|Duchy of Silgadin
|Motto: A las barricadas, vaschins!
("To the barricades, peasants!"; Romansh)
|Anthem: Silgadisches Fahnenlied
("Song of the Silgadinese Flag"; Silgadiner)
Location of Silgadin in Alisna.
and largest city
|Official languages||Silgadiner, Romansh|
|Government||Unitary constitutional monarchy|
|•||Prime Minister||Filip Malögia|
|•||Treaty of Rastatt||18 October, 1753|
|•||Current constitution||19 December, 1986|
15 sq mi
|GDP (PPP)||2010 estimate|
|GDP (nominal)||2010 estimate|
|Time zone||EAMT (UTC+1)|
|•||Summer (DST)||EAST (UTC+2)|
Silgadin (Silgadiner: Silgadin, Romansh: Silgiadina), fully the Duchy of Silgadin (Silgadiner: Herzogtum Silgadin, Romansh: Ducadi da Silgiadina) is a small Flenckenwalder unitary constitutional monarchy in central Alisna. Silgadin is bordered to the north and west by Styria and Schaumburg, to the east by Berry and to the south by Borgosesia. Silgadin is a landlocked country, and neither possesses a navy nor a coastline. The Duchy is located almost entirely in the Flenckenwalder Mountains, an large mountain range that covers most of central Alisna and divides the continent into separated northern and southern sections. In the south, the landscape is characterized by the presence of Lake Seil and its valley, the economic and population centre of the country. Silgadin is a bilingual country in which both Silgadiner and Romansh are spoken, as a result of its historical position between the Romance-speaking southern Alisna and Styria to the west.
The 1980s in Silgadin were dominated by economic depression and subsequent ethnic violence between Romansh-speaking silgiadinaises and Silgadiner-speaking silgadineren that was only placated by the 1986 Berrian Intervention to restore order and prevent an Styrian invasion. A new constitution was drafted, reducing the role of the monarch and economic liberalisation measures were taken to promote growth, which helped Silgadin to phase from a traditional agriculture-based economy to a services-dominated one, especially tourism.
Silgadin is a representative democracy with a constitutional monarchy and universal suffrage. The Duke (currently Otto XII) serves as the head of state and a representative of the duchy abroad, however his executive powers are quite limited. The Premier (currently Filip Malögia) serves as head of government, and the National Council (Nationalrat, Cussagl Naziunel) serves as Silgadin's legislative body. Silgadin is considered a stable democracy having survive the authoritarian waves of the 1930s and especially the early 1980s, when its democratic structure was menaced by fascist neighbours and internal opposition groups. Styria only recognized the sovereignty of Silgadin in 1986, and Borgosesia recognized it in 2005.
Silgadin is an ethnically mixed nation, with two predominant ethnic groups, Silgadiner-speaking silgadineren and the Romansh-speaking silgiadinaises. Andlau, Silgadin's capital and seat of both the monarchy and the government is also the most populated city of Silgadin and an important financial and cultural centre.
The term English term 'Silgadin' comes from the Silgadiner adaptation of the original Romansh term "Silgiadina", meaning 'garden of the [lake] Sil'. Sil is the Romansh name for the Lake Seil. The exact origin of the name to refer to the area is unknown, although there is consensus that it was already enjoying widespread use by the 9th to 11th centuries to define the northernmost, mountainous regions of the Union of Borgosesia.
GeographyAlisna in the northern hemisphere of Maredoratica and is bordered by land by Schaumburg to the north, Berry to the east, Borgosesia to south and Styria to the west. Silgadin is landlocked, and therefore lacks access to the sea. Its total area, including surface water area, is 40,015 km² (15,449.9 square miles), of which, 5.4 is covered by water masses. Most of this water coverage is composed of Lake Seil, the largest lake in the country.
Silgadin is a very mountainous country as it is located within the Fleckenwalder Mountains which cross central Alisna. The Fleckenwalders cover most of the country save for the Seil Valley in the south which opens up onto the Central Alisnan Plains in northern Borgosesia. The tallest mountains in Silgadin can be found in the central and eastern parts of the country. Wiissbärg is the tallest mountain in Silgadin at 3,770 metres (12,370 feet) above sea level. Silgadin's mountains are one of its most important natural assets, offering some of the best mountaineering and skiing anywhere in Maredoratica. They are also culturally significant, lending their images to local folklore as well as being the locations of some of the earliest cave paintings in Alisna, with the paintings in the Kreissmann Caverns dating back over 10,000 years.
The Seil Valley in the south of the country contains Lake Seil as well as several towns and cities, most notably the national capital, Andlau. The valley has historically been an important cradle for the development of Silgadin's culture and national identity, owing to its isolation. The area was formed several thousand years ago during the last ice age when the valley was filled with an ancient glacier. Global warming resulted in the melting of the glacier and the formation of the lake within the valley. Lake Seil also has a moderating influence on the local climate, often creating a temperature inversion that can shroud the surrounding mountains in clouds for weeks. The valley is connected to the northwestern plains by the Mitlau Pass, although a tunnel has been in use since 1979.
Northwestern Silgadin is dominated largely by flat, rolling plains forming the Central Alisnan Basin. It extends to western Schaumburg in the north and eastern Styria in the west with the border at the Munschau Gap the basin's westernmost extent. Agriculture dominates the basin with large areas of intensely farmed pastures. Much of Silgadin's agricultural exports come from this region. The soils within the basin are fertile and the plains are irrigated by the seasonal snow melt from the surrounding mountains on all sides of the basin. Use of this water has in recent years, become a contentious issue with Styria.
Dozens of small streams and rivers flow down the mountains in Silgadin, often into lakes or larger rivers. The Michelbach River is the largest and longest river in the country, starting in the northwest close to the border with Styria and draining into Lake Seil. This waterway was an important source of water and power for the early industrial workshops in Silgadin and in recent years has become essential for the generation of hydroelectricity.
A multitude of climates are found within Silgadin. These are influenced primarily by the geography and by the latitude of the country. The primary climate found in most areas of the country is tundra climate which is characterized by near continuous snow coverage and freezing temperatures year round and usually affects the higher altitudes of the mountains.
Most of the populated valleys and flat areas, especially around Lake Seil and northwestern Silgadin are under the influence of an oceanic climate. These areas typically experience all four seasons and have ample amounts of annual rainfall. The climate generally becomes milder in the extreme south of Silgadin, where it is influenced more by the warm, humid winds blowing off the Borgosesian Plains. Often these winds bring with them the weather systems which deliver the majority of the precipitation which falls over southern Silgadin. Thunderstorms are frequent during the summer months when humidity and warm temperatures combine with cool air from the Fleckenwalder Mountains. Temperatures in these regions vary between an average minimum of -3.9°C during winter and an average maximum of 23°C during summer.
Winter can bring large amounts of snow to most of the country, although some places can remain without snow all winter due to the Foehn effect of northerly winds off the Fleckenwalder Mountains. Heavy snowfall often blocks roads and railway lines through mountain passes as well as create avalanche hazards. Since the 1990's, the government has been actively working to control avalanches and mitigate the effects of heavy snowfalls during winter. In some parts of the country, freezing temperatures can last until mid-March.
The highest recorded temperature in Silgadin is 41.2°C, observed on July 22, 2003. The lowest recorded temperature is -41.9°C, observed on December 19, 1987.
Although Silgadin is a small country, a large variety of bird, animal, insect and fish species can be found within the country. Most of these species have adapted to live within the mountainous environments of the Fleckenwalder Mountains.
Notable mammal species found in Silgadin include the brown bear, of which less than 100 individuals remain in the country and the Alisnan lynx, which is threatened by habitat loss and hunting. Common canids found in Silgadin include red foxes and grey wolves, the latter of which is listed as a protected species despite populations becoming a hazard to livestock in recent years. Substantial populations of red deer, ibex and chamois can be found across Silgadin, with the latter two species found to be most plentiful in the mountain regions.
Silgadin's national symbol, the golden eagle, can be found across Silgadin but is especially prevalent in the mountains at moderate to high altitudes. It is one of five eagle species to be found in Silgadin. Other predatory birds found in Silgadin include ospreys and the Peregrine falcon, the latter of which has become adapted to living in urban and semi-urban environments.
Grass snakes are one of the most widespread and commonly seen reptile species in Silgadin. Reptiles are seldom found at higher altitudes due to the extreme temperatures and generally cooler weather. One of the most notable of the snake species present in Silgadin is the Alisnan pit viper which is responsible for the majority of snakebite victims admitted to hospitals around Silgadin each year.
Politicsparliamentary democracy under the framework of a constitutional monarchy. The institutional framework, the role of the monarchy as well as a series of transcribed rights and duties of the citizens are laid down by the 1986 Constitution, a text heavily influenced by Berrian constitutional doctrines, accompanied by a series of unwritten legal principles, of a customary character dating back as far as the 13th century, in what is known as the Silgadinese mos maiorum.
As in other constitutional monarchies, the positions of head of state and head of government are separate. The position of head of state is held by the members of the House of Haugwitz, and is passed by male-preference cognatic primogeniture. The current Duke is Otto XII, who succeeded his father, Duke Alphonse III, in 1972. The powers of the monarch are very limited, both by law and custom, and the position is largely ceremonial and considered a politically figurehead. Legally, the monarch is the nominal commander-in-chief and he also has the power of veto over legislative decisions and to dissolve the National Council. However, these powers have not been used since 1873 and 1905 respectively.
The actual executive power is vested on the Prime Minister (Silgadiner: Ministerpräsident, Romansh: President dal Cussegl da Ministers), the head of government. The Prime Minister presides over the Council of Ministers (Silgadiner: Ministerrats, Romansh: Cussegl da Ministers), naming its members and controlling its collective agenda. The Prime Minister is named by the monarch and then requires the support of the National Council to form its government and take the post. The Council of Ministers, the Prime Minister as well as the individual ministers are all answerable and accountable to the National Council, that may retire its support to the government with a non-confidence vote. The current Prime Minister is Filip Malögia, a member of the centre-right Christian Social Union (UCS/CSU).
The legislative branch of government is formed by the unicameral National Council (Silgadiner: Nationalrät, Romansh: Cussagl Naziunel). The National Council is formed by 250 members elected through single transferable vote directly by the population in the 51 different constituencies of the country. The National Council is elected every 4 years, although by-elections happen during the parliamentary term if a deputy is dies, resigns or is recalled by its constituents. The legislature is the sole depository of the national sovereignty, and besides exercising control of the government, it also passes budgets, declares war and ratifies treaties. Historically, the Silgadinese legislature was bicameral, however, the upper chamber was abolished in 1986, as it was a solely appointed chamber, representing the nobility.
Party discipline in Silgadin is weak, because of the electoral system and political culture, and as a result, the different Silgadinese parties have difficulties imposing their will, increasing the possibility of government instability. The exception to this general rule is the völkisch nationalist, right-wing Ostermarkische Bewegung.
The Silgadinese judiciary is formed by the Supreme Court (Silgadiner: oberstes Gericht, Romansh: Drettüra suprema) at the national level as well as provincial courts. The legal system of Silgadin is mixed, as customary law, known as mos mairoum, applies to the law of obligations as well as family law. The traditional Silgadinese laws still maintain considerable influence on the codified aspects of law. The legal system when referring to criminal, administrative and labour law is codified and based on the Berrian civil law, on the basis of legal codes developed and passed by the legislature. Even so, judges in Silgadin have more freedom to interpret the law than their counterparts in other, more purist civil law countries.
Silgadin is divided into 16 cantons (Silgadiner: Kantone, Romansh: Cantuns) for administrative purposes. Each canton is controlled by a Cantonal Council (Silgadiner: Kantonsrat, Romansh: Cantunal cussegl). Each council is composed of between 40 and 100 members, at least half of which must be elected representatives and the remainder filled with mayors or other local government representatives. Each non-mayoral councilor is elected to a term of four years, with elections running concurrent with municipal elections. Councils are presided over by a President (Silgadiner: Präsident, Romansh: President) who is elected by the council. Cantons have control over utilities as well as natural resources management, local transportation, housing as well as cultural and heritage preservation. Water usage and management is one of the main sources of income for many cantons around Silgadin, as cantons are entitled to levy fees on private and commercial properties for water usage.
In addition, Silgadin is divided into 45 communes (Silgadiner: Gemeinde, Romansh: Vischnanca). Municipalities vary between urban and rural, with urban usually containing the contiguous urban area of a city and rural composing several towns and villages. Urban and rural communes are structured differently. Rural communes will have a council composed of the mayors of the towns and villages within the commune. Urban communes are usually administered as a city or metropolitan council. Mayors of both rural and urban communes serve four year terms, as do city councilors. Communes have less powers than those of the cantons, with said powers largely limited to construction and maintenance of municipal roads and the levying of property taxes for central and cantonal governments. Urban communes have more powers and usually provide direct services such as sewage and refuse collection as well as public transport. Parks and recreational areas are also the responsibility of both urban and rural communes.
One of the unique features of subnational administration is the use of Landsgemeinde. Currently all cantons have the powers to convene a public meeting where all eligible voters in a canton can meet and discuss local issues with government representatives and vote on proposed cantonal policy. These meetings are usually held in the open air, either in a central square in the administrative capital of the canton or in a large park or open space to accommodate large crowds. Voting is carried out by coloured cards, which are handed out before the assembly begins. Each card is double sided with the colours green and red on opposite sites. Voters hold up the cards during voting to vote for or against proposals and policies.
Militarynavy as well as an independent air force, and as a result, the Silgadinese military is formed by the the Silgadinese Army (Silgadiner: Silgadiner Armee, Romansh: Armada silgiadina) as well as the National Militia (Silgadiner: Nationalmiliz, Romansh: Milissa naziunala), a gendarmerie. The commander-in-chief of the military is the Duke of Silgadin, currently Otto XII, however the actual control of the military lies with the Minister of National Defence, Helmut Meigen and the Commander of the Army, xx. The Silgadinese Army is in a relatively high state of alert, because of traditional border incidents and the hostile relationship with Borgosesia and especially, Styria, which already invaded the country in 1986. As a result, Silgadin spends around 6% of its GDP, or $7.11 billion in the Army.
Silgadin's security and strategy is based on the Andlau Treaty of 1991, whereby the sovereignty of Silgadin is to be guaranteed by Berry, which would come to the rescue of the country in case of attack. This was necessary to prevent any Styrian invasion as the small size of the Silgadinese Army made it impossible to protect itself alone. As a result, alongside the Silgadinese Army, two divisions of the Berrian Army are stationed in Silgadin to ensure its safety.
The Silgadinese Army (Silgadiner: Silgadiner Armee, Romansh: Armada silgiadina) is small, formed by 45,130 soldiers in military roles and further 5,300 in non-combat, administrative roles. Of these 45,130 soldiers, slightly below 40,000 are active and the rest are in reserve. The Army also contains an air wing, that operates a small fleet of 80 planes, including several ACM-3 Vipère fighter.
The National Militia (Silgadiner: Nationalmiliz, Romansh: Milissa naziunala) is a para-military gerndarmerie force with over 26,000 members. The National Militia is under the joint authority of the Ministry of National Defence and the Ministry of Governance. Although officially a part of the military structure, the National Militia's main duties are strictly civil, and include patrolling Silgadin's countryside and the highways and main roads outside the cities. However, its training is militarist and is not very different from that of members of the Army, and as a result in case of needs, the National Militia can be called to military duty to support the Army.
Economydeveloped economy with one of Alisna's highest growth rates. Currently, the economy is the 25th largest by GDP (PPP) and the 17th largest in Maredoratica by GDP (PPP) per capita. The Silgadinese economy is powered by high government spending in modern technologies as well as low taxation that has encouraged the development of a large domestic banking sector. Tourism is the largest single sector of the Silgadinese economy, accounting for slightly over 12% of the economy with diverse options, including winter tourism as well as a large offer of spas.
The Silgadiner currency is the thaler (SLT). The thaler is a decimal currency and is divided into 100 schilling. Silgadin was one of the last countries to convert from the gold standard, making the transition to a floating currency in 1962.
Tourism is an important industry in Silgadin. Approximately 7.1 million tourists visit the country each year, with winter being the most popular season. The sector directly employs about 22% of the labour force and indirectly employs around 35% of the labour force, mostly through seasonal employment. The industry accounts for 12% of the national economy, or around $18.0 billion.
Mass tourism is the largest industry within the tourism sector, accounting for 80% of the total annual number of visitors. Most of the tourists visiting Silgadin do so in the winter, making use of cheaper seasonal flights to access the ski resorts within the Fleckenwalder Mountains. Most of the tourists come from states within Alisna, although tourists from Leucia and Wilassia are increasing in numbers.
Luxury tourism accounts for the remaining 20% of tourists who visit Silgadin and is evenly spread throughout the year, with a slight peak during winter. Most luxury tourists make use of the wide variety of spas in Silgadin as well as the high-end shopping available in cities like Andlau. Recreational hunting is becoming an increasingly common luxury tourist attraction during spring and summer.
Agriculture is one of the larger contributors to the Silgadiner economy with the entire sector valued at 3.3%, or $39.09 billion in annual earnings. Most of Silgadin's agricultural production is involved primarily with livestock and dairy farming, although substantial horticulture and viticulture exist. Silgadin is also a producer of fertilizers.
Silgadin's agricultural industry primarily serves the domestic market, with 62% of all agricultural produce made domestically consumed within Silgadin. The remaining 38% of Silgadin's agricultural produce is exported, with these exports worth approximately $14.85 billion annually. The majority of exports go to neighboring countries, with Borgosesia, Pollona and Schaumburg being the top three countries for Silgadiner exports. Silgadin also imports a similar amount of agricultural produce from neighboring countries, primarily any cereal based products which have limited space to be cultivated. Fruit and other products which cannot be grown within Silgadin are also imported.
Dairy farming is considered to be one of the oldest and most important sectors of the agricultural industry in Silgadin. Most of the intensification and commercialization practices used in other countries have been resisted by Silgadiner farmers. This has given Silgadiner farmers an overseas niche market for organic milk, which now currently sits at 18% of Silgadiner milk exports. The industry is regulated by the National Dairy Board (Staatlisch Interessengruppe für Milchverarbeitend) or SIM. It is primarily involved in setting domestic milk prices, negotiating trade with representatives for Silgadin's export markets as well as acting as a de facto labour union for dairy farmers.