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The Republic of Whittvale

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NOTE: This factbook is a work in progress, and will be updated regularly.


The Republic of Whittvale


1. Etymology

The name Whittvale stems from the nation's geographical position, stradling the river Whitt. 

2. Geography

The nation of Whittvale can de dealt into three distinct regions. The Vale, a vast stretch of gently rolling hills is made up of the river Whitt and her tributaries. To the North of the Vale are the Uplands, more rugged terrain covered in forests, with its population centers tucked in its own valleys. The main river in this region is the river Thunn, which flows into the Whitt at Thunnsmouth. Finally, the Highlands, top the south of the country is made of a large plateau opening up to the Vale. 

3. History


"Centuries of expansion and feudal consolidation finally came to an end with the liberal revolutions of the 19th century, chrystalising and forming the current Republic of Whittvale."

Whittvale's archeological record goes as far back as 3,500 bc with the oldest finds coming from sites in the Upland Counties along tributaries of the Whitt and Thunn rivers. Evidence of stone tools, pottery and bureal mounds paint a picture of a tribal society which may have settled down and adopted agriculture as early as 2,800 bc. Distinct groupings can be made between the settled peopled of the area, dealt neatly into the Whitt and Thunn cultures. The first large settlements also go back to this period, some of which are still inhabited today. The origins of Whittvale's counties go back to this tribal period.

By 500 ad the first signs of more organised settlement start to manifest in the petty-kingdoms, which would later become the Duchies. The oldest and most imposing site, the walled city of Olde-Canley, was the seat of the Petty Kingdom of Whittan and dates back to the fifth century ad. A common trend to many of the walled settlements was the distinct multi-layered earthworks which surrounded the oppidium-like cities. From these expansive sights, the Petty Kings excercised their power throughout the Vales, consolidating their power over the centuries until they formed rigid fuedal societies around their leaders. At this point, Christianity began to spread throughout Whittvale.

A notable exception the trend of feudalisation are the southernmost reaches of Whittvale along the country's southern coast. The rugged terrain enabled the villages and towns to excercise more freedom, later deveopling into Free Counties. The cities that formed along the southern coast turned their focus to the trading and other maritime affairs. The maritime influences on this region can be seen in the cuisine, archetecture and festivities of the southern cities. In the Thunn Vale, in the north of what is now Whittvale, the process of consolidation took much longer due to several factors including the rural nature of the area, lower population and the Thunn being a much smaller river which made it harder to navigate, hampering trade. The Thunn counties would remain free until the sixteenth century when they too would fall under the influence of the Whitt kings.

By the tenth century, the Petty Kingdom of Whittan's influence over the Vale had increased to the point where the Kings of Whittan were for all intents and purposes the de facto kings of the Whitt Vale, the other rulers paying hommage to them. Whittan had reached this point through a careful web of adventagious marriages, trade agreements and being on the right side of the many conflicts that raged throughout the Vale. This hold was solidified in 1325 with the first Act of Unification, forming the Kingdom of the Whitt under King Edmund I. The new kingdom's capital was quickly moved from Olde-Canley to the centrally located city of Saint Albans-in-the-Vale where the first royal court was established. The former Petty-Kingdoms were allowed to continue to exist as duchies in the new kingdom. The families were permitted to maitain their rule over their lands as vassals under the new high king.

With the consolidation of the Kingdom of the Whitt to the south, the Thunn counties slowly coagulated into its own unified political entity. In 1310 the heads of the counties came together to discuss their future at Farthing castle. The Farthing Acts would see the counties come together to form an elective monarchy along the Thunn Vale, mirroring that of their southern neighbors. The elective system would be upheld for almost two centuries until the polittical and dynastic influence of the Counts of Krenth saw a change towards a de facto heriditary monarchy with its capital in Krenth-on-Sea which was formally adopted in 1510. The Kingdom of the Thunn would retain some rights of the free counties, however by this time the free counts had lost much of their power to the cities and their guilds, offering little resistance to their adoption into the newly formed kingdom.

While the Kingdom of the Whitt had consolidated into a more or less unified entity by the sixteenth century, the formation of a centrally unified kingdom in the north exaserbated existing problems which had gone back to antiquity. Border skirmishes and clashes between counties along the two kingdom's respective marches had been the most pressing of these issues, and with the newfound authority of the two kingdoms, this could finally be effectively addressed. The first effort to see these skirmishes put to an end came in the form of correspondance between the two courts, and the subsiquent tightening of authority on the march counts on both sides of the border. Further efforts to bring the two kingdoms together would go on until the first royal marriage between the northern and southern kingdoms in 1548, forming the Kingdom of the Two Vales.

By the dawn of the nineteenth century, a number of factors led to friction between the different socio-economic classes within the kingdom, and led to a degree of unrest. Firstly, many counties had been incorpoerated into the lands of the respective rulers through inheritance over centuries of marriages, giving the monarchs more power over time. Secondly, industrialisation led to liberal movements sprouting up in the larger cities as people left the countryside in pursuit of work, as land owners and the nobility accrued more land. By now the influence of the church had also increased to the point where the local peasantry had little prospect of owning their own lands, let alone the ability to purchase their own parcels. The increasing population in urban centers led to increased demands from the mercantile class, who together with members of the lesser and landless nobility, organised and called for their ancient rights of redress, which fell mostly upon deaf ears. By the middle of the nineteenth century, tensions reached a boiling point and the first act of open rebellion against the feudal system broke out in mass riots and the Storming of the Moresby Castle in 1856. This rebellion came ended four years later with the abdication of the royal family, the end of monarchy in Whittvale, and curbing of the church's institutional power in the state. The churhces lands were greatly reduced, dealt up and granted to locals in the lower and middle strata of society. Further reforms saw the counties reformed from noble entities to federal subjects of the republic, though the nobility was allowed to retain some estates to their name, and their titles which remained a symbol of their former power. 


4. Government

The Whitt government is split into the executive, legislative and judicial branches. The executive branch of the government is headed by the office of the prime minister, who leads the nation together with the chancellor. The prime minister is indirectly voted into office by the people, while the chancellor is appointed from the largest party in the opposition. The prime minister also appoints a deputy prime minister from his own coalition. Additionally, the country's ministries fall into the executive branch, with ministers appointed from the prime minister's cabinet. 

The legislative branch is dealt into the upper and lower chambers, the senate and the parliament respectively. The senate is made up of 60 senators, 10 per county, and the parliament is made up of 140 members of parliament, divided across the nation based on population. The senators are appointed from the former nobility, and are tied to their seats for life to ensure stability within the Whitt political system. The members of parliament are voted for directly by the population during elections. The two legislative bodies have equal power within the government, and must come to concensus on new legislation before it can be passed into law.

Finally, the judicial branch is made up of 6 County Courts, and finally, the High Court of Whittvale. 


5. Military

The defense of Whittvale and her people is the mandate of the Whittvale Armed Forces. The WAF consists of five branches, the Ground Component, Air Component, Naval Component, Medical Component and National Gendarmerie.  The Whitt constitution gives the WAF the right to use lethal force for the protection of Whittvale and her citizens, and to assist in times of national disaster. The head of the WAF is legally required to be a civilian at the time of service, with the five deputy heads of the armed forces being the highest ranking officers of the various components. 

Economy - How do your citizens earn their income?

Demographics - More details about your citizens

Culture - What do your people like doing?

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