Looking to brainstorm for a Carthaginian-inspired setting, /tg/. Care to lend a hand?What I have so farGov’t Culture>more land focused than Carthage was (opposed by a maritime-focused Rome analogue because fun with contrasts)>melting pot of settlers/phoenician stand ins, numidian expies, libyan expies, and smaller pockets of people from equivalents to sub saharan africa and europe.>Republic/Oligarchy with two Princes chosen from among the noble/founding families, five Prefects representing alliances of major guilds, and Nine Judges drawn the common people.>Senate handles most legislation, Judges or a General Assembly can break ties. Judges can veto.Money>gold and silver carry heavy weight. Plutocrats can openly act as peers to the nobility. Nobles, commoners, and nouveau riche all compete for government contracts such as tax farming/administration/military officership>center of trade between setting’s equivalents of asia, africa, and europe>very potent organized crime sindicatesMilitary>small professional corps of citizens>order of warrior clerics who uphold the rights of the faith/defend pilgrims and temples>heavy use of auxiliaries and mercenariesNow, here’s some points I’d like input on:-the City/republic is highly religious. Other faiths are tolerated but restricted to their own quarters & the trade quarter. I’m stuck on what sort of religion they’d follow - straight punic paganism just seems too on the nose-should the religion oppose magic? It’s an easy source of conflict but feels kind of cheap for me.Any other things you’d like to see if you were a player? What would really help a Carthage setting ‘pop’?
>>60776161>Carthaginian-inspiredHow can it be inspired by Carthage when you've removed nearly every trace of what made Carthage Carthage?Just call it a bog standard Classic Era city state.
>>60777656>removed every trace of CarthageHow exactly did I do that to my pseudo-Punic city state?What did I not yell *MUH ELEFANTS XD* loud enough? Or is it the fact that the setting isn’t *literally* just a counterpart if Carthage?IRL Carthage had:>Oligarchic/Republican system of government-Led by two elected Judges (Suffetes)-with a gerousia/senate-and a magistracy-where money was very influential-and referendums existed(See: Aristotle on the Constitution of Carthage)>Highly mixed populations with Punic & Phoenician colonists/their descendants ruling over second-class citizens composed of first wealthy & influential Libyans/Greeks, then whatever natives were around (Numidian, Iberian, sicilians, etc)>powerful financial/trade blocs>powerful noble houses scheming against one another descended from the founding families of the City>heavily relied on mercenaries/auxiliaries, with the Sacred Bands (guard divisions devoted to the gods) being composed of actual Carthaginians. Frankly the use of Elephants was implied by them being based on Carthage.The only divergences are that it’s a less thalassocratic state than Carthage and that i wanted to build my own pantheon rather than focus on the baby burning Baal memes.I don’t mind disinterest, but talking out of your ass is an entirely different matter. By this measure I could entirely duplicate Venice for a setting but if they don’t drink wine or live on canals then it’s just a generic Renaissance city state. Utter nonsense.
>>60778360>How exactly did I do that to my pseudo-Punic city state?>What did I not yell *MUH ELEFANTS XD* loud enough? Or is it the fact that the setting isn’t *literally* just a counterpart if Carthage?Not that anon, but for starters:>more land focused than Carthagewas (opposed by a maritime-focused Rome analogue because fun with contrasts)Don't define a Thing by making it a contrast with the Other Thing. Carthage was built on trade, and if you remove that it's already a huge part of what made Carthage... Carthage, go missing.>Republic/Oligarchy with two Princes chosen from among the noble/founding families, five Prefects representing alliances of major guilds, and Nine Judges drawn the common people.Judges (Suffets) were the big dogs in Carthage, not a representative of the commoners. Think the Book of Judges - they are basically kings in all but name.>gold and silver carry heavy weight. Plutocrats can openly act as peers to the nobility. Nobles, commoners, and nouveau riche all compete for government contracts such as tax farming/administration/military officershipNot bad, would emphasise on the mercantile nature of the nouveau riche myself>center of trade between setting’s equivalents of asia, africa, and europeThis goes back to the issue of your divulgence from naval trade. Why? Why move away from the seas when you are basically Constantinople?Military>small professional corps of citizens>order of warrior clerics who uphold the rights of the faith/defend pilgrims and temples>heavy use of auxiliaries and mercenariesThis isn't a critique but a suggestion - how about using Canaanite religion? Include everything that the Hebrews say they practiced like sacrificing children and the like. After all, Carthaginians were descended from Canaanites.
>>60778590>>60778360and because I forgot the type limit was 2k on /tg/Military>small professional corps of citizens>order of warrior clerics who uphold the rights of the faith/defend pilgrims and temples>heavy use of auxiliaries and mercenariesThis isn't a critique but a suggestion - how about using Canaanite religion? Include everything that the Hebrews say they practiced like sacrificing children and the like. After all, Carthaginians were descended from Canaanites.
>>60778609Copy+pasted the wrong segment. I had to rewrite the question on magic.>should the religion oppose magic? It’s an easy source of conflict but feels kind of cheap for me.Low-magic tends to go well with this kind of ancient setting, especially when system of religion is so youthful so as to be decentralised and lacking codification. Remember anon that this is before Abrahamic monotheism became the fad - polytheism means a much more diverse cast of gods and goddesses. There's no need to shoehorn things to White vs Black, but have a variety of clashes from the "mundane" yet undeniably divine squabbling to godly tantrums. Don't go for the easy "NotCatholic" vs "Arcane scholars". This is a time of the magi, when the clergymen were also the palace wizards. Mysticism and rulers using religion for their benefit should be rampant, with the "high priest" often being just another hat for the supreme ruler, or in bed with the elite.I am not advocating for downscale of magic. On the contrary, it should be (partly by the virtue of being so exclusive) an utterly arcane (as in secretive, something so clandestine that it's half-legend) thing. If magic is real, it would be better in this setting to be rare enough to inspire terror and fear into the peasants when they encounter it.
>>60778360>I don’t mind disinterest, but talking out of your ass is an entirely different matter.I wasn't talking out my ass, OP. Read >>60778590 and >>60778609 and try to understand that you're "Replace Thing with Opposite Thing" method doesn't really work.Carthage was a mercantile oligarchic republic. Given the technology of the period, the only way to move the amount of trade goods that requires is by water. Your land-focused Carthage simply can't work as a mercantile powerhouse. It has to be a sea/water power, much like Rome became after it knocked off Carthage.The other anon already pointed out the problems with your government setup. That's just a result of the usual and entirely normal misunderstandings which occur when "translating" Classic Era words and concepts into 21st Century words and concepts.Did you know that Carthage was still paying yearly land rents to the local African "kingdoms" well into the Punic Wars era?
>>60778590I appreciate you being civil instead of dismissive.>land focusedI thought it would be obvious from the use of Carthage/Phoenicia as a base that the City would be rooted in finance and terrestrial trade. Think Nabatea (the Kingdom that built Petra).>SuffetesWas just debating on how precisely to implement them. Any thoughts on what to call some Ephor/Tribune equivalents? Maybe Magistrates? I want some class conflict for my players to wade through.>emphasizing mercantile nature of the new richAbsolutely will do. Sorry if that wasn't clear.>Naval TradeShould've been more clear that it's not a move *away* from the sea, but rather less of a total reliance on it. Think something like Ptolemaic Egypt and Pergamon vs Rhodes and Cyrene. They all had strong merchant navies but the latter two were defined by their relationship to the sea while the former were more multifaceted.>Canaanite ReligionThat's another thing I'm debating - since Carthage more or less did follow the Canaanite gods (both stemming from phoenicia) right down to 'burning the babies Baal hamon', I feel like straight-up using those gods might be cheap.I think what I'll do is shuffle the pantheon around - make another god chief rather than Ba'al - and change the names of course. Definitely might work in some of the things that outsiders (such as Israel) said about them too.Thanks for posting anon. Appreciate it. Hope I clarified my position somewhat. I forget how poorly my autistic nonsense translates to text sometimes.
>>60778871>Think Nabatea (the Kingdom that built Petra).That kingdom's wealth was based on monopolizing the trade in a very small selection of very precious goods and it still wasn't enough to keep enemies at bay. Seasonal weather patterns make sailing north in the Red Sea impossible for most of the year forcing those trade goods to travel by caravan through Petra and later cities like Mecca. No matter how costly the goods, those trade volumes are not enough to fund your NotCarthage.>Should've been more clear that it's not a move *away* from the sea, but rather less of a total reliance on it.Carthage relied on the sea because they didn't control the hinterlands beyond their cities. As noted before, they were still paying yearly rent on the ground under Carthage itself into the Punic War period. >>Think something like Ptolemaic Egypt and Pergamon vs Rhodes and Cyrene.Egypt still depended on the Nile and Pergamon on coastal trade plus the Meander(?). Neither lasted as 1st tier powers for long and neither approached the level of Carthage.
>>60778871>religionThere are multiple ways you can approach this. Bible is in many ways literally Hebrew propaganda. There isn't much proof that they sacrificed babies and danced around the bloodied altar other than the Hebrews, their sworn enemies, saying so. It was heavily influenced by the Mesopotamian mythos as well, but that's a given for any Late Bronze Age peoples, and this includes the Hebrews. What I am saying is, you do not have to go the baby-killing route.>land focusedThe way you phrased it, with (and I repeat myself) "Thing vs Opposite Thing and then swap them" is one of the reasons I do not like this particular bit, but it is by no means the only one. The ancient Carthaginians were prolific seafarers, descendants of a people that spread far and wide and built up coastal trade outposts that grew into cities that grew into kingdoms. It takes away a lot of that particular flavour of the ancient Carthaginian civilisation. Remember anon, geography plays a very heavy role in the growth of a city-state. I would suggest putting it in a place that is not equivalent to real Carthage, if you want it to be more like cities that were big on both naval and terrestrial trade routes.>SuffetsWell firstly, I would ditch using Latinised titles. Tribunes and Magistrates and Prefects are all well and good... if we are dealing with that flavour. But this is the Carthaginians. They claim descent from one of the people of the First Age, worshipping gods that were old before Abraham's balls had hair. Wikipedia should be sufficient in aiding you with title-making, and for their descriptors use a more culture-agnostic title instead of jumping straight to Roman ones.>ThanksNo problem, that other anon was being a bit high-strung as well. I love Bronze Age shit and was writing some Bronze Age campaign, but trashed it since no one was interested in "lol bronze weapons". Then ran a quest on /qst/, and faced similar obscurity as well. Such is life of Bronzeaboo.
>>60778729Good point. Going for more an old, dank ancient semitic vibe with court sorcery is a great idea. Duly noted and very fitting.>>60778854Apologies for not giving you less credit than you deserved. I've had a particularly bad time with shitposters today and I wasn't being fair or reading well. Mea culpa.The two biggest things I'd note are these>I was hoping just for a Punic/phoenician style culture that was less exclusively sea-based than - say - Carhage or TyreI totally understand that to be a major trade power you need a strong merchant fleet and a navy/outposts to secure it. My issue is wanting a state more like post Punic Wars Rome or Ptolemaic Egypt were there was more desire for - to use the Venetian term - Terra Firma. To this end I'd thought to mix in some elements of states like Rome to produce a government with the infrastructure to rule things a little more solidly (hence a faction to represent the commoners rather than the clunky referendums/General Assembly Aristotle moaned about). Perhaps I need to veer it away from being a city state and just make it a Kingdom with Punic features and a healthy dash of sea trade.>Carthage's loose style of 'imperium'In order to make things smoother for the setting I wanted to move away from the Carthaginian tendency to just trade with the locals and let them be somewhat. They're definitely not expansionists - much more content with running what they have than taking more, so that means no land distribution/loot based economy. Hence the trade focus.As for vassals/subject territories I was definitely thinking a lighter touch than Rome (closer to a Persian Satrapal system maybe - pay your taxes and don't rebel? All's well!) but still want a cohesive, governed core that my players can experience.Extra note - my group is a bunch of fellow history nerds, so that's part of why I don't just want to file the serial numbers off Carthage. Ideally I want to evoke the 'flavor' of Carthage without being just a copy
>>60779052>>60779086You're definitely not wrong . Geography dictates much of culture - hence why in my mind I was placing this Not!Carthage in more of a Byzantine/Egyptian location. But that raises the issue of location and vulnerability. Carthage greatly benefited from not getting swept up in the Wars of the Diadochi, for instance, and having too central a location could prove detrimental.Also, I wasn't meaning to subvert just for the sake of subversion. It was more'How might a Carthaginian-style society develop in a more balanced way rather than such a strictly nautical one?'rather than>'Lawl it's like Rome and Carthage but oppsites XD'But I can see how that came across poorly.I'm considering looking into incorporating multiple pre-modern Semitic cultures (such as pre-Islamic Arabs of Yemen and Nabatea, & even native Egypt) for clues as well.>Latinized titlesMatter of me underestimating the /tg/ poster. I'm actually asking advice of Phoenician/Punic language on /his/ right now since I've been having trouble finding titles that satisfy me. I'm using those titles as terms of convenience/placeholders.Perhaps what I might do is centralize the government a bit more; maybe make it a true Monarchy with mixed elements to encourage stronger central control while still making it a sea-focused power. I really want Not!Carthage to have legitimate control over its core territories rather than just the coastline.
>>60779111>Apologies for not giving you less credit than you deserved. I've had a particularly bad time with shitposters today and I wasn't being fair or reading well. Mea culpa.No problem, OP. It's the way we have to post here what with character limits and all. You try to be terse and succinct hoping the other fellow can fill in the rest.>>My issue is wanting a state more like post Punic Wars Rome or Ptolemaic Egypt were there was more desire for - to use the Venetian term - Terra Firma. Give your NotCarthage a case of "imperial creep". Some Victorian statesman coined the idea by noting how the UK would slowly get dragged into local affairs when all they originally wanted was a safe anchorage. You'd chart a roadstead, then deal with the locals, then put some traders ashore, then settle a town, then build lighthouse, then "deal" with the locals again to protect the town and lighthouse. Once you were responsible for the locals, you found yourself protecting them from their enemies further inland or along the coast. Then, a few decades later you're sending flying columns 100s of miles into the interior to "keep the peace". Carthage was already moving away from their "non-interference" thinking by the 1st Punic War, just look at how "active" they were in Spain compared to territories around their older settlements. Giving your NotCarthage a case of "imperial creep" around their main cities to protect their "breadbaskets". Real Carthage preferred imports because the locals were pretty tough and outnumbered them by quite a lot. of course it was concerns over imports from Sicily that sucked Carthage into the first war with Rome.
A very simple approach is to think of a Greek City-state, emphasize mercantilism and oligarchal rule, cross it with a strong 'oriental' (Middle-Eastern, Babylonian and semitic since people will likely conflate Phoenician and Babylonian motifs). There's a kind of colonialism feeling to it with it being an outpost of people from across the sea with large latifundums (or the punic equivalent) staffed by local indigenous peasantry. There is some intermixing with the locals which allows for middle-ish class or middle-ish ranking status for the half-breeds or those locals who acclimatize to the foreign culture. But it's still very much a foreign colonial enterprise.
>>60779344>GovernmentEgypt was relatively safe because (from a Mesopotamian POV) it was in the edge despite being one of the Major Kingdoms. What you seem to be wanting is not Egypt (not that big on terrestrial trade in the first place), but Byzantium and to a lesser scale Judaic Caesarea. Like the anon from >>60779052 notes, trade routes and fickle and sea routes = more volume and speed. Whatever land trade this NotCarthage facilitates will likely be an inland exchange between nearby inland cities, or some rather exclusive merchandise coming from far, far inland (NotChina?) and making a stop in your port city not as a final destination, but merely as a jump-over. Read up on the Silk Road and its effects, and be prepared for Carthage to be even more international than it already was. Carthage did not have a pressing need for a standing army, but your Carthage definitely will unless it wants to get sacked like Baghdad every time you turn the history book.>Implementing Various Semitic CulturesTone down on the Egyptian and other Mesopotamian, and reassert the Canaanite for a change would be my recommendation. Maybe even use the ridiculously tall and well-endowed Canaanites the Hebrews supposedly encountered while running away from Egypt, according to their Bible. It isn't bad to add elements of some nomadic peoples, as this -is- a melting pot of a city, but remember that the Canaanites are city-builders, not tent-dwellers.
>>60779388The British analogue is actually a brilliant one. I hadn't thought of that. How fitting a contrast would it be for Not!Carthage to bumble into empire much in the same way Rome pretended it was - whereas Rome hunted 'casus belli' and justified it by whatever ornate political nonsense was necessary, here you'd have a profit-seeking state forced to defend its interests. Since they'd be focused on trade wealth rather than loot/agriculture, they'd only expand when absolutely necessary.Perhaps I could even play off the tension between Carthage and the Barcas in Spain, with ambitious families carving out their own pseudo-Empires 'to protect the common interest'. Now that you mention it, had Carthage won the wars there'd almost certainly been a power struggle between the Home city and her silver-enriched First Family.'Maybe I could even do a classical play on 'redcoats', throw in a white-feather style guilting of citizens into service so that the government has a more reliable ability to force project. Auxiliaries would actually translate well into British-style Sepoy/Askari analogues without being so inefficient as IRL Carthaginian mercenary forces.>>60779437As mentioned above this is an awesome idea. I'm embarrassed not to have thought of putting some subtle 18th/19th century flavor in to change things up.Now the root hypothetical of my setting becomes:>What if Carthage was allowed to continue developing without being broken by the Romansrather than>What if Carthage was less exclusively sea-focused?And yet still gets the desired result.Could be a neat setting if I hammer it out enough.Thanks for this anons. I really mean it!
>>60779516>Govt pt.II why the hell does /tg/ have a smaller wordcount than goddamn /qst/ Persian satraps might not be a bad way to go, given the age of your setting and difficulty of travel. Look up on the etymology of the title, and remember that the title is not of a king but a protector - flavour-wise, it's more like a Governor-General (someone with the real military might to protect the settlement and region from depredation) as well as political legitimacy stemming from regular tribute-giving to the Capital and formal declaration of subservience. Read up on the Amarna letters to get a feel for how rulers of old communicated with each other, and exchanged gifts (and complaints). The status of messengers is to be highly regarded, but dangerous for its bearer as well depending on the political situation.
>>60779388Adding on to the notion of "imperial creep" is the fundamental fact that "he who can keep order of the area is the de facto ruler". Well, lots of holes in that absolutist statement, but I think this illustrates the point, coupled with the anon's remark. Locals can and will gravitate to your trade outposts if it's safer there than their nearby homes facing the depredation of the desert nomads/mountain nomads/bureaucrat-nomads/other. It does not have to be a conscious decision to colonise the place, but an (almost terrifyingly) organic process.There are already examples of imperial creep as the linked anon mentions, and it was their northward interests that sparked the Romans' caution.>>60779530>Force ProjectionThere is a limit to how much the Central Authority can administer to far-flung regions. If the Carthaginian empire begins to hold significant in-land areas (harder to travel to), and you don't mind using the two Saffets system, you might be able to recycle Diocletian's Tetrarchy. More landed interest means greater need for garrisons and land troops, which can't zip-zap through the Mediterranean as fast as naval contingents can.
>>60779538I'm glad there's actually Classicalboos here on /tg/ at all.As it turns out I'm actually much better versed in the Achaemenids/Arsacids/Sassanids than Punic/Phoenician stuff so I'm very familiar with the system.I actually did my previous campaign for this group in a stand-in for Iron age anatolia, with my PCs joining a rebellion to free the cities of Not!Lycia from Not!Persia. Was very fun desu.
>>60779662>Iron Age, where metal weapon is common>not using Bronze Age, during which one of the very few sources of iron was literally from the heavens>:( That campaign sounds pretty fun desu, wish my friends could get over bronze age foreignness to play mine
>>60779847As a diehard Conan fan I'd take your Bronze Age adventures any day, anon. Don't worry.Honestly anything earlier than 1300s in tech/aesthetic/politics/culture is horribly underrepresentedPlus I mean, who can help but love Meteor Iron? Swords forged from star metal are patrician as hell.
>>60779904Never read Conan, I'm familiar with the bit where the Mongolian(?) guy asks him what is best in life and he answers something raider-y. Are the books good?
>>60779965Going to warn you ahead of time that semitic languages become a pain in the ass because of the absence of vowels much of the time. It's a case of them allowing for:>>'h y knw wht th vwl wll b, s w cn omt t frm th wrtng'.See if you can figure out what I was trying to say there. And that's with knowing the tongue I'm writing in! Perfect sense for them back then, agonizing for those of us trying to make sense of it now. You may want to try and look on google, google books and such, for glossaries, lexicons, transliteration or whatever of if not Punic then related Semitic tongues - ancient Hebrew, Canaanite languages, Urgarit will have a lot because it's a highly documented language for a small Syrian city-state http://www.sel.cchs.csic.es/sites/default/files/F.%20Watson.pdfhttp://ancientroadpublications.com/Studies/AncientLanguage/Ugaritic.pdfhttp://cnqzu.com/library/To%20Organize/Books/Brill%20Ebooks/Brill._Handbook_of_Oriental_Studies/Brill.%20Handbook%20of%20Oriental%20Studies/A_Dictionary_of_the_Ugaritic_Language_in_the_Alphabetic_Tradition__Handbook_of_Oriental_Studies_.pdf - Just quickly looking at the last one and it seems useful since it offers cognates in related languages like Arabic or Hebrew or Akkadian with the missing vowels. so 'nq' is necklace in Ugaritic, unqu is the Akkadian equivalent and anaq is the Arabic equivalent. So perhaps it'd be naq, nuq or one of the other two.
>>60779970Much better than the movies pound for pound. Very pulpy but fun and well executed.First movie still has a place in my heart though.>>60779965 >>60780005Appreciate the help. I remember learning Persian how baffled I was by the arabic-derived alphabet modern Persian uses due to the lack of vowels.Urgarit is an excellent suggestion. Never would've thought of that.Very, very helpful.
>>60779847Make them play King of Dragon pass or Six ages desu, it's as good and fun introduction to that kind of culture, also romans or ancient greeks had more in common with us than medievals once you learn about them.
>>60779530>The British analogue is actually a brilliant one. I hadn't thought of that.You would have thought of it. All I did was mention it first.>>How fitting a contrast would it be for Not!Carthage to bumble into empire...Much like middle Victorian UK. Telling itself it just wants to protect trade routes and finding itself sucked into landgrabs via >>60779654's "terrifyingly organic" process.>>much in the same way Rome pretended it was...The Roman cursus honorum certainly helped drive Rome's expansion. When your elite's prestige depends on hitting certain marks and some of those marks involved military campaigns, you're going to be an expansionist power.>>here you'd have a profit-seeking state forced to defend its interests. Since they'd be focused on trade wealth rather than loot/agriculture, they'd only expand when absolutely necessary.Yeah but that hinterland conquered in a fit of absentmindedness is going to produce both "marcher lords" and the standing troops such lords require. There is going to be friction between those new military elites and the old trading elites. Next add your silver-billionaires, the NotBarcas, who return from the daughter city colonies in NotSpain to buy/grab power in mother NotCarthage and you've got a nice nasty mess of politics.
>>60779970Very good. I am a huge fan of him and he and Harold Lamb (who I also suggest, but more so his nonfiction than his fiction) are the major shapers of my writing style and outlook.The best Conan stories will be Hour of the Dragon which is one of the longest (or the longest) and is a quintessential heroic tale, Phoenix on the Throne is good for some but since it's a literal Kull story dressed up I don't like it as I blur the two together, Beyond the Black River is almost less medieval and more wild-west/oregon trail but is very well done and encapsulates a central philosophy of REH, Tower of the Elephant is short but sweet. The only story of his that I feel is objectively shit is Vale of the Lost Women because it's so short and is a blatant case of him having to write a meal ticket. It's the standard schlock "dumb bitch needs saving" I have nothing against cheesecake, I love it though writing cheesesteak instead makes me realize I need to grab a bite. But it's a waste of his talents and you get that cheesecake with a great plot in say, People of the Black Circle.So get the Conan Anthologies, the post REH stuff I can't speak to. I read El Borak which is his Lawrence of Arabia in Afghanistan stuff and it's great. Harold Lamb wise is an upper class or more educated Robert E Howard, contemporary of him. I recommend Iron Men and Saints & Flame of Islam (First is Crusades to about 1130ish? Second is Saladin onwards), March of the Barbarians (Genghis Khan and Tamerlane), the book on Alexander the Great, Cyrus the Great, Hannibal Barca. Actually March of the Barbarians may only be Genghis and his successors, while Tamerlane is a separate book and both are in Earth shakers https://www.amazon.com/earth-shakers-Harold-Lamb/dp/B0007DRK12
>>60780153Harold Lamb's writing style for his nonfiction is what I'd call narrative histories, or a storytelling of history. It's very much like Herodotus or Thucydides or the ancient historians. Dialogue, speeches and such are inserted into the writing. Sometimes they will be literal quotes, but often it's much like Herodotus and Thucydides did - what they expected the men would have said, what they likely said in themes and broad strokes. It's a riveting writing style that engages you. Clearly if you want a pure nonfiction historical account you should read a more scholarly modern take, but it's highly entertaining and still thoroughly detailed. Lamb was no slouch and could speak "French, Latin, Persian, Arabic, and a smattering of Manchu-Tartar" https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Harold_LambI didn't really like his cossack tales book. Too dry for me. I need to try and read the other fictions though.
>>60780005One of the issues is that the Akkadians basically lifted Sumerian letters to write their stuff, when their languages did not mesh well. I think. I do not dare even touching the languages with a 10 meter pole.>>60780089Six Ages looks interesting, though for the SNES one it doesn't look like it's for me. I'm a fan of the old Infinity Engine games more than that kind of format. Thanks for the suggestions though!>>60780153Well I thought it was just "barbarian does barbarian things" but I'll check it out now>LanguageSince we got on this topic anway, I would just like to beg you NOT TO USE GODDAMN COMMON. Trade tongue is a thing, yes, but don't make everyone and their mother (and her dog) use it. And make literacy actually prestigious, time spent learning is time that could be productive for the majority of peoples around that time. Dialects differed even within the same "language", sometimes by city-states, and I cannot stress enough the sense of geographical alienation for much of the commoners. Travel is hard. It is difficult. You might get attacked by bandits, or lose the road and die of thirst on the way, or just... disappear.Besides, time spent traveling is time not spent on irrigation channels and shoring up your walls that are slowly crumbling through age.
A language example
Layout of the "New City" (Qart Hadasht)
Being descended from Phoenicians gave them a great sense of pride. They eventually outshone their colonial overlords to become the greatest Punic nation in history. Similar to how America eventually overtook Great Britain in the Anglosphere
>>60780113>Old vs NewI like the idea that the elites will divide to merchant-elites and military-elites. Initially, I think both military and mercantile would be vested in the single elite class, but as trade routes burgeon to truly international levels, opportunists who happened to step in at the right time in the right place will slowly fill the gap that the numerically inferior social elite will have a hard time filling up. We may even see a delegation of roles from the original satraps (Governor AND General) to a differentiation between civil and military administration (Governor is his own thing, while there's a separate general doing his other own thing) as the Carthaginian Empire grows mighty and the heart of its territories are mostly safe from being sniped by random nomad families.Which one will retain the "original elite", I wonder. Will it be the case of the old military elites, looking disdainfully at the new-moneyed merchants clawing at their social hierarchy? Or will the old mercantile elites slowly delegate away dangerous military matters to a newer, more risk-taking group?Something to think about when actually generating the history of your Empire I think, OP
>>60780291Isn't that Cartagena? I think Gadir was another Punic colony.
>>60780223Poor Akkadian. I was trying to pilfer it for a worldbuilding I am doing for fiction writing and I have to jazz it up or try and revert to Hebrew or Aramaean (which has its own issues, the vowel one) because Akkadian always fucking ends in U. or almost always does.But yes, don't common. Come up with a lingua francia and don't call it common. A lingua franca is going to be something that is one or more of the following:>The religious texts utilize (Latin, Arabic, Greek)>The tongue that learned academia/literary bureaucracies of a previous empire or kingdoms utilized (Aramaean, Greek), >Is the tongue the most important part of your empire speaks (Aramaean spoken by the Mid-East inhabitants ruled by the Persians, Greek spoken by much of the inhabitants ruled by Rome)>Is the tongue of a previous great empire and has inertia/momentum (Sumerian, Akkadian, Latin, Arabic, Greek)>Is the tongue used by most traders or the most successful traders (Italian in Outremer I think)>Is the tongue of the centralized military/political structure (Latin in the Roman Empire, English in the British Empire, Arabic in the Caliphates)You can always also have pidgin tongues - there might be some pidgin language in say, the North Sea during 1100 AD so traders don't have to speak latin to understand a Flemish or a Dane or a Brit or a French.Just because an empire is powerful doesn't necessarily mean their language becomes lingua franca. Turkish never assumed that position despite Turks basically ruling the entire Middle-East from 1170 AD until the late 19th and early 20th century. It was always Arabic or Persian. French was the diplomatic language from 1600s onwards more or less (maybe 1700s) despite the French ultimately being first among equals, not first without peers in power and status. Muslim tongues never became lingua francas for Christian Europeans and English or French only became so for Muslims because of colonial conquest for decades/a century or so.
>>60780425Also on that topic - Persian never became a lingua franca for the pre-Islamic Persians despite being basically the solitary 1st rate power in the region outside of the Greeks and Romans. Aramaean remained it, as far as I know well into the Sassanian period, in part because the most important part of the empire financially and administratively (Mesopotamia) spoke it. Some Persian dialect or language would have likely been a lingua franca among the Iranian part of the empire so Persians and Medes and Sakas and Parthians and Sughdians can understand eachother, though.
>>60780223I’ll gladly take your advice.It’s tragically common that sci-fi & fantasy settings completely misunderstand scale. Basic history/human geography should dispel any notions of ‘common’.Way I see it I’ll work with 3 main languages per area:>not!Punic>lingua franca/trade tongue>the local languageYour marcher lords & intrepid merchants will be fluent in all 3, while normal folk will have probably 1 native language and a smattering of the other two.This will extend to the party.
>>60780350What an interesting question.I think what will be the deciding factor is where the majority of the founding families/old blood end up.I would think the Merchant Princes would end up outstripping the military elite just as an extension of IRL Carthaginian infighting. Given that the Senate was prone to the lobster-pot mentality of tearing down anyone who amassed to large of a loyal retinue (hence the Barcid problem), I could see some of the major families switching to enterprise entirely. Similar emnity would surely develop as the sword nobles vs robe nobles in france - the argument whether gold or shed blood are the proper currency for power.Weren’t the suffetes civil authorities alone? I remember reading that unlike Consuls or Spartan Kings they never really took command of armies and instead appointed generals.
>>60780620Going back to the emphasis on religion you wanted, one way to do it is to have the clergy also be the bureaucracy, but not in that overused DEUS VULT meme way. Clerics are trained as scribes, able to read and write, and reasonably educated in other areas as well as being free from "worldly labours". City states of old often merged kingship with priesthood. The title of Lugal (King) often intertwined with En (Priest, Lord, Patron-God, Enki, ... yeah it has a lot of meanings) and one of the justifications of the king being a king was that he was the intermediary between the gods and man.Just don't let the memesters make it "WE SHALL RETAKE JERUSALEM" and theocratic bureaucracy should be fine.
>>60780706>Suffets as Military AuthoritiesTrue, but with terrestrial expansion comes a greater emphasis on standing armies and as an extension, generalship. Seeing as this would be a Carthage that is much, much bigger and not just hire mercenaries every time there's some trouble, it is not difficult to imagine that Suffets would gain some military authority as well, IMO.
>>60780706>I think what will be the deciding factor is where the majority of the founding families/old blood end up.That's your best bet and, because NotCarthage won't have the "sullied by trade" prejudice Rome gave us, I'd think the merchant elite will win out. I also think whether you're military or merchant will depend on your location and then will only be a matter of emphasis. In other words, there won't be the bright hard line between "sword" and "robe" or money and muscle like we saw in post-Roman Europe because a different culture is at work.You're in the continental hinterlands holding down farm & ranch land against the raids by the NotNumidians? You're a marcher lord but yo're not wholly ignorant of trade because people of your class and (most likely) your family still primarily trade. You're sending ships around the NotMed trading with all and sundry? You're a merchant prince but you also know how to fight because of pirates afloat and mobs ashore.I think the real divide will not be how your family made their money/reputation but how long ago they made it; i.e. Old vs. New.Also, much like how Roman consuls "led' armies with "advice" from professional soldiers. NotCarthagians magnates could hire or become patrons to military and/or trade advisors as needed to make up for their personal "deficits".
>>60781069Great point on consuls and military advisors. One of the big reasons leaders go to war is not only for national glory and loot, but personal glory. Crassus is a famous example of that particular motivation. Throughout history we see over and over again the deposition of popular generals by the fearful king and his court. Admiral Yi (definitely envied by the Joseon court, and King Seonjo may have been wary of his military prowess), Surena (executed by his king after the Battle of Carrhae despite because of winning), and on and on. With a more militarily ambitious nation, the role as commander of troops may be more prestigious than it was in Carthaginian courts.
>>60781069 >>60781189Excellent points on all points.Perhaps boiling down to old blood vs new blood would be an elegant solution. And you're definitely on the money with the multifaceted role of all these leadership positions, given the relative lack of centralization.Plus much like Persia and Anatolia you're gonna have lots of mercenaries as advisors and 'nco' equivalents. Many a foreign drillmaster and specialist I think.Anon's >>60781189 point towards personal advancement is super on point as well.So here we have three major modes to power:>Military/JudicialCulminates in the two Judges who run the Republic. Very tenuous for the family. High risk, high reward. Possible means the collapse of a family if a Judge does poorly.>ReligiousHaving Clerics (both in the secular and religious version of the word) is a great boon for a family. Having High Priests and Royal Scribes does much for a family.>MonetaryMoney talks. Without the Roman bias against trade/mercantilism (and indeed - with Carthage being so money-focused that it disconcerted the money hungry greeks) the Merchant Prince is a noble and intrepid way to build a great house.Given not!Carthage (Which I'm calling Castabar, pls donut steal) will have these three as valid venues of power I imagine the collective Patriciate would retain a distrust of each of these branches. A Medici/Mansa Musa-style Merchant Prince might be just as threatening to them as a Hannibal ever was.
>>60781189>One of the big reasons leaders go to war is not only for national glory and loot, but personal glory.And especially so in the case of Rome and the "cursus honorum" all patrician families followed to measure themselves against their rivals.Without a similar socially and religiously enforced "life path", NotCarthage magnates are going to lead more "flexible" lives and garner power in more diverse ways. Unlike Roman magnates, they won't need to be elected to this, serve as that, and be appointed to something else all while accomplishing A, B, and C by certain ages.While NotCarthage magnates and families are going to play to their strengths, they're going to be more "well rounded" than historical Romans were. In the Roman ideal, you were either a "gentlemen farmer" or on a lock-stepped career of alternating politico-military appointments. NotCarthagians are going to have more options to earn power and wealth.
One more thing before I fall asleep. I suggest not going the easy route and making this empire with an "Eastern Decadence" mindset. It's a very easy pitfall to fall into, especially with many early European historians coloured by their vision of the "mystical Orient", but it rather cheapens the authenticity of a civilisation that existed with its own classes of commoners and elites, with its own mundane problems and worries and grievances and festivals. Most societies have decadence in some scale anyway, but the "Persians were fabulous homosex and too civilised, which is why their empire fell to brave down-to-earth musclemen Greeks" narrative is too fucking Hollywood, not to mention an insult to the millennia of cultural development Mesopotamia birthed. 300 is a very fun-to-watch film, but don't take tips from them while worldbuilding if you are interested in any degree of historical accuracy.
>>60781331>Perhaps boiling down to old blood vs new blood would be an elegant solution.I think it's your best bet along with one your players can quickly grasp.>>And you're definitely on the money with the multifaceted role of all these leadership positions, given the relative lack of centralization.A lack of centralization plus a culture which doesn't "look down" on certain occupations. More roles are open to more talents.>So here we have three major modes to power:Very good. Three centers of power make fior nice politics. Also, make it so not one of those 3 power centers have managed to control the other two for very long. If there aren't written laws against it, there most certainly is a huge social taboo.The "old' families are ones who have multiple ancestors who have succeeded in various roles in all of three of those power centers during Castabar's history; i.e. "My lineage contains 10 Judges, 5 High Priests, and 4 Guardians of the Mint. Just who are you, sir?" >>Possible means the collapse of a family if a Judge does poorly.Most definitely. A High Priest during "interesting times" like plagues, quakes, droughts, etc., might damage a family too.>>A Medici/Mansa Musa-style Merchant Prince might be just as threatening to them as a Hannibal ever was.THAT is the wild card in the deck. Castabar could very well suffer it's own Punic Curse. Enough money can buy plenty of offices and support. Castabar's NotBarcid's arriving from NotSpain backed by all the silver the mines there are producing could be a huge threat to the existing order.
>>60781592Totally agree. I rolled through ‘Area Studies’ in grad school and there were plenty of retards who took the decadent east meme at face value. Part of the reason I’m run settings like these is to dislite said meme.Sleep tight based anon. Thanks for all you’ve shared.>>60781760My thoughts exactly. I think the intrigue is going to be central. My players are used to ‘good guy vs bad guy’. Here I can introduce a handful of factions who all have different tenets, pros, and cons.Thank you all for this thread. I’m so grateful I started it and that my bad mood didn’t scare you all off. This has all been very helpful.
>>60782121>Thank you all for this thread.No, thank you Anon. It's always great when some real work gets done on an interesting topic in a /tg/ thread.>>I’m so grateful I started itI'd think we're all grateful.>> my bad mood didn’t scare you all off.Perish the thought. I'm the dope who posted the glib comments in >>60777656. We're all lucky my overly terse comments didn't run you off and we all got to bounce ideas off each other.>>This has all been very helpful.Glad to be of some small help. If I could ask one small favor? When you Castabar material is finished, could you post it here?
>>60782310Of course I will anon. It's only fair.I'm not one of those spooked away by the thought of people taking 'muh precious OC donut steal.'I'm even trying my hand at writing a story in this setting. Hence why I'm so anal about having it detailed for my players. I'm hoping the campaign isn't just fun but also lets me see the world I'm trying to build from the ground level.So keep an eye out for my stuff. I'll be sure to share as it progresses.
Just to add I enjoyed lurking on this thread.
>>60783993Glad to hear it.Tanit be with you anon.
So are Not-Iberians in the menu in there or are you going with other kinds of civilized tribals?
>>60788132The OP mentioned Not-Barcids a couple of times so I'd assume there will be some sort of Iberia analogue.
>>60788140Good, I love those fuckers.
>>60788313>Good, I love those fuckers.Don't expect historical Iberian tribes lazily disguised with different names and funny hats because it's abundantly obvious that the OP isn't some gormless hack.Instead, there will be some partially colonized region containing partially conquered and partially allied tribes which has roughly the same effect on the OP's Castabar as historical Iberia had on historical Carthage.
>>60788487Stop, I can't only get so erect.
Also If no one minds I will periodically post some Punic, Numidian, Balearic or Iberian/celt-Iberian images because I love that time period so much.
>>60788543I hope OP makes good use of NotNumidian cavalry in his setting. They were one of the best sources for light cavalry skirmishers.