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Farquharson

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I don't actually know what Bohemia was, ladyfabia. All I know is that they seem to come and go at random. You'll see from the next screenshot that they've now been swallowed up by Austria :(

Next episode:

Joachim I Nestor (b.1484, Elector 1499 - 1535)

(Part Two: The Reformation and its aftermath)


Martin Luther, a slightly free-thinking citizen of Brandenburg

In the Year of Our Lord 1519, the light of the Glorious Gospel finally dawned, breaking through the dark clouds of the centuries-old false teaching of Rome. Stirred by the teachings of Martin Luther, all but two of the provinces of Brandenburg declared their allegiance to a new creed - Protestantism.

Joachim Nestor himself saw the grave error of Papal authority, not to mention the large amount of cash that could be seized from the churches if Luther’s teachings were taken to heart, and issued a proclamation on August 2nd 1519, announcing that henceforth the state religion of the mighty realm of Brandenburg would be that of Martin Luther.


(At this point my screen went black. No - it wasn't the dreaded CTD, it was just the screen filling up with an avalanche of stability drops, broken royal marriages and revolts. In theory I took a mammoth -17 stability drop, with eight instant revolts. Was I ever glad you couldn't actually drop below -3!)

At this, the entire continent of Europe was thrown into uproar. Within Joachim’s territories revolts sprang up, while all eleven royal marriages that the House of Hohenzollern had entered into were broken. The word “Brandenburg” became dirt on the lips of every ruler in Europe. But Joachim had found peace of a different kind, and sang lustily with his Lutheran brethren

With force of arms we nothing can,
Full soon we were down-ridden;
But for us fights the proper Man,
Whom God himself hath bidden.
Ask ye: Who is this same?
Christ Jesus is His name,
The Lord Sabaoth’s Son;
He, and no other one,
Shall conquer in the battle.”


Nevertheless, Joachim did find that force of arms was quite useful in quelling the almost continuous revolts that convulsed his realm for the next thirteen years. The situation was aggravated by a political crisis in 1526 and a devastating plague in 1530.

Meanwhile, Joachim had of course been forced out of the North German Alliance on Brandenburg’s conversion, but Bohemia, it’s new leader, saw fit to invite him back three months later. In 1521 Bohemia herself converted to Protestantism, leaving the leadership of the Alliance, now consisting of Brandenburg, Kleves and Strassburg, once again to Brandenburg.

In 1527 the League of Schmalkalden gave Joachim a chance to improve his severely damaged relations with some of his neighbours. In 1527 the North German Alliance expired and Joachim, sensing that its usefulness had also expired, opted to join the Franco-Scottish Alliance, with Kleves and Strassburg following soon afterwards.


Known to some irreverently as the Macdonalds Hamburger and French Fries Alliance :D

In 1528 Venice also joined the alliance and the following year declared war on Denmark. Brandenburg’s troops participated by capturing Jylland and Sjaelland and in 1532 Denmark paid her old enemy a tidy sum to get them out of the war.

In 1535 the Venetians again took the alliance into a war, this time with Tuscany and Genoa. Once again, there were no German provinces available for occupation, and in any case Joachim chose this moment to die, at the age of 51, leaving his son Joachim II on the throne.



Brandenburg in 1535

And finally... ;)

Joachim, speaking with a court advisor: More revolts! Revolts, revolts, revolts! What’s wrong with these people? I changed our state religion because they’d all become Protestants - what are they complaining about for goodness sake?

Advisor: Ah, well, Your Spiritual Excellency, it isn’t actually the Protestants that are revolting.

Joachim: Who is it then?

Advisor: Well there are one or two Catholics left in our realm, scattered about here and there.

Joachim: But surely they’re a tiny minority?

Advisor: Quite tiny, yes Your Excellency.

Joachim: So what are all my loyal Protestant subjects doing? Can’t they stop them?

Advisor: Ahem - er... I think they’re mostly reading the Bible and stuff like that Your Highness. We’ve tried involving them in armed resistance to the Catholic rebels, but they just quote verses at us.

Joachim: What sort of verses for heavens’ sake?

Advisor: Well, “Love your enemies”, and “If someone strikes you on right cheek, turn to him the other also” - things like that.

Joachim: “Love your enemies”? That’s not in the Bible is it?

Advisor: Well, yes Your Excellency, technically it is.

Joachim: And who on earth suggested that everyone should start reading the Bible, then?

Advisor: Ah - Martin Luther, Your Excellency.

Joachim: *slumps back in his chair * And this is the state religion we’ve just chosen?

Advisor: I’m afraid so, Sire.

Joachim: I think I’ll just go out there and do a bit of revolting myself...
 
Last edited:

Commandante

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Nice, big Brandenburg you've got there. You gotta love that country. :D

I like your dialogues...
 

Farquharson

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I certainly did. As I said in my intro my goals are simple and focussed - I only want German provinces! I stood by while the rebel scum captured them, then wiped out the marauders and let the provinces defect back to Poland.

The revolts weren't too hard to handle, but I was definitely glad to get back to stab +3. My economy is booming once more. (Plus I just got a couple of fluke factories:) )
 

stnylan

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Originally posted by Farquharson
Known to some irreverently as the Macdonalds Hamburger and French Fries Alliance :D
Somewhere in the future Jacques Chirac and GWB are having strange nightmares ;)

Another excellent update.
 

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Showdown with Austria

Joachim II Hektor (b.1505, Elector 1535 - 1571)

At the start of Joachim II’s reign, Brandenburg comprised 16 of the 34 German provinces. Of the other 18, 10 were being oppressed by Austria, 4 were being oppressed by France, and 4 were independent, but ignorant of the wonderful benefits of belonging to Brandenburg. Joachim decide that his priority should be to try to wrest some provinces from Austria.

First, however, in 1537 his ally Scotland declared war on Bremen. The Hohenzollerns had royal marriages with Bremen and two of her allies, Sweden and Prussia, but the chance to seize this last piece of German coastline was too tempting, and he joined the war, invading, capturing and annexing the province in just under a year.

Joachim’s next involvement was when Venice declared war on Denmark in 1540. The following year Austria declared war on Venice, France honoured the alliance, and Joachim had the immense satisfaction of marching into Austria backed up by the unrivalled might of the French army. A quick peace was made with Denmark, extracting as much money as possible and Brandenburg’s troops concentrated on laying waste to her southern neighbour. After Brandenburg had captured Erz, Ansbach and Bayern, the final outcome was a peace treaty signed by Venice in 1543 in which only Ansbach went to Brandenburg.

Soon after this, however, the French Alliance disintegrated and France allied with Austria. In 1546 Joachim put together his own Northern Alliance, consisting of Brandenburg, Kleves, England, Prussia and the Teutonic Order. Siebenbürgen was added to this line-up in 1554.

Meanwhile in 1546 the provinces of Hessen and Mainz, both of whom had remained Catholic up till then, converted to the new teachings of Jean Calvin. In 1553 England converted back to Catholicism and left the Northern Alliance to ally with Spain and Portugal.

In 1555 Austria found herself isolated, and facing domestic difficulties. Joachim seized his chance and declared war, bringing the rest of the Alliance with him. This time the job was done more thoroughly, and in 1557 when Brandenburg’s troops had captured four Austrian provinces and were at the gates of Vienna, Joachim accepted the Austrians’ offer of Erz, Ostmarch and Salzburg, and the war ended.

The next decade was a troubled time for Brandenburg. Joachim was growing old and losing his touch. A political crisis in 1561 was followed by a wave of unrest among the peasantry in 1563. Poor government policies caused further unrest in 1565 and 1569 saw the peasants again revolting. Thus were Joachim’s last years in power spent trying to restore order to his realm. He died in 1571 and was succeeded by his son, Johann Georg.



Brandenburg in 1571

:) :) :) And finally...

Joachim the II Hektor Hohenzollern, Elector of the great and glorious but of course spiritually humble state of Brandenburg sits in his palace in Berlin. A messenger arrives.

Messenger: My Lord, I bring good news and bad news.

Joachim II: Forget the bad news - what’s the good news?

Messenger: Your Excellency, the worthy citizens of Mainz and Hessen have at last abandoned their stubborn adherence to the heresies of Rome!

Joachim II: Wonderful! They’ve become Lutherans like all sensible Germans!

Messenger: Er - not exactly my Lord...

Joachim II: What do you mean? What have they become?

Messenger: That was the bad news, my Lord.

Joachim II: Which is?

Messenger: Er... I forget.

Joachim II: Don’t joke with me, I warn you!

Messenger: No really, I forget - wait, wait... Oh darn what a memory I’ve got these days...

Joachim II: Me too - what were we talking about again?

Messenger: Oh - yes! I remember! They’re Calvinists, my Lord!

Joachim II: Calvinists! You mean we have THREE religions in Brandenburg now?

Messenger: I should warn you, my Lord of other developments which threaten. Some villagers in Silesia have started to build a mosque. Then there is a growing tendency among the people of Mecklemburg to let cows roam free in the streets, calling them sacred. A group of woodcutters in the Black Forest have taken to sitting cross-legged under pipal trees meditating...

Joachim II: Wait a moment - there are no pipal trees in the Black Forest!

Messenger: Apparently they planted them specially, my Lord. Strangest of all, strangers clothed in suits and ties have been seen in pairs going door to door in Hinterpommern...

Joachim II: I’m beginning to think that innovative and decentralized is a bad combination for our domestic policies...

Messenger: Yes, my Lord, but as the Master, Confucius once said...

 
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Director

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Messenger: I should warn you, my Lord of other developments which threaten. Some villagers in Silesia have started to build a mosque. Then there is a growing tendency among the people of Mecklemburg to let cows roam free in the streets, calling them sacred. A group of woodcutters in the Black Forest have taken to sitting cross-legged under pipal trees meditating...

Joachim II: Wait a moment - there are no pipal trees in the Black Forest!

Messenger: Apparently they planted them specially, my Lord. Strangest of all, strangers clothed in suits and ties have been seen in pairs going door to door in Hinterpommern...

Joachim II: I’m beginning to think that innovative and decentralized is a bad combination for our domestic policies...

Messenger: Yes, my Lord, but as the Master, Confucius once said...
:rofl:

Oh, my! Poor Joachim II! We all certainly know how he feels! Just when you get a nice little kingdom going in Germany, Wham! They all go crazy on you!

Oh, I laughed all through that section. Now all he needs is some renagade Inquisators to build a pyramid and start up a collection of human hearts...

Austrian, preferrably... :D

Well done! Well done, sir, indeed! :D
 

Farquharson

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Actually, seriously folks, I'm so decentralized at the moment that revolts due to religious differences are a minor problem. It's all these dratted stab hits from baddy events that are getting me down. I can't convert anyone as I currently get -0.70 missionaries per year (high innovation - I want to catch up with France in land tech). I'm just praying the benighted Catholics will convert to state religion in goody events - Salzburg did immediately when I took it from Austria :)
 

stnylan

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Well, that put a smile on my face and got me laughing. Well done.
 

merrick

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Originally posted by Farquharson
Joachim II: Calvinists! You mean we have THREE religions in Brandenburg now?

Messenger: I should warn you, my Lord of other developments which threaten. Some villagers in Silesia have started to build a mosque. Then there is a growing tendency among the people of Mecklemburg to let cows roam free in the streets, calling them sacred. A group of woodcutters in the Black Forest have taken to sitting cross-legged under pipal trees meditating...

Joachim II: Wait a moment - there are no pipal trees in the Black Forest!

Messenger: Apparently they planted them specially, my Lord. Strangest of all, strangers clothed in suits and ties have been seen in pairs going door to door in Hinterpommern...

Joachim II: I’m beginning to think that innovative and decentralized is a bad combination for our domestic policies...

Messenger: Yes, my Lord, but as the Master, Confucius once said...
This just goes on getting better :D
Thank-you for brightening up a rather depressing day.

Sadly, in EU2 peace, love and general tolerance loses out badly to narrowmindedness and religious uniformity, so crank down that slider (you must be miles ahead in tech by now), break out the monocles and send forth the Prussian Inquisition!
(Everyone expects the Prussian Inquisition - zey operate to ze strictest of timetables...)

Random events are sent to try us, but the changing-religion-breaks-27-royal-marriages-and-causes-your-country-to-explode thing is just gratutious.

I did warn you, though. In my experience, there are three major indications that you have managed to piss the game off:
1) Random events knock your stability down faster than you can regain it at 100% stab.
2) You are DOWed by Tibet (or some other inaccessible minor which demands provinces it can't even see and won't make peace for any amount of money).
3) A small, rag-tag band of ill-equipped (but highly cinematic) rebels cuts a bloody swathe through your cities, pausing only to inflict gratuitous mayhem on your poor innocent stormtroopers... ;)
 

Farquharson

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so crank down that slider (you must be miles ahead in tech by now)
Well I was expecting to be, but I'm not. I'm at land tech 16, but France are at 17, while several other nations are with me on 16, including Austria. What have I been doing wrong? I've been fairly innovative since the start, though also decentralized. I've invested a fair bit in land, and nothing in naval. How have France done so well? Of course one problem Brandenburg suffers from is a lack of good military leaders (only one above a 3 so far). That must have slowed me down.
 

unmerged(15337)

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Frankly, I don't think you need to panic about your land tech. Being one point behind is not usually a problem. Admittedly, you would have temporary vulnerability when France hits level 18, but you should catch up in CRT very quickly.

In my experience the Latin tech group nations have such an easy time in tech that you don't need to be innovative at all in order to be competitive. It's when you play Chinese or Exotic tech nations that innovation is just about essential.

Oh, I see that the days of peaceful expansion by quiet diplomacy have ended.:D
 

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Thanks for your encouraging comments, jwolf - I'm feeling in need of them after this next reign! :wacko:

Oh, I see that the days of peaceful expansion by quiet diplomacy have ended.
You can say that again! Here's the continuation:

Johann Georg (b.1525, Elector 1571 - 1598)

When Johann Georg began his reign France was top of the league table for oppressing Germans, but unfortunately they were also by far the most powerful nation in Europe. The Northern Alliance now consisted of Brandenburg, Sweden, Prussia, Courland and Siebenbürgen.

In 1579 Austria declared war on Siebenbürgen and the Northern Alliance once more went to war. By 1582 the German armies had succeeded in capturing Bayern and Tirol and were just advancing on the main Austrian army, which they outnumbered, when Siebenbürgen accepted peace for 78 ducats. The disgusted Germans returned home fuming.

During this war Johann had been dragged into two other wars. Sweden had been attacked by Denmark, and Aragon had declared war on Brandenburg, bringing the armies of Spain and England into the German heartlands. These wars however were ended when Denmark paid Brandenburg 54 ducats in 1580 and Brandenburg paid Aragon 8 ducats in 1581.

In 1585 Johann, observing that France seemed to be at war with most of Europe, declared war himself. Kleves was quickly captured but France was making peace deals all round and the situation for Brandenburg looked less promising, and in 1586 Johann accepted 250 French ducats to end hostilities.

Almost immediately Sweden declared war on the Netherlands. Johann’s forces became embroiled in a long and fruitless invasion of the Netherlands, until in 1591 Sweden negociated the payment by the Netherlands of 175 ducats.

Later that year the people of Holstein, finally fed up with Johann’s endless wars, declared independence. Before the army could be called in to retake the rebel province, Courland had declared war on Poland, with the result that Courland’s ally Brandenburg was once more in a war with Poland’s ally, France.

French troops stormed through the German heartlands and laid siege to Stettin, capturing it in 1595. The following year, however, the Germans re-annexed Holstein, captured Kleves, then recaptured Stettin, and finally paid Poland 25 ducats to end the war. The fact was that Brandenburg was exhausted with fighting and much of the country was in revolt.

During the next three years Europe heaved a sigh of relief after the conflicts which had thrown it into such turmoil for the last seventeen years. Order and stability returned to Brandenburg, and in 1598 Johann Georg’s reign came to an end, with the map of Brandenburg looking strangely similar to when his reign began. One thing had been clearly established - that the balance of power between France, Austria and Brandenburg was extremely fragile.


Brandenburg in 1598 - see map of Brandenburg in 1571. :rolleyes:

:D And finally...

Henri IV Bourbon King of France is talking with one of his aides: I have decided to go down in history as the person who succeeded in ridding Europe of the detestable Lutheran heretics.

Aide: What a good idea, your majesty! Do you have a plan for how to accomplish this glorious feat?

Henri IV: Of course I have a plan. We will simply march into their heartlands - it has been made simpler by these hateful Hohenzollerns * retches slightly on forcing the word out * gathering most of them into one country - and force them all to recant!

Aide: Ahem - it may not be as easy as all that your majesty. Don’t you remember the Diet of Worms?

Henri IV: Hah! The Diet of Worms - that was organized by that imbecile Hapsburg, Charles V. We have our own secret weapon that we are about to unleash on these diabolic Lutherans - the Diet of Snails!

Aide: * gasps * Your majesty, truly you are a genius!

Henri IV: Thankyou, I know. We will force them to eat snails in bordeaux blanc till they cannot take it any longer. Those who prove particularly stubborn will be locked up in confined spaces with lumps of ageing Roquefort. They will not last long, believe me.

Admiring aide: When will this historic campaign be launched Your Divinely Favoured Majesty?

Henri IV: As a matter of fact, it has already begun. Three days ago the first wave of our glorious armies of chefs began invading Brandenburg. I am expecting the first reports from the front lines at any moment...

There is a knock at the door and a palace attendant appears.

Attendant: Your majesty - a messenger has arrived with news of our campaign in the province of Mainz.

Henri IV: Excellent - bring him in! * messenger enters * Well, tell me how many of the wretched Lutheran heretics are still holding out against us. Not many, I wager.

Messenger: Your Majesty! Alas, I bring terrible news! Not one Lutheran has recanted.

Henri IV: But... but.. what about our secret weapon? Surely...

Messenger: It seems that the filthy German pigdogs had their own secret weapon. We were overwhelmed by an entire regiment of Hamburgers, Your Majesty...

Henri IV: Ah merde! The dreaded fast food! Are there no depths to which these heretics will not stoop? Very well. If that is how it is, we will just have to conquer them in the more conventional way. Get the commander-in-chief of the French Royal Army to report to me immediately...
 
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stnylan

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It can only be a matter of time before the fearsome frankfurters enter the fray...

:D :D :D
 

Farquharson

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Look what I've started with this nonsense! :D Time to get back to the serious stuff...

Joachim Friedrich (b.1546, Elector 1598 - 1608)

Joachim Friedrich was a capable military leader, which was just as well as Brandenburg was in need of these at this time. He concentrated on investing in the army, putting the finishing touches to Brandenburg’s new legal framework instituted by his father, and building up the state treasury.

In 1604 the Protestant world was shocked by the cruel repression of their brethren in Hungary by Austria. Joachim, with of course purely humanitarion motives, began to prepare for war, assembling the largest army ever fielded by Brandenburg.

Unfortunately at this point he became temporarily insane, and war was postponed until he had come to his senses. Finally, in February 1605, Joachim seemed to have returned to more or less normal and war was declared. Joachim’s allies, Sweden and Courland, joined in, as did Austria’s minor Italian allies. Lithuania left the Northern Alliance but rejoined a few months later.

Three German armies simultaneously invaded Austria, attacking Sudeten, Vienna and Bayern. In May 1606 Bayern was captured and the victorious army marched on into Tirol. Meanwhile the other two armies had to combine to fight the main Austria counter-attack and the situation remained in balance for a time, until Austria captured Ostmarch in September 1606.

Meanwhile Courland had taken the Alliance into a war against Poland and France, and Brandenburg’s army in Tirol were driven out by the French. In November Joachim made peace with Poland, paying 100 ducats, and in the following February he bought Austria’s new ally Savoy out of the war with 92 ducats.

In December 1607 Ostmarch was recaptured by the Germans. In 1608 Joachim died and was succeeded by his son Johann Sigismund. The war with Austria was going reasonably well, but revolts were breaking out in every corner of the realm. Making peace with Austria seemed to be a priority.


And finally...

Joachim Friedrich Hohenzollern, Elector of Brandenburg to one of his court advisors: Well, how are our mighty preparations for war coming along?

Advisor: Sire, our new and unprecedentedly huge and unstoppable army is recruited and trained and awaits your orders.

Joachim Friedrich: Excellent! Give the order immediately. We are declaring war on Sweden!

Advisor: Yes Your Exc-... No wait, Sire, you mean Austria, surely? We have assembled this vast army to punish the papist Hapsburgs for their inhuman treatment of our brother Lutherans in Hungary.

Joachim Friedrich: No, not any longer. I have had a much better idea - we will invade Sweden and bring the filthy Scandinavians to their knees!

Advisor: But, Sire! Sweden is our most trusted ally! They are not oppressing any Germans. We share the same true faith with them, not to mention our royal marriage - such a thing is unthinkable!

Joachim Friedrich: How can it be unthinkable - I have just thought of it. Truly I am beginning to wonder if your wits are addled.

Advisor: And in any case, Your Excellency, we cannot invade Sweden since we disbanded most of our paltry navy several decades ago - how could our immense army get across the Baltic?

Joachim Friedrich: Truly your stupidity astounds me - there is no need to cross the Baltic to invade Sweden. We will invade them by land, going through Russia, of course!

Terrified advisor: B-but Sire! We have no military access through Russia - those Orthodox barbarians hate us almost as much as the Austrians...

Joachim Friedrich: I think you are clutching at straws now, you lily-livered imbecile. We will declare war on Russia as well, of course!

At that moment Joachim Friedrich’s official cartographer bursts in.

Cartographer (slightly breathless and carrying a map): Your Excellency - I have just completed the very latest and most up-to-date map of our realm and its neighbours!

Joachim Friedrich: Hmm - yes, let me see. We can study our army’s route to Sweden...

Cartographer: You will notice several provinces here, and here, Your Excellency * points out places where provinces have been smudgily coloured in with the ink still wet * which have recently passed to the crown of Sweden.

Joachim Friedrich (studying the map): What these here? Bayern? Tirol? How did they come to be part of Sweden?

Advisor: Our intelligence department are still investigating the mysterious circumstances Your Excellency...

Advisor: But meanwhile why don’t we invade them, Sire?

Joachim Friedrich: Hmm, I suppose we could...

Another court official bursts in - it is Joachim’s personal tailor: Sire, I bring good news - the new coat you ordered is ready.

Joachim Friedrich: I don’t remember ordering a coat...

Tailor: Yes, Your Excellency, here it is. Let us help you try it on.

Joachim Friedrich, as his attendants manhandle him into the garment: Er - the sleeves are rather long... Hey, why are you pulling my arms round my back - and what are all these straps for...

Suddenly the official palace decorator bursts in: Sire! I have completed the alterations to your bedchamber which you asked for - perhaps you would like to come and inspect them - the walls are all beautifully soft and spongy!

Joachim Friedrich (speaking through a gag): Gnnhh guh! Hmmpphh- plthth...

Advisor (as Joachim is dragged out): Don’t worry Your Excellency! I will see to all the arrangements for the war with Sweden...
 
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stnylan

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Clearly someone had done a little forward planning :)
 

Farquharson

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Johann Sigismund (b.1572, Elector 1608 - 1620)

On April 1st 1609 the province of Tirol fell to the Germans and Austria immediately accepted the Treaty of Innsbruck, in which Bayern was given to Brandenburg.


The Yin and Yang of Brandenburg and Austria after the Treaty of Innsbruck in 1611

Johann still faced major problems from rebel forces, however, who captured Ostmarch in August and Silesia the following year. By 1611 these two rebel provinces had been recaptured, and the rebel ringleaders suitably dealt with. The rest of the realm was cleared of other such undesirable elements, and Brandenburg began to enjoy a period of peace and prosperity.

Johann built up trade and industry and oversaw the building of Brandenburg’s third weapons manufactory, in Silesia. By the time of his death in 1620, the nation was ready for further expansion. All that was lacking was a good excuse to go to war!


And finally... What - no dialogue? :(

I didn’t have any inspiration here - it was such a short uneventful reign. Any suggestions welcome - the poster of the best suggestion will win a free Polish province the next time I have one to give away... (that should tempt John Poole at least ;) )
 
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