Throughout the history of the continent of Areura, a race of beast-people called the Lycanth dominated. The Lycanth came to build a sophisticated civilization and an orderly society. They developed their own unique physique, with high physical strength and a strong spirit. However, technology appeared for which the civilization was not ready. A large number of Lycanth were slaughtered by this forbidden technology. While mass-slaughter had not been the intent, it nevertheless caused the nation to descend into civil war, in a conflict eventually called the "Beast War". With the Lycanth having lost the greater bulk of their population, the leaders transferred the right to rule the continent to the Humans (hito), which was then a small and weak race. As disorder continued to plague the diminishing Lycanth population, the Humans reconstructed the nation and returned the land to prosperity.
The Humans came to think of the Lycanth as the "race which ruined the world", and made their intent to mass-exterminate the Lycanth known. While Lycanth are normally Human-like, the Humans came to believe that the Lycanth were dangerous in their beast-forms due to their lack of ability to think. Under the order of the king, the church began to exterminate the Lycanth under acts of heresy. The knights were armed in preparation for any invasions or uprising by foreign nations and the Lycanth alike. A Lycanth extermination movement, called the "Lycanth Hunt", was launched and encouraged the population to turn in Lycanth for rewards.
Source: Wikipedia, "http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tales_of_the_Tempest," available under the CC-BY-SA License.