And All Nations Shall Gather To It - A Crusades TL

Discussion in 'Alternate History Discussion: Before 1900' started by Rdffigueira, Mar 3, 2017.

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  1. galileo-034 Extreme Centrist Conspirator

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    Also, speaking of Christian Mongols, since the Byzantines are still around and a powerful player in both Balkans and the Caucasus, I'd rather suggest that the Golden Horde converts to Christianity, perhaps of the Orthodox rite, under Constantinople influence like they did convert the Kievan Rus a few centuries earlier.
     
  2. jocay Ambiguously Brown

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    Not to mention once Egypt is conquered and subjugated by the Crusaders, there are now friendly Christian neighbors to the south in Nubia and Ethiopia to reach out to and cooperate against Muslims who might flee southward and use Nubia as a place to launch raids. I would like to see the Crusaders in Egypt influenced and taken aback by the absolute monarchism and subservience of the Church to the state.

    Incidentally IOTL, there were supposedly numerous proposals to link up with the Nubians against the Mamluks of Egypt and Nubian characters were positively featured in crusader-themed poetry.

     
    Last edited: Sep 9, 2019 at 3:13 PM
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  3. trajen777 Member

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    Yep good example of this is

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Battle_of_Mohi

    Longbowman or crossbow etc would be very effective. However the key issues that might negate this are

    1. Long bowman etc would only be effective vs Mongol fixed battle formations. A key strength of the Mongols would be their incredible mobility and choose where the battle would take place.
    2. In sieges the effective Mongol tactic is to grab large groups of captives and drive them before their armies to the walls so missile fire would destroy the civilians before the first arrow hit the Mongol troops.

    That being said the effectiveness of the Byz (Mobil warriors them selves plus Turk mercs) -- good defenses (Taurus and anti Taurus mts), naval mobility (Anatolia), Greek fire, as well as all of the poor land available to the Mongols would have made it not a very attractive position to attack vs the rewards. (poor i mean -- Damascus, Aleppo, Baghdad and a recently recovered Anatolia - all recently fought over and devastated)
     
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  4. galileo-034 Extreme Centrist Conspirator

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    The first strength of the Byzantines is rather their diplomacy I'd say.
    They weren't the kind to launch military campaigns without having laid the ground diplomatically and put odds in their favor, except in cases they didn't have the choice.
    Here, they do have the choice.
    Plus, unlike the Shah of Khwarezm, they would never kill the Great Khan's envoys. We all know what a terrible mistake many rulers made of killing them, for the Mongols were very susceptible when it came to the rules of hospitality.
    That said, I wouldn't say for certain Jerusalem won't have someone like Reynald of Chatillon to commit such a blunder out of arrogance. Such would force the Byzantines to an uncomfortable choice, either assist its Jerusalemite ally and risk devastation of Anatolia by the Mongols potentially erasing all gains made during the 12th century, and sitting aside, breaking the longstanding alliance between them.
     
  5. Icedaemon Well-Known Member

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    Now I am wondering who you mean. The Mongols did not to the best of my knowledge totally exterminate whole populations. The russians basically culturally if not ethnically replaced or turned the vast majority of the populace of their lands, do you mean them? Or is this tied somehow to what Spain got up to in the new world OTL?
     
  6. [totally a legit person] [totally not an bot]

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    Sorry for that, I got preoccupied with one of my very close family members dying, I won't do this again, hopefully, if the world isn't too cruel again. Well, I could try, now I have some ideas and one, in particular, and we have both shared the Arabic one but I thought of it more in-depth than you it seems, well the first idea is a "Hungarian northern expansionism". Oh and do please co-opt whatever you like, and remove or change what you don't like, and please add on as you go, I wish to see how far you can take it.

    You see if you have a war over Hungary and Constantinople over Hungarian expansionism in Serbia or Croatia, which causes a war that they lose in spades, which neuters their ambitions south-wards. so instead they focus north-wards, in which there is a very "weak" country to the north, Poland, but they either lose or the pope intervenes, you can choose. they are to allow the biggest, and holiest polish pilgrimage of their history, to Jerusalem, and come with them, so they don't take Poland, at least for now. but after the Polish past through their lands (or later), they set their sights on the Holy "Roman" Empire and their aging Emperor. But someone steps up to defend them, the kingdom of Bavaria, and their rulers, the Welfs, in this "crisis" a man arises and beats the Magyars back. Just like their ancestors, the "barbaric and uncivilized" Magyars back from their invasion, and might gain some fame, and other positive things.

    There is also the Arabian uniting under the newly minted Fatimid successor state, Yeman, after many migrated it became very rich strong, and powerful. Just Powerful enough to take Mecha and Medina, becoming even richer and even more powerful, than they conquered the southern coast of Arabia. Which made them even richer and more powerful, with the trade and pilgrimages, it created a navy strong enough to destroy the Red Sea's pirates. To secure the Red Sea's trade even further, they invaded from the northern coast of the horn of Africa to the border to Egypt, but they then settled for simply them becoming vassals. And after a coalition of Arabian tribes tries to conquer Oman, Oman asks for the Yeman to intervene, and they do. on the condition of becoming apart of Yeman, they then attack and turn the whole of central Arabia into vassals, after a series of wars. Directly after the Mongols came through, and then collapsed, they conquered Mesopotamia and Persia, in what was dubbed the "second Arab conquest". They Threatened the Crusaders, Roman, and Georgian survival in Asia, and it was all done by a series of great leaders, who you can detail yourself if you want.
     
    Last edited: Sep 9, 2019 at 4:19 PM
  7. ImperialxWarlord Well-Known Member

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    Is conquering Egypt even feasible?
     
  8. Rdffigueira A citizen of the Southern Hemisphere

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    And now, to answer the posts after Chapter 51, let's see:

    Lots of popcorn. And some soda. You wouldn't want to be thirsty.

    Indeed! Can they even get there? Let's see.


    Phillip is not exactly the most tactful of the kings you'll see in this TL. I'm doing this on purpose, of course, we don't know a lot about him, so I'm working with the "haughty monarch" stereotype, and this goes as well as you can imagine.

    You are correct about the Byzantines. They will only go so far before saying "well, this is good, but let's stop by now". This, in turn, might produce a fracturing, as you said. What we can't guess, right now, is exactly when this happens.

    Overall, the Second Crusade will be seen as a success (comparatively to OTL, at least), despite the later setbacks it will come to suffer. The initial objetive was Damascus, and it was annexed very early on. As for Armenia, the truth is that the Crusaders don't really care about it too much - Christian ideology notwithstanding -, but they know very well the value of preserving a strategic in-depth defense in Mesopotamia to keep the Seljuks at bay. This alone might warrant a concerted effort.

    Yes, an expedition into Lower Mesopotamia is a feverish dream of a rabid dog rather than a conscientious and meticulous campaign of conquest. A large raiding expedition, at most, and one that will be easily satisfied once they avenge Edessa, by whatever means necessary.

    It seems that the Crusaders indeed forgot about Palmyra... a more sensible target, indeed.

    Exactly this.

    LOL, I loved the boldened part of the post. Don't give me the fricking ideas! I am, of course, trying to work within the realm of plausibility, so the likelihood of them actually capturing or even worse, securing Baghdad, is very low. That is not to say they might not try.

    Yes, the campaign might be considered a success by achieving some tactical victories, even if it from a strategic POV doesn't yields long-lasting results.

    And for the Byzantines, they are technically recovering their territories, so...

    I'm not sure if I understood your post. The "West" you mention here is Western Europe?

    It is crazy... but is it crazy enough to WORK? You'll see in the next installment!

    Not only it is very well fortified, but it is situated deep into Mesopotamia, far from the Frankish lines of operation, and very well populated by people who had the Crusaders. This will be great.

    You both are very much correct. The Byzantines are not interested in a restored and united Armenia, but rather in a collection of Armenian provinces, which is something very different (and manageable).

    And for Baghdad, taking it will most certainly be worse than not taking it.

    Thanks for the input about the scimitars. To be fair, it was just a generic mention, but I'll edit the post to replace with "sabers", I suppose it does fits better.

    About the HRE, it needs a lot of fricking patience, but I do want to someday get to it in greater detail.


    I'd advise against presuming that there is any good sense in this wild adventure. It is less about obtaining access to the Persian Gulf and more like goes like: "Hey, where's the capital of Islam? Bagh... what? Nice, let's sack it."


    I'm glad you noticed the bit about the Montforts. This brings interesting divergences back in Europe. Without the (different) Simons in Occitania and in England, respectively, we can think about the possibility of having the Albigensian Crusade and the Baron's Revolt butterflied away - at least in the form with which we are more familiar.

    Excellent observation. This will be the subject of Act V, post Second Crusade.

    And John... well, he might indeed have confused sentiments about a Baghdadi expedition. Being foremost a pragmatist, however, I think he'll go to great length to try to prevent it from happening, lest it might jeopardize their conquests in Armenia.

    There is truth in it... but Lower Mesopotamia was never a "core" province of the Roman - and never of the Byzantine Empire - so there is not much legitimacy to it. And, even worse, it is regarded as one of the principal centers of the largest Islamic denomination, so any sensible Byzantine Emperor will want to avoid putting the hand in this hornets' nest.


    Get your Crusader sponge here!! They are all in cross-format, ready to use!! 3 dinars each, you will not want to lose this deal!! With it you can wipe off any Saracen ruler from the Levant and keep your Holy Land PRISTINE as new!! Get yours now!!!

    Can someday the world be ready for a Frankish Persian Empire?
    I'd have to ask the mods to move to ASB Forums, of course.



     
  9. Rdffigueira A citizen of the Southern Hemisphere

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    I'm not equipped to answer this right now. I'll indeed have to wait to see. The actual idea of the Crusader States (Outremer and Latin Egypt) as gunpowder empires is an interesting one.

    Centralization will be an evident trend, considering that the alt-KOJ is much more bureaucratic than their feudal European counterparts. But it will not be a simple thing to do, as the feudal lords arguably have even more proportional power here than in Europe.

    About the equipment, there is not visible differences, besides those already existing in Europe (Italians vs French, and so forth). Over time, we'll see a mishmash of Byzantine and also Turkish influences in military and civilian dress, but those will be fairly subtle; overall, the "appearance" of a regular Franco-Levantine citizen won't be too distinct from those of Europe.

    Exactly this. But at least any success in Armenia might be enough in the long-term.

    By the 1140s, the Franks (and obviously, the Byzantines) are fairly acquainted with the Turkish tactics, so they'll be making their efforts to prepare against. The Byzantines can count on Pecheneg, Cuman and Turkish auxiliaries, while the Franks have their own share of light cavalry. Infantry for both sides is fairly equal in terms of equipment and resources, so they will be balance.

    You presented a very good prediction. But I still believe the Byzantines wouldn't exactly cheer for a Crusader advance into Iraq - they would be strongly against it - and the Franks might not want to go much further without Byzantine support, after all. I say it exactly because of the point you raised in your last phrase: this will provoke retaliation by the Muslims of the likes they might not be seeing in many years. It is better to simply "contain" the Seljuks beyond the Euphrates than go this far.

    Excellent post, as always, Galileo. I'll be thinking about the various possibilities regarding the Komnenoi succession, but, as you mentioned in the later part of your explanation, the TL is less focused on them than it is in the Crusader State.

    For a Crusader expedition, the Euphrates one, at the time being, is the only one that is reasonably feasible. It is geographically closer and they still have the western parts of Edessa to depend upon. The Tigris is too far deep into hostile territory, and, as you mentioned, there won't be a solid logistical base to allow for supplies.

    Your assessment about France is also fascinating, and you present a very solid case against a possible independent "Kingdom of Aquitaine". Once again, there is a lot of ground to cover before we get there, so I really won't be making an effort, right now, to dispute your points. On the contrary, I believe you might concede me the possibility of revising some premises later on; perhaps indeed we won't be seeing.

    When I brought up the idea of an independent Aquitaine, it is a very embryonic thought, I really did not think (yet) seriously about the details. For the time being, my only premise is: WI Eleanor's patrimony continued with the House of Poitiers instead of merging into the French Crown? Then, we can discuss new possibilities. In any case, it certainly won't happen before the 13th Century.

    Now, I'm not really considering a Balkanized or HRE-like France, but rather a movement in which the Capetian centralization is much less successful than IOTL. It was far from inevitable, and took the likes of a Phillip II Augustus to happen as it did. If we see the vassals keeping their own shares of power, be them allies or not to the Crown, we can expect, in counterpoint, that the French monarchy remains a fairly weak one, but with oscilating political fortunes. I'm thinking less about the HRE and more about Poland-Lithuania, meaning that strong monarchs made the monarchy much stronger, but, in the long scheme of things, there was a trend for provincialism and aristocratic decentralization.

    That's one of the long-running objetives I have with this TL, actually. By preserving a veneer of decentralized political structures in European monarchies, I believe we have grounds to see a longer-lasting Crusader Age. I mean this because, while the religious justification will always exist in the Christian ideology, the changing of social, economic and political structures that happened until the formation of the nation-states could be, in some ways, incompatible with the very concept of "Crusading" itself. Out of probabilities, a centralized state might be less interested in pursuing Crusade as a policy. Or, if it does, it will be more akin to an imperialist management than one we're seeing right now in the TL.

    It will unfold very much like that.

    Good points, again! I had not considered, yet, how a conquest of Baghdad could yield a cultural boon to the Crusaders, even more than economic ones... of course, they need to enter the city in first place.
     
  10. Rdffigueira A citizen of the Southern Hemisphere

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    A Christianized Mongol Khanate is in the box of ideas. Bizarrely enough, it might produce a very different alt-Russia, one that becomes more based in the Pontic Steppe than in eastern Europe.

    Would you remember any of these mentions of Nubians in Christian poetry? It would be very helpful and might give some interesting ideas.

    Well, I was thinking about the more comprehensive (legal) concept of genocide, that is simply a systematic attempt to destroy an ethnic/religious/cultural group. The Mongols did not "totally exterminate whole populations", but arguably, the extent of their destructive actions and atrocities in their campaigns of conquest were well beyond the usual expectations of warfare at the period. Since we're on topic, their destruction of Baghdad comes as a remarkable example. Of course there is a great deal of exaggeration in the sources, we can't know for sure how many perished in each Mongol invasion, but there is a somewhat of a thin consensus that they were far worse than the nomadic empires that preceded them in the conquest of the Iranian, Arabian and Russian countries, comparing to the Turkic and to the Jurchen invaders (of the Liao dynasty). Their reputation was only rehabilitated by the rather significant period of the Pax Mongolica, as I see it.

    But my original point was that it is fairly common to see them regarded as outright genocides, at least according to Islamic and Chinese POVs.

    Well, I hope its everything alright in your family. My condolences, and, once again, thanks for the kindness.

    I think once again we joined together in some ideas. I've considered, before, the possibility, of seeing a "Greater Yemen" arise as a regional power in Arabia after the demise of the Fatimids, and they would present another distinct threat to the Crusader establishment. It is most certainly something I intend to explore later on.

    It will have to be. It won't be as quick as it was with Lebanon or Syria, but, in the end, the survival of the Crusader State depends on securing Egypt, so this is a premise I've adopted, and one with which we'll work with.
     
  11. [totally a legit person] [totally not an bot]

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    you know, after the Mongol invasion of Persia, the population had possibly gone from 2,500,000 to 250,000 so that's free real estate for the Arabs, after a couple of generations, it could be completely Arabized, so that's something.
     
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  12. jocay Ambiguously Brown

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    As the Levant, Egypt and North Africa will be cut off from the Islamic world, Arab expansion is likely to take a more maritime aspect as well. Any empire or kingdom that emerges out of Yemen will almost certainly push into Eritrea, Somalia and the Swahili Coast. There might be an increased Arab presence in the Indian Ocean archipelagos and in Madagascar. MAYBE even establish colonies in Australia.

     
    Last edited: Sep 9, 2019 at 9:20 PM
  13. [totally a legit person] [totally not an bot]

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    yeah, even though this would be the case of the pendulum theory, it would be the most likely thing that will happen, although, maybe the golden horde will check their progress north, and force Iberia or someone else to find the Americas, changing a lot of things.
     
  14. Joriz Castillo Well-Known Member

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    When the Mongols come, the KoJ better start using horse archers like crazy. They'll need it when the time comes.
     
  15. Noblesse Oblige Reaper Squad Member

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    Except one does not simply adopt horse archer tactics to counter Mongol hordes.

    I'm sure when the time comes, they'll find a way.
     
  16. Namayan Well-Known Member

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    Mongol Bow got a longer maximum and effective range than an English Warbow/Longbow due to its recurve/composite build.

    The main weakness of Mongol Bow was that it was more sensitive to rain than a Longbow due to Mongol bow being a recurved composite bow, materials more sensitive to rain. So you will get more likely battles in Central Anatolia which is very dry compared to Black Sea Region of Anatolia which rains.

    Feigned retreats have been known to Romans since ancient times. The ERE even have treatise for it. The main difference fighting the Mongols was the superior commander leading it, once the superior commanders die out, more organization, more disciplined than an ordinary Nomad army. Vs the ERE its about who has got the better commander. If Genghis and Subutai were around the battlefield, the Mongols got the advantage.

    I dont even think the Crusaders are even a match at all not unless the Mongols regressed, superior commanders died out.

    The common composition of the Mongol army were Mongol Horse archers and Heavy lancers 6:4 ratio. Their Heavy lancers are more similar to ERE Kataphractoi.

    The mobility of the Mongol army averages 100-160kms per day. During Princeps times, the Roman armies had to pass a loaded march of 35kms per day. A Turkish horseman can travel 100kms in one day, but cannot keep that up not unless Turcopoles got 4 spare horses each like the Mongols.

    Mongol military doctrine, at least during their peak, is more similar to WW2 land warfare than their contemporaries in 1200s. Psy war, deception, intelligence gathering are all part of it before even fighting a battle.

    Of course, all this wont happen in ATL if Genghis Khan did not organize them as such fashion as these doctrines, meritorcracy, ww2 mobilities are due to his organization.
     
  17. jocay Ambiguously Brown

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    The Hungarians in a skirmish leading to the battle of Mohi were effective in trapping a Mongol vanguard force crossing a bridge and slaughtering them to a man with a combination of crossbowmen peppering them followed by an charge of infantry. Of course the Mongols modified their plans and wiped out the Hungarian army soon after but this little anecdote proves that they're not unstoppable.

    Fortify every single river crossing and bleed out the Mongols just enough until they give up or demand tribute from Jerusalem and Constantinople instead of complete subjugation.
     
  18. ALF0N53 Well-Known Member

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    A bit of a fast forward scenario. What are the chances of a breakaway khanate converting to Christianity?
     
  19. [totally a legit person] [totally not an bot]

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    The chances of it happening, are pretty damn high right now, considering everyone including the author Rdiffgueira is liking that specific idea right now, and they all have been for a relatively long time.
     
  20. Tomislav Addai Well-Known Member

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    Nooo common, the Ilkhanate just has to convert to Nestorianism. There is no way around it.
     
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