancient city.

In the first year after the Second Cataclysm, the contents of Astinus's library have disappeared and the Tower of High Sorcery has been destroyed.

Palanthas is situated at the entrance to a northern bay, making it Solamnia's most important port. Guarding the only overland passage to the city, through the mountains, the High Clerist's Tower blocks any access to the city. It was said that the Tower would never fall as long as men of faith defended it. Sadly, the Solamnic defenders never faced men of faith in the field, and the Tower fell to the Knights of Takhisis during the Summer of Chaos.

Kalaman
This city is considered to be the northeastern jewel of Solamnia, A port town, it is located between Nordmaar and the Estwilde, and on the mouth of the Vingaard river. In pre-Cataclysm times, Kalaman was Istar's bitter rival in the sea trade and was, at one point, completely blockaded by the Istarian navy. In more recent times, Kalaman was partially destroyed by the Red Dragonarmy during the War of the Lance, though it was liberated by the Golden General during the final days of the war.

Caergoth
This port town is one of the primary shipbuilding locations in Solamnia, in addition to Palanthas and Kalaman. Located on the southern shores of Solamnia, along the Straits of Schallsea, Caergoth is a major stronghold of the Knights of Solamnia, as well as a major fishery.

Garnet
This province of Solamnia was 'rented' the dwarves of Thorbardin so that they might mine the area. Though the dwarven citizens of Garnet regard themselves as a sovereign nation, they remain loyal to Solamnia -- in part, perhaps, to prepare an invasion of the evil nation of Lemish, to the east.

Dargaard
In the days before the Cataclysm, this was the home of the Death Knight, Lord Soth, then a Knight of the Rose. Because of Soth's betrayal, the land known as Knightlund is now known as Nightlund. During the War of the Lance, the keep was one of the major strongholds of the Blue Lady and her Dragonarmy.

Solanthus
This city is yet another of the Solamnic ones that fell to the dragonarmies during the War of the Lance. Solanthus was captured by the Blue Dragonarmy, and though the forces of darkness were eventually driven from the town, much of the surrounding countryside was destroyed.

Vingaard
Vingaard Keep was the home of the Knights of Solamnia for many centuries, stretching back to the Third Dragon War when Huma walked the land. Vingaard Keep remained the stronghold of Solamnic power until after the war, but strangely little has been heard of the Keep since then. The city of Vingaard was occupied by the Dragonarmies during the War of the Lance, thousands of years later, and many ruins were uncovered by the occupying forces. These ruins have yet to be explored.

Ergoth

Originally, Ergoth was the mightiest empire in the land. Founded around 2600 P.C. by Ackal Ergot, the empire once spanned much of the continent of Ansalon. When the fiery mountain struck Krynn, the lands of Ergoth were splintered off from the rest of the continent of Ansalon, and this mass of land was broken into two pieces. Bordered on their eastern shores by the Strait of Algoni, and with the Strait of Ergoth separating them, Northern and Southern Ergoth became even less important in the history of Krynn.

Northern Ergoth
A mountain range runs the length of Northern Ergoth, splitting the forests of the east and the plains of the west. Along the southern edge of the isle is a wasteland which neither the human nor the kender claim. Emperor Mercadior rules the western plains, while the kender inhabit Hylo in the forests of the east.

Both the human and kender settlements are beset by small bands of ogres and goblins which still roam the lands freely. The southwestern corner of the isle is perhaps the most 'civilized' because of its numerous castles and towns.

Kenderhome (Hylo)
Hylo is the only major city which remains on Northern Ergoth -- the rest were destroyed by the Cataclysm (which transformed Hylo into a port town). The kender dwell in the forests east of the mountains on the island, toward the northern end. The Straits of Algoni flow to the east protecting their smaller inhabitants from that direction, as the mountains keep the Ergothian empire of the west from expanding.

The city of Hylo is about 150 miles north of Goodlund, the nearest kender settlement.

Southern Ergoth
The 'C' shaped island of Southern Ergoth is much more densely populated that its northern counterpart, especially since the elves of Silvanesti and Qualinesti invaded the territory. In addition to sharing the island with the ogres who control Daltigoth, the old capital of the now diminutive Ergothian Empire, the Knights of Solamnia have an outpost on the island and the Kagonesti elves have lived here since the Cataclysm.

The northeastern part of the island is a barren wasteland, whose inhabitants are mostly goblins. Mountains split the Morgash Bay (or Bay of Darkness) from the outer shores of the island. The western shores are protected from the goblin nations by the Solamnic outpost, while the south central region is mostly forest, housing the Qualinesti, Silvanesti and Kagonesti.

Within the mountains lies the infamous and long-forgotten Foghaven Vale, location of the tomb of Huma Dragonbane, hero of the Third Dragon War.

In 12 SC, Gellidus the White captured Southern Ergoth. Elves fled to the isle of Cristyne, and the humans there fled to Sancrist. The island has since become a glacier, with the Straits of Ergoth and Algoni becoming dangerous watery graves.

Qualinesti

Home of the refugees of Silvanesti following the Kinslayer War, this nation of elves was founded by Kith-Kanan. The capital of Qualinesti is Qualinost, where the Tower of the Sun is built. This is where the Speaker of the Suns resides.

The woodland surrounding the elven nation is known as the forest of Wayreth, where the Tower of High Sorcery is located. This tower has the ability to reappear within a wide area, and sometimes appears inside the borders of Qualinesti.

The city of Qualinost is surrounded by four watch towers, connected by four golden arches, which define the city's limits. In the center of the city is the Hall of the Sky, the center of the city. Qualinesti is located just to the east of the Kharolis mountains and to the southwest of the lands of Abanasinia.

The Straits of Algoni border on the elven forest's western shore, which lies just southeast of Southern Ergoth.

Unfortunately, despite all of Qualinesti's defenses, the great green dragon Beryllinthranox was able to capture the forest when she demonstrated her ability to drain the elves' life force. She forces the elves to search for the Tower of Wayreth, in an attempt to increase her power.

Abanasinia

The plains of Abanasinia found themselves near the shores of the New Sea, created after the Fiery Mountain struck Krynn. Perhaps the most relaxed region of Ansalon, the plains are home to numerous tribes of plains barbarians, as well as the cities of Solace, Haven, Gateway and at least one hill dwarf community.

Though many of the villages and towns were destroyed in the War of the Lance, and again following the second Cataclysm, the inhabitants continue to rebuild their homes. The tree town of Solace is perhaps the most significant village in Abanasinia, for here the legendary Majere family lives among the mighty vallenwood trees. Here also is the Inn of the Last Home, the most famous inn of any sort on Ansalon.

North of Solace are the shores of Crystalmir Lake, and southwest of the lake are the boughs of Darken Wood, where the living dare not enter. Its borders are protected by a legion of undead soldier, and the wood is governed by the mysterious Forestmaster.

To the east lie the grassy plains, home of the barbarian tribes. If one ventures eastward further, the plains gradually become a huge swamp, which houses the ruins of Xak Tsaroth.

Abanasinia is perhaps the most sheltered of the many regions of Ansalon: with Thorbardin, the Kharolis Mountains and the Neidar (hill dwarf) communities to its south, the swamps of Xak Tsaroth, the Eastwall Mountains and New Sea to the east, the Straits of Schallsea to the north and Qualinesti to the west, Abanasinia is well protected.

Thorbardin

Nestled in the middle of the Kharolis Mountains, the mountain range his home to five of the most important locations on Ansalon: Qualinost, Solace, Thorbardin, Skull Cap and Pax Tharkas. The Kharolis run from just north of Ice Mountain Bay north to Abanasinia.

The dwarven kingdom of Thorbardin spans 22 miles from north to south, and 14 from east to west. It contains seven major cities, three warrens which are used for farming, and the burial area for all of the dwarves. In the center of Thorbardin is the Urkhan Sea. The most amazing thing about Thorbardin is not anything that is listed above -- it is that it is entirely underground.

Lighted by an ingenious system of openings which filter light from the surface, and protected by Northgate and Southgate, the only two entrances to the mountain kingdom, Thorbardin is truly a fortress. In the middle of the Urkhan Sea is a giant stalagmite, connected to the surrounding shores by pulley-run boats, which is really the 28 story fortress of the Hylar Clan: the Life Tree.

The fortress of Skullcap lies near the dwarven delvings. It was once a proud fortress, which was destroyed during the Dwarfgate War by one of the four spells of Fistandantilus. Pax Tharkas is a citadel which lies between Qualinost and Thorbardin, built in the time of Kith-Kanan. It was captured by the dragon Highlord, Verminaard, but before the end of the war, the Heroes of the Lance were able to retake the fortress.

After the Cataclysm, Thorbardin was sealed off from the world -- the great gates were closed. Such was the skill of the ancient craftsmen that when they are sealed, both Northgate and Southgate appear to be nothing more than a continuation of the mountainside. The great gates were opened again around the time of the War of the Lance, but have since banged shut again: following the dragon Beryllinthranox's attempts to conquer Thorbardin.

Those dwarves opposed to the idea of sealing the dwarven kingdom followed Severus Stonehand to the Khalkist Mountains in the north to recapture the kingdom of Thoradin. Those Neidar dwarves living outside the mountain in their villages have fled to Abanasinia.

Taman Busuk

Taman Busuk is the melting pot for all the 'evil' races of Ansalon. This region contains three of the most important dark cities: Sanction, Neraka and Gargath. Taman Busuk borders the Estwilde and Kern in the north and Zhakar in the south.

For the most part, Taman Busuk is a mountainous region, with the exception of the wastelands located in the south. The Khalkists are broken in few places, most notable Godshome and Gargath. As a state, Taman Busuk is very weak, but the cities within it are much more important.

Sanction
Sanction was once a human town, but the humans there have been displaced by the Blue Dragonarmy. Sanction is a port town, surrounded by volcanic mountains, the most notable are the Lords of Doom: three volcanoes who spew forth lava, which has destroyed parts of the city.

Here lies the primary Temple of Takhisis, where the Good Dragon eggs were contaminated, creating the draconians. This is also the place of initiation into the Dark Queen's priesthood for Highlord Ariakas.

Neraka
Neraka is the home of the Dark Queen's Temple of Darkness. Raised 141 years after the Cataclysm, the original cornerstone of the Temple of Istar is the seed of the twisted temple. The city itself is really nothing more than a living place for Takhisis' minions. In addition, barracks were installed for the five dragonarmies gathered around Neraka.

When travelers found the city, they mistook it for the 'Lost City of Neraka.' Those who survived the dark legions have named the city 'Neraka.' The city erupted into chaos at the end of the War of the Lance, when Highlord Ariakas was killed by Tanis Half-Elven and the Ruling Crown was thrown into the Dragonarmies.

Gargath
Originally the home of the Tower of Gargath, which housed the Graystone, the city is simple a cluster of dwellings clustered around the ruined tower. The tower itself is rumored to have many different locations, perhaps as a result of the changeable nature of the Graystone's lingering magic.

Godshome
This land formation is obviously of celestial origin: it is a bowl-shaped depression in the top of a mountain, which contains a huge circle of polished black rock. Little is known about Godshome, but several significant events happened here. The Companions witnessed the transfiguration of the befuddled wizard, Fizban, into his true form: the mighty god, Paladine. This was also the place of the death of Flint Fireforge, Hero of the Lance. Flint was escorted to the afterlife by Paladine himself.

Sancrist

The isle of Sancrist is distinctly divided in two halves: the mountainous northeastern part of the island, which houses Mount Nevermind, home of the gnomes, and the southwestern part of the island: plains and forests where the humans live. Castle Uth Wistan, home of Knight of the Rose (and Grand Master), Lord Gunthar, is the central human base, as well as a Solamnic Outpost.

Another feature of the land of Sancrist is that within the Solamnic territory resides the Whitestone Glade. The location of Vinas Solamnus's epiphany which inspired him to create the Knighthood almost two millennia before the Cataclysm, the Whitestone was said to have been blessed by the Kingpriest. This was the location where the many nations of good met during the War of the Lance to discuss the fate of the dragon orb, and the place where the legendary Dragonlance was returned to Krynn.

Bordered on its western shores by the Sirrion Sea, all trade flows eastward from the island to the mainland. To Sancrist's south is the smaller isle of Cristyne, now home to many refugees of Southern Ergoth who fled following its capture by Gellidus the White in 12 SC. Closer to home perhaps, is the capture of Mount Nevermind by the red dragon, Pyrothraxus, eight years after the second Cataclysm.

It is said that many years ago, when the Knights first arrived on Sancrist, the gnomes were afraid that they were going to conquered by the new inhabitants. So they devised a foolproof scheme to make what is now known as Mount Nevermind disappear. One morning, every Solamnic on the island awoke to the smell of rotten eggs and thousands of gnomes running out of the mountain, coughing.

When one of the elder Knights asked what the name of the mountain was, he received a traditional gnome answer: "webelievethatthismountainisformedfrommagmaandlava..." The Knight's response was "nevermind." Impressed with this remarkably brilliant and short name for their home, it was immediately adopted.

Silvanesti

Silvanesti is the original elvenhome, the forest where the great elflord, Silvanos, founded a dynasty of kings and a powerful nation of elves. After driving out the dragons in the First Dragon War, the Silvanesti settled down in and around the great capital city of Silvanost.

Silvanost is situated in the center of the forest, on an island. The Than-Thalas River (the Lord's River) runs through the land, splitting just north of the city and converging just south of it to form an island. Passengers are ferried from the mainland to the island by giant turtles, which pull large barges.

During the War of the Lance, the Speaker of the Stars, Lorac Caladon, attempted to use a Dragon Orb to protect his land from an invasion by the Dragonarmies. The orb was too powerful for Lorac, and captured his soul within it. So strong was Lorac's connection with the land that his nightmare -- trees weeping blood -- became reality, perverting the tall aspens of Silvanesti. Until the spell was dispelled by Porthios Kanan, descendant of the royal line of Qualinesti, dispelled the curse, the forest was known as the Bleeding Wood.

Silvanesti is located to the east of the Plains of Dust, and to the southwest of Goodlund & Balifor (Kendermore). In the fifth age, Silvanesti has been mysteriously surrounded by a magical field, which keeps the Great Dragons from attempting to claim the land.

Goodlund & Balifor

Balifor has two cities of note: Port Balifor and Flotsam. The latter name is appropriate not just for the city, but for the entire region as well: Port Balifor (and Flotsam, for that matter) is composed mainly of rowdy taverns and unsavory sorts. The most remarkable thing about these cities, aside from the filth is the ready availability of items on the black market and the crime which takes place beneath the wharves of Port Balifor.

Port Balifor is north of Silvanesti, situated on the eastern shores of the Bay of Balifor, and separated by a straight which leads to the Bay. The city is bordered on its eastern edges by sandy wasteland, the same sort that its western neighbor, Khur, shares. Flotsam is located to the north, and sits on the Blood Bay, which is just off the Blood Sea of Istar.

The Goodlund peninsula, on the other hand, is inhabited mostly by kender; this region may also be know by the name of Kendermore. Goodlund lies to the east of Balifor, though the deserts of the western nation are encroaching on the western plains of Goodlund. Further east, the forests of Goodlund cover the middle portion of the peninsula. The eastern most edge of the peninsula is a barren savannah, known as the "Laughing Land."

Following the Second Cataclysm, the peninsula of Goodlund was attacked by the great dragon Malystyrx. The kender, led by Riverwind, Hero of the Lance, mounted an attack against the dragon and were defeated. The kender have since fled the region, which has become known as the Desolation.

the Plains of Dust

The Plains of Dust lie to the south and east of the Kharolis Mountains and the dwarven kingdom of Thorbardin. In pre-Cataclysm times, the largest city in the region, Tarsis, was once a bustling port. It was famed for its library, schools, marketplace and temple. However, with the advent of the Cataclysm, the famous winged ships of Tarsis found themselves landlocked, many miles from Ice Mountain Bay. The plains surrounding Tarsis, which were once grassy tundra, have died.

Winds blow across the now desolate plains, threatening any sort of life which is foolish enough to venture upon them. Little was known about the Plains until after the War of the Lance, when the Companions traveled to Tarsis. At the same time, the Red Dragonarmy attacked and destroyed the city.

The Lord of Tarsis wishes to build a road from Tarsis to the sea, in order to revitalize trade in the region. Tarsis is also connected to the Southgate of Thorbardin, which has resulted in a profitable trade.

As it did after the Cataclysm, both Tarsis and the Plains of Dust have faded in importance, as they do not impact events up Ansalon in any significant way.

the Plains of Dust

The Plains of Dust lie to the south and east of the Kharolis Mountains and the dwarven kingdom of Thorbardin. In pre-Cataclysm times, the largest city in the region, Tarsis, was once a bustling port. It was famed for its library, schools, marketplace and temple. However, with the advent of the Cataclysm, the famous winged ships of Tarsis found themselves landlocked, many miles from Ice Mountain Bay. The plains surrounding Tarsis, which were once grassy tundra, have died.

Winds blow across the now desolate plains, threatening any sort of life which is foolish enough to venture upon them. Little was known about the Plains until after the War of the Lance, when the Companions traveled to Tarsis. At the same time, the Red Dragonarmy attacked and destroyed the city.

The Lord of Tarsis wishes to build a road from Tarsis to the sea, in order to revitalize trade in the region. Tarsis is also connected to the Southgate of Thorbardin, which has resulted in a profitable trade.

As it did after the Cataclysm, both Tarsis and the Plains of Dust have faded in importance, as they do not impact events up Ansalon in any significant way.

Icereach

This land, south of the Plains of Dust, is notable only for one thing: Icewall Glacier. The chill winds and harsh climate prevent much of any sort of civilization. The only creatures truly comfortable with the conditions here are the white dragons -- in fact this is where the remnants of the White Dragonarmy regrouped after the War of the Lance.

Icewall Glacier begins just south of the town of Zeriak, last outpost of the Plains of Dust. Many have wondered if Icereach is really a continent in and of itself -- land lies beneath the snow and ice just south of Zeriak, but when the thickness of the ice increases to depths of up more than a mile further south, things become more complicated. Some ice barbarians have ventured into the caves and crevasses of the southern reaches of Icereach, but report that the caves seem to continue downward forever. Some have not returned at all.

the Minotaur Isles

Also known as the Blood Sea Isles, these four islands are the home of sea barbarians and minotaur. Legend states that when the firey mountain struck Krynn, these islands survived because of their innocence of the guilt of Istar. More likely, however, is the fact that these islands were originally part of the coastal islands bordering on the Courrain Ocean, and survived due to their altitude.

Saifhum
This isle is the home of many sea barbarians, and not much else. The rocky highlands do not sport much in the form of anything living. The only real evidence of civilization is the capital, Sea Reach, which lies on the southwest shore of the island. Saifhum is the western most island of the four.

Karthay
This largest island is also furthest north, and is shaped somewhat like a crescent moon. The dry plains in the eastern and western portions of the island are interrupted only by high peaks, known as the Worldscap Mountains. The only evidence of civilization is Winston's Tower -- a ruined lighthouse.

Mithas
Mithas lies directly to the south of Karthay, and is one of the minotaur isles. Along the southern shore of the island are four volcanic peaks, a sharp contrast to the rest of the island's grassy plains. The capital of Lacynos (Nethosak) lies on the western shores, and is sheltered from the ravages of the Blood Sea by the Horned Bay.

Kothas
Though it does not have the volcanic problem of its northern neighbor, Kothas doesn't have the vegetation to make up for it. Minotaur rule this island, along with human pirates who live in the capital of Kalpethis. Kothas lies to the south of Mithas, and Kalpethis lies on the southwestern shores of the island.

the Blood Sea of Istar

Little is known about the Blood Sea of Istar. Perhaps the best place to begin is before the Cataclysm. Istar was a bustling seaport, the center of religious worship in the world. At the mouth of a river, Istar was the center of trade which serviced the plains surrounding it for hundreds of miles to the south and west.

When the gods threw the firey mountain down upon Krynn, it descended directly upon the Temple of the Kingpriest in the center of the city. As a result of the impact, the city and the surrounding lands fell several hundred feet, forming the bottom of the ocean as water from the Sirrion sea covered the grassy plains.

All the water within the Blood Sea has a strange and distinct color -- red. Hence the name the Blood Sea. Rumor has it that the color is the result of the blood of many victims who lost their lives during Krynn's most terrible hour.

Sailing along the shores of the sea is as safe as sailing anywhere else on Krynn, but mariners avoid the maelstrom in the center of the sea, where the lost city of Istar is located. The huge whirlpool at the center of the great storm draws all foolish enough to get caught into its current to their doom. In reality, the red color comes from the constant motion of the water disrupting the still-fertile soil of the plains below the waves.

The city of Istar still exists beneath the waves. Sea elves save mariners who are unfortunate enough to sail into the maelstrom. Pockets of air and plenty of stored food allow those who survive the waters a second chance at life below the waves.

the Dragon Isles

The Dragons Isles lie eighty miles to the north of the Cape of Nordmaar. Little is known about these islands -- they are all but impossible to reach as they are magically protected.

From east to west, the names of the islands are: Alarm, Mind, Misty Isle, Jaentarth, Heart, Berann, Winged Majesty and Tayol. All the islands average, at most, ten miles in diameter but reflect almost ever type of terrain imaginable.

The islands are located in the center of the topics -- the center of Krynn. The Irda inhabit at least one of the islands; the good dragons inhabit the City of Gold, capital of Misty Isle, though little is known of them. However, after the destruction of the Irda prior to the second Cataclysm, and following the Summer and War of Chaos, little is known about the fate of the islands.


Return to the main page