The Leistavian flag
Leistavian crest

Images of Leistavia

A history of micronations

Other art virtual nations
Upper Yafa
The Republic of Howland, Baker and Jarvis
KREV Digital Territory



On the one hand, culture is very old and digital technology relatively new. On the other hand, Pitcairn-Norfolk culture, established on Pitcairn Island in 1789, is a relatively new culture. Aspects of the 1838 Laws passed on Pitcairn Island, a constitution of sorts, are utilised as the starting context for exploring cultural interconnections.

Pitcairn-Norfolk culture was established on Pitcairn Island following the mutiny on HMS Bounty. The starting cultural influences were mainly Tahitian and English. After arrival on Pitcairn, basically there was a race war which killed most of the adult men within ten years. The resultant culture was strongly influenced by women and peace loving; there was not a single murder for another two hundred years on either island. In 1856 the entire community of Pitcairn Island moved to Norfolk Island and most descendant lives there today. The people living on Pitcairn today are mainly descendants of those who returned.

In Pitcairn's 1838 Laws, both genders were given the vote and education was compulsory for both sexes. Sustainable use of wood resource was vital to the community, and practice around the use of wood was codified in the Laws. The gravest criminal act in 1838 was to kill a cat, for which there was a fine of $50. There were no laws against assault, stealing or murder as these were unknown. White birds and cats in particular, were protected in the Laws.

Aspects of the Pitcairn Laws used as context for cultural interconnection in this project are gender equality, sustainability, and birds & cats. From this background and related discussion a codification of Leistavian practices will take place, using an as yet undecided filtering method. It is noted that there is likely to be a strong connection between cultures in the context of boat mythology. All is open to discussion.

Interestingly, the 1992 Constitution of Estonia stated that natural resources shall be used sparingly; no one's honour may be defamed; there shall be no torture; everyone has the right to free self-realisation, education, to preserve his or her ethnic identity, to hold his or her opinions; and science and the arts shall be able to exist freely. Some articles of Estonian Constitutional Law are given below after the Laws of Pitcairn.

Following is a transcription of the actual 1838 Laws of Pitcairn. Please note there is no specific Law giving women the vote, rather there is no law excluding women, and the number of women voting was recorded each year in the Pitcairn Island Register.

The Pitcairn Island Laws of 1838

No. 1 - Laws and Regulations of Pitcairn's Island
The Magistrate is to convene the public on occasions of complaints being made to him; and on hearing both sides of the question, commit it to a jury.
He is to see all fines levied, and all public works executed; and everyone must treat him with respect.
He is to assume any power or authority on his own responsibility, or without the consent of the majority of the people.
A public journal shall be kept by the Magistrate, and shall from time to time be read; so that no one shall plead ignorance of the law for any crime he may commit. The journal shall be submitted to the inspection of those Captains of British men-o-war, which occasionally touch the island.

No. 2 - Laws for Dogs
If anyone's dog is found chasing a goat, the owner of that dog shall pay a fine of one dollar and a half; one dollar to the owner of the goat or goats, and the other half to the informer.
If any dog kills or otherwise injures a goat, the owner of the dog so offending must pay the damages; but should suspicion rest on no particular dog, the owners of dogs generally must pay the damage. The foregoing law is of no effect when the goat or goats are upon cultivated land.
Persons who have fowls or hogs in the bush may take dogs to hunt them, but should the dogs commit damage during the hunt, the person taking the dogs to hunt must pay the damage.

No. 3 - Laws for Cats
If any person under the age of ten years shall kill a cat, he or she shall receive corporal punishment. If any one, between the ages of ten and fifteen, kill a cat, he or she shall pay a fine of twenty five dollars; half the fine to be given to the informer, the other half to the public. All masters of families convicted of killing a cat shall be fined fifty dollars; half the fine to be given to the informer, the other half to the public.
N.B. Every person, from the age of fifteen upwards, shall pay a fine similar to masters.

No.4 - Laws for Hogs
If a pig does any damage, the person who sustains the damage may take the pig so trespassing, no matter whether he sees the pig committing damage, or another person see the pig committing damage.
If any person or persons, see a pig, or pigs, committing damage, and neglect to inform the person sustaining the damage, the person guilty of such neglect must pay the damage.

No.5 - Law Regarding the School
There must be a school kept, to which all parents shall be obliged to send their children, who must previously be able to repeat the alphabet, and be of the age from six to sixteen.
Mr Nobbs shall be placed at the head of the school, assisted by such persons as shall be named by the Chief Magistrate.
The school hours shall be from seven o'clock in the morning until noon, on all days except Saturdays and Sundays, casualties and sickness excepted.
One shilling, or an equivalent as marked below, shall be paid for each child per month, by the parents, whether the child attended school or not.
In case Mr Nobbs does not attend, the Assistant appointed by the Chief Magistrate shall receive the salary in proportion top the time Mr Nobbs is away.

Equivalent for money (shillings and pence)
One Barrel of Yams valued at 8 0
One Barrel of Sweet Potatoes 8 0
One Barrel of Irish Potatoes 12 0
Three good Bunches of Plantains 4 0
One Day's Labour 2 0

The Chief Magistrate is to see the labour is well performed; and goods which may be given for money, shall be delivered, either at the market place, or at the house of Mr Nobbs, as he may direct.

No. 6 - Miscellaneous
If any person wants to cultivate any lands, he is to give notice of it to the public; and any person wanting any wood is to go on the aforesaid land and get it. If any person cuts more wood than is sufficient to build his house, the wood that remains after his house is finished is to be given to the next person who may want to build a house. This extends only to the mero and borou timber.
Any person who may want any trees to break off the wind from his plantations or houses, is to make it known; and no one is allowed to cut them down, even if they be upon his own land.
At any meeting which may take place, there shall be no bringing up things that are past to incriminate others, with a view to prevent justice with a case before the Magistrate. Any one doing so shall be punished by such a fine as a jury may think proper to award.
The Magistrate is to appoint churchwardens, four in number, beginning on the first of every month.
Any person detected in shooting, or in any way killing white birds (unless for the sick) shall, for each bird that is killed, pay a dollar.

No. 7 - Laws for Wood
If any person goes to cut logs, to enclose a piece of ground, or any other purpose, he is not to cut any fit for building a dwelling house. The Magistrate is to appoint four men to inspect the logs after they are brought home; and should any be found serviceable for building dwelling houses, they are to be taken from him and given to the next person who builds a house.
The third year from a time a person commences cutting wood he is to pick a share of thatch for covering dwelling-houses.
If the wood is left longer than the time specified, it is to be taken from him and given to the next person who builds a house.
Any person cutting logs, must not cut green ones until no more dry ones can be found. Any person without a pig-sty and wanting one, is allowed to cut green logs to make it with if dry logs are not to be found.
No person is allowed to cut down any trees for logs on which there are young ones growing, which may be serviceable for building in the future.
Any person having a large enclosure round his pig-sty, cutting down any tree on which there is any good logs [sic], is not allowed to take the logs, but he is to leave it for the benefit of those who have no enclosure. He is also bound to inform those who have no enclosure where the logs are to be found; but if they do not cut them at the end of two weeks, any one may be allowed to cut them, and keep them for such service as they please. No one may cut green logs to repair his large enclosure, save what he may find on trees which have been cut and left above two weeks.

No. 8 - Laws Respecting Landmarks
On the first day of January, after the Magistrate is elected, he shall assemble all those who should be deemed necessary; and with them he is to visit all landmarks that are upon the island, and replace those that are lost. Should anything occur to prevent it's accomplishment in the time specified (the 1st of January), the Magistrate is bound to see it done the first opportunity.

No. 9 - Laws for Trading with Ships
No person or persons shall be allowed to get spirits of any sort from any vessel, or sell it to strangers or any person upon the island. Any one found guilty of so doing shall be punished by fine, or such other punishment as a jury shall determine on. No intoxicating liquor whatever shall be allowed to be taken on shore, unless it be for medical purposes. Any person found guilty of transgressing this law, shall be severely punished by a jury.
No females are allowed to go on board a foreign vessel, of any size or description, without the permission of the Magistrate; and in case the Magistrate does not go on board himself, he is to appoint four men to look after the females.

No. 10 - Law for the Public Anvil &c.
Any person taking the public anvil and public sledge hammer from the blacksmith's shop is to take it back after he has done with it; and in case the anvil and the sledge hammer should get lost by his neglecting to take it back, he is to get another anvil and sledge hammer, and pay a fine of four shillings.

1. The Laws here are those given in Nicolson's The Pitcairners. Auckland: Pasifica Press (1997, p. 162-167).
2. Nicolson (1997, p. 164) reports that the value of yams and potatoes was also recorded as two dollars, the plantains as one dollar, and a day's labour at half a dollar. Clearly there is a mix of US dollars and UK shillings and pence.


The Estonian Constitution of 1992 [edited]

Article 1 Sovereignty
(1) Estonia is an independent and sovereign democratic republic wherein the supreme power of the state is held by the people.
(2) Estonian independence and sovereignty is interminable and inalienable.

Article 2 Territory
(1) The land area, territorial waters and airspace of Estonia are an inseparable and indivisible whole.
(2) Estonia is politically a unitary state wherein the division of its territory into administrative units shall be determined by law.

Article 3 Rule of Law, International Law
(1) Governmental power shall be exercised solely on the basis of this Constitution and such laws which are in accordance with the Constitution. Universally recognized principles and norms of international law shall be an inseparable part of the Estonian legal system.

Article 5 Natural Resources
The natural wealth and resources of Estonia are national assets, which shall be used sparingly.

Article 6 Language
The official language of Estonia is Estonian.

Article 7 Symbols
The national colors of Estonia are blue, black and white. The dimensions of the national flag and the national coat-of-arms shall be determined by law.

Article 16 Right to Life
Everyone has the right to life. This right is protected by law. No one shall be arbitrarily deprived of his or her life.

Article 17 Honor
No one's honor or reputation may be defamed.

Article 18 No Torture or Cruel Punishment
(1) No one may be subjected to torture or to cruel or degrading treatment or punishment.
(2) No one may be subjected to medical or scientific experiments without his or her freely given consent.

Article 19 Right to Self-Realization
(1) Everyone shall have the right to free self-realization.
(2) In exercising their rights and liberties and fulfilling their duties, everyone must respect and consider the rights and liberties of other persons and observe the law.

Article 37 Education
(1) Everyone shall have the right to an education. Education shall be compulsory for school-age children to the extent specified by law, and free of school fees in state and local government general education schools.

Article 38 Freedom of Science and Teaching
(1) Science and the arts, and their instruction, shall be able to exist freely.

Article 41 Freedom of Belief
(1) Everyone shall have the right to hold his or her opinions and persuasions. No one may be coerced to change them.

Article 49 Ethnic Identity
Everyone shall have the right to preserve his or her ethnic identity.

Article 105 Referendum
(1) The Parliament shall have the right to put draft legislation or other national issues to a referendum.
(2) The decision of the people shall be determined by the majority of those participating in the referendum.
(3) A law which has been adopted by referendum shall be immediately proclaimed by the President of the Republic. The referendum decision shall be binding on all state bodies.
(4) Should the draft law which has been put to referendum not receive a majority of yes-votes, the President of the Republic shall declare early elections for the Parliament.

Translation provided by Martin Scheinin to the International Constitutional Law (ICL) website retrieved 27 July 2004 from [full text available on that page].