An Age of Miracles Continues: The Empire of Rhomania

Discussion in 'Alternate History Discussion: Before 1900' started by Basileus444, Apr 30, 2015.

  1. Cryostorm Monthly Donor

    Jan 9, 2012
    Charleston, SC United States of America
    Well considering the legends attached to it, the whole conquer the world bit, the real spear head is probably hidden under Washington at the moment with pieces in various other countries as protection from that particular weapon of mass conquest.
    Wolttaire likes this.
  2. Donald Reaver Still alive Donor

    Jan 25, 2004
    Likely under the Washington monument, less rude reason why it looks that way.
  3. Vince Optimistic Pessimist

    Jan 13, 2005
    Utica, NY
    1635: After hearing of the disastrous defeat at Thessaloniki, Emperor Demetrios III boards a dromon in Constantinople with his mistress and a lifetime supply of kaffos. He is never seen or heard from again.
  4. TheWanderingReader Active Member

    Nov 11, 2015
    Cool theories and all my good lads, but we all know how it's going to go down.

    Obviously Casimir's gonna gallop to Constantinople Alone then break the Herakliean walls thanks to his sheer dedication to the Catholic Church, THEN choke D3 in one hand and Oddy on the other hand. After that he duels the bone breaker beneath where the walls once stood just because he truly hates that man.
  5. RogueTraderEnthusiast Winner: WillamOfOckham "Most Title" 2018

    Jun 15, 2016
    I mean, he wouldn't be the first Emperor to retire. I doubt the defeat will happen, but I can see D3 packing up once he's convinced Ody is ready. Perhaps to directly administer Rhomania in the West. If we care about the whole "Born to the Purple, etc" then we've got potential seeds.

    Then again, we've had Marias children mentioned enough that Andreas' bastards could be potential seeds for that. I personally like the idea of the grandchild of D3 and Andreas having a bastard line in the West. Absolutely no basis for it, but it'd be a great sort of "Backup" Imperial Family.
  6. Lascaris Well-Known Member

    Jun 16, 2005
    That's a synonym for "claimant to the throne "
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  7. RogueTraderEnthusiast Winner: WillamOfOckham "Most Title" 2018

    Jun 15, 2016
    I mean, the Giray were pretty reliable as second-families for the Ottomans. Making it explicit "If, and only if, the Imperial Family is unable to hold the throne, this family are next in line" explictly
  8. Basileus444 Well-Known Member

    Oct 30, 2011
    @Curtain Jerker: I have a soft spot for Elizabeth too. While Empress of Rhomania, I was originally planning for her to be the ‘faithful but barren wife’ of Andreas III, who has a roving eye (not noticing that Andreas I, whom he desired to emulate, was actually quite faithful to his wives), and then gets kicked out rather insultingly when Andreas III died. Things turned out differently because I added Maria of Agra largely on a whim, not for her benefit. So Elizabeth’s getting rehabilitated back in Germany because I feel bad about what I did to her character.

    A complete 100% take-out is impossible, although if a band of cavalry escapes the battle, turns brigand, and is killed three months later somewhere in Thessaly, that doesn’t help Munich any.

    @JSC: I’m so not sorry, it’s reversed itself and become anti-sorry. ;)

    The HRE, Triunes, and Spain would all appoint nobles as commanders (there are a few commoners but those are rare) but they’re all better set up, particularly the Triunes and Spain, to ensure said noble is both loyal and competent.

    Salzburg surrendered peaceably and didn’t require a siege or storming, so while the inhabitants will be forced to provide lots of ‘voluntary contributions’, the Romans aren’t going to wreck the city. That’d be completely against the unwritten rules of war of the day, and counterproductive as it’d encourage any future siege targets to resist to the last.

    The details are still up in the air, but I’m planning for a present-day Rhomania to still have an underlying current of distrust for the Latins and viewing them as an other.

    The noise is from the thunder in the storm at Constantinople (it’s raining at the beginning of that scene). Everyone assumed that the sound of thunder meant cannon, but really Nostradamus just meant cannon. He’s annoying that way…

    @CV12Hornet: I think not listening to Bogislaw is a small tip on a large iceberg…

    @HanEmpire: It’s going to be lots of fun…

    @Grammar Kaiser: Mood Music is always really good. I typically listen to ‘Two Steps from Hell’ while writing.

    @ImperatorAlexander: Belgrade and Skoupoi might suspect some sort of Greek trick at first, but if provided suitable proof (parade of high-ranking captives?) they’d probably surrender promptly if promised good terms.

    @Antony444: Theodor has really driven the Wittelsbachs, and the HRE, into the ground. A mix of confirmation bias, wishful thinking, and just plain stupidity.

    @RogueTraderEnthusiast: The Romans wouldn’t trust any of their captives with weapons, even if fighting against the Persians. The Byzantines IOTL had some really bad luck with that and Demetrios is well aware of the history. Prisoners being used as forced labor battalions is highly likely; it’s not like they have to be paid properly.

    But wasn’t it glorious that Theodor managed to fight all the way down to Thessaloniki? After all, Moscow is listed as one of Napoleon’s great victories on his tomb, even though the aftermath ended rather badly for him.

    Yeah, when the Wittelsbachs default on their loans, things are going to get nasty really fast. At this stage, Bohemia, the next-tier 4 (Cologne, Hesse-Brunswick, Pomerania, Württemberg), and the bigger/wealthier Imperial cities like Hamburg and Bremen are the only ones that have economies that aren’t in terrible shape.

    @catconqueror: The HRE still has more men. But there is now a serious shortage of trained manpower. The Bavarians were able to field a larger army than the Romans on fairly short notice, but the recruits were mostly bad. The various principalities have more men as well, but they’re busy finding excuses not to send anymore.

    There are still some in the Rhineland. The German states could field more men in total than they could supply in Rhomania, so Germany’s not empty. But its A-team isn’t available anymore.

    @Duke of Nova Scotia: Ibrahim has an advantage in that those most aware of the issues of the truce, in which Ibrahim is included, are also aware that a civil war in the Ottoman Empire will only benefit the Romans. So there is a sense of rallying to the throne since there isn’t a clear alternative to Ibrahim, save for his younger brother Iskandar the Younger still in Roman custody.

    The Ottomans view the Triunes largely as useful tools. They’re still infidels, but they bring in lots of money through trade and while the fleet they helped build didn’t do much on the high seas, it did serve as a fleet-in-being that safeguarded the Hormuz area.

    @Evilprodigy: The ghazi mindset is an inheritance from the early Ottoman days. They got started as Turkish chieftains rallied around Osman when the Romans were retaking Anatolia in the late 1200s, so holy war against the Christians is what ‘birthed’ the Ottomans. There’s always been this thread since, even if there’s been tensions as a result with the capital.

    I have a specific element for each of those bits of the prophecy. So everything will come true, in some form or another.

    Good prophecies are like that.

    @Aristomenes: Prior to this point nobody’s willing to be the first to stick their neck out, as that might mean getting chopped off. Plus while Wittelsbach troops are tied up, so are a lot of the various princes’ troops. And there’s also Henri to consider.

    There may be an alt-Mozart, but the OTL one is butterflied away.

    @Imperial Inkstand-filler: Something like that is highly probable. The Crusaders IOTL often displayed a ‘stabbed-in-the-back’ attitude against the Byzantines as an excuse to justify their own failings and defeats.

    @Komnenos002: The Triunes will definitely be moving east shortly. Henri’s been waiting for a moment just like this since this whole thing began.

    I’m thinking (and I reverse the right to change my mind) that the Lotharingians are comparable to the Golden Age Dutch, but instead of facing the Spanish, they’re facing an alt-Louis XIV. The Triunes are quite well organized themselves and they’re a lot bigger than the Lotharingians.

    @chrnno: Lotharingia can put up a good fight, especially playing defensively. But in the last two Triune invasions of Lotharingia, the Triunes were only beaten back by third-party intervention. They were winning before that happened. With its improved wealth compared to just a few decades ago, Lotharingia can do a much better job of defending itself than before, but it definitely can’t keep the Triunes from playing in the HRE if they want (and Henri does).

    @CV12Hornet: Yeah, the Lotharingians have a very long and skinny country, terrible for defense. If they try to hold that entire frontier against the Triunes, they’ll lose.

    @MarshalofMontival: I don’t know who said it, but it was something like ‘the prospect of hanging will concentrate a man’s mind wonderfully’. The Allied commanders won’t turn on each other if a giant Roman army is barreling down on them. That just guarantees they’ll be destroyed and they know it.

    @Sciox: There were some armies in the OTL 30YW that were completely destroyed without fighting a single battle just by being forced to retreat through already-stripped territory. We’re talking starting at 20K and ending at 2K. While a lot of the losses may be desertions, not death, that doesn’t help the general/sovereign.

    @JohnSmith: Well, there’s more to the prophecy than just this war. Nostradamus is a pretty tricky character, unlike me who’s a straight-shooter…

    Stop looking at me like that.

    @Shard: Perhaps…

    @Sceonn: He will. There’s a particular insult/rebuke I’ve been saving up for Demetrios to use, but the right moment hasn’t appeared yet.

    @Vince: Exactly!

    @Lascaris: Yeah. The Romans would have to be led by Alexios III Angelos to screw this up. Because somehow even he could find a way to drop the ball; he’s actually rather talented that way.

    @Babyrage: Theodor marching out would certainly make things easier for the Romans.

    @Donald Reaver: That is a risk, but at this point the Thessaloniki garrison is 40-50% the size of the Allied army all by itself, so even a desperate Allied attack wouldn’t take the city. It might wreck a few streets though and get really messy.

    @TheWanderingReader: The Age of Enlightenment should be fun. Hopefully I’ll be able to make the ideas interesting and plausible, but also somewhat different from OTL. I want the TTL world to be understandable to an OTL visitor, but still feel somewhat ‘off’.
    Soverihn, JSC, boringasian and 27 others like this.
  9. MorningDew suburbia is big gay

    Jun 11, 2015
    Washington D.C.
    Oh, does lothingaria control both sides of the Rhine? Are their borders essentially otl low countries plus German Rhineland and upper Rhine valley (up to basel)?
  10. MorningDew suburbia is big gay

    Jun 11, 2015
    Washington D.C.
    Also, how far up the Nile have the Egyptians advanced up the Nile? Are they close to capturing the first cataract/aswan?
  11. Βοανηργές Well-Known Member

    Aug 6, 2017
    Oh boy, can't wait for the revolutions to begin. Wonder which war-torn country(s) will fall prey to the wheel of (mis)fortune. Rhomania with its exposure to kaffos and academic tradition will definitely feel its effects, now it's just a question of how much.
  12. HanEmpire Delicious

    Oct 2, 2011
    The Land of Eh
    Romans have a lot more lower class protection than the Western nations, so probably not as much as the Latins.

    Off the top of my head:
    -nationalized welfare for orphans
    -relatively high social mobility for commoners of talent
    -focus on public works for the masses
    -lack of internal trade barriers and outdated feudal dues
    -primitive public education at the primary level
    -primitive proportional tax bracket schemes
    -reform minded imperial clan
    -constant vent for lower class frustrations in the form of opportunities in Island Asia
    -large middle class and academic field providing the bulk of the bureaucracy

    The Empire will likely go down the path of reforms and gradual changes to adapt to the times. You'd have to crap on the lower masses for a long damn time for revolutions to break out. Peasants are conservative and risk averse, so they'd have to be threatened with starvation before something big goes down.

    I personally think that the revolutionary fervour will break out in Germany before anyone, probably intermixed with the TTL Peasants' War.
  13. rocke Well-Known Member

    Aug 12, 2018
    how close it Rome to full-on democracy yet?
  14. JSC Member

    May 9, 2006
    They are in the modern sense they are an absolute monarchy with a strong leaning to theocracy. There is no democracy outside of informal village councils.
    Duke of Nova Scotia and rocke like this.
  15. Lascaris Well-Known Member

    Jun 16, 2005
    Lets note that the next empress will be a Persian ex-slave not any short of noble. And that while there's obviously a dynasty anyone could be raised by people and army on the shield and declared emperor, under the right circumstances and noone would bat an eyelid over not being of noble birth. And the lack a feudal landed aristocracy, the empire may have in aristocracy but this does not come from hereditary nobles. In many ways the empire is rather more republican in nature than its counterparts.

    How that would evolve... under the right circumstances Constantinople would be the right place to play out a republican revolution.
  16. Aristomenes Lord Of Morea

    Nov 30, 2012
    Well, I have no doubt that Casimir and the Bone Breaker will fight with a courage worth of the following song, but it will not be enough to save the Allies...
    Trevayne and Doglover285 like this.
  17. Komnenos002 asdf

    Mar 10, 2011


    So this doesn't sound too flash for the Lotharingians, although not so much that I'm fearing for their total obliteration.

    The Dutch Golden Age relied in part on superior organisation and modern state building. I get the impression that even if the Dutch have emulated their OTL success in this area, the gap between the Dutch and the Triunes is smaller than the gap between OTL Dutch and their OTL opponents.

    Combine that with a shell-shocked HRE and the terrible borders you've mentioned - it doesn't look great.

    Still, I hope there's enough obstacles that Henri walks away with a negotiated peace instead of the wholesale conquest he presumably wants. Throw in the Accord and it's pretty reasonable to suspect Lotharingia walks out of this in some form.

    And this is why the Allied Army should be totally screwed. The Rhomans won't achieve a total wipeout in the field of battle, that doesn't really happy in this time period. But they are going to make it disintegrate and inflict massive casualties while doing so.

    The true disaster is going to be when the disintegrated bands of Allied soldiers try and flee back home. They'll be fleeing past already deployed professional soldiers, roving bands of partisans, and through burned out land that can't feed them. Typing that all out and it sounds quite horrifying, actually. I'm genuinely sympathetic to the people who are going to go through this, most of whom have no part in the decision to attack Rhomania.
    Wolttaire likes this.
  18. Curtain Jerker Well-Known Member

    Oct 26, 2018
    I'm hyped to see if a three to one manpower advantage and a unified command structure is enough to overcome the near-legendary bad luck and tactical stupidity for the Romans in the upcoming battle. It is practically the irresistible force vs immovable object at work.
  19. chrnno Well-Known Member

    Jun 28, 2013
    Why not both? The Romans annihilate the entire allied army then confused by the ease parts of the army mistake each other for the enemy and the subsequent battle deals several times more casualties than the previous battle before it stops.
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  20. Iskandar Khayon Well-Known Member

    Jul 24, 2017
    Might be off topic, but how do the Romans feel about their classical Greek and Roman heritage? I know the Latins tend to hype up their connections to Ancient Greece and Rome, but how do the Romans view Ancient Greece and Rome?