Surda was a small country in southern Alagaësia, on the southwest border of the Broddring Empire. It was founded before the beginning of the Rider's War and remained outside of Galbatorix's Empire, as he was occupied with other sinister acts of Dark magic and did not consider it a threat. Consequently, many outlaws from the Broddring Empire sought refuge there, including the Varden. After Galbatorix was killed and Urû'baen was captured, a treaty with Nasuada allowed Aroughs, Feinster, Furnost, Eoam and Melian to be added to its territory, causing it to double in size.
The king of Surda, Orrin, was a capable ruler, though sometimes a bit strange in his antics. He was known as a great lover of science. Orrin was the son of Larkin. The Kings of Surda were historically allied with the Varden.
Aristocrats had great authority in Surda. It is unknown what official role they played in the government.
Surda had a strong farming culture which it had adopted from the Broddring Empire. Because it was by the Sea it was also heavily dependent on fishing and trade. One of the biggest corporations in Surda was the Silk Guild.
Surda also was a very large trading nation, due to the fact that they were the public face of the Varden. So much of the trading between the Varden and the Broddring Empire had to come through Surda. Surda accumulated large amounts of wealth through these two countries secret trading.
When the Varden was located in Farthen Dûr, Surda secretly supported them, but did not dare openly oppose Galbatorix, as he would have crushed them. Afterward, they accompanied the Varden in their war against Galbatorix.
Surda was the site of the first human landing in Alagaësia.
One year after Vrael's death and the end of the Broddring Kingdom's monarchy, Lady Marelda, ruler of the Imperial province of Surda, rebelled against Galbatorix's rule. It is not known why Galbatorix allowed them to do this, but Galbatorix may have been far too busy forging his new Empire out of the ashes of the Broddring Kingdom and probably did not want to waste many of his men on such a small land.
It is not known how Surda's monarchy began, but during the time of the Rider War, the monarch was King Orrin, who had recently ascended to the throne after the death of King Larkin.
Throughout its lifetime, Surda secretly supported the Varden. One of the small country's motives to aid the Varden is because a large number of the inhabitants of Surda and the Varden are related. Wary of its much larger neighbor to the north. Even still, it put spies in the Broddring Empire's cities and the Broddring Empire did likewise. By the events of Eldest, Surda and the Broddring Empire were virtually fighting a small, secret war with their spies, unknown to the general public.
Throughout the Inheritance Cycle, the Broddring Empire's and Surda's relationship had deteriorated to the point of war in Eldest. This war between Surda and the Broddring Empire has it's roots from the Varden's decision to move to Surda after the Battle under Farthen Dûr.
The Broddring Empire quickly learned of this through its spies and tried to assassinate Nasuada. By now, Surda and the Broddring Empire were on the brink of war. A few months later, Galbatorix secretly sent an army of 100,000 men. Surda quickly rallied due to its spies in the Broddring Empire. Surda's and the Varden's armies were soon marching out of Surda and into the southwest portion of the Broddring Empire to face off against Galbatorix so that the fighting would not occur on Surdian soil.
Although the Varden were outnumbered, even with the addition of Kull troops, they managed to hold out until the arrival of Dwarven forces. Then the rider Eragon and his dragon Saphira attacked Murtagh and his dragon Thorn, who killed Hrothgar immediately after the arrival of the dwarf troops. Murtagh defeated Eragon, but left him alive, taking Eragon's sword with him. Thanks to the timely arrival of Roran and his followers, the Varden was able to defeat Galbatorix's forces (Roran managed to kill the twins, thus saving many of the Varden's soldiers from perishing trying to fight the twins).
After that, Surda accompanied the Varden in a series of battles, ultimately capturing Urû'baen. After the battle, King Orrin and Nasuada had a dispute over who should rule Galbatorix's former empire. Nasuada insisted that she should be ruler but offered Orrin a treaty that would give him land that would double the size of Surda, though he had swear allegiance to the ruler of the Broddring Empire. He accepted this treaty grudgingly.