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Outside of Ferelden, the City of Amaranthine is now synonymous with the arling herself, but before the Orlesian invasion, it was only a modest fishing village despite a deep port well-suited to commerce. At that time, few other kingdoms had any need to trade with the Fereldan "barbarians".
The city changed rapidly with the Orlesians came. They built temporary docks to accommodate ships packed with chevaliers, and for a time, Amaranthine was the capital of occupied Ferelden. The bann of Amaranthine became one of the wealthiest nobles in the kingdom, as goods like wool were leeched from the city's swollen ports.
During the liberation, the fleeing Orlesians looted the city but left it otherwise unscarred. She recovered quickly. Ironically, Amaranthine's current prosperity is the legacy of Orlesian occupation. Do not share that opinion with the locals, mind.
- --From Annals of Northern Ferelden, By Brother Bedine, Chantry scholar