Laws of the Isle of Svago


Disclaimer: The Isle of Svago is a role play sim. This document does not encompass every scenario that might present itself. It’s the role play that will determine changes, removal or new laws. Like RL, it’s a guide to maintain some semblance of order.


The Isle of Svago is governed by the High Council. It consists of two members from each of the Five High Castes (Initiate, Scribe, Builder, Physician, Warrior) and is overseen by the Administrator. The two representatives normally consist of the Head of Caste and Assistant Head of Caste. Each of the High Castes has only one vote.

No matter of state may be decided with less than 3 votes in favor. The Administrator’s vote is only applied in cases of a tie or he is acting as proxy for an absent caste representative with that representative’s knowledge.

At the discretion of the Council, attending may also be the Head Merchant, the High Magistrate and the High Ambassador. They may advise the High Council when prompted to do so, but have no voting rights.

In times of war, the High Council may ask the Caste of Warriors to nominate an Ubar, who upon their approval will have total control of the Isle of Svago, military and civil, leaving the High Council to act as advisors to the Ubar. Once war has ended, power reverts to the High Council.

The High Council makes all laws and changes. This is done by majority vote. Merchant Law, Caste Laws and Codes are also applicable. The laws of the isle bind every citizen of the Isle of Svago within its lands and docks and are enforced by the Warrior Caste.

Visiting Ambassadors from cities with signed treaties and any accompanying them are to be given free passage so long as they do not engage in criminal acts. Any repeated violation will result in elevation of punishment.


Magistrates are recommended by the High Magistrate or Head of Caste should there not be a High Magistrate at that time. They report directly to the High Council but remain under the jurisdiction of the Scribe Head of Caste, as they play a dual role as both upholder of Civil law and their duties as a scribe.

Magistrates once appointed, are not under the direct authority of their caste. They are a separate authority, unto themselves and yield only to the Council. Any implication that the caste has any influence over their actions would imply authority which that could affect judgment.

The Magistrate decides if laws have been broken and how they are redressed. The High Council can overturn the ruling of a Magistrate through the appeals process.

Punishment may be increased or reduced per the Magistrate’s authority.

Any free person accused of a crime may request an advocate (lawyer) to represent them before the magistrate. If it is decides that Caste codes are applicable, these violations will be addressed by that caste.

Only the High Council can overturn a Magistrate’s ruling through appeal. And only then through unanimous vote to do so.

Praetors have the authority to adjudicate (judge) any crime in the area they are charged to patrol, usually markets and docks. The decision is immediate. If the convicted wishes to appeal, their case will automatically go to trial.


Investigations are conducted by The High Council, the law branch under authority of the Magistrate and Warriors of the Isle of Svago within the performance of their duties. Results of said investigations are to be shared with the Magistrates for final review and recommendations.

Any citizen may request an investigation of suspected illegal activity by lodging a Citizen’s inquiry with the Magistrate office.

All evidence of possible violations of law will be brought to the attention of the Magistrate for investigation. Hearsay will not be accepted.


Under authority of the High Council, Magistrates and any member of the Warrior Caste of the Isle of Svago may detain or order the arrest of any Citizen or Visitor for breaches of the peace or investigation of violations of the law. Any order issued by a member of the Warrior Caste must be obeyed, including removal of weapons.

Any Citizen of the Isle of Svago may request (not demand) that a Magistrate or Warrior make an arrest on their behalf.

Praetors can place anyone under arrest for any crime committed in their area. If it is discovered during investigation that the crime committed no longer falls under their jurisdiction, the suspect will be arrested and the case taken to Magistrate.


—————-SECTION 5 – FAMILY LAW—————

The eldest male of any household is the governing authority. If no male resides in the household, the closest living male blood relative shall have governing authority over the female relatives, even if they do not reside in the same house.

Upon death or enslavement of a Male Citizen of the Isle of Svago, privately held assets and estate shall transfer to his eldest known son. If no son can be found, it goes as follows:

Closest living male relative, if none then –
His companion at time of death, if none then –
Eldest known daughter, if none then –
State of the Isle of Svago

Upon death or enslavement of a Female Citizen of the Isle of Svago, privately held assets and estate shall transfer to either her companion, or nearest male relative.

Any free person who wishes their estate to be divided other than as above, must record it with the Caste of Scribes as proof.

A child’s status is determined by the status of the mother at birth. If the woman is free, so is the child, and subject to their father’s authority. If the woman is a slave, the child becomes property of the woman’s owner.

—————-SECTION 6 – CASTE LAW—————

The Head of Caste must be a male. The Assistant Head of Caste may be of either gender.

The Head of Caste may be dismissed by a majority vote of the High Council.

The Head of Caste may choose to act as caste representative or appoint a representative. If a representative is chosen by the Head of Caste, no other may cast a vote in his place, including the Head of Caste himself.

Traditional order of the High Castes are as follows:

Initiates (white)
Scribes (blue)
Builders (yellow)
Physicians (green)
Warriors (red)

Low castes have no order of authority, though traditionally, the merchant caste is the -lead- low caste.



It is important to understand the separation of jurisdiction when it comes to areas which have matters of civil law from matters of merchant law.

In the case of slaves for example, the laws by which one may be enslaved, the laws which determine what a slave may or may not do in public places will be a matter of civil law.


The Isle of Svago’s weight and stone is tested 4 times per year at the Sardar fair. Weights and measures are standardized throughout the Gorean cities by Merchant Law.

Within the Caste of Merchants, any buying and selling should have a singular unit of measurement and weights tested against the island’s stone. Merchants found using anything other than the agreed upon system will be charged with defrauding the citizens of the Isle of Svago.

Scales failing calibration, tested 4 times a year

A merchant using a deceptive Foot or Stone

Working without a permit or registration


8 copper tarsk bits – 1 copper tarsk
100 copper tarsks – 1 silver tarsk
10 silver tarsks – 1 gold tarn
2 gold tarns = 1 double weight gold tarn

Alteration of coin weights (shaving, etc.)

All Free citizens of the Isle of Svago must pay taxes to the city banker.

The tax on sold goods is 2%.
The tax on rental and real estate (homes) is 5%.
The Harbormaster will be responsible for charging a 1% tax on all imports and exports of the Isle of Svago.
Not paying Taxes is a violation.

Merchant Law controls things like wharf and proof of registration. As the Isle of Svago is a free port, like Helmutsport, and Schendi and Bazi, and therefore are more interested in having their port heavily trafficked than strictly policed.

Docking and not paying wharf is a violation.

Capture Rights:
Capture rights pertain to all property, including slaves. Active possession of a slave is regarded as crucial by the law. A slave must fully serve anyone who possesses her, even a thief. If the slave runs away from the thief, she is a runaway.

Free women are permitted to escape from a captor if they have not yet been enslaved. The point of this law is to keep slaves in bondage and to make men bold. The institution of capture is honored by all cities, provided the females captured are those of an enemy.

Any free man of the Isle of Svago who captures or brings a woman who is not a citizen of the Isle of Svago, to the city, has “Capture Rights” over that woman. These rights are only to THAT man. He may choose to free her, ransom her or strip her and place her under HIS collar. Should the collared woman not be willing to submit, she is subject to that man’s justice. This includes execution of the woman should the man wish it.

Until a woman is collared, she is still a free and accorded the respect of one.

Revised 01/10/201