The State of the World in 1422
By 1422, the Kingdom of Hungary had grown becoming the most powerful nation in Eastern Europe. The Magyar Rebellion in 1422 would bring about changes to the kingdom. Yet, even with all the gains and tribulations in Hungary, the world was changing itself.
The known world in 1422 (1)
The Hundred Years War was in a lull by 1422. English hegemony was established on all of Ireland by 1415. Yet, France was proving to be far more difficult to subdue. With the death of King Henry IV in the Battle of Picardie while on campaign in France, England had lost its best general in the war.
Henry IV in the Battle of Picardie before his death
Henry’s son Edward would be crowned King of England in 1419 and would be known as King Edward IV Lancaster. The inception of King Edward revitalized England’s assault on France. Edward IV would later be known as “The Conqueror” for he conquered all of Brittany as well as won key battles against France in 1420 and 1421. However, even with Brittany under English control and a score of victories against the French, the war was still in a stalemate. Because of the draw in France, Edward concentrated on Scotland and declared war in 1421. In only eight months, Scotland was either pacified by the English or in the process of pacification. Soon after, peace would be signed in Edinburg on September of 1421, which officially proclaimed England sole owner of all of Scottish domains except the capitol and its surrounding lands. The crushing defeat would cripple Scotland and exalt Edward for his success in nearly unifying the islands. (2)
By the beginning of 1422, France had been able to repulse the English from taking important strongholds in the north. They won a crucial victory at the Battle of Picardie in 1419, which stopped the English advance on Paris and robbed England of its king and best commander. Yet, France was still a fragmented state with small but powerful vassals unwilling to relinquish control of its lands to the French crown. The Kingdom of Burgundy continued to be a thorn on the France’s side as it frequently sided with England in diplomacy. France has the people and the economy to become a dominant state in Western Europe, but the kingdom needs to unify to ever stand a chance against England and the rest of Europe.
Castille has had a rocky beginning in the early 15th century. The Spanish power won an overwhelming victory against Granada in 1403, which saw Castille capturing most of the Muslim lands under its state except the capitol, itself. However, since the momentous gains by King Enrique III, Castille has fallen into trouble with rebellion and an alliance of Portugal and Aragon. The War for Iberian Dominance in 1411 spelled defeat for Castille as it fought both the Portuguese and the Aragonese. The war that lasted nearly four years was a devastating loss for the Castillians as it lost land to both of its neighbors in the peace settlement. The death of Enrique III in 1413 brought about the induction of his daughter, Isabel I to become Queen of Castille. Many powerful nobles in Castille did not appreciate the crown transferring to the late king’s eldest daughter instead of his brother. A power struggle would erupt in the country as nobles sided with either Don Carlos, the brother of Enrique or Isabel. The struggle would last through most of the decade until Isabel’s forces routed and crushed Carlos’s army in the Battle of Seville in 1420.
The Battle of Seville would solidify Isabel's claim to the Castillian throne
Don Carlos would be captured by the Royalist and subsequently imprisoned and later executed for treason in 1421. With Isabel’s throne secure, Castille eyes its return to dominance on the peninsula against its neighbors Portugal and Aragon.
King Joan II di Arago of Aragon has seen much success against Castille in the past decade since rising to the throne in 1409. His acquistions in Castille has had a price, however for his Mediterranean holdings. Aragon had extensive holdings in the Mediterranean, but King Joan realized that its Mediterranean power was fading fast due to the likes of Venice, Naples and the Ottoman Empire. Half of Sicily had revolted from Aragon and rebels are besieging the other half still in Aragon’s possession. Aragon is powerless in defending its Mediterranean possessions because of continental obligations against Castille and France. Aragon’s time as a maritime power is fading fast.
Portugal under its king, Joao I de Avis has seen prosperity and victory. Its victorious war against Castille proved to be a boon to Portuguese merchants in Andalucia and beyond. Portugal, considered more of a naval power proved that it had sufficient backbone to fight on land as well. Even with all its success, Portugal is still the smallest of the three kingdoms in Iberia. Its only consolidation to its size is its wealth, for it is also the richest in Iberia.
King Vasily I Rurikovich took an outstanding opportunity to gain land from Novgorod as it declared war on the weakened state in 1412. Its war against Novgorod would show to be a good decision as it gained considerable territory from them. Muscowy is growing in power and influence in the Russian Steppes, yet the Golden Horde is knocking at its door.
The Golden Horde has surpassed all expectations coming into 1422. Many in Europe believed the country would splinter when civil war was announced in 1405. The country would stay intact, but would cost the great Khan’s death in the process. His son, Khagan Shadi Beg Khan Genghisid would become ruler of a recovering Golden Horde. Instead of licking its wounds, the Khan went on the offensive declaring war against Lithuania, Novgorod, and other Far East kingdoms effectively crushing all of its enemies.
Khagan Shadi Genghisid demanding annual tribute from a conquered foe
By 1422, the Golden Horde is larger, more secure and able to war with any of its neighbors with deadly consequences. Its heyday has not arrived just yet.
The Ottomans have had slow success against its neighbors. It has nearly unified the Anatolian Peninsula. It is also waging a successful war against Venice for control of Constantinople to bridge the two Ottoman territories once and for all. With Constantinople under Ottoman control, it would usher in a new era in the East, as it would properly introduce the Ottomans as the bastion of Islam. All of Eastern Europe, including the Kingdom of Hungary is weary of the Turk’s thirst for new gains in Europe.
Though still considered a small state in Europe, it is notable for it conquered the once great city of Constantinople in 1418, effectively wiping Byzantium’s rule and culture from the world. The War of Veniero’s Pride, as the war would later be called, began due to an insult by Emperor Manuel II of Byzantium to Venice’s Doge, Antonio Veniero. The Venetian navy attacked the Byzantine navy off of the coast of Constantinople and scored an overwhelming victory. With no Byzantine navy to protect the city's harbor, Venice sent 10,000 mercenaries to attack the great city of Constantinople. The siege would last nearly a year before the starving inhabitants finally surrendered. The last stronghold of former Roman glory and culture was gone.
The Siege and Fall of Constantinople by the Venetians in 1418
Doge Veniero would never see the city fall as he died in Venice one month before the surrender. The new Doge, Mario Casanova Crescarzi would have a difficult agenda for his state. By 1422, newly acquired Constantinople would be in revolt and Venice would be at war with the Ottoman Empire.
(1) - As one may notice, the Kingdom of Poland no longer exists in the world. The Kingdom of Hungary would absorb the Polish lands in 1422 with the death of King Sigismund I of Hungary and the ascension of his son, Matyas I. More on the Polish throne inheritance for Hungary will be discussed in Chapter 1 of Part 2.
(2) - King Edward IV of Lancaster would later be considered one of the best Kings of England for his role in uniting all of Britain. Though this achievement was helped due to his great father's victories over the Irish, it would be Edward that would revitalize the Hundred Years War and bring pride and victory back to the English people.