Author Topic: The Republic Reborn II: Reborn Again [Orders Due Jan 31]  (Read 42592 times)


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The Republic Reborn II: Reborn Again [Orders Due Jan 31]
« on: October 08, 2014, 06:54:05 PM »
IC: On Consideration
Show me a man in the whole city of Rome who welcomed you as Pope without having his price, or hoping to get it. Even when they profess to be your very humble servants, they aim at being your masters. They pledge their fidelity only that they may more conveniently injure the confiding. Hence it is that there can be no deliberation from which they think they ought to be excluded; there will be no secret into which they do not worm their way.  If the doorkeeper keeps one of them waiting a minute or two, I should not like to be in his shoes.

- Saint Bernard of Clairvoux, written to Pope Eugenius III in 1152

The Republic Reborn is a cooperative political roleplaying game.  Players take on the personas of the leading senators of the Commune of Rome, a medieval government formed historically in 1144 to secure the liberty of the Roman people against the abuses of the Papal government and the Latin nobility.  In the age of the Crusades, open war between Empire and Papacy, and the growing power of the Italian city-states, the once-mighty city of Rome struggles to maintain its independence and regain its ancient glory.

RR is also an alternate history game.  While many historical people and events appear in the game, not everything that happens is strictly accurate, and historical characters may make different decisions than they did in real life.  The players themselves, through their actions, can change (and have changed) the course of the game from more-or-less “historical” outcomes to something else entirely.

If you’d like to join please send me a PM or find me on the CBG’s IRC channel if I happen to be on.  While the game has been going on since 2012 and a lot has happened since then, you don’t need to be familiar with the old thread or past updates to play this game.

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Chapter I (Old Thread)

Chapter II (New Thread)

« Last Edit: January 25, 2016, 03:01:09 AM by Polycarp »
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Re: The Republic Reborn II: Reborn Again
« Reply #1 on: October 08, 2014, 06:54:28 PM »

The City and the World - This post contains frequently-updated material for RR – maps, player characters, and units, as well as any important laws, treaties, or agreements enacted by the Senate.


Map of Rome


Medieval Rome is divided into fourteen regiones (regions).  This division originated unofficially several centuries ago, but was formalized by the Commune in 1144.  The borders of these regions are somewhat vague in actual practice, particularly where they border uninhabited areas of the city.  The Romans themselves do not number the regions; the numbers on this map are only for your convenience.

I. Montium et Biberatice: Also known simply as "Montium" (mountain), this is Rome's largest but probably least populated district.  The valleys between the hills are used for grazing land, while the hills themselves have vineyards and plenty of ruins used for quarrying.  The only notable populated area is the Colosseum, which is rented out to various tradesmen and laborers for housing and workshops.
II. Trivii et Vie Late: This region takes its name from three ancient streets that meet at the long, straight road the ancients called the Via Lata.  The region used to be more inhabited in centuries past, as the main output of the Aqua Virgo used to be here (no repair work ever extended the water all the way to the original endpoint of the aqueduct near the Pantheon).  The aqueduct has virtually ceased functioning now, causing most of the inhabitants to move closer to the river.
III. Columne et S. Marie in Aquiro: This region is named for the church of Santa Maria in Aquiro and a massive spiral column of the ancients depicting Roman soldiers and their conquests.  The column has a platform atop it that used to hold a statue of some Roman Emperor.  Climbing nearly 100 foot column is a popular activity for particularly daring young Roman men.
IV. Campi Martis et S. Laurentii in Lucina: This region is named for the northern part of the Field of Mars which it covers, as well as the minor basilica of San Lorenzo in Lucina.  Though it is prone to flooding, it is the region furthest upriver and thus has the least polluted water, and for that reason it is considered more "upscale" than the other regions of the Campus Martius.
V. Pontis et Scorteclariorum: Named for its bridges, the "Pontis" might be considered the tourist district of Rome.  By the Tiber and at the confluence of several major streets, this region is filled to the brim with pilgrims during the spring and is choked with shops, taverns, and inns.  Though infernally crowded, the region is a prosperous one and a prestigious place to live if you can afford a house along one of the major streets.
VI. S. Eustachii et Vinea Teudemarii: This region is centered around Sant'Eustachio (the church of Saint Eustace).  The church is a diaconia, a place where alms are given to the poor and sickly, and the surrounding region is one of Rome's slums.  Most of the inhabitants are menial laborers who work in the fields outside the city when harvest comes.
VII. Arenule et Caccabariorum: "Arenule" refers to the soft sand of the Tiber found in this region.  Indeed, the ground is marshy, constantly flooding, and Rome's leading region for malaria.  As might be expected, it's not a very fashionable district, but land certainly is cheap.
VIII. Parionis et S. Laurentii in Damaso: The name of this region comes from Parietone ("big wall"), referring to a very large wall that stands as a remnant of some unknown structure, and the Basilica of San Lorenzo in Damaso, a Roman martyr and one of Rome's patron saints.  The region is extremely heavily populated and its narrow streets run in a great chaotic maze that has confounded many thousands of visiting pilgrims over the years.  Though not a particularly low-class neighborhood, it it still avoided by the well-to-do because of how easy it is to wander into some blind alley and get mugged.
IX. Pinee et S. Marci: This region used to be called Pina, referring to a massive bronze pine cone that sits here.  It used to be the center of a fountain, but no water has run through it in hundreds of years.  In a city full of churches, this region is known for having a particularly large amount, including the Basilica of St. Mark, the Basilica of St. Mary above Minerva, and the Rotunda - also known as the Pantheon - which is dedicated to St. Mary and all the martyrs.  It is a fairly well-off district owing to its pilgrimage attractions and its central location.
X. S. Angeli in Foro Piscium: The name "Saint Angelo in the Fish Market" refers to both the name of a local church and to the fact that this is where the city's fishermen live and work.  The region includes the Theater of Marcellus and used to be called Regione Marcello.  The part of the region beyond the immediate shore of the Tiber is home to many of Rome's craftsmen, particularly its metalsmiths.  Situated between the Forum and Trastevere, St. Angeli is the heart of Rome's industry, such as it is.
XI. Ripe et Marmorate: This region is what passes for Rome's port district.  The Tiber is hardly navigable these days, but when shallow-draft boats do venture up the river, they dock here.  Most of the residents of this district are low-class tradesmen.  Tanners and butchers live here because they can throw their rotten offal and noxious chemicals (tanners use a lot of lye and urine in their work) into the water downstream from the rest of the city.  The region has a reputation as a tough neighborhood.
XII. Campitelli et S. Adriani: This region is named for the church of Santa Maria in Campitelli and the church of St. Adriano - or Saint Hadrian - better known as the Curia Julia and the city's new Senate house.  The region includes what's left of the Forum as well as the Capitoline and Palatine hills, but is fairly thinly populated.
XIII. Trastevere: Trastevere's name means “across the Tiber” (from the Latin trans tiberis).  Its streets are winding and narrow, the result of a chaotic history of building and rebuilding.  Separated from the rest of the city by the Tiber, Trastevere is considered to have its own culture, some say even its own dialect.  Trastevere is also the site of Rome’s Jewish quarter, centered around Rome’s only synagogue.  Two of Rome's oldest churches are located here, the Basilica of Santa Maria in Trastevere and the church of Santa Cecilia.
XIV: Insula Tiberina: The Tiber Island small, but rather densely populated by merchants and various auxiliaries and friends of the Pierleoni, whose family tower house is located here.  The largest building is the Basilica of St. Bartholomew, built by Emperor Otto III at the end of the 10th century.

Civitas Leonina: The Leonine City is named for Pope Leo IV, who ordered the building of the Leonine Wall to protect the Basilica of Saint Peter from Saracen raids in the 9th century.  It is usually not considered a proper part of Rome, and was not included in the original organization of Rome's communal districts.  Pope Leo brought a number of Corsican families to populate the heavily fortified mini-city, and their descendants still live here.  Though they have mingled and intermarried with Romans for centuries, one can still occasionally hear the Corsican tongue spoken in the Leonine City.  The Corsico-Roman inhabitants are very loyal to the Pierleoni and are well-represented among the Patrician's guards.

Black Line: The Aurelian Walls.  These walls were constructed in the 3rd century and are still Rome’s main defensive line nine centuries later.  In the 6th century tremendous damage was done to them by the Goths, who tried to make the city indefensible.  Some work has been done since then, but the walls are still in a terrible state of disrepair.
Dark Blue Line: The Leonine Wall.  This wall was constructed by Pope Leo IV after Saracens sacked St. Peter’s Basilica in the 9th century.  The Castle of St. Angelo was built upon the aging edifice of Hadrian’s Tomb at this time as well.  These comparatively modern walls are in a good state of repair.
Light Blue Line: Aqua Virgo.  When Rome was sacked by the Goths in the 6th century, they destroyed all the aqueducts leading into the city.  Though it does not currently function, the Aqua Virgo was partially repaired in the 8th century and is the only aqueduct of Rome not completely in ruins.
Brown Areas: Hills.  The original seven hills of Rome are marked.

Map of Latium

The Campagna Romana is the region around Rome, formed from the lower Tiber river valley.  Most farming here is done along the river, which floods frequently.  The only real resources of note are the tidal salt pans near the Tiber’s mouth, where the villagers of Gregoriopolis collect salt and sell it in Rome and Tusculum.  Unfortunately the marshlands are also notorious for malaria.  The Alban Hills are a raised area around Lake Albano, traditionally one of the favored summer spots of wealthy Romans and the domain of the Counts of Tusculum since the 10th century, who have built many castles there.

Tuscia is a thinly populated region, used mostly for pastoralism.  It is Latium’s main source of horses.  The region is dominated by the Frangipani castle of Tolfa in the hills east of Civitavecchia.  That city is Latium’s only real commercial port; it is a fief of the Abbey of Farfa, but is also within Pisa’s sphere of influence.

Falisca is a prosperous region of Latium that owes much to its strategic position between Rome and Perugia, the “link” between Latium and the rest of the Papal States.  Viterbo and Sutri also lie on the Via Francigena, the ancient route of pilgrims to Rome, and profit from the Roman pilgrimage.  This area is somewhat hilly and is known for olive and grape cultivation.  Most of the Faliscan cities are independent communes.

Sabina is the mountainous region northeast of Latium, which falls partly within the Duchy of Spoleto.  Rieti, its major city, sits astride the ancient Via Salarium that leads through the mountains of central Italy to the Adriatic Sea.  Grapes and olives are grown here as well, but the peasants of this rugged region are more isolated and less prosperous than the Faliscans.

Marsica is a very mountainous region around Lake Fucino.  The whole region was ruled by the hereditary Counts of Marsi until it was conquered by the Normans.  The land around the lake is very fertile but also plagued by malaria.  In this mountainous region, pastoralism is common, and Marsica supplies a great deal of wool to Latium.

The Latina Valley surrounds the Sacco River and its confluence with the Liri River.  The region has been a stronghold of the Papacy, and most of the cities are Papal rectorates rather than free communes (save Ferentino).  The nobility of Latium, mostly pro-papal families, control extensive estates and fortifications here.

The Pontine Marshes are mostly uninhabited, as the land is unsuited for farming and plagued by malaria.

Map of Italy

Map of Europe

Player Characters

The Senate of Rome is led by these men, our esteemed senatores consiliarii:
Vittorio Manzinni
Player: Light Dragon
Age: 66
Class: Citizen

Influence: 6
Popularity: 6
Orthodoxy: 7

1092-xx. The half-Sicilian, half-Roman glass and lumber merchant Manzinni is renowned for his unorthodox practice of importing glassware, woolen fabrics, linens and roots from the Fatimids (ongoing) and lumber importation from the Levant during the reign of his crusading commander Baldwin II (1118-1131), until his ships mysteriously mutinied during Falk's,_King_of_Jerusalem regency--he blames Melisande rather than Falk for those circumstances.

At one time, when trade was running well, he was good friends with his cousin-in-law Roger II of Sicily, for better or worse as far as politics in Rome are concerned.

He is bitter, having seen his fortunes decline after the subsequent ascendancy of Falk, Melisende, and Baldwin III in Jerusalem. His major trade routes are quite controversial. He knows and everyone else knows that he is only in the Senate as a nod to their attempts to do honor to his in-law Roger of Sicily. Although he donates large amounts of gold to refurbish Churches in Rome, he is persona non grata with the Popes and is suspected of being a heretic. Despite his fears of being accused of heresy, he has his mansion decorated with Egyptian and Baghdadian arts and he covertly smokes hashish with dusky Sicilian ladies in his gardens at night.
Roberto Basile
Player: TheMeanestGuest
Age: 46
Class: Citizen

Influence: 5
Popularity: 5
Orthodoxy: 6

The son of a common fisherman, Roberto was born in Amalfi in 1112. He does not speak of his earliest years, and will mention Amalfi only as it concerns his own contribution to the investiture of the city by sea as a companion of George of Antioch. Coming to captain his own ship in service to Roger of Sicily, Roberto accumulated a substantial fortune interdicting Saracen vessels off the coast of Tunisia. Eventually tiring of life at sea, Roberto settled in the city of Rome in 1141, marrying the daughter of a local merchant. Since then he has mostly put his efforts towards the cultivation of his renowned sweet eating oranges. Initially taking up his senatorial duties with some reluctance, he has come to relish his involvement in politics as of late. Those who knew him in his days as ship's captain would recognize an all too familiar twinkle in his eye.
Hugo de Vinti
Player: Magnus Pym
Age: 48
Class: Citizen

Influence: 8
Popularity: 6
Orthodoxy: 6

Born in 1110 to a wealthy marble merchant of Siena and a sophisticated Roman woman, herself the daughter of a notorious marble trader, he was raised in the marble business. Of an artistic mind, he learned and mastered the art of sculpting. His first commission was for the Siena branch of the family and was a total success, earning him notoriety in the sculpting community there, but also in Sicily, where his skills were in great demand during the construction boom.

Hugo is known to sometimes host great parties at his family estate, in which he exposes his work; marble sculptures, paintings and more. He also uses such opportunities to allow good friends to show off their talents, such as winemakers and chefs, but also dancers, musicians and such entertainers. His guests are select; senators, notable equites, important public officers and foreigners.

His interest in the politics of Rome is newfound, but he and his fellow Romans demand good governance, and only within the tight circle of the senatores consiliarii can one provide concrete results.

Though, for all his qualities, Hugo definitely is a controversial character. He has taken an ex-Muslim (since converted to Christianity), Sophia Al-Fayez of Tripoli, as his wife, which sometimes springs rumours about his own beliefs. Also, it has been rumoured that he indulges in nights of debauchery, inviting the prettiest of Rome to participate in orgies on foreign sofas and carpets while eating grapes picked from golden bowls.
Arrigus Sismondii
Player: Nomadic
Age: 36
Class: Citizen

Influence: 5
Popularity: 5
Orthodoxy: 7

Born 1121 to merchants, Arrigus inherited into his father's estate which included a small yet healthy winemaking business. Proving himself a shrewd businessman the young merchant, through much effort and not a small amount of maneuvering, has turned it into a thriving concern. At the height of his rise to wealth however the recent conflicts dealt a sharp blow to the local industry. Forced to scale back his ambitions for the present, Arrigus set his mind to obtaining a position within the senate. Despite the weakening of his wealth the merchant still maintains a quite healthy influence within Rome and has managed to find himself a seat amongst the senatores consiliarii themselves.
Barzalomeus Borsarius
Player: Elven Doritos
Age: 35
Class: Citizen

Influence: 4
Popularity: 6
Orthodoxy: 4

Barzalomeus' grandfather and namesake was a Roman purse-maker whose crafts were of such fine quality they were sought throughout Italy. His father, Bernardus Borsarius, broke family tradition; through good fortune and friendships, Bernardus became a merchant of Byzantine spices. Bernardus' enemies claimed he was a thief and moneylender as well, though nothing ever came of these libelous remarks. Barzalomeus subsequently followed in his father's footsteps, amassing a modest fortune from the spice trade. Unlike his father, Barzalomeus has a strong sense of personal order and justice--many say that this is a conscious ploy to distance himself from the stained reputation of his father, a reputation that lingers to this day.

Barzalomeus is a bachelor whose modest lifestyle and spartan home have drawn attention. When asked about his politics, he is known to reply "Catonian", with little elaboration. He has two young brothers, both of whom work in some capacity for Barzalomeus, and an elder brother who is widely known to be an imbecile. His principle agenda in the Senate is to restore order and justice to Rome, through whatever means necessary.
Sanguineus Viviani
Player: Steerpike
Age: 39
Class: Noble

Influence: 6
Popularity: 4
Orthodoxy: 5

Having returned to Rome after extensive travels (reputedly following quarrels with his late father), Sanguineus has taken up the mantle of senator. During his youth he had a reputation as a wild, lecherous man much given to drinking and whoring, often seen wandering the streets with a pitcher of wine in one hand and a prostitute at his hip. Before he left, darker rumours dogged his steps, as well – whispers of unwholesome proclivities and even occult involvements.

Since returning from his mysterious journeys to parts only guessed-at, Sanguineus seems to have much matured. Some say he merely sojourned in the Kingdom of France, but others claim he ranged as far as Toledo, a center of translation that has attracted scholars from throughout Christendom, or even beyond into the realm of the Wolf King, Muhammad ibn Mardanis. Having now come back to Rome, quietly married Sabbatina, a woman of appropriate social standing, and taken up his father's senatorial seat, Sanguineus seems a far soberer man than his youth suggested he could become. Rather than the debauched drunk that most expected he is much given to scholarly pursuits, prone to shutting himself in his library for hours, or to perusing the collection of exotic artefacts he brought back with him from his travels.

The Viviani family has uncertain origins but seem to be descended from certain Teutonic knights from the eastern frontiers of the present-day Holy Roman Empire. Displaced from their ancestral lands near Lake Fucino by the Normans, the family has rebuilt their fortunes from their estate outside of Rome, though they have been plagued by what seems a family illness for several generations (the very disease that carried off Sanguineus' father). While Sanguineus' wife has yet to produce an heir, Sanguineus returned from his travels with a bastard son, Cerrus, born of an unknown mother widely rumoured to be a Moor, providing yet more grist for the mill of scandal.

Family Members: Sabbatina Viviani (wife), Cerrus (illegitimate son), Morus (nephew)
Falco Bocca
Player: Llum
Age: 33
Class: Noble

Influence: 6
Popularity: 5
Orthodoxy: 2

Falco quite short with dark skin and darker hair. He claims to be descended from Greece but many rumours give him Moorish ancestry as well. The rumours are aided by his rather low orthodoxy, being a staunch Arnoldist.

Wife: Savina Bocca(28) Children: Rao (10), Emma (8), Symon (5)


Military units are divided into several categories.  “Roman Units” are those that can be raised from Rome and its contado (countryside).  The “Unit Library” lists all other units which have been encountered but Rome does not possess, though some have fought as allies or mercenaries of Rome.  “Naval Units” lists all naval craft (and marine units) available to Rome and other Italian states.

These unit icons are modified versions of graphics created by Fairline, Tanelorn, Catfish, Curt Sibling, and other artists of the Civ2 Scenario League.

Roman Units

These are conscripted peasants from the contado, untrained and uneager.  On campaign, they are most often used as "military laborers," foraging for food and firewood, erecting camps, and building fortifications so "proper" soldiers don't have to.  They also function as guastatori, "ravagers," who despoil the enemy's countryside in the army's wake.  In a pitched battle, they are of limited use - their weapons are largely improvised, including scythes, flails, bill-hooks, sickles, hoes, and clubs, enough to scare off other peasants while plundering villages and farms but fairly useless against professional soldiers.  Some of these contadini bring their hunting bows to war and can function as mediocre archers in battles and skirmishes.

Artisans and merchants make up the backbone of the 12th century communal army.  They serve the city as pedites (footmen) of superior quality.  Though not professionals, they typically have some limited training, are better equipped than peasant levies, and are motivated by civic pride instead of mere feudal duty.  Their middle-class status allows them to afford a certain amount of personal equipment, including a metal helmet, a wooden kite shield, and the lanzalonga, a 3-meter spear useful against both infantry and cavalry.  Though the spear is their primary weapon, many carry daggers, maces, or falchions as well.  The wealthiest of the militiamen may also have a mail shirt and/or a true sword, and sometimes serve as "officers" directing groups of fellow pedites.

Archery is not held in high esteem in the Latin tradition of war.  Bows are normally used for long-range bombardment to harass or provoke the enemy, not to cause significant casualties.  Archery is seldom decisive, and as a result the business is left to the poorest and lowliest men of an army, who can afford no better.  The crossbow, a wooden self-bow mounted on a stock and spanned by foot, fulfills a different role – while it cannot be used for arcing bombardments, its superior accuracy and modest increase in power at close or medium range make it better suited for direct shooting.  Though most popular as a siege weapon, useful for defending and attacking fortifications, it has slowly been adopted for use in the field and at sea by Italy’s communes.  Aside from a crossbow and bolts, a balistarius is required to provide a metal helmet and a sidearm, typically a dagger, hatchet, or short sword.  A wool coat is the best body armor he is likely to have.

Milites Pro Commune (Equites)
Ever distrustful of the noble classes, Italian communes typically could not rely on the landed aristocracy for their cavalry.  Instead, they took advantage of the wealth of the rising non-noble mercantile class, the wealthiest of whom could afford to serve as or provide for a mounted and armored cavalryman.  These milites pro commune (knights of the city) are not professionals like knights, nor equipped to quite the same standard, but they are decent medium cavalrymen who tend to be more disciplined and less headstrong than true knights.  They wear a mail shirt or hauberk with a coif and metal helmet, and usually arm themselves with lance, shield, and a sword, mace, or falchion.  In Rome, these men are called equites, and they are not exclusively non-noble, joined by a number of petty noblemen who have their sympathies with the Senate.

Turba Romanae
Throughout history, the Romans have been notorious for mob violence.  In ancient times, patricians and consuls often feared their wrath; in the middle ages, bloodthirsty Roman rioters forced Popes to sneak out of their palaces and Emperors to flee their coronations.  Roman mobs are mostly composed of farm and urban laborers, men who are technically "free" but have no reliable income and own no land, and are easily stirred to bloody action by fiery demagogues or shadowy paymasters.  When roused, they take to the streets with clubs, hatchets, slings, daggers, torches, and their furious anger.  They may not be soldiers, but they are filled with rage and there are an awful lot of them.

Politics can be a bloody sport.  Those who practice it frequently have a need for trustworthy men with tight lips, sharp eyes, and sharper steel.  Masnada – the term comes from the Arabic masnad, meaning “support” or “prop” – is usually used by 12th century Italians to refer to a lord’s knightly retinue or bodyguards, but in Rome it is now more broadly applied to the armed retainers of important men regardless of noble status.  The typical Roman masnada is a coterie of militia veterans, streetwise laborers, family friends, and others whose loyalty is bought by the personal patronage of a Senator or Eques.  These men form small private armies that function like a cross between urban militia and a street gang.  They are excellent men to have in a street skirmish, palazzo raid, or Roman riot, but are not ideally equipped or trained for a proper field battle, and are best restricted to urban conflicts.

Though urban militia may be superior to most feudal infantry, some senators have seen a need for a heavier, more professional force to complement Rome’s citizen-soldiers.  Since few Romans can afford actual armor, Roman leaders have addressed this need by raising their own privately funded and trained soldiers from the ranks of the popolo minuto, for non-citizens can be held in a senator’s service without having to worry about being called up for militia duty themselves.  These men are equipped to the standards of the richest urban pedites, clad in mail (or occasionally scale armor) and bearing the latest military fashions – flat-topped kite shields, Norman-style helmets, arming swords, and the lanzalonga (“long lance,” a spear of 3 meters or longer).  The existence of these lower-class private armies is a cause for some concern amongst the citizenry, as their loyalty lies to individual men rather than the Commune – the Romans have taken to calling them palatini (meaning “palace troops,” after the palazzi of their senatorial commanders).
Unit Library

This mob might not be Roman angry, but they are angry all the same.  Though full-scale peasant rebellions were rare in 12th century Italy, ordinary people did take up arms in defense of their city or in opposition to tyrants.  These men are peasants or city folk who are desperate enough to fight with whatever tools and makeshift weapons are at hand.  Within their cities or atop their walls they can be of value, but in the field they may be worse than useless.

Pedites Rustici
In rural territories under aristocratic or ecclesiastical rule, the main infantry component of a feudal army is the peasant-infantryman.  These men are fairly prosperous free peasants, village artisans, and small-town craftsmen who muster at the command of their lord with a spear, shield, and any other protection they can manufacture.  These men serve the same basic function as an urban militia, but their equipment is of a poorer quality and they are motivated only by feudal obligation, not civic pride.  Though they have their uses, they tend to be ignored by the aristocracy and are frequently relegated to non-combat duties.

Stipendarii Sancti Petri
Most mercenary footmen in Italy are low-born freemen who are drawn to a life of campaigning as an alternative to poverty.  Papal mercenaries are generally cut from the same cloth, but soldiers in the Pope’s employ may also view their service as spiritual, a way to “crusade” by fighting the Pope’s enemies without leaving their own country.  They are equipped in a standard fashion for Italian line infantry, with spear, kite shield, and helmet.  Their faith may make them more motivated and reliable than other mercenaries, but they are still mercenaries, not fanatics.

Milites Sancti Petri
Cavalrymen in the service of the Pope come from a variety of backgrounds.  The majority are usually Papal vassals, signores and their retainers serving their ecclesiastical liege just as any other prince.  Others are mercenaries hired from the coffers of the Papal Curia, or Italian noblemen who, having failed to join previous crusades, hope to fulfill their spiritual obligations by slaying the enemies of God closer to home.  Though an eclectic band, they are all members of the military elite of knighthood or the servants thereof, fighting on warhorses with the usual panoply of lance, sword, shield, helmet, and mail hauberk.

Zafones are irregular light infantrymen hailing from rustic villages in the mountains of central Italy.  They are peasants, but enjoy substantial independence thanks to their isolated location.  Many young men of the region seek relief from poverty through occasional mercenary work, serving local lords and communes with the coin to hire them.  Though they are poorly armed, relying chiefly on slings and javelins, they are tougher and braver than most peasant levies and can offer good service as ambushers, guastatori, and skirmishers.

Milites Italiae
Outside the great cities of northern and central Italy, the contado is controlled by noblemen of Frankish and Lombard extraction who fight in the traditional manner of the European aristocracy.  Though their family origins and allegiances vary from place to place and the fashions of their dress and armor may differ, they are all knights – a warrior elite, riding heavy horses into battle, wearing mail hauberks, coifs, and iron helms, and bearing swords, lances, and shields.  Groups of "knights" include not only the noblemen themselves, but "sergeants" (from the Latin servient, a servant) - sons, retainers, lesser vassals, and even mercenaries - who accompany their master into battle and are armed in a similar manner (though not always as heavily armored).  They are excellent warriors, many of whom have trained in the warrior arts since childhood, though they can be difficult to control.  Their terrifying charge can win battles on its own.

Milites Imperii
The secular princes of Germany often possess large allodial fiefs and owe no feudal military service.  Though their retinues of knights are impressive, they are often difficult for even a strong emperor to muster and control, and their lords may be less than loyal.  Accordingly, the emperors often rely instead on ecclesiastics – abbots and bishops whose own non-allodial estates were expected to field troops – and the ministeriales, “serf-knights” who hold noble rank and often control large (albeit non-heritable) estates, but are technically unfree.  Whether ecclesiastical, feudal, or “ministerial,” German knights fight in the usual fashion, as armored heavy cavalry with lance and sword, though German knights were specifically noted for being steadfast fighters even when on foot.

Though mercenary infantry can be found all over Europe, the Low Countries (and in particular the County of Brabant) are so well known for such men that “brabantini” has become an Italian term for mercenaries in general.  Many of them are indeed Flemish or Brabançon freemen, veterans of the civic militias of rich cities of Flanders, or younger sons of poor knights.  They are basically "robbers for hire," paid to ravage and destroy an enemy's lands, but can also stand in a battle-line.  Brabantini are better armed than common brigands thanks to the pay they get from their employers and the salvaged weaponry they strip from the dead.  They typically have mail, a helmet, a sword, and other weapons depending on their country of origin (the Flemings in particular favor unusually long spears).  Their greatest weapon may be their fierce reputation; wild tales of the brabantini burning villages, plundering monasteries, and ravishing nuns have spread all over Christendom.

Psiloi are the skirmishing troops of a Greek provincial army, the lighter counterpart to the skoutatoi.  Composite bows are their most common armament, but they may also carry slings or javelins.  Their job is to screen the advance of the heavy infantry and support cavalry on the flanks as necessary.  They are minimally equipped for close combat and have no real armor apart from an iron helmet.  Psiloi are drawn from both “native” garrison forces and colonies of other ethnicities within the empire (typically Armenians, Bulgarians, Serbs, or Vlachs) and are better trained and armed than the peasant levies of Latin armies, though their courage and loyalty are sometimes dubious.

Though the central army of the Greek Empire in the 12th century is largely made up of mercenaries and foreign troops, “native” soldiers still form the nucleus of its provincial armies.  Skoutatoi are part-time soldiers levied from the militias and watchmen of the native Greek population.  They are armed with a kite shield (skouton), sword, and lance, and armored with an iron helmet and some degree of body armor; most soldiers wear lamellar corselets, leather armor, or quilted cloth, while the men in the front ranks of the infantry formation may be more heavily equipped with lamellar over mail hauberks.  Skoutatoi are not particularly skilled or eager soldiers but their equipment gives them an advantage over the usual levy infantry.

Since before the days of the Crusades, the Greek army has hired “Latins” – a blanket term for all western Christians – to fight in its armies.  Greek Emperors have realized the effectiveness of western knights, particularly those of the Franks (also called keltoi, “Celts”), and have induced many Latins to settle within the Empire and serve as paid professional soldiers in the same manner as other permanent foreign units like the skythikon and the varangoi.  The latinikon form the majority of the Empire’s heavy cavalry and are employed in every major campaign.  They are indistinguishable in almost every way from western knights, differing only in their slightly more Greek-influenced equipment.

The Greek Empire has long relied on nomadic barbarian tribes for their light cavalry.  Steppe nomads are practically born to the saddle and bow and can outride, outshoot, and outmaneuver Greek and Latin cavalry.  The warriors of the Emperor’s skythikon (named for the Scythians, a nomadic people of ancient Roman times) are drawn from Turkic peoples like the Pechenegs, Uzes, and Cumans.  Though they are paid professional soldiers, “mercenaries” does not describe them well; like the legendary Varangian Guard, they are foreigners in the permanent employ of the state, often living in colonies within the Empire, and are more loyal than mere temporary mercenaries.  These troops are excellent and very versatile fighters, relying chiefly on the Asiatic composite bow but equally skilled in the javelin, lance, and saber.  While skirmishing is their favored tactic, they are not averse to a sudden charge into the fray when an opportunity presents itself.  They are often partially armored in mail or lamellar, affording them some protection but not as much as Latin knights or heavier Greek cavalrymen.

Milites Normanni
The Norman knight exploded onto the European scene in the 11th century, making his mark from England to the Holy Land and becoming the very model of the aristocratic cavalryman in western Christendom.  The Kingdom of Sicily was wrested from the Greeks and Lombards by Norman knights, a testament to their ferocity and skill at arms, and under the Norman kings of Sicily they remain the most superb heavy cavalry in Italy.  Norman knights are armored in coiffed mail hauberks and iron helmets, and carry kite shields, lances, axes, and swords into battle.  They are a battle-hardened elite; if they have any weakness at all, it is their pride.

Pedites Saraceni
The Norman kings of Sicily gained control of a large Muslim population when they conquered the island, and saw fit to preserve their communities, customs, language, and even their religion.  They soon found the "Saracens" to be their best troops – far more skilled at arms than Lombard peasants or Greek urbanites, and much more reliable than the prideful and disloyal Norman barons.  By the reign of Roger II, professional Saracen infantrymen had become the largest and most important element of the royal Sicilian army.  They are capable in melee combat, armed with straight-bladed Andalusian swords and protected by mail, scale corselets, or quilted cotton armor, but the area in which they truly excel is archery.  Unlike most Latin archers who are merely levied peasants meant to annoy the enemy, these Saracens are disciplined and highly skilled bowmen who can deliver rapid, accurate, and devastating volleys at tremendous range with their powerful composite bows.  Though many Popes have fumed at the Sicilian use of “infidel” troops, the Norman kings have resisted any attempts to convert them – Muslims, after all, couldn’t care less if their king is excommunicated.

The wealthiest peasants of northern Italy occupy a rung on the ladder of feudal society above other commoners, possessing a small grant of land called a feudum scutiferi (“squire’s fief”).  Such men are expected to show up for muster with a ronzino – an “ordinary” horse, rather than the specially bred and trained warhorse of a knight – and are armed in a modest fashion with a spear, shield, and possibly a metal cap.  Though often relegated to non-combat support roles, they are also employed as an ersatz light cavalry.  They have limited utility in harassing poorly-armed troops or pursuing a broken foe, but in a pitched battle they are likely to disappoint.  The true value of these peasant-horsemen emerges on campaign, where they can ably perform tasks that knights cannot or will not do – scouting ahead of an army, harrying enemy foragers, and raiding the countryside.
Naval Units

The galea (pl. galeae), or “galley,” is the product of a long process of development of an ancient vessel.  The Greek dromon that ruled the waves of the Mediterranean starting in the 6th century was a double-decked ship with around a hundred oarsmen; “galea” referred to a lighter single-decked version with half as many oars.  In the last century, however, the galea was redesigned by Latins – probably Italians – to have two levels of oars rowed by only one level of rowers, by putting two men to a bench.  With this design, half the rowers need not be confined in cramped conditions below deck, and are free to adopt a “stand and sit” stroke that uses the whole body for rowing power.  The 12th century galea is thus lighter, faster, and more stable than its predecessors.

The galea is a long, narrow ship with one or two masts bearing lateen sails, though it relies chiefly on its oars.  The usual galea measures around 40 meters from end to end and 15 meters across at the widest point of the hull.  The maximum complement of a typical galea is 150 men, 100 of which are rowers.  The galea was the most common warship of the time – while it does not carry crews as large as some of the bigger ships, its speed and maneuverability allow it to either outrun or cooperate to take down larger foes.  Galeae equipped for war are often given a “spur,” an above-water ram that is intended to cripple a ship by smashing its oars.  These ships are also used for fast transport, particularly of valuable cargo and wealthy individuals who can afford this kind of passage, but their cargo space is quite limited.

Named for the Latin word for “arrow,” the sagita (pl. sagitae) is a smaller version of the galea.  Designed in a very similar manner to the more common galea, this ship is built for superior speed at the expense of crew and cargo space.  The smaller crew complement disadvantages the sagita in a boarding action, but its greater speed makes the sagita an excellent vessel for raiding, scouting, and fast transport of important persons (albeit in substantially less comfort than in a galea).

The sagita is probably the best ship in the Latin arsenal for the business of piracy.  Though its crew is small compared to any other fighting ship, a fully-crewed sagita usually has no difficulty overwhelming more lightly crewed merchant ships, and with its prodigious speed it seldom has trouble catching them either.  A flotilla of these ships is no substitute for a “real” navy for the purposes of naval battle or sea-borne invasion, but they can wreak havoc on merchant shipping.  The usual sagita carries no more than 100 men, around 64 of whom are rowers.

The tarida (pl. taridae, from the Arabic tarrida, apparently a kind of merchant ship) is a type of galley that has gained popularity as a horse carrier.  Though it is an oar-driven ship like the galea, it is wider than a normal galley and has an unusual flat stern with two large stern-posts.  Once beached, the tarida’s stern can be opened and used as a ramp to deliver armed and mounted cavalrymen directly onto the shore.  While a nave can carry horses too, no other ship boasts this same amphibious capability.  The Normans are particularly fond of this ship, which allows them to quickly land their famous heavy cavalry without need for a port.

The tarida occupies a sort of middle ground between the galea and nave.  It is less maneuverable than the sleeker galea, but it's still an oared ship, so it can make maneuvers a nave never could.  It is faster than a nave, but can't quite reach a galea's speed.  As it can carry a larger crew complement than a galea, the tarida can be a respectable warship in its own right, but it can still be evaded by galleys and out-manned by naves.  While its capacity as an amphibious transport makes it unique, it is a very specialized ship that may have limited utility outside its intended role.  The usual tarida has 100 oars and a total capacity of 200 men, but up to 100 of those men can be exchanged for 50 horses.

In medieval Latin, nave (pl. naves) simply means “ship,” but as a technical term in the Mediterranean it has come to specifically mean a dedicated sailing ship, as opposed to the galea and its relatives which rely on oars.  The Crusaders found that galleys, even the new taridae, were insufficient for conveying truly large armies across the sea; around the same time, the increasing volume of trade in the Mediterranean caused the maritime republics to look to better ways of shipping bulk goods.  The modern nave, also known as the “roundship,” was the answer to both these dilemmas – taller, wider, rounder, and deeper-keeled than any galley, and relying entirely on sail for propulsion.  While this frees up precious room for cargo and transport that would otherwise be taken up by rowing benches, it means the nave is more at the mercy of the elements and cannot maneuver in the same way an oared ship can.

The nave is the typical large cargo ship of the Mediterreanean, and also the principal means of conveyance for pilgrims to Rome and the Holy Land.  The nave does not make long sea voyages, but instead hops from port to port along the coast, as its capability to carry its own supplies when burdened with cargo or passengers is not great.  With its smaller crew and poorer maneuverability than an oared ship, it is also vulnerable to pirates if it strays too far from friendly ports.  When filled with soldiers instead of goods or pilgrims, the nave can be a formidable opponent – its high sides make it difficult for enemies to board it, particularly if those sides are manned by hundreds of armed men – but galleys usually have no difficulty escaping the ponderous nave, and can simply wait for reinforcements before making an attack.  The deeper keel of the nave makes it somewhat less vulnerable to storms than a galea or smaller ship, but its draught also means it really must have a proper port to land, and cannot merely be beached.  The nave has a maximum capacity of 300 men, assuming it is carrying no other cargo; up to 100 of those men can be exchanged for 50 horses.

Nave Castellate
While a regular nave may serve as a decent warship in a pinch, the nave castellate (“castled ship”) is a sailing ship purpose-built for fighting.  This ship is just a nave with two “castles” – raised fighting platforms – on the bow and stern.  These castles are often designed just like fortified towers, with crenellations behind which marines can shoot crossbows or even arbalistae (large, stationary crossbows) as their ship closes with the enemy.  In a boarding action, men on these castles can rain missiles down on the deck of their unforutnate opponent.

While the nave castellate is a very formidable ship, it is no faster or more maneuverable than a regular nave, and its high castles can be a liability in rough seas.  A nave of any sort is unlikely to ever catch a galea; as a result, these ships are usually used in a defensive capacity, protecting harbors and escorting fleets of smaller ships.  They may be most effective as a deterrent, as no galea captain will want to put his ship in a position where a nave castellate could soon be looming over it.  Being a nave, this ship can be used for transporting horses and goods as well, but this may be somewhat of a waste of its potential.  Naves castellate have the same cargo and crew capacity as a standard nave.

Contrary to popular belief, the warships of the medieval communes did not use galley slaves – their oarsmen were free citizens performing their duty to the state.  In the 12th century, there was little distinction between a sailor and a soldier in the communal navies, and oarsmen would be expected to drop their oars and take up their weapons to board an enemy ship or repel those trying to board their own.  Citizen-sailors provide their own arms, and are typically armed with various daggers, swords, and long spears (sometimes specialized for boarding with added hooks or prongs).  A portion of them are also equipped with crossbows to engage the enemy before he closes, and officers and other more well-off seamen may wear mail shirts as well.  Going barefoot and bare-headed seem to have been the norm among communal marine forces.  While not ideally equipped for land warfare, these men are trained to the standard of any other citizen militia force and can be usefully deployed on land as light infantry, usually to complement heavier landing forces or to conduct coastal raids.

Treaties and Laws

Agreement with Giordano Pierleoni, 1153; Amended 1159
Parties: The Senate of Rome and Giordano Cencio Pierleoni
This agreement ended the standoff between the Pierleoni family and the Senate of Rome that overthrew him as Patrician in 1152.
The agreement was amended in 1159 to renew many of the same privileges for Giordano's nephew and heir, Cencio.

  • The Senate will confirm Giordano Cencio Pierleone's title as Patrician.
  • The duties of the Patrician shall be to administer the Leonine City and the Castle of St. Angelo as Castellan, enforcing the laws of the Senate and People of Rome and assisting in their defense within that domain.
  • Patrician Pierleone shall be acknowledged by the Senate as Magistrate of Trastevere, with sole judicial authority and the right to half of all fines levied in the execution of Roman law therein.
  • Patrician Pierleone will be confirmed as a Citizen of Rome but formally forswears any ambition to Senatorial office for so long as he holds his title of Patrician.
  • Patrician Pierleone will withdraw all his forces from Trastevere and all the streets of Rome outside the Leonine City.
  • Patrician Pierleone will surrender the Theater of Marcellus to the Senate.
  • Patrician Pierleone will relinquish his family house on the Tiber Island to his brother Ruggero.
  • Patrician Pierleone will pledge his loyalty to the Senate, and pay an annual duty of [1 Wealth] to the Senate for his privileges and honors.
  • The Senate shall enact a general pardon for Patrician Pierleone, his armsmen, and his family, that none may be later prosecuted or fined for any deeds prior to the date of this agreement.
  • Patrician Pierleone is excused from any duty to follow orders from or place himself under the command of Fortis Calafatus in whatever Senatorial position he may find himself in, Consular or otherwise.

Treaty with the Abbey of Farfa, 1154
Parties: The Senate of Rome and Abbot Anselm II
This treaty ended the Reatini-Farfan War, which Rome joined on the side of their ally Rieti.

  • The city of Civitavecchia shall be returned to the Abbey of Farfa.
  • The Abbey shall guarantee perpetual, free, and unfettered access to Roman travelers and on the roads between Rome and Rieti and Civitavecchia - that is, the Via Salaria and the Via Aurelia.
  • The Abbey shall furthermore allow the passage of Roman troops on the Via Salaria between Rome and Rieti.
  • The Abbey of Farfa shall pay the Roman Senate an indemnity of [4 WP] in silver.

Treaty of Campus Neronius, 1155
Parties: The Senate of Rome and Pope Adrian IV
This treaty ended the exile of the Pope from Rome, which began when Pope Eugene III fled the city in 1146.

  • His Holiness shall recognize the legality and legitimacy of the Senate of Rome and pledge not to interfere in their appointments or civil affairs which fall within their jurisdiction.
  • His Holiness shall recognize the Roman Militia as necessary for the defense of the city, but the Senate of Rome shall not levy men from outside the city nor make war against any Papal vassal or subject.
  • The Senate of Rome shall acknowledge the primacy of the canon law of the Holy Church over civil law in all matters under ecclesiastical jurisdiction, including the civil matters of marriage, inheritance, legitimacy, and contract, and the criminal matters of heresy, apostasy, adultery, murder, usury, and any theft or alienation of ecclesiastical property.  In addition, the Senate and its courts shall forswear any jurisdiction over any criminal or civil matter involving a priest, monk, or other ecclesiastic.
  • The Senate of Rome shall accept the Curia’s nomination of a Prefect, who shall exercise the judicial powers of the Church as the representative of the Papal Curia, and who shall possess sole authority over the collection of tithes, tolls on travelers and pilgrims, and the collection of all revenues from ecclesiastical rents and estates.
  • The Senate of Rome shall allow the return of all noblemen who fled or were expelled from the city during their rule and see to the return of any property seized from them.
  • The Senate of Rome shall return the Lateran Palace to the Papal Curia and pay restitution of [8W] as compensation for its plunder.
  • All men with membership in the Senate of Rome or the order of Equites who hold a fief or title of nobility shall present themselves as penitents before His Holiness for their disobedience to their liege, and shall each be fined [2W].

Law on the Selection of Senators, 1155
Parties: The Senate of Rome
This law established the method of replacing senators and established quotas for senatorial equites.

  • The number of equestris seats is fixed at twenty-two.
  • Each senator may select his own successor, provided the successor is a Roman citizen of good repute.
  • No seat held by an eques may be willed to a common citizen, nor vice versa.
  • If a senator selects a successor not of his own family, the successor must be approved by the unanimous consent of the senatorial equites.
  • A senator may be expelled from the Senate by a two-thirds vote; both Consuls must be present and preside over such a vote.
  • If a senator should be expelled from the Senate, his replacement shall be selected by the senators of his own class (i.e. equites or non-equites).
  • It is illegal for a senator to sell his succession rights for goods, land, or title, or have any business dealings with his selected successor, unless the successor is a member of his own family.
  • These laws cannot be amended save by a majority of both the equites and common citizen senators present.
« Last Edit: January 09, 2016, 04:37:07 AM by Polycarp »
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Re: The Republic Reborn II: Reborn Again
« Reply #2 on: October 08, 2014, 06:54:41 PM »

History - This post contains everything you’d care to know about the RR “campaign setting,” including an introduction to the city and the region, prominent noble families of Latium, prominent NPCs (both alive and dead), and a brief history of Rome leading up to the game’s start in 1152 and the city’s history thereafter.

The City and its Environs

Rome in the 12th century is a faint shadow of its former imperial self.  Once the most populous and magnificent city in the world, it has declined to a scarce thirty thousand people huddling in the ruins of their forefathers.  The modern Rome is a physically smaller city as well – most Romans live in the abitato, the “inhabited” part of the city, concentrated in the lowlands of the Campus Martius (Field of Mars).  The rest of the city is given over to ruins and shepherds – the once majestic forum was turned into a cattle pasture.  All the aqueducts are broken, save one, and the city walls – now far too large for the greatly shrunken settlement – have suffered from centuries of neglect.

Rome is no longer the capital of an empire, but it has remained the capital of Latin Christianity and the nominal seat of His Holiness, the Pope.  Its economy is based largely on its spiritual importance – every spring, pilgrims from as far away as Iceland come to Rome to see the great basilicas, the tombs of the saints, and the relics of the martyrs.  As the Pope is both a spiritual leader and a secular ruler, the city is also the center of administration for the Patrimonium Sancti Petri, otherwise known as the Papal States, which run from Tarracina to the Adige River.  

The southern part of the patrimonium is known as Latium, a stretch of land running between the Tyrrhenian coastline and the Appenine mountains that form the spine of Italy.  Latium itself is sandwiched between Tuscany and Spoleto, loosely-held regions of the Holy Roman Empire, and the Norman Kingdom of Sicily to the south.  The northern patrimonium is itself divided into two regions, the Marche in the south and Romagna in the north.  Romagna and the Marche are quite autonomous from Papal control compared to Latium, though some Popes have made efforts to strengthen their rulership there.  These northern lands are connected to Latium by the “Greek Corridor,” a strip of land running along the ancient Via Flaminia that was the artery of communication between Rome and Ravenna when these two cities were the last major strongholds of Greek power in Italy.

The patrimonium exists precariously between two greater powers, the Empire to the north and the Kingdom to the south, both of whom have quarreled and at times fought with the Pope (and one another) over control.  It is the dream of the Holy Roman Emperors to bring Sicily within their empire, and the aim of the Norman kings to thwart them.  To the East, the “Roman Empire” – whom the Latins refer to as the Empire of the Greeks – watches Italy with interest, still remembering the times of Justinian when the whole peninsula paid them homage.

Between them all stand the people of Rome, unimpressive in their wealth or power, but possessed of a glorious past and the conviction that their city will once again rule as the Queen of Cities and the center of the world.

Roman Society

"Citizenship" in the 12th century is a different concept than national citizenship today. The first chartered communes arose in the Middle Ages essentially as communal defense societies - while any one merchant or tradesman was at the mercy of the local lords and could be taxed, mistreated, or even robbed with impunity, a group of merchants that pooled their resources could achieve strength.  Even if they couldn't protect their members at all times, they could promise vengeance against any baron that abused them.  A "citizen" is not merely anyone who happens to live in a city - a citizen is a free man who is capable of and sworn to stand in that city's defense.  Citizenship is afforded only to those with the means to keep their own weaponry (for the average Roman citizen, this is a spear, shield, iron helmet, and some kind of sidearm) and the willingness to report for muster when called upon.  In return, citizens gain judicial and political rights.

Non-citizens compose most of the population of Rome and other communes - laborers, lower-class artisans, field workers, fishermen, shepherds, and anyone else who doesn't have the wealth to afford the basic militia kit.  While they aren't obligated to join militia service, they also don't enjoy the same rights as citizens - they can be expelled from the city or their property seized by the Senate without legal recourse (though they have little property to seize in the first place).  They are Romans, but Romans who don't contribute to the defense of the city are not considered deserving of the protection of its law.

The new senate, inspired by the past glory of Rome, has reinstated the ordo equestris, or “Equestrian Order,” the ancient knighthood of Rome.  This is a sort of "citizenship plus" - to be counted as an eques, a citizen must own a horse, lance, shield, sword, iron helmet, and mail shirt, and to either serve as a cavalryman himself or provide someone who can.  This expensive kit is available only to the richest citizens, who are typically either wealthy merchants or minor noblemen who have sworn their loyalty to the senate.  Many other Italian cities have similar "milites pro commune" (Knights of the Commune), though only Rome calls theirs "equites."  All PCs, by virtue of their own personal wealth, are considered to be equites.

Rome also has a community of several hundred Jews ("Ebreo").  The position of Jews in Rome in this time was better than most other places in Latin Europe - while Jews in Germany, for instance, suffered terribly during the Crusades, Jews in Rome were generally protected by the 12th century Papacy.  Pope Callixtus II promulgated a Papal Bull around 1120 that forbade the forced conversion of Jews and prohibited Christians from assaulting them, seizing their property, interfering with their customs, or disturbing their cemeteries, and subsequent popes have generally maintained these protections.  That said, however, Jews also cannot be citizens, do not enjoy the judicial rights of citizenship, and are prohibited from bearing arms.  For the most part, their community stays out of Roman politics to avoid trouble, but sometimes their dominance of certain trades (particularly cloth dyeing) and their tradition of moneylending (as Christians are forbidden to charge interest) create hostility and resentment towards them.

Landed Titles

Signore: A lord; a noble land-holder.  The term comes from the Frankish seigneurr (from the Latin seniorr, "elder") which was introduced to Italy by the Normans.  This is the lowest and most widespread title of nobility in Italy and the Papal States.  Minor signori of the countryside are sometimes called cattani (from capitanei, “captains”).  Signori may also be referred to as "barons;" in Italy, the titles are generally interchangeable.
Count: A feudal lord ranking above a common signore.  The title is a very old one, originating from the Latin comes ("companion").  Some counts are basically signori with an honorary title, while some are powerful landowners who rule whole provinces.
Margrave: From the German markgraf, meaning "March-count."  Marches are usually territories presently or formerly on the borders of the Empire.
Duke: A high title of nobility.  The only current Duke in Italy is the Duke of Spoleto.  The term comes from the Latin dux, meaning "leader."  The title "Doge" (of Venice) comes from the same root.
Vicarius: A layman who administers a church-owned estate.  Though vicarius is not a title of nobility, some vicarii are quite independent and have managed to have their office made hereditary within their family; in this case, the vicarius is a signore in all but name.  The term means "deputy" in Latin and is the origin of the word “vicar” as well as “vice” (as in “vice president”).
Rector: A rector is a governor of a province or city within the Papal States.  Rectors are usually ecclesiastics like bishops or cardinals (the Rector of Rieti is an exception).

Notable People

Aimeric de Savelli: Head of the Savelli family.  Killed in the Battle of the Laurels in 1158.
Antonio Demetri della Suburra: Prefect of Rome and Nephew of Anastasius IV.  Returned to Rome in 1155 after the Treaty of Campus Neronius, but killed during the Battle of the Vatican in 1159.
Cencio Pierleone: Head of the Pierleoni family and nephew the late Patrician Giordano Pierleone.  Formerly a clerk for the Papal Chamberlain, Boso Breakspeare.
Giordano Pierleone: Patrician of Rome and one-time ruler of the city before being deposed in 1152.  Reconciled with the Senate and ruled in the Leonine City until his death in the Battle of the Vatican in 1159.
Gionata Tusculani: Head of the Tusculani family and Count of Tusculum, jointly with his younger brother Raino.
Gisulf de Ausonia: A minor Lombard nobleman who attacked the son of Senator Basile and his new bride.  Outlawed by Prefect Colonna; current whereabouts unknown.
Leo Frangipane: Eldest son and heir of Oddone Frangipane, Lord of Tolfa.  Married to Theodora Pierleoni, half-sister of the Counts of Tusculum and cousin of Cencio Pierleoni.
Martino de Corso: Signore of Formello.
Niccolo Capocci: Signore of Monte Ritondo and Castrum Nomentum and eques of Rome.  His castles were razed by the Emperor, but they have since been rebuilt with the help of the Senate.
Oddone Colonna: Head of the Colonna family.  Signore of Palestrina, Castrum Colonna, and other estates.
Oddone Frangipane: Head of the Frangipani family.  Signore of Tolfa, Castrum Monticellorum, Torre Astura, and other castles throughout Latium.  The archenemy of Patrician Giordano Pierleoni until the latter’s death, and champion of Pope Alexander III.
Pietro II Colonna: Previous head of the Colonna family, Prefect of Rome, and Signore of Palestrina, Castrum Colonna, and other estates.  Died of the Roman Fever in 1157.
Pietro Latro: Vicarius of Civitavecchia, which he rules in the name of Farfa Abbey.
Raino Tusculani: Count of Tusculum, jointly with his older brother Gionata.
Ruggero Pierleone: Uncle of Cencio Pierleone.  Keeper of the Pierleoni family tower house on Tiber Island.
Tolomeo II Tusculani: Previous Count of Tusculum.  Went bankrupt.  Died in 1153, and succeeded by his sons Gionata and Raino.

Adrian IV: The first English Pope.  Placed Rome under interdict and crowned Friedrich von Hohenstaufen as emperor, but fell out with Friedrich later in life and signed a treaty stabilizing relations with the Senate.  His death in 1159 was followed by a schism.
Alexander III: Elected Pope by the anti-Imperial (or “Sicilian”) faction in the divided conclave of 1159.  Born Rolando Bandinelli of Siena, he served as the Papal Chancellor under Adrian IV.
Anastasius IV: Pope from 1153 to 1154.  Born Corrado Demetri della Suburra, of the Roman noble family of Demetri.
Rusticus: Current abbot of Farfa.  Appointed by the Emperor to succeed Abbot Anselm II, who had fought with Rome and Rieti.
Arnold of Brescia: A Brescian monk with strange and possibly heretical views on apostolic poverty and holy sacraments with a large following in Rome among the popolo minuto, especially women, and the lesser clergy.  Currently excommunicated and under the imperial ban.
Eugenius III: Pope from 1145 to 1153.  Born Bernardo da Pisa of the Pisan noble family of Paganelli.
Victor IV: Elected Pope by the pro-Imperial faction in the divided conclave of 1159.  Born Ottaviano (Octavian) di Monticelli of the noble Roman family of Crescenzi.
Wetzel: A fanatical Arnoldist preacher, originally from Bavaria.  Said to be a former monk.

Alexios Axouch: Protostrator of the Greek Empire (second-in-command of the imperial army), who led the second Greek expedition to Sicily which ended in a statemate.  His father was a Turk.
Bulgarus: A Bolognese legal scholar who supports the legal concept of ius strictum (Roman law strictly applied).
Damianus Truffa: The late Rector of Rieti, who co-ruled the city along with Dodone, its bishop, and forged an alliance with Rome.  Died in a riding accident in 1159.
Friedrich von Hohenstaufen: Emperor of the Romans, King of the Germans, King of Italy, King of Burgundy, and famed destroyer of cities.  Recently the Italians have taken to calling him Barbarossa, "red beard."
Ildebrando Ferrante: Camerarius (Chamberlain) of Perugia, chief among Perugia’s consuls.
Kosmas Bariotes: An Apulian Greek and high official (sebastos) in the Greek Empire.  Formerly the Greek ambassador to the Papal Curia.
Manuel Komnenos: The Emperor of the Greeks.  Ordered an invasion of Sicily that succeeded in reclaiming a number of Adriatic ports from the Normans.
Martinus Gosia: A Bolognese legal scholar who supports the legal concept of aequitas (equity).
Roger II de Hauteville: Former Norman King of Sicily and infamous warmonger.
Rogerius Placentia: A Piacentini legal scholar who studied in Bologna under Martinus Gosia. More colloquially known as Roger of Piacenza.  Currently in Rome.
William de Hauteville: Current Norman King of Sicily, and the only living son of Roger II.  Formerly excommunicated.

Great Noble Families of Latium

Origin: The origins of the Anguillara family are murky, but their name comes from the town of that name on Lake Sabatinus, a place of ancient heritage whose name comes from either angularia, referring to the “angle” or “corner” of the lake on which the old Roman villa sits, or from anguille, meaning “eel,” on account of the eels fished from that lake.  Anguillara was granted to the progenitor of the family, a certain Count Ramone or Raimondo, by the pope in the 10th century.  They are presumably Lombard or Frankish in origin.

Politics: The Anguillara are poorly attested until the late 11th century, when Gerardo Anguillara appears as an ally of the di Vico family and the German-backed antipope Clement III against the Frangipani and Conti.  The family remained close to the house of di Vico for several decades.  After the di Vico family lost power in Rome following the communal revolution, the Anguillara began struggling against them for territory around Lake Sabatinus, and reportedly maintained a cordial relationship with the city’s new patrician Giordano Pierleone.  

Estates: The Anguillara estates are centered around, as one might expect, Anguillara.

Prominent Members: Nicola, Lord of Anguillara; his sons Pandolfo and Giovanni.

Origin: The family claims to be descended not from a famous Roman, but from Rome’s greatest enemy – the very same Hannibal of Carthage who swore to destroy Rome and led an army over the Alps in ancient times to attempt just that.  They can be traced with more certainty to a far more recent “Hannibal,” a nobleman named Annibale (or Annibaldo) who held the title of Senator of Rome in the mid-11th century (then an aristocratic title of honor, as there was no actual Senate at that point).  An alternative story of Annibale’s origins is that he was descended from the Lombard Counts of Ceccano.  Regardless, Annibale brought his family into prominence by marrying a daughter of the Tusculani family, by which he received lands in the Alban Hills as a dowry.

Politics: The Annibaldi were, since the days of their founder, essentially a vassal house of Tusculum, and their fortunes rode high along with those of their patrons.  With the decline of that house in the days of Count Tolomeo II, however, the family began to assert itself, making common cause with cadet Tusculani branches like the Savelli and the Colonna whom the Annibaldi are related to by marriage.  The house was a key ally of the late Pietro Colonna but also fought alongside the Savelli and the Tusculani in their recent clashes with the Roman Commune.

Estates: The Annibaldi’s holdings are still centered around their original dowry from the Tusculani, most notably Monte Porzio and the town of Molara near Grottaferrata.  They maintained a small estate in Rome until 1144, and have yet to return to the city.

Prominent Members: Annibaldo III, Lord of Molara.

Origin: The Caetani name, sometimes rendered as Gaetani, comes from the city of Gaeta, and the family traces its ancestry to Hypatos (Greek for “consul”) Docibilis of Gaeta, who seized power there in 867.  His descendant Marinus II, Duke of Gaeta, acquired the city of Fondi and passed it to his younger son (also named Marinus) while his eldest son Ioannes succeeded to Gaeta.  All branches of the modern Caetani family are descended from the younger Marinus.

Politics: The Caetani were historically irrelevant to Roman politics, with their own power base in Gaeta, but the family was nearly destroyed when that city was conquered by Pandulf IV “the Wolf,” the Lombard Prince of Capua, in 1032.  The family split into two main lines afterwards, with the “Caetani” fleeing to a minor holding near Ardea in Latium and the “Gaetani” traveling to Pisa, where they established a noble house that is counted among the great families of that city.  Gerardo Gaetani of the Pisan branch became Count of Terriccio and was the commander of the Pisan crusading fleet that briefly conquered the Balearic Isles in 1114.  One member of the Pisan branch became Pope Gelasius II in 1118, but he reigned for only a year before his death.  The branch in Latium was somewhat less successful, eventually gaining control of Ardea but playing no substantial part in Roman politics until the Commune intervened on the behalf of Signore Crescenzio Caetani against rival lords beginning in 1156.

Estates: The ancestral lands of Gaeta and Fondi have been entirely lost to the Lombards and subsequently to the Normans.  Ardea and its environs are all that remains to the Latin branch of the Caetani, though the family’s control on that territory has strengthened since the Roman campaign against the Savelli and Tusculani culminating in the Battle of the Laurels.

Prominent Members: Crescenzio, Lord of Ardea; his son Marino and daughter Caetana.

Origins: The family is certainly known to be Germanic in origin, descended like a number of newer houses of Latium from Teutonic noblemen that came to Rome in the entourages of various Holy Roman Emperors.  The family served the Germanic Dukes of Spoleto after the death of the “Grand Countess” Matilda of Tuscany before marrying into Lombard nobility in Latium and inheriting estates there.

Politics: Relative newcomers to Roman politics, the Capocci have nevertheless ascended quickly; true to their Germanic origins they have tended towards a pro-Imperial stance and hostility towards the Church, which is believed to have contested the original inheritance that gave the Capocci their land in Latium (but evidently without success).  Arnolfo Capocci sided with the Pierleoni during the schism of 1130, though not very strenuously.  He died shortly after the Roman Commune was proclaimed, and the family under his son Niccolo (or Nicola) used the disarray of the church afterwards to redeem his house’s claims on nearby territories, gradually at first and then much more precipitously after the Roman-Farfan war.  Niccolo has since allied with the Commune of Rome.

Estates: The Capocci lands are centered around the castles of Monte Rotondo and Nomentanum in the Tiber valley north of Rome, but claim nearby lands belonging to Farfa, the Savelli, and the Church.  As a fairly new family to Latium, the Capocci have never maintained a residence in Rome itself.

Prominent Members: Niccolo, Lord of Monte Rotondo and Castrum Nomentanum; his cousin Pietro di Mizo, Cardinal-Deacon of S. Eustachio.

di Ceccano
Origin:The family claims to be descended from Petronio Ceccano, a 7th century Roman nobleman and father of Pope Honorius I, after whom the town of Ceccano was named.  This link is not proven, however, and it is considered more likely that the modern Counts of Ceccano are descended from a later Lombard nobleman installed in that province sometime after 750.  The earliest well-attested member of the family is Count Amato, who was titled “Count of the Campagna” in the 10th century.  Ceccano has been held by the same family since then (with a brief interruption in the early 12th century when it was possessed by the Frangipani), and the family holds the oldest comital dignity in Latium still extant – the di Ceccano were titled “count” before even the Tusculani.  It is possible that the Annibaldi are a cadet branch of this family which then married into the Tusculani.

Politics: The counts of Ceccano resisted the assertion of Papal control earlier in the century, with Count Godefrido even being excommunicated by Callixtus II for plundering the lands of the Abbey of Montecassino.  Godefrido ultimately swore homage, but his successors sided with the Normans against Honorius II and burned many villages in 1128.  The family sided with the Pierleoni and antipope Anacletus II during the schism of 1130-1138, but thereafter reconciled with Pope Innocent II.  While still independent-minded, the family has had no open breach with the Papacy since.

Estates: The primary estate of the family is, of course, Ceccano, but the family’s holdings in the surrounding river valley are extensive.

Prominent Members: Gregorio, Count of Ceccano; his sons Guido and Landolfo.

Origin: The Colonna family is a cadet branch of the Tusculani.  “Castrum Columna,” a fortress a few miles from Tusculum traditionally belonging to that family, was given to Pietro Tusculani, the younger brother of Count Gregorio III, who subsequently became known as Pietro de Colonna.  In his later life Pietro began to use this as a family name instead of merely a nickname, a practice continued by his son Oddone.

Politics: Pietro Colonna largely shared the allegiances of his brother Count Tolomeo I in the imperial cause.  His relations with his nephew Tolomeo II, however, were known to be strained, with Pietro taking a more pro-Papal stance.  He was faithful to the pro-Frangipani Pope Innocent II during the schism of 1130-1138, but was not considered one of his core supporters.  Pietro Colonna served as the Papal Prefect after the proclamation of the Commune, and despite being a Papal supporter and a Tusculani, he charted a moderate course that made him reasonably popular in post-Pierleoni ruled Rome.  His son Oddone was briefly made a standard-bearer of the Church and is assumed to be more pro-Papal than pro-Imperial, though like the Tusculani the Colonna claim to owe their fiefs to the Emperor rather than the Pope.

Estates: Though originally only possessing Castrum Colonna itself, Pietro greatly expanded his territories and his wealth, and the family now owns substantial land around Poli and Palestrina.  Most recently, Tusculum itself was sold – under some duress – to Oddone Colonna.

Prominent Members: Oddone, Lord of Castrum Columna and Palestrina.

Origins: The family’s name (sometimes rendered as dei Conti or de Comitibus) simply means “counts;” while the current head is indeed the Count of Segni, the name was acquired earlier, most likely because the family is a cadet branch of the Counts of Tusculum.  The line begins with Pietro, brother of Count Tolomeo I, who was made Lord of Anagni in the mid-11th century.  His eldest son, Trasimondo, was created Count of Segni; Trasimondo is thus the first cousin, once removed of the current Counts of Tusculum.

Politics: The Conti branch of the Tusculani became in the days of Tolomeo II the most prominent and successful in southern Latium, consolidating power in Segni and Anagni, frequent residences of the Curia.  Trasimondo’s brother Gregorio was elected as Pope Victor IV by the Pierleoni faction in 1138 (not to be confused with the present Victor IV) after the death of Anacletus II, but held office only for two months before submitting to the pro-Frangipani Innocent II and being sent off to a priory.  This short episode did not sour relations between the Curia and the Conti for long, however.  Following the communal revolution in Rome, the popes were common residents at Conti estates.  Unlike the main branch of the Tusculani, the Conti claim no imperial bequests or titles, making them more palatable to the Curia.  Since Trasimondo married Claricia, a member of the minor Roman family of Scotti, the Conti have inherited that family’s antipathy to the Orsini, though their geographical distance has meant this conflict has played out primarily in the politics of the Curia.

Estates: Segni is the family’s primary holding, though the family owns a number of estates and towers in the Latina valley.  The family, being quite new, has never maintained an estate in Rome itself.

Prominent Members: Trasimondo, Count of Segni; his sons Tristano and little Lothario; his brother Giovanni, Cardinal-Deacon of S. Maria in Portico.

Origin: The Corsi are believed to be descended from Corsican settlers who settled in Rome in the 9th century.  Pope Leo IV had invited these refugees from Corsica, whose island was continually ravaged by Saracen raids, to populate the newly constructed Leonine City.  The Corsi first appear as a noble family in the 10th century but did not gain prominence until the 11th, when they established themselves in the Forum region.

Politics: The Corsi were early allies of the Frangipani, and the two families intermarried several times in the 11th century.  The Corsi sided with the pro-Papal Oddone Frangipani over the more Imperialist sympathies of his father Cencio II, and during the schism of 1130 the Corsi estates were literally the only places in Rome where the pro-Frangipani Pope Innocent II was safe, as the Frangipani towers in the city had all been razed by Pope Callixtus II in 1121.  When the Roman Commune was declared, the family initially retained control of the Forum.  In 1144, however, a Roman mob led by Patrician Pierleoni stormed the Tabularium, the site of the main Corsi fortress, and the family fled the city.  After the Treaty of Campus Neronius, the family returned to Rome and one of their old towers on the Capitoline, though the Tabularium remains in the hands of the Senate.

Estates: The Corsi possess land north and east of the Roman contado, near the Leonine City and the valleys south of Lake Sabatinus.  Their main estate in Rome was the Tabularium, the archive building of the ancient Romans, which was seized after the communal revolution and now serves as the unofficial treasury of the Senate.

Prominent Members: Gregorio, head of the family; his son and heir Raniero, and two other sons.

Origin: The Crescentii claim to be descendants of the gens Aelia of ancient Rome, which included consuls of the republic since the 4th century BC.  There is some evidence the family is related to the Dukes of Naples and a previous Crescentius of Spoleto in the 9th century.  The first well-attested member of the family, however, is Giovanni Crescentius, who married into the Tusculani family and became the Bishop of Narni in the 10th century.

Politics: Despite being related by marriage to the Tusculani, the two families soon became arch-rivals; what the Pierleoni and Frangipani were in the early 12th century, the Tusculani and Crescentii were in the late 10th and early 11th centuries.  The family fiercely opposed Emperor Otto II and his successor Otto III, using anti-foreign sentiment to rally support for their house against the Germans and their Frangipani supporters.  Giovanni Crescentius succeeded in having his son elected Pope John XIII; when he died, a more pro-German candidate was installed as Pope Benedict VI.  The Crescentii deposed him, had a new pope elected, and colluded in Benedict’s murder.  The Crescentii successfully controlled the Curia and the office of Prefect for several decades, even recovering after Giovanni II Crescentius was captured and executed by Emperor Otto III (The great hill northwest of Rome - Monte Malo, “Bad Mountain” – was so named because it was the place of his death).  In 1012, however, Giovanni III and his puppet Pope Sergius IV both coincidentally died within days of one another.  The Crescentii attempted to install a new pope, but were outmaneuvered by the Tusculani with German support.  The family went on to sponsor several antipopes in the mid-11th century, but their heyday was over and the Tusculani regained their supremacy for the remainder of the century.  Branches of the family still exist, particularly the Ottaviani, but they are only a shadow compared to the Crescentii at their height.

Estates: The Crescentii were traditionally based in Sabina, and though many of their estates (like Nerola and Mons Brittorum) have passed to the Abbey of Farfa or other local lords, some castles and estates still remain in the hands of their descendents.  They no longer possess any notable estates in Rome itself; their great tower just west of the Pantheon was razed by the Tusculani when the family fell from power.

Prominent Members: Attilio, Lord of Palombara; his cousins Oddone, Goffredo, and Solimano, lords of Terni, and Ottaviano di Monticelli, enthroned as Pope Victor IV.

Origin: The family name is often paired with “della Suburra” or “de Suburra,” a reference to the ancient Roman district of Subura in which the family estate has existed for centuries.  The origin of “Demetri” is less clear; the name implies a Greek ancestry but that has not been proven.  It is generally believed that the Demetri are an old Roman family rather than a Frankish or German transplant, though they are liked by marriage to the early members of the Germanic Savelli family as well.  Perhaps because of its obscurity, “de Suburra” alone is increasingly preferred over “Demetri,” though the prominent members of the family continue to use both.

Politics: The Demetri were a rather unimportant house until Benedicto Demetri della Suburra allied himself with Cencio I Frangipani in the 11th century, acting as an imperial partisan during the Investiture Controversy.  The family reconciled with Pope Urban II, however, and remained on the Papal side in defiance of Cencio II.  The family has been staunchly pro-Papal ever since.  Benedicto’s son Corrado was made a cardinal by Paschal II, the same pope who destroyed the Frangipani towers.  Along with the Corsi, the Demetri came to the support of Oddone Frangipani in the schism of 1130, with Corrado being one of the foremost leaders of the pro-Innocent party in the Curia.  His nephew Gregorio also became a cardinal and led the unsuccessful defense of the Lateran from the Roman Commune in 1152; a year later Corrado was elected as Pope Anastasius IV, but lived for only a year and a half afterwards.  Most recently, Gregorio’s younger brother Antonio, now the head of the family, was made Prefect of Rome by Pope Adrian IV.

Estates: The main Demetri estate in the city is in the Suburra, which is now a rural area rather than the dense residential district it was in ancient times, and some of the pastureland in the vicinity is also theirs.  The family also owns estates near Formello, whose present signore is a distant cousin of theirs.

Prominent Members: Benedicto, head of the family and son of the late Prefect Antonio; his uncle Gregorio, Cardinal-Bishop of Sabina.

Origin: Known originally as the Anicii, the family’s name became Frangipani (“bread-breakers”) after a famous member of the family distributed bread in Rome during a famine, probably in the 10th century.  The family was also commonly called “de Imperator” (of the Emperor) in the 11th century.  The family tree is well-attested to at least the 8th century, and the Anicii family held power in Rome long before that – Saint Gregory the Great, a 6th century pope and renowned doctor of the church, is said to have been an Anicii.  Their ancestry before that is murky, though they claim to be descended from the Roman gens Anicii which included praetors and consuls of the Roman Republic as far back as the 2nd century BC.

Politics: Cencio I Frangipani, who led the family in the late 11th century, was initially pro-Imperial, going so far as to imprison Pope Gregory VII - an event which is seen by some as beginning the Investiture Controversy in earnest.  He eventually reconciled with the Papacy, but Cencio II, his son, swung back to the pro-Imperial side by arresting Pope Gelasius II, who was released by Pier Leoni and his allies but died shortly thereafter.  The pro-Frangipani faction in the Curia supported Innocent II in the schism of 1130, though initially Cencio II fell out with his son Oddone, refusing to support Innocent until 1133.  Cencio died not long thereafter, leaving the estate to Oddone, now the current head of the family.  Oddone was a staunch supporter of Innocent and the subsequent popes, particularly after Giordano Pierleoni was placed in command of the new Roman Commune.

Estates: The Frangipani own territories all over Latium in all directions from Rome, but their primary holdings are Tolfa and the surrounding hills, the lands northwest of Tivoli including Castrum Montecellorum, and the southern coast of Latium including Torre Astura and Tarracina.  The family’s towers in Rome were destroyed by the order of Pope Callixtus II in 1121 and they have controlled no fortresses in the city since then.

Prominent Members: Oddone, Lord of Tolfa; his son and heir Leo.

Origin: The Orsini family was originally known as the Boboni, named for for Bobone, a Roman nobleman of the early 11th century.  While the family is undoubtedly older than that, their origins beyond that point are unclear, though it is generally agreed they are Roman for several centuries at least and not Frankish or German transplants like some newer noble houses.  In the late 11th century the family became known as Boboni-Orsini after Orso, a descendant of Boboni, and recently the head of the house has begun occasionally dropping the “Boboni” part altogether.

Politics: As a very minor house until the present century, the Orsini were not very politically influential.  The house tended to side with the Frangipani through the Frangipani-Pierleoni struggle of the past few decades, perhaps only because their own lands are in close proximity to the Frangipani estates at Tolfa.  They have risen to some notoriety thanks to Giacinto Boboni-Orsini, a brilliant scholar who studied in Paris with Peter Abelard (the mentor, coincidentally, of Arnold of Brescia) and was made a cardinal by Pope Celestine II in 1144.  Nevertheless, they have yet to play a major role in Roman politics.

Estates: The Orsini family’s primary estates are along the northern Latin coast, particularly Palo and Santa Severa.  The Orsini maintained a small estate in Rome, but abandoned it along with most of the Roman nobility following the establishment of the commune.

Prominent Members: Giovanni, Lord of Palo and Santa Severa; his brother Giacinto, Cardinal-Deacon of Santa Maria in Cosmedin.

Origin: The family is descended from a Jewish moneylender of Trastevere named Baruch who was baptized by Pope Leo IX in the late 11th century and took the name Benedictus Christianus (“Blessed Christian”).  "Benedictus" married a Frangipani noblewoman and named his firstborn son Leo in the pope’s honor.  Leo married into the Crescentii family, and thus the family quickly acquired an impressive pedigree.  The family takes its name from Leo’s son, Pietro (or "Pier") Leoni.

Politics: Leo supported the reform papacy (with, in particular, a great deal of money) and sided with the Crescentii against the pro-German Tusculani; he did, after all, have a Crescentii wife.  His son Pier Leoni gained even greater fame as a staunch and effective defender of the pope.  Pier Leoni fought against the pro-Imperial Frangipani under Cencio II and the Tusculani under Tolomeo I, freeing Pope Gelasius II from Frangipani captivity in 1118.  After Pier Leoni’s death in 1128, His son Pietro became Pope Anacletus II, but the pro-Frangipani party chose Innocent II instead.  Though chosen by the majority of the cardinals at the time, Anacletus was denounced as an anti-Pope after he died in 1138 and Innocent gained control of the city.  The younger brother of Anacletus, Giordano, sided with the Roman Commune in 1143 and was subsequently elected its leader, gaining the title of Patrician.  He led the city in a successful defense against Pope Lucius II, who was mortally wounded by the Romans, but his later willingness to negotiate with the Pope led to his overthrow by a more pro-Arnoldist senate in 1152.

Estates: The major Pierleoni castles are in Rome itself, including the Castle of St. Angelo, Tiber Island, and – until 1153 – the Theater of Marcellus.  The family, unlike most noble houses, never relied on great agricultural estates, as it already had a vast fortune derived from usury before the conversion of Benedictus.  Leo and Pier Leoni received some lands from grateful popes, but these were lost after Innocent returned to Rome in 1138.

Prominent Members: Cencio, formerly a clerk of the Papal Camerarius; Cencio’s uncle Ruggiero, holder of Torre Pierleoni on Tiber Island; Cecio’s other uncle Huguizon, whereabouts unknown; cousin Ugo, Bishop of Piacenza.

Origins: The family’s name comes from the castle of Sabellum, near Albano, which was originally a property of the Counts of Tusculum.  The family’s origins are obscure.  The Savelli claim ancient Roman lineage, and the 8th century Pope Gregory II and 9th century Pope Eugene II are often claimed to be of their family; another account, however, maintains that the family is descended in the male line from German nobility who came to Rome in the early 9th century, possibly among the entourage of Emperor Lothair, the eldest grandson of Charlemagne.  The Savelli family is sometimes claimed to be an early cadet branch of the Tusculani, but it may be more likely that they gained their territories by dowry from that family in a similar manner to the Annibaldi.

Politics: The great Pope Gregory VII promoted Licinio Savelli to the cardinalate in the late 11th century, perhaps to reconcile former Tusculani allies with the newly reformed papacy that would eventually destroy Tusculum’s dominance in Rome.  The Savelli family continued to be close to the Tusculani, and only began to become a political actor in its own right with the decline of Tusculum under Count Tolomeo II.  The family has intermarried with the Annibaldi, another former “vassal house” of Tusculum, as well as with the Frangipani, who they sided with in the schism of 1130.  A recent engagement with the Colonna was broken off after the death of Aimeric de Savelli in battle with the Roman Commune.

Estates: The family still controls its original estates near Albano, including the Torre Maggiore in the western Alban Hills.  It has also acquired estates south of Nerola, near Farfan territory, centered around the torre of Mons Aureus.  Unlike most of the other major families of Latium, the Savelli have never maintained a significant estate in Rome itself.

Prominent Members: Giovanni il Torvo (“the Grim”), Lord of Mons Aureus; his little nephew Guilio, Lord of Torre Maggiore.

Origin: The earliest well known member of the family is Theophylact (or Teofilatto), Lord of Tusculum beginning in the mid-9th century.  The family claims matrilineal descent back to the Roman gens Julia, which provided Roman consuls as far back as the 5th century BC, and most famously included Gaius Julius Caesar and his nephew Gaius Octavius “Augustus,” the first Roman Emperor.  The family’s rise began with the marriage of two rather extraordinary people: Alberic, a Lombard page to Duke Guido IV of Spoleto who murdered his lord and seized the Duchy for himself, and Theophylact’s daughter Marozia, who had become the mistress of Pope Serguis III when she was fifteen and had a son by him (who would become Pope John XI).  With the backing of Marozia's family, Alberic became Patrician of Rome and his wife Marozia was titled “senatrix” and “patricia,” titles never since equaled by a Roman woman.  After jointly ruling Rome with his wife for more than 15 years, their puppet Pope turned on them and Alberic was murdered by his enemies.  Marozia fled the city, remarried to Margrave Guido of Tuscany, marched on Rome with Guido's army, imprisoned the Pope who had turned against her, and returned to power.  After Guido’s death she was courted by the King of Italy, who abandoned his own queen to marry her, but she was arrested on the day of the wedding by her and Alberic’s son, Alberic II, and died in captivity.  Alberic II defied multiple sieges of the city by the King of Italy and was the absolute ruler of Rome until his natural death.  Gregorio, the son of Alberic II, the brother of a pope and father of two more, was the first to be titled "Count" (his predecessors had been merely Lords of Tusculum) and was probably the first to take “Tusculani” as his family name; before that the family had been known as the Theophylacti.

Politics: For most of the 10th century and a good portion of the 11th, the Tusculani were the masters of Rome.  No fewer than seven popes have been Tusculani, and far more have been Tusculani puppets.  The rival Crescentii family seized power from them in the late 10th century, but after 1012 the Tusculani regained control of the Curia and the city.  The Tusculani hold on the papal throne was only permanently broken in 1059, when the system of Cardinal electors was established and direct control over the selection of Popes was wrested from the Roman nobility.  Afterwards the Tusculani became imperial partisans, particularly under Count Tolomeo (Ptolemy) I, who was proclaimed “Prince of Latium, Duke and Consul of the Romans” by Emperor Heinrich V; his son Tolomeo II wed Bertha, the bastard daughter of the same emperor (which makes both the current Counts of Tusculum and Emperor Friedrich “Barbarossa” grandsons of Heinrich V).  Under Tolomeo II, however, the Tusculani gradually lost much of their power and influence to other rising noble houses like the Frangipani and Pierleoni, never having truly recovered from the loss of the Papacy from which they had derived their early power.

Estates: The Tusuclani estates were traditionally clustered in the Alban Hills, including Tusuclum itself.  Recently that fortress was sold to the Colonna, a cadet branch of the family, but the Tusculani retain control over much of the area, with Albano serving as the family’s primary seat of power.

Prominent Members: The brothers Gionata and Raino, co-Counts of Tusculum.

di Vico
Origin: The family is descended from a German knight named Arnulf (or Arnolfo), born in the late 9th century, who was made gastald (steward) of Terni and later given his own land on the shores of Lake Vico in Falisca.  Initially his family was known as the Castelli, perhaps because of Arnulf’s role as castellan of the citadel at Terni, but this became “Castelli di Vico” and later simply “di Vico.”

Politics: The first Prefect of the City from this family, Pietro Castelli, got the family’s fortunes in Roman politics off to a rocky start in the late 10th century – he revolted against the Crescentii Pope John XIII and was punished by being suspended by his hair from the bronze equestrian statue of Constantine, paraded naked through Rome riding backwards on a donkey, and packed off to Germany as a hostage of Emperor Otto III.  The family prestige recovered, however, and an unusual number of prefects have come from the Lords of Vico.  A later prefect from the family assisted Pier Leoni in rescuing Pope Gelasius II from the clutches of Cencio II Frangipani in 1118.  The family allied itself to Pier Leoni and supported his son Pope Anacletus II during the schism of 1130, but Pietro di Vico received a pardon from the Frangipani Pope Innocent II after the death of Anacletus and was made prefect himself.  Pietro lost his job when the Roman Commune proclaimed its independence and expelled the old regime.

Estates: The estates of the di Vico family are, unsurprisingly, concentrated around Lake Vico and the environs of Sutri.  Like most Roman noble houses, they maintained an estate in Rome but fled the city following the communal revolution.

Prominent Members: Pietro, Lord of Vico; his son Giovanni.


What follows is a brief history of Rome in the early middle ages and a recounting of events since the start of our game in 1152.

Up to 1152
The Rise of the Papacy

In the 10th century, the Papacy was at its lowest point – Popes were selected and controlled by powerful Roman noble families, chief among them the Tusculani.  These noblemen styled themselves as “Senator” or “Patrician,” and effectively ruled Rome as secular princes.  While some Popes distinguished themselves as leaders, they were more often captives of the Roman political scene, beholden to whichever family had secured their election and doomed if that family should fall from grace.

This system of familial domination began to die out in the 10th century, when the German King Otto the Great conquered the former Kingdom of Italy and was crowned Holy Roman Emperor.  From this point on, the imperial crown and the crown of Italy remained with the German kings, and it was in the interest of the emperors that they, not the turbulent Roman aristocracy, decide who should be Pope.  Imperial intervention led to wars in Rome between pro-imperial and anti-imperial factions struggling to control the city and the Papacy.

In the late 11th century, the papacy at last began to assert itself.  The Imperial privilege of approving new popes was rejected and a College of Cardinals established for that purpose instead.  The Pope and the Emperor feuded over control of ecclesiastical appointments, or “investitures,” resulting in great unrest in both Italy and Germany.  Rome itself was sacked by the Normans in 1085.  Only in 1122 was the controversy over investiture was finally settled by the Concordat of Worms, which prevented the emperor from investing bishops with their holy offices and barred the emperor from having a direct hand in the selection of the Pope.

The Pierleoni and the Frangipani

At this time the master of Rome was indisputably Pier Leone, who held the title of Consul of Rome from around 1108 and was a firm papal ally.  Though he belonged to no family of importance, his father Leo had been a Jewish convert to Christianity who had amassed a great fortune from usury, and Pier Leone used this fortune to make himself the most powerful of Roman citizens.  He oversaw an Imperial coronation and fought for the Popes numerous times, including against the Frangipani, an old and prestigious Roman clan.  He died in 1128, “a man without an equal, immeasurably rich in money and children.”

When Pope Honorious II died two years later, the papal chancellor – himself a member of the Frangipani family – quickly selected a man named Gregorio to the papacy, who took the name Innocent II.  The rest of the cardinals decried this as illegitimate, and chose instead the second son of Pier Leone, named Pietro, who took the name Anacletus II.  Though arguably the less legitimate candidate, Innocent traveled abroad and gained the support of the kings of Europe.  Anacletus held on in Rome until his death in 1138, which ended the schism and allowed Innocent to return to the city in triumph.

The people of Rome, however, were growing restive.  In a time of growing wealth and prosperity in northern Italy, many cities enjoyed the independence of republican communes, while Rome’s burghers were shut out of government entirely.  The Papal Prefect, the Pope’s chief magistrate, held all power in the city.  The offices of his administration were filled largely by priests or his own noble relatives.  As Innocent was on his deathbed in 1143, the people of Rome rebelled against him and established a senate, consisting of 56 members, which quickly usurped most of Innocent’s temporal power in Rome.  He died before the end of the year.

Innocent was succeeded by Celestine II, another ally of the Frangipani, but he lived for only a year afterward and could not truly regain control of Rome.  After him came Lucius II, who fared no better – he warred with Sicily over a territorial dispute but was eventually forced to surrender.  Taking this opportunity, the Senate of Rome chased out the Papal Prefect, Pietro di Vico, and formally established the Commune of Rome.  To serve as Patrician, the new leader of this Commune, they chose Giordano Pierleone, another son of Pier Leoni and a younger brother of the antipope Anacletus II.

Lucius retreated to a fortress on the Capitoline hill and called for his Frangipani allies, but they were defeated by the Senate’s communal militia.  Mortally wounded by a stone hurled during the battle, Pope Lucius II passed away in February 1145.

Eugenius and the Romans

The College of Cardinals now chose a Pisan monk as Pope Eugenius III.  The Senate, however, blocked his consecration, and insisted that he could only take up office if he renounced all civic power and recognized the Senate.  He refused, and fled from Rome with his cardinals.  The Senators then banished all the nobles who had supported Lucius and Eugenius, including the Frangipani, and the people seized their property and looted their estates.

Though exiled, Eugenius used money and influence to gain the support of Rome’s neighbors and old enemies, the cities of Viterbo and Tivoli, who prepared for war.  Facing such odds, the Senate proposed negotiations.  A treaty was signed between the Pope and the Commune; the office of Patrician would be abolished, the Pope would return, and the Papal Prefect would be reinstated, but the Pope would recognize the Senate and its civil authority and pay the Senators a generous sum.

The animosity between the Senate and the Pope did not cease, however.  The treaty lasted only a few months before Eugenius, fearing another revolt, fled the city in the Spring of 1146.  The Senators again chased his supporters and cardinals out, and re-established Giordano Pierleone as Patrician of Rome.

The Monk, the Pope, and the King

Arnold of Brescia was an outspoken and controversial monk from Lombardy who the Church tried to silence for teaching dangerous doctrines.  He fled to France after being banished from Italy, but was condemned in Paris and exiled from there too, and the Church ordered his writings to be burned.  He was summoned to Rome in 1145 by Pope Eugenius III, and he threw himself to the Pope’s mercy.  Eugenius indeed took mercy on him, but compelled him to remain in Rome, to keep a better eye on him.

It was a poor decision, for Arnold soon returned to his old habits.  Perhaps inspired by the communal revolution there, Arnold declared that the Pope and his Curia were debauched and corrupt, and that they should give up all property and temporal power.  He called for the re-creation of the Roman government of ancient times to rule Rome, with the Pope acting only as a spiritual leader.  Already take by anti-clerical fever, the Romans received him warmly, and he urged the Senate to rebuild the city and restore the glory of Rome as an independent republic.  Even an excommunication failed to dissuade him, and his followers continued to grow.

In 1149, Eugenius attempted to take Rome by force, joined by the Count of Tusculum, the city of Tivoli, the forces of the Frangipani, and a detachment of Norman mercenaries.  Despite being outnumbered, the Romans managed to defeat the Papal army.  Another accord was finally reached between Eugene and the Senate, but the Romans refused to hand over Arnold and Eugene never felt safe enough to enter the city.

Both the Senate and the Pope requested that the German King, Konrad III, come and intervene on their behalf, with both sides offering to crown him as Holy Roman Emperor.  Having recently returned from the disastrous Second Crusade, Conrad prepared an expedition, but died in 1152 before it could get underway.  The throne of Germany and the title of King of the Romans passed to his thirty year old nephew Friedrich.

The Senate and Pope renewed their pleas, and at last enticed the King to make the journey to Rome.  A rumor spread, however, that Friedrich had entered into negotiations with the Pope and shunned the Senate, giving them only the ominous reply that when he arrived, he would “reward the loyal and punish the rebellious.”

When this rumor reached the Roman mob, rioting spread through the city.  Arnold and his followers took to the streets, demanding that the agreement with Pope Eugene be torn up and that a new, democratic Senate modeled on the ancient republic should be proclaimed to rule an independent Rome.

At this point, our game began.

Rome Since 1152
Deposed by the Senate, Patrician Pierleoni retreated to the Leonine City.  The new senate, with a hundred members and a strongly Arnoldist contingent, succeeded in driving out the last Papal soldiers from Rome, but ultimately cut a deal with the Patrician, allowing him to administer Rome west of the Tiber in the Senate’s name.

Rome under the new senate inaugurated its rule with a number of local wars.  Ignoring the Pope’s entreaties, Rome attacked its hated enemy Tivoli in 1152 and sacked the city.  It then responded to the pleas of the Sabine city of Rieti, which the Romans had helped rebuild after that city’s sack by the Normans, and made war on the Abbey of Farfa.  The Romans found victory on the field, but strategically the war was a stalemate.  Rome returned Nerola and Civitavecchia, which it had captured, in exchange for guarantees by Farfa of safe travel over the Via Salaria.

Meanwhile, King Friedrich made his way into Italy, inaugurating a grand effort to bring Lombardy more securely under his rule, to assert his ancient privileges there, and to gain the imperial crown.  Eugenius died and was succeeded by Anastasius IV, who himself lived only a year.  The cardinals then chose an Englishman as Pope Hadrian IV.  Hadrian pursued a bolder policy than Eugenius, placing an interdict on Rome that forced Arnold to flee to Naples, and using Friedrich’s arrival to compel the senate to submit to a treaty which recognized the senate but reinstated the Papal Prefect.  A mob assaulted Friedrich during his coronation ceremony in Rome, but the German knights won the day, and Friedrich won his crown.

Rome came into conflict with the Tusculani clan after some Roman merchants were assaulted near Albano.  They were victorious in a battle near Ardea, but were unable to take Tusculum itself; their siege was ultimately ended by the intervention of Oddone Colonna, who purchased the fortification from the Tusculani.  The Tusculani had, in the meantime, plundered and burned the Roman contado, producing a grain shortage and great famine.

Although relations between Rome and the Pope Hadrian became strained, particularly under the rule of the Prefect Antonio Demetri, their mutual treaty endured until Hadrian’s death in 1159.  A Roman delegation sent to Anagni compelled the cardinals to bury Hadrian and hold their conclave in Rome, which they did along with a corps of the Prefect’s knights.  The conclave, however, was unable to agree on a new pontiff, and turned violent when Cardinal Octavian took the Papal mantle and declared himself Pope in opposition to Cardinal Rolando, the favorite of most of the college.  A chaotic battle took place in the Leonine City, between the Pierleoni and the Romans on one side and the Frangipani and Demetri on the other, which ended in the escape of Rolando (now Alexander III) from Rome and the deaths of both the Patrician and the Prefect.

With the church in schism for the second time in three decades and the emperor making war on rebellious communes in Lombardy, God only knows what the future holds in store for Rome.
« Last Edit: March 12, 2015, 05:24:45 AM by Polycarp »
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Re: The Republic Reborn II: Reborn Again
« Reply #3 on: October 08, 2014, 06:55:08 PM »

Roman Law - The rules of the game and guides for playing it are found here, including how to post, how the Senate works, how to make money, and a few words about the philosophy of a cooperative game.

How to Post
This is a play-by-post game that proceeds in turns.  Each turn represents one season of a year (spring, summer, etc.).  Players post “orders” detailing what they intend to do in a certain season, and the I post an “update” that details the results of those orders, as well as what has happened in Rome, Italy, and the rest of the known world in that season.

Text Types

IC: Statements
Posts in an IC (in-character) box like this indicate what your character says or writes.  IC text boxes are called “statements.”  Statements are made by your character and may include speeches, conversations, letters, and any other kind of in-character communication.  Note that letters to NPCs outside Latium may take a full turn or more before a response is returned.

OOC: Orders
Post in an OOC (out-of-character) box like this indicate what your character does.  OOC text boxes are called “orders.”  Orders posts contain instructions that can include almost anything your character might be able to do - building a tower-house, distributing money to the poor, spying on an enemy (player or NPC), raising a private militia, investigating a town or industry you know little about, and so on.  Unlike statements, of which you can make as many as you want, you should only post one OOC box for orders each turn.  OOC boxes are also used for consular elections.

Regular text (like this) is for any out-of-character chat that isn’t orders – comments on the game, questions for me, conversations with other players, and so on.

Writing Statements

Statements, to me, are the heart of this game.  Statements are how you bring your character to life, and how you interact with other players in the game.  I encourage you to be creative and expressive, and to make as many statements as you feel like making.  The more a character says, the more we learn about that character, and the more colorful the game is.

Statements can have an impact on your orders.  You can say that your character is going to raise a mob in your orders, but if you give us a stirring in-character speech intended to raise a mob, it might help your chances of success.  Don’t worry if you don’t think you’re a great writer; it’s the creativity and effort that matter to me, not your technical writing skill.

You can also use statements to give us stories, vignettes, descriptions, flavor text, and so on if you feel so inclined – I always welcome creative prose.  I may even try and find a way to use it in a future update.  To distinguish prose from actual things your character says and writes, please put it in italics.

I often sprinkle a few Latin and Italian words around in my letters and updates, but you don’t need to feel obligated to follow my lead to play this game.  There are very few terms I use that don’t have perfectly suitable English equivalents.  Usually I’m pretty good about telling you what a non-English term means when I use it, but if you see me use a term like cattani or vicarius or patrimonium and don’t remember what it means, please just ask.

Writing Orders

Everything your character does should be in your orders post.  You can make a speech to the Senate saying that you’re going to do X, but X will not actually be done unless it’s also in your orders.

Orders take a variety of different forms.  Some orders might be investigations, like “find out where the nearest big silver mines are in this part of the world” or “find out who’s in charge of Anagni.”  Investigations like this usually cost nothing; they are simply how you learn details about the game world that you and your character might be interested in.

Other orders might be “orders” in the military sense – telling your men to patrol somewhere, guard something, escort you someplace, and so on.  Players who end up in command of armies will also have to provide orders detailing what they’re doing.

Many orders are spending orders – “spend X WP (Wealth Points) on doing Y.”  Finances for each character are posted with every update, detailing assets and income that you can use to build structures, start enterprises, pay for soldiers, and do pretty much anything else you can imagine that might cost money.  If you’re not sure how much money something is going to cost, you’re welcome to make an investigative order first (“Find out how much would it cost to do X”) or to make a conditional order (“Do X as long as it doesn’t cost more than 5 WP”).

Remember that orders fail, and they fail frequently.  Many times things your character attempts will be delayed, frustrated by an NPC or another player, or otherwise fail to go the way you (or your character) hoped.  Sometimes this is because an action is anachronistic or otherwise unfeasible, in which case I’ll tell you so; even perfectly valid actions, however, can be challenging.  You don’t always get what you want at first – sometimes you need to try again, try a different tactic, spend more money than you expected, get another character’s help, and so on.  RR is all about failing forward – even when you fail, I try to give you alternatives and opportunities.  Sometimes failed orders are the start of a story arc that will ultimately be rewarded with perseverance and some creativity.  To enjoy this game, you need to accept that not everything you try to do will be a masterful and immediate success, and understand that having an order fail doesn’t mean you’re playing the game wrong.

Secrecy and Metagaming

This game requires players to roleplay, which means separating in-character from out-of-character information.  Even though statements and orders are all posted in the thread, your character only knows information that’s been given to him in character.  If a letter isn’t addressed to your character, your character isn’t aware of it.

I trust my players to keep IC and OOC information separate.  Sometimes, however, players can “metagame” unconsciously.  If you feel strongly that a particular statement or order needs to be kept a secret from other players, you are welcome to PM it to me.  The game is much better and more interesting when everyone posts their letters, conversations, orders, and so on in the thread, so I encourage you to only consider PMing me statements or orders when it’s really necessary.

Inquests for specific characters (posted with each update) are only in-character knowledge for characters they are addressed to.  They are spoilered to prevent you from seeing other players’ inquests if you don’t want to.  Ultimately, it’s up to you whether you want to read other players’ inquests or whether you’d rather keep it a mystery, but either way you are expected not to act on that information, as it is not known by your character.

The Senate and the Consuls
The Senate

The Senate of Rome is composed of one hundred senators.  Currently, the position of senator is not elected, but rather each senator selects his successor; in practice the office is usually hereditary.  All players control a senator; the rest of the senators are NPCs.

The Senate of Rome is served by two consuls, executive officers elected by the senate every year.  The Exterior Consul is responsible for the affairs of the city outside the walls, while the Interior Consul is responsible for the management of the city inside the walls.  The top two candidates in a consular election become consuls, with the top candidate given the privilege of selecting which portfolio, exterior or interior, he will take for that year.

The Lesser Council (consilium minus, or just consilium) is the special leadership committee of the senate, charged with advising the consuls on matters of governance and deliberating matters of state deemed too sensitive to be disclosed before the full senate.  To use a United Nations analogy, the Lesser Council is like the Security Council of the Roman Senate – the big decisions get made there.  Lesser Council members, called senatores consiliarii (or just consiliarii), are regular senators who have been chosen by the senate to sit on this committee.  In this game, all Lesser Council members are controlled by a player.

The way the senate works is not set in stone.  As the senate’s leaders, player characters can propose and make all kinds of changes, including fundamental changes to how senators are selected, how consular elections are held, and what the powers of the consuls are (or whether there should be consuls at all!).  Big changes, however, may require convincing the NPC senate as well as your fellow consiliarii.  Having a lot of influence is always helpful when making these kinds of proposals.

The Consuls

The Senate elects two Consuls every Autumn.  Traditionally, the consulate is composed of one Exterior Consul and one Interior Consul.  In theory, the exterior consul has responsibility for Rome’s affairs outside the walls (including diplomacy and war), while the interior consul has responsibility within Rome’s walls (including public order and works).  The particular responsibilities of the consuls are not written down or restricted by law, however, so in practice the consuls have whatever power and responsibility their fellow players (and the NPC senate) let them get away with.

While the consuls are the guys in charge, this doesn’t mean other consiliarii can’t have foreign correspondence, engage in their own military pursuits, or invest in public works – it just means they may not have access to the militia, treasury, and other assets of state to do so.

There is currently no provision for a consul to be recalled or impeached, but he may be overthrown (even violently) if he takes actions against that clearly defy the will of the senatores consiliarii and the wider Senate.  Be wary, for the Romans are a wrathful people, and the fate of Caesar could easily be yours.

Consular Elections

The senate holds consular elections every year at the beginning of the autumn turn (immediately after the summer update is posted).  While every senator gets a vote, including all the NPC senators, we’ve abstracted the voting system with “influence,” a measure of how much weight a character’s voice carries among Rome’s elite.

In an election, each Lesser Council member (consiliarius) is allowed to cast a number of votes equal to the character’s influence stat, which represents the character getting his “faction” of NPC senators to vote a certain way.  More details on the election process are provided when the elections are posted each game year.

The two candidates with the most votes gain consular office.  Traditionally, the winner who has the most votes has the privilege of deciding whether he will be exterior or interior consul, and the second-place winner will receive the remaining office.

Changing the Rules

The rules of the Senate are not ironclad.  How many senators there are, how they are selected, how many consuls there are, what the consuls do, how they are elected, whether there should be other offices – all of these can be changed by the players, though some proposals might run into resistance from NPC factions.  The point is that there are infinite possibilities for remaking the structure of Rome’s government.

Personal Stats

Aside from their wealth and physical assets, Senators have three important statistics – Influence, Popularity, and Orthodoxy.

Influence indicates one’s importance and status in Rome’s ruling classes, among the senators and equites.  Your influence stat is used to determine how many “votes” you get in elections, particularly consular elections.  If your influence gets too low, you may be expelled from the Senate (which may effectively be a game over).

Popularity indicates how beloved you are by the vast majority of the city’s people, the infamous “Roman Mob.”  While popularity doesn’t give you votes in the Senate, it influences how successful your ventures in the city are likely to be, and can allow you to raise mobs and even armies more effectively.  If your popularity gets too low, you are likely to be assassinated or have your estate overrun by an angry mob.

Orthodoxy indicates how faithful of a Christian you are considered to be by the Church.  Orthodoxy is probably the least important stat for everyday actions, but having high orthodoxy can gain you the cooperation of the clergy, who are quite influential in Latium.  If your orthodoxy gets too low, you may be excommunicated.


The city of Rome also has a statistic of its own – Rage.  The Romans are a turbulent people, notorious for their pride and stubbornness.  Always resentful of foreign rule, Roman riots have chased a number of princes and emperors from their city over the centuries, and many Roman leaders who thought themselves invincible fell from power in a paroxysm of mob violence.  Alberic II, the greatest of the Tusculani, once stirred up a riot so great against King Hugh of Italy that Hugh was forced to flee from the Castel St. Angelo by lowering himself down the walls on a rope.

Rage denotes how angry the Romans are.  It ranges from 1 (Subdued) to 7 (Apoplectic).  Romans, being Romans, never have their rage quenched entirely – it will never be zero.

High rage is dangerous, because it means civil unrest and riots are more likely to occur.  Rage is best controlled by addressing the issues the public cares most about, which are listed at the top of each update.  While it’s usually best to keep rage low, high rage can sometimes be useful – high rage makes it easier to raise a mob for your own ends (and makes the mobs you raise bigger), and high rage also increases militia turnout if the city embarks on a campaign against a target of the city’s rage.  Remember, however, that other PCs and even NPCs can also use rage to their benefit in this way.

Wealth and Enterprises
The standard unit of exchange at this time is the pound or mark (equal to half a pound) of silver.  A pound was typically equal to about 240 of the most common coin, the silver denarius or denier.  Because determining prices and real incomes in the 12th century is rather difficult, however, wealth is abstracted into “WP” (Wealth Points) in RR.  Wealth Points are an OOC unit, not an IC one, so when characters express an amount of money I usually put it in brackets (e.g. “I have decided to give you [2 WP]”).

WP can be spent on many things – fortifying and beautifying estates, raising troops, bribing senators, giving alms to the poor, building ships, and opening enterprises to create even more WP.  The uses for WP are not limited to the things listed here.  You’re encouraged to be creative – if you’re not sure how much WP some plan of yours might cost, you’re welcome to ask me in your orders.

Not everything you do costs WP.  Many orders require no money (or so little that it’s not worth counting).  While wealth can help your character achieve his aims, it’s completely possible to be an influential, popular, and/or highly effective senator without being rich.

There are no banks in 12th century Italy, and there isn’t enough free currency to hoard coinage like some kind of Roman dragon.  When nobles and merchants save up wealth, it usually means buying precious assets – often metal items like silver tableware and gold jewelry, but occasionally furs, tapestries, artwork, and so on – that can later be sold if it becomes necessary.  This means that if your estate is sacked or burned down, you will lose most or all of your saved wealth.  Fortified estates and tower-houses, of course, are less vulnerable to this, but it’s always a possibility.


An “enterprise” is an asset that makes money.  Enterprises range from croplands to grist mills to apothecaries and trading houses.  Enterprises yield a set amount of WP every year on certain seasons.  Some enterprises also have special bonuses - for example, nobles can raise small numbers of levied farmers from croplands, while bakeries can give you a popularity boost if a famine strikes.  Because RR is a roleplaying game, not just a money-making simulator, enterprises may also affect your situation in unique, non-mechanical ways; special events, interesting contacts, and various rumors may be linked to certain industries.

Importantly, the list of enterprises here is not exhaustive.  If your character is interested in a business that’s not listed here, it could very well end up as a new enterprise if it’s historically feasible and your character pursues it in orders.

Every enterprise has a cost.  Enterprises must be purchased for one lump sum – you cannot start building them until you are capable of paying the entire listed cost.

Enterprises take only one season to start functioning.  They do not produce income during the season in which they are being set up.

Types of Enterprises

Urban enterprises must generally be built in Rome itself, though in some cases they may be located just outside the walls or in another town or city.  These enterprises usually require labor only available in the city and cater to urban markets.

Rural enterprises must generally be built outside Rome.  Most of these are agricultural in nature, though not all are actual farms – some, like Grist Mills, are buildings that are generally only useful in the countryside.

Agricultural enterprises are fields, pastures, orchards, and other enterprises which involve agriculture or pastoralism.  Agricultural enterprises usually have no cost – land cannot be constructed, it must be bought, leased, or otherwise acquired.  Agricultural enterprises can often be transformed into other agricultural enterprises with a small payment, though not all locations are suitable for all kinds of agriculture.

Manufacturing enterprises convert some raw material into a good.  Most enterprises are manufacturing enterprises, though the “goods” vary from tools to flour to dyed cloth.

Hospitality enterprises are part of Rome’s service industry, catering primarily to pilgrims.  They tend to have their income concentrated in the Spring and are highly dependent on the success of the yearly pilgrimage season.

Mercantile enterprises do not create goods, but specialize in buying and selling them, sometimes with very distant clients.  Mercantile enterprises also include those in which money itself is a good, like counting houses which skirt around Church usury laws to gain profits from lending.

Enterprises and Social Status

All players are either common or noble.  This has an impact on the enterprises they can possess.

While nobles belong to a higher social class, they are traditionally expected not to dirty their hands with trade and manufacturing; land is the only real respectable income source for a nobleman.  As a result, nobles cannot own any mercantile enterprises and may own no more than one urban enterprise of any type.  If they break these rules, they may start to lose influence and/or orthodoxy.

Common citizens have no social restrictions on trade and industry, but conversely they are generally not landowners – the countryside is controlled by lords, not merchants.  It is generally very difficult for common characters to acquire land for agricultural enterprises, though it can potentially be rented.  Non-noble characters who hold land in their own right, if it’s more than a few parcels in the city, are likely to eventually be challenged by the nobility.


Some enterprises are more reliable than others.  An enterprise may be quite volatile, meaning that it is more frequently subject to difficulties or mishaps.  These mishaps vary considerably – a sheep pasture might be affected by disease or drought, while a vineyard might be plagued by blight or ruined by a cold winter.  In general, the more profitable an economy is, the more uncertain it is.

Note that volatility reflects only “random” events, not those that come about because of character decisions.  Although wheat-growing is not very volatile, if Rome’s croplands are being regularly burned and plundered by enemies, that economy is going to fail often.

Very Low:
Wheat Economy (Croplands, Grist Mill, Bakery)
Fish Economy (Salinae, Fishery)
Lumber Mill

Oil Economy (Orchard, Oil Mill)
Wine Economy (Vineyard, Wine Press)

Linen Economy (Flax Field, Weaving Hall, Dyeworks)
Goldsmiths’ Workshop

Woolen Economy (Pasture, Fulling Mill, Weaving Hall, Dyeworks)
Apothecarial Economy (Orchard, Storehouse, Spetiarium)
Perfume Economy (Orchard, Perfumery)
Counting House

The Market

It’s possible for an enterprise to become over-saturated – Rome only needs so many goldsmiths.  Enterprises dealing with rare or specialized goods may find that their profitability suffers if players build too many of them.  These kind of events are usually not a surprise, and players will typically be warned when they try to start a new enterprise in a market that already seems saturated.  Rectifying this situation may require “dealing” with the competition in other ways.

Rome’s policies can also influence this – opening your ports and markets to foreign lands often brings profits, but it can likewise bring cheap imports that undercut local enterprises.

Enterprise List

Common enterprises are those that are well-known and can be built and operated by any character.

Common Enterprises
Grist Mill (Rural, Manufacturing)
Peasants depend on local grist mills to turn their grain into flour.  Villages may have their own animal-powered mills, but most lords build water-powered mills on local streams to handle large quantities of grain quickly.  The miller keeps a portion of every peasant’s flour for himself as his wage, and sends another portion to the owner of the mill, providing modest but reliable profits.
Cost: 12
Income: +1 during Summer; additional +1 in Summer with Croplands (maximum 2).

Wine Press (Rural, Manufacturing)
The process of grape pressing – formerly done by treading on the grapes, the way some peasants still do it – was vastly improved in speed and quality by the invention of the “basket press,” a barrel-like apparatus with a descending weight often driven by a crank-turned screw.  In addition to making and selling his own wine, a press owner can also charge fees to peasants who are willing to pay to have their grapes processed.
Cost: 12
Income: +2 during Autumn; additional +1 in Autumn with a Vineyard (maximum 2).

Oil Mill (Rural, Manufacturing)
Olive oil is a staple of the Roman diet, but olives must be crushed and pressed to produce it.  An oil mill consists of two kinds of machines: the mill itself, which is usually a stone basin with a vertical millstone pulled in circles by a donkey, and the press, which is very much like a basket press for wine.
Cost: 12
Income: +2 during Autumn; additional +1 in Autumn with an Olive Orchard (maximum 2).

Lumber Yard (Rural, Manufacturing)
The shipbuilding trade requires massive amounts of timber.  Hauling that timber and cutting it into boards is long, backbreaking work, which hasn’t really changed since the fall of the ancient Romans.  The work is done by hand – axes are used to split logs into planks, and the planks are finished with adzes, chisels, saws, rasps, and draw knives.  Large-scale carpentry is very labor-intensive, but fortunately the workers aren’t paid as much as woodcarvers and other more skilled craftsmen.
Cost: 10
Income: +2 during Winter
Bonus: This enterprise reduces the upkeep of a single ship by 1 WP.  See the rules on Ships for more.

Bakery (Urban, Manufacturing)
Rome consumes an enormous amount of bread – it makes up most of the average Roman’s diet.  Peasants in the contado usually bake their own, but the teeming masses of Rome’s lower class depend on large, multi-oven bakeries run by professional bakers.  These bakeries are fairly large buildings – usually made of brick to avoid fires – packed with clay-brick bread ovens.
Cost: 16
Income: +2 during Winter; additional +1 during Summer with a Grist Mill (maximum 2).
Bonus: During a famine, the price of bread rises dramatically, and you will have the option to either gain bonus income or distribute cheap bread for a possible Popularity boost.  The more bakeries you have, the larger and more likely this boost is.

Weaving Hall (Urban, Manufacturing)
Peasant women typically spin and weave clothes for their families themselves, but urban Romans seldom have this “privilege.”  Weaving halls are large-scale workshops where wool is scoured, spun, and woven into broadcloth to be sold to tailors and cloth merchants (or where flax is processed into linen in a somewhat similar manner).
Cost: 20.  You must choose either Wool or Linen.
Income: +2 during Winter; additional +2 in Spring with a Pasture or Flax Field (maximum 2).

Spetiarium (Urban, Manufacturing)
Spetiarius is usually translated as “apothecary,” but the medieval spetiarius is an eclectic mixture of druggist, spice trader, and candyman.  Spices and rare fruits were not just culinary treats, but were believed to have various medicinal properties that aided digestion, prevented disease, boosted the libido, and increased general health.  The spetiarium is a place where sundries like cinnamon, cassia, pepper, sugar (considered a spice), incense, citrus, and various plant extracts are made into syrups, unguents, confections, electuaries, and essences.
Cost: 8
Income: +1 in Summer with each of the following: Orchard (citrus), Storehouse (sugar), Storehouse (spices).

Hospitium (Urban, Hospitality)
Rome’s many pilgrims always need somewhere to stay, and that place is the Hospitium.  These structures take all sizes and shapes and serve all manner of clients.  Hospitia are guaranteed profit-makers – but only when the pilgrims come!
Cost: 10
Income: +3 during Spring.
Note: Hospitia themselves are not very volatile, but this does not take into account extraordinary events (like war, or a Papal interdict) that can completely ruin the hospitality economy.  Hospitia offer a lot of profit for a great price without relying on other enterprises, but anyone in this business needs to pay special attention to the pilgrimage.

Storehouse (Urban, Mercantile)
Inventory is required for trade, and inventory must be stored and protected.  A storehouse is a spacious building (often re-purposed from an old ruin) that securely stores goods awaiting maritime transport.  (When you build a storehouse, you must specify a certain type of trade you are engaging in, and clear this with me.  You may have multiple storehouses engaging in the same type of trade.)
Cost: 12
Income: +1 during Spring, Summer, and Autumn.
Note: You can build a storehouse for pretty much anything as long as it’s traded in Rome; the profits are all equal for purposes of this enterprise, though your choice of good may matter for other reasons.  How many enterprises of this kind the market will bear depends both on the demand and the port itself – busier ports will give more opportunities for trade.

Counting House (Urban, Mercantile)
Christians are forbidden to loan money for interest – but then again, they’re forbidden from killing too, and look how popular that is.  At the counting house, money is put to work making more money through investments and loans.  To lend money, you need to have money, and the counting house requires you to have some savings for it to function.
Cost: 12
Income: +1 in every season as long as you have at least 2 WP saved.  This savings limit is cumulative with that from other counting houses you own.
Note: A character owning a Counting House may experience lower Orthodoxy; the more you own, the greater the problem will be.

Fishery (Rural, Manufacturing)
Anchovies, mullet, mackerel, bass, carp, eel – the Tiber and the nearby waters of the Mediterranean are rich with all kinds of fish.  Though fish is not a particularly important staple food during most of the year, the Church has made it an essential industry with its prohibition on the eating of meat at certain times, particularly Lent.  Fish, being exempt from this ban, are critical to a well-rounded diet that is also in keeping with ritual observance.  The fishery is not any single building but a complex of piers, sheds, drying-barns, carpentry and net-weaving workshops, and other assorted structures that make the catching and processing of fish possible.
Cost: 14
Income: +1 during Winter and Spring; additional +1 during Winter with Salinae.
Note: Fisheries must, obviously, be built where there is water and fish.  Though their volatility is very low, it should be remembered that anything near water has a higher chance of being damaged by flooding.

Salinae (Rural, Manufacturing)
Salt is critically important for the preservation of food.  Salinae are shallow artificial pools dug near saline ponds and marshes; the brackish water is allowed to flood into the pools and is evaporated in the sun, leaving only salt behind.  The process requires few tools and its sole raw material, salt water, is plentiful, though it does require a large number of low-wage laborers to dig the salinae and collect the salt, a fair number of whom fall pretty to the ague while working so close to the unhealthy marshes.
Cost: 6
Income: +1 during Summer.
Note: Salinae can only be built in brackish marshlands.

Rare enterprises are those that cannot automatically be built because they require expertise, technical knowledge, rare goods, skilled workers, or some other factor that’s not readily available to all characters by default.  Building these enterprises may require you to investigate foreign lands, barter for trade secrets with other players, hire specialized artisans abroad, or acquire lands from NPCs.  Building these enterprises is best explored through inquests in your orders.

Rare Enterprises
Fulling Mill (Rural, Manufacturing)
“Fulling” is the process of scouring and thickening woolen cloth.  Traditionally, this process is done by hand by soaking the cloth in stale urine or kneading it with “fuller’s earth,” stretching the cloth on hooks, and physically beating it with hammers before a final rinse.  The fulling mill automates this process by using a water-powered trip hammer to beat the cloth.
Cost: 4
Income: +1 during Spring with a Weaving Hall that weaves wool.

Dyeworks (Urban, Manufacturing)
Fabric is worth much more when colored.  Dyers use all manner of plants, berries, and minerals to give fabric the kind of bright colors that nobles and peasants alike prefer.  Dye will quickly wash out of fabric, however, unless it is fixed with a “mordant” – the best by far is alum, but various metals and even stale urine are used when that rare mineral is unavailable.  Dyeing is a particularly vile occupation, creating a great deal of noxious fumes and toxic wastewater, and dyers’ workshops tend to be located in slums along the Tiber for this reason.
Cost: 14.
Income: +1 during Summer; additional +1 in Summer with a Weaving Hall (maximum 2); additional +1 in Summer if you have a source of Alum.

Perfumery (Urban, Manufacturing)
The Saracens invented the process of distilling.  With their techniques, flowers, fruits, and herbs can be concentrated in large pot stills into concentrated oils and fragrant waters.  Though unknown to most of Christendom, these fine scents are increasingly popular among the upper classes and are said to have healthful properties as well.
Cost: 12
Income: +2 during Spring with a Citrus Orchard (maximum 2).

Goldsmiths’ Workshop (Urban, Manufacturing)
“Goldsmith” is somewhat of a misnomer – most goldsmiths in Christian Europe work only occasionally with gold, and primarily with silver and bronze.  Goldsmiths are highly skilled and well-paid artisans who make all manner of items from precious metals, from cutlery and candlesticks to ecclesiastical instruments like censers, ciboria, aspergilla, and chalices.  Though wealthy merchants aspiring to high society are an increasing part of their clientele, the Church is still a goldsmith’s best customer.  Gold and silver, being foreign imports, can be subject to price fluctuations, but at least precious metals will always be in fashion.
Cost: 22
Income: +1 during every season.
Bonus: If you own at least one goldsmiths’ workshop, the amounts of saved WP required to increase the opulence level of your primary estate by 1 and 2 levels are reduced to 6 and 12, respectively, instead of 10 and 20.

Sculptors’ Workshop (Urban, Manufacturing)
Scluptors are the best of the stonemasons, men with a steady hand, a good knowledge of the properties of stone, and a keen eye for detail.  The ancient practice of making large, freestanding stone sculptures has died out; modern sculptors make reliefs and engravings.  Most of their work is ecclesiastical, decorating the capitals of columns, tympanums above church doors, facades, grotesques and gargoyles, and even tombs.  Rome, with its hundreds of churches, chapels, and basilicas, is an ideal place for a sculptor to work.  Though secular lords sometimes commission sculpture as well, the sculptor is generally even more dependent on the Church than the goldsmith.
Cost: 18
Income: +1during Spring, Summer, and Winter
Bonus: If you own at least one Sculptor’s Workshop, you receive a discount on building, renovating, or repairing churches, abbeys, and other ecclesiastical structures equal to 1 WP for every 5 WP spent (rounded down, but minimum 1 WP).

Forge Mill (Urban, Manufacturing)
Blacksmithing is largely a cottage industry, performed by a single smith and his apprentice(s).  It is hard work, particularly beating the hot iron, which must be repeatedly hammered and re-heated until the shape is right.  A water-powered trip hammer (or maglio, or martinet) greatly reduces the labor involved; now a single apprentice can simply hold the metal while the massive hammer does the work, then hand the piece off to a smith for finer crafting.  This enterprise is a large-scale workshop in which a number of blacksmiths work, often organized in a societas (partnership or confraternity), to produce large quantities of tools, horseshoes, nails, armor, and weapons.
Cost: 15
Income: +1 in Spring and Winter.
Bonus:  If you own at least one Forge Mill, upkeep for armored soldiers is reduced by 1 WP for every 3 WP in upkeep you pay (that is, reduced by 33%).  Your 25 free masnada are also considered armored at no extra cost to you.  In addition, for each Forge Mill you own, you can equip up to 100 soldiers with armor in a single season; normally, producing that amount of armor can take up to a year.  You may “lend” this last ability to other players who are raising armored forces.

Agricultural enterprises cannot be “built” at all – land must be acquired first.  Except for Flax Fields, they are all available for any character to cultivate so long as the land is available.

Agricultural Enterprises
Cropland (Rural, Agricultural)
Most agricultural land is given over to the production of wheat and rye.  Most croplands operate on the three-field system, in which parcels of land alternate between cereals, legumes (peas, beans, etc.), and laying fallow.  While grain is not a terribly profitable good, it is always in demand.
Cost: You may pay 1 WP to turn another Agricultural enterprise into Cropland.
Income: +1 during Summer.
Bonus: If you are a noble, for every Cropland you own, you may muster 25 Rural Levies from this enterprise at no cost.  If these levies are active at the end of summer, however, this enterprise will not produce income.  If these men are suffer grievous casualties, you may be unable to muster more men from this enterprise for a period of time.

Pasture (Rural, Agricultural)
Sheep and goats are the most common stock animals of Latium – sheep are raised primarily for wool, while goats provide dairy and meat.  Pastures are usually located in hilly areas or rocky ground where farming would not be profitable.  Animal husbandry requires far fewer workers than cropland does.
Cost: You may pay 2 WP to turn another Agricultural enterprise into a Pasture.
Income: +1 during Spring.

Orchard (Rural, Agricultural)
Latium is just about on the northern edge of Italy’s best fruit and olive producing region.  Orchards are located on favorable hills and tended by hired laborers.  Olives form part of the basic Roman diet, while citrus fruit is used medicinally or to flavor other dishes – the variety of orange grown in Italy is bitter and unsuitable for eating by itself.
Cost: You may pay 3 WP to turn another Agricultural enterprise into an Orchard.  You must choose either Olives or Citrus.
Income: +1 during Autumn (Olives) or +1 during Winter (Citrus).

Flax Field (Rural, Agricultural)
Flax is a flowering plant grown chiefly for its fibers, which are spun into make linen.  After the flax is harvested, it must be dried, retted, broken, scotched, and heckled before it can be spun.  Flax production is hard, manual work performed by peasants.  Though flax seeds are eaten and sold, they are not a major part of the local diet.  Flax seed oil (linseed oil) is also used in painting and woodworking.
Cost: You may pay 2 WP to turn another Agricultural enterprise into a Flax Field. 
Income: +1 during Spring.

Vineyard (Rural, Agricultural)
Wine is the beverage of choice for all Romans, rich and poor alike (though the former enjoy much better wine than the latter).  Vineyards are usually located in inland hill regions and tended by hired agricultural laborers.
Cost: You may pay 3 WP to turn another Agricultural enterprise into a Vineyard.
Income: +1 during Autumn.

Estates and Construction
Every senator begins with an estate in an area of their choice.  At the game’s start, this estate is fairly modest, but it can be made more secure and more opulent with WP.

Constructions are not limited to estates and castles, which are noted here.  Ports, schools, and repairs of walls and aqueducts have all been built/accomplished by other players.


An estate is any senatorial residence or fortification.  There are no limits to the number of estates a senator can build, but one is always considered a primary estate – where your character’s primary residence and “base of operations” is.  Your primary estate is also where your treasury is, and if it is overrun you may lose some or all of your saved wealth.  Your character’s family is assumed to be here as well, and unless you have orders to the contrary – moving them to a country villa for a season, for instance – they may be in danger if the estate falls.

If you have multiple estates, you can always change which one is primary, but it’s not always possible to do so instantly – if you get an Inter-update Event about a riot approaching your palazzo, it’s a little late to be talking about relocating.

Any estate, primary or not, is defined by two characteristics – security and opulence.  By default, a character’s villa has zero in both scores.  This doesn’t mean it’s completely indefensible or that it’s an impoverished hovel, but it is no more secure and no more impressive than the home of any other reasonably prosperous citizen.

Security is the measure of how strong an estate is as a fortification.  Security ranks make an estate progressively more difficult to attack; at low levels, security serves mostly to deter poorly-armed looters, while at higher levels even well-armed and trained forces will take heavy casualties trying to take it (if they are successful at all).

If an estate consists of a tower attached to a villa/palazzo (most do, unless built to be freestanding), at security levels 3 and higher you can move saved wealth into the attached tower if the (fortified) palazzo is overrun.  You can move up to 4 WP in this way at 3rd level, and 4 more for each level above that.  With enough spending, you can essentially protect your hoard from anything but an army with siege weapons.

Level 0: The estate has no notable defensive precautions, save perhaps a modest courtyard wall.
Level 1: The estate is somewhat “hardened” against intrusion – a thicker and higher wall around the compound, a first floor with no windows or just slits, stone construction that’s resistant to fire, a reinforced gate, and so on.
Level 2: The estate is as fortified as it can be while still retaining a “normal” interior.  The walls are tuff block faced with brickwork, often recycled from old ruins.  Its windows are small, albeit still functional, and it has arrow loops on most or all floors.  The roof is accessible and has an embattled parapet.  The estate has one or more courtyard walls which may have their own arrow loops or watch posts.
Level 3: A security level of 3 or higher represents the presence of a true torre, either attached to a palazzo or freestanding.  This tower, around 20-30 meters high, is a true defensive structure with an embattled parapet, arrow loops, and often a raised door only accessible by stair or ramp.  The inside is usually not meant for long-term habitation, but it provides refuge for a senator, his family, and his guards.  It has a small armory with slings, bows, and so on.
Level 4: The torre is taller and stronger, potentially 30-40 meters in height.  It offers a commanding view of the surrounding neighborhood, and has barracks and supplies for long-term defense.  Only trained and well-armed soldiers have any chance against it, and even they may find storming it extremely costly.
Level 5: A torre up to 40-50 meters in height.  A tower of this size and strength is essentially impregnable to anything but siege weaponry.  Such a fortification often has its own siege weapons as well – small catapults on the roof can be used against enemies, or even other nearby towers!
Level 6+: At this point, adding more to a torre mostly just adds storage and barracks space, as well as additional height.  Assume about 10 meters per additional level.  Truly high towers may largely be just for bragging rights, but they also increase the range of a tower’s missiles; a really high tower can project power over many blocks, potentially even a whole district.

Opulence is the measure of how sumptuous and rich an estate is.  Opulence advertises your status to everyone who visits, displaying your power and wealth.  Opulence levels put visiting NPCs in a better mood, and holding regular social events with important guests at an opulent palazzo can increase your Influence.  Some NPCs who are used to excellent accommodations may actually be insulted by attending a function at an estate they deem not opulent enough for their status.

Because a character’s saved wealth is usually saved in the form of precious goods – silver tableware, precious tapestries, golden candlesticks, and so on – saved wealth also increases the opulence of your primary estate by one level if you have at least 10 WP saved, and by two levels if you have more than 20 WP saved.  More WP than this has no effect, since stuffing treasures into a modest city villa can only improve it so far – then it’s just awkward and garish.

If your saved WP is 2 or less, your estate is actually considered one level of opulence lower than the structure itself.  Poverty isn’t sexy.

Level 0: The estate is functional, but “quaint” at best, befitting a moderately prosperous merchant with austere taste or a rustic cattani unconcerned with luxury.
Level 1: The estate is roomier and nicer than most, with good plaster walls and wide arcades.  A prosperous Roman merchant would be pleased to live here.
Level 2: The estate is a true palazzo at this level.  Tall, arched arcades separate the multi-story, whitewashed residence from a nice garden decorated with ancient statuary.  Inside, there are some architectural flourishes and possibly some frescoes.
Level 3: The palazzo is up to the standards of Rome’s best equites.  The palazzo has many tall dining rooms with ceilings of imported wood, each with its own grand fireplace; the archways are tall and elegant, and there are decorative flourishes on all the columns.  It may even have glass windows.  The gardens have rare and curious plants and choice statuary (some of which may be custom, and not merely pulled from the ruins).
Level 4: This palazzo is among the most impressive of Rome.  There are frescoes and painted patterns on every wall and fine detailing on every column, banister, arcade, and mantel.  The furniture is all imported, and the roof is brightly colored tiles over lead sheeting.  The garden is a delightful paradise, filled with fruit trees, well-manicured hedges, and possibly even a working fountain.  Such a palazzo is like its own village, with a small army of servants (and their own residence, separate from the main estate) and often with its own chapel (and its own family priest).
Level 5: This truly opulent palazzo can be compared only with the palaces of the Cardinals; it is everything that a level 4 is but bigger, grander, and more expensive.
Level 6+: This is Papal palace level.  A peasant witnessing it might think he was in heaven (as if you’d let peasants in here!).  There is a potential risk of actually losing Orthodoxy at this level – not only does the Pope hate competition, but everyone will start to compare you with some perfumed Saracen prince.


Each level of security or opulence costs 5 WP.  Damage to an estate can reduce its security and/or opulence, and you may have to pay to repair it (the price depends on the damage, but it always less than building a new one from scratch).

Construction on an estate takes 1 season for each level (of anything) plus 2 additional seasons.  Thus, building a 15 WP structure would take 5 seasons; building that same structure in three discrete increments of 5 WP would take 9 seasons.  This “surcharge” in time reflects the fact that it’s easier to build a whole structure from the ground up than repeatedly renovate a structure, which generally requires partial deconstruction as well.  On the other hand, a building is largely useless before it’s complete, and you may not want to wait in your 0-security estate for years while your massive 6-level torre is slowly funded and constructed.


Castles, both small (a rocca) and large (a real castrum) can be built in the country in a similar manner to an estate.  Like an estate, castles can have both security and opulence scores, though a castle in the contado will probably not benefit as much from opulence as a palazzo in the city (there are fewer people to see it, and it’s just not in as “happening” a neighborhood).  Unlike a tower house, however, castles generally grow outward rather than upward, adding curtain walls and defensive towers instead of additional height.

It should be noted that castles, unlike towers, may be considered “unauthorized” by the sovereign – in our case, the Pope – and building them will cause friction with the Curia unless your character is a papal vassal (that is, a nobleman) and has been granted a license for the fortification.  Small castles in Rome’s immediate neighborhood may simply be ignored or overlooked, but the larger a fortification is the more likely it is to be noticed, particularly if it sits on an important strategic point.

A castle can’t be built at a security level lower than 3.  In general, a castle lower than security level 5 is just a keep; it may have a small perimeter wall, but not a true curtain wall with battlements and towers.  Generally only castles at security level 6 and higher are considered real castra, as opposed to a rocca, though these terms are somewhat flexible in their common usage.

Soldiers and Ships
Raising Soldiers

While the militia of Rome serves without pay – militia service is required for citizenship – senators can raise their own small private forces at a personal cost.  Typically, private armies cost 1 WP per 100 men each season, assuming they are outfitted as (or similarly to) pedites or masnada.  Armored infantry cost twice as much (1 WP per 50 men).

Every senator gets 25 “free” masnada who do not require any upkeep cost – these are the core bodyguards and loyal armsmen that protect your family.  They can be given orders just like any other soldiers of yours.

The Senate or individual senators may also seek out mercenaries.  The availability of mercenaries depends on the time and place, but usually mercenaries are given a fixed payment for a campaign, and hope to augment that through plunder.

Drafting Sailors

There is very little difference in the 12th century between a merchant ship and a ship of war – because naval battles, when they occur, are conducted almost entirely by boarding, a large cargo ship full of armed men can be a very formidable warship.  Some ships, however, like taridae and naves castellate, have specific augmentations with naval warfare or troop transport in mind.

Galley slaves are not generally in use in the 12th century – the ships of the Italian cities are rowed by free citizens doing their civic duty, or paid rowers.  Any infantry units can be tasked as rowers, and will bring their usual equipment.  Poorly-armed men with no naval experience (like contadini) are not likely to do well in a naval battle.  Alternatively, fishermen and professional sailors can be hired to row Rome’s ships (as they are generally non-citizens, they have no militia obligations), usually at a rate of 1 WP per 200.  They are competent sailors but will be only lightly armed (with cudgels, daggers, hatchets, and whatever else they took with them) and will not be particularly useful in a boarding action.

Drafting Ships

The Senate can also take extraordinary action to draft ships, not just sailors.  This essentially means seizing merchant ships in the harbor and commandeering them for the state, which was common in the maritime republics in times of emergency.  As some ships in Rome are likely to be non-Roman (trading or passenger ships from other lands), the Senate must decide whether it wishes to seize only local ships or foreign ships as well.  This action will anger local merchants (and possibly foreign countries as well, if their merchants had their ships seized), and it will greatly anger them if their ships are subsequently lost or are seized for a purpose they believe to be nonessential.  Drafting the ships of Rome to defend the city against an invasion will meet with much less opprobrium than drafting them for some foreign expedition.  The number of ships available for drafting is semi-random, and is influenced by the season and how much business the port is doing that year.

Drafted ships are usually of the nave type, but galeae can appear as well.  Drafting ships does not mean drafting crews – the ships must be crewed normally, either by militiamen or paid rowers.

A senator with a Storehouse enterprise is engaged in overseas trade, and as such has ships that he may call upon in an emergency.  For each storehouse a character possesses, he can draft a single ship.  At the player’s option, these ships are also minimally crewed (50 men each) by merchant sailors.  These men are equipped as classiarii but are not as experienced at fighting as actual naval infantry, as they have probably never performed a boarding action (though they may have defended against a few).  They will typically refuse to participate in military actions, as that’s not their job, though they might be induced to do so with money.

In any season in which a senator has called up ships from one of his storehouses, that storehouse makes no profit.  If a ship called up from a storehouse is lost, the enterprise will be “damaged” and restitution will have to be made to restore it to working order.

The type of ship depends on the storehouse.  Most storehouses provide a nave, but those dealing in perishable or particularly valuable goods may provide a galea instead.  A “storehouse” dealing in piracy provides a sagita, and with 75 men instead of 50, who are somewhat more willing to engage in military actions.

Building Ships

Ships can be constructed and maintained instead of drafted.  A ships construction cost depends on its type.  Additionally, constructed ships also require upkeep.  Dry rot, shipworms, and other menaces require ships to be maintained regularly.  Ship maintenance costs are paid during winter, as it is in this season that ships are the least likely to be at sea and undergo most of their repairs.

Sagita: Cost 2 WP, Upkeep 2 WP
Galea: Cost 3 WP, Upkeep 3 WP
Tarida: Cost 4 WP, Upkeep 3 WP
Nave: Cost 4 WP, Upkeep 2 WP
Nave Castellate: Cost 5 WP, Upkeep 2 WP

A ship of any kind normally takes one season to build.  A Nave can be converted to a Nave Castellate for 1 WP, which can be converted back to a Nave for free, but conversion either way takes a several weeks - it's not a change that can be made when an enemy fleet is already approaching.

The Lumber Yard enterprise can make ships cheaper to maintain and faster to build.  A single Lumber Yard enterprise decreases the upkeep of a single ship you possess by 1 WP.  Multiple Lumber Yards do not apply to the same ship, but can each give their discount to a single ship being maintained.

The Lumber Yard bonus, like most enterprise bonuses, cannot be “farmed out” to another character, but a character could allow another to rent (or buy) the whole enterprise.

How to Win this Game
The Republic Reborn is a cooperative game – we are here to do some political roleplay and maybe learn a little about history in the process.

“Cooperative game” doesn’t mean that your character shouldn’t compete or fight with other characters – far from it.  Rivalries make the game more interesting.  It does mean, however, that you as a player shouldn’t necessarily do your best to “win.”  We are making a story, and characters in stories are often flawed – they fail, they make mistakes, they overreach, they act foolishly, and that makes them richer characters.  As another GM of a similar game put it:

Quote from: On Forum Games
And here's the most important part--we're working together, not against each other. Now, I'll frequently decide that "working together" means me throwing a nasty NPC horde at you, or some thoroughly unfortunate internal event, and you'll maybe occasionally decide "working together" means invading your fellow players or otherwise perpetrating dishonorable deeds (tsk tsk)--and that's well and good. The point is that this isn't like the adversarial court system, where each side throws the best they've got out there and let's the conflict sort out whose right. Rather, give some and take some. You don't always have to be the best ruler for your nation. Sometimes losing gives your experience some flavor. In summary, you don't just decide which way to trim the sails and crank the wheel, you also get to choose which way the ship sails (and I'll keep changing the way the wind blows to keep things surprising!).

“Give some and take some” is the key here.  Some people are naturally pretty strict roleplayers and pay attention to only what their character will do; other people are naturally storytellers who are more interested in the progress of Rome and the game as a whole.  Neither of those approaches are wrong, but this game is played best when we accept that the game's cooperative aspect and its roleplaying aspect are both indispensable parts, even though they are somewhat in tension with one another.

One day, this game will end – most likely either because interest has waned or because the players have destroyed Rome utterly (:P).  Until then, however, I suggest that the best way to “win” is to have fun, and the best way to do that is to play an interesting character while maintaining a respect and consideration for other players and the story we’re making.

I welcome any questions or concerns you have about the game.  Feel free to PM me or send me a private message on IRC (if I’m on) if you want to talk about something.
« Last Edit: October 09, 2014, 01:34:06 AM by Polycarp »
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Re: The Republic Reborn II: Reborn Again
« Reply #4 on: October 09, 2014, 08:10:02 PM »

Autumn has passed into winter…
Winter seldom brings snow to Rome, but the cold winter winds are accompanied by sudden storms.  Floods are still a danger, and only the most reckless mariners try their luck at sea this time of year.  In the countryside, vines are pruned and firewood is gathered, while craftsmen huddle indoors making and maintaining tools and equipment for the coming year.  The people fast through Advent before feasting at Christmas, upon a pig slaughtered in late autumn if they can afford it, and on wild game if not.  Epiphany is celebrated in January, and the date of Easter is announced to the people.

Our Consuls: Roberto Basile and Barzolomeus de Morrocho
Our Pope(s): Alexander III (“Sicilian”) and Victor IV (“Imperial”)
Our Prefect: None
Our Rage: Apoplectic! [7]

OOC: This Season’s Top 5 Popular Issues
1. “We demand bread!”
2. “Down with Octavian, that pompous Teutonic bootlick!”
3. “Down with Rolando, that corrupt Sicilian toad!”
4. “Famine, war, and fire – what use is the Senate?”
5. “We fear for our safety in these times…”

News from Abroad

King Henry II of England launched a major military campaign in late summer against the Count of Toulouse, Raymond V.  The County of Toulouse, though de facto independent for years, was historically associated with the Duchy of Aquitaine.  That title is held by Eleanor d’Aquitaine, the former wife of King Louis VII of France and the current wife of King Henry.  Claiming suzerainty over the whole region de jure uxoris (by right of his wife), Henry gathered a great army at Poitiers – some say the largest army Henry had yet assembled, which must be considerable given his ownership of England and most of France.  He was supported by his ally Ramon Berenguer IV, the Count of Barcelona, who sent his own contingent of forces into Toulouse, and accompanied by King Malcolm IV of Scotland.  Henry demanded Raymond’s fealty, and when Raymond refused, Henry and his army marched on his capitol with the intent to depose him.

Yet Toulouse did not fall, not because of its soldiers but because of the timely arrival of King Louis, who rode into Toulouse right as Henry’s army was taking its positions near the city.  Though Louis had woefully few soldiers with him, he rode around the streets attempting to raise the spirits of the people in an obvious display of support for Raymond.  Technically, while King Henry is complete sovereign of England, he owes Louis homage for his lands in France, despite the fact that Henry is vastly more powerful.  Unwilling to besiege the city where his own suzerain was currently staying as a guest, Henry withdrew from Toulouse without a battle, though he did put his army to work plundering the countryside, burning villages, and capturing the city of Cahors to the north.  As winter approaches, Louis may congratulate himself on holding back Henry’s seemingly inexorable expansion of his realm – at least for one more year.

Not all was good news for King Louis, however – only days after his return from Toulouse to Paris, his queen Constance of Castile died in childbirth.  Louis married Constance, his second wife, after his marriage to Duchess Eleanor d’Aquitaine (now the Queen of England) was annulled in 1152.  He managed to obtain two daughters by each of them, but at the age of 40 still has no sons.  No doubt desperate to produce a male heir, it has been recently heard that Louis remarried scarcely a month later, taking Adela de Champagne as his third wife.

A fleet under Kaid Petrus, a converted Moor, eunuch, and admiral of the Sicilian kingdom, has failed to relieve Mahdia, the last Sicilian outpost in Africa, from the besieging Almohads led personally by Caliph Abd al-Mu’min.  The fleet successfully raided the Saracen-held Balearic Isles, but when Petrus attacked the Almohads off the African coast, the Sicilian fleet was soon dispersed by a gale and limped back to Palermo.  As the coming winter makes another expedition this year unlikely, the situation looks dire for the last sliver of the Sicilian “Kingdom of Africa.”

Merchant ships returning from the east report that Egypt has been thrown into crisis.  Although that land is renowned for its agricultural productivity, its crops depend on the seasonal flooding of the Nile river.  The Nile’s waters rose lower this year than any other year in this century, and the result is that large areas of previously productive farmland now lay fallow and useless.  Food shortages led to rioting and brutal street-fighting in Alexandria, the country’s primary port, causing many foreign merchant enclaves to close down.

News of Italy

The Imperial siege of Crema, personally led by the Emperor and a number of prominent princes of the empire, continued throughout the season.  From their positions in wooden castles and earthworks totally surrounding the city, the besiegers bombarded the defenders with artillery while building yet greater machines to assault the walls.  The greatest of the besiegers’ engines were constructed by the men of Cremona, Crema’s bitter rival – three massive armored roofs on wheels and an enormous siege tower.  A sally by the defenders targeting this tower as it neared completion was defeated by Rhenish troops under the emperor’s half-brother, Count-Palatine Konrad von Hohenstaufen.

The Cremonesi tower is said to be more than a hundred feet in height, with its top six stories rising higher than Crema’s own walls.  These upper stories, each smaller than the last like a stepped pyramid, allowed archers and crossbowmen to shoot down on the heads of the defenders.  It is reported that 500 men were required to move the tower into place, and it is generally agreed to be the largest such tower ever constructed in Italy.  Initially clearing a path for it proved difficult; using the armored roofs for cover, the besiegers were able to approach Crema’s moat and fill it with debris, but by late September they had actually run out of material to fill it with.  Only after the imperial-allied city of Lodi came to their assistance with two thousand carts of earth and wood was the moat finally bridged.

The first major imperial assault was made in early October against the southwestern walls by the Cremonesi tower and one of the armored roofs.  Though covered in fresh hides to ward off fire, the tower was subject to heavy bombardment by Cremasci defensive artillery.  It has been reported that to dissuade this, the emperor suspended Cremasci and Milanese captives – alive – from the tower’s walls, but the defenders of Crema continued their bombardment anyway, and several days of battering the tower was forced to withdraw for repair.  Meanwhile, men operating under the armored roof had succeeded in breaching the wall, but when the imperial engines were forced back the defenders were able to build a wood and earthen rampart to cover the breach.

A second attack made with the tower in late October, now more heavily armored with hides and sacks of wool, was also repulsed thanks to the stone-throwers of the Cremasci.  Yet though they have been successful in thwarting each imperial assault, Crema is still surrounded with little hope of reinforcement, and they have failed to destroy the tower or any of the largest of the imperial engines despite attempts to burn them with flaming pitch and undermine them with tunnels.  For now, the great siege continues with neither side possessing a decisive advantage.

Military activity in the rest of Lombardy this season amounted to little, but it was reported that Konrad von Wittelsbach, Duke of Merania and cousin of the imperial marshal Otto von Wittelsbach, was killed in a skirmish near the city of Bergamo.

News of Latium

Following the disputed papal election in Rome, Pope Alexander III – the favored candidate of the “Sicilian” faction of the college of cardinals – escaped from the Leonine City to Castrum Monticellorum, the Frangipani estate northeast of Rome.  Soon after, Alexander and his cardinals – without Signore Oddone Frangipani, but with many of his knights – crossed the Aniene near Tivoli and proceeded south.  Observers claim that Alexander and his clerics traveled with no pomp or finery, but were dressed all in black.  By the 12th of September, Alexander’s party had reached the city of Ninfa, a city subject to the Frangipani.

On the 18th of September, in the presence of the greater body of the college of cardinals, local bishops, and the clergy of Ninfa, Pope Alexander III was consecrated and crowned.  Little more than a week later, Alexander’s first official act was disseminated throughout the land, informing all of the excommunication of his rival.  Pope Victor IV subsequently traveled to the Abbey of Farfa where, receiving the obedience of abbot Rusticus, he held his own somewhat less well attended coronation.  Immediately thereafter, he promulgated his own act of excommunication against Alexander.  Only 21 years after the end of the last schism that divided Christendom, there were once again two rival pontiffs.

Through various contacts in the clergy, it emerged in November that the emperor has contacted both of the would-be Popes.  Claiming that the dispute must be decided by the bishops of the Church, and citing the precedent of ancient emperors calling clerical councils, the emperor has summoned both to a council to be held in Pavia on the Octave of the Epiphany (January 13th).  As the siege of Crema continues to drag on, however, it is uncertain if the emperor will in fact be available to hold this council at the prescribed time.

Gerardo Calafatus, the son of Fortis Calafatus, was appointed by Consul Roberto Basile to act as the Senate’s representative to Rieti in an effort to mediate the dispute there between the bishop and the consuls.  He returned before the end of the season and provided a report to the consiliarii.

The conflict in the north between Acquapendente and Orvieto over Bagnarea’s declaration of independence from the Monaldesci has progressed little.  This may be in part because of the recent schism – with the possibility of a larger conflict in Latium between pro-Victor and pro-Alexander factions which have yet to fully coalesce, the various belligerents seem to be holding back until the strategic situation is clearer.  Some raiding was conducted by the two cities and some of their local allies, but the “war” has not yet seen any significant battles.

News of Rome

Since the chaos of the election-day, new details have emerged of the origins of this schism.  A detailed account of the conclave and its aftermath, as best can be determined from sources in the clergy, follows.

The Conclave
The initial ballots, held in secret, are not known, but from the beginning it is believed that Rolando Bandinelli (now Alexander III) had more support than Octavian (now Victor IV).  Some cardinals also seem to have supported Bernardo, the Cardinal-Bishop of Porto e San Rufina, but at some point on the first day his faction disbanded, with most joining the support of Rolando.

Of the thirty-one cardinal-electors present, those supporting Octavian were evidently never more than ten.  The rules of papal election are complicated and governed more by tradition than written statute, but it is generally agreed that at the start of the conclave the cardinals had agreed to proceed with unanimity, and as a result the conclave dragged on for two more days.  Eventually Octavian asked his supporters to stand with him and be counted, who amounted at that point to three – Imar of Tusculum, Guido de Crema, and Giovanni Morrone.  These cardinals declared that they would never accept the selection of Rolando under any circumstance.  The majority, proceeding without them, proclaimed Rolando to be elected.

It was then that the conclave turned to chaos, for as the Protodeacon Odone Bonecase brought forth the pope’s ceremonial scarlet mantle to lay upon Rolando, Octavian intervened and commanded him to stop in the name of the emperor.  Cardinal Bonecase refused and attempted to place it on Rolando’s shoulders, only to have Octavian rip it from his hands.  A general scuffle then ensued, during which the mantle was apparently torn to ribbons, but Octavian’s chaplain then produced another mantle which Octavian placed upon his own shoulders.  Such was his haste, however, that he accidentally put on the garment backwards, with the hood hanging down his chest, and some of the clergy present jeered at him.  One of Rolando’s cardinals attempted to rip the mantle from Octavian in turn, but Octavian apparently evaded him, took to the altar, and proclaimed himself to be Pope Victor IV, which was greeted with a cheer by most of the lesser clergy in the nave of the basilica.

Only moments later the doors of the basilica were forced open by a crowd from outside.  Evidently this crowd included many lesser clergy, shouting in favor of Octavian, but there were also armed men among them and some have alleged that Octavian’s retainers, imperial knights, or paid toughs were among them.  Fearing attack or arrest, Rolando and his cardinals fled by a secret passage to the munitio, the same passage that they would later use to return to the basilica when the munitio was attacked by Pierleoni’s forces, and Octavian and his adherents exited the basilica in triumph.

Two opposing narratives have arisen.  Octavian’s supporters claim that Rolando’s cardinals, by trying to elect Rolando regardless of the dissenting cardinals supporting Octavian, broke the initial agreement on unanimity.  They further allege that the pro-Rolando cardinals had, in Hadrian’s last days, held a secret meeting at Anagni; there they had sworn to elect a pope from their own anti-imperial party and made an oath to excommunicate the emperor.  Two of Octavian’s cardinals who switched sides to him after the conclave, Raymond de Nimes and Simone Borelli, have reportedly confessed that they were party to this scheme, and claim that this anti-imperial party was also bribed heavily by agents of King William of Sicily.  Though Octavian’s supporters acknowledge that his cardinals were in the minority, they claim that Octavian took necessary action to prevent the calamity of an election stolen by members of a corrupt conspiracy.  Rolando, they say, has crowned himself without being either invested with the papal mantle or appearing with the papal insignia, against the traditions of the Church.  They further note that Octavian, mindful of the contested election and the uncertainty of his selection, did not proceed with his coronation until Rolando held his own coronation and issued an order of excommunication against Octavian; these further illegal actions, they argue, left Octavian no choice but to act and be crowned as the lawful Pope.

Rolando’s supporters, in contrast, deny any “Sicilian conspiracy” and emphasize that Octavian had but three cardinals out of thirty-one who stubbornly refused to leave him.  There is precedent in canon law, they argue, to overrule “obstinate electors” who defy a unanimous vote against all reason, and the overwhelming preference of the college for Rolando should clearly indicate who the choice of the conclave was.  They ridicule the “theft” of the mantle by Octavian’s own hands, who intervened with brute force and the name of the emperor on his lips when it was evident that he would not get his way, and question why Octavian’s chaplain conveniently had a second mantle to give his master when the first was torn apart in the fray.  They accuse Octavian and his imperial allies of attempting to decide the conclave by force, citing the entrance of pro-Octavian armed men through the basilica door shortly after Octavian proclaimed himself Pope; the timing, they claim, clearly indicates a pre-planned conspiracy.  They argue that Rolando crowned himself Pope at Ninfa because he is the rightfully elected pontiff, and that his duty to Christendom was to accept this office and move quickly to quash uncertainty and rumors of a schism.

While both sides make arguments claiming to be in the right, appearances matter, and Octavian’s rather scandalous actions at the basilica – ripping the mantle from Bonecase’s hands and putting in on himself backwards – have been the source of much jest among the common people of Rome.  When Pope Victor attempted a procession through the streets with his loyal clergy and supporters, he was jeered at and heckled to such an extent that the procession was stopped short.  As they withdrew, the crowd grew more hostile, with some throwing stones and shouting “Maledicte!” (“accursed one”).  Pope Victor was unharmed and local militia were soon on the scene to break up the crowd, but the Roman Pope may not have felt he was entirely safe in the city – mocking and threatening pamphlets had also begun appearing in Rome, the most popular of them written by some wag calling himself “Britto,” whose rhymes were repeated by many even among the non-literate masses.  Before the end of September he departed for Farfa, ostensibly to gain the support of its abbot, and held his coronation ceremony there.

Yet what was foremost on the mind of the common Roman this season was not the drama of the two popes, but the continuing food shortage.  Bread prices rose steadily in September.  Consul Basile and Senator de Vinti were the most prominent in attempting to address this crisis – the Consul through public purchases of grain and the Senator by rather dramatically stripping the gilding from his estate to give food and money to the poor – but availability continued to be a problem.  Signore Niccolo Capocci was the source of much of the grain bought by the Consul, but the limits of his ability were clearly reached by October.  The city’s diaconiae were already nearly empty from last year’s hunger, and with the schism and the death of the Prefect, the administration of Church charity in Rome has essentially collapsed.

Senatorial efforts to hold down prices and provide supplies began to sputter out by late October, and soon riots were flaring up all over the Campus Martius.  Shops were looted in Pontis et Scorteclariorum and several wealthy families fled from Pinee et S. Marci when rioters attacked there.  The Forum and the Capitoline were too strongly held by the Senate for rioters to penetrate there, but measures to arrest the rioting within the Campus Martius themselves largely failed.  Many citizens of means have moved their valuables and their families to the houses of friends in the eastern portion of the abitato or elsewhere in Latium, or have begun hastily trying to fortify their own estates.

A fire, which may or may not have been related to the riots, erupted in Parionis et S. Laurentii in Damaso on November 5th; in the context of a hot, dry summer and an autumn with little rain thus far, it quickly burned out of control.  Spreading eastward, the fire moved into the slums of S. Eustachii et Vinea Teudemarii, destroying more houses and damaging the Basilica of Saint Eustace, an important diaconia for which the region is named.  The fire was only stopped in Pinee et S. Marci by local people and militia pulling down houses to create a break.  Clergy and laymen at Santa Maria della Rotunda (the Pantheon) filled buckets from the terminus of the rebuilt aqueduct as the fire came within a hundred yards of that building.

Late November brought some badly needed rain; though the farmers are still worried about next year’s harvest, at least the autumn did not turn out as dry as summer.  Nevertheless, Rome finds itself in a difficult situation.  Bread is still scarce and a good part of the central city is in ruins.  As most of the burned area was densely populated slum, the number of the poor and homeless has grown dramatically.  The faith of the people in their leadership has been badly shaken, and many poor families now wonder how they will survive the winter.  The death toll from the fire is unknown, but certainly in the hundreds.

The imperial legates Reichsmarschall Otto von Wittelsbach and Heribert, Provost of Acqui, departed from Rome this past season to come to the emperor’s aid at Crema and relay to him the pressing news from the split conclave.  Consul Basile reportedly gave the imperial oath to the marshal before his departure, and in return the marshal made official the grant of the village of Gregoriopolis to the Senate of Rome.  This grant is as yet unrecognized by either pope.

After some negotiations with the Senate, it was agreed to hand over the body of the former prefect Antonio Demetri della Suburra at Rome’s easternmost gate.  Armsmen of his family received the body and departed without incident.

The Senate’s monetarius Romolo Vanetti began casting silver Senatorial denarii for the first time, and the [3WP] spent by the consul on food supplies consisted almost entirely of silver coin with the city’s arms upon it.  As the mint is currently only recasting Papal deniers, this production does not yield any profit, but there is something to be said for the legitimacy bestowed by making one’s own coins, a privilege that is rarely exercised by anyone other than kings, popes, and the very wealthiest of communes.

The Schism

This new section will keep track of which rulers, cities, families, organizations, and other entities have declared for one pope or the other.  The lists may eventually be moved to the front page.

As expected, the Frangipani and Demetri families were quick to acknowledge Pope Alexander.  Ruggero Pierleoni was present at Victor’s coronation in Farfa to give the allegiance of his clan, and the Crescenzi – Victor’s own family – also recognized him in short order.  None of the other major families of Rome, however, have firmly committed to a faction, and following the news of the planned council at Pavia it is likely they are waiting for the matter to be decided there.

Victor’s three brothers were granted control of Terni in the last months of Hadrian’s reign, and have offered the allegiance of that city, though how enthusiastically Terni’s own consuls support Victor is unclear.  Abbot Rusticus of Farfa, an imperial appointee, also gave his allegiance to Victor upon the pope’s arrival there, and Victor’s coronation was held at the abbey.

Declared for Pope Victor IV
The Pierleoni
The Crescenzi
The Lords of Terni
The Abbey of Farfa

Declared for Pope Alexander III
The Frangipani
The Demetri


Owing to the death of Hadrian and the Papal schism, the Papal stipend was not received this season, and may have to be re-negotiated with the Pope(s).

Treasury: 8 WP

Income: 1 WP
  • Duty, Cencio Pierleone: 1 WP
  • Rent, Colosseum: 2 WP (Spring Only)[/i]
Expenditures: 1 WP
  • Upkeep, Senatorial Palatini (50): 1 WP
  • Mint Fee: 1 WP (Spring Only)

State Projects:

State Properties:
Theater of Marcellus
Tabularium (Treasury)
Curia Julia (Senate House)

Personal Finances
Arrigus Sismondii
Income: 20 (9/3/6/2)
3 Wine Presses (+6 Autumn)
4 Pastures [Rented from Calafatus] (+4 Spring)
1 Fulling Mill (+1 Spring)
1 Weaving Hall – Wool (+4 Spring, +2 Winter)
1 Dyeworks (+3 Summer)

Savings: 9 WP
Costs: Palatini (-1 Every Season), Alum (1 WP in Spring), Rent to Calafatus (6 WP in Autumn)
Projects: Mole (3/?)
Assets: Rocca [3S/0O], 50 Palatini, 50 crossbows

Vittorio Manzinni
Income: 25 (12/4/4/5)
1 Forge Mill (+1 Spring, +1 Winter)
1 Lumber Yard (+2 Winter)
1 Bakery (+2 Winter)
2 Storehouses – Glassware (+2 Spring, +2 Summer, +2 Autumn)
2 Storehouses – Linens (+2 Spring, +2 Summer, +2 Autumn)
2 Hospitia (+6 Spring)
Pontis Rent [Non-enterprise] (+1 Spring)
Savings: 9 WP
Costs: Palatini (-1 Every Season)
Projects: None
Assets: Estate [1S/2O], Land in Ripe et Marmorate and S. Angeli in Foro Piscium, 50 Palatini, Debt of 4 WP

Roberto Basile
Income: 20 (8/4/2/6)
2 Storehouses – Loot (+2 Spring, +2 Summer, +2 Autumn)
2 Orchards (+2 Winter)
1 Perfumery (+4 Spring)
2 Fisheries (+2 Spring, +4 Winter)
2 Salinae (+2 Summer)

Savings: 1 WP
Costs: Armored Masnada (-2 Every Season)
Projects: None
Assets: Tower House [4S/2O(-1)], 100 Masnada (Armored)

Hugo de Vinti
Income: 23 (15/2/1/5)
1 Storehouse – Marble (+1 Spring, +1 Summer, +1 Autumn)
1 Sculptors’ Workshop (+1 Spring, +1 Summer, +1 Winter)
5 Flax Fields (+5 Spring)
2 Weaving Halls – Linen (+8 Spring, +4 Winter)

Savings: 11 WP
Costs: Palatini (-1 Every Season)
Projects: None
Assets: Palazzo [0S/3O(+1)], Obelisk, 50 Palatini, 50 crossbows

Barzalomeus Borsarius
Income: 17 (3/4/3/7)
1 Spetiarium (+1 Summer)
2 Storehouses – Spices (+2 Spring, +2 Summer, +2 Autumn)
1 Counting House (+1 Spring, +1 Summer, +1 Autumn, +1 Winter)
3 Lumber Yards (+6 Winter)

Savings: 19 WP
Costs: None
Projects: None
Assets: Estate [0S/0O(+1)], 8WP loan to Alessandro

Senatorial Inquests

Senators that requested information or launched endeavors have the results of their efforts listed here.  This information is private, but you may certainly choose to share it with the Senate.

Roberto Basile
Your oath before the Reichsmarschall, before several of your senatorial supporters, has been given and received.  Otto departed not long thereafter, saying he had been recalled to the emperor’s service at Crema, and in any case needed to give his personal account of the recent events to His Imperial Majesty.  He also suggested that, while he personally believed Victor to be the lawful pontiff, the Senate of Rome might be wise to avoid official recognition of either “Victor or Rolando” until the emperor made a formal determination.  The Empire, he said, is Law, and it is important that the proper procedures be followed in this most delicate and important of matters.

Capocci seemed very pleased to welcome you to his newly completed fortresses, hosting you at Nomentum and giving you a tour of Monte Rotondo as well.  The castles are Franco-Norman style donjons, square-shaped standalone keeps not too dissimilar to a larger, wider torre.  Castrum Nomentum seems to have become Capocci’s main residence and received more attention.  As he related to you, this is in fact the third incarnation of Castrum Nomentum – the first was destroyed by the Normans in the 11th century.

Capocci assured you that his loyalty would lie with whichever Pope the Senate supported, though obviously he expects this to be Victor.  His primary concern, he said, was strategic – the castle of Poteranum, just south of his current territory, was the one he seized during the Farfan War which earned him the ire and retribution of Adrian and Frederick.  He admits that this castle is a personal ambition of his, as is well known, but also argued passionately that it could easily be used by the Frangipani to support an attack on Rome or to raid his or Rome’s territories.  He would appreciate any effort you could make in the Senate to support his proposal there (see letters).

Capocci was able to supply some grain, but he claims his supplies are not great and that his lands cannot sustain the city.  Indeed, he was proven correct later in the season.

Your proposal made no headway in the senate.  Sensing defeat, even your own party of senators pressed you to abandon the issue rather than to force a vote in the senate.  They would prefer to avoid the humiliation.

Gerardo received your dowry and accepted the betrothal.  He opined that it would be best to wait at least until spring for the marriage itself – fire and famine, he felt, were not ideal conditions for a social event of that kind.

Your gift to Ricardo was sent and received safely.

Pandolfo Cassi seems to have effected his escape from Tivoli successfully – if the Tiburtini are aware of his duplicity, they have not yet said anything.  He managed to enter Rome with the help of some friends and appeared at your residence.  He has given himself to your mercy and asked that the Senate revoke the exile ban against him (which he is, at this moment, technically breaking by answering your summons).

He has also given you a glimpse of the information he has, though he will not turn it over in its entirety until his pardon is secured.  It appears to be technical details of Tivoli’s walls – how high each section is (which, though it sounds simple, is very useful to know, as anyone who has assaulted castle walls with a ladder that turns out to be six feet too short can attest), the defensive configurations of the gatehouses, and the locations of the principal militia armories.  His information about the guard routes is poor, but then again this is probably the least important part, as guard schedules during peacetime will have no relation to how the walls are staffed when the city is under siege.

You spent 9 WP and earned 2 WP this season.

Arrigus Sismondii
While the hot summer was rather bad for Rome, it was quite decent for you – the weather resulted in an excellent grape harvest this year, which has translated to cheaper grapes and better-selling wine from your presses.  The income from your wine presses was increased by 50% this season (+3 WP).

Guillelmi assures you that, as a senator himself, he is well aware that very significant matters require the attention of the consilarii which take precedence over guild business.  He adds that a major concern of the weavers is at this point the situation with Rieti, as the city is a key point for moving wool from Marsica and Aprutium into Latium.  That city’s stability, he says, is very important to the Schola.

Guillelmi then broached a surprising proposal – elections.  His members, he said, had been upset by the Senate’s decision to quash elections and make senate seats effectively hereditary; it benefited the nobles and the Arnoldists, he believed, but disenfranchised the burgher class, including the weavers, who make up the vast majority of citizens.  He assured you that the Schola would be much better represented in the Senate and be able to exert more influence – influence in your favor, potentially -  if it could campaign for votes in an elective senate

While he proposed no timetable for such a reform, he feels it is inevitable, and that it would also do much to gain the support of the citizenry in this time of great anger and unrest.  While elections would, admittedly, do little to placate the non-citizens who cannot vote anyway, securing the allegiance of the citizenry which actually makes up the militia would ensure that any unrest or rebellion remains limited to the lower classes only.

He also hinted that your political ambitions, such as they were, might benefit from being seen as a champion of republican liberty.

Work continues, albeit slowly, in Nettuno.  It is worrisome, however, that the cardinal who granted you your office as vicarius is among the cardinals who have sided with Pope Alexander III.  If the Senate ends up taking the side of Victor, as seems quite likely, it may well endanger your position in Nettuno.  You have heard nothing from Cardinal Gualterio on the matter yet – given all that is happening, a Roman senator’s management of a rather inconsequential strip of Latin coastline is probably not the top item on the cardinal’s agenda.

Cencio has thanked you for your concern and was pleased to receive you at the Torre Pierleoni (the Leonine City, he said, is in somewhat of a state of disrepair at the moment).  He did not talk much business, but told you that he would be asking the Senate to either grant him his uncle’s titles and duties or re-negotiate Giordano’s agreement with him.  He was amenable to either choice, he said, but he would naturally appreciate your support if the Senate chose to craft a new agreement rather than ratifying the old one.

You have been given a letter from a Pisan merchant informing you that they cannot guarantee your alum shipment this year – the famine and unrest in Egypt has effectively shut down their trading operations in Alexandria for the time being.  They cannot predict whether the situation will be stabilized enough by springtime to fulfill your order.  If they are unable to bring your supply, obviously you will not be charged for it, but your related enterprises will obviously not receive its benefit either.

You spent 1 WP and earned 9 WP this season.

Hugo de Vinti
Signore Capocci thanked you for your offer of assistance, but assured you that he did not require any additional reinforcements.  Your men were diverted to Labarum instead, where your men visited the new vicar, Luidolf.

Luidolf did have some concerns which he asked your men to convey to you.  By this time, of course, he had received news of the schism.  Luidolf seems to have no strong feelings either way – the Church’s business is the Church’s, and what he’d like is to be on the winning side.  The cardinal who had invested him with the vicariate, however – Raymond de Nimes – is one of the five cardinals who has joined the pro-Imperial Pope Victor IV.  For now, he is waiting and watching, but he is concerned that soon Raymond may force him to declare one way or the other.

Gold is gold, and the loss incurred by stripping it down was not terribly great.  Gold, however, is something quite rare that few “normal” people ever get their hands on – gold coin is not even minted in Italy save for in Sicily, whose gold comes from Muslim Africa.  It seemed more sensible to trade the gold for things the poor could actually use, like silver (and, where available) bread, but you made sure that it was common knowledge you were stripping the very gold from your palazzo to pay for these things, and this very appropriate show of humility and generosity surely did not go unnoticed.  Your gifts were focused particularly around All Saints’ Day, one of the most significant holy days of the season.

Your brother has heeded your summons and returned to Rome with his family.  He reports that the people of Siena, having heard of the debacle in Rome, are by and large very favorable to Pope Alexander – who, after all, is himself Sienese.  The venerable Bishop Ranierio is also considered quite likely to side with Alexander, though he is not so certain of the consuls – they are practical men, he says, who generally consider political advantage over mere sentiment.  Be that as it may, the bishop is a very popular and renowned figure in the city, and he considers it very unlikely that Siena will take a pro-Imperial stance so long as he lives.

You have dispatched men to Genoa and France.  The Genoese man should hopefully return this coming season, but because winter is now upon us, your agent to France will likely not return until Spring (at the very earliest).

You spent 1 WP and earned 1 WP this season.

Vittorio Manzinni
The famine and chaos in Egypt has interrupted all trade so far this season, which means your storehouses dealing in Egyptian linens and glassware are empty and unprofitable.  They have made you no income this past season, though hopefully they should resume normal production in the spring, assuming the Egyptian government can regain control of the situation…

Your men were able to render some assistance during the fire, but were too few to do much of anything about the numerous civil disturbances this past season.  Fortunately, none of them have posed any danger to your own estate or other holdings - yet.

The Pierleoni family is not a traditional noble family.  Unlike most noble families whose wealth is built on landed estates, the Pierleoni made their original fortune by usury – the late Patrician’s grandfather was a Jew who made great sums through moneylending before he converted and was baptized as a Christian by Pope Leo IX.  His son, Pier Leoni, was a champion of the Pope against the Empire and was granted land and estates by the Church.  Pier Leoni’s son Pietro (Giordano’s older brother) became pope as Anacletus II in 1130, but it was a disputed election that led to an eight year schism, and in 1138 when Anacletus died the pro-Frangipani Pope Innocent II stripped the family of their territories outside Rome.

The modern Pierleoni family does possess income, primarily from the Leonine City and Trastevere – they own various bakeries, tenements, workshops, and other properties from which they collect rents and fees, and it’s said that they also receive “contributions” from the Jewish quarter in Trastevere to assure Pierleoni protection from any anti-Jewish mob violence that might break out.  Some have wondered, however, if this income is enough to balance their books; it may be that they are still relying chiefly on the old family fortune.  They are highly secretive about their finances and it does not seem possible to establish what their income actually is.

The Pierleoni family tower on Tiber Island is security level 3, but it is somewhat more secure than a normal S3 tower because of its position on an island, approachable only by a pair of bridges.  It would be more difficult to take by storm than its fairly modest security rating would imply.

The Castle St. Angelo’s security rating is hard to measure – it’s in a whole different league.  The site was originally the tomb of Emperor Hadrian before being converted into a fortress centuries ago, and its walls are so thick as to be virtually impenetrable.  The Castle St. Angelo is the strongest defensive point in Rome, a castle in its own right.  It would probably take a real army laying siege with towers and catapults to capture it as long as it was decently defended.

Until recently, the Pierleoni family was estimated to have around 300-400 men under arms, most of whom were masnada loyal to the family, but with the bloody fighting in the Leonine City and the death of the Patrician that number is now probably much smaller.  The exact number is unknown.

Church Holdings
In theory, nearly all the land in Latium is a “Church holding;” while there are some allodial lords, most landowners in the region are either vassals of the Pope or vicars administering lands for bishops or cardinals.  The question of how much the Church makes from its territories immediately around Rome is hard to know, and it’s possible the answer is “nothing” – a local lord, for instance, might “pay” the Church in military service rather than in taxation.  If he does pay taxes in kind, some may go to a diocese, abbey, or basilica, and some of that in turn may work its way up to the Curia.  Some lands and enterprises may actually be shared, with an ecclesiastical entity owning some share of the enterprise and the profits.

There is no standard “tax rate” on Church properties, as every lord and vicar presumably has his own agreement with the Curia or the basilica/diocese/abbey which controls the land.  Medieval Latin society (perhaps medieval society in general) at this time is not about a regulated, administrative state, but tradition, personal bonds, and oaths.  Even the Church’s own clerks have a great deal of trouble determining what is and is not theirs – it is not as simple as determining which enterprises and lands belong to the Church and which do not.

You are aware that the “best” ecclesiastical land around Rome is to the east, both southeast towards the Alban Hills and northeast between Rome and the lands of Niccolo Capocci.   They produce mostly grain, but there are some vineyards and olive groves in the hillier areas.  Senator de Vinti has introduced flax around Labarum to the north, but that has not yet spread very far.

Commercial holdings within the city itself are very few.  Most of the money made by the church within the city walls is made from tithing and from the annual pilgrimage.  Formerly the Roman Mint was also a source of significant revenue, but that has been taken over by the Senate and is only now getting some work done.

Paper is required for playing cards, and paper is pretty much unknown in Rome.  The first known paper mill in Europe was built in Islamic Spain in 1151, which the Romans in 1159 would probably be totally unaware of.  As far as I’m aware, papermaking would not spread to Italy until the late 13th century.  In other words, even if the concept of playing cards had spread to Rome by now, the technology to implement it still doesn’t exist.  For that reason I think it’s too big of a leap in our game.

Dice are another matter.  Hazard/azzardo is the newest craze, but Romans have been throwing dice since Romans wore togas.  While gambling is an activity usually associated with the lower classes, it’s not unknown among the middle-class artisans.  (Stereotypically, gambling with dice is most popular among soldiers, perhaps because when on campaign they frequently have nothing better to do.)  The rules for these games tend to be fairly simple and need little explanation – in “raffle,” players simply take turns putting money in the pool and rolling the dice until someone rolls triples, at which point that person takes the pot.  Hazard, a two-dice game, is slightly more complicated, but nothing even an illiterate peasant really needs pictures to grasp.

You had some tables fashioned for playing, though it’s difficult to imagine what might separate these from regular tables – perhaps just a rim?  Adding a high backing on one end might work.  Carving a table to make it more pleasing to the eye is quite possible, though gilding may not be such a good idea – dice games, particularly azzardo, are notorious for attracting cheaters, and the kind of person who would cheat at dice is probably also the kind of person who would strip gold leaf off a table when nobody was looking.

It seems like the most promising route for making money off this would be a holistic one focused around the taberna – the tavern.  Though most dice-throwing probably takes place in the alleys, when men do go indoors to gamble it is usually to the tavern.  Gambling is only one element of tavern entertainment – men go there to drink wine and ale, to eat, and to talk about daily life and Roman politics.  The tavern is, in a sense, a cafe, bar, casino, and community center all in one.

Neither gambling nor ale-selling alone are likely to make a businessman such as yourself much profit, but taverns in general – perhaps with an emphasis on gambling, but still usual taverns in other respects, offering alcohol and a social venue – could make money.  Because taverns are the social centers of the lower classes, it’s also possible that owning them might give you more insight into the mob; many famous Roman riots have gotten their start in a tavern.

It should be noted that, while not explicitly forbidden, gambling is generally frowned on by the Church.  Nobody has ever been excommunicated for throwing dice, but it’s possible that becoming heavily involved with “vice” of any kind might tarnish you in the minds of some clergy and other moralists.  Of course, that may not bother you at all.

You spent 1 WP and earned 0 WP this season.

OOC: Finally
Welcome to Chapter 2!  This thread is now open for business.  As usual, please let me know if there are any issues or mistakes.
« Last Edit: October 09, 2014, 10:23:10 PM by Polycarp »
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Re: The Republic Reborn II: Reborn Again
« Reply #5 on: October 09, 2014, 08:24:09 PM »
New maps are up.  The blackened area on the Rome map is the area affected by the recent fire.  The shields on the Latium map indicate the known position of our two popes – Victor IV has the Crescenzi arms (three gold crescents on a red field) and Alexander III has the ever-impressive Bandinelli arms (gold, just gold).

OOC: Senatorial Stats
The events of this season have shaken the faith of many Romans in their leadership.  Popularity for nearly every senator has declined, save Hugo de Vinti, whose show of humility by prying the very gold off his estate has been much talked about.

Vittorio Manzinni: Popularity -1.
Roberto Basile: Popularity -1.
Hugo de Vinti: Orthodoxy +1.
Arrigus Sismondii: Popularity -1.
Barzalomeus Borsarius: Popularity -1.

IC: A Papal Bull
For attempting by force to usurp the Chair of Saint Peter, for illegally and arrogantly crowning himself Pope in opposition to the college of cardinals and canon law, and for causing schism within the Holy Church, we separate OCTAVIANUS, Priest of Santa Cecilia, together with the clergy who give him obedience and all his accomplices and abettors, from the precious body and blood of the Lord and from the society of all Christians; we exclude him from our Holy Mother, the Church in Heaven, and on earth; we declare him excommunicate and anathema; we judge him damned, with the Devil and his angels and all the reprobate, to eternal fire until he shall recover himself from the toils of the devil and return to amendment and to penitence.

ALEXANDER, Episcopus, Servus Servorium Dei

IC: A Papal Bull
For engaging in conspiracy and simony in vain pursuit of the Chair of Saint Peter, for contempt of the rules and strictures of the conclave, for crowning himself Pope whilst neither bestowed with the mantle nor insignia of Saint Peter, and for causing schism within the Holy Church, we separate ROLANDUS, Priest of San Marco, together with the clergy who give him obedience and all his accomplices and abettors, from the precious body and blood of the Lord and from the society of all Christians; we exclude him from our Holy Mother, the Church in Heaven, and on earth; we declare him excommunicate and anathema; we judge him damned, with the Devil and his angels and all the reprobate, to eternal fire until he shall recover himself from the toils of the devil and return to amendment and to penitence.

VICTOR, Episcopus, Servus Servorium Dei

IC: Spoken before the Lesser Council
Distinguished Senators,

His Holiness Victor IV has asked me to express his regret to the Romans that he was unable to remain longer in Rome.  His Holiness has a deep appreciation for the Romans and their Senate and praises their bravery and resolute faithfulness against the excommunicate Rolando Bandinelli.  Nevertheless, the Holy Father has been forced to concur with his advisors that Rome’s position is at the moment too exposed to be able to ensure the safety of the Curia.  The city is menaced on multiple sides by Frangipani holdings, and is alarmingly close at hand to certain other powerful lords whose true allegiance is not yet known.  His Holiness has deemed it most prudent to direct his efforts to mend this abominable schism from Farfa for the time being.

Having heard of the recent hardships which have beset the city and mindful of his own position as Bishop of Rome, His Holiness has authorized me to give [6 WP] to the Senate for whatever needs the Senate finds greatest.  Regretfully the present condition prevents His Holiness from contributing more at this time, but he is committed to the prosperity and restoration of Rome and the city is in his thoughts and prayers.

Giovanni Morrone, Cardinal-Priest of SS. Silvestro e Martino, Chancellor of the Holy Roman Church

[6 WP] in silver has been contributed to the Senate’s coffers.

IC: Niccolo Capocci addresses the Senate
Senators, I am grateful to once again be able to set foot in Rome, something denied to me by the late Prefect.  I do not celebrate his death, but I will say that when I see God’s will at work in securing the liberty of Romans and the ruin of their enemies, well – I do not question it!

It is of Rome’s enemies that I am here to speak to you today.  With the aid of this august Senate I have rebuilt the fortresses that guard Rome’s roads and secure its connection to its allies.  But one vulnerability yet remains near at hand – the tower of Poteranum.  This castle, mine by right, was also mine in fact several years ago, but it was seized from me by the actions of Hadrian, who forced the Emperor into acting against me as the price for his crown.

Poteranum sits directly on the Via Nomentum between my castle and Rome.  It is also, like Nomentum itself, only a bowshot from the territory of the Frangipani to the east.  If the Frangipani or the Tiburtini were to hold it, they could easily use it as a launching point for an attack on Rome or the plundering of its countryside.  It guards the flank of the Via Tiburtina.  With it, any attack from the east can be harried and delayed; without it, it will act as a shield the passage of our enemies.  Those are the stakes, senators – we speak of the security of the road by which an attack from Monticellorum or Tivoli is most likely to come.

Now, senators, is the time to act.  The castle is held by a garrison belonging to the Basilica of San Lorenzo, which owes its obedience to Cardinal Giovanni Conti, one of the cardinals now in Rolando’s camp – or should I say Oddone Frangipani’s camp!  In the disorder and uncertainty of these past few months, no effort has been made to bolster its defenses, but it will not be long before our enemies realize the importance of this fortress in keeping Rome subjugated.

Your options, as I see them, are these: to wait, allowing our foes to entrench themselves more deeply and delivering a potent weapon into their hands – or to act, and aid me in taking this fortress.  When last I marched upon Poteranum, the garrison surrendered without a fight, and the garrison that holds it now is scarcely stronger.  With my armsmen and Rome’s might, we may take this castle, and under my protection it will be a shield to your citizens and a blow to your enemies.

IC: Report to the Lesser Council

My presence in Rieti, as requested of me by Consul Basile, was not sufficient to effect a reconciliation.  While there may be room for compromise in theory, there is no trust between the two parties.  The consuls insist that any Rector or other episcopal representative will act in bad faith and attempt to subvert their independence, while Bishop Dodone makes clear that, being “thieves,” the consuls will not respect any agreement to accept some modicum of oversight by the diocese.  While I was treated well by both parties, it proved difficult to even get their representatives to be in the same room together.

The military situation does not greatly worry me.  The bishop currently resides at the Rocca di Sopra in the foothills northeast of Rieti; it is one of a number of such towers, rather modest but decently constructed, which the bishop holds in the contado.  The bishop’s forces are not strong.  While Dodone is owed fealty by a number of local barons, many of those barons were subjugated under his joint rule with Rector Damianus, compelled to do homage to the diocese and maintain a residence in the city where they could be more easily controlled.  With the city and the diocese now at odds, a fair number of them have conveniently forgotten their oaths or made varying excuses to stand aloof, no doubt enjoying the bishop and the consuls being at one another’s throats.

The position of the consuls is little better.  Their militia, which was trained by my father, is adequate for their defense, but the consuls are men of trade and have no military experience.  Rather timid men, they fret that sending the militia forth from the city would risk too much at one stroke.  I believe that the fact that there has been no fighting so far is less because of restraint or morality than because both sides are too weak to take the offensive.  Of course, while this weakness seems to guarantee peace, it also guarantees that Rieti – both the diocese and the city – will be useless allies to Rome as long as this conflict lasts.

I had wondered when I first arrived how it was that Rieti was supplying itself with food, as many of its surrounding fields are largely in the hands of the diocese.  I assumed that they were importing it from elsewhere in Latium.  This proved to be true, but I had not expected the source – in fact the city is receiving most of its grain supplies from the castellan at Rocca Sinibalda, who is loyal to the Abbey of Farfa.

It is possible that Farfa is in some substantial way involved in this matter.  Their dispute was always with the diocese, not the city of Rieti as such.  As long as Damianus and Dodone worked together, the interests of the city and the diocese were one, but with the city and the diocese now at odds, the city of Rieti is unlikely to take such an active interest in championing the bishop’s claims against Farfa.  With the city in rebellion and his nobles largely ignoring his summons, Dodone, once Farfa’s mortal enemy, has now been effectively neutralized.  I cannot prove their involvement other than the fact that the consuls have been buying reasonably priced grain from one of their vassals, but I certainly would not rule it out.

I should also mention that I heard multiple rumors alleging that the rector’s riding accident was a product of foul play, but I found no man able to produce any evidence to support them.  I suspect these are the usual rumors that circulate when an important man comes to an unexpected end.

Signore Gerardo Calafatus

IC: Letter to the Senate of Rome
Out of respect for my uncle’s agreements with the Senate and with the understanding that these are chaotic times in which many important matters weigh upon the Senate, I have gladly paid the duty this season which my uncle the Patrician agreed to remit to the Senate in exchange for his titles and privileges.  I believe I am within my rights, however, to ask that the Senate ratify these same titles and privileges for myself if they wish this payment to continue, or otherwise that the Senate should propose alternative terms and submit to negotiations if they are not satisfied with such a grant.

Cencio Pierleoni

IC: A rhyming pamphlet distributed in Rome
Octavian, by what aberration
Do you seek to bring Rome to damnation?
How were you ever enticed
So to sunder the tunic of Christ?
You too will be dust by and by;
As you lived, so tomorrow you’ll die.

- Britto

IC: Arnold addresses the crowd
Brothers, sisters, I have been asked by earnest Christians who it is that rightfully holds Saint Peter’s chair and ring.  Surely there is, and must be, a rightful pontiff; every good Christian must surely know that the Church ought to have a Pope, and that his chair bestows upon him the right to our respect and reverence.  As Christ said to Peter, ‘on this rock I will build my church,’ and to the Word of God we remain ever faithful.

Yet I will tell you this – while we must revere our Holy Father, we must also know in our hearts and minds that the church which Christ built is in mortal peril.  We acknowledge the supreme and peerless power of the Holy Father, the Pope, and we know that this is not a worldly power, not a temporal power, not a power of gold and silver, but a power over yet greater things.  Why is it a Pope, given the keys to the gates of heaven, should concern himself more with the keys to his coffers?  Oh, how far so many of our priests have fallen from the true goal of salvation into the fires of iniquity and greed, all because of a vain pursuit for things of this world, and not of the world to come!

Remember always that no matter how lofty the honor or exalted the title, those clergymen who soil themselves with property and regalia are ever in danger of damnation, and the church that is built upon such a crumbling foundation is ever in danger of ruin.  Whoever is the rightful Pope, we shall ask of him no less than we have asked of his predecessors – that he must, for the sake of all Christendom and the salvation of many, abandon his property and all these worldly goods which corrupt the Holy Church, and thus regain God’s grace and the promise of salvation.

As always, the crowd roars its approval, but there are murmurs as well… more than a few yearn for Arnold to simply tell them the name of the true Pope.
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Magnus Pym

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Re: The Republic Reborn II: Reborn Again
« Reply #6 on: October 09, 2014, 10:34:55 PM »
IC: Letter to Consul Basile
Your efforts to relieve the popolo of the burden of starvation did not go unnoticed, and while their patience currently hangs by a thread, as can be expected of any man whose belly speaks louder than his voice, they will come to realize the magnitude of your charity. I, personally, thank you for your noble action.

Since we both love our City, and both wish for the rule of law to prevail, know that I have sent for Orléans and Genoa, that we might have suitable dictatores in Rome to teach men who are not of the cloth. Then, our courts shan’t be biased; a necessary step, no doubt.

Senator Hugo De Vinti

IC: Letter to Vittorio Manzinni
You brought forth a motion, last year, that would see the power of the Schola of Roman Weavers curbed and our coffers funded by the various mercantile enterprises that take place in Rome. At the time, I was seriously devoted to just such an enterprise and neglected a proper review of your proposition. I was at fault. Would you care to illuminate me as to the economic, as well as political, benefits and fallouts of your motion so that I may make a more sensible appraisal of the situation?

Also, in the interest of keeping you apprised of the situation concerning the university, whether or not you are consul, know that I have sent for Genoa, that we might obtain the services of a suitable dictatores and thus eventually provide Rogerius with students that have no allegiance to the Church.

Senator Hugo De Vinti
« Last Edit: January 10, 2015, 02:37:44 PM by Magnus Pym »


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Re: The Republic Reborn II: Reborn Again
« Reply #7 on: October 10, 2014, 10:55:59 PM »
Whoops, forgot this one.

IC: A Letter to the Roman Senate
His Imperial Majesty and Sole Augustus of the World, the Emperor FREDERICUS, sends his greetings to the Roman Senate.

Noting the precedent set by his predecessor Constantine the Great, who held indisputably the authority as Roman Emperor to summon episcopal councils of the Church, His Imperial Majesty has ordered that a council be convened on the Octave of the Epiphany [January 13th], its chief business being to determine the genuineness of the claims of the two men who have each claimed the Throne of Saint Peter as rightfully their own.  Both claimants to this most holy office have been summoned and prelates from both their parties shall be received and allowed to present their evidence.

To that end His Imperial Majesty summons a delegation of the Roman Senate to appear before this council to give an account of the events transpiring in Rome during the recent conclave, so as to ensure that every fact of the matter is known to the bishops of the Church on whose shoulders this weighty decision rests.  The Senate may send a delegation of any size it sees fit, but His Imperial Majesty requires that those men sent be themselves witnesses of the events in question; or, if this is impossible, that they bear written statements, countersigned by trustworthy men, giving an account of the events in question.

Let all men know that any man who waylays or impedes this delegation, be he a nobleman or commoner, acts in contempt of the Emperor's Peace and shall suffer the Emperor's Ban.

Rainald von Dassel, Archbishop of Cologne, Archchancellor of Italy
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Re: The Republic Reborn II: Reborn Again
« Reply #8 on: October 12, 2014, 09:08:57 PM »
IC: Letter to Signore Luidolf
Signore Luidolf,
I understand your concern, but unfortunately there is little I can do to reassure you except inform you of my preference for Pope Victor. It is also the opinion of the Senate that it is Octavianni di Monticelli who is the rightful heir to Saint Peter’s throne. However, out of respect for our friendship, I will refrain from suggesting that you declare for this or that.

The following, I hope, will satisfy you greatly. According to the agreed terms of our contract, I am to supply you with a minimum of [1 WP] come next season, in addition to the rent of [1 WP]. It is my pleasure to inform you that, after careful reviews, and in the interest of equity, I shall increase the funding to [3 WP]. Furthermore, these funds may be released now, if you wish it so. All in all, I will have personally provided you with as nearly as much money as was provided to Signore Capocci by the Senate to rebuild his castles.

While the additional money is a gift, and as a person who gives a gift must not expect something in return, I do have a request. As stated in the contract, we agreed that I may request an expansion of the lands used for my enterprise. At this moment, I require one additional field, which isn’t much. Will you agree to let me put the vacant field beside my current lands to good use?

Senator Hugo De Vinti
« Last Edit: January 10, 2015, 01:34:29 PM by Magnus Pym »


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Re: The Republic Reborn II: Reborn Again
« Reply #9 on: October 17, 2014, 04:11:16 AM »
OOC: Due Date
The due date for orders is Sunday, November 26th.

IC: On the Senate Floor
December finds the Senate in a state of near panic.  While many of the Roman elites had been most concerned about the recent Papal schism a few months ago, their very positions now seemed seriously endangered by the anger of the popolo minuto.  The Roman people can be quite politically astute, but when there is no bread on the table, their thoughts dwell on little else.  Attempts to purchase local grain over the autumn were woefully inadequate, and the Romans seem to increasingly blame the Senate for this crisis.  It was the Senate, they say, that precipitated the war with Tusculum; it was the Senate that, having gone to war, failed to protect Roman fields; and it was the Senate now that embroils itself in the politics of Popes and Princes but hardly exerts itself to feed its own citizens.  More than one senator has observed with trepidation that the people were far less irate than this in 1152, the last time the senate was overthrown and replaced in the coup that created the current body.

The situation is dire.  While Rome is not broke, its immediate neighbors simply do not have food to sell.  War is on the wind in Latium, and in such times cities are inclined to hoard their grain, not peddle it away.  The lords which are subject to Roman dominion have exhausted their supplies.  Little help can be expected from the Church – though many Romans malign the ecclesiastical bureaucracy that for centuries has taxed the people, the Curial magistrates do know how to organize, and have done rather well keeping the diaconiae full even in the worst years.  Now they are in complete disarray owing to the schism, the death of the Prefect, and Arnoldism, which holds the sympathies of many of Rome’s lesser clergy but has disrupted the relationships between Rome’s priests and its Curial government.

Some have suggested that Rome plunder its way to a full belly, but the season poses problems.  Winter is near at hand – the fields will be empty, meaning that no mere contado raiding will yield much food.  Seizing another city’s supplies might be possible, but because of the barren fields, the Roman army in the field would have nothing to eat during the siege, and as the Emperor has demonstrated at Crema a siege may drag on for many months even with the greatest of armies and engines.  Even if a quick capture were possible, Rome’s neighbors are far smaller than Rome itself – it is unlikely all the cellars of Tivoli, even if they are full to bursting, could see thirty thousand people through the winter and well into the following year.

Owing to the political situation, even importation abroad may be difficult to engineer.  Sicily is well known for its great production of grain, but King William is understood to be a strong supporter of Pope Alexander and his anti-imperial party; the Alexandrine faction of the College of Cardinals is often called “Sicilian” for a reason.  While nobody is sure, it seems unlikely that William would be in a great hurry to be the savior of a city that chased out his favored pope with fire and sword.

The maritime communes, particularly Pisa and Genoa, might be more amenable – they have not officially taken any side in the schism and did recently swear their fealty to the emperor.  These cities are not rich and powerful because of their charity, however, and it can be presumed that even if they are able to assist, the price they will demand for their services will be steep.

Other matters are of secondary concern, though they are not absent from the floor.  The Senate continues to be fairly strongly pro-Victor as a consequence of its pro-imperial stance, but it has become evident that the Roman people themselves are more divided.  Caring little about grand politics, many scoff at the idea that a Roman nobleman is “one of them” and sneer at Octavian’s buffoonery at the conclave; men throw their tunics over their heads, aping his backwards mantle, and shout “Behold the pope!” to raucous laughter.  That scorn is being stoked by anti-Victor rhymes and rhetoric, of which the anonymous “Britto” is the largest source.  If the peoples’ laughter has died down of late, it is only due to the looming famine.

To be fair, Alexander engenders no great love among the Roman people, who are at best ambivalent about a foreigner who until the conclave was the Chancellor of the Curia that the Romans have long resented, but at least he has not besmirched himself by such conduct as Victor.  For the moment, that makes him the clear (though far from absolute) favorite of the common people.

There are certainly those in the Senate who see wisdom in the words of Niccolo Capocci, who has counseled an attack on a nearby Papal fortress, but that issue is already all but tabled for another season when other demands are less pressing.

IC: Letter to Hugo de Vinti

The fields which you mean can be productive grain fields, which I am sure you will agree Rome badly needs.  If I may humbly speak only of myself, however, from land of such size and fertility, planted with wheat, I expect to receive [2 WP] every year, both from my direct share and the rents of my mill thereby.  While I have never given unfair prices to Roman merchants, it is true that in these times when bread is very dear, my profit may occasionally exceed this. 

As for whether it is in the best interests of the city, I shall defer to eminent senators such as you; but while I am amenable to renting the land, I feel I would still have to be justly compensated for its loss.

I am appreciative of your gift, and I believe it and your efforts in Labarum will do much to helping to restore the prosperity of this land after the ravages of recent years.

Signore Luidolf
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Re: The Republic Reborn II: Reborn Again [Due Jan 26]
« Reply #10 on: October 18, 2014, 07:10:41 PM »
IC: A Letter to Ansaldo Doria

It is my hope that this season finds you well, and so too the fortunes of your great city. Rome, alas, suffers still from the plunder of its contado, and further from the schism in our beloved Holy Church. The Romans and the Genoese have cause in common - both suffer from the avarice of the Pisans, and both serve the Empire with ardent loyalty. You and your Commune yet have my gratitude and the gratitude of Rome for assistance in seasons pass.

I regret now that I must ask more of Genoan generosity. I will not mince my words: Rome needs grain. Our fields are near exhausted, and our neighbours jealously horde what they have as the popolo are besieged by hunger. Rome will pay with price or promise for any grain Genoa might safely deliver, and with my authority as Consul I shall set aside [3 WP] to be held through the first half of this season in the hope that Genoan shipments might arrive.

Consul Roberto Basile
In Nomine Senatus Populusque Romanus

IC: A Letter to Oddone Colonna

It shall be clear to you that I write this letter as a measure of late resort, for the Colonna family and the Roman Commune have not always stood beneath the same banner, and the current time is one of tumult and uncertain loyalties. However, I had great respect for your father and remember him with some fondness. And indeed, in my dealings with you I have seen you to be an honest and equitable man cast from that same mold. Even though in future we may yet again find ourselves on opposing sides, you shall always have my trust and my respect.

But who can say what the future might hold? Let us disregard Popes and Emperors for a moment. My own loyalty is first and foremost always to the people of Rome, and those people cry out in this their hour of need. As Consul I must do all that is within my power to deliver them. The Colonna estates have suffered no war or deprivation, and it is known that their yield is impressive. Rome needs your grain, Signore, and she is willing to pay your price. As a man of honour I know it is not your desire to see the Roman people suffer unduly, and so I know that the price you name shall be fair. I am prepared to authorize immediately the purchase of up to [4 WP] worth of grain, and shall hold further funds in reserve should more be necessary.

Consul Roberto Basile
In Nomine Senatus Populusque Romanus
Let the scholar be dragged by the hook.


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Re: The Republic Reborn II: Reborn Again [Due Jan 26]
« Reply #11 on: October 19, 2014, 04:38:51 AM »
Sorry I haven't been able to respond much. Unfortunately I'm not sure if I will be able to until next Monday. I will try to at least send a few letters before then but things are looking pretty iffy right now.


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Re: The Republic Reborn II: Reborn Again [Due Jan 26]
« Reply #12 on: October 20, 2014, 05:36:42 PM »
IC: Letter to Roberto Basile
This message is relayed by one of Colonna's retainers, but not signed.

Popes and emperors demand their due, and cannot be disregarded - by the Romans least of all.  I would certainly not turn a deaf ear to the distress of the Roman people, but as you know, this is not merely an act of mercy but a political act owing to the position the Senate has put itself in.  The Prefect was an intemperate man, and it is impossible for me to imagine my father acting in such a rash way if he had lived to that day.  Nevertheless, he is now dead by the hand of the Romans, Oddone and Rolando are driven from the city by the Romans, and Octavian was sheltered by the Romans.  You can see the difficulty this presents.

I would not be surprised, however, if grain from my lands ended up as flour in Roman larders.  A representative is coming to you shortly whose master has asked to purchase a large sum of my grain, and I expect that he is interested in just such a circumstance.

IC: A Messenger Arrives at the Senate
My good men,

I bring you the tidings of my lord and master, Signore Annibaldo of the Annibaldi, Lord of Molara.  Though my lord has unfortunately been unable to reside in Rome of late, no man may doubt his Roman heart, and he could not bear to see Rome suffer through a winter so bleak.  While the so-called bread-breakers* hold only scorn for Rome, the plight of the city's people has given my lord great dismay.  Charity and love, these most Christian virtues, have spurred him to action.

My lord feels strongly that he has been gone from the city for too long, and asks merely that if his benefice is to be welcomed in Rome that his person be so welcomed, and that he be permitted to rebuild his estate that fell in the regrettable turmoil of the previous decade.  If the Romans will receive him, then he will be most pleased to bestow his generosity to them.

*A reference to the Frangipani, whose name means "bread-breakers," and who supposedly got that name by feeding Rome in the midst of a famine many years ago.

IC: The Same Messenger Appears Before the Lesser Council
My distinguished senators, I urge to you consider my lord's offer.  There are but a few matters that he wishes addressed before he can with confidence give Rome all that he would like.  The grain my lord possesses has not come cheaply, nevertheless he asks for not one silver coin from the Senate.  He is a nobleman, not a merchant, and his currency is his honor and duty.  He hopes, however, that he will be suitably recognized by your august institution for the considerable expense he is undergoing.

Firstly, my lord asks that upon his arrival with the promised supplies, you distinguished senators offer him the title of patricius, which has been borne by many Roman noblemen of esteem and most recently by the late Signore Pierleoni.

Secondly, my lord asks that the Roman militia be mustered upon his arrival to accompany him to the Campus Martius, the better to protect his generosity.

Thirdly, my lord asks this council for an oath that, should His Holiness seek to install a new praefectus urbi in Rome, the members of this council will petition His Holiness to appoint my lord to that position.

Fourthly, as has been stated before the Senate, my lord asks that he be permitted to rebuild his family's tower in Rome, which stood north of the Colosseum before his family left the city in 1144.

If this esteemed council will consent today, then tomorrow I shall be in my lord's presence to give him this good news.
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"The impediment to action advances action. What stands in the way becomes the way." - Marcus Aurelius

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Re: The Republic Reborn II: Reborn Again [Due Jan 26]
« Reply #13 on: October 20, 2014, 06:25:00 PM »
IC: Before the Lesser Council to the Messenger of Signore Annibaldo
And who is His Holiness that your Lord speaks of?
« Last Edit: January 10, 2015, 01:36:19 PM by Magnus Pym »


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Re: The Republic Reborn II: Reborn Again [Due Jan 26]
« Reply #14 on: October 21, 2014, 04:50:17 PM »
IC: Signore Annibaldo's Messenger to the Lesser Council
My lord does not presume to judge the rival claims of the clerics who now declare themselves pope.  He is confident that the ecclesiastical council at Pavia, called by the emperor to convene in January, will settle this matter, and my lord swears he will faithfully recognize whichever man is declared legitimate by that council.
The Clockwork Jungle (wiki | thread)
"The impediment to action advances action. What stands in the way becomes the way." - Marcus Aurelius