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The Theran Empire is a pre-historic civilisation. It is identified with Atlantis, but any details about it are unknown to the larger public. The capital of the Empire was located on the Greek island of Thera (now partially sunken).

The Empire controlled parts of Africa, Europe and Asia: Egypt, Southern Anatolia and Levant (Creana) and Tunisia (Marac); Bulgaria (Rugaria), France (Arancia), Germany (Vasgothia), Greece (Vivane), Italy (Talea), Ukraine (Barsaive); India (Indrisa).

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The Theran Empire is the main antagonist of the Earthdawn Role-playing game (Fourth World). In the Shadowrun universe (Sixth World), there is no public awareness of Thera's existence. Some individuals (immortal elves, dragons) remember it and some among them might even try to rebuild it in some form.

Southwest of Barsaive, the main Earthdawn setting, was the centre of the empire located on the island of Thera. As the chief power at work in Earthdawn, it was extremely magically advanced, possessing vast libraries of magical lore, powerful (if corrupt) wizards, and literal 'floating fortresses' ripped from the earth itself.

Theran wizards and politicians warned many of the outlying nations around Thera of the coming of the Scourge and the Horrors, offering the technology and protection of the kaers (underground, warded cities) to those who would pledge their loyalty to the Empire. Most of these nations agreed at first though some became unwilling to fulfill their end of the bargain after the end of the Scourge, wanting to have nothing to do with the bureaucratic nation run on political conflict and powered by slavery.

The Theran Empire survived the Scourge, and its effort to regain control of Barsaive forms the setting of the Earthdawn universe.

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