There may be a monarch or president on the coinage but, for most folk, the magistrate is the man that really matters!
Law, order, and taxes are the basis of government. A magistrate is the government embodied in one person: his duties mean that he can help collect taxes, repress the people, and take their sons into the army, all at the same time. He is an administrator, tax collector, thief-taker, instigator of charitable works, military recruiter and father figure.
A magistrate usually represents the state and landed classes, even in a republic. Liberty and equality are all very well, but the rich need to be sure their wealth is secure. Under Napoleon, magistrates in every district were carefully selected and monitored by a Ministry of Justice, and used to keep an eye on disloyalty to the new regime. Often, magistrates were sent to distant provinces, so that they had no local sympathies. In Britain, the opposite tended to be the case: magistrates were selected from among the local gentry, who knew their neighbours and tenants intimately. Magistrates also had the power to call out troops to put down any civil disturbances, and to send convicted men off to the military as punishment.
Magistrates are an upgrade over tax offices, granting more repression and a higher bonus tax rate. They require 1,500 gold and 5 turns to build. As with all administrative buildings, they are the best building line for generating more income in a region in the short term, as well as helping control the populace.
Like all other administrative buildings, the Magistrate (Napoleon: Total War)'s increase to tax income does not have a negative impact on public order, but it does increase the penalty on town wealth growth. Unless it is exempted from tax entirely, a region with a Magistrate (Napoleon: Total War) has a slower wealth growth than a region without one. A region without an administrative building, on the other hand, can't exploit its taxable income as fully. In some cases, it may be worth delaying building an administrative building in a region until its wealth has built up somewhat, to increase income in the long run.
Magistrates can be upgraded into Courts of Justice, which provide higher repression, a greater bonus to region tax rate, and the ability to research new civil technologies.
- +2 repression in the region
- +10% bonus to region tax rate
- Recruitment capacity (units in training): 1
- Enables research of: Code Napoleon (France only), Public Schooling, National Census
- Enables recruitment and replenishment of: militia