The Ealur are a slave race within the Amarr Empire. They were the first race conquered following the Empire's expansion into space. Despite their long period of , the Ealur remain both mostly enslaved and a distinct bloodline within the Empire.
The Ealur are a short, stocky race. Men average less than 1.7 meters in height while regularly weighing over 75 kg. Women are not much different, usually barely reaching 1.5 meters tall and weighing at 65 kg or more. The disproportionate weight comes not from fat, as generations of working in bondage has rendered them healthy, muscular, and very fit. They have dark skin and dark, curly hair, but a wide range of eye colors, with lighter colors being somewhat common.
Being mostly slaves, their wardrobe choices are limited. Men and women alike tend toward loose-fitting, comfortable clothes that do little to emphasize body shape. Robes are uncommon, except for those Ealur lucky enough to be clerical slaves. Most wear simple trousers, shirts, and shoes.
Little knowledge survived the collapse of the EVEGate on Ealur VI, the homeworld of the Ealur. The planet is warm and comfortable, with a short year. It is not particularly mineral rich, though it does possess several large deposits of precious metals and other natural resources.
The planet's biosphere was early in its life cycle, having only recently transitioned from a cold, ice-covered world as its star's surface temperature rose. Plant life had emerged within recent history, providing the planet with a breathable atmosphere, but having not yet given rise to large animal populations.
It seems likely that the original settlers were primarily interested in colonization rather than short-term exploitation of the planet.
It seems the planet had not been fully colonized by the time the EVE Gate collapsed, cutting the early settlers off from highly needed supplies. It was only the incredible habitability of the planet that allowed them to survive the subsequent lean times.
However, the colony was filled mostly with a simple people; farmers, construction workers, laborers, and the like. With little in the way of scientists or other learned individuals, the majority of technological knowledge was lost. Coupled with panic and distrust following the disaster, society fragmented and spread over the surface as small groups scavenged for supplies, food, and a way to continue their existence, and the Ealur quickly devolved to a primitive society.
Unlike on other planets, however, the Ealur faced little in the way of competitive pressure to rediscover lost knowledge. The planet lacked much hostile wildlife, with major predators found primarily in the oceans. With little to drive the Ealur to innovation, the society stagnated at a Stone Age level of technology and remained thus until the arrival of the Amarr.
The Amarr arrived on Ealur in 21432 AD and found the Ealur little more than scattered tribes. As the first intelligent race discovered by the Empire following their expansion into space, the Ealur set off a flurry throughout the Empire unlike any that had been seen since first contact with the Udorians. Theologians and scientists alike debated the meaning of another race of human beings existing in the universe, living on a completely alien planet.
Eventually, the spirit of the Reclaiming reignited in the Empire's collective psyche and the Ealur were enslaved. The primitive people had little choice in the matter, being thrown into bondage with essentially no resistance. Indeed, the Empire records only seven casualties in the entire Reclaiming of the Ealur: three to accident, two to disease, one to friendly fire, and only one to Ealur resistance.
Originally the Ealur were not particularly well-suited to enslavement. Due to their relatively comfortable planet, the race became renowned among the slavedriving Amarr as soft, weak, and sickly. The Amarr viewed this as only justification of their enslavement; surely their sins must have been great for God to leave them so fragile.
Immediately, the Amarr went about correcting this weakness. The Ealur were nearly worked to extinction, with millions dying in mines and harsh fields. Those that survived, however, passed their genes on, gradually transforming the Ealur people over numerous generations into the hearty bunch they are today. Indeed, the Amarr directed much of this transformation intentionally, breeding the strongest and healthiest Ealur slaves together with no concern for other characteristics such as intelligence.
Perhaps most damning to the Ealur's chances of escaping slavery was the long period of time before the Amarr encountered the Ni-Kunni. Though numerous smaller pockets of humanity had been discovered and conquered by the Amarr, these groups were typically exceedingly sparse, only barely eking out an existence on hostile planets. They tended to be bred with the Ealur and other slaves, quickly vanishing into a genetic slush pool and being forgotten to history, unable to take the place of the Ealur as "the slaves" in the collective conscience of the Empire.
The Ni-Kunni proved populous enough to have possibly supplanted the Ealur, but centuries of Amarr eugenics had caused the race to seem incapable of being freed. Prevailing sentiment among the Amarr at the time was that the Ealur would never survive being let free, much like a stray dog released into the wild would quickly be devoured by wolves.
The Ealur continue to be enslaved by the Empire, though the Minmatar now make up the majority slave population. Prevailing sentiment within the Empire continues to view the Ealur as little more than a particularly intelligent breed of livestock. Thanks in part to the power of the Minmatar Republic and the high visibility of Minmatar slaves, there has never been major pressure on the Empire to release its Ealur stock.
Several minor grass-roots campaigns have been established in the Federation advocating Ealur emancipation, but they are not popular causes. Most have crumbled and folded within a few years. The largest one still in existence, the Ealurian Emancipation Endeavor, has been marred by corruption scandals among its leadership in recent years, and has never been one of the Federation's top 1000 charities.
Before the Amarr conquest, the Ealur were a scattered, disparate race. Society was tribal, the abundance of food and dearth of natural enemies preventing conflict and smothering innovation. Individual tribes tended to number no more than a few dozen, with a few larger packs having hundreds. Interaction between tribes was limited, mostly occurring by accident when one group was moving and encountered another. Typically, these encounters resulted in trade and an exchange of women, helping to reduce inbreeding.
A few particularly adept tribes had managed to claw their way to an Iron Age level of technology, but most remained in a primitive, Stone Age bliss. Little of cultural significance was created; crude carvings and pottery have been uncovered by archaeologists, and cave paintings are occasionally discovered. If any great artistic or cultural achievement had been made by the Ealur, it has been wiped out by the Amarr and erased from the historical record.
The vast majority of Ealur remained enslaved, either in the Empire or the Khanid Kingdom. The Amarr see them as simplistic and stupid, primarily useful for manual labor and other physical work. Ealur slaves make up a fair portion of mining and agricultural colonies, using their stamina and brute strength to perform hard work beyond that of even the heartiest Minmatar slaves.
Despite the perception, some Holders have allowed their Ealur slaves to take up more stimulating and intellectually difficult work. In general, they perform these jobs competently, showing no more or less aptitude than for any other task.
A small number of Ealur have been freed over the centuries. Because freedom for their people is quite rare, these Ealur have been unable to form their own enclaves within Imperial society. Unlike the Ni-Kunni, no ethnic Ealur communities exist. A freed Ealur may go his entire life without meeting another freed Ealur, particularly one of the opposite sex.
Generally, freed Ealur live simple, lonely lives working menial labor. A lucky few manage to marry commoners of other bloodlines, though these relationships are typically doomed by prejudice. Amarr of all bloodlines with Ealur ancestry go out of their way to hide this fact, as it can cause significant difficulty in achieving even the lowest goals in the Empire.