The Republic of Astinus
Astinus, where men are free. Astinus, without rulers. Astinus, where even the gods are equal. Astinus, where blasphemy is upheld as righteousness. Astinus, where morality lies at the will of the mob. Astinus is a very controversial place. It is the only republic found on the entirety of Leng, and its citizenry is very proud of their ideals. Time and time again, attempts to have been made to undermine the republic, and time and time again they have been repelled.
The people of Astinus are often derided in other parts of Leng as being either stiff-backed sanctimonious preachers or dangerous revolutionaries seeking to unseat the natural order. Astinians would respond that those who have not the courage for freedom are wont to grasp mockery as a poor substitute. Lorknans would probably rebut by mocking the Astinians further; Common is not the native tongue of Astinus, and the stilted, flowery way that Astinians speak it is often made fun of. In mummer's tales throughout Leng, Astinians are a favorite for the role of the high-and-mighty intellectual who has no common sense.
Astinus and Arelon grew up alongside each other; indeed, Astinus was a province of the Arelonian Empire in its prime. The Empire itself has been around for 600 years, since about 400 BE. After a history of rebellion that saw other provinces escaping the Empire of Arelon, Astinus finally overthrew Arelonian rule in 250 BE. They replaced it with a republican system that has persisted ever since.
The underpinning of the republic is the Tribunal, which is composed of 707 tribunes. These are elected by vote once a year; every citizen is entitled to a vote, but only a landowner can be appointed to the office of tribune. The Tribunal, in turn, elects a consul once every two years. The consul, who cannot serve two terms consecutively, appoints 9 tribunes to form the Council of Nine. These councillors assist him, and have only slightly less authority. Each has a specific area of responsibility, to be decided by the consul.
Under normal circumstances, all affairs of state and spending are under the authority of the consul and the Council of Nine. The only authority they do not have is the proposal or amendment of laws; new laws are passed by a two-thirds majority of the Tribunal. The consul has the final say, and can make minor amendments to the law; if the amendments are too major, the Tribunal can veto the law, again with a two-thirds majority. Finally, a two-thirds vote by the Tribunal is sufficient to depose the consul, a councillor or a cribune.
If the Consul dies before the next election or is otherwise indisposed, the Councillors currently in the capitol can make consular decisions on his behalf as long as they have a quorum of 5. If they are evenly divided, or they do not have a quorum, the Tribunal votes directly - again, with a 2-thirds majority. Under normal circumstances, a majority of the Tribunal will be 471 votes; however, it can be less. Tribunes may be vacant until the next yearly election due to death, sickness, refusal to assume their seat, deposition, et cetera. If a tribune does not attend the Tribunal, they are assumed to abstain from any vote - reducing the majority needed.
The Consul is identified by a special ring, the Ring of the Republic, which is said to be made from gold taken from the crown of the last king of Astinus.