Roman Empire Timeline Cliches To Avoid

a bit recondite, but I've never seen a Rome TL explore the possibilities of the naval dimension of warfare (heck, most writers seem to forget that cavalry surged in importance in the Late Empire, but that probably goes with the whole "Byzantium doesn't exist" thang)
Eh, I've seen several. One was a surviving Trebizond.
 
The inevitability of Christianity. That somehow, it will always come out on top because it's 'naturally' superior.

Personally, I think it is a low-probability outcome that happened because, occasionally, low-probability things do happen, like rolling a d100 and getting 100. Yeah I know it's more complicated than that and I could debate it like we have a million times, but I'm tired of it.

But it does bug me when I see it just arising "on schedule" without explanation as inevitable.
 
Mountains typically make terrible borders. Your border is, essentially, the Mesopotamian plain. I guess it's not completely indefensible, but it's pretty difficult to defend and would require immense resources.
Looking at the history of Mesopotamia from the Sumerian city-states to the modern era, the alluvial plain is incredibly vulnerable to invasion from pretty much all sides. You can't defend the mountain passes from the lowlands, to do that you need to go into the mountains and build fortresses there. Which for the Romans means shipping men to Syria, marching them all the way across the alluvial plain and then up into the mountains, to defend a border that is longer than the Rhine.
 
Looking at the history of Mesopotamia from the Sumerian city-states to the modern era, the alluvial plain is incredibly vulnerable to invasion from pretty much all sides. You can't defend the mountain passes from the lowlands, to do that you need to go into the mountains and build fortresses there. Which for the Romans means shipping men to Syria, marching them all the way across the alluvial plain and then up into the mountains, to defend a border that is longer than the Rhine.
Right, hence why Rome's "natural" borders in the region would be Northern Mesopotamia with Circesium, Nisibis, Singara, and maybe Hatra probably being the extent of their feasible direct control (assuming Armenia is aligned with them). It's also enough of a buffer to protect Syria while also being a good launch point for any potential offensive action into Parthian/Sassanian Mesopotamia.
 
I think the silver-lining of Zagros Mountains is denial of Mesopotamia to Persia. Even if the province doesn’t become profitable, you can be sure that the Persians ain’t getting it’s population and wealth to use it against you either.People tend to forget that.
I always thought the problem w/ Mesopotamia was that it would've been too profitable and would've weakened the persians too much
Then governors of Mesopotamia'd be left alone in the east, w/ a quasi secure back, fabulously wealthy and w/ a massive army: that's begging someone to proclaim himself emperor
 
The goths? Ukraine.

Romania too.

I always thought the problem w/ Mesopotamia was that it would've been too profitable and would've weakened the persians too much
Then governors of Mesopotamia'd be left alone in the east, w/ a quasi secure back, fabulously wealthy and w/ a massive army: that's begging someone to proclaim himself emperor

There's the option of doing what Severus did to Syria and split the province into two (or more) units.
 
"Rome taking all of Germania totally makes sense." is at least a cliche.

I'm not an expert on the early empire as opposed to the part covered by the Byzantine Empire thread, but it keeps coming up like it would make sense for the Romans with what they knew and cared about to see ruling central Europe as worth the investment.
Rome taking Germanic, Rome taking Caledonia, Rome taking Ireland. This is what I dealt with in my Rome history tl, due to agricultural practices back then it wouldve been impossible to settle them without some major innovations.
 
Rome taking Germanic, Rome taking Caledonia, Rome taking Ireland. This is what I dealt with in my Rome history tl, due to agricultural practices back then it wouldve been impossible to settle them without some major innovations.
What about the areas Rome was trying to settle during the Marcomanic wars?
 
Probably already mentioned.

But the Roman Empire staying pagan is one I've seen a couple times, and it always seems to be done for the sake of it.
 
Rome taking Germanic, Rome taking Caledonia, Rome taking Ireland. This is what I dealt with in my Rome history tl, due to agricultural practices back then it wouldve been impossible to settle them without some major innovations.
Settling was possible, but only as a multi-generational effort, hence why I think you'd need some easy draw like stumbling upon the large and easily accessibile mines on the Scottish coast.
People in general tend to badly calibrate what "moved" strategic aims, injecting their expectations (or, worse yet, those extrapolated from GSG metas) instead.
 
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Zillian

Gone Fishin'
Oh. I need to keep a eye on this thread especially as I am writing a Roman timeline myself. However there is one thing I want to point out here:

Thirdly, on Christianity, I think the rise of Christianity, while it may happen differently, or later, was inevitable. It was happening before Constantine, and basically the only way to stop it was to persecute Christians in a way that really only happened under Diocletian. Any timeline with a POD after the birth of Christ and where St. Paul exists is going to lead to Christianity as a majority religion (yes I understand my idea technically has a POD before the birth of Christ but I don't see how that POD changes the birth of Christ). Yes, the Romans were reluctant to execute Jesus, but as long as they held Judea, they'd still basically be forced to, no matter who was in charge for the Romans.

I think that the idea of the inevitability of Christianity no matter the PoD is a cliche itself especially the bolded line.
The immediate butterfly effect of my PoD (Caesar surviving Ides of March) would actually throw the Jewish history completely out of its course without the chaos of the Second Triumvirate, the post-Caesar civil wars and the Parthian occupation of Judea. Nor could I see a reason for Caesar to appoint Herod "the Great" as king of Judea when the kingdom already had Hyrcanus II as its king (he came only to power due to the above mentioned chaos). A surviving Hasmonean kingdom would butterfly away Jesus' birth let alone the cultural environment which led to his philosophies.
 
I think that the idea of the inevitability of Christianity no matter the PoD is a cliche itself especially the bolded line.
The immediate butterfly effect of my PoD (Caesar surviving Ides of March) would actually throw the Jewish history completely out of its course without the chaos of the Second Triumvirate, the post-Caesar civil wars and the Parthian occupation of Judea. Nor could I see a reason for Caesar to appoint Herod "the Great" as king of Judea when the kingdom already had Hyrcanus II as its king (he came only to power due to the above mentioned chaos). A surviving Hasmonean kingdom would butterfly away Jesus' birth let alone the cultural environment which led to his philosophies.
A number of concepts in Christianity were already floating around the Roman Empire at the time of its rise. You have monotheistic religions including but not exclusively the Jews. You have the idea of a dying and risen god in the form of Orphism. You have a imperial culture that at the time was open to absorbing other cultures.

Thus if you proclaim a faith that is inclusive, muliticultural and flows with the time you have fertile ground for it.

As for a Hasmonean religion butterflying away Jesus's birth, I cannot see how that can be as Herod was in effect a Hasmonean by marriage and Joseph and Mary were not related to that dynasty.
 

Zillian

Gone Fishin'
As for a Hasmonean religion butterflying away Jesus's birth, I cannot see how that can be as Herod was in effect a Hasmonean by marriage and Joseph and Mary were not related to that dynasty.
Joseph and Mary were of course not related to the Hasmonean dynasty (which I didn't claimed by the way) but in my case the PoD happens 44 years before the birth of their son and and his parents might not have been around at this time.
Yes Herod is related to the Hasmonean dynasty by marriage but neither Jewish or Christians want him on the throne, and actually needed the Romans to back him up when he took the throne. They might have preferred a male relatives of the Hasmonean dynasty over Herod who already had reputation as a cruel ruler. I think this wouldn't happen in a less chaotic post-Caesar republic especially if Caesar survive the assassination attempt.
The circumstance of the birth of Jesus would change dramatically in a surviving Hasmonean kingdom as there would be no Massacre of the Innocents and other political and cultural factors. There are commonly agreed among the scholars that Massacre of the Innocents is a myth, but Herod did actually killed off Hasmonean relatives and other rivals to the Jewish throne which might have give inspiration to this myth. If Hasmonean avoid being annexed long enough past Jesus' birth, then his parents would have no reason to travel to Bethlehem for the Roman census.

Also just because a number of concept in Christianity already exist at the time doesn't mean that it would inevitable led to the rise of a monotheist religion. As far as I know only Judaism and perhaps Zoroarstarism are monotheist around the time of the birth of Jesus.
 
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If Hasmonean avoid being annexed long enough past Jesus' birth, then his parents would have no reason to travel to Bethlehem for the Roman census.

Also just because a number of concept in Christianity already exist at the time doesn't mean that it would inevitable led to the rise of a monotheist religion. As far as I know only Judaism and perhaps Zoroarstarism are monotheist around the time of the birth of Jesus.
There is no historical record of the census. Besides, there could be other reasons why Joseph and Mary go to Bethlehem. In Matthew's gospel it merely says that he was born there with no expanation as to why his parents were in the town.

On the matter of monotheist religions at the time, Christianity was originally seen as another Jewish sect albeit doctrinally different to the Pharisees and Saducees. There is no reason why it could not remain like that as well as grow its numbers. After all there are Messianic Jews living today who keep Jewish customs as well as believe in Jesus as the Messiah.
 
There is no historical record of the census. Besides, there could be other reasons why Joseph and Mary go to Bethlehem. In Matthew's gospel it merely says that he was born there with no expanation as to why his parents were in the town.

Some argue that Jesus really was born in Nazareth, as stated in Mark, and that the whole Bethlehem thing was a attempt by the writers of Matthew and, to a lesser degree, Luke (or whoever they took inspiration from), to prove that Jesus really was the Messiah, and fulfilled the prophecies, to a presumably Jewish audience - that particular event, specifically, being connected to Micah 5:1.
 
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