Posted in 2017, World Builiding, Writing

World Building Tip: Governments Part 1: Monarchy

One of the biggest and most important things you have to develop are the governments of your world. Different types of governments can mean differences in social interactions, ideals, traditions, and social structure. Because of the many types of governments that I could possibly write about I am going to split this topic up into several parts. I don’t want these posts to be too long. This will make writing worldbuilding updates that much harder.

A monarchy is the most common form of government found in the fantasy genre. This does not mean that you cannot have a monarchy in other genres. They can often show up in science fiction and historical fiction as well. When you have a monarchical government there will always be a royal family. Only people within this family will be able to inherit the title of monarch.

There are a few things you need to remember when creating a monarchy in your world. First of all there are multiple types of monarchies. An absolute monarchy is when the monarch has all the power. This is what was mostly seen in the past in many countries such as England, France, and Germany. A constitutional monarchy is when the monarch has limited power because of the constitution but still has a very small amount of power in the government. This is what England is right now in terms of the Queen and the british royal family. A crowned republic is when the monarch has no power at all and is merely a figurehead who acts as a symbol of the country.

The next thing you need to remember is the fact that there are multiple ways a heir can inherit the throne. They can be chosen by the current monarch to become the new monarch when either the last monarch either passes away or steps down from the throne. Multiple potential heirs can fight it out so that the strongest becomes the heir. There could be a test of intelligence, or a quest, or it could just be their destiny to one day rule the country as the monarch. There could even be a revolution which dethrones the last monarch and gives a new person the throne.

The final thing you must remember is that the royal lineage can be passed down by either males, females, or both. This is determined by the gender which holds the most political power in a society. Historically monarchies showed up in patriarchal societies and males carried on the royal lineage. Matriarchal societies were rare where the females carried on the lineage. I think equalitarian societies were slightly more common than matriarchal societies but still quite rare. In an egalitarian society both genders hold the same amount of political power and thus literally everyone in the royal family has the right to the throne.

When creating a monarchical system in your world keep the things I just described above in mind. You may want to base it off of a historical example but you don’t have to. While this would make it easier for you, it may seem uncreative and overdone. Also your government doesn’t even have to be a monarchy. Different forms of government can make your world more interesting and to be fair monarchies are overdone in the fantasy genre.

Sources:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Forms_of_government

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Matriarchy

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Patriarchy

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