Alternate History

Germanicvs/Octavivs Civil War (Ætas ab Brian)

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History of Rome-After Ætas ab Brian

G-O Civil War (Western Theatre)

1640(887) August 5


c. 1645(892)


Italy, Western/Central Europe


Republican victory, reforms in government

Major battles:

Sea invasion of Italy, Battle of the Po Valley,



Octavius Faction
Colo Confederacy (-1642)


Am. Corinthus (†1643)
Lu. Audcursus
Ato. Famphorus
Al. Pheidias (-1643)

C. Octavius (†1645)
Vr. Philotimia
Ati. Leo
Mx. Psellus


211 000

498 000

Casualties and Losses

193 000

270 000

G-O Civil War (Eastern Theatre)

1640(887)July 16


1644(891) May 11


Eastern Europe/Mediterranean, Asia Minor, Northeast Africa


Republican victory, reforms in government


Nubia (1643-1644)

Germanicus Faction
Colo Confederacy (-1643)
Penno Confederacy (1641)
Parthia (1643-1645)


Al. Pheidias (1643+)
G. Augustus(1643-1644)
Tr. Larcius

Germanicus Clodius (†1644)


211 000

1 100 000

Casualties and Losses

193 000

502 000


At first Germanicus' rebellion drew virtually all its manpower from slaves and gladiators, however, Germanicus had the full intention of leading the Empire in legitimacy once victorious. After conference with his generals, he decided to pursue bribes and extortion to bring some Republican legionaries onto his side; pillage occupied cities to pay for mercenaries from Arabia, and Europe; and most significantly, draft enormous numbers from the citizenry in rural and urban areas conquered. All these decisions were based on the hope of a quick victory and Germanicus' theories of how to revitalise the economy after. Germanicus and his advisers lacked the necessary strategic knowledge to perform the plan optimally. He was an effective orator in promoting his grand visions of democracy, but there were frequent rebellions in his own armies requiring mass executions of Roman citizens, damaging his image; fields were abandoned and brought famine to his side, though his mercantile experience prevented economic collapse. Despite these crippling consequences, Germanicus managed to field the largest armies in the conflict, necessitating the other factions to follow his lead in some capacity. Also he devalued his portion of the empire greatly by pawning off so much for mercenaries.

As a result of the great unrest in his armies and territories, one of Germanicus' generals were easily convinced to aid with his knife-in-back and his forces' surrender.


Octavius' immediate concerns were not affected yet by Germanicus' gargantuan armies, in fact he was counting on Germanicus being occupied with the further east. He also had a strong legionary base and so he would end up drafting the fewest civilians. A paranoid individual, he wasted considerable time on Britannia and Hispania, fearing the greater loyalty to the Republic than himself in both. Octavivs' focus on Hispania was the persecution of Mossalnans, demolishing a number of masaiadas which only caused them to rise up and require severe punitive operations.

Although by August 1642(889) he had solid control of the west, his plans to invade Italy by sea, starting mid November were repulsed with considerable casualties on both sides and he had to resort to the traditional invasions through the Alps(rail lines were not continuous enough to ride all the way through). Trying to work a narrow window before the winter, he quickly travelled by the in service rail lines with troops into northern Italia where his spies on the ground observed what appeared to be a massive Republican army possibly numbering 120 000 converging by foot from the east (likely an expeditionary force as Rome still controlled Dalmatia and Pannonia). Taken aback by this, he quickly pulled his troops back in a hiding position. When the army continued on south, he assumed it to be a force ordered to fortify a position against his current invasion. It was a large army, but Octavius and his generals decided that struck from behind, it could be, and had to be, destroyed. If it was routed it could still reinforce Rome's home garrison and potentially defeat him. He ordered a full attack on the army's undefended rear. At first the enemy was being defeated, but it's general turned out to be well experienced, quickly swinging several cavalry units to his weaker forces on his western flanks. At first determined, Octavius then became desperate as the enormous army began regrouping and successfully fighting his forces. This went on for some time until Octavius was near ordering a retreat, but then things got crazy, hundreds of catapult shots began landing on the battlefield, slaughtering both sides. The haze of battle made comprehension of the situation impossible and Octavius had had enough. Ordering a full retreat, Octavius' forces encountered a small force opposing the them. He intended to fly by them but the enemy successfully drew his forces into melee and he was forced to engage them. Soon after, he found the previous huge army now running at his forces, then he was said to have though to himself: "Why are catapult shots landing on them?" The still larger army swept over his and the smaller opposition. Octavius noticed the larger army seemingly frenzied and attacking the force he was busy with as well as his own legionaries... Looking south through the dust clouds, he saw a neatly formed and organised force moving his way. Octavius began to panic that another massive force was coming to obliterate his troops "How can they have so many armies this size?!", but then noticed the troops of the initial army he was first fighting was poorly equipped compared to the one encountered later, some having the look of slaves form the east... ... He had been fighting Germanicus' men the whole time. Geramicus must have sent this force for some reason after Rome. Its general was skilled and had an enormous force, so perhaps it had had a chance. Now, both were considerably weakened, and as the true Republican files began tearing away at Germanicus' army's rear, Octavius called for retreat again, this time not waiting for his troops to acknowledge. The Germanicus force was still large. Perhaps, he thought, he could regroup again and destroy the home garrison when they were weakened from fighting Germanicus' men.

However, upon fully retreating from battle, Octavius noticed that from a 95 000 man force, he now had fewer than 2000. From later spy reports, only a handful of Germanicus' troops escaped and its general had fought to the death, pinned by a Republican's skilful manoeuvring.

A clever trap or lucky coincidence that both armies would be invading from the north had resulted in the obliteration of two of the Republic's largest opposing forces.

After the battle's conclusion, Octavius began his drafting programmes to raise new armies, but the republic's victory in north Italy signalled that sooner or later they would be ground down. The news of his defeat in Italia also led to renewed revolts of the Mossalnans in Hispania, and Tingitana left Octavivs' side to declare independence in 1644(891). Tingitana would eventually be renegotiated into the Empire in 1650(897). As the war continued, in 1644(891) Octavius' paranoia reached new heights as he had several of his generals killed, accelerating his empire's defeat and opening him up to assassination as well.

The Mossalnan revolts in Hispania were only so helpful as the longer they were allowed to continue, the more likely they would be to declare independence as a Cilaf rather than return to the Empire. Tingitana during its independence, with its high minority Mossalnan population, would have likely supported independent Islannic kingdoms in Hispania.


Cut off from the loyalist east and caught in between these two factions, Rome managed a feat in its raising of armies to complement those it had control of. Expecting the traditional civil war path to come in from northern Italy, the Roman leadership began its preparation to defend the capital from a northern position, sending large numbers of troops, canna, and even catapults for use against the armies. At the time Rome had 132 loyal legions numbering 410 000 but the drafting of citizens brought the total to 800 000.

Octavius' sea invasion caught Rome off guard and the repulsion of Octavius' sea forces was a desperate battle. Thinking, with the vaposcurr lines not being repaired, that Octavius would wait until spring to try another tactic, they prepared for Germanicus' forces quickly moving, usually having to do so by foot, to arrive. When it was found that Octavius was sending another large force north before the winter, the Republican general Amando Corinthus saw a possible solution, had they been fighting only Germanicus the odds of success were seen as narrow. Corinthus used harassing tactics to slow down Germanicus' army, hid a force further north, and moved all defencive positions south. He bet a lot on the two rebel armies fighting each other and taking advantage of the confusion with respect to identification.

Vexillology from that point on became a very important focus in the war, few times after would forces be mistaken with one another. The drafting of large numbers of civilians also became commonplace on all sides.

The governors in the loyalist east defended against Germanicus' invasions but did not particularly contribute much to the war's outcome.

Aftereffects and Legacy

The war had been especially damaging to the east from Germanicus’ destructive policies.

During the latter parts of the war growing concerns of an increasing lack of intelligent, strong, and competent leadership and also from meritocratic trends evolved from the Abadsii created a new mentality in Rome, one in which to survive and rebuild the individual and all organisations had to be drawn to the united goal of bettering the state and as a result themselves and those around them. This ideology known as coeoligo coalesced and became the fundamental foundation behind Rome and even so late as when political parties were legalised in 2219(1466) virtually every party had some tendril of the old coeoligo principles. The subversion of the individual to the state also aided cultural relations with Sinica during their allied years.

Germania Inferior and Ulterior were combined as Germania Inferior at the war's conclusion and Judea was permitted semi-autonomy in negotiations with its resurgent Jewish population.

Having seen the effectiveness of drafting large numbers of people, the Senate passed the practice of regular conscription (called adsimilkum) for the first time, something that would become an integral part of Roman culture for the next four hundred years. Conscription was an absolute minimum of 18 months almost without exception for all males. It could be started at the age of 18 but had to be begun by the 25th birthday or else the person was forced in by officials or incarcerated.


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