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United Cygnian States
Timeline: Joan of What?
OTL equivalent: Oceania
Flag of Cygnia with 10 stars 1949 — present
Flag of Cygnia.png Great Seal of Cygnia.png
Flag Coat of arms
Motto: 
Suscipire et Finire (Latin)
"Support and Finish"
Anthem: 
The Song of Cygnia
Song of Australia - The Royal Australian Navy Band

Royal anthem: 
God Save the King
United States Navy Band - God Save the Queen

Cygnia-map.png
Territorial extent of Cygnia
CapitalNortham, TS
Largest city Sydney
Official languages English
Recognised
regional languages
Tok Pisin, Dutch, French, Aboriginal languages
Religion 63.3% Christianity
2.5% Buddhism
1.3% Hinduism
1.2% Other religions
22.3% No religion
9.4% Not stated or unclear
Demonym Cygnian
Government Federal parliamentary constitutional monarchy
 -  Empress Elizabeth
 -  Chancellor Julia Gillard (DLP)
 -  President of the Senate Sue Lines (DLP)
 -  Speaker of the House of Representatives Anna Burke (DLP)
 -  Chief Justice Stephen Gageler
Legislature Congress
 -  Upper house Senate
 -  Lower house House of Representatives
Establishment
 -  New Zealand 4 July 1614 
 -  Anglo-Dutch War 1664 — 1668 
 -  War of Independence 1784 — 1792 
 -  Declaration of Independence 3 April 1792 
 -  World War III 1938 — 1946 
 -  1947 Constitutional Convention 7 March – 13 November 1947 
 -  Constitution Day 18 February 1948 
 -  Coronation of Empress Elizabeth 2 June 1953 
Area
 -  Total 5,709,274 km2 
2,204,363 sq mi 
 -  Contiguous 4,986,585 km2
Population
 -  2016 estimate 162,358,145 
GDP (PPP) 2017 estimate
 -  Total £8,099 trillion (3rd)
 -  Per capita £49,882 (17th)
GDP (nominal) 2017 estimate
 -  Total £9.044 trillion (2nd)
 -  Per capita £55,707 (9th)
Gini (2012) 33.6
medium (19th)
HDI (2015) 0.939
very high (2nd)
Currency Cygnian Pound (CYP)
Time zone Western Standard Time (WST; UTC +8)
Central Standard Time (CST; UTC +9)
Eastern Standard Time (EST; UTC +10)
Date formats dd/mm/yyyy
Drives on the Left
Internet TLD .cy
Calling code +61

Cygnia, officially the United Cygnian States, is a country comprising Australia, the Māori Islands, New Guinea, and numerous smaller islands. It is the world's seventh-largest country by total area. Cygnia's capital is Northam, TS; its largest city is Sydney. Other metropolitan areas include Melbourne, Brisbane, Perth, Charlottesville, Auckland, Palmerston, Wellington, Port Moresby and Numbay.

For about 50,000 years before the first European settlement in the early 17th century, Australia was inhabited by indigenous Australians, who spoke languages grouped into roughly 250 language groups. After the European discovery of the continent by Dutch explorers in 1606, the colony of New Zealand, encompassing much of what is today eastern Cygnia, was claimed by the Dutch Republic in 1614. In 1660, the United Kingdom also began to colonise western Australasia, creating the colonies of Perth and Charlottesville in 1660 and 1662. Britain in 1668 also gained possession of New Zealand after their victory in the Anglo-Dutch War. The population grew steadily in subsequent decades; the continent was explored and an additional four self-governing crown colonies were established. In 1783, the British government was overthrown by French revolutionaries; King George III fled to the loyal Cygnian colonies, federating the six colonies and establishing a government-in-exile based from Perth. In 1785, George III declared Cygnia's independence from France. This independence was tested and confirmed in the Cygnian War of Independence from 1784 to 1792. Following the signing of the Treaty of London which ended the war, the Constitutional Convention of 1792 assembled to create the Imperial Constitution, the ratification of which resulted in the proclamation of the Empire of Cygnia and George III's coronation as George I, Emperor of the Cygnians.

Since federation and independence, Cygnia has maintained a stable liberal democratic political system that functions as a federal constitutional monarchy today comprising 21 states and several territories. The population of 162 million is highly urbanised and heavily concentrated on the coast.

Cygnia is a developed country and one of the wealthiest in the world, with the world's 3rd-largest economy. In 2014 Cygnia had the world's sixth-highest per capita income. Cygnia's military expenditure is the world's largest. With the second-highest human development index globally, Cygnia ranks highly in many international comparisons of national performance, such as quality of life, health, education, economic freedom, and the protection of civil liberties and political rights. Cygnia is a founding member of the United Nations, and also holds membership in the G8, Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD), World Trade Organisation, APTO, Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation and the Pacific Islands Forum.

Name

The name Cygnia is derived from the Latin Cygnis ("swan"); the name was devised and chosen in 1784 when the colonies federated. It was created in homage to the unique black swans native to Cygnia. Prior to Federation, the colonies were referred to collectively as Australia or British Australia.

History

Prehistory

Human habitation of the Australian continent is estimated to have begun between 42,000 and 48,000 years ago, possibly with the migration of people by land bridges and short sea-crossings from what is now Southeast Asia. These first inhabitants may have been ancestors of modern Indigenous Australians. At the time of European settlement in the late 18th century, most Indigenous Australians were hunter-gatherers, with a complex oral culture and spiritual values based on reverence for the land and a belief in the Dreaming. The Torres Strait Islanders, ethnically Melanesian, were originally horticulturists and hunter-gatherers. The northern coasts and waters of Australia were visited sporadically by fishermen from Maritime Southeast Asia.

European arrival

The first recorded European sighting of the Australian mainland, and the first recorded European landfall on the Australian continent, are attributed to the Dutch navigator Willem Janszoon. He sighted the southwest of what is today Cygnia is early 1606, and made landfall on 26 February at the Swan River. The Dutch charted the whole of the eastern coastline and named the island continent "New Holland" during the 17th century. In 1614, the Dutch Republic officially laid claim on the continent when Janszoon was sent with a colonial fleet; the colony of New Zealand was claimed near modern Brisbane. A camp was set up and the flag raised on 4 July 1614.

A British settlement was established at the Swan River in the west, now known as Perth, in 1650. The United Kingdom established Charlottesville several thousand kilometres east two years later. Britain lay a conflicting claim to the entire continent in 1663, beginning attempts to establish other colonies. This dispute was one of several which resulted in the Anglo-Dutch War, which broke out in 1664.

During the war, the British occupied the New Holland colonies, gradually overwhelming defending Dutch forces. The oldest and largest of these colonies, New Zealand, was renamed Brisbane and proclaimed a British colony. After six years of war, the Anglo-Dutch War was ended in 1670 with the signing of the Treaty of Westminster, formally ceding New Holland to Britain. The surviving residents of the Dutch colonies were allowed to return to the Netherlands; the others who remained were made British subjects.

After the United Kingdom secured dominance in Australia, more colonies were carved out of the continent. In 1707 a Letters Patent was issued which established each of these colonies as capitals of larger territories: Perth became the capital of Carolina, while Bunbury became that of East Georgia; Albany became the capital of West Georgia, and the settlements of Brisbane, Charlottesville, and Hobart were made the capitals of New Zealand, Avon and Tasmania respectively.

The indigenous population, estimated to have been between 750,000 and one million in 1606, declined for 150 years following settlement, mainly due to infectious disease. Thousands more died as a result of frontier conflict with settlers. A government policy of "assimilation" beginning with the Aboriginal Protection Act 1740 resulted in the removal of many Aboriginal children from their families and communities — often referred to as the Stolen Generations — a practice which may also have contributed to the decline in the indigenous population. This was stopped under the Chancellorship of Harrison Redford, who made the popular move to sign a treaty which began a long process of reconciliation and granted the Imperial government the power to legislate for Aboriginal Cygnians. Traditional ownership of land was also recognised in the treaty.

Colonial expansion

Between 1765 and 1780, the six colonies individually gained responsible government, managing most of their own affairs while remaining part of the British Empire. The Colonial Office in London retained control of some matters, notably foreign affairs, defence, and international shipping.

French Revolution

On 5 May, 1781, the French Revolution began. The Revolution was to be the end of the United Kingdom and the British Empire. Violence rapidly spread throughout the core realms of Britain, and on 14 July, 1781 the King of the United Kingdom, Alexander II, was forced to concede to the French revolutionaries' demands to move the royal court to Paris, thereby making France the centre of the United Kingdom, and not England. The National Constituent Assembly of France replaced the Parliament of the United Kingdom as the British legislature, and the Marquis de Lafayette became Prime Minister of the United Kingdom.

Popular opinion in the Australian colonies was thoroughly against the governmental change, and the colonial governments were wary of the new French government. Anticipating a move by France to secure its dominance over British Australia, the six colonial governors met in Swanstone on 6 October, 1781 and drafted the first version of what would become the Proclamation of Federation. In this early draft, the governors planned to declare the unification of the Australian colonies, and also the immediate independence of the new nation. However, the governors also elected to wait for a period of two years (unless an emergency unification was required), in case the situation in Britain improved.

On 20 June 1782 the King, increasingly dismayed by the disintegration of royal power, fled with the rest of the royal family from the Palace of Versailles, disguised as servants, and made their way to Marseilles. From there, the royal party embarked on a Royal Navy vessel and immediately set sail for British Australia. The ship arrived in Swanstone in April, 1783, and the King was welcomed amid cries of "God Save the King!" and "Long live Britannia!"

The colonial governors, upon hearing of the King's arrival, assembled once again in Swanstone to present to the King the draft proclamation. After editing it to include the King in the new federal government and creating a government-in-exile instead of an independent republic, the proclamation was approved by the Privy Council — composed of the governors — and thereafter it was published, officially federating the six colonies into the Kingdom of Cygnia.

Independence and expansion

World War I

Industrialisation

World War II, Great Depression and World War III

Cold War and civil rights era

Contemporary history

Name in other languages

The following are the full and common names of the United Cygnian States in major regional languages.

  • Melayu: Negeri-negeri Cygnia Bersatu
  • Javanese: Nagara-nagara Signi Sarékat
  • French: États-Unis Cygniennes (Cygnie)
  • Dutch: Verenigde Cygnische Staten (Cygnië)
  • Afrikaans: Verenigde State van Cygnië (Cygnië)
  • German: Vereinigten Cygnischen Staaten (Cygnia)
  • Spanish: Estados Unidos Cygnianos (Cygnia)
  • Chinese: 喜哥哖合众国 (Xǐgēnián hézhòngguó) (喜国, Xǐguó)
  • Japanese: シッグニャ合衆国 (Shiggunya Gasshūkoku) (シッグニャ, Shiggunya; 喜国, Kikoku)
  • Russian: Сигнийскийe Соединённые Штаты (Signiyskiye Soyedinonnyye Shtaty) (Сигния, Signiya)
  • Latin: Civitatis Foederatae Cygniae