Frances focused north east and Spain focused west

Discussion in 'Alternate History Discussion: Before 1900' started by Gancio The Ranter, Sep 1, 2018.

  1. Gancio The Ranter Well-Known Member

    Aug 31, 2016
    What if in the late xv and xvi century, two of the major European powers had decided to focus their efforts on specific fronts. I'm thinking about Spain completely focused on the Atlantic (and on absorbing Portugal) that tries to stay away from foreign entanglements in Europe and France focused on acquiring F-C and the Flanders. This would obviously butterfly away the Italian wars, but what would be other consequences?
  2. kasumigenx Well-Known Member

    May 26, 2009
    Have Miguel de la Paz survive.
  3. Umbric Man Umbric Manned

    Jan 5, 2008
    Southern Hella-ware
    France not even bothering to look into colonization basically gives continental North America to England and the Lesser Antilles to England and the Netherlands both, with England taking the lion's share of them. Spain likely keeps *Haiti and the Netherlands probably absorbs *French Guiana from Portuguese Brazil and keeps it per their temporary takeover of it from France in OTL and just holding various pieces of the Guyana Plateau in general.
    wtw likes this.
  4. telynk Well-Known Member

    Feb 20, 2013
    You're suggesting that France's focus is on acquiring the Burgundian Inheritance (Franche-Comte and Flanders) from Spain. This means war will come between France and Spain. When it does come, I can't see any way to avoid fighting along the Pyrenees.

    It seems that OP's intention was to have France and Spain focusing in opposite directions so they don't go to war, or at least don't go to war along the Pyrenees. The problem is that since France is mostly surrounded by Habsburg lands at this point, France has little choice but to go to war with Spain if they want to expand.
    VirginiaStronk, Codae and wtw like this.
  5. Galba Otho Vitelius Well-Known Member

    Apr 21, 2016
    I have to admit I'm not sure what is being suggested. IOTL, the Kings of France did expend a good deal of effort into absorbing the Burgundian inheritance, and this involved them in war with Spain, since the Kings of Spain had inherited what remained of the Burgundian territories (or more properly, the other way around). The northeastern frontier of France was a major theater of war.

    On French colonization efforts, Cartier's efforts to establish what became Quebec failed. French Canada really dates to Champlain and 1608, which is after the time period posted. The French acquired what became Haiti in 1625. The French did nothing in the fifteenth century and funded some exploration in the 17th century, as did the English incidentally.

    Maybe the OP is suggesting getting rid of the French invasions of Italy, but note that this is somewhat unlikely. The French kings thought they were the rightful heirs to the Kingdom of Naples and the Duchy of Milan. Countries really didn't expand like in Rick, legal claims were really important. And the French had been deeply involved in Italy in the Middle Ages, hence the links to Milan and Naples. So this supposes that the French kings forget about their past history and claims in Italy and concentrate on the northeastern frontier. That is unlikely but doable. With no French involvement in Italy, the Spanish kings would likely not bother with Milan, though they had held Sicily since the thirteenth century and would certainly pick up Naples too, which is sort of linked ot Sicily.

    The problem is that removing the link between Spain and the Burgundian inheritance creates huge amounts of butterflies. You pretty much have to give the Burgundian inheritance to some other dynasty, which means changing marriages and affecting dynasties across Europe. You could have Charles the Bold be more successful and have a maile heir, but that has unpredictable implications. You could have his daughter Mary marry Edward IV of England and not the Holy Roman Emperor Maximilian, but this changes the dynasties of both Castille and England. Maybe not have Philip marry Joanna of Castile and marry someone else, but at this point Charles VIII's invasion of Italy has already happened.

    The Netherlands was as wealthy and important as northern Italy, so if the French just skipped their Italian invasions, some sort of coalition of other European powers would have emerged to stop them in the Netherlands, even if Castille and Aragon were not involved. As for the Spanish, they still have to fight the Turks in the Med, if only to contain the piracy. The biggest effect of no Burgundian connection, other than the dynastic implications, is more success in North Africa which actually does have interesting implications. The colonial empire is less affected because IOTL they did as well as they could have in that area, in fact making almost ASB generated progress.

    Anything that does away with Charles V really scrambles the timelines of European history well past the 16th century.
  6. isabella Well-Known Member

    Mar 22, 2012
    A survival of both Mary of Burgundy and Edward IV of York maybe will do the trick as here Burgundy and France will continue to fight for the control of Artois and Franche-Comtè as, without the revolts who followed the death of Mary, Maximilian will not be forced to sign the treaty in which he assigned that lands as part of the dowry who his daughter Margaret.
    Survival of Edward IV is important because his children engagements will change greatly the scene as Elizabeth of York was engaged to the Dauphin before Margaret of Austria (here Charles VIII will marry either Elizabeth or his first cousin Catherine, Queen of Navarre).
    Catherine of Navarre here will marry either her cousin Charles VIII of France or Juan, Prince of Asturias more likely than her OTL husband Jean d’Albret.
    Juan prince of Asturias will likely marry either Catherine of York or Catherine of Navarre as both were offered to him.
    Anne of Brittany was engaged to the future Edward V of England but if Francis of Brittany do not want a personal union between England and Brittany and/or Edward IV/V think who a princess with Lancastrian blood will be a wiser choice as next Queen of England I can see Anne marrying Richard of York (as his first wife Anne Mowbray will still be already dead as OTL) and Edward V marrying Joanna of Spain (or Margaret of Austria but I think the first would be more likely).
    Cecily of York had an on/off engagement to the future James IV of Scotland (the on/off part depending from the wars between England and Scotland) and in the end they are likely to marry, while Anne of York was engaged to Philip the Fair of Austria-Burgundy (zero reason for broken the engagement from both sides).
    An Elizabeth of York not married to Charles VIII (if he marry Catherine of Navarre) will likely end as third wife of Francis II of Brittany, second wife of her uncle Richard, Duke of Gloucester or wife of the future Ferdinand II of Naples.
    War between France and Spain about Navarre will be inevitable and the same between France and Austria-Burgundy about Burgundy but still without the OTL encirclement things will be easier to control and with a strong England/Burgundy/Brittany against him is unlikely Charles VIII will be so interested in bring war to Italy for Naples (or supporting his cousin Louis of Orléans in a campaign for Milan)