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    Real Strategy Requires Cunning

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The Reign of Ernst I Von Wittelsbach, Duke of Bavaria

1397-1422

1399

Duke Ernst I Von Wittelsbach called together a grand meeting of the most powerful and influential members of the Bavarian nobility at the end of the year in order to better establish his kingdom. The end of an era was at hand, and it was the Duke's intention to make his plans for Bavaria known to his subjects at last.

Among the Duke's first major decisions, was to proclaim that he intended to fully support the Bavarian army, ordering that the standing army be enlarged, and that the entire kingdom focus its efforts on improving the army. He also decided to slash the funding of those who were proponents of naval research. To this news, several members of the nobility who advocated the acquisition of access to the sea and the construction of a navy rose up out of their seats and left in a sign of utmost disrespect to the Duke. Duke Von Wittelsbach later ordered that all of those who participated in the display have their land and titles seized, having them then committed to serve out their years within the confines of a Bavarian monastery.

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Unfortunately for Duke Ernst, he was unable to come to terms with his distant cousin Rupert III the Elector Palatine. Both the Duke and his cousin had laid claim to the lands of Franken, and when the Duke of Bavaria learned that Rupert III had stationed one thousand troops in Franken to secure it, he gathered his force of two thousand troops and began to march north.

Having a need for allies in his endeavor, Duke Von Wittelsbach extended kindness and friendship towards Trier, and they quickly accepted his offers of mutual assistance. Baden, upon learning of this news quickly made its own offer of support to Bavaria, an offer that the Duke was all too happy to accept.

By November, the Duke declared war on the Palatinate and defeated Rupert III's meager forces around Franken, and laid siege. Bavaria's allies, true to their word, joined in the cause and launched invasions of the remainder of Rupert III's lands and defeated the main host of his army at Pfalz. As the year drew to a close, Duke Ernst I maintained his siege of Franken and ordered freshly raised troops from Bavaria to begin the march north to join his army.

30759913.jpg


Thus ended the year 1399, and marked the true beginning of Duke Von Wittelsbach's reign.

The World As of October 14th, 1399


Europe As of October 14th, 1399
 
Last edited:

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The Reign of Ernst I Von Wittelsbach, Duke of Bavaria

1397-1422

1400-1410

As the war against the Elector Palatine continued in the year 1400, Duke Von Wittelsbach made the decision to apply for membership to the Venecian Trade League. The Duke believed that access to the Trade League would promote improved trade and reduce competition with larger, more powerful merchant states.

87074212.jpg


By May of that year, the walls to the city had been breached and Franken was in the hands of its rightful owner. Following this victory, Baden and Trier made peace with the Palatinate, with Rupert III conceding Worms to Trier. The war with Bavaria did not end though until October, when Rupert III agreed to surrender Franken and willingly become the vassal of Bavaria. Luckily the Duke's claims on the land, were enough to prevent the reputation of Bavaria from being seriously soiled due to the conquest.

34895587.jpg


The remainder of the year was relatively quiet for Bavaria. The decision to vassalize the Palatinate ended up being a poor one. Mainz had been previously embroiled in a war with Rupert III and quickly reduced the capital and forced Rupert to resign his post as Elector Palatine and annexed the remainder of the Palatinate under its own banner. Duke Ernst I, was unable to react in time to save his cousin, due to the fact that Mainz possessed many powerful allies and nations guaranteeing its safety from the threat of war.

In much better news it was announced that there was a man of great renown from Niederbayern, who was willing to design and implement an improved set of fortifications for the region. The Duke decided he would be best put to use remaining home to oversee this project, than being dragged to the capital as a member of the court.

13694322.jpg


In 1401, the Duke made it clear that good relations with Bavaria's powerful neighbors was one of his utmost concerns. The desire to have good and peaceful relations with Austria became the focus of his work and after months of posturing and negotiations, a royal marriage between House Von Wittelsbach and House Von Hapsburg cemented peace and prosperity between both kingdoms.

95099914.jpg


In 1403, the succession of the Von Wittelsbach line in Bavaria was secured through an illegitimate affair. The Duke's wife, thus far unable to produce an heir, rarely saw her husband as of late. Instead, the Duke began to favor the company of the unmarried daughter of a noble from Franken. Attempts to keep the affair quiet were mostly successful until the girl gave birth to a boy named Karl Albrecht. To minimize the scandal, Duke Ernst I had the boy adopted by a close cousin and had the mother placed in a convent.

21013754.jpg


The Duke's desire to further Bavaria's control of Germany resulted in his first truly aggressive war in the region. Having steadily raised the size of Bavaria's standing army since assuming control of the kingdom, the army was now prepared and capable, consisting of some eleven thousand troops. It would be with this army that the Duke would launch an attack upon Ansbach to the northwest. The war would begin in 1405, after years of preparation and diplomatic wrangling, to ensure that Bavaria would not have to engage a host of nations at the start of the invasion. Once Bavaria declared war and began its march into Ansbach, both Wurttemberg and Munster immediately responded by declaring war upon Bavaria. Also, in a move that would bear grave consequences later, Baden, whom at one time had called Bavaria and ally, refused to participate in the war, dishonoring itself in the eyes of Duke Von Wittelsbach.

By April of 1406, Ansbach was defeated and Duke Ernst vassalized the region, intent on continuing the war against Wurttemberg. The capitulation of Ansbach also meant that Ansbach would now be considered an ally of Bavaria. Wurttemberg would fight on, but in June, Wurttemberg fell, followed in August by Konstanz. The war would end with Wurttemberg surrendering and also becoming a vassal to the Duke of Bavaria.

93741110.jpg


Of course, the greediest of the Bavarian nobility demanded to know why these lands had not been annexed outright and absorbed into Greater Bavaria, so that those very lands could then be bequeathed to those very nobles. The Duke was weary of allowing the nobility to gain any more power than it already possessed however, and did not wish for his kingdom to expand far too fast, instead preferring to have a number of loyal and well established client states that Bavaria could rely upon for support, both militarily and economically.

Now, as had been mentioned previously, the Kingdom of Baden had violated the terms of its alliance with Bavaria, and with the conclusion of hostilities against Wurttemberg and Ansbach, the Duke turned his attention towards them. Angered at their lack of honor, Duke Von Wittelsbach declared war upon Baden in 1407. To his surprise, the Swiss, Lorraine, Cologne, and Wurzburg all rise up to defend Baden.

With their new allies at their side, Bavaria goes to war yet again. The first major battles are launched against the Swiss, and after two battles within Switzerland, the entire Swiss Army is eliminated. Without the Swiss Army, the coalition that had risen up against Bavaria was quickly crushed all over, with Duke Ernst I dispatching various portions of his army to oversee several sieges as he continued his march deeper into enemy territory.

49101172.jpg


Peace would not see the land again until the year 1410. By that time, the Bavarian Army had successfully destroyed all opposition and conquered its enemies. Duke Von Wittelsbach would subjugate many of those who had fought against Bavaria, with the Swiss, Cologne, Baden, and Wurzburg all becoming vassals of his kingdom. Lorraine would escape with only paying an indemnity to Bavaria, thus avoiding occupation.

72763771.jpg


Unfortunately, all was not well back at home. The Duke's only heir, illegitimate as he may have been conceived, was ill. The Duke called for the best doctors in the land in an attempt to save his son. Their advanced methods of balancing the four humors of the body through various herbs and bloodletting were not enough for young Karl Albrecht though and he passed away shortly thereafter. There was now no clear successor to the Bavarian throne, and the Duke was devastated.

76738662.jpg


Meanwhile, Holy Roman Emperor Vaclav IV passed away in Bohemia, and the Electors gathered to announce the election of Fridrich I of Bohemia to take his place, thus continuing Bohemian dominance of the Empire.

21152583.jpg


Not long after the loss of his first and only son, the Duke of Bavaria learned that his wife was with child. All of Bavaria prayed for a son, and the Lord delivered upon their prayers with the birth of Karl Von Wittelsbach, the rightful heir to Bavaria.

67430653.jpg


This news would be the last of importance for the year of 1410 and would mark a period of relative peace within Bavaria that would last for years to come. Although, the dreams of Duke Von Wittelsbach to influence more of the world were by no means complete by this time.
 

TheLoneGunman

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The world map shows Bavaria unclear. :p

I didn't feel like uploading the 3 meg .bmp version. :p

The second and last update will come soon, I hope you guys enjoy it thus far!
 

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In preparation for my turn, how do I get those nice worldmap screencaps and what's the default screencap button?
 

Enewald

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Hmm, which of your neighbour are not yet your vassals? :p
Austria and Bohemia?
 

JDMS

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Hmm. This looks interesting. Subscribed!

Also, not being familiar with HT, I have to ask. Did Bohemia not intervene when you were attacking the HRE minors?
 

TheLoneGunman

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Hmm. This looks interesting. Subscribed!

Also, not being familiar with HT, I have to ask. Did Bohemia not intervene when you were attacking the HRE minors?

They never intervened with my invasions.

Although I did try to maintain good relations AND grant them military access through my territory in efforts to appease them.

I will have the final update up tomorrow, since I won't be home tonight.

It shouldn't take too long since there wasn't nearly as much fighting or conquering after 1410. :)
 

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The Reign of Ernst I Von Wittelsbach, Duke of Bavaria

1397-1422

1411-1422

With Bavaria at peace, Duke Ernst I was free to handle various domestic, economic, and diplomatic issues. First, alliances were secured with all of that states that had been defeated in the past decade of war, and their loyalty assured through an intricate web of marriages between the royal families of their rulers.

The Duke also initiated the very first land reforms in the capital in an attempt to secure further power from the various land-holders in the region. These reforms would be responsible for continued growth and development within Bavaria, and the Duke hoped that it would be a part of his great legacy.

26618686.jpg


Following these decisions, the Duke also appointed a French noble to his court in an effort to improve his international prestige and trust. Many nations had grown distrustful of Bavaria's potentially imperialistic wars, and it was difficult to find allies abroad or even maintain good relations with many other nations. Those who objected to the inclusion of Firmin de Saint Omer were reprimanded and removed from their offices, as Duke Von Wittelsbach was not fond of criticism of his policies or decisions.

83076002.jpg


Peace would not last more than a few years, though when war would begin again in 1413 it would not be do to Bavaria. Instead, Bavaria would be dragged into a war started by its ally Poland. The kingdom of Poland had been eager to defeat the Ukrainians which had been overrunning the region. When Poland declared war though, Muscovy, Georgia, and Novgorod all joined the war against Poland.

In a conscious decision to support a staunch Catholic ally, Duke Von Wittelsbach joined the war on the side of Poland and ordered the Bavarian Army to assemble under his leadership and begin planning for an invasion of the Ukraine. To ensure the quickest route, deals were struck with the Regent of the Holy Roman Emperor to allow Bavarian troops to pass through Bohemia unmolested.

92760323.jpg


The army would arrive in the Ukraine in 1414 and would fight numerous small skirmishes before finally facing a large and important battle. During the Battle of Polesia, the Bavarian Duke would lead his troops bravely and slaughter countless Ukrainian foes. After the battle, his army would lead the siege of Trakai, and following its surrender, would give Poland enough leverage to Podlasia from the Ukrainians. With peace achieved, the Duke led his battle-hardened army back to Bavaria.

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In 1415, the Pope would pass away, and the Papal Conclave would elect Pope Gregorious XII as the new leader of the Catholic Church. The first major decision by the new Pope, was to revoke the excommunication of Austria from the Catholic Church.

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In 1417, the Venetians would call upon the experience of the Bavarian Army to help them in their conflict with the remnants of the Greek Empire in Constantinople. Having no navy or even access to the sea, the Duke was required to gain access through Hungary, Ragusa, and Naples in order to make the long march down into Greece.

60729114.jpg


Once in Greece, the Bavarians hastily defeated the Greeks in Achaea on three separate occasions, all quite bloody battles indeed. With the final victory coming in the form of a Bavarian conquest of Morea. The resulting peace deal would allow the Venetians to gain Corfu from the Greeks, while the Bavarians only earned further glory in the eyes of their people and their allies.

57429325.jpg


In February of 1421, Poland would again dispatch envoys to Bavaria, begging Duke Von Wittelsbach to assist them in yet another war. This time, their enemy was the vile Golden Horde, a state intent of spreading Islam into the deepest reaches of Europe if left unchecked. The Duke accepted the offer to join Poland's noble crusade, and made preparations to once again go to war against the enemies of Bavaria's allies. This time, the Duke would march deep into the Crimea to wage war against the infidels. Fighting several important battles for the region before laying siege to Kaffa.

49550053.jpg


While overseeing the Siege of Kaffa, the Duke took ill. Despite the advice of his best doctors and advisors, Duke Von Wittelsbach refused treatment or rest. Instead, when he learned that the walls to the city had been breached, he demanded to lead the army personally through the breach. After hours of bloody fighting, the Bavarians fighting within the city got sight of their glorious leader slumped over dead in a dark corner. The men's morale broken, they withdrew with their Duke's body back to their base camp. With his son Karl only an infant, the Duke had left the state with no one to lead it.

A meeting of the Duke's most loyal soldiers and advisors drew up plans to form a council to guide Bavaria, and to protect the young Duke Karl Von Wittelsbach's claim to the throne. With their leader gone, and their army stranded in the Crimea, the future now seemed bleak and uncertain for Bavaria.

42602819.jpg


Thus ended the reign of Duke Ernst I Von Wittelsbach.

The World as of April 28th, 1422
 

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Great update. Did the war between Poland and GH end?
 

k-59

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Hmm. This looks interesting. Subscribed!

Also, not being familiar with HT, I have to ask. Did Bohemia not intervene when you were attacking the HRE minors?

In HttT if a member state attacks another member state with a CB, the HRE will not intervene.

Nice start TlG.
 

TheLoneGunman

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Great update. Did the war between Poland and GH end?

The war was still raging when I lost my leader, so it would be up to enkhuush to inform us of how the war was faring. We were still at war with the GH and our entire army was stranded in their territory with no leader either. :eek:

I hope he figured a victorious way out. :D

In HttT if a member state attacks another member state with a CB, the HRE will not intervene.

Nice start TlG.

Thanks! I hope my start was "just right" and not too good or too bad.

And Burgundy is beginning to look dangerously large if you guys glance at the world map. :eek:
 

enkhuush

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The war was still raging when I lost my leader, so it would be up to enkhuush to inform us of how the war was faring. We were still at war with the GH and our entire army was stranded in their territory with no leader either. :eek:

I hope he figured a victorious way out. :D...

We lost war against GH. :)
 

JDMS

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TheLoneGunman

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We lost war against GH. :)

Well I didn't expect a 2 year old to do much. ;)

Should make for an interesting first update.

And I hope you didn't mind the high badboy... I was really trying to get it down to something that could be managed, since I knew my turn wouldn't last forever. Yet another reason for the long period of relative peace with little or no conquering. :)
 

enkhuush

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Well I didn't expect a 2 year old to do much. ;)

Should make for an interesting first update.

And I hope you didn't mind the high badboy... I was really trying to get it down to something that could be managed, since I knew my turn wouldn't last forever. Yet another reason for the long period of relative peace with little or no conquering. :)

I can't declare war until my heir reaches 16. :eek: