In order of precedence, the Great Officers are as follows:
The Lord High Steward/Royal Chief Justice
The Lord High Steward heads the Amber Judiciary. He chooses judges with royal approval; arranges prosecutions and investigations, as Attorney General and Solicitor General; controls all gaols that are not Royal Prisons. (Amber Castle and Port Royale), and is the supreme judge in parliament. His jurisdiction also includes liquor, betting and gaming licences for premises in Amber. Usually, it is the Steward who tries High Nobles for serious crimes (sometimes assisted by the Star Chamber), and also sits on offences committed within the verge of the royal palaces.
In his non-judicial roles, he audits and manages the accounts of the Royal Household (subject to audits with Royal Approval by the King or the Queen Mother Clarissa Helgram) and is often involved in arrangements for royal travel. He also manages of the affairs of the Royal Household which are not covered by the Lord Chamberlain, as well as the Royal Physician, Almonry, Royal Estates, Port Royal City Government and the staffing of the different positions of honour and state. In this role, the position works with and answers de facto to the Royal Secretary.
At a Coronation, he walks in front of the new Sovereign, carrying the Crown of Amber, on a velvet cushion. He wears robes of white satin and gold under-garment, with a long red mantle and ermine tippet.
Current Incumbent: Edward Albert Saxe-Coburg
The Lord Chancellor/Lord President of the Council
The Lord Chancellor is the Lord President of Council, and is able to summon the Great Officers of State in loco regis and to supervise the passing of Royal Decrees from the Royal Office to Orders in Council. He also has residual Judicial powers. The Lord Chancellor also has the authority to the Speaker in any House of Parliament. Important petitions are sent to the Lord Chancellor for his decision, with the most significant of these then being brought to the King’s attention. He is also sometimes referred to as the “Keeper of the King’s Conscience”, and is the custodian of the Great Seal of Amber.
The Lord Chancellor is head of the High Court of Chancellery, which determines according to fairness (or “equity”), instead of according to the strict principles of Amber Common Law. Wards in Chancellery are the youth of royal, noble blood and great wealth who are declared wards of the Lord Chancellor. Suitable marriages may be arranged for them if over the age of 16 to 21. The Court is also the legal machinery of Royal Divorces. The High Court has not met since the divorce of Clarissa and marriage of Rilga.
Royal children must also receive Royal Approval under the Royal Marriages Act if they wish to marry at any age.
The College of Heralds and all Knighthoods and honours fall under the control of Chancellery for administrative purposes though the Royal Office determines the appointments.
On formal state occasions, the Lord Chancellor, on formal state occasions, wears legal court dress consisting of a black silk velvet cutaway tailcoat with cloth covered buttons, waistcoat and breeches worn with white shirt, lace stock and cuffs, black silk stockings and cut-steel buckled patent court shoes. Over this is worn a black silk damask robe of state with a long train trimmed with gold lace and frogging, with a black silk ‘wig bag’ attached to the flap collar at the back. A black tricorn hat is worn with no wigs.
Current Incumbent: Isaac, son of Fiona
The Lord Treasurer/Chancellor of the Exchequer
Lord Treasurer is a position which makes the incumbent more or less a taxing machine. He is entrusted with a certain amount of misery which it is his duty to distribute as fairly as he can.
The Lord Treasurer’s key roles involves the framing of the annual Budget, which is summarised in a speech (with new shoes and a draft of liquor after the speech). He controls the Treasury Board or Lords of Treasury and holds the title of First Lord of the Treasury (but not Prime Minister), and has considerable control over other departments as it is the Treasury which sets departmental spending limits. The amount of power this gives to an individual Lord Treasurer depends on his personal forcefulness, his status with the other Office Holders and his relationship with the King. Although the Lord Treasurer is responsible for setting interest rates, he plays an important part in the monetary policy structure, setting the inflation target which the Bank of Amber must meet.
He controls regulation of the Amber and Golden Circle monetary system, and is guardian of the Strategic Gold Reserve which must contain 100 years of future budgets in gold. He also regulates the sale and trade of precious metals, but is not empowered to confiscate private holdings of gold and other precious metal holdings. In addition, he regulates the Crown’s share of treasure found in Amber, its lands and seas including the Empire of the Golden Circle. Through his control of revenue and taxation, the Lord Treasurer may authorize audits of government departments inside the Golden Circle and the Kingdom of Amber. He may also conduct audits of taxes of any business, subject of Amber or foreign resident/property owner or ratepayer, with the exception of members of the Royal Family.
The Sovereign Principality of Garnath, is the only entity inside the Golden Circle not under his control.
He has a summer house, a large treasury office and gets his own locked green dispatch box.
Current Incumbent: Rambault, son of Gerard
Lord Privy Seal
The Lord Privy Seal is the person who keeps the Royal Privy Seal for the day-to-day use of the Royal Office and theGreat Officers of State. The position is a sine cure; however it is also a high ranking position and tends to be used as a Minister without Portfolio to take on special projects and tasks not covered by regular Great Officers.
The Lord Great Chamberlain
The Lord Great Chamberlain (although the Great is only used at Coronations) is the senior official of the Royal Household and oversees its business, including liaising with the other senior officers of the Household, chairing Heads of Department meetings, and advising on the appointment of senior Household officials. His responsibilities do not include King Bleys’ personal household, which outnumbers the Lord Chamberlain’s staff.
He also undertakes ceremonial duties, and has a major part to play in Royal coronations. He has the right to dress the monarch on coronation day, is involved in investing the monarch with the insignia of rule, and serves the monarch water before and after the coronation banquet. He serves as the channel of communication between the Sovereign and the any government body in Amber (were parliament still meeting) and also regulates the design and the wearing of court uniform and dress how insignia are worn, subject to the King’s approval.
He as the statutory authority to veto the performance of any new plays: he could prevent any new play, or any modification to an existing play, from being performed for any reason; and to prosecute theatre owners could for staging a play (or part of a play) that had not received prior approval. He can prohibit the performance of plays where, in his opinion, “it is fitting for the preservation of good manners, decorum or of the public peace so to do”.
The Lord Chamberlain’s Office is a department of the Royal Office and is headed by the Comptroller. It is responsible for organising ceremonial activities including state visits, investitures, garden parties, the State Events, weddings and funerals, subject to the approval of the King/Royal Office.
On ceremonial occasions, he wears a distinctive scarlet court uniform and bears a gold key and a white stave as the insignia of his office.
Current Incumbent: Sheridan, son of Jericho.
Lord Marshal of Amber
Lord Marshal of Amber is the highest army official under the King. He controls the general staff, determines appointments and promotions, and administers the functions of war. He is the highest authority under the king in occupied foreign lands, subject to appeal eventually up to the Crown.
In conjunction with the Chief Justiciar, he presides at the Court of Chivalry, which administers justice in accordance with the laws of war. This is concerned with various areas relating to military matters, such as ransom, booty and soldiers’ wages, war crimes and including the misuse of armorial bearings. Jousts and tournaments fall under its jurisdiction. Any causes for a duel now can be referred to this body instead of a private duel for settlement, and the Court can authorise non-lethal judgements. The Marshal controls the military courts outside of Amber and the Golden Circle. There are different rules with military courts and regular courts.
From a ceremonial point of view, the Marshal is responsible for the organisation of State funerals and the monarch’s coronation in Amber Palace, or the Cathedral of the Unicorn in either Amber City or, more recently, Port Royal.
Current Incumbent: Edward Albert Saxe-Coburg
The Lord Admiral controls the Admiralty Lords Council and is the operational and administrative head of the Royal Amber Navy, and is the highest naval official under the King. He is also Admiral of the Allied Fleets of the Golden Circle Empire. The Royal Dockyards and support systems fall under Navy jurisdiction, as well as conquered islands under 100 square miles; and all water, where it controls the Admiralty Courts and administers Naval Law. The Lord Admiral has the final say over all promotions appointments and commissions under the authority of the Crown.
Rules for resolving army/navy turf wars:
- If it floats, the Marshal obeys the Admiral,
- If it’s on land, the Admiral obeys the Marshal
- Swamp is land.
Current Incumbent: Gerard, son of Oberon
Lord High Constable
This is a military post second in precedence to the Lord High Marshal. The Constable is responsible for supervising the militias of Royal Baronies, Earldoms and Duchies and co-ordinating them in time of domestic crisis or insurrection/invasion. He has the power to bring in emergency conscription, and seizure (with above market value compensation) of private property, persons, supplies, food, water, corporations, equipment and other items as needed. In all matters of war on land, the Constable acts as the Marshal’s deputy though they are the primary Commander of Lands Forces in the Amber Homeland. They also control the domestic military courts – subject to appeal eventually up to the Crown
Royal castles (with the exceptions of Amber Castle and Port Royal Castle) fall under their jurisdiction, as are all city walls, excepting Amber City and Port Royal. There are different rules with military courts and regular courts.
Current Incumbent: Bvt Brigadier Geoffrey Ellis (acting)
Sorcerer General and Court Magician
This an advisory post on all things magical. The most recent Court Magician was Prince Magnus, who replaced Dworkin who had long wanted to give the post up. With his subsequent departure, this has now been reappointed.
Current Incumbent: Icarus, grandson of Bleys