San Marino is a small republic on the Adriatic coast of central Italy, located in between the Emilia-Romagna and Marche regions and surrounded by the Republic of Italy. It was the smallest sovereign state in Europe, behind Vatican City and Monaco, and the world’s smallest republic until Nauru’s independence in 1968. But did you know how many heads of state this seemingly nation has?
San Marino has two leaders of the state. The heads of state, known as “Captains Regent,” are elected for 6-month tenure. They presently have the world’s youngest head of state, at 27 years old, and have had the most female heads of state.
Why Does San Marino Have Two Heads?
The concept of having two state leaders is similar to the concept of Roman consuls. They are chosen in periodic elections and are directly drawn from Roman Republic customs. The council is identical to the Roman Senate, and the captains regent to the old Roman consuls. It’s assumed that as Roman power crumbled, the locals banded together to construct a primitive government to protect themselves against foreign rule.
San Marino is not striving to be unique in terms of political structure, but the tradition of having dual rulers dates back to the Roman overlords, and they have elected to keep it.
The uniqueness of San Marino’s administration does not end with the fact that it has two heads of state but also with the period of these heads of state’s terms.
State leaders from other countries usually serve for four or six years, while the Captain Regents of San Marino only serve for six months. San Marino’s Grand and General Council elects the two Captain Regents, usually from opposing political groups.
The Secretary of State, Secretary of the Interior, and Secretary of the Treasury are the most recognized members of the Congress of State, all directly selected by the Grand Council. The remaining seven are selected indirectly because they are usually nominated by the various political factions of the Republic of San Marino. (Source: Study Country)
What is Unique About San Marino’s Postal Service?
A paid mail service was established for all the citizens of San Marino in 1607. The Republic’s first postage stamps were produced in 1877, and since then, San Marino stamps have marked the Republic’s cultural and historical events and people.
San Marino has long been a famous destination for philatelists due to its limited issue of stamps. Postage stamps and coins are keenly sought by collectors and are important sources of revenue.
San Marino’s postal history dates to October 7, 1607, when public mail services were introduced. A post office in nearby Rimini, Italy, serviced the republic’s postal needs until 1833 when the first San Marino post office opened. (Source: The Culture Trip)
What is Abraham Lincoln’s Connection with San Marino?
The Republic of San Marino and the United States of America have favorable diplomatic relations. San Marino approved a republican alliance with the United States during the American Civil War, and the government made American President Abraham Lincoln an honorary citizen.
Although your dominion is small, nevertheless your State is one of the most honored throughout history.Abraham Lincoln, former US President
(Source: The Culture Trip)