Most painful territorial losses

Futurist

Ad Honoris
May 2014
18,742
SoCal
#41
Egypt's loss of the Sinai to Israel?
Yeah, very possibly.

BTW, Israel should have used the time that it ruled the Sinai to encourage some Gazans to relocate there in order to ease the overpopulation crisis in the Gaza Strip. Of course, Gaza was less overpopulated back then than it was right now, so ...
 

Futurist

Ad Honoris
May 2014
18,742
SoCal
#42
Also, interestingly enough, I think that Britain should have added Sinai to Palestine when it gave Egypt independence back in 1922. Egypt already has a lot of land and isn't making much use of the Sinai while both the Jews and the Arabs of Palestine could have really used that extra land in the Sinai for themselves.
 
Likes: Menshevik
Jan 2016
1,128
Victoria, Canada
#44
What caused the post-1265 Byzantine decline in Anatolia?
Post-1282 and especially the mid-1290's, really, but the main causes were the great migration of Turkoman nomads west, into the borderlands and eventually lowlands, in the wake of the Mongol conquests (the Mongols having secured the best pastures in the central plateau for themselves); the preoccupation of Roman forces and attentions in the Balkans due to the numerous full-scale invasions of Charles I of Sicily (not immediately disastrous, and failure in the west would have been far worse, but which prevented imperial funds and focuses from being directed east for the lion's share of the mid-13th century); the inadequacy of Andronikos II, Michael VII's successor, who simply wasn't a competent enough general, administrator, or politician to stabilize the situation in which he found Asia (despite a somewhat admirable effort in the first decade of his reign), choosing to cut back on direct military spending, make alliances, and hire mercenaries instead; and, finally, the Catalan Company debacle, in which a huge Catalan mercenary band hired by Andronikos to retake Western Anatolia turned on the Emperor after a short stint of quasi-success (also involving the sacking of recovered Roman towns), sealing the fate of Roman Asia south of the Marmara.

Also, how'd the Byzantine Empire manage to expand into southern Greece after 1265?
Andronikos III, a military-focused Emperor, reconquered Epirus and Thessaly (as well as Lesbos, Chios, Anchialos/Mesembria, and Phocaea) in the 1330's, in one of the last notable periods of Roman success, albeit tempered by the loss of Nicaea and Nicomedia in the east and much of modern N. Macedonia to Stefan Dusan in the west. It was only in the 1340's and 50's that the Roman state, at the hands of the Serbians, civil war, Turks, and the Black Death, would be truly reduced to a crumbling, largely impotent regional power.
 

Futurist

Ad Honoris
May 2014
18,742
SoCal
#45

Futurist

Ad Honoris
May 2014
18,742
SoCal
#46
Post-1282 and especially the mid-1290's, really, but the main causes were the great migration of Turkoman nomads west, into the borderlands and eventually lowlands, in the wake of the Mongol conquests (the Mongols having secured the best pastures in the central plateau for themselves); the preoccupation of Roman forces and attentions in the Balkans due to the numerous full-scale invasions of Charles I of Sicily (not immediately disastrous, and failure in the west would have been far worse, but which prevented imperial funds and focuses from being directed east for the lion's share of the mid-13th century); the inadequacy of Andronikos II, Michael VII's successor, who simply wasn't a competent enough general, administrator, or politician to stabilize the situation in which he found Asia (despite a somewhat admirable effort in the first decade of his reign), choosing to cut back on direct military spending, make alliances, and hire mercenaries instead; and, finally, the Catalan Company debacle, in which a huge Catalan mercenary band hired by Andronikos to retake Western Anatolia turned on the Emperor after a short stint of quasi-success (also involving the sacking of recovered Roman towns), sealing the fate of Roman Asia south of the Marmara.
What made Catalans appear to be such attractive soldiers?

Andronikos III, a military-focused Emperor, reconquered Epirus and Thessaly (as well as Lesbos, Chios, Anchialos/Mesembria, and Phocaea) in the 1330's, in one of the last notable periods of Roman success, albeit tempered by the loss of Nicaea and Nicomedia in the east and much of modern N. Macedonia to Stefan Dusan in the west. It was only in the 1340's and 50's that the Roman state, at the hands of the Serbians, civil war, Turks, and the Black Death, would be truly reduced to a crumbling, largely impotent regional power.
Why'd Andronikos III fail to prevent the loss of the east?

Also, do you think that it would have made much difference to the Byzantine Empire's fortunes if the English Kings would have sent their forces to help the Byzantines out instead of pursuing a futile war to conquer France?
 
Jan 2016
1,128
Victoria, Canada
#47
What made Catalans appear to be such attractive soldiers?
I couldn't really tell you, except that they were a very large, experienced mercenary band and the Empire was in dire need of more soldiers, which was probably more than enough to recommend them.

Why'd Andronikos III fail to prevent the loss of the east?
Andronikos led an expeditionary force into Asia to relieve the Ottoman siege of Nicaea in 1329, but was soundly defeated by a larger Turkish force at the Battle of Pelekanon in the same year, being personally wounded alongside his chief minister (later Emperor), John Kantakouzenos. Nicaea, an incredibly well-defended city (with double-walls similar to those of Constantinople and a lake-side position which allowed it to be resupplied by ship) would hold out for another 2 years, until 1331, but Andronikos wouldn't again attempt to lead an army into Bithynia, evidently judging it better -- perhaps rightly so -- to focus on consolidating and expanding the Roman position in the Balkans and Aegean than risk likely death or defeat against the Turks in the east, or at least he had no immediate plans to that effect when he died young in 1341.

Also, do you think that it would have made much difference to the Byzantine Empire's fortunes if the English Kings would have sent their forces to help the Byzantines out instead of pursuing a futile war to conquer France?
No doubt it would, if the English somehow managed to find a way to get there, but they had absolutely no reason to march/sail the better part of 3000 kilometres to help out a heretical Emperor whose title/identity they didn't even recognize and who had no way of helping them further their territorial or diplomatic ambitions. I also rather doubt Andronikos would be up for another crusade at this point, given how well for the Romans the last few had gone.
 
Likes: Futurist
Dec 2011
4,722
Iowa USA
#48
Post-1282 and especially the mid-1290's, really, but the main causes were the great migration of Turkoman nomads west, into the borderlands and eventually lowlands, in the wake of the Mongol conquests (the Mongols having secured the best pastures in the central plateau for themselves); the preoccupation of Roman forces and attentions in the Balkans due to the numerous full-scale invasions of Charles I of Sicily (not immediately disastrous, and failure in the west would have been far worse, but which prevented imperial funds and focuses from being directed east for the lion's share of the mid-13th century); the inadequacy of Andronikos II, Michael VII's successor, who simply wasn't a competent enough general, administrator, or politician to stabilize the situation in which he found Asia (despite a somewhat admirable effort in the first decade of his reign), choosing to cut back on direct military spending, make alliances, and hire mercenaries instead; and, finally, the Catalan Company debacle, in which a huge Catalan mercenary band hired by Andronikos to retake Western Anatolia turned on the Emperor after a short stint of quasi-success (also involving the sacking of recovered Roman towns), sealing the fate of Roman Asia south of the Marmara.



Andronikos III, a military-focused Emperor, reconquered Epirus and Thessaly (as well as Lesbos, Chios, Anchialos/Mesembria, and Phocaea) in the 1330's, in one of the last notable periods of Roman success, albeit tempered by the loss of Nicaea and Nicomedia in the east and much of modern N. Macedonia to Stefan Dusan in the west. It was only in the 1340's and 50's that the Roman state, at the hands of the Serbians, civil war, Turks, and the Black Death, would be truly reduced to a crumbling, largely impotent regional power.
The national "high water mark" that nationalist politicians of the 19th and 20th centuries in Serbia used like a North Star to direct rhetoric.

Thanks for a complete response, interesting post.
 
Dec 2011
4,722
Iowa USA
#50
What North Star? Is that meant to indicate ambitions towards A-H?
If we want to draw a "higher order" analogy (which wasn't my actual intent) then, sure the "more than 100 years past expiration date" nature of Austria of 1909 (annexation crisis) and Byzantine Empire of Dushan's reign are "roughly" analogous.
 
Likes: Futurist

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