Midkemia is very similar to Earth in climate, and its flora and fauna. It has three continents: Triagia, Novindus and Wiñet. It has two oceans, though there are various names for them depending on the continent or nation. The Endless Sea is west of Triagia and is east of Novindus where it is called the Blue Sea. The Sea of Tears is east of Triagia and west of Novindus where it is called the Green Sea.
Triagia is the largest continent on Midkemia. Humans form the vast majority of the population of this continent, with other races contributing almost negligibly to the total. The extreme north is mostly sparsely inhabited wilderness with few enduring settlements. The continent surrounds, but does not completely enclose, two large seas, the Bitter Sea to the west and the Sea of Kingdoms to the east, which together form a moderately-sized isthmus in the middle of Triaga located about one-third of the length of the continent from south to north. The northern portion is heavily forested, but the south has few forests and is a more equatorial latitude. The Jal-Pur desert is the most notable desert on the continent and occupies most of the central expanse of the southern landmass. The two largest nations on this continent are, from south to north, the Empire of Great Kesh and the Kingdom of the Isles.
Novindus is the second largest continent on Midkemia with a variety of landscapes. It is to the west of the Triagia across the Endless Sea and to the east across the Sea of Tears, and it is not immediately clear from the literature which is the closer distance, suggesting that it is probably close to halfway around the globe in either direction. Politically, it has a collection of largely independent city-states which are spread out across the continent but form no overarching political system. The continent featured highly in Feist's Serpent War saga, in which the continent was largely laid to waste.
The third continent on Midkemia. Sometime ages ago, part of the continent rose up some 600 feet creating an isolated plateau. The lower portion of the continent was settled by refugees from Triagia, during the purging of the Ishapian Temple of the Heretics of Al-maral. The upper portion (The Ethel-Duath) was populated by the Saaur lizard-men, a race of nomadic warriors also created by Alma-Lodaka but who were left on the world of Shila, rather than Midkemia, and who were brought to serve the Emerald Queen during the Serpentwar Saga. After the war was concluded, they were relocated by the magician Pug, who sought to remove them from the Kingdom without fighting.
Technology and Magic
Midkemia is on a technological par with 14th to 15th century Europe, with a few anachronisms. For example, shipbuilding seems to be as advanced as 17th-century Europe, with three-masted square-riggers in evidence but no gunpowder or cannons, though naphtha is known. Generally, the world is a mostly pre-industrial agrarian state.
Magic in Midkemia is practiced by very few people. To the eyes of any nonmagician, anything that a person can do that cannot be explained is labeled magical. In the more superstitious rural areas, magic-users are usually shunned, or worse, captured and killed. Duke Borric of Crydee, with his foresight, bequeathed an island to Pug to start an academy devoted to magical studies, where magicians can gather without fear of discrimination and prejudice.
With Pug's education on Kelewan, it is revealed that these Midkemian arts are considered the Lesser Path of Magic, and the Kelewan magic is the so-called Greater Path. The Lesser Arts were seen as rudimentary talents, more focused to the very nature of magic, while the Greater Arts were seen as having greater effectiveness and practicality such as teleportation, conjuring energy from nothing, and so on. Pug's "parting shot" in Kelewan was to destroy the Tsurani Imperial Coliseum using a magically conjured windstorm and earthquake. The Paths are normally mutually exclusive - a Greater Path magician would not be able to invoke Lesser Path powers and skills.
There are several great magicians on Midkemia whose powers do not fit this dual-path model; Macros the Black, Pug conDoin (in his later years), Nakor the Isalani, Miranda, and Magnus, son of Pug and Miranda (and Robert De Lyse a student of Pug). Macros possessed abilities transcending the traditional Greater and Lesser Paths of magic; it is inconclusive whether this ability is a part of his gift upon becoming the avatar for Sarig, God of Magic, or if Macros was simply born with the ability like Pug. Similarly, Macros's protegé Pug, his wife Miranda, and his grandson Magnus also possessed the ability to invoking Lesser or Greater path powers at will. Nakor also wielded magic not confined to the classical definition of Lesser and Greater paths, though he insists upon the idea that "there is no magic", but merely "tricks" in manipulating some elemental forces of the world. As the books progress, Pug comes to the realisation that Nakor is correct, and the limits of magic are merely a result of a lack of understanding among magicians.
These are instantaneous links between two places, often on entirely different planets or levels of reality. The Riftwar involved arift between Midkemia and the world of the Tsurani. They can be created (with difficulty) by proficient users of the Greater Magic, but the Tsurani maintained one using a machine. They are sometimes created by accident and fluke. Most rifts are unstable, and so move about in space. The Tsurani's machine was one of the first known devices to stabilise a rift and to make it fixed in one position. Rifts, whilst a powerful device for travelling, are a risky device as they attract the attention of the Enemy, an evil being of immense power.
Throughout the rest of Midkemia's history various other rifts have appeared that are different from the norm. At the end of the SerperntWar Pug, Nakor, Tomas and Miranda encounter a rift that is connected to Nalar. They fight Zaltais who is a being from Nalar's thoughts and force him into the rift.
During Kaspar's exile on Novindus he encounters some strange creatures and also 'wrong' armour. After his visit to the Pavillion of the Gods he learns that these creatures are coming from magnet driven rifts. The magnets being the 'wrong' armour, which is known as Talnoy who come from a dark planet on a separate plane of reality known as Kosridi.
Nakor is also found to have the ability to create what are thought to be controllable rifts of a diminutive size which are undetectable to the Enemy (possibly due to their size).Though when questioned by Pug he is unsure if referring to them as rifts is adequate but he suggests that they are foldings in space but is quite sure they are not rifts but different. Much the same as anything else to do with Nakor his bag is a mystery still to be revealed. These "rifts" are placed in the lining of his travel bag allowing access to a cave, where Nakor stores items he may need, and a warehouse containing oranges (one of Nakor's most well-known traits is the seemingly never-ending supply of oranges he carries with him).
- sand squints