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|This article refers to a micronation which is defunct and no longer exists. You can help make the article reflect that or ask on the talk page for further information.|
| Glastieve |
Glory to the Independent!
Unfounded Revenge (2017)
Our Nation Built on Friendship (2019-20)
|South-West England |
|Capital city||Belassolt (2017)|
|Official language(s)||English, Latin, Evonian|
|Official religion(s)||State secularism|
Glastieven mythology (as a cultural tradition rather than a belief system)
|- Cabinet, First Republic||δ, R, U, K, N, E, Z, β and α|
|- Exec. Cllrs, Second Republic||δ, A, E, R, T, Z and N|
|- High Cllrs, Holy Commonwealth||δ, K, X and E|
|Established||23 February 2017|
|Time zone||UK time (2017, 2019-20)|
UK time + 1 hour (2018)
|Internet TLD||.glastieve.wixsite.com (de facto)|
|National sport||Undertale (2017-19)|
|National dish||State ice cream|
|National drink||Vodka (2019-20)|
Cheap apple cider (2019-20)
Glastieve is a former micronation-state that was active between February 2017 and March 2020 in the South-West of England. Founding three successive directorial republics, and spending some time as a stateless nation, Glastieve defined itself as a "nation and friendship group" that blended characteristics of a conventional micronation with a group of friends. At the effective dissolution of the country, there were nine Glastievens, but a total of fifteen people were actively engaged with the project at some point in its history, and citizenship was ceremonially re-granted to the six former members shortly before the nation was abandoned. Never formally abolished, the country and its institutions have been intentionally left in abeyance to allow for temporary nostalgic revivals, and so all three republics do still technically exist. Though short-lived, Glastieve was a highly developed New Secessionist micronation, with an effective directorial government; a culture that was developed organically by its citizens; and, at times, an active market economy.
The Republic of Glastieve was first established on 23 February 2017 by members of two preexisting groups of friends, Acteriendia and the Group. Over the next few months, the participants in the project started to view "Glastieve" as the name of both the polity and the associated group of friends. The First Republic was dissolved in November 2017 after controversy surrounding a plot to undermine an election result. A second Republic of Glastieve was founded in January 2018 by the same group of friends, who now viewed Glastieve as having superseded Acteriendia and located the beginning of Glastieven history in September 2014. This republic faded due to inactivity in January 2019, but the Glastieven identity persisted. While the group had no interest in founding a third micronation, a minority did plan a more ambitious project, the Envardian Republic. By September 2019, the whole group was involved with Envardia, but it was also clear that the plan was no achievable. A group summit was called and it decided to found a third republic, the Holy Glastieven Commonwealth, which declared independence on 11 October. In early 2020, the Group finally merged into Glastieve, as Acteriendia had done in 2017. On 4 March, the High Council issued the Declaration of New Home, essentially dissolving the Holy Commonwealth by putting it into deliberate abeyance.
Despite initially being explicitly created as a "MicroWiki nation," the country had a complex relationship with the MicroWiki sector. Its engagement in the community reached its peak in mid-2017, but in October the state passed a motion withdrawing from all online micronationalism in the wake of the country's involvement in a controversial breakaway movement during August and September. Under the Second Republic, only one Glastieven was part of the community, though a theme in the country's internal politics was competition with Austenasia; by the time of the Holy Commonwealth, the country was essentially no longer part of the MicroWiki sector. Glastieve's MicroWiki entries have often been the longest on the site, and this was a point of national pride, with the state maintaining and expanding these articles long after the country had ceased to be actively involved with the community. Glastieven contributions to micronationalism include New Secessionism, a micropatriological theory that emphasies the importance of an organic culture and the small-scale services that the micronational state can provide, and the Glastieven Model, a way of creating market economies in micronations.
- 1 Nomenclature
- 2 History
- 3 Culture and traditons
Uniliteral name codes
Name of Glastieve
The English word Glastieve (/glæstiːeɪjveɪ/) was constructed in February 2017 from the Irish place name elements glas (/glæs/) and tieve (/tiːv/), the latter of which is an anglicisation of the Irish word taobh (Connacht [t̪ˠiːvˠ]); the unusual pronunciation of tieve (/tiːeɪjveɪ/) is based on a colloquial perception of continental toponyms derived from the Romance languages. This name is in the tradition of the Acteriendian model countries, several less serious micronations created by Acteriendians that preceded Glastieve. The use of Celtic place name elements has its roots in δ's model country, Skovaji, and the use of improvised continental-sounding toponyms has its roots in E's model country, Myré. In Glastieven tradition, the country's name is said to be derived from the Irish for 'grassy hillside,' and this phrase has sometimes been used as a poetic name for the country, such as in The Grassy Hillside Club, the national chatroom of the Second Republic. In reality, however, glas means green, and taobh means side in the sense of a flank, edge or region, meaning that, in reality, Glastieve means something closer to 'green region' or 'the green side'.
Glastieve had its own names in its two non-English official languages, Latin, used in the Holy Commonwealth, and the constructed Evonian language, used in the First Republic. The usual Latin name for Glastieve was Dredria (/dɹedɹiæ/), which is taken directly from the name of Glastieve in the Evonian, Dredrae (/dɹɛdɹə/). Formally, the government of the Holy Commonwealth translated Glastieve as Collis Gramineus (/kɔlɪs ɡraːmɪneus/), Latin for 'grassy hill', mirroring the traditional Glastieven etymology of the English name. The formal Latin translation of 'Holy Glastieven Commonwealth' was Res Publica Sancta Collis Gramineus, approximately meaning 'Holy Republic of the Green Hill.' Other than in translating the name of the state, the government accepted Dredria as the Latin for Glastieve, such as in its use of the nationality prefix Dredro- or in the name of the Exedrium Dredriae, the national chatroom of the Holy Commonwealth between October and December. The Evonian for 'Republic of Glastieve' was Dzeirendae ditshaentae Dredrae.
|This section requires significant copy-editing to conform to a wiki style. This work is currently ongoing.|
Before the "Great Beginning"
As noted before, Glastieven history largely takes place in Exeter, a cathedral city that started the 2010s as a glorified market town and was slowly gentrified over that decade into something more like a student town. Over time, the extent to which Glastieve was confined to Exeter waned, though even at the Baisser de Rideau, 81% of Glastievens and 82% of those invited to join the Fellowship of Former Glastievens were resident in the city. Part of understanding the nation and friendship group is knowing what Exeter was like for a teenager in the latter half of the 2010s. The emergence of Glastieven cartography and folklore in the Second Golden Age suggests that the mature group had started to appreciate the importance to Glastieve of the geographical area where it existed, despite the micronational façade of a distinct ‘territorial claim.’ It follows from the importance of Exeter to Glastieve that certain parts of modern Exonian history might also form part of Glastieven prehistory. Certainly, understanding Exeter makes it easier to understand Glastieve, and for former members of the group, Exonian history can invoke much the same nostalgic response as the story of the group itself. Nver, a study of a British city’s history is well outside the intended scope of this work. As such, some further reading on Exeter’s history has been included in the appendix.
Another field of prehistorical study that falls outside the remit of this book is the history of ‘youth counterculture.’ Youth counterculture was a term of art in Glastieve that referred to a particular collection of Internet-based fandoms, which were felt to constitute a collective tradition associated with teenagers and young adults who had been bullied for their interests at a younger age and now defined their social identities in opposition to the mainstream. This most obviously included the anime and manga fandoms, but was intended as a wider term that would also incorporate nerdier fandoms, like xkcd and Star Wars, and Internet meme culture. In contrast to the term’s plain meaning, it did not include less explicitly ‘uncool’ subcultures like goths and punks. Instead, youth counterculture was thought of as a subculture in its own right characterised by the social exclusion and mockery experienced near-universally by teenage and young adult members of Internet-based fandoms. The Homestuck fandom was at the heart of the intuitive definition of the term as it was usually intended, and the range of Internet cultures parodied in Homestuck is roughly coterminous with the Glastieven concept of youth counterculture. All of this is contextually relevant to the history of Glastieve, and might be called ‘Glastieven prehistory.’
It has been noted by other Glastievens that the group was particularly influenced by its own perception of youth counterculture in the first half of the 2010s. At times, this enthusiasm has tipped over into mythmaking. The Homestuck fandom often locates its best days as having been in 2012, and in 2018, certain Glastievens were all too happy to merrily conflate this with the pseudo-historical ‘golden age’ imagined by the conservatives of the Skype-based MicroWiki community, concluding that youth counterculture as a whole had enjoyed a halcyon age in around 2012–14, with Glastieve as a young student of this older tradition. While this mythical view was only ever held by a minority, the real world of Internet fandoms c. 2010–15 certainly did have a disproportionate impact on Glastieven culture. For example, the group used Facebook Messenger as its main (and often only) chat platform from 2016 right up until the Baisser de Rideau. This was always something that set it apart from the teenage groups around it, who fairly universally used Snapchat, with a minority preferring Instagram. Traditional Glastieven wisdom asserts that Messenger was more popular in the earlier 2010s: this is supported by data from Google Trends, where comparing U.K. searches for Messenger and those for Snapchat shows that the former was more popular from 2010 to March 2013, but that the latter became more popular from April 2013. In worldwide searches, Snapchat came to parity with Messenger in December 2013, and pulled ahead in October 2014. Similar examples present themselves readily. Given its surprising relevance, some further reading on the history of youth counterculture in the early-to-mid 2010s has been included in the appendix.
Another strand in Glastieven prehistory is Bowhill Primary School. U, C, K, δ and N all studied here from September 2007 to July 2014, and for much of that time they were friends with one another in various combinations. Informally, Bowhill is sometimes talked about as a ‘hidden’ part of Glastieven history, and more importantly, a small fraction of later Acteriendian culture can incontestably be traced back to Bowhill. Furthermore, the primary school friendships of the five had an impact on their later dynamic in a way that finds no real analogy in the experiences of other members of the group before the formal beginning of Glastieven history. The foremost historian of this period has long been K, and her work on Glastievens at Bowhill has set the standard for how Bowhill is treated in Glastieven prehistory. The Keeper identifies two distinct ‘threads’ of relevant prehistory that can be identified in the wider corpus of in-jokes and games played by the four.
The first of these is Bakon Kids, a so-called ‘club’ that U, K and δ started. It began in either 2009 or 10, was renamed to Crackerjazz in 2012, and then again to Crackerjazz Lite in 2013 or 14. Naturally, it had its own long history, which included ‘wars’ with other groups, including the ‘Gammon Gang’ and ‘Spy Club;’ an attempt to start a stock exchange using leaves as currency; annual general meetings, held on the 6th of May each year; and a board game party (referred to in K’s contemporary writings as a ‘disco’), organised to take place during a lunchtime. Bakon Kids can be seen as the earliest type for the group’s later tendency towards creating quasi-formal structures for itself, like Green Team or the Glastieven republics. ‘Wars’ with other groups aside, the pretend-formality and legalism of Bakon Kids simulated a corporation more than it did a country. It is interesting to note that K and δ went on to become the two most hardline New Secessionists in the country, especially given that the former was not present for the post-Bowhill development of the philosophy but took it up after Glastievemoot as though it were natural. Bakon Kids is a bottomless source of surface-level comparisons with later events in Glastieven politics, e.g. the renaming to Crackerjazz mirroring the Bonhay Revolution, and in this capacity it was sometimes mentioned in politics, particularly in 2019–20.
K did her work before C became a Glastieven and before the merger of the Group into Glastieve was recognised, and so it might be reasonable to assume that Her Holiness would also wish to mention ‘Girls Aloud,’ another student-run ‘club’ that ran alongside Bakon Kids to some extent and included K, C and Dyer, among others, being led by C. While never sharing the pretend-formality of Bakon Kids, the friendship group that developed from Girls Aloud undoubtedly had some relationship to the later Group, and its existence strengthens the argument that Bowhill forms a sort of Glastieven ‘deep lore.’ Furthermore, Bakon Kids and Girls Aloud definitely had some pretend-formal interactions with one another while the latter was still being organised as a ‘club,’ probably between 2009 and 12, and they may have ‘fought together’ in the war with the Gammon Gang during this period.
The second of the Keeper’s threads is Black Hole Hulk, an imaginative game played by U, δ and their then-friend Kian Hollingworth from 2012 or 13 until their leaving the school. There was an attempt to bring N into the game, and though he did create a character, he did not become a regular fourth player. At the time, Black Hole Hulk was usually just called the Game, especially by U; the Game was rather like improvisational theatre without an audience, and B.H.H. was seen as a sort of television show. Each instance of playing the Game was an ‘episode,’ complete with acted-out ‘trailers for the next episode’ at the end of the breaktime or lunchtime, and there were around ten numbered ‘series’ during their time at Bowhill. When the three left Bowhill, the Game died with them, though δ wrote down some fragments of the B.H.H. lore and wrote some short stories using it. It is now recognised as the beginning of Glastieven mythology, and its characters and concepts were revived in 2015 with a recognition that the tradition had started at Bowhill in 2012; there was even an attempt to continue the series numbering. The link between Black Hole Hulk and Glastieve through the mythology is uncontested, though its role, if any, in influencing the rest of early Acteriendian culture is murky.
Secondary school loomed large on the horizon from mid-2014 onwards, and visits from different primary schools to Coltheart saw R meet and start to befriend S and δ, and N meet and start to befriend A. In 2014, Coltheart was in a state of transition. It had been Coltheart Technology College since the 1990s, and had been led by the same headmaster since then, Mr Maddern. He had built a strong reputation for the college, but was forced to resign in 2012 after it was revealed he was paying himself more than the British Prime Minister and that there was ‘insufficient professional distance’ between him and the chair of governors. Unsurprisingly, Mr Maddern’s resignation was followed by a change in senior leadership. The British government’s specialist colleges programme came to an end in 2014, and the new headteacher, Ms Carah, decided to rebrand the college as Coltheart School, with a new logo and school uniform being introduced from September 2014 onwards. Thus, the key figures of the Early Era joined a school that was still part way through changing from Coltheart Technology College to Coltheart School, with a new uniform and senior management team. In addition, its building had only been open since 2005, and teachers regularly referenced the ‘new building.’ Coltheart was a school in transition, and September 2014 was supposed to be its great beginning, though this ended up being overshadowed by later events. For a small minority, though, September 2014 is still remembered as a Great Beginning: that of Glastieven history.
Before Acteriendia, 2014–15
Glastieven history begins in the south-west of England, in the British county of Devon and its capital, the cathedral city of Exeter, and its earliest era is concerned with the social landscape at the Exonian schools which the future Glastievens attended before some of them came together in November 2015 as the group of friends that would later evolve into Glastieve. This group of friends, Acteriendia, can only be understood in the context of several entities that came before, and its roots stretch back quite some way into the past. Indeed, far from seeing the formation of their group of friends as the beginning of something entirely new, the Acteriendians of November 2015 perceived their friendship group as a convergence of several existing traditions, each of which contributed values, in-jokes, observances and institutions that characterised the new group. As such, the seemingly distant days before the friendship group retain modern relevance, and they form the first of the six eras of Glastieven history, the Early Era.
It was in September 2014 that the Early Era truly began, some two months after U, K, δ and N had left Bowhill and both Crackerjazz and the Game had been abandoned. The traditional starting point of Glastieven history, the Great Beginning, was when R, S, U, K, Z, A, δ, N and E all started Year Seven at Coltheart School. Naturally, the four Bowhillians already knew each other, though their friendships with one another had largely come to an end, with the notable exception being δ and N, who were still friends. Additionally, two pairs A and N, and R and δ, had already met and started to become friends on the school’s inset day, which had been back in the summer of 2014. All of this blurs the hard line that the Great Beginning traditionally represents. Despite the dramatic title, the Great Beginning is largely a product of convenience and folklore, reflecting the nostalgic Glastieven attitude to Coltheart School as much as it does the historical facts of the situation in September 2014, which was well over a year before November 2015 and much further away from the formation of Acteriendia than is popularly imagined. Whatever the concept’s weaknesses, though, the traditional Great Beginning took place on Friday the 5th of September 2014 when the school buzzer sounded at 8.45 a.m., and in the same instant, the Early Era of Glastieven history began. The next four months, which established the status quo that would define the rest of the Early Era, are often grouped with the Great Beginning. What this extended Great Beginning saw established were three important entities: Green Team, Trains Club, and the Acteriendian model countries, collectively referred to as Early Acteriendia. This rather misleading name should not be taken to imply that the three collectively constituted an iteration of that friendship group; rather, they are its predecessor, such that Early Acteriendia is to Acteriendia as Acteriendia is to Glastieve.
Shortly after the 5th of September, R and δ joined the Green Team, which at the time was led by teacher M, who was assisted by older students B and Jasmine. At roughly the same time, δ and N created Trains Club, building on their friendship from Bowhill. In addition, also in early September, R, δ, N and E were all invited to join Think Tank, the school’s gifted-and-talented group. Around a month later, δ and N founded two model country projects: on the 9th of October, δ created the Republic of Bedroom, which was replaced on the 14th by the Nation of Bedroom after strife between him and his brother. δ was Prime Minister of the N. of B., and his brother was Lord Wesley, an office equivalent to king. N was inspired by δ to create his own model country, and on the 16th established the Empire of the Democratic Republic of N, also serving as Prime Minister.
In September, shortly after its foundation, A and V joined Trains Club. V was a friend of N’s who also sat next to δ in tutorial, and A was then one of N’s closest friends, so their joining the club did not suggest that it had much appeal beyond its organisers’ friends. Largely through Trains Club, N encouraged A and V to create their own model countries: B’lardland and the Kingdom of V, and the four formally made up an organisation called the Exeter United Nations. Neither A nor V were as committed to their model countries as δ and N were, and in practice B’lardland and the Kingdom of V only existed through their diplomatic relations with the N. of B. and the E. of the D.R. of N. A conducted enough of these relations outside Trains Club for N to consider B’lardland to be the E. of the D.R. of H.’s ‘closest ally’, though the Kingdom of V was only ever spoken of at Trains Club meetings.
Meanwhile, Green Team met after-school on Wednesdays in G125, and dedicated its sessions to ‘inspecting’ all rooms in the school to record how many electric devices had been left on, with toffees given as a reward to those teachers who had turned everything off. The sessions were unsupervised by M, with B and her friends left in charge, and were often characterised by confrontations between R and the older students over their authority. The dates are uncertain, but at some point during the first term of 2014 both S and E joined the team, the older students left, and M stepped back from the club, continuing to supply toffees for the room inspections but no longer meeting the group in G125 at the beginning of the sessions. As the most senior members, R and δ assumed the leadership role of B and her associates, and were left in charge during the sessions.
In Trains Club, the E. of the D.R. of H. and N. of B. competed for influence over the nations of the Exeter United Nations. B’lardland and the Kingdom of V were initially aligned with N’s nation, but moved closer to the N. of B. in November when δ established the ‘Nation of Bedroom Economic Area’, which was formally ‘an extension of the N. of B.’s domestic economy to other member states’. In practice, this meant that δ created a small simulated market economy by distributing Wesleys, the N. of B.’s currency, to A and V. N responded by aiming to build an economy in the E. of the D.R. of H. that would be superior to the N. of B.’s, and began by creating his own currency, the Token. The race between the Wesley-based economy and the Token-based economy was known as the ‘Currency War’, and the competition increased activity in the Exeter United Nations, but risked division. In November, this division came when δ sponsored the creation of the Lordship of Alfieland, a ‘semi-independent’ nation that joined the Exeter United Nations in alignment with δ. In response, and so as to ensure the E. of the D.R. of H. remained on the same level of authority as the N. of B., N persuaded A to bring B’lardland out of the Nation of Bedroom Economic Area and into a formal alliance with the E. of the D.R. of H., dividing the Exeter United Nations in two.
Trains Club, meanwhile, was facing significant difficulties. An advertising campaign led by δ, which had included an assembly delivered to the entire of Year 7 and posters put up in the school library, backfired hugely on the club, drawing the attention of students in the older years who disrupted its meetings and bullied its members. As such, in November 2014 the club was mostly being held together by the friendship between the four, which in turn was supported by their model countries. Ergo, the division in the Exeter United Nations, with N and A on one side and δ and V on the other, significantly weakened Trains Club.
A and V had both been closer friends with N than δ, and as the division in their group began to be blamed on the power games in the Exeter United Nations, it was largely δ who took the blame, weakening his role in Trains Club and seeing N become the dominant figure. In the end, A and V began to lose interest in what had only ever been a casual activity, with their decline in interest likely not helped by the tensions, and on 1 December they both announced that their countries had ‘gone defunct’ (the traditional Acteriendian term for the end of a model country, coined by N in 2015), resulting in the Exeter United Nations being essentially abolished. Now without any reason to keep up the pretense, δ announced that the Lordship of Alfieland also being defunct, and said that it would be absorbed by the Nation of Bedroom. Aptly enough, in the history of Skovaji, the events of 1 December are known as ‘GAME OVER.’ (with the full stop), a reference to a flash in Homestuck, ‘[S] GAME OVER’ (without the full stop), in which nine out of eighteen main characters appear to die in a single four-minute animation.
Thus, 2014 came to a close against a backdrop of a weakened Trains Club dominated by N and his close friends, and a strengthened Green Team composed entirely of future Glastievens and with R and δ as its de facto leaders. The politics in Trains Club and Green Team during the first term of Year 7 are considered to be part of the Great Beginning, and the situation at the end of 2014 represented a status quo that would persist without revolutionary change until November 2015.
TRAINS CLUB & GREEN TEAM
Other than remembered and anecdotal evidence, the earliest surviving primary source for the days before the friendship group is a Green Team poster from January 2015, advertising a school e-waste collection bin for the charity Computers4Africa. At the beginning of 2015, the Green Team were starting to branch out and work on other projects, and though the room inspections were still part of the routine, they had become increasingly perfunctory, retained mostly because they were associated with the right to visit the staff-only floor of the school, which had access to the roof and a box of biscuits. More and more time at meetings was instead being dedicated to work on projects, suggested by M and then worked on by the club under R and δ’s student leadership—Computers4Africa being one such project.
The next-earliest written sources are from February, with one relating to Trains Club, and the other to the model countries. One is a Trains Club membership application, with a ham-fisted focus on excluding potential bullies, with questions including ‘do you have an interest in trains?’ and ‘do you have a personal dislike of any members of the club?’. Despite the childishness of their approach, though, δ and N were successful in protecting Trains Club from further disruption and in drawing in new members, and by the beginning of March, they were leading a revitalised club with regular meetings and an enthusiastic membership. The second is an edition of the Weekly Wesley, the newspaper of the First Republic of Skovaji, which had been declared over Christmas as the more serious successor to the Nation of Bedroom. The newspaper contains a condescending article titled Skovaji changes recognition status of N to ‘recognise autonomy but not full sovereignty’, which attacks the D.R. of H. for being childish, and explains that to avoid being embarrassed ‘internationally’ (in the online micronational community), Skovaji’s recognition of the D.R. of H. would be conditional on N’s acting on the criticism made. N was understandably angry with the article, which as a further insult broke Ntanese law by referring to the state as N and not the Democratic Republic of N or the DRoH. It was also the only notification that N received of δ’s decision.
These written sources are from the core of the early days, or the last two terms of Year 7, when there was little real movement towards the evolution of the late 2014 status quo towards the emergence of the friendship group in Year 8. Despite the appearance of continuity, Nver, the evolving relationships between different members of the future group as hinted at by events in the clubs were laying the foundations for the dynamic of the early friendship group, and for the circumstances of its emergence—January to August 2015 was a period of relative stability within the framework established from September to December 2014, but was one that laid the foundations for the radical and rapid change of September to November 2015.
After snubbing the D.R. of H. in the Weekly Wesley, δ made work on Skovaji his project at Think Tank, where students were expected to work autonomously on projects to bring to competitions between schools. On the 26th of March, he founded a second Exeter United Nations, technically a revival of the first, and encouraged E and a friend thereof, P, to start their own members of the Exeter United Nations as Think Tank projects. E created the Kingdom of Trebor, and P the Demorcatic Republic. These were more facetious than B’lardland and the Kingdom of V had been, and were centred largely on Wix.com sites that E and P created during Think Tank sessions, one of which still survives. By mid-April the spat between the D.R. of H. and Skovaji was over, and the two restored full relations. In particular, Skovaji acknowledged Ntanese sovereignty, and as a gesture of goodwill, also recognized the D.R. of H.’s victory in the Currency War. The D.R. of H. joined the second Exeter United Nations in late April, and N created a Wix.com site for his country while at Think Tank. Nver, the Lord Wesley vetoed a treaty of alliance negotiated by δ and N, and Skovaji refused to recognise the non-human citizens of the D.R. of H., which included a hamster as a police chief and a cat as an army general. This latter issue continued to be a source of contention between δ and N until June.
Less than a month later, in May, the Exeter United Nations was again abolished when both Trebor and the Demorcatic ‘went defunct’, with P no longer being relevant to Glastieven history. The D.R. of H. and Skovaji responded to a second failure to establish a local micronational sector with further reforms and modernization, the former adopting a written constitution in May and meeting many of the demands that had been made in the Wesley article over May and June, including restricting citizenship to humans, and the latter joining the MicroWiki community through Ned Greiner, the leader of Nedland, who had sent δ messages on MicroWikia, the less well-respected micronational website Skovaji had initially become involved with. δ also worked to restrict the authority of the Lord Wesley, after his brother’s refusal to sign the alliance treaty with the D.R. of H. had shown that his quiescence was not enough to prevent him from getting in the way of the P.M.’s ambitions for Skovaji, and the country essentially became ruled by δ alone.
M left Coltheart School in either February or March. That left Green Team in a state of limbo, with no staff leadership or endorsement, but a membership who knew they could probably continue to carry out their activities unchallenged. In the first of many instances of Green Team justifying itself using quasi-legal arguments based on the ‘jurisprudence’ of Coltheart School, R and δ determined that Green Team had never been abolished and continued to possess the same rights within the school as it had always while run by M, and that in his absence, they were now the team’s co-leaders. By the spring, the team were working on a plan to redevelop an abandoned garden area behind the school’s football pitch, including R and δ buying their own paint and painting a gazebo white without any staff approval. A document from April lays out a sophisticated plan to build mini planters to simulate growing plants in a long-unused polytunnel, and an unsent letter from June invites teachers to a ‘ground-breaking ceremony’ for their work to improve the gardening area, signed by ‘δ (Trains Club, Debating Club, Green Team)’ and ‘R (Jazz Band, Rock Group, Green Team)’.
Trains Club also saw significant development in the spring, beginning to realize its potential after having successfully repelled the bullies of the first term. A document from June is titled ‘fact-sheet for ePraise’, and presents information about the club to teachers to support δ’s applying for the right to award points and accolades to the club’s members—a right enjoyed by staff members in relation to their clubs. The success of this application cemented Trains Club’s status as a legitimate club, despite being student-run, and the detailed information on the sheet suggests an active group with a timetable of activities and a quasi-legal leadership structure comparable to that which was emerging in Green Team. The writing style also hints that δ may have regained much of his authority from N, and it is unclear which of the two was the dominant leader at that time.
The membership list on the fact-sheet is interesting. R is listed as an ‘associate member’, despite his letter signature suggesting that he did not consider himself to be particularly affiliated with the group. This suggests that he is listed by virtue of his Green Team-based friendship with δ. Indeed, at the time, it was a fairly common assumption among the Year 7s of Think Tank that within each year group there was a small core of people who made up all or most of that year’s membership or leadership of the extra-curricular clubs. For example, they thought that a single friendship group of Year 10 students controlled Think Tank, ‘Horrible Histories Club’, the school’s Amnesty International group, and the L.G.B.T.Q. society, and that a separate group in Year 8 were all members of Think Tank and controlled the Model United Nations. This idea would have been in δ and N’s minds when they listed R as an associate member, and R’s presence on the membership list is a sign of the emergence of social connections between the leaderships of the two clubs, and it is tempting to assume that what would become Acteriendia already had a degree of self-knowledge as Year 7’s ‘extra-curricular group’. Nver, the rest of the list is filled with unfamiliar names, and whatever had changed since January, the clubs still had largely non-overlapping memberships in June. Year 7 ended on this mixed picture, with little change yet since the Great Beginning but everything in place for the emergence of the group over the first two months of Year 8.
EMERGENCE OF THE GROUP
Year 8 began in September 2015, just two months before the friendship group was formed. A had left Coltheart School and moved to Northwich, near Manchester, and the rest of Trains Club’s largely non-Glastieven original membership were no longer interested in the club after the long summer holidays. δ managed to persuade R to join the club after taking him on cycling trips to film trains in Exeter, the footage from which was uploaded to YouTube on δ’s channel RailwayScientist in September and October 2015, including a video of R cheering with excitement as an H.S.T. rushes past. Nver, R and N did not get on at all, and between their constant arguments and the Trains Club’s greatly diminished membership, it was decided that the group had run its course and the club was formally abolished at the end of October 2015.
Meanwhile, in late September and early October, Z and E entered into a brief romantic relationship, known at the time by the name ‘Risabella’. It was this relationship that is meant to have ended when E flushed a French-language love-letter written for him by Z down a toilet off the Street, though rather disappointingly it is likely that this story is mythological, as both parties remember a conventional, if acrimonious, face-to-face breakup. Though the relationship ended on bad terms, Z remained friends with δ, whom she had come to know via her ill-fated romance with E. A secondary consequence of the relationship was that it weakened E’s relationship with his then-main friendship group, the Radio Wankers, who were so known because they congregated in a closet in the music department that had historically been used to run a school radio station.
At some point in 2015, most likely in late October or early November, as by 5.00 p.m. it was dark, there was a serious argument at a Green Team session in the polytunnel area. This was most likely over an incident well-known in Glastieven popular culture, involving S and Green Team member Jack Tucker, who was the last member of Green Team who would not go on to join Acteriendia. The members of the team had been taking turns to lock one another in a shipping container, that was being used as storage for garden tools (this container was known by some of the team as ‘the shed’). There was a significant sexual mythos around ‘the shed’ that had been built up largely by E and Tucker, who liked to draw attention to the fact that it was one of only two locations in the school that ‘had no windows and could be locked from the inside’—in reality, the container could not be locked from the inside, and could only be opened at all using a key that Green Team had obtained.
Separately to the game, Tucker had been loudly joking that he planned to lock himself inside the container and masturbate. When it came around to Tucker and S’s turn to be locked in the container, Tucker referenced his earlier claims by making exactly the kind of exaggerated sexual noises one would expect from a Year 8 student. Nver, it was alleged by R and E that he really was making good on his claims. The noises then changed to loud-but-facetious-sounding shouts of ‘get off me’; E unlocked the container, and the two emerged, with Tucker claiming that S had tried to ‘touch his dick’. S refused to make any comments on his side of the story, claiming that ‘what happened in the shed stays in the shed’, a phrase that still finds use in Glastieven popular culture. While it is highly unlikely that anything untoward actually did ‘happen in the shed’, the apparent ‘incident’ started an argument, and that argument spiralled into a wider conflict between the members of Green Team that ended up having very little to do with what had or had not happened in the container at all and focused more on previous arguments at sessions, including one when R had thrown a hammer at S and ended up smashing a window, and on the authority of the team’s leaders.
Green Team aimed to resolve the argument by holding a court-like ‘discussion’ over what had happened, with R and δ sitting on a balance beam and facing E, S and Tucker, who argued their cases while R and δ came to a conclusion as co-Chairs of Green Team. The argument later moved from the balance beam to a wall outside the polytunnel area, with the ‘judges’ sitting on the wall and facing the ‘lawyers’. Along with the lesser but more timely influence of the Group’s Coffee and Doughnut Meetings in 2017, this was what inspired the term Murus (Latin for wall), used as a metonym for the courts of the Second Republic and Holy Commonwealth. The most common name for this incident currently is “the ‘what happened in the shed stays in the shed’ incident”; it might more appropriately be called the ‘Proto-Mural Incident’. Shortly after the Proto-Mural Incident, Tucker chose to leave Green Team, citing R’s ‘abuse of power’ and ‘being a cunt’.
Outside of the clubs, δ was close friends with R, E and N; R was close friends with S, and may have been friends with E outside Green Team; this is obviously difficult to confirm or deny. R and N had also established their mutual dislike before the collapse of Trains Club. It is also worth noting that the Proto-Mural incident had ended up pitting R, S, δ and E against Tucker, and that this most likely strengthened their sense of collective identity as a group at least somewhat distinct from the organisation of Green Team. At this time, in around October or November 2015, U enters the story. Having recently discovered text roleplaying, she wished to revive BHH as a text roleplay with δ. Meanwhile, having broken up with Z, E quickly developed a romantic interest in (i.e. a crush on) U, and due to this crush, a desire to strengthen his friendship with δ, and a curiosity about BHH, he asked to join the new BHH roleplays. U and δ both enthusiastically assented, and quickly became a trio, with their friendship developing through the out-of-character chatroom associated with BHH—indeed, these chatrooms captured the developing dynamic between the three so well that a friend of E’s father actually asked for the publishing rights to them, given the then-current trend for young adult novels that focused on emerging friendships and romances.
U, δ and E referred to their roleplaying group as Acteriendia, a name that of course later came to refer to the friendship group as a whole. So, with E having joined BHH roleplays with U and δ, Trains Club now abolished, and Green Team containing only future Glastievens with a strengthened sense of group identity, the stage was set for these separate strands to come together in the formation of the friendship group between November 2015 and January 2016, bringing the first chapter of Glastieven history to a close, and beginning a continuous tradition that endures to this day.
Classical and Nerdery Acteriendia, 2015–17
In the event that is most commonly seen as defining the beginning of the friendship group, U joined Green Team at some point in November after being persuaded by δ and E. With Trains Club non-existent and Risablla (among other things) having weakened E’s position within the Radio Wankers, the Proto-Mural Incident and resulting sense of camaraderie had made Green Team feel to both of them like their main friendship group, and, as such, they wished for U to be a part of it. δ also persuaded N to join, for similar reasons. After U and N joined, the club stopped being focused on actually working on projects, instead spending most of each meeting hanging out on the staff-only floor until fairly late after sunset. While R and δ still claimed that Green Team was permitted so to do on the basis of the original electric device use surveys, this claim was by now completely empty. Indeed, they were never caught on the staff floor at night, and made considerable efforts in hiding and running to ensure things were kept that way.
R and δ were still running the club as co-Chairs, on the grounds that they had been members for the longest. When U joined, E demanded to be made a third leader with the same authority as R and δ, arguing that as he had joined and left the group at the very beginning of term in September 2014, he shared their seniority. U and N both rather disliked R and supported E’s bid to gain a seat at the table accordingly, and as his close friend, δ was supportive too. R and S were both strongly opposed, but were outvoted, and then persuaded by δ to accept the result. In exchange for accepting E as a leader, R demanded that S be given the same status—δ and E agreed, and the four began referring to themselves as the High Council of Green Team, with δ and R labelled as ‘Executives’.
Despite their position within the organisation of Green Team, S and δ had little interest in leading the friendship group, and R was too unpopular to assert any individual authority. Nver, by the end of November, all members of Green Team bar U saw it as their main friendship group within Coltheart School, and the High Council increasingly seemed to hold theoretical authority which it was quite unsuited to welding. As such, the High Council formally announced that it was relinquishing control over what it referred to as the ‘social aspects of Green Team,’ and these powers were essentially invested in E, who became de facto leader of Acteriendia. When the friendship group separated itself from the club in early 2016, δ returned to being the dominant figure in Green Team, including in its social affairs, but E remained leader of the friendship group.
There was some doubt over whether this new group would survive the Christmas holidays, especially as U and N were ambivalent at best towards the actual activities of the Green Team, around which the group had been based in November and December 2015. In January 2016, motivated perhaps by this doubt, δ and N proposed to R and E the founding of a revived Trains Club, with the four as founding members. N desired to again be part of a friendship group defined by something he liked, while δ had less political motivations and simply liked the idea of another Trains Club. R and E agreed to the idea—and in what is seen as the defining moment in the friendship group’s emergence from the clubs that came before it, the attendees at the first meeting of the newly revived club were R, S, U, δ, N and E: the exact membership of Green Team. It was clear now that there was a single friendship group in existence that was not defined wholly by either Trains Club or Green Team, and that this group had survived over the Christmas holidays on the strength of its members’ friendships alone. In recognition of this fact, U and N both left the Green Team, and the revived Trains Club was dissolved.
This group was Acteriendia, sometimes known in retrospect as ‘Classical Acteriendia’ to distinguish it from the later iterations of the friendship group, and the five main members of Classical Acteriendia at its formation were R, U, δ, N and E, with S on the periphery of the group thanks to his close friendship with R and membership of Green Team.
THE FIRST GOLDEN AGE
Since early 2017, the core of the Classical Acteriendian era has been known as the Golden Age of Acteriendia, a romantic label for a period about which relatively little is known. This Golden Age runs from January to June 2016, the days when Classical Acteriendia was the main friendship group of all its original members. There were regular group meetups in this period, and the group was at its most well-defined and united pre-Glastieve. During the Golden Age, Acteriendia was relatively isolated from other groups at Coltheart School, and it developed the beginnings of a distinctive ‘culture’ within the larger tradition of British youth counterculture. This culture went on to provide the authentic foundation for Glastieve’s national character, and, largely separately, was the subject of romanticising revival attempts in 2017 and 18.
As mentioned previously, U and N left Green Team in January, and the club returned to a relative focus on environmental issues. In addition, the BHH roleplays continued. This created two ‘sub-groups’ that were more closely knit than Classical Acteriendia as a whole—R, S, δ and E through Green Team, and U, δ and E through the BHH roleplays. N was in neither sub-group. There was no Acteriendian group chat, and so the group’s primary forum was eating together in the school canteen. U, δ and E all continued to use Skype with one another, and E liked to involve U and δ in his leadership of the group, so the BHH sub-group organized a number of whole group meetups using a mixture of texting and Skype.
The model countries continued to exist, and shortly after persuading Green Team to declare itself anarcho-communist, δ replaced Skovaji with the Skovajan Anarcho-Communist State (conventionally abbreviated to A.C. Skovaji), overthrowing the Lord Wesley. Somewhat facetiously, δ accused N of ruling the D.R. of H. undemocratically, noting that N’s ruling political party was called the National Party, and that despite the word ‘democratic’ being in the D.R. of H.’s name, no election had been held in the country. N took a dim view both of Skovaji’s anarcho-communism and of the accusations, and declared war on A.C. Skovaji, in a ‘conflict’ known as the Beale War. Skovaji ‘surrendered’ after N hit δ with a scale ruler, and the D.R. of H. ‘liberated’ Skovaji by restoring the Lord Wesley and the old governmental structure, though δ was permitted to continue using communist iconography in his coat of arms. Skovajan communism was over, and in the aftermath of the Beale War, δ and N began to work more closely together on their model countries.
At an unknown date, most likely in late winter or early spring, E acted on his romantic interest in U and asked her if she wanted to be his girlfriend (in the somewhat misleading language of the time, he ‘asked her out’). She said no, and as such E’s unrequited crush on U was now common knowledge. In an incident known as the Spring Festival Affair, while returning home after either a group or BHH sub-group meetup at the ‘St Thomas spring festival’, E broke down crying to δ about the situation with U, and asked δ to again ‘ask out’ U through Skype on his behalf. δ so did, and U again told E that she was not interested, and the friendship between the two began to deteriorate. He is generally said to have then asked her out for a third time, at school, being again rejected, though he disputes that this third asking out took place.
U’s more ambivalent attitude towards E and his fragile emotional state were both contributing factors to a decline in the number of group meetups towards the latter end of the Golden Age. By the modern definition, the Golden Age came to a close in June 2016, when U stopped being part of Acteriendia. This was brought on partly by E’s clumsy and repeated romantic advances, but the main cause is thought to have been the transfer of her allegiance to a cross-school and multi-aged friendship group based on Exeter’s anime and cosplay subculture (also called the Exonian weebery), which notably included β and α. In the more old-fashioned understanding of the end of the Golden Age, it came to an end when the loss of regular group meetups as a platform for remaining close friends caused the two sub-groups to drift apart, with N’s close friendship with δ meaning he was more closely aligned to the Green Team group than he was to the BHH one. In this model, the decline of the BHH sub-group caused by U’s decreasing interest came shortly after the Golden Age had already ended.
LATE CLASSICAL ACTERIENDIA
U’s leaving was a blow to a friendship group that had already been weakened by the loss of group meetups and E’s weak leadership, and it triggered a brief period of sudden change as δ, N and E all made their attempts to respond. The outcome of these changes was Classical Acteriendia’s transition into a subtly different friendship group, the Chill Group, which had a different character.
N’s actions were essentially self-motivated, and were based on his liking U and disliking R. In his flawed understanding, the BHH roleplaying group had detached itself from Acteriendia, leaving him stuck with R and S while U, δ and E continued to be a happy trio. As such, he attempted to turn this imagined trio into a quartet by ‘joining BHH’. The three agreed, with δ hoping to keep BHH alive despite the social changes, U hoping to de-E BHH sufficiently to keep roleplaying it or integrate it into the Exonian weebery’s network of ‘O.C. worlds’, and E hoping to patch things up with U, and BHH was revived with N as a fourth member, playing Bale E. Santra and his dog Jarvis. He failed to thrive. Disagreements over his roleplaying style, the nature of the lore and the quasi-magical powers of Jarvis all led to N losing his temper quite spectacularly, and the attempted revival of BHH fell apart.
Largely blaming δ for his failure to break into the roleplaying group, which by now had not existed for almost three weeks, he then created a new roleplaying game, Space Wizards of Awesomeness II, with himself, U and E as its players. As the name suggests, it was a revival of an earlier roleplay, which had been a success back in December 2015—a success that Space Wizards II failed to emulate. δ resented it, wrongly assuming that its chatrooms were filled with gossip about him or evidenced N’s having a crush on U, and he made continual, disruptive attempts to gain access to and read its chatrooms. Meanwhile, after the end of the first roleplay, U had little interest in continuing with Space Wizards II and turning it into something comparable to BHH, telling N, ‘I think we should just forget about Space Wizards. It was really cringey and it just couldn’t go on’. It is of some interest that, while BHH was still on Skype, Space Wizards II was on Messenger, likely representing the first use of that platform in Glastieven history.
Perhaps with these uncomfortable events in mind, E enlisted δ’s help in righting the ship. At the time, the two both accepted E’s model of friendship groups, in which each needed a ‘core’ on which the group would rest. He saw the BHH roleplaying group as the core of Acteriendia in the Golden Age, and thus felt that rather than repairing Acteriendia, their task was to create a new friendship group with a new ‘core’. δ suggested two ideas for such a ‘core’: interest in the railways, as had sustained Trains Club, and micronationalism, in the same vein as the two creations of the Exeter United Nations. E, who was expected to be leader of this ‘new group’ just as he had been of Acteriendia, agreed to try both.
The two began a two-pronged attack, beginning to hold trainspotting meetings (an ideal that Trains Club had always hoped to eventually achieve), and starting a new micronational organization. E created his own model country, the Republic of Myré, and Skovaji, Myré and the D.R. of H. collectively formed the Devon Union, an organization intended both as a successor to the Exeter United Nations and as a new foundation for the group, like Green Team had been at the end of 2015. According to E, there were also efforts to bring the group together through a Minecraft server, but if these efforts ever were made, they were unsuccessful.
Despite holding one successful meeting, the D.U. failed in its goal of providing a new micronational foundation for the friendship group. R was not involved, E had little interest in doing anything with Myré outside D.U. meetings, and the ‘organization’ had little links to the trainspotting meetups that included R, which meant that in E’s model of friendship groups it was failing to serve as the group’s ‘core’. As such, both Myré and the D.U. fell into inactivity. Nver, the ideal of formalizing the group through micronationalism remained popular. As for the trainspotting meetings, though they had been successful, they had not translated into an interest in the railways beyond actual travel thereon at weekends, and thus also made an unsuitable ‘core’ for the new friendship group.
As it happened, the way to achieve this ideal came from δ. Back in April, R, N and E had all been ceremonially appointed to Ofie derinvart hSkovagee, the powerless lower house of the Skovajan parliament; this had been a symbolic appointment with the aim of increasing the number of Skovajan citizens. In mid-June, Nver, δ elevated his three friends to the High Council of Skovaji (or Seanad derinvart hSkovagee) in an ‘election’, and organized regular meetings of the body. The former internal politics of Skovaji were cast aside, the Lord Wesley being too quiescent to care, leading to the model country becoming a small micronation and the friendship group being based around Skovaji. As expected, E remained the leader of this new group, though δ now had a role as something of a deputy or co-leader thanks to his office as the Prime Minister of Skovaji, his close friendship with E, and his role in holding the group together. The High Council was something of a type for the Cabinet of the First Republic, which itself went on to inspire both the Cabinet of the Second Republic and the modern-day High Council, and it is arguable that the tradition of directorial governance in Glastieve can be traced back to the politics of Skovaji in summer 2016.
Photos from the time - Skovaji and trainspotting. As explained, the Chill Group’s meetups were focused on being the High Council of Skovaji and enjoying trains.
April 2016, E July 2016, Geoff Sheppard via Wikipedia Kerry in the territory of Skovaji, as Prime Minister (he can be seen on the left ceremonially weilding a ‘sword of office’) An H.S.T., the group’s favourite train, passing through Exeter St Thomas railway station at high speed.
This arrangement lasted well into the holidays, perhaps until as late as mid-August 2016, but activity in the High Council slowly declined over the summer. In July, a chatroom called Chill Group was created on Skype, with R, δ, N and E as members, hence the general use of this term to refer to the post-U friendship group of 2016, a use that began in October 2016. This group chat remained active through the summer holidays—but, when its members returned to school in autumn, the social landscape had fundamentally changed.
EARLY GROUPIAN HISTORY
THE NERDERY CONFLUENCE
At the beginning of Year 9, the Chill Group did not represent the extent of δ, N or E’s main friendships as it had done in Year 8. Over the summer, δ became part of a Bristol-Exeter friendship group centred on a Messenger chatroom called Ben’s Big Stick is a Lesbian at Heart; N made friends with William Allen, a figure who appears now and then throughout the history of Glastieve; and E made friends with C, K, and Hannah Barker, forming a new friendship group called the Group. All three of these changes contributed to a more porous boundary of the Chill Group based on a more mainstream teenage understanding of ‘friendship groups’ that was less restrictive and formal than the traditional Acteriendian one, but it was E’s new Groupian friendships would prove most consequential when school resumed in September.
Unlike Acteriendia, which in Year 8 had been largely self-contained, the Group was part of a larger structure, which was known at the time as a ‘cluster of groups’. This cluster comprised a significant part of Coltheart School’s nerdery, and is thus often referred to as simply the Nerdery, or as the interconnected Nerdery. Being part of a cluster meant that the boundaries between friendship groups were seen as relatively fluid and unimportant, and it was commonplace for nerds to be invited to meetups of other Nerdery friendship groups, without this implying that anyone wanted them to become fully part of that group. In the Acteriendian understanding, this made the interconnected Nerdery seem a confusing mess of overlapping groups with wide peripheries, where people simply appeared randomly at different meetups, and this led to some rather spectacular misunderstandings over the next few years. Of course, to any more normal British teenager, the Nerdery simply seemed like a fairly normal ‘crowd’ or large group in a school, with Classical Acteriendia the unusual one.
At the beginning of September, the Chill Group remained the main friendship group of R, δ and N, and in their eyes, its leader remained E. For him, Nver, the Group was now his main friendship group. He still wished to be close friends with δ and wanted him to attend meetups of the Group, but was ambivalent towards R, N and the idea of the Chill Group. Meanwhile, U returned to δ and E, the former of whom added her to the Chill Group’s chatroom, making her part of Acteriendia again. She was closely associated with β and α, two of her friends from the weebery, and in the style of the Nerdery she often invited them to Acteriendian activities. Nver, despite U’s attitude, Acteriendia was still some way from truly being part of the Nerdery. In the eyes of R and δ, her new friends had simply become part of the periphery of Acteriendia through their friendship with U, just as S had through his friendship with R. As for N, he still thought that ‘the friendship group’ was the Chill Group of summer 2016, and δ recalls a conversation from October where, while on a train journey from Exmouth to Exeter St Thomas, N expressed his confusion at what U, β and α were doing sometimes hanging out with them, and at who E’s new friends were.
Meanwhile, at least according to the members of the Group, U started to develop a crush on E, though remained outwardly hostile to him. She was also close friends with C, who she started to consider her best friend. As such, U wanted to become part of the Group—something that K and E both wished to avoid at all costs. Despite U’s perception of their friendship, C was relatively ambivalent on the issue, and so there was no real desire from anyone other than U for her to join the Group. According to E, when U came to Groupian meetups, it was generally because she had ‘found out’ where and when they would be meeting and invited herself. Naturally, this was a source of tension.
In October, δ replaced the Skype-based ‘Chill Group’ chatroom with one on Messenger called ‘Acteriendia’, with R, S, U, his then-girlfriend, G, himself, N, E, α and β as members. This was intended to assert Acteriendia’s existence as a friendship group, and would later lead to its becoming closer and closer to the Nerdery. He also persuaded U and E to restart the BHH roleplays. This had little effect on their public acrimony and the chats were always somewhat inactive, but it kept the mythology alive and gave some strength to the still-weak Acteriendia.
TWO GROUPS INTERSECT
It was U and E who connected Acteriendia to the Nerdery, and it was the latter’s attempt to bring δ into the Group that led to Acteriendia’s being integrated into the Nerdery. Ironically enough, therefore, in a way it was E’s very ambivalence to the Chill Group that ultimately led to Acteriendia following his lead and becoming part of the Nerdery. In November, during rehearsals for school play Bugsy Malone, E invited δ to hang out with the Group. This worked naturally and well, partly as δ and K had been close friends in primary school. Meanwhile, E began to develop a crush on C, and given the nature of play rehearsals it was not difficult for them to flirt with one another covertly enough that she who might be opposed, i.e. U, did not find out.
Returning to the question of δ and Acteriendia’s joining the Nerdery, it was differing perspectives on the social mechanisms at play that sowed the seeds for Acteriendia to follow δ into the Nerdery. In the eyes of U, C, K and Barker, his presence was simply a case of someone from elsewhere in the Nerdery being invited to hang out; in the eyes of δ, he was becoming part of the periphery of a new friendship group. From the perspective of the nerds, δ was now part of the Nerdery, and he began to receive invites to various different activities associated with the Group and the nearby cluster. δ, Nver, misunderstood how the Nerdery worked. Continuing to project the Acteriendian model of distinct friendship groups with single leaders onto the more fluid and disorganised landscape of the Nerdery, he concluded that Acteriendia was in the process of ‘merging’ with a second friendship group that contained all the unfamiliar members of the Nerdery and was led by K. In this model, the Group was a sort of ‘ruling council’ composed of influential members of Acteriendia and ‘K’s second group’. Whenever he encountered a nerd who wasn’t in either Acteriendia or the Group, he assumed they were from K’s second group, and thus somehow subject to the authority of the Group.
This fictional scenario informed his actions throughout the era of Acteriendia in the Nerdery, and was grounded in some truth—the Group certainly was one of the most integrated friendship groups, being entirely ‘of the Nerdery’ in a way that not many others were, and K did indeed organize the meetups for both the Group and for other friendship groups. Nver, she was not truly the ‘leader’ in the way that E was leader of Acteriendia, and any influence the Group had over other parts of the Nerdery was loose soft power. δ’s mythos, the idea of a Groupian Ascendency, was pervasive, Nver, and the remainder of Acteriendia were taught his understanding. Indeed, Glastieven history writing from as late as August 2019 accepted the Groupian Ascendency model, arguing that the Group was a type for the directorial governance of the First and Second Republics.
In January 2017, T joined Coltheart School. He became part of the wider Coltheart School nerdery, but in a cluster distinct from what has been called the Nerdery here. The friendship group he joined was loosely connected to the Group through Gabrielle Hawkins, who was both a member of T’s initial group and part of the Nerdery through C. Back in the Group, C seemed, surprisingly enough, to be reciprocating E’s crush on her, and the two began to be shipped as ‘Cherbert’, meaning that the possibility of their relationship became a popular idea that was supported by others as though they were fans of characters on a T.V. show. Meanwhile, trying within his understanding of the Groupian Ascendency to be democratic, δ tried to organise joint Groupian-Acteriendian meetups, which had the dual effect of increasing his influence over Acteriendia and integrating it further into the Nerdery. He had an ambition that the two groups he imagined could be merged completely, and he felt he could help by linking Acteriendia and the Group together; thus, his immediate goal was, in essence, a Group-Acteriendia merger. This was interpreted by R, S and N as he intended, but by everyone else in terms of the usual fluid meetup attendance common in the Nerdery.
From February, in Acteriendia and the Group, the events leading to the declaration of the First Republic began to take place. The first of these was on the 11th of February, when U, C, K, Barker and E went on a group trip to the cinema. During the film, C and E began holding hands, and at the end of the film, U left abruptly without saying a word. During the week, she explained to K that she had left in response to C and E’s ‘being disgusting’. Meanwhile, perhaps even in defiant response, the two began a romantic relationship with one another, known as ‘Cherbert’, with δ and E remembering a trip to Hotel Chocolat on the 12th where they both bought Valentine’s Day gifts. Also on the 12th, K invited δ to meet her, C and Barker at Kaspas, keeping it secret from E. Anticipating the controversy that was likely to erupt once U discovered Cherbert, and believing that δ wanted to join the Group without knowing about his merger ambitions, as, unbeknownst to δ, E had spoken of δ’s enthusiasm for joining the Group as part of arguing that he should be invited to its events, K offered δ a deal, known as the Kaspas Deal: if δ could successfully persuade U to leave the Group alone, he could join.
In reality, the Kaspas Deal was mostly meaningless, as K had no real authority to determine the Group’s membership and E’s efforts meant that δ was already likely to become a member of the Group. Nver, whether knowingly or by luck, K had played on δ’s belief in the Groupian Ascendency and her supposed leadership of Group, and he imagined that the Kaspas Deal was a fairly conventional way of entering this ‘ruling council’. Initially, though, he refused to take the deal for ethical reasons, and K ensured that he wrongly assumed this meant he was not yet welcome hanging out with the Group in school.
On the 14th, Valentine’s Day, δ and his then-girlfriend G broke up on bad terms. While δ was ending his relationship on G’s doorstep in Bristol, C tried to keep hers with E secret from U. She erred by confiding in someone, either the aforementioned Hawkins or Charney Dallas, who told U about the relationship behind C’s back. On the 17th, an event known by the modern friendship group of C, K and Barker as ‘the Kaspas Kickoff’ took place. The Group, U, and U’s brother Billy U all met up at Kaspas Dessert Bar, during which time U and Barker ended up in the women’s bathrooms simultaneously. Seeking an ally, U began attacking C and E to Barker, calling them ‘disgusting’ and accusing E of ‘stealing her best friend’. Barker ran back into the main restaurant and informed C of U’s behaviour; when U returned from the toilets, the Group confronted her. She lost her temper in an almost N-esque way, and stormed out.
Despite this declaration of war between U and ‘Cherbet’ (a contemporary name for the relationship between C and E), δ managed to remain relatively neutral between his two friends. Nver, the BHH roleplays came to an end, and δ was sensitive enough to realize that it would be a poor idea to try and revive them. Feeling insecure after his breakup with G, δ wanted a return to the days of the friendship group being supported by a strong ‘core’ (he was still convinced by E’s summer 2016 understanding, which for E had of course been eclipsed by a Nerdery one). His interest in a Group-Acteriendia merger also continued, and the drama over Cherbert had led to him being concerned that R and N were being left out of the loop in what he still believed to be the quasi-political affairs of a ‘ruling council’. This, combined with a certain recklessness induced by events in his personal life that proceeded from his breakup with G, led to him agreeing to the Kaspas Deal, hoping that he could find a way to turn things to the advantage of his desired Group-Acteriendia merger and new friendship group with a strong ‘core’ in which he could feel stable and secure. Other personal events he had not disclosed to his friends, unrelated to those that had followed from his breakup, had led to the end of Skovaji in October 2016, and he also wanted to rejoin the online micronational community and be more successful there.
Firstly, he acted to meet his obligations under the Kaspas Deal, speaking to U in school and persuading her that the Group were bastards and not worth her time, and that Cherbert would naturally end soon enough, proving her right. On that basis, she agreed to leave the Group alone until ‘they grew up’, and K was then happy to let δ know that he was on the periphery of the Group—as he essentially had been anyway. Next, both motivated by the reasons given above and by a more simple hope that it would be enjoyable, δ proposed to N and E that they should create a group micronation based on ‘the friendship group’, in the same vein as Skovaji in summer 2016 but with more preparation and a larger membership, such that they would join the MicroWiki community ‘with guns blazing’ and fast become the greatest micronation therein. By ‘the friendship group’, δ had meant the sum of Acteriendia and the imaginary K’s second group, of course including the Group; in practice, what he was talking about was a micronation based on the Nerdery. N and E were equally enthusiastic, and recruitment began in the Group and Acteriendia. On the 17th of February, a Skype chatroom was made of the eight founding members of what would soon become the Republic of Glastieve: R, U, C, K, A, δ, N and E.
First Republic of Glastieve, 2017
The Republic of Glastieve as it was envisioned in February 2017 was in some ways unrecognizable to the Holy Commonwealth. Firstly, and perhaps most glaringly, it was a hobby project that made little attempt to encompass the everyday life of the friendship group—more like Skovaji in summer 2016 than Glastieve later in its history. Secondly, it was very much a project of two friendship groups. If ‘Glastieve’ had meant something similar in February 2017 to what it does today, Acteriendia would only have represented half of the nation, with the Group representing the other. The First Republic’s being created was the highest form of merger between the two, and the first two months of the First Republic’s history, known as the Foundation Period, were the era when Acteriendia was most integrated into the Nerdery. Over this period, there were two important threads: that of the beginnings of the First Republic, and that of Acteriendia as a fully integrated part of the Nerdery, strongly connected to the Group. These two strands came together at the end of Foundation Period in late April 2017, ushering in the next era of Glastieven history.
Glastieve formally declared independence on the 23rd of February, and over the next week, a ‘provisional government’ acted through a Skype chatroom to develop the structure of the state and to prepare to ‘launch’ the country in the online MicroWiki community on the 1st of March. There were several candidates for the flag, the name of the country, and the offices of state, though the idea of a directorial government was simply assumed. A minor dispute broke out when N threatened to leave over the fact that the Field Marshal of the Armies would be represented in the Cabinet separately to the Minister for Defence and the Judiciary; it was resolved by N instead being Minister for Infrastructure, Transportation and Geographical Affairs, a job title involved to placate him. The name Glastieve was suggested by δ; it is a combination of the Irish place-name elements glas and tieve, an Anglicisation of the original Irish word taobh that would normally be pronounced teev and not tee-ay-vay, which Wikipedia suggested meant ‘grassy hillside’ but which actually meant ‘green side’. The flag chosen was created by C; the green represented Nature, the red represented equality, the purple represented fun, and the golden star, sovereignty.
The introduction of Glastieve to the MicroWiki community was postponed until the 4th of March, as it was decided on the 1st that the country was not ready. On the 4th, δ announced the Republic in a post on the MicroWiki forums, using the name Mark Kavanah to distance himself from historical failures of his in the community at the helm of Skovaji, particularly the collapse of the M.E.G., an organisation founded by micronationalist Henry Twain and later taken over by δ. He asked the rest of the chat if anyone else would also prefer to be known by a fake name: R and U asked to be known as John Matthews and Genevieve Unak respectively. These fake names were used in both external and internal contexts, and were considered important. Within hours of δ’s forum post, Twain used I.P. data to out ‘Mark Kavanah’ as being the same person as δ.
The governmental structure of the state was assumed by everyone to be directorial; beyond that, it largely emulated the conventions of the British government as these were understood by a group of Year 9 students. The Cabinet of Glastieve would be the collective head of state, made up of five ministers, the Field Marshal of the Armies, and the Head Justice of the Supreme Court. At the foundation of the Republic, R was Minister for Governmental Administration; U was Field Marshal, C was Minister for National Identity, Insignia and Language; K was Minister for Education and Recruitment; A was not a member of the Cabinet, instead serving as a special adviser to N; δ was Minister for Media and Economics; N was Minister for National Insignia and Language; E was Minister for Public Safety and Defence; and β was Head Justice. The early state also nominally had an economy, with the Luach (Ⱡ) as a ‘local cryptocurrency’ on the blockchain app Colu; this system was never really used.
This Cabinet held its first meeting on the 9th of March. This meeting saw the passage of the Ministerial Responsibilities Act and the Cabinet Procedure Act, two of the most important acts in early Glastieven law. They defined the authority of ministers and the nature of the Cabinet in relation to the government, made up the main written component of the state’s constitution until October. The meeting was also used to formalise the work of the provisional government, and a vote was held to formally adopt C’s flag and coat of arms. This vote was intended to be ceremonial and unanimous, but N voted against both, claiming that C’s flag wasn’t as good as his alternative design, and that the coat of arms was a ‘national embarrassment’. At its next meeting on the 16th, the Cabinet then passed the Planning Permission Act, drafted by N, and replaced C’s coat of arms with the current design, which had been designed by micronationalist João Gustavo on δ’s commission. It also set up the Glastieve Shared Google Drive, which is still in use today.
In these early days, R, N and δ did the most independent work. R gave his department a distinctive identity as ‘DoGA’, pronounced dough-ga, and made a Wix.com website for his department. He also made a number of dubious claims, such as having held a fundraiser, raising 50 Ⱡ and being personally congratulated by δ, or employing four special advisors, none of whom were known to anyone in the Nerdery. N designed a logo for his department and announced that he was founding a private company with himself as C.E.O., Glastieve Transit, who he would contract to run services for the state. δ created a Wix.com website for the Glastieven government, ‘GovernmentOnline’, with sections for each department and a link to the DoGA website, as well as to a guess of the Wix.com web address N might choose for a website for his department. He also distributed stolen exercise books with Glastieven coats of arms cut out and stuck to their front covers, known as ‘departmental books’, to each minister.
Only five of the seven Cabinet members had met on the 16th, indicating that from the very beginning there was a distinction between those with a greater interest in micronationalism, who thus had more political authority, and those who were more casually interested and had less power. As the Glastieven state gradually gained more authority over the friendship group, this ‘micronationalistarchy’, known at the time as the ‘active-inactive ministers distinction’, started to cause problems. At the time, a popular metonym for what was called the active-inactive ministers distinction was the so-called ‘unopened books’, the departmental books given to C, K and β, which were never even opened.
A second type for later challenges faced by Glastieve was the Spingate controversy, the first political controversy in the country’s history, taking place in the Foundation Period. Spingate, also known as Transitgate-Spingate, was an attempt by δ to expose a plot of R’s to remove N from Glastieve. R first approached δ on the 26th of February at a meeting of the provisional government and warned him that he would leave Glastieve unless δ ‘kicked out’ N. Hoping to find a way to use political intrigue to keep both of them in the project, δ agreed to ‘help’ R. With N’s recent announcement on Glastieve Transit in mind, δ suggested to R that the two could force N to resign by making it illegal to contract private companies, creating a ‘corruption scandal’ over his awarding an illegal contract to a company he ran. This plan was called Operation Transitgate, and δ suggested that they detail the plan in a document in the Glastieve Shared Google Drive, and that they fill this document with ‘restricted/classified’ notices. His intention was that N would find the document, and that R would be "caught in the act" over Transitgate, which would ensure that he had nominally held to his deal to R without actually causing N’s leaving. As R was then-known for making frequent typographical and grammatical errors, δ filled the document with such errors (e.g. ‘Department of Infastructure, Defence and the Judiciary’) to make it seem as though R had written it himself, and placed it in a folder labelled ‘PRIVATE - TRANSITGATE’ so that N would assume that it was not something that he was intended to discover.
N discovered the document on the 15th of March. He first brought it to δ, telling him that he had a ‘plot’ of R’s, and then confronted R about it directly at school. R responded by threatening to fire him, which was potentially within his authority as the Minister for Governmental Administration (the First Republic had no written definition of the different powers that were afforded to each minister). That afternoon after school, R attempted to prevent the scandal from breaking by deleting the entire Glastieve Shared Google Drive, but N had already made backups of all the files on the Drive and had taken screenshots of the Operation Transitgate document, referring to the proposed plan as ‘Transitflop’. δ had got what he wanted, but now wished to use the potential political controversy to expose false claims that R had been making on his department’s website, and he told N that he planned to create a newspaper to write an article on Transitgate. N sent him a screenshot of the document and an official statement as the C.E.O. of Glastieve Transit, in which he refuted the claim on which the plan had hinged, saying ‘I am not planning on being the permanent CEO of Glastieve Transit, rather a temporary stand in until a more permanent CEO can be hired. For the period that I am acting CEO, I will not claim my salary, what would have been my salary will instead be put back into the company’.
At the next Cabinet meeting, on the 23rd, δ distributed paper copies of his new newspaper, The Glastieven, to the other members of Glastieve. The two operative articles in the newspaper were titled Government ministers shamed in spin scandal and Kavanah on Matthews - he lies to the Cabinet and the public. The first explained the events of the controversy thus far but with δ’s role changed to suggest his involvement began only when N informed him that the Drive had been wiped, and was written to lightly criticise he and N while implying that only R was really at fault. The second was a detailed exposé of various lies that R had told to the Cabinet, including screenshots proving that he had made up four special advisers and screenshots of his claim in private messages that he had ‘been to the Microwiki high court’ and that this court would be ‘shutting glastieve down’.
The meeting decided that Spingate, seen as the time as a serious failure of the state, was jointly the fault of R and δ, with the latter criticised for choosing to act as a rogue agent rather than taking the issue straight to the Cabinet. Nver, it was δ who had extracted this statement from the Cabinet to ensure that, in records of Glastieven history, his role as the primus inter pares of the group was less obvious. Spingate dealt a serious blow to R’s reputation; seen until then as one of the most trustworthy and effective ministers, hence his high office, he started to earn his more controversial later reputation. In addition, the Cabinet granted δ the power to engage in basically Machiavellian ‘counter-spin’ as Minister for Media and Economics, with an interpretation of ‘media’ encouraged by the presentation of ‘media strategy’ in television shows like The Thick of It. Lastly, with all seven members present, the Planning Permission Act was passed for a second time.
At some point in March, the Group started a new tradition, known as ‘Cookies and Doughnuts Meetings’. These took place every Tuesday at a wall close to Coltheart School, and generally had C, K, Barker and E in attendance, with δ infrequently invited too. Given the myth of the Groupian Ascendency and the far more justified sense that the Cookies and Doughnut Meetings were often characterised by being judgemental about other nerds, the Cookies and Doughnut Meetings were, along with the Proto-Mural Incident, an inspiration for the Murus.
No meetings were held for the next four weeks, as the usual venue was unavailable. Only two events were recorded as noteworthy between the 23rd of March and the 20th of April. The first of these was a second attempt of δ’s to get the other members of Glastieve to engage with the Colu-based economic system and join the MicroWiki community—with no real success in either area. The second event was δ’s publication of a white paper detailing the economic Glastieven Model, a more sophisticated economy plan to replace the failed Colu-based system, which was received positively at the next meeting and would be the basis for several economic plans in Glastieve. It was also received positively in the community, with a respected newspaper, the Coprieta Standard, describing a successful economic model as a ‘holy grail’ and suggesting the Glastieven Model might be a way to achieve it. Indeed, the core ideas of this Model and its three pillars of the economy are still the basis for the modern Glastieven economic proposals from X.
At the meeting on the 20th of April, in the last political action taken before the First Republic was subsumed by the April 2017 controversy, N motioned for a vote of no confidence in R. By analogy with the British government, this vote aimed to remove him from his position as Minister for Governmental Administration. In what was plainly revenge for Spingate, N argued that R was untrustworthy, lazy, manipulative, ineffective and generally unsuitable for high office. U and β both supported the motion thanks to their general dislike of R. δ made a more moderate argument in support, on the grounds that R’s decreased activity meant he should take on a role less key than governmental administration. The vote passed unanimously, and N and δ were jointly appointed ‘DoGA Interim Handover Lead’, a position that gave them authority to determine how R would be replaced. Meanwhile, R ‘resigned from Glastieve’, i.e. left the country. On the evening of the 20th, N and δ announced that there would be an election to replace R on the 27th, and that N’s friend Allen would stand therein.
THE APRIL 2017 CONTROVERSY
Primarily taking place from the 20th to the 23rd of April, the April 2017 controversy was a key turning point in Glastieven history. The controversy was an interpersonal dispute in the Group that was triggered largely by C choosing to break up with E, leading ultimately to U, δ and E being kicked out of the Group; the end of Groupian involvement in the First Republic of Glastieve and the Acteriendian link to the Nerdery; and the emergence of a new friendship group that had the developing nation of Glastieve at its core, and that included T and Z as Acteriendians. Various different explanations for how and why E and C’s breakup descended into the free-for-all mêlée of April 2017 have been proposed; though there is no consensus, the most common modern understanding is that the idea that ‘drama had started’ spread throughout the Nerdery, giving anyone with an axe to grind an excuse to get involved on one side or the other.
The controversy began on the 18th of April, a Tuesday, during one of the Group’s Cookies and Doughnut Meetings, with E not in attendance. Over cookies and doughnuts, C told K and Barker that she was feeling uncertain about her relationship with E, and was considering bringing it to an end. Meanwhile, unbeknownst to C, E was worried that his relationship with her was in danger, and that his then-girlfriend was considering leaving him for K. He started talking to δ about how he could ‘fix things’. Motivated largely by the same personal matters as had proceeded from his own breakup in February, δ wanted to prove himself as a skillful operator, and volunteered to help ‘sort things out’ by speaking to X learned from C that she was allowing K to handle the matter, and he reported this to E. In the traditional Dredro-Acteriendian understnding, it was either C’s bringing K into her breakup that was at the heart of the controversy, as it turned it into a drama, or it was both C and E’s use of K and δ as advocates, establishing two clear ‘sides’, and, arguably, allowing the two to fight a sort of ‘proxy war’ through the theatre of the breakup.
K advised C to ‘consider whether or not she really [romantically] liked Robert’. Meanwhile, E went straight to K, confronting her about C and accusing her of ‘subconsciously manipulating her into being gay’. What he intended by this statement was that K had a crush on C and could tell that C had vague feelings towards her, and so without realizing what she was doing, hence ‘subconsciously’, she was manipulating C into requiting that crush, or ‘being gay’. The ridiculous statement and sentiment are both now part of Glastieven popular culture, though E continues to defend it. According to C and K, neither ever had a crush on the other, but according to E, both have admitted to him that they did in fact have crushes on one another, and that K was trying to twist the situation to bring her and C together. In the understanding of the modern group of C, K and Barker, this still-unresolved dispute was at the heart of the April 2017 controversy, with the escalation to ‘drama’ resulting from E making this accusation.
Regardless of whether it was the involvement of K and δ or E’s accusations that had led to it, the word was now out throughout the Nerdery that the Group was engaged in a civil war. Barker joined K and C’s ‘side’, and other friends of K’s were also loosely involved. R and N were largely sympathetic to E, though didn’t know the details of the controversy. U and her friends in the Exonian weeebery watched from the sidelines. On the afternoon after E’s confronting K, C decided to take K’s advice, and her way of determining whether or not she still had romantic feelings for E was to approach him suddenly after school and passionately kiss him, without any explanation and without any reference to the apparent weakness and impending end of their relationship at the time. E then went to δ in stunned surprise, and assumed that δ ‘deserved the credit’ for ‘fixing things’—asking δ ‘woah, what did you say?’. Appallingly enough, δ decided not to look a gift horse in the mouth, and responded along the lines of ‘a magician never reveals his tricks’, boasting about his ‘dramatic success’.
Nver, despite δ’s and E’s assuming all was well, C’s kiss had brought her to the conclusion that she was, in fact, no longer in love with him. In E’s view, this was also when she decided that she preferred K. The first sign in Glastieve that something was wrong was on Thursday, the 20th, when none of the Group attended the meeting of the Glastieven Cabinet at which N successfully forced out R in revenge for Spingate. It was also on the 20th that U finally decided to involve herself in the controversy, positioning herself as an ally of δ but not of E, telling δ behind E’s back that he should ‘try to break up Charlotte and Robert’.
On Friday, the 21st, there was a meeting organized by K during the school lunchtime to try and relieve some of the tension. This was a typical Nerdery affair, with several nerds present who were not part of the Group but had been appraised of K and C’s side of the situation, including H, who had a flag decorated with a rainbow labelled ‘colourful language’. E failed to attend the meeting, and δ spent most of his lunchtime leaving him voicemail messages full of foul language to the effect of ‘get yourself the fuck over here’. At 6.32 p.m. that evening, C added δ to a Skype chat containing him, her, K and Barker. The group had a call lasting one hour and forty-five minutes on the topic of how C should go about breaking up with E. δ said that it should be a matter for the two of them, and that she should break up with him in person and not involve anyone else. She and K argued the contrary, saying that it was a matter for the whole Group ‘at this point’ and that E lacked the emotional maturity to resolve the situation with C.
On the morning of Saturday, the 22nd, δ renamed the Skype group chat ‘Dumping Rob without destroying everything’. He then renamed it again to ‘Glastieve Secret Service’, a name K strongly endorsed, and she was later described as the first ‘Chief of the Secret Service’ when an actual organization with that name became active after June; indeed, she herself later described herself as the founder of the Secret Service. Also on Saturday, δ created another Skype group chat with the name ‘Glastieven Lounge’, in the same style as other chatrooms in the MicroWiki community, such as the Abeldane Lounge and Corian Lounge, perhaps intending to assert Glastieven unity in the face of the controversy or perhaps hoping to draw the controversy into a more public, accountable sphere. Whatever δ was trying to achieve with his chatroom’s creation, he failed, with only two messages ever being sent therein, one by A and the other by U.
There was another ‘kick-off’, in the language of the Group, in Exeter city centre on Sunday. A dramatic argument broke out on the street outside the Royal Albert Memorial Museum, and it is possible that U may have become involved with the ‘kick-off’, as a way to settle old scores over her views on E and C’s relationship and her exclusion from the Group. δ and K were away at Ten Tors training and struggled to respond in time to text messages from Barker updating them on the situation. A second group call of the so-called Secret Service took place that evening, lasting for two hours and twenty minutes, followed by δ posting ‘well we're all fucked ladies and gentlemen’ to the chat.
This was essentially the end of the Group as a friendship group—the modern Group of C, K and Barker, with δ and Dyer on the periphery, evolved in 2018 as a revival of the 2017 one. It was also a death blow for New Acteriendia, as it no longer had any connection to the interconnected Nerdery, and had lost β and α from its periphery. U, too, was now only on the periphery of New Acteriendia. The status of the First Republic of Glastieve, therefore, was uncertain. It might have had the potential to bring the Group and New Acteriendia back together in the wake of the controversy. But there was another possibility, too: with Allen, a friend of N’s, wishing to become the next DoGA minister, there was the chance that Glastieve could become ‘a thing by itself’, disconnected and separate from the now-broken cluster of the nerdery in which it had previously been rooted.
As the de facto organizer of the First Republic and operating under his largely forgotten title as DoGA Interim Coordinator and Handover Lead, δ concocted a plan to try and choose between these two directions. He drew everyone’s attention to the election already scheduled for the 27th of April, and announced that two candidates had already notified him of their intentions to stand: Allen, and Barker. Of course, Barker had done no such thing, but δ imagined that if she won the election, he could simply inform her that she’d ‘been elected as the new Minister for Governmental Administration’, and that as she was unaware of the election’s taking place at all, she wouldn’t think to challenge it. R then announced his candidacy in the election, saying he would ‘fight for his job’; Nver, given his continued lack of popularity and the new social implications of the election, he was roundly ignored.
The supporters of Barker and Allen were styled ‘Acteriendians’ and ‘Independentists’ respectively. The former referred in general to wanting Glastieve to be rooted in the existing friendship group, the Nerdery, or a nerdery cluster, and not to the group now more precisely called Acteriendia. The latter referred to the competing desire for Glastieve to be an ‘independent’ endeavour, and for the new minister to be chosen based on enthusiasm and skill rather than friendship group membership. δ ran an opinion poll on the 25th, which was also the first Tuesday since March when there had been no Cookies and Doughnuts Meeting, and found that the Acteriendians were likely to achieve a narrow win, with the Independentists close behind. On the 27th, Nver, Allen won the election, as δ and E both voted for him after having said in the poll they were more likely to back Barker.
On the next Tuesday, the 2nd of May, the Cookies and Doughnuts Meeting actually did go ahead, with all the Group’s now-former members in existence. At this Meeting a game was played on E’s phone that involved filling in the blanks in sentences, to humorous effect; the timing of this game is often forgotten, and it sees some use as a misleading metonym for the Cookies and Doughnuts Meetings as a whole or the whole era of the partial merger between Acteriendia and the Group. Despite this relatively good-natured end, Nver, the Group had undeniably drifted apart, that Cookies and Doughnuts Meeting was the last ever held. C, K and Barker would now not be part of Glastieven history until 2019.
Shortly thereafter, on the 4th of May, the first Cabinet meeting was held since the April 2017 controversy. E was ill, and so only U, δ and Allen were in attendance as voting members. Nver, α, who had a ceremonial title in Glastieve but was not part of the Cabinet, was in attendance. In addition, so was Z, who had learned about Glastieve from U and was interested in joining as a new Cabinet minister. Excited about the idea of new members and anxious to keep Glastieve relevant in the face of the changes to the social landscape effected by April 2017, δ pushed for authorization to hold a ‘Cabinet reshuffle’, which would see C and K replaced by Z, β and α. The Cabinet agreed, and joint authority as ‘Reshuffle Advisors’ was granted to δ and Allen, as the Minister for Governmental Administration.
The plan went a little awry on the 5th when Allen resigned suddenly from Glastieve, saying it was because he would ‘do a shit job anyway’. Also, α had said that she did not want to be a Cabinet minister, as she would be moving away from Exeter soon. Allen was replaced with U, and she and δ decided to abandon his plans to simply add new people and instead chose to overhaul the entire structure of the state. Meanwhile, δ and E had made a new friend: T, who they had seen in a biology lesson drawing evolution trees for dragons. Clearly an archetypal Glastieven, he was immediately incorporated into the reshuffle plans, and when U and δ published their work on the 8th of May, what they had created was more than just a new Cabinet: it was a new Acteriendia.
A NEW FRIENDSHIP GROUP
The period between the May 2017 Cabinet reshuffle and late June 2017 was a period of high activity and interest in Glastieve and a strong new Acteriendia, sometimes known as the Little Golden Age or the Golden Age of the First Republic. Known less poetically as the Renaissance Period, it was defined from a micronational perspective by increased engagement with micronationalism from all ministers, including those who would later be thought of as ‘inactive’, minimal infighting in the Cabinet, and consistent attendance at meetings. The new friendship group, which had been born of Glastieve, began the Renaissance Period by asserting its independence from the project, but gradually become increasingly integrated into the First Republic. Despite being a type for what makes the Holy Commonwealth so special, the combination of the integration of the friendship group into the First Republic and the active-inactive ministers distinction led to the end of the Little Golden Age and the beginning of the Partisan Period, when a political hierarchy emerged and led to Cabinet infighting.
The first two meetings following the reshuffle were attended by all eight Cabinet members, confirming the idea that Glastieve was on the rise and that even the more apathetic ministers were eager to engage with the micronation. On the 11th of May, the Cabinet voted to ratify the charter of the Grand Unified Micronational (G.U.M.) and Glastieve joined the organisation three days later; although this suggested an increased presence in the MicroWiki Community, the majority attitude in Glastieve to the community would always be lukewarm at best, with a far greater focus given to internal affairs. At this time Glastieve also joined the Micronational Association for Finance and Economics (M.A.F. & E.), an organisation chaired by δ, although this would have little effect on the country.
By the second meeting Glastieve had become the clear centre of the friendship group and there was a desire to see more Glastieven-orientated activities beyond the government. In recognition of this the Cabinet created the Sofa Government Club–a social club that would meet after school on Thursdays to discuss Glastieven matters. This meeting also saw the re-opening of old wounds and a hint of things to come in the form of N leaving the meeting partway through due to an argument with R; this incident was largely ignored as the danger posed to Glastieve by N and R’s rivalry was not appreciated at the time.
The meeting on the 25th of May only just managed to achieve quorum, with three absences only one of which was expected; Cacheside described this as a “disappointing turnout”. The meeting was eventful in spite of the low turnout: δ’s request that his department be granted a Plenipotentiary Licence–giving him the power to act on Glastieve’s behalf in the MicroWiki Community–was passed, although both R and T spoke against it; N suggested that Allen be allowed to rejoin Glastieve as a security officer in Cabinet meetings, although this was defeated. The Sofa Club also met later that day discussing the future of The Glastieven, which δ had briefly moved to Wix.com before deleting the site announcing a consultation period.
The two weeks between the 25th of May and the 8th of June saw several somewhat significant yet relatively peaceful changes to the social climate surrounding Glastieve. The first of these is a change in the membership both of the micronation and friendship group by way of α leaving the group and Allen joining; α had failed to attend the meeting on the 25th and U announced that she had moved away and would no longer be involved in micronationalism on the 1st of June; Allen’s appointment as a security officer was again proposed by N and defeated on the 1st, but at the meeting on the 8th he was given α vacant post of Chief Justice of the Supreme Court. The second change was the abolition of the Sofa Government Club. Although the Club had served as the host of the meeting on the 1st on account to the normal venue being unavailable, it was considered unnecessary the trend of Glastievenising activities of the friendship group was beginning to happen naturally without formalised structures. Finally, Glastieven mythology was revived in early June with the creation of Maisraln; this lead E to propose making mythological roleplaying the national game, Nver the vote resulted in a tie and E withdrew the proposal because he felt the controversy had made it inappropriate.
No history was recorded in the week before the 15th of June. At the following meeting Allen asked δ and T to formally apologise for the lack of updates to the “History” section of the “Republic of Glastieve” MicroWiki article. This meeting also saw the passage of T’s Tau Act, the first act to be passed by the Cabinet since the Planning Permission Act in March, but was otherwise comparatively uneventful.
The last major event of this period was the creation of the Taxation and Salaries Committee on the 20th of June by δ, Cacheside, and R. The Committee was intended to build on the Glastieven Model in order to create a functional Glastieven economy. Though such an economy was a long-held dream in Glastieven politics, work on it would be ongoing and (with the exception of an abandoned system from the Foundation Period) the First Republic would never see it realised. Regardless, the Committee drafted three pieces of legislation they hoped would lay the groundwork for a future economy. These three acts were passed unanimously at the meeting on the 22nd of June, along with δ’s Criminal Law Act, setting a record in Cabinet meetings that would be matched few times in Glastieve’s history.
The Golden Age of the First Republic ended on the 29th of June, a day on which three separate events undermined the egalitarianism and procedural propriety that had characterized Glastieve post-April 2017. What followed next was the evolution of the inevitable division between more and less active ministers into a hierarchical power structure that worked around, bent and sometimes downright ignored the directorial constitution of the republic, and the emergence of a strategy to keep people active and interested by Acteriendian interpersonal tensions being ‘professionalised into an interesting political narrative’—the idea of drama as politics. This period is usually seen as a transitional one, with Glastieve sliding from the successes of May and June towards the failures of Matthewsgate, the Holiday Period and the Reformation Period.
The first major failure of the 29th was the use of a ‘historical retcon’, the Glastieven term at the time for a brand of historical negationism that involved falsehoods being written into the official ‘history records’ on MicroWiki. On the 29th, Z, δ and E were all attending an extra-curricular debate on the U.K.’s leaving the E.U., and so were unavailable to attend the Cabinet meeting. Strictly speaking, there were still enough ministers at Coltheart to make quorum and hold the meeting, but without δ present to shephard everyone, nothing happened. This seemed to prove that δ was the de facto leader of the Cabinet, and that it was not truly a directorial body of equally-influential and equally-invested ministers. In order to avoid admitting to this officially, δ wrote on MicroWiki that the meeting had been ‘cancelled’ due to ‘Z, δ and E being unavailable [...] and T being unwell’. Naturally, T had not been unwell on the 29th, and the meeting had never been cancelled, making this the first ‘retcon’ in Glastieven history.
Another unlawful exercise of power by δ had been uncovered by N that afternoon, and the Supreme Court assembled at around 3.00 p.m. on the 29th to hear the case of N vs Kavanah. Back in 2016, when Skovaji had claimed the territory that would later become the First Republic’s, δ had ceded a small parcel of land to another micronation, the Khanate of Nedland, as a diplomatic gesture. This parcel of land was called Evonia. He was still an M.P. of Nedland in 2017, and during a Nedlandic parliamentary session at which he had said very little, δ brought up Evonia and asked that it be moved to another location—apparently to avoid the social embarrassment of not having said anything all meeting. Nedland agreed, and δ casually informed N that afternoon that part of Glastieve had just been ceded to another micronation. N was not impressed, and took δ to court.
N maintained that as Minister for Infrastructure, Transportation and Geographic Affairs, responsibility for determining Glastieve’s borders fell to him. None of the maps he had produced sNd Evonia, it had never been left out of Glastieve’s claim, and nobody had ever questioned this until now. δ claimed in his defence that the territory of the First Republic was legally defined in terms of what Skovaji had ceded to the U.K. in the Liquidation and Dissolution Act, and that Glastieve had only ever declared independence from the U.K., not from Nedland, and that the original site of Evonia had always been Nedlandic and not Glastieven. He then argued that his Plenipotentiary License gave him the authority to move the claim, as it was a mere diplomatic courtesy that did not alter the total amount of land Glastieve claimed.
The court, led by Allen, ruled in favour of δ. Desperate to make sure that it didn’t look as though he was a ‘leader’ of Glastieve, just as he worried the cancellation of the Cabinet meeting had done, δ engaged in a second retcon, claiming on the wiki that Allen had told him off for presenting himself to Nedland as the First Republic’s leader. δ even fabricated a statement to that effect, which included Allen’s stating that he had acted ‘legally but immorally’. Of course, despite Allen’s judgement and the fabricated statement, it is clear retrospectively that δ’s argument was spurious, and that he had in fact acted both illegally and immorally.
In the late evening of the 29th, the last and most egregious of δ’s three abuses of power took place. Inspired by micronations like Abelden and Nedland that were highly integrated into the MicroWiki Community, δ decided to copy them in opening a chatroom-based parliament with online community members as M.P.s: the Legislative Convocation of Glastieve. He quickly secured approval over Messenger from R, U, E and T, meaning he could claim that the foundation of the Convocation had the approval of the Cabinet, and founded three political parties that members of the Convocation could join: the Egalitarian Party, who were left-wing, liberal and loosely Confucian; the Pragmatic Party, who were broadly centrist; and the Acteriendian Party, who were based on the ‘Acteriendians’ of the Minister for Governmental Administration election in May, but with a more left-wing nationalist aesthetiX led the Egalitarians, R led the Pragmatic Party, and, strangely enough, S led the Acteriendian Party.
The Legislative Convocation was a flop at home and abroad. δ had failed to grasp the nuance of how MicroWiki micronations awarded citizenship to community members, and was met with faux-confusion and ridicule at the idea of ‘foreigners sitting in your parliament’, despite that being how it worked in practice for other micronations. It also quickly became clear that few micronationalists would have been interested in joining a minor nation like Glastieve’s parliament anyway. The party choices of the few M.P.s were announced in the domestic Glastieven group chat in an ‘election night’ style—it became clear very quickly that the Egalitarians were set to win a large majority, and R and S both jumped ship from their respective parties within an hour of the first M.P.s joining. They needn’t have worried anyway: the Convocation fell into inactivity by the next morning, never sat, and was soon swept under the rug of Glastieven history and forgotten about.
On the 6th of July, the Cabinet met through video call in the evening, as there was still no venue available at Coltheart School. Five members, not including Z, were present on the call. E proposed and the Cabinet voted for the Manslaughter Decriminalisation (Amendment) Act, which amended the Criminal Law Act and removed manslaughter from the list of crimes, as it was considered unfair to punish somebody for an accident. Z complained that the Cabinet had no authority to pass an Act that related to her brief, Judicial Affairs, without her consent, and said that a meeting on video call was not legitimate. Her complaints were dismissed.
Despite the failure of δ’s attempt to found a parliament, the political parties persisted. As the Egalitarian Party leader, he appointed an Egalitarian Party National Executive Committee, composed of himself, N, E and T. This group only ever had to attain the approval of one more member to pass something through the Cabinet, and considered itself capable of making executive decisions by itself, functioning as a sort of state-within-a-state. Later in July, the Glastieve Secret Service would be ‘re-established’, claiming continuity with the group chat of the April 2017 controversy, with the same group of four as its membership. This established a clear hierarchy: δ was the de facto leader, despite his best efforts to present himself otherwise; N, E and T were next; R, S, U, Z and Allen were less active and less influential.
The theoretical justification for much of the N.E.C.’s power was extra-constitutional and based on an emulation of the internal politics and governance of British political parties, influenced by television shows like The Thick of It and Yes Minister, but whenever it needed to exercise authority within the state, it employed a stretched interpretation of the term ‘governmental communications’ in δ’s title. This began as a slightly confused emulation of the role that The Thick of It suggested the communications officers of the British government had in enforcing the party line, though of course without the external pressure of an independent press. Over time, it evolved into a conflation of communications with all aspects of administration and policy-making, lending the Minister for Communications almost presidential powers. Nver, it seems that the N.E.C. had no intention of intentionally amassing power to itself for the sake of control or ambition; the only authority in which δ, N, E and T were truly interested was the authority to work around an inactive Cabinet which slowed down their attempts to push Glastieve forwards.
They were checked in this regard by the more open and selfish ambitions of R, who was supported unquestioningly by S. With the aforementioned power structure in existence, R became interested in climbing it, and worked together with S as ‘Doniial’ (/dɒnaɪɑːl/, an acronym for Department for National Identity for Insignia and Language used as a proper name), positioning their department as the N.E.C.’s competitor. While δ used increasingly loose interpretations of ‘communications’ to justify the N.E.C.’s executive powers, R tried to do the same with ‘national identity’, arguing that national identity covered everything from taxes to regulating the language that N could use in the chatrooms. With later events in mind it might be tempting to assume that from the beginning of July he wanted to bring down δ, but in reality he was more interested in having himself and S take the place of E, T and N, to a certain extent mirroring the hierarchy of the Green Team at the time. For example, in mid-July, he proposed a ‘Taxation Act’ that would give Doniial and ‘DoMAE’ (the Department for Media and Economics—he had meant to refer to the Department of Economics, Finance and Governmental Communications) the joint power to set tax rates, amassing quasi-presidential powers to both himself and δ. Needless to say, the suggestion was universally panned, but it sNd Doniial’s ambitions.
R had the first opportunity to flex his political muscles on the 7th of July. When E announced on the 7th of July that teacher Ms Mertens had offered her room to be a venue for Cabinet meetings, he also relayed her suggestion that the group register themselves as a branch of the Campaign for Nuclear Disarmament. T supported the idea, and though δ was a little reluctant, he was also willing so to do, and so the proposal had the N.E.C.’s stamp of approval. Nver, R (and thus S too) opposed the idea, and forced it to go before the Cabinet, where U and Z opposed the idea. Despite the men’s distaste for one another, R was able to gain the circumspect support of N for his opposition, and was successful in defeating the proposal. Just as the Taxation Act had shown Doniial’s ambitions, the vote on C.N.D. membership sNd that it had authority.
Perhaps spurred on by his victory in the Cabinet, R now tried to assert himself in Acteriendia. He once again came up against the N.E.C., who in the friendship group tended to operate as the G.S.S. on the grounds that they were preventing quarrels like April 2017. R wanted to remove U from the friendship group on the grounds that her presence made drama inevitable, and he petitioned δ to ‘trick her’ into so doing using covert means. δ refused so to do, both for moral reasons and on the grounds that he wasn’t sure if he would be able to. R was able to win the support of E for his plan, and firmly believed that he would also be able to persuade Allen. R wanted E to double-cross δ and work with him to get U out himself, but the latter insisted on calling a G.S.S. meeting to discuss the question of U’s removal. δ, N and T were rather stunned at the discussion’s even taking place, and swiftly voted to snub R, even threatening to tell U about the plan and the response thereto, which they dubbed ‘Caitlingate’. R felt as though he had been silenced and manipulated, and while before he had wished to emulate the Green Team’s hierarchy in Glastieve, Caitlingate turned him against δ and sparked his presidential ambitions.
R believed that the informal nature of the power structure pointed to its being maintained by interpersonal rather than political means, and felt that δ was de facto leader because he was most effective at ‘manipulating everyone’ socially, and that his status in Acteriendia was what gave him his power in Glastieve—an impression supported by his success in the constitutionally clearly-defined Cabinet and his failure in the murkier realm of the interpersonal. Therefore, R decided to try and trash δ and E’s reputation by getting them into trouble with teachers and dragging them into brutal interpersonal arguments outside Glastieve, thus ending their Glastieven prestige and creating a power vacuum for Doniial to fill. The Cabinet meeting that had been scheduled for the 10th of July was cancelled, as δ and E were busy that lunchtime responding to allegations made by R to Ms Mahon, the teacher running Green Team.
R’s use of drama as politics strengthened δ and E’s resolve to push Glastieve forwards; ironically, Nver, their increased activity relative to the rest of the country only served to widen the gulf in influence that gave R his motivation. On the evening of the 10th, E announced that the Cabinet would be ‘in recess’ over the summer holidays, with legislation to be enacted by Messenger polls rather than through in-person meetings. E also pressured R to ‘contribute’ to the republic, and he responded by running a Messenger poll on religion, which he claimed would be part of a wider national census—it found that at the 11th of July 2017, 22% of Glastievens were Christians, and 88% were atheists.
On the 12th, δ and E engaged in a series of discussions known as the First Mythological Conference, which established the basis of modern Glastieven mythology. The Conference took place in an empty classroom after school, with the two mapping out ideas on a whiteboard; notably, some of the brainstorming took place while they were jumping between different tables while E played the song ‘Megalovania’ on his phone, and, as mentioned in the Introduction, the apparent contrast between the formal name given to the event and the more chaotic nature of its activities came to be a point of political contention in January 2018.
By the 12th, N and T could tell something was going on with R and S, who were being increasingly public and blunt in their attempts to tarnish δ and E’s reputations. The National Executive Committee issued the following statement on R’s behaviour:
The Egalitarian Party is aware that John Matthews [R] and S are attempting to engineer a split in our party intended to strengthen their position relative to some nebulous source of power that they assume is hidden by us. Glastieve is a nation of equals, and where individuals are influential this is based purely on a respect for their opinions earned through hard work and commitment to the country. We will not insult Matthews’ intelligence by pretending that we do not understand how this works: if they continue with their power games, they will only humiliate themselves and lose whatever influence they have.
This was nothing short of a declaration of war on R, and he responded in kind, bringing the statement to Ms Mahon as evidence that δ and E were ‘trying to start an argument’ with him and should thus be stripped of all authority within Green Team. Mahon disagreed, but by now was well aware of the argument going on and responded by trying to make Green Team a sort of ‘safe space’ where they could work out their issues away from Glastieve—which only strengthened R’s tactic. The statement represented the end of the uncertain stability that had been maintained by drama as politics, and the beginning of an open war between the National Executive Committee and Doniial: the Matthewsgate controversy.
MATTHEWSGATE & THE HOLIDAY PERIOD
Though there has been enough debate on the importance of Matthewsgate that the debate on its importance is notable in itself, it is clear that the controversy was a key turning point in the history of the First Republic that ultimately laid the foundations for its fall four months later. Matthewsgate was followed by the summer holidays, which were accompanied by the Holiday Period, characterised by a drop in activity in what was at the time a largely school-centred organisation and a maturation of the Egalitarian Party’s blunt hierarchicalism into a more subtle and less formal ‘diarchy’ of δ and T that survived long after the First Republic’s fall.
In the hope of reducing popular support for Matthews by employing the drama as politics principle, δ revived The Glastieven and publishing an article titled Egalitarian political split can only end badly for Matthews, argues Kavanah. The article opened with he, E and T stating that R was engineering a political split in the Egalitarian Party ‘purely for his own gain’, and that it ‘could only end badly’. The article went on to print comments made ‘behind closed doors’ by E, in which he said: ‘Aaron thinks this is a game, and that he is the genius megalomaniac, tricking everyone into letting him win. But he always forgets that Flowey ends up dead in all three runs’. This reference to Flowey, a character in Undertale, became a recurring motif of the Matthewsgate controversy.
δ messaged Matthews asking if he ‘had any statement’ on the article as it had been so far drafted, and he replied with the message ‘Yes "these accusations are completely ludicrous and John Matthews and S both joined the egalitarians as they thought it was the best way forward for them and glastieve"’. He then sent a second message, reading ‘Anyway how come it's always me that is under fire why not Robert or you this is why this glastieve is crap your just manipulating everyone and when they do what you want you chuck it back in there face’. δ then combined both of these into one statement in the article, ignoring the fact that only the first had been sent with quotation marks around the statement.
It was on the evening of the 16th that the most infamous events of the controversy took place. N had started a discussion in the group chat about the possibility of establishing a national lottery, an idea that was well-received. R was opposed to N running it, suggesting N was unqualified so to do and that someone else, such as δ, should run the lottery instead. The disagreement between the two quickly became heated, with R calling N ‘stupid’ and N losing his temper in typical fashion, breaking the rules of the chatroom by shouting (i.e. typing in all upper-case letters) and swearing. δ and T both argued forcefully and rather impolitely against R’s assertions, heating the situation further. In the heat of the argument, R removed N and δ from the chat, re-adding them a few seconds later. N became even more livid, and R mocked him for losing his composure, claiming to have only removed the two from the chat ‘for a bit of fun’.
As Minister for Media and Technological Affairs, T then removed R from the chat, informing him that this was a temporary measure to allow everyone to calm down. Nver, whenever R was re-added to the chat, he now attempted to remove U, N, δ and T, swearing at E and attacking him for trying to re-add the four. After a few minutes, he removed E and Allen too, sending a message to δ that read ‘Shame everyone apart from me and Alfie are out the group’. According to S, in the now almost-empty group chat he declared himself President of Glastieve; it may have been his plan to make it a condition of re-entry into the chat that his authority as President be recognised.
δ replied calmly to R, at first calling him an ‘asshat’ with several laugh emojis, and then warning him that his messages would be leaked. R responded by trying to blackmail δ by threatening to release a ‘secret’ of his unless he apologised: δ called R’s bluff, and threatened him in return by quoting lines from Sans in Undertale. Meanwhile, T had sent messages to R in all upper-case letters, reading ‘EXPLAIN YOURSELF!’. In response to δ’s threats, R blocked him on Messenger and re-added everyone other than him to the chat, posting that he and S were resigning permanently from Glastieve, and then leaving the group chat. N created a new chat to collect screenshots of the event, and named that chat ‘Matthewsgate screenshots’, coining the controversy’s name.
R sent his last messages of the night to T, in response to his earlier text message. He clarified that he was leaving Glastieve, and claimed that S had told him three weeks ago that he too would be leaving. R also famously said that ‘kerry ahs no power he is only a minister of economics not a lord high chancellor or any thing’, that ‘glastieve is fake and. A waste of time’, and that the Glastievens were ‘all playing silly buggers’. After the screenshots had been collected, as Minister for Media and Technological Affairs, T instructed The Glastieven to draft ‘a report showing the extent of our disgust and loathing for the former minister’s behaviour’; this report included angry statements from N, δ and he. The three also drafted a piece of legislation that would exile R, the Anti-Cuntery and Dickishness Act, but decided to wait until the next Cabinet meeting to enact it.
By coincidence, from the 17th to the 21st, S and δ were planning to work together on an extra-curricular project for a school enrichment week. Early that morning, δ agreed a plan with the rest of the National Executive Committee, working as the Glastieve Secret Service, to try and bring S back over to the Glastieven government’s side. This operation was known informally at the time as Operation Doniial, but was retrospectively redesignated Operation Glass Crystal in a G.S.S. restructure of September 2017. Operation Glass Crystal had three main goals: to keep S interested in Glastieve; to maintain a connection with R so that he might be persuaded to return; and to prevent the two from ‘regrouping’ to resume their attacks on δ and his allies outside Glastieven politics.
It was largely a success. S was appointed as Minister for National Identity, Insignia and Language, claiming that he had ‘woken up confused’ on the morning of Matthewsgate and had absolutely no desire to leave Glastieve. The next question was of whether or not R should be exiled—should the Anti-Cuntery and Dickishness Act be enacted? On the 23rd of July, the question was put to a poll vote in the group chat. S, δ, E and T all voted against the Act, while U, N, Z and Allen all voted in favour, as did β, who was not part of the Cabinet. Following an old tie-breaking rule from the Cabinet Procedure Act of February 2017, the votes of Field Marshal U and Supreme Court Judge Allen were excluded, and the Act was narrowly defeated. R was approached by The Glastieven on the Act’s failure, but he declined to comment.
Nver, the door had been opened for R to rejoin and he knew it. Later that day, he unblocked δ on Messenger. R said that he wanted to return to his old position as Minister for National Identity, Insignia and Language, with S demoted back to Undersecretary. δ went to T and E for help in responding, cutting N out of the loop over his support of the Anti-Cuntery and Dickishness Act. The three, a de facto new National Executive Committee, refused to take this offer to the Cabinet, claiming it would be unfair to S. R then threatened that if he was not made Minister for National Identity, Insignia and Language, he would have S leave Glastieve, but this was dismissed as an empty threat. R then messaged T with a different offer: make he and S ‘co-Ministers’, with equal power to attend meetings and vote. The three rejected this too, offering R the Undersecretaryship instead as a compromise.
On the 24th, R approached δ, and said he wanted to take the deal and become Undersecretary. The de facto National Executive Committee brought R’s request before the Cabinet, with the three issuing an extended statement to the Cabinet in the name of the Department of Economics, Finance and Governmental Communications to the effect that this vote should determine once and for all whether or not R was part of Glastieve. They were now seriously concerned that the ongoing events were turning people off the project and damaging its image in the micronational community. U and N were the leaders of the anti-R camp, with Z predictably on their side, while S and E were the leaders of the pro-R camp. With Allen inactive and unlikely to vote, that made δ and T the deciders, and they both agreed to support R’s return.
Though the fallout from the Matthewsgate controversy had kept Glastieve active, the summer holidays had started on the 22nd, and after the vote on the 24th activity started to drop. In particular, E was on holiday, and was thus unable to continue being part of the de facto leadership team. This left δ and T as the two leaders: an arrangement of which neither was particularly fond. δ nicknamed the political situation ‘The Diarchy’ when updating the history recorded on MicroWiki, referencing a singer-songwriter duet in the micronational community, and this contemporary name has stuck. T sent δ a message to tell him that he ‘disapproved of this so-called diarchy’ and was still committed to the directorial governance of the Cabinet; the latter responded with a short speech about how he himself had never wanted to be a leader of Glastieve, but that it was always necessary for someone to ‘organise everything and hold it together’, and that all that had changed since T’s joining was his coming behind the curtain and seeing how it had always really worked. Despite their misgivings, the diarchy persisted.
T proposed that they should hold a Cabinet reshuffle to clear the air, noting the effectiveness of the May 2017 Cabinet reshuffle at dealing with the fallout from the events that had taken place in April. δ agreed, and suggested inviting R and S to work with them. They began by planning it in secret, which was δ and R’s preferred modus operandi, but after T complained of its being undemocratic, they announced it to the Cabinet through an article in The Glastieven. It is unclear under what authority they believed they were operating, but it is also clear that nobody else in the Cabinet questioned their right to organise a reshuffle without their consent. The power of the diarchy was clear.
They published the outcome of their work later that evening, still on the 25th of July. On 25 July, Kavanah, T, Matthews and S publicised the results of the reshuffle. Rather then try to bring in new people or remove old ones, this reshuffle simply moved around existing Glastievens, with no ministers leaving the Cabinet and R rejoining. The following changes were made:
The Department of National Identity, Insignia and Language was renamed, becoming the Department of National Identity, Culture and Language. E became its leader, with the same powers that R and S had had when leading Doniial.
The Department of Public Safety, Defence and the Judiciary was divided into the Department of Public Safety and Defence, which was responsible for the police force and the military, and the Department of Constitutional Affairs and the Judiciary, which was responsible for jurisprudence and the judicial system. S became leader of the former, and Z became leader of the latter.
The Department of Economics, Finance and Governmental Communications was divided into the Department of Economics, Corporations and Charities, which was responsible for the economy and for N.G.O.s, and the Department of Communications and Press Strategy, responsible for communications in the conventional sense (public relations), and ‘communications’ in the euphemistic sense (originally something close to the role of a whip or enforcer, but by July 2017 essentially encompassing all public administration). R became leader of the former, and δ became leader of the latter.
The Department of Media and Technological Affairs became the Department of Online and Diplomatic Affairs, inheriting some of the Cabinet’s diplomatic powers, with the Plenipotentiary License granted to δ being declared null and void. T became its leader. The Department of Governmental Administration and Recruitment was deemed redundant and abolished.
On the 29th of July, in what traditionally marks the beginning of the Holiday Period, δ published a white paper titled ‘Dissolving hidden political and power structures to create a more united and democratic Cabinet’ four days after the Cabinet reshuffle. The document had two main purposes: firstly, to challenge the view of Glastieven history that he felt had been implicit in T’s proposal to hold a Cabinet reshuffle, and secondly, to make a case for returning to the constitutional governance of the Foundation and Renaissance Periods by ‘dissolving’ the power structures that had emerged in the Partisan. The view of history that δ sought to challenge held that Glastieve was it its strongest immediately after a political shake-up, such as the declaration of independence or the May 2017 Cabinet reshuffle, but that over time inactivity and political inequality built up, leading to controversies like Matthewsgate and resulting new shakes-up.
The publication of the paper effectively marked δ’s unilateral dissolution of the Egalitarian Party N.E.C., and without its role in circumventing an inactive Cabinet giving it purpose, the Party itself was de facto abolished. Nver, it was unsuccessful in inducing the great increase in activity that would have been required for the return to constitutional governance that it called for, and with it being the summer holidays, δ and T were fairly content to allow the machinery of government to grind to a relative halt. A low level of activity kept the group chats alive, but the nation undoubtedly suffered from the same quiescence as the state, if to a lesser degree, and there were no attempts at any point in the summer to organise group meetups.
Given the nature of the First Republic, therefore, the few activities that were carried out and recorded as ‘Glastieven’ were exclusively those of δ, E and T. The first of these was on the 29th, when the then-atheist δ and the nondenominational Christian T met up and had a discussion on the nature of faith, coming to the conclusion that adhering to a single ‘belief system’ (a religious denomination, or a secular lens of reasoning like Marxism or psychoanalysis) was intellectually lazy, and that one should instead consider many different perspectives and combine these into a system of beliefs unique to oneself, just as T felt he had done with the views of different Christian denominations and δ did with his syncretism of socialism and Confucianism. They called this anti-dogma principle ‘Renmei’, and started a Messenger poll in a Glastieven chatroom to make Renmei the state religion, perhaps more appropriately the ‘state anti-religion’, of Glastieve. The vote was in their favour, but the idea seems to have been forgotten about.
In a sideways attempt to simultaneously strengthen the Cabinet and increase activity by circumventing it, δ announced on the 1st of August that the system of Cabinet committees was being revived. All previous committees were abolished, and two were created: the Cartography Committee, and the Fundraising Committee, the first of which was composed of Z, δ, N, E and T, and the latter of which was composed of the same plus R. The former actually held an in-person meeting at some point in late July or early August after Z, δ, E and T were turned away at the gate of Ide Fest 2017, but neither committee ever actually achieved its goals, and were both quickly forgotten about.
Over late July, independently to Glastieve, δ had been increasingly involved in groups on the fringe of the MicroWiki Community that were hostile towards the élitist and cliquey nature thereof, which was often dismissive of new members and hostile to those who challenged friends of the ‘Old Guard’. δ interpreted this cliqueness as a class structure, and quickly became radicalised against it, working with more moderate allies on a secret plan to break away from the community, with various different voices within that group influencing the shape of the project. In the end, δ launched the ‘New Community’ on the 1st of August, receiving a mixed response from the fringe and universal condemnation from the rest of MicroWiki. He managed to secure the confused and perfunctory approval of the Cabinet for him to tell MicroWiki that Glastieve was aligned with this New Community; the story of the New Community is largely irrelevant to Glastieven history, but the formal association of the country with that group led to δ often using The Glastieven and the name of Glastieve as part of his personal involvement in the N.C., and the dispute did become somewhat important in September when Glastieve became part of a spat between the group and Emperor Jonathan of Austenasia, the owner of MicroWiki.
REFORMATION AND DECLINE
The Holiday Period came to an end when the Summer holidays ended and Glastieve’s citizens returned to school at the beginning of September. This allowed Glastieve to once again spread beyond group chats and have a physical presence in its members lives. It was hoped that the bout of inactivity experienced over the holidays would end and that all Glastievens would return to the enthusiasm enjoyed between May and July, Nver the combination of the six week long recess and the increasingly confusing political drama, first with Matthewsgate, then in the MicroWiki community, meant that the majority of Glastievens were beginning to grow sick of micronationalism. Consequently, the next two months were marked by high levels of political reform, as δ and T, and to a lesser extent Cacheside, endeavoured to increase engagement and activity with the Republic, with ultimately limited success.
The beginning of this period is marked by the passing of the Internal Affairs Motion on the 5th of September. This was the last time the Cabinet would make an official decision over the online chatrooms before returning to in-person meetings. The Internal Affairs Motion ended formal Glastieven involvement in intermicronational matters, and was passed to allow the country to move on from the recently concluded fight with the MicroWiki administration and to focus on improving its own function and stability. On the same day, Glastieve left MicroWiki, asking the site’s administration to delete Glastieve’s articles and moving all information to the new Glastieve Wiki.
On the 7th of September the Cabinet met for the first time since July. The meeting was held in a new venue, meaning N, U, and Z were unaware of its taking place and were thus unable to attend. δ was held publicly accountable for this as he had been given responsibility for organising Cabinet meetings in the most recent reshuffle. At the meeting δ, R, and T gave reports on the activities on the Secret Service in operation Kingfisher, the progress that had been made on the economic plan over the holidays, and leaving MicroWiki, respectively. Nver, the meeting was cut short by Knowels and R having to leave part way through, meaning no official votes could be held.
The next week saw a minor argument that would later be recognised as part of a major series of events in Glastieven history in the form of the September Scare. The September Scare was a brief panic caused by Cacheside claiming that the friendship group of Acteriendia no longer existed and had not in fact survived the holidays. This claim was shortly dismissed as being baseless, although it may have been partially responsible for the eagerness of δ and T to revive interest in Glastieve. The September Scare is primarily considered relevant for its connection to the E Crisis, a political crisis in the early Second Republic that arose from similar claims being made again by E in January 2018.
The Cabinet held a successful meeting on the 14th of September with every member other than R, who had given warning of his absence, in attendance. The majority of those present donated money towards the purchase of website domain for Glastieve; the website was created and worked on over the next few weeks, but would never be particularly functional. The Cabinet also voted to hold a ‘special meeting’ every two months to set goals for the Nation, as well as to review the government’s internal guidelines, although none of these meetings were ever held. On the same day, Cacheside, R, T, and δ announced, on behalf of the Cabinet, a programme of legislation known as the Two-Month Plan intended to lay the groundwork for growth within Glastieve and increase the integration between the micronation and the friendship group. The Plan originally included the Economics Act, the Constitutional Convention Act, and the National Identity Act, and throughout its duration several other acts would be added.
Over the next week, two public announcements were made in Glastieve. The first was by R on the 15th that he no longer wished to be known by his alias of John Matthews and instead wanted his real name to be used. This development came about because R no longer considered Glastieve something to hide his involvement in, and was praised by δ, who described it as symbolic of the country successfully creating a new identity following the recent difficulty; T and U both circumspectly approved R’s decision; notably, N chose not to comment. R would request the reintroduction of his alias during the Second Republic, but at the time it was taken as a sign of him turning over a new leaf. The second announcement was by the mythological foundation on the 19th, giving information on a proposed video game that had been in development since the holidays. This game was intended to make it easier for more Glastievens to engage with the mythology, although like many of the initiatives of this period, it never came to fruition.
The Cabinet only just managed to achieve quorum when it met on the 21st of September, with Allen, Cacheside, N, T, and δ in attendance. At the meeting the Cabinet voted to award attendance strikes for unotified absences. T and δ released a draft of the National Identity Act, written as part of the Two-Month Plan, at the meeting, which caused significant division in the Cabinet when Allen, Cacheside, and N all opposed the draft over the inclusion of ‘typing quirks’ and the implication of the act forcing an artificial culture on Glastievens through national icons not shared by everyone. The criticisers of the act claimed it would make Glastieve less serious and increase the disconnect with less enthusiastic members, while supporters claimed it would take advantage of the nation's unique culture and give Glastieve a common grounding.
Following this argument, Glastieve saw a brief period of success, with various micronational initiatives pushed forward. This was seen as a positive sign that the desires expressed in the creation of the Two-Month Plan were being realised and that the country was returning to the success of the Renaissance Period. It was here the concept of a ‘golden age’ of Glastieve was first considered, a phrase that would later be applied to various periods of Glastieven history both in the past and future of when the claims were made. Nver, in retrospect this period bears similarity to the Foundation Period in its dichotomy between enthusiastic and inactive ministers: Allen, Cacheside, N, R, T, and δ actively engaging with the micronation, but Knowels, U, and Z becoming increasingly apathetic.
On the 26th of September, N announced the passing of the Public Roadways and Pedestrian Spaces Act. This act declared certain areas of the Glastieven territory as open to different kinds of transport and was passed as a Departmental Act, rather than through the Cabinet, as it only altered the existing powers of N’s department. N declared the act would be instrumental in increasing Glastieve’s presence in its territory and the act was received positively by the majority of Glastieve, although R criticised both the act itself–for being unenforceable–and N’s decision not to pass it through the Cabinet.
R declared successful work of his own on the 3rd of October when he announced that the economy (which had become his responsibility in July) would be ready to launch in about two weeks. R’s economic plan was more accelerated than that of δ, who had intended to start the economy in 2018 with several extensive pieces of legislation, while R had intended to launch it on the 1st of October with only the Economy Act from the Two-Month Plan as legal framework. The official main reason for the delay of the economy both before and after this announcement is the lack of design for the Luach notes. δ commended R’s progress, although N and T claimed that there would not be enough engagement for the economy to worδ has since admitted to pushing R to make the announcement so it is possible that had the economy began in this period it would not have been constructed suitably to get off the ground.
During the two weeks since the last meeting T and δ had been endeavouring to move Cabinet meetings to within the territory as, like N had done with his Public Roadways and Pedestrian Spaces Act, they wished to increase Glastieve’s presence within its territory; it had also become clear that holding meetings during school lunchtime did not allow enough time to properly debate motions and so they decided to hold meetings later in the day. The initial plan had been to move the meeting scheduled for the 28th of September to the 29th, but this was cancelled and instead meetings were postponed until a time when the whole Cabinet was available could be arranged. This plan gained support from N, but was opposed by Cacheside; some other Glastievens, including U, expressed concern that they would not be able to attend meetings held in the territory.
Glastieve was gripped by uncertainty over the 6th and 7th of October when R appeared to relapse into his old behaviour by causing a minor controversy reminiscent of the politicised drama of July 2017. On the evening of the 6th R told T to announce R’s resignation to the Facebook group chat. At the same time R called δ to tell him T was lying and requesting a formal enquiry. δ exposed this, explaining that he believed R had been attempting to implicate T. R later declared he was in fact resigning permanently. This incident came as a shock after R’s recent touting of his economic plan and the increased sense of stability in Glastieve. Nver, the next morning R claimed his resignation was fake and had only been claimed to see how others would react. R’s return was received positively by Cacheside, but N, T, and δ all condemned R’s actions. Ultimately the issue was dismissed with R getting a formal caution, but this didn’t do much to alleviate the attitudes of R’s critics.
The Cabinet finally met on the 11th of October in the territory of Glastieve. The meeting just managed to make quorum with Allen, Cacheside, N, T, and δ in attendance. R, U, and Z had provided notification of their inability to attend, but Knowels, who had claimed he would, received and attendance strike; a letter was delivered to Knowels two days later informing him of this, and was returned after he ripped it up. At the meeting the Constitutional Observances Act, the State Information Act, and the National Identity Act–all of which were part of the Two-Month Plan–along with N’s National Holidays Act were all passed unanimously, with minor amendments to the National Identity and National Holidays Acts. This was the second time in Glastieven history that four acts had been passed in one meeting, and the last time so many were passed before the Holy Glastieven Commonwealth. δ commended the meeting, saying it had sNd Glastieve could do what was thought impossible and that the lack of commitment was coming to an end. Unfortunately, this was to be the last meeting of the First Republic as there would not be another time when quorum could be achieved.
FALL OF THE REPUBLIC
After the 11th of October, the Cabinet was unable to organise another meeting as there was no time when more than half the Cabinet could be gathered in the territory. This, combined with rising levels of apathy, meant that Glastieve stagnated over October 2017. Attempts to increase engagement in the country and to broaden the scope of what was considered Glastieve were proving unsuccessful. Many people saw the move of Cabinet meetings to the territory as needless and unachievable, development on the video game based on the mythology had ground to a halt and the mythology as a whole remained an esoteric branch of the nation’s culture, and an increasing portion of the Cabinet were no longer making contributions.
On the 28th of October, δ decided that this situation had gone on too long and recruited Cacheside, N, and T -who by this point were the only politically active Glastievens–to help him plan Project Zeta. Project Zeta was an initiative that would completely restructure the government and ‘reset’ Glastieve, in the hopes of encouraging greater involvement. The Project rewrote the constitution of Glastieve, reducing the Cabinet down to five ministers who would be elected every six months. This was intended to make the government more competitive and thus give it a greater incentive to actually govern the country. It was also hoped that a decreased government would lead to increased activity outside of the government, the idea being that more activities would be included within the perception of Glastieve and the country could therefore be better structured around the friendship group.
The Cabinet officially adopted Project Zeta on the 31st of October, and elections were announced for the next day. Glastievens were asked to inform the Cabinet which department they wished to lead, with a popular vote to be held over any contested positions. R resigned following this announcement and fully left Glastieve, though he would return in the Second Republic. Allen, Cacheside, and δ all stood for the ministerships for Foreign Affairs and Diplomacy; Cultural, Mythological and Historical Affairs; and Economics, Finance and Business respectively and unopposed, while Knowels stood against T for the office of Minister for Governmental Administration and Public Relations and N stood against U for the office of Minister for Internal, Legal and Territorial Affairs.
When the election was held, it was expected that T and N would defeat Knowels and U respectively. T indeed won his election by a significant margin but surprisingly U defeated N. This meant that N, Knowels, and Z were now left out of the government and of these three N was particularly dissatisfied with this situation. Over the next week N, with Cacheside’s help, began a plan to oust U from government so that N could replace her. The plan essentially involved ensuring U had a high workload that would lead her to resent her office and hopefully resign.
This plot was discovered by δ who in turn leaked it to U. δ suggested to U that in response she form her own political party to oppose the so-called ‘old guard’ of Glastieve, meaning those members who had unofficially held the most influence. This was put into effect on the 8th of October with Allen, U, and δ all resigning in protest of the plot against U. This was followed by U announcing that her new party–known as Reform–was taking over the government, releasing a new government membership listing Allen, Knowels, T, and U, along with Cassey O’Conner, an acquaintance of U’s who was a Glastieven in name only during Reform’s few days in power, as the new Cabinet, with Cacheside and Z taking on non-Cabinet positions in the government. N and T, and possibly others, both expressed concern at this development, but δ encouraged them by explaining this would allow them to focus more on non-governmental initiatives and expand Glastieven activity, as had been the intention of Glastieve.
In the wake of the Reform takeover, T resigned from the Cabinet, thinking he was among the ‘old guard’ Reform aimed to oppose. It is likely that U, as well as other members of Reform, saw the takeover as more of an attack on Cacheside and N for actions in the friendship group either predating or outside of Glastieve as a micronation, rather than a purely political initiative. This would explain why T, though one of the more active and influential members, was not targeted in the takeover. Over the next three days, the Reform government would become increasingly inactive, as the majority of its members lost interest. It became clear to all that by this point the micronation was only being held together by the efforts of Cacheside, T, and δ, and that without them in the Cabinet the country was falling apart. It was later claimed that a referendum was held in which 88% of Glastievens supported re-declaring independence; this referendum was in reality fabricated in early 2018 as part of the Sovereignty Retcon.
In reality, the First Republic came to an end when, on the 11th of November, T declared that it had ‘died’ and deleted the official Messenger group chats. Growing disinterest in the wake of Matthewsgate and over the Summer Holidays, followed by over zealous attempts to reinvigorate activity led to a return of the old dichotomy between active and inactive members. A last attempt to tackle this dichotomy had failed miserably, and so the First Republic of Glastieve had fallen.
KEEPING THE DREAM ALIVE
During the last two months of 2017, the friendship group was once again an amorphous structure with no organisation around which to base itself. Nver, this did not mean the group had come to an end. Rather to everyone’s surprise, Z created a new Messenger group chat for on the same day the Republic fell. This chatroom was originally named ‘Glastieve Reconstruction’—but, given that name’s micronational implications, was quickly renamed to ‘New Acteriendia’s Chill Group #24’. This was a reference to a Nerdery-era tradition which had originated when the original Chill Group chatroom was moved to Messenger and named Chill Group #2, and was later replaced by a Chill Group #3. The #24 of the December 2017 chatroom was calculated by adding together every Acteriendian chatroom on Messenger since the original Chill Group, regardless of their names. Between Z and δ, many people who were loosely on the fringes of Glastieve were added to the Chill Group #24, in what was likely an attempt by the two to broaden the group’s membership, although none of the non-Acteriendians added actually stayed active.
The chatroom indicated that there wasn’t yet sufficient interest to revive the First Republic or found a second, but that the Glastieven friendship group was still alive and well. Nver, Cacheside, T, and δ still desired there would be a micronation around the group and believed that with enough preparation they would be able to make it work. They decided they would spend the next two months working heavily on redesigning Glastieve, with the hopes of removing whatever lead to the toxic political climate and disengagement of the late First Republic. With this aim in mind, they formed the Glastieve Planning Board and worked hard for the next two months to prepare the Second Republic for launch.
The Planning Board undertook a lot of work designing the government structure, including the innovation with perhaps the most lasting legacy: ‘the constituencies model’. The constituencies model posited that Glastieve would exist as a collective of several ‘constituencies’, each one comprised of an independent friendship group. Each constituency would be represented in a ‘general assembly’, an infrequent event with the primary purpose of electing the Cabinet. The plan was that what had previously been considered all of Glastieve would be joined by a second constituency led by D, a friend of δ’s, with more to be added later. This system likely had the same motivation behind it as the widening of the membership of the Messenger group chat, but would similarly not come to fruition. Despite the Planning Board’s efforts, the constituencies model would quickly faded into irrelevance in the Second Republic, though the government would continue to nominally operate under the model and other constituencies would make a brief resurgence in late 2018. The constituencies model would go on to be the planned structure of the Envardian Republic but ultimately was not incorporated into the Holy Glastieven Commonwealth.
The second major reform of the Planning Board was the complete overhaul of Glastieve’s territory. Until now, Glastieve had claimed territory in the Alphin Valley to the West of Exeter, as had Skovaji before it. δ moved that the Second Republic should instead seek out UK common land as its territory, as this would give it a greater level of freedom over this territory; he also wanted to connect Glastieve to the Stannary Parliament of Devon and Cornwall, in the hopes of claiming legitimate sovereignty on a technicality. This proposal was accepted and the Planning Board set about searching for common land, ultimately settling on an area of North Dartmoor, as this was common land, was previously controlled by the Stannary Parliament, and was a place of interest for the Planning Board.
The Planning Board held a meeting on the 2nd of December to consolidated its work. At this meeting the government structure was finalised, including the official adoption of the constituencies model; the central government ended up being pretty much identical to that of the First Republic, although this time designed around a greater membership. The Planning Board also decided on a plan to rejoin the MicroWiki community, having left in disgrace in September 2017. This plan involved in infamous Sovereignty Retcon; this was a claim that the First Republic had never considered itself an independent micronation the Second Republic was Glastieve finally declaring independence following a referendum during the Reform takeover. The Planning Board also met on the 18th of December when Cacheside, T, and δ visited the proposed territory on Dartmoor. During this event, they called R to unsuccessfully negotiate his return to the micronation, as he had stormed out after the fall of the First Republic, describing attempts to revive Glastieve as ‘treason’.
Outside of the Planning Board, the friendship group continued to prosper. Although attempts to broaden the membership had been largely unsuccessful, the group quickly recovered from the collapse of Glastieve and once again flourished. The new group chat was active throughout the end of term and the Christmas holidays and saw very little, if any, of the drama of the late Republic. This period also saw the development of various non-micronational initiatives, including a group minecraft server and the beginning of a noir crime novel by Z. The mythology also experienced high levels of interest and Second Mythological Conference was held, restructuring the narrative of Glastieven mythology to make it more engaging. All in all, the friendship group thrived and Glastieve looked as though it had a bright future moving into the Second Republic.
Second Republic of Glastieve, 2018
The Second Republic was formally declared on the 1st of January 2018, a date that δ and T chose to make the line between the old and the new as clear and dramatic as possible. At the beginning of 2018, both were motivated by desires to make the Second Republic highly distinct from what had come before—in particular, δ wanted a clear ‘line in the sand’ between the negativity of the recent past and the prosperity that he hoped would be achieved in the near future, and T wanted the new micronational government to be less prone to political controversies, which he understood to have led to the First Republic’s downfall. As for E, he seemed oddly lacking in strong feelings on how the new republic should look: a silence that is retrospectively ominous, given the events that soon unfolded.
At the beginning of 2018, the Second Republic was nominally operating under ‘the constituencies model’, which meant that the Republic of Glastieve would encompass a number of distinct, autonomous ‘constituencies’, analogous to the states of the U.S. of A., and that what had been until now the whole of Glastieve would simply be the first constituency, ‘Acteriendia’. In fact, there was also a second constituency: Chartersvill, which would be led by D, a Scottish then-friend of δ’s. In early January, much emphasis was placed on the equal status of Acteriendia and Chartersvill, and both had their own territories: Acteriendia’s on Dartmoor, and Chartersvill’s in the Campsie Fells. D was supposed to recruit his friends to his constituency, but he soon lost interest. By the end of January, the constituencies model had been forgotten.
The constituencies model was one of two innovations δ and T’s. The other was New Secessionism. This was a micronational political theory that held friendship groups were analogous to the disorganized communities of people and tribes that developed into nations, and that friendship groups could themselves develop into ‘micronations’ by establishing their own governments. At the time, the two also endorsed parallel plane theory, an extension of New Secessionism which asserted that friendship groups and micronations existed on a separate and parallel plane of sovereignty to tribes and normal countries. New Secessionism meant that the non-micronational activity of friendship groups that founded micronation-states should be seen as the ‘organic culture’ of those states, and that the governments of those states had an obligation to provide services to be rooted in their ‘nations’ and provide relevant services, such as moderating group chats or organizing meetups.
More specifically, δ and T believed in Acteriendian Secessionism, the idea that Acteriendia and Glastieve shared this relationship, with Glastieven history beginning in November 2015 with the origins of the nation and the modern republic deriving its sovereignty from the inherent sovereignty of Acteriendia. These ideas were what δ had in mind when he wrote the legally binding Declaration of Independence, which compelled the government to be ‘rooted in the organic culture of the Nation of Glastieve’—the Nation of Glastieve meant Acteriendia, the friendship group that had existed since November 2015 and founded the First Republic.
THE ACTERIENDIA AND NEW SECESSIONISM CRISIS
Once the work of establishing the Second Republic had finished, the micronational politics of Glastieve fell back into a First Republican pattern. By the 14th of January, the constituencies model had fallen into obscurity and Chartersvill was all but forgotten about, and all the Glastievens who had joined Z’s group chat became part of the Second Republic and took up their usual positions in the cabinet. The challenges faced were of disparate enthusiasm and quorum failure; not the challenges seen at the launch of a new project, but the same as those struggled with by the ageing First Republic in its Reformation Period. Taking this apparent sense of continuity to its extreme, it is actually not unreasonable to speculate that the less micronationalistic in Glastieve were not even aware of there being a new republic. The high politics of the First Republic had gone over most people’s heads at the best of times, and the publicly unexplained Sovereignty Retcon had divorced an already arcane and inaccessible historical narrative from the remembered reality, making the provenance of the apparent distinction between the Republic and the ‘G.C.A.’ quite unclear. It is quite possible that one or more of R, S, U or Z believed that the Republic of Glastieve had simply been inactive over the Christmas holidays and was now back to normal—and, in mid-January, that understanding would not have been entirely untrue.
This continuity with the late First Republic did not last long, and by the end of March, the stage had been set for the rest of the Second Republic’s history. The continuity was broken by E and his opposition to the New Secessionist reforms of δ and T, an opposition which triggered the greatest civil war in the friendship group since April 2017 and the most violent political controversy in Glastieven history: the Acteriendia and New Secessionism Crisis.
Despite a relatively strong start, if one lacking in the enthusiasm of February 2017, the Second Republic was overcome within weeks by the greatest argument in the friendship group since April 2017 and the most violent political controversy in Glastieven history: the Acteriendia and New Secessionism Crisis. Beginning in mid-January 8th of February
SLOWS MOVEMENT FORWARDS
From the 17th to the 19th of March, Britain was again carpeted with snow, in a cold wave known as the Mini Beast from the East. The South was hit particularly hard, and a Glastieven trip out in the snow helped to move the group on from the Acteriendia and New Secessionism Crisis. Part of this trip included a snowball fight with another friendship group in Belmont Park, recorded at the time as a Glastieven Army training exercise with ‘troops’ led into battle by U and E.
Meanwhile, the end of the controversy led to a brief flurry of micronational activity, mostly orchestrated by δ and T. On their suggestion, R proposed on the 21st the creation of a national museum; δ agreed to write agendas for Cabinet meetings; and E said that he intended to organize a for-profit public event to raise money for and draw attention to the Republic of Glastieve. δ, E and T started work on improving Glastieven historiography in line with the recommendations of their Second Phase Initiative. Lastly, on the 24th, δ, E and Allen all visited Devon County Council’s offices to exercise their right to view the Register of Common Land and to make copies of the maps.
This work was consolidated in two Cabinet meetings, on the 24th of March and the 8th of April. These meetings were held in the Haven Road Centre, which was coming to be seen as the headquarters of the Glastieven state. N made contributions to these meetings and attended both, and R was appointed as secretary, suggesting he too was behaving sensibly and making reasonable contributions. Following the second of these meetings, δ relaunched The Glastieven, having purchased a domain at www.theglastieven.com and written an H.T.M.L. website.
One E.C. who was notably absent at both Cabinet meetings was Z, and largely at δ’s initiative, he, she and T became a trio within the friendship group, calling themselves The Tea Party after their first meetup, which was attending the Lord Mayoress of Exeter’s traditional tea party. On the 11th, this Tea Party grouping proposed a Secret Service Act, which would revive and restructure the Glastieve Secret Service under the leadership of a Cabinet-appointed commissioner, with the first Commissioner of the Secret Service being Z. It was hoped by δ and T that Z’s being Commissioner of the Secret Service would provide her with a niche within which to make enthusiastic and active contributions to Glastieve.
At the next Cabinet meeting, only three E.C.s attended in person. In what was framed as a declaration of the existing custom, it was determined that non-attendance at a meeting counted as willful abstention from all votes, unless a message was sent to the government’s Slack workspace stating otherwise. That made the three-person meeting quorate, and it voted to change the rules so that the number of E.C.s who had attended each meeting would no longer be recorded or published, with the goal of ‘increasing the maiestas of the Cabinet’—in other words, hiding the low attendance at meetings to maintain an illusion of consistently high activity. The next day, six E.C.s joined a Minecraft server, whose complex political rules led to two players signing a treaty in heavily abbreviated Mediaeval Latin and T being elected ‘Chancellor of the Central Curia’. The contrast between the activity in something popular and the inactivity in the Cabinet was clear.
Meanwhile, the maiestas project continued. A Cabinet meeting held at Exeter Quay renamed Chancellors to Lord High Chancellors, and used the common land maps acquired from Devon County Council to precisely fix the borders of Glastieve based on the Mediaeval stannaries. δ and E ended up being internally isolated (a punishment) at Coltheart School for eating lunch in the school canteen off an ornate white tablecloth that δ had brought from home, and R left the Cabinet in protest, claiming the two had ‘embarrassed’ the nation. Lastly, δ and T requested that Allen, Chancellor of the Murus, adjudicate on whether E.C.s could be elected between General Assemblies.
The Springtime Period was followed by the Quayside Period, characterised both by a slow decline in overall activity and increasingly pluralistic politics. At a Cabinet meeting on the 23rd of May, Z announced that she would lead an anti-sexism initiative in the Glastieven government, describing the state as ‘very male dominated’. R was the only critic, describing the idea as a ‘load of hippy nonsense’. δ presented a treaty he had drafted with Austenasia, and the Cabinet voted to sign it, formally establishing relations with the most influential state in the MicroWiki sector. On the morning after, E announced that he would be launching a market economy, using a Google Sheets spreadsheet to record all transactions.
Perhaps in response to the increased activity, N resigned from the Cabinet. This was the very first hint of the anti-republican and anti-δ sentiment that led to his leaving the nation and friendship group in November. He sent a long paragraph to The Glastieven explaining his reasons for leaving; in his view, Glastieve was like ‘an old dog’, and it was time for the micronation to be abolished and for the friendship group to return to ‘not having a name’, ideas similar to those endorsed by E during the Crisis. His leaving was spun by δ into a positive assertion of the continued existence of a thriving extra-governmental nation in Glastieve, and his reasons were not published, with The Glastieven instead noting that N had been ‘capricious and almost unstable-sounding in his flailing, poorly-punctuated attacks on his group of friends’. It is not difficult to see how the animoscity began from this.
For their part, δ and T had begun to focus on Glastieve’s image in the wider community, with a particular emphasis on grounding the republic in U.K. law through a stretched interpretation of the stannary law, and on increasing Glastieve’s score on Linden’s Revised System of Classification, a scale used to rank micronations based on their achievements. To this end, the two visited the territory a number of times, erecting a tin bound, ‘mining’ therein by panning in an old mine’s stream, and drafting the Rights of Way Act, which compelled the state to take responsibility for maintaining rights of way by sweeping leaves from paths and picking up litter.
Throughout May and June, work continued by various Glastievens on individual projects related to the state. Allen worked on launching a private-sector business; E worked on the upkeep of the economy; The Tea Party worked on a novella based on Glastieven mythology, Maiestas; and δ worked on creating a website for the Second Republic at www.glastieve.org.
Meanwhile, with tensions between E and the rest of Glastieve still high after the Crisis, his girlfriend Bara began to become the subject of increasing derision in Glastieve. U was the most open in her view that Bara was ‘turning Robert into a dick’, and this view was supported more quietly by both δ and T. In fact, everyone apart from N and S seemed to have at least some grievance with E or with Bara, and the loose label of ‘his behaviour’ and ‘his bullshit’ became standards around which everyone rallied. This culminated in the Treaty of Exeter, formally the ‘E-Glastieve Voluntary Non-Interaction Agreement’, on the 15th of June. The Treaty of Exeter was the joint work of U, δ and T, and in a blend of U’s anti-E soundbites and δ’s pretentious, self-justifying rationalisations that was reminiscent of the rise to power of Reform, the Treaty laid out an ultimatum: no signatory would speak to or contact E until he stopped the ‘behaviour’, famously using the phrase ‘for too long, Robert has been the crying baby who has got the bottle’. δ collected signatures from R, N, and Z, meaning six people had signed, and laid out the terms to E shortly before the Bowhill Summer Fete, advising him to make a ‘bold gesture’ to show the group he respected them. In E’s view, the dog whistle was clear: the Treaty of Exeter meant that ‘unless I dump Beti, y’all are dumping me’.
The Treaty broke down on the day after it was signed. Z and N both removed their signatures on the 16th, deciding they had acted too rashly, and it is possible that N contacted and chatted with E. Not united by attacking E, U and R had an argument in the group chat, weakening T’s resolve to continue with the Treaty. Dealing very poorly with feeling ashamed for organising the whole affair, δ spent most of the 16th paranoid about others breaking the Treaty behind his back and making him look like an idiot. On the morning of the 17th, he proposed that the Treaty be abolished, and both U and T agreed, with the former feeling E had ‘learned his lesson’ and the latter that the whole matter had gone too far. R argued briefly and forcefully that E should remain kicked out of Glastieve even if the Treaty were suspended, but he was ignored by T, who added E back to the chats to no further opposition. The Treaty was quickly forgotten about, but E’s reputation remained poor.
At a similar time, despite the apparent acrimony between δ, E and T suggested by the Treaty of Exeter, the three were working with Allen on a G.C.S.E. Citizenship ‘action project’ that it was hoped could double as a fundraiser for the Republic of Glastieve. Z had originally also been part of their Citizenship group, but had left after she felt that δ and E were using their rank in the Glastieven state to undermine what she felt should be the egalitarianism of the group project. The four planned an Afternoon Tea event for the 21st of July, ostensibly to raise money for a ‘campaign to increase access to Dartmoor’, with Glastieve being a ‘ceremonial declaration of independence to raise awareness’ within this campaign. The earliest source for their planning work is a flyer made on the 18th of June.
In late June, δ and T (who tried to get Z involved and kept her just interested enough that they could call it a project of The Tea Party’s) were interested in reviving the constituencies model. Influenced by their own New Secessionist theory, they believed that across the country there were people who would want to have micronations but had never thought about the idea, and that Glastieve could reach these people and thus expand. They determined that there were two separate ways this could be achieved: through Glastieve supporting other friendship groups in creating their own micronations, which was thought to be more faithful to New Secessionism; and through a more effective revival of the constituencies model, which was better at increasing Glastieven prestige and grandeur.
The choice between these two options was known as the Greater Glastieve question, and The Tea Party felt that they had a responsibility to solve it. In the end, the three devised a compromise option: the Intermicronational Association. The I.A. was to be a micronational organization, independent of the Glastieven state, created by an Act of the Cabinet and ‘offered support’ by Glastieve. This both preserved the ideological integrity of New Secessionism and made the project an effective tool for making Glastieve appear refined and influential. δ and T then began work on trying to find people to start their own micronations. The latter contacted his friends at his former school in Cornwall, but was met with a neutral response. δ tried speaking to A and his friends in the North; this was the same group of friends whose group chat had been renamed to Glastieven Protectorate of Edible Pug Squad back in 2017. He was successful, and on the 4th of July announced that the Edible Pug Squad’s successors had said they were interested in founding an I.A. state.
On the 14th of July, the date of the Afternoon Tea fundraiser was moved from the 21st to the 30th, and last-minute changes were made to increase the budget for marketing designed to attract customers on the day, including balloons and bunting. The event went ahead on the 30th and very narrowly broke even, making a total profit after all costs of just under £2.00. The event was reported in The Glastieven as a fiscal flop but a public relations success, though an attempt to get customers to join a ‘campaign mailing list’ had only collected a single email address.
THE CONSTITUENCIES MODEL
In the summer holidays between Years 10 and 11, it was considered inevitable that G.C.S.E.s would lead to a drop in activity in the Second Republic: the question was not ‘if’, but ‘when’. This was in the minds of δ and T as they responded to A’s request for help in making an I.A. state, but the main ambassador for this inevitability was E, who in as early as August 2018 was arguing that the state should be ‘put into hibernation’ for the whole of Year 11 and not revived until after G.C.S.E.s had been finished.
In their discussions over the creation of an Edible Pug Squad I.A. state, A and δ felt that, despite The Tea Party’s conclusion, the constituencies model was a more practical way of creating the national Dredro-micronational network that the élite of the Second Republic wanted. δ was able to persuade T of this, and the I.A. was quietly dropped—without the two pushing it, it was quietly forgotten about, just as the Legislative Convocation had been in 2017. The constituencies model was back. The only significant opposition to the proposals was from R, who felt that as the current Glastieve had created the nation and was likely to be ‘better’ than the other constituencies, they should instead have the status of colonies, with the mother country Glastieve remaining as the Exonians and having the power to control its colonies. This so-called ‘colonial model’, which was literally empire-building, was ignored. δ contacted D about reviving Chartersvill; D gave a vague response that δ interpreted as a ‘yes’, but in practice there was no more Glastieven presence in Scotland after July 2018 than there had been before.
δ and T set up a group chat in August, containing themselves, R, A, D, E, and a second member of the Edible Pug Squad group, L. The members of the Edible Pug Squad were referred to as ‘Manchunians’, though they actually lived in Northwich, a town around twenty-five miles south-east of Manchester. The common term for the Second Republic following the reforms needed to involve Chartersvill and the Manchunians was ‘Greater Glastieve’, though at the time T discouraged this term, fearing it sounded as though Glastieve was ‘empire-building’, a term used as a snarl world in the MicroWiki community, and encouraged the alternative term ‘New Glastieve’, which was used in the title of the group chat—‘Deciding how New Glastieve should work’.
Meanwhile, on the 14th of August, there was an argument in the Grassy Hillside Club sparked by a photo of himself and Bara that E had posted on his Instagram. R, U and δ all reiterated their belief that the relationship between the two was inappropriate, and R repeated calls for E to end it with Bara, prompting δ to give a lengthy analysis of why he felt that the group opposed E’s relationship with Bara, concluding that ‘faced with the reality of his declining status, E claims the group is presenting him with an ultimatum [...] he rejects the inevitable, and refuses to develop a more reasonable strategy’, and that ‘E has to pick a lane - whoever’s fault that is’. Nothing more came of the spat, but it drew attention to the continuing ill-feeling towards Bara in Glastieve.
On the constituencies model, the ‘Deciding how New Glastieve should work’ chat was fairly inactive, and by September had only achieved the bare minimum for setting the constituencies model in motion. Each constituency would have a constituency council, which would be a microcosm of the Cabinet that could enact local laws, a constituency coordinator, and optionally, a constituency executive, which would model the central government. None of this was written into law, and would be established instead by the passing of a ‘legally binding Cabinet motion’. Desperate to press on before the predicted pre-G.C.S.E. drop in activity made things impossible, δ and T called for Cabinet elections, and within a week a new Cabinet had been elected with R, A, Z, δ, E and T as E.C.s. L was made the constituency coordinator of the Manchunians, whose constituency was being temporarily called ‘Glastieven Manchester’, D was made constituency coordinator of Chartersvill, and Manchunian γ became the Chancellor of National Identity and Culture.
In their own constituency, T and δ made a loose attempt to engage citizens with the constituencies model, but they explained it quickly and poorly and mostly just made sudden changes and asked out of context questions. To quote U, who was likely speaking for the nation, ‘Caitlin lost. Caitlin very confused.’ In the end, the two largely gave up after they had managed to extract approval from their confused friends to name the constituency ‘Acteriendia’ and to use the flag of Skovaji as the flag of Acteriendia. Both of these had been suggested by T, and initially opposed by δ, who had wanted to delay the whole roll-out until he was confident everyone in the constituency understood what was going on and had taken part in a discussion about local government, the name of the constituency, and its flag. In the end, though, he gave his reluctant approval to T’s ideas. As this might suggest, local government was an embarrassing failure across Greater Glastieve. Chartersvill was an emperor’s-new-clothes scenario. Everyone knew that there was no Glastieven presence in Scotland, but δ sustained the pretence on the wiki and tried his best to persuade everyone else to do the same in central government. The situation in Manchester was a little better, and the constituency’s citizens did involve themselves a little in Glastieve, but by the end of September, L had successfully lobbied for it to be granted permission not to have a council or executive. Their involvement was largely as associate members of an Exonian project, and they had little interest in making their own friendship ‘as Glastieven’ as the one in Exeter. The constituency of Acteriendia had never even appointed a local government, and there were no obvious candidates to run one, so it was granted the right to eschew it altogether. The de facto outcome of the constituencies model was essentially the same as R’s colonial idea, with the constituency of Acteriendia as ‘Glastieve proper’, Manchster a colony, and Chartersvill non-existent.
Central government (much of which was essentially just local government for the constituency of Acteriendia) continued at much the same declining level of activity as it had done before the summer holidays. The Tea Party had largely given way to the more traditional trio of δ, E and T, which was known during this period as The Throwaway Group after δ made a temporary group chat in November called ‘throwawayGroup’, using the word ‘throwaway’ in the same sense as a ‘throwaway account’ on a site like Reddit, and T, not being familiar with the term, started using The Throwaway Group as a label analogous to ‘The Tea Party’. Though its use might properly be restricted to after November 2018, it is fairly conventional to talk about the trio in October 2018 as The Throwaway Group too.
By the beginning of October, The Throwaway Group all recognised that declining activity represented a serious threat to the Second Republic, but had different views on the nature of the problem and how it should be solved. δ saw inactivity as resulting from apathy with the nation and friendship group in general, and felt that the republic could be helped by the friendship group being strengthened and ‘made more Glastieven’. E saw inactivity in both the republic and the friendship group as an inevitable consequence of their being in Year 11, and felt that, rather than trying to increase activity, The Throwaway Group should arrange for the government to be suspended until after G.C.S.E.s. T saw inactivity as a largely political issue and considered the friendship group relatively secure but the republic fragile, but was unsure as to how it should be dealt with. Of the three, only δ really considered the constituencies, and even he saw it as ‘less of their problem’; this had the effect of making The Throwaway Group the de facto local government of the constituency of Acteriendia, with similar unofficial executive power to the Egalitarian Party’s National Executive Committee in the Partisan Period.
Despite The Throwaway Group’s considering inactivity their problem to solve, they were also interested in reviving the Cabinet. The three organised an all-day meeting in Topsham on the 14th of October, with The Throwaway Group enjoying a ‘working lunch’ at the Lighter Inn—the source of a particularly amusing anecdote about E, who believed he had been served, when he had in fact unknowingly been brought alcohol-free larger. R joined the three in the afternoon, and they took official photos and held a formal Cabinet meeting on the waterfront. The four tried to call A on Messenger, but he failed to answer and the meeting progressed with only members of the constituency of Acteriendia present. On the walk back from Topsham to Exeter, the four devised a plan for work the Cabinet should do over the autumn half-term, from the 22nd of October to the 1st of November. They agreed on the name ‘the Sunrise Plan’, though this was never actually used in public relations and seems to have been forgotten about within days. Key to the Sunrise Plan was the revival of the Glastieven Model, this time with paper money that would be created and printed by E using Beti’s printer.
During the autumn half-term, δ set about trying to put into practice his belief that the nation needed to be strengthened. He met up with R on the 21st, visiting the territory on Dartmoor, U on the 22nd, and N on the 23rd, in each case hoping to strengthen the connection between Glastieve and its more ambivalent members. He also met with T on the 25th, discussing ideas to develop the Second Republic. Coincidentally, that meetup was in what is now the Holy Glastieven Commonwealth, with a photo being taken of the view from the Sex Bench.
E’s new paper-money economy launched on the 2nd of November, the first day following the half term. The cornerstones of the new system were paper Luach notes, made using MS Paint, printed in black and white, laminated, and cut out by hand; and the Banking Service. This was δ sitting in the corner of the Lounge exchanging paper notes for virtual money on the spreadsheet that had supported the previous failed economy attempt. Unlike every previous attempt, the November 2018 economy was actually successful in putting the First and Second Pillars of the Three Pillars Model into practice, and a small-scale and sluggish market economy persisted in the constituency of Acteriendia until the Second Republic’s dissolution.
Nver, despite the novelty of the economy, activity in the Second Republic was at an all-time low. The nation was relatively healthy, though the constituencies were isolated from one another, with Manchester now reduced to only A, L and γ, who were occasionally active in the group chats but were mostly connected to Glastieve only by their friendship with δ, and Chartersvill continuing to lack a pulse. The Cabinet was useless. R and A were inactive, and Z was rarely able to attend meetings either in-person or online. A meeting was held on the 3rd of November, with Z, δ, E and T in attendance, but achieved nothing other than an unrealistic financial plan that would have required E to raise £40.00 per Cabinet meeting by organising fundraisers. Deadlock then prevented further meetings, with every attempt shut down by back-and-forth arguments over that financial plan, location, frequency, and agendas. The central government’s Slack workspace was inactive to the point where δ had taken to messaging people on Messenger when he wanted them to reply to him on the Slack workspace—and even then, he rarely expected them so to do.
I really don’t know what to title this yet
It was in mid-November, likely around the 10th, that this grey status quo was broken, when δ’s girlfriend X said she might be able to establish her group of friends at Petroc college as a constituency of Glastieve. The other δ (from now on, δ) was strongly supportive of his girlfriend’s plan, and secured the support of first The Throwaway Group and then the rest of the Cabinet to encourage X to proceed with trying to persuade her friends at Petroc to form a Glastieven constituency.
On the 18th of November, she revealed that she had been successful in her efforts. Applications for Glastieven citizenship were made by O, F, X, J, and W, under the collective name ‘Northllando’. In response, δ drafted the Northllando Act, legislation that formally created the new constituency and gave it the relatively complicated system of government that Manchester and Chartersvill had rejected, with a separate elected constituency council and appointed constituency executive. He had high hopes for Northllando—created ‘properly’ by written legislation and led by someone he knew was both enthusiastic and capable of working independently of he and T’s prompting, Northllando seemed the perfect opportunity to create a more developed constituency that would be truly equivalent to Acteriendia.
δ’s sense of optimism was infectious, and Northllando’s joining the Second Republic led to an uptick in activity, interrupting the trend towards inactivity that had begun in August. Known as the Northllando Renaissance, it was largely centred on the constituency of Acteriendia, but was also characterized by an attempt by the central government to reduce ‘Acteriendia-centrism’, which involved renewed efforts to involve Manchunians in the central government and attempts to establish strong local government in Northllando.
Hoping to sustain the increase in activity, δ announced that he would once again be writing weekly newspapers. Rather than reviving The Glastieven, he split it into two publications: The Custodian, and the Acteriendia Evening Standard (a name mirroring the London Evening Standard, a U.K. newspaper). The Custodian would be ‘more tabloidy’, focusing on friendship drama and on amusing stories that took silly events and reported on them in a faux-serious way; the Evening Standard would be ‘more broadsheety’, focusing on micronational politics and on essentially British news that took place within the Second Republic’s territory on Dartmoor.
Unsurprisingly, the increase in micronationalism within Acteriendia was unpopular with N, particularly as δ and T’s renewed enthusiasm for New Secessionism meant that his having resigned from the state made him in no way exempt from being considered part of the micronation. Furthermore, his relationship with δ had also been deteriorating since events in the latter’s personal life in September, and The Glastieven’s reporting of his resignation in May. This made N even more hostile to δ’s attempts to get him involved with Glastieve. In the eyes of E’s alternative view of history, it also meant that N’s bilateral friendship with T was the only thing that kept him coming to group venues. The Northllando Renaissance was the last straw for N, and on the 21st of November, he stormed out of the Lounge over δ’s jokingly removing opening a pack of his cookies from his lunchbox. Despite initial expectations of a quick resolution of what seemed like a relatively minor issue, that was the end of N’s four-year-long involvement in the nation and friendship group.
Later that day he left every current Glastieven group chat, and a number of historical ones. He stopped attending the Lounge, refused to interact with any member of the group if δ was present, and gradually went through and left every historical group chat with any connection to δ, Acteriendia or Glastieve. He initially stayed on the de facto periphery of the group—for example, on most break-times he would hang around outside the Lounge chatting to other Glastievens until δ arrived, and would then walk away—but by the end of the year had drifted away. He ripped up a letter of apology from δ sent in March 2019, and only interacted with him on two occasions following the cookies incident: during a history lesson, when he interrupted his attempt to explain military ranks, saying ‘don’t think that this means I’ve forgiven you or that I don’t still fucking hate you, but you are explaining that so badly that I can’t stop myself from correcting you’; and on the last day at Coltheart, when δ tried to apologise, he told him to ‘fuck off’, and when he said to him, ‘I know you’ve hated me for most of this year, but what about one last high-five before you never have to see me again? For four-and-a-bit years of friendship?’, he responded, ‘you are fucking dead to me’.
THE REPUBLIC FADES AWAY
After the Northllando Renaissance came to an end, the central government went into de facto abeyance for the Christmas Holidays, following First Republican precedent, and both Manchester and Northllando drifted away, leaving Glastieve once again coterminous with the group that had inherited the Acteriendian tradition. Though the state was inactive, it seems that the nation and friendship group stayed strong in the holidays. The three recorded meetups were δ and T on the 23rd of December; R, δ, E and T on the 28th; and δ, E and T on the 30th. This is quite clearly due to bias in the historical record, and it is overwhelmingly likely that other Glastievens had their own meetups over Christmas. Nobody thought about the Second Republic much in late December.
The 1st of January 2019, the anniversary of the Second Republic’s being declared, came and went without particular fanfare. δ had written a speech and had considered trying to rally the Cabinet to prepare a New Year’s address, but decided ultimately that he couldn’t be bothered with the huge effort that would entail. A few days into January, he and T met at the former’s house to discuss how they could revive the state following the total inactivity of the Christmas Holidays. Just as δ had been when he had decided against bothering to force the Cabinet into pretending to be a directorial government on New Year’s Day, the two were exhausted after having been responsible for keeping the machinery of government moving since at least May 2018, and simply didn’t have the energy or motivation to push it back into life from a standstill, especially given the incumbency under the constituencies model to attempt to revive Northllando and Manchester. Thus, in that meeting, the two decided not to make any effort to revive Glastieve—and that was enough for it to come to an end. The Second Republic was, at last, over; and just like the first, it was T that declared its having ‘died’.
The closest thing to a formal announcement came from E, who renamed the Glastieven Lounge to ‘The Lounge 🎷🍷’ and posted ‘Welcome to the Lounge y’all’, explaining when asked that the Chatroom Regulations were no longer in force. The Second Republic had fallen because increasing inactivity and disinterest had led to δ and T bearing a greater and greater burden of work in keeping the state at all active, and the two had eventually crumbled under the weight of trying to sustain both the entire constituencies-model state and the illusion of a directorial system of government in which they were not leaders. The fatigue they suffered and the fact that it led to the state coming to an end were both kept firmly in mind during future attempts to write constitutions, including that of the Holy Commonwealth.
Starlit Night, 2019
The end of the Second Republic was not a particularly dramatic event. Where the First Republic had fallen, the Second seemed more to have faded away, and its end was declared more than it was effected. As such, the immediate appetite for a new Glastieven micronation that had characterised November 2017 was distinctly absent in January 2019: the nation had quite frankly had enough of micronationalism, and both δ and T had had enough of trying to persuade their friends to engage with a micronational project in which they were not particularly interested. Thus, Glastieve ceased to be a country, but retained a fading micronational aura. The era between the Second Republic’s end and the micronational revival in autumn 2019 that led to the Holy Glastieven Commonwealth is known as the ‘Starlit Night’—both a reference to the sense of a Dark Ages with a mysterious silver lining, and a pun on the starlight-themed nomenclature that was used by an organisation called the Envardia Planning Board in their dealings with Glastieve during this era.
At the meeting where they decided to give up on the Second Republic, δ and T also decided to work on new micronation in secret, grander and better-run than Glastieve had ever been. They planned to spend around seven months working on this new micronation, and to ‘go public’ during the summer holidays when they had already put in enough work to make it impressive, and protect it from failing. Later that afternoon, X joined the project on δ and T’s invitation, and the three of them are considered its ‘founding members’. E learned of the project’s existence by reading over δ’s shoulder while the two were present as friends of Cat’s at a weebery meetup, and after some discussion, he was admitted to the project too. The four eventually decided on the name ‘Envardia’ for the new country, and their secret organization became known as the Envardia Planning Board, mirroring the Glastieve Planning Board of 2018.
Meanwhile, in Glastieve itself, a sense of ‘nation-ness’ and a proclivity for establishing unusually formal structures both endured beyond the Second Republic’s collapse. For example, the Acteriendian Lounge (known once again as the Glastieven Lounge now that δ had given up pushing the nomenclature of the constituencies model) was still used at breaktimes and lunchtimes in Coltheart School, and Z’s authority as Proprietor was still respected. R was still admin of the Messenger chatrooms and sometimes called himself the ‘moderator’ or ‘director’ thereof, though his formal title as Director of the Chatroom System was forgotten. The group still called itself ‘Glastieve’, the flag was still used, and particularly ironically, the motto ‘Glory to the Independent’ was still sometimes used.
With the distinction between Northllando and Acteriendia now meaningless and the members of Glastieve now familiar with her, X quickly became part of the friendship group in her own right. It was noted by E in April that she would have continued to be a Glastieven even if she and δ had broken up, which was seen to define her in opposition to the position of S. K also began to be involved with Glastieve at some point between January and the 14th of April, when she was listed as one of the friendship group’s members during a meetup in Belmont Park celebrating the “Second National Homestuck Day”.
Though the chatrooms remained important, activity in them declined noticeably from the republican days, with the heart of Glastieve now the Lounge and the activity there at break and lunch. One tradition from this era was the ‘meme quiz’, which involved competitive identification of ‘meme songs’ past and present from a Spotify playlist of δ’s. U and Z were both inconsistent in their using the Lounge, which pushed them towards the periphery of the group. U’s activity in the chatrooms and long membership of the group kept her from actually ending up on the periphery, but Z was inactive in the chatrooms and lacked U’s seniority, and so ended up on the periphery. R and S were both also inconsistent, but like U had the benefit of long seniority. In addition, their being on the edge of ‘public life’ whilst remaining full members of the group had been so commonplace in the two republics that the attitude continued, with break and lunch in the Lounge considered analogous to activity in the micronation.
Meanwhile, the work of the Envardia Planning Board continued, with Glastieve seen as Envardia’s first province. The territory, the parks and greenery along the Exe from Exeter Quay to Bridge Road, was chosen by a vote in the Lounge; the other three considered were the territories of both republics, and one that overlaps the south of the current Holy Commonwealth. At the beginning of May, on the eve of the G.C.S.E. exams and around a month before the Envardia Planning Board’s initial rough estimate for when the country would be created, δ and E met up in Alphington to discuss the progress of the Planning Board. The two ultimately felt uncomfortable with two main options for the relationship between Glastieve and Envardia: either the latter become a province of the former, which felt inappropriate, especially as the transition from Coltheart School to Exeter College was seen then as inevitably causing a weakening in the strength of the group; or there was a hardline break in continuity, with Glastieven history cast aside by Envardia. The two worked together to create an alternative: The Starlight Plan, which would form part of a wider document called The Autumn Declaration, aimed at defining Glastieve’s future.
The Autumn Declaration would be divided into three parts: The Bold Assertion, The History of Glastieve, and The Starlight Plan. The Bold Assertion was a celebration of Glastieve, declaring the group to have made awesome memories together while at Coltheart. The History of Glastieve, despite its name not a work of history in the same way as this is, would have been a compilation of works (poems, photos, drawings and essays were all given as examples), with one submitted by each Glastieven. The Starlight Plan would then be a political declaration that built on the nostalgia and pride of the first two parts of The Autumn Declaration. Specifically, The Starlight Plan suggested that Glastieve as a nation take responsibility for ‘building Envardia’, thus ‘making the Envardian dream a Glastieven reality’, and that Glastieve would then become a prestigious group within the high society of the Envardian Republic that gave its refinement and expertise to Envardia in exchange for tax exemptions.
Though the two did send messages to every Glastieven asking for contributions to The History of Glastieve, and δ wrote the first page of The Starlight Plan on a very decorated page, that was as far as The Autumn Declaration ever got. Nver, the sober political ideas of The Starlight Plan—that Glastieve should not become a province, but should instead act through the Planning Board to build Envardia and then become a tax-exempt group within the high society—were popular with X and T. It was felt that Glastieve would provide eight free citizens who would not need to be convinced of the benefits of paying taxes, and it felt like a good way to preserve the value of Glastieve’s history and lingering ‘nation-ness’. The Starlight Plan became the official policy of the Envardia Planning Board.
G.C.S.E. exams took place for everyone but X in May and June (she had A.S. exams at around the same time), and dominated the friendship group. By this time, Z’s declining attendance in the Lounge had seen the role of Proprietor disappear, and though R continued to be the admin in the chatroom’s settings, he no longer exercised any of the authority he had once claimed. δ and E both made largely unsuccessful attempts to recruit Glastievens to a new, pre-republic Envardian community. One such attempt on the 7th of May saw δ post a sad poem called ‘Glastieve of Coltheart’ and a link to the Envardian Discord server, captioned ‘Things can be OK’, in the Glastieve lounge chatroom of the First Republic, which had last been used in November 2017. The only responses were E saying ‘That's really good - I don't know what to say tbh’ and N leaving the chat.
The next significant attempt by the Envardia Planning Board to get Glastieve involved with Envardia was the foundation of The Starlight Lounge on the 12th of July. This was a new chatroom in the republican style, with R and Z appointed admins in recognition of their former roles as Director of the Chatroom System and Proprietor of the Glastieven Lounge, and a formal Charter that was largely plagiarized from the Micropolitan Lounge, a restricted-membership and famously élitist Skype venue that had once existed in the MicroWiki community. Membership of The Starlight Lounge was restricted to those Glastievens who stated in a Messenger poll in the old chat that they wanted to join Envardia when it was founded, and the old chat was renamed to just ‘Social Lounge’ by δ to emphasise the link between Glastieve and The Starlight Lounge. At the same time, the formal English name of the Planning Board was changed to ‘Tsevinke Évánia nús Komrena’, which was a translation of ‘Envardia Planning Council’ into the half-finished constructed Envardian language, and the most common way to refer to it in English became ‘T.É. nús K.’ (tee-ee-noos-kay). Outside T.É. nús K., only R and U said in the poll that they wanted to join Envardia, and The Starlight Lounge failed to take off.
Little is recorded about the friendship group itself in this time, but given the stress of G.C.S.E.s and its slide towards comparative normality, it is likely that it was not much different to any other friendship group in Year 11. Its main fora were the Lounge and the Social Lounge chatroom; the situation with G.C.S.E.s makes it unlikely that the group did much outside of school, and the Social Lounge is known to have been a largely inactive chatroom that was dominated by U talking about the television show Doctor Who and X reposting memes from Reddit and Instagram.
Holy Glastieven Commonwealth, 2019–20
When term began at Exeter College, Petroc and Exeter Maths School, T.É. nús K. put the recruitment plans of The Starlight Plan into action, preparing for the country to declare independence before the end of September. δ secured the official support of the Reach Academy, the College’s gifted and talented group, for the project, and T had mixed success in trying to persuade the Maths School to endorse it in a similar fashion. All four were supposed to print and distribute pamphlets, though only δ, E and T ever did this with any enthusiasm. The Envardian Republic needed to have a minimum of twenty citizens in the government for its ambitious constitution to work, and there were only six Glastievens who were at that time planning to join Envardia. Meanwhile, everyone expected the friendship group to peter out, but activity in the chatrooms actually increased a little as the move to further education or full-time work made an obvious topic of conversation.
By coincidence, δ ran into R on the 6th of September; the former was out on a recreational night walk, and the latter was walking back from a concert at Coltheart School. R decided to come with δ on the walk, and the two decided to make these night walks a weekly tradition, inviting other Glastievens to join them. On the 13th and the 14th, R, δ, E and T went on the first two Night Walks, which were to the current territory of the Holy Commonwealth and to the nearby Great Hill View Park. These Night Walks were an important part of the revival of traditional Glastieven culture and values after the Starlit Night had led to much of their falling away.
δ and T met for a progress meeting on the 15th, ten days before the planned ‘conference’ of Envardian recruits and fifteen days before independence was due to be declared. In total, T.É. nús K. had found one recruit. Added to the five Glastievens who had declared an interest in becoming citizens, this still fell well short of the twenty ‘absolute minimum’ that δ, E and T had predicted. Noting that, under The Starlight Plan, T.É. nús K. derived its authority to create the Envardian Republic from Glastieve itself, δ suggested that T.É. nús K. call an ‘Assembly of Glastieve’, extending this loose legal theory he saw in The Starlight Plan to the convention of such an Assembly, and suggested that through this Assembly they ask Glastieve, from whom his reading of The Starlight Plan suggested they derived their authority, to choose between four options:
Motion 1 – known as ‘continue anyway’. This meant T.É. nús K. ploughing on relentlessly with the original plan, regardless of the struggles. Motion 2 – known as ‘Brexit extension’. Backed by X, this proposed that T.É. nús K. continue with the original plan but with a long time extension. Motion 3 – known as ‘Third Republic’. This motion proposed T.É. nús K. abandon the Envardian Republic and create a third Glastieven republic, with creating an Envardian state becoming a long-term goal of that new country. Motion 4 – known as ‘throw it all in the sea’. This motion would have seen Glastieve end its support of T.É. nús K., instructing it to disband. T and δ intended to tell the floor at Glastievemoot that if Motion 4 were passed, they would probably seek to create a less serious micronation with no formal link to Glastieve, in a similar vein to the Kingdom of Sairmaena. T.É. nús K. scheduled this Assembly, known casually as Glastievemoot, for the 21st, the next Saturday after δ and T’s discussion. Over the next week, they focussed on preparing emergency plans for if Motion 1 was selected, and on trying to ensure the greatest attendance possible at Glastievemoot. Meanwhile, there were discussions on what would come of Envardia in the event of Motion 3’s being passed. On the 20th, at the third Night Walk, which also had K in attendance, many of these issues were discussed. The prevailing opinion was that the national social network that T.É. nús K. had hoped to create with the Envardian Republic should be re-understood not as something to be created but as a diaspora of people with shared characteristsics that already existed but did not yet have a micronation based on it, analogous to the nerdery or weebery, and that a new Glastieven republic would be a micronation rooted in that tradition. It was thought that it would itself be an instrument for creating an Envardian Republic in the longer term by the coming together of independent states that Glastieve had supported potential Envardians in creating, known as the Dredro-Envardian sector. This syncretism of The Starlight Plan and the June 2018 Intermicronational Association model became the orthodoxy for if Motion 3 was passed, with T.É. nús K., R and K all in support.
On the 21st, Glastievemoot took place, and despite some challenges, seven out of nine Glastievens attended. It was considered the first group meetup in as long as anyone could remember; in fact, it was the largest gathering of Glastievens since February 2017, and the only out-of-school gathering of such a large proportion of the group since the Golden Age in 2016. In an innovation of δ’s, anyone present could submit a motion, which would then be debated after T.É. nús K.’s. Over the course of the day, nine such additional motions were submitted. Most notably, those accepted included one supporting a song written by δ as a ‘national song’, and one declaring the hill between Mincinglake and Drake’s Meadow to be ‘of special significance’ to the group, with K recanting her earlier dislike of the area.
At the meeting, Motion 3 was selected, instructing T.É. nús K. to work towards the creation of a third Glastieven republic. The next morning, K joined T.É. nús K., which for all intents and purposes had become a sort of ‘Third Republic Planning Committee’. The old Slack workspace was abandoned and replaced with a Messenger chatroom, thought to be a more agile way of working, and work began with a hitherto unseen intensity. δ and T took to meeting at 7.30 a.m. every morning to work on the more boring and technical aspects of establishing a new micronation, with most of their work being on legislation and on this very work of history. Video calls were held in the T.É. nús K. chatroom regularly; at first every day, though after a week or so they were being held once every second or third day. E was perhaps uncharacteristically articulate in characterising the motivations behind the hard work when, on the doorstep of his house after a meeting with K, δ and T, he said: ‘Glastieve has been a friendship group for long enough—it’s time for us to become a nation again’. T was equally compelling in his response: ‘I think this time maybe we can be both’. The increased activity, though, led to Z leaving Glastieve on the 8th; the impact of this on the sense of optimism was surprisingly little, as she had been on the periphery of the group for some time and had long been expected to drift off before 2020.
The two main ways in which T.É. nús K. involved Glastieve in the planning for the foundation of the Holy Commonwealth were in the compilation of ‘interest lists’ and the Declaration of the Holy Commonwealth, the declaration of independence. Both of these are explored in greater detail in the Epilogue; the principles behind each were to ensure that the Holy Commonwealth was founded as a micronation that was truly a whole-group venture, and not just one of the micronationalist élite that had led the First and Second Republics. On the 11th of October, the work of T.É. nús K. came to an end, with the nation’s people declaring themselves to be an independent state.
THE ‘LITTLE GOLDEN AGE’ REVOLUTION AND CHALLENGE RETURN TO PROSPERITY LE BAISSER DE RIDEAU
On the 3rd of March, the High Council officially made the Declaration of New Home, in which it recognised the Baisser de Rideau (French for closing curtains) of ‘formal Glastieven history.’ The Declaration of New Home also granted citizenship of the Holy Commonwealth to everyone that T had originally added to the Fellowship of Former Glastievens group chat; acknowledged that the Second Golden Age had taken place; extended conciliar support to the development of An Irregular Rebellion; and recognised that the Group had merged into Glastieve. The ‘recognition’ of the Baisser de Rideau was, in practice, intended to mean much the same thing as the Liquidation and Dissolution Act. By including further terms in the Declaration, Nver, and by not actually abolishing itself, the High Council tacitly endorsed the idea of deliberate abeyance.
The First Republic was explicitly founded as a "MicroWiki nation;" two of its founders, δ and N, had previously been micronationalists in that community, and between February and August 2017, other Glastievens became involved to a varying degree and the state made some effort to integrate with the sector. From August to October, Glastieve was involved in an attempted break-away movement from the community; δ, T and R all engaged in activities that drew condemnation from the community, in R's case acting on explicit orders from the state. T then pushed through the Internal Affairs Motion, which banned the First Republic from engaging with the community. During the era of the Second Republic, δ alone was active in the community, and he continued to be even after that republic's collapse. Envardia had a page on MicroWiki, and δ persuaded his then-girlfriend X to engage a little with the community, but the other leaders of that project, T and E, both disliked MicroWiki and suggested Envardia should try to create its own sector. By the time of the Holy Commonwealth, it was once again only δ who was part of the community.
Culture and traditons
No Glastieven's writing was ever published during the lifetime of the country. However, both fiction and non-fiction writing were important parts of the nation's cultural life. Fiction writing was a common pastime among Glastievens, though it was rarely associated directly with the micronation. In 2017 and 2018 especially, writing was often a social affair, with collaborations and sharing work an important part of Glastieven popular culture and the Coltheart writing club (which met in the same room as the 2018-19 Glastieven Lounge) being made up entirely of Glastievens for part of 2018. At the end of Glastieven history, T, Z and δ were all actively working on novels, with δ having written 30,000 words and drawn up a full plan, and U regularly published fiction on the Internet, having over a thousand followers on Wattpad. In addition, both X and δ wrote poetry and letters.
In addition to the Glastieven contribution to mainstream literature, writing centred on Glastieven mythology was a common form of expression, usually thought of as a type of fan-fiction (and therefore not as "proper writing.") This was largely short, throwaway stories intended to develop characters or ideas, and such peices of writing were often penned as suggestions for how the roleplaying world could be developed. While most mythology fan-fiction was short, T, Z and δ collaborated on a proposed novel in 2018, Maiestas, though this project never advanced beyond around 5,000 words and a complex plan.
One Glastieven non-fiction book was finished: Glastieve: A History, which was 41,000 words long and was written by T and δ between July and November 2019. In addition, several non-fiction academic papers were published in 2020 through T's University of Glastieve. The main focus of non-fiction writing in Glastieve, however, was entries in MicroWiki and various online encyclopedias of Glastieven mythology. "Wiki-building" was a common and sometimes politically contentious activity that accounted for a significant fraction of the activitiy related to the mythology, and in both the First and Second Republics, improving the coverage of Glastieve on MicroWiki was a responsibility of the state. Glastieve's MicroWiki entries were a source of significant national pride, and were frequently the longest on the site; most have now been deleted to protect the identities of those who had been involved with the project. As of April 2020, the current entry on Glastieve remains the longest on MicroWiki.