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Shogun 144

WFG Retired
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  1. This brings back such memories. Makes me glad that I have an extra copy of AOE Gold!
  2. My 2 cents: To my knowledge there is just a lot we do not know about the Iberians and naval warfare. Thorfinn's suggestion makes sense. Also, we could add to the Iberians some Celtic warships, maybe one unit or two, acting as mercenaries in the Iberian player's service or what not. But I don't know if it would be supportable. Something to consider, nevertheless.
  3. Awesome! I loved to play Empire Earth years back. I still have the original disk, though I lost my copy of AoC, so this is a real boon. There was some real good campaigns out for EE and The Art of Conquest back in the day. Does anyone remember "The Principality"? That, and "After Crécy" were my favorite campaigns for Empire Earth.
  4. Always nice to see new faces on the forums. Welcome to the Wildfire community Andreas and hudyge! Great selection of RTS games you name, Andreas. I have recently started to play Empire Earth again and I must admit I have forgotten just how good it was.
  5. Forud, Yes, Dr. Farrokh is one of the leading scholars of Pre-Islamic Iranian history in the world. I am proud to say that I do in fact own his book, Shadows in the Desert, and I do intend on using it for 0 AD when I am able. I have not read much of it yet, I have not had the time, but so far it is proving a great and useful work. Thanks again for your interest in 0 AD, Forud.
  6. Forud, Thank you for your contributions. As I don't know much Persian I can not comment on your accuracy but I do want to correct you on one point. As far as I am aware asabari or asabaran (depending on linguistic context) is a real Persian term that is used to denote medium or skirmish cavalry. I have seen the term used primarily to denote the cavalry of Media and Arachosia during the Achaemenid, Hellenistic, and Parthian periods.
  7. I had a feeling this might come up. I know I use the term Germanics in my articles but to be brief I just can not think of anything better. German or Germans is not correct for 0 AD's time frame as the Germans did not exist at the time and would not for some time. I have seen some scholarly articles on the Later Roman Era that do use the term Germanics to refer to the northern enemies of Rome. I believe this to be acceptable. If you have any concerns, please let me know.
  8. Just wanted to post to say that I have a new blog. It is called 'Asian Siege Warfare' and can be found here: http://asiansieges.greathistory.com/ I have already worked on it for a while now and I am almost done with my first series. I am going to try to work at updating it on a more regular basis. The website is owned by the Weider History Group, for whom I have done most of my freelance work. I am still working getting printed in one of the magazines though. Anyway please check it out.
  9. Yes indeed! Thank you everyone and congratulations to Tilanus_Commodor for his win.
  10. In general the ‘Celtic’ language is divided into two branches: P-Celtic which includes the languages spoken by the Gallic and Brythonic Celts. The other is Q-Celtic which includes the languages spoken by the Celtiberians and Goidelic Celts. Of these among the best understood is Gaulish, which covered much of modern France, Switzerland, the Benelux, Northern Italy, and parts of Germany. Gaulish also spawned a number of dialects, the best known of which was the language of the Galatians in Asia Minor. Another well known case was Lepontic, native to Northern Italy. Unfortunately the Celts did not leave much in the form of written records. As there was no native alphabet invented by the Celts they used the writing systems of the peoples they encountered. The most common were the Etruscan alphabet, the Greek alphabet, and the Latin alphabet. No full transliteration of spoken Gaulish into any of these alphabets exists so any attempt at written Gaulish is an adventure in conjecture and the educated guess. Nevertheless we do know enough about Gaulish to make some general guidelines. In his De Bello Gallico Julius Caesar notes that Gaulish was very similar to Latin and that Gallic leaders could understand his military dispatches. So Caesar used Koine Greek instead, a language that the Celts did not understand as easily. Surviving inscriptions (like the Coligny Calendar and curse tablets) are another important clue and give us a broad understanding of sentence structure and how the words were used. Gaulish was a viable language from approximately 600 BC when it separated from Common Celtic to the 7th Century AD when it fell out of use in favor of Vulgar Latin (which borrowed extensively from Gaulish) and Frankish, the language of the region's Germanic rulers.
  11. Hello everyone, Sorry for the shameless plugging but I just opened my first blog today, which I am calling Tactica Guerilla. I don't have anything up yet beyond the introduction but I still want everyone to know about it so they can check it out later. This is very exciting! Tactica Guerilla
  12. Hey everyone, Well I have decided to post this little article I wrote to commemorate the breaking of the Ottoman siege of Vienna in 1683 on September 12. The Christian victory here was the harbinger of the future and the Treaty of Karlowitz which ended the Great Turkish War over a decade later changed the entire dynamic of relations between the Ottomans and Europe. Venimus, Vidimus, Deus Vicit The Ottoman Siege of Vienna On September 12th, 1683 a date 325 years in the past from yesterday, the armies of the Ottoman Empire under the command of Grand Vizier Merzifonlu Kara Mustafa Pasha were defeated before the walls of Vienna. This was the second and last time that the Ottomans, the greatest Islamic empire in recent memory, would lay siege to Vienna and seriously threaten Europe. In recent years the Ottomans had already begun to experience a revival. Starting 1656 the leadership of the Ottoman state had fallen into the hands of the new grandee dynasty of Koprulu, an Albanian family of previously little importance. Starting with the patriarch Koprulu Mehmed the family led a reversal of Ottoman fortunes across the board. However this did not yet become a cause for concern until the next round of the Ottoman-Polish Wars saw the Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth actually lose control of a significant chunk of its territory in the south. This included the Right Bank Cossack Hetmanate in 1672 to the forces of Grand Vizier Fazil Ahmed Pasha. While the war ultimately ended on far less severe terms in 1676 the sudden revival of the Ottoman military machine in the east was worrisome. The same year that the war against the Commonwealth ended saw the ascension of the third Koprulu Grand Vizier, Merzifonlu Kara Mustafa. Ambitious and talented Kara Mustafa intended to build on his adopted family’s accomplishments. From the beginning the new administration was plunged into war with the growing power of the Tsardom of Russia. This war ended in 1681 in the Ottomans’ favor and allowed them to turn to Europe. There the Ottomans were faced by their most enduring foe, the Catholic Habsburg dynasty. By that time the whole of the Holy Roman Empire was the throes of the Counter-Reformation, the Catholic answer to the Protestant and Reformed movements of the previous century. The current Emperor, Leopold I, seemed to have two great goals in life: The end of the Protestants, and the containment of Louis XIV, the Sun King of France. Thus it was that the Habsburgs found themselves fighting a losing war with the Calvinist Hungarian leader Imre Thokoly, Prince of Transylvania. The success of the anti-Catholic cause attracted Ottoman attention, especially when Thokoly wrestled a considerable part of Northern Hungary from the Habsburgs. In 1682 the Grand Vizier negotiated the acceptance of Thokoly as an Ottoman vassal state as King of Central Hungary. Louis XIV saw the inevitable result of Kara Mustafa’s policy and sent word to his embassy in Konstantiniyye to let the Ottomans know he did not plan to interfere if the affair came to blows. This proved to be just what Kara Mustafa needed. With the French King’s promise the Grand Vizier felt confidant enough to begin to convince the Sultan, Mehmed IV, to declare war. As it turned out the Sultan needed more convincing and Kara Mustafa went as far as to falsify documents and manipulate the Habsburg desire for peace at all costs, to his advantage. On August 26th Mehmed IV finally agreed to war and sent a message to Vienna telling the Emperor to stay where he was until the Sultan could arrive to take his head personally. Mehmed also let Leopold know his intention to wipe the population out in its entirety unless they accepted Islam. However because of the lateness of the season the Ottoman army could not depart from Edirne. They had gathered there to await the Sultan’s blessing as supreme leader of Islam, and the invasion was pushed back to the following year. This allowed the Christians time to recover from the shock of the Ottoman declaration of war and prepare. Leopold called on the Pope, Innocentius XI, to help out with the diplomatic offensive. The Pope responded whole-heartedly but found his efforts to unite Christendom blocked by Louis XIV, who believed that an Ottoman victory would ensure France’s supremacy over Europe. The main battleground of the diplomatic war was the Sejm (Parliament) of the Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth. The King of the Commonwealth, Jan III Sobieski, was more then willing personally to ride to war. But the law of the Commonwealth dictated that the unanimous approval of the Sejm was needed first. For the rest of 1682 and into 1683 the embassies of France and the Papacy fought to out-bid each other for the votes of the individual delegates in the Sejm. This became particularly frustrating as the matter continued over several sessions. In the meanwhile the Ottoman war machine rumbled forward. On March 30th, 1683 the Ottoman Army left Edirne and marched north into Hungary. By May 3rd they had reached Belgrade and were joined by the vassal armies of Imre Thokoly and the Chinggisid Khan of the Crimean Tatars, Murad I. At a war council in Belgrade the Grand Vizier decided on a change of plans, rather then advance and besiege the Habsburg fortress at Gyor he opted to advance directly on the capital at Vienna. The Sultan had no objections and gave the go ahead on the plan, though he personally stayed behind in Belgrade. On July 7th Ottoman intentions became clear to the Habsburg court and the Emperor, together with his nobles, the majority of his army, and some 60,000 civilians abandoned Vienna. Only a skeleton garrison of 11,000 under Ernst Rudiger, Graf von Starhemberg, and 5,000 civilians remained when the Ottoman army finally arrived on July 14th. Their army totaled 120,000 men, with an extensive siege train. Upon arrival the Grand Vizier set up one of the most splendid siege camps in history and ordered his men to begin to construct siege trenches and bring up the artillery. Before the firing began Kara Mustafa sent forth an emissary to the walls, telling the garrison that if they laid down their arms and became Muslims they and the population would be spared. A resounding roar of defiance answered him, and the siege began. This turned out to be the key element to sway the Sejm. With reports from Hungary and Austria coming in and one last massive bribe from Rome, the Sejm gave the unanimous decision to declare war on the Ottoman Empire. King Jan was already resolved to go to war anyway from the previous winter. Now with official sanction the King of the Commonwealth moved his forces ever closer to the western border. On August 15th he crossed into the Holy Roman Empire and towards the end of the month his army, composed of the finest forces he had to offer, met up with an Imperial army commanded by Leopold’s brother-in-law: Karl V of Lorraine. A combination of Austrian, Bavarian, Swabian, Franconian, and Protestant Saxon troops the ragtag forces had been steadily harassing the Ottomans for some time. With the arrival of the Commonwealth forces the Christian leadership felt that they could now relieve Vienna. The allied troops numbered 75,000 in total. Of those 50,000 were Austrian and German and the remaining 24,000 being Commonwealth. Meanwhile the siege was not going well for the defenders. Merzifonlu Kara Mustafa Pasha was not an impatient or hot-headed man and as far as he knew he had all the time in the world to conduct the siege. His actions were methodical and steady. When the Ottoman cannons, 300 in all, proved to be too light to breach Vienna’s walls he adopted tunneling instead. This proved more successful, but Vienna’s walls were some of the most advanced in Europe and taking them down was slow going. But most important of all was the defender’s spirit, for every dent the Ottomans made the garrison would sandbag it back up. Ottoman tunnels were met by answering tunnels from Vienna, planting and defusing bombs back and forth steadily. But the Ottomans knew they were winning. On September 8th the Ottoman sapper corps blew a massive chunk out of Vienna’s walls when they destroyed the Burg ravelin and the nearby Nieder wall. As the Ottoman infantry stormed the fortifications the defenders, now whittled down to 4,000 continued to hold grimly despite the damage. They were prepared to fight the Ottomans in the streets if needed. However help was coming. Two days earlier the Imperial/Commonwealth forces had crossed the Danube at Tulln and were marching with all speed to Vienna, working out a solid command structure along the way. News of the breach caused them to move even faster. The King soon led the combined armies through the dense and mountainous forest region of the Wienerwald. On September 11th Christian forces arrived on a small hill overlooking Vienna known as Kahlenberg and drove off an Ottoman observation force. They then lit up 3 large torches to let the Ottomans and the defenders know of their arrival. The Ottoman response was lackluster. Kara Mustafa was convinced that the natural terrain of the Wienerwald would prevent any force significant enough to threaten him from coming through and had fatally underestimated the Christian resolve to defeat him. Even as his staff urged the Grand Vizier to break camp and wheel about to face the Imperial/Commonwealth forces he refused. Instead he moved a small force of 30,000 infantry and cavalry to his rear supported by cannons and the Crimean cavalry while shifting the majority of his forces for one final attack on Vienna the next day on September 12th. Meanwhile in the Christian camp the allied forces were preparing for battle. Jan III was careful in his deployment, putting the Austrians on the left flank, the majority of the German troops in the center, and the Commonwealth troops augmented by German infantry on the right. In the early morning dawn of the next day the Catholic troops held Mass while the Protestants held their own service, both prayed for victory. At 5:30 AM the Ottomans moved to dislodge them. But not the Crimean cavalry whom in a fit of anger at the Grand Vizier’s treatment had chosen to peal off and raid the suburbs of Vienna, abandoning their positions. Duke Karl reacted quickly and led his own troops forward, joined by the Imperial infantry in the center. The resulting battle would soon dissolve into a steady concerted effort to push back the Ottoman line. However it was slow going as the heavy woods made the fighting and advance difficult on both sides. The whirling battle soon began to drag more Ottoman troops into the fray but Kara Mustafa kept his best troops, the crack Janissaries and the heavy cavalry out of the fighting and in the trenches before Vienna. Even as the Christians attempted to break the siege the Ottomans were attempting to create a second large hole in the walls, rendering the relief effort and the defense futile. But the defenders, already suspicious of another mining attempt like that of September 8th, discovered a massive bomb under the Lobel bastion just in time. The last ditch chance for victory had effectively gone up in smoke in the early afternoon around 1:00. At the same time as the bomb was diffused the Commonwealth forces had finally managed to make their way onto the battlefield proper and held position on the ridge. King Jan then detached his infantry to aid the Imperial center in turning the Ottoman lines. The remaining 14,000 cavalry then departed back into the woods accompanied by a unit of Imperial cavalry. At 2:30 PM the Christian cavalry, led by Poland’s winged hussars, burst from cover on the far right of the Ottoman lines. The impact of some of the best cavalry in Europe head on was too much for the stressed siege lines to bear and they broke nearly on contact. Within another 3 hours the rest of the besiegers broke and fled as well under pressure from the Austrian left. The last element to resist was the 20,000 man Janissary corps, but even they were overrun under the press of the Christian advance and fled. The Grand Vizier then ordered the withdrawal to Belgrade, which turned into a rout. Leaving their whole camp and its riches behind, which greatly benefited the victors. Jan III was the first to reach the Grand Vizier’s tent from which he received the delirious and joyful cheers of his army and the defenders of Vienna as the savior of Europe. The city was saved. As the allied troops plundered the camps Jan III took the time to dictate a letter to the Pope by which he would report his victory to the whole of Europe. In this letter he made his famous paraphrase of Julius Caesar’s dispatch from the battle of Zela in 47 BC: “Venimus, Vidimus, Deus Vicit” We Came, We Saw, God Conquered.
  13. Well everybody I just got an article I wrote put up on the website of the magazine Armchair General. As it turns out they have a new feature called POV or Point Of View in which the writer writes the situation and asks two questions. The readers then post their answers and in two weeks the author's gives his answer. All very cool. Well I managed to write something up about the Battle of Nicopolis in 1396 and it got accepted and put up. As part of the short bio of myself I had to write, I mentioned 0 AD. The editors at AG made that mention into a link to the game's homepage. Check. It. Out! Nicopolis!
  14. The Kingdom of Kush forms an important phase in the history of what is now Sudan and parts of northern Ethiopia. While much of Kush’s history is outside 0 AD’s time frame it is important as it leads into the Meroitic Period. Which stands today as among the most important of the pre-Islamic African cultures. The Assyrian invasion of Egypt proved to be the beginning of Kush’s end. The 25th Dynasty of Kushite kings who ruled over Egypt in what has been considered one of history’s greatest ironies, was brought to an end in the mid 7th Century. Despite a spirited defense by both the Pharaoh Taharqa and his son Tanutamon the Assyrians conquered Egypt in three general invasions, the first in 671, the second in 667, and the last in 663. After 663 the 25th Dynasty retreated to Kush, taking residence at Napata. From this base the Kushites kept Egyptian culture, enshrining it. They looked up to their period of rule in the north with pride. The Egyptians however did not, and under the Saite dynasty which led Egypt to independence from Assyria, they sacked Napata in 590 at the orders of Pharaoh Necho II. The sack reinvigorated Kush which began to pour itself into a massive drive to modernize its army and retake Egypt. The Iron Age of Nile Africa had begun. The lessons learned from Assyria and the Saitic Egyptians forced Kush to reevaluate itself and its army. Taking advantage of both Kush’s strategic position on the Red Sea and its natural iron wealth the kingdom turned into one large iron forge. This transformation coincided with developments to the north as the Satic Dynasty fell to the might of Persia in 525. As a trade kingdom Kush felt this change through the arrival of Persian merchants, whose culture began to have an impact on the kingdom. As Egypt fell, Kush became more steadily unique and less of a clone of its northern neighbor, continuing to keep elements of Egyptian culture but with their own uniquely Kushite twist. This change was gradual and the full effects would not be felt for some time. This all came to fruition centuries later after Persia itself fell and was replaced by the Hellenistic successors of Megas Alexandros, Alexander the Great. Hellenic culture had probably first reached Kush by traders, and was reinforced by their sudden arrival in the area by force. Around the 270s (exact date unknown given the uncertainties of Kushite history) a revolution occurred in Napata. Previously the priests of Amun Re, the supreme deity of the Egyptian pantheon, would try to control the sitting Pharaoh by pretending to receive a message from the deity saying the ruler’s time on the throne was up. The Pharaoh was then expected to commit suicide and go on to the afterlife. But the sitting Pharaoh of the time, Arakamani, was educated by Hellenic tutors. This led him to reject the ritual and with a sizable body of troops he marched on Napata. Once there he entered the temple of Amun Re and ransacked it, killing the entire priesthood in the process. Arakamani, to distance himself from Napata and the old order, then had his pyramid built not at Napata but further south at Meroe in Upper Kush. The city was already famous by this time. Meroe, besides being the central hub of several overland and over water trade routes, lay in the middle of a seasonal rain belt. This combination made Meroe one of the largest and most wealthy cities south of Egypt. It was also defensible, surrounded by rivers on three sides (the Nile, the Atbara, and the Blue Nile), causing several ancient authors to mistakenly believe Meroe to have been an island. Arakamani could not have chosen a better site to make his break with the past. The Meroitic Period had begun. It was here then, in the Meroitic Period that Kush truly became separate of Egypt. Almost immediately following the move to Meroe and the reign of Arakamani the differences between old Kush and the new period in Meroe became steadily more pronounced. Amun Re was cast aside by the new Kushite priesthood created by Arakamani. In his place they put the native lion-headed deity, Apedemak. Other religious changes were wrought which saw the entire pantheon revamped and only a few Egyptian deities remained. But this was not the only change. The Egyptian language suddenly ceased to be the accepted language of the kingdom early in Meroitic history. In its place a new language, only now being deciphered, was created called (fittingly) Meroitic. This language was a mixture of Egyptian ‘cursive’ and a strange alphabetic script of unknown origins. Although we can identity the derivatives of Meroitic by common words shared between them. By far the most momentous changes were in the nobility and the royal family itself. In this case the trappings of Egyptian culture were almost entirely thrown off. After the move to Meroe the upper classes gradually stopped using the old traditions borrowed from Egypt. Everything from social norms to names changed to something different. Modern historians believed the nobility may have attempted to revert to the practices of early Kush before contact with Egypt, mixed in with bits and pieces of other cultures (Egyptian, Persian, and Hellenic). One well attested example was that Meroitic nobility scarred themselves, an old Kushite practice. Accompanying these changes was the sudden newfound equality of women. Meroitic artwork shows women often equal to men standing alongside them on even terms, sometimes helping their husbands smite his foes. Occasionally the woman did the smiting. One of the greatest changes however was that in Meroe the Pharaoh no longer reined supreme. His power was held in check by a figure known as the Kandake, corrupted into English through Latin as Candace. The Kandake was one of the most important women in the royal court and usually either the Pharaoh’s wife or some other close female relative. The office was neither hereditary or for life, since they were elected from a pool of royal candidates by the council of priests. This was similar to the practice used for the succession of the Pharaoh, who was also elected from a pool of eligible royal candidates. But his office was for life. The Kandake technically had to share power with another woman, usually an older relatived called the Qore. The Qore was the supreme authority in the household, but real power was held by the Kandake. On occasion when the Pharaoh was too young to rule or unfit the Kandake would be appointed by the priests to rule in his place. Other changes that were not so pronounced will also be examined. In Meroitic Kush the farmers were no longer the center of the economy and were replaced by cattle herders. The cow assumed a place of importance and temples dedicated to Apedemak often were decorated with scenes of cattle, usually the breeding and caring of the animals. The ceramics, which are always important to archaeologists, also changed from the bright red of the earlier periods to a polished black for the Meroitic. Iron production however was one thing that did not change and the constant production of the metal is one of the enduring legacies of Meroe, and the catalyst for its eventual downfall. The Kingdom of Meroe began to achieve its greatest prosperity in the last century before Christ. With Meroe itself leading the way the cities of Kush had achieved a splendid prosperity thanks to the wealth of the Red Sea trade to and from India. As well as the kingdom’s natural wealth, thanks to its rich supply of iron and gold. Ivory from elephants, a sacred animal in Meroitic Kush, was also valuable as was Ostrich feathers. All of these were in high demand to the north in the rump Ptolemaic state and more importantly their Roman overlords. This highlighted the growing threat of Rome, which successive Meroitic Pharaohs became increasingly worried. One reason was that Ptolemaic Egypt and Meroitic Kush had a specific agreement on a series of temples that both kingdoms shared by religion that sat along their borders (between Upper Egypt and Lower Kush). As long as neither power attempted to take over the area they remained at peace, even though the intermittent border wars continued in spite of it. But it was unknown if the Romans would honor the agreement. This led to tensions all along the border zone, called the Dodekaschoenos. In 24 BC the most notable event in the history of Meroe occurred, a military confrontation with Rome. By this time Ptolemaic Egypt had been annexed by the newborn Roman Empire, and the Kingdom of Meroe, who had had limited contact with the Romans, was eager to press the limits to which they could go. In 24, while Augustus Caesar recalled Aelius Gallus after his failed invasion into Arabia, the Kandake of Meroe, Amanirenas, ordered an invasion of the north. This was in part motivated by what Amanirenas may have seen as a sacred duty. As the High Priestess of Isis, recognized by both Kushite and Egyptian alike, she may have saw it as best to annex the temples to Meroe for protection. Meroitic troops annexed the Dodekaschoenos and raided as far north as Aswan. Rome reacted quickly by sending Caius Petronius, who launched a counter invasion. But Amanirenas ordered her troops to fall back and allow the Romans to take Napata. Petronius enslaved the population and burned the town, famously remarking that Kush was not worth the effort to conquer. As the Romans went back north the Kandake launched a counterattack, surprising the Romans with their superior archery and elephant corps. Petronius was victorious in the end and Amanirenas surrendered. Negotiations with Augustus resulted in a peace treaty to return to the status quo, but markedly with the reestablishment of the Dodekaschoenos zone between Egypt and Kush, but with a Roman garrison close by. Future generations of Roman emperors were cautioned by Augustus to contain Meroe, but not to conquer it, out of respect. These events were followed by a Meroitic golden age. The period from AD 12 to 20 is often referred to as the height of Meroitic Kush and roughly corresponds to the reign of Pharaoh Natakamani and his wife, the Kandake Amanitore. This royal couple is the best known monarchs in Meroitic history, partly because they were its greatest builders. Together Natakamani and Amanitore either restored and built over from scratch a majority of the surviving temples and monuments dating from this period in modern Sudan. Natakamani is also known to historians as the architect of a new smaller type pyramid, which he urged future generations to use. Confusingly however is that from the artwork found at the temple of Apedemak at modern Naqa it appears the two rulers led the kingdom to war and lost two of their sons to this conflict. But no record of any conflict exists elsewhere. It any case the period of their rule is still considered one of the best periods in Meroitic history. As one last note on this phase of history we know today that Kandake Amanitore was mentioned in the Christian Bible. In the Book of Acts Philip the Evangelist converts to the still small Christian faith an ‘Ethiopian Eunuch’ who then takes his faith back to his queen, Candace of Ethiopia. The New Testament of the Bible was originally written in Koine Greek, which referred to Kush as Ethiopia. This was repeated in Roman records, as can be seen in the accounts of Amanirenas’ war with Augustus. What is today called Ethiopia was called Aksum, after the primary city and kingdom of the region during that time. However the prosperity and glory of Meroitic Kush that was overseen by Natakamani would not outlast him. When the Pharaoh died in AD 20 his surviving son, who may have been his eldest to start with, succeeded him. But Arikaharor was not his father and the building spree that had marked Natakamani’s reign ground to a halt. This traditionally marks what historians refer to as the long decline of the Meroitic kingdom, for lack of any better evidence. Modern archeology points the pursuit of iron may have been the catalyst. As the number of iron forges increased to keep up with the demand for Kushite iron the harvesting of so much wood to feed the furnaces may have turned the lush lands around Meroe into desert. Without fertile lands agriculture and cattle herding suffered and forced them to go further and further out to find lands to grow food and feed the cows. The death of Nero and the end of the Julio-Claudian Dynasty had effect even on Meroe. Nero had made it clear during his reign that he had designs on the southern kingdom and regardless of Augustus’ instruction intended carry it out. But at the last moment he canceled his plans, content with the information gathered for him by the military. This did not make him well liked by Kandake Amanikhatashan, who started to rule in 62. To spite Nero’s memory she backed Vespasian to become Roman emperor after he was proclaimed by his troops in July, 69. After the Senate confirmed Vespasian as emperor and he sent his son Titus to deal with the Great Jewish Revolt the Kandake took the opportunity to send a sizable cavalry force to Jerusalem to aid Titus. While the final contribution of the Meroitic squadron was slight it did boost relations and the new Flavian dynasty promised to uphold the old treaty. In the 2nd Century AD a sudden change took place in Kush with the rise of the nomads. These nomads were divided into two groups: The Blemmyes and the Noba. Both group paid homage to the Pharaoh at Meroe and the Blemmyes especially were valued for their fighting abilities. In the late 1st Century AD the Meroitic court moved the Blemmyes as a people and settled them in Lower Kush along the border with Rome. But by the 2nd Century the Blemmyes had begun to display an increasing degree of independence from Meroe, even to the degree of having their own king. This in turn led to the Blemmyes becoming more and more settled and urban. Even as this happened however the introduction into the region of the camel allowed the Blemmyes to become much more potent militarily. While nothing is known for certain it is believed that thanks to the camel the Blemmyes transformed into a real threat to both Meroe and Rome. Both states were raided unmercifully even as the king of the Blemmyes still paid tribute to Meroe. This resulted in the tangled situation in which Meroe still commanded the loyalty of some of the Blemmyes, but most of them had turned into raiders. The 3rd Century AD accelerated the decline of Meroitic Kush. With the Blemmyes’ newfound power now rampaging across both Upper Egypt and all Kush at will even the formidable might of Rome was shaken. With the continuing decline of arable land in the kingdom the situation grew worse, even though evidence suggests the authorities managed to avoid starvation and kept a reasonable amount of stability. However the wealthy Red Sea trade that had practically sustained the Meroitic kingdom began to shift during this time. Instead of flowing to Meroe, the routes now flowed to Aksum. The kingdom of Aksum, the forerunner of modern Ethiopia, had been founded in the late 1st Century BC. With the changing routes from India the Aksumite kingdom could now take full advantage of the great wealth offered by the trade. To protect its interests Aksum expanded militarily seizing control of Meroe’s Red Sea coast, thus severing it from maritime routes. Other Aksumite military adventures were aimed at Upper Kush, trying to sever the overland routes. When this was defeated they instead bypassed Meroitic Kush, creating a pricing war with Meroe which the latter ultimately lost. In the closing years of the century there appeared a moment of renewed hope as problems in the Roman Empire, the so called Crises of the Third Century, had lead the empire to all but abandon the Dodekaschoenos. But this hope proved illusory. Diocletian, who had brought the Crises to an end and created the Tetrarchy, realized that with the threat of the Blemmyes that occupying the Dodekaschoenos was no longer viable. He decided to abandon the area, but rather then allow it to be occupied by Meroe, Diocletian invited the Noba to occupy the area. Still living on the western bank of the Nile, the more ‘civilized’ Noba saw their chance to break with Meroitic Kush and took it. Crossing the river in force the Noba attacked both Meroe and the Blemmyes before making it into the Dodekaschoenos, even as the Romans withdrew further back into Egypt, though they maintained control of the primary temple at Philae. With the settling of the Noba in the Dodekaschoenos the kingdom of Meroe was deprived of another major ally, which turned against them. The Noba quickly formed their own state, called Nobatia which combined elements of both Hellenic and Meroitic cultures, and went to war with the Blemmyes. The 4th Century was the final one for Kush. By this point the end of Meroe was all but finished. The building of monuments and temples and even pyramids (small as the Kushite model was) had completely stopped. The kingdom no longer had the ability to support these projects, much less the state itself. With most of the former kingdom either annexed to the Blemmye tribes and Nobatia to the north and Aksum to the south Meroe was in pitiful condition. In the early years of the century the Aksumite King Aphilas conquered Meroe but left the city standing, instead demanding they pay homage to Aksum. Pharaoh Yesbokheamani agreed, and the kingdom had for all intents and purposes ceased to exist. However as a vassal state Meroe continued to function as the cultural predecessor of a new people just beginning to form. The Ballana culture or X-Group as it is called first appeared in the 4th Century and appears to have originated from intermarriage between the Noba and the Kushites. This new culture borrowed much from Kush and was also distinctly unique in that it took in other influences as well. The Ballana are considered the ancestors of the Nubian peoples. Strife with Aksum continued to plague Upper Kush for many years until finally in 350 AD the Aksumite King Ezana, the first Christian monarch, led his troops north and demolished Meroe. The destruction of the city marked the end of Kush as a kingdom, even though it continued to persist culturally and linguistically for at least another century. In conclusion the kingdom of Kush left a major imprint on Africa. Because of a close proximity to the giants of Egypt and early Ethiopia the Kushite state is often overlooked in history. But its influence on the development of the region is undeniable, though still misunderstood due to both the Meroitic script itself and racial nationalism.
  15. Thanks Erik, You're probably right about where this should go. But I have always put my B-day announcement on this board, don't know why. Just the way I am I suppose.
  16. YAY!!!! Well today is a big day for me, THE DAY I TURN 21!!! Yes I am now 21 years old, and looking back on the past year I see that God has really blessed me. I have had a good year for my writing, and I feel that I have grown in my skills as a writer. I also know that God continues to bless me by allowing me to remain here at Wildfire Games, working on 0 AD. I hope that there is many more blessings in store, I just need to pray for them! I also know He blesses me with my wonderful family, and by allowing to go on a birthday extravaganza and getting a load of cool books. I got a fifth one today from my Mom and Dad: The Wars Against Napoleon Good reading! So let the party commence! Hahahaha!!!
  17. In this article we will give a short history of the Trinovantes tribe of Prydain, that is Ancient Britain. The strongest tribe in Prydain before the coming of the Romans, the Trinovantes became favored by Rome. Unfortunately there is not much known about the Trinovantes. Because the Celts did not keep records much of what we know about the Trinovantes has to be pieced together from the archeological findings and the coinage they left behind. The record becomes clearer after the Romans arrive, but is still somewhat murky. The Trinovantes were Brythonic Celts, the original Celtic arrivals in the 5th Century BC. We also know that like the Iceni the Trinovantes grew wealthy on trade across the Channel. However they were far more involved in this trading then the Iceni, as a result the Trinovantes were one of the few tribes in Prydain to be aware of what was happening in the outside world. Perhaps this heavy trading would explain the most amazing thing about the Trinovantes. That is that they were the most powerful tribe in Prydain for what appears to have been a good length of time. At the time of Caesar's invasion the Trinovantes were the most powerful tribe in Prydain, even over the Belgic Celts, who were more warlike then the Brythonic Celts. The arrival of Rome turned the whole of Prydain upside down. About the time of Caesar's invasion the king of the Trinovantes was Mannuetios, called Imanuentius by the Romans and it appears he was well aware of the conquest of Gaul. Caesar records in De Bello Gallico (Latin: The Gallic War) receiving an offer of surrender from the Trinovantes, asking him to spare them should he come to Prydain. Not long after that Mannuetios became involved in a struggle with the king of the Casse, Vellaunus (better known as Cassivellaunus), and was slain in the war. Mandubracius, heir of the Trinovantes, fled to Gaul and asked for Roman aid. When the Romans invaded Prydain in 54 BC the Trinovantes were the only tribe that welcomed them, giving the Romans much needed supplies and a safe haven. After defeating Cassivellaunus and his followers Caesar was ready to leave, as events in Gaul demanded his return. But before he left he made sure that all of Prydain understood that the Trinovantes were a Roman client state under his official protection. No harm was to come to them. In the years that followed Mandubracius appeared to have ruled as a good king, and the capital of the Trinovantes at Braughing (modern Hertfordshire) prospered. Around 30 BC, after the death of Cassivellaunus, Mandubracius offered the hand of his daughter in marriage to the king of the Catuvellauni, which he accepted. This marriage solidified the bond enforced by Caesar, but this didn’t stop the bad feelings between the two tribes. Mandubracius died fifteen years later in 15 BC. His succession ignited a major dispute between the Trinovantes and the Catuvellauni. When the unnamed son of Cassivellaunus died ten years after his marriage he was succeeded by Tasciovanus, the grandson of Mandubracius. As the old king had no sons of his own it appeared that Tasciovanus was set to become king of two tribes, creating a super power that would dominate Prydain. But the Trinovantes did not want an outsider ruling over them. Rallying under the nobleman Addedomarus they opposed the succession of Tasciovanus and placed Addedomarus on the throne at Braughing, who then moved the capital to the city of Camulodunum. The two rivals nearly came to blows, and several small skirmishes did in fact occur, but ultimately the threat of Roman intervention insured Addedomarus stayed on the throne. Of the reign of Addedomarus not much is known, except that he laid much of the foundation of what would make Camulodunum great during the time of Cunobelinus, and that he shifted the coinage of the Trinovantes to conform to the Catuvellauni model. He died in 5 BC and was succeeded by his son, Dubnovellaunus. Much like his father not much is known of the reign of Dubnovellaunus. One event that was recorded in the Res Gestae Divi Augusti (Latin: The Deeds of the Divine Augustus) is that around 7 AD Dubnovellaunus arrived in Rome with the king of the Atrebates and reaffirmed the status of the Trinovantes and Atrebates as clients of Rome. Two years later the ambitious Cunobelinus, taking advantage of Roman distraction over the diaster at Teutoberg, conquered the Trinovantes and killed Dubnovellaunus. Cunobelinus ruled as king of the Trinovantes for about a year. In 10 AD he became king of the Catuvellauni, as his first act he made the Trinovantes a member of the Catuvellauni federation, and made their capital his new ruling seat. The Trinovantes made their last stand with Boudicca. When the Romans returned to Prydain in 43 AD to conquer the island once and for all the Trinovantes at long last got their freedom back from the Catuvellauni. Claudius promised not long after that he would restore the Trinovantes to their former lands. But the Emperor had no intention of keeping his promise, only concerned with pacifying the Trinovantes for now. This became clear when the Romans turned Camulodunum into a Colonia for retired soldiers and their families. When Boudicca rose in revolt in 60 AD the Trinovantes joined her. After the defeat at Watling Street and the end of the rebellion we hear no more of the Trinovantes as a separate people. In conclusion the Trinovantes were a major tribe in southeastern Britain. While our knowledge about them is small, we do know that they had a significant impact on Prydain and even post-conquest Roman Britain.
  18. In this article we will give a short history of the Iceni tribe of Prydain, that is Ancient Britain. Undoubtedly the most well known of the Brythonic tribes, the Iceni were among the strongest of the native Brythonic tribes. Much of the history of the Iceni is unknown. Before the arrival of the Romans, and even after until the time of Boudica, we have little to no reliable sources on the Iceni. What we do know is pieced together through conjuncture, mostly based on what archeological remains have been found and primarily their coinage. From this modern historians have been able to gather some facts about the Iceni. Unlike many of their neighbors the Iceni were native Brythonic Celts, which probably means that the Iceni can be traced as far back as the 5th Century BC, when the Celts first arrived in the British Isles. We also know that the Iceni were not ruled by one king absolutely, but by a high king who was checked by a council of 11 other kings, which would explain some later events. The Iceni were also wealthy, one of the few non Belgic tribes to be so, and would later come to mint their own coins, under the influence of the Catuvellauni. Our first solid evidence of the Iceni comes from Caesar. When the Romans arrived in Prydain for the second time in 54 BC the Iceni chose not to join the alliance formed against them by their southern neighbors, the Casse. Preferring to sit and watch the course of the war. When Caesar crossed the Thames the Iceni decided to submit to him with the other surrounding tribes. In his memoirs the victorious general records the Iceni under the name Cenimagni, though whether this is a result of Caesar misunderstanding the Iceni kings or purposefully miswriting their name to humiliate them is unknown, though both is equally possible. Unlike with the Casse and other tribes Caesar did not make the Iceni a client of Rome, and after recording their name down under his defeated foes he appears to have left them alone. Left to their own devices the Iceni were forgotten again, and not remembered until years later. The Iceni appear again after the birth of Christ. Our next major mention of the Iceni comes after the beginning of the present era, when a king known as Addedomarus first began to mint coinage. Addedomarus drew his inspirations for these coins from the coinage of Tasciovanus, going as far as to use the same design (face/horse). However unlike the Catuvellauni, the Iceni minted the name of the tribe as a whole on their coins, only later adding the name of the king who minted them. At some point Addedomarus died and was succeeded by a king only known today as Can, which was the mark on his coins. Can died around 25 AD and was succeeded by the first reasonably well known Iceni high king, Antedios. This king would go on to rule for nearly 20 years, making him the longest reiging of any known king, before the arrival of the Romans, who would in time become the worst foe the Iceni would ever face. Rome returned to Prydain in 43 AD. As a result of the need of Emperor Claudius to prove himself, and of the internal disputes of the Catuvellauni, the Romans invaded Prydain for the third time in 43 AD. Antedios, like his unknown predecessor in the second invasion, chose not to get involved and sat the war out. When the Catuvellauni were defeated Antedios submitted peacefully to the Romans, who made the Iceni an allied client state, and appointed him sole king of the tribe. This outraged the other kings of the Iceni, who deeply resented being ruled by one man. When Antedios began to mint coins with only his name, and no other mark on them, the other kings had had enough. Two of these kings, known only by their coin marks as Aesu and Saenu, minted their own coins in defiance of the high king. In an attempt to appease them Antedios took his mark off the coins, and went back to using the name of the tribe as the coin mark. But this olive branch gesture failed. In 47 AD the Roman governor, Publius Ostorius Scapula, arrived in Iceni territory to disarm them. This move by the Romans was sudden and unexpected. The various nobles, angered by what they perceived as a betrayal, united behind Antedios and rose in revolt. The Iceni Revolt of 47 AD was easily put down by Roman arms, and a new man was chosen to replace Antedios as king. This man was named Esuprastus, but is better known as Prasutagus. Esuprastus, it appears from the records, was one of the 11 kings under Antedios. But unlike the others he did not revolt. Esuprastus knew that he could not revolt against Rome and succeed, and so decided to reign in peace. Esuprastus had the best recorded reign of any Iceni king, and in his reign the kingdom prospered and grew. The Romans themselves came to respect Esuprastus, and gave him permission to mint his own coinage separate of Roman control. Esuprastus also increased the wealth of the Iceni greatly, through increased trade and production of high quality ceramics, for which the Iceni were famous. In 49 AD he married the woman who has made the Iceni so remembered, Princess Boudica. That Boudica was of royal blood is undisputable, but which tribe she came from is under debate. In any case the two formed what appears to have been a formidable pair, and had two daughters. At one point Esuprastus began to take several large loans from Roman financiers, which would cause much trouble later on. In 60 AD he died and when his will was read the Romans were in for a surprise. Despite his servile attitude towards Rome Esuprastus had no intention of giving his kingdom to them after his death. In the will the kingdom was divided, with Nero receiving a greater portion and his daughters receiving a rump portion to rule over jointly. To Rome this was unacceptable, a client king was supposed to will his entire kingdom after his death to the empire. Besides that female inheritance was a foreign concept to the Roman mind. Nero decided to take the entire Iceni kingdom by force. Boudica was flogged and her daughters raped during the seizure. A year later a general revolt by the Brythonic and Belgic tribes occurred, Boudica at the head. Boudica was the last Iceni ruler. Burning with rage at her and her family's mistreatment at Roman hands Boudica lead a mass revolt against Roman rule. Even the Belgic tribes, whom the Iceni usually looked down upon as barbaric, united with Boudica. The warrior queen went on a rampage across Roman Britain, burning and looting the Roman towns of Camulodunum Colonia, Londinium, and Verulanium. The Roman governor, Gaius Suetonius Paulinus, was unable to defeat Boudica and lost an entire legion in the opening stage of the rebellion. Paulinus was eventually able to defeat Boudica a year later at the Battle of Watling Street, near modern Athelstone. Following this Boudica and her daughters committed suicide to escape capture. As a result of this rebellion the Romans began an increased crackdown, though this lasted only a few years. After this we hear no more of the Iceni as a separate people. In conclusion the Iceni were one of greatest tribes in Ancient Britain. Though much about them is shrouded in mystery we can say for certain that among the Brythonic Celts the Iceni were a major force. Remembered even to this day for their courageous last stand against Roman rule.
  19. In this article we will give a history of the Catuvellauni tribe of Prydain, that is Ancient Britain. One of the best known of the Celtic tribes in Britain the Catuvellauni dominated southern Prydain, and made the most impact on Rome. The Catuvellauni were not as old as their neighbors. In terms of age the Catuvellauni were amongst the younger tribes of the Celtic world. In fact the Catuvellauni were not even a proper tribe, but the result of several tribes joined together following Caesar's second landing in Prydain in 54 BC. The principal tribe of the Catuvellauni was the Casse, from whom all of the kings came forth, and who lead the rest of this 'federation' for the duration of its history. The other members are unknown, with the exception of the Trinovantes, who were added to the federation by Cunobelinus in the early 1st Century AD. Of the Casse not much is known. We do know that they were Belgic Celts who had inhabited the area around the modern Thames at least as early as the 3rd Century BC. We also know that the Casse were considered the leaders of military innovation in Prydain and were wealthy by virtue of the tin trade that was so plenty in the British Isles. If the records are correct the Casse were also held to be skilled politicians and diplomats, a trait that the Catuvellauni inherited years later. Rome sparked the creation of one of their worst foes. By the time Julius Caesar arrived in Prydain the second time in 54 BC he had attracted enough attention from the Brythonic and Belgic tribes to realize that they needed a kind of supreme commander to organize themselves if they were going to survive. They met and appointed Cassivellaunus, or more correctly Vellaunus of the Casse, to be their leader. At the time of Caesar's arrival Cassivellaunus had just finished a war with the Trinovantes, the virtual rulers of Prydain, defeating them and exiling Mandubracius, the heir of the Trinovantes. Mandubracius in turn fled to Caesar who thusly was already aware of Cassivellaunus by the time he reached the Thames area. It was not long before Cassivellaunus realized that conventional warfare was not going to work against the Romans, causing him to resort to guerilla warfare. This worked for a time but eventually Caesar pushed on and was able to cross the Thames and reach the territory of the Trinovantes, and thus to safety. Cassivellaunus was not done yet, but Caesar surprised him by attacking his great home fortress at modern Wheathampstead. But even then Cassivellaunus had one last trick. The four kings of Cantium, modern Kent, who had banded together for protection. The Kentish kings for the most part kept to themselves, but in the interest of unity they followed Cassivellaunus. He ordered them to attack the Roman naval base. This attack failed and Cassivellaunus, realizing he was outmatched, surrendered to Caesar. Caesar agreed and left for Gaul as quickly as possible, imposing only light terms and vassalage. Cassivellaunus, for his part, learned from the experience with the Romans and probably watched the Gallic Revolt as well, absorbing the lessons taught there. Melding all of these ideas together he unified the Belgic tribes along the northern shore of the Thames into one tribe and called them the Catuvellauni, the Smiters of Vellaunus. The Catuvellauni would quickly dominate Prydain. Following the death of Cassivellaunus in 30 BC he was succeeded by his unnamed son, who married into the royal family of the Trinovantes to further solidify the peace enforced by Caesar's terms. This unknown king died after ten years and was succeeded by his son, Tasciovanus. This new king would oversee a long and glorious reign, ruling a total of thirty years. In the reign of Tasciovanus the capital was moved from the old fortress at Wheathampstead to the new un-walled city of Verlamio, or Verulanium. This move was meant to signal not only to Prydain, but also to Rome, that the Catuvellauni were going in a new direction. During this period the wealth of the Catuvellauni increased greatly, and their power grew with it. Even though this period of peace and prosperity brought the Catuvellauni to great heights not everyone was happy with the situation, even the king himself. Tasciovanus made it no secret he did not like the Trinovantes, even though his own mother was one. And he probably blamed them for the sad state of the Catuvellauni as vassals of Rome. But no one dared touch Caesar's favored tribe. That is until 9 AD, while Rome was distracted by the disaster of Teutoberg Forest. Led by Cunobelinus, the eldest son of Tasciovanus, Catuvellauni forces attacked and conquered the Trinovantes, and the city of Camulodunum became the new seat of power. Cunobelinus ruled the Trinovantes for a year, when his father died. Following his crowning the Trinovantes were absorbed into the great Catuvellauni federation, and the capital was moved to Camulodunum, which would become the largest and richest city in all of Prydain. Unlike his father, grandfather, and great-grandfather, Cunobelinus sought the friendship of Rome and is now considered to be the First British Statesman. The Romans were greatly surprised by the wealth and power of the Catuvellauni, especially when they learned of the presence of not one, but two mints in Cunobelinus' territory. The reign of Cunobelinus was the golden age of the Celts in Prydain, even though the Brythonic Celts were left out in the great federation of Belgic tribes. Tiberius Caesar would go on to grant the title 'King of the Britons' to Cunobelinus, which started a series of military campaigns in the 20s AD. Cunobelinus there after was King of the Britons both in title and reality. In 35 AD the kingdom began to unravel when the king lost his brother and viceroy, Epaticcus. The kingdom was divided between the sons of Cunobelinus, to disastrous consequences. In 40 AD the old king suffered a stroke, and his younger sons Togodumnus and Caradoc seized control. This seizure prompted the eldest son, Adminius, to flee to Rome. Shortly afterwards Cunobelinus died, brining the golden age to a close. Caradoc's reign was the end of Catuvellauni. With the death of Cunobelinus the eldest remaining son, Togodumnus, became the new king. But Caradoc was the true ruler of the Catuvellauni. Unlike their father, the two brothers were anti-Roman, and resented the increasing Roman nature of their kingdom. But first other matters drew their attention. The Atrebates, a new kingdom originally from Gaul, had earned the special hatred of the Catuvellauni when they killed Epaticcus. Caradoc focused all the energies of the kingdom on conquering the Atrebates. He succeeded and drove the king of the Atrebates, Verica, to Rome. In Rome the new Emperor Claudius was desperate to find some way to prove himself to the empire. The arrival of Verica, coupled with the continued pleas of Adminius, gave Claudius the opportunity he needed. In 43 AD the Roman Invasion of Britain began. Caradoc and Togodumnus rallied the tribes of Prydain to resistance, resulting in a situation eerily similar to their great-great-grandfather's when he confronted Caesar. The war went badly for the Catuvellauni, not even the chariots that worked so well in the last invasion could turn the tide. At the decisive battle at the modern Medway the Catuvellauni are broken by Roman arms, and Togodumnus fell in the battle. Caradoc assumed the kingship, now ruler in title and in fact. Caradoc would go on to fight one last field battle at the Thames, only to be defeated. Following this he returned to Camulodunum to try to get the populace to disperse into the woods and fight the Romans in a guerilla war. But they did not heed his words and the Romans conquered the jewel of Prydain shortly after Caradoc's departure with a small group of followers. This remnant followed Caradoc to Wales and there assisted the fugitive king in fighting a brilliant guerilla campaign from 47 AD to 50. In that year Roman authorities finally defeated the last Catuvellauni at the battle of Caer Caradoc. The king himself escaped capture for a while longer before he was betrayed by the Brigantes and sent to Rome in 51. After this we hear no more of the Catuvellauni as a separate people. In conclusion the Catuvellauni were a major tribe of Prydain. Without a doubt the Catuvellauni are among the greatest of the Celtic tribes of Ancient Britain. They well earned their fame, and their kings were great warriors, diplomats, and leaders.
  20. In this article we will give a short history of the Sequani tribe of Gaul. While not as well-known as their neighbors, the Aedui and Arverni, the Sequani nevertheless were a major power in the years before Caesar. Not much is known of the early years. Unlike with the Aedui and Arverni, with whom we have a clear starting point in history, we have no clear starting point for the Sequani. They are a mystery even to this day. What makes them even more mysterious is the Sequani did not speak Gaulish, but a different language, with theories ranging from some form of Goidelic to a corruption of Ligurian. In any case one thing is clear, the Sequani were among the younger tribes of Gaul. The Sequani first appear solidly in the 3rd Century. By the time of the 3rd Century BC we have far more solid ground on which to work on to the Sequani. Rome's influence had first begun to spread during this century. Roman contact shaped the Sequani in several ways. From the start they hated these new arrivals and were scornful of anything Roman. Despite this they engaged in trade wholeheartedly, and grew wealthy. This wealth was gained from the vast stores of cattle, sheep, and pigs the Sequani owned. If the Aedui were the masters of silver and gold and the Arverni of pottery, then the Sequani were the masters of domestic animals. In Rome the smoked ham of the Sequani became famous. It was this that lead to the beginning of the feud with the Aedui. Both the Aedui and the Sequani sat on the rich trade routes from the Mediterranean, their territories lay just across the modern Saone from each other. Soon the Sequani would commit themselves to whatever dispute their neighbors got in, just to be on the opposite side of the fighting. This lead to an alliance with the Arverni, which they took advantage of. When the Sweboz first began to raid Gaul in this period the Sequani tried to manipulate them, rather then cower in fear of them. In these people the Sequani saw the means by which they could achieve dominance. Which was the ultimate goal of all the Gallic tribes. The 2nd Century marked the rise of Sequani power. In the 2nd Century BC the Sequani were in the early part of the century dwarfed by their more powerful allies in the Arverni Confederacy. All of that changed in 121 BC when Rome broke the power of the Arverni, insuring the dominance of the Aedui Confederacy in Gaul. This marked a major changed in Gallic politics, and a major change in the Sequani as well. Their most hated foe had become the most powerful tribe in Gaul, backed by foreigners they despised. This was unacceptable and as a result the Sequani stepped up their attacks on the Aedui. Despite Roman backing the Aedui could not stand under the pressure of Sequani attacks, and the cracks in the new order of Gaul began to show. By the end of the 2nd Century the power of the Sequani had risen to such an extent that many of the former allies of the Aedui had become members of a new Sequani Confederacy. Insuring their dominance in the coming century. The 1st Century would mark the best, and worst, years of the Sequani. By the beginning of the 1st Century BC the balance of power in Gaul had changed more times then any in recent memory. The ruling power in Gaul had become the new power of the Sequani Confederacy, made up of former client states of the Aedui and Arverni alike. Many of the more conservative Gallic tribes had joined with the Sequani in alliances, in fear of the more liberal and open Aedui Confederacy, which had been reduced to a political nonentity. However it was not the support of the other Gallic tribes that allowed the Sequani to dominate Gaul, it was their Sweboz allies. By the 1st Century the numerous agreements between the Sequani and the Sweboz had turned into an all-out alliance between the two powers. Through the dominance of the Sequani the Germanic warriors were able to raid and attack as they pleased. All this considered the Sequani had every reason to be confident of final victory over the hated Aedui. But to the amazement of all Gaul not only did the Aedui resist the Sequani led invasion, but they were winning the war. The Sequani then decided to play their last, favorite, card: the Sweboz. But the other powers of the Sequani Confederacy, led by the Arverni, objected to this. But they did not listen and called on Ariovistus, war-leader of the Sweboz, to aid them in 71. But this was massive mistake. After Ariovistus conquered the Aedui he turned on the hand that called him forth, and the Sequani were nearly wiped out in the massacre that followed. The power of the Sequani Confederacy had been broken by the very allies they had depended on for dominance. Caesar defeated the Sweboz in 58 BC and kicked them out of Gaul, restoring the tribes that had been conquered by them to their former lands. This meant that when the Sequani were restored those lands they had conquered in their period of dominance were taken away. If any of the chiefs of the Sequani did not hate Rome yet, then they did from this point on. As a result when the call of revolt spread out in 53 the Sequani joined in wholeheartedly. When the Gallic Revolt was put down at Alesia the Sequani were among those treated harshly by Caesar. The last mention of the Sequani comes to us years later, in the 1st Century AD. When Augustus reorganized Gaul as part of his general revival of the Roman world the district of Sequania in the province of Belgica was named for the Sequani and they were relocated there. When Julius Civilis and Julius Sabinus rose in revolt following the death of Vitellius the Sequani resisted them. This earned the Sequani the admiration of Rome, who made their chief settlement, Vesontio, a colony, and graced it with a triumphal arch. After this we hear no more of the Sequani as a separate people. In conclusion the Sequani had a mixed impact on Gaul. They are remembered as the ones who produced the greatest domestic animals in Gaul, producing both clothing and meat of exceptional quality. Their greatest legacy however was bringing the Sweboz across the Rhine.
  21. In this article we will give a short history of the Arverni tribe of Gaul. As one of the most powerful tribes the Arverni had a major presence in Gallic politics. Vercingetorix, the most famous Celt of all, was of this tribe. Much of the Arverni's history is unknown. Because of the nonexistence of Gallic sources much of what we know of the Arverni must be reconstructed from the archeology, the Hellenes, the Romans. The historian Livy tells us the Arverni, like their Aedui foes, were part of the great migration to Italy under Bellovesus in the 6th Century. It has been suggested the Arverni belief that they were destined to rule Gaul may have started in this period, due to the influence of the Bituriges. This in fact may be the root of their name, as Arverni is Gaulish for Superior Ones. Not much more is known until the 3rd Century. When we hear of the Arverni again in the 3rd Century BC they had prospered and grown to amazing heights. By this time the Arverni had long since surpassed the Bituriges and had begun a great conquest of Gaul. The primary force behind this conquest was religious in nature, and tied to their kings. The Arverni choose their kings by election, in which all free men took part. The king, whom they called the Verrix, was believed to be divine, the incarnation of Arvernos. To them the natural place of the Verrix was to be high king of Gaul. The formation of the Arverni Confederacy dates from this period. This confederacy allowed for Arverni power to spread from the Pyrenees to the Rhine. Their domestic might was also great from this time on. It is said there was no home in Gaul did not have Arverni made pottery, so great was their reputation for making pots. Gergovia, the Arverni capital, is now believed to have been home to the greatest kilns in Gaul, in terms in quality and sheer numbers. This, combined with Arverni control of the northern trade routes, made them very wealthy. So wealthy that for a time the Arverni fielded the best equipped army in Gaul. However the rising power of the Aedui and their allies threatened their power. This became the start of the famous feud between the two alliances. The 2nd Century was both the high tide and the beginning of the end. Under a succession of brilliant Verrix the power of the Arverni Confederacy expanded to cover nearly the entirety of Gaul, and even the Belgae, the fierce tribes of what is now Belgium, feared them. The Hellenic traders of Massilia left behind a record speaking of the appearance of the Verrix Luernos when he visited their city at the height of Arverni glory. From this we know that at least in the mid 2nd Century the Arverni leadership had started to adopt some aspects of Hellenic dress. Luernos wore a robe of purple and gold (this speaks well for the wealth of the Arverni). We also know from this account the Arverni's main emblem was a wild boar. But all of this was about to come crashing down. When the Romans arrived in Gaul to the aid of Massilia the Arverni were drawn in by treaty ties tying them to the Allobroges. In the resulting conflict the powerful Arverni Confederacy was utterly broken by Rome (121 BC). The Arverni themselves were nearly wiped out, and the Verrix was humiliated. Following this the kingship lost its religious significance and was abolished. Gaul soon afterwards broke once more into chaos, the fragile unity brought by the Arverni's iron fist gone. In the 1st Century the most famous Celt of all appeared. It is in this period that we know the most about the Arverni, and that even in their twilight they could still pose a threat to Rome. By the time of the 1st Century the Arverni had defied all belief by beginning to recover from what had appeared to be a mortal wounding at the hands of Rome. This rising strength enabled the Arverni to, with the help of the Sequani, challenge the power of the Roman backed Aedui. But even so the Arverni still suffered heavily, and they appeared to be losing the war. When the Sequani proposed inviting the Sweboz to help them the chief of the Arverni, Celtillus, was vehement in his opposition. The Arverni and the Sweboz hated each other, and Celtillus did not want their help. Nevertheless the Sequani invited them anyway, and brought disaster on themselves when the Sweboz turned on the hand that paid them. But this, ironically enough, would be a good thing. With the Aedui all but wiped out, and the Sequani beaten, the Arverni stood a good chance of regaining their former power. Celtillus began to develop dreams of grandeur, if he had not already, believing the path open to revive the office of Verrix. Thus he set out to unite Gaul. But his dreams were all cut short when his nobility assassinated him out of fear what a united Gaul would bring on them. As the son of Celtillus, the deliberately named Vercingetorix (which means Man who is Chief of a Hundred Heads), was too young to rule so the nobles ruled in his place. Vercingetorix would go on to eventually take control of the Arverni and in time became the leader of the great revolt against Rome in 53. Alongside the Arverni Guard, an elite formation he created, Vercingetorix lead his men into battle. In 52 the Gallic tribes, united in thier entirety for the first and only time, elected Vercingetorix as the Verrix, high king of Gaul. But his reign would be short, Caesar was relentless. When the Gallic Revolt ended Caesar spared the Arverni from destruction. Why he did so remains a mystery, but it is commonly believed that Caesar respected them for their nobility of person and fighting spirit. After this we hear no more of the Arverni as a separate people, except for a few scattered references here and there. In conclusion the Arverni were a major power in Gaul. Rising from relative obscurity to become nearly masters of Gaul, to being all but wiped out by Rome, only to recover and almost defeat Julius Caesar himself, truly the Arverni were among the greatest movers and shakers in Gallic history.
  22. You scored as Augustus. You are Augustus! First emperor of the Romans and one of the greatest statesmen in the ancient world. You brilliantly eased the old Republic into the Principate and set the path for an empire that would last for centuries and form the underpinnings for all western civilization. Hail Caesar! Augustus 100% Hadrian 86% Claudius 79% Antoninus Pius 71% Marcus Aurelius 71% Vespasian 64% Trajan 64% Tiberius 57% Nero 36% Nerva 36% Caligula 29% Domitian 29% Vitellius 21% Commodus 0%
  23. In this article we will give a short history on the Aedui tribe of Gaul. One of the best known of the Gallic tribes the Aedui played a major role in the politics of the region, both before and after the Roman conquest. Not much is known of the Aedui. It is unfortunate but like with most of the Gallic tribes we do not know a lot about the Aedui outside of their interactions with Rome. We know that the Aedui were in existence in the 6th Century BC, for Livy tells us that the Aedui were part of the great invasion of Italy under Bellovesus. The Insubres, who founded a city that would later become known as Mediolanum, were a sub tribe of the Aedui. It is interesting to note that the Aedui claimed to be the rightful heirs of the Bituriges (which means incidentally kings of the world), the rulers of Gaul in the 6th Century. Roman contact had a great impact on the Aedui. From what little we know of them we know that contact with Rome must have happened fairly early in the history of the Aedui. For by the time of the 3rd Century they already have a Roman style political system in place. Of all the Gallic tribes the Aedui have the best recorded political system. Again by the 3rd Century we hear of them of having an assembly that elected a magistrate, called the Vergobret, whose power matched that of a Roman Consul according to Caesar. We also know the wealth of the Aedui increased by this time as the trade routes between the Greco-Roman cultures of the Mediterranean and Northern Europe went through their territory from Massilia (modern Marseilles). Gold coins, minted by the Aedui themselves, date from the 3rd Century. It is also from this time that we first hear of the long standing bad blood between the Aedui and Arverni. Previously the Arverni Confederacy had been the undisputed masters of much of Gaul, from the Pyrenees to the Rhine. The rising influence of the Aedui threatened their supremacy, and when the Aedui formed an alliance against them, tensions rose. If any wars broke out between them we cannot say for certain, but the bad blood started in the 3rd Century. By the time of the 2nd Century the tide of power had turned. As we move forward in time more becomes clear. The 2nd Century was one of momentous change for the Aedui, and for all of Gaul. It was in these years the Roman Republic first made its presence felt. When Massilia became threatened Rome intervened on their behalf, and that conflict drew in the Arverni. They were nearly wiped out by the Romans, and the power of their confederacy was broken beyond all repair. The Aedui, who had supported the Romans as far as they could with out going to war, prospered for their support. In 125 the Senate officially recognized the Aedui as friends and brothers of the Roman people, giving them privileged status. When Roman trade from the newly established Province began arriving in force the Aedui switched to using Roman style silver coinage to fully take advantage of the new trading opportunities. Bibracte, the capital, became among the richest and largest of the Gallic cities. When Rome began to meddle in the political stage of Gaul they choose to back the Aedui, and it was Roman power that backed the formation of an Aedui Confederacy. But this new force never attained the same level of power the Arverni had, and the cracks soon showed. The rising power of the Sequani became a major thorn to the Aedui, and a even greater threat then the Arverni. In the 1st Century BC we have the most information. We know the most about the Aedui during the period of Caesar's conquest of Gaul, with whom they allied themselves. In 71 BC the Sequani (allied with the Arverni) and the Aedui were at war and from all accounts the latter appeared to be winning. The Sequani as a result called a man we know as Ariovistus to help them. Ariovistus appears to have been a war leader amongst the Germanic Sweboz, whom the Romans called the Suebi. The Germanic peoples were the only warriors the Celts truly feared, and their entrance into the war turned the tide against the Aedui. To their credit they managed to hold the Sweboz off for ten years before appealing to Rome for aid. The arrival of Diviciacus in 61, a druid who was also Vergobret, is significant as not only one of the few named Vergobrets but also as the only named druid who really existed. Diviciacus left a great impact on Rome, and he even made friends with the great orator Cicero. However the Senate refused to help him and his people, and as a result the Aedui fell to their enemies soon after Diviciacus' mission. When Caesar arrived in Gaul he restored the Aedui to their former lands, and pushed the hated Sweboz back over the Rhine. Over the course of Caesar's conquests the Aedui were Rome's greatest Celtic allies and many young Aeduan nobleman joined Caesar's legions as a cavalry auxilia. For these reasons it is hard for historians, even to this day, to understand what motivated the Aedui to suddenly switch sides when the Gallic revolt began in 53. It has been suggested that the reason was a change in leadership. In 53 Diviciacus had lost his bid to be re-elected as Vergobret, so the new magistrate, possibly an anti-Roman, would have had good reason to align with the rebels. Interestingly enough Vercingetorix, who was an Arverni, was elected leader of the revolt at Bibracte. When the revolt was defeated by Caesar at Alesia in 51 it was the Aedui who were the first of the tribes to beg Caesar for forgiveness. Because the ties between the Aedui and Rome were still strong Caesar spared them and the Aedui quickly assumed a leadership position in the new Roman order. The last mention of the Aedui comes in the 1st Century AD. When Augustus began his reorganization of Gaul in the early years of the new era the Aedui were among the first to be affected. Augustus dismantled Bibracte and built a new capital, a blending of Roman and Gallic cultures, for them. This new capital was called Augustodunum. In 21 AD an Aeduan nobleman named Julius Sacrovir rose in revolt in protest against the high taxes demanded by the Roman government. Tiberius dispatched Legio II Augusta under Gaius Silius to put down the revolt, which ended swiftly. Despite this the long history of friendship prevailed and the Emperor Claudius bestowed upon them jus honorum, the right to run for public office. After this we have no more mention of the Aedui as a separate people. In conclusion the Aedui were an important part of Gallic history. Even though we do not have a lot of information about them the Aedui were certainly a major power in Gaul. And as a benefit of their long standing friendship with Rome the Aedui became the first Celts to run for Roman office.
  24. Well I personally would love to see the Mauryans, Saka, and the Hellenistic Kingdoms. I have always liked the Successors, and the Mauryans I grew to like writing my bio of thier founder. Europa Barbarorum, a mod for RTW, got me interested in the Saka, who are definatly interesting.
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