11 April 2008

[liff] ORLY? News Item Of The Day: Sark No Longer Feudal

1483. (BBC full story) In a story that reminds you of all the blue laws in the U.S. such as No Roller Skating In Public Restrooms and You Can't Put Makeup On a Pig and things of that nature, we learn that Sark, one of the Channel Islands and a posession of the British Crown, as finally decided to  step boldly into the 20th Centruy and give up its system of government, which was actually still feudal:

Owners of the island's 40 tenements (divisions of land) had an automatic seat in the Chief Pleas, and islanders chose 12 people's deputies. But now the Chief Pleas is to be made up entirely of 28 elected deputies. The island needed to reform its constitution to comply with European human rights laws. The island agreed in March to change its 400-year-old system of government, which could directly trace its roots back to Queen Elizabeth I, who once granted the ruling "Seigner" a fief on the tiny Channel Island. The unelected descendents of 40 families brought in to colonise Sark, after the French abandoned it in 1553, have governed life on the island ever since.

Sark is really a very tiny place; scarcely larger than two square miles, and home to only about 600 people.

Why the island has the same name as that character in Tron remains unexplained.

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pril said...

that looks like a fascinating little place to go check out. I love the Clameur de Haro, too. Did I spell that right? Even use the right words? Too early...

Samuel John Klein Portlandiensis said...

Yes, you did use the right words. What intimidates me is the idea of pronouncation!

Wouldn't it kick A to witness that in operation?