An Age of Miracles Continues: The Empire of Rhomania

I've gotten so used to spelling Rhomania with an h that
Is it safe to say the greek identity is not an ethnic identity anymore?
I certainly believe so, although I'd say a assimilated resident of Taprobane or any other possession in the east would identify as Rhoman first and associate the greek identity more with the mainland
 
I've gotten so used to spelling Rhomania with an h that
I certainly believe so, although I'd say a assimilated resident of Taprobane or any other possession in the east would identify as Rhoman first and associate the greek identity more with the mainland
To which I'd answer huh? If the resident of Taprobane is assimilated and believes himself Greek, why exactly he shouldn't be considered an ethnic Greek?
 

Arrix85

Donor
Rhomania has the naval capabilities to establish effective cultrual and military control over Indonesia that india quite frankly lacks at the moment despite their staggering success in other aspects. As for the Ottomans I believe theyve been harassing Rhoman trade in the east for quite a while but don't quite have the ablity to cut them out of the indian ocean and especially with the upcoming War of the Wrath they wont be able to do anything about Rhoman expansion into the indian ocean for a while
The Ottomans even thinking of cutting the Romans out? . It's a miracle they can even get out of the Persian gulf. I don't think that even during the Troubles they tried something like that (Could be wrong, is it in OTL the Ottomans had some minor contacts with Aceh?)
 
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To which I'd answer huh? If the resident of Taprobane is assimilated and believes himself Greek, why exactly he shouldn't be considered an ethnic Greek?
Fair point, I just always assumed that in the world of this tl Greek would have a more geographic connotation to it and Rhoman would be a more inclusive term for all hellenized individuals ie communities in the east that still retain sizeable amounts of their original culture. Although this is mostly headcanon on my part and greek and Rhoman are mostly interchangable in this timeline so id have to agree with ya
 
The Ottomans even thinking of cutting the Romans out? . It's a miracle they can even get out of the Persian gulf. I don't think that even during the Troubles they tried something like that (Could be wrong, is it in OTL the Ottomans had some minor contacts with Aceh?)
Most of it was done through encouraging Piracy and supporting Triune activity in the east
 
I wonder... if a newly crowned Emperor in Constantinople had a name that was that of one of the older, classical Roman Emperors at some point: say you get a Tiberios and he would get crowned as Tiberios IV.
Would the Latin West recognize this regnal numbering? If some kingdoms didn't that could make for some interesting diplomatic spats since that would basically cut the the heart of Rhoman legitimacy as the Roman Empire.
 
Wouldn't it be in the indian sphere. Also pushing for rhoman society it pushing it ottomans and india stand in the way for effective control.

Btw just re-read my message let me clarify i find that reasoning for indonesia not good india makes sense with hindu mughals along with what rhoman policy in the middle east i just find Indonesia to be just screwing islam for the sake of screwing islam

On said subject wouldn't the ottomans fear there income in threat as they hold important trade routes, byzantine bypassing them will be very bad surely they will act to stop that.
Actually by the time of the Pod, Indonesia is still under control of the Hindus Majapahit. And considering Islam only make way to the interior by the 14-15 th century, it completely make sense why Indonesia is not fully Islamjc. As the the collapse of Egypt deprive the local Islamic scholar of its main education source and the different and kinda colonial powers butterfly away the 9 preacher who spread Islam to interior java.
 

Cryostorm

Monthly Donor
I wonder... if a newly crowned Emperor in Constantinople had a name that was that of one of the older, classical Roman Emperors at some point: say you get a Tiberios and he would get crowned as Tiberios IV.
Would the Latin West recognize this regnal numbering? If some kingdoms didn't that could make for some interesting diplomatic spats since that would basically cut the the heart of Rhoman legitimacy as the Roman Empire.
Ooh, that would be very interesting to see how the different western powers, and other nations for that matter, dealt with a classically named emperor.
 
Islam didn't make it big in Southeast Asia until Sufi missionaries helped translate and merge the Quran and Muslim practices with local languages and customs, helped along by Muslim traders from the Middle East spreading roots in all the urban port cities. The destruction of the Sultanate of Egypt and the Roman hijacking of the Red Sea trade route has largely supplanted this process with Orthodox Christianity instead.

Now instead of the anemic Ottoman traders and culture missions (I'm surprised that the Ottomans even have a blue water navy), everyone's getting blasted with Christian Bibles and missionaries. And the Roman practice of ignoring ethnicity and tolerance of non-Islam religions means that it's Orthodox Christianity that's making most headway.

On that note, @Basileus444 did you intend for the Orthodox Romans to practice Orthopraxy when it comes to dealing with minority religious groups? I love the irony.
 

Cryostorm

Monthly Donor
Yeah in my opinion you nailed it, like in the United Kingdom you are "British" but also English, Welsh, Scott, Irish
Or like modern India where you can be Gujarati, Kannadan, or Assamese and have you own traditions and culture as well as speak you own native language but still consider yourself Indian and most people have an understanding of the nation's lingua franca of Hindi/English. Modern Indonesia is largely the same way as well.
 
Anatolia was never really Turkified until the 18th century. The Ottomans were quite cosmopolitan at various points in their history in otl. Plus there were many sizable populations of Greeks and Armenians within Anatolia as well. The early Ottoman Armies were made up of many Greeks and Cilian Armenians who converted to Islam. Many Greeks of the former Eastern Roman Empire preferred Ottoman rule to a reunification to Rome by the time Constantinople fell. Genetically speaking Greeks and Turks are quite similar to each other as they share many haplo groups. There also was lots of cross-cultural exchange between the Romaoi in otl. I assume that with these Hellenized Turks, there's likely a distinct Turkish dialect of Greek spoken with a fusion of Greek and Turkish cultures. Eastern Roman noble house like the House of Axouchos which served Ioannes II Komnenos, were of Turkish origin who rose to prominence in the service of the Byzantines.
Your assumption about the Hellenized Turks is correct. There’s a subculture in Anatolia that’s mixed Greek-Turkish (plus a lot of genetic mixing; Demetrios I Komnenos had a Turkish father). Plus many local saints were probably Sufi fakirs originally.

Another idea I came up recently for Not the End is that of ‘whirling monks’, an Orthodox Christian version of the whirling dervishes. The monks whirl to bring themselves into an altered state of consciousness to commune with the Spirit of God. It could be an alternative to OTL hesychasm (practiced ITTL by the monks of Mt Athos), active instead of meditative.

Oh good, glad I'm not the only one that this happens too. In both my long-term Byzantine and Venice games Hinduism is pretty much extinct. Thanks for the answers/comments!
If you have EU4, Vijayanagar is a fun play that I recommend.

Also, i got all caught up on Not the end and wow the quality is astounding. It makes me wanna reread the whole timeline!
Thanks! I think it’s funny that in the original, at this point I was already into the 1400s, while now I’m just pushing into the 1250s.

I have to question how the Ottomans could even become a naval power anyways, the Persian Gulf coast isn't exactly known for plentiful timber supplies.
The Ottoman navy is very much a creation of the Ottoman-Triune alliance. Without that Triune aid there wouldn’t be an Ottoman navy.

The Ottomans even thinking of cutting the Romans out? . It's a miracle they can even get out of the Persian gulf. I don't think that even during the Troubles they tried something like that (Could be wrong, is it in OTL the Ottomans had some minor contacts with Aceh?)
The Ottomans did think of that; it was the driving impetus behind the treaty of naval alliance/support with the Triunes.

IOTL the Ottomans had contact with Aceh. I purchased and read The Ottoman Age of Exploration just a couple of weeks ago. The Ottomans were more active in the late 1500s in the Indian Ocean than I realized.

I wonder... if a newly crowned Emperor in Constantinople had a name that was that of one of the older, classical Roman Emperors at some point: say you get a Tiberios and he would get crowned as Tiberios IV.
Would the Latin West recognize this regnal numbering? If some kingdoms didn't that could make for some interesting diplomatic spats since that would basically cut the the heart of Rhoman legitimacy as the Roman Empire.
If said Latin kingdom was already in poor diplomatic relations with Rhomania, they might pull something like that. Otherwise it’s a pointless insult.

Islam didn't make it big in Southeast Asia until Sufi missionaries helped translate and merge the Quran and Muslim practices with local languages and customs, helped along by Muslim traders from the Middle East spreading roots in all the urban port cities. The destruction of the Sultanate of Egypt and the Roman hijacking of the Red Sea trade route has largely supplanted this process with Orthodox Christianity instead.

Now instead of the anemic Ottoman traders and culture missions (I'm surprised that the Ottomans even have a blue water navy), everyone's getting blasted with Christian Bibles and missionaries. And the Roman practice of ignoring ethnicity and tolerance of non-Islam religions means that it's Orthodox Christianity that's making most headway.

On that note, @Basileus444 did you intend for the Orthodox Romans to practice Orthopraxy when it comes to dealing with minority religious groups? I love the irony.
That wasn’t a conscious intent; it just ended up working out that way.

How have things been in venicia? Has it's population gotten close to pre andres levels yet?
Venetia has had a downturn since the Cape route has been growing in prominence. Less eastern goods are flowing through Egypt, than Venetia, and on to Europe. It’s not as severe as OTL, as the situation ITTL mirrors the OTL late 1500s, where the Suez and Cape split the traffic, as opposed to post-1600 where the Cape really took over. The city has never recovered the prominence it once held as the Serene Republic. Population is around 75000, appreciably less than its pre-Andreas 100,000+.
 
The Other Indian Empires
Faith and Steel: The Other Empires of India

“A wise man does not play chicken with an elephant.”-unknown origin.​

Vijayanagar may be the most spectacular, but it is far from the only Indian polity or even major power on the subcontinent. Two others make that grade as well, albeit not to the level of the great southern empire. These are the Kingdom of Oudh and the Viceroyalty of Sutanuti.

The year 1635 is a good one for Kishan Das, the Maharaja of Oudh, who has finally retaken the capital of Lucknow and murdered his traitorous brother Karan Singh and his entire family for good measure. From Patna in the east to Firozabad in the west, from the foothills of the Himalayas in the north to Maihar in the south, he is again lord and master.

Although on a map Oudh appears paltry in comparison to Vijayanagar, due to the high population of the Gangetic plain Kishan Das’s demographic resources are far more comparable to Venkata Raya’s than the map would suggest. Oudh mirrors Vijayanagar in many ways, for instance following the three-tier land administration model with direct holdings, feudal-style nayaks, and vassals on the periphery. The Oudh army is also divided into three categories based on the type of land holding that originates the troop in question.

Oudh lacks the massive import and export trade of Vijayanagar, but the sheer size of the internal market supports a well-developed textile industry, while Oudh perfumes are prized as valuable exports beyond the border. Another significant boost to the economy is Kishan Das’s possession of Varanasi, the holiest of the Sapta Puri, the seven sacred cities of Hinduism. The Maharaja is a massive patron of Varanasi, encouraging the pilgrims who flock there from as far away as Mataram, although much less so during the recent war with his brother.

The death of Karan Singh is at first a major blow to the power that bankrolled his initial coup, the Viceroyalty of Sutanuti. Viceroy Bertrand de la Faye had sponsored Karan Singh to pull Kishan Das away from his attack on the Viceroyalty in 1632. Kishan Das had won three battles during his offensive, but while none had been decisive, the track record clearly showed the threat the Oudh monarch could pose to the Triune Viceroyalty.

On the western frontiers of the Viceroyalty between it and Oudh lie the Rajas of Jharkand and Bihar, the latter being the feeble core remnant of the once mighty Empire of Bihar that in its heyday dominated most of the Gangetic plain. Those days are long gone now. While both states are de jure independent, they are very much satellites of the Viceroyalty. Meanwhile the Viceroyalty stretches from Koch Bihar (no connection to the Raja of Bihar) in the north to the Bay of Bengal, from Asansol in the west to Chittagong in the east.

Administratively the Viceroyalty looks much like Vijayanagar and Oudh with a three-tier land management system, although vassal states make up a larger percentage of the territory in question. In the two native empires though, vassal states are given autonomy in exchange for regular tribute payments, while the Viceroyalty enforces certain commercial conditions in the vassals to facilitate the trade of Triune merchants.

The Viceroyalty also looks much like the Katepanate of Taprobane to the south. It is an administrative department of the Triune government [1] with the Viceroy appointed by the Triune monarch. Like the Katepanoi, the Viceroy has complete civil and military authority, both governor and general, a union of powers made necessary by the distance from the metropole. However Triune merchant companies are important powers in their own right, filling the niche that in the Katepanates is occupied by the Ship Lords, although these are usually proper companies rather than more personal ventures.

The Viceroy maintains his authority over the various vassals under his banner through several different methods. Firstly is by the threat of foreign powers, such as the Bhutanese and Tibetans in the north, the coalescing Toungoo Kingdom in the east, and the Maharaja of Oudh in the west.

The second method is through the commercial constraints in the terms of vassalage. While Bengal is populous, rich, and productive, most of that ends up being siphoned off into Triune hands. Triunes can trade between vassal states without paying dues, while Bengali merchants must pay a toll every time their goods cross a frontier. This gives Triune traders a huge advantage and a much bigger market. Also the Viceroyalty has gained the support of the wealthy Bengal banker families. While goods are subject to dues, their money can flow freely throughout the Viceroyalty to the benefit of family coffers, who repay their Triune benefactors with plentiful and low-interest loans.

An extra benefit for the Triunes is that Bengali wares, particularly the textiles the region produces in quantities comparable to Vijayanagar, fuel Triune trade throughout the east. Bengali cotton can be traded in Indonesia for spices or Pyrgos for silver, which can then be shipped to China to trade for chinaware or tea, rapidly growing in popularity back home. As a result, the Triunes have less need or interest in trading in Vijayanagar.

Some of this money helps pay for the sepoys that are the muscle of Viceroyalty. These are native troops trained and equipped in the European manner, although in battle they are supplemented by Indian troops supplied by the vassal states. There are a few European regiments in the Viceroyalty, who earn higher pay than the sepoys, but disease keeps the strength of these white regiments limited.

There is some intermingling between Triune and Bengali culture. Many officials and officers sent to India are attracted by elements of native culture; Viceroy de la Faye commissions a translation of the Ramayana into French during his tenure. With few European women there is much intermarriage, although frequently the Indian wives are abandoned if the husband returns to the Triple Monarchy.

Those who form more durable attachments with Indian women, as opposed to just using the many brothels, are the most likely to assimilate. Many is the Triune official who is Triune in public by day but in private by night lives more like a native Bengali notable. There are rumors that some go completely native to the point of converting to Hinduism, such as the resident in Bihar. In addition to the official stipends from the Viceroyalty to various temples, which has been found to be a good and cheap way to get loyalty, there are personal endowments. Two examples can be found in the Colonel of the 1st Asansol Sepoy battalion and the Harbormaster at Chittagong. Both pay for candles for a temple where they are stationed, the Colonel after a bowel complaint disappeared after he visited the temple, the Harbormaster after the priests prayed for the survival and rescue of him and his family after a boating accident.

That the threat of Kishan Das does not reform and march again against the Viceroyalty is due to news from the west. The small Sikh state centered on Delhi took Agra while Kishan Das was fighting with his brother, and he wants it back. A small force that tried to retake Agra in 1635 was eviscerated by Ranjit Singh; clearly more force is needed.

The Sikh state is not like the great territorial empires of India. The Sikh faith, founded by Guru Nanak a hundred and fifty years before, had been born in the lands between the Punjab and Delhi. The number of Sikhs had steadily grown over the decades, drawing both from the Muslim and Hindu populations. As their numbers grew though, local notables grew concerned about their power.

The first third of the 1600s left northwest India in an uproar. Iskandar’s invasion shattered the local balance of power that had been formed after the destruction of the Delhi Sultanate by the combined might of the Hindu empires of Bihar and Vijayanagar. But then the Ottomans were expelled by the Vijayanagara, but they failed to fill the power vacuum. In the cauldron of chaos, those jealous of the Sikhs combined against them.

Although the Sikhs were defeated and driven from the heartland of their faith, they had been by no means destroyed. The chaos that had cast them down could be used to raise them back up again and in 1630 a reformed Sikh army took the once great city of Delhi.

The 1630s would be a transformative time for the Sikhs. Delhi was to be a new heartland. The Fifth Guru, Tegh Bahadur, started the construction of the Harmandir Sahib outside the city just five months after the conquest. Also as a way to distinguish Sikhs from non-Sikhs, he instituted the fellowship of the Khalsa, which required a special rite of baptism and the five symbols of Sikhism. [2]

Although the Guru was often referred to as the sovereign of the Sikh state by foreign observers, the Sikh state is much more of a confederacy than a centralized state. During the fighting in the Punjab the Sikhs had been organized into units called misl, commanded by a warlord who led that formation in battle. In 1635 there are six. While the misls cooperate against non-Sikh forces and recognize the Guru as the spiritual authority, the Sardars (chiefs of the misl) are largely autonomous with their own forces and holdings. Ranjit Singh is one of the Sardars, with the conquest of Agra greatly adding to his power base and prestige.

Sikh forces at this stage are still mostly cavalry, although the horsemen are adept with lance, saber, and musket. The horsemen are largely supported with jagir land grants, like the Nayaks of Vijayanagar, with being paid solely in coin having mercenary connotations. There is some infantry, recruited mainly from non-Sikhs, although not much in the way of artillery. Ranjit Singh’s adoption of Roman artillery was crucial to his takeover of Agra.

The Romans supplying cannons to Ranjit Singh had absolutely infuriated Kishan Das. The Triunes had used trickery, marshaling his brother against him, but the Triunes had been his enemies; such stratagems were to be expected. But the Romans were supposed to be his friends; he is not the kind of man to forgive such treachery.

The Sikhs are well aware that Kishan Das intends to march against them, and while the 1635 assault was beaten back, the next one will certainly be much larger. Thus they search for allies. They find exactly what they need in Venkata Raya, who is no friend of Kishan Das. The two great native empires have been fishing in the waters of the petty states that lie between them and Venkata Raya sees the Sikhs as another tool in these diplomatic maneuverings.

In 1636 the Empire of Vijayanagar and the Sikh Confederacy sign the historic Treaty of Agra. In it the Sikhs agree to become vassals of Vijayanagar, although the tribute is light and the Guru is not required to present himself at the Assembly of Princes. In exchange Venkata Raya will protect the Sikhs against Oudh.

Another benefit for Venkata Raya is that per the terms, the Sikhs will facilitate Vijayanagara recruitment of Gurkha troops to their north. Venkata Raya had discovered these short but tough men while campaigning in northern India against Ibrahim and he is very desirous of getting more for his armies. By 1640, there will be 4000 Gurkhas in Vijayanagara service, their cries of ‘Ayo Gurkhali’ striking fear in the heart of Vijayanagar’s enemies, the start of a proud and illustrious tradition that endures to the present day.

Kishan Das is utterly furious when he hears the news. While he wants Agra back, he is not willing at this point to risk crossing swords with Venkata Raya and so is forced to stand down. However he is not going to take this lying down.

His diplomatic counter-thrust is both unexpected and ingenious. Six months after the Treaty of Agra is signed, another historic treaty is signed in Patna between the Kingdom of Oudh and the Viceroyalty of Sutanuti, in which the two are pledged to be allies. It is a startling shift in the dynamic of power in India. With the pair as allies, there is a power bloc uniting most of the Gangetic plain, a power bloc comparable to that of Vijayanagar.

There are certainly tensions between the allies and a coalition is always more unwieldly than a unitary power, but Venkata Raya is well aware of the threat this poses. De La Faye was well aware when signing the treaty that it would anger the Vijayanagara Emperor, while Kishan Das is angry over the Sikh situation. Thus both take very little time to start fishing around in east central India, amongst the petty Rajas of Orissa and Chhattisgarh and the Adivasi chiefdoms in the great forests that still exist there. It is the typical game of diplomacy and espionage the great powers play with the small fry on the periphery of their domains, although the combination of Oudh and Sutanuti make their efforts particularly effective. One example is the new Raja of Cuttack who agrees to join the northern alliance in early 1637.

Venkata Raya is willing to look further afield than the petty states of India in search of allies against the new menace to the north. Both Rhomania and Spain seem to be good choices.

[1] The Viceroyalty is officially part of the Kingdom of France, although English traders are allowed to trade on the same terms as French merchants with no difference in customs requirements.

[2] The Khalsa is the same as OTL, although the setting is different and taking place sixty years earlier than IOTL. Also the OTL requirement that all Sikh males take the surname Singh while Sikh women take the surname Kaur is not implemented here.

I am taking all my Sikh information from Empire of the Sikhs: The Life and Times of Maharaja Ranjit Singh by Patwant Singh and Jyoti M. Rai.
 
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