Ghidovia was founded by humans, but was made a regional power by the Arcva court Rafil. Their initial rise was followed by territorial expansions that encompass modern Ghidovia. Ultimately, a civil war led to the expulsion of many members of the court who would later found Arcellus.
The first towns began to appear in Cella around the year 400. Fertile land and protection from the plains tribes of Vasta allowed the ashanzu to prosper. From the start, Werex Bankasorabeau was an important hub because it was central to coastal trade, protected by a bay, and near to Saeva. Regular wars between towns limited growth and kept trade costs high.
The followers of the Arcva Dondorius arrived in the year 492. With his wizard followers, the town of Werex Bankasorabeau was conquered. He set up a court there, and named himself Zarod of Arcellus – meaning “People of Cella” in Ghido. Dondorius was not as quite traditional as his sister, Retu, though many of the ancient rituals and traditions were maintained.
In spite, he declared that only male Arcva could rule, as proof of the fact that Zarodossa crowned Fomros Rafil I, a male, as Zarod of Ghidovia.
Arcellus was a small state, no larger than the neighbouring cities. It won victories, and suffered defeats in battle. Dondorius and his descendants would sometimes need to flee from conquering armies, such as the year 528 when Ashanzu raiders came down the river and stormed the city. Its sole advantage was at a crossroads of trade that was growing larger as more civilizations appeared on Altus.
Arcellus's fortunes in its early years were heavily dictated by the whims of raiders and pirates who could easily extort ransoms or blackmail from the Court of Rafil. Belatium Rafil I of Arcellus inherited in 880 a military designed around ancient copper weapons, a small number of elite soldiers, and wizards to quell uprisings. This limited the ability of his army to protect either commerce or the citizens of Werex Bankasorabeau from attacks.
Belatium I set about modernizing his army in 890. Strong bronze weapons replaced brittle copper ones. Soldiers were recruited from the local Ashanzu, who were paid a salary to fight. These soldiers were organized into units led by the veteran Arcva. There were enough small units that a single unit could not overthrow the Zarod alone.
Belatium I also enlisted the raiders from nearby lands to protect Arcellus. Ashanzu ships from the Ijhier coast were given red sails and paid a monthly tribute so long as no piracy plagued Werex Bankasorabeau. They became feared and respected, taking the title of “Crimson Sails” and were merciless when hunting down rogue ships.
Both measures proved effective, and Arcellus' trade network expanded to include the entire Papiska Strait, as well as the city of Wemaj Armagrani, which served as a vanguard against river raiders.
Arcellus' increasing trade power meant that they could dictate the medium of exchange. Betalium opted for minted coins of set sizes and composed of specific proportions of rare metals, the standard coins were silver, reflecting the nearby silver mines of the Callian Rise. These coins replaced the need to barter for goods, and made those with rare merchandise prefer to trade in Arcellus. By 915, the first large-scale regional trade on the Callian Rise. These merchants were known in all towns, even beyond Arcellus, as "Vaniens."
As more money flowed in to Betlium's Coffers, he invested in a library for the capital so that the knowledge of the Arcva could me more accessible to the Ashanzu, while also encouraging foreign scholars to journey to his city. The court Sora took over its handling, creating a new class of Arcva who were not uniquely nobles.