The oldest known human civilization in Solista or Palador is found in the ancient desert empire of Zamora and the five sacred cities that form the empire. These are Zamora, Khopi, Nesh, Ilith and Sumea. They are clustered in the fertile valley of the sacred river Kho.
The rulers of Zamora are Divine Priest Kings and mighty Sorcerers who become Gods at death.
The religion is a pantheon of strange deities who rule this world and an intricate afterlife. The afterlife is very important to a Zamoran, preparation for it begins literally at birth. (The infants umbilical cord is preserved by its parents to be buried with it.) Mummification is routinely practiced and elaborate tombs are built to house the dead and their grave goods.
There are many deities, hundreds, maybe thousands, and many of these are animals or half human half animal in nature. Cats, snakes, various insects, birds (Hawks and cranes), buffalo, lions and jackals play important rolls in the religion. The river Kho has powerful symbolic and religious significance, as does the sun, moon, stars, wind and desert. The Zamoran Pantheon is divided into two levels. The greater deities, called the ‘Qrath’ or Great Ones and the ‘Clath’ or ‘Children.’
The ‘Great Ones’ who rule over all the Clath, are believed to be the ‘Children of Ollitith’ (Zamoran name for Titan.) The Qrath elevate the Clath, making them gods and goddesses, assigning their powers and roles in the pantheon. The Qrath are also the ones who ‘brought’ humans to Ollitith (as well as Elves and Dwarves in earlier times.) They brought humans to Ollitith to replace the elder races (the Elves and Dwarves) that had failed to follow the Great Ones commands.
As a result of this belief, Zamorans are somewhat xenophobic in regards to the non-human races!
In addition to the five cities of the Living in Zamora, there are two others. One is Thanos, City of the Dead, where all Zamorans aspire to be buried. None except its Priestly Keepers live there. The other is Zarroth, City of the Gods. This ‘Seventh City’ does not have an earthly manifestation, at least not a permanent one. It sometimes appears, briefly, but it mostly exists in the Afterlife. It is here that good Zamorans will spend eternity. Though it doesn’t materially exist it plays a significant role in day to day affairs.
Zamora has existed, virtually unchanged (to outsiders) for at least 5,000 years. At one time it was the center of a vast empire that covered most of Palador. Today, it is a shadow of its former power.
The Zamoran faith has no significant presence in Solista.