Dradelden was a colony established by the Amazons of Pontus around 800 BC and later became the last remnant of their country when the Persians successfully invaded. Since the Attic War the Amazons have been led by their strongest warrior until her death, at which point a tournament is held. The winner is declared the new ruler of the Amazons. This tradition held true even after the Amazons joined the Xorian Empire when King Jevaninada I married Queen Anajakaze. After the death of the married pair, Queen Ashabodai ascended to the throne. She led the Amazons in revolt, but surrendered to the force of the dragovinians. She accepted dragovinian status from Jevaninada II during the peace negotiations. Queen Ashabodai ruled for several years until she was slain at the battle of Phoenix. In the next tournament the council of the Amazons forbade dragovinian Amazons from competing. The winner and new Amazon queen, Jittehalong, still nominally holds power in Dradelden, but she is forced to take orders from Jevaninada’s subordinates.
Dradelden is famous for the horses that are bred here. After the death of Achilles his horses, Balius and Xanthus, were captured by Paris. Upon Paris’s death they were left unattended in his palace stable until an Amazon, Anathilea, who had escaped the battle with the Achaeans, snuck in and liberated them for herself. The horses would have rebelled against her had they not know she was related to Penthesilea, the one woman Achilles’ loved. All the fine horses in the Dradelden stables are descended from those first two studs.
The excellent stables of Dradelden improved their stock of horses through selective breeding until a godly zenith was reached with no room for improvement. At that point new blood had to be called in. A group of Amazons were sent to the Whitewood Forest to capture some of the unicorns that are known to dwell there. Enough were brought back to breed with all the best horses of the Dradelden stables. Now the city has some of the smartest, fastest, and strongest horses known to humankind. Another oddity of interbreeding the unicorns with horses was unaligned unicorns. The common unicorn is white and values goodness and a few magical beast experts speak of black unicorns that value evil. The professional horse breeders at the Dradelden stables have managed to breed unicorns of any alignment and color.
Dradelden has kept a strong and unique warrior tradition. Every girl child that survives to the age of six is taken from her parents to a female agoge. All these girls are taught mathematics, poetry, and gymnastics from a young age. Once they are deemed ready by their teachers the girls learn how to use swords, spears, axes, bows, and any other weapon imaginable in combination with a shield. Most of the graduates of the weapon academy choose to use the weapon of Penthesilea, a two-handed battle-axe.
As one would guess, because the women of the city are becoming soldiers and leaders the men take the backseat in society traditionally filled by women. Growing food, serving the upper class, caring for the horses, and the variety of other menial tasks required to keep a city going are all performed by men. The only semi-high class job that men are allowed to do in the city is slave trading. This is upsetting to outsiders used to a patriarchal society and confrontations between Amazons and outsiders are frequent.
There are many farms around Dradelden that the city relies upon for food. They grow the grains and root vegetables that keep Dradelden’s citizens’ bellies full. The Second Xorian War put a particular strain on Dradelden’s food supply. After the war the Amazons returned to raiding surrounding settlements of other city-states just to provide for themselves.
In the Second Xorian War the Amazons were initially led by Queen Ashabodai in the battles around Phoenix and subsequent siege. During the Battle of Phoenix, Ashabodai was killed by Logan the warlock. After the battle two tournaments were held to decide who the next queen should be, one in Dradelden and one in the war camp outside Phoenix. A human won the Dradelden tournament and a dragovinian won the Phoenix tournament. The two champions faced off to determine who would rule the Amazons and the Dradelden champion won. Jittehalong was crowned Queen of the Amazons. Unfortunately she was defeated by the Alliance soon afterward.
The end of the Second Xorian War and the return of dragovinians to mortal status largely diffused the tension between dragovinian and human Amazons. Their society united as one and they held a unified tournament for the successor queen. The new Queen Kazilock leads the Amazons in aggressive raids of the other Western Cimmerian cities. Without the Xorian Kingdom to stop them, the Amazons are on the rise to become the reigning force in the West.