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Nan Madol is one of the City-States in Civilization VI. It is a small partially-sunken city on the coast of Temwen Island, near the much-larger island of Pohnpei, part of modern-day Micronesia. The name Nan Madol means "spaces between" and is a reference to the canals that crisscross the ruins of the city. It served as the capital district of the oft-mythologized Saudeleur Dynasty, that ruled over the entire island of Pohnpei and its surrounding waters from the 12th century until the 17th century. They are described as foreign conquerors who subjugated the Pohnpeian people for over 500 years, before being defeated by a semi-mythical Polynesian warrior-hero from the east known as Isokelekel. Isokelekel's capture of Saudeleur-controlled Nan Madol elevated him to the status of "the father of modern Pohnpei".
According to Pohnpeian legend, Nan Madol was constructed by the twin sorcerers Olisihpa and Olosohpa, who came from a mythical western land. The brothers arrived in a large canoe seeking a place to build an altar so that they could worship the god of agriculture. To build their altar, the brothers levitated the huge stones that form Nan Madol with the aid of a flying dragon. Eventually Olisihpa died of old age, and Olosohpa married a Pohnpeian woman, becoming the first Saudeleur. Although Olosohpa ruled kindly, each generation of his successors grew increasingly tyrannical towards their Pohnpeian subjects and disrespectful of Pohpeian deities. Their reign ended with the invasion by Isokelekel, who also resided at Nan Madol, but his successors abandoned the site and much of it was eventually lost to the ocean.
The remaining ruins of Nan Madol are shrouded in mythology and legend, serving as the inspiration both locally and internationally for centuries' worth of stories. It has been referred to as "Atlantis" or part of the "The Lost Continent" by various European invaders who first arrived to the shores of Pohnpei in the early 19th century. HP Lovecraft based the mythical city of R'lyeh, the home of the creature C'thulu, on Nan Madol. Some Pohnpeians say that the last Saudeleur king turned himself into a fish in order to escape Isokelekel, and he still resides near Nan Madol to this day.