Inex [i ˈnɛks] is the capital of Xurno and its largest city, with over 600,000 residents. It's located in the northern Xengi delta, not far from the site of Yenine, and just downriver from Lirau and Yeš. It also serves as the capital of the delta province, Šiyku.
The foundation of the city is attributed to Čedemu, who definitively conquered Šiyku for the Ezičimi, but this is likely an invention to increase its prestige; the first contemporary references to the city date to around 400. The capital of Axuna was then Bidau; the explosive growth of Inex began when a bridge was constructed connecting Inex island to the mainland (leading to Lirau). This made Inex accessible by land or by sea, wherease Bidau could be reached only by water. By the 600s the city had become the capital of Axuna, and it remained that of Axunai.
The original patron god of Inex was a local deity known as Welsakana; this had no appeal elsewhere, and when the city became the capital it threw out Welsakana in favor of Meša-- traditionally the god of Yenine, downstream. The Inegri went so far as to move Yenine's largest and holiest statue of Meša to Inex.
The Lučezagiei kurtudai, the Engineers Adjutance, created an impressive water distribution system in the imperial capital, wich carried clean water to every neighborhood and removed waste; the achievement was all the more remarkable for the fact that the engineers had to work with a total drop in water level of only 10 meters.
The city was brutally sacked by the Gelyet in 2483, destroying an immense cultural wealth, including the major libraries of the empire. The new state of Xurno emerged on the middle Xengi in the 2530s, based on Curau. Though Inex was liberated by the nyei Miudis, Curau remained the capital throughout the imperial period.
The battle for Inex was a key moment in the Revaudo revolution. In 3012, the emperor Siluri II received a rare bit of good news: the city of Yeš had rebelled against Revaudo; but rebel forces were closing in on the city. He ordered forces from Inex to aid the counter-rebellion. But it was all a ruse: once the garrison in Inex was weakened, an insurrection broke out, supported by a rebel expeditionary force. The fake rebellion in Yeš ended, and now rebels from there and from Inex converged on the imperial army and destroyed it. As Curau was still in imperial hands, Inex became the capital of Revaudo Xurno, and the seat of the Academy.
The contemporary city
Inex sprawls on an island in the delta, along the main channel of the Xengi; the road to Lirau crosses a smaller channel to the north. The city faces the river to the east, and the richest districts lie near the water.
The city is notoriously difficult to navigate, a warren of twisting streets and canals whose names change frequently; to make things worse, many streets are restricted to certain classes: artists, or military, or the shameful castes which remove wastes and the dead.
The two main aqueduct systems, the ancient Old Waters and the imperial New Waters, are shown in blue.
A Diary of the Prose Wars takes place largely in Inex; locations in brown on the map refer to people or places mentioned in the novel.
The local dialect of Xurnese is Inegri, not too far from standard Corauši.
Neighborhoods and points of interest
- Mabri’s work— the Early Empire palace where Mabri worked restoring the paintings
- The Army is based here
- Raujic’s Palace— seat of the Salon of Gymnastics which oversees the army
- Main base and shipyards of the Navy
- Great Dzusnar— the dzusnar (Endajué meeting hall) overseing all other dzusnari in the city
- Liralaur Palace— seat of the Salon of Painting, known for its baroque beauty
- One of the newest settled areas, mostly factories
District of Heaven
- Center of the city in imperial times
- Revaudo Palace— the former Imperial Residence
- Registry, Treasury— government ministries
- Reusune— stylish home of this Academician of Music
- Mausinar Atelier— teaches Painting and Sculpture; many of the students in the novel attended it
- Center of the city in Revaudo times
- Palace of the Salons (Xamunari o dax)— housing the Academy and the Council
- The main port of Inex, which naturally includes the Customs ministry
- Mërcalo— a Verdurian merchant; Liteon, his nephew
- Slum adjoining the docks and often housing maritime workers
- Enirc, the poor scholar who is the central character in the novel
- Once an actual marsh, now reclaimed but still unhealthy and poor
- Palace of Architecture, the suitably grandiose seat of the Salon; the offices of Wéneš and Gašnue are here
- Home of Wéneš and Xayu
- The ancient center of Inex
- Palace of Acceptance (Gemaudo o dax)— where symposiums were held during the Prose Wars
- Palace of Justice— seat of that ministry
- Bicikez or White Palace of the philosopher Jugiroz, the original Academy, now a museum
- Xoriniu— publisher of the Oldtown Gazette and organizer of symposiums
- Named for a fire that destroyed part of Oldtown in pre-imperial times
- Van Studio (Evangri Pucišnar)— once famous for its pioneering studies in anatomy
- Dates to imperial times; the adjective is a comparison to Oldtown. A poor neighborhood
- Known for its extensive parks and the mansions of Academicians