Candelaria And Marquez
The Republic of Candelaria And Marquez
República de Candelaria Y Marquez
Motto: Solidarity of the Nation
Anthem: O, Sweet Nation
and largest city
|Official languages||English, Spanish|
|Government||Unitary parliamentary republic|
• President of the Government
• Limited Self-Government
• Dominion Status
• Candelarias Republic
• Republic of C&M
|Time zone||Meridian Time|
The Candelarias are believed to have been settled by aboriginal Rushmoris of unclear origin around 1300, developing a distinct Kolan culture that would vanish following European settlement commencing in the mid eighteenth century. This was initially Spanish-speaking in character and largely centred on Marquez, though by the early nineteenth century the islands had become a British territory, and later dominion, dominated by English-speaking Candelaria. The modern republic is officially bilingual, with native Spanish speakers making up around half of the population of Marquez, and a much smaller percentage of the Candelarian and Outlien populations; with that community historically suffering economic and social discrimination that helped further a still strong separatist sentiment and intermittent periods of civil unrest. Today’s multicultural C&M is additionally home to numerous linguistic, ethnic and national minorities.
Formerly the Dominion, and later Republic, of the Candelarias; the country was refounded as Candelaria And Marquez in the aftermath of the 1959-60 civil war, with the outlying island states of Cabrera, Green, Fallon, Pranschke and Sloane initially remaining separate and still retaining a significant degree of self-government.
Though establishing a definitive timeline of subsequent events is considered challenging due to the use of time dilation technology, it is generally agreed that the period between 1980 and 2010 marked C&M’s ‘International Era’, at the start of which time the country announced itself – and, in doing so, the region of Rushmore – onto the international stage through the medium of sport. C&M became a leading sporting power, its national teams winning multiple world titles in football, rugby union and field hockey, while the Candelaria And Marquez Soccer Championship was for a time one of the multiverse’s most successful and popular domestic football leagues. Though militarily weak, the country was an influential voice on the Rushmori stage and an important cultural centre. For many years Albrecht, C&M’s capital and largest city, played home to the powerful Rushmori Institute of Cartography.
A developing country with low crime rates and a generous social security system; C&M’s post-war political culture of multiparty coalitions, free elections and peaceful handovers of power was offset by significant media, internet and public censorship and abuses carried out by government security agencies in the name of upholding what would more recently become known as the ‘Candelariasian Conspiracy’, the state’s ever more desperate desire to protect the majority of the public from learning of the existence of non-human sapience, in addition to other aspects of the wider multiverse dismissed domestically as fiction and conspiracy theories.
In the June of 2010 the country underwent the traumatic incident that became known as the Beatrice Event, rapidly following which C&M largely withdrew from international sport and politics. Following a period of significant social unrest and a programme aimed at declassification, media liberalisation and national reconciliation; the country is now widely considered to be experiencing a degree of government transparency and economic freedom unprecedented in its modern history without appearing ready to retake its place amongst the international community. It is unclear if the events of November 2020 will have any effect on this status in the long term.
First referred to as Candelaria by Spanish fishermen in the late sixteenth century, many decades prior to European settlement, it is unclear if the islands were first sighted on Candlemas Day or named in honour of La Morenita. By the time of settlement the largest island was referred to as Gran Candelaria, with Marquez taking its name from its earliest administrative capital, now a small fishing village. Like most place names on the islands, it is assumed that Marquez was in turn derived from the surname of a prominent early settler, now lost to history.
Candelaria and the Candelarias were used interchangeably by English-speakers to refer to the archipelago as a whole into the early twentieth century, after which Candelaria largely replaced Gran Candelaria in referring specifically to the largest and by now most populous island. The demonym Candelarian was widely used to refer to all inhabitants of the state until the 1960 creation of the Republic of Candelaria And Marquez, since when it has been used domestically solely to refer to natives of Candelaria and been succeeded as national demonym by Candelariasian. The use of a capital A within the nation’s formal name is often attributed as deriving only from 1980 and a law passed in the hope of underlining Marquez’s equal status within the republic, though had in fact been commonplace for the two decades prior.
These confusions have helped spawn a significant number of international variants, such as the Candelari used in Krytenia (where the nation is commonly referred to as Candelar, or Marqueste y Candelar among Spanish speakers), Candelalalian of the Wysterian nations of Quintessence of Dust and Achtervolging, and the Candelabran, Candelbrese and Candelariasan variously used in Bears Armed (where the full national name is Candlebras and Marquees), as well as a number of defunct variations such as the Canderlisian formerly used in Valanora and Canderlaris of Sorthern Nortland. It has been common internationally for the largest island to be referred to as Canderlaria and the national demonym as Canderlarian, though Candelarian is most frequently used in place of Candelariasian, and commonly so in Dancougar, the Holy Empire, Sarzonia and Taeshan. In the Han Empire, the nation’s name may be transliterated as the Republic of Gando and Malge.
The non-representation of any of the archipelago’s islands beyond the largest two within the country’s modern name has been contentious since the reintegration of the outlying islands states into the political framework of Candelaria And Marquez proper, and a movement in support of a return to the name of the Republic of Candelarias has gained modest support since the 1960s. Most Candelariasians however have appeared attached to the ‘C&M’ branding, though the absence of national sports teams from international play over the past decade has seen this affection undergo a modest decline.
Place names in the islands are typically derived from surnames or home towns of earlier settlers (particularly on Candelaria) or refer to the physical geography of the time (much more often in Marquez). The names of many cities however were altered in the late nineteenth century as part of a policy of ‘Candelariziation’ – Abingdon becoming Abiodun, Bovington changed to Bove, Vauxhall to Vo, etc. Other names have also been anglicised, such as the Albrecht boroughs of Hoxton and Lexaton from their original German surname origins.
Though geologically coherent, the physical geographies of the two larger islands of the Candelarias archipelago that lend the modern state of Candelaria And Marquez its name are quite distinct. The western and southern coasts of the more low-lying Marquez are marked by sand and shingle beaches, whereas Candelaria is surrounded by cliff faces and rocky coves. Similarly, the broadleaf deciduous forest that once covered much of the islands have retreated to the north-east of Marquez in the wake of human habitation, while Candelaria’s untamed west is marked by tracts of heathland. The lushest vegetation and remaining forests on Candelaria, north-western Rushmore’s largest island, are found in the centre and north, with the south and west characterised by sheep and cattle pasture and small villages battered by West Rushmori winds.
Successive Candelariasian governments have favoured extended pre-existing settlements rather than the creation of new towns in Candelaria’s west or the Marquezian north-east, and as a result there exists a stark divide between the built-up ‘Strip’ either side of the estrecho innomado, and the remainder of each island – though early expansion prior to the centralisation of government did bring towns to the banks of inland rivers and lakes. While Marquez, along with the country’s fisheries, was home to the Candelarias’ agricultural base well into the twentieth century, western Candelaria had seen more intensive farming in recent decades and a significant population increase, notably augmented by Serbian-speaking immigration.
Candelaria is further bifurcated by the Great Lakes region and the Mayo Valley – these two features respectively the location of the country’s largest body of water, Lake Wessex, and its highest peak, Mount Lo.
The Candelarias have a mild, temperate but changeable oceanic climate with few extremes. Precipitation falls throughout the year but is light overall, particularly in Marquez – Candelaria tends to be wetter on average and prone to the full force of storms in the late autumn and winter months, which have occasionally brought destructive winds, high rainfall and less often snow and hail. Both islands experience some snowfall each winter, with north-east Candelaria most prone.
The archipelago’s major resources include clay, coal, lead, zinc, pumice, molybdenum, natural gas, copper, forestry products and fish.
Albrecht – Established in the 1840s, somewhat later than several other major English settlements on the eastern and northern Candelarian coasts, Albrecht rapidly absorbed neighbouring Morganstown to become the first settlement on the island to be granted city status by royal charter, and in 1863 succeeded the northern Candelarian town of Brayton as the seat of administration for the dominion. Well behind the largest cities of Marquez by population, it became C&M’s most populous only in 1986 after government reorganisation saw Albrecht formally absorb the cities of Hoxton, Lexaton, Liverpool, Magnus and Sorres.
The heart of the Strip – the urban agglomeration stretching from south-east to north-east Candelaria and along the west coast of Marquez, which is collectively home to over half the Candelariasian population – today’s Albrecht is C&M’s political, economic, cultural and media capital. A sprawling, largely low-rise city characterised by the ‘village’ feel of its innumerable distinct neighbourhoods; Albrecht is the country’s most ethnically, linguistically and religiously diverse large city, with the highest proportion of immigrants and youngest population – Albrecht University is C&M’s oldest and largest.
The city can be considered in effect contiguous with numerous towns to the south, and the likes of Bulent, Dyce, Lavange and Warne are often thought of as part of an even more expansive Greater Albrecht; autonomous Gordon Bay City nearby to the south forming a rather more distinct enclave.
Arrigo – Beginning to emerge from El din’s shadow in the late 1800s, Arrigo eventually became Marquez’s largest and most important city by the mid-1900s, and was C&M’s most populous until Albrecht’s enlargement. Located on the north bank of the Ensenda de la Garganta, it was and remains a major port though its primary industry is the automobile manufacturing sector thanks to its being the base of operation for the Morales, Patton-Carmichael and ClotaireAutos corporations. Despite this, Arrigo possesses the only large metro network of C&M’s major cities and, like the capital, public ownership of motor vehicles is low.
The centre of Hispanophone culture in the islands, though English is in fact marginally more widely spoken and the Hispanic population outnumbered by the Anglo; the Sacred Heart in the harbour quarter is the country’s largest Roman Catholic cathedral and the liberal rival to the cathedrals of El din. The Universidad Isabela González de Arrigo is comparatively recent among the islands’ major educational bodies but is today the country’s second largest.
Much of southern Marquez is seen as part of Arrigo’s urban sprawl, including the satellite towns of Ardanza, Barrany and Hermigua to the north, and the small cities of Chapon, Miranda and Onwere to the south-east. The latter of these is home to C&M’s third largest and most countercultural university; and revels in its bohemian identity, its many festivals (including the internationally renowned Parade of Ducks), distinct political and media culture, the highest standard of living of any major town on Marquez, and unofficial status as C&M’s ‘LGBT capital’.
Caires – The largest city of Candelaria’s industrial north-east, Caires – pronounced [/k?r?z] – enjoyed only brief prominence as a major port during the early twentieth century, having previously been a major market town and terminus for local mining and agricultural activities before a boom time for its harbour made it home to more trading companies than any other in the Candelarias. In later years its docklands declined but a burgeoning major economic slump was arrested by the establishment of the once sedate Rider Castle area of the city as its casino district.
Arguably still the gambling capital of Oygruppen; its glitzy entertainments and relaxed laws form an often remarked-upon contrast with rather more sober central Caires, widely considered a Candelarian ‘everycity’ epitomising average values and outlook. The city’s minority communities are split between diverse low-income immigration populations in and around Rider Castle and the city’s other industrial hubs; and affluent, well-established, communities, notably including the majority of C&M’s Yaforite population. The Nr Caires area includes the large towns of Scruggs Picking and Scruggs-on-the-Dangly.
Bove – Still seen as the ‘muscles’ of the Candelarias, the success of the city once known as Bovington was built on the exploitation of the rich mineral deposits of the Lake Di Stefano region to the east. Steelworks and ironworks once employed the bulk of the population; this later diversified with the growth of chemical plants and factories for glass manufacture, textiles and electronic equipment. Expansion into a number of fishing villages turned Bove into a port, though its dockyards are not nearly as extensive as other Candelariasian coastal cities.
Proud of its working-class identity, built around tight-knit communities in turn-of-the-last century terraced housing and modern high-rises, Bove attracted young professionals in the late twentieth century with the establishment of a ‘MediaCity’ to rival that of Albrecht and Arrigo – C&M’s major television networks and newspapers are respectively broadcast from and printed here, furthering the city’s integration into the Greater Albrecht sprawl. Bove is none the less home to the highest percentage of Candelariasians of non-Hispanic European ancestry of any large city in mainland C&M, though it is also the centre of the country’s Jewish community.
In an effort to avoid being subsumed into Albrecht in the eyes of the wider public, the city council has promoted the city’s status at the heart of a ‘Greater Bove’, taking in towns including Bettney and Lesperance on the coast and, inland, the ‘lakes towns’ of Di Alfonso, Eide, Starless City and Talinger.
Clotaire – The most northerly large city in the Candelarias, Clotaire’s docks were like most Candelariasian cities its major employer until late twentieth century diversification. Today, the city is a major exporter of public transport equipment, with much of northern Rushmore home to rolling stock manufactured in Clotaire. Satellite towns include Bevan, Le Thipp Judek and Lower Wessaxontown.
The city has been at the heart of many of C&M’s boom periods for popular music, and is well known for its nightlife centred on the Parry Head and Hopstack districts and bursting with trendy bars and clubs – as well as some of the country’s roughest dives. Clotairiens are renowned for an accent often considered impenetrable even by other members of the north-east’s ‘Gang of Four’ large cities (alongside Alvery, Caires and Khatib-Gassett). Sometimes referred to as the ‘Capital of the Ansernia Islands’, Clotaire was long home to a large Sorthern Northlandish expatriate community – one which has swelled dramatically since that country’s nuclear devastation, to the point that the next national census is expected to confirm Clotaire’s status as C&M’s third most populous city ahead of Caires.
Khatib-Gassett – More commonly known as Khatib, the twin city – or triple city, arguably encompassing the large town of Rose of Sharon – became a major manufacturing centre in the mid twentieth century and a hotbed of support for the Socialist government and Marxist-Leninist thought up to and during the civil war, after which it would be emblematic of the new C&M’s marriage of statist economics with a disinclination towards overt expressions of socialist ideology. The largest inland city in the country, it today relies largely on the service sector and is characterised by its post-war tenement blocks.
Though less diverse than the other members of the ‘Gang of Four’, it has long been home to C&M’s largest Muslim community outside Albrecht – originally mostly of Turkish extraction, later Arab and today strongly Bettian in character, particularly in ‘Rosasharn’, drawn predominately from the Gwlad Teg highlands.
Zapata – The largest city and administrative capital of Green Island, the largest of the Outliers, Zapata was home to around three quarters of the island’s population even prior to the Sam Mc O’Neil period, and its size swelled further during and after this difficult time. Founded as Zapateros by Spanish speakers in the late 1700s, it had established itself as a centre of fishing and shoemaking prior to becoming one of the few examples in the archipelago of a settlement taken over by English-speaking colonists who would force out the pre-existing population. It spent the latter half of the nineteenth century as Queen’s Town and later Riverton, before adopting the name Zapata.
Unlike most large Candelariasian ports it became a centre not of shipping but of fishing, and is home to some three quarters of the islands’ trawlers and trawlermen. Meat packing and other industries related to the rural portion of the island’s agricultural activities also make up a large section of the economy.
Though home to one of C&M’s larger aboriginal Rushmori communities, non-white immigration remained formally discouraged by successive island and city councils despite the opening up of mainland C&M following the civil war. Zapata has the highest proportion of residents claiming British decent of any large Candelariasian settlement, and the city was a hub for anti-immigrant and white supremacist organisations with mainstream appeal. In the years prior to the Beatrice event, the city’s relationship with its beloved football club, and its significant number of elven players and staff, ironically contributed to a considerably less insular and more subversive culture than a mainland C&M still labouring under the Candelariasian Conspiracy.
El din – Located on the northern coast of Corazana Cove on the western coast of Marquez, El din became gateway to the rugged expanses of north-east Marquez and the lakes and forests of the east. The economic and cultural capital of Marquez under Hispanic rule, its coffers fed by the mining, farming and forestry communities that surrounded it, the city remained a holdout against British domination until the signing of the Robinson Treaty and the creation of a single, unified Candelarias. Initially the new country’s largest and wealthiest city, set apart by its grid design and wide boulevards, El din suffered badly as the area’s mineral wealth rapidly proved overexploited. Many newly unemployed workers moved south, to join an exodus of company bosses and entrepreneurs, and the city was supplanted by Arrigo as Marquez’s most important.
Population decline was arrested by the collapse of the north’s agricultural base in the 1970s, with the more industrialised farming of the south, alongside that of the Outliers and western Candelaria, better able to feed C&M than the isolated ranches of north Marquez. Shanty towns – the villas miseria – developed where old suburbs and hamlets had collapsed, and would remain an intractable problem marked by poor sanitation, inconsistent electricity and substance abuse into the twenty-first century, though progressive social policies and strong Sargossan investment have finally brought something of an economic boom to the city. El din is known as the ‘Cathedral City’ of the Candelarias, thanks to the presence of both the Blessed Peter Gonzalez Cathedral, the county’s first, and St Joseph’s, among many other churches, and religious observance is considerably higher than in any other large Candelariasian city.
While an Anglo Marquezian middle-class developed from the early 1900s, the city remains predominately Spanish speaking; though La Basilica to the south and the town of Castillo have higher proportions of Hispanophes and exhibit much higher levels of separatist sentiment, in tandem with other towns of central including Condory, Galindo, Pastrana and Trayectoria del Encercago. The town of Agujero, to the north, is home to the National Space Facility, and is a significant employer in El din.
Allemali – Founded as the fishing settlement of Puerto de Alemany by Spanish settlers in the late eighteenth century, making it one of their first forays onto the then Gran Candelaria, the village was soon vacated before being resettled by English speakers some twenty years later. Allemali vied with Clotaire for the title as Candelaria’s preeminent port until the emergence of Albrecht, but also served the string of satellite towns and villages that grew up in the surrounding hills to exploit sources of copper and molybdenite; Almford, Alvorne and Bering chief among them today.
The base of the Royal Navy in the islands, modern Allemali maintains a close link with the Candelarias Naval Defence Force – its Headquarters of Command are in the city, along with the National Maritime Warfare School, the National Sea Cadet Training Centre, and the moorings for most of the country’s limited fleet of naval vessels. The other major branches of the joint armed forces also have a significant presence, with no other city in C&M having anywhere close to as high a proportion of its young men and women in uniform. The dockyards are also a significant employer for commercial shipping, as is tourism and gambling.
With C&M’s limited military history however the city has had to look elsewhere is search of a favourite son, finding it in the form of Allemali icon Samuel Pafford, an early nineteenth century figure famed for either holding a worlds record for the longest nose, or for having spent his adult life with a succession of root vegetables attached to his face as a means to cover his secret shame.
Allemali is considered the southern hub of the Strip; Nr Allemali’s portion of the coastal sprawl taking in towns to the north such as Abiodun (and its famously exclusive district of Gamboa), Melvorne (home of the spherical Melvorne Bun), Portsmouth and Preece.
Other Major Settlements – The southern Marquezian city of Melin is C&M’s next largest city, the centre of the islands’ prophylactics industry, followed by Vo; a major centre of publishing, agriculture and tourism as the largest city in the rural west of Candelaria. Large north-western towns include Brayton, Saurin and Webley – each extolling an ethos of rugged individualism and largely reliant on state controlled industries.
Flora and fauna
The Candelarias have fewer animal and plant species than mainland Rushmore because they became islands shortly after the end of the last Ice Age about 8,000 years ago. Many different habitat types are found in the islands, including farmland, open woodland, temperate forests, conifer plantations and peat bogs.
In the early years of human habitation, the islands’ economy depended to a great degree on fishing, which has perhaps inevitably resulted in a serious decline in both the stocks of fish overall and number of species within C&M’s waters. By far the most famous creature in the islands is Oncorhynchus mediocris, known colloquially since the 19th century as the mediocre fish, either for its mildly orange colour or heroic commitment to utter blandness. Small and agile enough to avoid most fisherman's nets and essentially inedible, it became one of the islands’ few aquatic success stories, and its sheer tenacity earned it the title of national animal in the 1923. Since then, however, there has been significant destruction of its habitat and the fish is considered endangered. In mid-2008, the mediocre fish was succeeded in its role by a giant toad named Hope, which frolicked freely in the nation’s many lush forests until it was hit by a Volvo in 2017. The toad, its left leg fully healed, the psychological damage of its ordeal and the eternal solitude it suffers as an unnatural lifeform rather less so, is now star attraction at the Metropolitan Zoological Centre in Liverpool, Albrecht.
Few mammal species are native to the islands; though some species, such as the red fox, badger, otter and various species of tree shrew are very common. Others, such as the red squirrel, red deer, terminal burrowing zpinh and marmot are less common and generally seen only in certain national parks and nature reserves around the islands. Some introduced species have become thoroughly naturalised, including rabbits, grey squirrels, black rats and capybaras. Species that have become extinct to the islands include the wolf, the mountain hare, the fisherman bat, the bear, the hedgehog, and several native cattle breeds. Native snakes include the European adder and water snake, while the most common lizard is the Common Lizard. There are numerous amphibians, the most common being the common frog, the midwife toad and the bleeding toad, of which only the frog is native. Certain marine turtle and terrapin species appear regularly off the south west coast but do not come ashore.
About 300 species of birds have been recorded in the islands, many of which are migratory. As with virtually all Rushmori nations, it is the waterfowl that attract the most attention – with C&M’s swans, and to a lesser extent its geese, widely considered dangerous vermin. Whitenesses of swans have been known to block out the sun for over an hour as they pass overhead, and numerous fatalities have been ascribed to their presence while on land. There are also arctic birds, which come in the winter, and birds such as the Rossheim lesser gulp, which come in the summer to breed. The islands, particularly the Outliers, have a rich marine avifauna, with many large seabird colonies dotted around its coastline such as those on Knee Island and the Islas Valero north-east of Marquez. Also of note is Peterson’s Sea Eagle, recently and controversially reintroduced after decades of extinction.
Until relatively recently the largest two islands were heavily forested with oak, fir, alder and chestnut, but forests now cover only about 15% of the land. Because of its temperate climate many species, including sub-tropical ones, will grow on the islands. Much of the land, particularly in the west of Candelaria, is now covered with pasture, and there are many species of wild-flower. Whin, a wild furze, is commonly found growing in the uplands, and ferns are plentiful in the more moist regions that are home to hundreds of plant species, some of them unique to the islands, others having been introduced, either artificially or by dumb luck.
An oft noted feature of Candelariasian life is the islands’ all-pervading smell of cabbage, a fact that defies explanation given that the smooth leaved, firm headed, brassica is not in fact a significant vegetable crop in the islands. Major agricultural produce in C&M includes rice, wheat, barley, grapes, potatoes, daffodils, sunflowers, dairy goods and fish.
Government and politics
Candelaria And Marquez is a unitary parliamentary republic with a bicameral legislature, comprising an upper chamber, the National Council, and a lower chamber, the House of Representatives. Initially following the establishment of the second republic after the civil war, the country was governed by a directly elected President; this office was abolished in 1968. Subsequently the head of state, invested with limited powers, has been the Leader of the National Council. The head of government is the President of the Government (or Prime Minister, though this term is seldom used domestically), who is the leader of the governing coalition or party in the House of Representatives (typically, the leader of the largest party in the House). From 1868 to 1960 the head of government was referred to as the Prime Minister; thereafter the term was reserved for the holder of an office more akin to that of Speaker of the House, abolished in 2012 in tandem with a range of other political reforms.
Since 2012, the House of Representatives has been elected using the mixed-member proportional representation system, with a minimum of 260 seats of which half are elected from first-past-the-post constituencies, and the remainder filled from regional party lists with a four percent threshold for representation. There may additionally be overhang seats. General elections are held on or near May 12th every four years.
From 1947 to 1994, the country’s upper chamber was the Senate, comprising one hundred members appointed by the leaders of the major parties in the House. Thereafter, a new National Council was formed under President Xavier Hrehoresin as a twelve member advisory body. From 2016, this was reformed as an eighty seat council with an extended oversight role. Members are elected from forty constituencies each delivering two members using the single non-transferable vote method, with ten constituencies electing their new members in October each year. Members may serve a maximum of two consecutive terms.
In the four decades prior to the Beatrice event Candelariasian politics was dominated by the Unionist and Modern Liberal parties, both broadly reflecting the social democratic consensus and possessing a shared desire to maintain the Candelariasian Conspiracy – in general, the Unionists were characterised as favouring a more centralised state and economy and more conservative social outlook, with the MLP as their more economically and socially liberal counterparts. Even prior to the introduction of a form of proportional representation in 1992, governing coalitions were the norm and the two parties were typically supported in government by the Social Democrats and Conservatives respectively though these alliances had begun to shift by the twenty-first century.
Since 2016 the Progress party of incumbent President Fanny Tan has led the governing coalition, having largely absorbed both the MLP and Conservatives. The Social Democratic & Green Party and anti-corruption Our Open Eyes group served as junior partners until 2020, when Progress formed a coalition with the new Peasants Party.
As of 2020, the make-up of the House of Representatives was as follows:
Progress Party (centre to right, pro-business, anti-corruption), 120 seats, led by Fanny Tan
Peasants party (centre-left to right, populism, anti-corruption), 16 seats, led by Leon Spencer
Unionists (big tent, social nationalism), 47 seats, led by Mike van Mourik
Social Democratc & Green Party (centre-left to far-left, social justice, environmentalism, devolution), 23 seats, led by Phoebe Gunsmith
Candelarias Unity Alliance (right to far-right, anti-immigration, agrarianism), 21 seats, led by Gabrielle Gojkovic
Partido Nacionalista de Marquez (centre-left to right, Marquezian nationalism, regionalism), 18 seats, led by Pablo Domínguez
Moriarty Party (right-wing populism, prohumanism), 13 seats, led by Sterling Featherstone
As of 2021, the National Council comprised:
Progress Party, 31 seats
Unionists, 16 seats
Partido Nacionalista de Marquez, 11 seats
Social Democratc & Green Party, 8 seats
Candelarias Unity Alliance, 4 seats
Peasants Party, 4 seats
Moriarty Party, 3 seats
Peace & Freedom (far-left, social justice), 2 seats
As of 2022, important members of the Second Tan Cabinet included:
President of the Government Fanny Tan MP
Vice-President of the Government Leon Spencer MP [Peasants Party]
Secretary of State for the Economy and Public Finance, Timothy Towers MP
Secretary of State for the Home Department, Scarlett Tahirovic MP
Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs, Aimee Siebold MP [Peasants Party]
Attorney-General, Cameron Hardman MNC
Minsiter for Agriculture and the Environment, JJ Sattler MP
Minister for Anti-Corruption, Democratic Reform and Transparency, Steven Carter MP
Minister for Business, Employment and Trade, Paul Mkandawire MP
Minister for Citizenship and Communities, Cara Carmichael MP
Minister for Constitutional Affairs, Christian Laurent Williamson MNC
Minister for Defence, Cesar Bravo MP
Minister for Education and Young People, Imogen White MP
Minister for Health and the Elderly, Jose Ignacio Gómez MP
Minister for Infrastructure and Transport, Eoin Ó Miadhacháin MP
Minister for Unexpected Happenings & Public Information, Russie Walker MP
Candelaria And Marquez is a highly centralised state, with only the five major outlying islands possessing autonomous regional government. Local government is provided by city, town and village councils.
The early colonial Candelarias deferred to Britain in regards to external trade and foreign relations, and as an independent state the country initially maintained close relations with Europe. Under President Clarke, the relations of the new nation of Candelaria And Marquez pivoted to its immediate neighbourhood, establishing close economic and political ties with Nethertopia, West Zirconia and the nations that would go on to form the Confederated Nations of Continental Rushmore bloc. While the nature of Sargossa’s military government, and infrequent sabre-rattling in relation to the Islas Valeros east of Marquez, has necessitated more publicly watchful rhetoric between Albrecht and Soluca than with C&M’s democratic neighbours, the country has for decades been one of the Candelarias’ most important trading partners. It is additionally widely accepted that C&M would be reliant on Sargossan military support in the unlikely event of invasion from beyond Oygruppen.
Despite agitation for a referendum on joining the CNCR from some supporters of Panrushmorism, particularly following the decision of the government of Ransome-Bkyki Island to dissociate responsibility for its foreign relations from Albrecht and instead join the CNCR, there has never been popular political, media or public support for C&M’s membership. In addition, C&M has remained supportive of but aloof from most other regional non-sporting bodies, having only observer status under the terms of the Rushmori Defence Treaty and expressing neutrality towards the Common Rushmori Community. Formerly bearing responsibility as Rushmore’s delegate to the World Assembly, under the Morton administration C&M withdrew from the organisation and has subsequently offered tacit support to each of its successors.
C&M’s relations with Rushmori nations south of Branta are considerably more limited, with the notable exception of Ad’ihan. At the commencement of the ‘International Era’ however, the country engaged in a policy of establishing ties with a series of countries from beyond the region, and despite C&M’s post-Beatrice insularity a number of these relationships continue to provide considerable support to the Candelariasian economy, including those with the Blouman Empire, Brutland and Norden and Kelssek. Other previously close cooperative relationships have for varying reasons fallen into abeyance, notably including Kura-Pelland, Sorthern Northland and the Han Empire, the last of which included support for counterterrorism operations in relation to the activities of the Mujeongbu.
Most of these and other ties were founded via sporting connections, no longer relevant following the country’s withdrawal from international competition. A particular notable exception was the relationship established with Descartesland that led to the formation of a bilateral space programme, now likewise largely discontinued.
Candelaria And Marquez has an estimated population of 22 million, though a lack of recent census data has contributed to widely varying estimates from non-governmental sources.
Prior to the second half of the twentieth century, the Candelariasian population was almost wholly of white European origin, with ethnography being defined principally through language differences and linguistic heritage. Spanish speakers make up around half the population of Marquez, for a total of approximately 16%. The vast majority of the remainder of the European population are English speaking, though British ancestry constitutes only a plurality estimated at between 30-45% of the gene pool. Italian speakers have long formed the country’s third largest linguistic group, though their numbers have decreased significantly from their early twentieth century heyday as a result of Anglicization and Castilianization. The same process saw once large distinct Dutch, Swedish, Czech, Portuguese and other European linguistic communities survive largely in the form of surnames and other cultural artefacts, and modern European linguistic communities are mostly of recent immigrant origin. A notable exception is formed by the longstanding Turkish community, much of which has remained Muslim and distinct from the majority population.
The Candelariasian government does not keep records specifying ethnic identity, but the non-white community is believed to constitute 10-15% of the population as of 2021. A clear majority of permanent migrants to C&M in the twenty-first century are of ethnic minority backgrounds, drawn from hundreds if not thousands of countries and many arriving as refugees.
Minority groups are today principally spoken of in national rather than linguistic or ethnic terms, both in regards to first generation migrants and those who identify, and are identified, with their parental country or countries of origin. The largest national minority in C&M are Sorthern Northlanders, their already large numbers augmented considerably following an influx of refugees in the aftermath of the country’s nuclear devastation. The country is home to a large Bettian diaspora, who constitute a plurality among C&M’s growing Muslim population. Other extraregional national minorities of significant size include the Han, Yaforites, Cafundulenses and Nord-Brutlandese.
Rushmori minorities are typically less obvious, being mostly made up of short-term economic migrants and individuals who have rapidly assimilated into the majority population, though distinct Bkyka, Nethertopian and Sargossan communities are in evidence in many cities, particularly in Marquez. Beyond Oygruppen; Djocorangans, mostly first generation, are by some distance the largest Rushmori migrant group. There are also small Mwembamban, Sterogan and Seunemi communities, and there has long been a steady stream of migrants from both the Anglophone and aboriginal CNCR nations. Minorities of all kinds make up a significantly larger proportion of the population in the urban strip than the rest of the country, a rare and prominent exception being the Serbian-speaking community which settled and remains largely confined to the rural west of Candelaria.
Long an avowedly secular country, Christians are believed to now make up fewer than 50% of the population, with Anglicans the largest denomination on Candelaria and Roman Catholics on Marquez – by comparison to linguistic and cultural differences this religious distinction has seldom been a significant bone of contention. There are smaller Methodist and Lutheran communities. Islam is C&M’s largest non-Christian religion, accounting for between 1-5% of the population, and the Muslim community’s growing population has been a major point of political contention since the turn of the twenty-first century. The Jewish community is centred on Bove, and there are smaller Buddhist and Hindu populations.
The Candelarias’ non-human population remains largely limited to Gordon Bay City, though there has never been a formal barrier on sapient non-humans gaining C&M citizenship (since prior to 2010 their existence was unacknowledged) and a small number of such have either been granted citizenship or residency, or publicly affirmed a species identification kept hidden during the Conspiracy years.
As a result of post-Beatrice policies, the country has seen significant inward migration from the Candelariasian diaspora, returning from exile or voluntary relocation. Much of that which remains abroad has followed the pattern set by their predecessors in assimilating into local society, but distinct Anglophone, Hispanic and mixed communities retain a significant presence in Sargossa, in particular the island of Larissa, as well as in Nethertopia, West Zirconia, Ransome-Bkyki Island and the other nations of the CNCR, the Polar Islandstates, Mainland Azerredacqua, Ancharmunn and, most significantly but formerly, Sorthern Northland.
Candelaria And Marquez is home to a diversity of cultures, a result of its history of immigration and contemporary multiculturalism. Its primary culture is Western in character, based around its Anglo-Celtic heritage with Spanish influences (and vice versa in much of Marquez). Waves of immigration have provided other influences absorbed into national culture, as has international Anglophone mass media. Despite this, Candelarias English has diverged relatively little from its British origins, and indeed has homogenised in recent decades, with many distinctive features of West Country English and Spanish origin now limited to the most rural parts of west Candelaria and the Outliers, and Marquez respectively. Candelarias, or Marquezian, Spanish by contrast is a dialect with highly distinct pronunciation, grammar, vocabulary and slang.
Candelariasian society is typically regarded as less permissive than that of its Euro-Oygruppen and Brantan neighbours, albeit with a legal system that has been significantly further liberalised since 2010 and an austere but more faintly disapproving than outright censorious common attitude towards displays of wealth, overt sexual expression and excess, and the use of intoxicants. Religious observance has however never been high, and conservative Christianity plays little role in public life – neither gay rights nor access to safe abortions have been significantly contested issues since the 1980s. Prior to the Beatrice Event marriage rates were high by Western standards and early marriage common, though recent decades had seen a considerable realignment in attitudes towards an equal share of labour in the home and the status of working mothers. Vegetarianism, and in particular pescatarianism, is notably common despite the continued economic importance of livestock farming. In public, Candelarians and Anglo Marquezians are popularly seen as verbose but quietly spoken, and disinclined towards physical closeness with strangers – the reverse being observed as the case among Hispanic Marquezians.
Candelariasian contributions to the Western arts world are generally little known outside the country, and a disinclination towards national chauvinism has limited critical domestic praise and attention. Candelariasian literature reached its zenith in the late nineteenth century, with Victorian novelists including Shelby Ross, K. L. Samson and Lionel Vickery remaining popular. Georgina Guillaumin remains arguably the country’s most popular writer, her 1889 work The Birth of Beatrice considered a triumph of feminist authorship and a major influence on the development of a Candelariasian national consciousness, particularly in Hispanic Marquez, despite sex scenes widely considered among the worst gifted to the English canon. The works of writer and short-lived Prime Minister Reuben Merchant are today little regarded but ‘Merchantist’ and Unionist philosophy is widely seen as exerting a continued significant influence over Candelariasian society. Candelariasian literature generally is marked by its unduly lengthy and impenetrably plotted novels and the wafer-thin characters, unsatisfying climaxes and weak attempts at humour contained therein.
The plays The Quality of Being, On Being Wrong and Wicked Children have made their writer Joseph Ness the country’s most celebrated playwright, while Victorian poets Amy Boots-Gaunt, Homer Jones and Luis Fernando Fernandéz Rodriquez remain C&M’s best regarded. The latter, a lowly bank clerk for most of his life, eventually became a national icon years after his pauper’s death, his rediscovered poem O, Sweet Nation set to music by composer Kenneth Park and officially adopted as C&M’s national anthem in 1961 despite, or possibly because, of its generally agreed status as a tuneless dirge with inappropriately sensual lyrics.
C&M has generally taken its musical cues from the wider region and English and Spanish speaking worlds, though there have been occasional boom times in domestic rock, pop, alt-rock, alt-pop and alt-alt. Current trends favour oro oso and gimlet rap music in Marquez and Candelaria respectively, and sixteen year-old girls mumbling barely audibly over discordant beats. C&M’s modest film industry is dominated by art house director Krasimir Cook, and are typically of the ‘struggling, substance-dependant, emotionally fragile creative experiences rare joy through meeting of spirits with willowy younger immigrant woman’ school.
Prior to the 2010s, most forms of media in the Candelarias were highly nationalised if not necessarily centralised, with the clear exceptions of Spanish language newspapers, television and radio. All outlets were subject to considerable reporting restrictions as part of the effort to uphold the Candelariasian Conspiracy, though much of this took the form of self-censorship and journalists were generally given a relatively free rein to criticise the government and other officials providing matters pertaining to overseas affairs and ‘supernatural’ events domestically were treated in the manner the state considered appropriate. State intimidation, and in extreme cases imprisonment, exile or assassination, of consistent ‘offenders’ among the profession was widely believed to be the case even among the general population by the twenty-first century, and was confirmed as an infrequent but not irregular practise during the Truth & Reconciliation hearings that followed the Beatrice Event.
A breakdown in public trust in the establishment media from 2010 briefly saw the growth of alternative media outlets, often run on a community basis, however in the following months many of the country’s previously most popular newspapers, television networks and radio stations were bought out, and in several cases privatised, and re-established under new ownership – with popular small outlets steadily likewise added to their portfolios and eventually merged with more established entities. This has proven less the case in Marquez, where community broadcasting in both English and Spanish has remained strong.
The Albrecht Herald, after a strong challenge in the previous decade by the upstart Albrecht Freedom News and C&M Today, has once again resumed its status as the nation’s most popular and influential former broadsheet, with the sensationalist Albrecht Mercury surviving the post-Beatrice era of disrepute with only a modest fall in readership. Other major publications including the Bove-based National Reporter, Albrecht’s Daily News and El Periodico del Arrigo have been reinvigorated under new ownership, alongside the more recent The Nation, all pushing pro-Progress political stances.
Analog television was switched off in 2016, with the privatised TV1 and TV2 (now CMTV) and TTO1 and TTO2 retaining their status as the dominant forces of C&M’s comparatively small television industry, alongside CMNews and Reuben. By contrast, listening figures for national and local radio remain in a state of flux and decline.
C&M’s online service providers were highly regulated prior to the 2010s, with most Candelariasian internet users reliant on a handful of officially sanctioned web portals that allowed limited access to the wider internet, alongside a ‘walled garden’ national intranet service. Today there are few such restrictions on usage, prompting increasing national debate over the ease of access to extremist content and pornographic material.
Inheriting a love of amateur sport, the Candelarias took many decades to truly embrace professionalism or the notion of participating in international competition – the latter a largely alien concept in Rushmore until the entry by the Candelaria And Marquez Association Football Association of the C&M national football team, the Big Blues, into the Baptism of Fire tournament that preceded World Cup 36 qualifying.
While progress was inconsistent, over the course of the following fifteen cycles the Big Blues became a leading force in international football, winning Cup of Harmony 33, World Cup 45 and World Cup 49. These victories contributed to the team’s status as the focus of the country’s cultural attentions, and to the sport as the cornerstone of its national identity. The country co-hosted Cup of Harmony 35 and World Cup 44, while the domestic football league – the CMSC – was one of the most successful in the multiverse, both on-field and as an entertainment product with a reach far beyond Candelariasian shores.
The country’s inclinations towards team sports were similarly reflected in the successes of the national rugby union team, the Huge Blues, which likewise won two world titles, as did the Blue Sticks, the national field hockey side. National teams in ice hockey, cricket and gaelic football also competed internationally, while the country participated at two summer and three winter Olympic Games. Here the delegation of the Candelaria Olympic Committee And Candelaria And Marquez Athletics Association was less successful that many of the country’s international peers owing to less developed systems supporting individual and small-side sports, but did take golds in a diverse array of events from sailing and rowing to gymnastics and tennis. Motor sport was also moderately popular, with Candelariasian driver Joe Allon becoming World Grand Prix champion.
Among the many profound repercussions of the Beatrice event was a total cessation of Candelariasian involvement in international sport. While intended as a temporary measure, public hostility towards sportspeople and sporting administrators, and towards the measures taken to facilitate C&M’s presence in international competition, has seen this state of affairs remain in place. Furthermore, all major national domestic leagues in team sports remain defunct, while many storied club sides have been disestablished.
Even amateur participation, including by minors, in most team sports remained disapproved of, though there has been a steady upswing after an initial crash in the popularity of individual sports. The general public has once again begun to follow intermural and national amateur competition in athletics, cycling, swimming, artistic and acrobatic gymnastics, golf, bocce, bat and trap, snooker, martial arts and water sports. Recreational hunting, bullfighting and the traditional Candelarian sport of newt fencing have all largely disappeared however.