2020 Turtledoves - Best Ancient Timeline POLL

The Best Ancient Timeline is...


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In imitation of some other posts on some of the other polls, I thought it would be appropriate to give an introduction to my timeline and my intentions.

When one reads the history common in public discourse on the later Assyrian empire, it is often taken for granted the fall of the Assyrian state between 627-611 BCE. This 16 year period, is the reign of Sinsharishkun, the second son of the old king, Assurbanipal. He was the last Great King of Assyria and the last Assyrian king who held the capitol region of Nineveh, Kalhu and Assur. Common culture tends to view Assyrian history as such:

-Assurbanipal was a grand king who ruled for an exceptionally large period. He was devoted to religion, arts and his reign saw the empire reach its limits of power.
-In matters outside of his control, negligence or otherwise some even say Assurbanipal had already passed, is defeated by the Scythian horde in the vicinity of Haran in the year 631 BCE.
-Assurbanipal is succeeded by Assur-etil-ilani, who is defeated and Assyria is ravaged and destroyed by the Scythian horde. Most of the empire becomes destabilized and an Aramaen revolt appears under a king Nabopolasser. To make matters worse, the Medes enter alliance with the Aramaen rebels in Babylon and make war upon Assyria in 628 BCE.
-Sinsharishkun ascends to the throne under odd circumstances, most likely slaying his elder brother. His reign then is seen as one of many losses, incompetence and defeat, culminating in an almost inevitable genocide and destruction of Assyria.

Despite this common view, the historical record and the one taken by almost all scholars in the field of Assyriology attests to the lack of inevitability in the empire itself at the beginning of the reign of Sinsharishkun. Likewise, records, from the unbroken Babylonian chronicles, speak almost proudly of Sinsharishkun and these accounts display for us not a weak or incompetent king, but one of extreme talent and martial skill. Who, despite his father's failings, was able to maintain an empire in total war and very nearly took victory.

Before we discuss this grand victory that makes our POD, we should discuss another trope. The trope that Assyria, the so-called cauldron of the Bronze Age, the most fanatical and perhaps radical and alien of the ancient societies of the Mid East, was destined for defeat and destruction. That its extreme war making and zealous persecutions caused others to develop hate and arise against it. Tying into this, the notion from Machiavelli, 'that it is better to be feared rather than loved, but worse than both is to be hated.' However, we disagree fundamentally with this assertion, even if philosophically it may have bearings, it is however not unforeseeable to view the continuation of this Burning Cauldron in the Mid East and embarking upon the exportation of this mentality that exceeded its Persian successors. The effect of; at the heart of Western Asia, beats a renewing-China like civilization that instead of ruling in a stable fashion (as the Achaemenid's did generally in comparison), continues to ebb and flow and burn like a great forest fire. The Assyrian chronicles described their kingdom as the inferior mirror of the actions of the Great Gods, their small and insignificant holding that emulates them (the Great Gods) and as the story is, the Great Gods demand sacrifice, conquest, war, destruction, devotion and consecration of all matter to them; hence Assyria is called to uniquely unlike any most realms of history, conquer the universe. Hence the name of the Assyrian king, his highest title, 'King of the Universe, Master of All.'

Likewise, we cover the myriad of cultural and societal changes and trends in Assyria, in a uniquely alien and Akkadian way. Some have mentioned, that the timeline is like peering into another world in terms of the cultural differences and the unsightly nature of Assyrian devotion and mentality. What does it mean for such a culture to be maintained and perpetuate itself into the world? In the Bronze Age and Iron Age, we see the footprints of Assyria as the primary vehicle for large state and imperial construction in the Mid East (such as the Median kingdom and Persian kingdoms were created as a reaction to Assyrian fanaticism and bellicosity; same for Urartu, Colchis and others), an extrapolation of this into the world at large, is to our opinion, an exciting prospect.

This is out timeline goal and our POD is in specific, a victory of Sinsharishkun in the 2nd Battle of Uruk. The Uruk battles were a series of battles between the Assyrian field army of Sumer against the Aramaen and Babylonian rebel Nabopolasser with an army of Elamites, Gambulu and Arabs. In otl, Nabopolasser won a close victory and with the victory, received an alliance from the Medes and likely the Scythian horde inhabiting the area of Anatolia. Furthermore, the victory in Uruk, gave Nabopolasser complete rule in the south and could allow him to focus on a single front, whilst Assyria had already now four new fronts of war to its north, east and south. However, with a 2nd victory at Uruk, Sinsharishkun can advance south as planned without fears of a Median strike. Thus, Sinsharishkun with immense military superiority attacks southward.


The consequence of this change in the course of war, leads to the Burning Cauldron to continue its furious charge in all directions in search of asserting its title, King of the Universe.

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I hope that this timeline draws attention to the Assyrian culture, history and society. That would be the greatest and first wish. The second is a grand thought experiment of mine and of others regarding the effects of the empire upon India, Europe, Central Asia and by proxy, China. If you vote for my timeline for this award, it would help me achieve the other two points and thus I welcome all support and votes! Thank you to the readers and admins.
 
Hello everyone I am the writer of the Timeline Britannicus Invictus, and like everyone else thats been nominated for this award I want to say thank you to those who nominated me and to those who vote for my timeline.

Now onto the breif introduction of my Timeline. Britannicus Invictus begins with the failed assassination of Tiberius Claudius Germanicus Augustus, Emperor Claudius. The ensuing events place his son Tiberius Claudius Britannicus Caesar at the head of Rome, guarded by his Father in Law Corbulo, and his loyal Flavians. The goal of this timeline is to reach into the lives of the roman elite, and tell their story of political chaos and of course war. Through the twists and turns we get a different version of Rome, One lacking a mad man of the likes of Nero, how Britannicus reign will turn out we dont know yet, but we will continue to dive further into this timeline with constant Chapters.

One hope of this timeline is to show how much one action can change history, as well as to bring attention to the men and women of the early Roman Empire.

Thanks to all readers who have supported me, and to the admins and donors for running this forum, and to those who vote for us for this award!
 

Geon

Donor
Hello, I am Geon the writer of Saint Caligula!!.

I wanted to say thank you thank you thank you to everyone who nominated and seconded me and so far has voted for Saint Caligula.

To put it simply, I wanted to ask a simple question. How much difference would it have made if Constantine was not the first Christian emperor but an earlier individual - say during apostolic times. Caligula's illness during his reign is said by some experts to have caused him to become mentally unbalanced later in life. I wondered if the Emperor were healed by some miraculous means by one of the Apostles - or in this case Clement who was a disciple of St. Paul, how the dominos would fall from there. I will be continuing this TL off and on the next few months. And I appreciate all who have so far enjoyed it.
 
I'll make a promotional post here because why not:

My TL, A Horn of Bronze, is an alternate agriculture TL which explores the rise of a complex civilisation in the Pacific Northwest and all the ramifications that has on the world (starting with the Americas), with a particular focus on the Columbia River basin. I give a great emphasis to exploring how culture and society develops in light of this and give rich descriptions of cultural practices and the anthropology of these societies. The PoD is a great leader far to the north in Alaska shapes of the culture of his people in a way that leads to the domestication of the caribou as well as plants used to feed both caribou and humans, that is, a horticultural pastoralism. Climatic changes (volcanic eruptions and the Late Antiquity Little Ice Age) spread this domestication far and wide and lead to experimentation with other crops (many of which are water plants) and animals resulting in a full on agricultural revolution in the Pacific Northwest. I go into detail on the activities this civilisation relies on from whaling and seafaring, to pastoralism, to taming rivers for aquaculture, to manipulating the forests around them for food and essential supplies, and how this affects the development of civilisation. I have termed this civilisation "Fusanian civilisation" after the identification of the West Coast with the Chinese legend of the distant country of Fusang (which as you may guess foreshadows later contacts with China and Japan).

Thus far I have explored the origins of this civilisation, described numerous cultures important or otherwise, and detailed key events in the early history of this civilisation that describe how it came to be. My current focus is now detailing the rise of state societies and structures and the emergence of its first true empire out of a number of competing city-states. After that will be plenty of updates along those lines and eventually the impact on the remainder of the world and how the world interacts with this civilisation.

My inspirations include some of my favourite TLs here like Lands of Ice and Mice, Lands of Red and Gold, and Land of Sweetness. I read quite a few alternate agriculture TLs before I started and in some ways I'm aiming to subvert common tropes in play in those TLs . I am also quite inspired by the fascinating history, archaeology, and ethnography of this area OTL and the accomplishments achieved by those people in spite of their lack of Old World technology and decimation by disease.

My goal is to explore the interplay of forces on history--the natural world, biology, societies, and brilliant leaders--and above all, immerse myself and anyone who cares to read in the world of an alien civilisation, it's culture, and its affairs from those of the lowest peasant and herder to those of its elite.
 
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