00-00 About Berant

by Ernest Bywater

Tags: Military, Workplace, Royalty,

Desc: General Story: Can be skipped if you want to. General background information about the Berant geography, legal structure, laws, and society. This is for those who want a deeper understanding of the culture of Berant and is more a travelogue than a story.

Recent History

The Amir (pronounced a-mear) Clan has ruled Berant since the sixth century AD / CE. For over a thousand years they're the premier clan in the Amiri tribe (pronounced a-mear-e) and the largest tribe in the country. The crown goes to the eldest male of the senior Amir line, usually the King's eldest son, unless an Amir Clan Council rules that person ineligible, a very rare event. If the King has no sons, then it goes to his eldest living nephew. If no living males can be found from the descendants of the last three generations the same process is applied to the king's daughters, nieces, and cousins, with their husband becoming king. This process then goes back another generation at a time until one can be found or all descendants for the last ten generations are dead.

Berant becomes a French Colony in the late eighteenth century by an agreement with the King, he wants to avoid a losing war. Spears and arrows weren't much good against firearms and cannon. The King sees this and negotiates the best result for his people. The country is hardly affected by this since they have no publicly known natural resources of any value. Nothing worth the effort of an organised removal. It's untouched in the Great War and the Japanese occupation in World War Two is little more than a minor inconvenience for most. The French are invited to not return after the Japanese and Allies go, leaving behind more than enough modern weapons to keep the French out of the country. Berant isn't worth the cost of conquering in the mid-twentieth century. The same happens with their neighbours in Dareed and Shukra. Dareed and Shukra did have some natural resources worth taking, but most were removed by the French prior to World War Two.

The ruler of Berant from 1922 to 1st January, 1946 is King Marshad, a wastrel. His father thought it a good idea to send him to Europe for his education, in the hopes this let him fit in better with the French Colonial Government and deal with them a lot better than he does. However, schooling in Paris from ten years of age has him attending school there at the start of the twentieth century. Instead of learning how to work hard he learns how to party hard and enjoy life to its fullest. He's only interested in having fun. The country is lucky his younger brothers are trained at home under the tribal laws, and they do the real running and administration of the country.

The only good thing that can be said about King Marshad is: he's a lot better than the rebel generals who killed him and introduced a 'democratic' government (of the type that never has a public vote, that is) in January, 1946. Thedifference is marginal, but he didn't arbitrarily kill people in large groups. No formal laws are ever passed by the rebels.

When the generals attack the palace the princes fight a fierce battle with the rebels to cover the escape of four princesses; the King's two daughters and his two nieces, the daughters of the princes. The princes and the Palace Guard give their lives for their country's future. Proving all the country's warriors weren't dead, at the time of the attack.

When King Edward came to power in December, 1948 he changed the way the monarchy worked, and set up aconstitutional monarchy. This was difficult because much of the country was under tribal law and the people wanted the old monarchy. They were unhappy with democracy asintroduced by the rebels. Large sections of the country no longer had formal tribal councils because they'd been totally destroyed by the rebels' pogroms. King Edward needed something acceptable to both areas. Using the AustralianConstitution as a base, because he was familiar with it, he developed a hybrid variant to make both groups happy while introducing a high level of elected democratic government as domestic management. When voted on theconstitution received 99.99% support from the population. After getting the constitution through he set about creating a uniform set of laws for the whole country. That process isn'tcomplete and never will be. It took sixty years to be 99% uniform across the country.

Later is a summary of the government and legal systems after King Edward's reforms were put in place. This isn't a detailed list of all the laws, although some very important ones are mentioned, but it is an analysis of the system itself. Many see this as a perfect constitutional monarchy, others don't. This works for Berant and its people, and that's the best you can say for any political or governmental system.

Selection of the Monarch

The head of government is the King. Now he's the husband of one of the King's daughters or nieces or cousins. If need be the line tracks back one generation at a time until a suitable candidate is found. The Amir clan council decides which of the suitable candidates is to be the King. When possible the King selects a suitable heir whilst still alive and helps train them for the role. This way there's no point in intra-family squabbles. A male born to the royal family can never rule. And their brothers-in-law have to worry about being voted in by the eligible clan members because only blood members of the clan have a vote.

After King Edward the King has no control of any money or assets of the clan or his own. He introduced the change and couldn't make it retrospective. King Herbert is the first King the new royal property laws apply to. Any property or assets he has must be handed back to his family or handed over to the clan trust when he's appointed. This way the clan has a control over the King by simply refusing to finance his actions. Also, the clan council can recall him by unanimous vote.


Berant is an old kingdom in tropical Asia, the mountains are tropic jungle or dense tropical forest. The majority of forest trees are exotic hardwoods while the jungle is mostly softwoods. The jungles, forests, and plains abound with local wildlife, most of it small and harmless. Apart from humans the only dangerous animals in Berant are the local mountain lions who live in the tropical jungle very close to the tops of the mountain ridges, most are in the Burran and Amir (pronounced a-mear) Mountains. Attacks by lions are very rare, but they do occur; usually when people wander into the lions' hunting ranges.

The western border is the centre ridge tops of the Burran mountains. This high mountain range is the western border of the Kingdoms of Shukra, Berant, and most of Dareed; with the lower quarter of Dareed being a peninsula. The almost straight ocean shore forms the eastern border of these countries. Most of the shore line is high sheer cliffs with many nice bays and beaches. Berant's southern border is the Darunch Mountains with Dareed south of them. The northern border is the Sharten Mountains with Shukra north of Berant. In land area Dareed is almost the size of Berant and Shukra is about the same size as Berant.

Berant is like an out of shape hour glass, because it pinches in on the western side. The narrowest point is at the Amir Mountains where the country is only one hundred and sixty kilometres wide and twenty kilometres of that are the mountainous tropical jungle of the Burran Mountains. The Amir Mountains run from there to the coast and make an effective barrier that almost splits the country in half.

Northern Berant consists of the Sharten Plain running from the Sharten Mountains to the Berant River. This area is a rough rectangle of three hundred and twenty kilometres across (east - west) and four hundred and eighty kilometres deep (north - south). The Amiri Plain runs four hundred kilometres south from the river to the Amir Mountains. Southern Berant consists of the Kotar Plain running six hundred and forty kilometres from the Amir Mountains to the Darunch Mountains with the Kotar river splitting this almost in half to create the Northern Kotar Plain and the Southern Kotar Plain. This plain widens out from one hundred and sixty kilometres at the Amir Mountains to three hundred kilometres at the Darunch Mountains. Dareed is seven hundred and twenty kilometres long from the Darunch Mountains to the peninsula tip. It's from two hundred and eighty to three hundred kilometres wide until the peninsula, which is one hundred and twenty kilometres wide for most of its one hundred kilometres length. Shukra is much more of a rectangle of three hundred kilometres across (east - west) and nine hundred and sixty kilometres deep (north - south) with the Shuk Mountains as its Northern border. The assimilation of Dareed after the Battle at Marley's Landing was a very significant increase in the size of Berant's land area and population.

There are many known passes across the Sharten, Amir, Darunch, and Shuk Mountains, and these are all marked on good maps. There are no known passes across the Burran Mountains, or if they're known they're well kept secrets of the family or clan or tribe. Rumours of hidden passes have been around for over a thousand years, but none have been found by the authorities, or reported to them.

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