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Author Topic: The Republic Reborn  (Read 186781 times)

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« Reply #1680 on: May 01, 2014, 10:05:58 PM »

Here's two changes I would suggest, if everyone agrees.


ONE - Statement of Purpose
The Senate approves the establishment of a force responsible for preserving the public peace. This force, the Sentinels, will act to preserve not only the public peace, but also to enforce the rule of law as codified in the Justinian codex.

THREE – Emergency Removal of a Commander
Should the commander of the Sentinels be unable to perform his duties, because of death, serious injury or absence, or other causes deemed relevant by the Senate, the Senate shall convene a meeting of the senators in under seven days to select a new commander in accordance with the procedure established in TWO (C), above.

Do you guys think it's fair? They're basically just rewrites for clarification. Saying the Senate WILL do it instead of it IS doing it is kinda lame. And the THREE clause merges its suggestions because there's absolutely no need for multiple As and Bs on this.

Also, should we specify which consul has precedence over which, if the force should be under his command by default for some reason? Here I'm thinking about:

TWO-   Appointment of Commander

(A) Who May Serve as Commander of the Sentinels
(1) Direction of this unit rests with a Senator who is appointed by the Greater Council.
(2) A Consul may serve as Commander by default or by appointment, but not by election.

Maybe there's no need...

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« Reply #1681 on: May 02, 2014, 03:37:57 AM »

I'm fine with these modifications.

Gelatinous Cube

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« Reply #1682 on: May 02, 2014, 07:10:21 PM »

Under (2)(C)(3), the Interior consul would have precedence in a situation of default.

Re: your alteration to 1, that is fine.

Re: Section 3- it should remain as it is in Sissmondi's recent rewrite- there is no need for the modification that you suggest. There is currently a distinction between what happens if there is an emergency v. what happens if there is a death, and I think the distinction makes sense. The rewrite eliminates the distinction.


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« Reply #1683 on: May 04, 2014, 07:27:21 AM »

Concerning section THREE, I fail to see your point that the distinction is absolutely necessary, as the result is the exact same. The Consul of the Interior would be acting commander of the Sentinels until the Senate vote procedure takes place and elects a new commander. But if clogging the text with unnecessary sentences satisfies you, I won't say anymore on the matter. As long as we can get this moving.

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« Reply #1684 on: May 06, 2014, 09:26:36 PM »

Letter To Della Suburba

I look forward to seeing you in Rome and I agree that my men will not interfere with the execution of Church Law in accordance with the Treaty. My understanding is that the Senate holds this view. My understanding also is that there are some in the Senate who have been acting to undercut the Consul of the Interior's power with respect to interior security, but it is also my understanding at least on this matter, they will not act at cross-purposes. When you arrive next season, I would be glad to discuss this at greater length.

-Consul Vittorio Manzinni.
« Last Edit: May 07, 2014, 07:51:39 PM by Light Dragon » Logged

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« Reply #1685 on: May 07, 2014, 03:02:08 PM »

A Letter to Gerardo Calafatus


It is not my intent that they should be put to such a purpose - at least not on any regular basis. I have no desire to insult the skill and ability of these men. As Consul of the Exterior I must concern myself with securing Rome against her foreign enemies, and in this capacity I think your father's palatini will serve well. With the situation in Latium as it is, I fear that we shall shortly have need of them.

However, that is not to say the men should not expect to be utilized as such if the city is wracked with riot or civil strife, when loyal men are needed to restore the peace. I will set this as a condition of their employment, and if they are unwilling to restore the city's peace in times of extremity I do not think the Senate would be best served by their retention.

Consul Roberto Basile

A Letter to Niccolo Capocci


Signore Demetri has accepted your offer, and it is my hope - as I know  it is yours - that we all should put this behind us. I doubt Oddone will act openly now that Antonio is reconciled to you, but he is an ambitious man, and I am under no illusion that Rome is not among his desires. Eventually I am sure he will have his excuse, but I shall work to see that it is in a time of Roman strength, and Frangipani weakness.

Consule Roberto Basile

A Letter to Antonio Demetri della Suburra


As you have said, it is your right to execute the law in this regard in the name of His Holiness. The Senate shall not resist you in the matter of Arnold of Brescia. I will note my concern that such action will no doubt see the blood of Romans shed on the streets of the Eternal City - as you are aware - but if His Holiness thinks the apprehension of the friar worth the lives of the Romans, then I suppose we must abide it.

I expect that you will keep your men well in-hand and carry out your duty with the utmost restraint. Neither I nor the Senate could rightly tolerate a massacre.

Consul Roberto Basile

Spoken privately to Arnold of Brescia by a messenger of Roberto Basile

Good Friar, my benefactor bids me warn you that the Prefect shall shortly make his return to Rome, and that it is his intent to seize your person and deliver you to the Curia. My benefactor cannot risk the order and peace of the city on your behalf, and the matter of the law in this regard is likewise without the jurisdiction of any civil power. He has bade me send you this message not with expectation that you shall resist, but with hope that the lives of your followers, faithful Romans, might be spared. Their ardour is well known, and they would no doubt defend you even against Papal steel. He humbly asks that you make submission peacefully and quietly, and carefully and privately prepare any necessary prior arrangement. My master hopes that you might perhaps come to reconciliation with the church, though he knows this unlikely.

There is no other option that should spare the Romans, save that you absent yourself from Rome with haste. My benefactor would have you know that he treasures the lives of the people, and strives always to their protection.

Orders for Summer 1159

- Basile shall see that the rioters taken at the Demetri estate are tried before the Senate's court for disturbing the peace of the commune, and will recommend that they be fined for their crime.

- To obtain the copper the mint requires, Basile must act decisively, and he must act now. Before the imminent return of the Prefect, Basile shall declare as Consul that in the absence of other authority it necessarily falls to the Senate to see to the good repair of all Rome's monuments and works. The portico of Santa Maria della Rotunda has been subject to decay and weathering, and as a good christian Basile would not see such a famous church languish in ill-repair. Therefor, he shall set workmen to erect scaffolding and pry up the weathered copper sheeting (and of course deliver this refuse to Romollo Vanetti's workshop for recycling), and replace it with new clay tiling - or something else relatively inexpensive. Basile shall hopefully in one stroke have done a good and christian deed, and seen to the needs of the mint. Spend up to 3 WP in this regard over the duration of the season.

- Basile shall resolve the matter of the Colosseum, and see its ownership pass to the Senate. He shall see to the organization of the payment to the Calafatii, spending 3 WP of his own, and gathering up a promised 3 WP from Senator de Vinti, 6 WP from Senator Borsarius, and 1 WP from Senator Sismondii. The remaining 2 WP shall come from the city treasury.

- Basile will essentially absent himself from the matter of the Sentinels, as he finds it tedious and distracting. He shall see to the retention of 50 Calafatan palatini to the city's service, and will commence their payment of 1 WP per season at the appropriate time from the city treasury.  Basile will ensure through his negotiations with Gerardo Calafatus that the palatini are in fact not contracted to be Sentinels, but a retained military force for the defence of Rome and the supplementation of the militia.  

- Basile will host Gerardo Calafatus (and his two brothers) for a sumptuous dinner at the Basile estate - his daughter and wife likewise present, both engaging in polite dinnertime conversation. He shall seek to know the son as he did the father, and ensure the continued friendship between the Basile and Calafatus families, expressing this sentiment happily and clearly, saying of Fortis that he was a true and great friend, and a stalwart Roman and protector of the city. Basile will of course ask after Gerardo's thoughts on the Commune and its future, and its current governance. Assuming things have gone well to this point, after dinner and over dessert wine Basile will broach the subject of a potential match between Gerardo and Olithia and gauge Gerardo's reaction. It would seem a sensible course, given the relationship that Roberto had with Fortis.

- Basile will politely greet the Prefect on his return to the city, escorting him with a score of armsmen. He will see that Capocci indeed restores the Demetri estate, and that the two men are reconciled amicably enough, and will attempt to diplomatically head off any further potential acrimony between the two men. He will observe the Prefect's actions carefully, particularly as they concern Arnold of Brescia.

- Having noted the goats and sheep that graze on the nearby hills, and ever-desirous of the diversification and expansion of his family's wealth, Basile shall investigate the acquisition of a flock or herd of his own, and determine the current scheme of extant grazing rights and the resulting feasibility of obtaining pasturage. Basile would prefer goats, and harbours a secret hope that he might eventually possess a functional and profitable dairy.

- Basile will send some of his agents to Gregoriopolis to monitor the activity of the Pisans, and any attempt they might make to establish themselves therein.

- Basile will accept de Vinti's invitation to view Trajan's Market, and will consider it as a potential courthouse, jointly investigating costs, restoration, and feasibility.

- Most importantly, Basile shall proceed to Ardea at the appropriate time for the birth of his first grandchild, bringing with him twenty of his guardsmen. Basile will pray for an easy birth and the health of the child and the mother, and look for the coming of Avenazon. If a boy he will propose the name Giovanni for Caetana's brother, and if a girl he will propose the name Emilia.

OOC: Sorry for not getting this up sooner! Had to write it during lecture as I currently have no internet, and won't until Friday afternoon at the earliest, but this should take care of everything.

Let the scholar be dragged by the hook.

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« Reply #1686 on: May 08, 2014, 12:26:18 AM »

Today's the day!  Please get your orders in if you haven't posted them already!

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"The impediment to action advances action. What stands in the way becomes the way." - Marcus Aurelius

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« Reply #1687 on: May 08, 2014, 01:18:14 AM »


- Pay [1 wp] upkeep on Palatini
- Gift Basile [1 wp] for the Colosseum purchase
- Seeing the wisdom of his captain's words Sismondii will attempt to acquire [1 wp] worth of crossbows and bolts for the Nettuno armory. If some of his palatini can be trained on the crossbow all the better.

- Sismondii will earmark a further [2 wp] for work on the road. While he imagines that difficulties in finding labor will continue, especially as the year wears on towards fall, he hopes that at least that much work can be done.
- Sismondii will accept Senator Guillelmi's gracious offer to host him at his home. Sismondii will explain to the senator that with the current senate interest in preparing an official Roman legal structure it would be wise to make sure that the concept of a guild is given its fair due. He does not believe it would look too forward on the part of the schola as the schola firstly wouldn't be putting their name on it (Sismondii and perhaps Guillelmi would be doing that) and additionally it would not just be for the weavers. Rather Sismondii has been looking to the highly successful guild structures of cities like Pisa and Venice and hopes that in writing guild rights, duties, and protections into Roman law that he can strengthen local commerce by protecting Roman merchants. Obviously Sismondii would defer to Guillelmi and his associates on the particulars of what might be useful for a formalized guild structure but he hopes that Guillelmi and the schola as a whole might be willing to at least discuss options for making this work.
« Last Edit: May 08, 2014, 01:33:14 AM by Nomadic » Logged

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« Reply #1688 on: May 08, 2014, 01:38:04 PM »


Gift the remaining total of the Colosseum purchase to Basile

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« Reply #1689 on: May 20, 2014, 04:16:50 AM »

Anno Domini MCLIX
Summer has passed into Autumn…
In autumn, laborers take to the farmlands to plow the fields and sow the winter wheat, while in the hills grapes and olives must be picked and pressed.  This is a busy time in Rome, for much work needs to be done between the withering summer and the onset of winter.  The wealthy return to the city from their country estates this season, and the Church prepares for the celebration of All Saints’ Day.  On the water, merchants hurry to complete their routes before the winter storms make the sea treacherous, and citizens watch the Tiber warily, for floods come most often in autumn.

Our Consuls: To be determined
Our Pope: Adrian IV
Our Prefect: Antonio Demetri della Suburra
Our Rage: Frothing! [6]

This Season’s Top 5 Popular Issues

1. “We demand bread!”
2. “Barbarossa is coming… will he be a tyrant or a liberator?”
3. “Good riddance to the prefect – Rome shall be free!”
4. “The Arnoldists endanger us all when they seize churches like this...”
5. “Niccolo Capocci is a loose cannon catapult.”

News from Abroad

The army of Greek Emperor Manuel Comnenus, on its way back to Constantinople from the emperor’s victorious campaign against Antioch, was attacked near Iconium by the Turkish Sultan Kilij Arslan II.  The attack took the Greek army by surprise, but after a prolonged battle the Turks eventually withdrew, causing significant casualties but not achieving a decisive victory.  Upon his return to the capital, the emperor dispatched his nephew Iohannes Konstostephanos with an army to punish the Turks and compel the sultan’s submission.

The Emperor of the Greeks received more distressing news upon his return to Constantinople.  His wife and empress, Bertha von Sulzbach, had died in his absence.  Bertha, who took the Greek name of “Irene” at her coronation, was the sister-in-law of the late Holy Roman Emperor Konrad III.  She leaves her husband with only one living child, Maria Komnena, who is seven years of age.  Manuel reportedly grieved for his empress terribly, but is presumed the emperor will remarry.  He is forty years of age, and by a new wife he might yet father a son.

Władysław II, claimant to the Duchy of Poland, has died.  He held the position of High Duke until he was deposed by his brothers in 1146, and ever after lived abroad in the Holy Roman Empire.  In 1157, it seemed Władysław might finally reclaim his throne when an imperial army marched upon Poland, but in the end the victorious emperor decided to maintain Władysław’s younger brother Bolesław IV as High Duke and extract an oath of vassaldom from him rather than restoring Władysław to power.  Władysław died at Altenburg in May.

The Almohad army besieging Mahdia, the last Sicilian-held city in Africa, successfully overran the commercial suburb of Zawila, but was unable to take the city’s fortified center.  Later this summer, twenty Sicilian galleys arrived at Mahdia with supplies and reinforcements, and the Sicilians regained control of Zawila and some of the coast north of Mahdia.  The siege, however, continues.  Personally led by the Almohad Caliph Abd al-Mu’min, the besieging army is rumored to be a hundred thousand strong.

News of Italy

The war in Lombardy began in earnest this summer, with skirmishes and battles throughout the region.  Milanese horsemen plundered the contado of Lodi in June, but were intercepted on their return by Garnerio, Margrave of Ancona, who routed the Milanese and recovered the spoils.  A Milanese attack on a bridge over the Adda River held by the Lodigliani shortly after also failed.  An imperial force subsequently raided the contado of Milan, and fell back under pursuit; apparently they were intended to draw the Milanese into an ambush, but fled in the wrong direction and were nearly all captured.  The emperor himself, however, discovered this disaster and quickly moved to intercept the victorious Milanese, taking them by surprise from all directions and rendering almost the entire force either dead or captive.  After this, the Emperor was free to completely destroy the Milanese countryside with no further interference.

The emperor opted not to besiege Milan after this series of successes, but Crema, one of Milan’s major allies.  Some believe that the emperor simply lacked the strength to invest Milan; the emperor sent home most of his German soldiers last year, and his current army is made up largely of Lombard allies, principally the nobility of Lombardy and the militias of Cremona, Lodi, Como, Pavia, and Bergamo.  Those allies may also have influenced the decision, as Cremona – which has supplied the emperor with the largest contingent of any commune – is bitter enemies with Crema and has been petitioning the emperor to raze its defenses for some time.

Cremona laid siege on July 2nd, with the imperial forces and the militia of Pavia arriving a week later.  The emperor was accompanied by Konrad von Hohenstaufen, Count Palatine of the Rhine and the emperor’s half-brother, and Friedrich IV von Hohenstaufen, Duke of Swabia and cousin of the emperor.  On the 21st of the month, reinforcements arrived under the command of Heinrich “the Lion” Welf, Duke of Saxony and Bavaria, followed shortly thereafter by Welf VI Welf, Margrave of Tuscany and Duke of Spoleto, and his knights.

All agree that this will be a truly massive siege – unlike the last siege of Milan, which soon ended as the city ran out of food, Crema is believed to be very well stocked.  Its own militia was reinforced with contingents from Milan and Brescia before the siege began, and the commune’s defenses are overseen by magister Marchisio, a native of Crema, and one of the most renowned siege engineers in Italy.  For their part, the imperial forces have already constructed a series of wooden castles all around Crema’s walls, armed with all manner of siege devices.  The men of Cremona are said to be constructing the most massive siege tower ever seen in Italy, though how it will make it past the city’s impressive moat is not yet clear.

The last news from the north was that no major assaults have yet happened, though the defenders have launched several sallies attempting to burn the imperial siege engines, so far with only modest success.  The defenders have run into opposition not only from imperial troops and allies, but from bands of irregulars who have been skulking in the marshes around Crema and ambushing its defenders when they leave the walls.  Though apparently composed of commoners armed only with stones and knives, these bands – which the Cremaschi have dubbed fili Arnoldii (“sons of Arnold,” referring to Arnold of Brescia, well-known in Lombardy chiefly for his life of poverty) – have made sallies even more difficult for the defenders.  The origin of these people is unclear, but many presume they are the urban poor of anti-Milanese cities hoping to loot the city and the bodies of its defenders.

A spectacular story is circulating about an attempt on the life of the emperor by some sort of magician; rumors disagree as to whether he was Italian or a Saracen.  The man allegedly infiltrated the emperor’s camp with an assortment of poison-impregnated jewelry to give to Frederick, or possibly a poisoned dagger to use upon him, but the emperor’s men were forewarned of this plot and arrested him at once.  It is said he was in the pay of the Milanese, though some claim he did not divulge his paymaster even under torture.  Either way, he was crucified by the emperor’s men.

This summer experienced an unusually high level of Saracen piracy, with corsair fleets seizing merchant ships and even raiding the southern coast of Sardinia.  The consuls of Pisa have accused their rivals in Genoa of being complicit in these raids; Sardinia is under Pisan control, and Genoa has a trade treaty with the Almohads.  Genoese shipping has been conspicuously untouched by the latest rash of attacks.

News of Latium

Damianus Truffa, the Rector of Rieti, has died.  Reportedly, the rector fell from his horse while falconing and suffered a head injury; it did not kill him immediately, but his condition deteriorated over two weeks until his death.  His loss has precipitated a crisis of power in Rieti.  Traditionally, the city was a bishopric, controlled directly by the Bishop of Rieti – since 1137, that bishop has been Dodone, of the Cistercian Order.  In the 1140s the burghers of the city demanded their own government, and a council of “rectors” was established – technically under the supervision of the bishop, but with significant autonomy.  Among these was Damiano (Latinized to “Damianus”), who quickly consolidated his own power within the council.  By 1154, the council of rectors had been reduced to a “council of one,” Damiano himself.  Though the rectors had been established as a counterbalance to the bishop, Damiano cultivated good relations with Dodone, and the two cooperated in campaigns against Farfa in recent years.

Damianus Truffa ruled with a strong hand and there was little opposition to him even as he did away with the short-lived democratic institutions of the council.  With his death, however, the democratic instincts of the burghers have come back with a vengeance.  When Dodone attempted to nominate a new Rector himself, a group of the city’s prominent citizens met in the city’s cathedral, declared the Rectorate to be abolished, and proclaimed a government of eleven elected consuls.  Bishop Dodone was prevented from entering the cathedral and since mid-August has been residing at Castrum Lunianum, a hilltop fortress-town about five miles northeast of Rieti.  The consuls have a strong position within the city itself, in part because they appear to have the loyalty of the city militia (organized and trained, in fact, by the Roman knight Fortis Calafatus).  Most of the contado of Rieti, however, is in the hands of the bishop, including a number of castles and monasteries in the hills around it.  So far there has been no bloodshed, but the situation is quite tense.

An even greater conflict has broken out in the north of the Patrimonium.  Last winter, the city of Bagnarea declared its independence from the lordship of the Monaldeschi, a prominent Orvieti noble family.  Initially, this seemed to be merely a dispute between a small city and a noble family, only of passing interest to Rome.  In June, however, the Monaldeschi allegedly stirred up a counter-revolutionary uprising within the city itself.  After several days of civil unrest and uncertainty, the insurrection failed - but Bagnarea, fearing further intrigue or even an armed assault, called for help.

Rumor has it that they called first upon the Faliscan League and were rejected, though this may be wishful thinking on the part of the Romans, ever eager to paint their northern rivals in an unfriendly light.  Another party, however, accepted – the commune of Acquapendente.  Acquapendente, a city only marginally smaller than Orvieto, has long been the target of Orvieti attempts at expansion; it has been able to resist this principally because of the prosperity it gains from being the “gate to Tuscany” and a critical stop on the Via Francigena.  The city’s leaders have been proclaiming their pro-Imperial loyalties ever since Barbarossa passed through their city on the way to his coronation, and while he was in their midst they were brave enough to proclaim themselves subject “neither to Curia nor Commune” (meaning, respectively, the Pope and Orvieto).

A city rejecting the rulership of an Orvieti noble family was of but minor concern to the consuls of Orvieto – but it was quite another thing entirely for a regional rival to announce its “protection” for a city within the Orvieti contado.  Orvieto demanded that Acquapendente stay out of the dispute, Acquapendente refused, and on July 10th, the consuls of Orvieto voted to declare war on Acquapendente.

Acquapendente made the first move, burning farmlands in the Paglia river valley and demonstrating against the walls of Torre Alfina, a Monaldeschi holding, but their force retired without giving battle when the Orvieti dispatched an army in response.  The summer that followed was characterized by raiding and skirmishing throughout northern Tuscia with no pitched battles or clear victories for either side.  Orvieto is by most metrics the stronger city, but its position has been made difficult by internal divisions within the commune.  There are rival noble families happy to see the Monaldeschi humbled who have no desire to return their fief to them in triumph, and the consuls seem to have similar concerns about using civic arms to strengthen that family.  The loyalty of the commune to its local barons apparently only goes so far.

The conflict has been complicated in the past few weeks by other noble families of the region throwing their lot in with one side or another.  The Marsciani, ruling a large territory between Orvieto and Perugia, have supplied levies to Orvieto; as Signore Raniero Marsciani’s father received his investiture from the Bishop of Orvieto, that was probably predictable.  The Bovacciani, rivals of the Monaldesci who control land on the opposite bank of the Tiber from Orvieto, have declared for Acquapendente.  The Counts of Calmaniare, who control Bolsena, have so far managed to remain neutral.  Another party to watch is the powerful Aldobrandeschi family, which controls a very large territory in Tuscany along the borders of the patrimonium and has posed a significant obstacle to the expansion of Orvieti power in that direction.

The Faliscan league has no official position on the conflict and its members have yet to intervene.  While the alliance is pro-Papal in theory, and thus would be assumed to be sympathetic to Orvieto, the Faliscan League is not a single state – each of its members have their own interests and their own histories with the participants in the conflict.  The Bishop of Sutri, Giovanni III, who is widely considered to be the architect of the league, may be purposefully remaining aloof to avoid causing any fractures amongst the members of his coalition.

In other news, authority over the city of Terni has been granted by His Holiness to Oddone, Goffredo, and Solimano, the brothers of Cardinal Ottaviano dei Crescenzi Ottaviani di Monticelli.  Although Ottaviano is believed to be the leader of the “Imperial” faction in the College of Cardinals that Pope Adrian opposes, this bequest is presumably meant to be an act of reconciliation.  Terni retains its communal government, though it now operates under the authority of the Crescenzi-Ottaviani family.

News of Rome

Rome sweltered under an especially hot summer this year.  While such summers pose no problems for the grape and olive crops in the hills – grapes in particular, as well as citrus, might well thrive – the heat may pose a problem for the coming year’s wheat crop if the autumn rains are not sufficient.

For Rome, however, this was only the second-worst news regarding the all-important wheat harvest.  Summer is the season of the harvest in Latium, but the war in the previous year greatly disrupted the planting season last autumn; during the key planting months, many farmers in the Roman contado were still displaced from their land, or were unable to acquire seed corn because of the high price of grain or the destruction of their granaries and storehouses.  As a result, there was simply not much to harvest this year.  Bread prices, which had steadily declined since the winter but remained above-average, abruptly spiked again early this summer as the scale of the problem became clear, and civil disorder resulted.  Though the actions thus far have not quite been “riots” in the Roman sense, fistfights over bread, stone-throwing at merchants and the wealthy, and mass demonstrations at diaconia, estates, and taverns are growing ever more common.  The most violent, in Pontis et Scorteclariorum, resulted in the death of a 9 year old boy when he was hit in the head by an errant stone.  Many predict the crisis to grow worse in short order.  The diaconia of the Church, the traditional providers of charity, were already substantially depleted by the near-famine last year, and with the prefect still absent from the city the dilemma seems to be thrust upon the Senate alone.

In July, the Commune of Rome began minting its first independent currency.  The new coins, produced in the workshop of monetarius and camerarius Romolo Vannetti, are billon, an alloy of silver and copper (in this case, in a 1 to 3 ratio).  While billon coins are not common in international trade, the have occasionally been used for lower, chiefly domestic denominations (by the Kingdom of Sicily, for instance).  While the numbers produced so far have been fairly small, the minting appears to some to be more of a political statement than an economic act – not only is this an assertion of the Senate’s ability to mint currency, something previously done only by the prefectural government, but the new coins bear the image and (abbreviated) name of Pietro Colonna.  The fact that the Senate has chosen to honor a popular (and dead) prefect without mention of the current and living one has not escaped notice.

Two weeks ago, an ambassadorial party sent by the emperor arrived in Rome.  The column of knights, retainers, and servants, around forty strong, was led by the Imperial Marshal Otto von Wittelsbach, Count Palatine of Bavaria, and Heribert, Provost of Acqui, a pro-imperial Lombard clergyman.  Otto is not an obvious choice as a diplomat – he rather famously drew his sword on a cardinal who impugned the imperial dignity a few years ago, and allegedly had to be restrained by the emperor himself from striking the clergyman down on the spot, in the middle of a church.  Count Guido di Biandrate, who headed the last imperial delegation, was apparently indisposed on account of the war in Lombardy.  Otto’s Bavarian troops are with the emperor at Crema, but evidently their commander could be spared.

The Church of Santa Maria Rotonda, known in ancient times as the Pantheon, has resumed its normal services – just under new management.  As it turns out, most of the church’s priests were already Arnoldists themselves, and have resumed their normal duties with a few modifications.  For one, the church’s vicar has been expelled, and is believed to have fled the city; the priests now manage the church in council.  They have also stripped all the gold, silver, and other valuable ornamentation from within the building – except the actual implements of the Eucharist – and had it broken up and given to the poor.  Otherwise, the activities and facilities therein have remained unchanged.  Though Arnold himself still preaches occasionally from the steps of the building, he does not seem to have had any direct role in the reopened church.

The woodworkers of Rome are increasingly adopting a new technology.  Previously, bowls, cups, spindles, dowels, and all other sorts of turned wooden pieces were typically made on a “hand lathe,” in which the piece was turned manually by crank or cord, requiring the woodworker’s free hand or an apprentice.  Craftsmen from the north, however, have introduced the so-called “spring-pole lathe,” which uses a flexible green bough connected to a foot pedal by a cord to allow the woodworker to turn the piece with his foot, leaving both hands free for working.  While the pole lathe has the potential to allow wheelwrights, furniture-makers, joiners, and other craftsmen to perform their work faster and more easily, it also has a military application.  The release system of a crossbow is the most delicate part of the weapon; the most modern release system, the rolling cylindrical “nut,” is usually a piece of bone carved by hand.  The pole lathe allows workers to easily craft such nuts, and to make them smoother and more symmetrical than before, consequently enhancing accuracy.  [Crossbows are now slightly more effective.]

Court Roll

This new irregular section details any judicial proceedings of note.

Six men arrested by Consul Basile in the attack on the Prefect’s estate were brought up for an ad hoc tribunal in the Curia Julia.  A fine had been proposed by Consul Basile, but legal experts on hand from the new school noted that the Digests allowed loss of property only for violations of the Lex de Vi Privata, that is to say minor disorder, in which a man is beaten in a public riot but not killed.  In any case, none of the prisoners had any property worth speaking of, belonging that class of destitute Romans who so often make up the bulk of civil disturbances.

The severity of this particular riot necessitated the application of the Lex de Vi Publica, which at the very least required the “interdiction of fire and water” – the formal phrase meaning “banishment” in Roman Law.  A case analyzed in the Digests, however, specifically noted that the exception to this was “attacking and plundering houses or villas with an armed band,” for which the penalty was death.  A discussion over whether the mob constituted a “band” ensued, but a decision in the affirmative was eventually reached on the grounds that the group had come some distance together to the villa rather than coming upon site separately and coincidentally.  Despite pressure for leniency from some senators, all six men were sentenced to death.  This verdict met with the approval of most of the senate, which tended to believe that disorder resulting in plunder, arson, and death needed to be dissuaded in the most strenuous manner possible.

The six men were publicly hanged on June 12th.  A large crowd gathered to watch, which made those in charge of the proceedings rather nervous.  Evidently, however, the condemned did not have much public sympathy, and the proceedings were not interrupted.  Notably, these were the first public executions in Rome since the formation of the Commune.


Treasury: 4 WP

Income: 2 WP
  • Duty, Patrician Pierleone: 1 WP
  • Papal Stipend: 1 WP
  • Rent, Colosseum: 2 WP (Spring Only)

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)

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.

« Last Edit: May 20, 2014, 03:03:21 PM by Polycarp » Logged

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« Reply #1690 on: May 20, 2014, 05:15:24 AM »

Consular Election of 1159

Senators, it is time to decide who will lead our glorious city in the coming year!


Election Rules

All PCs are eligible for Consular status, though a character who wins an election may choose not to accept the position if he so desires.  All PCs are eligible to cast a ballot, though casting a ballot is not mandatory.

Each character has a number of votes equal to his Influence score.  When you cast a ballot, you must choose how these votes are allotted.  You may spend all your votes on one candidate or split votes between candidates however you wish.  A ballot should be in a red OOC box like this one, and be in this format:

Election of 1159

Your Senator’s Name

4 votes to Senator X
2 votes to Senator Y

The ballot is not secret.  Who voted for whom is in-character information known by all.  The whole Senate, all 100 members, takes part in this vote; our game simulates this using Influence, meaning that when you “cast a ballot” it actually represents your character and his friends and/or family actively cajoling and convincing NPC senators to vote your way.  This is a tedious process of pandering speeches, cloying flattery, empty promises, and boring dinner parties, and is by definition not a private matter.

Bribery, specifically the expenditure of Wealth to buy votes, is permitted.  Bribery will alter the final count of votes, depending on how much Wealth was spent.  Bribery works by  “stealing” one vote from a candidate of your choice and giving it to another candidate of your choice.  Stealing a vote in this way costs 2 WP.  It may be obvious that people were bribed if the final result doesn’t match who players actually voted for, but there will be no direct indication of who bribed them unless the bribery is discovered.

If the bribery is discovered, there will be a scandal resulting in a loss of Influence.  The chances of a bribe becoming a scandal are 10% for each vote bought.  Note that a scandal does not mean the bribe was unsuccessful – it is still possible to win an election by bribery despite a scandal, but the loss of Influence may make it difficult to hold on to power.

If you choose to bribe, it should ONLY be done by sending me a PM indicating how much you are spending and who the bribed Senators are supposed to vote for.  If you post a bribe in this thread, it will not be accepted, and I will laugh at you.  Bribes are non-refundable!

The two players with the most votes (after Bribery) are elected Consuls.  The Consul who receives the most votes has the privilege of deciding which Consul, external or internal, he wishes to be.  Ties will be resolved in favor of who has the most Influence or, failing that, a coin flip.

On the Senate Floor

The chief occupation of the Senate this season is, once again, the bread crisis.  Although this time the Senate does not have to deal with hordes of peasant refugees, the crisis may be worse in another respect – the diaconia, charitable granaries owned by the Church and administered by the prefect, are practically empty from the near-famine last year.  Combined with recent Arnoldist activities, the civic peace of the city seems to be dangerously close to falling apart – it may be that only the oppressive heat kept Romans from turning out in violent mobs this past season.

Foreign policy too has been a subject of discussion amongst the senators.  The senate tends to be pro-consul rather than pro-bishop on the matter of Rieti, simply because of republican sympathies, but it is not really clear which of the candidates for leadership would be in the best interests of Rome.  The Orvieto-Acquapendente War is another topic of conversation, though where Rome’s interests lie there is unclear, at least until Spring when continuing conflict there may spell trouble for pilgrims.  Some worry that if Rome takes a side in that conflict it will unite the Faliscans, who are currently straddling the fence, on the other side, and for that reason Rome should stay out; others (mostly Arnoldists) argue that pro-Imperial Acquapendente is a natural ally of Rome and should be supported.

There is some confusion as to the relationship between the newly-established “sentinels” and the 50 men, previously soldiers under Senator Calafatus, who have been retained by the Senate.  Though both consuls Basile and Manzinni authorized their payment, some seem to have believed that these men were being hired for service as the very same sentinels, while others figured these “sentinels” would be drawn from elsewhere and these men were merely consular troops.  Considering the legislation recently proposed and passed regarding the sentinels, it would probably be helpful to determine whether in fact these men were hired to fill that position or for some other purpose.

Delegation from the Consuls of Rieti

One of the newly proclaimed consuls of Rieti speaks before the Senate…

Senators and Friends,

It has been a decade since the Normans destroyed our city, and a decade since the Roman Commune offered its assistance to us.  With your aid we rebuilt our walls, our houses, and our cathedral, and the people of Rieti have never forgotten.  The Romans and Reatini have fought alongside one another against Farfa, and when Rome was threatened by the Tusculani we sent soldiers to your aid.  I and the other consuls of Rieti mean to honor that friendship and maintain our alliance.

We know well that Rome has chafed under the rule of a tyrant imposed upon them by the Church; indeed, the Senate I have the privilege to speak before now was renewed, having fallen silent in ancient times, in righteous outrage against just such tyranny.  We, your allies, now find ourselves in the same position.  Our bishop has appointed his own man to be lord over us without the consultation or approval of the people.

All we desire is the same civic liberty, the same freedom, that the Romans themselves enjoy.  The bishop has refused us our liberty and has seized our countryside and fortified Rieti’s villages and towers against us.  We do not seek to overthrow him in his rightful office, but we demand that he recuse himself from the governance of our city and bequeath to the city the villages and fortresses that rightfully belong to its people.

Rome is a more powerful city than Rieti, and if the Romans stand by us we believe we can force the bishop to accede to our just demands without bloodshed.  We humbly ask the Senate for its support in obtaining the same liberty that it has won for itself.

Delegation from the Bishop of Rieti

A messenger from the Bishop of Rieti speaks before the Senate…

Noble Senators,

My lord the Bishop of Rieti sends you his greetings.  The Bishop gives thanks to God for the ten years of friendship between himself and the Romans; he stood in the ashes of Rieti after the fury of the Normans had passed, and welcomed the Roman delegates who arrived in Rieti’s darkest day to aid and renew the city.  No man has been a greater friend to Rome than the Bishop, who encouraged the rectors to accept Rome’s offer of alliance and gratefully received Signore Calafatus when he came on his campaign against the Norman foe.  Though Rector Damianus has passed on to God, the bishop pledges to honor Rieti’s alliance with the Romans in good faith and true comradeship.

The Senate, perhaps, has heard of the “government” that now claims Rieti, and perhaps they have already come to seek aid for themselves.  He prays that you will not be fooled by their appeals to the liberty of the people – they do not represent the people of Rieti, but rather these “consuls” are a contumacious clique, a handful of merchants who have seized power in the city which they intend to wield only for their own enrichment.  They have bribed the militia commanders to support them, and now they doubtless seek to buy the Roman Senate with their hollow and deceitful paeans to freedom.

The Bishop of Rieti desires no harm to befall the city’s people, but he believes that if the Romans give him their support the conspirators in Rieti will lose heart and return the city to lawful and peaceful rule.  Bishop Dodone beseeches almighty God to guide and protect the Romans, and prays that you, their leaders, will remember who your true and faithful allies are.

Otto von Wittelsbach speaks to the Lesser Council


Our Emperor expects loyalty and honor from his subjects, which is his due.  Yet his rule is one of justice and equity, in which the true and the faithful shall prosper.

When the Count of Biandrate was last in this city, he was informed that the village of Gregoriopolis, merely a few leagues from Rome, had been granted by decree of the Curia of His Holiness the Pope to the city of Pisa.  His Imperial Majesty praises Pisa’s loyalty, but notes that by treaty already established, Pisa’s dominion as ceded by the emperor extends only to Civitavecchia and no further south.  As Rome and its environs are indisputably the province of the Roman Emperor, His Imperial Majesty finds that the Curia did unlawfully cede this village to the Pisans without consideration of the law.

Related to this matter is the matter of the oaths of the Romans.  Your representatives to him at Roncaglia were of... different minds when the time came for them to join the Lombards in giving their oath of loyalty to the emperor.  It would naturally be inconceivable for His August Majesty, or any ruler, to bestow benefits on those who do not recognize him as such.  Therefore, to dispel any question of friendship and loyalty, I am ordered to ask whether the Senate, or its Consuls as representatives, are prepared to give the same oath given by every other city of Lombardy assuring the Emperor of their loyalty.  To wit -

Oath of Loyalty

“I swear that from this time forth I shall be faithful to my lord Frederick, the Emperor of the Romans, against all men, as is my lawful duty to my lord and emperor, and I shall aid him to retain the crown of empire and all its prerogatives in Italy, namely and specifically the city of Rome and whatever jurisdiction he is entitled to have in it.  I shall not deprive him of his royal rights here or elsewhere, and if they should be taken from him I shall in good faith aid him to recover and retain them.  I shall be party to no plot or deed to cause him the loss of life or limb or honor or to be held in captivity.  Every command of his, given me personally, or in writing, or through his representative rendering justice, I shall faithfully observe, and I shall by no evil means evade hearing or receiving or complying with it.  All these things I shall observe in good faith without deceit.  So help me God and these four Holy Gospels.”

If your answer is favorable, then I tell you that, as this document will attest, our Emperor Friedrich von Hohenstaufen, sole Augustus of the Roman Empire, has empowered me to confirm his declaration that Gregoriopolis is bequeathed in its entirety to the Senate of Rome and shall be confirmed as the dependency of Rome, and its people rustici* of Rome, subject to the law of Rome and of the emperor.

*literally "rustics," commonly "peasants," but used also to mean a feudal dependent of any kind.

A messenger comes before the Lesser Council

Noble senators,

I am here on behalf of the Roman Pandolfo Cassi, who was stripped of his titles and wealth and called a traitor for his involvement in a plot against the former prefect of Rome.  He is much aggrieved over his inability to return to the city of his birth, and confesses that he despises the Tiburtini, whose city he only sought refuge in out of expediency.  He swears that he is not a traitor to Rome or the Senate, but merely acted out of opposition to the tyranny of the Church and their prefect.  While he confesses to taking improper control of ecclesiastical property, he insists that he stole nothing from the city.

He humbly beseeches the mercy of the Senate.  He has already received tremendous punishment; he has lost all his earthly possessions and has been forced to live in exile for years among the despicable men of Tivoli, who treat him with scorn.  His name and that of his family are black with dishonor.  If he did not fear for his life, he would come before you himself as a penitent.  In the name of Christian charity he asks for your clemency that he may return to the city of his ancestors in peace.

To demonstrate his loyalty to Rome, he desires to give it valuable aid against its hated enemy.  Tivoli has, with the aid of the Frangipani, built defenses that are much stronger than those defeated by the Romans under Fortis Calafatus; it will not again fall so easily, and if the Romans war against it a second time they may find themselves facing a protracted and costly siege.  Pandolfo Cassi, having lived in Tivoli for several years, has acquired a deep familiarity with these defenses, and has made detailed plans of the walls, gates, and patrols at tremendous personal risk to himself.  He humbly offers this valuable information to the consuls if they will secure his pardon.

I have been contracted to return a reply to him if the consiliarii will deign to give him one.

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« Reply #1691 on: May 20, 2014, 06:15:26 PM »

A Letter to Gerardo Calafatus


I much enjoyed your company - as well as that of your brothers - and I am glad that you called at my estate. Having thought upon the matter that we discussed, I will propose that we proceed. Any father must surely despair when his daughter should leave his house, but he should likewise be buoyed up if his daughter has made a match with a man honourable and compassionate. And I think that there is no man in Rome who could be a better husband to my Olithia than you. It is always a father's desire that he should protect his daughter, and that she should have only the best. To see to Olithia's wellbeing, and that of your shared future, I am prepared to offer a dowry of [6 WP] in good silver, which I hope to be a fine and equitable sum for her keeping. If this is agreeable to you, I would be honoured to call you my son.

Roberto Basile

A Letter to Ricardo Basile and Caetana Caetani

My Beloved Son and Daughter,

I am yet overjoyed at the coming of young Giovanni unto the world, and I am heartened each day to know of his good health and of the love his parents bear him. I knew the first moment that I saw his face that he should be a great man like his father, and like the uncle in whose honour he was named. He must of course come to Rome when he has grown and see his family estate, and the city that he shall one day call his own. I am a proud grandfather and I wish the best for my grandson. As a birth gift I shall shortly be sending [1 WP] of goods and silver, that his parents might be secure in their holding, and that Giovanni should have each and every advantage.

Your Father,

Roberto Basile

In the Lesser Council

Signore, you are known as a fair man, and I think in this you have spoken fairly. His Majesty is due every respect that his sovereignty deserves, and again for his good works and his judgements. If any man upon this earth is ruler of the Eternal City, it is the Roman Emperor. His Imperial Majesty should know that The Senate and the People of Rome are his good and leal servants, as they have been to the Emperors since the days of Augustus himself, and the Commune shall not break this great and ancient bond. As a Senator of Rome and as a subject of the Emperor, I am grateful that the matter of Gregoriopolis should be considered with this deliberate equity. Law and rightful rule must be restored in Italy, and it is the Emperor who works to see it done.

I trust that His Majesty shall never forget the Romans, and I am therefore prepared to give my own oath, as I have been called upon to do. If again the Senate should elect me as Rome's Consul I shall give it on behalf of City and Senate both, who by my investiture with this office shall confirm their own loyalty. It is time that Rome cast its doubts aside, and it is time for the Romans to make plain their friendship and their allegiance. Councilors, heed the words the reichsmarschall has delivered here to us today, for they are good and wise. The Curia squats yet in Anagni, and it is clear that Rome's interests are not foremost in their minds. Think to the future, Senators.

Consular Election of 1159

6 votes to Roberto Basile
« Last Edit: May 21, 2014, 12:26:43 AM by TheMeanestGuest » Logged

Let the scholar be dragged by the hook.


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« Reply #1692 on: May 20, 2014, 09:03:34 PM »

Consular Election of 1159

6 votes for Roberto Basile
1 vote for Barzalomeus de Morroccho


Hugo De Vinti seems to be using his influence mainly to support Roberto Basile's candidacy. He has also endorsed Barzalomeus de Morroccho's candidacy. Perhaps to reassure the nobility of Rome.

Orders for the Autumn of 1159

Pay Upkeep for Palatini [1 WP]
25 of my palatini will travel with me at all times.
10 of my palatini will patrol the area around the Pantheon to ensure "everyone's safety". They may arrest hostile troublemakers, which shall be judged according to the law.
10 of my palatini will be sent to Cappoci in order to increase security and responsiveness "should any unfortunate event occur". Should there be no need, they may travel to Labarum and get a feel for the Vicar's leanings and ensure the workers -and fields- are well. They may then reinforce my personal guard.
5 of my palatini will remain home and ensure the safety of my family, as well as of my property.
Most of my masnada will act as scouts and spies, serving primarily to ensure I have eyes at every important spots; the Leonine, the Senate, the Pantheon, Basile, Pope Victor, the Imperial delegation and others that might become more important during the turn.

I shall myself be on patrol duty all over Rome in order to "protect my brothers, sisters and the law", judging criminals according to the law and protecting whatever rights they may have.

The gilding of my estate shall be undone, the materials salvaged in order to be distributed to the poor. The date will be selected carefully, taking more interest in Holidays, especially those relevant to charity, benevolence and generosity. I think I had gilded with 5 WP.

Hugo has a preference for a peaceful solution to a solid and united government in Rieti, however he prefers to let Basile and other such able -or appointed- men in the Senate devise a plan.

While not convinced of the timing to restructuring our government in Rome, the idea has merits, especially since the latest consular appointee appears absent. Hugo will keep an open mind on the subject, preferring discussion on the matter.

Summon my brother, Tomas De Vinti, his wife and his son back in Rome. The purpose is to familiarize him with the expanding family business in Rome and the workings of the Senate so that he may succeed my seat both as Senator and the family business' manager, should I die or else become unable to exercise my functions.

Dispatch an agent to Orleans, France, to initiate the process of finding a suitable master in the art of writing. It would be interesting to know about their background; things such as their religious beliefs, their political leanings, if any (especially how they view different monarchs), if they are indebted, if they are popular inside and outside of their domain of study.

For the time being, also send an agent to Genoa to seek out a dictatores and skilled rhetoricians.

Privately to the other Consiliarii

Regarding Pandolfo Cassi, we remember well his deep involvement in the "Marcellus conspiracy". He should consider himself lucky, for even though his heinous crimes are more important than those who the court sentenced to death this season, he still lives. Allowing his return discredits all of us and might very well serve to infuriate the Prefect needlessly.
« Last Edit: September 26, 2014, 02:42:04 PM by Magnus Pym » Logged

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« Reply #1693 on: May 20, 2014, 10:51:16 PM »

Note passed to Basile

What I could not say in Roncaglia, I certainly cannot say in Rome.

Consular Election

4 votes for Barzalomeus Borsarius

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« Reply #1694 on: May 20, 2014, 11:18:27 PM »

A Note Returned

Then allow me to say it instead.

Let the scholar be dragged by the hook.

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