The 1000 Year Dynasty of the Kommenos TL

Discussion in 'Alternate History Discussion: Before 1900' started by Tongera, Jul 8, 2012.

  1. Tongera Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Apr 24, 2012
    Location:
    Bristol, Great Britain
    Apologies for the long wait, but I had two sets of laptop problems, which made me re-write the updates twice. I was able to save a part of the TL last time, I re-read it and it makes sense to me, but it may seem disjointed a bit. I also added footnotes to relevant parts, which may account for disjointedness.

    Comments will be appreciated and needed, so I would appreciate it greatly with suggestions and recommendations to improve it:



    Chapter 11: Preparations for the Cilician War
    Once the decision to invade Cilcia is made by the Basileus, his generals start to plan the campaign in Konstantinoupolis with Manuel taking charge. For the rest of early 1179 to April 1179, there is disagreement on how the invasion should proceed, whether to involve the Vassal, the Principality of Antioch and whether to use the new Turkish subjects, who happen to know the area well and make excellent light cavalry and archers (particualarly useful in Anatolia). There is also disagreement on whether there should be a prominent naval campaign as well, other than just blockading the Cilician coast and the occasional raid, which some of the naval officers want to be a prominent part of, due to missing out on the battles and victories of Myriokephalon and the Siege of Ikonion due to them being land battles and far inland and the campaign will be close to the sea.

    By early May of 1178, some progress is made of how the campaign should be carried out, with the majority of the campaign being based on land, with a naval campaign, a minor part of the campaign, being carried out from Cyprus, with raiding and landing a small amount of troops (sailors and marines in this case) on the Cilician coast to capture coastal settlements and then raid inland, diverting as many Armenians troops from opposing the main armies that are invading from Antioch, Kalonoros and Ikonion. By the end of May, the minor details (supply and foraging mostly) are being sorted out, with diplomats and advisors being sent to Antioch to prepare them to host a 15,000 force led by Manuel and for a army to be led most likely by the Prince of Antioch, Bohemond.

    In June 1178, the advisors and diplomats arrive in the Principality of Antioch to prepare the route to Cilicia for Manuels army, while the port of Alexandretta is to be cleared for the arrival of the Rhoamios troops, which are arriving by sea. It is clear that moving the troops into Antioch during July and invading the same month aren't possible, despite Manuels optimistic predictions, so a message is sent back by sea to Konstantinoupolis telling him of the situation. When the message arrives in July, Manuel is dissapointed by what he considers his advisors incompotence, however he decides to postphone the campaign until later in the year, possibly the new year.

    During the preparations in Antioch and Anatolia, Manuel decides to sort out several problems in the meantime. One particular problem is Andronikos Komnenos [1], who Manuel receives word that he is arriving or has arrived in the Chaldia Theme, the destination being or is somewhere near Trapezus [2]. The confused reports do not help help however and distracts from the upcoming campaign, as Manuel sends for confirmation to Trapezus on whether Andronikos is there or not. If so, Manuel orders for him and any followers to be arrested on sight and sent to Konstantinoupolis, as Manuel still hasn't forgiven him for the seduction of Theodora Komnenos [2] and refusing to take the oath for Béla III of Hungary [4]. What annoys the Basileus most however, is the fact that his seduction of Theodora is incestous.

    Another issue is the Pronoia grants [5] within the empire, which is starting to show cracks and problems. Complaints are being received about corrupt Pronoiars [6] by the Paroikoi [7] on the land granted. The complaints are often about excessive taxes, with records showing taxes being collected at high levels, but the Paroikoi complaining of even higher taxes. There is also complaints of high taxes for transports and travel through the Pronoiars lands, with is stifling trade is those areas and causing difficulty of travel throughout the provinces. There is consideration on revoking the grants (the Pronoiar don't actually own the land and it isn't hereditary) due to the complaints, but the Basileus doesn't want a possible rebellion on his hands while he is away campaigning far away in Cilicia and the Pronoiar make up a large part of the army, so it is decided to leave the issue for now until he has time on his hands.

    During June to the later months of 1178, Manuel is pre-occupied with plans on how to deal the Pronoiar problem, reports that his cousin Andronikos may be in the Trapezus theme and with his succession. The first two problems Manuels procrastinates on, due to have no reason to sort them out right this instant and it would be more practical to deal with in the new year after the campaign. However the succession of his son Alexios, is pressing on his mind, due to Manuels advancing years and Alexios young age. He prepares Alexios for governace by increasing his education in military, economic and diplomatic affairs. However his biggest concerns are Alexios lack of interest in governace, which worries him and infuriates his tutors to no end, while they acknowledge he can at least learn the basics, his lack of interest prevents from learning better governing, which could threaten the hard work that Manuel and his father and grandfather spent on rebuilding the empire after Manzikert. He resolves to personally instruct and help tutor Alexios in the future, hoping this could help.

    During the month of December 1178, the final preparations for the invasion of Cilicia are ready, with the troops transported to their destination and ready to march. Manuel is travelling by ship to Alexandretta, then to Antioch, where he is to be met by the Prince Bohemond III, who is to lead a contignent of his own troops within the main army lead by Manuel. By 10th of January 1179, the Rhomaios armies will invade Cilicia from 3 different directions, with around 25,000 men split within the three armies, with archers, cavalry of all different kinds and heavy infantry making up the bulk of the army, with Manuel controlling the largest of 10,000 men, with the Antiocheans adding 1,500 men, mostly heavy infantry and a bit of heavy cavalry.



    1. Andronikos was the final Komnenos Emperor until he was overthrown and killed in the streets of Constantinople. His reign was characterized by the persecution of the aristrocracy and fighting corruption. Suffice to say, he was more a Vlad the Impaler than Basil the Bulgar Slayer in terms of dealing with the nobility.
    2. Modern day Trebizond.
    3. Manuel Komnenos niece, married to Baldwin III King of Jerusalem.
    4. Béla III was a potential heir to the Byzantine throne until Alexios was born and Stephen III (brother) died childless and he went back to Hungary as King. Relations were good until Manuel died in 1180.
     
  2. cimon Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jun 20, 2011
    I hope that the other part of this update will be ready sooner...
    present internal problems raising obstacles to a campaign...nothing more common.Some law may need be repealed,substituted or modified...maybe?
     
  3. Tongera Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Apr 24, 2012
    Location:
    Bristol, Great Britain
    Thanks for the first part of praise. :)

    I am sorry, but I can't quite understand the second part. :confused: Can you explain in a clearer way please?
     
  4. cimon Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jun 20, 2011
    Tongera,

    It is obvious that certain laws concerning the Pronoia must be modified,or stricter measures should be applied to remedy the situation.