Long ago, the gods granted their favor to King Raithwall, who would oversee the subjugation of a territory spanning from Ordalia to Valendia. Here he forged the Galtean Alliance.Ashe
King Raithwall is a historical figure in Final Fantasy XII. He was Ivalice's first Dynast King, and is the ancestor of Princess Ashe. Raithwall is known for uniting Ivalice under his rule and possessing three pieces of deifacted nethicite, which have since been passed down as royal heirlooms and proofs of royal lineage.
King Raithwall had long white hair, mustache and a beard. He wore a golden helmet with wing ornaments and was draped head to foot in armor with intricate patterns. His long cape was frayed at the bottom. His weapon was the greatsword since known as the Sword of Kings.
King Raithwall is known as a benevolent king who sought to unify the land to stop the wars. Due to his skills in strategy and deep empathy with his people, he took control of Ivalice and is remembered as a great leader.
Many were the countries and kingdoms dotting Ivalice, and many were the wars waged in this time. Legend says that Raithwall, a noble from a small country in Valendia, was granted a sword and magicite from the gods, and with these artifacts, a mission: to unify the land. His strategic genius and deep empathy with his people were evident in his rule of Valendia, and from there he went on to take control of the remaining two continents. Soon all Ivalice belonged to the Galtean Alliance, and a Golden Age had begun. Now king of all he surveyed, Raithwall's was a benevolent and just reign, guiding the Alliance for near half a century. After his death, the Alliance held firm and knew peace and prosperity for four hundred years until its dissolution with the passing of the last of Raithwall's direct descendants.The Age of King Raithwall
King Raithwall lived centuries ago. He was a nobleman from a small country in the Valendian continent. The gods of Ivalice saw the potential in this king, and gave him the sword that would become known as the Sword of Kings. He traveled to the Pharos where he cut three shards of nethicite from the Sun-Cryst. The Cryst is a large fragment of nethicite that the gods created to control mankind and their history by giving shards of it to those they could trust. Nethicite is a powerful source of magickal energy and a crystal that absorbs Mist, releasing it as magickal energy.
The shards Raithwall carved from the Sun-Cryst became known as the Dawn Shard, Dusk Shard, and Midlight Shard. Using these three shards, he ruled Valendia and united it with the other continents, Ordalia and Kerwon, into the Galtean Alliance. He became known as Ivalice's first Dynast King. While keeping the Dawn Shard for himself, the Dusk and Midlight Shards were passed onto his descendants in the ruling families of Dalmasca and Nabradia and became royal heirlooms. As Raithwall's lineage was chosen by the gods to lead Ivalice to the direction they wish, the three shards glow in the presence of his kin, pointing his ancestors as the "rightful" rulers of Ivalice.
During his rule, Raithwall gave the Sword of Kings to the Gran Kiltias of the time. It is unknown why he gave the blade to the Kiltia sect, but the Gran Kiltias did not question his motives, and sealed the blade in the Stilshrine of Miriam. At some point he also defeated the Esper Belias.
With King Raithwall's passing, he was buried in a tomb, located near the Nam-Yensa Sandsea, with the Dawn Shard. To ensure no one could steal the Dawn Shard, Belias guards the tomb. Hundreds of years later Raithwall's descendant Princess Ashe begins to pursue the Dawn Shard to prove she the rightful heir to the throne of Dalmasca, and during her quest becomes the gods' chosen for a new Dynast King, a path she ultimately decides not to follow.
Behind the scenes
Raithwall's back story is similar to that of Dorgalua Oberyth from Tactics Ogre: Let Us Cling Together, which was also directed by Yasumi Matsuno and shares other similarities with the Ivalice Alliance. Like Raithwall, Dorgalua Oberyth unified the war-torn Valerian Isles under his rule, and would later be crowned the "Dynast King".
Raithwall likely derives from Rædwald of East Anglia. Rædwald of East Anglia was a 7th-century king of a long-lived Anglo-Saxon kingdom who became a bretwalda (an Old English term meaning 'Britain-ruler' or 'wide-ruler'), title given to some of the rulers of Anglo-Saxon kingdoms from the 5th century onwards who had achieved overlordship of some or all of the other Anglo-Saxon kingdoms. Rædwald reigned from about 599 until his death around 624. He was the first king of the East Angles to become a Christian, converting at Æthelberht's court some time before 605, while simultaneously maintaining a pagan temple.