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Lilliput

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Lilliput&Blefuscu

An 18th century map of Lilliput and Blefuscu.

Lilliput (IPA Pronunciation: [ˌlɪlɪˈpʊt], [lil-i-put]) is an island nation located in the South Indian Ocean. Lilliput is separated from the neighbouring island of Blefuscu by an 800 yard wide channel. The capital city of Lilliput is the walled city of Mildendo, located on the Western side of the island.[1]

Lilliputian and Blefuscan flaura and fauna are remarkably small, the average adult being no taller than six inches with other organisms similarly proportioned. Lilliput was first discovered by a European in 1699 by Lemuel Gulliver. It was the first voyage of Gulliver.

HistoryEdit

Lilliput has been in conflict with the neighbouring nation of Blefuscu since the early 1600's. The Prince of Lilliput at this time cut one of his fingers while breaking an egg on the big-end. The Emperor of the time then published an edict commanding all of his subjects to break the egg on the smaller end. This inspired great controversy, as Big-Endians interpreted the religious text the "Blundrecal" as commanding against the breaking of eggs in an inconvenient way.

The new law was so highly resented that six rebellions were led on it's account, during which a Lilliputian emperor was killed and another overthrown.[2] The nation of Blefuscu offered refuge to those fleeing Lilliputian persecution. As many as eleven thousand people have, at times, suffered death rather than break their eggs at the smaller end.[3]

750px-Ch 1 Gulliver Grandville 09

A 19th century etching of the Emperor of Lilliput.

The controversy has resulted in many hundreds of books a treatise being published on the issue, though Big-Endian books are black-listed in Lilliput and Big-Endian assemblies are also outlawed. Big-Endian exiles grew accredited in Blefuscu and received so much private assistance from Lilliputian Big-Endians that a "bloody war" was soon waged by the two empires.

PoliticsEdit

Political PartiesEdit

The two largest rivalling political parties in the empire of Lilliput are the Tramecksan and the Slamecksan parties. Followers of the Tramecksan are distinguishable by the high-heels of their shoes while followers of the Slamecksan are distinguishable by their low-heels. The Tramecksan party is mostly conservative and supports the ancient Constitution of Lilliput. However the Emperor of Lilliput, in 1699, favoured the Slamecksan and would allow only low-heels into the administration. The emperor at this time is described as having lower heels than any of his court, signifying his Slamecksan sympathies.[4]

The tension between Tramecksan and Slamecksan sympathisers is so high that they refuse to enter talks with one another, or even eat, drink or talk with each other. Statistically the Tramecksan have the largest group of members and supporters, though political strength and influence is afforded to the Slamecksan.[5]

Geography and BiologyEdit

Lilliput and Blefuscu are located in the South Indian Ocean. Both islands are separated by an 800 yard channel. Lilliput lies just below the equator where a tropical climate is prevalent, with two distinct monsoonal wet and dry seasons. Here humidity is generally high, averaging about 80%.

All Lilliputian animals and plants are of small stature, the average adult male measuring less than six inches in height.

LawsEdit

The legal system of Lilliput operates on reward and punishment. For example if a citizen of Lilliput is capable of producing evidence that he/she has obeyed the laws they are entitled to certain privileges, a certain sum of money is given to them along with the symbolic title "Snilpall".[6]

The Image of Justice in Lilliput is that of a woman with six eyes, two before, two behind and one on either side. In her right hand she holds a bag of gold open and in her right is a sheathed sword, to show that she is more disposed to reward than punish.[7]

Informants and state criminals of Lilliput are punished with severity, but if the person accused is found not guilty of the alleged crime his accuser is instead executed. The innocent person is then quadruply recompensed out of the possessions of his accuser for his loss of time, danger to his life, hardship of imprisonment and for all expenses used while making his defence. If the funds of his accuser are not sufficient then the innocent person is compensated by the Crown. Following this the Emperor makes a mark of his favour upon the acquitted individual and word of his innocence is spread.[8]

Fraud is generally considered a greater crime than theft and is punishable by death. Lilliputians reason that although an individual can take care to avoid theft honest individuals will often be undone by those of superior cunning, particularly in the arena of the free market.[9]

References and notesEdit

  1. Part 1, Chapter IV, "The wall which encompassed it is two feet and a half high, and at least eleven inches broad"
  2. Part 1, Chapter IV, "there have been six rebellions raised on that account; wherein one emperor lost his life, and another his crown."
  3. It is computed, that eleven thousand Persons have, at several times, suffered Death, rather than submit to break their Eggs at the smaller End.
  4. But however this be, his Majesty has determined to make use of only low Heels in the Administration of the Government, and all Offices in the Gift of the Crown, as you cannot but observe; and particularly, that his Majesty's Imperial Heels are lower at least by a Drurr than any of his Court; (Drurr is a Measure about the fourteenth Part of an Inch).
  5. We compute the Tramecksan, or High-Heels, to exceed us in number; but the Power is wholly on our Side.
  6. Although we usually call Reward and Punishment the two Hinges upon which all Government turns, yet I could never observe this Maxim to be put in practice by any Nation except that of Lilliput. Whoever can there bring sufficient Proof that he has strictly observed the Laws of his Country for seventy-three Moons, has a claim to certain Privileges, according to his Quality and Condition of Life, with a proportionable Sum of Money out of a Fund appropriated for that Use: He likewise acquires the Title of Snilpall, or Legal, which is added to his Name, but does not descend to his Posterity.
  7. It is upon this account that the Image of Justice, in their courts of Judicature, is formed with six Eyes, two before, as many behind, and on each side one, to signify Circumspection; with a Bag of Gold open in her Right Hand, and a Sword sheathed in her Left, to shew she is more disposed to Reward than to punish.
  8. All Crimes against the State are punished here with the utmost severity; but if the Person accused makes his Innocence plainly to appear upon his Tryal, the Accuser is immediately put to an ignominious Death; and out of his Goods or Lands, the innocent Person is quadruply recompensed for the Loss of his Time, for the Danger he underwent, for the Hardship of his Imprisonment, and for all the Charges he had been at in making his Defence. Or, if that Fund be deficient, it is largely supplied by the Crown. The Emperor does also confer on him some publick Mark of his Favour, and Proclamation is made of his Innocence through the whole City.
  9. They look upon Fraud as a greater Crime than Theft, and therefore seldom fail to punish it with Death; for they alledge, that Care and Vigilance, with a very common Understanding, may preserve a Man's Goods from Thieves, but Honesty has no fence against superior Cunning; and since it is necessary that there should be a perpetual Intercourse of Buying and Selling, and dealing upon Credit, where Fraud is permitted and connived at, or has no Law to punish it, the honest Dealer is always undone, and the Knave gets the advantage.

See alsoEdit

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