9 August 1925
with secondary residence in Panemi, Veridia
• Siakua Bunkers
• Gengeraa Culture
|Spouse(s)||Nemi Marosta (1944–1948)|
Yaraba Saron (1962–2003)
|Parent(s)||Ažvjrt Volóška (father)|
Piča Litsìràj (mother)
Marín Balásk (born Morňij je Ažvjrt Volóška, 9 August 1925) is a Vjrti-Barradiwan archaeologist, author, and university professor famous for unearthing various prominent ancient Halarian settlements that were previously believed by scholars to be fictional for the purposes of ancient storytelling, which in turn led to a movement in the 1960s and 1970s to begin more thorough archaeological investigations to find more abandoned Halarian settlements mentioned in contemporary literature. His work revitalized the field of archaeology within Barradiwa.
He is also known for discovering the controversial Tell Haltaageraa just inside the recognized Lhavrinian border near the source of the Thewer River, with carvings on what appear to be walls showing an age of upwards of 23,500±1,000 years alongside the usual evidences of habitation (such as various tools) being found within 50km of the site's epicenter. These are suspected, but not confirmed, to be the source of the mysterious "Thewer trophies"—artifacts and trinkets found within Theweric and Ramekian ruins, sometimes as far north as Yaageqyë, that don't seem to have a verifiable age but are widely agreed upon as being significantly older than contemporary Theweric tools.
According to some sources, this indicates that there may have been a Kav civilization within the proximity of Thewer approximately 20,000 years before humans established an organized society on Boroso (roughly 5,000 years before humans even set foot on the continent) and even several thousands of years before the Halarian civilization was established. Other sources dispute this claim, pointing out that there is no evidence of where the civilization went—or otherwise how or why it disappeared. Evidence so far proves inconclusive either way, however those in favor of the Kav civilization theory have since come to be in a decisive majority outside of Dhwer.
Marín holds citizenship in Barradiwa, Veridia, and Lhavres, with several other countries inviting him as an honored guest for various events.
Childhood in Veridia
Marín was born in Maraj, Veridia, in 1925 to a wealthy real estate magnate and a socialite from Rosland. During his childhood, he would often dig in his schoolyard, at parks, and on his mansion's grounds for rocks and small relics dating back to medieval or even Letsatian times, some as old as 40 BCE. During a televised interview in 1979 during his time living back in Maraj, Marín relayed a childhood story about how he'd found a Giallisian sword hilt dating to 1263 hiding in some sand on the lakebed of Lake Kijú, presumably lost amidst a skirmish along the lake's coast between the armies of the medieval petty kingdoms of Giallisia and Kije, which were known for feuding over ownership of Maraj before Veridia united in the 1300s. Marín proceeded to show the time-worn hilt to the audience.
A few weeks after the interview, Marín was visited by a factory worker from the Giallisian Mountains who held much enthusiasm for the medieval era. He offered to refurbish the hilt and give it a new blade in the style of his ancestors at no charge. Marín accepted, and upon receiving the finished sword later that year, he gave the factory worker enough money to retire.
Years in Barradiwa
Marín lived in Veridia until 1941, when his father chose to flee the regime of Ǧól Gíradz due to concern for the safety of his wife and son amidst Gíradz's growing hostility towards Rosians. Marín and his family then moved to Palace City, Barradiwa, where Gerut Olboros (a relative of Marín's mother) set them up in a room within the Olboros Palace. Here, Marín's enthusiasm for history reached a peak as he would spend many of his days exploring the older buildings of the city that were open to the public. He made friends with various archaeology professors during this time.
When the Great Ekuosian War took off in the mid-1940s, Marín was approached by the draft office for military service, but was ultimately exempted due to the refugee clause in Barradiwan draft law that refugees and persons caring for a refugee are not required to accept a draft call—his mother being Rosian, the draft office was convinced by Marín's father to invoke that clause.
After the war blew over, Marín moved to Nunkes for his college education, attending Buorus University and pursuing a career in archaeology.
After obtaining his doctorate in 1955, Marín began partaking in archaeological digs all around the world, with his first being in Zhinayak. In 1957, Marín was excavating ruins on the Dhweran island of Siakua, east of the mainland, hoping to find maps or other clues to point to the island's potential significance as a trading hub centuries ago. What he'd found astonished investors: broken slave shackles under a layer of mud just outside the entrance to the largest ruin on the island, as well as a vast network of escape routes and underground tunnels within the ruined city's walls. After a dozen more ruined towns with similar features were found dotting the coast of Dhwer wrapping around to the region of Yaa, it was concluded that these settlements were comprised of escaped slaves who would lure unsuspecting slavers to their deaths and then sell their jewellery to nonslaving traders to fund and enable an extensive network through which slaves would be smuggled to freedom in Kavrinia. Evidence suggests this network flourished between the 1100s and 1700s.
Just 100km southeast, on the southernmost tip of Siakua, Marín made another shocking discovery: a large military bunker hidden within a cave littered with skeletons in uniform. Everything within the bunker points to it having been built by Terminia sometime in the 1870s in an attempt to establish a larger foothold in Upper Boroso, or perhaps to stage a surprise attack on Shohuanese forces if they were to invade the island. There are also skeletons of poorly dressed and emaciated people both outside the bunker and slightly within it, with skeletons of uniformed Terminian soldiers overlapping; it is widely thought that the would-be invaders were bands of escaped slaves, who were common on Siakua in the late 1800s. Evidence suggests the bunker was not maintained by the maritime empire for very long, either because of the ongoing wars it faced against Shohuan and Letzia at the time, or because of the aforementioned roving escaped slaves, or perhaps both.
Main article: Gengeraa Culture
Return to Veridia
Marín returned to live in Veridia in 1976, where he had become a celebrity due to his work. Here he began work on his first novel about archaeology, focusing on his work in Halaria, with future books covering his work in other areas.
Marín is currently employed as a professor of archaeology at his alma mater, Buorus University, in Nunkes.