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nalivayko

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Nice update. I was hoping to see at least Messina captured though :) Btw, what are your plans as for Lorraine now?
 

Farquharson

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Thanks to all for your replies ;) .

King Yngvar: I think it's too late - the BWB has started to grow... Well, maybe later on they can help me beat up the French :D .

coz1, Arcadian: I suspect pizza is going to play an increasing role in René's policies... :)

Van Engel: Thanks!

stnylan: I was a bit shocked by that battle - how is it possible? They were at the same naval tech level as me (2!), and OK Alfonse has a pretty high military rating, but still... :( Maybe they have their slider way over to "Naval" or something. In any case, I want to be undisputed master of the Western Med, so I'll have to do something about my navy... :mad:

nalivayko: Sorry - but my forces in Naples weren't really up to a war of conquest at this stage. It will come, though, don't worry! ;) As for Lorraine, I'll just take it as it comes. This would also be a useful "last province" to take from the French, leaving myself with a CB on them for as long as I want :) .

Next update coming up...
 

Farquharson

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Chapter 5: 1440 - 1445
Five go off to War Again

Having stripped the Aragonese of most of their money and a little of their arrogance in the Pizza War, René turned his attention to other matters. He was still ruling the duchy of Lorraine in his spare time, but he didn’t have much of this, so when Charles VII asked if he could vassalize the duchy in 1440, René and his wife Isabelle of Lorraine agreed. Lorraine had been vassals of the French Crown before, from 1423 till 1435 and René was hoping that this would be just another passing phase.


René, known as “le Bon”, who liked to shock with his outrageous beard styles​

In 1441 another crateload of pizza to Milan further improved relations with Duke Visconti to the point that René was nearly ready to offer him the opportunity to be a vassal of Provence. With a view to making friends who might help him fight the Aragonese, René also arranged marriages with Foix and Castile, not noticing that both of these had recently joined the English Alliance. The two marriages had to be annulled a few months later, when Charles VII declared war on Brittany, in May of 1441.

The Breton War pitted all five members of the French Alliance (France, Provence, Lorraine, Hessen and Milan) against Brittany, England, Foix and Castile. Foix had recently dropped out of their alliance with Aragon over a war with Granada, and subsequently joined England. Burgundy now dropped out of the English Alliance, which made things easier for the French Alliance.

As usual, the Bretons quickly invaded Maine and besieged Le Mans, capturing it by December. As usual, René initially left the Manceaux to their fate - they were growing used to intermittent Breton occupation - and marched west to command the allied siege of English-held Bordeaux.

While there, a herald from Alfonse V arrived at René’s camp, demanding once again that he hand over Naples to Aragon. René laughed and sent him on his way, but he soon learned that Alfonse was now playing dirty. A wave of Aragonese-backed terrorism began to sweep the disputed territories, and soon Richemont had his hands full trying to keep things under control. René’s French subjects now began to question whether ruling a bunch of Italians was worth all this trouble and stability in the realm reached an all-time low. René, however, was determined not to give in to terrorists - besides, he was now unable to contemplate life without pizza...

Bordeaux surrendered in March 1442, and once again René succumbed to the lure of the wine cellars before he had negotiated peace terms with the English. The next day Charles VII accepted the English offer of 144 ducats if they could keep Gascogne. Slightly miffed, René marched north to see about recapturing Le Mans. His wife Isabelle joined him as she was going north herself to visit the French royal court.



The wine cellars of Bordeaux - a bad influence on Good King René​

Isabelle of Lorraine, comtesse de Provence: So, darling, you let the English off the hook again! You know I really wanted to have a second palace in Bordeaux. Why did you let them keep it?

René, comte de Provence: Ahem - er, reasons of state, dear...

Isabelle: And what sort of state would that be we’re talking about, darling? Total inebriation?

René, laughing nervously: Ha, ha - very drole, dear. Anyway, I’m sure we’ll be able to take some provinces from Brittany. Wouldn’t that be just as nice?

Isabelle: No, not really. And anyway, what makes you think Charles will let you play that trick of stealing all his sieges again?

René: Hmmm. You’re right, dear. If only we had some cash we could send him some more pizza - he seemed to like that. We’ve spent everything on the war, though...

Isabelle: What else does he like?

René: Well, aside for having a penchant for maids-in-waiting, I don’t really know.

Isabelle: Maids-in-waiting, eh? I wonder... I did spot him eyeing up Agnès, my maid of honour last time we were in Paris. Perhaps I’ll have a word with her and see what she can do.

René: But, but... Charles is my brother-in-law! You can’t deliberately try to get him to commit adultery...

Isabelle: Oh, René, you’re such a prude! No wonder everyone calls you René le Bon. Anyway, if I know Charles he won’t need much persuading.

René: Just exactly how well do you know Charles, darling?

Isabelle: Really, René - he’s not my type. Don’t worry about me. You just go and steal the sieges and leave Agnès to deal with Charles.

Thus did Agnès Sorel, Isabelle’s maid of honour become Charles VII’s most famous lover. Diplomatically, her charms worked even better than pizza Napolitana.

René stopped in Tours where he waited for reinforcements to join him from Aurillac and Marseille, while Isabelle continued on to Paris. Le Mans was besieged in August 1442 and recaptured the following March. Meanwhile the French had captured the Breton capital, Nantes, and were now besieging Rennes, where René now joined them in April 1443. The city fell two months later, but François I, duc de Bretagne would not hand it over. René led the allied army on to besiege Brest, the last Breton stronghold, arriving in August 1443.

The siege of Brest was long and bitter. In the meantime, Richemont put down two terrorist-led revolts in Napoli, and repelled two Castilian attempts to land there. In August 1444 Mainz joined the French Alliance. In November 1444 Brest was finally captured, but François I still refused René’s demand for the province of Armor. It took Charles, the leader of the alliance to come and negotiate the Treaty of Brest, signed by François in December, whereby Brittany handed over all her treasury and ceded Armor and Bretagne to the House of Anjou.



René’s new subjects look pleased with their new ruler​

The French Alliance were still at war with Castile and Foix, however the government of Foix fell in May 1445, leaving Castile as their sole remaining enemy. The Castilians held Poitiers and were besieging Montpellier. René lent his aid in a French attempt to recapture Poitiers, while the French broke the siege of Montpellier. Finally, in September 1445, with the province of Armor in revolt, Charles VII paid the Castilians 20 ducats to end the war, and René marched north to deal with the Armorican rebels, which was done by the year’s end.

Peace now reigned once more, and René took the opportunity to send an embassy to Milan to propose to Duke Visconti that perhaps he might like to become a vassal of the growing realm of Provence. Alas Duke Visconti could not see the benefits of this, despite the promise of regular shipments of pizza in return for half his annual revenue. However, René was not too disappointed. He sat back in his royal library and studied with satisfaction the latest map of his domains.



Domains of the House of Anjou after the Breton War (1441-45)
Eight provinces: Bretagne, Armor, Maine, Cévennes, Provence, Piemonte, Napoli, Apulia
Ok, so it’s not the most geographically cohesive nation in the world, but still...​
 
Last edited:

Zan Thrax

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Farquharson, aren't galleys supposed to slap warships around at the low tech levels? You know, the ones where the warships haven't figured out how to make the cannonballs leave the cannons with any real speed. :D

Oh, and I think that Rene and Alfons will have to have a discussion about just who's the rightful king of the two Sicilies. Just as soon as I finish up with Genoa. (And Tunisia. And Egypt. And Castille. Bloody oportunistic lot in the med.)
 
Last edited:

coz1

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Well, I guess as long as you are friendly with the French, you should be fine. How about finishing up with Savoy? That green needs to go.
 

stnylan

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Perhaps not cohesive, but a very feudal nation by the looks of things. What more dynastic delights await?
 

richvh

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Can't Alfonse counter Rene's Neapolitan pizza with Sicilian pizza?
 

nalivayko

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I'd say conquering Normandie from the English will look pleasing to the eye. Don't worry about being cohesive. In one of my aars I had Austria split into seven pieces. It is more fun this way.
 

Van Engel

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I must say that orange is one of the best colours I have seen for EU2 so you beter use it wel! :)
 

unmerged(15337)

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Well, one positive aspect of your disconnected nation is that it gives you natural goals for conquest and assimilation in order to simplify your topology. :)

I suppose you could go the other way and let go of unconnected provinces, but I have the impression that that is not what you intend...

Good luck in your likely continual pizza wars with the Spanish.
 

Zan Thrax

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Scattered has advantages though. Yeah, the no land connection penalty's probably hurting, but other than France herself, no one can reasonably reach enough of his land to force concessions. At the same time, as long as military access is maintained, armies can be moved from province to province safely.
 

unmerged(19936)

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Cohesiveness is overrated. You better put patches of orange where ever you can.

Are you planning on removing the French at some point?

You AAR is extremely AARmusing. Ick, what AARful joke. I should stop now :p

Keep up the good work
 

Farquharson

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Sorry for the delay, folks - it's been a busy week.

Zan Thrax: That would make a lot of sense (about the galleys, I mean). I've started building some of my own. As for the rightful King of Naples and Sicily, I'm afraid there's no question. René is not prepared to negotiate!

coz1: It would be nice to swallow up Savoy, yes. They do have a rather large army, though, as these irritatingly tiny nations always seem to be capable of, and the witless French have just entered a Royal Marriage with them :rolleyes: .

stnylan: The main delight in store as far as the event file goes (ooh what a cheat I am) is a showdown with France over who owns Maine, sometime in the 1480s. Will our friendship survive???

richvh: Fortunately, Alfons doesn't seem to have thought of a pizza counter-attack yet ;) .

nalivayko: Normandie, huh! Don't talk to me about Normandie right now... :mad:

Van Engel: With 460 years still to go, I think we can safely say that that pleasing orange will be spreading a fair way across Europe :) .

jwolf: Let go of territory? An Angevin would never even think of it! Seriously, though, I intend to pick up Italian culture by moving my capital to Naples, then I have plenty of places to expand into without getting too much wrong-culture stuff.

Judas M: Good King René was sorely tempted to try this out on Charles VII, but his Goodness got the better of him... :D And btw, I just made a Royal Marriage with Baden - I thought of you! :p

King Yngvar: "Extensive" is the word you're looking for, I think.

Zan Thrax: Exactly what is the "no land connection penalty"? These are the sorts of details I'm still woefully ignorant about. It might be helpful for me to know at this stage :) .

Troggle: Some day, some way, the French will probably have to step aside and let the Angevins rule all of France. That's down the road a wee bit, though... :D

Well folks, here's the next episode, but since I'm leaving for Scotland tomorrow and won't be back till 7th March it will probably be the last post for some time. Don't worry though - the Angevins will pop up again, just when everyone's forgotten about them. It's their speciality! :D
 

Farquharson

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Chapter 6: 1445 - 1449
René Gets Annoyed

We left René at the end of the last chapter gazing contentedly at a map of his somewhat fragmented domains. The possibility of war was never far away, Savoy and Aragon being the most likely perpetrators at this precise moment. The English, taking the opportunity of their truce with the French Alliance, declared war on the Scots, with Brittany and Castile supporting them. Noticing that the Scots were rather short of friends, René invited them into a royal marriage with Anjou, which they enthusiastically accepted. And while everyone was in a matrimonial mood a marriage was also arranged with Mainz, the latest addition to the French Alliance.

In 1446 war came closer to René’s borders when Modena invaded Genoa. This war lasted nearly two years before the Genoese finally coughed up 25 ducats to get rid of the Modenans. René of course still had his beady eye on the lucrative trading centre on his doorstep, and was somewhat disappointed that the Modenans had not managed to take Corsica from the Genoese, leaving the tempting morsel of Liguria ready to be snapped up by someone else (him for example).



Genoa - shortly to become the birthplace of someone called Christopher Columbus​

All was quiet for some months, save for a minor revolt in Armor, swiftly dealt with by René. In March 1447 Charles VII of France arranged a royal marriage with Savoy, which was definitely bad news for René. How could he hope now to annex this irritating little duchy without falling out with France? However, in April another opportunity presented itself, when the French Alliance’s truce with England expired and Charles VII declared war on his old enemy. Only Brittany came to England’s aid, but as usual the whole French Alliance stayed solid. René was particularly hopeful of annexing Brittany.

Not to be left out, Burgundy declared war on the duchy of Lorraine in May, but René managed to wriggle out of this by paying the Burgundians 42 ducats the following month. Meanwhile both Burgundy and Würzburg had joined the English Alliance. Then in August a large army of Aragonese-backed rebels gathered and began to besiege the city of Naples. Laval, the new commander of the Neapolitan Army did not wish to risk his tiny force against them and so remained in the mountains of Apulia to await what would happen.

In September 1447 the French finally got around to besieging the Breton capital, Nantes, and René quickly took command. In February England found yet another ally, Bremen, and even managed to land an army in Napoli. These English troops conveniently drove out the Aragonese-backed rebels, then proceeded to pillage the countryside. In April 1448 the city of Nantes surrendered to René, but François duc de Bretagne refused René’s generous offer of annexation, agreeing instead to Charles VII’s even more generous offer to hand over their entire treasury of 40 ducats!


[OOC: Can someone explain how they were allowed to do this as I got my peace offer in first, with a 100% warscore?]


The imposing defences of Nantes Castle​

The following month Laval finally emerged from his hideout in the Calabrian Mountains with his 5000 cavalry and fell upon the English, wiping them out. René marched south from Nantes to take over the French siege of Bordeaux, hoping to drown his sorrows in the wine cellars once more. Meanwhile, however, the French were for the first time making significant progress against the English in the north. Calais had fallen and Rouen and Caux were both under siege. Reluctantly, René decided that Normandie was really a more logical extension to his domains than Gascogne, and he marched north again to command the siege of Rouen.

Then in September 1449, when Rouen looked like it was about to fall, the French King arrived in person at René’s camp. René viewed his arrival with some alarm:


René le Bon, comte de Provence: Ah, Your Majesty, what an honour it is to have you here - just a passing visit, I presume?

Charles VII, King of France: Yes, my dear brother-in-law, I have come to personally deliver the news.

René: News? What news?

Charles VII: The war is over - we can all go home! Isn’t that wonderful?

René: But - but... Rouen hasn’t fallen yet... A few more days and the city will be ours!

Charles VII: I think not, my dear René, since we are no longer at war with the worthless English.

René, beginning to scowl: So - I see your little game! I presume you have taken Calais and Caux for yourself and left me with nothing, is that it?

Charles VII, looking aggrieved: René, René! Would I do a thing like that? You will receive your due share of the spoils of war - the English were forced to pay us indemnities, of course. But I have allowed them to keep their territories.

René: What? You made peace without liberating a single inch of French soil from the English invaders?

Charles VII: No need to be so melodramatic, René! We won the war, that’s the main thing.

René: Pardon my saying so, Your Majesty, but those English must have offered you a veritable mountain of gold to addle your wits to this extent!

Charles VII: Ten ducats, actually.

René: WHAT???!!!

Charles VII: Between the five of us - that makes a nice round two ducats each, right?

René, light suddenly dawning on his features: Ahhh - I think I see, now... You’re suffering from a year of temporary insanity, is that it?

One of Charles’s aides standing behind him begins nodding vigorously, tapping his finger on his temple and crossing his eyes.

Charles VII: I’ll treat that as a joke in rather poor taste, René! There’s nothing whatsoever wrong with my sanity.

René: Of course not, Your Majesty. So - we’ll be going to war again in another five years I presume?

Charles VII: Yes, of course.

René, with a resigned sigh: Well, I’ll be off to see about keeping the peace in Armor and Bretagne, then. Good day to you - and give my regards to Marie.

Charles VII: I will - and René...

René: Yes?

Charles VII: Here’s your two ducats...

And so René dejectedly rode back to Rennes, his purse fuller by two ducats, and his domains exactly the same as at the start of the war two and a half years earlier. On his arrival some ill-advised Breton insurgents chose this moment to revolt, and René vented his rage on them, crushing the rebellion in a record three days.


The Breton insurgents never stood a chance against René’s fury​
 
Last edited:

stnylan

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