Skyline of central Ikolinis at dusk, as seen from west.
|Earliest settlement||c. 200 CE|
|• Steward Mayor||Serrü Thfal|
|• Total||512.22 km2 (197.77 sq mi)|
|Elevation||78 m (256 ft)|
|• Density||2,500/km2 (6,400/sq mi)|
Ikolinis (Thaaft: /ˈɪkɔlɪnɪs̠/) is the capital and largest city of the Fals Empire. It is the country's principal political and commercial center, and was so even before the Fáknir Republic broke away. Ikolinis is also the capital of the Ikolinian Kingdom (province), one of the Imperial provinces. According to the 2022 census, Ikolinis had 1.2 million inhabitants, with a metropolitan area of 2.2 million people. The city covers an area of 512 square kilometers (198 sq mi). The city was originally located on a small peninsula in a bay situated at the north bank of the Erivortla river, but intensive land reclamation efforts combined with urban expansion have made it so Ikolinis has expanded into previously submerged land, and encompass both sides of the river in the last four hundred years. The city lies at a distance of 35 km from the shore of the Gulan Sea, and ships have more or less direct access via the Erivortla.
The Thaaft name Ikolinis comes from Old Ikolian Ekolewhiynesu, formed of Ekol "Ikol hills", -ewhiy a locative suffix (now defunct), and nesu "residence, homestead". In modern Ikolian, the name is Ekolewnes. The Ikolinian name Ikalewnes is of identical etymology as its Ikolian counterpart.
Ikolinis is located in the Fals Empire, where it is situated in the lower southern half of the Zaak Peninsula. Ikolinis is situated in a basin within the Ikol hills on a sedimentary plateau created by the Erivortla river. It is surrounded by hills on all sides except east, where it is bound by Lake Ikol.
Land reclamation efforts have been ongoing ever since the village was founded, and have gotten more encompassing as the city grew in wealth and population. While originally the area of and around Ikolinis consisted of swamps and riparian biomes, the channeling of the Erivortla river, subsequent drainage of surrounding areas, and walling of western shores of lake Ikol has created a large amounts of land suitable for construction and agriculture.
|Climate chart (explanation)|
The face of modern Ikolinis is the result of centuries of growth, with the village of Ikolinis growing to gradually absorb and conglomerate with a number of closely spaced villages on the same swampy lowland it lies on, each with their own old town centers and neighborhoods, features that still stand out when viewed from above. Ikolinis is home to many famous examples of the eastern Fals architecture typical to the region. The Ikolinian cityscape has large remained unchanged since the early 1900s, with most visible growth happening at the peripheries. Inhabitants of the inner city, greatly reliant on tourism and catering, have opposed most proposed changes to the core's infrastructure and architecture throughout the 20th century, leading to a great degree of preservation of the original architecture.
This list is not comprehensive, and includes only the most popular places of interest. Examples include:
The part of the city on the northern bank of the Erivortla river, containing many of its most popular sites.
- Old Weighing House: Five-hundred year old building where incoming goods were weighed and tolled before heading to the old market or being shipped through.
- Old Town Hall: The seat of the city council of Ikolinis since 1492.
- Pink House: This luxurious house on Ship Street with a view of the old harbour and the Erivortla is partially painted pink, and serves as the Emperor's work residence during most of the year. It is open to the public on specific days for tours.
- Royal Palace: Located on the eastern shore of lake Ikol, in the Quiet Streets neighborhood, closed to the public.
- Veklas Castle: Residence of the Veklas family, a former noble house with a long mercantile history whose extant members are still influential players in parts of the Imperial economy.
- Gilin Dam: Site where the Erekla river that streams into Ikolinis was first dammed to facilitate the construction of a moat and several canals.
- Erklenis: Pictoresque neighborhood, originally a separate village that became incorporated into Ikolinis around 1700. Originally sat at the mouth of the Erekla river.
- Royal Ikolinian Council: Seat of government of the Ikolinian Kingdom (province), built in the place of the old center of Erklenis after a large fire burnt most of it down.
- Kitujrs Gate: Nowadays a bustling street, originally the location of the northernmost gate of Ikolinis until around 1450, while Ikolinis was still situated on a peninsula.
- Noble Girdle: Series of streets in the western section of central Ikolinis, formerly inhabited by Ikolinian nobles and rich merchants, now by Imperial officials and the wealthy in general, and housing several ministries, as well as the embassies of several countries.
- Imperial House of Conference: In the Noble Girdle, this impressive complex of buildings houses the Empire's parliament and seat of government, as well as a number of ministries.
- New Silent Temple: Across the moat from the parliament. Adjacent is the temple square, almost always in use as a market.
- Skin Street: Former commercial street, before the 1900s designated as one of only a few places around the city where human merchants could legally do commerce, areas that were known as kos.
- Gold And Tea House: A Letzian-styled tea and coffee house, marking the beginning of Skin Street. Since its inception in 1695 a popular establishment among the Ikolinian functionaries.
- Ikolinian Gate: A fortification at the mouth of the Erivortla river, built to deter attacks from lake Ikol.
- Victory Park: Forest-like park lined with the statues of important historical figures of the Ikolinian Kingom and the Fals Empire. Across from the Supreme Court building on King's Street.
- Juvid of Ikolinis: Built during the time when the Terminian Empire controlled territory in the Zaak peninsula. Ikolinis, being a short lived tributary of the empire, was forced to allow Pashaist missionary work to occur within its borders.
- Anadir Bathhouse: Luxurious bath house of the Ikolinian nobility, and later the wealthy in general.
- Fox Street: Popular shopping street in western Ikolinis.
- The Bomb Hole: This crater formed when a munitions factory exploded during a bombing raid in the Fals-Helsonian war, and is now a small lake. Planned to be filled in and turned into allotment gardens.
- The Botany: Large botanical gardens built under the enthusiastic supervision of Emperor Mistar in 1902, later expanded with the Ikolinis Zoo and natural history museum.
- Oran palace: Former residence of the Oran family, a dynasty that ruled Ikolinis from 1550 to 1702.
- EMC: Previously the main factory of the now defunct Erpüre Motor Company, now converted into something resembling a bazaar, full of new restaurants and small shops.
- New Nardiarang: Largest Nardiarang in Ikolinis.
- Chicken Bridge: Built in 1920, this was the first bridge across the Erivortla in Ikolinis, finally physically connecting the north and southern halves of the city. As its name suggests, the bridge is decorated with statues of chickens, as well as other birds, in honour of the historic poultry market that had to make way for it.
Fort is the neighborhood (or collection thereof) of Ikolinis south of the Erivortla. After the construction of a fortification on the southern bank in the early 16th century, a settlement gradually began to form around it.
- Tamrak Castle: Main stronghold of the defensive works around the original fortification.
- Nermazaai Palace: Former royal palace of the Ikolinian Kingdom, open to the public, and offers its rooms and gardens to be rented for events.
- Great Market Hall: Extravagantly decorated market hall from the 1910s, in the financial district.
- Royal Ikolinian Academy: Formerly the foremost educational institution in the country, this luxuriously decorated complex of buildings now functions primarily as a business school for the upper class.
- Atazmin: Excavated remains of a Boorian temple, and adjacent small colony.
The majority of the Ikolinian population consists of As, making up almost 40% of its 1.2 million population. The native Ikolinians make up an almost equal share of the population, and the closely related Ikolians that inhabit the province in general are a significant minority. Increasingly over the course of the last century, the lines between As and Ikolinian/Ikolian identity within the city have become blurred, and many identify with more than one. This number is significant, however only one ethnic background is able to be chosen on the Imperial census (the law that brings about this exclusivity has been made more inclusive and will see effect by 2025, when the next census takes place). Farressets have inhabited the city for at least 500 years as well. As a result of its over 150 year long status as the capital of the Fals Empire, Ikolinis hosts communities of many Fals ethnicities. Fáknirs make up the largest "recent" minority, that is of the last hundred years, with around forty thousand residing all throughout the city.