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morningSIDEr

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All that made question Turquetil his own mortality. After all, he was also reaching 60, and death would come sooner then later. He had grown old with his enemies and Leopold was just first to leave. Grim Reaper was knocking in his door as well.

Some foreshadowing of troubles to come perhaps?

Good stuff as ever, more continued useful gains for the Normans (well, I'm not sure if gaining Derbent can be considered a particularly useful gain!) and the nemesis of the Empire, Leopold, finally bowing out.
 

Nikolai

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Welcome back! A good update as usual.:)
 

hjarg

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Norman Coronation Gift to New Kaiser

End of French Resistance


The situation in France begun in 1229, when newly crowned King Arnaud I decided that he wanted to be free, not French King ruled by German Kaiser. Recent wars had shown him that even the protection of the Kaiser would not stop the advance of the Normans down south, and to put it simply, Arnaud and Kaiser Leopold just didn’t get along. So, the first French war started in 1229 and Normans intervened on French side in 1232. By September 1233, the war was over- Norman intervention did turn the tides, but Arnauld thought it would be easier to sign peace then to continue the war.

Just 4 month later, Leopold tried to revoke County of Zamora from Arnauld and the war reignited. This time, Normans did not help French, but took Duchy of Toulouse from them. When Kaiser excommunicated King Arnauld, it provoked a civil war within France, when Mathieu I de Capet used his claim on throne to start a civil war. Arnauld had to fight in two fronts, though the opposing front was quickly picked apart by Normans, who used the situation to their own advantage. Picking on rebellious Dukes, they gained duchies of Gascogne, Valencia, Asturias and Cordoba. But the Duke of Granada and Holy Roman Empire still kept on going.

Finally, in September 1240, King Arnauld was forced to give up and surrender himself to the new Kaiser Otto V, secede the throne of France and end the conflict that lasted for more then a decade. Mathieu I de Capet became the new King of France. Arnauld was thrown into imperial prison in Mecklenburg. But this was not the end of Arnauld, for he was also King of Leon, he managed to hold on into his main holding in Paris and half of the vassals of France swore fealty to him as King of Leon instead of Mathieu. Mathieu managed to gain northern vassals under his control, but the southern ones and Duchess Ida of Flanders remained under Arnauld’s rule. Basically meaning that the situation in France is a powder-keg waiting for the tiniest spark to lit up the war again. And when it does, Normans come in knocking.

sicily299.jpg

New King of France and old King of France

sicily300.jpg

... and the division of French vassals

Coronation Gift- Holy War for Provence

Traditional Norman crowning gift for the new Kaiser was war. This time, Turquetil targeted Provence, a county that split Norman holdings into two different ones: Gallo-Iberian and Italian holdings. Of course, the sea kept them all nicely together, but with conquest of Provence, the holdings of Normans would all be nicely together by land as well.

So, the war was declared in November 1240. By December, army of nearly 30 000 Normans had landed in Provence and by the end of January, the first province was Norman. Meanwhile, Otto had not wasted time in getting reinforcements. Pope was one of the first ones to agree- and as usual, Pope Marcellus II forgot that declaring war on Normans means that your next door neighbors come in, knocking with a battering ram. Nth Sack of Trapiani took place in March 1241 and Pope was out of the picture.

sicily301.jpg

Be afraid when the Normans are coming!

In addition of Pope, Kings of Denmark, Norway, Poland and Hungary joined the war, meaning that once again, Normans were at war with most of the Europe. Of course, that did not stop Normans from attacking and most of the enemy troops were still marching when the war ended.

First battle of the war was fought in Tarragona, Spain. 9000 German troops from Iberia were marching to the gathering and were intercepted by Norman main army of 14 000 soldiers, sailing quickly from Provence to the province, kicking the Germans and then sailing back. By March, the second province of Provence, Venaissin, was under Norman control and part of the army was marching towards the third, Forcalquier.

sicily302.jpg

Normans showing the creative use of Navy in warfare. Get on boats, kick ass, sail back

Meanwhile, King Istvan of Hungary marched towards Norman holdings in Croatia. Soon, over 7000 Hungarians were in the province of Varazdin and continued to happily siege and pillage the province. 12 000 Normans were recruited from Italy to counter the threat and in May, they arrived in province and started to kick Hungarian ass- only to retreat when hearing of a larger Hungarian army joining them. Quickly, Normans pulled back, with Hungarians hot on their tail.

sicily303.jpg

The situation here could get ugly...

Turquetil reacted quickly- he hired mercenaries, totalling 12 000, put them on a ship and sailed them towards Croatia. Meanwhile, Normans held their own against Hungarians there. Then, Forcalquier fell in the end of June. It was enough for Otto V to realize futility in standing against Normans and he made peace, quickly ending the war and potentially troublesome situation in Croatia.

Thus ended the first war between new Kaiser and Normans.

sicily304.jpg

With the conquest of Provence, Western Mediterranean looks definitely Norman.

Of Mongols

New Kagan Boroghul celebrated his coming of age knee-deep in the blood of Ryazians. Small Rus princedom fell to the Horde in the beginning of 1241, making them the first Rus ruler to fall under Mongol yoke.
 

hjarg

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And yet another update, yet another war and yet another Kaiser defeated! :) Normans are on the roll!

grumphie- stable warmonger seems too scary... almost like Norman empire! :p As for getting claim on France- it is a bit more complicated now. Though when i get claim on Galicia, things could be better. I'll see about that.
DensleyBlair- thanks! As for Mongols- i think i'll manage to hold them off if needed. Guess sooner or later i have to try.
Chief Ragusa - not personal retinues. I'm still under patch 1.05 unfortunately. Though the number of retinues could be that much... hmm, i'll have to test sometimes again. But 1.06 left me with some ugly nonpopulated provinces in the middle of Italy, plus south of Mauretania and some other places in Europe. I'll talk about Cathars and Norman cultures when Turquetil dies. As for future plans- grab what i can get and then some more! :p
morningSIDEr - just reminding that Turquetil is actually pretty old. Troubles... well troubles are as much that his son and heir, Count Robert Guiscard, has gained something interesting from Byzatine whorehouses... and has only female heirs. As for Leopold, it's just replacing one nemesis with other. Though Otto has over 50 years of age and i'm hoping that he will kick his bucket as well soon.
Ricardo Rolo - if any HRE vassals are nice enough to revolt, they will be dealt with, yes. But only when they're bordering my territory. And HRE just got his insides kicked once again :)
Nikolai - thanks a lot!
 

DensleyBlair

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Congrats on joining the empire by land! I'm one of those people who have OCD about borders, so that would make me happy :) Looking forward to more!
 

morningSIDEr

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Good stuff. Nice to see that Turquetil already has the measure of Otto, his victory when gaining Provence convincing. Very kind of him too to honour the new Kaiser's crowning with a deceleration of war. France seems a mess at present, she is definitely in need of strong Norman leadership.
 

hjarg

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Last War of Turquetil

Loss of Kingdom of Galicia


Duke Oveco of Portucale was a special case. He to warred against his liege, former King Arnauld of France. But he was one Duke Turquetil wasn’t able to touch- for a simple reason. He was Cathar. The only Cathar ruler outside Sicily and only ruler in the Empire that follows that faith.

Ruling from Porto, he had already lost Coimbra to King Tancred of Portugal. Then, as an illumination, advantages of being Cathar hit him like powerful Hauteville army looting his countryside. He converted, thus evading fate of every other rebellious Duke that had common border with Hautevilles.

And in less then a month after coronation of King Ferant de Hauteville of Galicia, he managed to usurp the title. Galicia is a small Kingdom, consisting only of 6 provinces- as much as some larger Duchies. And Oveco owned three while Ferant owned another three. So, Oveco put ahead some money, pushed his claims and before anyone realized, he was concidered to be new King of Galicia.

sicily305.jpg

Come easy, go easy...

Turquetil grinded his teeth, but there was nothing he could to- Oveco was a cathar under protection of the Holy Roman Empire and a direct vassal to Emperor Otto.

War for Kaliopolis

Kaliopolis was just one small province in the Byzantine Empire. They considered themselves independent, ruled by Doux Dionysius II of Thrace. The only way it was special was because it was next to Byzantium- and part of Duchy of Thrace that Turquetil wanted for himself.

A claim had been faked some years ago, costing outrageous 4000 gold. Now, it was time to make it come true- war was declared in November 1241. Plus, half of the province was already in the hands of enemy, for poor Doux Dionysius was already involved in two wars- one of them civil war to dethrone him, another a war to dethrone Anna I, the Byzantine Empress. Overall, poor Doux was pretty much in a bind and Normans coming knocking didn’t help much.

As usual for Byzantine territories, it was heavily defended. But there wasn’t an army capable of fighting in sight. Normans gathered almost 30 000 soldiers from Sicily and Calabria, sailed them to Byzantion, split them into two and started to siege two provinces- Thrake in European side and Nikomeda in Asian side. Both were garrisoned with over 3000 troops, so Normans didn’t risk with an assault, but instead waited for siege.

Soon, Turquetil mobilized Duke of Tunis and sent his 10 000 soldiers to siege Kaliopolis. Still, there was no enemy in sight, Byzantines preferring the safety of their castles until hunger forces them to surrender.

sicily306.jpg

The war can be really boring- Normans taking a Norman holiday in Byzantium

By the middle of July 1243, the Normans had gained enough lands- a castle in Thrake, Nimoeda and a city in Kaliopolis to finally force poor Doux to give up his lands. Since the Doux is still involved in two wars, the title is yet unclaimable, but the province is Norman. Slowly, Normans begin their attack on heart of the Byzantine Empire.

Coming of Age of Adelise

Adelise de Hauteville, daughter of Robert Guiscard and her heir, became 16 in the June 1242. She was beautiful, fair, graceful and as good administrator as her father. Good diplomat and unusually for non-Norman women of that age proficient in warfare, both in personal skill and tactics and strategy. She had been living in Palermo with her grandfather since she was 6, though she occasionally visited his father in Byzantium as well. She was tutored by the most powerful ruler in Europe, who took really good care of her granddaughter. And so, she grew up perfect. Plus, a she was a future Empress. In marital market of medieval Europe, it meant that she was a catch of the century.

Her hand was claimed by Walter II, King of Croatia. Though only 18 years old, had had been ruling for 5 years and he too grew up a good ruler. Already for years, Walter had been hanging more around Royal Palace in Palermo then in his own personal palace in the beautiful city of Zadar. Tournaments where young King could show his bravery, ministrelling outside chambers of Adelise (until Turquetil himself threw a chamberpot at love-struck King), expensive gifts and all other. No wonder Adelise was taken to the young charming King- and when she became of age, they married in a most lavish ceremony, with parties being held in Palermo, Byzantium and Zadar. Whole Empire cheered.

sicily307.jpg

The future Empress and his groom

Death of the Emperor

Nothing much else happened for a year. Normans were taking breather from the wars, recovering, licking their wounds. Rest of the world had their asses kicked by Normans and were also licking their wounds. Yes, there were wars. Even King Silvester of Jerusalem was fighting for Arabia Petrae, a single province of a desert and civil wars were raging in Holy Roman Empire and Byzantine Empire. But overall, the rest of the world was quiet.

Oh, and Kagan Boroghul died at age of 18 in a battle and was replaced by his 13-year brother Alagh.

It was until 10th July 1244. Turquetil had gone to sleep last night, took a small nightcap and never woke up again. Servants found him dead early in the morning. It was a peaceful death, and graceful one. There was a smile across Emperor’s face, as if he had a pleasant dream and didn’t want to wake up.

Thus died Turquetil, Emperor of Sicily, King of Sicily, Italy, Africa, Mauretania and Aragon, Duke of Sicily and Calabria, Count of Palermo, Trapani, Girgenti, Syracusa, Messina, Regio and Catanzaro, Baron of Grattieri, Mistrerra, Milsameri, Nouvo Castello, Turqueville, Bohemundus, Lord Mayor of City of Palermo, Sovereign of Kindoms of Jerusalem, Egypt, Croatia and Portugal.

He died at the age of 62, having ruled the Empire for 47 years and making Normans the most powerful nation in the world.

sicily308.jpg

Death of the Emperor

Only problem is that his son and heir had... well, gone a bit liberal in the whorehouses of Byzantium. To put it simply- the new Emperor had an itch that needed some scratching. And as a result, he has much bigger itch that really needs some serious scratching... and medical attention. I’m afraid we’re gonna have yet another short-lived Emperor.

sicily309.jpg

And the new Emperor... Emperor Itchy and Scratcy!
 

hjarg

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And that is the end of Turquetil. To be honest, Turquetil managed score of 25 500 vs 17 000 of Bohemonds- and the latter got a boost from Jerusalem!
Thus far, he had been the most successful ruler ever.

Dovahkiing- Yes! I r alive! Muhahahhahahaaaaa!
DensleyBlair - heh, i know how you feel. Beautiful borders make me happy and proper Dukes ruling their proper Duchies make me estatic and so on!
morningSIDEr - Well, wars are becoming more whack a mole then wars. As for France- i hope they try to become independent soon. Much easier to eat them up then being part of the HRE. Well, Otto can't live forever, he's over 50 already. If all goes well, HRE will have new Kaiser and some more wars soon!
 

DensleyBlair

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Well, wars are becoming more whack a mole then wars. As for France- i hope they try to become independent soon. Much easier to eat them up then being part of the HRE. Well, Otto can't live forever, he's over 50 already. If all goes well, HRE will have new Kaiser and some more wars soon!

Sometimes whack a mole wars can really but me off - it just seems that instead of not wanting to fight because of fear of a devastating loss, I become apathetic. The most successful game I ever had was with Britannia, using my own family created in Ruler Designer. I took all of Britain, Sweden (it went Norse and I used Holy Wars,) France & Aquitaine and Denmark, and my heir was married t the queen of Norway, so his heir would have had most of Scandinavia. I decided that, instead of continuing and just becoming a massive, ahistorical blob, I would start again (the next game I started, by the way, is the vague subject of my AAR.)

Once again, though, a thoroughly enjoyable update. :)
 

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I actually think the chances of the current emperor rather decent. Sure he'll probably die soon, but the health penalty might not be so bad for him. And a -30% fertility penalty is nothing compared to a -1 million.
 

morningSIDEr

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ministrelling outside chambers of Adelise (until Turquetil himself threw a chamberpot at love-struck King)

I love this line.

At least Turquetil bowed out gracefully, living to a good age, a fitting reward for so great a ruler. Good to see progress being made with regards to the Byzantines, although the title of Galicia being stolen is irksome. With the new Emperor, Robert I, a short-lived ruler, at least Adelise seems a most stupendous heir.
 

unmerged(58610)

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How dare a ruler become Cathar and steal on of the de Hauteville kingships? And he's Otto's vassal. Emperor Robert has spent all his life building allliances inside the Byzantine empire. Hope he got a claim on the Imperial title to go with all his other gatherings. Not that he should let Galicia get away with this. Can he claim the Duchy as a result of a Holy War with Otto.

Bohemond was still the greatest, even if Turquetil got more prestige. Bohemond had more pizazz.

Robert already owns the City of men's Desire. That makes him the true Emperor, anyway.
 

hjarg

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Life and Death of Emperor Turquetil I, part I

Catharism


The conquests of Turquetil were something the world had not seen since Charlemagne. Norman armies were seen all over the Mediterranean, conquering from Muslims, Catholics and Orthodox alike. The expansion of Hauteville Empire was unprecedented for centuries and the whole world feared them more then even the new threat- the Mongols. Though less blood-thirsty, the Normans were much more hungry for lands and gold- and their neighbours had plenty.

But that is not the main reason Turquetil is known. Despite his conquest, our warrior-emperor is remembered more because of the single decision he made. It was back in 1200, when Turquetil had ruled for three years and was less then 20 years old.

The relations between Normans and the Pope had always been strained. Normans in the south were military power to fear, especially when you’re living in Rome, just one province away. On the other hand, Normans were the shield of Papacy against Muslims. In time though, the shield turned into sword that cut first into Muslims, then into fellow Christians. On one side, Normans were liberators of Jerusalem, on the other side, they were heavily armed neighbours with a taste for warfare and willingness to take the law into their own hands.

The previous paragraph shows the Popes as innocent victims- but of course, they weren’t. Money from all over the world flowed into coffers of the Pope. Bishops from Sicily to far north of Norway paying their dues more often to Pope then to their rightful Kings meant that Pope is very-very rich. And with such richness comes corruption. Popes were power-hungry manipulative bastards that tried to control Kings, expand their lands and become supreme rulers of Catholics.

Turquetil’s grandfather Emperor Bohemond solved the problem one way- he took Rome, installed de Hauteville, now called Simplicitus II, as a Pope. But that was temporary solution, for until Bohemond lived, the new Pope followed his commands. Soon after his death, Pope showed him his true face- he turned against de Hautevilles, his own family- in order to increase the power of the Popes.

Turquetil reacted unexpectedly- he turned heretic. He embraced the Cathar religion. Being a ruler for less then 5 years, that was a gamble- but it paid off. In less then a year, most of the Dukes and Counts of Hauteville Empire had embraced the new religion. The royal court slowly followed and the rest of the Empire as well.

42 years later, when Turquetil died, Catholic Norman was a rare sight. The conversion that had begun slowly picked up pace soon. Mallorca was the first province to convert, then Palermo, the royal capital. One after another, the populations of provinces turned Cathar. By the time of Turquetil’s death, most of the lands in the Empire were followers of Catharism, and the Catharism had became the major religion in the Mediterranean area.

sicily310.jpg

The spread of Cahtarism by the time Turquetil died. Italy and North Africa are mostly Cathrar, with other regions picking it up by fast pace.

In the end, it would be appropriate to talk about moral authority of Catharism. In the beginning of Catharism, it was 50%. Since there was no religious head to make it bigger, the advance was only achieved by holy wars. By the time Turquetil died, it was 91%.

Wars with the Holy Roman Empire

What Hauteville Empire was in the South, Holy Roman Empire was in the north. The Kaiser was ruler of Germany and Northern Italy. Normans also wanted that rich land and that had caused tensions between the nations. The first war between Normans and Holy Roman Empire was in 1159, when King Asclettin decided to take back the county of Spoleto. The Normans won that war and since that, in about every 10 years or so, Normans had been at war with the Empire, slowly gaining lands in Italy.

War for Corsica, 1198-1199

First war of Turquetil, taking place even before his conversion to Catharism, was with Holy Roman Empire- as was becoming tradition of de Hautevilles. From May 1198-May 1199, Turquetil spent his coronation war conquering Corsica. Of course, Turquetil won, adding another Duke to his list of vassals- and more importantly, finishing what his ancestors begun. In May 1199, Turquetil crowned himself as a King of Italy. A long dream of de Hautevilles had finally become true, though half of Italy was still under German rule.

Holy War for Ferrara, 1208-1209

In May 1208, after the 10-year truce it was time for a war again. This time, the target was Ferrara, a merchant republic under rule of the Empire. But this time, things had changed. Kaiser Leopold, seeing threat from Normans growing, had managed to persuade King Eudes of France to become his vassal. With that, Normans faced the combined might of two greatest nations in Europe and with that, the Holy Roman lands extended from Sweden up north to the Iberian peninsula in the west.

Still, combined German and French troops were no match for the Normans. Three Germans intervention armies were beaten back and in January 1209, Kaiser gave up and Ferrara was Norman.

Holy War for Tuscany, 1220-1222

Again, after 10 years, it was time to go to war. This time, Normans were in for the fight of their lives. Besides Holy Roman Empire (and remember, that is the combined might of Germans and French, with a little sip of half of Iberia), English and Polish Kings came to aid the Kaiser against the heretic Normans. The armies soon rose over 20 000 soldiers and the battles became more and more bloody. Biggest was battle of Lucca, where combined army of Empire, English and Polish, numbering nearly 27 000 soldiers, met Norman main army of 22 000 soldiers. If was fought in March 1122, and it was one of the biggest battles in medieval Europe. Normans won, an though 7000 Normans were killed, the number of fallen Empire and allies troops were over 16 000.

sicily250.jpg

Just showing the battle again

There were other smaller battles as well, but Normans with their use of Navy, lots of resources and good military commanders were able to win every single one of them. The war lasted for 2 years and 1 day, being the longest war ever fought with the Germans. In the end, Normans were victorious and Tuscany was properly Norman.

French Intervention War or Holy War for Modena, 1232-1234

The alliance between King Eudes of France and Kaiser Leopold was a strong one. French and Germans against Normans worked well- until Eudes died and his son Arnauld inherited the French realm. The relations between Kaiser and King were not nearly as good- and soon, it turned into full-scale war of French independence. The war had been raging for a few years already when Turquetil intervened, declaring Holy War on Modena.

But this time, Modena was not the main target. Of course, troops were sent to Modena to take the province, but they were the troops of surrounding Norman vassals. Main Norman armies sailed to Ibera, where the battles between the French and the Germans were taking place. There, in the hills of Salamanca, they beat the German main army, then reconquered lost French holdings and set sail... to north, to Normandy.

For the first time in nearly 200 years, de Hautevilles set their feet back in their original homelands. They stayed only for a while, but it was heartwarming. From there, the Normans marched to Paris, liberated the city and for the first time in Norman history, crossed the German border and beat German army in Verdun.

sicily282.jpg

Normans marching to Germany for the first time- and from a direction most unexpected

All was in vain though- Arnauld gave up in January 1234. Normans signed a peace few days later, gaining a duchy, but lost France. Or at least they thought that at the moment (see more in Advance to French lands).

Holy War for Provence, 1240-1241

Provence was a province standing between Norman holdings in Italy and Norman holdings in France and Iberia. When Leopold finally died back in May 1240, Turquetil did celebrate the demise of his old arch-enemy with happy invasion to the province. Empire, partially engulfed in civil war, since not everyone liked Otto V, the new Kaiser, was unable to offer much resistance.

The war as over in June 1241, Normans gaining another rich Duchy from the Empire.

The Other Wars with the Holy Roman Empire

There was total five wars fought between the Empires. Or, one should say- five direct wars. The conflict between Turquetil and Leopold raged through the whole era and was not limited to just direct wars between Empires. As seen below, in Advance to French lands, Turquetil was quick to take advantage of internal conflicts within the Holy Roman Empire and gained several Duchies in the process. They basically should count as wars against the Empire as well, though in theory, Turquetil was picking on rebellious France and rebellious vassals of rebellious France.

More annoying was the tendency of the Emperor to intervene almost every other war Normans fought against Catholics. Want to attack Croatia? Sure, but Leopold comes to the rescue. Want to expand to Iberia? Sure, but count on Leopold bringing his troops to the game. Involvement of the Holy Roman Empire made wars that should have been easy into huge conflicts, raging from Ibera to Italy to Balkans. To be honest- though Normans did lose some battles, all Leopold’s attempts were in vain. Normans always achieved their goal, always won their war and never did the German achieve anything.

To be continued...
 

hjarg

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You know, Turquetil was such a great monarch that i even have to split is eulogy into two! :p Next part coming in a few days...

DensleyBlair - i know, the blobbing makes the game not so fun to play. But i'm interested to see how far the Normans can go... Btw, Karlings seem a very interesting choice!
cyrileom- yea, but still, he's short-lived. Kind of de Hauteville curse- where only every second ruler becomes great. Growing up and old without my direct control seems to be bad for your health :p
grumphie - doubtful. Because if keep up the current pace, EU4 would be cakewalk.
morningSIDEr - i half-expected Turquetil to finally die in a battle, not be dead in his sleep. Not a really good way to go for a warrior-emperor. Still, Adelise is promising
Chief Ragusa - Galicia will come back to Normans. Sooner or later. As for claim for Byzantines, not yet. But i'm slowly moving to their lands as well, so sometimes i'll most likely usurp the title.
 

DensleyBlair

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It's always sad when a great ruler dies, and this is a great obituary so far. I like the fact that you give your rulers obituaries - it makes it a bit more personal. As always, waiting for more :)
 

morningSIDEr

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A great read, very much enjoying this overview of Turquetil's impressive reign. As stated I think he'll best be remembered for his conversion to Catharism but his accomplishments on the battlefield are no less noteworthy.
 

cyrileom

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You need to have the De Hauteville Empire self destruct as your finale. Every AAR needs that as its finale.