The Extra Girl: For the first heaven and the first earth were passed away.

Discussion in 'Alternate History Discussion: Before 1900' started by Dr. Waterhouse, Apr 19, 2018.

  1. Shnurre Well-Known Member

    Jul 26, 2011
    First let me complement you on this amazing rewrite of your TL. While I did follow the previous version its beginning was much less detailed than I usually prefer for TLs.
    This new version however both looks more plausible to me (probably it is subjective but I find detailed descriptions way more convincing than the shorter ones even if the events they describe are the same) and very engaging to reed (in fact yesterday I haven’t gone to bed till 5 AM reading it). The way you describe Saxony being constantly on a perilous brink and yet managing to walk the tight rope is excellent and had me glued to the monitor. Your characters also appear believable, flawed but very attractive (what a magnificent bastard, an epitome of Renaissance prince, Friedrich IV is!)

    I have a couple questions about current borders of Saxony. You have provided map on the page 6, but some details are still unclear for me (feel free to ignore this quesion if it drowns too deep into HRE borders gore). I use this map for reference but you probably have something better.
    You have mentioned directly that by now Friedrich has annexed Albertine Saxony, subjugated bishoprics Magdeburg, Halberstadt, Mainzer territory around Erfurt and Imperial City of Goslar. It is also clear that Friedrich has annexed smaller bishoprics in Saxony – Meissen, Naumburg and Mersenburg (as Wurzen, Zeitz and Mersenburg are mentioned as being integrated directly into the Electorate).

    However the fate of smaller feudal holdings of Saxony and Thuringia – Schoenburg, Reuss, Schwarzburg, Henneberg remains unspecified. Judging by the map on page 6 Saxony has annexed or subjugated Schoenburg, parts of Reuss around Gera and southern part of Schwarzburg holdings including the castle Schwarzburg itself.

    First two are very plausible:

    1. Heinrich XV that ruled Gera IOTL died childless. IOTL succession went to Heinrich IV von Plauen, but he was Habsburg man through and through and ITTL would probably unable to enforce his claim. Now Reuss guys also wanted lordship of Gera but since Heinrich IV also had patent from Charles V to their holdings around Greiz, they would probably swallow the annexation of Gera by Friedrich IV (since Friedrich wants Gera only Gera that they have claim to but Heinrich IV supported by Habsburgs wants both Gera and their main holdings around Greiz).

    2. Schoenburg in 1540s is under joined regency, but de-facto is under Moritz thumb. I am not sure Ernestines would annex their lands outright, but Friedrich would probably be able to reduce their holdings and subjugate them in some manner.

    The Schwarzburg bit however raises some questions. Specifically I think that more plausible outcome would be either Ernestines owning both southern and northern parts of Schwarzburg ( i.e. respectively lands around castle of Schwarzburg and lands around Sondershausen) or neither. The justification is as follows:

    1. IOTL domains of Schwarzburg were occupied by Ernestines in 1546 and restored to Guenther XL of Schwarzburg after Muehlberg. If in TTL Guenther XL supports Albertines, I don’t think Friedrich would restore his lands to him and thus northern part of Schwarzburg around Sondershausen would probably also be part of his domains.

    2. On the other hand if Guenther XL does not fight against Friedrich he would probably retain both northern and southern parts of his lands.

    Also rather peculiar that the Imperial city of Goslar is isolated and rather small enclave of Saxony (after Friedrich has ceded the former lands of Braunschweig-Wolfenbuettel to Braunschweig-Lueneburg). Muehlhausen, however is right on the Saxon border, sandwiched between Saxony and friendly Hessen (particularly after Hessen annexed Eichsfeld ) and owns quite a bit of land but remains independent.
    But of course there is nothing implausible about this – Friedrich would hardly return Goslar unless forced in a very hard way (especially given its historical and propaganda value for HRE) and the opportunity to subjugate Muehlhausen did not present itself yet.
  2. Dr. Waterhouse A Mighty Fortress Is My TL

    Nov 12, 2008
    I am deeply sorry to have been so long away. And it was, truly, unavoidable. I don't like to go into personal stuff on here but it seems necessary in this instance. First, I live in the part of the United States affected by Hurricane Florence, and by affected, I mean we had 39 inches of rain in four days. Then I had a close family member fall ill during the hurricane (for unrelated reasons), who spent 31 days in the hospital. That family member then passed away, requiring me to plan the funeral. And I went for something like four weeks with no home internet. So, believe me when I say I would have rather been doing alternate history than spending my time as I have the past month. I'm now going to need to take some time to get myself back up to speed on the timeline, but hopefully we will be back in business shortly, beginning with an extraordinarily tardy answer to Shnurre's question. Thank you all for your patience.
  3. Samuel Von Straßburg Well-Known Member

    Sep 8, 2014
    Glad to see you back continuing the TL. Sorry you've had such a rough time of it lately.
  4. Threadmarks: Supplemental on Saxon territorial acquisitions as of 1554

    Dr. Waterhouse A Mighty Fortress Is My TL

    Nov 12, 2008
    First, thank you for the kind words about the timeline. Hopefully we will be getting back to business forthwith.

    Now, in answer to your specific questions about Saxon territorial acquisitions in the Spanish War.

    Three factors determined whether Saxony acquired a given territory in those early years of the Spanish War. First, did the territorial prince in question contribute forces to Charles V's effort to remove Elector Friedrich IV (like Albertine Saxony, or briefly, Braunschweig-Wolfenbuettel)? Second, are they an ecclesiastical territory abutting Saxon lands (like Magdeburg)? Third, are they a vulnerable free or imperial city that would gladly trade tax money for Saxon protection (like Erfurt)?

    With respect to Reuss, the critical question was resolved as soon as I found out it was included in our timeline's Schmalkaldic League. Especially given the anxieties Saxony's acquisitions created anyway among Friedrich and Johann's protestant neighbors, they can't go around dispossessing allies, even small or marginal ones. So, Reuss with its innumerable Heinrichs is safe, and at the same time both outside Saxony and completely surrounded by it, much like Anhalt. Now, that's reflected in the map on page 6. However, to be honest really at the time I had just worked it by virtue of Reuss not being a named enemy or target in the timeline.

    As to Henneberg, that's also outside the border specified in the map on page 6. Now, we're going to be reaching the matter of a certain inheritance treaty shortly (1554). But really, it's fair to say if our timeline's Johann Friedrich II (son of the magnanimous), dispossessed of the electoral dignity, with tiny territories, can wrestle Henneberg away from the Hennebergs, our Friedrich IV can too.

    In my facile researches on the matter, I can't seem to find whether the Schoenburgs were on Team Luther or not. That they received estates in Bohemia suggest not. That may indicate their lands got folded in to the Wettins (I suppose we really don't need to specify Ernestine any more, with poor Moritz gone). For all we know by the point we are in the timeline, some French Huguenot refugees are trying to make a go of it in their lands.

    Now, as to the Schwarzburgs, that presents a close question. Guenther XL was, somewhat like Moritz, both a Protestant prince and an enemy of Johann Friedrich in our timeline. So how does that work out? Once again, remember that before the Dueren adventure our Friedrich IV was making a point of not doing anything to provoke his neighbors or create unwanted friction. He really did not want to create any casus belli that the emperor could use against him. So he would not have tried to dispossess Guenther outright. And then later, you will recall that Friedrich deploys Luther at the end of his life to write a scathing rebuke of Moritz, whom he groups with the emperor and the pope. At that point it would have been very difficult for Guenther to move against Friedrich and not face the wrath of his people. So I'm thinking unless I can find more detail on the matter Guenther is pulled along unhappily in the wake of Friedrich, not having lost his territory, and not really able to act against his much larger rival. Which is pretty similar to what you're saying, I know.

    Now, in conclusion, once again I hate that I am so tardy with a response and hope that you're still with us. Getting just this sort of detail on the families of the Thuringian nobility is brilliant, and I hope you're still along for the ride so you can continue to ask just this sort of question and offer additional detail as we go forward. And on that note, if you have any maps or other material to share with me, that would be great.

  5. Threadmarks: The Life of the Elector Friedrich IV, Holy Roman Empire, 1553-4

    Dr. Waterhouse A Mighty Fortress Is My TL

    Nov 12, 2008
    Emperor Ferdinand I, by Hans Bocksberger the Elder

    So this week on Resignations Privatcast we have the thrilling, and I mean thrilling, news that yours truly is going to be contributing to a new anthology of essays in the exciting area of allohistory. For those of you not familiar, this is where people posit alternate ideas about what could have happened, but did not. For example, what if Russia won the Ninth General War, or what if Russia won the Ninth General War, or really, what if Russia won the Ninth General War? Conceivably other scenarios are possible, but once you check out the actual websites where they discuss this stuff, pretty much all they're interested in is the versions of events in which we're pretty much all just serfs.

    This volume however promises to be different. As we all know, no one person has ever managed to rule Europe. Not even when we add in geographic hedges like, north of the Pyrenees, or west of the Carpathians, or leaving aside Scandinavia. No one has ever done it, no one has ever even come close to it, and the career of the emperor we've been examining here at Resignations Privatcast for the last year and a half provides a useful examination of the reasons why one man, or woman for that matter, can never wrestle the continent into submission.

    That said, this book is going to examine the figures who came the closest to pulling off the unimaginable coin trick of uniting Europe under their rule, and then imagining that extra step with which they won the whole thing. I for my sins am going to be writing about Charles V. Others will be writing about figures like Jan Sobieski and Philip the Great. And lest any one think this anthology is just going to be one long series of love letters to Team Roman Catholicism, we have a lovely contribution from a lecturer at the University of Kaiserin examining what would have happened if, during Erste's succession crisis, when Brandon England and Wettin Germany stood at the altar and contemplated joining together in a personal union that would have created an empire stretching from Kurland to County Kerry, they had actually gone through with it. Instead, of course, it was not even the usual matters of inconsistent national aspirations, religious difference or clashing political cultures that did in the project. It was simply some of the most toxic family relationships ever to cross the European stage, replete with arrogance, grudges and in one celebrated moment, the actual throwing of a crown.

    But that's someone else's story. Mine is Charles', and what would have happened if Charles managed to subdue his rascal Lutheran subjects. At which point, all he would have to do is conquer France, defeat the Ottomans, keep the pope of the moment from stabbing in the back, and really Europe would all be his. Imperator in fact as well as in name. Piece of cake. Really. In any case, I will be sharing more information about the book, including title, publication date, and the names of the other contributors, as soon as I can. But now, back to our story. This is Resignations, our continuing privatcast look at all the great quitters of history, and the story of how they all came to make the decision to walk away from it all.

    So, when the Elector Friedrich IV of Saxony met Charles V at Liege on Easter, 1553, so that they could together begin a campaign against the French, nothing was spared in the way of spectacle. It helps here to imagine a Germanic Field of the Cloth of Gold. At the emperor's camp outside the city's walls, with thousands watching, elector did emperor feudal homage on a stage erected for the purpose. The message, to the assembled nobility, knights and soldiers, and to the audience of the great and good not actually present, was simple. The Empire stood united against her enemies, the bloody internal strife that had cost it the Vicariate was done, and Germans now stood shoulder to shoulder, Catholic and Lutheran alike, to send the armies of Henri II home with their tails between their legs.

    Of course what transpired over the months that followed was, far from the lofty expectations announced to the world at Liege, a set of marches more intended to avoid violence than to prosecute it. No matter how much either emperor or elector protested his good will and fidelity, neither could dispel the fear that the other would outmaneuver him, and either land a surprise blow himself, or sacrifice him through indifference to the French at some moment of vulnerability. After all, Friedrich had very good reasons not to place himself between the jaws of two Catholic kings. And Charles could not help but remember that Henri of France had declared himself the protector of the German Lutheran princes, of which Friedrich was most definitely one.

    At the same time, the cost of what was now over ten years of continuous war in Germany had drained the treasuries of all involved. Until the defeat of Friedrich's brother-in-law "Henry IX", in the case of Saxony much of this cost had been born by the exchequer of the English king. Even so, the expenses run up by the war were enormous. Some of the present campaign against the French had even been funded by selling the jewels and dresses of the electresses Elizabeth and Dorothea. In that the army this act would help to field was being traded for the liberation of the Duke Alexander, we can only imagine one assented, and the other, had she been alive, would have.

    One of the few practical benefits to these long months of ineffectual, and astronomically expensive, war-making in the west was that it brought the two chief principals close enough together that it was relatively easy to begin a back and forth in which the parties might find a way to peace. Unfortunately, these negotiations had to be done in the absence of the most skilled diplomat in the Saxon ranks, as Julius was off fetching home Friedrich's heir, and if possible finding that heir a bride from among the Wettins' English relations.

    Everyone understood the issue of religion to be both the most intractable problem, and at the same time the one most essential to forging a lasting peace. Either side might be willing to make concessions as to matters of territory or succession, but neither had shown much flexibility as to the final religious settlement of the empire. One idea promoted by the imperials was that all sides accept the authority of a general council of the church. The one which had just been meeting at Trent until the invasion of the League of Chambord had given the pope an excuse to dissolve it, but it could be recalled, and this was the Catholics' favored position. However, also possible was the appointment of a fresh council following some formula that would be more acceptable to the Lutherans.

    Here though, Charles's chief problem was not even Friedrich: it was Pope Julius III. As hostile as the reformist princes were to the idea of submitting their religious beliefs and practices to the approval of the officers of the church they had seceded from, the seat of power in Rome was still more reluctant to submit its prerogatives to a general council empowered to reform it from without and to introduce into the body of Catholicism any of the reforms it had just denounced as heretical and forbidden.

    Thus if Charles moved to satisfy the elector, he would lose the pope. If he moved to satisfy the pope, he would lose the elector. Friedrich, without accepting the notion of a council as such, outlined in a hypothetical his belief that the only ways in which one would be acceptable would be not for Lutheran doctrine to be submitted to the approval of a prior body of church law, but for the two faiths to negotiate a merger on an equal basis. Whether he calculated this so as to be noxious enough to the Catholics he'd never have to worry about making good on the idea, we simply do not know. Nonetheless, it was the effect.

    A second position, supported by Ferdinand and the party of Catholics who had lost patience with Charles's apparent policy of perpetual war on the Lutherans, and who were increasingly coming to think that without some immediate intervention by accident or design the parties would just backslide back into conflict, was that the Lutherans accept in principle the idea that the religious question would be resolved by a future church council, and the Catholics put off any efforts to reunify the empire under the Church until the completion of that council, but that all parties undertake to make certain that no such council would ever meet. This had the imprimatur of support from a relieved Rome, but Friedrich smelled the same trap he had twenty years before, that once he submitted to the authority of such a council, the other parties could change their mind, decide to hold it, and thus rule in the adverse and embark on a crusade in earnest against him. Or, those parties could change, peace-minded and exhausted Habsburgs be replaced by their fresher and more impatient kin, and once again the council agreed to on the condition it never to be held, suddenly could become a reality.

    Thus when news arrived of Edward VI's death, and not long after that, of Suffolk's defeat and the succession of Mary to the throne of England, both sides were already frustrated with the lack of progress, either in the collective military enterprise against France, or in working through the most serious barriers to peace with each other. There were advisors to the emperor who counseled Charles keep the elector from leaving, just as those same advisors had wanted to seize Friedrich while he was kneeling before Charles on Easter Sunday. But if the ten years of fighting had not been enough to make Charles accept the permanent independence of the Lutherans from Rome, it had at least broken him of thinking that getting Friedrich in his custody would solve all his problems. Like so many other courses of action available under the present circumstances, that course of action had been tried before, and been found more than a little wanting.

    And so, to the relief of one prince and the disappointment of the other, the elector departed Charles's company. It was on the long ride back to Saxony that Friedrich finally resolved the only way forward was to at last exploit the differences between Emperor Charles and his brother King Ferdinand. This had actually been one of the stratagems of Friedrich's father the Elector Johann some twenty years before, which had been set aside when Ferdinand had proven himself no less enthusiastic about the Catholic religion than Charles.

    But matters were now far different: Charles had made war against the Protestant princes in a way that prejudiced and endangered Ferdinand's rule in Bohemia and Hungary, he had plotted to secure the Holy Roman throne for his son Philip, with a reversion to be held in Ferdinand's line of heirs, and he had compounded these failures by recklessly waging multiple wars against not just the Protestants but at the same time other powers, like Catholic France or their allies the Ottoman Turks. So Ferdinand, even aside from the ever-present temptation of the imperial crown, was more than ready by now to break with a brother he had come to find tiresome, overbearing and dangerous.

    From Friedrich's perspective, this turn was overdue. In no way had Charles been moved to anything close to the consensus Friedrich and Ferdinand had reached so effortlessly at Schandau. The Saxon elector now understood: even with the metaphorical gun to his head, Charles could not leave off his role as the enforcer of Catholic orthodoxy in any permanent way. But neither could Friedrich deal confidently with Ferdinand so long as Charles held the authority as emperor with which he could wreck any arrangement Friedrich reached with the King of the Romans. So truly, the only way forward was to use Ferdinand to somehow displace, and perhaps even overthrow, Charles. And this had to be done now, for with the support of England lost, likely forever, Friedrich could not afford another campaign against the imperials. The one saving grace was that the imperials' finances were in such parlous condition that they could scarcely more afford to make war against him.

    It was at Wartburg that Friedrich met finally the son lost to him for so long. If history does not record the moment of their reunion or the words they exchanged, it's likely because there was not that much to say: Friedrich's behavior over the years had been evidence of his feelings on the matter enough. Of more immediate consequence, Friedrich was able to meet with his close council, including of course the now-indispensable ducal prince Julius of Braunschweig and the Duke Johann. Together they decided Julius would bear a letter to Ferdinand proposing (1) that Charles leave the Empire for his other realms forthwith; (2) the rule of the empire be given to a regency council, consisting of the four secular electors (Maximilian as King of Bohemia, Friedrich as Elector of Saxony, and the Electors of Brandenburg and the Palatinate), chaired by the King of the Romans. Thus Maximilian would be preserved in his offices, while losing the ability to proscribe the Protestant faith; and (3) all princes who guarantee the freedom of Catholic worship within their realms would themselves be exempt from having their religious policies regulated by the imperial courts.

    Julius was not slow on his return from Prague with Ferdinand's extraordinary answer: there would be no new regency council. Charles as emperor would be persuaded to leave, the regency would pass to himself as King of the Romans outright, and the powers of that office would be kept intact. With respect to the religious settlement, Ferdinand specified that he would grant no license under any circumstances to those who preached the body and blood of Christ were not in the Eucharist, which meant that religious freedom would remain limited to Catholics and Lutherans to the exclusion of the other Christian sects proliferating in northern Europe.

    For once, Friedrich found himself favorably surprised by a Habsburg turn in the negotiations. As to the regency council, he had gathered it would not be that simple or that clearcut as his first proposal seemed. And as to the limits Ferdinand sought to place on permitted worship seemed to Friedrich far from unfavorable. Of course, Friedrich would continue to shield the other Christian sects, just as he had previously, no matter the commands to him from the imperial center. But if that permissiveness lay with him and not the emperor or the King of the Romans, that left him the role as defender. Even now, in the early years of the tuer angelehnt, Friedrich sensed the political possibilities that lay in him being, if not the leader of a unified reform movement as he had dreamed before Luther's intransigence had prevented him, then their common benefactor and protector.

    So for once the answer prepared for the Habsburgs, after so many decades of haggling and threats, was a simple yes.

    Of course Friedrich knew that functionally this time he was giving up little. In the event Ferdinand did betray him, he would be in little worse circumstances than he found himself now. Crucially, he still would not be conceding the authority of a general council of the Catholic Church to render a judgment over him and his subjects. It was then with a grim resignation that he received back in late November 1553 not the final assent he thought he was sure to receive now from Ferdinand, but a final, additional demand: Albrecht Alcibiades was still free, and still terrorizing Franconia with an army of 5,000 mercenaries. Ferdinand would excuse Friedrich his earlier abrogation of his promise to fight the French, but only on the condition he dispatch Albrecht Alcibiades once and for all.

    Friedrich's answer to Ferdinand was just as clear: Albrecht Alcibiades was a traitor under the imperial ban for making common cause with the empire's enemy France. Customarily, the reward for deposing such a prince would be that prince's lands, and that was the precise wage Duke Moritz had accepted from the Emperor to enter his service against Friedrich. Friedrich now demanded the same with respect to Albert Alcibiades, which would mean all the lands of Brandenburg-Kulmbach. Receiving this reply, Ferdinand fell mute. Friedrich took this as assent.

    Thus it was in early March 1554 the Saxons invaded Brandenburg-Kulmbach. Friedrich was now ailing, and this time it was Johann who led the armies. Albrecht offered battle near the town of Kronach, the home and namesake of the Wettins' court painter Lucas Cranach. Here as with Moritz's final battle, superior numbers and veteran troops proved decisive, and Albrecht Alcibiades' army was dispersed and Brandenburg-Kulmbach overrun. Unlike Moritz though, Albrecht Alcibiades had value alive: if the Habsburgs were reluctant to recognize the Saxons' possession of his lands, it would be a small matter to let the feared general and brigand loose to menace them some more. Otherwise, it seemed plain to all the parties that in occupying Brandenburg-Kulmbach Friedrich had seized an additional bargaining chip, which he could conceivably trade for a favorable outcome with respect to the disputed succession of Hesse, or to all the outstanding questions that plagued the empire and its rulers.

    Regardless, it was now time. It was late spring, 1554. The long-promised imperial diet at Augsburg was about to begin. And this was to be the real thing, with all the princes, even the ones who had so lately been trying to kill each other, in attendance. And it was to be for, as they say, all the marbles.

    Next: war is over, if you want it.
    Last edited: Nov 13, 2018
    minifidel, Zaffre, Zulfurium and 7 others like this.
  6. Threadmarks: Supplemental Note on the History of the Kings and Queens of England

    Dr. Waterhouse A Mighty Fortress Is My TL

    Nov 12, 2008
    QUIZ - English Royal History
    Ms. Gibbons-Moore
    5th Level

    1. Which is the site of the last peacetime assassination of a reigning English monarch?

    (A) Edinburgh Castle

    (B) Arundel Castle

    (C) Westminster Hall

    (D) The Banqueting Chamber at Whitehall

    2. Who is the English monarch, renowned as the land's last warrior king, who has lent the Royal War College both his name, and his image, in the form of a fearsome equestrian statue by the front gate?

    (A) Henry VIII

    (B) Charles I

    (C) Edward VIII

    (D) Richard IV

    3. Henry X, in an effort to reduce his expenses from the upkeep of the various royal residences, deeded what royal property to a new university that would bear its name?

    (A) Richmond Palace

    (B) Bridewell Palace

    (C) Woodstock Palace

    (D) St. James Palace

    4. Who was the first English monarch to step foot in the New World?

    (A) Elizabeth II

    (B) Mary II

    (C) Edward VIII

    (D) Katherine I

    5. When was the last time royal assent was withheld from a bill passed by Parliament?

    (A) 1938

    (B) 1708

    (C) 1659

    (D) 2017


    Blenheim Palace as Woodstock Palace
  7. Tyler96 Well-Known Member

    Feb 26, 2013
    Adelaide, South Australia
    Read through this over the previous few days. Great TL :).

    I know its somewhat irrelevant to this TL, but what happened to the other Dudleys?

    Specifically, Ambrose and Robert- IOTL they were obviously major figures in Elizabeth's reign, and she had a whole thing with Robert.

    Are they dead? Because otherwise you'd expect them to be involved in efforts to lure/cajole Guildford back to England. All the talk of Guildford being his father's heir and being restored to his father's titles also sorta suggests that his elder brothers are out of the way.
    Dr. Waterhouse likes this.
  8. Threadmarks: Saxon Economic History, 1537-1560

    Dr. Waterhouse A Mighty Fortress Is My TL

    Nov 12, 2008

    Shanghai World Financial Tower, as the headquarters of Dessauer-Duclos Berechtigt, Magdeburg


    So with you coming to the close of the first half of this two semester course on Saxony between the death of the Elector Johann and the start of the First General War, Professor Killinger has asked me to lecture today on economic history. In this she has been most gracious. I can only fancy that she would do a much better job at conveying to you the contributions of Saxon political development over these years to the evolution of modern finance, than I would be relating the winding military and political narrative history of the Spanish War.

    Here, as with so much else in the Holy Roman Empire of the sixteenth century, we must start with religion. If Professor Killinger was true to form, she delivered to you with great verve a lecture on first, Luther's 1537 demand for the expulsion of the Jews from the scattered lands of Ernestine Saxony; second, the ensuing disputation over the place of Jews in a Christian polity, between one side, led by Josel of Roseheim, and the other, led by Luther; and third, the resulting decision by the Elector Friedrich to let the Jews stay, which even now stands out as a resounding humiliation of his most famous subject.

    Friedrich, I will remind you, decreed not just that he would permit the Jews to stay but that he would impose no direct burdens on their presence within what was then Electoral Saxony. There would be no taxes or confiscations on them, at least from his office and his agents. But what he did do was to say that if a profession or line of economic activity was not open to Christians it could not be open to Jews. Thus, Jews would be barred from money-lending as Christians were. In the original proclamation, Friedrich simply envisioned that Saxony would be a happy land completely free of loans repaid with interest, and that as a result everyone would live happily ever after. If this seems hopelessly naive, it might be helpful to remember he was still 27 years old, and in his fifth year in the electoral dignity.

    Now, even in the sixteenth century long distance trade depended on credit. Immediately, complaints came in, from customers deprived of their luxuries, merchants who were denied the means to acquire inventory, and the craftsmen, servants and other interests those merchants supported. Simultaneously, tax revenues declined precipitously, and this in the context of what Friedrich understood to be the run-up to a struggle for survival against the Emperor and his supporters among the Catholic princes of the empire, which left open the very real possibility that this sudden jolt to the electorate's economic life could be the critical failure that would bring down the Reformation.

    For all these reasons, the messy collision of Friedrich's utopian thinking with the commercial life of Saxony forced him to act quickly, and unceremoniously. The young elector did not even go a full year before lifting his prohibition on usury. However, what his aggrieved subjects thought they were getting in 1539 when he reversed himself was the restoration of the old regime. What they got instead was something far more radical. For now the Elector established what was essentially a public monopoly on lending for interest in his lands.

    Now, Friedrich's rationales for this, which he promulgated widely, are fascinating. He believed the Christian moral arguments against usury were applicable only to usury for private enrichment. If the state, the organ responsible for the defense of the realm and the administration of justice, involved itself in lending, then the fractional additional payments it could extract back over time was more on the order of a tax. And if that state's coffers benefited from these payments over time, that was less about one set of people profiting at the direct expense of their fellow subjects than the state becoming more able to safeguard the public welfare from threats without and within. And even if, occasionally, these funds might go toward, say, a pearl-encrusted firearm for the elector (see slide one), a bezoar for an electress dowager terrified of being poisoned (slide two), or a set of miniature ivory figurines and a matching chest purchased as toys for the Duke Alexander (slide three), then these expenses too were for the public good, in that the Ernestine House of Wettin occupied the public role that it did in the life of the people, their splendor an expression of the realm's prosperity and well-being.

    There were other advantages as well. Friedrich could thus make sure the proceeds stayed within his realm and was not a drain on its wealth. Remember, these were the years of Festung Sachsen--Fortress Saxony--when the Electorate stood sometimes as a lonely bulwark against the combined might of Emperor, Catholic Church, and the economic interests that supported them, in this interest in particular the Augsburg bank of one Jakob Fugger.

    Now, many rules in the late medieval world had a function of keeping economic resources close to home. For example, sumptuary laws and other bans on luxuries disproportionately curbed goods imported from far abroad, even from non-Christian lands. The electorate establishing a public monopoly on usury accomplished much the same thing, and as Friedrich's letters on the matter explaining his new policy details, there's an even stronger rationale for doing it in the case of money. A merchant may bring pepper or silk from lands where they are commonly produced to those where they are not, but there is no reason to buy money from outside the borders of a polity in exchange for interest so long as the same money may be obtained from the land's prince.

    Of course, Friedrich found other benefits to this policy too. He could easily set rules preventing overbearing, unfair or exploitative terms (even though in truth he had little incentive to set such rules, given that he was the one benefiting from the exploitation). And he could curb the injustices and public disorders involved in debt collection (even though, once again, his putative role as the defender of the weak debtors was subject to an enormous conflict of interest). For reasons I trust I do not have to labor, regulating an area of economic activity is easy enough to do, once the state is one half of every transaction involving that activity.

    In just this way, we come to some of the more fascinating effects that arose when a society's chief source of legal authority also served as its only lender. Of course it was the Duke Johann who memorably said of the Ernestine House of Wettin's new family business, "we should only lend to those we can kill." Of course, this exaggerates, and reflects no actual policy. But it did demonstrate a preoccupation in the early experiments in Saxon public lending that the state be able to exert physical authority over the borrower. Remember, the whole rationale of the scheme was financing commercial activity within the borders of Saxony. For that reason, borrowers from Anhalt, Braunschweig, Bohemia or Brandenburg were officially unwanted. Yet that does not mean that these borrowers did not want access to the ready funds being made accessible by the Saxon elector.

    For this reason very quickly a class of straw borrowers and business partners emerged, who traded their eligibility to borrow as Saxon subjects to foreign merchants and entrepreneurs for a fee. These came to be called the Zweitemaenner, or secondmen. Now, in these early days, with as we said the physical authority of the state over the borrower a primary means of ensuring payment, the credit-worthiness of borrowers was most often measured by whether they had to appear before an agent of the elector once per week or once per day, so as to verify they had not absconded and were making progress toward repayment.

    Also, the consequences of default, even if there was no fraud or misuse of funds involved, was most often time in a dungeon alongside whatever heretics, papal agents or Habsburg mercenaries might currently be kept there. So it goes without saying then, that especially in the beginning these secondmen, or straw borrowers, who conveyed loan proceeds to other borrowers from outside Saxony, were hardly from among the great and the good. Very often they engaged in various forms of fraud to receive the loans in the first place. Yet, for reasons we are going to see shortly, within a very few generations some of these men would be fabulously wealthy. In Wittenberg, 1540, as usual in history, extraordinary risk drove extraordinary reward.

    By the time the Spanish War began, less by virtue of some grand pronouncement, or a single scheme conceived with intent, than through the gradual evolution of procedures due to trial and error, a system of collateral had emerged. Essentially, the use of the body of a physical person to secure the loan was economically inefficient. It was both too much, in that it was too expensive to the borrower, too costly in that it prevented him from doing other things with his time that had more economic value than standing in a line before a low-level court functionary. And it was too little, in that it conferred too little a value in place of the economic detriment for which that body was made to stand. Or to put it a different way, the person if the borrower is still usually going to be less valuable than the debt the person is securing. So, instead of the person or the borrower or his straw man, who would be hauled in front of the elector's agent every so often, or imprisoned in the event of non-payment, there evolved the use of property as security for the loan, advantageous as that as was given that it managed to be both more valuable to the state lender.

    Now this security could mean, first, real property. And the value of real property in late-medieval Europe meant, first and foremost, land on which one could grow the cereals annually which in turn could pay rent, pay taxes, and be sold to make bread. But it could mean forest land, forest which could be cut, and the land sold separately. Or even a mine, of which Saxony had more than a few. Real property, then as now, could also mean a home, a shop in the sense of a place where goods are sold, or a place where goods are made. Of course borrowers could also make use of personal property as security, and there were no end to the family heirlooms, jewelry and even junk that began crowding the Elector's cellars. Finally, and perhaps most sophisticatedly, income strings could serve as security. The Fuggers of Augsburg had already pioneered the use of such complex arrangements by which a borrower could assign a string of payments to its lender, or make the right to receive the payment something the lender could demand on default. However, these arrangements were still rare in northern Germany, and the Saxon elector wasted no time trying to make up for lost time.

    And it is to this growth in the use of collateral we owe the emergence of a system of centralized state record-keeping with respect to property. With respect to real property, this was to ensure people owned what they said they did when they pledged it as collateral, and that it was not pledged twice, or beyond its reasonable value. Of course, quickly, a parallel system emerged with respect to chattels. In the ledgers of the late-sixteenth century one sees line items and descriptions of coaches, ships, jewels, horses, cows, sheep and so forth. At first this system existed for the exclusive use of the lending agents of the state finance agency established by Friedrich. But once, a generation later, his son the Elector Alexander restored private money-lending, the made the decision to throw open these records for the collective use of all the finance houses, understanding the benefit of an orderly system of collateral with minimal fraud outweighed the loss of competitive advantage to what was then evolving into a state bank. Even today, Germany has one of the most encyclopedic, well-organized, and accessible set of state-managed property records of any nation in the world, a system which got its start in these years.

    Of course, what the Elector could not have anticipated these reforms, alternately bold and tentative, would coincide with some pivotal events in the history of European finance. Relatively early in the history of the Spanish War, the Emperor's court, despite the enormous wealth generated by Spain's new colonial empire, faced dire trouble with its lenders. The emperor's defaults became more common. And as it did, that created possibilities. The empire required last-minute sources of financing with which it could try to make good on its scheduled payments to its first-tier lenders, like the Fuggers; the failure of its lenders to cough up additional financing in lieu of its dodgy history created the need for supplementary loans to support its war-making, and the defaults themselves made the imperial lenders less able to service their ordinary commercial business. Basically, if Charles V could not make a payment on a Tuesday, those who stood in line for an ordinary business loan on a Wednesday morning were likely to be disappointed.

    Who then stepped into this opportunity? The Zweitemaenner. With remarkably adroit business sense, the rolling Spanish financial crisis that transpired in tandem with the Spanish War permitted the Saxon money men to establish a parallel financial system that stretched beyond the borders of Saxony, in contravention of the express designs of the elector. They did this partly through what we would call money-laundering, engaging in the buying and selling of property and goods that allowed money to change hands without technically loans being made of the money originating in the Saxon treasury. Scandalously in one sense, Saxon silver was finding its way to the Emperor's bankers, and through them, to the Emperor himself. By the time of the campaigns of the elector following his return from Spain, there is little doubt the Zweitemaenner were in some part bankrolling the imperial army through intermediaries.

    It was doctors of the Leucorea, hoping at last to reinstate the prohibition on usury and in doing so vindicate Luther's position on economic life once and for all, who first made this argument to the elector in 1551. Once again, a disputation was held. And once again, the result surprised the Saxon establishment. The entire matter before the elector only so long for him to inquire how much interest the Zweitemaenner were able to extract. Once he found out Charles was paying them ten percent a year, far and above the profit margin for much ordinary trade activity, he ruled in their favor. Friedrich answered, "If these men bleed Charles like they had a spigot in his flesh, why should I stop them? If I could train rats to go pilfer from his treasury and bear that silver to me, so the money with which he would procure and pay his soldiers would mine, I would. Instead, I have the Zweitemaenner, and they do the same."

    This complex arrangement of Saxon moneymen and imperial warmaking came out into the open after 1552, when Friedrich sided with Charles against his former allies. By now the fictions the Zweitemaenner had spun that they were only funding economic activity in Saxony were becoming more and more threadbare, and they were evolving into something more like the Protestant and north German answer to the Fuggers. The watershed, however, came in 1557, in the year of the famous Double Default. Essentially, both sides of the conflict dividing Europe, the Kingdom of France and the Holy Roman Empire, missed their payments at the same time. Interest rates reached as high as sixteen percent. For Saxony, its treasury still depleted from the loss of English support, its commerce marred by the shift of trade routes toward the Atlantic, its mines hurt by the infusion of more cheaply had silver from the New World, suddenly this business of finance seemed like it might be something more than a way to prank its enemies and engage in a few fly-by-night transactions. Instead, the full possibilities of commercial life began to unfold.

    However, the next great step in this process would not belong to Friedrich IV. One of the first official acts of his son, Alexander, cash-strapped even then, was to end the Saxon state monopoly on money-lending and instead charge fees for the privilege of permitting private lenders to compete against the state. This was when the Saxon finance, in its breadth, volume and sophistication, really began to take off. And of course it goes without saying, this explosive development made possible the evolution of the Saxon state into a true strategic competitor against the Habsburgs. This historical process, the transfer of wealth between debtor-Habsburgs and creditor-Wettins, was not something discovered later, or something understood only by political and economical elites. Instead, I would leave you with this (slide four) drinking song popular in Frederician England in the decade before the First General War saw a future elector and emperor enter into final battle:

    War, war, war! What is it for?
    To make the Saxon-man rich, and the Spaniard poor!

    And so I would say that, for all the exciting and gory details Professor Killinger has drilled into you about the military victories Friedrich won in the Spanish War--Duke Moritz swimming amongst the corpses at Kreuzfeld, the collapse of the boat-bridge on the Main, the death of Philip of Hesse--the true story of the future mastery of Germany was decided here, in the dry ledgers of low-level Saxon bureaucrats not looking too closely at where the proceeds of all these loans were going.
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  9. Dr. Waterhouse A Mighty Fortress Is My TL

    Nov 12, 2008
    Honestly I haven't given a thought to the other Dudleys. Keep in mind they are going to be in less play, and hence less danger, in this scenario than in our timeline. The Brandon claim descends in our timeline through Frances, giving Jane Grey her claim and making her the putative queen. In the timeline, the Dudleys are sidelined by the better claim of Henry Brandon, Duke of Suffolk. Hence Jane Grey herself making it to a ripe old age. So they're further out of the spotlight, in that their in-law isn't the putative queen-regnant Mary turns into a speedbump. I mean, both in our real history and in the timeline, Mary isn't especially interested in pursuing people on the basis of their blood connections (now go ask the de la Poles and Poles if they could say the same about her father). So I don't know of a reason they would be targeted in this world that they wouldn't be in real history. I hope that helps.
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  10. Dr. Waterhouse A Mighty Fortress Is My TL

    Nov 12, 2008
    Oh, one other thing. Now how I imagined the offer to Guildford as the younger son working is as follows: when a title is extinguished by virtue of treason and then recreated, it doesn't necessarily have to follow the succession of the earlier creation. So, for instance, Duke Hugh of Hill House could be determined to be a traitor, his title extinguished, his lands forfeit, and he is executed. His eldest son, Stephen, lives, as well as two daughters. But Stephen is a real pill and nobody likes him. On the other hand, the younger son, Luke, though a wastrel, ingratiates himself with the monarch. Luke can be created the new duke as if it's a completely new line, as if he's Brandon taking over for a de la Pole. Now of course there are precedents for different treatment. For example, the Howards are a special case where their dukedom was restored to them rather than being created anew. But that was at least my train of thought.
  11. isabella Well-Known Member

    Mar 22, 2012
    Usually do not work exactly like that plus would not be more logical offering to restore the Dorset title (maybe upgraded to Dukedom) to Guilford and Jane? She was her father’s legitimate heiress while Guildford had two older brothers still alive who were both important members of Elizabeth’s court: Ambrose, the elder had already inhereited the other former title of their father, the earldom of Warwick while Robert will likely receive the earldom of Leicester as OTL so the Marquesate or Dukedom of Dorset would be a more fitting choice (plus the title was already in Jane’s family and was neither taken away or given to other people)
  12. Dr. Waterhouse A Mighty Fortress Is My TL

    Nov 12, 2008
    But there's no reason why it's illegal for there to be a new creation of a title of nobility within a family that previously held the title. I think of it more in terms of function. Why was Thomas Howard raised to the dukedom of Norfolk? Was it the fact that he was the eldest son of John Howard, the first duke of the 1483 creation? If so, Henry VII and VIII took their own sweet sweet time about it. Or, was it that he lured James IV into a disadvantageous battle at Flodden, defeated him and turned him into a pincushion?

    Here, it's no more complicated than that the elder Dudleys aren't married to potential transmitters of a claim to the throne of England. A promise to Guildford does work that a promise to the elder brothers simply does not do. To Elizabeth it gets potential heirs and the mother of potential heirs safely home, where they can't be diplomatic bargaining chips against her, or worse.

    As to the possibility of restoring the Dorset title, keep in mind there were two women at this point who had held titles lower in the nobility which had been restored or created in their own right, not by virtue of marriage. One was Margaret Pole, Countess of Salisbury, who at the time was a widow. The other was Marquess of Pembroke Anne Boleyn, who was at the time she was created such was (still, just barely) single. So yes, there's the Margaret Pole precedent. But this is not exactly common, and complicated by the fact that Jane at the time was a married woman. I think restoring or creating a title in a married woman in her own right the more unusual, and outre, course.

    Simultaneously, while the marquessate of Dorset was of long standing, there was no dukedom of Dorset. While these titles could become grander on occasion (earls of Suffolk and Northumberland sometimes both become dukes), I think that's also disfavored. Northumberland, even as an earldom, was always a title that pulled above its weight in the middle ages because of its role in the north with respect to the Scots.

    And the important narrative function of the offer is that Elizabeth is dangling a real pearl. The option for Dudley and Jane to become, give or take a surly Howard, the most important nobles in England. So the plum so grandiosely snatched away by the execution of Guildford's father gets dangled before Guildford, with the idea of inducing him to do something everyone else around him realizes is counterproductive to the Brandons' long game. That he would not have expected to enjoy it otherwise as a younger son only strengthens the inducement.

    And finally, implicit in the story is that it is a play for Guildford's pride and ambition, not Jane's. Because Jane's loyalty to her deceased first cousin, to her family, and most importantly to her own prospects should young Henry Brandon suffer mischief, is presumed unshakable. But because of the patriarchal conventions of sixteenth century matrimony, if Guildford jumps, Jane gets dragged along. And Guildford, makes no mistake, wanted to jump. He just never got the chance because of his, ahem, unfortunate accident. Oh, cruel fortune! Oh, fickle destiny!
    Last edited: Nov 18, 2018
  13. Threadmarks: The History of Catholics in Saxony, 1533-1560

    Dr. Waterhouse A Mighty Fortress Is My TL

    Nov 12, 2008

    The Cathedral of St. Peter and St. Paul, Vilnius, as The Roman Church of St. Peter and St. Paul, Wittenberg.

    "We request not to die by your command": A History of the Catholics of Wittenberg, from the Spanish War to the Founding of the Second Realm

    Jessica Almodovar-Kristofferson

    from the Introduction

    Scholarly attention on the religious policy of the tuer angelehnt century has traditionally been trained on the Saxon state's policies toward either the Jews, or the other sects of reformed Christianity. Surely, the stories this work has told are important: how an emphatically Christian polity came to regard itself as something other than as coextensive with its Christian citizenry, and instead see Jews as members of society rather than as tolerated outsiders; how the prince's role of stewardship for the souls of his people evolved and was ultimately set aside out of political necessity; how a Lutheran state teeming with minority Christian cults negotiated the public statements of doctrine that people were expected to live with in their daily lives in the sunset of the medieval world.

    Yet for all the value of these stories, and of the larger tapestry to which they contribute, of the evolution of religious tolerance in the very teeth of pitched religious warfare, they are limited in that neither Jews nor other Protestants represented the same danger to the state and its ideological foundations that Roman Catholicism did. Anabaptists never captured the elector or his heir; Jews never fielded an army that despoiled Thuringia. During the momentous years of mid-sixteenth-century struggle, the Roman Catholics of Saxony who refused to follow their neighbors in becoming Lutherans or joining the other reformed churches were a class apart, not just of religious dissidents, but people who were both members of families and communities within Saxony, and, to many, agents of a direct threat to those same families and communities.

    For these reasons, it is the Catholics of Saxony rather than the other non-Lutheran communities who best represent the limit-case for the state's official tolerance, and were the targets most vulnerable to both officially sanctioned and unsanctioned violence. Thus this study attempts to separate out the history of the Catholics and to present the specific evolution in their identity during Saxony's rise to preeminence among, and unification of, the German princely states. It is a project attended by several difficulties, not the least of which the problem of separating out these questions of state-subject and inter-community relations from the military history. For while the Duke of Alba's famous predations on the Saxon countryside lay outside this topic, it is impossible to understand the motive or context for the events which are within its purview without referencing the horrors of 1550.

    It is in fact crucial to consider the role of the external military violence in shaping the Lutheran-Catholic relationship in these years. It is far too easy to take for granted or as inevitable the violence of the two communities' interactions. But this volume will argue this was far from the case. In a different set of circumstances, one perhaps where the war between emperor and elector ended quickly but the sectarian division was preserved, it is possible to imagine the two more doctrinally conservative branches of German Christianity working cooperatively to contain the more radical alternatives emerging in the second half of the sixteenth century. Instead, Saxony's implacable tenacity in pursuing its war objectives following the failure of Charles V to remove the Elector Friedrich IV led to a steady escalation of inter-community bloodshed.

    Such bloodshed cannot be considered apart from the Wettins' aggressive use of accounts and images of the oppression of Protestants by the Holy Roman Emperor and the King of France in the propaganda they used to mobilize Saxon society for the decade-long war. Even apart from Cranach's masterpiece Merindol, scarcely a heretic was burned in the Catholic monarchies during the decades of mid-century without it being commemorated in the widely disseminated woodcuts the Wittenberg shops mass-produced. The explicit purpose of this body of culture was characterizing a Catholic emperor, the Catholic nobility supporting him, and the Catholic armies massed to advance his interests as an imminent threat, not just to the rulers of Saxony but to the immortal souls of Saxon Protestants. Given this rhetoric, it was impossible for the onus of the propaganda to stay with just the external menace, and not touch the neighbors who had until then peacefully shared the life of their communities.

    Again and again, this state-commissioned and state-funded literature defined Catholicism with a willful intent to disrupt a Protestant subject's personal relationship with Jesus. It was only natural then for those Saxons who identified themselves with the cause of Luther and the electors to subject the Catholic civilians within arm's reach to a sort of preemptive violence, which Protestant authorities defined as being in defense of community and of their true religion. For this reason, even before and apart from the Duke Johann's 1549 decision to suspend the Reciprocal License and expel the Catholics from Saxony, violent repression of Catholics was commonplace.

    Policy toward Catholics during the tenure of Friedrich IV can be divided into four distinct periods, each one shaping the treatment of Catholics by community and individual actors in various ways. From the accession of Friedrich to the time of the Reciprocal License of 1534, the religious unity of Saxony under a Lutheran Church led by its bishop the elector was simply presumed. People at that time did not live with the awareness of a permanent division in the Christian Church, or even that there was some sort of breach with Rome. Reform during this period could be taken very literally: Saxony and its allies had merely acted aggressively to purify the church and the rest of Christendom would soon join them. Not much thought was given to the idea of parallel Catholic and Lutheran church structures, alternate congregations, or the secret reinroduction of abolished religious orders. That would come later.

    Next came the Reciprocal License, which governed Saxony's treatment of Catholics from 1534 to 1549. Originally the promise of tolerance for those still loyal to the Roman Church was negotiated as part of the marriage contract for the Princess Dorothea of Denmark. When Friedrich reneged on most of those arrangements, it formed the core of a new arrangement he reached with Ferdinand, King of the Romans, also King of Bohemia and Hungary. Under the Reciprocal License negotiated at Dohna, the Catholics of Saxony and the Lutherans of Bohemia would enjoy a similar absence of interference by the state in their choice of a different religion that other people at variance with the state's officially promoted doctrine would not enjoy. Something frequently lost in the laudatory accounts of Friedrich's role in the history of religious freedom is that as soon as he began carving out additional concessions to other religious groups, as he did beginning in 1538, he was abrogating the terms he agreed to at Dohna.

    And of course it goes without saying that the Reciprocal License did not promise anything like legal equality, or even fair treatment to those Saxons wishing to preserve their allegiance to the Catholic Church. It merely promised their continued lives and their security in their homes and property. If regimes of coercion arose to coax Catholics towards Luther's church, which was still seen by many to be the only religious choice consistent with loyalty to the state and elector, the elector was indifferent to them. Whereas the regimes of tolerance promulgated for Jews and non-Lutheran Protestants reflected a decision by the elector to enthusiastically provide fair treatment to the former and to encourage immigration by the latter, the policy toward Catholics was far more begrudging. Offenses against the Catholic community during the years of the Reciprocal License were punished haphazardly, and frequently received tacit official encouragement.

    But perhaps the most troubling aspect of the years of the Reciprocal License was that Saxon Catholics did use the very limited freedom granted to them to create separate and parallel religious structures, to invite priests, to conduct masses, and to administer the sacraments in a manner acceptable to Rome. Thus whereas previously continued loyalty to Rome had been largely unmarked and inchoate, now a known population of Saxons resistant to the officially promoted reformed religion existed. Schaffenburg, in his seminal 1693 history of the period from a perspective the extreme pro-Lutheran scholarship of the Alexandrine era, states it clearly: "The License of Dohna served the great function of separating out the papist venom so that later it could be better expelled from the body."

    Thus when Friedrich was captured, Duke Johann's regency began, the principles of Dohna suspended, and the demand issued that all the Catholics in Saxony leave, taking only what they could take on their backs, the very lassitude with which the Catholics had formerly been allowed to practice their religion now comprised their prison. They had identified themselves publicly as taking exception to the official doctrines, they were known, and the fact that they were known threatened their lives. Some did recant, but more, citing fear for their lives, chose to part with homes and property to strike out for those German princely realms where they might be received sympathetically. Even in this mass out-migration however, there came violence. During 1549 and 1550, there were numerous records citing harassment, robbery and much worse committed against the Catholics leaving Saxony. In many cases, homes and other buildings that had been used as rudimentary chapels and schools were burned as acts of purification. In a dark twist, this brigandage and violence affected far more than its intended targets. Groups seeking to terrorize the departing Catholics in several instances killed Lutheran bridegrooms fetching their wives from neighboring towns, and in one instance near Meissen set fire to a closed wagon of Lutheran orphans being conveyed to new homes among their extended family.

    The deep wounds inflicted on Saxony's Catholics during the Johannine Regency meant that the reinstatement of official tolerance and the terms of of the Reciprocal License in 1551 and 1552 was taken less as a watershed and the establishment of a permanent liberal regime than as another respite. By now, it's believed that upwards of two-thirds of the people who were attending Catholic masses in the electorate when the elector was abducted in January 1549 had been killed, or left. For all intents and purposes even the relatively more benign regime of the elector believed that resettling the departed Catholics homes and tenancies with the French Huguenots and other religious Protestant religious immigrants would be advantageous to the state. Though Catholics and Lutherans were once again expected to live side by side in peace, there was no statement of regret for prior events, and little effort to prosecute the religiously-motivated violence that had torn Saxon society during Johann's regency.

    What this left to the Elector Friedrich in the concluding years of his reign was formulating an actual legal basis for continued Catholic worship in Saxony, especially after this was mandated in imperial law following the 1554 Augsburg Diet. For forbidding the state to act directly to punish a system of worship is one thing, it is quite another to establish the rules that govern its interactions with the rest of the state and with other religious life. For this, the elector could look to the Strangers' Law, which governed the status of the churches of the Protestant immigrants, as a model. The Strangers' Law basically established a set of robust state regulatory powers, including that of agents being present during religious services, religious texts being deposited with the state, and of official figures in the church being perpetually available for state interviews to answer questions. More importantly, it denied any and all claims to the former Catholic properties in Saxony, requiring the Catholic community to begin a costly effort to build or rent new facilities to conduct worship and other activities.

    But by far the most important aspect of the 1556 Code was that it applied, in broad terms, the Strangers' Law's prohibition on acts by the church that might prejudice or harm the state. To put it in perspective, during this time the pope was still considered a public enemy of the Saxon elector. Even an act as simple as sending tithes to Rome or to episcopal governments outside Saxony was seen as a violation of the law. And because of the active role of the religious orders in Europe in converting and reconverting people to the Catholic religion, the interests of the state were likewise seen as forbidding the reintroduction of the Catholic religious orders. That the criminal penalties attached to this provision were never used is due mostly to the desire of the Electors Friedrich IV and Alexander not to unnecessarily provoke the Habsburg emperors, rather than any preference on their own part.

    And in the end, it was that external threat, and thus that implied external source of protection, that of the Emperor Ferdinand I and his heirs, that the Catholics of Saxony looked to, rather than to the Elector Friedrich and his laws, narrowly written, reluctantly enforced, frequently flouted with impunity. It is in this sense the story of the Catholics of Wittenberg we will tell over the course of this book stands as a rebuke to, rather than a continuation of, the narrative of tolerance and lovingkindness that attends the accepted and state-promoted narrative of "the Holy Prince" and his love of religious liberty and conscience.
    Last edited: Nov 27, 2018
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  14. Dr. Waterhouse A Mighty Fortress Is My TL

    Nov 12, 2008
    Illinois Republic 2.png View attachment 421962

    Nine Facts about the Illinois Republic

    1. It is pronounced Ill-in-wa.
    The name rhymes with Blois.

    2. The Republic's symbol is an iron-ox. Because Illinois is landlocked, and dependent on other, sometimes hostile, North American republics for sea access, the ironroads have been almost uniquely necessary to its economic well-being. For other states, the tracks across the countryside mean convenient travel or commerce. For the Republic, it is freedom from the great geographic limitation that hindered its early development.

    3. Energy is a perennial problem for the Republic. From independence, Illinois has been a phenomenal economic force in North America. Its heavy industry has made it one of the world's leading exporters of vehicles, equipment and machinery, while its agriculture make it a leading source of meats, dairy, grains and fruit. However, for all this wealth, and despite the presence of some coal reserves that were exploited early in its history, Illinois has had a problem with sparse energy resources, especially of petroleum and uranium. This has led to resource-wars on the plains, the evolution of resource-substitution biofuels regimes and robust state-directed support of public transportation. For this reason it has difficult relationships with some energy-vendor aboriginal republics and with Neupreussia. Starting in the mid-twentieth century, however, the Republic began aggressive development of its solar and wind resources. While not sufficient to power its entire economy and eliminate the need for imports, this new sector has sparked economic growth that has counterbalanced the maturity and decline of other traditional heavy industries.

    4. While francophone, Illinois is ethnically diverse. Its relatively early independence, majority-Catholic population and egalitarian society has left the Republic with the largest communities of Poles, Austrians, Croats, and Italians in the New World. Its liberal society makes it a preferred alternative for immigrants to the RCR. It also has a population that is one-quarter descended from African slaves originating in Louisiana and the other slave republics of the nineteenth century.

    5. Though slavery was rare in the Illinois Country, and declared illegal early in the history of the Republic, slavery has been a force that has shaped its history.
    The first external wars Illinois fought as a nation was over its refusal to accept slave-made goods from its neighbors, in furtherance of domestic laws passed to protect its own workforce. Later, Illinois made extensive contributions to the North American Wars of Liberation.

    6. Illinois and Louisiana do not get along.
    Even compared to the occasionally fratricidal nature of relations among the English-speaking republics, the relationship of Illinois and Louisiana has never recovered from the initial bloodshed. To this day they are considered to represent irreconcilable ideological extremes, republic and kingdom, secularism and conservatism, enlightenment and ancien regime. To this end, though the two nations share a small border, it is the site of Fort Delivrance, Illinois's largest and most robust military base.

    7. Mascoutaine is called "the second city."
    The first city is Paris. With six million people, Mascoutaine is next to Paris considered to be the cultural leader of the French-speaking world, a center of media, literature and the arts that benefits from an absence of content-based media regulation. Mascoutaine also combines a daring and somewhat outre arts scene with robust contributions from both business and the public sector to give itself a somewhat flashy reputation. The monumental lakeside Coeur-de-la-Nation district is considered to be the grandest and most aesthetically pleasing of the North American capitals.

    8. Over half of all the republic's war dead, from independence to today, are former slaves. Over the course of the nineteenth century one of the controversies around which the republic's political life was organized was immigration, specifically that of slaves from the slave-holding colonies, and later that of their descendants from those nations still maintaining various degrees of illiberal hierarchy. While quotas varied widely and were debated fiercely, early on a consensus formed that volunteering for military service would trigger an automatic admission on the part of the applicant, along with his wife and any children. The result was that at its height the Republic had an army upward of two-thirds African descent, with a ratio even higher among the infantry. In the middle of the twentieth century a vociferous campaign for public recognition began, culminating in the national cenotaph at Peoria and, completed in 1970, the Sentinel at Delivrance. Facing south into Louisiana, it is a 288 foot tall statue of a black infantryman.

    9. The Republic presents a problem for future economic and political integration of the North American nations. Strong labor protections, deep subsidies for domestic energy production, and animosity for Louisiana have all complicated the fifth round of Integration talks, completed recently in New Amsterdam. Chief deputy Nicolette Clermont-Lazio has set nine conditions on the Republic's participation in a common American currency, of which six have been met, one is arguably attainable, and two are widely deemed impossible given the positions of the other parties.
    Last edited: Nov 21, 2018
  15. Nyvis Well-Known Member

    Aug 23, 2013
    Little nitpick. République is feminine, so it would be La république Illinoisienne. Assuming this is French, obviously.
  16. Dr. Waterhouse A Mighty Fortress Is My TL

    Nov 12, 2008
    Corrected. And I can only plead that I was in a hurry. I actually double-checked that republique was feminine and kept repeating "Illinoisienne! Illinoisienne!" when I was finishing the map like a magic incantation, but alas, ignored the article.
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  17. Threadmarks: Supplemental Note on the Tunguska Event, 1908

    Dr. Waterhouse A Mighty Fortress Is My TL

    Nov 12, 2008

    Hello. This is News of the West, a presentation of InterState, the independent public events service of the English-speaking nations of North America, and I'm Hilde Adair. It's 6am June 30, 1908 at our studios in Wilderness.

    Our first story this morning, as we are sure you all already know, is the end of the drama surrounding Traveler Sonnenstein-Adams. This morning at just after 7 o'clock local time, it exploded in the atmosphere over the remote Yeniseysk region of the Russian Empire. While early reports suggest that as much as a thousand square miles of forest may have been flattened by the blast, it is believed as few as a dozen people may have been killed, far fewer than even many of the most optimistic recent estimates. As these remarkable images from the Russian Imperial Communication Service indicate, the glow from the object's destruction has broken the Moscow night like dawn itself. Scientists, medical teams and the Russian military have already begun traveling to the remote explosion site, and should begin reporting back their early findings tomorrow. It is believed, however, it will be very difficult to find any immediate trace of Sonnenstein-Adams itself.

    Just four years ago, the discovery of Sonnenstein-Adams' likely trajectory threw the world into a panic. Many journals and broadsheets breathlessly predicted the end of the human race, triggering an epidemic of suicides, a worldwide growth industry in the excavation of underground bunkers, and a heightened interest by governments of the leading powers in rocketry and extra-atmospheric exploration. Few people can forget such florid, and perhaps even regrettable, moments as the tsar declaring that all peoples of the earth were under his protection and that he would permit no harm to come to them from the heavens.

    A few months later, when better estimates of the object's size were calculated, much of the horror in the public mind drained away, replaced by the grim game of predictions as to where Sonnenstein-Adams would fall and what its effect would be. England's Royal News Service received vehement complaints over a series of pieces it produced imagining the effects of various world capitals taking a direct hit from Sonnenstein-Adams, which respondents thought sensational and exploitative. Nonetheless, many seaside cities erected fluxial walls in low-lying areas. Several weeks ago, final calculations were made as to the likely impact site of Sonnenstein-Adams, narrowing it down to the northern hemisphere, somewhere between Moscow and Beijing. A chance of danger diffused over such a large area meant that few people moved to escape the possible escape zone until, in the final hours before the explosion, still more precise information could be had.

    Scientists are virtually unanimous in saying that it would be hard to find a place for the traveler to hit that would have contained fewer human habitations or the potential for so little damage to human life. Still, the State Science Council of the Russian Empire has already announced an intensive program of screening plant, animal and human tissues exposed to the blast.

    In a related event, Queen Katherine in giving her response to the explosion of Sonnenstein-Adams early this morning stoked public comment by slurring the word "Tunguska", the immediate vicinity in the Russian Empire where Sonnenstein-Adams fell, and several other terms in her statement. Commentators have noted her skin at the time was flushed and her eyes unfocused. Public interest in the queen's health spiked earlier this spring when she apparently stumbled disembarking the royal yacht Confessor. Whitehall has pushed back hard against any speculation about the queen's drinking habits.

    Meanwhile in the English Parliament, this morning Her Majesty's administration has already been challenged over the expenses in constructing the new extra-atmospheric launch facility at Penzance.

    First Minister Barton: "Where the rock fell is beside the point. Who was injured by this rock is beside the point. When the next rock comes is beside the point. It will never be the policy of this kingdom to sit idly by while the skies above become crowded with the shiny gewgaws of oriental tyrants. Just as England triumphed in the first era of exploration it will triumph in this second. Work on the Hakluyt Project, and on the Drake Centre, will continue, and both will be completed on schedule."

    Alternate Leader Burns: "Give it a rest, Donnie. You don't need a lifeboat to make it to the moon now. Although I suggest you might want to get a head start there anyway, before you have to explain at the next election to the good voters of Ipswich what you did with 600 million pounds of their tax money. Make sure that dart of yours saves a seat for you!"

    NEXT: Lavinia Murphy explains how you can turn your now-unnecessary Sonnenstein-Adams bunker into a lovely wine-cellar or family craft room.
    Last edited: Nov 23, 2018
  18. isabella Well-Known Member

    Mar 22, 2012
    Well as you have said Jane is married so is logical who the restoration of the Dorset title (with or without upgrade) would be offered to Guildford not Jane herself as he would be the Duke/Marquess of Dorset (holding his title either in his own right or jure-uxoris)
  19. Threadmarks: The History of the Diet of Augsburg, 1554

    Dr. Waterhouse A Mighty Fortress Is My TL

    Nov 12, 2008

    The Kroenungsmahl of Ferdinand I, 1558, Frankfurt-am-Main

    from The Habsburg Struggle for Europe (1940) by Perez Wolfman

    The end, such as it was, came with no unambiguous triumph by any party. The two sides of Germany, Protestant and Catholic, were like two boxers, each in complete exhaustion, who could no longer stand on his own, and so leaned against his foe for that strength to stand which he no longer had in himself.

    Matters of imperial succession by the spring of 1554 had been resolved within the House of Habsburg, not outside it. Consultations with the imperial princes had informed Charles V that, after a decade of war, rebellion and savage disorder, none of them were willing to tolerate his rule further. Even the most ardent supporters of the Catholic cause, who were themselves without any sympathy in itself for some permanent religious division of the empire, blanched at the idea of a continuation of Charles's policies, which now promised not division's end but its aggravation. And it did not help Charles's cause that, following the accession of Mary I to the throne of England and the suspension of England's subsidies, so crucial to Saxony, he now advocated to press the newfound advantage, with a return to the field to decide the matter by force once and for all.

    But now he had exhausted all resources, and worse, all the patience of his necessary allies. So, mere weeks before the princes were set to convene at Augsburg, word spread like wild fire that the Emperor had assented to an abdication, with his brother the King of the Romans his successor.

    Charles however had yet another card to play. During the previous three years most of the diplomacy had occurred between Friedrich of Saxony and Ferdinand, with the difficulty most often in persuading Charles to ratify the compromises the Elector and the King of the Romans had reached. Now, however, Charles made an overture directly to Friedrich: he would ratify the Saxon claim to Brandenburg-Kulmbach, where the Elector had recently evicted the Margrave Albert Alcibiades, if in return Saxony would abandon its advocacy of the heirs of Philip. and allow Hesse to become a Habsburg fief.

    Such a resolution to the two most pressing territorial questions before the Diet would expand Saxony still further. It would give the Electorate valuable lands in Franconia and create a mammoth realm snaking all the way from Magdeburg to the hinterland of Bavaria. But it would also simultaneously stimulate the envy of the other Protestant princes, because Saxony would be engorging itself still further, and awaken their anxiety about the Electorate, in that these terms would require it to once again abandon its allies. In short, Charles's offer was, nakedly, an attempt to isolate the Saxon cause within the imperial community.

    The question was not whether Friedrich or his court would realize this trap. It was whether they would calculate their best interests lay in knowingly springing it and accepting the consequences, the loss of all its influence with the other Protestant princely states. Of course, it went without saying within the House of Wettin the Duke Johann argued strenuously for Saxony to reject the overture. Saxon patriot and expansionist though he was, he had no interest in supporting the landless sons-in-law Charles's plan would disinherit.

    Julius of Braunschweig broached the idea of appeasing the duke by simply bestowing Brandenburg-Kulmbach on him, but Johann had heard such talk before, and by now put little stock in it.

    In the end though, Friedrich had to heed his own consultations with his own Protestant neighbors and allies. None would support Saxony's expansion, and certainly none would support Habsburg expansion at the expense of Philip's Protestant heirs because it would be paid for with Saxony's expansion. And so, reluctantly, Friedrich made the decision to let the lands of Brandenburg-Kulmbach slip by. He would allow them to revert to the Hohenzollern heir Georg Friedrich, a brother of Albert Alcibiades who was margrave of Brandenburg-Ansbach, on the conditions that he hold the regency of those lands until Georg Friedrich reached his majority in 1557, and that Philip's heirs be recognized in their Hessian landgraviates. In this case the three younger sons were all technically within their minority. Only the eldest, Wilhelm, was of age. Friedrich would permit Ludwig, the second son, who was 17, to rule, but would make himself regent for the younger two sons, Philip and Georg.

    Normally, this aggrandizement would be seen as a naked play for power and enrichment at the expense of vulnerable heirs. However, Charles's offer had created a context in which Friedrich could say he was demurring from a far greater prize, and acting in these heirs' interest. Of course such a state of affairs would be hardly satisfactory, either to these Hohenzollerns' cousins, who themselves held an electoral dignity and ruled the large margraviate that abutted Saxony on the north, or to those same heirs of Philip of Hesse. In what was a rare breach of his alliance with Saxony, Wilhelm of Hesse-Kassel advanced himself as a potential regent in opposition to the Elector Friedrich, even as the Hohenzollern Elector Joachim II Nestor advanced himself as an alternate regent for Brandenburg-Kulmbach.

    For reasons Friedrich could only pretend to not understand, few of his colleagues were willing to permit him to manage the inheritances of any other German prince.

    Such was the state of affairs when the Diet in Augsburg began. The conditions of the various princes' attendance, and the sizes of their entourages, had been subject to such spirited and intense debate that it gave little hope for resolution of the actual substantive disagreements. In short, no one wanted a prince repeating Friedrich's earlier performance in 1546, staging what was in fact an invasion garbed in the necessities of ordinary travel with an appropriate guard.

    Charles for his part, in one final gambit, informed the attendees of his desire for the princes previously in rebellion against him to make a statement of feudal adherence to his rule as a condition of their participation in the diet. This, Friedrich rejected outright, and not just because he had already paid homage in this way the previous year. He understood this most likely was a ruse to separate him from his guard and get him into the Emperor's custody, and as such he would have none of it. Thus, with the princes and their traveling courts already gathered in Augsburg, in houses rented at extravagant expense, the whole business threatened to unravel: if Charles would not accept Friedrich's presence without homage, and Friedrich would not pay homage, then Friedrich would leave, and the Protestant princes friendly to his cause after him, dividing the empire once again.

    As Friedrich temporized over what to do, caught in a rare moment of indecision, Charles made subsequent overtures. If Brandenburg and the Hessian heirs--whose realms Charles had so recently tried to seize--would support his cause, pay homage themselves, and not follow Friedrich out the door, he would grant the respective regencies at issue to the Hohenzollerns and Hessians outright. It would seem he had finally managed to sever Saxony from its critical alliances. Ferdinand's camp was increasingly nervous that the transition they had just negotiated might not come off as planned, or come off at all, for that.

    At the last minute though, Julius of Braunschweig went to Joachim II Nector and conceded everything. Brandenburg-Kulmbach could go to Georg Friedrich immediately, and Saxony would accept the regency of Joachim II Nestor until Georg Friedrich's majority. With Saxony and Brandenburg now having resolved their differences and presenting a common front, Wilhelm of Hesse-Kassel knew better than to temporize, or to presume further upon the patience of his patron the Elector Friedrich, and he immediately withdrew as a potential regent for his two youngest brothers in favor of the Saxon Elector.

    The collapse of Charles's final effort to isolate and exclude Saxony completed his humiliation in the eyes of the Diet.

    Soon afterward he gave formal notice of his decision to abdicate the imperial throne, opening the way for the election of the King of the Romans. Traditionally, election by itself was not enough for one to receive the title emperor. Instead, a man was only emperor after his coronation by a pope. Charles V had found away around this before his coronation in Italy at the hands of a pontiff essentially beaten to submission a decade after his election by referring to himself as the elected emperor.

    But in these circumstances, Ferdinand knew accepting the throne of the Holy Roman Empire with the assent of the Protestant princes, and accepting the compromises necessary to do so, meant deferring, possibly forever, his receiving his crown from the pope's hands, and becoming a real emperor of the Holy Romans as the office was historically defined. Thus even with the diplomatic situation of the empire as it found itself in 1554, and the seeming impossibility of the situation continuing as it had under Charles, the importance of what followed in Ferdinand's election should not be underestimated.

    First, before the election of a new emperor could be held, Friedrich demanded the religious settlement. Otherwise, all would be undone, and on this matter he would not be moved. His vote for Ferdinand had been conditioned on the acceptance by the Habsburg of the principles negotiated at Schandau. First, fairly easily, the jurisdiction of the imperial courts with respect to religion was stripped away. Next, Friedrich expected the approval of the provision granting each prince the right to decide religious matters on his own, so long as the right of his subjects to participate in the Roman Church, if they chose, was respected.

    Instead, Ferdinand surprised the princes with a draft which would only recognize the right of the constituent states of the empire to permit non-Catholic rites in those churches which recognized the real presence of Christ in the Eucharist. This would in effect limit the freedom being mooted to two options, Catholic and Lutheran. Ferdinand understood well by this point, after twenty years of dealings with the Elector, Friedrich's personal preference for Sacramentarian doctrine, and understood along with it Friedrich could not refuse a much-needed peace deal to satisfy his fondness for the Calvinists. Already his edicts in sympathy with Jews and the various Protestant cults had raised eyebrows among the solidly Lutheran Saxon elite. Ferdinand knew flouting them to prolong a war in disadvantageous circumstances would endanger Friedrich's rule. Moreover, he understood that if Friedrich backed out now, and the prospect of a lasting religious settlement fell through because of Friedrich and not the Habsburgs, then it would be possible to revive the war as Charles had wanted, but with all the political advantages resting with the Habsburgs.

    But Friedrich understood all this as well as Ferdinand. And so despite high drama at the Wettins' rented house in Augsburg the night Ferdinand's draft was circulated, which climaxed in the Elector's nephew Henry Brandon and Guildford and Jane Dudley being unceremoniously ordered back to Saxony (Friedrich later declared he had not been told so many times he could not do a thing even in the two years he was held captive by the emperor as he was that one night), Friedrich relented. For the younger Saxon nobles and knights who had come of age with an almost supernatural belief in Friedrich's statecraft and military prowess, the diet was becoming a dispiriting affair: no Brandenburg-Kulmbach, no Hesse, and a less robust religious settlement than had been envisioned.

    But about what followed next there could be no ambiguity. Friedrich's most crucial demand was that Saxony be confirmed in her new frontiers, the Albertine and Ernestine lands united under him, the electorate's other acqusitions ratified and his role as prince-defender of the newly appended territories like Magdeburg, Goslar and Erfurt rendered legal in the eyes of the empire. Here too, Ferdinand managed to shave off as much as he could, declining to include language that would explicitly make the new office of prince-defender hereditary, and thus tied to the Saxon succession.

    When Friedrich agreed to this, it was as if the collective slump in the shoulders of the Saxon delegation became impossible to ignore. Friedrich was aging, and his health was entering into an obvious decline. Magdeburg, the pearl of great costs that had been the object of so many plots between Ernestine and Albertine Saxony, that was easily the most populous and wealthiest town in the nascent Saxon empire, might pass out of Wettin hands as soon as Friedrich breathed his last, which for all anyone knew could be as little as a year.

    Then the already-negotiated settlements to the successions of Hesse and Brandenburg-Kulmbach were enacted. Following that, the Diet approved a law both restricting the emperor from using foreign troops against his subjects and the territorial princes from accepting aid from foreign powers against the emperor, satisfying two of the great complaints Protestant and Catholic Germany had each lodged against the other. These were all enacted with little controversy. It was then, in an air of almost unbelievable jubilation, the electors retired and held the first imperial election since 1519, when it had been conducted in what had been for all intents and purposes a different world. Friedrich even did the unthinkable, which his father the Elector Johann had refused, and participated in the Catholic rites necessary to imperial election ritual.

    By necessity, election and an informal coronation would be held in Augsburg presently, to be followed the next year by more formal ceremony in the traditional seat of Aachen. Of course, even then Ferdinand would lack the legal imprimatur most necessary to his imperial office, that of coronation by a pope. But for the moment such legal niceties were set aside in the rush to peace. With so many stratagems by all sides that could derail the consensus of Schandau having failed to do so, and with so many stumbling blocks overcome, matters now took on a momentum few could have anticipated. In the space of a day the Electors decided unanimously: Ferdinand was emperor. Then Ferdinand in his coronation oath repeated all the promises Charles had made in 1519, the breach of which had become the core of the Saxons' casus belli, and to them were added the terms reached by the foregoing diet. They were all written into Ferdinand's very acceptance of the imperial throne. And though Friedrich had conceded matter after matter to win the long-sought peace, no one doubted this insistence on the peace terms being written into the coronation oath meant that in Saxon eyes a breach by Ferdinand would mean not just fresh war, but once again the vacating of the imperial throne.

    All that followed was anti-climax. With an almost shocking nonchalance, the princes turned to ordinary business of taxes, the imperial courts, and the perennial problem of funding the armies defending Bohemia and Hungary. In these matters Friedrich became Ferdinand's great advocate. For a moment it was as if the Reformation and all the ensuing chaos and bloodshed had not happened.
    Last edited: Nov 27, 2018
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  20. Dr. Waterhouse A Mighty Fortress Is My TL

    Nov 12, 2008
    One Question Quiz, outside the fourth wall of the timeline:

    What regnal name is used for Friedrich's nemesis in the German schools of the alternate present?

    (A) Carlos V
    (B) Charles V
    (C) Thanos
    (D) Karl V
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