|Flag||Coat of arms|
Royal Motto: For God and my people.
- Royal Palace
Largest conurbation (pop.)
Devolved unitary state
|Head of State||HINM King Henry V|
|Head of Government||The Rt Hon Geoffrey Middleton, Prime Minister|
- Union with Nieland
- Union with Gudrof
- Secession of Gudrof
|24 March 1986|
25 June 1562
|Constitution||Constitution Act, 1986|
|Legal Tradition||Mix of common and civil law|
English, Anguistian, Nielandic
Isselmerian, several others
Day of Happy Regrets
19 May (985)
25 June (1562)
24 March (1986)
15 February (999)
12 December (1349)
|Sterna sterna canescens|
|Pinus sylvestris huisensis|
|Patron Saint||St Silvester of Lucca|
- % Water
Sunset NSDossier NSTracker
|GDP (USD, 2007)
- Per capita
|CHDI (May 2006)||0.990 (very high) (1st)|
|PDAS rating (July 2007)||A|
| 1 lethse (L/£) = 100 pence (p)|
|Time Zone||GMT/UTC -0100|
- ISO 3166-1 alpha-2
- ISO 3166-1 alpha-3
- ISO 3166-1 numeric
|Calling Code||+92, +902|
The United Kingdom of Isselmere-Nieland (UKIN), formerly the United Kingdom of South Lethe, is a sovereign North Atlantic devolved unitary state in southern Lethe, the largest of the Lethean Islands located midway between Iceland to the north and Ireland to the south, bordering the Principality of Gudrof to the southwest, the republics of Wingeria and Hoblingland to the north, the Lethean Sea to the east, and the Solquist Sea to the west. The UKIN is often referred to as Isselmere-Nieland, or more rarely as the United Kingdom, primarily to avoid confusion with the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland and other united kingdoms.
The UKIN is a constitutional monarchy. Its present dynasty, the House of Glaines-Oldmarch, dates back to the Act of Settlement, 1557, although the Isselmerian line along the combined patrilineal-matrilineal ancestry dates back much earlier. The current quasi-federal state emerged from the Constitution Act of 1986 that separated the UKIN into the four autonomous regions of Anguist, Detmere, Isselmere, and Nieland. Constitutionally, Anguist and Detmere are still part of the Kingdom of Isselmere.
Historically, Isselmere-Nieland has been aloof from most international matters, but in recent years circumstances have forced the United Kingdom into a more active and interventionist role in world politics. The UKIN is currently a member of several alliances, most importantly the Organisation of Maritime Powers and the Woodstock Pact.
The UKIN is a socially progressive country with a very highly developed economy. Isselmere-Nieland is noted within Lethe for its publishing and automotive industries, although its information technology and shipbuilding sectors have achieved some foreign successes.
- 1 History
- 2 Geography
- 3 Population
- 4 Culture
- 5 Education
- 6 Politics
- 7 Law
- 8 Administrative divisions
- 9 Symbols, customs, etc.
- 10 Economy
- 11 Communication networks
- 12 Foreign relations
- 13 Defence
- 14 Travellers' provisos
- 15 Notes
|For prehistoric Isselmere-Nieland, please see Prehistoric Lethean Islands.|
|For the origins of Isselmere-Nieland, please see the History of Isselmere-Nieland.|
|For the history of Parliament, please see Parliament, A History.|
Isselmere-Nieland has found itself embroiled in several wars over the past century. During World Wars I and II as well as the Korean War, the country’s small armed forces fought alongside those of the British Empire to the extent that many thought the smaller island kingdom was part of its southern neighbour. In more recent years, the United Kingdom became involved in battles between the Organisation of Maritime Powers (OMP), of which the UKIN is a member, and other alliances.
The first contemporary war in which the UKIN fought was an absolute disaster. On behalf of the OMP, the government sent an entire fleet to Arabia in an effort to contain forces operating between North Africa and the Persian Gulf only to lose it off the Horn of Africa to hypersonic ordnance dropped by high altitude, high speed bombers, the practicality of which had been neglected by engineers from the Royal Shipyards and Lyme and Martens. Consequently, the UKIN had to leave the battle to its more powerful brother states. Approximately 104 vessels and over 30,000 lives were lost in that one engagement.
In the next battle, this time in defence of Sarzonia against Cam III, the UKIN was much more successful. With Sarzonia being threatened by orbital bombardment, the Isselmere-Nielander Orbital Defence Force moved to engage Cam III space assets, leading to the withdrawal of the aggressor nation from the conflict.
Subsequently, the UKIN threw its weight behind the effort to protect Feline Catfish from a host of states purportedly seeking to prevent nuclear proliferation. Once again, the effort was completely unsuccessful, with the UKIN and other nations considered aggressors. The involvement of Automagfreek led to the dispersal of many of the two parties and the “war” collapsed into a battle of threats and counter-threats, culminating in Feline Catfish’s reclusion.
The next conflict in which the UKIN involved itself was the Bausch Rebellion. A Sarzonian colony, Bausch sought to separate from the Incorporated States following the passage of gay rights legislation. In the end, the situation was resolved before the Isselmere-Nieland armed forces became heavily embattled.
Another civil war erupted in Sarzonia, this time led by the Restore Sarzonia Task Force (RSTF). The RSTF had similar aims to the Bauschian rebels and had succeeded in capturing President Mike Sarzo. Pacitalian special forces and a Hamptonian special contingent succeeded in disrupting the RSTF plans. Meanwhile, the RINN managed to lose four battleships to a much smaller rebel force, a defeat that continues to serve as a reminder to both the Royal Shipyards and RINN. Twenty thousand lives were lost in that engagement.
The UKIN swiftly fell into another internecine conflict, the Inkanan Civil War. The then Democratic Labour government sought to assist the Inkanan monarchy against the Confederate insurgency alongside Sarzonia. Supporting the Confederacy were Doomingsland and the Generic Empire, although neither nation was overtly involved. The Royal Isselmere-Nieland Navy’s Fleet Air Arm and Royal Isselmere-Nieland Marines (RINM) struck against the Confederate forces, but many air assets were either destroyed by a sudden long-range assault by the Doomingsland air force. On the ground, the RINM Pathfinders were annihilated in running battles with the Confederate Army before completing any of its missions whilst the RINN had to beach many of its roll-on/roll-off vehicle carriers to provide the main RINM assault group with the armoured support to fend off ever increasing numbers of Confederate land forces. After the war, the UKINDF hierarchy blamed the restrictions imposed upon it by the royal Inkanan government. Both the Democratic Labour government and its Union (i.e. Conservative and Liberal) successors determined that incompetent leadership was the cause of the UKIN’s second greatest defeat. The dead numbered at least 35,000.
More recently, Isselmere-Nieland embroiled itself briefly in another war, mostly of words, to ensure the independence of Czardas before a combined force of CAD members compelled that nation to submit.
The UKIN dominates the southern third of the main island, Lethe. The Ungforth Marshes have historically protected the northwestern frontier of the United Kingdom from the Republic of Wingeria, whilst the north and northwest borders face Hoblingland. The Lethean, Tichonian, or East Irish Sea washes upon the eastern coastline as the Solquist Sea crashes upon that of the west. To the southwest of the UKIN is the small, sovereign Principality of Gudrof.
Isselmere-Nieland possesses a stark natural beauty. Most of the United Kingdom is gentle hill country broken by broad river valleys and a few wide plateaux. Much of Anguist and Detmere, as well as the north and northeastern provinces of Isselmere are ridden with moors, the largest of these being the Ungforth Marshes. Historically, these wetlands have provided the inhabitants with a ready source of fuel from peat and a cultural focus. The east of Detmere and northeast of Isselmere are riddled with lakes, whilst the Solquist Sea coast of Nieland is riven with fjords, as well as several deep rivers running from vast lakes into the sea.
The United Kingdom does possess several features of interest, some beautiful, some distinctly unhealthy. The most notable of these sites are the aforementioned Ungforth Marshes forming the northern reaches of Anguist, the Quismond Mountains dividing Nieland from Isselmere, solitary Mount Thurbel standing amidst the Sarpathian plain in the middle of Isselmere, and Lake Bormunst, a circular body of water in northeastern Detmere.
For most travellers, the Ungforth Marshes are certainly unhealthy. An experienced and prepared researcher will find, however, they do have a charm all their own. Beyond being a perfect breeding ground for midges, the Marshes are home to a wide assortment of strange fauna. Amongst the unique mammals and birds is a diminutive, endangered species of deer, the Ungforth or Barley-tail deer (Rangifer angfortensis). The marshlands themselves are mostly peat bogs. These bogs were used by early Anguistians and Anglo-Frisians as a source of fuel, as noted above, and copper and as well as for human and animal sacrifices and executions.
The Quismond Mountains are an extinct chain of volcanoes that evince the fiery origins of the Lethean Islands. The range has endured many millennia of erosion by wind, precipitation, and glaciers, reducing many of its constituent peaks to mere shadows of their original grandeur. Even so, the mountains do make a comfortable home to the ash pika (Ochotona quismondi) and the Apphelian ibex (Capra appeligensis).
Mount Thurbel, a dormant shield volcano, stands apart from the Quismond Mountains in the midst of the Sarpathian plain, where it forms the highest natural point in the UKIN (2427 m). Studies have indicated that Thurbel is the remnant of the eruptions from which the archipelago emerged. Consequently, it is a subject of great interest to local vulcanologists.
Due to Thurbel's unassuming height and absence of threat — it no longer even smoulders — most tourists ignore the site. Despite its volcanic inactivity, Thurbel feeds many nearby geothermal springs reputed to have therapeutic qualities and which create a veritable botanical paradise around the mountain. Many Isselmere-Nielanders unable to venture south during the dreary winter months visit the natural baths and are understandably loath to acquaint casual travellers with the tradition.
Lake Bormunst was created by a meteoroid impact approximately a hundred thousand years after the eruption that formed Lethe. The lake and its surrounding area are an important region for mineralogical exploitation. Before industrialisation, Lake Bormunst had been home to a species of trout (Salmo argenti), but mining and overfishing led rapidly to its extinction.
Isselmere-Nieland has a sub-arctic-to-temperate climate thanks primarily to the Gulf Stream. The UKIN receives precipitation of one form or another most of the year, with skies being overcast up to three-fifths of the year. The western coast facing the Atlantic Ocean, comprising the regions of Anguist and Nieland, receives the most rain, occasionally as much as 3000 mm per year. The southern and eastern coasts of the Lethean Sea typically receive about 2600 mm annually. Unsurprisingly, all three national languages have many words for precipitation and cold that they share liberally amongst one another.
Although the weather does tend towards the wet, it is highly variable, mostly due to strong winds blown in by the North Atlantic Current. Travellers are advised to dispense with umbrellas and to adopt raingear such as macintoshes instead.
During the summer months, the UKIN can be infested with midges, especially in northern Anguist near the vast moors of the Ungforth Marshes. The midges are more of a nuisance than a health hazard, but they can be disconcerting to first-time visitors.
Many Isselmere-Nielanders are greatly concerned about the possibility of global warming as many communities and industries are located along the country’s shores. The government's Meteorological Institute is studying the matter closely.
At present, 34.1 per cent of the land is considered arable, with a further 2.3 per cent being actively cultivated, and 63.6 per cent of the United Kingdom's territory falling into the broad other category of urban areas, barren terrain, etc.
|See also Demographics of Isselmere-Nieland.|
Blessed by history with stable government and by fate with remoteness from much Continental European strife, Isselmere-Nielanders tend towards conservatism and isolationism, despite often being known for their ebullient good humour when meeting strangers. These contradictions – socially progressive but culturally conservative, isolationist but welcoming – may perplex some travellers to the United Kingdom, as will the wet weather and the importance of regional and local identity to some Isselmere-Nielanders.
The majority of Isselmere-Nielanders (89.1 per cent) reside in urbanised areas, a trend that is increasing with every year. Despite agricultural subsidies intended to keep rural communities intact and to maintain farm production, economic successes and the rapid increase of mechanised farming techniques since 1908 have contributed the decline of rural populations.
Five largest megalopoleis
- Greater Daurmont (Isselmere) - 46.7 million
- Chilton-Mithesburgh-Grimsby Downs (Anguist) - 38.3 million
- Paskenby-Felsingburgh-Sleethaven (Nieland) - 32.5 million
- Fennerby-Blackridge-Gorman (Detmere) - 27.9 million
- Cosgreave-Thistlemoor-Coalsport (Isselmere) - 26.8 million
Sex, gender, and marriage
Like their Continental co-religionists — the Calvinist Netherlands, Lutheran Scandinavia, and Catholic Spain, Italy and France — Isselmere-Nieland takes a practical view regarding matters of (biological) sex, gender, sexual preference, and transsexuality. As in those countries, not all Isselmere-Nielanders approve of the official governmental opinion, but tolerance if not out-and-out acceptance is by far the norm.
Within the United Kingdom, there are 0.95 males on average to every female, with an approximately equivalent male-to-female birth ratio. Females have a lower infant mortality rate than males (2.87 per thousand as opposed to 3.1 for males) and live on average about 6.2 years longer.
In matters of sex and the law, the State has striven towards equality of treatment. Women across Isselmere-Nieland received the vote in 1917 in an effort to bolster wavering support for involvement in World War I. Until 2006, both men and women were subject to National Service. Sexual selection of foetuses is strictly prohibited by law as is their genetic modification unless such is to correct a known defect.
Sexual freedoms and reproductive rights have slowly expanded throughout the twentieth-century. Termination of pregnancy without cause up to six weeks from conception has been legal since the Abortion Act, 1971, so long as the procedure is performed within a hospital or clinic.
The State officially recognises yet does not fund sex change operations, termed sexual reconfiguration in government literature. Sexual reconfiguration, which includes elective cosmetic surgery on sexual characteristics (i.e. breast implants), is open only to persons who have attained the age of majority and whom are deemed to have sufficient mental capacity to understand the certain changes and potential risks involved in such surgery. Since this policy was introduced in 2001, there have only been two instances wherein the State has challenged an individual's right to sexual reconfiguration. The Reproductive Rights and Technologies Act has regulated abortion and sexual reconfiguration since 1984.
Since 2004, homosexual and transsexual civil marriages (marriages conducted by civil rather than religious authorities) are considered on equal terms with heterosexual marriages. With the Disestablishment Act, 2003, the State admitted that it cannot oblige any religious institution to perform homosexual marriages owing to the rather rigid separation of Church and State outlined by that statute. Polygamy, whether polygyny or polyandry, is still illegal.
According to the last census, 1.72 per cent of the population has undergone full sexual reconfiguration, a further 0.14 per cent are awaiting the operation or are considering it, another 9.46 per cent are homosexual, 5.53 per cent are bisexual, and 1.49 per cent are avowedly asexual, including members of the clergy and religious orders.
Isselmere-Nieland is a multicultural society that prides itself on tolerance. Consequently, ethnicity is a difficult topic to contend with in the United Kingdom. Broadly, the population according to the latest census (2001) falls into the following general categories:
- White: 82.7%
- Black: 6.2%
- East Asian ancestry: 5.9%
- South Asian ancestry: 5.2%
The lines between the White, Black, and Asian ethnic groups are vague owing to the degree of inter-marriage between the groups, with the census either reflecting self-identification by the respondents or the opinion of the census-taker. Most people within Isselmere-Nieland identify themselves either as Isselmere-Nielanders or with their region of birth or residence.
The comparative absence of ethnic diversity found in many other states has been attributed to the weather. Indeed, Isselmere-Nielanders tend to holiday elsewhere, particularly in Sarzonia and other warm sunny climes, whenever possible.
|See also Religion in Isselmere-Nieland and History of Isselmere-Nieland.|
Reformed Church of Isselmere
|Free thought||Agnosticism, atheism||15.03|
Despite the disestablishment of the Reformed Church of Isselmere in 2003, religion still plays an important role in the lives of the majority of Isselmere-Nielanders. Towns and cities throughout the country are embroidered with churches, temples, synagogues, mosques, gurdwaras, and other sites of worship. Organised religions are gradually losing ground to alternatives, notably agnosticism, atheism, deism, and neo-paganism.
As the table to the right demonstrates, the majority of Isselmere-Nielanders consider themselves Christian. The largest Christian community is that of the formerly established denomination the Reformed Church of Isselmere (RCI), a Calvinist denomination, finding its greatest number of followers in Detmere and Anguist. Most Nielander Christians belong to the RCI or the Lutheran Church of Nieland, which was formerly the established church of Nieland. Isselmere plays host to a large number of sects that emerged from the RCI following the Reformation, which is covered in greater detail in the History of Isselmere-Nieland.
The Jewish community in the United Kingdom has diminished significantly in the past half-century. From the largest non-Christian faith to one of the smaller communities, demographers have traced the relative decline of the Jewish faith to the declining birth rate amongst those of European descent and the prevalence of other faiths amongst immigrant groups since 1954.
By contrast, the Muslim, Sikh, and Buddhist communities in Isselmere-Nieland have experienced a marked growth since 1945 as immigration from within and outwith Europe has increased. Buddhism and Islam have both received a number of converts from other religions, particularly Christianity.
Still, the most telling rise has been in the number of self-styled agnostics and atheists, deists, and traditionalists practising neo-pagan religions. The number of free-thinkers has blossomed since the Disestablishment Act. Statisticians believe the numbers to be grossly inflated by disenchanted followers of many religions or simply the disinterested.
Celto-Germanic neo-pagan cults and covens have grown rapidly from their origins during the Romantic reaction to the changes of the nineteenth-century, but most Isselmere-Nielanders tend to view such groups derisively, especially in Anguist.
|See also Languages of Isselmere-Nieland.|
The predominant first or mother language amongst Isselmere-Nielanders is either English or Isselmerian (88.56 per cent), followed distantly by Punjabi (2.27 per cent), Cantonese (2 per cent), Nielandic (1.72 per cent), Arabic (1.47 per cent), Anguistian (1.4 per cent), Mandarin (1.38 per cent), and a variety of Slavic languages (1.2 per cent). English, Anguistian, and Nielandic are the official languages of Isselmere-Nieland.
English is the de facto and de jure lingua franca for the entire United Kingdom and its possessions. All schoolchildren are required to receive instruction on the English language from their fourth year of formal education, as specified within the Constitution Act.
The United Kingdom is a cultured land that takes great pride in its artistic achievements. Isselmere-Nielanders consider themselves to be informed about culture, not only within their own land, but internationally as well. Educational policy emphasises the development of well-rounded individuals, including arts and sport as well as academic subjects. Support for the arts is predominantly a private endeavour, however, much to the consternation of many artists, writers, and academics who often deride the government for its myopic fiscal conservatism. Whilst the State does not usually promote the development of the arts, national museums and galleries receive sufficient funding to permit free admission, and ample security, and most private museums require only modest fees for admittance.
Of the arts, literature receives the most attention. The Royal Union Library boasts of a Hall of Writers with manuscripts of great Isselmere-Nielander and some foreign authors, including some contemporary works. Umbarton and Throckmorton's Great Authors in the Making (GAMUT) prize, established in 1915, is widely followed in the media, often to the detriment of international news. So entrenched is the Isselmere-Nielander love of books that many discussions begin with an enquiry about what book one is reading at the moment.
As private individuals, the Royal Family actively assists the advancement of the arts, supporting both the fine and popular arts, especially since the Royal Household renounced most of its last vestiges of control over censorship in 1986. The Royal Gallery contains many fine examples of the best of Isselmere-Nielander art. In a tradition dating back to 1905, the king presides over an annual awards presentation celebrating the best achievements in literature, non-fiction, and the plastic and performing arts.
Cinema and television receive some government funding to ensure that a measure of Isselmere-Nielander culture reaches into domestic households. For the most part, the Isselmere-Nielander Broadcasting Corporation (INBC) operates as an independent entity. It is, however, required by law to serve as an educator as well as an entertainer. Due to the central government's emphasis on education — typically the second or third budget priority after social equality and, sometimes, defence — the network's instructional function ensures it receives larger audiences than most private broadcasters.
Organised sport in Isselmere-Nieland is relatively recent, arising in the late nineteenth-century, but extremely popular. Association football, known simply as football in the UKIN, is the favourite sport of Isselmere-Nielanders, with Rugby football, in particular Rugby union, a close second. As in many countries throughout the world, football and Rugby union have local cognates in a host of ball sports played for many centuries between different groups, but until the "importation" of standardised rules for the aforementioned games, local sports were primarily ceremonial and customary in nature.
Golf has made great strides in Isselmere-Nieland as well, as has ice hockey in recent years, even though both are considered "seasonal" sports (summer and winter, respectively). Cricket is regaining some of its popularity, albeit losing some of its traditional reserve in the process owing to local conditions: balls are typically painted in violent day-glo colours to heighten visibility thus reducing possible injury. Baseball has failed to make a similar transition.
Isselmere-Nieland has not engaged in many international competitions as yet, chiefly because its low standing. In UEFA rankings, the UKIN stands somewhere above Liechtenstein and Luxembourg but below Albania, mostly due the the propensity of Isselmere-Nielander players to receive bookings.
|See also Education in Isselmere-Nieland.|
|Early Childhood Education|
|6 mo.-2 yrs.
|Primary School||5-11 yrs.||COPE1|
|Tertiary and Quaternary Education|
|1Certificate of Primary Education, 2Student Aptitudes General Assessment, 3Certificate of Secondary Education, 4Certificate of Advanced Secondary Education, 5Diploma of University Studies, 6Baccalaureate, Master, Doctorate|
Education, along with social equality, is a fundamental part of Union and regional government policy. Within the UKIN, the Union government outlines general policies and establishes certain curriculum standards through framework legislation, but it is commonly the responsibility of the devolved governments to enact and administer those policies and to regulate and institute the specifics governing education. Educational institutions are predominantly public (i.e., State funded), yet private institutions are permitted to operate so long as the students' basic educational requirements are met.
Broadly, there are four educational levels: early childhood education (ECE), primary education, secondary education, and higher education. All public levels are funded by both the Union and regional governments. Levels frequently consist of component stages or phases, during which teachers and parents monitor and assess the student's advancement. Compulsory education lasts from about five years of age to sixteen years of age, but most Isselmere-Nielander children continue on until the age of majority (eighteen years of age) and beyond.
Unlike many school systems, the Isselmere-Nielander educational year, which begins in September, may last until the middle of the subsequent August, depending upon the weather. Technological advancements have permitted distance education (tele-education), but most parents — and odder still, most students — would prefer the children to attend school even during the miserable winter months. Most students avail of the free and nutritional hot or cold meals served thrice daily in compulsory education establishments, resulting in improved youth health standards throughout the United Kingdom.
Early Childhood Education
Early childhood education is typically provided for children aged from two to five years of age. It is a non-compulsory stage that is well-supported by both parents and the State. Early childhood education programmes in Isselmere-Nielander universities blossomed with the introduction of the stage in 1961, which has been cited as one of the reasons for the UKIN's strong economic development and the social and educational success of many working class children.
In 1973, Parliament, in conjunction with industry, introduced a new crèche stage aimed at helping working single mothers return to the job sooner. Taking in children of twelve months of age, or in some instances younger, the phase has proven very successful.
Secondary language education may begin in nursery school. Both Anguist and Nieland offer bilingual education in their respective regional languages, and all four regions offer bilingual education in a number of other modern languages, including Latin and Pacitalian.
Primary education is first compulsory educational level. Prospective students ought to be five years of age before beginning their studies, although provisions permit children of four years of age who will turn five in the course of the school year to attend if they pass an initial assessment examination. Primary or elementary education usually comprises six years of learning (Years 1-6) and consists of two stages, a two-year Introductory Phase (Years 1-2) followed by a four-year Elementary Instruction Phase (Years 3-6).
Secondary language instruction begins at the primary level, typically by the third year but often before. Should primary instruction be predominantly in a language other than English, instruction in English grammar and language will begin by Year 4 in both public and certified private educational institutions.
Advancement to the subsequent Year is wholly dependent upon the student's demonstrated capabilities. The State-wide rate of failure (i.e., retention rate) is listed as 2.3 per cent across the entire six-year level. Students granted enhanced advancement (i.e., bypassing a school Year) comprise 1.8 per cent of all primary education students, with many gifted students opting for enriched programmes instead.
Students tend to begin secondary education at eleven years of age. Secondary education consists of three phases. The first two stages are of three years each (Forms 1-6), lasting generally until the official school-leaving age of sixteen years or the end of the currently attended school year, whichever comes last. The final stage provides a further two years of education to prepare students either for higher education or to train them for a skilled vocation.
The first two stages are taught within high schools or similar private institutions. The first is the Initial Assessment Phase (IAP; Forms 1-3). Beginning with this phase, pupils not currently enrolled in a modern language are required to choose one for their next six years of study. The IAP ends with comprehensive Student Aptitudes General Assessment (SAGA) examinations. SAGA examinations are intended to indicate the particular strengths and weaknesses of each student, directing him or her towards programmes best suited to his or her talents. Since November 1968, pupils are not streamed towards either academic or vocational programmes at this stage.
At the start of Form 3, students are requested to note which optional subjects they will take in the next phase of their education, the Academic Evaluation Phase (AEP; Forms 4-6). (After the SAGA examinations, students may re-visit and re-select their choices.) This second stage prepares students for another set of examinations, leading to a Certificate of Secondary Education (COSE).
Before November 1968, results from the COSE examinations stream pupils towards one of four types of college or senior secondary schools that make up the third phase of secondary education:
- academic, which prepares the student for an academic or general studies college;
- general, which allows the pupil the choice of attending an academic, general, or technical college;
- technical, which readies the student for administration, business, engineering, or the sciences; and,
- vocational for training skilled workers, technicians, and junior managers.
Since 1968, there are but two COSE examinations — general and technical — leading to either a general or technical college. Placement in one or the other college is not absolute and competent students may transfer between institutions, albeit not persistently.
The Collegiate Phase (Forms 7-8) culminates in a series of examinations leading to one of two Certificates of Advanced Secondary Education (CASE). Like the COSE examinations, before November 1968 there had been three options, general, technical, and vocational.
Concerns about the reliability of SAGA, COSE, and CASE examinations in determining the true capabilities of the examined pupils led to the establishment in 1968 of the UKIN Secondary Examinations Appeals Board (SEAB) that studies and rules upon appeals and complaints laid before the various boards and ministries of Education.
Tertiary and Quaternary
Tertiary and quaternary education serves many purposes, such as replenishing the liberal professions, advancing research in the arts and the sciences, and training senior technicians in other skilled careers. Secondary school graduates who have received their CASE or mature students who have obtained its equivalent — a Certificate for Adult Continuing or Higher Education (CACHE) — may proceed into higher education.
The type of institution of post-secondary education to which a prospective student might apply is typically dependent upon the sort of CASE or CACHE he or she has secured, although the prospective student may take proficiency examinations in order to either enter or transfer to a different institution. Each institution of higher education may decide its own procedures for selecting prospective students, so long as such methods conform to meritocratic standards and are not in and of themselves contrary to the Charter of Rights and Freedoms. Private religious-based establishments are permitted to require prospective students to be of a specific faith if it can be reasonably assumed that (a) different belief system(s) would be too disruptive or contrary to the main focus of the institution.
Establishments of post-secondary education fall into two broad categories — general and professional education — that are further sub-divided into institutions offering either short or long curricula. These institutions are:
Polytechnics and universities provide general instruction whilst university institutes and institutes train skilled professionals. Despite this apparent separation, polytechnical institutes, universities, and institutes fall under the rubric of higher education, whereas university institutes are typically considered vocational or professional establishments.
Since 1993, both public and private institutions of higher education require the payment of tuition and registration fees. In public institutions, the measure was meant to counteract both the declining educational budgets wrought by the economic recession of the late 1970s to late 1980s and the rising maintenance and resources costs in all fields. Still, public tuition is heavily subsidised, with the State paying up to 85 per cent of tuition costs for all students, whilst those requiring financial support or studying in certain fields may also receive grants, stipends, or low-interest loans from Union and/or regional governments. Private tuition and registration costs are monitored by provincial, regional, and Union governments to ensure the primary motive for cost is to maintain or improve the quality of education. The State subsidisation of private tuition is very uncommon.
Polytechnical institutes or polytechnics are the most numerous institutions of higher education, providing short two- to three-year programmes of instruction in general studies in the arts and sciences as well as some related vocations. Typically, polytechnics are independent establishments not affiliated with universities, although polytechnics graduates may continue their education in the latter institutions. Polytechnics may grant associate degrees (AD) or diplomas of university studies (DUS), but a small number have been accredited to offer baccalaureate degrees.
Most polytechnics are publicly-funded and -operated bodies typically administered by alderdoms or municipalities, but there are some private institutions as well. Such private establishments are usually run by and for the upper classes and receive little, if any, public funding, most of which is used to maintain the grounds. In recent years, two such elite polytechnics, Kenilworth and Wittering-Houlten, became acquisitions of the State when falling registration and mounting costs to upkeep the ancient buildings and gardens became insurmountable obstacles to their continued operation. Other private polytechnics are primarily operated by corporate collectives keen to promote pariochal paternalism.
In accordance with the Disestablishment Act, 2003, spiritually-based polytechnics, unlike religious primary and secondary schools, may not receive any public funding or donations from any governmental body, including the monarchy. Such institutions are, however, well-attended by scions of the aristocracy.
Unlike the polytechnics, university institutes or institutes of technology are commonly connected with a parent university. University institutes offer professional programmes to train nursery school instructors, skilled technicians and workers, production line engineers, junior managers, medical and dental assistants, or to prepare students who might wish to transfer to a university after graduating.
A typical university institute programme is of two-years duration, although some programmes may require three years of study before completion. University institute graduates receive diplomas (e.g., Diploma of University Studies in Automotive Maintenance) that may permit access to a university.
University institutes may request prospective students to fulfill certain entrance requirements, especially for early childhood education, medical and dental assistant, and line engineer programmes. Generally, these requirements are similar to those requested by the university institute's parent university. Most public university institute programmes depend on the marks the candidate received on their CASE examinations and their final three school years.
Universities form the highest level of official, degree-granting tertiary education, with several of the larger or more prestigious universities offering quaternary (post-doctorate) programmes. Many of the older universities are governed in accordance with a royal charter administered by the Council of State, whilst newer universities were established by either public or private bills.
The general duration for university programmes are as follows, each period being cumulative:
- Baccalaureate: 3 years
- Master: 2 years
- Doctorate: 5 years
These periods may vary depending on the course of study and the capacity of the student.
Institutes are typically post-graduate (i.e., post-master or, more frequently, post-doctorate) specialist training institutions. Such institutes are centres for applied and/or theoretical research, such as the Royal Institute for Epidemiology, or are professional training academies, such as the Royal Isselmere-Nieland Society of Physicians and Surgeons and the Isselmere-Nielander Advocates' Society Library.
|See also Administrative divisions or Government of Isselmere-Nieland.|
The UKIN is a quasi-federal representative constitutional monarchy founded upon the primacy of law embodied within its written constitution, statutes enacted by Parliament and enforced by the judiciary, and traditions passed down through the centuries. Elections to Parliament and bodies of local government are through direct universal adult suffrage.
Since 1986, the United Kingdom of Isselmere-Nieland possesses a written constitution that consolidates much of the broad host of laws and other documents as well as codifying some of the conventions that have become an essential part of parliamentary ceremony. The two constituent kingdoms of the United Kingdom, those of Isselmere and Nieland, became a hyphenated whole reflecting the political union of the crowns arising from the Act of Consolidation, 1562. The Act united the kingdoms' parliaments, with selected members of the Storting of Nieland joining those of the Isselmerian Convention of Estates in Pechtas Castle.
As the centuries passed, antipathy towards the Act of Consolidation grew, particularly within Nieland in spite of the generous degree of autonomy granted to that nation. Demands for the re-establishment of the Storting grew in strength when the Austrian Empire was forced to accede to Magyar pleas for a measure of independence with the creation of the Austro-Hungarian Empire. Pressures on the monarchy increased further with the Versailles Treaty of 1919 and the establishment of the Irish Free State in 1921. Agitation for greater freedom spread to Anguist and Detmere throughout the twentieth-century culminating in a welter of riots during the 1960s.
Parliament, urged on by King Robert V, finally addressed the concerns of various peoples in August 1977 with the formation of the Constitutional Commission. The Commission studied a variety of possible formulae before deciding eight years later upon the devolution of the United Kingdom into four autonomous regions. The Kingdom of Nieland was to remain whole as an administrative entity with the boundaries it possessed in 1562.
Unlike Nieland, the Commission divided much larger Kingdom of Isselmere into three autonomous regions, albeit without the formal constitutional dissolution of the kingdom. The lands of the ancient Kingdom of Anguist became a principality whilst those of the eleventh-century Kingdom of Detmere became a grand duchy. The remaining territories were entitled the Grand Duchy of Isselmere.
All this tinkering with the political map of the United Kingdom necessitated a revision of the line of succession. Mostly, these changes were in terms of titles rather than official precedence. Under the terms of the Constitution Act, the crown prince became His or Her Royal Grace (HRG) the Grand Duke or Duchess of Nieland, the second in line to the throne the Grand Duchess or Duke of Detmere, and the third in precedence became the Prince or Princess of Anguist. An additional change to the order of succession was introduced by Robert VI, one that was in keeping with the two kingdoms' history. Instead of strictly male primogeniture, the eldest offspring, irrespective of sex, would accede to the throne.
Members of the extended Royal Family typically serve as the heads of region known as Lords High Commissioners of Isselmere and Nieland. The eldest member of the cadet branch of the House of Oldmarch occupies the post of Lord High Commissioner of Nieland, whilst the eldest sibling of the reigning monarch sits as the Lord High Commissioner of Isselmere. The sovereign, by and with the advice of the sitting Union government, appoints the lords high commissioners of both Anguist and Detmere. By custom, both officials must be native to the respective regions they represent. These officials are, in fact, cabinet ministers responsible for those two regions. The day-to-day administration of all four regions is usually left to Lords Commissioners.
Since the promulgation of the Nielander Language Act, 2005, the United Kingdom of Isselmere-Nieland has three official languages, English (Isselmere-Nielander), Anguistian, and Nielandic. The Union Parliament still sits at Pechtas Castle (as does the Isselmerian Assembly, albeit within smaller chambers), and the judiciary is united at the highest level as the Supreme Court of Isselmere-Nieland.
As a constitutional monarchy, the law and Parliament and not the monarch alone is sovereign. Even so, for ease of reference, the Constitution Act, 1986 refers to the monarch, styled the King or Queen of Isselmere-Nieland, as the Sovereign. The King is addressed as His Isselmerian and Nielander Majesty, or simply His Majesty. Isselmerian or Nielander grand dukes or dukes, foreign royals, and other select foreign heads of state — namely, President Mike Sarzo of Sarzonia and Grand Admiral Jim of Jimnam — may refer to him as Your Grace.
The King is the Duke and Lord High Steward of Glaines and Oldmarch, the royal houses of Isselmere and Nieland respectively. In event of a regency due to incapacity of the reigning monarch, the minority of the Heir Apparent or if there is no clear successor to the throne, the regent principal, known informally as the Regent, temporarily assumes the title of the Lord High Steward of Glaines and Oldmarch. Regents principal are typically the Queen Consort or the eldest sibling of the former or incapacitated monarch, unless the Heir Apparent has attained majority. The regent serves as a limited head of state in conjunction with a Regency Council. The composition of the Regency Council is outlined in the Constitution Act, 1986. During a regency, ducal authority over Glaines and Oldmarch rests with the Regency Council as a whole.
The title of Lord Protector of Gudrof is a conceit since most of the former Kingdom of Gudrof, except for the province of Upper Gudrovia, is now a sovereign principality ruled by a cadet branch of the House of Glaines-Oldmarch. Gudrof, which was only tentatively part of the kingdom through marriage since 1653, separated peacefully from the United Kingdom of Isselmere and Nieland in 1899. Gudrof and Isselmere-Nieland still maintain close and amiable relations.
The eldest sibling of the reigning monarch is known as the Duke/Duchess of Huise as well as the Marquess/Marchioness of Glaines. The head of the cadet branch of the House of Oldmarch is known as the Marquess/Marchioness of Oldmarch.
|See also Parliament of Isselmere-Nieland.|
Parliament, comprising the monarch and two chambers or Houses of Parliament, the Senate (Upper House) and the House of Assembly (Lower House), is the supreme legislature of the United Kingdom. Barring certain matters falling under exclusive royal prerogative or under ministerial responsibility, legislative authority rests with Parliament.
Before the proclamation of the Constitution Act in 1986, Parliament was sovereign, theoretically able to repeal any law adopted by previous parliaments and to promulgate any new laws that the current parliament desired, albeit in practice constrained by the unwritten, living constitution and the judiciary. No Parliament could force its successors or assigns to abide by any act without recourse to repeal.
From 1986, Parliament's powers are constrained by the Constitution and by the Supreme Court of Isselmere-Nieland, which is charged with determining the constitutionality of bills and acts presented before it. Since the Constitution Act formalised and codified existing conventions and customs, the statute was not considered unconstitutional, despite the claims of several groups such as the Loyal Monarchist Party and the Council of Peers.
Another question of sovereignty exists within the Constitution Act, that of the appellation of the current monarch. The Constitution Act refers to the King (or Queen) as the Sovereign as the gender-neutral term for the seated head of state in preference to the alternative, Monarch, which is used for his or her predecessors. Isselmere-Nielander legal traditions specify that sovereign more precisely denotes the king or queen's role as the apolitical permanent representative of the State as well as the source of law.
Isselmere-Nielander kings and queens still have greater legislative and executive authority than other constitutional monarchs as their predecessors had not abused those powers in the past.
Most legislation may be initiated by either House, with the exception of bills of supply (money bills), which must tabled by the government and presented before the House of Assembly first. In theory, the Sovereign-in-Parliament alone may make laws by granting royal assent to bills passed by both Houses, with the Sovereign presiding over a joint session of Parliament in the Hall of Congregation of Pechtas Castle, declaring with each bill he promulgates "The King/Queen wills it." In practice, this ceremonial acceptance of the legislature's will is typically performed monthly by the monarch's appointed representatives, the Lords Commissioners.
Every bill passed by Parliament must possess three signatures, those of the Speaker of the House of Assembly, the President of the Senate, and the Sovereign or, should there be a Regency, that of the Regent and the President of the Regency Council. Government bills must also bear the signature(s) of the initiating minister(s), as private member bills must be signed by the respective initiating Member(s) of Parliament.
The Sovereign may reject a bill in its entirety, a very rare occurrence, or may make suggestions on sections therein. If a bill on a matter other than one affecting the nature of the monarchy or of royal prerogative is presented to the Sovereign by the legislature three times, the bill is considered to have royal assent.
The Sovereign may prompt the Houses to initiate legislation on matters falling outside of royal prerogative in a Royal Audience held before a joint session of Parliament. King Henry V (r. 2004-present) did so to request the Houses and particularly the Government of the day to repudiate the order for the Europa class Super Dreadnought.
The Council of Ministers is the seat of most executive authority, with royal prerogative comprising the remainder. The Sovereign or his or her Lord(s) Commissioner(s) may preside over plenary meetings of the Council of Ministers, but only in an advisory capacity. In truth, the Prime Minister is responsible for the day-to-day running of the Government. The Prime Minister is chosen by the Sovereign from members of the House of Assembly, which may reject the royal selection in favour of a candidate of its own choosing. The Prime Minister, on consultation with the Sovereign, then appoints the other Ministers.
The General Council of Judicature (GCJ) administers the operation of the national and nationally-appointed judiciary. The GCJ serves as the supreme disciplinary body for judges and justices throughout the UKIN.
Despite these three bodies, it is the Council of State that is the de jure voice of the nation. The Council of State consists of the Sovereign or his or her Royal Commissioner(s), the Council of Ministers, the Council of Peers, the General Council of the Judicature, and the Privy Council. Formerly, the Temple Council, which governed the Reformed Church of Isselmere, was part of the Council of State, until the Church was disestablished in 2003. As noted above, the Council of Ministers, headed by the Prime Minister, is the de facto government. The Council of Peers advises the Sovereign on matters concerning the nobility, while the General Council of Judicature advises the Sovereign on judicial issues. In practice, the Sovereign has little or no influence on the GCJ and custom, as well as the Constitution, has made the Sovereign subject to the advice of the Council of Ministers. The Sovereign may also obtain the advice of his or her Privy Council, although generally that body is composed of active senior government ministers.
As stated above, the Privy Council is generally considered part of the royal retinue. It is chaired by the Lord Advocate, who must not be confused with the Advocate General. Within the Council of State, the Privy Council defends the rights of bodies bearing royal charters, such as public universities, certain municipalities (royal burghs), and Crown corporations.
|See also Laws of Isselmere-Nieland.|
The law within the United Kingdom is a mixture of common and civil law, emerging through customs and traditions widely upheld by the monarchy, Parliament, and the legal profession through statutes and statutory instruments, by precedent, and by judicial review of administrative matters. The monarch is considered the source of law, being the personification of continuity and of legitimacy. It is the duty of the legal profession, of barristers, solicitors, judges, and jurisconsults alike, to uphold legal standards and to defend the rights of the monarch's subjects. Parliament, the regional and provincial legislatures, and local authorities draft and order the implementation of laws, subject to judicial review. Precedent serves to ensure consistency and continuity, as well as to fill any gaps that might exist within current legislation.
The legal profession in Isselmere-Nieland consists of lawyers, judges, and magistrates. All members of the legal profession must receive formal legal training in order to occupy their respective posts. It is, however, permissible for a private citizen or a foreign national to act as his or her own counsel if the individual in question so desires.
The origins of the legal profession date back to the Middle Ages. Early legal proceedings in the four kingdoms of Anguist, Detmere, Isselmere, and Nieland were infrequent, almost informal affairs presided over by the local magnate every month or perhaps seasonally. Bereft of any knowledge of Roman law, trials tended towards the mystical, with guilt or innocence decided upon by one's fortitude or simple luck. The increasing complexity of life forced the law and the legal professions to evolve. In order to maintain some consistency in their rulings, as well as to recall from whom they had to collect fees, wealthier magnates including the kings began appointing reeves and bailiffs (geréfan in Anglo-Frisian, rúnaírech in Anguistian) from those who had received some rudimentary education from church schools. These minor officials grew in importance with the incorporation of Anguist into Isselmere forced Latin into the role of lingua franca between the remaining Anguistian hierarchy and the newly imposed Isselmerian aristocracy.
Whilst the Catholic Church unwittingly advanced the ideas of centralised authority and of written laws, the Norse brought with them the concept of trial by jury. The magnates within the Anglo-Frisian kingdoms of Isselmere and Detmere were slow to adopt juries, with the notable exception of those nobles and their officials in the former kingdom of Anguist, who were forced to accept the scheme as the sole means of understanding their new tenants.
Since the Royal Courts Act, 1692, lawyers and judges must receive formal legal training in order to occupy their respective posts.
The judicial and penal systems mix regional and central control. Criminal law and parts of civil law are the province of the central government to ensure consistent penalties and policies throughout the courts within the United Kingdom, but the regions and provinces are generally responsible for crimes committed within their boundaries. Crimes committed within more than one region or against the Union government (i.e. matters involving officials and/or property of the central government) are administered by the central courts.
Cases are tried before provincial or regional courts save certain matters reserved for Union and specialised courts. As noted above, the judiciary of Isselmere-Nieland is governed by the General Council of Judicature. The Royal Courts of Justice or central judicature consists of the Supreme Court of Isselmere-Nieland, the highest court in the land; the Court of the Four Realms (known colloquially as the Four Corners Court), which considers matters outside the jurisdiction of the regional courts; and, the Court of the Lord Constable, the courts martial appeals court. The Council of State performs some judicial duties as well as the penultimate court of administration in the land.
Civilian penal law
High treason: Commission of acts against the state that aid and abet foreign powers, whether in time of war or peace, including but not limited to spying, attacking an officer or official of state, sedition, insurrection, campaigning for the violent overthrow of the monarchy. Penalty: Life imprisonment or death by hanging (the latter penalty re-established by the Bradshaw Law (2005)).
Low treason: Debasing the currency (includes speculation against the currency in times of economic crisis); foreign propaganda (during times of war); hate crimes; slavery or indentured servitude; sorcery (has not been removed from the lawbooks despite falling into desuetude); threats against the state, its officers and/or officials, and/or property. Penalty: Varies, but between five years to life imprisonment.
Homicide consists of several crimes, ranging from manslaughter to crimes against humanity.
- In Isselmere-Nielander law, manslaughter is considered homicide without intent, wherein an individual's actions, despite an absence of intent, contributed to the death of another.
- Negligent homicide covers situations in which the person behaved in a callously indifferent manner that directly contributed to another's death.
- Murder in the third degree requires the accused to have intentionally caused grievous harm to another that contributed to said person's demise, whether or not death was the actual intent.
- Murder in the second degree involves an active intent by the accused to end another's life.
- The charge of murder in the first degree is lain against an individual who has plotted to end another's life. Life imprisonment or death (hanging or lethal injection; re-introduced with the Bradshaw Law (2005)). The accused need not have had a specific victim in mind for this charge to be laid; the intent to kill any person is sufficient.
Rape falls under five categories.
- Statutory rape covers all forms of sexual intercourse between an individual capable of granting legal consent and a person incapable, whether due to age or mental incapacity, of giving such consent. The penalty for statutory rape is typically between two and five years, with a maximum being ten years.
- Forced consent (sexual assault in the third degree) covers all forms of sexual intercourse between a person in a position of trust and/or of authority such that the complainant might reasonably assume that his or her livelihood or character might be damaged should consent not be forthcoming. The penalty for forced consent is at least five years, with a maximum penalty of ten years.
- Violation covers any sexual act for which consent has not been given, including sexual acts committed whilst the aggrieved party is unconscious. The penalty is the same as that for forced consent.
- Violation under threat (sexual assault in the second degree) covers all forms of forced sexual intercourse in which no other forms of violence are presumed to be inflicted upon the complainant, but that the accused made threats that might lead a reasonable person to assume further violence might ensue. Violation brings with it a penalty of ten to fifteen years.
- Grievous violation (sexual assault in the first degree) covers all forms of forced sexual intercourse in which violence played a role before, during, or after the actual sexual assault. The penalty for grievous violation is fifteen years to life imprisonment.
In trying the accused, the State may refer to up to three categories of rape, with the punishments running concurrently. One such case was that of R. v L. Mason (1987) when the accused, Lionel Mason, an instructor at Portclieve Primary School, was charged with sexual assault upon a twelve year-old pupil. Mason was sentenced to five years for statutory rape, seven years for forced consent, and twelve years for violation under threat. The sentence would have been more severe, Justice Ulmsbridge noted, had Mason not plead guilty.
|See also Administrative divisions of Isselmere-Nieland.|
The UKIN is divided into four autonomous regions (Anguist, Detmere, Isselmere, and Nieland), which are subdivided into twenty-nine provinces and further into 349 alderdoms or counties. Below the alderdoms are bailies (districts, known as dóma in Nielandic) and burghs or municipalities. The larger burghs are further subdivided into wards, although some, such as the capital, consist of several baillies.
The four regions each have their own viceroy (Lord High Commissioner) and legislature, which are responsible for the subordinate jurisdictions therein. The provinces are in turn governed by Lords Lieutenant appointed by the respective Lord High Commissioner and by elected provincial councils. Both the regions and the provinces are permanent administrative divisions that may not be altered save by Act of Parliament ratified by popular referendum.
Alderdoms are primarily administrative divisions, but are governed by councils elected from its constituent bailies. The bailies themselves are policed by district magistrates known as grieves in Isselmere and Detmere, bailies (Ang. baileaigh) in Anguist, or dómari in Nieland.
The Principality of Anguist abuts the North Atlantic, facing Iceland and the Arctic Ocean, sharing borders with Nieland to the southwest, Isselmere and Detmere to the east, and Lower Whingeing to the north. Anguist is the home of Anguistian language and culture as well as the Royal Shipyards of Isselmere-Nieland. The Principality is the smallest of the UKIN's autonomous regions by area and third largest by population, with its six provinces containing 15.4 per cent of the UKIN's total. The capital is Mithesburgh (Anguistian Cérmidhe).
The Grand Duchy of Detmere is the easternmost region within the United Kingdom. The Grand Duchy's northern and northeastern borders face Hoblingland, the Tichonian Sea separating the UKIN from Ireland washes over Detmere's eastern coastline, whilst the southern and southwestern frontiers meet northern Isselmere. Detmere's northwestern borders face Anguist. Detmere is the second smallest region by size and the least populous as well, with 14.7 per cent of the United Kingdom's population. The capital of Detmere is Semling.
The Grand Duchy of Isselmere, which is the larger of the three regions that comprise the Kingdom of Isselmere, is the most densely inhabited and largest of the four regions with 38.2 per cent of the population. The Grand Duchy is separated from Nieland to the west by the heavily eroded Quimpot Mountains that run much of the length of that frontier. Anguist faces Isselmere to the northwest, as does Detmere in the northeast. The Tichonian Sea forms the border of much of the east and south of the Grand Duchy. The boundary between the Grand Duchy and the small sovereign Principality of Gudrof is to the southwest. The capital of Isselmere is Daurmont.
The Kingdom of Nieland is the largest and second most populated region within the UKIN. With 31.7 per cent of the citizenry, Nieland is the buffer between its larger eastern neighbour and the two smaller regions of Anguist and Detmere. Nieland is home both to a strident independence movement and to many of the UKIN's publishing and information technology (IT) firms, a fact which worries many non-Nielander Union politicians. The capital of Nieland is Felsingburgh (Nielandic Felsingborg, Anguistian Cérglanís).
Symbols, customs, etc.
Coat of arms
|See also Coats of arms of Isselmere-Nieland.|
- Quarterly, first, Gules a tern Argent displayed and crowned Or beneath three roses Or, which is for Isselmere;
- Second, Azure a stag rampant, langued and armed, beneath an acorn Or, which is for Anguist;
- Third, Azure a trout Argent nageant, beneath two towers Or, embattled and voided gate and windows, masoned Sable and ajoure Gules, which is for Detmere;
- Fourth, Gules an ibex statant, langued and crowned within a double tressure flory-counter-flory Or, which is for Nieland;
- Overall an inescutcheon party per cross;
- First, Vert an unicorn rampant crowned Argent labelled Argent, which is for the House of Caitwuil;
- Second, Argent a boar Sable rampant, langued Gules beneath a rose Gules, which is for the House of Houmbertis;
- Third, Azure a lion rampant gardant crowned with ax bordered by nine six-pointed stars Or and langued Gules, which is for the House of Sigurdsson;
- Fourth, Gules a lion rampant Argent beneath a crown Or, which is for the House of Alvarsson;
- The whole surrounded by the Chain of Office (Order of the Tern);
- For a Crest, upon a wreath Argent and Azure thereon the royal helm beneath the royal crown Proper Or with bands Gules, a mantling Ermine within Gules, beneath a motto Neer so far;
- For Supporters, lions rampant Or crowned Proper, langued and armed Gules, bearing lances, addextré the pennant of Isselmere, sinistré of Nieland, the compartment Vert with four roses Or. Motto, Pro Deus quod nostrum populus.
Union and regional animals
United Kingdom and Isselmere: Hoary tern (Sterna sterna canescens)
Anguist: Barley-tail deer (Rangifer angfortensis)
Detmere: Silver-backed trout (Salmo argenti) — extinct
Nieland: Apphelian ibex (Capra appeligensis)
The Road to Prosperity
As waves crash down on Lethean shores,
Strong soldiers guard the northern moors
And brave sailors ride the ocean’s crests
With love of Our (King/Queen) in their breasts
Our fields are bursting with ripe grains,
God bless these nigh-incessant rains!
The fish leap into our fishers’ boats
Our beasts and folk fat on farmers’ oats!
Our country great, Our (King/Queen) so fine
O, so grateful am I that they’re mine!
These forests plentiful, these burghs wealthy!
’Tis fair to walk, the roads are healthy!
The road to prosperity’s a treacherous one,
But in this land it can be done
Our hearts are true and minds are keen,
Guided by Our Noble (King/Queen)!
|1 January||New Year's Day||All||1893|
|Variable||Good Friday, Easter, Easter Monday||All||1013|
|15 February||Day of Happy Regrets||Anguist, Isselmere||999|
|24 March||Constitution Day||All||1986|
|19 May||Coronation Day||Isselmere||985|
|25 June||Union Day||All||1562|
|19 October||King's Birthday||All||2004|
|12 December||Toel's Day||Anguist, Detmere, Isselmere||1349, 1889|
|See also Economy of Isselmere-Nieland.|
The Isselmere-Nielander economy is modern, highly automated, and post-industrial. Private enterprise dominates all sectors, although certain strategically important fields, such as naval construction and nuclear resources, are operated by State monopolies established by royal charter, or Crown corporations.
For much of the United Kingdom's contemporary history, the State's economic policy has been protectionist. Involvement in the Woodstock Pact and steady growth has led to a reduction in tariffs in recent years, but since policy-makers have linked such practices with the country's economic success as well as the high savings and investment ratio among Isselmere-Nielanders, the Union and regional governments are reluctant to abandon protectionism all together.
Crown corporations like the Royal Shipyards (RSIN) — but not the Isselmere-Nieland Nuclear Energy Commission (INNEC), which is a government agency — do often have a limited private presence with some publicly-traded stock or other securities owned by domestic and some foreign investors, and are administered and operated at arms-length by the State.
Owing to massive investment in education, social equality, and defence by Union and regional governments, the book publishing, automotive, and information technology sectors have blossomed.
The primary sector of industry involves itself in the harvesting or extraction of natural, unprocessed materials. Primary economic units can be as small as an individual farm or fishing boat, or as large as Union Petroleum and Gas Organisation (UPGO), which works most of the oil and gas fields within the United Kingdom and its 200 nautical mile (nm) economic exclusion zone. Larger primary economic units, such as those involved in mining or other forms of extraction, often engage in some processing.
Firms involved in processing materials are the secondary sector of industry. Manufacturing industries and associated primary sector firms in the United Kingdom provide 27 per cent of the total gross domestic product (GDP), providing employment for an equivalent percentage of the labour force. Manufacturing firms run from heavy industry such as Cholmondsley-Dewar metallurgical conglomerate, to the important transportation sector led by the massive Royal Shipyards, to light industry of electronics manufacturers such as Turing-Babbage.
In Isselmere-Nieland, manufacturers and service industries often form cartels that provide the parent company with the secondary and tertiary (service), and sometimes even the primary, economic units necessary to finance, build, market, and service their goods. These cartels vend ancilliary products such as insurance.
The transport and arms manufacturing sectors dominate the United Kingdom's stock exchange, the Bírsa. Four key manufacturers from these virtually interchangeable sectors are listed below:
- Detmerian Aerospace Dynamics (DAS) provides its designs mostly for domestic customers, though the firm has achieved some foreign successes with its DAS-3 Sea Fury and DAS-2 Spectre designs. The company's corporate offices are located in Fennerby, Detmere.
- Isselmere Motor Works (IMW) of Thistlemoor, Isselmere, is a major producer of civilian and military land vehicles as well as marine and aircraft engines. IMW has established foreign centres of production in Russkya and Rusokaria.
- Lyme and Martens Industries (LMI) was formerly a major manufacturer of uncrewed vehicles, but its markets have fallen by the wayside with the growth of products from Clan Smoke Jaguar's industries and other foreign firms. LMI's headquarters is in Ponsonby, Detmere.
- The Royal Shipyards of Isselmere-Nieland (RSIN) is the largest nationalised industry in the UKIN and a noted manufacturer of warships. Though now outclassed in terms of foreign sales by Sarzonia's Portland Iron Works (PIW) and Praetonia's Imperial Praetonian Shipyards (IPS), the RSIN is still strongly supported by the Royal Isselmere-Nieland Navy (RINN) and the Jimnam Grand Navy (JGN). Its headquarters are in the northern city of Grimsby Downs, Anguist.
The tertiary or service sector finances, promotes, and provides service to all three sectors of industry. Service industries, led by book publishing and information technology firms, comprise the largest proportion of both the gross domestic product (70.8 per cent) and the labour force (69 per cent). The high savings and investment by Isselmere-Nielander citizens and firms necessitated by high import tariffs and taxes on foreign investments has benefited both them and domestic banks and credit unions, which use the funds they receive to further promote domestic firms.
- Turing-Babbage Electromechanical Devices, plc (TBED) is the UKIN's largest information technology (IT) company. Many of its hardware components may be found in everything from the latest generation fighter jets to little Tommy or Sara's toys. TBED's head offices are in Stettering, Nieland.
- Umberton and Throckmorton (U&T) are the largest publishers in the UKIN, produces textbooks and educational multimedia for all instructional levels. U&T was once the primary publisher of religious texts for the Reformed Church of Isselmere (RCI) as well as other Christian sects and other faiths. With the RCI's disestablishment, U&T has removed itself from the religious market. Since 1915, U&T have supported young writers with the Great Authors in the Making (GAMUT) award. For each category, a jury of twelve authors and six publishers judge the works. The GAMUT is most frequently awarded to challenging and innovative works of fiction and non-fiction. U&T's central offices may be found in Cailliecross, Daurmont, Isselmere.
Rail is the most common means of long distance travel and freight transport within the United Kingdom. Rail travel is safe and secure — the Royal Gendarmerie polices both the trains and the lines — as well as quick. Older lines are diesel-electric, with the emphasis on electric as diesel engines are used only when the weather is absolutely appalling, but most of the newer lines operate by magnetic levitation (maglev). Sixty-three per cent of lines, including maglev lines, are designed for rapid rail service (between 180 and 325 km/h) with sleeper-less tracks. Very heavy freight lines — mostly used by the Defence Forces — comprise the rest. These specialised rail systems are limited to between 70 and 140 km/h. Most rail services use standard gauge,
In recent years, the United Kingdom's road networks have improved remarkably. National roads, prefixed by N followed by a number, are typically dual carriageway routes with at least two lanes, frequently three, going in each direction, and serve to connect two or more regions. Provincial roads are the next in line, prefixed by a P, and often are as large, if not larger, than national roads. These routes provide inter-provincial transport within a region. Motorways providing links between and around urban areas about are usually prefixed by M. Other roads, mostly those outside of urban areas, are prefixed by A for autoroute.
Roads within Isselmere-Nielander towns and cities, with the exception of large boulevards, are rarely very wide, a reflection of the country's ancient heritage and cultural conservatism.
The UKIN has extensive modern telecommunications networks. Most services — telephone, television, etc. — are now digital.
Isselmere-Nieland is a member of two essentially defunct organisations, the Woodstock Pact and the Organisation of Maritime Powers, and is an ally to the following nations listed in alphabetical order:
- Omzian Democratic Republic
- Praetonia — retired
- Sarzonia — retired
- Southeast Asia
- Space Union
|See also United Kingdom of Isselmere-Nieland Defence Forces.|
The defence of the realm falls to the United Kingdom of Isselmere-Nieland Defence Forces (UKINDF) under the direction of the Defence Council of the Council of State, although the Ministry of Defence manages the day-to-day administration of the Defence Forces. The UKINDF has a unified command structure at the service level consisting of a Department of the Defence Forces and the Office of the Chief of Defence Staff. Each of the services is headed by a secretary of state for the service as well as the acting service chief. The UKINDF comprises three services, the Naval Service, the Isselmere-Nielander Army (INA) or Land Service, and the Aerospace Service.
On 15 April 2006, Parliament passed the Deactivation Act that ended the requirement for all able-bodied citizens to serve at least one year of National Service, whether as a conscripted soldier, an employee of the Department of Public Works, or part of an approved, similarly community-spirited programme.
Personnel and funding
The table below indicates the resources each service has, along with the Joint Service contingent involved in medical support and certain other non-combat endeavours.
|Service||Personnel||%||Budget (IN£)||%||Population %|
The Isselmere-Nielander love of cultural conservation can be overstressed, but not by much. Architecture within the UKIN varies from early medieval to the ultra-modern, often within the space of a few city blocks. Sightseers should not be unduly concerned that the older monuments and edifices they wish to visit are currently under restoration, particularly during Lethe’s short spring and autumn, as there are many others from which to choose. Visitors might remark upon the prevalence of book shops, which often rival the number of tea houses and coffee bars in many Isselmere-Nielander towns and cities, and might be astounded by being asked what book one is currently reading.
As a conservative people, Isselmere-Nielanders observe traditions that might appear strange to the newcomer, such as the Day of Happy Regrets and Toel's Day, both of which have caused great consternation among many foreign observers that the locals understandably find hilarious. Travellers to the United Kingdom are recommended either to plan their holidays around such occasions or to simply succumb to the spirit of the day.
- Isselmere-Nielander English sounds like Scottish English spoken with an Icelandic accent. In other words, imagine Björk speaking like a Glaswegian, or vice versa, really.
- There are three national languages in the UKIN: English, Anguistian, and Nielandic. Except if one encounters a radical Anguistian or Nielander nationalist, one is advised to steer clear of the latter two languages. Should one encounter a radical nationalist, it is best to simply steer clear altogether.
- Since 1986, the UKIN consists of four autonomous regions (regions, Anguistian úlaidh, Nielandic þjóðir): Anguist, Detmere, Isselmere, and Nieland. Do not refer to the UKIN as Isselmere even within Isselmere, for there one is likely to receive a long lecture about the United Kingdom’s history. Elsewhere, one might receive a punch in the mouth.
- Tourists must be aware that despite the often miserable weather, public inebriation is viewed with opprobrium and will almost undoubtedly land one in gaol.
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