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England, through the Ages, An EU4 AAR

Welcome to my Paradox AAR/PD! This player diary is an AAR (After-action report) of my adventures as the Kingdom of England in a modded game of Europa Universalis 4. Now I know you readers are probably completely lost, so that's okay, since I plan on doing a gameplay/tutorial AAR when I finish this one completely. I hope that it will explain the game better for you guys. But for now, I'm going to be focusing on this AAR. If you'd like to try out EU4, you can check it out on Steam:

Latest update (2/8/2015): Castilian Heart

Table of Contents 


Chapter 1: War and Peace

Chapter 2: Turmoil

Chapter 3: Recovery

Chapter 4: New Ideas

Chapter 5: Great Wars

Chapter 6: The World of 1450

Chapter 7: A Few Good Thoraeds

Chapter 8: The Last of Many

Chapter 9: Thoraed Maximus

Chapter 10: A New Dynasty

Chapter 11: The World of 1500

Chapter 12: Civil War

Chapter 13: The Birth of A Nation

Chapter 14: Rule, Britannia!

Chapter 15: Land of Opportunity

Chapter 16: The World of 1550

Chapter 17: Queen Anne's Peace

Chapter 18: Calm Before the Storm

Chapter 19: The Seven Years' War

Chapter 20: The Andalusian Armada

Chapter 21: The World of 1600

Chapter 22: Westward We Go

Chapter 23: Colonialism and Deception

Chapter 24: A Few Good Years

Chapter 25.1: The 23 Year Update, Pt. 1

Chapter 25.2: The 23 Year Update, Pt. 2

Chapter 26: The World of 1650

Chapter 27: No Peace for the British

Chapter 28: Mercantilism

Chapter 29: The Bear and the Lion

Chapter 30: At Century's End

Chapter 31: The World of 1700

Chapter 32: India

Chapter 33: Colonial Wars

Chapter 34: Castilian Heart

Chapter 35: Good Hope

Chapter 36: The World of 1750

Thanks for reading, and I hope you enjoy this AAR/PD! Big Grin
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Looking forward to it.
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(click thumbnails to view full image)

In the year 1400, England was a mere regional power in the sea of many greater powers. Although near-dominant in Britain, it is far from a contender in the politics of mainland Europe. (broken thumbnail Sad )

The realm is ruled by the military-minded Ealdhun Hvitserk, who can trace his ancestry back to the legendary Viking Halfdan Hvitserk, one of the sons of Ragnar Lodbrok who invaded Britain to avenge their father’s death. 

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England's primary rivals as of yet are located exclusively in the Isles.

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England’s primary rival in the region is the Kingdom of Northumberland, who also shares England’s only northern frontier. 

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Another branch of the Hvitserks rule in the Kingdom of Lotharingia, a state whose very existence is threatened by its geographical location. 

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In Iberia, the post-English Kingdom of Andalusia and the Kingdom of Castile are locked in a fierce rivalry to dominate the peninsula.

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Western Europe is dominated by the states of France, Frisia, and Italy, while Lotharingia and Burgundy are two comparatively minor states with an unfortunate location as a buffer between several great powers. While in Central Europe, the Kings of Germany and Bavaria, not unlike the situation in Iberia, are locked in a seemingly eternal rivalry with each other. 

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Eastern Europe is divided between the Orthodox Ruthenia and Cumania, and the pagan states of Finland and Rus’.

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The Levant region is largely dominated by the Orthodox Byzantine Empire, which was for a short while unified with the Kingdom of Bulgaria under the Croatian Domagojevic dynasty. 

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Knowing the state of turmoil Europe is in, Ealdhun hires only the best of the best for his council, choosing carefully from among his nobility. 

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Ealdhun signs several treaties with Frisia, the first of such being a royal marriage and the second being an alliance. 

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A prominent yet misguided monk preaches a heretical doctrine to the commoners of some minor village, which somehow gains national attention. His burning has left a permanent black stain on the Church, just one in a mighty amount of factors that would later lead to a dangerous schism within the Church…

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Nation may rise against nation, kingdom against kingdom, but can England survive this age of conflict, reformation, and enlightenment?

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World map (1401):

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outstanding first post in here Aco !

With plenty of screenies.

Each of your screen shots also has some kind of description, which took a lot of time I know

and is a nice touch for the readers.
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Chapter I: War and Peace

Ealdhun decides to send one of his finest diplomats to improve relations with his dynastic cousins in Lotharingia. 

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The first conflict of century in the British Isles erupts as a border incident between Brythoniaid and Scotland sparks into an all out war. 

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Sensing this as an opportunity to invade Northumberland unimpeded, Ealdhun orders for troops to be amassed on the border. 

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He also orders for the navy to begin preparing for war. 

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Knowing that the Northumbrians are currently mobilizing own army in response, Ealdhun gives a very cultured letter stating that England will be on their doorstep within the hour. 

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Ealdhun orders for a special tax to be collected to fund the war. 

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A distinguished noble by the name of Lawrence Bedford is appointed to lead the invasion of Northumberland.

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The first engagement of the war occurs as the Northumbrians attempt to relieve the garrison at Lancaster, which was being besieged by English invaders. 

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The attempt is a miserable failure as the Northumbrians, facing a combined force of England and Frisia, are forced to retreat due to being massively outnumbered. 

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The English forces pursue the fleeing Northumbrians, annihilating them completely at their capital. 

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By this time Northumberland has been totally besieged, their Danish allies unable to support them due to being bottled up by the Frisian fleet. 

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By the time the new year rolls around, the first Northumbrian garrison surrenders, in the province of Derby, followed by Yorkshire. 

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Soon enough every single province of Northumberland has surrendered, leaving negotiating a peace deal the only thing left to do. The border regions of Lancashire and Lincoln are annexed to England, as well as a tribute of 101 ducats being exacted from the Northumbrians.

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Thus the first in a series of many wars for British unification has been concluded. 

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Perhaps impressed by English performance during the war, a well respected drill instructor from Frisia offers his services to the English crown. 

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This man greatly increases the power and respectability of the English army, and one of his apprentices by the name of Offa Cornwallis also offers his services to lead English troops to glory. 

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And thus begins a century of conflict in Europe.

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World map, 1404:

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Neato! I'm glad that Frisia is being your friend. For now. Tongue

Will they perhaps sometime later turn on you?
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It's not out of the question. The AI is very bipolar diplomatically in this game. Tongue
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And while I'm here, I might as well post the update, because I have created quite the backlog of updates that need to be posted now (played to 1438 so far).

Chapter II: Turmoil 

With Northumberland pacified, at least for now, Ealdhun decides to shift his focus to another enemy - The Britons. 

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Later on however he receives grave news: The Scottish have annexed all of Briton Ireland, leaving Brythoniaid as a fraction of its former size, and Scotland ending up becoming a major contender in the contest of Britain. 

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A diplomat from Norway sends a request of assistance from the English in their war against Sweden, even if they were on the verge of total victory against their Swedish enemies.

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Perhaps frustrated by the Norwegians' insolence, Ealdhun completely lashes out in the face of several prominent noblemen and diplomats, destabilizing the realm. 

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Ealdhun sends an expeditionary force of 7,000 to assist the Norwegians in Sweden. 

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Less than a year later, the garrison of the Swedish capital of Stockholm surrenders, leaving Sweden totally defeated. 

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They surrender under very favorable terms for Norway, even severing their alliance with Scotland (leaving the Scots diplomatically isolated)

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An accusation of heresy is made as Ealdhun's court theologian makes very controversial remarks regarding the doctrine of the holy trinity. Ealdhun dismisses these accusations as petty gossip. 

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Finding this to be an opportune time, Ealdhun decides to wage his own war on Brythoniaid; His goal ostensibly being to annex a few minor border forts, but in reality he was seeking to force the submission of the Britons under English lordship, to protect them from any more Scottish bullying. 

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The first engagement of the war occurs as every bit of English manpower is thrown after what was left of the Briton Army.

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A portion of the merchant fleet is conscripted to facilitate the blockade of Briton ports. 

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The Briton capital of Gwynedd falls in November of that year, but their royal court is able to evacuate to the peninsula of Brittany. 

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To pressure the Britons even more, a force of 6,000 men is landed in Brittany. 

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In the midst of the war, an opportunity to greatly increase the morale of the English army is found: A great jousting tournament like no other. 

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However, it is soon after that Lawrence Parker, one of the kingdom's most loyal generals, dies. It is suspected that the Britons are behind this in some way. 

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These rumors only work to improve the English will to fight, and soon after Glamorgan falls after a long and slow siege. 

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With Glamorgan having fallen, England can now use its free troops, commanded by Offa Cornwallis, to reinforce the invasion of Brittany.

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It seems, however, that not all is going well. King Ealdhun suddenly decides to kick the bucket after a severe case of sudden Pneumonia. The entire nation is in mourning over his loss. 

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The reign of good king Thurfirth is ushered in on a good note as the garrisons of Armor and Finistere fall soon enough, leaving Brythoniaid pretty much totally defeated.

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The Britons immediately surrender under the following terms: That Brythoniaid will become a vassal of England, will pay a tribute of 38 ducats, and the region of Glamorgan is ceded to England.

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And while England might have lost a great king to disease, Thurfirth is committed to continuing his father's legacy in any way possible. 

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(World map, 1412) 

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Continuation of amazing postings here with this game Aco !

The great screenies, just keep on coming man Cool
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Chapter III: Recovery

The early reign of Thurfirth I is marked by intrigue in the Holy See.

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Thurfirth commissioned only the realm's finest poet to write a glorifying epic about his late father, and while things claimed in this epic may not have been very true, they still sparked a unifying spirit for the English people. 

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Troubling news comes as the realm of France, just across the Channel, was alarmed so much by English expansionism that they decided to form a defensive coalition against the English. It is expected that the deceitful Scots will use this as an opportunity to gain an advantage on the English. 

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In exchange for a large lump sum of church funds, the young monarch had agreed to give 10% of the national tax to the church for the next 20 years.

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Thurfirth turns his attention toward expanding diplomatically, marrying one of his cousins into the royal house of Denmark.

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More troubling news comes as Scotland directly annexes half of Northumberland into their realm, greatly increasing the Scottish power. 

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In response, Thurfirth decides to form his own coalition, this one against the Scottish, in hopes of luring the Northumbrians into the English fold.

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However, this does nothing for the Northumbrians but to decide to join the coalition against England. 

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In a last ditch effort to ease the tension, Thurfirth sends several highly cultured letters to his neighbors attempting to justify his recent actions in Brythoniaid. 

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The rump Northumberland descends into Civil War as King Thurcytel I faces a revolt of nearly all of his most powerful vassals. 

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The time finally comes as Thurfirth is now able to begin integration of his subject the King of Brythoniaid into England. 

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In order to improve relations with his alienated neighbors, Thurfirth hires one of his finest statesmen to explain to France that he means no harm to them. 

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This policy actually ends up working as the Kingdom of Northumberland leaves the coalition shortly after. 

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Arncytel's work produces a good harvest as France, the former leader of the coalition, finally leaves the coalition, with Scotland being the sole member remaining. 

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Thurfirth then begins to pursue a policy of rapprochement with the French, first marrying off a nobleman of his dynasty into their royal family. 

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More fortunes come as Thurfirth's choice of a cabinet happens to be the right choice, benefiting the realm in a big way. 

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Finally, in November 1426, the process of integrating Brythoniaid is finished, and England now rules over England proper and also the Kingdoms of Wales and Brittany. 

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Instead of attempting to subjugate the Northumbrians by outright force, Thurfirth pursues the more diplomatic policy of luring them into English overlordship, starting with an alliance agreement. 

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And that would happen to be the last diplomatic decision Thurfirth would make as King, as he passes away ca. 1427, dying a natural death. His young and able son Balthere Thurfirthsson inherits the throne as Balthere I of England. 

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The ascension of Balthere onto the throne of England will mark a new era for the realm as Europe enters a time of unprecedented advancement. 

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(World map, 1427) 

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