Medieval World War

Discuss historical events and information concerning any culture, time, or location in our world (or even the frontier beyond).

Who will win?

The West (England, France, Ayyubid, Holy Roman Empire)
The East (Genghis Khan and his Empire of Khanates plus Japan)
Total votes : 46

Re: Medieval World War

Unread postby Tigger of Kai » Tue Dec 14, 2010 11:07 pm

To my mind, this excellent exchange about the Mongols calls to mind something I read recently about the rulers of another, earlier vast Asiatic empire:
the Persians were a people marked out to fall under the influence of others and not to hew an independent path for themselves. In their own highlands, like the Spartans in the Laconian vale, they might live unspotted from the world, a valiant, simple, and truthful race ; but when they once went forth to conquer and to rule, it was their inevitable doom to be led captive by their captives and to adopt the manners and ideals of more intellectual and original peoples.

One such intellectual and original people were the Greeks, and the great legacy of the Hellenic empire was the deep impression it left on its successor empire — Rome. In this light, the Mongols, though deserving of credit for their almost unblemished martial record, appear to have been a bit of a flash in the pan.
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Re: Medieval World War

Unread postby Crazedmongoose » Tue Dec 14, 2010 11:36 pm

I agree. Though it's interesting because I would have never thought of the Persians as being severely in this category. Granted, I'm not sure how modern day Iran, aside from having a different religion, differs culturally from the Persians. From what I understood the Persians' core cultural values were things like truth?

Cultures like Sparta, Mongolia, the Timurids, the Huns, were unmatched in martial prowess but couldn't maintain themselves for lack of a focus on intellects, the arts etc. And it's interesting, to my mind, that the most enduring cultures in the world, ie. Hellenic (or even just Athenian to be frank), which flows through a great majority of the world to this date, and Chinese which has maintained and dominated in East Asia for 4000 years, all fit under the descriptor "intellectual and original", despite neither civilizations being that exceptional at the whole military thing.

It seems like it's almost the lot of herding/grazing civilizations is to conquer and then be subverted/assimilated. The Manchus (I am part-Manchu myself) conquered China and then were ultimately wiped out because they just became Chinese for all intents and purposes.
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Re: Medieval World War

Unread postby Jordan » Fri Dec 17, 2010 7:26 am

Sedentary lifestyles ultimately offer certain benefits that are in some ways more appealing than a nomadic life for human beings. There have been nomads throughout all of history and still are today, but as time went on the number of nomadic groups dwindled. Because a nomadic lifestyle is tougher by nature, perhaps it made many of the nomadic groups into better soldiers, though. In that sense, it makes sense that, as you point out, many of the nomads were conquerors by force but conquered by culture. As they observed the lifestyles of their subjects, they realized that they were less rigorous and easier and in some ways adapted to them because of this, in my opinion. But I think nomads have played a greater role throughout history than people give them credit for.
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Re: Medieval World War

Unread postby Sun Fin » Mon Dec 20, 2010 12:55 pm

What this comes down to in the end is politics. If with the Mongolian's we are presumbing East are the attackers (or West with the Crusades as the attackers) the attack can only be sustained as long as there is a stable and strong leadership. As soon as that dissolves the attack will lose momentium and lead to infighting. Like what happened with Mongolians. Of course if the other force attempts a counter attack than it might force the remnants into allying as there is nothing like a strong enemy to unity warring brothers. Basically its an unwinnable war.
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Re: Medieval World War

Unread postby princeherry » Tue Apr 26, 2011 9:07 am

The Medieval World at War brings together for the first time in a single volume authoritative accounts not only of European and Middle Eastern warfare, but also of Central Asian, Indian, Chinese and Japanese conflicts.

Superbly designed, this book encompasses everything from Charlemagne’s empire building, the Viking invasions of northern Europe and the Christian crusades against Islam, to Mongol horse-archers, the Teutonic knights of Germany, the English longbowmen, the gunpowder revolution, the Ottoman threat to Europe and Samurai warfare.

Here are vivid accounts of tactics, troop types, battles, fortifications and siege techniques, and analysis of the underlying political and military strategies that were shaped by the clash of often very different social and ideological systems.

Feature boxes highlight key topics ranging from battles such as Tours, Agincourt and the siege of Constantinople to weaponry and armour from England to Japan, and to castles such as the mighty crusader fortress of Crac des Chevaliers in Syria.

Eyewitness accounts bring the story dramatically to life, and battles are visualized with specially commissioned 3-D reconstructions. This book is authoritative and exciting reading for anyone interested in warfare.
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