Muslim World: The True Faith Timeline

The Age of Collapse: Chapter 5
Muslim World - The Age of Collapse
Al-Andalus in the Early Age of Collapse II: The Reign of Fennas I al-Muahad

Northern Campaigns in 754
After settling in Andalus, al-Muahad began a ruthless hunt for the ibrahimites, killing the most prominent leaders and imprisoning several others collaborators and supporters, with the focus of their purges being on the Guadalquivir Valley, thousands of ibrahimites (and innocents in some cases) were killed during the process.

Seeing himself for now without danger to his authority, al-Muahad primarily returned to work with his army, taking over an army of about 40.000 troops (which would be increased to 50.000 after the Banu Qāsi relinquished troops [1]) who would soon sample Fennas's power across the peninsula demanding tributes and gifts from the local lords. In the end, Fennas began a campaign against the basque tribes in the north, ending it after taking control of the Aragonese Pyrenees and converting one of the tribes to rule the area on their behalf.

With a clear path, al-Muahad crossed the Pyrenees with his army and entered Gascony. His first opposition was the basque tribes around the Pyrenees, who were quickly defeated, but his advances would be seriously checked by Hawanalid ibn Awdu al-Saalihin [2], who ruled the region in the interests of the Ibrahimites [3]. After some skirmishes in the Adour River area, the two would clash in the Battle of Munmarasan [4], with Fennas succeeding after effectively using his numerical advantage.

After Munmarasan, Fennas proceeded deeper into gasconian territory, confronting Hawanalid again in Bazas, where he again found victory, forcing Hawanalid to retreat to his well-fortified capital in Burdjel [5], and was subsequently surrounded by Fennas.

But Hawanalid knew that his situation would not get any better with the ibrahimites being pushed back in the north, so he did the only thing he could do, offer surrender in exchange for keeping his land as a fiefdom. Soon al-Muahad accepted the proposal, unwilling to spend time idly, and after an oath of loyalty from Hawanalid, al-Muahad would leave some garrisons in Gascony and return to Andalus, the ibrahimites would soon fall in Faransa.

Consolidation and the War against Wasatbahr (755-762)
After securing his position in Gascony, Fennas turned to Andalus once more. Overthrowing small rebellions of disloyal lords, killing them and replacing them with supporters of his government. By 757, his rule over Al-Andalus was absolute, as well as an unstable rule over the basque tribes of the Aragonese Pyrenees, while receiving tribute from the Duqis of Jasikuna [6], who served as al-Muahad's eyes and ears in the complex politics of Faransa.

He then resumed work on Uqba's projects, leading to the completion of the Qurṭuba-Karkasun road in 763 and its extention to Afyniun [7], of the Great Mosque of Qurṭuba and various irrigation works in the al-Wādī al-Kabīr Valley [8], beginning a tradition of the rulers of Al-Andalus supporting the agricultural infrastructure, contributing to the consequent agricultural revolution.

Feeling safe, al-Muahad sent a delegate to assert a deal with Azure ibn Ṭāriq in Faransa, who successfully secured the deal, with Azure recognizing Fennas's sovereignty over Jasikuna and Ghālia [9] in exchange for a Farano-Andalusian alliance to expel the wasatbahrians from the coast, and an ndalusian army to be sent to assist Azure with the invasions from the tribes of Akba-Faransa. [10]

With the alliance formed, Azure and Fennas mobilized their forces and laid siege to the wasatbahrian posts in Arbūnah, Masaliaan and Qubalat Al-Juzur. With the combined fleet initially defeating the wasatbahrians at sea, the situation seemed to be going well until it was decisively defeated by the brilliant admiral Ġwann al-Muntasir, the defeat resulting in the Banu Murwant [11] of Provence refusing to provide another fleet for Azure and in Fennas' subsequent unwillingness to deal with the wasatbahrians alone, hostilities soon returned to the regular pirate raids on the coast.

Following the failed campaign against the wasatbahrians, Fennas sent an army of about 16.000 troops to help Faransa stabilize the rhine border, fulfilling the terms previously defined. Subsequently, he would spend some time solving affairs in Qurṭuba, until in 764 the Banu Qāsi sought help from the Emir after being decisively defeated by basques invading their lands, so Fennas assembles an army of about 20.000 troops and marches north, establishing camp on the site of what would later be its new capital, Madinat al-Gharb, or as it would be popularly known, Gharbīyyah [12].

The Conquest of the North (764-767)
Arriving on Banu Qāsi's lands, Al-Muahad was gloriously received by Musa ibn Furtun [13] in Tawdila, and receiving an additional 4.000 troops for his campaign.

His first action was to call for help from the subdued basque tribes and Hawanalid of Jasikuna. While rapidly defeating the Basques who had invaded the Banu Qāsi, within a month's time, the campaign had kicked the basques from Musa's former lands. With Fennas offering mercy (and the right to settle on land) to basque migrants in exchange for their conversion to Islam and abandonment of their tribal allegiance.

After (re)establishing control in the region, Fennas set out to put an end to the problem once and for all, with 16.000 asque troops from the subjugated tribes and Jasikuna joining Fennas, he went on the offensive, subjugating the invading basque tribes with one month, and within a four-month period, converting most tribes by the sword and founding military posts to maintain control of the region, the area would be extensively rebellious for a long time, but establishing an administrative system for the tribal chiefs themselves to settle would facilitate the suppression of revolts (which would be largely from the population).

With the conquest of the basques completed, Fennas dismissed the Banu Qāsi, Jasikuna and Basque troops with significant financial compensation for his vassals. And spent time overseeing the region, in his meantime overseeing, he would make the decision to establish a capital in the area, elevating his military post to a city (and subsequently starting construction).

In 766, Fennas raised an army of 23.000 soldiers to end another risk to his power, the Kingdom of Asturias. The invasion would be a fatal blow to the Asturians, who would be quickly defeated and forced to seek refuge in the mountains as half a century ago. Fennas used the same system as with the basques, establishing military posts to prevent the success of revolts and to serve as a base to purge the mountains of rebels.

The (somewhat) consolidation of andalusian rule in Asturias would last until 767. By then only a few rebels would be hiding in the mountains, at one time or another raiding the military posts. Fennas would return to Qurṭuba, gathering his things and subsequently moving the bureaucracy and everything important north, where Madinat al-Gharb was being built.

Peaceful Last Years and the Founding of Gharbīyyah (767-774)
The years between the end of Fennas' Asturian campaign and his death were mostly peaceful, with the main event being the construction of Gharbīyyah. During this time, al-Muahad patronized several poets and scholars to make their presence in the new capital, founding a library and an art gallery in the city [14], which would foster the rise of Al-Andalus literary-artistic culture.

Infrastructure works were established in the Dawrih River Valley [15], with old roman aqueducts being renovated and the establishment of similar irrigation systems to that of al-Wādi al-Kibir, encouraging the re-establishment of intensive agriculture in the region, and subsequently significantly increasing al-Muahad's revenue.

Meanwhile, Fennas prepared his eldest son, Idris, to succeed him as Emir, while appointing his other two sons, Yasin and Fayad to work i the administration of al-Mawsat and Galīsiya, respectively [16]. None of his youngest sons was particularly ambitious, though Fayad showed good military skills.

The rapidly thriving region around Gharbīyyah leaded to a migration of people from the south to the Dawrih Valley, leading in the coming decades to exponential growth in cities such as Balālwalid, Balansiyyah al-Markaza, Semurāh, Salamanka, Sūriah [17] and, of course, Gharbīyyah.

After becoming ill in the winter of 773, Fennas ibn Zari al-Muahad would die in April 774, not ending but beginning an era and a nation, with his Emirate being passed safely to his son, Idris ibn Fennas al-Rumiin [18], which would be as (or even more) consequential than his father.

[1]: The Banu Qāsi acknowledged the overlordship of Fennas for the security of their own lands, so...they're just making their part of the deal
[2]: OTL Hunald I of Aquitaine, after Tours, Gascony was integrated into the muslim domain by the conversion of Hunald to Islam while Odo remained in Aquitaine (eventually succeeded by his other son Hatton) and would eventually be the main christian power in the politics of Faransa (securing his position by helping in Uqba's invasion)
[3]: Hawanalid basically recognized the overlordship of the ibrahimites to be capable of fight against his brother Hatton in better terms
[4]: Mont-de-Marsan, France
[5]: Bordeaux, France
[6]: Dukes (arabization) of Gascony
[7]: Avignon, France
[8]: Guadalquivir River
[9]: Septimania, the name is because the visigoths called Septimania simply "Gallia"
[10]: The Thuringii are pushing west, and with "west" i say "Crossing the Rhine"
[11]: Sons of Mauronte, Duke of Provence, they converted along with Grifo and are lords of the lands designated as OTL County of Provence
[12]: "The City of the West", with the nickname being just a "citynamization". The location is Aranda de Duero, Spain
[13]: Furtun ibn Qāsi died and Musa is his son, just making it clear
[14]: What would Al-Andalus be without its charming cultural eccentricity?
[15]: Douro River
[16]: Andalusia proper and Galicia, respectively
[17]: Valladolid, Palancia, Zamora, Salamanca and Soria
[18]: "The Roman", heh, stay tuned.
 
Will Gharbīyyah be taking Cordoba's place as pre-eminent city in *Spain? IOW, will Seville and Cordoba reach the heights they did in OTL or will they be superseded by Gharbīyyah ?
 
Will Gharbīyyah be taking Cordoba's place as pre-eminent city in *Spain? IOW, will Seville and Cordoba reach the heights they did in OTL or will they be superseded by Gharbīyyah ?
Yep, Gharbīyyah will pretty much take Cordoba's place as the top city in Iberia. Seville maybe will reach OTL heights (or even bigger!), but Cordoba will very much be a shadow of what it was OTL. One note tough, the cities at the Douro River Valley will be substantially bigger TTL, as will already can see.
 
Will Gharbīyyah be taking Cordoba's place as pre-eminent city in *Spain? IOW, will Seville and Cordoba reach the heights they did in OTL or will they be superseded by Gharbīyyah ?
Yep, Gharbīyyah will pretty much take Cordoba's place as the top city in Iberia. Seville maybe will reach OTL heights (or even bigger!), but Cordoba will very much be a shadow of what it was OTL. One note tough, the cities at the Douro River Valley will be substantially bigger TTL, as will already can see.
So Gharbīyyah become ITTL Ribat-Maŷrīṭ (otl Madrid) as the new capital, not bad, very unique and show the focus toward al-faransa.
 
About Aranda de Duero, I am a little confused. It's ubication it's not bad but it isnt great either. They are and the confluence of 3 rivers but only one of those (the Duero) it's important enough to be on maps, in fact I looked the citiy on google earth and the two other rivers looked a little thin for the amount of navigation you would see around the capital of such realm. Granted otl Madrid is even worse, it has no close rivers and it was only chosed becouse the church wasnt strong in the area (in terms of land control) and because it was a good hunting ground for the king. So what does Aranda have going for them? For example Burgos it's in the same basin (but in another river) and while being further north and closer to the mountains and not being in a confluence area it it much closer to the Ebro allowing easier comunication with northeast Iberia:
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About Aranda de Duero, I am a little confused. It's ubication it's not bad but it isnt great either. They are and the confluence of 3 rivers but only one of those (the Duero) it's important enough to be on maps, in fact I looked the citiy on google earth and the two other rivers looked a little thin for the amount of navigation you would see around the capital of such realm. Granted otl Madrid is even worse, it has no close rivers and it was only chosed becouse the church wasnt strong in the area (in terms of land control) and because it was a good hunting ground for the king. So what does Aranda have going for them? For example Burgos it's in the same basin (but in another river) and while being further north and closer to the mountains and not being in a confluence area it it much closer to the Ebro allowing easier comunication with northeast Iberia:
View attachment 515409
Actually, @Nivek's comparation with OTL Madrid it's pretty much the answer, isn't really the best place to have a capital (though as you said, heh, it's better than Madrid), it was selected as capital very much because of personal choice by Fennas and the fact that the majority of the cities in the region are connected to a lord in some form or another. Just change the hunting ground thing to "I want this damn place to be my city and everyone will see how great it will be" (never minded why the name is "The City of the West"?) and you have a somewhat alternate Madrid going on. Other thing is that in comparison with, for example, Burgos, Aranda has a good connection with the south (actually, OTL the biggest thing about Aranda is that the city is a crossroad between Portugal and Madrid) while being in a good position towards the north.

So, it's like Madrid but (significantly) better.
 
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Actually, @Nivek's comparation with OTL Madrid it's pretty much the answer, isn't really the best place to have a capital (though as you said, heh, it's better than Madrid), it was selected as capital very much because of personal choice by Fennas and the fact that the majority of the cities in the region are connected to a lord in some form or another. Just change the hunting ground thing to "I want this damn place to be my city and everyone will see how great it will be" (never minded why the name is "The City of the West"?) and you have a somewhat alternate Madrid going on. Other thing is that in comparison with, for example, Burgos, Aranda has a good connection with the south (actually, OTL the biggest thing about Aranda is that the city is a crossroad between Portugal and Madrid) while being in a good position towards the north.

So, it's like Madrid but (significantly) better.
Nice i got the alusion right, still is a nice city too and one nice divergence. And that last line make sense, here might not be a portugal but good communication among the peninsula is vital too
 
Nice i got the alusion right, still is a nice city too and one nice divergence. And that last line make sense, here might not be a portugal but good communication among the peninsula is vital too
Yeah he is right. It's also quite near of the Ebro ans also the northern christian mountain but not too close (keep an eye on your enemies but kkep them at arms lenght). I see it now.
 
I remember something. I thing @Talus I of Dixie mentioned that most of the Berber Revolt was averted but if so doesnt the Magreb changes a lot? Because of the Revolt the Magreb remained a breeding ground for zaydi, ismaili and khawarij movements and dynasties. The revolt left strong anti abbasid and anti umayyad (that is to say, sunni caliph authority) in the region up until the defeat of the Fatimid dynasties. In the earlier centuries of Islam (say until the XII century) shiism looked quite stronger then sunni forces, heck the sunni abbasid caliph was reduced to a vassal of the shia Buyid dynasty for a long time. It was only with the arrival of the suljuk turks and the reconciliation of the berbers with the sunni abbasid caliph that sunni forces started to take back control fo most of the middle east and north africa, reducing the shia territory to it's core communities.
If this is averted in the Magreb it changes a lot for example all basically most of he Magreb was shia (and to a lesser degree, khawarij, they had a good number of communities in the argelian mountains, some remain today but as ibadis now) and more importantly the inicial territorial base of the Fatimids was in Tunis, eastern Argelia and Tripolitania, before moving into egypt.
Granted there are chances that with the Abbasid decay the berbers decide for dissident religious movements, although I get the impression they changed sect every time they had a problem with the head of the previous. they ressented the Umayyads and Abbasids so the become Shias and khawarij. They resent the Fatimids that moved east to Egypt and rule them from there, they go back to sunnism by accepting back the Abbasid Caliph.
The Great Berber Revolt of 739/740–743 AD (122–125 AH in the Muslim calendar) took place during the reign of the Umayyad Caliph Hisham ibn Abd al-Malik and marked the first successful secession from the Arab caliphate (ruled from Damascus). Fired up by Kharijite puritan preachers, the Berber revolt against their Umayyad Arab rulers began in Tangiers in 740, and was led initially by Maysara al-Matghari. The revolt soon spread through the rest of the Maghreb (North Africa) and across the straits to al-Andalus.
The Umayyads scrambled and managed to prevent the core of Ifriqiya (Tunisia, East-Algeria and West-Libya) and al-Andalus (Spain and Portugal) from falling into rebel hands. But the rest of the Maghreb was never recovered. After failing to capture the Umayyad provincial capital of Kairouan, the Berber rebel armies dissolved, and the western Maghreb fragmented into a series of small Berber statelets, ruled by tribal chieftains and Kharijite imams.
The Berber revolt was probably the largest military setback in the reign of Caliph Hisham. From it, emerged some of the first Muslim states outside the Caliphate. It is sometimes also regarded as the beginning of Moroccan independence, as Morocco would never again come under the rule of an eastern Caliph or any other foreign power until the 20th century.
List of shia, khawarij and ibadi dynasties and states in the Maghreb:
  1. Emirate of Tlemcen (Khawarij) 736–790
  2. Barghawata Confederacy (most tribe khawarij, minority islam influenced sincretic religion) 744–1058
  3. Rustamid dynasty (Ibadi) 777 or 779–909
  4. Idrisid dynasty (Zaydi) 788–974
  5. Banu Ifran (Khawarij) 790-1066
  6. Zirid dynasty (Zaydi but latter sunni) 973–1148
  7. Fatimid Caliphate (ismaili) 909–1171
  8. Kalbids (ismaili) 948-1053 Again sicilians actually but maghrebi arabs
  9. Banu Kanz (Ismaili) 1004–1412 sudanese actually, they were arab-bejas not berbers
Basically how are things in the Magreb? Was the Revolt only postponed? Will the khawarij and shias spread in the region as in otl? Will the Fatimids rise?
 
About the Abbasid Bizantine frontier, with the current setup I cant see the bizantines ever taking back cilicia or other eastern anatolian provinces.
Syria in the 9th century.svg

In the 7th century Cilicia was invaded by the Muslim Arabs. The area was for some time an embattled no-man's land. The Arabs succeeded in conquering the area in the early 8th century. Under the Abbasid Caliphate, Cilicia was resettled and transformed into a fortified frontier zone (thughur). Tarsus, re-built in 787/788, quickly became the largest settlement in the region and the Arabs' most important base in their raids across the Taurus Mountains into Byzantine-held Anatolia.

The Muslims held the country until it was reoccupied by the Emperor Nicephorus II in 965.[6] From this period onward, the area increasingly came to be settled by Armenians, especially as Imperial rule pushed deeper into the Caucasus over the course of the 11th century.
Without it being recovered by christian, it's quite lickely that armenian dont resettle the land and it become arabized like the rest of the levant.
On the same vein, I expect greater arabization of northern al jazira:

Aka the south of the Taurus that is part of turkey nowadays but way less then cilicia because the kurds in the mountains are quite unlikely to assimilate (althought I am not shure the if the kurds where there in this era, I hear tthey keep spreading eastward between the medieval and ottoman eras) and groups like the assyrians and other non arab christian minorites. The point is I think that greater arab settlement and assimilation of those areas will make it less likely for it to turkify once turks arrive.

PD: I confess most of my interest for more arab settlement in cilicia and northern mesopotamia is just pretty borders:
 
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Anyway what are the Bulgarians doing? With the civil war and the Abbasid intervention I can see Voedos recuesting their help and them pulling a 4th crusade and taking over the empire they were supposed to help. Althought you dont need to fuck constantinople to take over the empire, with being orthodox, a decent general with a decent army is more then enough. I can smell a Bulgarian dynasty and posible the Bulgarian people reaching all the eay to the aegean sea and eastern thrace:

But I am not shure. I just checked the wiki and the Bulgarians have yet to convert to christianity, but I thing if they do they can enter Constantinaple with the door open and take over from inside. On the other hand they can just take the oportunity to attack the romans now that they are distracted and debilitated.
 
Avars also have yet to convert to christianity. And in our timeline they only did because thewy were in decline and the Franks subjugated them:
The gradual decline of Avar power accelerated to a rapid fall within a decade. A series of Frankish campaigns in the 790s, beginning in 791, ended with the conquest of the Avar realm after eight years. The 791 campaign ended successfully, although no pitched battle was fought.[52] Avars had fled before the Carolingian army arriving by the Danube, while disease left most of the Avar horses dead.[52] Tribal infighting began, showing the weakness of the khaganate.[52] The Franks had been supported by Slavs, who established polities on former Avar territory.[53] One of Charlemagne's sons captured a large, fortified encampment known as "the Ring", which contained much of the spoils from earlier Avar campaigns.[54] The campaign against the Avars again gathered momentum. It would take two massive hammer-blows, two major musters of the host, drawing upon levies from every part of the now great kingdom, before the robbers' nest was exterminated. And at last, in the year 796, five years after the war began, the Avars cracked and lay utterly at the king's mercy.[55]

By 796, the Avar chieftains had surrendered and accepted Christianity.[52] Pannonia was conquered.[56] According to the Annales Regni Francorum, Avars began to submit to the Franks from 796 onwards. The song "De Pippini regis Victoria Avarica" celebrating the defeat of the Avars at the hands of Pepin of Italy in 796 still survives. The Franks baptized many Avars and integrated them into the Frankish Empire.[57] A growing amount of archaeological evidence in Transdanubia also suggests an Avar population in the Carpathian Basin in the very late 9th century.[58] In 799, some Avars revolted.[59]

In 804, the Bulgaria conquered the southeastern Avar lands of Transylvania and southeastern Pannonia up to the Middle Danube River, and many Avars became subjects of the Bulgarian Empire. Khagan Theodorus, a convert to Christianity, died after asking Charlemagne for help in 805; he was succeeded by Khagan Abraham, who was baptized as the new Frankish client (and should not be assumed from his name alone to have been Khavar rather than Pseudo-Avar). Abraham was succeeded by Khagan (or Tudun) Isaac (Latin Canizauci), about whom little is known. The Franks turned the Avar lands under their control into a military march. The March of Pannonia—the eastern half of the Avar March—was then granted to the Slavic Prince Pribina, who established the Balaton principality in 840. It continued to exist in the west until it was divided between the Carinthian and Eastern marches in 871.[citation needed]

Whatever was left of Avar power was effectively ended when the Bulgars expanded their territory into the central and eastern portions of traditional Avar lands around 829.[60] According to Pohl, an Avar presence in Pannonia is certain in 871, but thereafter the name is no longer used by chroniclers. Pohl wrote, "It simply proved impossible to keep up an Avar identity after Avar institutions and the high claims of their tradition had failed".[61] Although, Regino wrote about them at the year of 889.[58][62] The growing number of archaeological evidence in Transdanubia also presumes an Avar population in the Carpathian Basin in the very late 9th century.[58] Archaeological findings suggest a substantial, late Avar presence on the Great Hungarian Plain, however it is difficult to determine their proper chronology.[58] The preliminary results of the new excavations also imply that the known and largely accepted theory of the destruction of the Avar settlement area is outdated, the disastrous depopulation of the Avar Khaganate has never happened.[63]
Neither have the Bulgarians:
The Christianization of Bulgaria was the process by which 9th-century medieval Bulgaria converted to Christianity. It reflected the need of unity within the religiously divided Bulgarian state as well as the need for equal acceptance on the international stage in Christian Europe. This process was characterized by the shifting political alliances of Boris I of Bulgaria (ruled 852-889) with the kingdom of the East Franks and with the Byzantine Empire, as well as his diplomatic correspondence with the Pope.

Because of Bulgaria's strategic position, the churches of both Rome and Constantinople each wanted Bulgaria in their sphere of influence. They regarded Christianization as a means of integrating Slavs into their region. After some overtures to each side, the Khan adopted Christianity from Constantinople in 870. As a result, he achieved his goal of gaining an independent Bulgarian national church and having an archbishop appointed to head it.

When Khan Boris began his reign in 852, the international situation in Southeast Europe was characterized by a race for influence in the region, both cultural and political. The conflict with the Byzantine Empire for domination over the Slavic tribes in modern-day Macedonia and Thrace was still far from being resolved. In the middle Danube region, Bulgaria's interests crossed with those of the emerging kingdom of the East Franks and the principality of Great Moravia. It was about that period when Croatia emerged on the international scene, carrying its own ambitions and demands for territories in the region.

On a larger scale, the tensions between Constantinople and Rome were tightening. Both centres were competing to lead the Christianization that would integrate the Slavs in South and Central Europe. The Bulgarian Khanate and the Kingdom of the East Franks had established diplomatic relations as soon as the 20s and 30s of the 9th century. In 852, at the beginning of the reign of Khan Boris, a Bulgarian embassy was sent to Mainz to tell Louis II of the change of power in Pliska, the Bulgarian capital. Most probably the embassy also worked to renew the Bulgarian-German alliance.

Some time later, Khan Boris concluded an alliance with Rastislav of Moravia (846–870) instigated by the King of the West Franks, Charles the Bald (840–877). The German Kingdom responded by attacking and defeating Bulgaria, forcing Khan Boris to later re-establish an alliance with the German king directed against Great Moravia, a Byzantine ally. The situation held great risk for the weakened Bulgarian state. War broke out with the Byzantine Empire between 855 and 856. The Byzantines wanted to regain control over some fortresses on the Diagonal Road (Via Diagonalis or Via Militaris) that went from Constantinople, through Philippopolis (Plovdiv), to Naissus (Niš) and Singidunum (Belgrade). The Byzantine Empire was victorious and reconquered a number of cities, with Philippopolis being among them.[1]

In 861 Khan Boris concluded an alliance with East Frankish King Louis the German, all while informing him that he would like to accept Christianity according to western rite. This renewed alliance threatened Great Moravia, which sought help from Byzantium (862–863). This was at the same time when a Byzantine mission to Great Moravia was taking place. Cyril and his brother Methodius intended to draw Great Moravia closer to Constantinople and strengthen the Byzantine influence there.

Khan Boris was more interested in the first Slavonic alphabet Cyril and Methodius had created. Bulgaria wanted to implement the Slavonic alphabet as well as a means to stop the cultural influence of the Byzantine Empire.

In the last months of 863 the Byzantines attacked Bulgaria again, probably after having been informed by their Moravian allies that Boris told the German king he was willing to accept Christianity and Byzantium had to forestall him from taking up Christianity from Rome. A Rome-dependent Bulgaria in the hinterland of Constantinople was a threat to the Byzantine Empire's immediate interests.

Before any actual military engagements took place, Khan Boris was forced to sue for peace due to being unprepared for war because of Bulgaria being badly affected by crop failure and earthquakes that year, which Boris may have taken for a sign to convert according to the eastern rite. Negotiations were set up and Boris promised to convert to Eastern Orthodox Christianity along with his people, requesting missionaries to come to Bulgaria and begin the process.

The two sides concluded a "deep peace" for a 30-year period. In exchange for Bulgaria's conversion, the Byzantines returned previously conquered lands. In the late autumn of 864, a mission from the Patriarch of Constantinople Photios arrived at the Bulgarian capital Pliska and converted the Khan, his family and high-ranking dignitaries. Boris was given the Christian name Michael (after then Byzantine Emperor Michael III) and, according to most scholars, changed his title to the Slavic equivalent of Prince - Knyaz.[2] After that the Bulgarian population began converting to Christianity.
Reasons for convertion
Following the conquests of Khan Krum of Bulgaria at the beginning of the 9th century, Bulgaria became an important regional power in Southeastern Europe. Its future development was connected with the Byzantine and East Frankish empires. Since both of these states were Christian, Pagan Bulgaria remained more or less in isolation, unable to interact on even grounds, neither culturally nor religiously.

After the conversion of the Saxons, most of Europe became Christian. The preservation of paganism among the Bulgars and the Slavs (the two ethnic groups that formed the Bulgarian people and nation, mixed with the local, partially romanized and Christian thracian population), brought another disadvantage — the two ethnic groups' unification was hampered by their different religious beliefs. Lastly, Christianity had its roots in the Bulgarian lands prior to the formation of the Bulgarian state.
So now the circuntances that made them convert are gone. But new ones may arrive. The gold is in internacional politics and institutions. I wonder if the lack of frankish military campaings against the Avars help thme against the Magyars? I mean the avars where already in decline and the Magyars where strong.
 
The point is the are really few christian independent polities remaining and a few of them arent doing well:
122 Sem Título_20191101201916-1.png

We have the two Bizantines spent in civil war
1579038726268.png

Enlarged Bavaria, the many petty kings in Britain, Britanny and finally and out of map Ethiopia (and if everything goes as otl there they will be reduced to their mountains and become a christian island in a muslim sea). There few players left. Alhough taking into account the nature of medieval politics and that people continue to exist even if they are no longer independent christian numbers in areas that are christian at the time of the POD wont experience a really dramatic reduction in numbers and is likely that from time to time christian polities experience a comeback to the map or gain a status similar to the romanian pricipalities under ottoman suzerainty:
Moldavia, Wallachia and Transylvania which paid tribute to the Ottomans and over which the Porte had the right to nominate or depose the ruler, garrison rights, and foreign policy control. They were considered by the Ottomans as part of Dar al-'Ahd, thus they were allowed to preserve their self-rule, and were not under Islamic law, like the empire proper; Ottoman subjects, or Muslims for that matter, were not allowed to settle the land permanently or to build mosques.[1]
Dar al-'Ahd (Arabic: دار العهد‎ "house of truce") or Dar al-Sulh (Arabic: دار الصلح‎ "house of conciliation/treaty") are terms used for territories that have a treaty of non-aggression or peace with Muslims.[12]
This designation can be found in the Quran, where Muslims are directed on how they should act in war:
"Excepting those who join a people between whom and you there is a treaty, or such as come to you with hearts reluctant to fight you, or to fight their own people. Had Allah wished, He would have imposed them upon you, and then they would have surely fought you. So if they keep out of your way and do not fight you, and offer you peace, then Allah does not allow you any course [of action] against them." Quran 4:90
But this really hurts any chances of christian expantion outside of its current lands. If things continue like this maybe christianity could lose it's character as a proselytising religion.
 
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Basically how are things in the Magreb? Was the Revolt only postponed? Will the khawarij and shias spread in the region as in otl? Will the Fatimids rise?
Well, politically, the Magreb is basically an abbasid frontier province, though i can say that as far west you go more rapidly the abbasid control will vanish with time. I would have to do a Maghreb update because of the upcoming wars anyway.

Religiously, it's kinda messed up, because exists a core of abbasid supporters (the same core that made good part of Uqba's armies in the african campaigns) while we have significant dissident communities spread out in the entire region. Isn't like the Khawarij/Shi'a will spread or not, they already are there, though the shi'ites have more to complain about the abbasids than the kharijites (this will be important heh). So, we can say that nothing like a general berber revolt will happen TTL.

About the fatimids i don't want to spoil too much, but i can say that the Shi'a won't have to wait too much for their Caliphate to come ;)

About the Abbasid Bizantine frontier, with the current setup I cant see the bizantines ever taking back cilicia or other eastern anatolian provinces.
I think that they won't even have that time to do so, mind you.

Without it being recovered by christian, it's quite lickely that armenian dont resettle the land and it become arabized like the rest of the levant.
On the same vein, I expect greater arabization of northern al jazira:

Aka the south of the Taurus that is part of turkey nowadays but way less then cilicia because the kurds in the mountains are quite unlikely to assimilate (althought I am not shure the if the kurds where there in this era, I hear tthey keep spreading eastward between the medieval and ottoman eras) and groups like the assyrians and other non arab christian minorites. The point is I think that greater arab settlement and assimilation of those areas will make it less likely for it to turkify once turks arrive.
Cilicia short-term i can say that heh, it will be arab, but long-term i just can say that...anything can happen :p, though is pretty unlikely that a ethnic armenian Cilicia ever cames to be.

Northern Jazira will probably survive as the giant melting pot of minorities (Kurds, Assyrians, Armenians, etc.) as arab settlement is going mostly for Jazira proper and the most-instable fringes of the muslim world. So i think that it will remain ethnically mostly OTL (or even less arabized).

Anyway what are the Bulgarians doing? With the civil war and the Abbasid intervention I can see Voedos recuesting their help and them pulling a 4th crusade and taking over the empire they were supposed to help. Althought you dont need to fuck constantinople to take over the empire, with being orthodox, a decent general with a decent army is more then enough. I can smell a Bulgarian dynasty and posible the Bulgarian people reaching all the eay to the aegean sea and eastern thrace:

But I am not shure. I just checked the wiki and the Bulgarians have yet to convert to christianity, but I thing if they do they can enter Constantinaple with the door open and take over from inside. On the other hand they can just take the oportunity to attack the romans now that they are distracted and debilitated.
The bulgarians are getting out of their own civil war (though it went better than OTL because of the byzantines not messing up with them) and will be a valuable prize for the events to come, but yeah, i don't promise them being particularly loyal to their alliances. As i said, isn't wars of the leagues for nothing, the civil war will turn into the for everybody's gain (less the romans of course) war. Bulgarian settlement will certainly be a thing for the near future, though i can't tell which way it will go without making some big spoilers :biggrin:

Avars also have yet to convert to christianity. And in our timeline they only did because thewy were in decline and the Franks subjugated them:
Neither have the Bulgarians:
So now the circuntances that made them convert are gone. But new ones may arrive. The gold is in internacional politics and institutions. I wonder if the lack of frankish military campaings against the Avars help thme against the Magyars? I mean the avars where already in decline and the Magyars where strong.
The majority of eastern europe is a big pagan spot anyway, the bulgarians (and the avars) for the near future have nor the reasons nor the will to convert. Unless something new arrives and changes it, of course.

Actually, it really doesn't help the avars, since OTL the franks themselves couldn't stop the Magyar conquest of Pannonia, so i don't think that a (already) declining Avar Khaganate will be sufficient to stop them. Other thing is that the slavs have a new freedom against the Avars with no franks in the west, so the situation really doesn't gets better for the Avars.

The point is the are really few christian independent polities remaining and a few of them arent doing well:
122 Sem Título_20191101201916-1.png

We have the two Bizantines spent in civil war
1579038726268.png

Enlarged Bavaria, the many petty kings in Britain, Britanny and finally and out of map Ethiopia (and if everything goes as otl there they will be reduced to their mountains and become a christian island in a muslim sea). There few players left. Alhough taking into account the nature of medieval politics and that people continue to exist even if they are no longer independent christian numbers in areas that are christian at the time of the POD wont experience a really dralatic reduction in numbers. But this really hurts any chances of christian expantion outside of its current lands.
If things continue like this maybe christianity could lose it's character as a proselytising religion.
I was waiting someone to comment about this, the things are going really bad for christianity but as you say, conquest isn't conversion, and we have some pretty good targets for christian expansion with the actual situation.

Something that will really be a experiment ITTL, is how christianity develops without its somewhat euro-centric landscape. I know it seems like the christians will be transformed into a somewhat secondary religion but heh, they still have plenty of space to grow. And following some premature plans for the TL, i have some (christian) surprises for y'all, look to the east my bois.
 
Hey Talus, you thing this guys can survive an keep some kind of a state (a vassal state would be fine. https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kingdom_of_Semien
World only confirmed jewish polity after the romans fucked palentine/israel.
And they had a good run too.
A jewish african state. It would probably need to keep the christian ethiopians divided in many principalities or subjugated by muslim rulers (and the jews allied/vassals to the latter).
 
Hey Talus, you thing this guys can survive an keep some kind of a state (a vassal state would be fine. https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kingdom_of_Semien
World only confirmed jewish polity after the romans fucked palentine/israel.
And they had a good run too.
A jewish african state. It would probably need to keep the christian ethiopians divided in many principalities or subjugated by muslim rulers (and the jews allied/vassals to the latter).
Actually yep, i think that i can play with it...hehe
 
Hey @Talus I of Dixie, how is the relation between Kosmos and the Bishop of Rome? What is the current situation of the patriarch of the west? On one side, he lost all the lands of the latin rite outside of Italy, Bavaria and the far away lands of Britanny and Britain (comunication with those places must be a bitch, the bishops there are probably de facto acephalous) and his home is under direct authority of a roman emperor (bad for papist political pretensions). OTOH the orthodox suffered mighty and their base is under threat of existencial enemies of the empire (pagans and muslims). I was thinking that the not yet Pope may try to offer a bargain to Kosmos, in exchange for support, Kosmos support Rome's claim of superiority over the other patriarchs. But I don't really know how they are actually doing, the state of their authority, both church and emperor, a lot happened to them.
 
Also I just realised that compared to the first word map we got, it seems that Kosmos territory in Croatia and Serbia has been reduced to Dalmatia. Did the southern slavs kick him out during the chaos of the civil war? Those slavs, are they christian or pagan?
 
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