Meritocratic Isles
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Author Topic: A Brief Introduction to the Meritocratic Isles  (Read 26450 times)
Archon Praefectus

Merit: 30
Posts: 888

« on: June 10, 2006, 04:44:45 PM »

A Brief Introduction to the Meritocratic Isles

The government of the Meritocratic Isles may seem a bit overwhelming to new visitors.  There is a lot to learn, and it can be difficult to know where to start.  Don’t worry.  It isn’t nearly as complicated as it may seem to first time visitors.  It is pretty simple to learn the basics of our region’s government, and we have prepared this guide to help you find your way!

An Overview

The Meritocratic Isles is a prefecture of a larger empire called “The Meritocracy.”   The Meritocracy is an old organization that began in this very region, Meritocratic Isles!  As a Prefecture we have a large degree of autonomy, but we still recognize The Meritocracy as our central government. 

Our relationship with The Meritocracy is dictated by The Treaty of Reunification.  You do not have to read this treaty, but you may do so if you are interested in the legal aspects of our Prefectorial status.

Now, let’s turn from the central government to the regional government.  This is what should most concern you.

Our regional government is a Meritocracy modeled after ancient Sparta and other Greek nation-states.  This is why some of the names of government bodies and officials may seem a bit strange at first.  I’ll explain what all the names mean in the section below.

Names and their Meanings

  • The Meritocracy – – The Meritocracy is the name of our central government.  The capital region is “The New Meritocracy”, and their forum can be found at    The Meritocracy is lead by the “Consul” and is home to the “Meritocratic Senate”.  The Meritocracy is modeled, to a degree, after ancient Rome.

  • the Isles – We sometimes call ourselves “the Isles”.  This is just a short way of saying “Meritocratic Isles”.

  • The Politeia – The Politeia (actually “The Meritocratic Politeia”) is the official name of our government.  It comes from an ancient Greek word that can be translated as “the body politic.”  It is this “body politic” that united communities in ancient Greece, including Sparta.  Sometimes the word has been translated to mean “constitution,” and other times it has been translated to mean “Republic.”  (The latter translation gave Plato’s “The Republic” its English name.)  We use the term to mean something similar to Republic, with an emphasis on the community that makes the Republic possible.

  • The Nomos – The Nomos is our constitution.  It is taken from the ancient Greek word for “law”. 

  • Citizen – Citizens are official members of our government.  To become a citizen, you must apply and be accepted by a vote of the current citizens.

  • Archon – Archon is a high ranking Greek official. (It can be translated to mean “ruler”.)  We did not want kings in our region, so we chose to have Archons.  Sparta had two kings, and we have two Archons.  Both Archons are discussed below.

  • Archon Basileus – The Archon Basileus (the “ruler king”) is the leader of the government, similar to the real life President of the United States.  The Archon Basileus is the head of state, the head of government, and the Commander-in-Chief of the militia.

  • Archon Praefectus – The Archon Praefectus is an official appointed by The Meritocracy (our central government).  The Archon Praefectus serves as the “Vice-Archon” and as a member of the Gerousia (discussed below).  The Archon Praefectus also ensures that The Meritocracy is properly represented in the Politeia.

  • Gerousia – The Gerousia (“council of elders”) was the name of the senate in ancient Sparta.  In the Politeia, the Gerousia is one part Senate and one part Cabinet.  The Gerousia is responsible for creating the Policy of the Politeia, and may veto any legislation.  Both Archons serve on the Gerousia.

  • Apella –   The Apella (assembly) was the name of the democratic body of citizens in ancient Sparta.  Our Apella functions nearly exactly as the Spartan Apella.  Every citizen of the Polieteia is also a member of the Apella.  The Apella is responsible for passing all legislation, approving all new citizens, and electing officials such as the Archon Basileus and the Ephors.

  • Ephor – The Ephors (“ones who oversee” or “supervisors”) were the most democratic of all Sparta's officials.  They were designed to be a counterweight to the power of the two hereditary kings.  In the Politeia, the Ephors are a counterweight to the Archons and serve primarily as judges and investigators.  It is the job of the Ephors to ensure that the laws of the Politeia are obeyed. 

  • Krypteia – The Krypteia (“hidden, secret things”) was a right of passage for certain Spartan citizens who had completed their military training.  In the Politeia, the Krypteia is our intelligence service.  Most citizens will never see the Krypteia, but it is out there.

How the Government Works

Now that you are familiar with our terminology, the government should be very easy to understand.   The Nomos, or constitution, assigns certain official tasks that must be carried out.

Legislation: Legislation is suggested by a citizen, and debated for a period of time.  Once the author is ready, the legislation is put to a vote. All legislation must be passed by a majority of the Apella.  Once the legislation passes, it must also be approved by a majority of the Gerousia before taking effect.

Elections:  All elections are held by the Apella.  The Gerousia does not have additional power within elections.   The Archon Basileus serves a two month term and elections are held every odd-numbered month (ex. January, March, May, etc.).   Ephors also serve two month terms and are elected ever even-numbered month (February, April, June, etc.).   There may be up to 5 Ephors at any time.

The Militia: Any citizen may join the militia.  Promotions are given based on activity, a willingness to lead, and an ability to lead.  We try to remain active, and we often participate with The Meritocracy in military activities.  This allows us to stay more active than we otherwise might.  There are 7 ranks within the militia.  From lowest to highest they are:

  • Hoplite
  • Ouragos
  • Enomotarch
  • Lochagos
  • Polemarch
  • Strategos
  • Archon Basileus

Of course, the rank of Archon Basileus is held by the official of the same name and is decided by an election.

Promotions: The Politeia was founded on the idea of "meritocracy," that is, "rule by merit."  To be promoted within the government, you should show a willingness to work and an ability to complete your assignments.  If you are eager to take on assignments then your fellow citizens are likely to notice you.  The Archon Basileus may appoint you to positions of some importance, or you may run for election as an Archon Basileus or Ephor. 

What is the purpose of it all?

Finally, you may be wondering what the purpose of the government is. Indeed, you may be wondering what the purpose of this game is!  NationStates is very open-ended, and there is no way to “win” the game.  It is a political game that was built primarily by the players. 

Since the game is so open-ended, you can do nearly anything.  Some people enjoy the excitement of running for office, infiltrating other organizations, and winning military victories.  Other players enjoy the less exciting elements such as writing legislation, overseeing trials, or managing the bureaucracy.  Nearly everybody enjoys the game’s wonderful community.  Personally, I enjoy the game for the friends I have made and for the opportunities to create interesting organizations.  If you like politics, chances are you can find—or create—something in the game that you will enjoy.  That is the purpose of the game and, to a large degree, the reason our government exists.


If you have gotten this far then you know the basics of how our government works.  You may check the sidebar on the left of this forum to find out who the current office holders are, or to find links to all our important documents.  Also, if you decide to join the region as a citizen then you will be assigned a mentor who can answer any questions you may have.  And, of course, you can always ask a question on the forum and we will be happy to answer it.

Good luck!
« Last Edit: April 15, 2008, 01:49:55 PM by Valle de Mexico » Logged

Jack McDonald,
President of the Radioactive Republic of Jasque
Former Archon Basileus of the Politeia

Merit: 15
Posts: 322

Angel Sanctuary is the bestest of the best!! :)

« Reply #1 on: August 06, 2006, 01:55:12 PM »

I know a little about some of the things you said Jasque, I studied Athenian history for a year for some reason and recently, I read a novel, "A courtesans daughter" was a good book, about the Archon and such things, there's more stuff about that in the book, just wanted to tell you. Cheesy

~I'm nice, most of the time Cheesy~
Would a better answer have been to point to "Administrator", noting that if God existed, He would never allow so foul and cruel a forum-master to come into being?
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