A declaration of concord allows the Imperial Conclave to agree a statement of belief, intent or support. It can also be used to extend an invitation, accept an offer or reject an approach by an eternal. The declaration has no binding legal consequences but it does clearly expresses the intent of the Conclave, so it is often used when the Conclave wish to demonstrate their collective will to another political house such as the Senate.
The only effect of a declaration of concord is to demonstrate the agreed will of the Conclave. To do that effectively the declaration must clearly state what it is that the Conclave agrees on. It is common to have wording such as "the Conclave believes..." or "The magicians of the Empire support...". The declaration should be a clear simple expression of what it is the Conclave wishes or are doing (or that they reject).
In general, more is less - the longer and the more complex the wording, the less clear the resulting declaration will be. The wording of a declaration of concord cannot be amended after it is submitted, and will be recorded verbatim if the declaration passes.
The conclave can only vote either to agree with the declaration, or to disagree with it.
It is not possible for the Empire to pass any declaration secretly. If the declaration is passed, the civil service take reasonable steps to ensure that magicians throughout the Empire are aware of it. Some of those informed will be inclined to follow the lead of the Conclave and will act accordingly. This often means that non-Imperial parties will become aware of the declaration - usually that is to the advantage of the Empire.
For example, if a declaration calls for increased magical trade with Jarm - then many Imperial magicians will make contact with their Jarmish counterparts looking to trade with them. Naturally therefore the Jarmish will soon become aware of the declaration the Conclave has passed - they may (or may not) then choose to send a representative to Anvil to discuss the matter.
However, if a declaration calls for Imperial ritual teams to take every advantage of an offer provided by Basileus Flint of the City of Locks to allow them to curse the Thule territories, then Imperial magicians will be aware that that declaration has passed... but the Thule will not. No Imperial magician is going to get in touch with the Thule to discuss the matter with them unless a player-characters chooses to do that.
Occasionally the declaration of concord is used in advance to declare that a specific magical act will not be considered sorcery. Such a declaration is not legally binding on the Conclave but it can be very influential.
For example, in 326YE a number of curses were placed on individuals who had been identified by the Shuttered Lantern as supporters of the briars involved in the Freedom heresy. Given the personal power of several of these individuals, the covens involved sought this declaration immediately before placing the curses and used it (successfully) as a defence when magicians associated with the Imperial Senate and Imperial Synod tried to have them declared sorcerers in the aftermath.
The declaration of concord has also been used to initiate the creation of a Conclave order or a new Imperial title. The Imperial Senate will often take a relevant declaration into account when voting on a motion that impact magicians, or magical matters. The Constitutional Court also look at these declarations as evidence that the constitutional role of the Conclave is not being undermined.
Concord can also be used by the Conclave to accept an offer or a deal, often from an eternal or foreign nation.
If a concord does not pass, it is not considered to be the same as the Conclave saying they do not believe something - it is generally accepted by Imperial citizens, eternals, and foreigners alike that there are a number of reasons why the precise wording of a concord may not be upheld.
- Conclave session
- Conclave order