How do you join the Civil Service?
Secretarii are a class of scribes and recorders who are chosen from amongst the scholarly class of the great cities of the empire. Appointment to the civil service is made by the emperor himself, with the assistance of a magisterial court staffed with clerics of the Quilian and Hierian temples. Only freeborn nobility (second and third sons, as well as any citizen born in an urban commune) are admissible to the civil service. Farmers and the like cannot join the civil service—but nor would they want to, almost universally lacking the ability to read and write.
Sacred Heralds are also members of the civil service, with ranks above the palatine secundi but below the primari.
What kinds of things do civil servants do?
Comprised mostly of Quilian and Hierian priests, the civil service provides many essential functions of the empire—tax assessment, recording and promulgation of law, assessment of the various repairs in the great cities, assessment of roads, and administration of the imperial system of wayhouses along the Pillar Road that runs as a highway from Miles all the way west to Byrne.
What are the ranks of the service?
The civil service has two branches—the Palatine Service and the Provincial Service. Palatine servants work as secretaries beneath the inner and outer curia, recording everything that's said and done. These are known as the sercretarii domus. Secretarii domus are divided into the tertii, secundi, and primari. Above the primari are the Secretarii Curiali, who serve the emperor directly and record the goings on of the court and help promulgate laws by hiring heralds and viators.
The Provincial Service is also divided into tertii, secundi, and primari, but the Provincial Primari are the chief servants of each Duchy and Imperial County, and report back to the Secretarii Curiali.