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Esmondianism

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HIMEmperorEsmondIII

His Imperial Majesty Emperor Esmond III in March 2010.

Esmondianism is the term given to various related political ideologies concerning support for Esmond III, Emperor of Austenasia (reigned February 2010 - September 2011). The meaning of the term can be widely split into four differing definitions, sorted chronologically.

Austenasian Civil War

The term "Esmondian" was first used upon the outbreak of the Austenasian Civil War, to distinguish the supporters of the Emperor from the Carolinians, supporters of the claim to the Throne by HIH Princess Caroline. During the war, the term was synonymous with "loyalist" and "legitimist", and was openly used by the government to refer to supporters of the legitimate Monarch. However, the majority of Esmondians (as was the case with the Carolinians) were not Austenasians, but British volunteers recruited into the Austenasian Army to fight for their claimant to the Throne. British Esmondians did not associate the term "Emperor" with a figurehead as Emperor Terry I had been, but with the autocratic glory and military prowess of the Roman Emperors. This viewpoint of the Austenasian Army, along with Esmond's personal charisma, resulted in the Emperor taking active charge of the war effort, overseeing recruitment drives and giving orders to military officers. It also resulted in Project Imperium, an effort to have the imperial title of Esmond III given legitimate recognition through the doctine of translatio imperii by sending letters to figures such as Emperor Akihito of Japan and Crown Prince Otto of Austria.

May - September 2010

After an Esmondian victory in the Austenasian Civil War, popular support for the Monarchy was at an all time high. Despite not having yet received the recognition sought for by Project Imperium, the Austenasian Army considered Esmond III the legitimate successor to the Western Roman Emperors regardless. The term "Esmondianism" came to have roughly the same meaning as the political theory of Imperium currently held by the Austenasian government, although Esmondians took this a step further by seeing Esmond III as nothing less than the personification and rightful source of all authority in the West, not merely as holding the highest diplomatic precedence. Laws such as Act 121 (Imperial Titles), Act 124 (Imperial Powers) and Act 127 (Regnal Names and Imperial Edicts) were passed increasing the powers of the Monarch in accordance with public and military sentiment, and on 4 July 2010 the Caesarship of Orly was founded by Caesar Calum, who had obtained his title (and therefore, in the eyes of the Orlian people, his authority to rule) from Esmond III. The Emperor thereby gained suzerainty over Orly, former Carolinian supporters such as Sterling and BlueSkies were recognising Esmond as lawful Monarch, and the Midget Nation-in-Exile had already become an unofficial vassal of Austenasia - the influence of Esmond III thus reached its zenith.

September - December 2010

The first time that the suzerainty of Esmond III over the Carshalton Sector was challenged in any meaningful way was on 11 September 2010 - the Caesarship of Orly had been divided into the Kingdom of the Grove (ruled by Calum I) and the Kingdom of Copan (ruled by Declan I), both acknowledging Esmond III as overlord. On 11 September, Declan I rejected the claim of Esmond III to suzerainty over Copan. While this was seen at the time as nothing more than a product of a friendly rivalry between the two monarchs, Esmond III began to assert his authority in increasingly eccentric ways: as well as demanding tribute of cake and unilaterally proclaiming random public holidays and illogical changes of season in the Austenasian calendar, on 11 October he declared himself Pope of a new religion called Legatism; on 17 October, he resurrected the empty title King of Rushymia; on 12 November, he renamed his new religion to Esmondism, and replaced his loyal follower Calum I with Crown Prince Jonathan as head of state of the Grove after the Crown Prince brought him a chocolate cake; finally, on 8 December, he confided in the Crown Prince his intentions to imminently overthrow Austenasia's constitutionally-bound monarchy and install himself as a dictator under a nominally communist regime. During this time, the term "Esmondian" was used to refer to those who supported him in his efforts to wield greater authority over Austenasia and the Carshalton Sector, although fewer and fewer were supporting him for the reason that he was the rightful Emperor of the West.

December 2010 - March 2011

On 19 December 2010, Declan I was made joint Emperor of Austenasia by Parliament after a defeat for the Esmondians in the War of the Orlian Reunification, which had been orchestrated by Crown Prince Jonathan in an attempt to limit Esmond's influence by replacing him as far as was possible by Declan I, who was now also Midget Master and monarch of a reunified Orly. The power of Esmond III now extended only over Austenasia itself, and even there he had to share it with Declan I. This situation initially resulted in a resurgance of support for Esmond III within the Austenasian Army in the face of what they saw as unwelcome foreign domination by the former King of Copan. "Esmondianism" therefore simply became the ideology that Declan I should loose all power in the Carshalton Sector and that Esmond III should once more become its overlord. However, this military support for Esmond rapidly dwindled after popular military reforms were given Imperial Consent by Declan I, and after a large number of military officers witnessed Esmond having to bargain with an officer for his loyalty during the 5 January Austenasian coup attempt. Public support for Esmond III had already diminished due to news having spread of his demands for tribute of cake and his founding of Esmondism. By late March, Esmond III had few supporters left, the "Declanian" faction prevailing amongst the army and Imperial Court, and Parliament was able to remove him from the powers of the Throne on 31 March 2011 - he was removed altogether as Monarch on 20 September later that year by the implementation of the Austenasian Constitution of 2011.

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