Discussion in 'Alternate History Discussion: Before 1900' started by Napoleon53, Dec 13, 2018.
Don't worry, man. It's really good.
Honestly, it’s pretty damn great, so take some well deserved pride in it.
Sternberg seems saner then otl, which I love just for the sheer irony. Wonder if he'll develop a warped Inuit cultural fetish or stay with just a mongolian one. And because it includes so much of otl British Columbia, Yukon, and northern Washington, I imagine this Alaska is far richer and probably able to sustain itself better. All and refugees from the RU and French canada are probably going to give the country a shot in the arm population wise too
I am actually planning to write what happened to him before 1917 and how his experience during the Great War impacted him
What happened to Switzerland? Did it keep its neutrality? Maybe they merged with other countries?
I like it, but I have one concern: how does the Great Trek happen? IOTL, it mainly happened because the British alienated the Boer inhabitants of the Cape Colony. With the Dutch still in charge, there wouldn't really be a reason for a migration into the hinterland to escape the tightening grip of a foreign culture.
Preview for the next chapter:
Hark the Sound of Electrified Voices: The West Carolina Valley Authority
When Alyaska became an Illuminist Prussia...
The Rise of Super Orthodoxy
Nikolaj Velimirović, the Father of SuperOrthodoxy
If there was one nation in the region of the Balkans which benefited the most from the Great World War, it was none other than the Kingdom of Serbia. As a result of the Great World War, the Kingdom of Serbia ended the war having annexed the Kingdom of Albania, with Greece annexing the region of Northern Epirus, and with the Albanian Genocide, in which the Serbian state and military killed over a quarter of the population of Albania and expelled the Albanian population from the region of Kosovo, going down in history as the “Great Tragedy of the Balkans” as stated by Irish journalist James Aloysius Joyce, and with the rest of the Albanian population being forcibly converted to Orthodox Christianity, with a few still practicing Islam in secret. The Albanians were not the only victims of the Kingdom of Serbia, as the Croats and Bosniaks of Bosnia had also suffered under Serbian oppression for decades, while the Orthodox Montenegrins were treated by the Serbian state as “Cousins to the Serbs.”
Flag of the Kingdom of Serbia, adopted on June 28, 1889
With the rise of SuperCatholicism in Europa, particularly in Italy, Southern Germany and Austria-Hungary, it was only logical to assume that similar movements would arise within the Orthodox Christian nations of Europe. It was not surprising that the birth of SuperOrthodoxy would arise within the Kingdom of Serbia; a nation that was incredibly nationalistic and had committed one of the worst atrocities of the Great World War aside from the Cleansing Month in the Republican Union. The man who was considered the father of SuperOrthodoxy was none other than the Serbian Orthodox Priest Nikolaj Velimirović.
Nikolaj Velimirović as a Seminary Student in 1903
Nikolaj Velimirović was born in the small village of Lelić, Valjevo, Serbia, on January 4, 1881, or December 28, 1880 in the Julian calendar, with the Gregorian calendar not being adopted by Serbia until after the end of the Great World War in 1916. Soon after reaching adulthood in 1899, Velimirović joined the Seminary of Saint Sava in Belgrade, which he graduated from in 1905 and after which he became a professor at the Seminary, and one of the youngest as well. Soon after Serbia entered the Great World War, Velimirović resigned from his position as a professor at the Seminary and offered his services to the Serbian Army an army chaplain. During the Great World War, he served as a chaplain during the Dalmatian campaign and during the Albanian campaign, and during the latter Velimirović ruthlessly supported the evangelization and conversion of the Muslim Albanian population to Serbian Orthodox Christianity. While he condemned the genocidal actions of the Serbian Army, and supported “a peaceful yet forceful conversion of the wayward Albanian people”, he supported all actions necessary against “Albanian towns that resisted our rule and refused to see the light of God.” Soon after the war, in 1915, Velimirović returned to Serbia and was consecrated as the Bishop of Žiča in the city of Kraljevo. During his time as Bishop of Žiča, he actively supported and preached a doctrine of Serbian nationalism and Serbian chauvinism, Pan-Serbianism and a unification of the majority-Serb parts of the region of Vojvodina in Hungary, including the city of Novi Sad, with Serbia, Serbian monarchism, fervent anti-Illuminism and a brotherhood between all the Orthodox Christian peoples of Europe.
Throughout the late 1920s and early 1930s, with the rise of the SuperCatholics and the founding of the SuperCatholic Party in Italy, Bishop Nikolaj Velimirović payed close attention to such developments in Europe and was very much intrigued by the rise of an intense combined nationalism and religiosity in much of Catholic Europe. Velimirović was inspired by this new rebirth of nationalism and religiosity, and he gradually came to the conclusion that the Orthodox Christian lands needed their own movements that were analogous the new movements in Catholic Europe. As a result, on June 28, 1929, the day of the Serbian national holiday of Vidovdan, Nikolaj Velimirović, along with other likeminded individuals, including anti-Illumanist Russian exiles, founded the SuperOrthodox Party of Serbia (СуперОртодоксна странка Србије/SuperOrtodoksna stranka Srbije) in Kraljevo, Serbia, with the Great World War veteran, war criminal, journalist and writer Stefan Cicvarić acting as deputy leader of the party. The party supported Serbian ultranationalism, Pan-Serbianism, Serbian Orthodox fundamentalism, Serbian Orthodox evangelization of the Catholic Croats and Muslim Bosniaks, and cooperation between the Serbian Orthodox Church and other Orthodox churches in Europe.
Over the next few years of the 1930s, with Serbia in an economic slump, increasing unemployment as a result and with many Great World War veterans still impoverished and suffering from physiological problems, the SuperOrthodox Party of Serbia saw a meteoric rise and a large increase in support and membership over the first half of the decade of the 1930s. This was much to the alarm of both the Serbian government of King Bratislav II and Prime Minister Nikola Uzunović, and the Serbian Orthodox Church of Patriarch Dimitrije, the first Patriarch of the church since the Serbian Patriarchate was re-established in 1895, who despite being a Serbian nationalist and staunch conservative, was very much against the new SuperOrthodox movement which he saw a danger to the Serbian nation.
Bratislav II (born 1890)
With the increasing popularity of SuperOrthodoxy within Serbia, numerous SuperOrthodox politicians were elected to a number of local positions throughout the country and many more were elected to the National Assembly of Serbia during the parliamentary elections of 1934. With Prime Minister Uzunović refusing to go into a coalition with the SuperOrthodoxers, a political crisis had begun. Thus, General Dragutin Gavrilović, a veteran of the Great World War and a secret SuperOrthodox sympathizer, launched a coup against the Serbian government on May 24, 1934, and his forces managed to capture much of the city of Belgrade with the help of loyal units under the command of Goran Đujić, a young army officer, Serbian Orthodox priest and secret SuperOrthodox Party member. In the aftermath of the coup, King Bratislav II, under some duress, proclaimed Dragutin Gavrilović as Prime Minister of the Kingdom of Serbia under a military government. In spite of the fact that the new military government of General and Prime Minister Gavrilović was officially non-partisan, Gavrilović was a SuperOrthodox sympathizer and made secret, closed-door promises to the SuperOrthodox members of the National Assembly that he would accommodate their desires at some point in the future.
In 1936, Patriarch Dimitrije died in Belgrade at the age of 89 on July 17, 1936. Thus, a new Patriarch of the Serbian Orthodox Church needed to be elected. With the continuing rise of the SuperOrthodox movement in Serbia and with the increasing support of SuperOrthodoxy within the Serbian Orthodox Church, it only stood to reason that Nikolaj Velimirović would be chosen as the new Patriarch of the Serbian Orthodox Church. Thus, on August 23, 1936, Nikolaj Velimirović was elected Patriarch of the Serbian Orthodox Church as Nikolaj, Serbian Patriarch.
Super Orthodoxy, as if the world needed a new batch of crazies to lock itself into another vicious circle... It only makes me curious of the fate of the Tesla family in this universe given Milutin Tesls is an Orthodox priest and a pacifist...
India post #2, expect around 3 more.
THE FRUIT OF THE ROYAL GARDEN
“I am proud to belong to a nation which has sheltered the persecuted and the refugees of all religions and all nations of the earth... I will quote to you, brethren, a few lines from a hymn which I remember to have repeated from my earliest boyhood, which is every day repeated by millions of human beings: ‘As the different streams having their sources in different paths which men take through different tendencies, various though they appear, crooked or straight, all lead to Thee.’” -- Vivek Anand, 1900 [OOC: source]
To the chagrin of the little bourgeois social clubs that declared themselves “Indian Autonomiste parties” in the late 1800s, a theory may take years to seep through its intended audience... but a good story spreads like wildfire. And one of the greatest tools with which Vivek Anand Datta built India’s first modern mass movement was the story of his own life. Born to a mill-worker and raised in a slum, he resisted the sinful wiles of Calcutta’s streets and excelled enough in his studies to qualify for the civil service; at the cusp of this great triumph, however, he cast aside the scepter for a fakir’s staff. He started small, visiting the urban temple near his home and refining his sonorous voice with songs of devotion. A priest, noting his enthusiasm, offered to tutor him. Before long, Anand’s extemporaneous and intensely personal speeches on the meaning of the ancient epics, the feelings of pride and mourning and determination he could draw out of his audience, made him a minor celebrity in Bengal, and then a major one throughout northeastern India. Controversy dogged him—Anand was a layman of low birth, and Brahmins more well-versed in Vedic tradition ridiculed him for playing fast-and-loose with doctrine and misattributing popular folk stories to ancient authors—but, as the popularity of those same folk stories attests, this was not a dealbreaker for most Hindus. Nothing could stop the momentum of this emerging guru as he announced a pilgrimage to the holy city of Varanasi, and called on whoever would to join him. The Grand Trunk Road soon resounded with thousands of marching feet, and saffron flags snapped in the wind above.
The agents of the Compagnie des Indes orientales followed along, watching for the first sign of sedition from him or his crowd—but none could have expected the conundrum such a sign would pose. In his autobiography, published in 1890 some time after his twenty-seventh birthday, Anand unexpectedly revealed that he was a grandson of an old partisan of Paul Horace Greer. Subsequent investigations confirmed this fact. Some internal memos called for a public response, but cooler heads convinced the colonial administration to take the long view. Anand’s claim had caused quite a stir, and his critics argued he now sought to cement his ill-gotten religious authority with a fabricated genealogy. Arresting Anand would make an enemy of him—but worse still, it would confirm his story and allow him to draw on the sympathies of classes high and low. By keeping their hands off, the Compagnie could allow Anand’s movement to flame out by itself, if that was its fate. In any case, Anand weathered this storm. By 1899 he was a household name in north India, and his first grand tour of the south was a success to rival Varanasi. No one was more well-suited to represent Hinduism at the following year’s Agora of Faiths.
Publicly, the Agora was the brainchild of two men who wished simply to seat all the religions of the world at one table and have them discuss the great issues of the age, but peculiar motivations lurked beneath. Raghunath Rao II, Maharaja of Baroda, remarked after his coronation that his realm was “a healthy tree, though not the tallest in its grove.” The realm of the Gaekwad dynasty, centered in Baroda, was formerly one of the four great subunits of the Maratha confederation. But as Napoleon I’s armies filtered into the Maratha heartland, into the void left behind by the devastating raids in which Paul Horace Greer killed the last Peshwa and stole away his treasury, granary, and armory for the benefit of his own rebel army, the Gaekwads were the first to pledge themselves to the French cause. By this, they secured protection against the English and avoided being subsumed into the Bombay Principality, but their realm in Gujarat remained right next to the heart of French power, which naturally received the largesse of French investment. This “anachronistic” little kingdom peered right into the house of modernity, and it had the choice (a real choice, as the princes retained near-absolute control over their states’ domestic administrations for nearly the entire colonial era) of being left behind or keeping up. Raghunath Rao, like his father before him, wanted by his every word and move to fight against the idea that princely states like his were “backward”, that they stood outside the continuum of historical progress. Though judicious Parsee financial managers were always required to keep the Maharaja’s ambitions in check, the trade and industry of Gujarat nonetheless financed an impressive renovation of Baroda City. Railways and roads connected new hospitals, parks, and schools. A new building code provided the legal basis for demolishing derelict structures, and erecting new houses and apartment blocks connected by motorized postal rickshaws. A new sewer system was the flagship initiative in an all-out assault on disease and pollution. But even all this, he felt, was not enough. He had proved that Indian princes had money to spend, and the basic wherewithal to use it for the public good. All this earned him praise from Compagnie officials, but they could easily do this sort of work for him (or without him). There had to be something he could do, something so kingly that a Europan bureaucrat couldn’t even conceptualize it for fear of offending his own sovereign. On an evening stroll in the Royal Gardens, after an audience with Parsi, Jain, Hindu, and Ismaili bankers, the Maharaja mused absentmindedly that he’d probably never see a sight like that outside of Gujarat… and then stopped in his tracks. The ferns and coconut palms rustled all around.
The Maharaja’s opposite number was Jules Verne, a wealthy pensioner who was formerly on the Compagnie’s Court of Directors. He was the sort of man with the resources and time to do just about anything he liked, and so no one thought it odd that he left his Bombay estate for a vacation in the Tuscan countryside in the summer of 1895. It would not be known for many decades that Verne was an Illuminist of high rank, and that upon hearing of Friedrich Nietzsche’s death he had gone to the Areopagus in Elba to vie for leadership of the Enlightened. Verne disagreed with Otto Werner’s views on the necessity of immediate political revolution, and believed instead that a “revolution of the soul,” a displacement of Christianity by a less flawed system of spirituality, would improve world politics from the bottom up. Verne was around a century late with this line of thinking. By the 1890s the Illuminists had grown tired of waiting for organized religion to dissolve itself, and became enamored of the decisive, world-changing actions by which the Forces of Reaction furthered their own aims. As the extent of his unpopularity became clear, Verne angrily wrote in his journal that “on full display is the Jew’s madness: even as he decries all religion, he still believes his own to be the best the world has to offer. I see in his ramblings no more than the moneylender’s lust for quick material gain, which has intoxicated all the rest one by one.” This and other antisemitic musings led him to consider the Orient the last hope for humanity’s salvation. For years he had sought a savior in India, but he grudgingly accepted that waiting was indeed not enough. The Great Teacher who would set the world to rights had to be fished out of the great sea of Asian humanity, and for that a pretext was required.
A pretext to concentrate all the Orient’s charismatic figures in one place. Addressing a letter to his old friend the Maharaja, who had earlier written to him about a similar idea, Verne figured it might as well be Baroda. The stage was set, the Compagnie notified, and the fateful day of March 19, 1900 finally arrived...
“...and, at last, though to think on ‘t I have said it before, I pray that this meeting does not become a breeding-ground of errors in judgement. I love peace, peace is indeed the state in which men may best stretch their hands out to the Lord, and be saved. And I love decency among men—oh dear, where are my notes? I have them, just give me a moment…—yea, decency and goodwill, which are the basis for the industrious spirit which has flourished for centuries in Europe and is now planted firmly on Asian shores. And I love freedom, that most natural freedom of which we are all possessed. Yet let none of these things guide us to acceptance of each other's faults, not at all, but instead toward the patience and tenacity to drive out ignorance where it, ah, where it dwells. I conclude my remarks, and wish all the good men of this conference Godspeed.”
Thus ended the tenth and last day of the proceedings. Verne silently fumed. To think that Othmar Derichs’ clique of Austrian flatterers-in-chief had wormed its way even into the Compagnie! The new Director-General, a Monsieur Sigmund Freud, was the son of Jewish converts to Catholicism—which, as anyone knew, made him doubly zealous. There was something unsettling in the way he talked about the old Mother Mary… but Verne would have listened to him rant for hours about the Virgin’s majesty and grace, if it could have averted his interference in this momentous event. The friar Freud insisted on sending to represent Catholicism, reportedly a childhood friend of his, either riled all the other delegates up against him or damn near put them to sleep. How would a World Teacher emerge from this mess?
Yang Wenhui was certainly bored, but he’d largely accomplished what he set out to do. He’d given the Orthodox delegate, a hapless old Greek, a sound grilling over the (lack of) ethics involved in the bloody Russian assault on his homeland five years prior— in fact, he’d nearly gotten the silver-bearded priest to declare Tsar Viktor an apostate right then and there, but the French stepped in to stop what, given the international audience of reporters milling about, could maybe have snowballed into a diplomatic incident. Yang had also wanted to meet an American, but the Americans had rebuffed Mr. Verne’s offer even after he went to the trouble of sending them Protestant Dutch envoys. Something about “guaranteed pollution of Pinnacle Blood if left isolated in the Satanic den of the Inferiors,” as the Maharaja sheepishly explained in the first day’s commencement speech. That had caused the good friar some embarrassment, but he recovered quickly enough… an inevitable consequence of scheduling quirks giving him the final word almost every day, and the liberty of dragging it out as long as needed.
But credit was still due to the other delegates. The bushy-bearded Persian (though he often called himself “Pashtun” before correcting himself) representing Islam often punctuated his speeches with little verses of poetry, recited in the original Persian and then in French for the benefit of the conference. The Buddhist, a lay preacher from Sri Lanka, made Yang grateful for being a delegate for so nebulous a category as “the Chinese tradition”. His own views tended more towards Buddhism than anything else, but had he been chosen to represent Buddhism he might never have had the privilege of hearing this fiery man call for the rescue of texts and refugees from the country recently rechristened as Holy Nippon, for the maintenance of Buddhist sites throughout northern India and the Dutch East Indies, for a grand Buddhist mission that would send teachers to all the world, to even the black box of America. And most curious was another lay preacher, the Hindu. Here was a man who seemed completely in his element. While all the delegates were influential men of some kind or another (Yang himself had only recently retired from the head of the Qing Foreign Ministry), many were bureaucrats or academics, accustomed to small-to-medium audiences already disposed to listen. This fellow instead spoke of leading processions of thousands across many miles. But for all that experience in rabble-rousing, over the ten days of the conference he’d been a proper diplomat. He made no concession to criticism of his faith, but sought no disputes himself and tried to resolve them when they flared up among others.
As the applause ended, and Yang reached out to shake his neighbor’s hand, it seemed to him the real work of interfaith dialogue was only just beginning.
With everything happening on the main thread, I've thinking about doing some writing about Ireland.
With the main thread up to 1936, meaning James Connolly would be 68, which seems like the perfect time to kill him off and replace him. I'm thinking of Seán Mac Diarmada as his replacement. Aside from a good strong gaelic name, he was in OTL also member of the Military Committee of the Irish Republican Brotherhood, a signatory of the Proclamation of the Irish Republic, an organiser for Sinn Féin, heavily involved in Gaelic revivalism and Irish nationalism in general, all of which can be suitably twisted for maximum Madness. Suggestions for other political contenders or allies would be appreciated
James Larkin Jnr and Denis Larkin's
A Connolly Trokia (like there dad they were all rather leftie)
The various members of Connolly Column
R Palme Dutt (parents move to Ireland over the more Racist Britain)
Michael Collins as the long lasting leader of the secret police
Maybe fit the Bevans (Jennie Lee, Nye Bevan) in there somewhere, part of a Irish propped up Welsh Government in Exile (Celtic revival government)/starters of the Irish Nuclear program.
James Gralton and the members of the Revolutionary Workers group
Various members from the Republican Congress
All excellent suggestions. Definitely going to be some Death Of Stalin vibes happening in the halls of Dublin.
And for extra delicious irony, I’ll probably include a Hard Border between North and South Ireland a la Berlin or Korea.
Obviously the title of Prime Minister will have to be changed (too English). Should I stick with Taoiseach like OTL or try something more socialist?
Taoiseach would work, I can also recommend Ceannaire which is Gaelic for leader. Maybe you could have People's Spokeperson or the Chairman as well.
Also the Irish border frontier would make the DMZ look like a cakewalk. I suspect that Ulster is like London under the Blitz as both sides lob shells at each other every so often. I imagine both side are Paranoid bunkers with Ireland full of WMD's ready for use (insert pictures of British folk in Gas Masks).
Tanaiste could work as an allusion to the RU's Atheling concept. The Tanaiste refers to the heir in a traditional Irish chiefdom, who would be elected by the nobles from among the members of the dynasty. It's also used for the Deputy PM of Ireland.
The trouble with that is that Tanaiste is that it was used to denote being an heir, or next in the line of succession. Taoiseach is a lot more like "commander who serves at the behest of the king." However, during British rule OTL the term did evolve into meaning "deputy/viceroy", and going with the idea of Ireland as a partnership of royalism and socialism I think it could work.
Thinking about it, Connolly would probably prefer the simplicity of Taoiseach or Ceannaire. He'd probably save all the fancy titles for the Monarchy, declaring them Ard-Rí na hÉireann (High King of Ireland), Sovereign of the People's Most Socialist Kingdom of Ireland, Defender of the Celtic Race, Protector of the Realm, Breaker of the Great Chain, Supreme Chief of the EireSoc Party, Grand Commander of the People's Liberation Armed Forces, Warden of the Most Illustrious Order of Saint Patrick, Indestructible Shield Bearer Against Anglo Tyranny, True Defender of the Peoples Hope.
(all in Irish of course)
Hmmm, I suspect they'd lob the occasional shell at each other for awhile after the war, neither side willing to truly stand down from a war footing in case the other tries something, until their Bigger Backers (Europa and the RU) make them stop. After that, plenty of state sponsored terrorism on both sides of the border. Think the worst days of the Troubles and then dial it up a few notches.
Honestly Ceannaire sounds like a better title, not one you hear much in otl, but it is actully pretty cool sounding, has a meaning that serves for the purpose of identifying the prime minister really well, and it has some, ahem, unpleasant implications that perfectly mesh with the Madnessverse, since Ceannaire and Füher both share the exact same direct meaning when translated into English. Also it serves too highlight the huge differences between the ATL kingdom of Ireland and the real life republic, since their leaders titles have similar meanings but sound completely different, much like the superficial similarities between the situations in Ireland in OTL and TTL with things like the north south divide only serves too highlight the massive differences between the governments of Britain and Ireland and the situations of said countries in this timeline.
The same goes for Taoiseach too (the literal translation is Chieftain or leader) and people have been making them exact same comparisons to that and other fascist titles since at least 1944. But yeah, Ceannaire sounds cooler
(And will definitely scale back that overlong series of titles for the King. It was mostly just a joke)
The WCVA post is being temporarily postponed until.after finals because I want to make sure I do research, etc. However, something I plan on having up by Sunday:
A Very Cokie Christmas (in Yankeeland)
Separate names with a comma.