Easter was celebrated yesterday by the Imperial Family, and across the Empire.
Easter Sunday, which is an official public holiday in Austenasia, was celebrated with members of the Boxall family (the relatives of the Emperor Mother) visiting the Imperial Residence, where a meal of roast lamb was eaten. Chocolate Easter eggs had already been handed out amongst the Imperial Family at the start of the day.
Commemorating the Resurrection of Jesus Christ, the day was also observed with attendance at church services. His Imperial Majesty the Emperor went to a midnight service on Saturday evening at the Greek Orthodox Church of Ss Constantine and Helen, and the other members of the Imperial Family went to a morning service at Carshalton Methodist Church. Crown Princess Caroline was given a bag of chocolate eggs by the Emperor to share amongst the children at the latter church.
Despite four separate pieces of land joining the Empire only yesterday, Austenasia has expanded once again this evening with the annexation of East Wrythe.
This piece of land, comprised of a garden, has been annexed as an exclave of Wrythe, situated roughly a third of a mile from the main town, on a large island of the River Wandle which was named the Island of Wrythe on 10 January earlier this year.
This is the first time that the territorial composition of Wrythe has changed since March 2011, when a small piece of land bordering Wrythe granted to the Slinky Empyre was re-annexed after the latter polity collapsed.
East Wrythe is adjacent to the house of Queen Emma I of Copan, and has been granted extraterritoriality as an embassy of Copan. Although under Austenasian sovereignty, Copanese law will apply for as long as East Wrythe remains an embassy. This is the first embassy (not counting the symbolic Crepundia) to be founded in the Empire.
Seven people and over 64,000 square feet of land have joined the Empire of Austenasia in four simultaneous annexations.
In Canada, a new Crown Dependency known as Shineshore has been annexed. Situated on the shore of Lake Ontario, it is the first time that the Empire has had a coastline of any sort, and a prospective naval force is currently being discussed. Shineshore, with a population of five, is governed by Lord Alastair Cranston.
Lord Alastair is also owner of a second addition to the Empire, the Territory of Beith Craobh Iostan on the Scottish isle of Coll. This land features a newly-built holiday house, uninhabited for most of the year.
The third expansion made by the Empire has been to the already existing Territory of Emperorsland, which has annexed the adjacent house lived in by its governor, Lord Hengest Crannis (formerly known as Karanys Dómynus and Theledir the Wight). The annexation of this house has transitioned the Territory of Emperorsland into the Empire’s fifth Town, now known as Lichtenstein, of which Lord Hengest has been appointed Acting Representative.
The fourth annexation made by Austenasia this evening – all of which were put into effect by an Act of Parliament – has been of the Territory of Glencoe, ten square feet of land also in Scotland and owned by Lord Hengest. Neither Glencoe or Beith Craobh Iostan have had governors appointed to them due to no known suitable candidates living near enough to them.
Emma I was crowned Queen of Copan this afternoon by Emperor Jonathan I.
The Emperor, who appointed Emma I to the Copanese throne in June last year after Copan became independent from Wessaxon rule (along with the neighbouring state of the Grove), placed a silver crown on the Queen’s head with the words “As Emperor of Austenasia and Romanorum Imperator Occidentalis, I crown you Emma I, Queen of Copan.”
The coronation was held at Beddington Park in the United Kingdom. The capital of Copan is still flooded, and so an alternative place for the ceremony had to be found.
This is the first time that the Emperor of Austenasia has physically crowned a vassal monarch. Unlike the coronation of Jonathan I himself, which took place only a month after his ascension to the Throne, the coronation of Emma I has taken place just over nine months into her reign.
Today marks 10 years since the Midget victory in the First Battle of the Grove on 15 March 2004.
The battle, fought by the Midget Empire and their allies the Word Life Gang against a group known as the Girly Gang, took place in what is now the Plain of Copan in Orly, but was then known only as part of the Grove Park in Carshalton.
This was the final battle in a war which had begun in May 2003 when lands claimed by the Word Life Gang had been invaded and occupied by the Girly Gang. The Midget Empire agreed to come to the Word Life Gang’s aid when its own borders were also breached by the Girly Gang.
The Girly Gang numbered about twenty, whereas the allied forces combined outnumbered them by five or six. However, the battle took place after lunch during a school trip, and the teachers supervising the trip detained Midget Master Daniel and much of the Word Life Gang before the battle started due to Daniel having led a pre-emptive attack on their enemies using sticks as swords.
Although a sizeable amount of the allied forces had been detained, Emperor Jonathan I – then known as Commander Jonathan – led the remainder of the troops in the battle against the Girly Gang as Daniel’s deputy, building a small base in nearby trees and implementing battle plans with the leaders of the Word Life Gang.
Despite being greatly outnumbered, the allies managed to hold out against the Girly Gang for a long time with diversionary and guerrilla tactics until they were finally pushed back to their base. Just as Jonathan’s forces became surrounded, Daniel and the other detained soldiers charged across the field from the lunch site, having been allowed to go by the teachers. The Girly Gang were caught in a pincer movement and forced to surrender.
The Girly Gang were made to cede land to the Midget Empire and Word Life Gang, and shortly afterwards dissolved. The Midget Empire emerged as the dominant power in the playground in which it was based, and when Daniel abdicated later that year, Jonathan’s popularity from his leadership in the battle ensured that he became the Second Midget Master, reigning until he left the school in July 2006.
A commemoration on the battlefield had been planned, but the current floods in Copan have made this impossible.
The First Battle of the Grove is the earliest battle to have taken place in the Carshalton Nations the date of which is known with precision. Two subsequent Battles of the Grove (the second usually referred to without a number to distinguish it, and the third more commonly known as the Battle for Orly) took place during the Austenasian Civil War and the War of the Orlian Reunification respectively, in May and in December 2010.
Parliament has passed an Act founding a Privy Council as an advisory body to the Emperor.
The Council contains Countess Eritoshi, Emperor Mother Margaret, Emperor Father Terry, Taeglan I, Lord Marshal William, and several other politicians and friendly foreign leaders.
Appointment to the Council will be at the absolute discretion of the Emperor. The Privy Council has no power to issue legally binding advice, but can give suggestions to the Emperor which he will consider.
Sir Alexander Reinhardt is a founding citizen of the Federal Republic of St.Charlie, who helped to lead the revolution in November 2008 that overthrew the old Kingdom.
Prime Minister from 2009 to 2011, and then again from 2012 to 2013, Reinhardt was recently elected the fourth President of St.Charlie, taking office on 8 March.
The Empire and St.Charlie have engaged in formal diplomacy since August 2009, signing a treaty of mutual friendship and co-operation in December later that year. The Austenasian Times has conducted an exclusive interview with the new president:
Austenasian Times: First things first: how did your inauguration ceremony go? We’ve seen a photograph uploaded to Facebook, but who was present and what took place?
Reinhardt: It was pretty good, I guess! First Judge Michele Vicentini was there, then we had President Lunam with Deputy PM Nicolò Alvisi and two other citizens who came directly from Tor Pendente, one of them was an Observer journalist. The Secretary of the FUCM [a St.Charlian trade union] was also there. We had the swearing, then I signed the official documents and we had dinner together. The inauguration was followed by a party, but some of us don’t remember all of it, to be fair.
Haha, sounds fun. Now, for the sake of those who are not aware, what are your functions in St.Charlie as President?
St.Charlie is a federal parliamentary republic. As such, my duty as President is not only to nominate the Government, and protect the Constitution, but also to represent the nation and its unity. While it could be seen a very ceremonial figure, the President is literally the physical representation of St.Charlie in the micronational sphere.
Some observers have regarded St.Charlie as recently being on the decline in terms of governmental activity and international influence. What would your response to them be?
We’ve all grown up a bit, which led to a decline in terms of online presence, so it is true that there is a difference with the past years. However, this doesn’t mean that we’re not as active as before internally, which I think is the most important thing to preserve in a micronation. We’ve become a bit like our long-time friend and ally, Flandrensis: we exist, we do things as usual, but we don’t publish it much, and many see it as a decline in internal activity. It’s more complicated than what it looks like.
It’s good to know we’re not in any danger of losing you all! PoliNation 2014 in Italy is only a few months away, an event which you are helping to organise. What else do we have to look forward to during your term of office?
My predecessor, James Lunam, did a wonderful job in preserving the identity of our nation. However, he was mostly seen in the Italophone sector. For instance, he recently set up a journalism award for Italian micronationalists named after Nick Maggiore. I am planning to continue his policy, but increase my presence in the English sector too.
Finally, you have been with the modern St.Charlie right from the beginning, when you took part in the movement that transitioned the old Kingdom into the current Federal Republic. Over five years have passed – are you pleased with how St.Charlie has grown in that time?
Yes, I am very pleased with what we have now. Most micronations die with their founders, and we have reached the point where even those who weren’t there in 2008 are political leaders and active citizens. So far, it’s probably the thing I am most proud of.
Good luck for your term, your excellency, and thank you for your time.
Thanks a lot!