Alternate History

400-499 (Abrittus)

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Due to Rome's defensive doctrine and friendly relations with the Sassanids, this is a century of relative peace, stability, innovations and increasing living standards in the Mediterranean space.

While the development of the slave-free Roman economy outpaces both their Gallo-Roman and Sassanid neighbours, the latter two are also at the height of their imperial glory.

The Gallo-Roman Empire conquers the entire British Isles and controls much of continental North-Western Germania, putting an end to the threats of invasion. The inclusion of so many Celtic tribes and kingdoms subtly transforms the empire (henceforth "Celtic Empire"). Towards the end of the century, the Celtic Empire is indebted to its own citizens and has debased its currency greatly, though.

The Sassanid Empire controls Persia and the Gulf and all the Indo-Aryan lands formerly controlled by the Kushana and Shaka as well as Bactria, Sogdia and more of the Central Asian steppe beyond as well as the steppe between the Caspic Sea and the Aral Sea. In trade as well as in cultural exchange, the Sassanid Empire profits heavily from its intensified contacts to China, India and the Roman Empire. Scientific, theological and cultural innovations are created here. The latest among them, social revolutionary Mazdakism, shakes the foundation of the empire towards the end of the century.


Sassanid / Roman Empire: Indian cotton carding bows come into use across the Middle East and the Mediterranean.

Alemannia: Chnodomar speeds up Alemannia`s modernisation even more, pushing municipal councils and gau tings to codify the laws of their respective lands and to elect magistrates who are responsible for improving and extending the network of roads across Alemannia.


Alemannia: Agenarich Serapio dies. Emissaries from Roman civitates and from the Five Nations attend his majestic Lausai funeral. The Bundsting / Senatus Foederationis elects Chnodomar as his successor. He is crowned with the title of "Kaisar", no longer as "HIgh King", as a symbol of Alemannic independence from the Gallo-Roman Empire.


Gallo-Roman Empire: Caledonians and other Picts cross Antony's wall and raid Northern Britannia. Caesar Spurius Cumbricus decides to take back the reign over the isles and sends a massive army to the North.


Gallo-Roman Empire: After several major defeats, the Gallo-Roman armies bring the entire larger British Isle under their control; only smaller islands at its fringes are still held by people who have not submitted to Spurius Cumbricus. Clan chiefs are held as hostages or enslaved and several garrisons stationed in the low- and highlands.

Soninke: A group of dissenters, who do not subscribe either to Christianity, or to the new social rules which collectivise all property, leaves the rest of the Soninke and seeks refuge in the lands controlled by the city state of Takrur.


After repeated raids and acts of piracy, the Conventum Romanum decides to secure its emporium in Mosylon (in OTL Somalia), which is an important commercial centre and port town for Roman-Indian trade, with a strong naval presence. The majority faction of the "Collegiales" follows a doctrine elaborated by the Academia Collegii Militum, which defines the protection of the republic's most vital economic interests as the most important acts of "defense". The "Aulian Doctrine", named after the academy's most outspoken professor, marks the beginning of a new imperial strategy, aimed not at enlarging imperial territory, plundering foreign cities, exacting tributes from vassals or capturing slaves, but at safeguarding good business of Rome's merchants, safe and affordable transport routes, access to resources and to outlet markets.


Sassanid Empire (India): At the University of Barygaza, mathematicians in the Devangari tradition come up with the idea of a number "zero".


Sassanid Empire: The second Sassanid university with Sogdian as official language opens in Bukhara.

Imaziyen: Beginning of a seven-year long (on and off) war between the Imaziyen and the Duguwa of Kanem, who want to restore control over the Kaouar Valley.


Armenia: Under the supervision of Patriarch Meshrop, an Armenian translation of the Bible, drawing on both Aramaic and Greek canons, in the Gregorian script is completed.


Imaziyen: "Scholae Christianae" are established in all major towns and oases of the Ljama`a Amazigh, using the profits from Niger-Roman cotton trade. They elevate the levels of literacy and professional skills among the Imaziyen and also contribute to a standardisation of Tamazight and its absorption of even more words of Greek and Latin origin.


India: A horse-trader from Prayaga is harassed by a local tax magistrate upon attempting to approach Kannauj. His protests lead to the death of his horses, his wife and his assistant. The horse-trader seeks justice, but finds none, since the local magistrate is a member of the highly influential Maukhari clan. He ultimately appeals to Chandragupta. Chandragupta, who fears that the Maukhari might create problems, judges the local magistrate merely to re-institute the killed horses, considering the rest the horse-trader's own fault because he had put up inadmissible resistance against the magistrate's order. The judgment creates outrage among the merchant communities of the Gangetic plain, whose wealth and social power have grown beyond measure. Prayaga`s horse-breeders' and traders' shreni (guild), many members of which are trained in the martial arts and belong to secret societies, decides to arm themselves (to accompany their members in armed convoys) in reaction to the judgment. It is the first time that a socio-economic institution like a shreni assumes such political and military autonomy. Their decision finds support even in Gupta towns.


Tamilakam: Ostrogothic sea merchants establish close connections with Cochin, the Cheran town with a large Jewish community. Dependences will be created here, and Cochin will serve as the Ostrogothic main base for the pepper and pearl trade with Muchiri, Korkai, and Kanchipuram.


Roman Empire: The technique of blowing glass over oil lamps is greatly improved in the Cyrenaic and Egyptian civitates.


Alemannia: Kaisar Chnodomar resigns, being very ill and incapable to continue his duties. His elected successor is Makrian, the first Alemannic monarch with a provincial Roman background (from Lopodunum). Makrian soon starts a program of building Roman-style aquaeducts.


Lasika: A Laz translation of Meshrop`s bible is completed, too.


Roman Empire: At a Syrian Academia Vulcania in Damascus, the first vertical windmill is planned. A first  improved version is installed six years later near Caesarea.

Imaziyen: Owed to better weaponry, more camels and greater numbers of crusaders bent on victory or martyrdom, the Imaziyen finally defeat the Duguwa with the help of insurgent local Tubu tribes. The entire old Duguwa elite is massacred or driven into the desert. The Agonistici celebrate the victory of their crusade with another mass / communion. Now that they control Kanem and the entire Kaouar Valley as far South as Bilma, they have monopolised the Eastern passage across the Sahara from the Sahel to the Mediterranean, too.


Peresechen on the river Hierasus (OTL Siret) becomes the Roman Republic's first civitas with Slavic as official language (spoken by the majority of citizens who belong to the tribe of the Ugliches).


Saxony / Frisia: Angrivarian Saxons invade the largest Frisian town, Dorestad, where more than 25,000 people live from trade with the Celtic, and to a lesser extent also Roman, Empire. They demand high tribute payments for the city's "protection".

India: Chandragupta dies. He is succeeded by Kumaragupta, the great reformer of his empire.


Social tensions caused by the recent advent of the Soninke disrupt Takrur. Beginning of a civil war.


Roman Empire: Aegidius, a professor of philosophy at the University of Alexandria, who has travelled a lot through the Sassanid Empire including its Indian East, publishes his main work, "De organis scientiae". In it, he rejects the "transcendental speculations" of (Neo-)Platonism as well as the Athens-based New Academic School of Skepticism, and defines standards for an empirical quest for truth.

Historians of philosophy have linked his empiricist philosophy with Aegidius` contact with Indian Carvaka philosophy, and its widespread success with the abundance of collegium-based academies of applied sciences and the mechanical revolution which has gripped the Roman society at this point in time.

Franconia / Saxony: Saxons attack Frankish kingdoms and extort tribute.


Lanka: A Roman emporium in Nagadiboi is consolidated and fitted with a naval presence. Its name is Lanca Affena.

The Antic King Bogudan subdues the Moksha.

Iberia: An Iberian translation of Meshrop`s Bible is completed.


Gupta India: Kumaragupta I founds the University of Nalanda, which would become India's greatest centre of Buddhism and science.

Imaziyen: The Synod of the Community of Saints decides that the sanctuary of the former Kanem Empire in Mune is actually the Ark of the Covenant, which has now returned to rightful heirs. A foundation is set up which enables priestly education in and pilgrimage to Mune.


The small town / marketplace of Homia (OTL Homel) is mentioned for the first time in a contract in which local Mordwinian fur traders guarantee to sell their goods exclusively to the Ostrogothic merchant syndicate of the Atarkbaktoi (= the fearless). The document also mentions Slavic farmers inhabiting the lands in the immediate South-Western proximity of Homia.



Roman Empire: Researchers at an Academia Cerealia in Thagaste (Africa Carthagensis) invent a mechanical cotton carding machine.


Roman Empire / Sheba: Rome's naval presence in Aden is increased to secure Roman-Indian trade. The Roman presence is not extremely popular with Sabaeans, but it strengthens the local economy and the importance of one of Sheba's largest port towns.

India: Bhaskara, a brahmin from Prayaga who had studied at the Jainist-dominated University of Mathura, writes the first Ganatantrashastra, in which he lays down principles of an orderly society and rejects imperial monarchies.


Alemannia: Chatti call the Alemanni for help against frequent Saxon invasions and slave hunting. After a successful Alemannic campaign in Chassia and Southern Saxony, Chassia becomes incorporated into the Alemannic Empire as a new gau.


Sassanid Empire: The largest university of the Sassanid Empire in Gundishapur opens a mathematics department, where many scholars from India work. They introduce the Devanagari numerical system to the West of the Sassanid Empire.


The Antic King Bogudan collects tribute from the Slavic tribal union of the Ventichi (Vyatichi).

Imaziyen: The establishment of religious institutions at Mune, operating in the Amazigh language, upsets the Tubu, who see themselves as the guardians of the Ark of the Covenant. The Synod salomonically decides to fund Tubu-speaking priests, too, from the abundant profits generated by Trans-Saharan cotton trade.


Gallo-Roman Empire: With Cogidubnus, the Senate at Lugdunum elects for the first time a Briton as Caesar. He decrees a reform of the provinces and pagi.


Roman Empire: The first alcohol still is operated in Sicily. Licinus, a landowner, sells brandy made from wine in Syracuse.

Gallo-Roman Empire: Cogidubnus integrates the lands North of Antonine's Wall as regular provinces into the Empire and implements the pagi system adapted to the local clans.


In Takrur, the civil war is temporarily ended with the proclamation of an absolute monarch who commands over a sizable standing army, including cavalry. Defeated Soninke are forced to work likes slaves for the Serer elite.

Sassanid Empire: Balkh is the second university to open a mathematics department. It will be followed by more than ten universities in the next five years.

India: Kumaragupta invites Bhaskara to Pataliputra, where they conduct the famous "Dharmashastra dialogues". Although Bhaskara is a republicanist, the two show high respect for each other.


India: At the University of Nalanda, a department for Natural Philosophy opens. Its first Dean is not a devout Buddhist, but a Carvakan from the University of Barygaza in the Sassanid Empire.

Alemannia: To secure the Moenus against frequent invasions from the North, strong new castles are built in Virtburg (OTL Würzburg) and Babenberg (OTL Bamberg).


Gallo-Roman Empire: After raids on Britannia's East Coast and on Pictandia, Cogidubnus forges an alliance with the High Kings of Tara against the Ulaid of Emain Macha.


The Gregorian Church organises further translations of Meshrop`s Bible into Lezgian, Alanian, Nakh and Lak.


Gallo-Roman Empire: Ligain warriors under the command of Mac Cairthinn mac Coelboth and Gallo-Roman legions defend the Ulaid and split their territory. Gallo-Roman forts and naval bases are established in OTL Northern Ireland and on the island's Eastern coast.


Roman Empire: The Christian Academy of Edessa under its Spritius Rector, Nestor, defines a Biblical canon which diverges from the Greek Canon. It consists entirely of texts and translations in Aramaic and includes, in contrast to OTL, for example the Gospel according to Peter and a different version of the Gospel according to Matthew. The Aramaic or Nestorian Bible soon becomes the best-read book in the South-Eastern quarters of the Roman Republic. Later canonic Sabaean translations are mostly based on it.


Sassanid Empire: In the Northern satrapies of the Sassanid Empire, the economical Chinese method of papermaking is adapted to environments without mulberry trees and bamboos, using other wood leftovers instead. Its first use among wealthier Sogdians, Gandharans and Bactrians is - imitating Chinese practices - as toilet paper.


Arabia / Sassanid Empire: Supported by Sheba, which seeks to gain control over the Strait of Hormuz, the South-Eastern arabian tribe of the Azd revolts against Sassanid leadership. The Sassanids unleash their Arabian allies, the Lakhmids, whose mounted archers defeat the revolting Azd. Some rebels flee into remote mountain regions.


Roman Empire: To aid trade and the dissemination of inventions, the Conventum Romanum decides to expand the "cursus publicus" (the Roman postal system) and open it for the use by private persons. Post offices are opened in cities and towns across the empire. Retired professional soldiers are employed in these post offices, on the post ships and as post riders.

Arabia: The Jafnids, led by the Jewish king Jabalah III ibn al Nu´man, seize the opportunity and attack and plunder al-Hira, the capital of the Lakhmids. Jabalah dies in the battle for al-Hira, though. While still in al-Hira, his three sons each attempt to mobilise support for their claim to leadership.


St Kinnon founds the Celtic Church; a pelagianist brand of Christianity.


Gallo-Roman Empire: The largest fleet of Angles and Saxons so far manages to break through Gallo-Roman defense lines and plunders and devastates Batavia and Britannia.


Arabia: In return for Lakhmid support in the war against the Hepthalites, the Sassanid shah Bahram V. lends military support for the reconquest of al-Hira.

Celtic Empire / Saxony: The Celtic Caesar Lucius Scoticus gathers an enormous army for an all-out war against the Angles and Saxons. His infantry, among them many Scotes and Picts, rolls over neutral Frankish kingdoms and defeat the Saxons at Ulft and at Eresburg, where a holy tree of the Saxons, the Irminsul, is felled. The defeat and the desecration of their sacred place throws Saxon society into a long cultural and political crisis.  At the same time, the Celtic navy occupies and secures the Frisian islands, sails up the rivers Weser and Elbe and burns down major Saxon settlements. When the infantry and cavalry join them, they march Northwards and conquer Anglia. Two more battles at Marklo and at the Egða are lost by the Saxons and Anglons respectively. Before winter comes, two thirds of the Saxon territory and all of Anglia are brought under Celtic control.


Arabia: Lakhmids defeat the internally divided Jafnids and conquer them.

Celtic Empire / Saxony / Anglia: Lucius Scoticus (who can also call himself Saxonicus maximus and Anglicus maximus now) decides to make Anglia an imperial Celtic province, while letting Saxony survive as a vassal state. Celtic troops remain stationed across Western and Central Saxony and erect a dozen castra and naval bases, among them Castra Martellis, which would in later centuries become Hammaburg / Hamburg, the capital of an independent Saxon kingdom.

Land in Anglia (OTL Continental Denmark) is given to the victorious soldiers, among them many formerly landless Picts and Scotes with Celtic citizenship and even some from auxiliary units without Celtic citizenship, who now acquire the latter. This ethnic composition of the Celtic colonisation of Anglia contributes greatly to the development of the Common Celtic language, a lingua franca spoken by the settlers of Brythonic, Pictish and Scotish (OTL Irish) origins and used for all purposes except for the most formal ones, where Latin is used. Over the next decades, what we call the North Sea in OTL becomes the "Mare Celticum" in this timeline.

Angles, Jutes and Saxons, who had dwelt in these lands before, are fleeing South-Eastwards.

Also, Celtic military presence in the Frankish kingdoms on the right shore of the Rhine is increased. Territorial boundaries between Frankish kingdoms are laid out on a map drafted by Lucius Scoticus.


Sassanid Empire: Positional notation with Devangari numerals and the number zero, which allows elegant calculations, is accepted at all new mathematical faculties across the empire.

Saxony: This year's Althing at Marklo marks the lowest point in Saxon history so far. More than half of Saxony's ethelinga are held as hostages in the Celtic Empire, while the rest is forced to nominate a permanent king, who must also be palatable to the Celtic Caesar and Senate.

In this sombre mood, the Lausai movement gains followers among the Saxons. The Lausai are oppressed both by the Celtic imperial occupation forces and by the new Saxon Kingdom, though.


Angles, Saxons, Jutes and Warnians move into Hermunduria. The Hermundurians manage to kill many of them, but cannot roll back their invasion, and must ultimately flee to Alemannia and into the Burgundian lands of the Alliance of the Five Nations. Anglo-Saxon-Warnian fortresses are built.

The Frankish kingdoms turn more and more into Celtic client states, whose warriors operate as auxiliaries for the Celts, and whose inter-tribal conflicts are arbited by the Celtic Caesar. Regular payments, which have a devastating effect on the imperial Celtic treasury, turn the Frankish kings into employees of the Celts.


India: An ample project of infrastructural improvement (canals, roads, border and town fortifications) is finished by Kumaragupta's administration.

Ireland: The death of Amalgaid mac Fiachrae marks the beginning of an era of warfare in North-Western OTL Ireland, with frequent incursions into Celtic Scotia and its allied confederacy led by the Kings of Tara.


India: Kumaragupta gathers representatives of various kshatriya dynasties, brahmin groups, wealthy shrenis, Buddhist monasteries and town councils in an assembly in Pataliputra, to which he also brings the heads of his administrative and military offices. The summit`s goal is to codify the roles, rights, duties and ressources of the different power groups, the monarch and his administration - both to avoid internal struggles and weakness, and to acquiesce the growing criticism following Bhaskara`s formulation of the Ganatantrashastra.  The summit ends without any consensus results. It nevertheless changed the course of the Gupta Empire`s history by setting a precedent: future monarchs would have to consult similar supreme assemblies on important occasions, too, although who exactly would have to be invited and which occasions were important enough was not clearly defined. Rivaling dynasties increasingly attempted to influence the power balance within the Gupta polity instead of attempting to establish their own, which was about to become an out-dated notion on the Gangetic plains in the light of ganatantrashastra criticism.


Roman Empire: In the process of the extension and modernisation of the dams and mills at Leptis Magna, the first water powered cotton carding machines are built and used.


The Margo Hypanensis descends into chaos as the marginalised Slavic tribes of the Branichevci and Smolyani rise up and plunder newly established villae rusticae. Troops loyal to Boro, King of the Velziti, and militia of the predominantly Roman or Melingoi Slavic civitates confront the marauders, but are unable to stop them completely.


Violence and bloodshed continue in the Margo Hypanensis and extend to the lower reaches of the Margo Tyrensis, too. Voices calling for an intervention on behalf of the Republic's business partners in the margo, where major and formerly profitable infrastructural investments must be protected, have not yet gained a majority in the Conventum and were also unable to convince any major civitas within the Republic to deploy its militia.


China / Shanshan / Sassanid Empire: The Tarim Basin kingdom of Shanshan is attacked by the Northern Wei under Emperor Taiwu. Sogdian merchants, who are active in this region and exerted a great influence on the King Zhenda of Shanshan and his advisors, are afraid of losing influence. They alert the strong and wealthy Sogdian cities in Sassanid territories farther West. An ad hoc council of Sogdian leaders decides to hire military help from the Turkic Chubans, who agree to the plan. The Chuban assist in the defense of Shanshan. They can postpone Shanshan's defeat long enough for news of Gai Wu's rebellion to reach Emperor Taiwu, who abandons the campaign and withdraws from the Tarim Basin. Sogdian influence, and specifically the influence of Sassanid Sogdians and their Turkic allies, over the Tarim Basin is consolidated.

Roman Empire: As plundering, killings and destruction continue in the Margines Tyrensis et Hypanensis, the Consuls Bato and Usretos send in federal troops stationed along the Borysthenes and on Tauris.


In OTL Southern Somalia, war breaks out between the city-states of Barawa (dominated by Sabaean and Persian merchants) and Merca (ruled by local Biyomaal). Neither side wins, but both cities suffer and draw the consequences: Barawa sends tribute to the King of Sheba to obtain military protection, while the Biyomaal ally themselves with the Rahaweyn of the hinterland plains and the Oromo in the mountains.

Roman Empire: The Margines Tyrensis et Hypanensis come under direct federal and military administration. In contrast to the rest of the Republic, its civitates do not enjoy fiscal and legislative autonomy. Taxes are to be collected by a new administration headed by new provincial Censors appointed by the Conventum Romanum. Roman law applies to the margo, and provincial Praetors serve as institutions for appeals. Not all inhabitants automatically become Roman citizens, though. At the beginning, only a sixth of the population enjoys citizenship (and with it the right to own land). Over the next decades, the diverse population of the new Provincia Tyrensis and Provincia Hypanensis (the Republic's only two provinces!) partly acquires citizenship through service in the Roman federal armed forces, while a few more acquire citizenship from the Censors. The rest remains condemned to toiling away as landless coloni, a status overcome elsewhere in the Roman Empire.

Tauris, where things had remained calm, retains the status of a margo.


Arabia: With military support from Rome, the Jewish Jafnids manage to shake off Lakhmid rule again.

Imaziyen: In the entire Ljama`a Amazigh, standard measurements after the Roman model are introduced.


Sassanid Empire (India): In Punavadi, the first temple, in which Mary, mother of Jesus, is portrayed as one of Shakti`s reincarnations, is erected at the request of its donor, a wealthy brahmin from the South who had spent several years among Christians in Southern Arabia and married a Christian wife.


Sassanid Empire: Sassanid shah Yazdegerd II orders the implementation of a mail system analogous to the Roman cursus publicus in the Sassanid Empire, too.


The empiricist philosophy of Aegidius and his eleves have become an important philosophical paradigm at Roman and Sassanid universities, too, where they are referred to as "Celtic philosophy".


Sassanid Empire: Sokotra is conquered by the Sassanids. In response, Sheba forges a formal alliance with its fellow Christian kingdoms of Aksum, Armenia, Lasikia and Iberia and the Christian Taghlib and Kindite Arabs because Rome does not want to imply itself against the Sassanids.


Arabia: After the Nabateans managed to convert a Quraish clan to Simonism, social conflict erupts in Mecca.


The port town of Kismayu, ruled by local Bajuni, but apparently frequented by Sheban, Sassanid, Indian and Ostrogothic merchants, appears for the first time on a Roman map (Greek name: Kismayon).


Arabia: The Simonists are defeated among the Quraish.

Roman Empire: In large, wealthy South-Eastern civitates like Antiochia and Alexandria, the production and use of "Persian" toilet paper becomes widespread.


Celtic Empire: The Celtic Empire gets its own mail system, too.

India: The Pushyamitras tribe  against the Guptas. Kumaragupta I is killed in the battle. His son Skandragupta defeats the Pushayamitras.

Alemannia: Kaisar Rechila starts an offensive against the Anglo-Saxon-Warnians in OTL Thüringen and Sachsen. He wins two important battles and forces the Saxons, Anglons and Warnians to retreat into the wooded hills at the Southern fringe (OTL Thüringer Wald; Fichtelgebirge).


Arabia: The Quraish attack the Nabateans. After the battle, the Nabateans must assure to abstain from further proselytising among the Quraish.


Roman Empire: The extremely wealthy Augustini family, who operates many mills and buys larger and larger amounts of cotton from the Imaziyen, awards a great sum of money to Iulianus, an engineer from Carthage's Academia Vulcania, who has invented a mechanical spinning device that can be integrated into the company's mechanical system powered by the Leptis Magna dam. The first spinning machine is used in the same year.


Tamilakam: Wealthy members of the Sabaean merchant community build the first Christian church in Muchiri.


Roman Empire: After the Augustini have installed twelve more water powered spinning machines, their devices are destroyed by infuriated Simonist workers, whose jobs in the rising cotton textile industry were lost. The wild strike is finally ended at the intervention of the African Conventum. The Augustini are compensated and order new machinery.


Alemannic burgi are built to control the new Hermundurian gaue in the North-West: Wartburg, Mühlburg, Gleißburg, Lobdeburg, Borna.

The Anglo-Saxon-Warnian population erects burgi, too, to defend their positions and dwellings in the wooded hills and roads which are important for its exchange of goods with the South (e.g. the Schauenburg).


Roman Empire: At an Academia Collegii Nautarum in Alexandria, a functional flamethrower with pumps and large containers of oleum petrae is developed.


The Ostrogoths have built a trading outpost / colony at Chrysosydor (OTL Volgograd) in the Kingdom of the Antes, from which they conduct trade on the Ra (OTL Volga) with the Antes, Magyars and Mari and which guards the passage from the Tanais to the Ra, an important Ostrogothic shortcut for trade with the Northern Sassanid Empire. It is the first of several Ostrogothic colonies beyond the reaches of the Roman margo.


Celtic Empire: The first post mill is built in Batavia.

Imaziyen: A court of appeal for the Ljama`a Amazigh - of course theologically dominated -, the "Supreme Imkama", is established in Theveste. It contributes greatly to the development of a fixed canon of "Agonistic Christian law", comparable perhaps to what OTL Muslims understand as Sharia.


Celtic Empire / Ireland: Crimthann mac Énnai relies on support from his imperial Celtic allies in his successful battle against Lóegaire mac Néill. The North-Western Irish wars are ended, the lands of the Ui Néill and Ui Fiachrach are conquered and split: the Northern shore becomes a part of the Celtic province Scotia, while Connacht chieftains must accept Laigin overlordship.

Sassanid Empire: In contrast to OTL, the Hephtalites, who have become fully integrated, loyal subjects of the Shahanshah, nor the Awars cause any trouble in Transoxania. All is quiet in the Northern Caucasus, too, where the Sassanid Empire has established close links with the remaining Alani, Cercetians and others, offering local elites education in the cultivated cities of the empire and lending support against the increasingly powerful Christian kingdoms of the Central and Western Caucasus (Lasika, Iberia).


Celtic Empire: In the empire's largest city, Lugdunum, plebeian protesters backed by the collegia of less wealthy, but numerous professions (tailors, blacksmiths, fishermen) overthrow the decurional communal constitution and install a Comitium Civitatis.


Gupta India: After several other shreni have followed the horse-traders' example and armed themselves openly to protect their members within and between cities, and after the shreni of several towns have negotiated with each other to accept this and not consider it aggressive, and Skandagupta has not found an adequate answer to this quickly growing trend, the philosopher Vyasatahana declares that Skandagupta is not a "Chaktravartin", an ideal ruler of the world. Perhaps the most surprising circumstance is that Vyasatahana, himself a Brahmin, does not use Vedic comparisons or even comparisons to earlier Gupta rulers to discredit Skandagupta, but Ashoka, the great Buddhist ruler of the ancient Maurya Empire. His work finds a great echo among learned Indians of Hindu, Buddhist and Jainist creeds.


Roman Empire: The first experimental flamethrowers are installed on Roman war ships in the Mediterranean and the Black Sea.


Following a persecution in Sheba, a large group of Manichaeists flees to Kismayu. The council of elders of Kismayu accepts them against the payment of a "Mani tax".


Sabaean colonists found the city of Bar ul-Zandj on an island (OTL Pemba) just opposite a large Shambaa village on the continent's shore.


Celtic Empire: The second largest city in the empire, Tarraco, follows the example of Lugdunum and is governed by a Comitium Civitatis, too, now.


Roman Empire: The Augustini of Leptis Magna have become the wealthiest family in the entire empire. Cotton trade with Africa has increased at the factor 50 over the last 50 years. Africa becomes a wealthy province. New textile mills open up in other provinces, too, now.

Celtic Empire: A dozen monasteries of the Celtic Church have sprung up across Ireland, Britain and Spain. They attract the educated, who would previously have called themselves "druids", but are dissatisfied with the scientific, anti-metaphysical trend of Aegidian philosophy druidism at the universities.


Roman Empire: The remaining approximately 1,000 Blemmyes who live and work at the Roman hydreuma Omichle on the Red Sea are granted the status of Roman citizens. While the hydreuma and the agricultural compound they work on belong to the Federal troops, the Blemmyes are incorporated politically into the civitas / polis of Berenice Troglodytica.


Ostrogoths: One hundred years after its establishment, the Ostrogothic citizens of Rome's first margo "Tauris te Bosporos Kimmerikos" decide in a narrow referendum against joining the Roman Republic. Their cities, which stretch along the Borysthenes and Tanais far up North, where their syndicates buy furs and horses from the Ugro-Finns and sell them iron tools, sophisticated glassware and alcohol, to the Isle of Tauris, whose port towns like Chersonesos have been rebuilt in grand style, and its citizens are wealthy. Their trading networks span across most of the known world. Young men and women alike enjoy good education, many speak not only Greek, but also Hebrew, the sacral language of their Judaist faith, which has taken deep roots among the Taureans and brought cultural unity to the people of various descents. The Ostrogoths are protected by the Roman military presence, which also offers good business and job opportunities, and they feel no need to subject themselves to the general draft for the Roman Republican army. Their comparatively low levels of taxation are also something they don't wish to give up for becoming full members of the Republic. Thus, the status quo continues.

Roman Empire: Still experimental fire pumps are installed on river vessels patrolling the Borysthenes and the Tanais. They increasingly also accompany Ostrogothic merchant ships sailing to the Northern woodlands.


A Soninke conspiracy led by Reidja Cissé overthrows the Serer king and reverts the roles. Now, the Soninke rule over the Serer.


KIngdom of the Antes: King Slavomir loses control over the rebellious woodlands in the North, where the Ventichi refuse to pay their tribute or submit soldiers, joined by many Moksha.


Ostrogoths: Chortitia on an island in the Borysthenes has become much more than a Roman naval base. It is a growing town with a predominantly Ostrogothic population, which welcomes the cheap labour of Slavic newcomers, and although it is not part of the Roman margo "Tauris te Bosporos Kimmerikos", its internal political structure follows the democratic model, with an ekklesia and elected magistrates. Chortitia and Severopolis have become important stopovers on Ostrogothic trading missions further upriver on the Borysthenes and its tributaries. This year, wealthy citizens of Chortitia begin an ambitious project: Canals are built for the irrigation of the steppe which surrounds Chortitia, using water from the Borysthenes. Polyan Slavs are contracted to permanently settle down and work on these irrigated fields using modern crop rotation.The Polyans are also supported in their self-defense through loans for Roman weapons and training in military and civic defense by the Roman troops stationed at Chortitia. At the same time, Chortitia is secured as a large stone-walled island fortress with huge buildings aimed to serve as reserve granaries, to prepare the city for a siege by anyone attracted by its wealth.


Alliance of the Five Nations: King Guntaric of Burgundy marries the Langobard princess and heiress to the throne, Rumetruda. The two adjacent kingdoms in OTL are from now on dynastically united.


The Manichaeist refugees have apparently started a school in Kismayu, where influential and wealthy Bantu send their children, too. The first written documents in Bajuni language appear, written in the Pahlavi alphabet.


Roman Empire: Intensive irrigation has led to the salinisation of vast surfaces in the Provincia Hypanensis and some lands in the Provincia Tyrensis, too. Diminishing returns and famines have led to the abandonment of many settlements there, and to renewed violent clashes between different tribal and social groups.

Celtic Empire / Ireland: Óengus mac Naid Froích converts to Celtic Christianity. The first Celtic monastery in the lands of the Iverni (OTL Munster) is erected.


Sassanid Empire: The Zoroastrian priest Mazdak Jr. begins to proclaim his ideas about the evil nature of private property, the divinity of communal work, the superfluousness of an institutionalised clergy, the evil dark of  patriarchal monogamy which suppresses love, and the virtuousness of joy, especially shared joy. Falling on fertile ground in a well-off society, where the aristocracy has acquired incredible amounts of wealth, Mazdakism gains much more followers than in OTL and will become one of the world's most influential religions / social philosophies.

India: The growing community of Roman merchants builds a temple dedicated to Neptune in the large Kalingan city of Dantapura. It also serves as a place of cultural exchange among Romans and for the celebration of various Roman festivities, not only the Neptunalia.


Roman Empire: The Conventum Romanum decides to abandon the Provincia Hypanensis except for the castra along the Hypanis and the Tyras-Hypanis canal. Citizens can move to the Provincia Tyrensis, where the last forested areas are chopped down and the land distributed to the newcomers for agricultural settlement. To stop the conflicts - and because there is now a clear majority of Romanised inhabitants -, the Provincia Tyrensis is fully integrated into the Republic by 484, with all its inhabitants enjoying Roman citizenship and its civitates, which must formalise themselves in the next five years, enjoying the usual full fiscal and legal autonomy.



Sassanid Empire: Among the new urban elites in the Persian heartland, the idea of vegetarianism, imported from India, finds more and more followers - not only among Manichaeists and Jainists.

Kalabhra India: Achchutavikantra, a Buddhist who as a youth had studied in Gandhara and Barygaza, becomes Emperor of Kalabhra.

Celtic Empire: "Eternal alliance" is forged between Óengus mac Naid Froích, Crimthann mac Énnai Cennsalach and the Celtic Caesar Priscus.


Celtic Empire / Norway: Increased Celtic trade with Norwegian coastal settlements has sparked a ship-building innovation: Norse ship-builders at Sørstad (OTL Kristianstad) design and build longboats with sails (earlier than in OTL).

Kalabhra India: Achchutavikantra rides of a wave of support from the poor peasantry as he revitalises the early Kalabhra populist policy against brahmadeyas, expropriating much of this land and distributing it among landless peasants, while subjecting the land to taxation once again.


Celtic Empire: The bridge of the Bracchium Truculi (OTL Firth of Tay) is finished. It is the longest bridge in the entire world, and the ultimate symbol of a massive and very expensive program of upgrading the infrastructure of the new Celtic provinces of Caledonia, Pictandia and Scotia and integrating them into the economy of the Celtic Empire. Fueled by Celtic nationalism (which in turn is fueled by an inferiority complex vis-a-vis the Roman neighbour, whose economic development outpaces that of the Celts), the new provinces, inhabited by "actual" Celts, who speak Celtic languages instead of Latin, are treated extremely well. Its professional elites are integrated into Celtic collegia, universities are founded in Eblana (OTL Dublin) and Lothiana (OTL Edinburgh), where the sons of druids not only learned Latin, empiricist natural philosophy etc., but were also allowed to research into their own language and history. Roads and ports were brought up to the imperial standard and cities fortified against Scandinavian pirates. Celtic self-esteem is at a peak but all of this came at a price... the new provinces don't bring a lot of venues and taxes in return, and the Celtic state treasury is not only completely empty, it is also indebted to its citizens, and its currency is so seriously debased that Celtic merchants who trade e.g. with the Alemanni have to use Roman denarii instead.

Gupta India: A large group of republicans is expelled from the capital Pataliputra. After long journeys, most of them reach Kapilavastu, which has become a city republic roughly following the neo-gana sangha model.


Sassanid Empire: Mazdak and his followers close several Zoroastric temples and convert them into public spaces where - at least according to opponents - wild orgies are celebrated. But the Mazdakists also begin to call for the empire-wide abolition of private property and the dissolution of the army.

Alemannia: High King Rezzo orders the construction of a canal linking the small rivers Alcmona (OTL Altmühl) and Radentia (OTL Schwäbische Rezat), thus creating a waterway across the watershed between the Danube basin and the Rhine basin.


Sassanid Empire / Kalabhra India: Achchutavikranta and the Sassanid shahanshah Balash sign a treaty of military, political and commercial cooperation. For the Sassanids, it's aimed at consolidating their economic dominance in India. For the Kalabhra, it's aimed against the Gupta and Pallava menaces in the North and against insurgent Chera and Pandya aristocrats.

Roman Empire: In the former Provincia Tyrensis, i.e. the land between OTL Prut and OTL Dniester, the civitates of Castra Nigra (OTL Cernovits), Tyraspolis (OTL Tiraspol), Tigina (OTL Bender),Tiveropolis and Bilogradum become regular and equal constitutive members of the Roman Republic.


Gupta India: Budhagupta has lost control over his empire's major cities, as almost a dozen "gana sangha" follow their own rules and keep their own taxes and shreni co-operate across towns to set and enforce economic rules. In the countryside, things do not look much brighter, with imperial tax collectors being generally considered corrupt, and local dynasties in many parts of the empire merely paying verbal tribute to Budhagupta, but building up their own kshatriya divisions. Budhagupta decides to attack the presumably weaker enemy first: He promises the formalisation of maximum autonomy and manages to complement his imperial with Kamarupa and Pallava vassal armies, and lays siege to several gana sanghas in the Ganges valley.


India: Achchutavikranta sends ships full of troops to support the gana sanghas. While the large city of Kannauj falls, several smaller cities are successfully defended. Then, the republicans gain the upper hand in the large coast town of Sisupalgarh. In the battle for this city, Budhagupta is killed.

Ireland / Celtic Empire: Laisrén mac Cair from a Forthuata background gathers a great number of followers, among them many Déisi, in an uprising or possibly a campaign aimed at uniting the island or liberating it of Celtic influence, which has sharpened social inequalities. Both Óengus and Crimthann are killed in this campaign before Celtic troops arrive from Britain.


Sassanid Empire: Mazdakism is declared a heresy by the Mobadan Mobad Kartir. Mazdakist herbads are removed from temple service.

Gupta India: Budhagupta´s successor, Balasimhagupta, formalises the de facto independence of the Pallava and the Kamarupa, but also ends his campaign against the gana sanghas and guarantees far-reaching urban self-government and the right of towns, shreni, religious and other associations to co-operate on their own terms, if these terms are made public and laid down in the Gupta archives, and to bear arms for individual or collective self-defense. The imperial level is extremely weakened, but peace is restored to Northern India for the next decades.

Ireland / Celtic Empire: Celtic troops make good progress in OTL Ireland, but cannot prevent massive raids of Britannia's Western coast by Laisrén's hordes.


Roman Empire: The guild of mechanical engineers establishes itself empire-wide and employs a legate in Rome whose job is to "inform" (i.e.: influence) the Senate in the interests of the guild. Thus, the first modern industrial lobbying is institutionalised.

Funan: Advised by Indian counsellors, Kaundinya Jayavarman starts his reforms of the Funan kingdom. Slavery is abolished, the use of Sanskrit is greatly promoted across the entire sphere of influence, and the dependence on Indo-Chinese trade is reduced by extending the fields for the cultivation of rice and the use of several new, more productive varieties - an agricultural reform comparable to the introduction of the three-field crop rotation in Europe, which contributes greatly to Funan's survival in contrast to OTL. Óc Eo continues to be the most thriving port town in the region, where the new Western trades establish themselves for the first time, while both great Buddhist schools and Hinduist temples are built in the capital Vyādhapura.

Gupta India: In Nalanda, Persian-style paper is increasingly used for minor academic purposes (like student scripts during lectures, or written exams), while more durable writing materials continue to be used for books and important treatises.

Ireland / Celtic Empire: In the final battle at Cenn Losnada, the last anti-Celtic groups capitulate.

Alemannia: Construction of the Fossa Rezzi is completed.


The Kikuyu port town of Mombasa is mentioned for the first time on a Roman map.

Celtic Empire (Ireland): The entire island, which in OTL is called Ireland, is incorporated into the Celtic Empire. The lands of the empire's former allies in Leinster and Northern Connacht are integrated into the existing province of Scotia, whose capital is moved from Emain Macha to Eblana (OTL Dublin), closer to the holy place of Tara and with a good existing port. The South-Western half becomes the new province of Hibernia with a capital in Hibernis. Pagi are established, mostly in correspondence with existing clandoms / septs.


Celtic Empire: In the majority of cities, the republican movement has succeeded with its grassroots strategy of democratising communal administration, wrestling the power from a few oligarchs (decuriones) and installing Comitia Civitatum. On the empire-wide level, the military successes of the caesars and the long era of inner peace have kept structural criticism at bay.


Sassanid Empire: Kavadh I becomes shahanshah of the Sassanid Empire. He turns out to be a great supporter of Mazdak.

India / Sri Vijaya: Buddhist monks and other scholars from Nalanda found a monastery and school in Palembang, an ascending port town which profits greatly from India's increased economic output and the intensification of trade with all of India, the Sassanid Empire, Swahili colonies and even Europe.

So far, Palembang is still tributary to the Kings of Funan, but the Nalandans have brought the idea of  "gana sangha" with them ...

Celtic Empire / Norway: In spite of the emptiness of the imperial treasury, the Celtic navy purchases and commands hundreds of long-boats with sails from the Sørstad shipyards. After the Celts have secured control over the North Sea, there are plans to expand Celtic dominance into the Baltic Sea, but so far, heavy Celtic battleships have turned out to be useless and an easy prey in the shallow waters of the Kattegat, where pirates and other enemies of the Celts inhabit the so far unchartered archipelago. The new Sørstad longboats are meant to make a difference here.

They do make a difference in Sørstad itself, where this business deal turns a few dozen craftsmen / fishermen into an extremely wealthy group of people who start to use their versatile boats and their huge amounts of capital to establish a close-knit autochtone trading network. The Sørstaders stick up for one another; they manage to keep their innovation a secret for another decade, and they maintain their close contact even as they begin to swarm out across the Baltic Sea.


Alliance of the Five Nations: The first guild (gaffers) in the Germanic world is founded in Linza (vis-a-vis the Roman city of Lentia across the Danube, with which the Markomanni trade a lot).


Sassanid Empire: Kavadh I rehabilitates Mazdakist herbads and closes more Zoroastric fire temples.

East Africa: The Shambaa settlement in the vicinity of the Sabaean colony Bar ul-Zandj has become a stone-walled port town named Tanga (after the Shambala word for farmed land, which is what surrounds Tanga now). Tanga and Bar ul-Zandj appear to maintain intense trade relations. A written bilingual contract for the long-term delivery of cotton and its payment is the first document of the Shambala language, written in the Southern Arabian alphabet of the Sabaeans.

Imaziyen: Ongoing theological disputes about the role of women and men in the communion of the saints escalate and lead to the establishment of a second Supreme Inkama in Capsa, rival to that in Theveste.


Sassanid Empire: The first smock mill is built in India near Barygala.

Shah Kavadh I abolishes slavery in the entire Sassanid Empire and starts welfare programs to feed and house the poor, which are implemented in many satrapies. His Mazdakist measures swell the ranks of this social and religious movement even further.

Imaziyen: The religious schim tears the Ljama`a Amazigh apart. Garama, Siwa, the Tubu of the Kaouar Valley, the Kanembu, Bagirmi and Lisi in the East support the new Supreme Inkama in Capsa and convene in a new Ljama`a there. The Gaetuli and Moroccon Berbers, Audagostum and the Fula declare their loyalty to Theveste. 


In the document of a legal case before the Western Supreme Imkama in Theveste, the ethnic group of the Fula are mentioned for the first time. They appear to be a mixture of Berber-speaking Western Imaziyen and Mandé people, who pursue a lifestyle of cattle herding and live between Koumbi Saleh and Takrur. Furthermore, they appear to be Agonistic Christians. Sassanid Empire: Shah Kavadh I declares women and men equal in rights.

Celtic Empire: One of the first Celtic exploration missions in the new longboats discovers the Insulae Cattae (OTL Shetland), which are sparsely populated by an iron age civilization speaking a language not very different from that of the Picts.

Imaziyen: Beginning of an endemic civil war between Western and Eastern Imaziyen.


Sassanid Empire: Shah Kavadh I prepares a land and a military reform, which would legally abolish the aristocracy, empower the landless peasantry and replace the knight-army with a yeomen self-defense force. Resistance forms. A first attempted assassination fails.

Roman Empire: Italian natural philosophers in the Alexandrian empiricist tradition discover a variety of highly inflammable liquids that can be gained by distilling petra oleum.


Sassanid Empire: A conspiracy of aristocrats and the clergy against shah Kavadh I, Mazdak and their followers begins. As the first Mazdakist communities are attacked and their members killed, Kavadh I and Mazdak flee from Ctesiphon into the Arab desert and find asylum among Nabatean Simonists.

Djamasp becomes the new shahanshah. He restores the Zoroastrian clergy and abandons Kavadh's reform plans, but also stops the violence against the Mazdakists.

Gupta India: Narasimhagupta replaces a large number of local magistrates in a popular campaign against corruption.


Burgundy: The Burgundian yeomen army chases Slavic clans from the tribe of the Czechs off their territories.

Roman Empire (Syria): The Christian Academy at Edessa, which is financed by the Chuyodo Christé, is opened for a wide range of non-theological subjects in order to attract more innovative thinkers and inventors into the heartlands of the Roman Republic`s Aramaic Christianity, which lags behind the rest of the republic economically. Subjects ranging from mathematics to law and from medicine to natural philosophy would be taught (for the first time in Roman history) in the Aramaic language.


Sassanid Empire: Shah Djamasp passes a progressive tax reform, easing the burden on the peasantrs and demanding a greater contribution from the wealthy elite.

Even though moderate reforms are begun, Mazdakist gatherings become greater and greater; they demand the return of Kavadh and Mazdak and all-out social reform. Violence returns. Urban craftsmen and tradesmen in the heartland are divided between supporters and opponents of Mazdakist thought and plans.

Following disagreements with the Simonists, Mazdak and Kavadh move further West, where they find refuge among a Jewish community of Essenes.

India: Because the land passage through Sassanid Kushana is safe and dotted with Buddhist monasteries, Bodhidharma had chosen this path towards China instead of the sea voyage as in OTL. In Shrinagari`s great monastery, he revives the synthesis between martial arts and contemplation, which had blossomed two centuries ago, and begins to formulate the principles of an active Jhana.


Roman Empire: Gaffers in the Roman Empire found an empire-wide guild, too.

Pot stills are used in all provinces of the empire now. Apart from wine, fermented barley concoctions are also used for burning spirits. The overall consumption of hard drinks has skyrocketed in the Roman Empire, and business-minded Ostrogothic and Roman merchants sell the stuff to the Celts, the Germans, the Persians, the Arabs and the Aksumite Africans, too.

Persians have copied the glass production techniques and produce their own stills and their own alcohol, too.


Salvador79 (talk) 17:13, March 5, 2014 (UTC)


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