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|United States of Vrnallia
|Motto: "Uraška, Tvimòr, Pokuljà"
"Peace, Justice, Understanding"
Vrnallia (dark green) is in the north of Asura
|Largest city||Dvrieska Citya|
|Recognised national languages||Vrnallianb|
|Government||Federal Democratic Republic|
|-||First Minister||Lješmarad Brachvieca (Soc)|
|-||Premier||Zujka Cismachà (Soc)|
|-||Vrnallian Empire (informal confederation)||872|
|-||Unification (as the Vrnallian Commonwealth)||1025|
|-||Writing of First Constitution||1773|
|-||Writing of Second Constitution (as the United States of Vrnallia)||1899|
38,109 sq mi
|GDP (nominal)||2016 estimate|
|HDI (2016)|| 0.927
|Time zone||Nokia Mean Time (UTC+0)|
|Drives on the||left|
|a.||Dvrieska City was formerly the capital of Vrnallia. Zalejk became the capital when Vrnallia was made a federation after the Great War.|
|b.||Standard Vrnallian is based on the dialect of Dvrieska. All insular dialects are mutually intelligible, but the Vrnallian of mainland Asura may be a separate language.|
The United States of Vrnallia (pronounced /vəˈnæljə/ or /vəˈnælijə/, also called (the) USV or simply Vrnallia, called Vrnaljaj Mgokovikhljeguš pronounced /vr̩ˈnaʎaj vgɔ̃kɔvʲiˈkʰʎɛguɕ/ or Vrnalja in the Vrnallian language) is an archipelagic federal democratic republic located to the west of the mainland of Asura on the planet of Aeia. The nation consists of four states - Dvrieska, Mlekie-Vorod, Hujre and Mlakazej (Mazej) - comprised of 60 electoral constituencies. Its nearest neighbours are Crylante to the east and Tir Lhaeraidd to the south.
With a population of 1,440,809 inhabiting an area totalling 98,702km2 (a population density of 14.6/km2), and a nominal GDP of just ȥ57,834,721,385 (NS$57,236,051,077.00), Vrnallia is the smallest recognised sovereign nation in Asura which is also a member of the Commonwealth of Democratic Nations. The nation is ethnically very homogeneous, having had little immigration, though recently immigration has been rising and some thriving immigrant communities may be found in major cities, such as in the capital Zalejk where 8% of residents are have a first or second generation immigrant background, above the national average of 6%. The climate is similarly uniform, being temperate though slightly warmer than locations on the mainland at a similar latitude.
The Commonwealth of Vrnallia was formally created as part of the Treaty of Union, dating to 1025. However, though the islands were linked politically they continued to operate with their own government systems as a very loose confederation, and it was only with the ratification of the First Constitution in 1773 that an elected confederal government or Council was created to govern the Commonwealth as a whole. In 1783 the Council unanimously passed the Declaration of Citizens' Rights, an extensive amendment laying down over 200 rights given to all citizens the breaching of which is illegal and punishable. These documents have both been expanded upon over the years, with the Constitution rewritten entirely in 1899 following a century of occupation by the United Kingdom of Lhedwin, the Great War and Declaration of Independence and turning Vrnallia into a federation.
The politics of Vrnallia are split between a number of parties. The current majority government is a left-leaning coalition of the Socialist, Progressive and Centrist Parties, while the opposition consists of the Conservative and Nationalist parties and an independent. These parties share sixty seats in the Vrnallian Chamber. The Vrnallian Council is a four-member body currently consisting of two Socialist councillors, including First Minister Lješmarad Brachvieca, and two Conservatives.
- 1 Etymology
- 2 History
- 3 Geography
- 4 Politics
- 5 Economy
- 6 Demographics
- 7 Language
- 8 Infrastructure
- 9 Culture
The name Vrnallia is a Newrickisation of the Vrnallian name Vrnalja. This is probably derived from the word ýňe "island" and an uncertain other word. Common belief amongst Vrnallians is that the other word is áže "home", though this is unlikely. Alternatively, the word may have been úli "rock", a word which survives in the modern language only in the word vlicha "solid". Another possibility is the Old Vrnallian personal name Égla (source of the modern name Jalja). Exonyms found in older Lhaeraidd and Midrasian texts refer to the Vrnallians as Unailieg and Enaelii respectively. Colloquially the country is referred to as Vrnichto "the archipelago". Mainland Vrnallians may colloquially use Vrnichto or somewhat sarcastically Hágchali (pronounced [ˈhaχaʎi]) "the old country".
Evidence of human settlement in the Vrnallian archipelago dates back to at least 10,000BCE, during a period of glacial retreat, when some or most of the archipelago was joined together as a single island. There is marginal evidence that at this time Vrnallia was a peninsula on the mainland, though this is inconclusive and likely reflects an earlier period. Major evidence of settlement dates to about 4000BCE, the date at which the remarkably well-preserved sandstone Hagamnova Temple complex on Mazej is believed to have been built. Genetic and linguistic evidence suggests that these first settlers were Old Asurans, who moved west in response to the arrival of the more recent eastern migrants who are ancestral to the majority of Asurans today. The evidence for this is both chromosomal, in that ethnic Vrnallians possess both Y-DNA and mtDNA that is not present in most other Asurans except for those who are also believed to descend from the Old Asuran peoples, as well as linguistic, as the Vrnallian language is not related to those of mainland Asura but shows typological similarities with the small Transiabalic language family.
Exhumations of prehistoric remains show that these proto-Vrnallians remained in contact with mainlanders through trade. Items buried with the dead, mainly weapons and trinkets such as mirrors, have been discovered to originate from societies of eastern and southern Asura, though in these instances there was likely not a direct trade with those societies.
The discovery that some remains unearthed on a prehistoric battleground in Oserland in 1940 carbon-dated to between 3650 and 3670BCE include Vrnallian DNA suggests that the proto-Vrnallians may have been an unsuccessful conquering group, or that they were at at least one point invaded by mainlanders whom they were able to repel.
Early Lhaeraidd historians make reference to a certain Unailiu or Unaeliu (demonym Unailieg) which is commonly understood to refer to the Vrnallian archipelago. A term Mulc(h)ae used by some writers to refer to a west coast tribe has been tentatively connected with Mlekie (Old Vrnallian Mýlýkka), though it may be exonymic. The Unailieg are said to have been affluent and honest but fiercely resistant if not outright hostile to outsiders.
The historian Merfyn ap Iorwerth, exemplifying this attitude, writes of how the Unailiu would trade: a foreign trader would set fire to a pole located beyond the Unailieg village to signal his desire for trade at which point two villagers would appear. One would remain with the trader while the other would select goods to purchase and take them into the village. There the villagers would select goods to offer in return, which would be given to the trader. If he felt he were being cheated the villager accompanying him would be offered as a slave.
Modern scholars dispute the accuracy of this claim. At least one contemporary source, the Llyfr Morcant, states that "the Unailieg village is always one to welcome a merchant, and the villagers always ones eager to part with their goods." Furthermore, though some Vrnallians entered the slave trade, there is no evidence that they were sold by their countrymen. Indeed, evidence of Vrnallians buying foreign slaves is minimal and postdates Merfyn's account.
The first mention of a specific Vrnallian island is found in a footnote to a copy of an Alydianist holy text, which states that "the men of Daurestika also burn their dead." The reference here seems to be to pagan cremation practices on Dvrieska, which continued until the conversion to Trúathi (Vrnallian name: Ciedž) in the eleventh century.
The first Old Vrnallian text to refer to islands by name is a memorial engravement found on Hujre, which reads: "Égla was born on Dýđyréstýka, lived on Mýlýkka, died here on Úŋre." This inscription evidently refers to Dvrieska, Mlekie and Hujre in order.
Vrnallia was able to retain its independence during the rise and fall of the empires on mainland Asura, due primarily to a combination of its remoteness as an archipelago and its fairly strong navy, operating mainly from Mlekie. However, the rise of the Lhaeraidd Octarchy was felt to be a clear threat in Vrnallia. A military coalition of Mlekians and Dvrieskans conquered parts of the north coast of tir Lhaeraidd and established military fortifications there. Colonists soon followed, founding successful settlements such as modern-day Zejed (Old Vrnallian: Zájjéte "Legacy", Lhaeraidd: Saied). In 872CE the Vrnallian Empire was declared.
However the Vrnallian Empire was not to last, as increased Lhaeraidd unification eventually led to a series of skirmishes in the early tenth century through which the colonial territory was eventually ceded back to tir Lhaeraidd. Vrnallia, however, maintained its independence, and the colonial settlements became trading posts, with goods being moved through them between Asura and Lhedwin.
In the ninth century, the spreading Trúathi religion had reached Vrnallia and began to supplant local pagan practices, particularly in Dvrieska. Though little remains known of Vrnallian paganism, it seems to have been similar to that found elsewhere in the north. The main centre of paganism was the largest city at the time, Hujre. As a result Hujre quickly established itself as the economic and cultural hub for Vrnallia and remained so from the seventh century through to the eleventh century.
By the mid-tenth century however, Trúathi had become the religion of a majority of Vrnallians, and had even been adopted by a significant minority of those on the island of Hujre, though was mostly unheard of amongst the mainland Vrnallians. Trúathi was declared the official religion by the Jarls of Dvrieska and Mlekie in 1009. This left the Hujre Jarldom the only part of Vrnallia which was not officially Trúathi.
Tensions between the Trúathists and pagans of Hujre came to a head with the Vrnallian Civil War of 1013-1025, sometimes called the Twelve Years' War. After the murder of a number of Trúathists in the town of Hujre, believed to have been committed by pagans, the Trúathists retaliated and, with the aid of the Jarl of Dvrieska, sacked Hujre. The civil war was bloody and the highest estimates suggest that a full quarter of the population was killed, but ultimately the more numerous Trúathists were victorious. Surviving pagans mostly converted, though some fled or were killed for refusing to convert.
At the end of the Civil War in 1025, the Jarls of Dvrieska and Mlekie applied pressure to the new Jarl of Hujre (the previous, pagan ruler having been killed during the war) to unify. The Commonwealth of Vrnallia was thus formed in that same year, with the political affiliation of all three Jarldoms into a single (though not politically homogenous) state.
In 1029, a push for the independence of Vorod and Mlakazej from the Jarldom of Mlekie led to the brief War of Vassals in 1030. Mlakamuso was sieged and the war ended in a matter of months, leading to Vorod and Mlakazej being raised to Jarldoms on an equal footing to the other three and asserting Dvrieska as the politically preëminent region of Vrnallia. Mlakazej adopted the name Mazej to distance itself from Mlekie, after which it had been named.
The Old Vrnallian language had recognisably changed into a form of Modern Vrnallian by the fourteenth century. A particularly notable handwritten Modern Vrnallian text, a five-folio document called the Codex Insularum, was written in the early 1400s or perhaps late 1300s. The book refers to the inhabitants of each of the islands of Mlekie (Mlaékíe), Vorod (Úorod), Dvrieska (Dvríestka), Hujre (Huíríe) and Padál (Padalv). The name of another island mentioned, Haéstiú, is obscure, and may be an island which was later submerged by rising sea levels. Alternatively, some have speculated that the name may refer to Mlakazej.
Early Modern Period
Invasion and occupation by Tir Lhaeraidd
The Teyrn of Tir Lhaeraidd, Tyrone VI, made claims on Vrnallia in 1598 as he saw it as a useful location for intensive agriculture to supply the Lhaeraidd. Negotiations with certain Vrnallian landholders led to support amongst certain segments of the Vrnallian nobility who had been promised greater power and wealth for the Lhaeraidd plantations programme. However, the majority of nobles and peasants alike saw this as nothing less than an invasion, and violently opposed the initial Lhaeraidd settlers on Hujre. The practically unarmed peasant settlers were unable to oppose even the fairly poorly-equipped Vrnallian soldiers who razed the plantations and killed or imprisoned the colonists.
The burning of plantations around the port of Lakiaš was particularly concerning for Teyrn Tyrone, and in 1605 he mustered an expeditionary force to invade Vrnallia. Two armies of 10,000 men armed with muskets, pikes and halberds and including cavalry and artillery landed on Hujre - one in the south, near Lakiaš, and the other in the east, near Dnuhozuš. They quickly overtook the settlements near to their landing spots and established fortifications to prevent the Vrnallians from retaking them. Some local peasants who had been displaced fought with the expeditionary forces, but lacking training and armed with little more than pitchforks and bread knives they were easily defeated. Quickly after, however, the Hujre lords who opposed the Lhaeraidd joined their forces to march against the Expeditionary Force, and until 1610 fought in open combat against the Lhaeraidd.
The fighting was slanted heavily against the Vrnallians. While the Lhaeraidd were now mostly fighting trained soldiers, they possessed far more advanced weapons and armour. Having kept away from combat outside of their homeland, the Vrnallians were using spears, broadswords and crossbows with only a few early rifles and wore leather armour for the most part, and lacked the cavalry and artillery of the invaders. In battle on the flatlands of eastern Hujre therefore they were slaughtered. Fighting in the more hilly west and around the Hujre Lakelands however, where cavalry was of limited use and artillery difficult to use effectively, the Vrnallians did manage victories, leading to Tyrone sending reinforcements of a further ten thousand in 1608.
Having conquered Hujre in 1610 the Expeditionary Force turned its attention to the other islands, whose Lords had spent the last half decade mobilising troops and building ships to retake Hujre. The Teyrn had anticipated this and sent ships of his own to aid his forces. The Vrnallian lords sent ships towards Hujre, expecting at any moment to encounter the Expeditionary fleet in open waters. The Teyrn, however, had kept most of his ships to the south of Hujre, leaving only a few light ships near the coast to distract the Vrnallians. When the Vrnallians met these troops just off the southern coast of Hujre they engaged, expecting an easy victory, at which point a small Lhaeraidd schooner detached and met with the remainder of the Expeditionary fleet. They joined the battle, and were able to pin the Vrnallians between them and the coast, which combined with their technological advantage led to the crippling of the Vrnallian navy. Unhindered, the Lhaeraidd moved troops to the remaining islands, blockading the remaining ports to prevent the Vrnallians from rebuilding their navy.
Until 1635 the Expeditionary Force continued to meet the Vrnallians in skirmishes, slowly asserting their control over the Vrnallian villages and towns. Even then, when most of the Vrnallians lords had been brought to heel, camps in the highlands continued to harass the Lhaeraidd occupiers. The camps were eventually eliminated after their supply lines were blocked and they faced starvation, having been unable to grow feed on the hills. Some of the Vrnallians surrendered, others were killed attempting to raid the Lhaeraidd-controlled farms for food. By 1640 organised resistance to the Lhaeraidd was almost unheard of, with the nobles having pledged their loyalty to the Teyrn and the peasantry too weak to fight on their own.
Only a few insignificant uprisings troubled the Lhaeraidd for the next century and a half. Under Tir Lhaeraidd, Vrnallia kept technologically in step with the rest of Asura, and its people were generally as free as they had been before the invasion, though it was economically deprived as most of its natural resources were being used to supply Tir Lhaeraidd rather than Vrnallia. The plantations proved somewhat less profitable for the Lhaeraidd than expected due to the need to maintain soil quality, but were still considered a worthwhile source of income. Divisions between the natives and settlers were physical as well as social - aside from the natural animosity towards an occupying force, the plantations' fortified nature meant few Vrnallians has access, while few Lhaeraidd ever needed to leave. In 1726 the Lordship of Vrnallia was merged with the Kingdom of Crylante, which tir Lhaeraidd had controlled since 1557. This only accelerated discontent, as Crylante too was becoming increasingly rebellious due to the growth of the United Kingdom of Lhedwin.
Insurrection in Vrnallia was averted more due to apathy than anything else, but the Lhaeraidd administration was aware of the increasingly strong nationalism amongst Vrnallians, particularly following the circulation of leaflets penned by an anonymous author in 1790 which called "the liberation of Vrnallian blood, through the letting of Lhaeraidd blood". This subversive publication led to a major attack by a group of twenty two Vrnallian bandits, many deserters from local armies, on an unprepared garrison on Dvrieska the following year. After killing almost sixty Lhaeraidd soldiers, who had been taken completely by surprise late in the night, ten of the men were killed and the rest captured. They were summarily executed the following morning. Amongst the peasantry, they were seen as heroic martyrs rebelling against an unjust occupation. Unrest grew and a number of nobles lent their support to the nationalist cause. Fighting broke out once more, and in 1799, seeing this along with increasingly small profits from the plantations and the risk of a conflict with Lhedwin, which also claimed Vrnallia, the Teyrn of Lhaeraidd withdrew his soldiers and most of the settlers from Vrnallia.
Occupation by the Kingdom of Lhedwin
Without the protection afforded by the Lhaeraidd, however, the King of Lhedwin, (name TBC), felt increasingly confident that he would be able to invade Vrnallia, which to Lhedwin offered a useful location for ports and sea fortresses to defend the seas west of Lhedwin.
The Great War
During the Great War which followed, Lhedwin found itself fighting the Grand Alliance, including Midrasia and the fledgling Asuran Socialist Union who fought Lhedwin in fierce land battles on Asura. The Alliance also fought naval battles, deploying advanced cruisers and crippling the Lhedwinic Navy's ability to operate far from their ports. Meanwhile within Vrnallia, harassment from the Vrnallian Partisans prevented Lhedwin from maintaining control over Vrnallia, particularly in rural areas though also in the towns of Mlekie where the Partisans' Provisional Government had located itself.
The Allies were eventually able to reach Vrnallia with ships, and following the decisive Battle of Vrnallia Sound Lhedwin retreated from the archipelago in the spring of 1899.
Declaration of Independence
The leaders of the Vrnallian resistance wrote up the country's declaration of independence from Lhedwin within a month of their liberation, and following the swift creation of an emergency government this was ratified in the summer. Twelve politicians - all five Councillors, two Governors from Dvrieska, two from Mlekie and one from each of Hujre, Mazej and Vorod - then drew up and ratified the Second Consitution in winter, making Vrnallia a federation rather than a confederation, with Zalejk as the national capital, and affirming a commitment to "peace, justice and understanding". The first general election of the new federation was held in spring of 1900.
The social-democratic coalition between the Socialist and Liberal parties which formed Vrnallia's first government introduced policies which at the time were extremely progressive by global standards, including a universal minimum wage and guarantee of sickness leave. Universal suffrage was introduced in 1915 by a Socialist-Progressive coalition.
The early twentieth century saw widespread movement from the countryside to quickly growing urban areas, primarily state capital cities and the national capital Zalejk. This caused an economic crisis in the early 1910s as local food production fell to record lows. Anticipating the possibility of starvation, heavy investment in agriculture was made to encourage food self-sufficiency, and grants were given to citizens building new homes outside urban areas. This was moderately successful, with about 70% of nationally consumed food being produced in Vrnallia in 1930, and notable rustication in some areas (particularly on Dvrieska and Hujre islands).
The late 1920s was a period of significant polarisation in Vrnallia, with attempts by the Socialist Party to improve ties to the Aeian Socialist Union in the interest of upholding neutrality combining with a strong anti-firearms policy to end almost three decades of Socialist rule in the election of 1928. The first National Population Growth Scheme (Vrnallian: haziavnjachtokhmonuconaskhu or HVC-askhu) was implemented in 1930: rather than encouraging migration out of urban areas, the Conservative-Liberal coalition introduced incentives for families to have more children. This was wildly successful, with the growth of the population from 732,711 in 1930 to 912,695 in 1940, causing a major teacher shortage. This coincided with the worst agricultural crisis in Vrnallian history, which is largely attributed to the Conservative refusal to continue funding established agricultural schemes while the population was growing so quickly. A combination of investment into agriculture as well as a push for economic diversification led to the subsequent recession ending in the mid-1940s. In 1946, elements of universal healthcare were introduced for the first time. Full coverage was introduced only in 1957 following the Dvrieska Smallpox Outbreak of 1953-54.
|Geography of Vrnallia|
Vrnallia is an archipelago lying in the North Sea of Asura consisting of thirty four islands, dominated by the four largest islands of Mlekie, Dvrieska, Hujre and Mlakazej (known commonly as Mazej). The island of Vorod, the fifth-largest island in the country, was formerly populous enough to constitute its own state, but it was eventually merged with Mlekie. Not every island of Vrnallia is permanently inhabited: a small number are only inhabited seasonally, while some are totally uninhabited.
These islands are for the most part very flat, with occasional hills but few mountainous areas, and then only on the largest islands. Mountains are located on Mlekie (an east-west range), Dvrieska (a north-south range which is the longest of the Vrnallian ranges and contains dormant volcanic fissure vents as well as a smaller range in the southwest), Hujre (a range which moves southeast before dividing in roughly the centre of the island) and Vorod (a small east-west range which contains active volcanic fissures). A large stretch of hills running north-south on Mazej are often referred to as mountains by locals, but do not meet the official governmental criterion of being above 250 metres above sea level, peaking at 221m near the village of Chezi.
As a result of the scarcity of mountains, there are few or no rivers on many islands. Even on Vorod, which is somewhat mountainous, there is only one river, the Cierys River. The relatively large number of rivers on Dvrieska in particular were of great importance in its becoming the economic of centre of Vrnallia during the period of Lhaeraidd rule.
The total land area of Vrnallia is 98,702km2 (38,109mi2). The four largest islands together measure 86,201km2 (33,282mi2). The smallest island, Lajanorog, just off the southern coast of Dvrieska, is about seven kilometres squared. Skerries on which no plants grow are not officially considered islands, merely rocks, though an uncertain number of these also exist.
Vrnallia's population is largely confined to a number of urban areas on each major island rather than being spread out across the islands. For example, Dvrieska City's metropolitan area is home to almost half of the total population of the State of Dvrieska. Dvrieska City is the largest city on Vrnallia, while the capital, Zalejk on the island of Mlekie, is the second largest city. Most settlements are found on the coast or nearer to highland regions.
Vrnallia is a northern-hemisphere country lying at roughly fifty to fifty-five degrees north of the equator. At lower elevations two major climates are observed: further south, in most of the islands of the state of Hujre and part of the islands of the state of Mazej the climate is described as Marine Oceanic (Aerh Cfb) with reasonably warm summers and cool winters, while elsewhere the climate is Subpolar Oceanic (Aerh Cfc), being colder and with more frequent snowfall but with milder winters than in more northern regions. At the highest elevations the climate is tundra (Aerh ET). The frequent rainfall throughout the year was historically important in making the archipelago a valuable exporter of cabbage and cauliflower even in spite of a paucity of rivers.
The climate is greatly influenced by warm westerly ocean currents which meet the west coast of Asura and the Vrnallian archipelago. It is unknown how much, if at all this affects local temperature, but it has been linked to increased precipitation in the area. These currents may also explain the vibrant aquatic life around Vrnallia.
Rain is common throughout the year, though especially in spring and summer, while in autumn and especially winter snow is common. Southern Mlekie, including the capital Zalejk, receive the greatest snowfall on average, while Mazej receives the most rainfall.
Vrnallia is renowned for its largely untouched land, with the numerous uninhabited islands being fairly popular tourist destinations for travellers worldwide, commonly viewed from ferries which are well-used in Vrnallia. As a result the nation's ecosystems have developed with little human intervention over the centuries; the major exception is overhunting of the Vrnallian Wolf, which led to its extinction in the late nineteenth century.
Vrnallia's coasts and waters are home to a great number of aquatic lifeforms. The country's fishing industry developed as a result of the great variety of fish which could be exported to the mainland, such as cod, haddock and herring. Salmon are common in Vrnallian rivers. Other species such as seals and whales commonly visit the archipelago.
The endemic avian life of Vrnallia includes very many seabirds such as puffins, eiders and wrens, which form a major part of Vrnallian cuisine, with each island said to have its own speciality bird dish. An endemic species of raven is currently listed as critically endangered. Many migratory birds pass over Vrnallia in winter, which until recently were hunted; however, efforts by conservationists resulted in these hunts being heavily restricted by the Migratory Birds Conservation Act 1980.
The Vrnallian sheep is a national symbol, found on all major islands and eaten as part of the national dish, Muskisijochto. Sheep herding remains common in rural Vrnallia. There are also native species of cow, duck, goose, fox and chicken. The Vrnallian wolf became extinct in the late nineteenth century due to overhunting, and its loss is said to be one of the main reasons for Vrnallians' great care for their environment.
The island of Dvrieska in the Codex Insularum is presented as heavily forested, and most of the larger islands are believed to have historically been covered in forest. As a result of deforestation however this is no longer the case, with the only large forest being protected as part of the Hujre Federal Nature Reserve.
Most plants in Vrnallia are varieties of shrub, wildflower, grass, lichen or moss. Thistles are particularly common and are a national symbol. The Asuran Oak was introduced successfully to the Taphaca and Hlava islands, and there are plans to introduce more trees to Vrnallia in the future in an attempt to restore some of the historical forest.
Vrnallia is a federal republic with a healthy multi-party democracy. First Minister Lješmarad Brachvieca is the head of state while Premier Zujka Cismachà is the head of government. The Vrnallian Constitution is a codified document originally written in 1773 and rewritten almost entirely in 1899 after achieving independence. This document, which can only be altered through a referendum-approved Act of Parliament, defines the structure of Vrnallian government and imposes a number of checks on its power. A part of the Constitution dating back to 1783 is the Declaration of Citizens' Rights, which outlines rights for the Vrnallian people which are deemed to be inalienable. From a legislative perspective this is held to be the most important part of the Constitution.
Vrnallia has a federal parliamentary system based on a hybridisation of traditional assembly-based governmental practices and the more recent Lhedwinic system. This has resulted in an unusual system which can be precisely described as neither unicameral or bicameral, though most classifications have tended towards analysing the Vrnallian Parliament as a unicameral premier-presidential system. The parliament consists of a sixty-member Chamber and four-member Council, both directly elected and with powers which cross over one another though broadly corresponding to a legislature and an executive respectively.
The First Minister, a member of the Council, has a large degree of legislative power (he is, for instance, able to influence parliamentary Acts including budgets, and until the Twelfth Amendment to the Constitution could vote on their passage) while some executive power rests with the Premier (for example, she is Supreme Commander of the military in the event of an invasion) and Chamber as a whole (Cabinet members are mostly chosen from the Chamber). The Chamber and Council meet in the same building, the Parliamentary Assembly on Independence Square, Zalejk, though typically in separate rooms.
All members of the Vrnallian Parliament are elected by the populace. Vrnallian federal elections take place in three stages. Stage one is the election of Representatives to the Chamber for each of the nation's sixty constituencies. Stage two is the election of Councillors from each of the island groups, and stage three is the selection of First Minister from the Councillors by nationwide vote. General elections take place over one week, unless the voting period is extended by a vote of the Chamber. Usually, elections for Representatives and Councillors take place on the same day, though exceptions are not uncommon.
Both stages one and two of federal elections use alternative voting. Stage three is decided by a simple plurality. State elections, meanwhile, use STV. As a result, states consist of multi-member regional constituencies while the federal government consists of delegates from single-member constituencies.
In the Chamber, the Premier is usually selected by the First Minister, hence the full title being Esteemed Premier of the United States of Vrnallia by Appointment of the First Minister, with a requirement for cohabitation. The current Premier, however, was elected by her party before being appointed by the First Minister. The opposition is traditionally led by the leader of the largest opposition party or coalition. Government and opposition Cabinet members (secretaries) are selected by the Premier and Opposition Leader respectively and may include members of the Council (the positions of Home Affairs Secretary and Foreign Affairs Secretary are constitutionally required to be held by the First and Second Ministers respectively). The Speaker of the Chamber is elected by all members of the Chamber at the start of each governing term. General elections occur after four years or one week after a majority vote in the Chamber to hold an early election. This is rare however; the last early election was called in 1965 following the Helkryn Scandal.
The Vrnallian multi-party system is dominated by the Socialist, Conservative, Progressive and Centrist parties. The Nationalist Party has had at least one Representative for the last five elections, and with one exception independent Representatives have been present in all Parliaments since 1973. The Vrnallian Council is dominated by the Socialist and Conservative parties, with the last non-Socialist or Conservative Councillor having been Centrist Ujko Niéchkarejna in the 1977-1981 Parliament.
Although state administrations contain an odd number of members specifically to avoid tied votes, the Chamber has an even number of members to ensure that federal Acts have the support of a majority of Representatives, according to original constitutional practice.
Vrnallian is divided into four states corresponding to each of the four island groups: the State of Mlekie-Vorod, the State of Dvrieska, the State of Mlakazej and the State of Hujre. Each of these states is locally governed by a State Administration which is elected using the Single Transferable Vote system of voting. Prior to 1950 these governments were elected using different systems; the Electoral Simplification Act unified all electoral systems into one.
|Mlekie-Vorod||17||84||Heveksi Renaku (Socialist)||9||414,891|
|Dvrieska||19||93||Lješmarad Brachvieca (Socialist)||11||437,094|
|Hujre||13||66||Khodan Vdàci (Conservative)||7||319,571|
|Mazej||11||57||Karléj Hadzia (Conservative)||9||269,253|
The major parties of Vrnallian politics are the Socialist Party, Conservative Party, Progressive Party, Centrist Party and Nationalist Party. Other parties exist and have had some success within state elections, such as the Liberal Party (in Dvrieska and Mlekie), Green Party (in Hujre) and the Liberal-Libertarian Alliance (in Mlekie and Hujre).
In government, the Socialist and Progressive parties are left-wing parties while the Centrists are socially and economically liberal. Socially, the Progressives are more libertarian than the Socialists as well as are entirely secular. The Centrists are also secular. Economically the Socialists have long been the more orthodox socialist party though in coalition with the Progressives they have moved to a somewhat more centrist position. This is expected to continue in coalition with the Centrists. The main opposition Conservative Party supports a liberal mixed economy and is more conservative socially than the government. The Nationalist Party, which has two federal Representatives, is very socially conservative and economically supports a state market system. The Independent in opposition, Dzygyn Zvabmo of North Vorod, was elected on a platform of social conservatism and opposition to membership of the Asuran Community and could be said to fall on the right-wing of the Conservative Party.
Of the parties without Representatives but with state Administrators, the Liberal Party supports a free economy and are socially liberal, not unlike the Centrists. The Liberal-Libertarian Alliance, a splinter of the Liberals after some members merged with the Libertarian Party, support a classical liberal economic and social system. The Green Party is a social-democratic libertarian party with an emphasis on environmental issues. The New Syndicalist Party is the youngest party in the Vrnallian political sphere, and stands for greater power for unions and the democratisation of the workplace.
The federal government Socialist-Progressive-Centrist coalition has a majority in the Chamber of nine. The Socialists have an outright majority in the administrations of Hujre and Mlekie, a Socialist-Centrist coalition has no overall majority in Dvrieska while a Conservative Party aided by an independent has a majority of three in Mazej.
Law and Justice
The Vrnallian court system, like its Parliamentary system, operates at both federal and state level. The Vrnallian Supreme Court is the highest federal court, while immediately below it are the Federal Appellate Courts. The highest devolved courts are the state Supreme Courts. Below these are the Appellate Courts, and at the bottom of the legal system are the Trial Courts. Members of the Supreme Courts are appointed by the governments and approved by the parliaments at the appropriate level, while members of all other courts are appointed by the independent Legal Appointment Regulatory Commission.
The Vrnallian Supreme Court consists of five of the highest judges in the country. The body is officially non-partisan and ideologically unbiased. State Supreme Courts are made of the highest judges from a given state. By law, these judges must have been born in the state to whose Supreme Court they are appointed. Such restrictions do not apply to the judges of other courts.
The Vrnallian court system as described in the Vrnallian Constitution is responsible for "the perusal of matters relating to the concern of justice for the convicted and accused, and the assessment of all legislation in terms of its compatibility with federal and, above all, constitutional law." The Constitution was amended following Vrnallia's acceptance to the Asuran Community (now the Commonwealth of Democratic Nations) to add that the courts are also responsible for examining the compatibility of Vrnallian law with supranational law, ie. international and Asuran law. Though the judiciary is not a formally legislative body, the Constitution asserts that "the rulings of any court, so long as they shall not be superseded by a higher court, are to be taken as binding laws and precedents."
Violent crime in Vrnallia is very rare, though more common in urban areas. Some forms of theft occur with frequencies above the Asuran average in Vrnallia, particularly car theft. Gun-related crimes are noticeably higher than in the rest of the continent, likely connected to Vrnallia's lax firearms laws. Vrnallia has long made use of extensive rehabilitation programmes which have resulted in a gradual fall in crime since the start of the century.
Since the Helkryn Scandal of the 1960s in which widespread nepotism in the government was revealed Vrnallia has taken a strong stance against corruption, with the federal government becoming one of the most transparent national governments in the world since. Bribery is almost unheard of.
The Vrnallian Police Force is responsible for enforcing the law in Vrnallia. The police force is generally unarmed given the low levels of violent crime in Vrnallia. Armed policing is the responsibility of the rarely-deployed Heimdall Unit, part of the Vrnallian Defence Units; this unit is never deployed to tackle crimes with no reports of firearms involved, and increasingly focusses on counter-terrorism.
Vrnallia makes a distinction in its constitution between "prosecutable crime" (fabriédesa) and "discretionary crime" (sòhat). A crime considered as discretionary is rarely dealt with by courts, and may not even involve the police. An example of such a crime is illegal disposal of a flag, which is typically overlooked. On the other hand, a prosecutable crime is always a police matter, and will always be dealt with in a court if not resolved between the affected parties. The Constitution does not identify any laws with either type of crime, and which category a crime falls into is decided through precedent, which is not inflexible. For example, the use of cargo ships as a means of civilian transport was formerly considered prosecutable, but is now considered discretionary as long as the captain of a vessel is aware of and agrees to the presence of a civilian passenger.
Vrnallia became a member of the Asuran Community in 2016 and of the Drago Entente in 2017, and therefore also became a founding member of the Commonwealth of Democratic Nations when those two bodies merged in 2017. It is the smallest member, with six seats in the Aeian Parliament. DAPs are selected in two regions - Dvrieska-Hujre and Mlekie-Vorod-Mazej - using closed list proportional representation.
Vrnallia has historically remained a fairly neutral country and therefore has been able to pursue diplomatic relations with many nations. Vrnallia's main trade partners are all Asuran nations, such as Tir Lhaeraidd and Midrasia. Vrnallia maintains particularly close relations with the nations of Lhedwin, although historical circumstances mean that the relationship can appear cold at times. Many Vrnallians do not think of themselves as "true" Lhedwinic peoples. Nonetheless, Vrnallia is a member of the Lhedwin Council.
Vrnallia has diplomatic relations with all recognised countries as part of the Vrnallian policy of "co-operative neutrality".
Vrnallia has an embassy in many nations of Asura, as well as in a number of nations on other continents. In nations without a Vrnallian embassy, agreements with some other Asuran nations allow foreign embassies to be used to contact Vrnallian authorities.
The Second Constitution of the Republic of Vrnallia, written shortly following the Great War, officially outlaws any military from operating within Vrnallia in times of peace, including banning a standing army. This decision was made partly for economic reasons, as the occupation had ruined the Vrnallian economy, and partly as a response to the havoc wreaked by war on Vrnallia and the world. The Constitution permits mobilisation and conscription in times of war where there is a serious threat of invasion to Vrnallia, but in this instance the military would exist purely as a defensive force to be demobilised in peacetime.
In the 1930s, with rising global tensions, the desire for some sort of military organisation came to the forefront of Vrnallian politics, with both major parties, the Socialist and Conservative parties, ultimately coming to support some sort of self-defence force being established. The Supreme Court gave its consent to the passage of the National Self-Defence Act 1937 only in 1942, with the legality of the Act being justified by the VDU only being defensive, and not technically considered to be "mobilised" unless Vrnallia was the target of a declaration of war. The Supreme Court did, however, confirm that any sort of national service would be unconstitutional as it would count as peacetime conscription.
The Vrnallian Defence Units are divided into four semi-autonomous branches: the Land Defence Units, the Naval Defence Units, the Air Defence Units (equivalent to an army, navy and air force in other militaries) and the Coast Guard. The Land Defence Units are further divided into the Heimdall Unit, Tyr Unit and Ull Unit, as well as the armoured Iron Jaw Unit. The Naval Defence Units are divided into the Firesnake Unit, which has capability similar to the Coast Guard, and the Kraken Unit and Watersnake Unit. The Air Defence Units consists of the Divine Roar Unit, a unit of helicopters, and the Searing Wind Unit, a unit of planes.
The Heimdall Unit, one of the Land Defence Units, is often used as an equivalent to armed police in other countries, and is the only part of the VDU outside the Coast Guard which is regularly armed, as other branches are forbidden from bearing weapons outside their barracks in peacetime. In most instances Heimdall officers carry handguns and carbines, but are trained in a range of weapons for different situations.
Personnel in the Border Protection branch of the Vrnallian Coast Guard are routinely armed with small arms weapons, usually handguns and assault rifles but occasionally carbines, but do not receive full military training (the Coast Guard is considered separate to the Naval Defence Units).
As a member of the CDN, Vrnallia has a pledge to be defended by CDN powers in the event of an invasion.
Vrnallia had an annual GDP of ȥ57.835 billion (Znedas) in 2016, which adjusted for Vrnallia's 1.05% inflation is equivalent to NS$57.236 billion. This is the smallest GDP of any Asuran nation. Of this, about ȥ57.5 billion (NS$57 billion) was spent, resulting in a surplus of about ȥ336,000,000 (NS$332 million) or 0.5804%.
Vrnallia's biggest export is food, especially saltwater fish which are plentiful in the archipelago. Freshwater fish, mainly salmon, are also exported though in smaller numbers. Vrnallian cabbage and cauliflower are highly regarded, and Vrnallians were amongst the founders of the International Farmers' Market, which Vrnallia has hosted twice. More recently Vrnallia has begun to export potatoes to other Asuran nations, who are able to buy from Vrnallia at cheaper prices than from nations outside Asura.
Some restrictions on Vrnallian food exports have caused the export of whale, seal and some bird meats to fall to a low in recent years. In particular, restrictions on whale export have seriously harmed the Vrnallian whaling industry, though domestic whale consumption remain reasonably profitable.
Other exports of Vrnallia include granite, iron and aluminium sourced from Vrnallian hills and mountains, sandstone and some limestone, basalt sourced from Vrnallia's coasts and oil extracted from the Opal Ocean Oil Field, which Vrnallia has a small claim to.
Vrnallia's manufacturing industry exports medical and fishing equipment as well as components for manufacturing automobiles, aircraft, home appliances and wind turbines.
Seafood exports are the primary source of income for Vrnallia, with well-known companies throughout Asura using the Vrnallian industry for supply. 28.5% of Vrnallian GDP comes from fishing, with fishery being one of Vrnallia's largest employment sectors. The fishing company Roška Plus is the largest Vrnallian exporter, exporting over 700,000 tonnes of seafood in 2016.
The nation's economy retains a large agricultural segment, though this is responsible for about 17% of Vrnallian exports compared to almost 30% in the 1950s. Natural resources make up the next largest fraction of exports.
Larger towns, the capital Zalejk in particular, have growing services and manufacturing industries. In particular, Zalejk has a rapidly growing software sector, with notable Vrnallian companies Saildev and Mobilvak based there. Dvrieska is the home of medical manufacturer ŠDF as well as a number of other manufacturers.
Tourism is a slowly developing industry in Vrnallia, primarily catering to travellers looking for less urban ventures. In Q3 2016 the national tourism board announced a rise of 110% in profits over Q2 2016 which it claimed were related to the country's appearance in the Copa d'Aeia 2016.
Vrnallia has a population of 1,440,809 according to the census of 2016 with a net immigration of about 2,500 in the 2015-16 year. Vrnallia is the smallest member of the Commonwealth of Democratic Nations and one of the smallest sovereign nations in Asura, with a density of 14.6 people per square kilometre across the country. Density rises significantly in urban areas where the population is largely concentrated, such as 1,173.72/km² in the capital, Zalejk. The most populous urban areas, in descending order, are Dvrieska City, Zalejk, Hujre City, Mlekie City, Mazej City and Vorod City. Three of these areas lie within the state of Mlekie-Vorod, the northernmost of Vrnallia's states. The western state of Mazej is the least populated of the states, while the eastern state of Dvrieska is the most populated. Vrnallia's fertility rate is 2.1 children per woman, somewhat high for an Asuran nation. Life expectancy for men is 81.23 years and for women 84.76 years, giving an average of 83 years.
Vrnallia is still a largely rural country, with the population being centred in specific urban areas. Almost 70% of the population lives in one of the six largest urban areas. The largest area is Dvrieska City or Dvriskamuso, the capital of the state of Dvrieska, with a population of 207,193, followed by Zalejk, the capital of Vrnallia, located in the state of Mlekie-Vorod with a population of 167,255.
Largest cities or towns in Vrnallia
94% of the Vrnallian population are ethnically Vrnallian while 6% of inhabitants belong to minority groups, making Vrnallia one of the most ethnically homogenous countries in the continent of Asura. The proportion of minority people is highest in Dvrieska City and Zalejk, where respectively 9% and 8% of residents are not ethnically Vrnallian. The largest ethnic minority groups are from Lhedwinic nations (over 70%) and the rest of Asura (25%). The remaining percents of minorities are mostly from Catai. At least 15% of ethnic Vrnallians have Lhedwinic ancestry, though it is unknown how many of these people's Lhedwinic ancestors were in fact from Lhedwin's own Vrnallian ethnic minority group.
Precise statistics on ethnicity are not readily available as the Vrnallian census does not ask for the country of origin, but rather the continent of origin (with Vrnallian, Lhedwinic and Other Asuran being distinct categories) and skin colour. From 2020 this will be changed to gather more specific information.
The main religion in Vrnallia is Trúathi, which according to the 2015 census is the religion of 76.35% percent of the population. Trúathi remains a major part of daily Vrnallian life both on individual and official levels, with religious practice remaining common amongst self-identified Trúathists, quite in contrast to the countries of Lhedwin. It is the official religion of the country, with the Vrnallian Trúathi Church retaining a powerful though waning presence in the nation's political sphere. The figurehead of the Church is the Elder Moderator of the Vrnallian Synod, currently the Most Elder Thòr Mej of the Zalejk Session, but like other Trúathi churches the Vrnallian Trúathi Church is decentralised with no single figures predominating. Religious education, including the teaching of Trúathi values, is mandatory in schools and religious celebration is a duty of all levels of government.
A further 6.2% of Vrnallians identify as being Alydian. Although Alydianism did not have the same impact on Lhedwin or Vrnallia as the rest of Asura, missionaries have visited Vrnallia since the sixteenth century. The vast majority of Vrnallian Alydians are part of the Vrnallian Nordarian Church. After Alydianism, the largest religion is Ksaiism, the religion of 1.85% of Vrnallians, while other religions are practiced by 0.9% of Vrnallians.
Only 14.7% of Vrnallians do not follow any religion, a significantly lower rate of atheism than the countries of Lhedwin (eg. 29.2% in Crylante).
The indigenous language isolate, Vrnallian, is the national and official language of Vrnallia. It is also an increasingly uncommon regional language of northern Tir Lhaeraidd, though some linguists have argued that this variety, called Continental Vrnallian, is in fact a different language. Within Vrnallia, dialectal diversity is great; the specific form of the language taught in schools and used in official contexts, Modern Standard Vrnallian, is based on the dialect spoken in the former capital, Dvrieska City. Written Vrnallian is also based on this variant.
Almost every Vrnallian is educated in Lhedwinic, and approximately 60% of Vrnallians have an upper-advanced or near-native proficiency in Lhedwinic, with a total of almost 80% of Vrnallians having a conversational knowledge. Vrnallians often use Lhedwinic as the language of diplomacy even with non-Lhedwinic nations due to the greater availability (this is fiercely resisted by Vrnallians with more nationalist tendencies).
During the period of UKL rule over Vrnallia a Lhedwinic-Lhaeraidd creole was spoken in Vrnallia. Following Vrnallian independence this speech relexified into a variety called Saciska in Vrnallian or Vørnevinsk in Lhedwinic, which is not a creole, but a form of otherwise standard Lhedwinic with certain Vrnallianisms such as the replacement of phrasal verbs with prefixed verbs (kom ind → ikom "come in"), the use of distinctly Vrnallian words and senses such as pose instead of taske "bag" and a strong Vrnallian accent such as the pronunciation of /ʁ/ as [ɦ]. Code switching into this dialect is common in Vrnallia in which case it more closely resembles the creole it likely developed from; the dialect can also be written in the Vrnallian alphabet although this is uncommon.
In Vrnallian family names occur before given names. Hence Brachvieca Lješmarad has the given name Lješmarad and the family name Brachvieca. Outside Vrnallia names may be ordered in a more familiar manner, i.e. Lješmarad Brachvieca. In Continental Vrnallian a Lhaeraidd-influenced naming system is used, with the given name followed by a patronym and a family name, as in Bedvar Rujsaj Bacha (Bedvan/Bedvar, child of Rujsa, of the family Bacha). The family may be placed first as in Vrnallia, though this is rare and mostly a stylistic choice. In daily life most Lhaeraidd Vrnallians use Lhaeraidd forenames and thus patronymics, such as Bedwyr ap Croeso Bach.
The oldest known Vrnallian names were single names, frequently compound words such as Alidanguli "full heart" and Naviaska "winter's darkness". However, patronymics such as Ograi "son of Ogra" seem to be ancient in Vrnallia as well, certainly predating their proliferation during the years of Lhaeraidd rule. However, these names seem to have been used primarily for disambiguation, particularly with untitled people. Under Lhedwinic rule the modern system of family names was adopted. Family names typically derive from the names of ancestors, professions, geographical features and some other sources.
In most foreign language writings, including this wiki, the western convention of placing the surname last is followed.
Holidays and Festivals
The majority of Vrnallians have been Trúathist since the eleventh century, and the religion has had a significant impact on Vrnallian culture. According to the Constitution, Vrnallia is officially a Trúathist country. Certain elements of the pre-Trúathi pagan religion were adapted to fit the Trúathist cosmology when it was introduced to Vrnallia; for example, the two world-serpents called the Firesnake and Watersnake were reinterpreted as aspects of Freyja (rievia) and Óðinn (hodi).
Numerous Trúathi holy days are national holidays in Vrnallia. The most important of these holidays Yule (julda); the entire week around Yule - Yule proper, Yule Eve and the days before and after - is a national holiday. Vrnallians generally spend this period with family. On the evening of Yule families traditionally eat the national dish, Muskisijochto, often accompanied by mead and followed by a dessert of sweet biscuits (smòkaš) and ice cream. Although the main ingredient of Muskisijochto is normally lamb, during Yule it is sometimes replaced with duck or goose, following the Lhedwinic tradition. It is not uncommon for entire families to come together across the Yule period to eat and make merry, even those who have moved apart.
A Trúathi celebration peculiar to Vrnallia is the celebration of the final day of each season (hrogóm), which is felt to reflect ideas of death and renewal, both important concepts in Trúathi. Although these days are not national holidays (they are state holidays in Hujre), many workers nonetheless choose to take them off to celebrate with friends.
The principle secular holidays are Independence Day on November 7, the date on which Vrnallia's 1899 constitution was ratified, and Constitution Day on February 11, the date of Vrnallia's first free election in 1900. Both days are marked by public events, including memorial events, performances and, since 1944, displays by the VDU. Independence Day is also traditionally the date of the First Minister's National Address.
Vrnallia's oldest art is calligraphy, the development of which is closely tied to the development of the Vrnallian literary tradition. Vrnallian calligraphy uses the Vrnallian alphabet and is characterised by two distinct styles: phadakhmichajulún "leaping calligraphy" is characterised by the emphasis of ascenders and descenders to create large, looping strokes, while phestnakhmichajulún "priestly calligraphy" is more uniform and, as its name suggests, originated among priests who used it in religious texts. Perhaps the most famous piece of Vrnallian calligraphy is to be found on the first page of the Vrnallian Constitution: the writing of the word vrnalja "Vrnallia" in the phadakhmichajulún style has been reproduced by various public bodies including the tourism agency, Visit Vrnallia, which uses the word on its logo.
Other elements of Vrnallian visual art are largely derived from the traditions of Lhedwin. Hujran sculptors proved popular amongst Lhedwinic authorities and most of Vrnallia's most famous statues originate from Hujre, including the Statue of the Slave Liberated located on Freedom Street, Zalejk and the Partisans' Memorial on Dockside Avenue, Njalgu. Earlier statues were generally religious in nature, with a significant number of commissions made by notable individuals, many of which were removed from public display after Vrnallia became independent.
Painting in Vrnallia is similarly largely modelled on Lhedwinic styles. Many paintings from the UKL period were commissioned for display in churches, while portraits were mainly commissioned by political figures or wealthy individuals. Landscape paintings have been popular throughout Vrnallian art history, with a particular focus on depicting the sea, which has long been revered by Vrnallians. As a result of the nature of these paintings there was a significant tendency towards realistic portrayal in the Romanticist and later Realist styles. More avant-garde styles did not become popular until after independence, being resisted for a long time as not being faithful to Vrnallia's cultural heritage.
Vrnallia has a long literary tradition, with the earliest Vrnallian texts dating back to the sixth century CE. The first truly literary text appears to be a stone-inscribed historical account from the eighth century. However, the first extant lengthy writing on vellum is from the fifteenth century, the Codex Insularum. This text in Early Modern Vrnallian is a five-folio personal record written by a Dvrieskan trader.
During those periods of Vrnallian history when the archipelago was ruled by foreign powers, namely tir Lhaeraidd and the United Kingdom of Lhedwin, literature was the main means of expression for artistically-inclined Vrnallians. The Vrnallian alphabet was treated as a tangible symbol of Vrnallian identity and anti-occupation sentiment was often expressed through difficult-to-read calligraphy. Perhaps the strongest expression of this sentiment is the series of leaflets circulated in 1790 which called for a violent uprising against the Lhaeraidd occupiers.
Vrnallian poetry dates back to the 1100s and is largely based on meter, in contrast to the alliterative poetry of Lhedwin or the rhyming poetry of continental Asura. In Old Vrnallian syllable weight was based on alternations of accented and unaccented syllables, but with the loss of this accenting in Modern Vrnallian the size of the syllable determined its weight: short vowels in open syllables are short while long vowels in closed syllables are overlong. Short vowels in closed syllables as well as long vowels in open syllables are both long. Much early Vrnallian poetry is religious in nature, expressing Trúathist mythology. Later, descriptive poetry beings to appear.
Arguably Vrnallia's most famous writer is Avgusta Pidnakhóv (1862-1925). Pidnakhóv worked on the docks of Njalgu during the Great War and wrote poetry based on his experiences. After the war he wrote his most famous poem, Sisi Ustiena "The New Age", which vividly described his vision of the rebirth of Vrnallia through comparisons with the natural world and Trúathi mythology. He also wrote the prose text Mandaj Psòdaj Jevi "The Life of the Poor Labourer", a tale of the life of a dockworker during the Great War which was based on his own life. This is regarded as Vrnallia's national book and was one of the foundations for the standardisation of Vrnallian.
During the period of occupation by the United Kingdom of Lhedwin, a number of Lhedwinic-language works were produced by Vrnallians. Aside from legal and political texts this includes a well-known series of translations of religious poetry by the Hujran priestess Khevi Zalje.
Vrnallian cuisine varies between each of the country's major islands. The characterisation of each state's cuisine is generally summed up with reference to the kind of fish which features most prominently in each: salmon in Dvrieska; cod in Mlekie; herring in Hujre; haddock in Mazej. These fish form a major staple of Vrnallian cuisine, alongside lamb and beef, as well as a variety of local berries.
Vrnallia's national dish, which dates back to early in Vrnallia's written history, is called Muskisijochto, which literally means "sheep meal". This consists of a generous serving of lamb garnished with various vegetables such as cabbage, leek, onion and potato. It may be served dry or with gravy. Traditionally a rye bread called hagafiazej is provided, and the most authentic servings include a side of dagriziuzej, a dip or garnish of pickled seaweed. Some varieties of muskisijochto replace the lamb with beef, and a variant common at Jule uses duck or goose.
Various other Vrnallian dishes make extensive use of seafood. The most basic seafood dishes are fish with seaweed (either fresh or pickled), and a dish popular with tourists is the so-called phreju njurík "Newreyan-style seaweed", which is fish and chips as commonly eaten in Newrey served with seaweed. Fish stews remain popular, even moreso than meat stews amongst many Vrnallians. There is a proverb in Vrnallia: vonjaj huróv vasphonuš vadnju bubuthezij izazej badnje vathál "the ideas in a man's head are as numerous as the hundred sorts of fish stew", which illustrates how many recipes for fish stew exist in Vrnallia.
Whale is a traditional part of Vrnallian cuisine. However, for various reasons including the health risks and rising cost of whale consumption, whale eating has been declining since the 1970s with a dramatic effect on Vrnallia's whaling industry.
Vrnallian desserts have tended to emphasise local fruits for economic reasons. For a long time the most expensive dessert a Vrnallian could regularly afford was biscuits, and as a result biscuits served with ice cream and/or berries are still a very popular option for dessert. Vrnallian biscuits eaten at dessert are usually a sweet sort called smòka, whereas biscuits eaten at other times are usually a saltier sort called kyksa. Over the past century berry muffins have become popular amongst all Vrnallians, making use of local berry varieties, particularly blueberry.
Alcohol consumption has long been somewhat stigmatised in Vrnallia outside of celebratory contexts. The drinking age in Vrnallia was twenty for a long time, being lowered to eighteen only in 1995. Imported alcohol can only be purchased from the state-owned retailer Alkodiechto, and then at a high tax markup. As a result most Vrnallians consume locally-produced alcoholic beverages. The most popular on all occasions is mead, with akvavit being almost as popular. Cider has been a speciality of Mlekie since the medieval period, but only began to spread to other parts of the country in the seventeenth century.