The Constitution of Fiume (no, wait, come back! This is interesting!)
Found this quite by accident on Wikipedia while trawling the Wikisource list of Constitutions: A constitution drafted, for the short-lived Republic of Fiume (in northern Italy when founded in 1920; now in Croatia), by the poet and adventurer Gabriele d'Annunzio . Unlike certain other short-lived republics established in northern Italy during tumultuous post-war years, Fiume actually seems like a decent sort of polity - if only it had survived. From a lawyer's point of view it is full of professional interest. Okay, the preamble is a bit George Lucas, but that's the nature of the preamble genre (IIRC, Communist China's preamble, too, reads like a Ridley Scott screen crawl):
- The Enduring Will of the People
- Fiume, for centuries a free Commune of ancient Italy, declared her full and complete surrender to the mother-country on October 10, 1918. Her claim is threefold, like the impenetrable armour of Roman legend.
- Fiume is warden of the Italian marches, the furthest stronghold of Italian culture, the most distant land that bears the imprint of Dante...
- 8. The Constitution guarantees to all citizens of both sexes: primary instruction in well-lighted and healthy schools; physical training in open-air gymnasiums, [...]
- 8. Whatever be the kind of work a man does, whether of hand or brain, art or industry, design or execution, he must he a member of one of the ten Corporations [...] 9. The first Corporation comprises the wage-earners of industry, agriculture and commerce, small artisans, and small landholders who work their own farms, employing little other labour and that only occasionally.
- The second Corporation includes all members of the technical or managerial staff in any private business, industrial or rural, with the exception of the proprietors or partners in the business. [...]
- The ninth comprises all workers on the sea. [...]
- It is represented in the civic sanctuary by a kindled lamp bearing an ancient Tuscan inscription of the epoch of the communes, that calls up an ideal vision of human labour: 'Fatica senza fatica.' ["Fatigue without fatigue"? Huh?]
- 27. Two elected bodies will exercise legislative power: the Council of Senators; [and] the Council of 'Provvisori'.
- 29. Senators remain in office ten years....
- ...They are elected in the proportion of one to every thousand electors, but in no case can their number be under thirty. All electors form a single constituency. The election is to be by universal suffrage and proportional representation.
- 31. The Council of the Provvisori is composed of sixty delegates, elected by universal secret suffrage and proportional representation. Ten Provvisori are elected by industrial workers and agricultural labourers; ten by seamen of all kinds; ten by employers; five by rural and industrial technicians; five by the managerial staffs in private firms; five by the teachers in the public schools, by the students in the higher schools, and by other members of the sixth Corporation; five by the liberal professions; five by public servants; five by Co-operative Societies of production, of labor and of consumption.
- 1. The sovereign people of Fiume, in the strength of their unassailable sovereignty, take as the centre of their free State the "corpus separatum," with all its railways and its harbour. But, as on the west they are determined to maintain contact with the mother-country, so, on the east, they are not prepared to renounce their claim to a frontier more just and more secure than might be assigned to them by the next happening in the give-and-take of politics...
- 43. When the province is in extreme peril and sees that her safety depends on the will and devotion of one man who is capable of rousing and of leading all the forces of the people in a united and victorious effort,
- ... the National Council in solemn conclave in the Arengo [joint sitting - Article 34] may, voting by word of mouth, nominate a Commandant and transmit to him supreme authority without appeal. The Council decides the period, long or short, during which he is to rule, not forgetting that in the Roman Republic the dictatorship lasted six months.