Alternate History

Timeline 1130-1145 (Interference)

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Central-Eastern Europe: Incessant civil wars between the Russian principalities: the Kipchak/Cumans take part in droves as mercenaries.


Western Europe: Duke Medeiro II leaves Leòn to his son-in-law, the Gallastrian heir to the throne, John II Ramiro of the Mabinardo dynasty.

Southern Europe: Roger II of Lesser Normandy (southern Italy) marches on Rome, ousting Innocent II and having Anacletus II recognized as the sole Pope and king of Italy/Spoleto. Thus begins the Norman patronage of the Papacy:cool: ; a Norman guard is assigned to Anacletus for his safety. The exiled rival takes refuge in the friendly Canossa kingdom and sets up his first court in Mantua, then later in the free republic of Pisa.

Genoa and Pisa begin an all-out war for control over Corsica, the eastern reaches of the Ligurian Riviera and the Mediterranean trades at large.

Byzantine Empire: The Danishmendiyya Turks of Melitene (*OTL Malatya) crush and annex the Crusader buffer state of Caesarea/Mazhak, razing the Cappadocian stronghold and prompting yet another Batiturk insurrection in southern Anatolia: the echo in Constantinople and, even more, in western Europe, is considerable.

Middle East: The Seljuk sultan of Baghdad, Mahmud II, dies. His successors will prove weak puppets of their generals, and will be eclipsed in time by the more powerful relative Sanjar of Khorassan.


Northern Europe: Following the murder of Knut Lavard, his half-brother Erik Emune rises against the king, uncle Niels. In the end the rebel is forced to flee to Scania, but when Niels and his heir, Magnus the Strong, try to finish him off, they are crushed at the battle of Fodevig bay. Magnus dies in battle, while Niels makes the fatal error of sailing back to Slesvig, where he is massacred by the populace :eek: for killing the popular Knut Lavard. Erik becomes thus the new king of Denmark.


Southern Europe: Innocent II and Anacletus II dispute for the Papacy and the related crown of Italy/Spoleto.

Anacletus reigns in Rome till his death, being only then regularly succeeded by Innocent, with Roger II's final approval. Most Christian states recognize Innocent II as the true Pope-in-exile, with the notable exception of Aquitaine/Occitania.


Western Europe: The Second Crusade is announced in Dijon by the Burgundian preacher St. Bernard of Clairvaux, a supporter of Pope Innocent II in the Papal schism, and, due to Bernard's great fame, finds a wild reception even without being called by a Pope.

Duke John III of Valencia rejects Zenete suzerainty and defeats his former overlords and their southern Spanish allies at the battle of Alt dels Sanc; eastern Spain is freed of Zenete control.

A Genoese fleet attacks Maiorca but is eventually driven back by the Pisans and the local Norman lords.

Byzantine Empire: John II Comnenus campaigns in Anatolia against the Turks with mixed success, stemming the Turkic hordes in many skirmishes.


Central-Eastern Europe: Boleslaw III of Poland campaigns against Hungary, not achieving any decisive result; Slovakia remains Hungarian.

1133 Southern Europe: Innocent II, from his exile see in Pisa, detaches from the archbishopric of Milan the episcopal see of Genoa and the powerful abbey of Bobbio, which are instead put under a newly created archbishopric of Pavia (the capital of the Lombard kingdom). This in punishment for archbishop Anselmo Pusterla's support for Anacletus II:o ; the Milanese themselves then exile the high prelate.

Innocent II also settles the Genoan-Pisan struggle by dividing rebellious Corsica between the two warring cities, the western side to Genoa and the eastern one to Pisa.

Central-Eastern Europe, Byzantine Empire: Two main Crusader armies of some 40,000 men reach Constantinople, the first led by land by duke Henry the Proud of Bavaria, and the second by sea through Lombardy and Italy by the king of Burgundy, Adalbert III the Orphaned. Both armies are received as unrequested hosts and promptly ferried across the Bosphorus. After ravaging Thrace and Asia Minor for supplies, the German army takes a beating :( from the Danishmendiyyas in the battle of the Salt Lakes in the very heart of Anatolia and has to withdraw to Angora, where it is later reached by the Anglo-French-Burgundian-Lombard army (the Franks, in the Byzantine nomenclature) who decide to winter before further campaigning in the barren Anatolian plateau.

North Africa: St. Barca from Bona preaches the Second Crusade in Numidia and Ifrigia (*later Punia, OTL Tunisia), raising an army due for the Levant.


Western Europe: King Conan III the Great of Brittany crushes at Alençon the counts of Anjou, Fulk V and his son Geoffroy V, relatives of his mother, on behalf of emperor William III. The two had revolted against the emperor, as the sovereign objected to their expansionism. The defeated rulers are jailed and killed, their relatives exiled in different places inside the Norman empire and in the Levant, or forced to take monastic vows. Anjou is bestowed upon the earl of Richmond Alain the Black, Conan's son-in-law and a close friend of the Norman emperor.

North Africa, Middle East: The African crusaders sail from Bardapolis (*OTL Tunis) led by the heir to the imperial "Roman" throne of the West, young Matthias Ghiffiotto, and come ashore in Genoese-held Jaffa. Thence they attack and capture the Fatimid strongholds of Ashqelon and Gaza, ousting the Muslims from Palestine. After much debate with the Genoese and the kingdom of Jerusalem, it is decided that both will be Western imperial holdings (Terra Christi Transmaritima).

Byzantine Empire: In Angora a deal is reached between basileus John II and the Crusaders. A part of the latter will assist in repressing the Batiturk (*western Turks, formerly Rum-Seljuks) rebels, while part of the Byzantines will advance with the main armies to retake Caesarea/Mazhak and Melitene (*OTL Malatya); of these two cities, the first to fall will be given to the Crusaders, the other to the Byzantines. When the powerful Christian armies attack, both cities are retaken, as the Turks refrain from giving battle, resorting to guerrilla. John II leads a Byzantine force to the recapture of Sebastea/Sivas as well. The seat of the Danishmendiyya emirate is again transferred, this time to Artzingane/Erzincan.

1135 Southern Europe: A Pisan fleet plunders Amalfi ending its independence as a sea-trading town: Roger II's Normans occupy it, causing a new conflict with the Sicilian-based Western “Roman” empire.

Byzantine Empire, Middle East: As predictable, the Byzantines and the Crusaders soon break their temporary pacts :rolleyes:. The imperial army led by John II drives the Crusader garrison from Caesarea/Mazhak and Cappadocia is retaken for Byzantium; Melitene remains a Crusader border march under the noble German Adalbert von Babenberg, who had renounced his rights of primogeniture to the Austrian March to depart as a crusader.

Then the main Crusader force heads south, opening its way amidst grave losses till Edessa (*OTL Urfa), where they rout the Ortoqid Turks, making the city yet another Crusader county under Wido of Tarantasia, a close relative of count Peter I of Savoy. Aleppo too at last falls to the Crusaders and is ceded to the principality of Antioch. Then the remnants of the Crusader army proceed south towards Hamah but are trounced by atabeg Zengi of Mosul's cavalry at Ubaiza (al-Huwayz).

Middle East: The African-Western imperial crusaders attack Damascus but fail after a long siege, being mercilessly harassed along their withdrawal route to Galilee by the Burid army led by atabeg-regent Mui'd ad-Din Unur.

Black Africa: Ghana (emperor) Bawl II of the weakened Ghana Empire shakes off Zenete tutelage.



British isles: The Welshmen rout a Norman army at Crug Mawr (Ceredigion/Cardigan) and recover independence from the Norman Empire; king Gruffydd II dies of old age a little later to be succeeded by his sons Owain II and Cadwaladr

Western Europe: King Otto II of Luxemburg and Lorraine dies prematurely, leaving the infant Otto III under the regency of uncle William, who soon usurps the throne as William II.

Saint Denis Basilica is consecrated by emperor William III marking a turning point in architecture with the first example of the Norman (*OTL Gothic) style

Central-Eastern Europe: The rich trading city of Novgorod rises against its prince, Vsevolod I, driving him from power and proclaiming a free republic, which still recognizes local Rurikid princes as elected figureheads.


Western Europe: Innocent II, from his see in Pisa, launches an excommunication against king William VII (*OTL duke William X) of Aquitaine/Occitania, inviting emperor William III of Greater Normandy (*France and England) to invade and crush the “heretic” and “Cathar” Aquitanian ruler. The invasion proceeds, devastating the country, and when William dies, his younger brother Raymund takes over, pledging feudal submission to the emperor as a sub-king and accepting to persecute the Cathars. But this last will prove an almost impossible task, due to their great numbers. In France, instead, the movement is fiercely persecuted.

Byzantine Empire, Middle East, Southern Europe: The Grand Eastern Campaign of John II Comnenus. The basileus, crushed the Batiturk rebels, recaptures Melitene (*OTL Malatya) as Adalbert of Babenberg has died at 30 leaving no heirs nor last will, then invades and conquers Armenia Minor, taking back in Constantinople as a prisoner king Leo I.

This moves put him again in conflict with the Crusaders, and particularly with Antioch, which implies the Lesser Normans of southern Italy and the Knights Templar, already well established in the area. Antioch is quickly brought under Byzantine suzerainty and young prince Tancredi has to bow in front of John II Comnenus and hold his horse's bridles in his triumph in the Syrian city. This outrages Roger II of Lesser Normandy, Tancredi's father, who swears war on the Byzantines. The subsequent scramble of alliances :confused: brings Venice on the side of Byzantium (to avoid having both sides of the Otranto Strait in Norman hands) and the Pisans close to the Norman ruler, which is already warring with the Western “Roman” empire of Sicily and its Genoan allies for control over coastal Campania...

In the meantime the battered remnants of the armies from the Second Crusade are slowly ferried back to Europe and North Africa or enlist as mercenaries in the Levant.


Northern Europe: Harald IV of Norway is murdered by Sigurd Slembedjakn, another bastard son of Magnus Barefoot, which further plunges the country into civil war, Harald's sons, Sigurd II and Inge I, fight the usurper, finally defeating and killing him at the battle of Hvaler.


Northern Europe: Albert the Bear of Saxony, gained the approval of Innocent II for a personal “crusade” against the still largely heathen Wends, begins a long campaign to subdue them. Only after years of harsh struggles the Wends will capitulate and Greater Wendia will become the March of Brandenburg.

1137 Northern Europe: When king Lothar of Supplinburg dies of old age, Germany is again in flames. The Electoral Diet convened in Frankfurt, instead of appointing Henry the Proud of Bavaria as expected, elects as the new king duke Ludwig III of Thuringia (Ludwig V as king), who also gets the nearby crown appanage duchy of Franconia. Henry the Proud doesn't accept the verdict and fights back from his holdings in Bavaria.

Count Walram III of Limburg, Brabant and Arlon is made duke of Brabant by king William II of Luxemburg and Lorraine.

Western Europe: The county of Barcelona (Catalonia) is finally vassalized by Septimania after decades of petty struggles on the issue of its status.

Southern Europe: Hungary wrests Bosnia from Duklja/Zeta (Melanoria, *OTL Montenegro); the local Bogomils, though, render effective Hungarian control over it a difficult task.

Central-Eastern Europe: A Byzantine flotilla retakes Bosporon/Kerč from the eastern Kipchak/Cumans. Caucasus, Middle East: Shams ad-Din Eldiguz, atabeg (reggente) of the Seljuk sultan in Baghdad, creates an own independent dynasty in Azerbaijan with capital in Tabriz, and establishes suzerainty and tutelage over the Danishmendiyya emirate of Ahlat/Armenia.

Middle East: Taking advantage of the Crusader-Byzantine conflict, atabeg Zengi of Mosul quickly recaptures Aleppo.

1137-1146 Northern Europe: Erik III Haakonson Lam usurps the Danish throne succeeding his murdered uncle Erik II Emune.

1138 Northern Europe: The county of Frisia, after the death of Henry II of Zutphen, is made a possession of the powerful county-bishopric of Utrecht.

North Africa, Western Europe: Stephen of Gadir finally overthrows the Zenete Compact in the battle of the White Fortress and creates the Cathar Gadirote kingdom in Mauretania (*OTL Morocco). The southern Spanish states severe any relation with the defeated Zenetes (2000 of them are massacred in Seville alone in the so-called Blood Easter:eek: ).

Southern Europe: Death of Anacletus II, after the brief interlude of anti-Pope Anacletus III, through the brokerage of Bernard of Clairvaux the Papal throne passes to the exiled Innocent II. King Roger II of Lesser Normandy (southern Italy) makes a formal statement of regret :rolleyes: for supporting Anacletus II, cedes Gaeta to the Papal kingdom of Italy/Spoleto and has his excommunication cancelled and his kingship acknowledged. Furthermore, his aggression of Western imperial cities of coastal Campania is turned two blind eyes :rolleyes: and his tutelage over the Papacy is de facto confirmed (having, of course, no way to displace the Norman garrison from Rome).

Central-Eastern Europe: King Boleslaw III of Poland dies, dividing the kingdom between his four sons, Wladislaw, Boleslaw, Mieszko and Casimir. The "senioral principle" established in his testament states that the oldest living member of the Piast dynasty is to have supreme power over the rest and always control an indivisible, wide strip of land running N-S through the middle of Poland, with Cracow as the main city, besides being the overlord of Pomerania. Thus the duchies of Lesser Poland (the “royal” one, to Wladislaw II), of Greater Poland, of Kuiavia-Mazovia, and of Silesia are born, but the Senioral principle will quickly be broken:o , starting a period of feudal dissolution. Caucasus: King Demetrius of Iberia/Georgia takes Ganja (Azerbaijan) from the local Seljuks.

Far East: The southern Song court of imperial free China is set in Hangzhou. 1139

Northern Europe: Duke Henry the Proud of Bavaria dies a premature death after being captured and delivered to king Ludwig by the margrave of Austria, Leopold IV von Babenberg. Henry's young son, also called Henry, remains in Bavaria under the regency of uncle Welf, margrave of Bernmark (Verona), who recognizes Ludwig III of Thuringia (Ludwig V as German king) as the duly elected sovereign to avoid further damage for the Welf household.

Southern Europe: The Lateran Council (*OTL Second Lateran Council) summoned by pope Innocent II to heal the wounds of the recent Papal schism grants extensive privileges to the the Templars, making them literally an armed militia of the Roman Church in the Levant and an economic powerhouse. The use of the crossbow is “prohibited” :rolleyes: between Christians (no one will ever respect this); anathema is launched against Cathar Mauretania (*OTL Morocco) and its king, Stephen of Gadir, the “heresiarch”, but the Numidian states prove too weak and divided to move. Roger II de Hauteville, whose troops guard Rome itself, is duly pardoned and acknowledged as king of Lesser Normandy (southern Italy). His army, aided by the Pisan fleet, takes Naples by famine from Western imperial hands after a two-year-long siege.

Middle East: Atabeg Zengi of Mosul and Aleppo enforces suzerainty upon Damascus and becomes the most powerful

Muslim ruler in Syria.


Northern Europe: As Greater Wendia (Brandenburg plus Mecklemburg) is under heavy pressure from duke Albert the Bear of Saxony, the Bohemians subdue Lusatia. They also wrest from Germany the border march of Misnia (Meissen), whose ruler Conrad I von Wettin pledges obedience to king Vladislav II of Bohemia.

Erik III Lam of Denmark fights and kills his rebel cousin Olaf II, who held Scania as his power base.

Southern Europe: A complicated war is fought over Sardinia, whose High King Robert III of Torres is allied with Roger II of Lesser Normandy and Pisa against Genoa, the Western empire of Sicily and the rebellious Sardinian judicates of Arborea, Gallura and Cagliari/Santa Igia. Pope Innocent II tries to assert Papal rights over the island quoting a fabricated document:rolleyes: , Pepin's Diploma, who allegedly assigned the island to the Papal domains. All warring factions falsely swear to recognize this to gain Papal favor:rolleyes: , but the war continues unabated as the island plunges into anarchy.


Northern Europe: Ludwig V of Germany dies and a new Electoral Diet has to be convened. Only after considerable debate, and having narrowly rejected a staggering offer from the Luxemburgian usurper William II to accept as king of Germany his dethroned young nephew, Otto, the ten Electors appoint Ludwig VI, son of the deceased Ludwig V. The new king at once detaches the traditional lands of the Count Palatines of Rhine (west of the river) from the royal duchy of Franconia to form an independent march of the Palatinate as a defense against Luxemburg, entrusting it to Henry Jasomirgott, brother and successor of Leopold IV of Austria.

Western Europe: Eleanor, niece of king Raymond of Aquitaine/Occitania, marries Henry, heir to the Greater Norman Empire of France and England.



British isles: Somerled, the Viking/Pictish son-in-law of the king of Alba and Scotland, Olaf I Bitling the Red, leads a rebellion in the Alban Islands (*TTL collective name for Shetlands, Orkneys, Hebrides) and Argyll, which is tamed in the end but at a price: the so-called Lordship of the Isles will remain hereditary under Somerled and his descendants. The Norse jarls of the Orkneys, instead, are even more firmly put under Alban-Scottish vassalage despite Norwegian and Northumbrian raids on their behalf


Southern Europe: Pope Innocent II calls for a “Crusade” :rolleyes: against “schismatic” and “Saracen-friendly” :confused: Byzantium, and launches an interdict against Venice, at present an ally of the basileus against the Normans of southern Italy. A Norman fleet conquers Corfu from the Venetians, then is crushed at the naval battle of Zante/Zacynthos by a joint Venetian-Byzantine-Sicilian fleet led by the Ifrigian (*Tunisian) admiral John Lafadi. The Norman capture of Salerno ends Western imperial presence in Campania; the Normans also raid Calabria, sacking Rossano and Catanzaro. Central-Eastern Europe: Unification of the principality of Galicia/Halicz (save Volhynia) at the hands of the Rurikid prince Vladimirko. Central Asia: The Karakhitais of Yelü Dashi Gur-Khan defat and subdue the western Karakhanids of Samarkandan Turkestan and the Burhanids of Bukhara, then crush the Seljuk forces of Sanjar of Khorassan at Qatwan, conquering all of central Asia except for Khorezm/Turkmenistan. Yelü Dashi is a pagan, sympathizing with both Nestorian Christianity and Mahayana Buddhism; not wanting to live under infidel domination :eek:, the current Wali (*Sunni “Pope”) of Samarkand, Salah ad-Din II, relocates to the safer town of Ghazni (Afghanistan) under the proctection of the local Ghaznavid rulers.

Far East: The Treaty of Shaoxin sets the boundary between Song southern China and Jurchen/Jin northern China at the river Huai. The valiant Chinese general Yue Fei is recalled in Hangzhou and executed for alleged treason:rolleyes: ; Song China pays tribute to the northern invaders.

1142 Northern Europe: When the German army assembled for the “Crusade” against Byzantium (an invitation mostly rejected west of the Rhine) is hijacked against Bohemia by king Ludwig VI, Albert the Bear of Saxony, true to his oath to the late Bohemian ruler, Sobeslav I, refuses to march and abandons the royal camp. He is soon stripped of Saxony, given instead to young Frederick III von Hohenstaufen (*OTL Barbarossa), first son of duke Frederick II of Swabia. This also angers the Welfs of Bavaria, who had been claiming Saxony for many years. As Albert the Bear openly resists the Swabians, and also sacks the king's possessions in Thuringia and Franconia, while the Welfs fight anyone else, Germany again plunges into chaos. In Norway Eystein II, another son of the late Harald IV Gille coming from Ireland, is associated to the throne by his half-brothers, Sigurd II and Inge I Haraldsson British isles: The Picto-Scots of king Olaf I Bitling the Red invade and conquer a sizable part of Northumbria as Norman forces advance from the south till the very walls of Yorwich (*OTL York). King Godwin I is deposed in favor of his son, Wulfstan, who reaches Winchester to pay feudal homage and tribute to emperor William III of Greater Normandy (*France plus England). Alba/Scotland is ceded Cumbria/Cumberland, which is made a duchy outside the two realms of Alba and Scotland, a personal appanage of heir to the Double Crown. Papal wrath over alleged thefts to the vast possessions of the Archbishopric of York leads to an interdict by Innocent II also against Greater Normandy and Alba/Scotland.

Southern Europe: Quickly a front forms against the ungrateful and arrogant Innocent II, and an anti-Pope is elected in Venice, the venerable bishop of St. James of Ikhuzi (*OTL Algiers), St. Cyriacus, who takes the name of Augustine II. Due to the civil war in Germany only a few thousand men depart from Regensburg for the “Crusade” against Byzantium, reaching Hungary whence an attack on Byzantium is made through the Sklaviniai (*OTL Balkans). The German-Hungarian army is however harassed by Serbs and Vlachs, repulsed under the walls of Naissos/Niš and finally annihilated :D by the Byzantine Vardariote (*deported Turk from Anatolia) general Anatolius Albaides at the gorges of Pirot. Enrico I il Guercio marquis of Carretto, direct descendant of Aleramo of Montferrat and a son of the late marquis of Savona Boniface del Vasto, inherits the town of Finale (Western Riviera) in the chaotic feudal dissolution of most of the former Aleramic March and establishes the Del Carretto dynasty.

Middle East: Count Mirò I Salomon of Tripoli grants the important fortress of Krak des Chevaliers to the Knights Hospitaler of Saint John.

1143 Northern Europe: The count of Holstein, Adolf II von Schauenburg, founds Lübeck on the site of the destroyed Wendic town of Liubice; this will rapidly become the chief German port in the Baltic, and a trading powerhouse.

British isles: Olaf I Bitling the Red, the founder of the Crovan dynasty of Alba and Scotland, is murdered by his nephews but is avenged by his legitimate heir Godfrey I the Black, who takes over.

Western Europe: Gallastria (*OTL Galicia and Asturias) is forced to recognize Portugal after losing the battle of Orense. John II Ramiro of Gallastria acknowledges Afonso III the Great of Portugal as a full king on par with himself. He also gives his last daughter, Reyllana, to Afonso's heir, Diogo. The usurper William II of Luxemburg and Lorraine earns the reputation of a hyena by blinding :mad: :mad: :mad: and confining in a monastery his young nephew Otto III, the legitimate ruler.


Northern Europe, Central-Eastern Europe: Albert the Bear is forced out of Saxony by royal and Swabian-Hohenstaufen forces; he takes refuge with thousands of his best men in Bohemia, whence he continues his systematic conquest of Greater Wendia. The Bohemians raid Germany and Austria, torching Nuremberg and Passau

Southern Europe: Pope Innocent II dies, to much rejoycing :D of his many enemies inside and outside Rome. Again rival Roman factions elect two rival Popes, Guido da Castello and Gherardo Caccianemici, but this time no one recognizes either “Pope”. A bishops' council in Milan elects instead the former anti-Pope Augustine II as the new Pope. The saintly Numidian bishop, though, dies of old age in Bardapolis (*OTL Tunis) on his way to Rome, not before cancelling any interdict or excommunication except the one against the Cathars. In the end a new council summoned in Sutri elects no less man than Bernard of Clairvaux, Innocent's former supporter, who takes the name of Dominic I.

Middle East: Walram/Aleramo I, viceroy of Jerusalem (*the titular king is the emperor of Greater Normandy, currently William III), dies and is succeded by his younger brother William I.

Byzantine Empire: Manuel, favorite son of basileus John II Comnenus, marries Lucia, daughter of the Western Roman emperor John IV of Sicily, sealing a renewed alliance between the two halves of the Roman empire.

1144 Northern Europe: King Sverker I of Sweden leads a failed “crusade” in Estonia

Western Europe: As powerful Norman and Burgundian armies mobilize against William II of Luxemburg-Lorraine, he is murdered by duke Henry II of Limburg-Brabant-Arlon, who restores the legitimate Otto III the Blind, a broken boy. The subsequent Norman-Burgundian invasion (both parts pretending to ignore what's happened:rolleyes: ) finds almost no resistance and Henry, now the actual ruler of Luxemburg, recognizes Greater Normandy as feudal overlord; Valenciennes is ceded to France, while Burgundy crowns its ancient dream of annexing Lorraine, though at the price of making the rival Norman Empire even stronger.

Southern Europe: In a most grave violation of the royal truce between rival Comuni, Milan razes Como to the ground; Amedeo II of Lombardy, entangled in incessant petty struggles with his brother Guidone in Piedmont, is taken by surprise and declares Milan an outlaw city. Roger II of Lesser Normandy (southern Italy) crushes the last revolt of Amalfi against the new conquerors.

North Africa: The Cathar Gadirotes of Mauretania (*OTL Morocco) led by general Julian the Andalusian crush the invading Numidian forces of the Foedus Africae at the battle of the M'luvi river (*OTL Moulouya). The weakened Numidian city-state league begins to crumble, leaving again free way for the rise of tribal and feudal power in the provinces. Byzantine Empire: The Armenian prince Thoros II escapes from prisony in Constantinople and flees to Cilicia, where the Armenians rise and refound the kingdom of Armenia Minor with Crusader help. A Pisan fleet conquers Cyprus, handing it over to count Bonifacio of Novellara, a Crusading scion of a secondary branch of the Canossa family, who proclaims himself duke of the island.

Middle East: Atabeg Zengi of Mosul and Aleppo vassalizes the Ortoqid emirates of Marida/Mardin and Hisn Kayfa after bloody struggles, then destroys the Crusader fortress of Edessa (*OTL Urfa); its count, Wido, resists in the stronghold of Turbessel but loses all lands beyond the Euphrates. Fatimid Egypt wrests supremacy over the Negev desert and parts of Jordan from the Crusaders of Jerusalem.

1144-1146 Southern Europe: Factional struggles in Rome end in the formation of the Roman Republic, inspired by the Lombard preacher Arnaldo da Brescia. The Romans reject the Papal monarchy in favor of a popular government like that of other Comuni. After two years of difficult cohabitation, Pope-king Dominic I (Bernard of Clairvaux) leaves Rome for Benevento, asking for help from Roger II de Hauteville, the king of Lesser Normandy (southern Italy). The Norman army then assaults and crushes the Roman Republic in a dreadful bloodbath :eek: ; Arnaldo is burnt at the stake :eek: for heresy, but his ideas will live long, creating the Arnaldist movement, anti-establishment in both religious and lay matters, often interconnected with the growing Cathar presence leaking in northern Italy from Provence and from Bogomil Bosnia (in Italy Cathars will be called “Bulgars”).

1145 Southern Europe: Pope Dominic I preaches the Third Crusade at the synod of Spoleto to repeal Muslim aggression of the Crusader holdings in the Levant; the Cathar heretics of Mauretania (*Morocco) and the still heathen Slavic, Finnic and Baltic peoples of northern Europe are also marked as legitimate :rolleyes: targets for Crusading. The armies of the Guidoni (Piedmontese) and Amedei (Royalist, Lombard proper) branches of the royal Lombard family and their respective allies clash at Lomello, with no clear winner despite a dire death toll. The royal capital of Pavia is briefly besieged and partly torched by the rebel Milanese. Venice reduces Pola and Capodistria (Histria), despite the rival interventions of the count of Gurizberg (*OTL Gorizia) Henry II of Lurngau and of the margrave of Histria, Engelbert III of Sponheim-Ortenburg. Byzantine Empire: Basileus John II Comnenus confiscates all Pisan property in the empire:D , after Pisan support for the Normans. Pisa is forced to concentrate its trade with Spain and Egypt as a consequence.

Middle East: A new wave of Crusaders from Greater Normandy, Aquitaine, Burgundy and southern Italy/Lesser Normandy (some 15,000 men) reaches the Levant by sea, being the German route blocked by war and Byzantium locked :D for hostile Crusader transit. The army, led by count Theophylact of Valence, a relative of the Burgundian ruler Adalbert III, tries at first an invasion of Egypt but is decimated by malaria while ravaging the eastern Nile delta. Then they turn against Damascus again, only to be repulsed by the local regent Unur, a recalcitrant vassal of Zengi.

Basileus' Interference Timeline
Earlier in time:
Timeline 1115-1130 AD
1130-1145 AD Later in time:
Timeline 1145-1160 AD

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