Anaxios: A Discussion on a Modern Byzantium

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

  1. Viralworld Éirí Amach an Ghealach Donor

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    Granted a lot of my knowledge of Ῥωμανία is from it's earlier portion (636-1081 or so) but I think for a model of the Roman state continuing into the modern era we need to look at the Russians. The Romans would suffer much of the same problems that Russia faced when trying to get "into Europe" so to speak. They would be viewed as "oriental" and "eastern" in the eyes of the West and would have a difficult time, at least before the 18th century, in participating in wider European politics. The dynamic would be to look at them as foreigners and schismatics. I think that much of the enmity between the Romans and the "Franks" would still continue at least past 1453 into the 16th and 17th centuries. Much like the Ottomans, perhaps powers like France would use them as a counterbalance against the Holy Roman Empire and, depending how much the Romans expand, they could play a big role in Italian politics once again.

    As shown by the Byzantine recovery in the 9th and 10th centuries on to the apogee under Basileos II, the manner in which the Romans deal with the Turks and Timur and how they expand will play an important role in how the state develops. I think as the state expands, the pull away from Constantinople will cause resentment much like it did in the 10th century. Cosmopolitan Romans of the capital will contest power with the land-owning provincials. Perhaps this trend would wane as technology got better and communication and travel allowed a closer cooperation and so a larger range of Constantinoplian projection, but maybe not.

    If you want a more developed answer you might need to provide additional details to the timeline and how it diverges but the premise here is interesting. The Republican institutions in the "Πολιτεία τῶν Ῥωμαίων" and their reaction to the passage of time and the modern world are also fascinating. The rise of the printing press I think would involve provincials far more in the horse-tradings inside the capital. Instead of the cosmopolitans often making or breaking a ruler, the provincials would receive news and ideas faster and easier. Constantinople could no longer be an inside political club commanding the provinces. Instead, the significance of public opinion in the themes would matter more since more citizens would be in the loop as to the political goings on and far faster.

    The powers of the Basileus would probably stay continuous as is the tradition, the bureaucracy likely get bigger with way more people to take care of and more mouths to feed.

    The relations with the East would be more hard to predict. The situation would largely depend on which powers exist there as always but if push comes to shove, the Taurus is likely the consistent political border upon which any further major incursions would fail.
     
  2. catconqueror Imperator of Cats

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    But the result does not lie, The Christian world adopted the printing press with relatively few debates compared to the middle east. Also a Christian Byzantium would have better relations with the west so its easier to modernize.
     
  3. Tibi088 Well-Known Member

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    I have written about the 19th century politics of a surviving byzantine empire. I didnt go into detail but supposed the existence of a very good butterfly net to keep changes outside of the area minimal.

    The focus was the effect of nationalism and liberalism on byzantine society. It created a huge rift and a divided identity of the greek speaking populace.

    The liberals were more democratic minded and found their ideal in the ancient hellas and Athens. They refused to identify theselfs as romans and the agelong identity of the Empire. Because of this and their nacionalism they had bad relations with not greeks speaking peoples of the Empire. They were also anticlericals and propagated the separation of state and church.

    The conservatives on the other hand were proud romans and refused to acknowlidge the existence of greeks and regarde them as the most dangerous group for the future of the Empire. The were much more generous with not greek people of the empire. You could be a roman and an armenian, bulgarian at the same time. They ideal was the old Byzantine Empire - and to a lesser extent Rome. They were royalist, mostly supported absolutism and were strong supporters of the church (I modeled them on Russian slavofils).
     
  4. Byzantine fanatic Pasha of the Rumistan beylik

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    https://www.dailysabah.com/feature/...bout-the-printing-press-in-the-ottoman-empire

    Sure, the relations between Christian Byzantium and the west were so good that in 1204, an army of Christians from the west sacked Constantinople and dismantled the Byzantine Empire. Real good relations. Right....
     
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  5. Tibi088 Well-Known Member

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    I would say thats mostly on Venice, a rival. The whole west shouldnt be blamed. And whats more relevant here, ATL likely didnt happen.
     
  6. Byzantine fanatic Pasha of the Rumistan beylik

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    What do you mean? That the Fourth Crusade was an unlikely historical event?
     
  7. Tibi088 Well-Known Member

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    I mean that the OP has a Byzantine Empire surviving with borders from "Azerbaijan to Serbia". Not impossible but unlikey with a POD after the fourth crusade.
     
  8. Byzantine fanatic Pasha of the Rumistan beylik

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    Oh I see, agreed. Yeah I guess the best way to make that happen would be a TL where either the Turks are successfully absorbed, or Manzikert never happens. Which takes us back a bit earlier, to the 11th century most likely.
     
  9. Viralworld Éirí Amach an Ghealach Donor

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    I mean I would argue that the whole debacle of the Fourth Crusade was more of a series of unfortunate events than any specific enmity that led to the sack. The crusaders were used as a tool in the Roman power struggles and their candidate who promised them pay lost out and was killed so they did what was not unusual for the time - they stormed the city and plundered it. I’d argue most of the bad blood between “Romans and Franks” cane about in the aftermath, the crusaders didn’t set out the sack the city originally.
     
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  10. Pressedflowers I listened to the Cure, and then I cried.

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    Hmm not per say the 11th century, more like Iaonnes Komemnos and his successor. I still need the crusdes to happen, or Europe is very much changed. Or perhaps it is earlier with the Turks not advancing past a line from Pisidia to Galtia, perhaps to a more successful breaking up of the dynatoi in terms of control, or a lessening of the civil war following Romanos' defeat at Manzikert, that would be int he 11th century. Alexios could still call for the West as he still doesn't have enough men or resources to take all of Anatolia back, even if the western portions are part of the Polity.

    Say the crusaders instead of reatling Nikaia, retake Philomelion, or Isauria? The Komenoi could round out the century by finishing off whatever states arise in Anatolia, Danishmeds or Seljuks, yet fail to suppress the Rupenids as they could not OTL. Perhaps the Romans contest with Ayyubids past the Euphrates, and try to balance the crusaders. I'd like them to still fall, preferably by Egyptian hands.

    Perhaps Manuoel, if he succeds his father, whenever he dies, finishes off the Danishmeds or Seljuks, but it is so costly, or fights a version of Myriokephalon with another Turkish power that he is disheartened, and the end of the 12th century happens OTL, or something similar.
     
    Last edited: Feb 5, 2019
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  11. Pressedflowers I listened to the Cure, and then I cried.

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    Romania  Defeated Invicta.png
    Modern Romania so far
     
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  12. Pressedflowers I listened to the Cure, and then I cried.

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    Romania  Defeated Invicta No colonies.png
     
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  13. Viralworld Éirí Amach an Ghealach Donor

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

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    Something like that. Idk why the Romans would get into colonialism, being very anti-capitalist, but stranger things happen. Anyways they conquered Syria and Palestine in the 16th century like the Ottomans, but then lost it in the 18th due to Mamluke offensive. The current Palestine is the result of (insert revolutionary power plus dictator)'s wars. The Romans were granted the Palestine (which then included the Nile delta) as well as Sicily.

    Generally more Christian, and more orthodox, skipping out on the heretical Syrians. The nation betwixt the two Roman portions, is their faithful Islamic partner, this TL's (insert historical Turkish ruling family), rulling from Baghdad, from Tripoli to Basra (or was as that state was carved up following this TL's Great War into Western European dominated Arab nations)

    The Roman portion of Italy was also larger, and i may split it off entirely as an independent Greco-Sicillian state (with Cyrencia of course). Would be a nice tourist destination.

    The discovery of oil in Palestine would make the territory valuable, and since it's several integral themes of the Empire, staying that way is a prime directive of the Beuracracy. The enemies of Rome might want to chop it off but idk.

    As I had posted in a previous section of the general map thread, Armenia and Georgia are lost to the empire in the east. Bulgaria as well to the north.
     
    Last edited: Mar 14, 2019
  15. Pressedflowers I listened to the Cure, and then I cried.

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    Map of the European Continent, post Great War
    Our Sacred Empire.png
     
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  16. Kirook Well-Known Member

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    Okay, sure, I’m always down for a new take on this concept.

    Probably makes sense. Their core areas aren’t quite enough to make them a superpower, but they could stay a regional power with some luck.

    Okay, this is a bit of a stretch and probably requires a POD further back than you anticipated, but it isn’t impossible.

    Aaaaand you’ve lost me. This isn’t really how AH works; there’s no reason history would be anywhere near the same if Byzantium survived or even just did somewhat better than OTL.
     
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  17. Pressedflowers I listened to the Cure, and then I cried.

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    Informative maps (WIP)
    Political: will include Administrative information
    Romania  Defeated Invicta No colonies.png
    Linguistical: will include language information
    Linguistics map.png
    I plan on making a religious map of the empire as well
     
  18. Pressedflowers I listened to the Cure, and then I cried.

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    Yo I understand. I'm rethinking loads. Like a lot! You can disregard the OP.
     
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  19. Kirook Well-Known Member

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    Alright, cool, I’m glad you’re learning. It’s possible that the Byzantines might be able to keep their various ethnicities and religions together by trying some sort of ATL version of Ottomanism (“Romanism”?), but your mileage may vary on how successful that might ultimately turn out to be.
     
  20. Pressedflowers I listened to the Cure, and then I cried.

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    It's not that I didn't understand, it's that I didn't know how to express what I wanted to say. I shouldn't have said what i said, because I was asking how would the Romans react to things in the modern world, like modern banking, modern democracy, capitalism, modern central governments, socialism, secularism and the like?

    I was carried away with ideas i already had, and put them in when i should have reserved them.