Diamante

The Septonate Brotherhood of Isla Diamante

La Hermandad Septonate de Isla Diamante
Flag of Diamante
Flag
Motto: Advancaramos la Reina Verde en el Mundo.
(Verdean: We Advance the Jade Queen in the world.)
Isla Diamante in relation to Northern Verde and Plata
Isla Diamante in relation to Northern Verde and Plata
Capital
and largest city
Ciudad dele Templo
Official languagesClassical Verdean
Recognised national languagesVulgar Verdean
Ethnic groups
  • 92% Verdean
  • 6% Mixed Verdean-Especian
  • 1% Mixed Verdean-Capisarian
  • 1% Other Especian and Meridonian
Demonym(s)Diamnean, Diamneans
GovernmentElective Ecclesiocracy
• Archsepton
José Garza Abadías
LegislatureSeptonate Brotherhood
Establishment
• Queendom of Diamante Established
AI 486
• Grand Temple of Isla Diamante completed
AdI 586
• Independence from Second Verdean Republic
11 de Mesvacío DI 131
• Island Purchased from Cloud Nine Travel Agency
52 de Mesvacío DI 184
Area
• Total
6,700 km2 (2,600 sq mi)
Population
• DI 218 estimate
156,215 (26)
• DI 216 census
156,200
• Density
23.316/km2 (60.4/sq mi)
GDP (nominal)DI 217 estimate
• Total
$5,104,793,770 NSD
• Per capita
$32,678 NSD
CurrencyMeridonian Unit
Date formatdd-mm-yyy DI
Internet TLD.sb

The Septonate Brotherhood of Isla Diamante is a unitary Elective Theocratic Ecclesiocracy, a City-State located in the Northwest of the Verdean Archipelago region of Greater Meridon. Diamante is a relatively homogeneous nation, comprised primarily of practicioners of Regio dela Verde. The Regio priesthood, known as the Septonate presides over the state of Diamante, guided by the principles of theocratic commualism, and the stewardship doctrine, overseeing care for the citizenry, and protection of the environment of most of the island. Isla Diamante maintains one of the cleanest examples of tropical rain forest remaining on the Verdean Archipelago.

Humans came to the Verdean Archipelago 10,000 years ago, with the first major societies on Diamante coming into being 6,000 years ago, only to be swept away a few centuries later. Diamante would remain relatively desolate until 4,000 years ago when a number of settlers began to recolonize the island and recreate larger societies. Diamante was then the seat of the attempts by the first dynasty to unify the Verdean Archipelago and create the first Verdean Empire.

Diamante was a relatively minor presence in the Empire, until the Great Fire that struck Corazón del Río in AdI 886. After that, the Septonate of Corazón del Río, at that time the largest in the Verdean Empire, opted to move its operations to Diamante in an attempt to construct a new Grand Temple. The temple, in spite of repeated attempts to stop the construction, the Temple was finally completed in AdI 1086. The temple then increasingly became the seat of power for religious authorities in the Verdean Archipelago, until the fall of Diamante to the Federal Republic of Capisaria in the DI 140s.

Diamante suffered significantly under Capisarian rule with the island being sold to the Capisarian-based Cloud Nine Travel Agency, which bulldozed the Temple and made the islands populace dependent on the company which constructed a resort hotel on the ruins of the Temple. In DI 169, an earthquake and tsunami devastated the island, and ruined Cloud Nine, resulting in the eventual sale of the island at auction in DI 184. The island was bought by Verdean resistance members who turned it over to the Septonate which took control of the island in Di 185. The Septonate government has managed the island since.

The Septonate Brotherhood of Isla Diamante is currently the wealthiest of the Culturally Verdean nations. This is in large part due to both the relatively large revenue the island receives from tourism, as well as donations to the Septonate Brotherhood, and the Grand Temple. The Brotherhood has governed largely according to the doctrines of theocratic collectivism, and stewardship, taking care of the citizenry, and making most of the island a nature preserve, rigorously working to protect the ecosystem on the island. Income equality, at least on the personal level is quite high, resulting in, compared to many other Verdean nations, a nearly uniformly high standard of living. The small size of Diamante does however mean that the island is dependent on international benefactors, primarily the Republic of Verde.

Etymology

The term Isla Diamante is religious reference dating back to the earliest followers of the Regio dela Verde. According to legend, the islands of the Verdean Archipelago are the demenses of the deities of the Regio, Isla Diamante being the home of the Diamond Priest, the spiritual soul of the deities, and the purest form of divinity. The Septonate Brotherhood of Isla Diamante is a construction of the Imperial Era. For most of recorded history however, the Verdean Archipelago had been more or less unified under the banner of successive Verdean Empires and Republics, and it was only with the warlord era that island specific cultural identities began to form. The demonym for citizens is Diamnean.

History

Main Article: Verdean History

Early History

Modern humans first arrived on Isla Diamante 8,000 years ago, initially as small gathering tribes. People began to collect into city-states somewhat later than other islands in the Archipelago, only around 6,000 years ago. These early city-states, proved short lived however, as within a few centuries, what is suspected to be a plague wiped dramatically depopulated the island, and destroying early civilization on Diamante. For the survivors life returned to a prior primarily hunter-gatherer state, though some agriculture continued locally. Populations would slowly grow throughout the next two thousand years, but proper settlements would not begin to arise until 4,000 years ago nearly a thousand years after the rest of the Archipelago. These classical period settlements would prove to be more permanent, and significantly more important, than the previous settlements.

During the classical period, Diamante proved a relatively remote island, removed from much of the strife between the Proto-Verdean monarchies in the rest of the Arhipelago. Its population unconcerned by the wars occurring further to the south. When an upstart king from Isla Verde sought to unify all of the Verdean Islands, the Diamnean peoples sent a small body of people to join a coalition against the prideful King, but they did not see battle before a storm killed the King and ended his ambitions of conquest. With the immediate threat of invasion staved off, the Diamnean civilizations went back to their isolation, remaining unconcerned about the affairs of the other Verdean peoples.

At the end of Classical Era, Diamante once again was forced to enter regional politics when a generation of upstart monarchs began their plans to unify the Verdean peoples. When the Rubecan queens came for Diamante, the Diamnean civilization proved incapable of mounting an effective defense. Once conquered it became a major seat of the Queendom's attempts to secure the other islands, and providing a number of resources for the armies of the queendom. Once Corazón del Río had been captured however, Isla Diamante became less relevant to the plans of the Queendom, and gradually faded into the background as they took their final steps into securing what would eventually become the First Verdean Empire.

An oil painting of the Fire of Corazón del Río

Imperial Era

For much of the early part of the Imperial Period, Isla Diamante was relatively quiet, and in fact saw outward migration from the island to Verde and the other, larger islands. This changed however, when the Great Fire of Corazón del Río, burned much of the city, including the Grand Temple of Corazón del Río, and the Imperial Palace to the ground. The Septonate of Corazón del Río, in an attempt to get away from the city, and its bloated, fire prone cityscape. Very quickly they selected the island of Diamante as the site for their new temple. However, they were halted by the Imperial government, which could not allow the Septonate such a measure of independence, insisting that the Septons would join the new Imperial administration, housed in Castille. As a result, the Septonate had a small headquarters in Diamante for two centuries while a succession of Imperial rulers denied construction of the temple. In AdI 566 they were finally given clearance to construct the Temple, which was completed in AdI 586.

During the middle part of the Imperial Period, Isla Diamante, and its Septons proved to be an invaluable source of technical, and societal innovation as the Septonate, most notably Pedro Cortez, were instrumental in the creation of the printing press. The first presses were then used to propagate the Regio faith primarily, but then presses were used by civil writers and spurred the development of several proto-liberal movements; and more importantly cemented the status of the Septonate as a permanent fixture of Diamnean society. As the Verdean Empire began to colonize the Especian continent, the Septonate of Isla Diamante played a key role in integrating Native Especians into the Empire, and some, most notably, Hugo Villa, who was assisted the Especians in asserting their claim to freedom from slavery. Towards the end of the period of colonization of Especia, Diamnean missionary Pablo Coruna del Verde was responsible for the writing of The Case for Liberty which proved to be the seminal text of early Verdean liberalism.

In the waning days of the First Verdean Empire, the Septonate, and therefore Diamnean society found itself increasingly weakend as a result of the Meridonian First Enlightenment and the spread of liberal values throughout the Verdean First Empire. As liberal thinkers increasingly embraced rationalist and humanist thought, the values of the faith were increasingly discarded. As the elite was increasingly populated by these bourgeoisie and business owning class, the old religiously backed feudal order began to break down. In order to stay relevant, the Septons allied themselves with the Verdean liberal movement, increasingly more so when the monarchy itself weakened in the final decade of the First Empire. The final major act of the Septonate in Diamante during the Imperial Era was to denounce the Mandate of Heaven, a religious backing of the Imperial monarchy, which proved a significant step in tripping the Verdean Revolution and the fall of the Verdean Empire.

A woodcut of Diamnean Revolutionaries during the Verdean Revolution

Post Imperial Era

For much of the first century of Post-Imperial rule, the Diamnean Septonate, and Diamnean society in general was made to languish in irrelevance. The relative lack of natural resources, and small labor pool meant that there was little industrial interest in the island, and the decline of support for the Regio de Verde meant that the influence of the church was increasingly ineffective at supporting the island without these industrial interests. As the First Republic came under siege as a result of class conflict however, the church saw a brief revival in the years of increasingly reactionary thought that led to the coronation of Carlos XII Parisa, and the beginning of the Second Verdean Empire. During this period, Diamante played a small but important role in producing propaganda and small warships for the efforts of the Second Empire during the Carlosian War. After the war, Diamante went into a period of quiet isolation as the rest of the Archipelago exploded once more into class conflict, and the eventual collapse of the Second Empire. During the brief period of the unstable Second Republic Diamante exercised minimal influence on Verdean politics and played only a minor role in the Valden War of Aggression, declaring independence from the Second Republic in DI 131.

Diamante was among the first to stabilize itself in the maelstrom following the Valden War, and the collapse of the Second Republic. It was also one of the last to fall to Capisarian authority, being taken only after all the states protecting it had also been taken by Capsiaria. Under Capisarian rule, Isla Diamante was quickly bought by the Cloud Nine travel agency and made into a corporate territory. The Temple was bulldozed, and the Diamnean people were forced into a company town around the construction site of a new resort hotel. The Diamnean people attempted to resist, but were put down by mercenaries of the private Seraph Security Corporation. The resort opened in DI 155, serving tens of thousands of wealth Capisarians in its first year. Cloud Nine uses the hotel, and its highly paid jobs as a carrot to maintain order, paired with Seraph Security as the stick. This arrangement came to an end however, when an Earthquake and Tsunami devastated the island, and laid waste to Diamante's resort. The company never recovered from this event, and the island's economy shrank significantly overnight.

During the revolutionary period in Capisaria, and its equivalent resistance in the Verdean Archipelago, the Diamneans found themselves among the first liberated when Cloud Nine went bankrupt and was forced to sell at auction the Island of Isla Diamante to the Orteguista movement. The Orteguistas turned over Isla Diamante to the Diamnean Septonate, which assumed control of the civil society of the island once more. The deserted resort was demolished and construction of a new Grand Temple began. In conjuction with this the religious authorities set up a secular council to run day to day affairs, and both worked to restart the tourism industry on the island, as well as laying out the principles of the new administration namely, the protection of the poor and the environment of the island. Over the years since the revolution, the Septons have overseen a dramatic expansion of the economy and the rapid improvement of living conditions for the average Diamnean. Additionally, the new government has overseen the stewardship and restoration of the local enviroment, and in doing these made Diamante one of the nicest places within the Archipelago to live.

Geography

An overhead walkway in the cloud forest area of Diamante

The Septonate Brotherhood of Isla Diamante is the sole state on Isla Diamante, and is a city-state of 6,700 square kilometers. Isla Diamante is dominated by single large mountain, an extinct Volanco known as El Sacerdote, which located centrally on the island. The island is of a tropical climate, and most of the island is dominated by tropical rainforest, with some sandy beaches and the heights of El Sacerdote being a tropical cloud forest. The island has a high degree of biodiversity, and is home to around 3,000 species of animals and vascular plants. Isla Diamante's highest point is the peak of El Sacerdote at 5,782 meters. Isla Diamante has many small rivers that descend from the higher levels of the island to the sea, the largest of these being the Río del Spiritu Sancti. Most of the island is a natural preserve, managed directly by the civil authorities of Isla Diamante.

Demographics

According to the most recent census, Isla Diamante has a population of 156,215 and has become relatively stable. The population is the least diverse in the Verdean Archipelago, with over nine tenths of the populace being of pure or nearly pure Verdean stock, and almost the entire population being at least partially Verdean. The entire legal population resides in a single city, Ciudad dele Templo, and as a result the entire population is urbanized. The official language of the Septonate Brotherhood is Classical Verdean, which is spoken natively, by nearly the entire population of Isla Diamante, and its official religion is Regio dela Verde, which is similarly almost uniformly followed by nearly the entire population.

Government

The Septonate Brotherhood of Isla Diamante is an elective ecclesiocracy with a second, secular government that operates the island on a daily basis. There is only one layer of government in the Diamnean system the national government in this instance is a municipal government as well. The ecclesiarchy of the Septonate is mostly responsible for the legislative authority of the island. Those Septons who do serve on the legislative council are elected by all citizens over the age of 18, after being vetted by the Septons themselves (to ensure that the candidate in question is free of corruption and upstanding in their values). From among them, the Archsepton is chosen by the council to act as an executive, and head of state for the Diamnean government. The secular government operates primarily as an administrative bureaucracy that manages the day to day affairs of the island, and enforces the directives of the Septonate. As a very small nation, the Diamneans are reliant upon maintaining close relations with larger nations, and has close relations with the Republic of Verde, and Plata who are benefactors and supporters of the Diamnean government and nation.

Economy

Economic Indicators

Monetary Unit: Meridonian Unit (μ)

Conversion Rate: μ1 = $1.7733 NSD

Fiscal Year: 27 de Mesorge-26 de Mesorge

Nominal GDP: $5,104,793,770 NSD

GDP per Capita: $32,678 NSD

Labor Force: 93,729

Unemployment: 937 (1%)

The economy of Isla Diamante is guided by religiously collectivist principles. Diamante is a major net importer of goods, and is largely dominated by the tourist industry, which is the primary driver of the Diamnean economy, and service sector positions provide most of the jobs for the islands one hundred fifteen thousand strong workforce. Supporting the citizenry of the island is the other large part of the economy, with the education system, the general hopsital, and other similar workspaces provide most of the rest of the jobs on the island. Given governing principles of Diamante, and its relatively small population to care for, the financial resources brought in by the tourist industry have allowed Diamante to more or less eliminate poverty on the island for legal its legal denizens. Infrastructure within the city of Diamante is extremely well developed, though surprisingly lacking in automobile networks (cars are banned on Diamante), and the entire power grid, as of DI 202 is supplied by wind and solar sources. The government controls 35% of the economy, and uses this money almost entirely to provide for social services and law enforcement in Diamante. The currency used in Diamante is the Meridonian Unit.

A member of the Diamnean Security Force

Law Enforcement

Law enforcement on Isla Diamante is provided by the Diamnean Security Force, which provides traffic enforcement, local law enforcement, environmental protection, counter-terrorism, guarding major building, as well as, to a lesser extent protection from external threats. This security force operates throughout the island operating small garrisons throughout the island, with most in the city of Ciudad dele Templo. In outside garrisons, members of the security force are primarily responsible for protecting the environment on the island, and removing people squatting illegally away from the city. Currently the Security Force has 2,651 members operating within its ranks, and receives an operating budget of $51,047,938 or roughly 1% of the GDP of Isla Diamante.

Human Development

Isla Diamante is a developed nation, and is in fact the most developed nation in the Verdean Archipelago. Diamante was fortunate in that it was liberated from the Capisarian Federal Republic significantly earlier than the rest of the Archipelago (with the exception of Dorado). Diamante has virtually no poverty, and strives to maintain a high standard of living for its citizenry. The education system is well funded, and almost the entire adult population is literate, with most adult citizens having sixteen or seventeen years of education. There are five primary and one secondary school, as well as a small university, the Regio Seminary. Healthcare in Diamante is provided by the Dimnean general hospital which is a sizable complex made up of several departments that service almost any conceivable need that the Diamnean citizenry has. These factors, as well as the relatively high income of the average Diamnean citizen result in a high standard of living for most of the citizenry, though Diamneans find themselves somewhat lacking in disposible income as a result of the need to buy imported goods on a day to day basis.

Culture

The culture of Diamante is perhaps the purest expression of Verdean culture, as it was before the fall of the First Verdean Empire in the Verdean Archipelago, immigration to Isla Diamante was relatively little in comparison to the larger islands. The island is, far more so, than other islands in the Archipelago, dominated by the cultural influences of Regio dela Verde, the church of which, sponsors a number of cultural and community activities. As much of the island had to be reconstructed as a result of the DI 169 tsunami, it perhaps is more modern in its architectural style, with Post-Modernist buildings being quite common. When it comes to cuisine, Diamante is well known for its seafood, and its fruit based dishes which are well known throughout Southern Meridon. Entertainment is mostly imported from the larger Isla Verde, but the city does operate a small bullfighting arena as well as an football stadium.