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The Thyatian Senate

by James Ruhland and Giulio Caroletti

Structure & Composition of the Senate

The Thyatian Senate is formed in this way:

102 senators are elected, with elections called by the Emperor, but never more than 6 years between them. The elective Senators are chosen by the following formula:

Thus, it is clear that the Senate varies in number from a minimum of 171 to a maximum of 210 (in AC 1016 following the changes in the City of Thyatis' status, this becomes 199 to 238).

If a Senator has access to more than one seat, things vary:

Note that these events also proceed if a senator loses his seat not by his own accord, but rather because he has been stripped of the title by the Senate due to some major charge (betrayal of the nation, etc.). This is usually the way Emperors fill in more suitable senators if they are especially displeased by the current senators. But it is noteworthy that the Senate can also do this at the expense of the Emperor's loyalists, and thus collect enough votes to dethrone a weak Emperor.

*In 1016, just before the Crown War [See the Mystaran Net Almanac -Ed.], there were 187 senators.


When in session, the Emperor (as the "humble" Duke of Thyatis) holds the position of Princeps Senatus; if he is not present, the Crown Prince acts as Praesident Pro Tempore of the Senate (and holds the Emperor's vote in proxy). If neither are present, the most senior Senator present functions as Praesident Pro Tempore. These officers function as speakers (Dictators) of the Senate, recognizing individual Senators in debate and scheduling topics of discussion (which gives them a great deal of influence over what is discussed). Note that every Senator has the right to speak on every topic if he or she chooses, and so the Senate officers must be fair in recognizing those who stand to speak. However, the ability to guide the order in which topics are discussed and the order in which Senators are recognized to speak before the body can be critical.

There are no "political parties" in the Thyatian Senate, however there are a number of informal factions:

Factions & Members of the Senate


This faction is built up around the aristocratic ancient families and their followers (Clientela) and allies. It is a very large group, comprising 112 senators, but it is roughly divided in four smaller groups, which share different views on the political conduct of the Senate and the Empire.

The four factions are:

Gens Aemilia (24 senators)

Idea: Expansion of Senatorial & Aristocratic Perogatives

Gens Aemilia, led by the related families Paulus and Scaurus, represents the part of the Senatorial aristocracy that always tried to reinforce the Senate's power at the expense of the Emperor. A good example of their politics is the politics of the Emperors of the Scaurus family (59-117). The Gens Aemilia has been particularly influential in the Duchy of Kantrium, where they possess vast estates and are an economic power. The Paulus family is now planning to send their younger members to the Hinterlands, to establish a personal dominion with strong ties to the Senate instead of the Emperor.

Important Senators:
Kritias Paulus (head of the Paulus family), Leana Scaurus (head of the Scaurus family), Duke Maldinius Kerendas, Duke Tarik Ben Nadir
Baroness Gilla Blyskarats, Baron Babrak Biazzan
Gens Zendrolian, Gens Aurelia

Gens Aurelia (23 senators)

Idea: Theocratic Influence

This faction is represented by the Vorbian aristocratic family and is heavily influenced by the Church of the Trias. Members of the Gens Aurelia includes Adrian Aurelian, the most influential Pontifex of Thyatis, Werner Van Holze, the lieutenant of the Flamen of Solarios, and several dominion rulers. Their political goal is to support the Emperor through the organs of the Church, but they also use their power to strengthen the Church itself, and try to substitute the Church instead of the Senate in the role of the political counterpart of the Emperor. Many hands-off clerics of the Church do not like the machinations of the Gens Aurelia.

Important Senators:
Kallistos Vorbian (head of Vorbian family), Adrian Aurelian (Pontifex), Arch-Duke Derentarius

Thyarius Palykratidius, Werner Van Holze

Republicans, Gens Sergia, Populares, Gens Aemilia, Philosophers

Gens Sergia (22 senators)

Idea: Moderate Conservatives

Both leading families of the Gens Sergia trace their origin back to Sergius Trenzantenbium, cousin of Lucinius, the King of Thyatis during the Struggle for Freedom. Licinian had two sons, Lucinius and Mucius. Mucius was later nicknamed "Scaevola" ("Left-Handed") due to the loss of his right hand. The two sons of Licinian gave their names to the two branches of the family that descended from him. Both families have distinguished themselves as moderate Optimas, far from the excess of the nationalistic aristocratic families. They have supported the Empire but also strongly the rights of the Senate; this equivocating position has resulted in several violent deaths and proscriptions by the hand of usurpers or intransigent senators.

Important Senators:
Sergius Scaevola (head of Scaevola family), Julian Lucinius (head of Lucinius family)

Count Geraldan Actavius, Count Baldassarre Patrizio, Ettore Ottaviano, Iulius Scaevola

Enemies: Gens Aurelia, Republicans

Gens Zendrolian (43 senators)

Idea: Support the Imperial Family

The Zendrolian faction takes its name obviously by the first emperor of Thyatis, and the Emperor's counselors, advisers and political allies (Clientela) represent it. Many heavy nationalists and imperialists list themselves in the Zendrolian gens, but so do such people as Demetrion Karagenteropolus.

Important Senators:
Eusebius Torion (Emperor of Thyatis), Demetrion Karagenteropolus, Arch-Duchess Triella Tien Tang, Duke Callastian Retebius

Vivianna Romanones, Tredorian, Justin Karameikos, Demetius Vannopolis

Enemies: Republicans, Populares, Gens Aemilia

The Pure Ones (6 senators)

Idea: Ultranationalists and Hattian Seccessionists

These senators believe that the conduction of the Empire is wrong. Either the Empire will reopen a conquest politics and put out the non-Thyatian elements of its culture, or Hattias will leave the Empire. Although the latter aspect is condivided only by Hattians, many ultranationalists share this view of things.

Important Senators:
Harald Van Braun, Alkybiades Nemeicus

Count Heinrich Oesterhaus

Enemies: All other factions

Philosophers (13 senators)

Idea: Anti-interventists, pacifists

The Philosophers faction is a pacifist group, led traditionally by the Ochalean ruling family. After the betrayal of AC 1006, this faction was severely weakened (before the war there were more than 20 senators), although the return of Ochalea and the Pearl Islands will probably help things go better. The Philosophers are fiercely opposed to any political involvement of any Church, and their members go from conservators to moderate illuminated progressives.

Important Senators:
Arch-Duke Teng Lin Dieu, Arch-Duke Nurokidu Nuar

Count Yldysyl Greenheight, Countess Sabrina Andreana

Enemies: Gens Aurelia, Republicans

Free Thinkers (Independents) (9 senators)

These senators do not feel part of the other factions, but their support often proves critical in close votes, and thus they are influential beyond their apparent numbers. Canolcarius, the most prominent member of this group, likes to consider himself a power broker of sorts.

Important Senators:
Angelarian Canolocarius

Populares (42 senators)

This faction is composed of the most influential "progressives" in Thyatis, and especially opposes interferences in the Senate politics by external forces (Church and Emperor); they do not favor expansionistic politics, and currently they want to open more friendly politics with the other nations, although in the respect of Thyatis' imperial rights. The Populares are a contradictory group, with some of their members bordering the Republican eccesses, and others very close to the Gens Aemilia.

Important Senators:
Seline Valleides (taleswoman of the Populares)

Duke Leonidas Ruggiero, Duke Callastian Jowdynites

Gens Zendrolian, Gens Aurelia

Republicans (5 senators)

The Republicans are extremists who want to drastically alter the Empire's government and substitute it with a Republic. Many are ideal disciples of Fabritius Luscinia, a subversive of the 10th century.

Important Senators:
Darian Lentulus

Optimas, Philosophers

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Copyright (c) 2000, James Ruhland and Giulio Caroletti. All rights reserved. Used by permission.