The Six Kingdoms are unified—as much as they may ever be—under an international governing body known as the Symvoulio.
The seat of the Symvoulio is always housed in one constituent kingdom; the term for the Symvoulio’s current seat is the Symvoul. The governing body of the Symvoulio, made up of three consulates, is referred to as the Vyrdag, and the Vyrdag convenes in the capital city of the Symvoul. These terms can be confusing; please check out the glossary of terms at the bottom of this page.
The Symvoul is the current seat of political power in the Six Kingdoms. Every ten years, the Symvoul passes to one of the Six Kingdoms, elected by a committee of delegates from all participating kingdoms. No kingdom can serve twice in a row. Generally, the Symvoul must pass to each of the six kingdoms before one of them can take it again. However, a kingdom may give up its turn or be “skipped” in special cases (like civil war), if and only if a qualified majority of the electoral committee votes for it. The committee may also skip ‘’to’’ a kingdom, as long as it hasn’t immediately gone before, but this is even rarer.
There have been times of war or strife where a Symvoul has been deposed and another Kingdom has fought to take over, or dry years where no Symvoul has been properly elected, but those have been rare.
There are benefits to being the Symvoul. Firstly, the Symvoul’s Upper and Middle Consulate delegations have tie-breaking power: if the six kingdoms are split evenly on an issue, the Symvoul’s vote is the deciding factor. Secondly, the Vyrdag meets in the Symvoul’s capital city each year.
As of the current game time, Mugroba is the Symvoul. Anaxas, whose last year as the seat of the Symvoulio was 2719, is in the process of passing the torch; destabilized by the move, Anaxas is struggling to let it go. Gior has expressed disappointment in the cycle, concerned that Mugroba does not have the best interests of the wider Symvoulio in mind. In protest, they have reinstated their ban on foreign visitors, unless approved by the Da Huane Patriarch herself. Anaxas continues to remain unwelcome in Gior without exception.
The Vyrdag is, put simply, the driving force of the Symvoulio. The Vyrdag is the Symvoulio’s international governing body, and consists of many, many organs and representatives from all six kingdoms. It has three consulates, each of which fills a different purpose and breaks down into smaller parts.
The Symvoulio’s annual meet is also referred to colloquially as the Vyrdag, on account of the fact that it is a convening of the Vyrdag.
The Upper Consulate is made up of the High Council and the Arcane Council — the heads of state and of the universities respectively. While most of the Symvoulio’s day-to-day functions take place in the Middle and Lower consulates, the Upper Consulate is the be-all, end-all; its two councils have the last say on major issues.
The High Council consists primarily of the figureheads of each of the six kingdoms—the emperor of Mugroba, the king and queen of Anaxas, the matriarch of the leading family in Gior, etc—with the exception of Hox, whose Pal Tzeh has no single representative, and from whom a figurehead is chosen by sortition.For the most part, they are treated as advisors; they are honored with elaborate ceremonies at the start of every Vyrdag, but have little sway in current-day decision-making.
The Arcane Council, on the other hand, is a different story. Consisting of each headmaster or headmistress from each of the six universities, the Arcane Council convenes to discuss the broader trajectory of university education in the six kingdoms, as well as matters of coordination among the universities.Of course, much of this is handled by lower consulate committees comprised of university faculty. In reality, the Arcane Council has the final say on almost any matter in which it wishes to involve itself. Many motions in the middle and sometimes even lower consulates have been brought to a stand-still or thrown out by a majority vote from the headmasters.
Many years, the Upper Consulate has been quiet, permitting the bulk of the Vyrdag to handle matters; some years have been utterly dominated by a unified and active Arcane Council.
The Middle Consulate consists of the Court of the Symvoulio and the Council of the Circle, which, respectively, deal primarily with issues of law and religion.
The Court of the Symvoulio is the driving judicial force behind the Symvoulio. Like the Anaxi court system, it is split into secular and arcane courts, though the arcane court has seen less and less use of late.
The secular Symvouli Court is presided over by the chief judicial officials of all six kingdoms, or representatives thereof, depending on the situation. For the most part, it either settles disputes among kingdoms or solves conflicts of laws, and is just as sprawling and complex as any one kingdom’s secular court system.
Additionally, it is responsible for the formation of ad hoc tribunals in the case of war crimes. The arcane branch of the Symvouli Court may also act, in the case of an internationally significant violation of the Noble Uses, but this is extremely rare. These tribunals must take place during the political season, and they must take place in the capital of the Symvoul. Furthermore, the Symvoul appoints the judges presiding over these cases.
The Council of the Circle consists of the highest-ranking members of each kingdom’s significant religious factions (e.g., the Noumenon of the Everine, the Rho Tsvat’kyett of the Mhoren Basheva), as well as delegations from each.
The Lower Consulate consists of the Assembly — the Symvoulio’s main legislative body — and a plethora of committees appointed for various functions, many changing from year to year. The Lower Consulate is where most of the Symvoulio’s day-to-day obligations are fulfilled, from proposing and voting on legislation to record-keeping.
The main part of the Lower Consulate is the Assembly, which consists of delegations sent by the legislative bodies of each of the six kingdoms. In Anaxi Politics, the lower consulate is populated by the two houses of parliament, generally including all (interested) Incumbents and the Vyrdag committee of the Assembly.
Numerous other organizations exist within the lower consulate, like the Agricultural and Peace Councils, and the Council for the Preservation of the Lower Races. In addition, other committees exist, changing from year to year as needs be. As the situation demands, these may consist of local officials, diplomats, academics, etc. In general, it is the responsibility of the Upper Consulate to appoint the appropriate officials for the year’s committees, although in practice this task is often delegated; in Anaxas, it is not uncommon for members of the house of parliament to have a say in who attends.
A sprawling secretariat exists for the managing of records, day-to-day administrative duties, and other secretarial matters.
The Vyrdag convenes annually during the rainy season of Loshis and Hamis. The majority of the three consulates is expected to flock to the capital city of the current Symvoul, or else send representatives in their stead. Members of the Upper Consulate, such as kings and queens, are unlikely to make the move and remain abroad through both months; however, members of the Middle and Lower consulates are expected to attend at least one of the two months, unless they have medical concerns, familial obligations, or other sufficient reason to stay home.
The six kingdoms do not, to say the least, get along very smoothly.
While Gior has been an active member of the Symvoulio for the last three centuries and more, their isolationist and increasingly nationalistic tendencies chafe with the other kingdoms. Hox is an historically reluctant participant, and does not easily share its stoic, collectivist philosophy with the rest of the Symvoulio, particularly the sister kingdoms of Anaxas and Bastia.
Anaxas and Bastia are long-time allies. Hesse and Anaxas have a history of war and struggle to cooperate, though Hesse and Gior are unlikely allies. Nearly all the kingdoms look up to Mugroba for its innovation, vibrant history, and diplomatic aplomb, but under this admiration may run a current of resentment.
Firstly, no human or (knowing) wick has ever sat on the Vyrdag in any capacity—period. However, matters concerning passives are more complex and have created issues among kingdoms in the past.
Gior’s priesthood is made up of passives, and therefore Gioran representatives in the Middle Consulate are passive galdori. While Mugrobi imbali are not trusted in formal political positions, they may find themselves in secretarial positions—positions in which less emphasis on honesty is a boon rather than a detriment.
For nations like Anaxas and Bastia, who fear and gate their passives, and even Hox, which, in addition to something like gating, believes passives to be the product of a curse, this presents problems. Such issues are coming out more and more as the Mugrobi Symvouli cycle officially begins; early 2720 will find many Anaxi, Bastian, and Hoxian dignitaries in Thul Ka, where imbali mingle (in environments like some colleges of Thul'Amat and many marketplaces) with galdori.
Popular thought holds that the Symvoulio has existed since the War of the Book, as an attempt to unify the remaining kingdoms in its aftermath. Its real origins are unknown; the earliest records of it are 580 AT. Citing traditions so ancient no trace of them exists now, the then-headmaster of Brunnhold called for a “Vyrdag“—an Old Estuan word signifying “the day of Vachran”, or a rare day when Vachran was visible in the sky and when ancient Vitans would convene to discuss matters of importance.
The Symvoulio was established in its modern form officially in the fifteenth century, when four kingdoms—Anaxas, Mugroba, Hesse, and Bastia—elected a country to “lead” them and convened once a year.
Gior joined in 2402 under Jolenke Huane, when the Da Huane family came to power. Hox joined much more recently, at the turning of the Cycle in 2710; the northernmost kingdom had been absent from participation in the Symvoulio for almost 350 years. Now, the Symvoulio unifies all six inhabited, reachable kingdoms.
Glossary of Terms
- Rainy Season — The months of Loshis and Hamis, when the Vyrdag meets annually in the capital city of the Symvoul. Also known as the “political season”, and the “Flood Season” in Mugroba.
- The Six Kingdoms — The six kingdoms which are a part of the Symvoulio: Anaxas, Bastia, Gior, Hesse, Hox, and Mugroba.
- Symvoul — That constituent kingdom which is the current seat of the Symvoulio. Elected by a committee of delegates from all six kingdoms, it changes every ten years.
- Symvoulio — The six kingdoms’ unifying government system.
- Vyrdag — The governing body of the Symvoulio, composed of three consulates. Also refers to the political convention that takes place every year during the rainy season, in the capital city of the Symvoul, as it is a convention of the Vyrdag.