Mandala system

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The Mandala system is the primary way in which nations of Southeast Asia traditionally relate to each other. There are some similarities with the feudal system of medieval Europe, as well as the modern condominium system. See Wikipedia:Mandala system for its operation *here*


In the Mandala system, there are a few privileged nations who enjoy "overlord" status. Smaller nations exist in a tributary status to these more powerful nations. Historically, the overlord-tributary relationship was personal, ruler to ruler, rather than on the level of nations, and could change swiftly. In addition, a nation could easily be tributary to two or more overlords. In the modern system, the relationships are more formalized, being governed by treaties, and are more complex than simple tribute.

Major participants

Before the Great Oriental War, China was the most important overlord nation. After the War, China's influence became much less.

(Note: the following list is tentative, and the romanization is inconsistent)