The principality of Arad is a rugged terrain that spends a significant portion of the year blanketed with snow. The people of Arad are known for their striking features (with tall builds, blonde hair and blue eyes being the norm) almost as much as for their bloody history as sailors, warriors and raiders.
The Arad people are nearly universally tall and well built. Other coloration is seen on occasion (particularly in families of former raiders that may have acquired wives abroad in the past), but the majority of the people of Arad are fair-skinned with blonde to light brown hair.
Children born outside of marriage in the Principality of Arad take the name “North” in place of a family name.
Once a nation of raiders and pillagers (the Adhil people became such strong shipwrights by learning to repel centuries of attackers from Arad) the citizens of Arad who know their history still chafe under the control of the Kingdom of Thellerg. Following the War of Aros the Thells elevated a number of the old families of Arad to serve the role of nobility and implemented a program of arranged marriages to Thell noble families among them.
Formerly a loose conglomeration of various warrior tribes many consider the present political structure within the principality to be a puppet government controlled from afar by the Kingdom of Thellerg and not a true representation of the local people. Whether or not this is the case the residents of the coastal areas of Thellerg and Helladhil rest easier without the persistent threat of Arad raiders.
The Arad government are officially supporters of the Church of Enelwing, but there is still a strong dedication to Penem among the families that still long for a return to the days of Arad raiding parties.
There are two types of noble families in Arad, those that were once renown raiding families (usually referred to as [NATIVE], which roughly translates as "Natives") and those families who were willing to work with the Thell conquerors to integrate Arad with the rest of the Kingdom of Thellerg (referred to as [USURPER], typically translated as "Usurpers" and mostly used as a pejorative).
The [NATIVE] families tend to hold sway over sparsely populated remote areas, or have few land-based concerns but command large seafaring fleets. The [USURPER] families are usually in control of towns, villages and populated areas.