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    Real Strategy Requires Cunning

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Crimson Drakon

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Interlude II : Anno Domini 1326 – A treatise on the known world, as presented by the scholar Ya’qub of Cyrenaica



It is without doubt that our world is ever changing, ever shaped and formed by the events that occur in our lifetime and the lifetime of our ancestors and our progeny. You cannot cross the same river twice, for it has already been altered by the currents that flow.

When the young man known as Sir Giordano Visconti wrote his Travels, almost two hundred years ago, our Ummah even stretched to the North Christian Kingdoms. Spectacular as it sounds, a people known as the Danes were manservants to a Cuman adventurer and a far off mythical place known as Lithuania was slowly accepting our creed. Yet all these now are history and perhaps even fables by writers of fantasy.

I have collected sources and tomes from many scribes to fill this gap of time. In what has been my work of my lifetime, I present to you the cartography of our known world, the year 1326 from the time of the prophet Jesus.






The Christian Realms of the North

With no doubt, to my dismay, the Christians have been the most successful to make up for their losses and reorganize themselves, marking the historical emirs of Andalusia as a relic of old. The named Pillars of Hercules belong to the King of Aquitane and the Jimenas of Castile have even conquered Marrakesh, the horror.

Still, they are prone to fighting among themselves: the one they name Holy Roman Emperor, after eradicating the heretical, to their creed, kingdom of Hungary, proceeded to contest with the vile Principality of Pisa. The cause of war was an insignificant county by the name of Brescia, to the reaches of a place named Lombardy. Such wars have been fought by the dozen, all ushered by the petty state of feudalism which most of the Christian Realms live up to.

To name an example: the King of Aquitane had managed to unite once long ago the crowns of Aquitaine and France under his head. With his death, the Aquitanians retained their rightful King while the Franks elected a new one, by a Frankish dynasty of the d’Anjou. With our laws of Iqta, this would have been unthinkable.

The far north is broken between tribal pagans and the King of the Rus, of the Sheremetev Dynasty. There also exists a King of Ruthenia, from the Rurikid Dynasty.

Finally in the Isles of the Britons, there is a man named King of Eire. The lords of Scotland are fighting among themselves for their reasons and the land of the Angles is united under the crown of Wales and England. It should be noted that it was the Angles who started a war to depose the Holy Roman Pope from his seat and they succeeded, to the surprise of the Christian world.


Of Africa and the Middle East




As we had duly noted, what was once named Mauritania, is now under firm Christian control. The decadent Almoravids fell back to the south and pushed further the pagan Mali tribes to the jungles. From the cluthes of Pisa broke off two satellite-states: Alger, a collection of Italian and Berber merchants and the Ethiopian King of Abyssinia, who was tricked into Pisan submission.

In the Middle East, the Pope of the Christians has called for a Crusade in Anatolia, the second of its kind in the area. With the will of Allah, the Crusaders will be ousted and Sultan Cuneyd II Annazid will be redeemed for his dynasty’s decadence.




Of the nautical charts which signify the trade in the Mediterranean, the Red Sea, the Indies and the rest seas







It is known to all contemporary men that the wretched Principality of Pisa has domineered the trade conducted between the various realms and has extracted profit beyond measure. Their sheer monopoly is only contested by the Republic of Venice, which has been brought under the dominion of the Greeks.

Their extend has even reached the far off Indies, with the Visconti family having firm control of all Silk Road port nodes, shipping the prized goods from the Indian Ocean to the Gulf of Oman and then to the Horn of Africa, with the final destination being Alexandria and the Occident ports.

The only worth mentioning Republic in the North is that of the Visby traders, who have successfully forced out of business a mercantile league by the name of Hanseatic League. With no one to compete with, they have under their supreme control the sea known as the Baltic and it seems likely they will expand to the other Christian realms of the region.

….

As history may repeat itself, it is the hope of a pious Muslim that the Caliph reconciles his differences with Sultan Annazid and Anatolia will become the turning point for the reversal of the outrages committed in Africa and Andalusia by the Christian invaders. Insallah!
 
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TheAnguishedOne

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Thank you for the update. The HRE is looking very powerful as your neighbor, adding to your border gore (not that I mind, some border gore can be fun). So nice seeing Pisa dominate trade.
 

Crimson Drakon

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Thank you for the update. The HRE is looking very powerful as your neighbor, adding to your border gore (not that I mind, some border gore can be fun). So nice seeing Pisa dominate trade.

Yes I do agree, it would have been nice having Italy as Pisan so the border gore would have been less obvious but alas... the AI had different plans. Such is the price for a Republic with elections!

But maybe if the situation is right, we can do something in Egypt and reduce that light Fatimid green :)
 

Nikolai

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Nice overview.:)
 

Crimson Drakon

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Arc II
Chapter 5
Part 2: Hearing the Call of the Heart / A Friend in Need/ Love Conquers All​

“You are still here? Would you not leave as quickly as possible as you said, so you can reach the far corners of the Earth and complete your birthright? “

Her words stung like throwing salt upon an open wound. Ever since the incident with Doge Arrigo of Tuscany, mistrust and accusations have had made their relationship into a bitter quarrel of witty remarks.
They were two different characters altogether: he was a man cynical to the core, greedy and ever opportune for the acquisition of wealth and she was a lady tutored by the nuns, kind, honest and erudite. The only element that united them was their lust for each other, after they had fought with themselves and proclaimed vows of rivalry. This is how Abelino and five other girls were born: products of carnal desire.

“Quiet woman! Can’t you see I am counting my coins…there…I missed it again! But this is my fourth counting and each time…they disappear?! How can that happen...is it my imagination that they are lost…”



Candida mumbled under her breath. You and your family had lost it a long time ago… serves you right for worshiping Mammon…

“Did you say something?” he said

“This obsession with money has transformed you Ausonio! Here, you cross the Seven Seas and go to places that even Alexander the Great had not set his foot upon, so you can get…gold… You made people pay a large Royal Aid Duty at our wedding, so you can…”

He interrupted her

“…pay His Holiness, the largest usurer of the Christian world, to renew the Papal Decree of the Indies! What then, will he impose a tax on goods from India because they are made by heathens?”

Candida gasped and took him by the arm

“This is blasphemy! Pray Bishop Rosso hasn’t heard you or he will begin talking again…the last we need is a Papal visit!!”

“I don’t care about that bigot anymore! I will have him imprisoned one day and tortured. I won’t be sleeping again with the hand of a dead old man by my side!”

She sighed in frustration

“You are beyond correction…you…”

Ausonio stopped her and kissed her with passion. He had felt the urge again inside him once the fighting stirred.

However Candida pushed him back.

“No, Ausonio, these are fasting days, you cannot just barge in and do as you wish…you..”

He yelled at her

“Fine, woman! Deny me! Again! You then wonder why I rather go at the end of the world?! I’d rather take a ship and fall by the edge than endure this torment!”

Inside him he knew long ago that what he had with Candida was dying, just as a ship which leaked would eventually sink. It was then that he decided that he would no longer focus as actively as he did to attain gold and provide for the Familia. Rather, he would live life as he wished and satiate his senses: his lust.



But everything would have to be done in secret. Apart from being the Visconti head of the family, he was also the Steward of Pisa and its High Judge. He could not amorously flirt here and there with bar wenches. He would have to be careful and pick his love interest carefully…

…it then dawned to him the perfect match for his escapades. Baroness Srimahadevi of Masula. A solemn woman, her beauty had infatuated young Abelino when all the vassals of the Visconti had arrived to meet the new progeny of the Familia. She would be perfect…she was the exotic element that Ausonio needed urgently.



Making hasty preparations, Ausonio II bid his son and family farewell, giving his wife a cold embrace. Abelino too was called back in Pisa by the Grand Prince for an urgent task, which was not named.

Months of travel, Ausonio II, Doge of Alexandria, made his way in far off Masula, forgetting all his worries and anxieties. But Srimahadevi did not fall to his advances: she quoted that now that she had converted to the Lord, the sinful ways of her past as a Hindu did not fit her at all and rejected Ausonio’s passion.




The bitterness of being rejected twice more made his heart shrink and shrivel from sadness. He even went as far as to study poetry in Telugu, cursing himself when he proudly rejected his Chancellor’s language lessons saying ‘if they cannot speak Italian, they are not important enough!’. Foolish Ausonio!!



But as he would make his way to charter a ship back to Alexandria in defeat, two letters were delivered to him urgently.

The first letter went about to describe the slanders Bishop Rosso of Alexandria spread about the Doge being an adulterous hedonist and how the Doge would cynically blaspheme the Church.

The second was the most curious: an Indian Thakur who was rumored to be called ‘the Lewd’ asked his aid and guidance in the administrative matters of his realm, citing how amazed he was when he heard the Steward of Pisa would arrive in the immediate area of Southern India.

For the first letter, Doge Ausonio was absolute. Prison for the rebellious man of the cloth. He had enough of his share of holy preaching, of holy guidelines to be observed and maintained.
As of the Indian Thakur…. the prospect of meeting on friendly terms a governor of an area in close proximity to his port of control intrigued him. In the end, Doge Ausonio II agreed and set sail for Tenkasi to meet this man himself and see what aid he needed.



4 November 1327
Thikana of Tenkasi, Domain of Chola Maharaja


“Sire, I still think this is not a good idea… if you remember, you hold two ports which once were the domain of the Maharaja of Chola. What if this is a trap?”

Ausonio II shook his head in disagreement. “He has more need to keep me alive than to imprison me.I feel I will like this cultural exchange. A pity again that I do not know whatever they speak here…”

The Visconti entourage was greeted at the modest palace of the Thakur. Apparently, as the translator explained, Thakur Kontân of the Kalinga Ganga Dynasty was a most pious observant of the creed of the Hindu faith. This though did not obstruct him from following his hedonist approach to living and his lustful behavior.

Ausonio nodded warmly in agreement. He felt that the two of them would reach a mutual language.

As they entered the main hall, the Thakur greeted them in spotless Italian

“Welcome! Welcome! Doge Ausonio what an honor it is to meet you in person!”

Everyone was astounded by what they saw and heard. A Tamil speaking Italian?!

He chuckled with their surprise and continued

“Oh, I speak your language indeed, for the Visconti trade has done us much good with selling our hard earned goods and communicating with the rest of the world. We now are united in a network of coins, goods, ideas and culture!”

“Well said my friend. I had a very good feeling about this meeting” Ausonio said

The Thakur smiled in response and urged them to eat and drink. Exotic food similar they had not eaten in Europe engulfed their senses and the recitation of passages from the Mahabarata and other Indian epics thrilled them.

“Poetry and stories are all good…but nothing compared to the beauties of India! Come then, dance!” he said and clapped his hands.

Before they knew it, female dancers arrived, dressed in a multitude of colors. With the warm weather in Tenkasi, it was needless to say that the dress code of India was absolutely different than in Europe and less modest at least.

“Ah, my favorite dancing and singing birds! How…” said Kontân but was cut short by the deadly glare of his wife.
Ausonio could not help but let a chuckle break from his lips , in a way that he understood his problem, the universal commitment to matrimony.

The two men then discussed the matters that the Thakur had summoned him. Upon the conversation, Ausonio presented from his backpack il Libro and showed the images to Kontân.

He was amazed. He was certain that the Brahmans too had reached almost the same conclusions as Ildebrando had done and he was marveled how the Italians were so ahead of their time. But the following pages made him present a darker, more grim look.

“This ink…it is not squid…it is blood…I have seen this technique in the jungles of Bengal, where Candradvipa is. This is dark, very dark work. Is it your ancestors’ work?”

Ausonio was not certain how to respond. Could he tell the story of his kinsmen, of the Great Fire? He instead told him of his dreams and anxieties, of the rumors of what Sinibaldo III was heard mumbling when he spoke

Kontân’s eyes widened

“Do not bury this book, I beg you. The Naga, the underground serpent dragonmen, will learn from it and who knows what may happen next… I understand it is your legacy, but consider my words also. It may have something to do with your dreams and your kinsman you told me about”

A passing serving woman came and smiled to both of them, breaking the grave atmosphere that had occurred. Kontân looked at how Ausonio ogled her instantly and he let a wry smile

“I see you share the same passion, Doge Ausonio. Let me grant you a gift for your advises and accepting my invitation to my palace!”

In only a few moments, Kontân arrived with a large book on his hands. He had a wicked smile on his lips

“Here, have a look!”

Ausonio opened the pages. Before he could protest that he did not speak or write Tamil, his eyes were engorged at the vivid images of lustful actions, in a manner he had never seen before

“With this book, every woman you meet will be yours! I have yet to perfect the act of whispering on the ear and…”

Suddenly, Kontân’s wife barged in, obviously annoyed at the images of the book. In hasty Tamil, Kontân explained himself and kissed her hand. She stormed off the same way she entered…

“Wives…” said Ausonio

Both men laughed

......​



Doge Ausonio II read the letter of Thakur Kontân and smiled, remembering the time they passed when he was invited at his palace in Tenkasi. If someone had mentioned to Ausonio that thanks to an Indian Thakur, he would have had immense success with the fair gender, he would have scoffed it off as nonsense.

But now he was sailing in joy as he kept undercover a mistress. She was named Filippa and she was everything Candida was not: beautiful, quick of mind, gregarious and of loose morals. With eyes only of his own grace…it was too good to be true. The only annoyance Ausonio had where the cries of Bishop Rosso who languished still in prison and cried like John the Baptist of the scandals he committed everyday.



His close advisors warned him he could not keep it for long: Rosso was a man of the cloth and the Pope would be immensely irritated should word arrive at his ears of the Visconti trespassing.

“I will do one last thing, then I will set him free. I want his stay to be…immemorable”

He descended at the dungeons to find Bishop Rosso in a destitute position. Malnourished and with tattered clothes, he did resemble a Biblic figure.

“Blessed are those who..”

“Shut up priest!” said Ausonio



Hours later, a sickening sound was heard

“Is he alive? Is he alive?” asked Ausonio with obvious fear painted on his face

The guards shook their heads gravely and pierced the Doge with their eyes. The Doge stumbled as if he was a blind man. He trembled and ran in panic in the midst of the night, crossing the many streets of Alexandria.

“Filippa! Filippa! Wake up and prepare your clothes! We must leave now!”

Like a madman, Doge Ausonio II and Filippa with him left incognito from the city, without a trace. Would news reach Rome that a Bishop perished under torture from the Visconti, he would have at least excommunicated them. In the middle of the night they traveled to Aswan and from there, with no questions asked, they swiftly made their way to Tenkasi for shelter.

Thakur Kontân was a gracious host and did not worry, as Pisan law did not apply in his realm. He assured his friend that he would make the arrangements for a ship to take him to safety in the realm of Cathay, where he had some contacts who with the right amount of money would keep their silence.

Ausonio thanked him and considered his favor paid off. Once they were sailing at the North Coromandel Coast and then further on to the northeast, he was filled with a liberating emotion: he was escaping from all his troubles and worries, away from the troublesome Catholic inquisitive priests and the obligations of marriage. It was only him and Filippa, the true love of his life.



Officialy for the Principality of Pisa, Doge Ausonio II of Alexandria died due to depression, following the example of Chiaffredo Visconti who went to the desert to atone for his sins. No one was absolutely certain of the fate of the amorous Doge, of the man who like Midas himself touched everything and turned into gold. Did money bring happiness to his man?

The male members of the Familia elected a different altogether character to lead the Household in this troubled time: it was Duke Sciarra II of Capua, the other remaning prominent branch of the Visconti Arboreum, a scholarly theologian renowned for his dedication to the virtues of Christendom.

 

TheAnguishedOne

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Ausonio's tale is rather self-contained, but it's an enjoyable story nonetheless.
 

Crimson Drakon

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Nice overview.:)

I like that Ausonio's fate has little to do with the official histories.

Ausonio's tale is rather self-contained, but it's an enjoyable story nonetheless.

I forgot to mention thanks for the comprehensive world update and how it was delivered.

Hi everyone and thank you for your comments. I had some major RL setbacks, with health involved, but I did not want to leave the AAR hanging, so I have written the epilogue for Arc II and will try to finish the game (staying on version 2.5.2 as not to bug the campaign). I hope you enjoy!
 
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Crimson Drakon

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Epilogue of Arc II:
Fine del Mondo? – The Two Imbecile Visconti Grand Princes - Puppetmaster Gianfranco Visconti, the Imperial Progeny, pulls the strings – The Pisan Anti-Papacy and the lapse to Fraticelli and Lollardy – Grand Prince Gianfranco Visconti restores the Nova Roman Republic


The sound of seagulls and the clashing waves awoke him from his deep slumber. The man tried to rise from his position but felt weary, exhausted. He looked around him. A sandy beach and the remnants of what had been a ship lying around him.

He then remembered the tropical storm. Of how they lost their course, the cries of the sailors who shouted as they had reached Fine del Mondo – the End of the World.

Maybe they were stranded on an island beyond India and Cathay? Perhaps it was mythical Chipangu , the island so described by Marco Polo the Venetian?

His thoughts were interrupted by a female voice, most familiar to him

“Ausonio! Thank the Lord you are alive!” she said. Her dress was in tatters but even still, she had not lost an ounce of her inherent beauty

“Oh Filippa my love! We…we are stranded! Our ship…”

She nodded with sorrow. It seemed they were the only ones who escaped from the terrible disaster that had struck them. A ship headed for Cathay and safe shelter and now lost from all known human contact

“Do not worry…here…my book is intact! Perhaps we can trace our position through the stars and if we make a raft we could…”

Their speech was interrupted by the looming sound of drums. Before they could react, a group of warriors with feathered masks were upon them.

Indians? Savages? Who on Earth are these people?

Ausonio tried to speak to them in Tamil, some basic phrases he learned from his friend Kontân. They did not seem neither to understand nor willing to aid in any way. Quickly they seized them and lead them to their city

It was then that Ausonio recalled a far off rumor he had dismissed as a wild tale: they were the people that the fishermen of Iceland had come in contact some years ago. Pity they were not the Indian explorers he had guessed the first time..


Meanwhile in Capua, Italy

“Doge Sciarra, you have been elected by the members of the Familia to lead us to prosperity. We pray that your professed path to God will outshine potential black marks our predecessors might have smudged upon our household... long life!”



A devout and kind figure such as Sciarra II could only spell the return to virtue for the turbulent House Visconti. Alas, the plans were for naught and Doge Sciarra II passed away only a month after his election. His place was occupied by his son, Doge Sciarra III, the first of the impotent Visconti Grand Princes.



House Visconti was lucky that at the same time a capable Council advised and presided over the personal failures of Doge Sciarra III, a detached priest. During his rule, a menace from the West appeared: first confused as Indian explorers who traversed the Great Ocean (and surprisingly did not fall to the edge of the world, a point of debate among scholars), it came to be known that these people were named as Aztecs, bend on destruction and massacre in completion to a prophecy of their own creed.



During these dark times, Sciarra III could not care any less and continued sponsoring private feasts and indulged in what he knew best: gaming. He believed that should danger knock at Pisa’s door, he would know exactly how to act, as he had practiced so many times. It was fortunate that Pisa was not tested by the Sunset Invasion.



To the surprise of many and thanks to a heavy funding of the electoral campaign, Sciarra III was elected as the Grand Prince of Pisa on 29 December 1338, when Grand Prince Tedice the Fat della Gherardesca gave up the ghost. The day the results were announced, he came out of hiding , as there were rumors of an assassination plot being hatched to remove him from his office altogether. The first action he did as Grand Prince was monumental: he removed trade posts from della Gherardesca control and seized them as his own. Only a man of insolence or an imbecile could have bend such the laws of the Principality.



While Pisa chose an isolationist policy and focused on its internal problems (or rather focusing on how to remove Grand Prince Sciarra from power, at least those who did not control him directly) , Iceland fell to the Aztecs and the Sunni Caliph regained Jerusalem from the Teutonic Order, as Catholic Christendom fought on two battlefields. Around these times came of age Gianfranco Visconti, the son of Abelino, a man who would further shape the fate of Pisa.

However in a twist of fate, the Aztecs were moved by the words of the Pope and perhaps amazed by the religious power he held in Europe, they converted to the Catholic faith and ceased immediately their hostilities. The Pope went as far as to name him a Cardinal of the College. Needless to say that in order to appease the invading Aztec, he was also named Preferatus.



Grand Prince Sciarra had lost his desire for gaming and began to study the scriptures, even going as far as to find a hermit who according to rumors held great knowledge. This man he then named friend and set him as the Anti-Pope, questioning the wisdom of Rome to place its successor to a man who previously slaughtered Christians by the thousands.



Bonded by their cynical nature and deviance from Catholic canon law, Grand Prince Sciarra and Pope Lucius II defied the will of the Council of Pisa and declared war on the Papal State, wishing to oust Pope Urbanus II and restore order to Rome, namely sense on their choice of who the next Pope would be.

The war was short lived as the wealth of Pisa and military superiority outnumbered the resources of the Papal State, forcing Urbanus II to flee from the Eternal City at night. With this, the Papacy was now subordinate to the Grand Princes of Pisa, causing much protest from the other Catholic kingdoms, especially after “the donation of Lucius II” which granted the Pisans rightful claim to Ancona, Spoleto, Lombardy and Susa as well as absolvence and ratification for the contested claim of Pisa on Genoa. It dawned to Pope Lucius II what the true intent of Sciarra was (or those behind him) and unwillingly signed the papers before him.



No sooner than ink dried upon the “donation” that the Grand Prince immediately pressed the claims for Pisa. With the gold coffers filled to the brim, the professional mercenary armies could not compete with the levies of the Holy Roman Emperor, scoring victory after victory.

When the peace treaty was signed, Pisa held almost supreme dominion upon the Italian peninsula, a dream which had been abandoned from the days of Grand Prince Cassio the Great. But Grand Prince Sciarra did not stop his surprises there: as he became more distant with his former friend Pope Lucius II, his religious advice was conferred by a Bishop by the name of Rainero.



When Pope Lucius II died, perhaps in grief over the troubles he had caused, the College of Cardinals in defiance elected as the new Pope the Aztec Cardinal, who abdicated from his former position. It was then that ambitious Bishop Raneiro’s power grew and steadily he poisoned the Grand Prince’s mind and adopted the Fraticelli creed as his own.

The Grand Prince announced his new belief and promptly removed the Bishopric of Rome from the Aztec Pope and granted it to the Fraticelli Prince-Bishop. Of course, this was all too much for the Grand City of Pisa, even if in fact it had gained plenty thanks to the controversial actions of Grand Prince Sciarra. A plot was unearthed to assassinate the Grand Prince and the orchestrator was no other than Duke Gianfranco of Sardinia, the son of Abelino and the Greek Princess. Promptly he ordered his arrest but death stopped his actions and the new Grand Prince who was elected was Davide II Visconti, the second of the imbecile Grand Princes.



Of Grand Prince Davide II there were few things to note. His rule as Grand Prince was pretty much unremarkable, with his period of time being more known for the successful 6th Crusade for Jerusalem from which an independent Serene Republic stemmed, led by the former Doge of Alger Marco Sfondrati. He died from severe stress at the age of 50 and was succeeded by Grand Prince Gianfranco Visconti, who is best remembered for restoring the Nova Roman Republic.



As the family legacy dictated, Gianfranco too fell victim of his own cynicism and disbelief. When Prince-Bishop Rainero of Rome passed away, he was succeeded by Prince-Bishop Barnaba who also strayed to the Lollard Faith, converting the Grand Prince as well. Being Lollard in faith, Grand Prince Gianfranco proceeded to revoke the titles of many Catholic and Fraticelli vassals who did not conform to his rule.

The most memorable gambit was the involvement in the internal affairs of the Basileia of the Romans and specifically, pressing his birthright to the title inherited by his mother. Weakened by the civil war, not even the alliance with the Holy Roman Empire could save the Greeks and with the storming of Constantinople, the Pisan troops captured many of the Basileus’s family household. In a short time he abdicated and with great pomp, Grand Prince Gianfranco announced the resurface of the Republic of Nova Roma, with aims to restore the ancient once glorious Republic of Rome.



Of course the transition was not easy. Common ground between the various vassals of the newly found Republic of Nova Roma was discontent: the Greeks for losing their privileges and imperial regalia and the republicans who protested over their faith. For the moment, the Varangian Guard enforced the will of the Grand Prince. Would it be enough to retain the stability of this new polity? Would the Republic of Nova Roma survive from its own differences and maybe transform into the hallowed Senātus Populusque Rōmānus?


 
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It is good to see you back after overcoming your RL setbacks :), may they be left behind. Just like the Visconti, maybe?

What a turbulent period of time. Aztecs becoming popes, imbeciles ruling Pisa, then Italy, Viscontis becoming heretics, than renew the Roman republic...
 
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TheAnguishedOne

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Here I thought the Aztecs arriving would be the biggest news in this update. Who cares about them though, for now we have the reborn Republic of Nova Roma! Well done accomplishing that. The Visconti's place in history is yet again reassured.
 

fabiolundiense

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What an amazing saga ! Congratulations on recreating an Italian Roman Republic !
 

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Rome reborn! Hopefully not to die at the hands of the Aztec barbarians...
 

Crimson Drakon

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It is good to see you back after overcoming your RL setbacks :), may they be left behind. Just like the Visconti, maybe?

What a turbulent period of time. Aztecs becoming popes, imbeciles ruling Pisa, then Italy, Viscontis becoming heretics, than renew the Roman republic...

Thank you for your wishes! Indeed this world could not have been more chaotic and only a capable hand could be justified behind the imbecile rule ;)

I believe with such estrangement from the Church it would be logical for the Visconti to become heretics in the end. Although I would have wanted them to be Fraticelli, Lollard is good on its own I guess (meaning they fight the wealth of the Church so it could land on other pockets)

Here I thought the Aztecs arriving would be the biggest news in this update. Who cares about them though, for now we have the reborn Republic of Nova Roma! Well done accomplishing that. The Visconti's place in history is yet again reassured.

Gianfranco's lineage was destined to press his blood inheritance eastwards. And what more fitting name than the Republic of Nova Roma :)

Lets hope we can get the full deal later on (although I dont think our time span would allow the Republic to have the extend of Augustus)

What an amazing saga ! Congratulations on recreating an Italian Roman Republic !

Thank you, I hope it is something original, maybe if we restore the Roman Republic the culture will also be Roman, not sure if it can be done though

Well done and welcome back!

It's a sign of how powerful the Visconti have become that even imbecilic desires are certain to be realised. The new empire must be awash with gold and mercenaries.

You are right, the monthly revenue is about 180 gold coins or so, due to Lollard faith and the republic income. I barely use levies anymore, the mercenary companies are the optimal solution for all the wars now :)

Rome reborn! Hopefully not to die at the hands of the Aztec barbarians...

I am afraid the Aztecs have neutered themselves by adopting Catholicism. They exchanged a chance to become Popes and rule the world indirectly with their fury their former faith had given them. But who knows I guess... :)
 
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Final Arc
Roma Perpetua


It is the fourth of September Anno Domini 1383. Ten years have passed since the Italian Merchant Prince Gianfranco Visconti ascended upon the imperial throne of the Greeks and united into a single banner the Italian peninsula with the remnants of the Eastern Roman Empire.

Merchants of the Italian Republic City-States, the Viceroys of Italy and Sicily and the various Greek lords and generals all now pledge allegiance before the elected for life Grand Prince. Even the two figureheads of Christianity, the Catholic Pope and the Ecumenical Patriarch now consider the Grand Prince of the Republic of Nova Roma and Pisa as their sovereign.

In a world where the sword and the pastoral crook ruled, it was an obvious anomaly for these ruling classes to now swear their faith before a man of the scales, a man whose household commanded trade of goods and money, activities of the townspeople who sought protection from them in the past.

Even the full power of the Council was not enough to appease the sentiment of injustice: for upon it where seated men of the liking of the Grand Prince and not those who held real power inside the Republic.

Thus there were many movements to break free from this false Republic. But all ended in blood and the reconciliation to avoid being sentenced into a harsher punishment. Indeed, there were no more levy troops in this Republic but rather professional troops and mercenaries, all executing the will of the Grand Prince to the extreme as it was he who paid them their salary.

In the Republic of Nova Roma there were only two ancient Great Houses: Visconti and della Gherardesca. The Caetani, d’Appiano and Alliata all were lost to obscurity, as there were no more male offspring to continue the family trade. In their place “new people” emerged, trying to fill the gap of these great houses of old. And what is more, the Visconti and della Gheradesca had been at rivalry for ages, as only they had the means to actually ascend upon the throne, a true plutocracy carried from the Grand City of Pisa.

The year 1383 finds the Grand Prince with an inheritance: the prominent Visconti successor perishes to consumption only at the age of 16. With him the temporal title of Serene Doge of Italy passes once more to the Grand Prince and with him a Holy War of his own: the Lollard Holy War for Apulia and the dream to restore the Senate and People of Old Rome, the true Republic.

Gianfranco rules the Republic of New Rome from the majestic Imperial Palace of his Greek predecessors. Closed and confined, he enjoys the meals and beverages the former Basileia has to offer, supplementary with the spice trade from India which he holds the monopoly. His new Greek wife, from a noble lineage, has already given him children, but bad tongues say they are not his…

It would remain to be seen if the infinite gold supply of the merchant Visconti would be enough to employ the best troops against the whole world which denies the dream of Roman resurface. One can only wonder if the power of money would win over the sword and the cross…
 
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  • Victoria 2
No standing army, but instead all wars are fought with mercenaries... Suits the new government, but it's definitely a risky venture. Adding Rome to your territory would all but solidify your claim to the rest of the world.