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Old 03-06-2014, 02:04 PM   #7
Join Date: Sep 2012
Default Re: New Reality Seeds

More reality seeds, fresh off the grittle:

Gujarat, 1572: The Portugese sent diplomats to negotiate with the Akbar the Great, arguably the greatest king ever to rule the Mughal Empire. Had he convinced the Portugese to form a closer alliance with the empire than was crafted, there would have been great benefits for both empires. In his time Akbar united most of what we think of as India under the Muslim banner. One can only assume his conquests would have been all the greater backed by a steady line of trade in spice and other merchandise in exchange for European firearms and permission to establish a fleet to defends his holdings. Establish a strong enough alliance (along the lines of Dutch and Japanese) and the Portugese might find their Empire lasting longer while the expansion of the trade imperiums of the other European nations is delayed. If Akbar lives long enough his legacy might include a more successful implementation of Din-i-llahi, a religious polyglot of systems found throughout the Mughal Empire, including Islam, Christianity, and hinduism. Greater expansion could reasonably see Buddhism added to that list. Should the Mughals become a great power in their own right, the Emperor of the Peacock throne might come to serve as the voice of the most prominent faiths of the Earth.

Moscow, 1610: Russia was still reeling from the rule of Ivan the terrible and the subsequent Time of Troubles was well underway. Numerous contenders for the title of Tsar were battling a bloody civil war. Amongst these was Wladyslaw Vasa, son of the king of Poland-Lithuania Sigismund. Wladyslaw was in fact elected Tsar by the Russia nobility, but his father ruined this career in its infancy by attemtping to conqueror the throne for himself. Had Sigismund listened to reason, the two nations could have united their forces to reclaim the throne of Sweden (Sigismund's original intent in attacking Russia to begin with). With this success, Sigismund would have his crown and Wladyslaw could inherit the three throne of Sweden, Poland-Lithuania, and Russia- forming the largest empire in the world and perhaps avoiding the bloodshed of the Great Northern War. Given that both Russia and Sweden were soon to come into their own golden ages, this event could serve as an excellent way to make Poland into a great power in ages to come.

London, 1605: The fifth of November may be a day that shall never be forgot, but the Gunpowder Plot that inspired that rhyme was foiled. Had the event taken place, the world we know might well be very different from the one we live in. Despite Guy Fawkes intentions, the most likely result of the destruction of King and Parliament (and perhaps the subsequent burning of London itself- Fawkes was using a LOT of gunpowder, and the city was assuredly as much a matchstick ready to be lit as it was at the time of the Great Fire of 1666) would have been a harsh crack down on Catholicism across the nation and a much more strongly devoted Protestant majority. Such an event would shock the minds of the entire world and could inspire radical movements that failed on our Earth. The Diggers and the Levellers beaten down by Cromwell could instead rise earlier and create a true Democratic or pseudo-Socialist regime in the heart of England some 300 odd years early. Or new radical governments could be spawned off the words of John Locke, Rousseau, and other enlightenment thinkers.

Paris, 1421: Henry V was a strong English king whose ambitions and achievements amounted to nothing in the face of dysentry and the crusade of a French peasant girl. Had he lived beyond his 36 years, Henry might have swept away the armies of Joan of Arc and cemented his claim to the French throne. With France and England united behind him, Henry's next goal was the conquest of Israel in a modern crusade. Such a happening could provide a stay of execution for Constantinople, otherwise destined to fall in a few short decades. A longer life for the king would also see the smoother transition of power from father to son, an event that might just prevent the mounting tensions and rivalries that would eventually explode into the War of the Roses.

Shanghai Pass, 1644: The end of the Ming Dynasty was neigh. The people were starving, and a peasant army had arisen under the guidance of former imperial soldier Li Zencheng. Beijing had fallen to the rebellion, and the last Emperor of the Ming had taken his own life. The Shun Dynasty had begun. Yet along the Shanghai Pass the former Ming loyalist Wu Sangui had a fateful decision to make- accept the new regime or throws his lot in with the invading Manchus. On our earth he opened the gate in the Great Wall, allowing the foreign invaders into China and ultimately initiating the rise of the Qing Dynasty that would rule until the advent of Communism. Had he hesitated, there is a good possibility that the new Emperor could have rallied and armed his armies into a force to the Manchus back to the steppes. If their king survives, the Manchus might then turn their ambitions elsewhere, perhaps conquering and uniting rival khannates in Upper Asia after the fashion of the Mongols they much admired. At best, this could prove a major hindrance in Russia's ability to expand and hold onto Eastern territories. At worst, we might see a line of Tsars descending from the Manchus and additional forays into the heart of Europe. In China proper, the Shun might have an easier time of rule than their Manchu counterparts. There is an argument to be made that the conservatism of the Qing was forced upon them by necessity- their foreign nature meant they had to strive all the more carefully to appear traditional and respectful of Chinese tradition. Lacking that need, the Shun might have continued the advances of the Ming and allowed China to keep pace with their counterparts in the West by the time of the industrial revolution.
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