|Titles||The Gilded City; City of Empire|
|Ruler||Grand Prince Stavian III|
Source: Taldor, Echoes of Glory
Oppara, the City of Empire, (pronounced oh-PAH-rah) is the capital of Taldor, and by far the largest city in the realm. It is an ancient and thriving city which earned the title the Gilded City because of the many roofs, spires, and domes that once glittered with gold plating in the high afternoon sun. Even though the metal was long ago stripped away, Oppara remains the example of what the empire once was and what it could be again, though today it is plagued with mismanagement, selfish aristocrats, poverty, and crime.
Oppara was founded before Aroden's ascension as a god and considers itself the source of civilization for all of Avistan. It was already in existence when Taldaris, a native of Oppara and the first Grand Prince of Taldor, conquered the local city-states along the eastern shores of the Inner Sea to found that nation.
The Gilded City with its tremendously long history is no stranger to tragedy. One of the earliest came in -632 AR, when the infamous Tarrasque broke through the World's Edge Mountains and destroyed the city.
Following the ascension of the god Aroden in 1 AR and the creation of the city of Absalom, the new god of humanity's faith quickly spread in Taldor, and Oppara quickly became the center of his worship.
The dominant building materials of Oppara are stone, marble, granite, and bricks. Six thousand years of history and the extravagance of the empire's capital are obvious in the city's design. The streets are paved in grandiose mosaic tile or well-laid cobblestones. Stone gutters quickly siphon off the frequent summer rains into the city's expansive sewer system. Public fountains dot many of the larger crossroads and squares. The city is lit by tens of thousands of lanterns at night.
Oppara is located atop the Black Cliffs of the Mighty Porthmos, thirty miles upriver from the enormous mouth of the river that flows into the Inner Sea. The massive Grand Bridge of the Empire connects Oppara with the river's distant southern shore. The deep Porthmos is full of shipping traffic.
Oppara is divided into fifteen distinct districts, each with its own flavor and characteristics. A sixteenth district, called Grandbridge Vagabond Camp, is located on the south shore of Porthmos River, and not usually considered part of Oppara. The dominant characteristic of Oppara's city plan is the Central Canal that forms a fork with its center in the middle of the city and its three branches extending from there towards the edges of the city. The northeastern and northwestern branches go through its walls and beyond. The southern branch ends in the Porthmos River. The Central Canal divides Oppara in three areas.
The Lionsgate district is hedged in by the two northern branches of Central Canal and it is mainly a market district. The western part of the city is divided into the Imperial Square district where the Imperial Palace is located, the Memorial Park district, the Seven Towers district where the ancient Azlanti settlement of Oppara was founded, the Aroden's View, Senate's Hill and Worldbreaker Hill districts which are located on the western hills of the city, on top of the Black Cliffs, the wealthy district of Westpark, a part of the large mercantile Grandbridge district, from which the Grand Bridge of the Empire emerges to connect Oppara with the river's distant southern shore, and the large Westport dock district. The eastern part of the city is divided into the Crownsgate district, the residential Canal Row district, the poor and dangerous The Narrows district, the eastern part of the Grandbridge district, and the Eastport dock district. The fortified Jadrishar Island just off the western coast of Oppara, forms one more district which is occupied by the Imperial Navy.
A number of local guilds and organizations have been established in the city. These include the Lighters' Guild, which lights the tens of thousands of lanterns at night; the Oppara's Constabulary, that keeps the city safe; and the Porthmos Militia, which keeps watch on Westport at night. The city is also home to the Brotherhood of Silence, the biggest and most important thieves' guild in the Inner Sea region and the Platinum Band, a tight-knit group who revere the god Apsu.
The Pathfinder Society is interested in ancient Taldor's treasures, and the Society has established a Pathfinder lodge in Oppara, as have their main rivals in the Inner Sea region, the Aspis Consortium.
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