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Thursday, December 29, 2005

Bring back the English Heptarchy!

To me, the idea of English regional government based upon the Anglo-Saxon Heptarchy seems the only way forward for radical English regionalists to escape the political minefield of following Establishment models of regionalism AND accusations that we are part of a Brussels plot to "break-up" Britain. The following below came from the same Guildist League Yahoo e-group as in the previous posting.

Message: 1
Date: Wed, 30 Nov 2005 01:52:10 -0000
From: "eliadite"
Subject: Re: Capital idea

The word heptarchy refers to the existence of the seven kingdoms
which eventually merged to become England during the early1 0th
century, and comprising Northumbria, Mercia, East Anglia, Essex,
Kent, Sussex,and Wessex. The term itself dates back to the twelfth
century, and the English historian Henry of Huntingdon.

The heptarchy continued as administrative areas after the formation
of England which, was generally a decentralised kingdom developed
closer to an "organic model". The parts of the heptarchy had their
own leading towns, which could be viewed as regional capitals. All
this was smashed to pieces when the Norman invasion imposed a
militaristic, centralised despotic regime in 1066.

The regional identity survived in the English at the cultural level,
all be it subtly. I've long been interested in the concept of the
basic model of the ideological and cultural superstructure being
determined by the economic base, but also and essentially that the
economic base is determined by environmental conditions. Therefore
the Norman essentially non-English, cultural model was ultimately
always unsuited to England and set in train a dysfunctional period in
English history. These type of dislocations also help to initiate
ecological despoilation, perhaps the most pressing concern of
humankind today.

The Heptarchy therefore represents the most recent (1,000 years ago)
system in England to which to refer for people wishing to see a
return to a decentralised organicism The idea of rotating capitals
amongst the heptarchal capitals is something I've dreamt up (though
it's probably not original). In this day and age of tele-networking,
video-conferencing, advanced encription I see no reason why not given
we're talking about devolving so much power down to the regions and
to the Guilds anyway.


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