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Chapter I

ARTICAL 1

The Empire of Ethiopia comprises all the territories, including the islands and the
territorial waters, under the sovereignty of the Ethiopian Crown. Its sovereignty and
territory are indivisible. Its territories and the sovereign rights therein are inalienable.

All Ethiopian subjects, whether living within or without the Empire, constitute the
Ethiopian People

ARTICAL 2

The Imperial diginity shall remain perpetually to the line of Haile Sellassie I,
descendant of King Sahle Sellassie, whose line descends without interruption from
the dynasty of Menelik I, son of the Queen of Ethiopia, the Queen of Sheba and King
Solomon of Jerusalem.

ARTICAL 3

The succession to the Throne and Crown of the Empire by the descendants of the
Emperor and the exercise of the powers of Regency shall be determined as
hereinafter provided.

ARTICAL 4

By virtue of His Imperial Blood, as well as by the anointing which He has recieved,  
the person of the Emperor is sacred, His dignity is inviolable and His power
indisputable. He is, consequently, entitled to all the honours due to Him in
accordance with tradition and the present Constitution. Any one so bold as to seek to
injure the Emperor will be punished.

ARTICAL 5

The order of succession shall be lineal, and only male, born of lawful wedlock, may
succeed male; the nearest line shall pass before the more remote, and the elder in the
line before the younger.

In conformity with the provisions of this Artical and the following Articals 6 - 16, a
special law shall determine the order of, and the qualifications for the succession.


Among those entitled to the succession shall be reckoned also the son unborn, who
shall immediately take his proper place in the line of succession the moment he is
born into the world.

ARTICAL 7

In the event that, at the time of His succession to the Throne and Crown, the Emperor
shall have attained the age of eighteen years, He shall, on the day determined by Him,
but in any event not later then one year after His succession to the Crown, be
anointed and crowned as Emperor, the provisions and details of the coronation being
determined in the Coronation Ceremonial of the Ethiopian Orthodox Church of 2nd
November, 1930.

ARTICAL 8

Regency shall exist in the event that the Emperor is unable to exercise the Imperial
Office, whether by reason of minority, absence from Empire, or by reason of illness as
determined by the Crown Council. In such cases, the Regency shall exercise, in the
name of the Emperor, all the powers and perogatives of the Crown, except that the
Regency shall shall have no power to grant the title of Prince, and shall caretake
powers only as regards the properties of the Crown and of the Emperor. Regency
shall automatically terminate upon cessation, as regards the Emperor, of the
conditions having given rise to the Regency, in accordance with the provisions of the
present artical.  Regency shall be exercised, respectively, in the situations as provided
for Articals 9 and 11, by the person or by the Council, as provided for in Articals 10
and 11.

ARTICAL 9

In the event that the Emperor, or in the event that the Crown Prince or the Heir
Presumptive, in the situations provided for in Artical 11, shall not have attained the
age of eighteen years, the Regency shall be exercised by the Council of Regency as
provided for in Artical 11.

ARTICAL 10

The Council of Regency shall consist of the Empress Mother, the two descendants of
the line of Sahle Sellassie most nearly related to the Emperor, as determined by the
Crown Council, having reached the age of eighteen and being of sound mind, the
Archbishop, the Prime Minister, The President of the Senate and the President of the
Chamber of Deputies. The President of the Council of Regency shall be the Empress
Mother, or, in Her absence, the Prime Minister. No decisions of the Council of Regency
shall be taken except by a majority vote of two - thirds of the members thereof.

ARTICAL 11

Regency shall be exercised by the Crown Prince or the Heir Presumptive, as the case
may be, in case of the serious illness, or the absence of the Emperor from the Empire.
However, in the event that the Crown Prince or the Heir Presumptive, as the case may
be, himself shall be subject to serious illness, or shall be absent from the Empire or
shall not have attained his eighteenth year, the Regency shall be exercised by the
Council of Regency, which shall automatically relinquish its functions to the Crown
Prince or the Heir Presumptive, as the case may be, upon the cessation of any such
disability of the Crown Prince or the Heir Presumptive, as the case may be. Serious
illness of the Crown Prince or the Heir Presumptive, as the case may be, shall be
determined by the Crown Council.

ARTICAL 12

Upon the birth of the Crown Prince, the Emperor shall designate the members of the
Council of Guardianship to be convened and to assume its responsibilities only in the
event of a Regency. The mother of the Crown Prince shall ex-officio a member of such
Council. The Council of Guardianship shall receive in trust for the Crown Prince one
third of the annual income and revenues received by the predecessor of the Crown
Prince who has become Emperor, in conformity with this the provisions of Artical 19
(c).

ARTICAL 13

(a) In the event that the Emperor shall, at anytime, have no male desendant, or no
male descendant capable of meeting the requirements for succession to the Throne,
He shall, after having previously consulted the Crown Council, publicly designate as
Heir Presumptive from amongst His nearest male relatives, a direct descendant of
Sahle Sellassie, meeting the requirements for succession to the Throne.

(b) The determination as to the qualifications for sucession shall be made by the
Emperor, after having previously consulted the Crown Council.

(c)  In case of a determination that a male descendant is incapable of meeting the
requirements for sucession, such determination shall operate to exclude such male
descendant in favour of the next male descendant, or in favour of the Heir
Presumptive shall become inoperative upon the subsequent birth of a male
descendant.

(d)  In case of the minority of the Emperor, the designation of an Heir Presumptive
shall, in accordance with the provisions of the present artical, be effected by the  
Council of Regency. However, at the time of His Coronation, and at any time
thereafter, the Emperor shall be free to designate, in accordance with the provisions
of the present Artical , another Heir Presumptive in replacement of the Heir
Presumptive designated by the Council of Regency, or previously, by Himself.

ARTICAL 14

Throughout His minority, the place of residence of the Emperor shall be the Imperial
Palace. Absence therefrom for travel or for educational purposes maybe authorized
by law. Upon attaining the age of twelve years the Emperor may make official
appearences, attended by the Council of Regency, the Princes, the "Balabats" and the
Dignitaries (Mekuanent.)

ARTICAL 15

Any member of the Imperial Family, who, being eligible for succession, marries a
foreigner or who marries without consent of the Emperor, of the Regent, or of the
Council of Regency, as the case may be, shall forfeit all Imperial perogitives for
himself and his descendants.

ARTICAL 16

The Imperial family shall include all direct lineal ascendants and descendants,
together with their spouses, of the Emperor, with the exception of those who have
not complied with the provisions of Artical 15 or who are not of the Ethiopian
Orthodox Faith.

ARTICAL 17

The status, position, duties, responsibilities, emoluments, travels abroad and
deportment of the Princes and of members of the Imperial Family shall be considered
by the Crown Council from time to time and their recommendations thereon shall be
communicated to the Emperor for further action.

ARTICAL 18

Upon the death of the Emperor, there shall be a period of full national mourning of
three months, followed by a period of half mourning of six months, and upon the
death of the Empress, there shall be a period of full national mourning of two months,
followed by a period of half mourning of four months. The Emperor shall proclaim
lesser periods of full and half national mourning upon the deaths of other members of
the Imperial Family, except that no period of national mourning may cause to be
postponed a coronation more then one year from the date of the succession to the
Crown of the Emperor or of His attaining the age of eighteen. In the event that the
coronation takes place during a period of full or half mourning, such periods of
mourning shall be terminated seven days before the coronation.

ARTICAL 19

(a)  The regalia of the Crown, including all regalia of the Empress and of the Crown
Prince, are inalienable as belonging to the Empire.

(b)  From the date of the proclamation of the present Constitution, all realty
registered in the Name of the Crown (Bete Mengist) are held in trust for the Crown
under the administration of the Emperor and are inalienable.

(c)  It is the Emperor's right to administer all of the inalienable properties of the
Crown and all profits and revenues therefrom for the benefit of the Crown and the
Empire; and to receive and administer an annual approriation, as provided by law,
from the Imperial Treasury, which shall, with the aforesaid profits and revenues, be
adequate for the fulfillment of His functions under the present Constitution. In any
case of a Regency, the civil list shall be annually determined by law.

(d)   All properties held in the name of the Emperor or members of the Imperial
Family are private property and, as such, are under the same regime as that
applicable to all properties of nationals of the Empire.

(e)   The Emperor's Court shall be under His direction and He may make such
arrangements in regard thereto as He deems appropriate. He may, at will, appoint to,
or dismiss, from all posts at His Court, such persons as He shall see fit.

ARTICAL 20

Upon the establishment of a Council of Regency, each member thereof shall take,  in
the presence of the Emperor, the following oath which shall be administered by the
Archbishop :

" In the name of the Almighty, and as a member of the Council of Regency, I hereby
swear to defend, with all my power, the rights, the privileges and inheritance of His
Majesty the Emperor, so long as I shall remain a member of the Council of Regency ;  
that I will, at the all times, respect and defend the Constitution ; and that in all my
actions and conduct, as a member of that Council, I will ever be motivated by respect
for the Constitution and the firm resolve of protecting the rights, privileges, and
inheritance of His Majesty the Emperor of Ethiopia. So help me God"
The Archbishop himself shall take the same oath.

ARTICAL 21

On the occasion of His Coronation, the Emperor shall take the following oath:
"In the name of the Almighty God, We
Haile Sellassie I, the Emperor of Ethiopia,
swear that We will uphold and defend the Constitution of the Empire; that We will
govern Our Subjects with patience and devotion to their general welfare in
accordance with the Constitution and the laws; that We will faithfully defend, with all
the means in Our power, the integrity and territory of Our Empire; that We will
faithfully see to the impartial execution of all laws approved by Parliament and
proclaimed by Us; that We profess and will defend the Holy Orthodox Faith based on
the doctrines of St. Mark of Alexandria, professed in Ethiopia since the Holy Emperors
Abreha and Atsbiha; that We will ever promote the spiritual and material welfare and
advancement of Our Subjects; and that, with the aid of the Almighty, We will faithfully
execute the promises which We have here undertaken. So help Us God."

ARTICAL 22

On the occasion of the Coronation of the Emperor, if over twelve years of age, the
Crown Prince or the Heir Presumptive, as the case may be, all members of the Crown
Council and all members of the Parliament, shall individually take an oath of homage
and fidelity to the Emperor.

ARTICAL 23

In pursuance of the requirements of Artical 22, the Crown Prince or the Heir
Presumptive, as the case may be, if over age of twelve, shall take the following oath:

"In the name of the Almighty, I hereby swear that I will faithfully observe all the
precepts and directions of my August Father ( "Sovereign" in the case of an Heir
Presumptive) and will ever strive to respect His wishes and seek not after that which
is not given to me, and be not so impatient as Adonias or so daring as Abeselom; that
I will ever conduct myself so as to be worthy of my Sire ("Sovereign" in the case of an
Heir Presumptive), of my Imperial Blood and of the high station which is ("may be" in
the case of an Heir Presumptive) my destiny; that I will, at all times, respect the
Constitution and the laws, and will ever profess and defend the Faith of our Orthodox
Church. I swear that, with the assistance of the Almighty, I will faithfully execute the
promises which I have here undertaken.So help me God."

In the event that the aforesaid oath shall not be taken on the occasion of the
Coronation, either by Crown Prince or by the Heir Presumptive, as the case may be, it
shall be taken before the Emperor by the Crown Prince or the Heir presumptive, as
the case may be, upon his attaining the age of eighteen.

ARTICAL 24

In persuance of the requirements of Artical 22, the members of the Crown Council
shall take the following oath:

"In the name of the Almighty, I hereby swear allegiance and fidelity to my Sovereign,
His Imperial Majesty
Haile Sellassie I and that I will, as member of the Parliament,
faithfully place above all else the interest and welfare of Ethiopia and of its Sovereign;
that I will at all times, faithfully respect the Constitution and  laws of the Empire, and
that I will disclose no secret or confidential information revealed to me in connection
with my official duties and position.  So help me God.

ARTICAL 25

In persuance of the requirements of Artical 22, the members of the Parliament shall
take the following oath:

"In the name of the Almighty, I hereby swear allegiance and fidelity to my Sovereign,
His Imperial Majesty
Haile Sellassie I and that I will, as member of Parliament,
faithfully place above all else the interest and welfare of Ethiopia and of its Sovereign;
that I will at all times, faithfully respect the Constitution and laws of the Empire, and
that I will disclose no secret or confidential information revealed to me in connection
with my official duties and position.  So help me God.