Anaxios: A Discussion on a Modern Byzantium

Discussion in 'Alternate History Discussion: Before 1900' started by Pressedflowers, Jan 31, 2019.

  1. Pressedflowers I listened to the Cure, and then I cried.

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    Let us imagine a modern Romanía. One that has endured the ages, yet commands not the world's stage. Let us imagine the Romans as a people stretching from Azerbaijan to Serbia. Let us imagine that much of history is similar to ours; the Turks, the crusades, the rise of Europe, the Renaissance, colonialism, a great revolutionary was, the industrial revolution, amd now nationalism. Let us say that Romanía has lost Anatolia to Turks, regained it, and then lost it to Timur, and then regained it, that the Romans took the tactful job of retaking the Balkans in the same timeframe as the Ottomans, yet without the predation upon Hungary. Let us imagine that the Romans, ancient as they are, decided to look forward with the Europeans and that the glorious days of Augustus pale in the glories of what is to come. They industrialse like their neighbours. This is Romanía.

    Now let us suppose Byzantium is also a Republican Monarchy, as argued by Anthony Kaldellis, then what is the nature of this industrialised Roman society? Do they assemble in the Hippodrome, peticoats and tophats, for political functions, to acclaim emperor's and such? What is the nature of the government? Does the beuracracy continue to function, does a parliament arise? What of the Emperor? He is simply a public servant like all in the government. What of the raging capitalism in the West? The Romans had no interest in that which does not provide for the common good. What of railroads? Of private industry? Romanía would surely have quite a command economy. What of banking? The republics of Italia are powerless or non existent yet here is Byzantium.

    What would its realtions be to its neighbours? To Persia, now and forever its eternal rival, to Russia who surely looks to Romanía as a father? What of the Slavs? Do they become integrated, Romans in actuality? How does their national spirit, these Romans, react to the new nationalism of the West? Does Roman Polity adorn itself with flags, as the Romans had no concept like heraldry?

    What is this New Rome? That is what I'd like to answer.
     
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  2. Evil Crusader Well-Known Member

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    The first question to answer is, 'why the wanton cruelty on the common historical butterfly'.

    One doesn't simply gift a major nation a few hundred years of extra survival without severely impacting the timeline to the point of making it unrecognizable.
     
  3. Pressedflowers I listened to the Cure, and then I cried.

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    What if things go right? Not saying that the nations of Europe will be the same, but I think their projected course will be similar.
     
  4. Pressedflowers I listened to the Cure, and then I cried.

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    I mean, our interpretation of events, is subjective, thus it being an interpretation.
     
  5. bbctol Member

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    Really? No fall of Byzantium means the Silk Road stays open, meaning no need to explore West for alternate trade routes, meaning the discovery of Americas, the development of intercontinental sailing, and European colonization are greatly delayed. It also means an Orthodox church that retains its power base, fundamentally altering the power of the Catholic Church, unrecognizably changing anything like the Protestant Reformation. I mean, in this timeline the Renaissance as we know it just doesn't happen.

    Even Kaldellis would call this a stretch.

    What?
     
  6. Execubitor168 Member

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    Dude just look at the Age of Miracles. I swear it answers most of your questions.
     
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  7. vortiger Well-Known Member

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    the whole silk road thing is a huge misconception. the Ottomans never closed off access to goods from the east, Venice pretty much had a monopoly on the carrying trade. Portugal would still have sent expeditions to the Indian ocean, because they wanted a part of the trade. Someone like Columbus would have seen how successful Portugal was and had the same idea that he could reach the Indian ocean sailing west.
     
  8. bbctol Member

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    Exactly; after the fall of Constantinople, Venice had a monopoly on trade from the East through their relations with the Mamluks, while the route to Genoa through Constantinople was blocked. The shift from a multipolar to monopolized trade system motivated further exploration by sea. By this point, the Portuguese had started sailing the Atlantic, but that was mainly to find a direct trade route for West African gold (and even Henry the Navigator's further explorations before 1453 were originally motivated by the realization that Constantinople was about to be conquered.)
     
  9. Pressedflowers I listened to the Cure, and then I cried.

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    I'm here to learn
     
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  10. Pressedflowers I listened to the Cure, and then I cried.

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    Okay
     
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  11. vortiger Well-Known Member

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    How does a surviving Byzantium stop the Portuguese from exploration? they are never going to be in a position to compete in the the Mediterranean. the Italian city states will still be the principle benefactors, unless in the new TL Byzantium takes more control of its own trade to the west. unless you are trying to make the claim that the competition between the Byzantium empire, Mamuluks, Venice and Genoa will somehow decrease prices so much that Portugal wont want to get involved in the trade? Henry the navigator only ruins your theory more. Since the majority of his voyages happened before the fall of Constantinople, so would imply that they already had a maritime tradition that could be focused somewhere else. which in the OTL they did.
     
  12. Evil Crusader Well-Known Member

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    Which is great! But, here's the point, history is not a series of abstract factions and borders on a map. It's not a sum of clear-cut actions & reactions. We do usually designate a Point of Divergence, and we may even do so with a desired outcome in mind, but the important thing you have to always factor in is that the outside world will interact and change, releasing the famous butterflies. The crossover of multiple PODs quickly make it so you can't rely on timing, sequence, or even actual occurrence of major facts; for example, the Renaissance is not a given and Romania existing may well delay it because of no emigration push as much as, say, hasten it by negating the loss of knowledge in the famous 1204 Sack. And that's just from straight consequences of one POD.
     
    Last edited: Jan 31, 2019
  13. Pressedflowers I listened to the Cure, and then I cried.

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    I disagree with the assertion that the renaissance is the by product of the Nation of the Romans ending. Europe was in an upswing. All that wealth creation amd power building, coming out of the feuadalist structures to newer feudalism structures, meant that Europe was changing. The point of the renaissance is that individuals, especially ones with power, realised that they were not a continuation of the Roman world, worldview, mindset, etc. They realised that they, Φράγκοι, were far different amd there had been a serious and lasting break that eternally seperated them from the ancients. The technology, the art, the science, is irrelevant. What matters is ideology, self-perception. Remeber, perception is everything. This clearing house gave power holders knew avenues to expand ideology and greatly increase their power. Instead the realisation that Rome is dead, but the realisation that Rome is "foreign" "east" "distant" "not relevant" could, in my mind, stimulate similar occurrences. The same would need to happen to the Romans themeselves, as they need to stop looking into the past. Anyways, that's just my thoughts. I'm not new to Pods or any of this philosophy, I'm just musing the idea of a what a modern Romanía looks like. The whole "bodices and bowler hats in the Hippodrome."

    I'm more interested in how the Buzantine republicanism and self perception evolves into a Modern world wherebit is not only center stage, but painfully aware of its shortcomings in power projection.
     
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  14. Pressedflowers I listened to the Cure, and then I cried.

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    Perhaps a better question would be, how would Romania act in an industrialised world? Does it follow the course of the Ottomans because of its geography, or does its being Roman add something more?
     
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  15. HanEmpire Delicious

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    The Romans would have a better time of modernizing than the Ottomans. For one I think they'll dodge the Ottoman Empire's idiotic ban on Muslim-operated printing presses.
     
  16. Curtain Jerker Well-Known Member

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    It is a sensational timeline that deals with a ERE that survives the Fourth Crusade and exists to the modern day. The author is up to the early 17th Century and Rhomania is a Great Power with...well, just read it. Here's a link.
     
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  17. Evil Crusader Well-Known Member

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    The problem is that you are just saying 'let's change things, but ignore ramifications'. Changing the situation in the Empire may well prevent those factors from giving rise to the Renaissance, and instead making them blossom differently or not at all. For example, since that Empire controls Anatolia, it would remain an ideological rival to the Latin world, try to exert influence over the Crusader states (or conquer them outright) thus changing the way Classic culture is approached. This, and another tbousand changes, make it so your question is unanswerable.
     
  18. Byzantine fanatic Scholar of the West and East

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    The Romans closed down Plato's academy in Athens for being "pagan". And it's not like the printing press was uncontroversial in Europe. Not to mention people being burned at the stake for translating the bible into English. Lay off the prejudice, dude.
     
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  19. Pressedflowers I listened to the Cure, and then I cried.

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    I never finished reading the TL.
     
  20. Pressedflowers I listened to the Cure, and then I cried.

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    I think imma stick with my 9th century TL