Letter Patents

A title of nobility is conferred through an official document known as a Letter Patents or "Letter Patent of Nobility". The Letter Patent is issued by the Emperor-King, since the monarch of Karnia-Ruthenia is the fount of honor of the Empire. The physical document is composed by two sheets with the "formula of conference" (the formal proclamation confering the title) written in English and the arms correspondent to the new title on the other.

The letter patent specifics the duties and obligations of the noble. All letters patent contain language exhorting the new noble to "uphold and defend the Empire" using whatever authority and resources he may have, and also sets out any other provisions attached to the specific title, such as special conditions on inheritance. All of these provisions appear in the highly legalistic court terminology used almost exclusively in such documents.

When a letter patent is issued, the noble holds lhe original document and a record of the appointment is retained in the Hofkalender, an almanach located at Hofbau Palace. The physical patent of nobilily is primarily ceremonial, and can be replaced if lost or destroyed. The exclusive nature of the document adds to its individuality and perceived importance. Few official documents are written in such elaborate fashion, and those that are obviously have great importance.

Traditionally, listings of official appoimmems are published annually in the Holidays Lists (Christmas Day, Empire Day and Foundation Day, mainly) and in the Birthday List (appearing on the Emperor's birthday, which for Oscar I is 14 August). But letter patents may be issued extraordinarily at the discretion of the Emperor. Additional patents of nobility are sometimes issued for political purposes or special occasions, or to fill positions within the Imperial government. These letters patent are issued in special proclamations as needed.

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