The New World of the White Huns

Spoilers! And industrialization might look somewhat different from what we saw OTL.

World Wars are also probably going to look somewhat different, depending on what colonialism looks like in TTL. Which again, as we've already seen is taking somewhat of a different cast than OTL.

The Xasar industrializing first is not a given by any means. Economically speaking, they're hardly as central as they were even a few centuries ago. The times, they are a-changing.

We're about two hundred years ahead of schedule, roughly, but if history shows us one thing, it's that technology isn't linear and there's no path of progress. Agriculture can be developed without the state. The state can be developed without wheels. Writing can exist without monarchs. All of which is to say that the modernity of the White Huns might not look like modernity as we know it. We're witnessing the very initial phases of the birth of the "modern world" now.

My only promise is the one I've made since the very beginning. I will end this timeline when we reach something akin to modernity, by which I mean the era that the people living in the White Huns universe consider "modern." There will be no futuristic technological elements, and we will end before those occur. I may even retcon the exact date of the nuclear bomb post I made ages ago (not by much) if need be.
I hope one of the things that ttl won’t have are antibiotics as penicillin is caused by a fluke, and I’d like to see a ‘modern’ world where infant mortality is still high due to disease as medicine and the general knowledge of disease is less advanced.
Estonia.

Kidding. I have no idea yet. I don't plan the timeline that far in advance.
I think that for Christian Europe England or the Rhine make the most sense, although the Rusichi and the Xaxar may industrialise earlier since they are more connected to India via their religion.

BTW, would Japan colonise Siberia and America? I’d like to see a version of Japan that controls Panama through ittl California even though the Europeans and Indians are colonising in ittl America.
 
I hope one of the things that ttl won’t have are antibiotics as penicillin is caused by a fluke, and I’d like to see a ‘modern’ world where infant mortality is still high due to disease as medicine and the general knowledge of disease is less advanced.

I mean sooner or later antibiotics would probably be discovered if not for the fluke of penicillin. Even prior to the discovery of penicillin, people were aware that there were chemicals that killed bacteria. So I don't see how there'd be a huge difference in long run.

I really can't comment on infant mortality rates in a future I haven't written yet, but I don't really see thematically how massively higher infant mortality would fit with the broader themes I've been exploring.

I think that for Christian Europe England or the Rhine make the most sense, although the Rusichi and the Xaxar may industrialise earlier since they are more connected to India via their religion.

They're still very far from the Indosphere.

BTW, would Japan colonise Siberia and America? I’d like to see a version of Japan that controls Panama through ittl California even though the Europeans and Indians are colonising in ittl America.

It may. At this point, Japan is still relatively insular, but that is changing slowly. Japan might ultimately conquer California (I stress might) but the current residents are Cham from South East Asia.
 
I mean sooner or later antibiotics would probably be discovered if not for the fluke of penicillin. Even prior to the discovery of penicillin, people were aware that there were chemicals that killed bacteria. So I don't see how there'd be a huge difference in long run.

I really can't comment on infant mortality rates in a future I haven't written yet, but I don't really see thematically how massively higher infant mortality would fit with the broader themes I've been exploring.
I think that antibiotics would be discovered later, which would make medicines less advanced than otl, which was what I was going for. Maybe no vaccines? Inoculation still exists though, since its so easy to do.
They're still very far from the Indosphere.

It may. At this point, Japan is still relatively insular, but that is changing slowly. Japan might ultimately conquer California (I stress might) but the current residents are Cham from South East Asia.

Yeah, but everyone in Europe is far from the Indosphere. I think the Middle East (Persia?) is the second area to industrialise (kinda like Germany industrialising), which then would send the knowledge and expertise of industrialisation to other Buddhist countries. As most Christians would be doubling down on conservatism due to the quick changes on literally everything, only a few countries in Europe will industrialise until ittl’s 21th century I think.

PS: I really like this version of Europe. Christianity is getting some Muslim characteristics such as slave soldiers, which may retard its modernisation. How powerful is the church in Western Europe ittl? Also, will we see the Indians colonising bits of Europe such as Ispania, the Maghreb (They’re in the Med so it counts), and Germany as they would have bits of things that the Indians want. Would we see massive slave mines in Europe for coal?
 
I think that antibiotics would be discovered later, which would make medicines less advanced than otl, which was what I was going for. Maybe no vaccines? Inoculation still exists though, since its so easy to do.

Why though?

Yeah, but everyone in Europe is far from the Indosphere. I think the Middle East (Persia?) is the second area to industrialise (kinda like Germany industrialising), which then would send the knowledge and expertise of industrialisation to other Buddhist countries. As most Christians would be doubling down on conservatism due to the quick changes on literally everything, only a few countries in Europe will industrialise until ittl’s 21th century I think.

I appreciate the thoughts. I don't know if Industrialization will spread along religious lines, and frankly, it is an open question what those religious lines will be one to two centuries hence.

PS: I really like this version of Europe. Christianity is getting some Muslim characteristics such as slave soldiers, which may retard its modernisation. How powerful is the church in Western Europe ittl? Also, will we see the Indians colonising bits of Europe such as Ispania, the Maghreb (They’re in the Med so it counts), and Germany as they would have bits of things that the Indians want. Would we see massive slave mines in Europe for coal?
Thank you. Part of the reason this world is so fundamentally alien, however, is that I don't plan anything too far in advance, and I don't play favorites.

The Church in Western Europe is extremely powerful in a way that the Renaissance Popes of OTL would have envied and the Medieval Popes of OTL would have thought exceedingly crass. They have a lot of power, but that power is harder than they'd like it and maybe, just maybe, not soft enough to win them the love of their subjects.

Or maybe we will see something akin to Philip Pullman's magisterium. I'm not sure yet. Both directions seem plausible.

As I've mentioned in private messages, slave soldiers are one of the varying weird elements of the timeline. To quote myself: "I should probably explore the ramifications of that on European alt-feudalism. We may end up with a more formalized "black" aristocracy in large parts of Europe, although slave soldiers are not a ubiquitous thing. Frankly, they're also one of the weirdest parts of this timeline, that I introduced slave soldiers to Europe instead of the Near East. But I don't see why it would be impossible. Just feels very out of place with history as I know it, and I'm surprised there hasn't been more reader pushback. Still, I think it's a smart way to get the Papacy to be more militarized, and in this timeline the Papacy has a real need to replace the Frankish Empire militarily."
 
As I've mentioned in private messages, slave soldiers are one of the varying weird elements of the timeline. To quote myself: "I should probably explore the ramifications of that on European alt-feudalism. We may end up with a more formalized "black" aristocracy in large parts of Europe, although slave soldiers are not a ubiquitous thing. Frankly, they're also one of the weirdest parts of this timeline, that I introduced slave soldiers to Europe instead of the Near East. But I don't see why it would be impossible. Just feels very out of place with history as I know it, and I'm surprised there hasn't been more reader pushback. Still, I think it's a smart way to get the Papacy to be more militarized, and in this timeline the Papacy has a real need to replace the Frankish Empire militarily."
Maybe you can make an interlude on the topic of the slave soldiers and explore what it is like in Europe.

I also think that an update on the lost knowledge that would have gotten in otl renaissance, did not get recovered in the white Huns worlds and how that impact the white huns world, and maybe they found stuff that we could not find in the otl renaissance.
 
Why though?
Honestly, that’s one of the ways modernity in ittl can be different than what’s considered modern technologies in otl
I appreciate the thoughts. I don't know if Industrialisation will spread along religious lines, and frankly, it is an open question what those religious lines will be one to two centuries hence.
I think industrialisation spreads along cultures with similar values. The Rushichi and the Xaxar are more similar to India given Buddhism than Christian Europe. Plus, I’d like a Christian Europe where they’re less powerful as its more interesting.
Thank you. Part of the reason this world is so fundamentally alien, however, is that I don't plan anything too far in advance, and I don't play favorites.

The Church in Western Europe is extremely powerful in a way that the Renaissance Popes of OTL would have envied and the Medieval Popes of OTL would have thought exceedingly crass. They have a lot of power, but that power is harder than they'd like it and maybe, just maybe, not soft enough to win them the love of their subjects.

Or maybe we will see something akin to Philip Pullman's magisterium. I'm not sure yet. Both directions seem plausible.
Essentially I’m asking that question as society becomes more conservative when factors such as religion, culture and the elites prevent it to do so.
As I've mentioned in private messages, slave soldiers are one of the varying weird elements of the timeline. To quote myself: "I should probably explore the ramifications of that on European alt-feudalism. We may end up with a more formalized "black" aristocracy in large parts of Europe, although slave soldiers are not a ubiquitous thing. Frankly, they're also one of the weirdest parts of this timeline, that I introduced slave soldiers to Europe instead of the Near East. But I don't see why it would be impossible. Just feels very out of place with history as I know it, and I'm surprised there hasn't been more reader pushback. Still, I think it's a smart way to get the Papacy to be more militarized, and in this timeline the Papacy has a real need to replace the Frankish Empire militarily."
I think slave soldiers in Europe makes sense considering the problems that they had. They could be a major force in the centuries to come, and screw Europe up in many ways, which is fun. Also, who colonises Argentina?
 
Honestly, that’s one of the ways modernity in ittl can be different than what’s considered modern technologies in otl

I don't see why that's intrinsically necessary. Modernity will be hard enough for me to depict without unnecessarily holding back home progress.

I think industrialisation spreads along cultures with similar values. The Rushichi and the Xaxar are more similar to India given Buddhism than Christian Europe. Plus, I’d like a Christian Europe where they’re less powerful as its more interesting.

I don't know if industrialization is cultural and I'd be interested to see sources that propose that.
Essentially I’m asking that question as society becomes more conservative when factors such as religion, culture and the elites prevent it to do so.

I'm sorry, I don't understand what you mean here.

I think slave soldiers in Europe makes sense considering the problems that they had. They could be a major force in the centuries to come, and screw Europe up in many ways, which is fun. Also, who colonises Argentina?

Agreed. I don't yet know who will colonize Argentina.

Maybe you can make an interlude on the topic of the slave soldiers and explore what it is like in Europe.

That's a good idea.

I also think that an update on the lost knowledge that would have gotten in otl renaissance, did not get recovered in the white Huns worlds and how that impact the white huns world, and maybe they found stuff that we could not find in the otl renaissance.

The creativity necessary to figure out a set of things we didn't discover OTL is possibly beyond the scope of this timeline (I'm hardly going to invent hypothetical Greek inventions). But I agree the former could be useful.
 
Agreed. I don't yet know who will colonize Argentina.
There might not be a reason to. If the native peoples of the region (be they here descendants of the Guarani, Mapuche and other peoples of the region or different entirely) were able to keep relative independance far longer than most of the rest of South America bar the Mayans, Yaqui and deeper plains tribes otl. It isn't impossible some of their states could survive in the long term if circumstances allow.
 
I don't see why that's intrinsically necessary. Modernity will be hard enough for me to depict without unnecessarily holding back home progress.
So are you going to go till we have things like crispr, which is found due to people finding dna, then people doing a lot of research on bacteria? I'm saying things like genetic engineering wouldn't be necessary while mechanical innovations would be required for a 'modern' world.
I don't know if industrialization is cultural and I'd be interested to see sources that propose that.
It's my hypothesis on how industrialisation spreads. It makes sense though.
I'm sorry, I don't understand what you mean here.
I'm talking about why industrialisation doesn't spread/spreads slower in certain countries/cultures.
 
Autotheism in the Old and New Worlds
The Asian Gnostic sects that would eventually be dubbed the Hephtalites came to inspire a number of other heretics; most importantly, the Autotheists. The Hellenes, with expatriate communities all over the Western Mediterranean, exchanged ideas with the locals, and with the Mauri. While Hephtalism was a minority even in Asia Minor for quite some time, still some converts made journeys west, and influenced the "lay monks" of the Frankish lands, also known as beghards, who devoted themselves to lives of prayer and good works without taking vows. As the authority of the Frankish state collapsed, individual virtue and piety were increasingly looked to as tokens of authority, benefitting the Catholic [1] Church, but also local holy men of varying orthodoxy, who came to be relied on as judges in local disputes.

Varying sects of Autotheism sprung up in and around the trading cities of the Western Mediterranean. These sects had in common a tendency to shun ostentatious rituals and worship, and a belief that virtue implied literal union with God. Many held the belief that Jesus was the adopted son of God, the most perfected human, and that all men should strive to attain union of their human and Christ-natures. Many sects also held property in common (at least at first) and encouraged communalism and "brotherly love". They also tended to be more egalitarian than the Frankish society of the day, according women expanded status or equal status to men. They differed in their degree of dualism and, later, elitism, but nearly all had a ranked community from initiates all the way to the nigh-saintly Purificati, Perfecti, or Virtuosi, as they were variously called.

In Ispania the sects flourished in the south and east. Most influential, ultimately, would be the Apostolic Order, founded by Rodrigo of Gadez, and brought to the New World after his martyrdom by his disciple, the "Apostle" Antonio, which siphoned off many members of the movement in southern and western Ispania. The maritime Legation [2] of Narbo, County of Barcino, and Commune of Pisa had large Autotheist communities, as did Provence and Aquitaine. Under persecution, these groups would eventually become more exclusive and private, but still maintained their community focus.

In Italy, the Italiote Hellenes of the south, were exposed directly to both the influence of the Hephtalites and the collapse of Frankish authority. The Simeonites, a strongly dualistic sect named after one Simeon of Taranto, became prevalent there and in Sicily. The Xasars came to realize eventually that their "Rumana Dhata" lumped together Hellenes and Latins , and created a new Dhata court for the "Franks" to accommodate the local customs of northern Italy. The Xasars encouraged migration of Autotheists around the Mediterranean to Italy, and so in the north, a dual legal system evolved where, in the north, the Catholics used the "Frankish" Dhata and the Autotheists used the "Roman" Dhata. Autotheists, while tending toward insularity and quietism and thus unlikely to actually serve in the Xasars' bureaucracy, were at least trusted more by the state and were encouraged to settle near important Xasar strongholds like Heneto [Venice]. After the Votive Wars and the Division of Aquitaine, Autotheists were persecuted and seen as collaborators. Ispania, Burgundy, and Aquitaine's communities were expelled entirely; Italy's was heavily persecuted but had established deep enough roots in Northern Italy to entirely extirpate. Many of the "holy republics" that now control much of southern Italy show strong crypto-Autotheist influence, especially that of Taranto...

In Africa, Autotheism had less need to offer mutual aid (society not having collapsed as much for the Mauri...) and so in places, especially the great ports, the sect became more individualistic and almost came to resemble a social club, one with a strong religious focus to be sure but one that also had a number of "dilettantes" attracted by its reputation. The heresy was accused of sexual deviancy, Pelagianism, and Satanism, among other invective, but the Mauri had a lenient attitude toward heretics and so this sect persisted and influenced those of the later Western Med. Among the Berber, Idirism enjoyed a new life as Massunaism, named after one Massuna, a goatsherd who claimed to be the third Son of God. This strict, iconoclastic sect was seen as too deviant to tolerate and was eventually suppressed in Africa, but would come to have strong impacts on the history of Tolteca. Massuna led his followers overseas and they eventually settled around the Moorish outpost of Vivamauri [Matamoros] north of Tolteca.

In Antillia [Cuba], the Apostolic Order had formed a society along what they considered Autotheist principles. This society was bucolic, community-focused, strictly Latin-speaking, and over time would come to integrate the local Taino population, though never completely; still, the Taino increasingly spoke Latin and worshipped with the Purificati while Taino customs like ball games became popular with the settlers. Taino practices like polygamy were frowned on, but tolerated. Local caciques became baptized as bishops and brought the various clans into their church. The Taino and other natives on Antillia had weathered the plagues with the Order's help and increasingly adopted European techniques.

The settlers, it turned out, would have a symbiotic relationship with the Taino. Being agrarian-focused, the settlers ironically had little love for the sea, but the New World was full of threats from that direction. The Andilander Norse launched raids from Sankt-Jan, Rothulland, and other ports-of-call. A lost Fula expedition, en route to Tolteca, landed, raided Antioch, and then after negotiations, surrendered, converted, and became a notable part of that community. Most threateningly, the raid of the Norse corsair "Black" Hakon af Island turned into an outright invasion when his pirates seized Agapia [Havana] with little resistance. He then marched on Jerusalem-Ultramar [Santiago], declaring himself "King of Antillia", pillaging the settlers' small family farms and capturing natives to sell into slavery. Ultimately, it was the Taino who were most familiar with the arts of war, and they were able drive out Black Hakon with numerical superiority and guerilla warfare. The threats from overseas only grew larger, however, and only the arrival of the Aquitainian exiles and the Mauri likely prevented them from being conquered around this time.

Over the nearly two centuries since the founding of Antillia, the island had acquired a reputation as a strange place, half wildly savage, half rigidly ordered, and all heretical. Despite occasional shiploads of immigrants, the settlers remained very isolated from European influence for quite some time, until the Votive Wars brought a new wave of persecution. Burgundian, Aquitainean, and Italian exiles came flocking to Africa, Sicily and southern Italy. They also went overseas, to New Aquitaine, but most especially, to Antillia. Despite some culture shock, the groups came to an understanding and the new arrivals brought their knowledge of naval matters and other more recent European technology to bear for the island's advantage. They maintained their commercial ties to the Mauri as well, tying the island into transoceanic trade networks for the first time. In New Aquitaine the authorities took the most token of measures to express official disapproval of Autotheism, while unofficially welcoming the (disproportionately urban and skilled) wave of European migrants. Autotheist refugees would settle heavily around Lac-Sant-Marie [Maracaibo] and would also be heavily involved in developing the Imperial Arsenal's weapons manufacturing industries.

Antillia was not the only Autotheist island. The history of Lux, home of the splinter group of Alphonsians and namesake of the Lucaias [Bahamas] has been mentioned in a previous post. Smaller splinter groups resided on Perdition Isle [Key West] and other islands in the Lucaias. The colony at Patmos [Andros Island], founded by a crypto-Autotheist but primarily millenarian sect called the Johnites from Aquitaine, came under attack by Ispanian freebooters, who invaded the colony, expelled the settlers, and turned it into a notorious pirate haven. This haven would form the pretext for Aquitaine's eventual takeover of the islands, which would then pass to Ispanian control after the Division of Aquitaine.

In the Xasar lands, a wave of Autotheist exiles accompanied their armies' withdrawal, many of whom would be settled in Epirus and on the Dalmatian coast. Raugia [Ragusa] may be the largest Autotheist city in Europe. North of Aquitaine, Autotheism won some converts in Neustria, Brittany, and Carinthia, but made little headway in the Anglo-Norse or Germanic world. Their influence would be felt, though, on certain latter-day dissident movements that were beginning to gather steam there...

[1] I should clarify for whoever asked about it, that the Catholic and Orthodox churches of OTL never split so these guys are also "orthodox"
[2] From its status as as being ruled by an Imperial Legate
 
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Yeah, but everyone in Europe is far from the Indosphere. I think the Middle East (Persia?) is the second area to industrialise (kinda like Germany industrialising)

I disagree on this. Persia is more like India's Russia and maybe Europe could still industralize like Eastern Asia industralized.
 
You forgot to put down the footnotes.

Until he edits them in:

[1] I should clarify for whoever asked about it, that the Catholic and Orthodox churches of OTL never split so these guys are also "orthodox"
[2] From its status as as being ruled by an Imperial Legate
 
I disagree on this. Persia is more like India's Russia and maybe Europe could still industralize like Eastern Asia industralized.

Yes, someone early called them the gendarme on the Ganges in allusion to Russia, and while I'm not sure if they'll play a similar role (I'm not even sure yet what reaction and revolution would look like in this TL), there's a decent case for them being a militarily powerful state that fails to industrialize as quickly as it's neighbors.
 
@Practical Lobster I just read through RotW and this thread and I have to say, it's truly amazing. The world is so rich and alien, yet feels so real. I have a lot of questions.

With regards to the linguistic landscape of the Near East and the Balkans, its mentioned that Iranian dialects are predominately spoken. Are these dialects predominantly Eastern Iranian in origin versus Persian's Southwestern branch OTL? Have Persian or its variants been relegated to regional languages?

With the introduction of slave-soliders to Europe, I think it would be pretty interesting to see the development of a Mamluk class/aristocracy who would ostensibly be more faithful to the Pope.

Lastly, is East Africa in the Indosphere or part of the greater Iranian world due to the melting pot culture at play there? It reminds me a little bit of the Mandala system in Southeast Asia that it seems to be under the influence of both, but at the same time it also seems to be coming more into its own after having read the last updates.
 
Thank you!

With regards to the linguistic landscape of the Near East and the Balkans, its mentioned that Iranian dialects are predominately spoken. Are these dialects predominantly Eastern Iranian in origin versus Persian's Southwestern branch OTL? Have Persian or its variants been relegated to regional languages?

Well any region predominantly settled by the Eftal or any other steppe people like the Xasar would have a lot of Eastern Iranian speakers. I think Iran itself has a language that more closely resembles an evolution of Persian with few-to-no Arabic influences, and more Turkic/Eastern Iranian loanwords. But linguistics has never been my strong suit and it is always others who have made the best contributions to the timeline in that respect! So I welcome feedback and corrections from all.

With the introduction of slave-soliders to Europe, I think it would be pretty interesting to see the development of a Mamluk class/aristocracy who would ostensibly be more faithful to the Pope.

It hasn't been discussed in perfect detail, but that's basically what exists in the old Frankish heartlands of Europe. The slave soldiers aren't the landed nobility per se, they're more akin to the palace nobles of the late Frankish Empire, drawing a large stipend and collecting rents. They may transition into a landed nobility over time, but the current situation is basically one of armed juntas.

Lastly, is East Africa in the Indosphere or part of the greater Iranian world due to the melting pot culture at play there? It reminds me a little bit of the Mandala system in Southeast Asia that it seems to be under the influence of both, but at the same time it also seems to be coming more into its own after having read the last updates.

I'd say they're part of the "greater Indosphere" that vast and ill-defined region stretching from the northern tip of Australia (or arguably now California) to Eastern Iran or Southern Arabia, a world that's embraced to varying degrees Indian political, economic, and religious thought over time. It's certainly under the political influence of Indian powers, while also being under the cultural influence of both Iran and India, and you're right in noting that it's also its own thing. The whole situation is complex and messy and fascinating. I think in the long term it will be tough for East Africa to chart its own course in the world, since as we're seeing the Indian Ocean is basically the kiddie pool of global imperialism as practiced by the powers of South India. East Africa is close enough India can send armies and fleets with ease, and its entire economy is basically geared to develop goods to ship back to the "metropole" (using that term loosely).
 
Mexica Gets Remodeled New
I've been sitting on this update a while but now feel like it's ready to go. At long last, things will be moving along in Mexico...

The Chicomoztoca
After the standoff at Senumakulu [Monte Alban], an uneasy truce reigned between the Ispanian and Novaquitainian regimes in Tolteca. Their positions were precarious enough that fighting risked wearing even the victor down and making them vulnerable to invasion and revolt. Both remained set on possessing the Valley of Anahuac [Mexico], which was the true prize of Tolteca, but remained just as set on making sure the other did not get it. As a result the last Fula king, Faraba, was able to maintain his rule.... until it was shattered by the rise of the Chicomoztoca.

To understand the Chicomoztoca, it is necessary to understand the Chichimecs. "Chichimeca" was less of an ethnicity, than a description - denoting "barbarians" who practiced a nomadic hunting lifestyle on the dry plains and hills of Northern Mexico, also referred to as Aztlan, the legendary home of the Nahua peoples. Many of them were Nahua or spoke languages kin to that of the Nahua, and, over the centuries, waves of them had migrated down south into the civilized lands of southern Mexico and been mostly assimilated into the overall Nahua culture.

This process was interrupted by the Fula hegemony. In another world, migrating Aztecah [people from Azltan] would have founded the city of Tenochtitlan in the early 14th century. Instead, many of these people went west, founding the confederacy of Chimalhuacan on the Pacific coast. Others simply stayed, and raided the Fula and each other over the borders. These nomads took to the horse with speed and skill. Their adoption of modern arms and armor was slower, but accelerated by the arrival of Itzcoatl and his entourage of skilled followers, whose anti-slavery ideas would gain popularity among the victims of repeated Fula forays. The Masamida would come to supply them with tufenj and other accoutrements of war, while the Massunaites, that heretic Berber Autotheist sect, had settled just to their northeast, and provided further education in horseback riding and goat herding. They also introduced the camel to the deserts of North Solvia, giving the inhabitants another new asset, and many Chichimecas turned to nomadic goat herding to supplement their traditional hunting lifestyle. Thus, with their strength and numbers waxing, and the Fula rump kingdom landlocked and waning, it was only a matter of time before the natives gained an advantage over their long-time oppressors.

The man to seize this advantage would enter history known only as Huitzilhuitl ["Hummingbird Feather"]. After uniting a coalition of 13 tribes, he would lead a coalition of Nahua, Pame, and Guamares to victory in the seige of Kafibaka, with the help of hired Mauri cannoneers. The victorious siege rapidly devolved into a sack, and an orgy of retributive violence ensued. Huitzilhuitl attributed his success in war to the favor of the god of the hunt, Mixcoatl, and sacrificed King Faraba and many other high-ranking captives in his name by shooting them with arrows, a practice which would become common in the new regime. The Fula, never a majority in the Valley of Anahuac, were soon driven out by mobs of Toltecans, and thousands of refugees fled to Oachicaca and the coast.

Huitzilhuitl moved to consolidate his rule. Where Fula rulers had been displaced, local nobles were once again allowed to reign. The new capital of Aminitlan would take some time to develop, resembling for years a great armed camp, but eventually a new city would rise on the shores of Lake Anahuac. Huitzilhuitl seized on the common heritage of Mesoamerican peoples, naming his coalition the "Chicomoztoca", after the mythical cave the Nahua peoples were birthed in. The Fula, whose black skin recalled the color of Tezcatlipoca, the god of death, conflict, and magic, were said to have been that god's avatar; the Chicomoztoca could properly propitiate him, and so had the right to inherit their rule. Gladiatorial sacrifices of Fula and European captives were instituted in honor of Tezcatlipoca, which played very well with the vengeful crowds. This was in conflict with the anti-sacrifice views of the Way of Itzcoatl, but the warrior cults wielded political power that could not be denied. However, Huitzilhuitl made concessions to the growing number of followers of the Way by banning slavery, at a stroke leveling the worst of the hierarchies imposed by the Fula and winning widespread popularity among the masses. A lavish ceremony was held dedicating twin cornerstones of new temples to Mixcoatl and Tezcatlipoca, and Giovanni Cosca (who shortly ended up sacrificed himself) wrote in his journal that the smell of blood could be noticed for miles downwind of the city. Huitzlhuitl rallied his forces and proclaimed he would liberate all of Tolteca from overseas foreigners.

This could not have come at a worse time for Ispania. Word of the fall of Kafibaka and word of the fall of Olizpo arrived on opposite sides of the ocean at around the same time. Alvar de Coruna, Count of Oviedo, had replaced the count of Ispalis and now faced the unenviable prospect of a native invasion with no reinforcements coming from home. With open war between Ispania and Amuricush, the Mauri freeports closed their doors and entered a state of thinly-veiled hostility. Refugees poured into Nyanri and Dola on the coast and overwhelmed the city's food supplies. Near Cholula, the Ispanian expeditionary force would fight Huitzilhuitl's army to a bloody stalemate. The Count of Oviedo, knowing that his situation was increasingly hopeless, perished in a suicidal charge against a cadre of Pame warriors. His subordinate, Diego Martinez, would take the reigns and ordered a withdrawal of the army to Satanazes [Florida], bringing with him a sizeable number of refugee Fula aristocrats. The Chocomoztoca swept down the coast and did not stop until they reached the outskirts of Dola [Veracruz], where the Twin Crowns governor of the Yucatan had installed a protectorate under a Fula noble.

New Aquitaine looked on these events with dismay. As Emperor Julian faced a decade-long campaign in the Tolteca, he had increasingly delegated oversight of his conquests to his close friend Marcus d'Arcachon (the new "Exarch of New Aquitaine"), as the Emperor's presence was required back in the Andean capital of Morlans. Exarch Marcus faced his own internal turmoil - civil war erupted in the vassal state of Oachicaca as Duke Kwarire faced a revolt led by his half-brother Anda, capitalizing on the instability of the refugee crisis. His forces were already deployed further west in Jalisco fighting the "devil worshipers" of Chimalhuacan, and unrest simmered among the Mixtec subjects of the domain. Ultimately his position was rescued by the Tarascans, who launched their own attack on Chimalhuacan and would ultimately assert their own rule over the Pacific coast from Jalisco to Mazatlan. This freed the Exarch to quash the Zapotec revolt and, just barely, stave off a Chicomoztoca army at the mountain passes of Oachicaca.

The Exarch wrote to Morlans desperately pleading for more men and resources. But they would be in short supply. For Emperor Julian had just received a most irresistible proposition, on a ship sailing from Bordeu...
 
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Haiti New
And a double feature, this time on the long-neglected island of Haiti...

The Dissolution of Haiti
The island of Haiti would, it turn out, have a more turbulent history than neighboring Antillia. Conquered in the late 12th century by Ispanian votivists, the so-called "Dukes of Haiti" turned out to be a callous and heavy-handed bunch, which would ultimately be their undoing. At the colonial capital of St. Nicolas [Cap-Haitien], the first Duke, Rodrigo Meles, rounded up the native population in mass, placing them on "colonias" modelled, notionally, after the seigneuries of the Frankish homeland, where the natives were brutally exploited in return for the dubious benefit of baptism and instruction at the hands of Catholic priests. Taino hands would build a stone fortress, and later, the lavish palace, in which he and his sons would reign. The Franks never extended their reach fully over the interior. The Chiefdoms of Maguana and Higuey, in the east of the island, mounted particularly fierce resistance, despite being ravaged by plague. Despite some tentative steps at establishing plantation agriculture, the island largely remained a stopover point for adventurers on the way to Tolteca or Aloysiana.

In 1225, the Flowering Flesh arrived in Haiti. St. Nicolas became an abattoir; conditions had never been healthy at the best of times. The reigning Duke Bartolomeo himself was struck down, succeeded by his son, Rodrigo II. Concurrently, a major hurricane struck the island; the resulting storm surge wiped much of San Nicolas's harbor district into the sea. Taking the storm as an omen, the chief of the Higuey, Cayacoa, rallied the remaining Taino in revolt. Priests were slaughtered on the colonias and Cayacoa himself led an army to surround San Nicolas and starve it into submission. In 1227 a Masamida expedition would be shocked to arrive in port only to find Cayacoa sitting on the Duke's throne, having declared himself the new Kasikenena or "King" of Haiti. Rodrigo II would eke out a miserable existence thenceforth as Cayacoa's personal servant; other Franks would enjoy a more privileged but no less subordinate status in the new kingdom. Cayacoa knew the Franks' techniques of weaponmaking and horseback riding gave them an edge in warfare, and resolved to have the surviving Franks teach them to his subjects. His son, Agueibana, would travel to Antillia, Rothulland, and Tolteca, seeking to foster alliances for the new kingdom. While abroad, he established cordial relations with several Amuricushi merchants and agreed to allow the establishment of Moorish freeports at San Nicolas and Yaguana [Leogane], and on the coast near Cayacoa's new capital at Higuey. In return, the Moors supplied the Taino with weapons... though they held back the most sophisticated and quality arms to retain their own advantage.

In 1236, Cayacoa died, and an assembly of caciques proclaimed Aguiebana the next Kasikenena. The chief Guiebana of Jaragua, a rival of both the new king and his late father, decamped to Antillia, where he attempted to raise a Taino revolt against the Apostolic Order. In Antillia, however, relations between colonists and natives could not have been more different; the settlers had, for example, helped the natives with food and shelter during the greatest waves of plague, and the Autotheists had made many converts among the populace. This abortive rebellion was a damp squib, but did sour relations between the Order and Haiti for a time, particularly as Agueibana turned a blind eye to corsairs who made the seas around the islands far more hazardous.

In 1265, the Twin Crowns founded the colony of Rijkhaven [San Juan, Puerto Rico], which quickly became the major European port in the Antillean Sea. The Franks would not forget their rule of Haiti, however, and, acting on a Papal Bull giving wide latitude for those "suppressing the Evils of Piracy and Rapine", King Boudewijn authorized an expedition seeking to reconquer the island in 1276. The new invaders successfully seized San Nicolas and Higuey, and founded the port of Nieuw Vlissienge [Santo Domingo], which became the capital of the newly proclaimed province of "New Zeeland". However, the Moors in particular were not pleased with losing their privileged trading rights, and for a time Moorish and Twin Crown vessels would engage in hostilities on the high seas. Ultimately the Mauri attacked the ports directly and seized the Twin Crowns' newly established plantations, indirectly aided by various factions of Indians and Watyans, who had less compunctions about selling modern arms to the Taino. Thus the Mauri came to be landlords in addition to traders on the island...

Henceforth the Taino would have diminishing status on the island. They had been decimated by plague, famine, and the chaos of repeated rounds of guerilla warfare. Seeking to replenish their ebbing manpower, the Taino would emulate their Mauri allies in importing African slaves from Kapudesa and the Congo. St Nicolas became a major center of the slave trade in the New World, and was also noteworthy as the furthest-flung center of Indian and Kapudesan commerce, which culminated in a treaty with the Red Swans in 1310, granting them toll-free basing rights on the island of Capairon [Tortuga] in exchange for their superior arms and know-how. Slaves rapidly came to outnumber Taino and Westerners alike, and several "maroon colonies" of escaped slaves soon sprung up in the interior.

in 1345 General Raoul Molinas landed on the island to enforce the Ispanian crown's old claim to the island. His army was able to capture Kasikenena Guariones in a surprise raid on St Nicolas, but things turned sour for the campaign quickly. The army engaged in an infamous sack of St Nicolas that become the subject of the most famous Moorish sea shanty of the time, San Nikolla. Merchants fled with tales of atrocity. The decapititated Haitian state was effectively destroyed, but the locals reverted back to local loyalties to their clans or maroon colonies and melted into the hills. Molinas's own army was ravaged by malaria and the natives were too well-armed to properly subdue.

The Amuricush deployed a fleet to "reinforce" their Indian allies at the Red Swan freeport on Capairon. Seeing the writing on the wall for his occupation, Molina withdrew to New Cortoba without a fight, and from there made his entry into Toltecan history. After, however, the Masamida found order almost as hard to restore. The Ispanian occupation had resulted in the escape of many, many, slaves, and the maroon colony of Bayaja alone controlled as much as 1/5 of the island. The Kasikenena was restored by Moorish arms, but Western weapons were already prolific on the island and local clans resisted their puppet's authority. The general anarchy culminated in a slave revolt in 1363 that successfully captured the capital at Higuey and decapitated the Haitian monarchy once again. In the chaos the Twin Crowns sailed a fleet to Nieuw Vlissienge to "protect the inhabitants from Rapine", reestablishing their hold on the eastern half of the island, and the Amuricush took the, for them, unprecedented step of appointing a Governor to the city of St Nicolas. A rump Taino state centered on Yaguana limped on, until it found itself invaded by the kingdom of Denmark (to which the Twin Crowns' King Boudewijn had cultivated marriage ties). Still, Bajaya remained independent in the interior, with nearly European levels of technology and following a mix of native, Christian, Eastern and African beliefs that came to be called "Santaria".

The Danish colony marked the start of a certain expansionist phase. Having been left out of the Antillian colonial game for quite some time, they seized on their alliance with the Twin Crowns and planned a joint invasion of Antillia itself. The Jarl of Scania led an expedition that captured the capital of Jerusalem-Ultramar [Santiago] in 1370. By this point, the Antillians, bolstered by recent arrivals of exiled craftsmen and Taino sailors, were becoming a local naval power of their own and were able to give a bloody nose to the Twin Crowns fleet containing the Jarl's reinforcements, turning them back to Rijkhaven. Ultimately the Apostle John III negotiated a closer alliance with the Mauri, leading to Amuricushi intervention. Amuricushi warships blockaded Jerusalem-Ultramar and bottled up the Jarl's forces, while the Governor of St Nicolas dispatched his garrison to take Yaguana.

The defeat of the Danish expedition and the founding of a Moorish freeport at Agapia [Havana] (the first ever foreign settlement on the island) marked an escalation of tensions with the Twin Crowns, who were increasingly at odds with the Moors in the Gulf of Tolteca as well. It also marked increasing cooperation between the Moors and Antillians, whose Autotheist connections supplemented the Mauri trade routes in the New World... missionaries of the Order, pointing to their peaceful and successful society, would win a fair number of converts on Haiti, particularly among the remaining Taino. The natives had lost their homeland, though. The common language was a creole laying Taino, African, and Frankish ingredients on a Moorish base, and the population, now, was a true melting pot of Indian, European, and African influences, or perhaps a boiling pressure cooker, held together now by the pressure of the lash...
 
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