Croatia adopts thematic system

Oct 2011
275
Croatia
#1
Croatia during King Tomislav utilized traditional tribal military organization, which allowed it to put enormous armies in the field for the short time. However, it was not long before it feudalized, which had the effect of reducing the size and effectiveness of the military, as well as leading to typical feudal politics and internal instability. So what if, instead of feudal system, Croatia introduced something similar to thematic military model, or else something similar to British feudalism - with king giving land directly to soldiers instead of feudal insubordination?
 
Apr 2017
707
Lemuria
#2
Croatia is and was too small to field a massive army without crippling its economy. The correct strategy would be a small but extremely professional and experienced army and integration into an ally army. Massive armies were only for countries like France, UK, Russia and Spain. If you read on French military reform from Louis XIV to Napoleon, you'll realize how hard it was to train, equip, feed, field a massive, competent army or armies.
 
Oct 2011
275
Croatia
#3
That is why I pointed out "for the short time". Tribal military organization at the time of Tomislav meant basically that every single male of fighting age could be called up to fight. But that would work for a battle or two; not so much for protracted warfare. That, I think, may have been part of the reason for feudalization; but as I noted, feudalization led to internal instability.
 
Apr 2017
707
Lemuria
#4
Just did a search on that king. We are talking circa 900 here right? I didn't realize it was this time period. What was the population of Croatia back then?
 
Oct 2011
275
Croatia
#5
Nobody knows, exactly. I had found figures ranging from 800 000 to 2 million. Constantine Porphyrogenetos states that Tomislav's Croatia could have raised 100 000 infantry and 60 000 cavalry; that is probably an overestimate, but keep in mind that these were militia, not semi-professional troops as on Roman model. So based on those numbers, yes, 800 000 to 1 600 000 inhabitants is likely.