Micronations/List of already existing micronations/Grand Duchy of Avram

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The Grand Duchy of Avram is a micronation founded in the early 1980s by Tasmanian John Charlton Rudge,[1] who styles himself the "Grand Duke of Avram".

The public manifestation of the Duchy was The Royal Bank of Avram which at one time operated from retail premises owned by The Grand Duke of Avram in George Town, Tasmania, and which still issues its own banknotes and coinage and platinum 1 ounce coins. This enterprise was later relocated to Strahan, on Tasmania's west coast. Customers were required to exchange Australian currency for the Avram equivalents in order to obtain the currency. The Bank still operates today.[2]

The unlicensed nature of the Avram Bank roused the ire of the Australian government, who promptly confiscated Avram's entire currency reserves and initiated proceedings against him in the Australian Federal Court system. Eventually, after a total of six court cases, costing the federal government some A$22 million, the courts ruled that The Grand Duke of Avram had not engaged in any illegal activity, and ordered the return of all the confiscated property, however some disappeared in Federal Custody and later appeared on the market. He was permitted to resume his banking practices unhindered. He has issued several sets of coins and banknotes in the name of the Royal Bank of Avram since the 1980s (the most recent of which are dated 2008) and has asserted to a number of media representatives that the bank operates from a number of unspecified sites inside and outside of Tasmania.

Rudge was elected as a member of the Tasmanian House of Assembly, representing the Liberal Party in the seat of Lyons. He served a single term and held the position of Shadow Minister for Construction. Rudge later served as a councillor and Deputy Mayor of the municipal council of Sorell under his legal name as agreed by Justice Pierre Slicer in one of his decisions.

Rudge claims dozens of "noble" and "religious" titles (among them "Earl of Enoch" and "Cardinal Archbishop of The Royal See"), which he asserts are of ancient origin. He also claims to be the grand master of a handful of ancient orders of chivalry, and to travel on an Australian passport that lists his various titles including an Australian "Official" passport.

The Duchy of Avram has never claimed territory in the manner of other Australian micronations such as the Hutt River Province.

References[edit | edit source]

  1. "His Grace the Most Noble the Duke of Avram". The Parliament of Tasmania. 24 November 2005. Retrieved 2008-04-02.
  2. The Grand Duchy of Avram

Further reading[edit | edit source]

External links[edit | edit source]