Yes but as soon as we get into the modern period it becomes harder and harder to do so considering outside interference. Britain would probably protect Egypt for the sake of a canal.

While Byzantium can take Egypt before the modern period I think it's a bit frivolous and means they'll have to extend their military forces over quite a bit rather than keeping it largely limited to the two fronts of Anatolia and the Balkans meaning that if there were to be some devastating event it'll hurt all the harder.
The British can't just do whatever they want, you know. Assuming the British come knocking at the same time they did OTL, Egypt will have been a core Roman province for around 1900 years. It is not some impoverished indebted colony to be traded from one power to another. It would be akin to the British annexing Normandy in 1900 -- it would be absurd. And I don't know why you keep talking as though the Romans have to take Egypt. They don't have to take anything, Egypt had been under Roman control since 30 BC, only being lost after the Arab invasions, which were repelled according to the author's post.

And maintaining control over Egypt is anything but frivolous. It is the granary of the empire, a major source of manpower and taxes, and the seat of the Alexandrian Patriarchate. For the Romans, control over Egypt provides far more benefits than it does drawbacks.
 
The British can't just do whatever they want, you know. Assuming the British come knocking at the same time they did OTL, Egypt will have been a core Roman province for around 1900 years. It is not some impoverished indebted colony to be traded from one power to another. It would be akin to the British annexing Normandy in 1900 -- it would be absurd.

Keep in mind all the Religious strife between Egypt and Constantinople. It wouldn't be the first time an Empire helps prop a rebellion of dissatisfied subjects against their overlords for monetary, territorial, or mercantile gain.

Besides are you really going to argue that such a strategically weak position is viable over a Millennium. It would assuming nothing ever goes wrong ever but bad emperors and crises are inevitable and it's best to be in a position where the Empire can recover from it by shortening the frontiers.

And I don't know why you keep talking as though the Romans have to take Egypt.

While it is possible the Romans maintain control over it for the most part its inevitable that it slips from the grasp of imperial control even for a time. The Sassanians managed to do it, Zenobia did it, and I'm sure it's a trend that's going to continue.

Even if they protect it from the Arabs during the initial migration who's to say there won't be another, or when an Alt-Mongol army comes through or even another powerful Iranian Dynasty.

Not saying it's impossible just not likely. Maybe if the religious issues that caused such mass dissention in Egypt were solved it could be easier, otherwise you're going to start getting problems with cities throwing open their gates like what happened in OTL Syria.

It is the granary of the empire, a major source of manpower and taxes

All the more reason the Empire will be too crippled to respond if they can not remove the invader immediately; the longer it takes to respond the more unfeasible it becomes. Not to mention the public backlash of spending the treasury taking back Egypt when the Bulgars/Magyars/Pechenegs are knocking on the gates of Constantinople.
 
The Sassanians managed to do it, Zenobia did it, and I'm sure it's a trend that's going to continue.
These 2 are separated by 300 years so in in 6 centuries egypt is lost twice so I guess by that the Romans will loose egypt in 900ish something

For the alt mongols it would depend how good the alt mongols are how united the Byzantines are the alt mongols will be overstretched but the Byzantines could be in internal strife
 
Keep in mind all the Religious strife between Egypt and Constantinople. It wouldn't be the first time an Empire helps prop a rebellion of dissatisfied subjects against their overlords for monetary, territorial, or mercantile gain.

Besides are you really going to argue that such a strategically weak position is viable over a Millennium. It would assuming nothing ever goes wrong ever but bad emperors and crises are inevitable and it's best to be in a position where the Empire can recover from it by shortening the frontiers.



While it is possible the Romans maintain control over it for the most part its inevitable that it slips from the grasp of imperial control even for a time. The Sassanians managed to do it, Zenobia did it, and I'm sure it's a trend that's going to continue.

Even if they protect it from the Arabs during the initial migration who's to say there won't be another, or when an Alt-Mongol army comes through or even another powerful Iranian Dynasty.

Not saying it's impossible just not likely. Maybe if the religious issues that caused such mass dissention in Egypt were solved it could be easier, otherwise you're going to start getting problems with cities throwing open their gates like what happened in OTL Syria.



All the more reason the Empire will be too crippled to respond if they can not remove the invader immediately; the longer it takes to respond the more unfeasible it becomes. Not to mention the public backlash of spending the treasury taking back Egypt when the Bulgars/Magyars/Pechenegs are knocking on the gates of Constantinople.
These are all very good points, and it's fair to assume that the empire, even if it fares far better than it did OTL, will still inevitably face internal crises or outside pressures that allow for rebellious territories to temporarily break free. That being said, I still think a stronger, more stable Rome can have them firmly under her control by 1900. The keyword here being can. One of the difficult aspects of such an early POD is that it's nearly impossible to make meaningful long-term predictions, as virtually anything can happen in the 1300 year-long timespan we have to work with. Just as they could succumb and collapse to all the factors you've listed, they could also roll constant nat 20s and cruise into the 20th century as one of the dominant powers of the world. I've opted to focus on the latter path as it's more along the lines of what the OP is looking for. It certainly isn't among the likeliest outcomes, but I do think it's ultimately possible.
 
These 2 are separated by 300 years so in in 6 centuries egypt is lost twice so I guess by that the Romans will loose egypt in 900ish something

For the alt mongols it would depend how good the alt mongols are how united the Byzantines are the alt mongols will be overstretched but the Byzantines could be in internal strife
As you said, it depends. If the Mongols catch them with their pants down then the Romans are in for a really bad time. But if they're otherwise in good shape then I think they can successfully repel any Mongol incursions, though certainly not unscathed in the process.
 
Provide no spectacular screw ups by the Byzantine government, what is the largest possible amount of land that can be held up to 1900?
Dude this is way to broad of a time for much of a substantive answer. Depending on which period you use there will still be a huge amount of time to cover. So many things were affected by the fall of Rhomania. Rhomania surviving to 1900 would be a world that's probably totally unrecognizable to us.

If your goal is long-term stability then I think expanding into the old western territories is a mistake. Rome's best course of action is to solidify its control in the east, where Constantinople serves as a natural geographic center from which to control the Balkans and the rest of the Eastern Mediterranean.
They had solid control over the East. This was the whole reason why Justinian felt confident in the East. It was the Arab conquests which totally ended the classical paradigm of the Greco-Roman world. Even in its weakened state the Empire was still able to recover. Also the idea of reuniting the Empire did not just originate with Justinian, it very much predated him, and if he doesn't do it, someone else would in the later future.

As for Justinian's campaigns in the West, they could have easily succeeded. While there were many issues that led to its ultimate failure, the Plague was the main issue. No one could have accounted or even foreseen something like that. If you have Justinian be a bit less hasty about expansion, he could easily have conquered Italy easily early on. One possibility is avoiding the Berber revolt in North Africa which forced Justinian to send Belisarius back to Africa. This interrupted the momentum of the Italian campaign. Just have him delay the invasion a bit to fully pacify North Africa and the Italian campaign should go off with a hitch. The Ostrogoths would probably surrender trying to cut a deal with the Romans as the relentless invasion would not give them any chance to regroup and go on a counteroffensive like in otl.
You presuppose that the Sassanids will remain a constant, but this is far from likely.
They almost got conquered by the Hephthalites at one point, so depending on the pod, you could see the Sassanids seriously destabilized.

to a Five Good Emperors period would give them time to breathe and establish a formal system.
The Five Good Emperors were pretty overrated tbh. The Romans actually going from Theodosius to Maurice had well over a century peaceful transitions of power from one Emperor to the other. It was just Phokas' idiocy that ruined the whole thing.

Though to have more success you likely need the Justinian dynasty continuing. An easy pod for this if say Theodora and Justinian likely have a son before they become rulers. This was probably before she became barren. Another pod is if you have Germanos succeed Justinian. He was the Emperor's cousin and had married into the Ostrogothic royal family. Germanos was considered as the heir-apparent until his sudden death in 550. Though he was disliked by Theodora but supported by other members of Justinian's government including Belisarius and Procopius.
 
I'm pretty sure that the Byzantines would be more continental focused than having any aspirations on Canada. The Caribbean maybe, but Canada?
if anything there focus would be on levant egypt north africa and persia. I expect if they do defeat egypt they may push into east africa to take control of the red sea trade. Dont think they would care much for colonies in america's plus they dont have the power projection unless they conquer morroco and iberia which in middle ages is too much difficult kigusically
 
What the Byzantines desperately need is a concrete succession system in order to lessen the absurd number of civil wars that plagued them OTL. Perhaps the Byzantines getting something akin to a Five Good Emperors period would give them time to breathe and establish a formal system.
Would a hereditary monarchy or some kind of presidency be preferable?
 
Would a hereditary monarchy or some kind of presidency be preferable?
Why would there even be a presidency? The title itself is an anachronism for the Byzantines. Plus any ideas of Republicanism have been dead for well over a thousand years.

There already was de-facto hereditary monarchy within Rhomania. The army preferred this as it established a clear line of succession. Most conflicts occurred when the main line died out and the succession was contested by equally viable claimants. The other issue was when siblings/cousins fought in a dynasty.

Anna Komnene and her mother nearly started a Civil War with Ioannes II Komnenos as they were trying to have Ioannes disinherited in favor of Anna's husband and Alexios' son-in-law. The main target of the coup refused to take part in it and he even lent his support to Ioannes II.

This also came to a head during the Second Palaiologan civil war as well which utterly drained the Empire's resources.
 
My thoughts have always been that the Balkans/Anatolia is the best borders for Byzantium. Annexing Armenia was likely a step in the wrong direction.

I have heard an argument that the consistent Arab raids which shifted the Anatolian economy away from agriculture and toward pastoralism created the perfect set up for the Turks. So perhaps any earlier cessation to the Arab raids will be important to keeping Anatolia strong against an inevitable Turkish incursion
 
Why would there even be a presidency? The title itself is an anachronism for the Byzantines. Plus any ideas of Republicanism have been dead for well over a thousand years.

There already was de-facto hereditary monarchy within Rhomania. The army preferred this as it established a clear line of succession. Most conflicts occurred when the main line died out and the succession was contested by equally viable claimants. The other issue was when siblings/cousins fought in a dynasty.

Anna Komnene and her mother nearly started a Civil War with Ioannes II Komnenos as they were trying to have Ioannes disinherited in favor of Anna's husband and Alexios' son-in-law. The main target of the coup refused to take part in it and he even lent his support to Ioannes II.

This also came to a head during the Second Palaiologan civil war as well which utterly drained the Empire's resources.
I couldn't figure out a word for a permanently elected position that doesn't turn into the hre or plc.
 
I couldn't figure out a word for a permanently elected position that doesn't turn into the hre or plc.

I could definitely see the imperial title evolving into something like a lifetime elected appointment, although that itself might be too much of an anachronism given the early POD
 
Why would there even be a presidency? The title itself is an anachronism for the Byzantines. Plus any ideas of Republicanism have been dead for well over a thousand years.

There already was de-facto hereditary monarchy within Rhomania. The army preferred this as it established a clear line of succession. Most conflicts occurred when the main line died out and the succession was contested by equally viable claimants. The other issue was when siblings/cousins fought in a dynasty.

Anna Komnene and her mother nearly started a Civil War with Ioannes II Komnenos as they were trying to have Ioannes disinherited in favor of Anna's husband and Alexios' son-in-law. The main target of the coup refused to take part in it and he even lent his support to Ioannes II.

This also came to a head during the Second Palaiologan civil war as well which utterly drained the Empire's resources.
To be fair there is the thing in the byzantine empire were the main line was not death rather overthrown like in the case of maurice , justinian II etc.
 
My thoughts have always been that the Balkans/Anatolia is the best borders for Byzantium. Annexing Armenia was likely a step in the wrong direction.

I have heard an argument that the consistent Arab raids which shifted the Anatolian economy away from agriculture and toward pastoralism created the perfect set up for the Turks. So perhaps any earlier cessation to the Arab raids will be important to keeping Anatolia strong against an inevitable Turkish incursion
Keeping Armenia as a buffer state is a prudent strategy, but the situation leading up to the the Battle of Manizikert was in no way inevitable. Under Empress Theodora previous Turkish raids were dealt with swiftly.

It was a combination of unimaginable stupidity on the part of the reigning Emperor Constantine X Doukas that led to the debacle. Not even the Angeloi as self-destructive, corrupt, and incompetent as they were would have done that. Not even Phokas would have done something like what Conistantine X did.

The imbecile chose to sit idly in the palace while his courtiers kept bringing in news of Turkish raids. He dissolved the 20k strong Armenian garrison in the face of an invasion into Armenia. He did it largely because he didn't want to cut back on his indulgent and opulent lifestyle in the capital. Its honestly a mystery why the man wasn't assassinated or forcefully deposed by anyone in the court. So many Emperors were blinded for much less. I know there was an assassination attempt in 1061 though by the dynatoi.

I could definitely see the imperial title evolving into something like a lifetime elected appointment, although that itself might be too much of an anachronism given the early POD
Not really. The Empire was an republican monarchy whereby the Emperor was acclaimed by the will of the "Senate and the people of Rome." In practice that meant the army. This had been the case for over a millennium, so that's not a very likely scenario.

I have heard an argument that the consistent Arab raids which shifted the Anatolian economy away from agriculture and toward pastoralism created the perfect set up for the Turks. So perhaps any earlier cessation to the Arab raids will be important to keeping Anatolia strong against an inevitable Turkish incursion
It was more because the wealthy nobles kept trying to consolidate more land under themselves and this led to them driving off peasant landowners. This sort of left Anatolia depopulated, though Anatolia was never really majority Islamic/Turkish until well after the fall of the Byzantine Empire. Even during the reign of Sultan Osman I, a good portion of his troops were made of Greeks and Armenians who either converted to Islam or preferred Turkish rule over the Latins.

The Byzantines had the opportunity to defeat the Turks numerous times though. I believe the last chance for any sort of reconquest would probably be in the early/mid 13th Century. Though Andronikos III's campaign in the 14th Century had he almost won, had the makings of recapturing most of the Greek lands in Western Anatolia.

Though if say Alexios Philanthropenos wasn't blinded he probably would have changed things drastically. The man was a very good general and even when elderly and blinded when news of his arrival reached the invading Turks, they fled in fear of him. Had his coup been successful you probably could have ended up with a Byzantine Majorian.
 
Egypt probably goes into the British sphere earlier to prevent conquest by the Byzantines.
In a TL where the Roman Empire not only survives but remains dominant, there will be major butterflies (no Crusades for one) and there is no guarantee than an island state off the coast of Western Europe will rise to prominence.
 
If the Byzantines were competent and stable enough to survive to 1900:

Greece, North Macedonia (FYROM), Southern Bulgaria, Antioch and Anatolia except Armenian Highlands in the Southeast, would be firmly a part of the Byzantine Empire/Kingdom or even if it is reorganized as "Greece" with a different name. Some parts might be re-Hellenized if a conquest still happens in any region in the above list that more or less surrounds Greater Greece.

Northern parts of Balkans might be South/West Slavic or West Germanic or Hungarian, depending on what unfolds and when. But the Byzantines holding the Northern parts of the Balkans is not easy.

In case the Arab invasions don't happen, the Byzantium remains the most powerful state in the Mediterranean until the rise of France, Spain (even if a Visigoth one) and Italy, towards the Late Medieval and the Modern era. Like the Ottomans, they may be much bothered in colonizing the New World, except sending some Greek immigrants and missionaries. They already have plenty of lands in the Mediterranean climate and with good riches pouring from trade and agriculture but eventually saturates with the Rise of the West. Greek regions will stay united under a successor state, but we cant say about Syria and Egypt. There are many variables here.
 
Was reclaiming Austria in the cards (if so that's a definite game changer for european history) or was Bavaria too entrenched?

Not really. The Empire was an republican monarchy whereby the Emperor was acclaimed by the will of the "Senate and the people of Rome." In practice that meant the army. This had been the case for over a millennium, so that's not a very likely scenario.
So what would be the ideal modernized Byzantine government?
 
there is no guarantee than an island state off the coast of Western Europe will rise to prominence.

Still a fairly likely possibility though.

Being an Island does mean it's somewhat safe from mainland invasion if it ever unites; as well as giving it a significant maritime tradition which definitely sets it on the right path.

And that's not even discussing the easily accessible industrial materials like coal, iron, tin, and others which gave Britain an early lead in the Industrial Revolution.
 
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