"Salome laughed fiercely, and slapped her bosom. The low-necked tunic left the upper parts of her firm breasts bare, and between them there shone a curious mark -- a crescent, red as blood.
'The mark of the witch!' cried Taramis, recoiling.
'Aye!' Salome's laughter was dagger-edged with hate. 'The curse of the kings of Khauran! Aye, they tell the tale in the market-places, with wagging beards and rolling eyes, the pious fools! They tell how the first queen of our line had traffic with a fiend of darkness and bore him a daughter who lives in foul legendry to this day. And thereafter in each century a girl baby was born into the Askhaurian dynasty, with a scarlet half-moon between her breasts, that signified her destiny.'"
-- Robert E. Howard: "A Witch Shall Be Born"

The provinces of Khauran

A small border kingdom between the eastern tip of Koth and the Eastern Desert region of the Zuagirs.

It had rich meadows and very fertile croplands. The ruling caste was Hyborian while the soldiers were Shemitish. The farming class was of ancient aboriginal stock.

Kothic adventurers founded Khauran at a time when many tiny principalities were being carved out of the fertile uplands. In Conan's time only Khauran and Khoraja had managed to retain their independence from Koth.

Khauran Besieged

Just like the Shamla Pass in Khoraja, another important break in the Kothian Escarpment was found in Khauran, bringing the vital trade of the east-west caravan routes into the small kingdom. However, the Road of Kings, built by Corinthian city-states, stole some of the caravan trade from Khauran.

Khauran was ruled by the matrilineal Ashkauri dynasty. This Hyborian lineage of queens had a curse on them, such that once every century, an evil sorceress was born into the family, identified by a crescent-moon birthmark between her breasts.

  • Akrel, Oasis of: Was situated in the desert east of Khauran.
  • Beni Nuer: A tribe of scavengers living on the edge of the desert south of Khauran.
  • Deadman's Journey: The caravan route taken by slavers raiding the Blacklands of Punt and Zembabwei. It crossed the Southern Desert from Khauran to the River Styx.
  • Ekinari: A nomad tribe of the desert south of Khauran.
  • Omri: A tribe of the Southern Desert, living between Khauran and Zamboula.
  • Zardas: Located at the crossing of two roads just north of the border between Koth and Khauran. Built next to a small river, it was a large cattle market.

References: Witch Shall be Born, Conan the Mercenary.

  • Population: 430,000
  • Capital: Khauran (pop. 110,000)
  • Ruler: Queen Taramis, heir of the Askhauri dynasty
  • Major cities: Kandala (pop. 13,000), Ketha (pop. 34,000 -- a city on the caravan route from Zamboula to Shadizar, famed for its stone quarries)
  • Resources: Semi-precious stones, food, cattle
  • Imports: Khauran is a major trade center of the east-west trade
  • Allies: Khoraja
  • Enemies: Koth (pays tribute to)
  • Tech level: Roman
  • Religion: Ishtar, Bel