An Age of Miracles Continues: The Empire of Rhomania

Hmm I wonder if Odysseus will get the nickname like Basil II. Odysseus the Islam Slayer?
After his war of wrath I'm guessing at one point he'll probably go to Island Asia. Hmm yes it could mimic like the otl Odysseus journey, he goes to Island Asia wreck some latin and muslim shit then goes home, gets lost for a time and then show up in Constantinople at spectacular way.
Yes I think I like to see this.
That would be so cool if he got lost in the middle of island asia, perhaps he could end up in new Zealand and establish contact with the Maori
 
Also Rhome has stagnated on the military front - explains why they had so many setbacks vs Iskander and the beginnings of the War of the Roman Succession. The military reorganization B444 detailed after the war is a result of that. Not all their setbacks from circa 1590-1633 were simply bad luck. Lots of Rhoman incompetence as well played a part in those loses.

Rhome didn't have the setbacks of Prussia but that's in part because of geography. It is easier to march men through Prussia then the Balkans/Syria/eastern Anatolia. I'd posit that having the crown prince captured on the field of battle and held hostage (a gilded cage is still a cage) and ransomed back for a million-plus hyperpyra is pretty damn humiliating, especially as it led to Demetrios II pulling a mini-Henry VI and going near-comatose as a result.
 
Also Rhome has stagnated on the military front - explains why they had so many setbacks vs Iskander and the beginnings of the War of the Roman Succession. The military reorganization B444 detailed after the war is a result of that. Not all their setbacks from circa 1590-1633 were simply bad luck. Lots of Rhoman incompetence as well played a part in those loses.

Rhome didn't have the setbacks of Prussia but that's in part because of geography. It is easier to march men through Prussia then the Balkans/Syria/eastern Anatolia. I'd posit that having the crown prince captured on the field of battle and held hostage (a gilded cage is still a cage) and ransomed back for a million-plus hyperpyra is pretty damn humiliating, especially as it led to Demetrios II pulling a mini-Henry VI and going near-comatose as a result.
Well hopefully this new army reforms will wipe the ottomans with relative ease. Even if the ottomans bounce back they wont be able to fight Rome on par like they did with Iskander the flawless. Iskander is probably my only hated part of this timeline, otherwise pretty much everything is good.
 
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Well hopefully this new army reforms will wipe the ottomans with relative ease. Even if the ottomans bounce back they wont be able to fight Rome on par like they did with Iskander the flawless. Iskander is probably my only hated part of this timeline, otherwise pretty much everything is good.
What kinds of reforms were those?
 
I'd love to see some vexillolgy and heraldry graphics of the world. Be interesting how they differ.
I wouldn’t have a clue where to start with that.

An interesting thing about Rhomania is them seemingly always being up to date when it comes to military matters. I mean, I've read through most of the story, and I find myself surprised they haven't gotten the equivalent of Prussia's national humiliation during the Napoleonic Wars which prompted major reforms.

Any reason why they always manage to keep themselves from stagnating on that front?
An OOC reason is that numerous small reforms and tweaking of the system is a good way to provide material for updates.

The War of the Roman Succession was originally going to be an unambiguous Roman defeat, with the Romans being clobbered in a two-front war with the Ottomans and Latins. But that was before I came up with the Great Uprising, which led to the assault on Mecca, which caused the war with Iskandar the Great, cue gigantic rabbit superhighway…

I anticipate Odysseus isn't just going to be known for his slaying of the ottomans. I think hes going to play a large part in consolidating Roman rule over island asia. I think this is going to be a major part of his legacy
We’ll see.

Hmm I wonder if Odysseus will get the nickname like Basil II. Odysseus the Islam Slayer?
After his war of wrath I'm guessing at one point he'll probably go to Island Asia. Hmm yes it could mimic like the otl Odysseus journey, he goes to Island Asia wreck some latin and muslim shit then goes home, gets lost for a time and then show up in Constantinople at spectacular way.
Yes I think I like to see this.
Not sure what nickname Odysseus will get yet. I had one idea, but I’m not sure if I can get it to fit anymore.

Check out this update. It has some post-war military stuff.
Dumb question. How do you get the link to go directly to the post in question? Thanks.
 
The Lands Below the Winds: Java and the East
The Lands Below the Winds: Java and the smaller eastern islands

The island of Java is heavily populated by the standards of Island Asia, with only the larger mainland realms comparable in demographic size. Of the Javanese states in 1635, Mataram is by far the largest both in territory and population, although its lack of maritime ports has hampered its technological development until the formation of the Roman alliance. (Mataram controls much of the south coast of Java, but it lacks the natural harbors and easy access to the interior via rivers that the north shore possesses.)

Fervently Hindu, Mataram has been locked in a long struggle with Semarang, the most powerful Muslim state in Island Asia after Aceh. While controlling only a strip along the north coast of Java, a gunpowder and wealth edge has enabled the Semarang to stalemate the much more numerous forces of Mataram, at least until the advent of the Mataram-Roman alliance. Now in the late 1630s Semarang is clearly declining fast, especially after Henri II makes peace with Rhomania and orders Triune aid to the Semarang to cease.

Roman involvement in Java has grown massively in the decade of the 1630s, although admittedly that was from a small base. Roman trading quarters now exist in every port city taken by joint Mataram-Roman forces, including the great port of Surabaya. The most important trade item is mundane but essential, rice. Unlike the other Katepanates who have larger landmasses under their control, New Constantinople’s domains consist entirely of small islands, specks on a map. Their value comes from those islands’ abilities to grow rare spices, for example the ethnically-cleansed Banda Islands, whose native population had been exterminated by the Romans during the conquest.

But because real estate is limited and the profit is in spices, the temptation is to put all available real estate into spices and not into much-less-profitable rice and vegetables. The massive rice fields in the Javanese interior around the city of Mataram provide a bountiful crop surplus the Romans are now able to access, a considerable boon considering earlier Roman difficulties in acquiring reliable food sources.

However, while the Mataram-Roman alliance is valuable, it is also expensive. Practically all of the ships available to the Katepano of New Constantinople are tied down in coastal operations off Java. Semarang cannot take on Roman battle-line ships, but those are few and far between, while Semarang ships can, even without Triune naval aid, pose a threat to light warships and armed merchantmen, the bulk of Roman naval forces in eastern waters.

Mataram and Semarang do not control the entirety of Java though. The western third of the island is the Kingdom of Sunda, an ancient state nearing its one-thousandth anniversary. During that long history, its fortunes have waxed and waned, the last century being particularly difficult. At the beginning of the Semarang Sultanate in its most expansionistic phase, after finishing off Majapahit (who’d been an overlord of Sunda), the Sultans turned their gaze on Sunda.

Pitched battles on both land and sea were rare, but devastating Semarang raids ripping through the countryside enslaving thousands of Sundanese had badly depopulated the kingdom. At several points it seemed like the long history of Sunda was about to come to an end.

In 1581 the Sundanese Raja appealed to the Portuguese for aid, who responded with a force of 400 arquebusiers. The next year the combined Sundanese-Portuguese army inflicted a smashing defeat on a Semarang army at the battle of Cimanuk. Although further slaving raids would continue, the battle of Cimanuk marked the end of Semarang’s existential threat to Sunda. Afterwards Semarang would turn its gaze toward the interior of Java, its raids there helping the Rajas of Mataram to coalesce their power by offering protection against the attacks.

Sunda and Portugal/Spain maintained their strong alliance, with trade prospering and benefiting both parties. No less than seven Sundanese princes have made their way to Lisbon for education, all showered with honors at the court of the Portuguese and later Spanish kings. In coastal Sunda, there is a small but noticeable minority of Catholic converts, unique in all of Indonesia. In Cimanuk and Banten there are small but capable shipyards that are quite adept at outfitting Spanish-style vessels and even building smaller warships. Sundanese sailors are common on Spanish vessels in the east.

On the opposite side of Java from Sunda is the Blambangan Kingdom, much smaller in area than Mataram or Sunda and much poorer than Semarang. Although Hindu, Blambangan has often allied with Semarang as a counter to Mataram, which is the greater threat. The collapse of Semarang power is extremely alarming to the rulers of Blambangan, although for now Mataram’s efforts are focused westward.

Western influence in Blambangan in 1635 is minimal, although there is a small Lotharingian presence. The non-Javanese power that weighs most on Blambangan is Gelgel, the most powerful of the Balinese states. The island of Bali, although small, is heavily populated and divided into several states, Gelgel and Mengwi the most powerful. The pair exercise hegemony over smaller states outside of Bali, their writ extending as far east as Sumba.

The rest of the Lesser Sunda Islands is also comprised of small native polities with varying degrees of trade with western merchants. In Timor and the various smaller islands east of Flores such as the Alor archipelago and the Tanimbar Islands, Roman influence is clearly dominant. The city of New Constantinople is on Ambon and between that and the new Roman stronghold of the Banda Islands, they are the clear hegemon in these waters although the degree of control they can exert over the native polities varies.

New Constantinople is clearly on the rise. The manner of conquering and controlling the Banda Islands is repulsive on an ethical level, but economically it has been a huge success. New buildings, including a fine Katepano’s palace and courthouse, as well as expanded harbor and storage facilities, are being constructed, with Wu immigrants playing an important role in the expansion of the city. That said, New Constantinople still suffers from a serious lack of manpower.

Going north from New Constantinople, the large islands of Ceram and Halmahera remain firmly under the control of their native peoples. Outsiders are uninclined to press the issue, given the locals’ tendency to eat those who cross them. Ceram remains a thorn in the side of New Constantinople, with the locals performing occasional raids on Ambon. To get shipwrecked on Ceram is most hazardous. Roman counter-raids hit Ceram every now and then (a young Leo Neokastrites cut his teeth on such raids) but two attempts to conquer Ceram and permanently end the threat have ended in fiascos.

Tidore and Ternate certainly rate much higher on the Roman civilization-ism scale. Both islands are small but sophisticated polities, originally wealthy through the spice trade. However most revenue from that now goes to their Spanish overlords, much to the native Rajas’ annoyance. But they are not willing to seek Roman help either. The two islands used to be vassals of Rhomania before the then-Portuguese wrested control from the Romans, so the Rajas see little reason to throw off the new master by inviting in the old.

Tidore and Ternate are both small and united, attributes that cannot be used to describe Sulawesi to the west. By far the most powerful entity in Sulawesi is Makassar, which dominates most of South Sulawesi and wields a ‘mini-thassalocracy’ in the surrounding waters as far as Buru, which is a vassal. Its rise to prominence is extremely recent and in response to growing Spanish and Roman power in the Moluccas. Makassar is wholly dedicated to free trade and fiercely opposed to the monopolies both the Romans and Spanish try to impose on their territories and vassals, which attracts all other parties who have reason to oppose said monopolies. As well as local peoples, this draws in Triunes, Lotharingians, and Arletians, eager to trade for spices which come either the lands of the mini-thassalocracy or smuggled ones from Roman and Spanish holdings.

Makassar may dominate but it is far from unchallenged. There are several small Buginese polities although their disunity and small size mean that most are little more than an annoyance to Makassar. Some are already vassals of Makassar, while a few more troublesome ones have been destroyed outright. However Makassar is primarily a maritime power, and given its tendency to irritate the Romans and Spanish the state is often distracted from conquests in Sulawesi.

This distraction has allowed the Wajo Kingdom to expand in scope to a size unprecedented by Buginese standards. This success has gained the attention of both the Spanish and Romans, but efforts to use Wajo as a weapon against Makassar have failed since the two Christian powers spend most of their time and energy countering the other. Both would like to use Wajo against Makassar, but neither want the other to be the one to do so. Meanwhile the Wajo rulers use the opportunity to get gifts from both sides, while not having to do much of anything in return.

Central Sulawesi, like South Sulawesi, is independent, but there are no states here to draw outside attention. Isolated from the outside world by rugged terrain, the Torajans are still animists with no polities larger than the village.

In contrast, the island of Buton just to the southeast of Sulawesi is a Roman vassal, while Banggai in eastern Sulawesi and Manado in the northeast pay tribute to the Spanish. The latter two are both legacies of Tidore’s and Ternate’s own Imperial ventures, which first the Romans and then the Spanish took over as they began to build up their own empires in this diverse region.
 
Alrighty here's the new map! Mostly just updated island asia and added new thingies in the corner since the old betas aren't a symbol ttl. Lemme know if you guys have any suggestions or questions!
 

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Not sure what nickname Odysseus will get yet. I had one idea, but I’m not sure if I can get it to fit anymore.
Can I ask what is he supposed to be nickname?
Though I still like him to be called the islam slayer. If not well there is also nicknames that is well suited for his legacy "the wrathful, the bloody and the vengeful".
 
If I recall there are 4 Kaptenates. Taprobane(Sri Lanka), Singapura (Singapore and Malaya), New Constantinople (Indonesia and Papua), and Pygros(Philippines).

In terms of strength Taprobane is the strongest while Pygros is the weakest but all are expanding power rapidly as more and more natives are Romanized.

These updates have been enlightening on the relative strengths of the eastern powers. I thought that the Triunes would be main impediment to Rhoman dominance but it is pretty clear that Spain will be the main opponent especially with Triunes and Lotharingians killing each other for the foreseeable future.

I still think that long term Rome is going to come to utterly dominate the arc from Taprobane to the Philippines; their approach to race and integration is just far superior to all others; but it is clear it will not happen as quickly or one-sidedly as I originally thought.
 
I echo those who have said that these regional updates are quite good. Not only are they up to this timeline's usual high standard in terms of writing they also get me to look up information about a time and place I knew next-to-nothing about. Early/Mid-Modern Asia was a fascinating place!
 
If I recall there are 4 Kaptenates. Taprobane(Sri Lanka), Singapura (Singapore and Malaya), New Constantinople (Indonesia and Papua), and Pygros(Philippines).

In terms of strength Taprobane is the strongest while Pygros is the weakest but all are expanding power rapidly as more and more natives are Romanized.

These updates have been enlightening on the relative strengths of the eastern powers. I thought that the Triunes would be main impediment to Rhoman dominance but it is pretty clear that Spain will be the main opponent especially with Triunes and Lotharingians killing each other for the foreseeable future.

I still think that long term Rome is going to come to utterly dominate the arc from Taprobane to the Philippines; their approach to race and integration is just far superior to all others; but it is clear it will not happen as quickly or one-sidedly as I originally thought.
Maybe the war of grief will finally destroy the stalemate between Rome and Spain? This is final chance for both parties to truly dominate Island Asia. And given that the war of grief shouldn't last long considering there's the war of wrath (B444's update on the 1 yr that Rome suffered economically, this is still in Demetrios III reign) . I'm guessing at one point the Romans and Spanish did clash, where Rome probably won that battle and pretty much forcing Spain to stop the war cause their bankrupt this time and have no more money to spend on.

I could be wrong but this war of grief shouldn't last long without Spain taking and destroying 4 of Rome's stronghold, as you have stated in the last updates. On the account of that wouldn't the next update be about east asia around the Zeng, Japan and Korea? I guess it will take some time before we see a next update on Island Asia.
 
If I recall there are 4 Kaptenates. Taprobane(Sri Lanka), Singapura (Singapore and Malaya), New Constantinople (Indonesia and Papua), and Pygros(Philippines).

In terms of strength Taprobane is the strongest while Pygros is the weakest but all are expanding power rapidly as more and more natives are Romanized.

These updates have been enlightening on the relative strengths of the eastern powers. I thought that the Triunes would be main impediment to Rhoman dominance but it is pretty clear that Spain will be the main opponent especially with Triunes and Lotharingians killing each other for the foreseeable future.

I still think that long term Rome is going to come to utterly dominate the arc from Taprobane to the Philippines; their approach to race and integration is just far superior to all others; but it is clear it will not happen as quickly or one-sidedly as I originally thought.
Rome has settlements in papua? Where? Not doubting you just wondering so i can add it to the map
 
Western influence in Blambangan in 1635 is minimal, although there is a small Lotharingian presence
I wonder if there is anything like the Treaty of Tordesillas ITTL to clearly delineate the spheres of influence of the Catholic powers or Arletian powers. Arles is probably unable to compete with Spain so quietly hunkers down and tries to grab what it can.

New Constantinople
New Constantinople choosing to go tall I see. How does it compare to Pekan's 40k population?

The latter two are both legacies of Tidore’s and Ternate’s own Imperial ventures, which first the Romans and then the Spanish took over as they began to build up their own empires in this diverse region.
Do you mean first two btw? Latter two are under Spanish influence.

Updates getting soooo close to Australia. I'm wondering how soon Europe will rediscover and scheme for it again.
 
Things are looking interesting. I do hope that Rhomania takes most of Australia as they could name it Notosia or Notia edafi. Making the capital sideroupoli in otl Melbourne perhaps.
 
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