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Byzantium

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Byzantium

Founded

Points of interest

Affiliation

New Human Empire[2]

"it's beautiful. That's the Capital of the Night."
Dietrich von Lohengrin, viewing the Imperial capital Byzantium for the first time[src]

Byzantium, also referred to as the Capital of the Night, is the capital city of the New Human Empire—the last Methuselah nation on Earth. Historically the city was also known as Constantinople and Istanbul in ancient times. Encircled by a dome-like perimeter of sapphire walls, Byzantium is an enormous transcontinental city in Eurasia, straddling the Bosporus Channel between the Mediterranean Sea and the Black Sea. The city layout beyond the walled perimeter consists of vast city streets, erect domes, tall towers protruded between trees, numerous gates and elegant arches. Its appearance was widely regarded as beautiful, and its architecture reminiscent of an ancient city.

The ancient city, also known as Byzantium, was re-inaugurated as the new capital of the Roman Empire in 330 AD under the reign of the Roman emperor Constantine the Great. It served as the seat of government for the eastern remnant of the Empire under the name Constantinople until its fall to the Ottomans in 1453 AD. Prior to Armageddon in 2124 AD, the city was called Istanbul. By the end of the Dark Ages in 2401 AD, the Methuselah restored the city to its original name "Byzantium" and ultimately designated it as the capital of the newly-established New Human Empire.

The center of modern Byzantium is the Celestial Imperial Palace; also known as the Jade Palace, it is the seat of power for Empress Augusta Vradica—the supreme sovereign of the New Human Empire. The palace is highly fortified by the elite Yenceri, and only members of the Imperial nobility are allowed access with the Empress' permission. Another notable feature of Byzantium is the Lapis Lazuli Dome; a majestic blue dome covering the entire surface of the Imperial capital, it functions as a UV-ray polarization wall which nullifies the lethal effects that sunlight has on the Methuselah. As such, Byzantium is the only location on Earth where the Methuselah are safe to travel in daylight. The population of Byzantium consists of both Methuselah and human citizens of the Empire. Although both races are said to co-exist under the Empress' rule, the human population is largely subservient to the Methuselah, who represent the upper class of the capital and the Empire as a whole.

EtymologyEdit

"Byzantium" is an ancient Greek city, later renamed "Constantinople" and then "Istanbul." In Greek legend it is said to be named after Byzas, the leader of the Megarean colonists and founder of the city.

CityscapeEdit

Byzantium is divided across the Bosporus Channel into the Rumeli and Anadolu districts of the European western coast and the Asia-Indian eastern coast, respectively. The Methuselah inhabit the European side, which is the wealthier and more prestigious region of the Imperial capital. The West Bank is further divided into the northern Rumeli Beyoglu and southern Rumeli Istanbul divisions by the Halic Golden Horn Bay.[4]

The city area of the West Bank-North District is situated atop a steep-sloped peak rising from the shores of the Halic. It is a high-class residential area where the Methuselah nobility's mansions are located, including the homes of the Duchess of Moldova, the Duke of Tigris and the Marquise of Kiev. The North District is also where most of the city infrastructure was concentrated, consisting mainly of public water, underground power facilities, and the majority of military installations, such as training grounds and naval ports.[4]

The West Bank-South District is a wide area, enclosed by seven hills and large forests, and the location of the entire Celestial Imperial Palace. As such, the entire southern half of the West Bank is the residence of a single inhabitant—Empress Augusta Vradica, the absolute sovereign of the New Human Empire. The Imperial palace is forty times larger than the San Pietro Cathedral, which is the largest palace in human society. The area features thirteen large domes and almost a hundred spires. Although the south division is technically the Empress's residence castle, it is also inhabited by a hundred Palace Guards, a few hundred Methuselah aristocrats, almost ten thousand Terran citizens, and numerous automata. Their sole purpose in the south division is to serve one mistress, the Empress.[4]

In addition, the Celestial Imperial Palace is divided between the outer and inner courts. The Hall of the Great Dome is located in the Outer Court. The Empress' main residence is located in the Inner Court. The palace is regarded as the center of both the capital and the Empire as a whole, solely due to the fact that all central authority in the Empire is vested in the Empress.[4]

General goods are sold at the local shops throughout the Imperial capital. Certain things from the "Outer," such as alcohol and tobacco are considered contraband due to their harmful effects on human health. Due to the prohibition on these items, Byzantium is full of public baths and teahouses instead of bars.[4]

The Great Bosporus Bridge stretches across the Bosporus Channel and connects the West Bank-North District to the East Bank "Terran" District. The human section of Byzantium is a hallmark of a downtown area in a city, with a wide network of long streets, narrow alleyways, and small buildings densely packed together. The district is also the location of a blood extraction building; a place where local humans donate blood for use by their Methuselah overlords in exchange for monetary compensation.[4]

Notes and referencesEdit

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