Grand Duchy of Carthage
| Grand Duchy of Carthage |
|Capital city||Drumm Stronghold|
|Official language(s)||English, French|
|- Grand Duke||Eric|
|- Protector||Ashleigh Sinodis|
|Established||7 January 1998|
|Disestablished||5 April 2021|
The Grand Duchy of Carthage was founded on 7 January 1998, as part of the creation of the Empire of Agber. The impetus for Carthage's creation was Arlene's family moving to the upstate New York area as part of her father's US Army career. The nation was officially dissolved on 5 April 2021.
In late 1997, then Queen Arlene of Kolios' family relocated from Augsburg, Germany, to Fort Drum, in upstate New York. Shortly after settling in, she began considering the future of the Then Kingdom of Kolios. After studying types of governments, she settled on scaling back its profile to that of a Principality, and establishing a new nation in her current location that she dubbed the Grand Duchy of Carthage. Initially Empress Arlene also served as the Grand Duchess of Carthage. After a few months of doing so she decided to relinquish that title to a friend, who became known as Grand Duke Andrew.
These early days of the Grand Duchy saw it operate largely as an after-school activity, which it would continue on even as Empress Arlene moved away during her parents divorce in 2002, to California.
The Order of the Rosy Cross Incident
In August of 2003 the Order of the Rosy Cross was created by Grand Duke Andrew. Six Knights and Dames were initially named to the order before Empress Arlene learned of the name's ties to the Rosicrucian movement, and Grand Duke Andrew's attempts to make Carthage a bastion of Rosicrucian thinking and culture. Due to these facts, and given that physical regalia had not yet been purchased and distributed, Empress Arlene ordered that the order be disbanded and all memberships revoked in November of that same year. In protest, Andrew immediately severed ties with the Empress and Agber, without even so much as an official resignation.
As a result of these events, all remaining stock from the first iteration of the Order of the White Lion was lost, as well as a number of pieces for the Order of Carthage. As she had helped fund the Order of Carthage pieces, this sequence of events prompted Empress Arlene to declare the National Order of each territory to be directly under her control, with her assuming the entire funding of them moving forward. The lost pieces are presumed to still be held by the former Grand Duke.
Activities During Empire's Transient Era
From 2004 through 2013, Empress Arlene was a member of the United States Air Force, and saw herself stationed at four different bases. While Carthage initially carried on with business as usual under the guidance of Grand Duchess Charlotte. In August of 2005, Charlotte abdicated from the throne, citing her weariness with being part of an Empire that felt very detached from Carthagean affairs. All of her provincial governors quit at this time. Rather than let Carthage officially go defunct, Empress Arlene decided to make the role of Grand Duke or Duchess a position within the retinue she surrounded herself with at Renaissance Festivals and Fairs, something that had become part of her activities during her time working directly with what was then the Enclave de Cordova. This Era saw the service of Grand Dukes Nicholas and George, as well as Grand Duchess Anne as the head of Carthage. Despite their service, they had no administrative duties (aside from serving as the font of honor for the Order of the White Lion), and never had any provincial governors.
As part of the Empire's Renaissance, Empress Arlene appointed Grand Duke Louis as the nation's seventh head of state in 2013. He was selected due to a combination of having been involved with Carthage during the reign of Grand Duchess Charlotte, his residing in the geographical area of the Grand Duchy, and his familiarity and involvement with Renaissance Fair culture. As he was charged with developing a unique identity for the nation, Carthage began introducing more aspects taken from France's era of the House of Valois with a few elements from early Bourbon rule. While Carthage is the least active nation within the Empire, activity levels for it are still higher than they have been at any other point in the Grand Duchy's history.
Changes as a Result of the Indiana Proclamation
Carthage has been the least affected nation within the Empire of Agber due to the restructuring to an elective monarchy at the Imperial level that occurred on 18 June 2020. The only readily identifiable difference the additional autonomy afforded to Carthage has made is that Grand Duke Louis now serves as the font of honor for the Order of Carthage.
Decline and Dissolution
The ascension of Grand Duke Eric after his father's death in 2020 proved to be the first step in the eventual dissolution of the Grand Duchy. Global politics led to divisions in the ranks of Carthage's citizens. Without a strong central leader, these rifts widened to chasms in February of 2021. This culminated in a number of Carthagean citizens breaking away from the Grand Duchy and its parent Empire on 27 February. More than half of the active roster left, along with the provinces of Black River and Turning to form the Royal Republic of Rivière Noire. The next day, the province of Rulison would join the separatists and would elect its first ruler: King Quentin.
On 3 April 2021, Carthagean Protector Ashleigh Sinodis announced her intent to dissolve the Grand Duchy of Carthage to Emperor Devon and the other national heads of state. She cited the reasoning being her inability to reach Emperor Eric or his legal guardian for a period of nearly four months coupled with the departure of most of the nation's active citizens to Rivière Noire. The decision was approved on 5 April, officially dissolving Carthage after more than 23 years.
The last head of Carthage was Grand Duke Eric, who sat on the figurative and literal Cascade Throne of Carthage. The Grand Duke or Duchess served for life. As Grand Duke Eric was underage when he assumed the throne, there was discussion amongst the Provincial heads as to who should serve in the role of Protector. After much deliberation, there was a split among the four provincial heads, with Comtesse Diana of Black River supporting the appointment of Comte Quentin of Turning, and Comte Xavier of Rulison backing Comtesse Ophelia of Sobek. Empress Arlene, in her role as Imperial Sovereign and former Grand Duchess of Carthage, suggested longtime Carthagean citizen Ashleigh Sinodis as a compromise appointment. This was approved by the provincial leadership, with Comte Quentin being the only dissenting vote.
List of Carthagean Rulers
Carthage had eight rulers in its history:
- Arlene, 1998. Briefly served as Grand Duchess before abdicating the throne, to allow Carthage more autonomy within the Empire.
- Andrew, 1998 to 2004. Disappeared from Carthagean community without abdication in protest to actions of Empress Arlene during Order of the Rosy Cross incident.
- Charlotte, 2004 to 2005. Part of mass exodus of leadership in response to absence of Empress Arlene from Carthagean affairs.
- Nicholas, 2005 to 2009. Removed from role by Empress Arlene due to personal misconduct.
- George, 2009 to 2012. Removed from role by Empress Arlene due to negligence and absence from Agberian affairs.
- Anne, 2012 to 2013. Removed from role by Empress Arlene due to restructuring of the Empire and lackluster service.
- Louis, 2013 to 2020. Died by suicide.
- Eric, 2020 to 2021. Dissolution of the nation.
Orders of Chivalry of the Grand Duchy of Carthage
While the Empire of Agber as a whole has numerous separate orders of chivalry, there were only four officially considered of concern to Carthage. The two orders of the Empire, the Order of the Empire of Agber and the Order of Arlene I, both superseded the two orders of the Grand Duchy, the Order of Carthage and the Order of the White Lion. The Font of Honor for these two Carthagean orders at the time it was dissolved was Grand Duke Eric.
When Carthage was dissolved, Queen Barbara of the Kingdom of Maevis received permission from Emperor Devon of Agber and Protector Ashleigh Sinodis to assume control of the Order of the White Lion, renaming it the Ancient Order of the White Lion.
|Order Name||Established||Classes/Ranks||Awarded For||Notes|
|Order of Carthage||7 January 1998||Knight/Dame Grand Cross
|Service to the Grand Duchy|
|Order of the White Lion||1 January 2001||Knight/Dame Grand Cross
|Service to the Grand Duke||Majority of first set of regalia unrecovered from first Grand Duke, who disappeared|
Only Grand Cross and Knight/Dame rank awarded for most of the order's history
Control of order transferred to Kingdom of Maevis in 2021