Best Military Performance of the bunch

Best performer

  • Athens

    Votes: 0 0.0%
  • Carthage

    Votes: 11 44.0%
  • Sweden

    Votes: 7 28.0%
  • Confederates

    Votes: 0 0.0%
  • Germany

    Votes: 7 28.0%

  • Total voters
    25

Larrey

Ad Honorem
Sep 2011
5,909
You forgot that Sweden and France concluded an alliance in 1672 , with France promising 400,000 riksdalers of subsidies in peace time, to be raised to 600,000 in war time, for Sweden maintaining a 16,000 men strong army in her German dominions.
By September 1674, Sweden had enlarged her army to 22,000 men after France had increased the subsidies to 900,000 riksdalers, which she threatened to withdraw if Sweden was not using this army

French were financing Swedish. Likewise, during Thirty Years War it were also the French who were providing financial support to Gustav II.

Sweden didn't perform well in terms of inflecting serious damage to Brandenburg - Prussia and distracting it. So, Swedish weren't even able to do that good of a job on their end. Luckily, France was triumphant in their conflict and helped Sweden.
Sure. Sweden was pretty much bankrupt after the minority government of Charles XI.

Someone had made off with the money, and it hadn't been spent on the army, that's for sure. It's possibly the worst prepared war in Swedish history (alongside "The Hats' Russian War" in the 18th c.)

So it's certainly one of the more ignominious episodes in Swedish military history. Good thing for the Brandenburgers too. Gave them something to hype and mythologize. :)

Charles XI first had to win the war with the Danes, and then confront the Swedish nobles to get the country back in order. He pretty much saved Sweden.
 
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Sep 2016
1,330
Georgia
Charles XI first had to win the war with the Danes, and then confront the Swedish nobles to get the country back in order. He pretty much saved Sweden.
Then neighbors tried to grab lands from Sweden, while his son was still a boy. :mad:
 
May 2018
928
Michigan
Carthage comes in a close second, but outside of Hannibal, their military performance was average, and the government itself was pretty fickle.

I'd give the award to Germany in the early stages of WWII. They conquered several countries, including France.
 

Larrey

Ad Honorem
Sep 2011
5,909
Then neighbors tried to grab lands from Sweden, while his son was still a boy. :mad:
Well, I don't think anyone was actually surprised back inte the day. It was the nature of politics.

But there is a direct line from how Charles XI came to the throne in a situation where Sweden had international entanglements and obligations due to its alliance with that France, and thus got landed in a war it was in no way prepared to fight, and how by the time Charles XII took over it was a reversed hand.

Charles XI won the necessary war to win, then pursued a foreign policy of non-entanglement to avoid a repeat of being drawn into someone else's great-power conflict willy-nilly, reforming the army to a new level of national self-sufficiency, while setting about a reboot of the royal administration, and facing down the last remnants of independent power of the aristocracy. Charles XI was known as "the Grey Cloak", for the unadorned great-coat he would wear when making surprise inspections in various parts of the royal administration. As a monarch he was extremely unflashy, just highly efficient and on that level the acme of a "good king". But he fought only one war, and that was by necessity at the start of his reign, so unlike the monarchs surrounding him there's little excitement or reason for the world outside to have noticed him.

But as a consequence when Charles XII took over Sweden was possibly Europe's best-run country. The army was top-notch. Effectively Charles XI has started with everything more or less in pieces (even if the foundations left by his predecessors were good) and running on empty. For Charles XII the larders were full, everything was running smoothly, he just had to get in and start using it. What Charles XI left behind was the reason Sweden under Charles XII could fight the Great Nordic War as long and as hard as it actually managed.
 
Sep 2016
1,330
Georgia
But as a consequence when Charles XII took over Sweden was possibly Europe's best-run country. The army was top-notch. Effectively Charles XI has started with everything more or less in pieces (even if the foundations left by his predecessors were good) and running on empty. For Charles XII the larders were full, everything was running smoothly, he just had to get in and start using it. What Charles XI left behind was the reason Sweden under Charles XII could fight the Great Nordic War as long and as hard as it actually managed.
Wasn't there famine in Baltic provinces, when Charles XII became a king ?
 

Larrey

Ad Honorem
Sep 2011
5,909
Wasn't there famine in Baltic provinces, when Charles XII became a king ?
No escape from climate in the cold... That was the Great Famine of 1695-97. 1695 went down in Swedish history as "The Great Black Year". Charles became king in 1697, so by the time the climate again started improving, so just before his time.
https://journals.ametsoc.org/doi/abs/10.1175/1520-0477(1979)060<0775:GHETWS>2.0.CO;2

The last wave of The Plague to hit Stockholm rolled around in 1710-13 so that was in Charles XII's time.
 
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