The Nefantar is the name of one of the seven Minmatar tribes. Coming to be known as Ammatar during the years of Amarr rule, the name Nefantar has now been reclaimed by those returning to the Republic in the wake of the Elder Fleet Invasion.
The Nefantar tribe originated in the Tronhadar Delta on the continent of Houdea on Matar. Their early history is marked by a conflict with the Krusual Tribe that eventually enveloped most of the Minmatar tribes before a planetary peace prevailed.
Traditionally one of the largest tribes after the Starkmanir, the Nefantar enjoyed great influence and prestige among the Minmatar tribes. When the Starkmanir decided to relocate, the Nefantars' power only grew as the Starkmanir became more and more absorbed with their own issues. While they did use this influence to claim the Hjoramold system, the Nefantar tribe as a whole didn't move, preferring instead to hold on to their new found prominence on Matar.
First Contact to Conquest
Following the Day of Darkness, when the Amarr invaded and kidnapped Minmatar for slaves, the Nefantar leadership were torn. Though they could retreat to the safer space of Hjoramold, leaving would seem like cowardice to the other Minmatar tribes. The tribe itself was split because, while it seemed clear to all that Hjoramold would be no safer than Matar, many of the elite suggested moving to buy time, believing they could figure out how to defeat this enemy, or at least defend their kin already in Hjoramold. The chief made the final decision, choosing to stay on Matar. While some scholars paint this as a noble gesture, others point out that the Amarr Navy had wiped out all but the smallest of vessels, and it wouldn't have been feasible to move that many people in the aftermath of first contact. Regardless of motivation, all scholars agree that it was a seminal event in the tribe's history, as some members of the aristocracy became very bitter over the decision not to move the rest of the tribe.
Armed with resentment, and fueled by fear, these disenfranchised members of the Nefantar elite began working with the Amarr to ensure the exemption of their families as the raids continued. Over the next one hundred and twenty five years, these families were to become some of the most powerful on Matar, and any opposition that arose would usually disappear on the next outbound slave ship. In the year 22480 AD, the Nefantar finally moved their capital to Hjoramold VII. There was much rejoicing on Matar, as many believed that this signaled an end to the slave raids, and they were right. They were still celebrating when the Amarr invasion fleet arrived.
After the Amarr Conquest of Matar
Having moved the rest of the Nefantar leadership to Hjoramold, a great purge was begun there. Every Minmatar not of their tribe was enslaved as the Nefantar committed themselves fully to the Amarr faith. They willingly abandoned a great number of their traditions, claiming they had progressed beyond the old social structure of the Minmatar tribes, and so impressed Emperor Damius III that he granted the Amarr governor of the Ani constellation only nominal powers. In a speech announcing this favored status, the Emperor alluded to the Nefantar poetically as 'Ammatar'. The word was quickly picked by the Minmatar slave population who used it as a derogatory term for the tribe that had betrayed its brethren. It was also during this period that Tyrion Plethar was consecrated as the first Minmatar priest of the Amarr religion.
The Amarr poured a great deal of wealth into the Ani constellation in an attempt to help the Nefantar build up their infrastructure. Research centers, stations, trading hubs, even hospitals and cultural buildings were erected in a short period of time. The Nefantar inclination towards establishing and developing fixed centers of trade combined with Amarr underwriting soon led to an accumulation of vast amounts of wealth that the tribe hoarded in various locations.
Traditionally not as nomadic as other Minmatar tribes, the exception among the Nefantar were the Wayfarer Clans. Wayfarer Clans were families that traveled extensively, often only returning once every few generations. One of these clans mapped the entire Immensea over the course of six generations, though their name has since been lost to history. After the Amarr conquest had begun, returning Wayfarer clans were shocked at the change of fortune their people had experienced. Uncomfortable with their tribe's role in this new order, many simply headed out again, never to return.
The first crack in the relationship between the Nefantar and their Amarr overlords came in 22762 AD with the secession of the Khanid Kingdom. The destruction of Starkman Prime in 22947 AD drove this invisible wedge further, and unbeknownst to the rest of the tribe, the Nefantar leadership began moves to shelter and protect the remaining members of the Starkmanir tribe. Papers were forged and much strong-arming and coercion were used as the Nefantar acquired a great number of Starkmanir slaves, hiding them in plain sight on their holdings. The Nefantar would later claim the protection of the Starkmanir as their primary motivation for siding with the Amarr during the Minmatar Rebellion, and the Elders confirmed they approved the plan.
The Gallente would be the first to legally use the term Ammatar in one of their early drafts of the Gallente-Amarr Free Trade Agreement.
During the Rebellion
While many small attempts had been made at revolution before, the destruction of Starkman Prime heightened and intensified incidents of unrest throughout the Amarr Empire. Ironically, the Nefantar played a role in fermenting this unrest by first exporting those Minmatar showing the most signs of dissidence to all corners of the Empire, and then hiding the fact that a fair number of Starkmanir actually survived on their holdings. It took two hundred and sixty-nine years for the spark set off by Drupar Maak to ignite the flames of Rebellion, but ignite it did.
The Amarr had always been spread too thin, and with their defeat at the hands of the Jove, they were completely unprepared for the passion of the Minmatar people. However, despite the extreme success of the Rebellion in the vast majority of places, the Amarr still maintained a heavy superiority in space. Even when the Minmatar forces had taken Hek, it was still relatively easy for the Amarr to move their fleet around, and they answered the Nefantar plea for help by sending significant forces, including a capital ship, the TES Reclamation.
Initially the Amarr force swept aside whole squadrons of rebel ships, and the governor of Ani at the time, Lord Basad, used the brief respite granted by the Reclamation's arrival to construct a formidable fortress in orbit around Hjoramold XII.
The tide turned quickly for the pro-Empire forces. A double agent lured the Nefantar tribal leader to a remote location in the Uriok system and assassinated him. This act caused a massive up-swing in disruptive acts among those slaves still held in bondage, and mere days later a saboteur succeeded in destroying the TES Reclamation in the Traun system.
With the threat of the capital ship gone, the rebel fleet turned back towards Hjoramold. The bulk of the Amarr Fleet had been forced to pull back to quell riots closer to home, and the Ani constellation was now completely cut off now from the rest of the Empire. The Nefantar prepared to evacuate.
Dismantling monuments and relics, the Nefantar packed them up and, avoiding the jump gates, snuck them out of the system along with the remnants of the Starkmanir tribe. The fort constructed by Lord Basad came to be known as Lord Bastion during its valiant two month stand against the invading rebel forces. When it finally fell, the last of the Nefantar that were able to left Ani for good.
The Nefantar tribe were relocated to the Derelik region. The Molden Heath entrance to this region was through Audesder, at the time heavily fortified by Amarr forces and thought to be well behind the farthest possible advance of the rebels. As such, this was the destination system for the relics being moved from the Ani constellation. Ironically, the rebel forces did reach Audesder, and with Fort Kumar in Kenobanala proving too hard to break, it was the last system taken by the rebels.
With both the Amarr and the majority of the Nefantar unaware of the deception the tribe's leadership was undertaking in regards to the Starkmanir, the relationship between the two seemed stronger than ever. Having proven their loyalty to the Empire, the Nefantar were granted their own semi-autonomous domain in Derelik. They officially adopted the 'Ammatar' moniker, and the Ammatar Mandate was born.
Late in the Year YC110, the secret the Ammatar leadership had been keeping was exposed to the whole cluster when the Sisters of EVE announced the discovery of a large population of Starkmanir living within the Mandate. Oddly, this news heralded not only the resurrection of the Starkmanir tribe, but of the Nefantar tribe as well. While the Elder Fleet carried out its coordinated attacks designed to liberate the Starkmanir, Ammatar Consulate Governor Ana Utulf encouraged her people to go with them. Many did, not only slaves and commoners, but slave-owners and members of the Ammatar Navy as well. In fact, it was the Ammatar Navy defectors who first put their finger on the pulse of what was happening when they altered their ship transponder signals to identify themselves as "Nefantar tribe" vessels.
With some of the slaves freed by Jamyl Sarum's proclamation returning to the Republic along with the Starkmanir, Thukker, and the Nefantar, it was the Nefantar who seemed to be getting the shortest end of the stick. The ancestral lands of the Thukker and Starkmanir on Matar had been held in trust, but no such accommodation had been made for the Nefantar. Court cases, and other land disputes, along with rising religious tensions have made it difficult for the Nefantar refugees, some of whom had left relatively opulent lives and positions of power in the Mandate.
The Nefantar chose Eleca Valkanir as their chief in YC115.