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Old October 16th, 2012, 04:00 AM   #1

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Most powerful empire that never existed?


So instead of debating the most powerful empire of all time, lets talk about those countries and peoples that never had a notable empire but could have done, and why they didn't.

The Spartans are, IMO, the obvious candidate for this, but if you look at their social system, there was literally no option for empire. If they had simply 'freed' the helots into a kind of peasantry, rather than slavery, and taxed them as free men to support the Spartiates, then could Sparta have actually had expansionist state policies?
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Old October 16th, 2012, 05:10 AM   #2

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The Scandinavian Empire that existed for a short time under Cnut.
It comprised England, Denmark, Norway, southern Sweden, the Northen Islands and had Scotland, Wales, Eastern Ireland and Scandinavian-ruled Normandy and Poland as vassals.
It history it fell apart after Cnut's death, but with a more centralised organisation and cohesian among Nordic people, it could well have included Rus and with the Normans, dominated Northern Europe and the Mediterranean.


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Old October 16th, 2012, 05:19 AM   #3

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I'm dubious about those continental borders - how on earth are they meant to be defended?
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Old October 16th, 2012, 06:36 AM   #4

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Originally Posted by Sargon of Akkad View Post
I'm dubious about those continental borders - how on earth are they meant to be defended?
I just lifted the map from another site. Had I designed it I would have added Southern Italy, the Mediterranen Islands and the Crusader Kingdoms where, in real life the Franks and Normans ruled.
However, in the above map, the enemies/competitors were:-

South of the Alps
West of the Pyrenees
South of the Carpathians
The other side of the Steppes.
Of course, I didn't even suggesthow long the Empire would last, especially when the Mongols and the Turks arrived.
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Old October 16th, 2012, 06:41 AM   #5

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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ancientgeezer View Post
The Scandinavian Empire that existed for a short time under Cnut.
It comprised England, Denmark, Norway, southern Sweden, the Northen Islands and had Scotland, Wales, Eastern Ireland and Scandinavian-ruled Normandy and Poland as vassals.
It history it fell apart after Cnut's death, but with a more centralised organisation and cohesian among Nordic people, it could well have included Rus and with the Normans, dominated Northern Europe and the Mediterranean.


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All of Britain? All of Ulster? France? Really? What time period?
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Old October 16th, 2012, 07:00 AM   #6

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All of Britain? All of Ulster? France? Really? What time period?
1015AD onwards.
Canute actually had the Viking parts of Ireland as vassals under his command.
Northern France was dominated by the recent descendants of Scandinvians. Here is a map of Canute's realm in 1035. The orange parts are vassals, the yellow parts racially scandinavian allies.

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Old October 16th, 2012, 09:50 PM   #7

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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sargon of Akkad View Post
I'm dubious about those continental borders - how on earth are they meant to be defended?
Who would be brave enough to enter Viking territory
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Old October 17th, 2012, 10:03 AM   #8

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The Slave Army of Spartacus should have attacked Rome and taken it. Thus controlling the central part of Rome's Empire and replacing its' core with a Spartacus and slave run Empire. Instead he decided to leave Italy, which set up a tripartied attack on him by three Roman Armies at once. If Spartacus had taken Rome and then decreed freedom for all the slaves in Italy, he could have acquired an even bigger army and thus even more control over what was left of the Roman Empire in Italy. What type of government would Spartacus have instituted into Italy and how would Rome's many enemies have seen this sudden anti-slave Empire? Would such an example spread like wildfire creating many other slave dominated areas? Spartacus would have had to be very adaptable. However, many political solutions concerning participation, wages and democracy might have been found to implement and establish a successful and survivable government.
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Old October 17th, 2012, 11:23 AM   #9

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Re: Most powerful empire that never existed?


Empire covering the whole south east asia: It might have been very prosporus and powerful empire given its impoartant location on trade route between east and west.

Cholas came close to forming such an empire. However they themselves went into decline after 2-3 generation.

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Old October 17th, 2012, 11:43 AM   #10
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Originally Posted by General Michael Collins View Post
All of Britain? All of Ulster? France? Really? What time period?
Cnut did not rule 'Wales'. That is pure codswallop.
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