The vast Empire of the Dragon contains hundreds of thousands of people. Many are human; some on the fringes of humanity, but Emperor Kisu rules all. Yet one man, even an ascendant emperor, cannot see to all of the concerns and laws governing so many. To keep Cantha running effectively, a bureaucracy is and always has been key. This bureaucracy — known collectively as the Celestial Ministry — has grown in size and power over the years, though not necessarily in efficiency. Emperor Kisu knows that the bureaucracy is too large, and in places too corrupt, but even the sovereign ruler of Cantha can only do so much to stem the tide of a growing bureaucratic class in Kaineng City.
The Celestial Ministry is divided into four smaller Ministries, each one devoted to a different aspect of Cantha's imperial government. These ministries, each named after one of the four major elements, have been created over several hundred years to (ostensibly) meet certain needs that the Celestial Ministry could not handle. Their elemental names — Fire, Earth, Air, and Water — are traditionally tied to specific (and largely mythical) powers. The most visible function of all Ministries is tax collection, which makes them even more unpopular among the masses. Most Canthan citizens love their emperor, but hate the bureaucracy that runs his empire.
— The Guild Wars Factions Manuscripts
The Celestial Ministry was a government organization in Cantha, divided into four smaller ministries; the Ministry of Flame, the Ministry of Earth, the Ministry of Water and the Ministry of Wind. Each of ministries had a specific group of responsibilities and was associated with a mythical power.
Responsibilities of each Ministry
- The Ministry of Flame oversaw law enforcement and justice and was in charge of incarceration. It was associated with control over the sunrise and sunset.
- The Ministry of Earth was the paperwork ministry. It was in charge of record keeping, building projects, and accounting. It was associated with control over the bounties of the land—animal, vegetable, and mineral.
- The Ministry of Water controlled the city's water supply, irrigation, and the fishing industry, as well as sharing direct control of Cantha's harbors with the Ministry of Wind. It was associated with controlling rainfall as well as the moon's rise and set.
- The Ministry of Wind controlled all the trade and shipping that relies on the wind, over land and across the sea. It shared control of Cantha’s ports with the Ministry of Water. It was associated with controlling the winds and storms.
The first cracks in the Ministries were shown during crisis with the return of Shiro Tagachi. They proved to be ineffective at both defeating the assassin and fighting his armies. Even after his demise, his army of Afflicted continued to dwell in the Empire of the Dragon, claiming countless lives.
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