Falcòn, House of

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Information

Foundation: 1675-1730Dead.gif
Capital: Valetia on Malta
Religion: Roman Catholic

By Martin Helsdon

Description

Frequently in competition with the Albanian East India Company and the Houses of Tewfik and Procurare, the House of Falcòn was destroyed in 1730 by the Albanians in collusion with the government of the Duchy of the Isles.

The History:

Still to be written.

NewsFax Entries

1675-1676 T174
House of Falcòn: No entry.

1675-1676 T175
House of Falcòn: No entry.

1679-1680 T176
House of Falcòn: No entry.

1681-1682 T177
Syria: The House of Falcone, however, was well received in the western ports and much corn, cotton and dye was sold to that concern.

AEIC: The offices in Constantinople were expanded and new operations started in Venice (despite the previous presence of the House of Falconé agents there) and Antioch.

Danish Empire: At the same time, he made sure that the agents and officers of the Falconé house were given a harder scrutiny in these operations in the northern Italian cloth trade.

House of Falcòn: Ahram was please, on one hand, to open trade relations with the Lybians, and quite displeased, on the other, at the actions of the Albanians, which had made the efforts of his agents and factors in Denmark much harder. Despite this the Falcòn concern managed to establish a presence in Marseilles (wine), as well as Barcelona (more wine and fabrics), and Sicily (olives and corn). Existing operations in New Oran and Benghazi were expanded. In the east, Falcòn ships arranged the trade of a large quantity of grain between Ethiopia and Syria to avoid the new trade restrictions that the Syrians had emplaced.

1683-1684 T178
House of Falcòn: The Korez pursued their ties in Syria by submitting an early bid to for the dye monopoly and also kissing up to the Syrian governors along the Mediterranean (most of the dye trade was focussed on the trade in Imperial purple). The Islanders were paid off for the use of their port facilities too. A new trade route was opened with the Ethiopians through the ancient Maori port of Semerang. Political efforts in Lybia and the Three Isles failed to gain the Korez factions there control of the cities of Benghazi and Archimedea.

Ethiopia: Quite a quantity of grain was delivered by Falcone traders to Gozer, but attempts by that merchant house to establish offices and trade connections there failed due to the poor language skills of the factor sent to carry out the mission.

1685-1686 T179
Syria: The Syrian government awarded the dye monopoly to the Albanian East India Company, which squeaked past the House of Falcone as the leading bidder.

House of Procurare: So too did Jens Viirshin's travels in the Mediterranean manage to acquire Procuré entre to the ports of Barcelona and Caligari, this despite the strong presence of the House of Falcone in Barcelona. Similar efforts in New Oran were strongly rebuffed by the Falconeirs, and Athens was found to be a stronghold of the AEIC, who warned Jens and his crews to just keep on sailing...

House of Falcòn: Hadramuht( nt )
Ahram was quite displeased to learn that, despite the efforts of his underlings, the Swedish merchants of the Procuraré combine had managed to acquire warehousing and permits in Barcelona and Caligari. A similar attempt to gain entrance to New Oran was foiled, however. Still, things in the Mediterranean were becoming... crowded. The subsequent failure of his agents to secure the Syrian dye monopoly was also bitter gall in his mouth. On the plus side of the ledger, a new trade route was opened with the Mixtec empire in the south. Too, an arrangement was reached with the politically safe province of Hadramuht, and operations in Benghazi, Marseilles, Archimedea, Augostina, Lisbon and Mt'suia were either expanded or initiated. In Benghazi, Falcone political control was paramount.

Too bad it was not to last.

Lybia: Prince Awab, the son and heir of Hasan, took to wife a bride of the Kabilya tribes. At the wedding, amidst the revelry and celebration, the prince took aside the representatives of the mercantile houses of Falcone and Procurare. With a companionable hand upon each of their shoulders, he spoke: "Get OUT!" and hurled the two startled dignitaries off of the balcony and into an ornamental pool below. Within weeks, the offices of both houses had been ransacked, their warehouses seized, their trading permits and papers revoked, and all of their dependents and factors expelled from the Emirate. "We shall have no foreign influences here without the leave of the Emir, and as these combines have seen fit to pursue their operations here without that leave, we do not accord them the practices of guest-right and hospitality." The loss in cash, capital and time to both concerns was great, particularly to Falcone.

1687-1688 T180
Spain: While supporting Procure with one hand, Lucien then ordered his troops in Barcelona and Lisbon to wreck the warehouses of the House Falcone in both of those cities. The merchant factors were run out, and their homes confiscated. The Procure representatives then paid pennies on the guilder for what remained.

House of Falcòn: Diplomacy Oran in Algeria(ea)
Ahram was stunned at the reversals his house had suffered; first the expulsion from Lybia and now the actions of the Spanish crown. Still, he did not give up, turning his personal attentions instead to the rich textiles trade in northern Italy, and expanding the minor Falcon operations there, Too, his lieutenants were busy.

Ethiopia: Like many rulers, Pakash was concerned about the proliferation of mercantile holdings in his port cities, so he issued an edict that all combine activities within Ethiopia were banned unless the combine recieved the permission of the government to conduct same. However, no actions were taken against the holdings of the Tewfiki or the House Falcone. At least, not yet.

1689-1690 T181
Danish Empire: Politicking continued in Venice by the Albanians seeking to discourage the activities of the Falcone and Procurare cartels. In this they were less than successful, though they continued to benefit from Claudia's patronage.

House of Falcòn: Diplomacy Oran( a )
Ahram struggled to recover from the various reverses dealt him, both by fortune, and by the fickleness of nations. The merchant ships of the House were overhauled and fitted with light cannon to protect them from pirates and other raiders. A close alliance, however, with the bey of Oran gave Ahram a secure base in the western Mediterranean. Coupled with the further expansion of his holdings in Archimedea, the master of the house had some hope for better times ahead. Efforts in the Red Sea also met with good success, even though the Falcone now found themselves competing with Tewfik in those areas.

Libya: The Emir also announced that normal relations had been restablished with the House of Procurare. The same could not be said of the brittle state between Lybia and the Falcone, who established a presence in Oran.

Hasan showed the merchants what they could expect from him when he appeared at the gates of Oran with 28,000 men ( nearly all Emirate Guards ) and a massive fleet. The Falconer captain al'Baha, seeing destruction on the wind, fled with his small squadron of armed merchantmen to the west, slipping the noose now drawn tight by the Lybian fleet and army. The Oranii, however, did fight to protect their city, though the first assault of Lybian guardsmen carried the main gate and then the citadel.

1691-1692 T182
House of Falcòn: The Falcone fleet kept a weather eye out for pirates, and some rearmed transports that they owned patrolled the area around Malta in particular. Otherwise Ahram oversaw a strong effort to restablish the trading networks damaged by the Lybians and others - concerns in Sana, Mt'suia, Bastia, Genoa, Marseilles, and Gozer were expanded, while new offices were opened in Caligari and Aseb. Ahram, however, died of a tropical fever while attempting to make a voyage down the west Afriqan coast. His long time right hand man, Thorvald, was elected to succede him. The Norseman was a little leery of this - he had many enemies, some with long memories.

Libya: By the order of Awab, the tenuous allowance of trade between the Lybian ports and the House of Falcone was completely banned. No Falcone ship would be allowed in Lybian harbors, nor would Lybian ships be allowed to carry Falcone cargoes.

1693-1694 T183
AEIC: The elders of the company voted to send a lavish gift (the biggest vegetable basket you ever saw!) to the House of Falcone to honor the passing of Ahram deKorez.

Elsewhere the Senior Partner oversaw the expandsion of operations in Mansura, but barely escaped arrest in Nuf, a town that - strangely enough - is the sole proprietorship of the Falcone combine.

House of Falcòn: Other than mourning the passing of Ahram, and accepting the various gifts and presents sent by other nations, things were very quiet in the Falcone house. The 'Kalibios' (Goodlife) Pirates, who plague the Eastern Mediterranean, have extended their depredations to the west, to the coast of Sicily. Recently they attacked and destroyed the village of Leon, several miles south of Palermo. Reports are confused, but several survivors spoke of a bigga golden statue dat climbda outta da sea, shoutin somtin abouta Luigi.

Duchy of the Isles: The Islanders shuffled fleets around and sent a small squadron to the Falcone outpost of Nuf, on the northern coast of the Sinai, just to check and make sure things were ok. Which they were.

1695-1696 T184
House of Procurare: An abortive effort to acquire warehouse space in Archimedea on Sicily was forestalled when local Falcone bravos set fire to the buildings and then watched in the company of the local constabulary.

House of Falcòn: Heyerdahl at last reached the end of his strange and glorious career - he had been a swabby, a general, a king, a fugitive, a ship-captain, the master of the house of the Falcon, and now, at last, he went to his ultimate reward at the age of sixty-five. His new family and friends, only recently come to know his full history, mourned to see the old man pass, and with him the memory of simpler times.

1697-1698 T185
House of Falcòn: An attempt to murder Joshua was foiled by an alert maid, who dumped the explosive casserole out of the hotel window. Otherwise the Falconers kept to themselves and tried to figure out Heyerdahl's accounting scheme.

Duchy of the Isles: Gutun arranged with the Albanians to participate in their cartel route to the far east - a move that angered the House of Falcone, but they were just sitting around so what did they expect? Further the antics of the Falcone thugs in Archimedea were not to the liking of the civil authorities, so 2,500 Islander marines were deployed in the port to keep things polite. The port police also issued this statement: "All merchant houses who seek through proper channels and request ducal permission are welcome in the Three Isles. Behaviour such as that exhibited by employees of the House of Falcone will not be tolerated. Continued violations will result in fines or potential expulsion."

1699-1700 T186
House of Falcòn: Shaking off the langour that had befallen the house before the death of Heyerdahl, Reynolds undertook a number of new initiatives; trade routes were established to Maasai, Persia, Wallachia and Burgundy. Relations were repaired with the Lybians and a number of new ships were built. Reynolds himself went to St.Michael's to attend the Papal meeting on the "cultic threat".

Falcone offices were opened in St.George-the-Defender in Morroco, St.Michael's in the Azores, and New Oran in Lybia.

Church Spiritual: Many visitors came to St.Michaels at the behest of the Pope; amongst them were a prince of the Prester John, a lord of the Australs, an emir of the Syrians, a duke of the Spanish, Reynolds of the House of Falcone (also representing the Ethiopians). Unfortunately with the spectre of darkness showing its hand so openly on the north European plain, there was little to discuss.

Ethiopia: Repressive measures were taken against the various business efforts of the House of Tewfik; their offices in Mt'suia and Gozer were closed down and all of their goods confiscated. In the capital, the Falcone representatives plied Horos and his cronies with all manner of gifts and presents.

Despite it seeming quite unlikely that Ethiopian ships would have much chance in the near future, a new navigational school was opened at Gozer with help from the Falcone cartel.

1701-1702 T187
House of Falcòn: The Falcone kept a low profile, hoping that the war that was ruining their business would be over soon.

1703 - 1704 T188
House of Falcòn: Now secure behind the massive fortifications girdling Malta, the Falcone undertook to improve the city of Valetia and other cities that were places of operation for them.

1705 - 1706 T189
House of Falcòn: Diplomacy: Al'Rhemish in Kabilya(mf)
After long discussions, the Falcone at last refused the offer made them by the Procurare to join their houses. Joshua, speaking to the captains of the fleet, said "no matter the gold offered us by our esteemed competitors, or the offer of marriage between our house and theirs, we must stand proud and independent of them". Bengt Procurare, who had come so far, personally, to make this offer was sadly disappointed to fail. Still, there were other opportunities… Captain Boyad was killed by thugs (possibly in the pay of the Libyan government) in Oran.

1707 - 1708 T190
House of Procurare: Bengt, who was in Valetia, attempting to strike a deal with the House of Falcone, offered the hand of his granddaughter, Susana, to seal the arrangement. Unfortunately the murder of an Albanian representative spoiled the effort and Bengt and his party were forced to return to Barcelona.

House of Falcòn: The generally tense situation in the House in Valetia was exacerbated by the brutal murder of an AEIC emissary - he was found hung upside down by his genitals in the breezeway of the Guest's Quarters. The following investigation pointed strongly to the machinations of the Procurare ambassador, but it could not be proved. Regardless, Joshua dismissed the northerners and put them aboard ship for Barcelona.

1709 - 1710 T191
House of Falcòn: Diplomacy: Tortosa in Valencia(mf), Tangier in Zirid(mf)
Galvanized by the scuffle between the Procuré and Albanian emissaries in the previous year, Joshua finally took a firm hand at the tiller and the Falcòn began active operations again. The House found itself somewhat lagging, however, behind the Albanians - who had been particularly busy in Danish territories. Hudson d'Ubious was arrested on trumped up charges of being a Swedish spy in Trieste and spent all of 1710 in a dank cell, picking lice off of his body parts.

1711 - 1712 T192
House of Falcòn: The Falcone continue to keep a very low profile, though they did note with pleasure that much of the battle-fleet carefully built by the Albanians was destroyed when Constantinople fell to the Catholics.

1713 - 1714 T193
The Holy Cross War:
May 1713 At the same time that the Viceregal fleet returns, the long-missing General Uralpinsky shows up in Constantinople as well on a House of Falcone ship.

House of Falcòn: The Falcone cleaned house again and took some pains to hire sneaky fellows to help them keep an eye on their enemies. They laughed hysterically at the disaster that had befallen the Albanians and sent the widows of the dead Boardmembers (in an act of poor taste) some hats, "to cover the heads of their men".

1715 - 1716 T194
House of Falcòn: Master Joshua minded his own business.

1717 - 1718 T195
House of Falcòn: The Falcone continued to mind their own business, though Lucious d’Medici (one of the more powerful captains) died by accident in the trouble in Naples.

Ethiopia: David’s campaign against the Hadramuht (beyond the desire for glory that still afflicted him) was directed at the House of Falcone, who had made an arrangement with the emir of that land. David’s glory was assured, as he conquered.

1719 - 1720 T196
House of Falcòn: The loss of the Mansuran canal and the resulting cessation of trade and communication from the east gave Falcone operations in the Red Sea and Persian Gulf a swift kick in the head. The news from Asia had been dire before, but now it ceased altogether.

1723 - 1724 T197
AEIC: The Company legate in Venice found himself locked in a brutal little struggle with the Houses of Falcone and Tewfik, both of whom were attempting to expand their operations in the Danish capital. After a number of brawls and at least one murder, the Albanians exercised their allies in the city militia and the Imperial government and had both the Falcone and the Tewfik ejected from the city.

Norsktrad: The Company also held a lavish, but strictly controlled, demonstration of their new Olesson Engine based “self-powered ship” from their massive harbor, drayage and shipbuilding complex just outside of Lisbon. Four of the Olesson ships raised a huge racket and enormous clouds of black and white smoke as they were launched. All four, sails furled, managed to make it to sea under their own power. Falcone and Albanian East India Company representatives on hand mocked the enormously expensive project as being a waste of effort.

Spain: Reports by Falcone merchant captains of “fire-breathing dragons” being sighted off of the Estremaduran shore were widely circulated, though nothing could be proven.

House of Falcòn: The Falcone at last woke up, looked around, and went back to bed. However, some effort was taken and the shipyards in Valetia were reopened and twelve large new merchantmen laid down for construction. Trade with the Danes and the Swedes was also revitalized and emissaries sent out to various functions and affairs. The boy, Gregor, was proclaimed the next Master and Heir to Joshua. The “Spanish” plague spread a little bit, with Captain Te’lar being knifed in a Valetia harbor-front dive.

1725 - 1726 T198
House of Falcòn: The Falcone continued to ruminate on the unfairness of life and the grief that came with each turn of the wheel.

1727 - 1728 T199
House of Falcòn: The House of Falcon continued stockpiling their profits, content with the status quo. “Ice-schmice, what does that have to do with business?”

1729 - 1730 T200
Duchy of the Isles: Everyone in Valetia turned out in May of 1730 to observe the arrival of the Albanian Aerofleet, numbering two airships (the Eagle and the Hawk) moving under their own power! A huge parade was had for the brave aviators and everyone turned out for a picnic of legendary proportions.

The arrival of the Albanians coincided with the sudden and very unexpected death of Jakob Feyd, even as he was approaching the main office of the House of Falcone, intending to invite the Falcones to the great picnic. The middle aged Duke staggered, clutching his heart, and then collapsed on the street. His wife Aya, who was hurrying to catch up with him was immediately on the scene, surrounded by her personal guards.

Aya’s green eyes glinted, perhaps with tears, perhaps with amusement, to see her husbands’ cold dead face lying on the cobblestoned street. The Ducal guard, which had formed a bristling cordon of rifles, sabers and bayonets all around the scene looked to her for orders.

“The Falcone did this,” she snapped at them, “Even as they arranged the death of Duke Gutun. Enter their house immediately, arrest everyone within!”

The Guardsmen shouted in affirmation and within moments the sprawling residence / warehouse / cartel offices of the Falcone was under attack from all sides. Indeed, Aya’s troops had crept into the houses on all sides of the Falcone compound during the night and now thousands of men rushed forward on the attack. The merchant’s unprepared, were quickly overwhelmed and dragged out in chains, weeping and wailing. Aya, her face cold, returned to the Ducal residence, satisfied that the Falcone had been taken in hand in Valetia. Courier ships were dispatched to all corners of the realm, ordering the seizure of all Falcone ships, buildings, personnel and (most importantly) banking assets.

By the end of the day, Aya had been crowned Duchess of the Isles by the elderly Bishop of Valetia, had nominated her younger sister Neya as her heir, had seen to the drowning of her nephew Safi (the son of the late and reviled Duke Ali), and had signed some lucrative trade arrangements with the Albanian East India Company, including the transfer of many Falcone properties and rights to the AEIC.

The next day, under extremely heavy guard, a vast quantity of bullion, bonds, bank notes and miscellaneous jewels was moved out of the vaults under Falcone House and into Aya’s own storehouse. All throughout the Duchy, her men were also seizing everything else of value, including the entire Falcone merchant fleet. It was a very profitable day for Aya and her family. Very profitable…

House of Falcòn: …was destroyed by the connivance of the Islanders and their Albanian lackeys. A sad end to a once respected merchant house.

AEIC: The aftermath of the Islander’s raid on the Falcone netted the AEIC substantial holdings on Malta, Sicily and in Marseilles.

The Masters of the House of the Iron Falcon

  • Joshua Reynolds 1695-1730
  • Thorvald Heyerdahl 1690-1695
  • Ahram de'Korez 1675?-1690

The Players

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