Navarre, Kingdom of

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Foundation: 1739-1746 (T205-T208)Dead.gif
Capital: Bilbao in Asturias
Religion: Roman Catholic

By Rob Pierce


Communist agitators (from Marseilles and Baklovakia, no doubt) began to stir up revolutionary attitudes in the cities of the Republic of Spain. The foment finally boiled over in 1739 (T205), but Republican Commandante Largo Cabellero did little to stem the chaos. The landowning nobles, giving up on Caballero, declared a new Kingdom of Navarre to restore order and subdue the agitators. These royalists were led by Jose Sanchez de Leon of Navarre. Caballero recovered from his dallying, however, and ultimately defeated the last of the Navarese (1746, T208) in street fighting in Lisbon. The Communard's who provoked this mess, and their Republica Popular de Espan, were eliminated the following year.

The History:

Still to be written.

NewsFax Entries:

1739-1740 (T205)

Nörsktrad: Faced with civil insurrection in the Spanish capital, the Company ordered Malcom and Marget (Johannes' children, and able lieutenants) home with all speed. Though the Imperial Guard had promised to protect the offices of the Company, the Maklarevalde did not trust them one bit.

As it happened, Malcom and his fleet returned to Lisbon just in time. The various revolutionary and counter-revolutionary elements in the capital had gone wild, rioting in huge mobs, shouting slogans, flinging stones and burning brands at one another. A particularly vicious and well-organized crowd attacked the Offices of the Company with clubs, sledges, scaling ladders and fire. Malcom and his sailors from the fleet rushed to defend the compound and a fierce melee resulted among the warehouses and offices. Though the Company sailors (a rough lot) threw back the attack - causing thousands of casualties - hundreds of workmen, artisans, clerks and stevedores in the compound had been dragged from their offices or barracks and beaten to death.

The Maklarevalde, arrving after security had been restored, looked around with a sick, sinking expression. "Our enemies are growing bold," he muttered to his son. "What next, I wonder?"

Company possessions, holdings and warehouses in Andalusia, Aragon, Barcelona, Murcia, Madrid and Talavera were all attacked and damaged or destroyed by agitated mobs or revolutionaries.

Spain: Besieged as he was by economic chaos, sputtering rebellion and trouble at levels high and low, Largo proved to be a cunning leader - he concentrated on the business of trade. New ships were built to carry Spanish goods to foreign realms, he paid off the debts incurred by the previous regime, he invested in new works in Catalonia (a notorious hotbed of anti-Lisbon sentiment) and he raised new garrisons and regiments to secure his rule.

However - despite good intentions - the Commandante failed to actually entrust these new troops to anyone, or order his generals to take the field to restore order in the cities and repress banditry in the countryside. Instead, the Guard captains were scattered here and there to investigate conspiracies and plots and intrigues... they made arrests, they dragged people from their beds and put them to the question, they annoyed everyone high and low alike. The Church, in particular, they singled out for 'inspection.'

So revolution - and a vigorous response from the great landowners and the Church - was allowed to ferment unopposed. Largo was well thought of by both sides, and all the factions plagued him for support and aid. He did not respond, sunk in his own twisted world of conspiracies... and while he scrabbled to find the truth, Spain burned. The great university at Seville exploded first - the students running wild, battling the city guard and the condotierri of the landowners - inspired by the commune of Marseilles. Then Aquitaine and the city of Limoges in Auvergne, Galacia, Navarre, Old Castille and Salamanca. The cities followed the revolution, the provinces fought for a return to royal rule and the privilege of the landed classes.

Efforts to arrest the great nobles (particularly Jose Sanchez de Leon of Navarre) failed, and Jose proclaimed himself king of a reborne Spain, and duke of Navarre. The other nobles flocked to his banner, and the Church (fearful of the destruction wreaked upon it's sanctuaries in those lands under Communard rule) pledged their support to 'restore peace and serenity.'

Trapped between now opposing powers, the provinces of Asturias and Leon immediately agreed to pay reduced taxes to both Navarre and Spain, as well as allowing free passage for Jose's armies. Emboldened by this success, the new King gathered an army in Navarre and marched on Barcelona. There, one of Largo's generals (Antonio) was muddling about in local affairs. Faced with invasion, he mustered the local garrison and barricaded himself in the strongly fortified city. Jose Sanchez was welcomed by cheering crowds in the countryside, and by curses, insults and Republican flags waving over the walls of the city.

The noble King saw he had little chance of breaking such defenses, so he left his son Diego Alfonso to besiege the city with a quarter of his men, and then marched away south (his spies reporting the port of Tortosa had no walls or defenses). Meanwhile, in Lisbon, general Diego Tordes (one of Largo's innumerable cousins) had begged the Commandante to give him an army to suppress the rebellion of Navarre. Grudgingly, Largo gave him a few thousand men and sent him off.

Disgusted with his commander's short sightedness, Diego pushed his men in a quick march across the breadth of Spain. They entered Valencia at much the same time as Jose Sanchez and his army. After a bit of chasing one another around the countryside, Diego managed to force a battle at Demurres between his ten thousand Republican Army troops and Jose Sanchez and 13,000 Royalists. Despite the difference in numbers, Diego's Republican troops were all veterans and well equipped, and his artillery batteries were of a particularly heavy weight.

A particularly swirling battle followed, with cavalry charges, sallies, retreats and two pitched infantry melees - but Jose Sanchez (despite being not quite as good a commander as Diego) managed to force his enemy from the field, punishing the Republicans and maintaining the valor and morale of his own men. The victory was very narrow, but for the Royalists it was a god-send. Valencia fell to them, and the port of Tortosa.

Diego fell back into Murcia to regroup. Jose Sanchez struck northwest into the mountains, ending '40 in Aragon and threatening to sweep down upon Madrid. Diego, perforce, moved into the city to prevent him. Requests for more troops, sent by courier to Largo, had failed to elicit a response.

Amid all the other troubles, rumors began to circulate of a Hussite fifth column active in Spanish cities, and (most disturbing of all) among certain of the intelligentsia and the government officers. Despite investigations by the Office of the Inquisition, no culprits were found and the rumors died down. However, a particularly hostile relationship resulted between the Republic and the Papacy - one which was acclaimed in the streets by the students and workers, who found no allies among the Black Coats.

1741-1742 (T206)

Baklovakia: The Communards in Marseilles were plagued with embassies from many powers, and made out well in gifts (particularly from the Danes and the House of Tewfik) which they immediately applied to the Workers Cause (buying Danish rifles and pistols for the workers battalions.) In any case the students had determined to aid their brothers and sisters fighting in Spain, and many left the city and marched west into Navarrese territory.

Jesuits: Eventually news of the Vicar-General's death [in America] reached Sussex and the headquarters of the Order and there was some trouble. Vladimir had no son, and in any case the Jesuits were not that interested in electing their leadership through blood lines. Further, Vladimir's daughter Natasha had recently wed Jose Sancho de Leon and was now Queen of Navarre. So the upper ranks of the order put their heads together, consulted with the Pope and elected Martin Sawyer (a Jesuit, scholar and noted rapier-man) to lead them. This displeased Natasha, but she had her hands full in Spain anyway, so there was little she could do about it at the moment.

Navarre: Diplomacy: Asturias(ea)

Despite being in revolt against the Republic (and at war with those dirty gangs of students), King Jose devoted his immediate efforts to increasing the cities of Corunna (in Galacia) and Tortosa (in Valencia). A new city, Bilbao, was built in Asturias. The concomitant disbandment of some of the Royalist regiments to provide manpower for these projects caused great consternation among the nobles supporting de Leon.

"What are you doing?" They demanded, having secured an audience with the King in Aragon. "We must raise every man under arms and set ourselves against the Republican scum and their Communard dogs!"

Jose shook his head and continued to pack a suitcase with fine linen and silk shirts. He was preparing to travel to London to marry the lady Natasha Tukhachevsky, whose father was Vicar-General of the Jesuit order. "The kingdom is an untenable affair," he admitted at last, to make them stop shouting. "I have sent a letter to Largo, agreeing to terms to end this conflict."

A stunned silence met his bald words. The nobles stared in horror. "We... we are surrendering?"

Jose nodded, lips pursed. "We cannot afford to have a Catholic nation riven by civil war, not with the Hussites pressing upon us. I am going to London, to marry miss Natasha, and then I will raise bees, I think."

The Spanish nobles remained speechless while Jose picked up his bag and left, but while he took ship to London and his waiting bride, they did not surrender, nor did his son - Diego Alfonso - who took to the field with what army remained, determined to protect the rights and usages of the landed class, and the nobility, and the Church, against the Republicans.

As it happened, Jose sailed to London and married Natasha, who then learned her father had died on a humid shore in the Amerikas and was then ejected from her house in London and found herself on the street with a sister and a brother to take care of. Jose, heart-sick at the failure of his dream, found himself on a ship to Spain, again.

Natasha (who is no wilting flower, not a scion of the Tukachevsky clan!) landed in Bilbao and immediately took horse to join prince Diego in the fighting on the eastern coast. And well she did, for Republican assassins had waylaid and murdered the young prince while he surveyed the siegelines around Barcelona.

Jose, though despondent, forced himself to make the rounds of those noble lords who had offered him some support before - and might now provide men and arms and gold to this cause.

Aside from the fighting against the Republicans and the treachery of the Church and the Jesuits, the Navarrese were also afflicted by marauding gangs of workers and students (from the communes of Marseilles and Limoges) who overran the provinces of Auvergne and Languedoc, laying siege to the port of Narbonne.

Spain: Determined to crush the Navarrese and restore order and peace to the Republic, Largo attempted to raise an army in Barcelona - unfortunately, the city was under siege - so the new regiments were raised in Lisbon instead. A number of Catholic mercenaries were hired at Cortez as well, to bolster the defense of that critical port. The Commandant then issued this proclamation:

"Fellow Spanish citizens! This bloody civil war must end now before more innocent men, women or children are killed. From this moment on, any and all citizens who have revolted will be given amnesty if they lay down arms and return to Spain. No one who returns will be prosecuted nor punished. However this offer can not, and does not apply to the leaders of the rebellion they have caused the death of innocent people and they must be held accountable for their actions. In a resolution passed by the Spanish Senate the self proclaimed Duke of Navarre Jose Sanchez de Leon is hereby striped of all land and titles and possessions. Those possessions will be given to the families of the men and women he has killed. Like wise all possessions of Diego Alfonso are also to be taken and given to the families that he also caused to loose loved ones. We know that this can not replace the lost men and women, but it may help in some small part." Largo Caballero

Public exultation met this decree, for everyone knew the nobles and grandees would fight to the end - and then their estates would be broken up and parceled out to the people. Leaving his brother Jose to rule in Lisbon, Largo took a very large army north from the capital and into Galacia. At the same time, another Republican army mustered in New Castille and then invaded Valencia.

The arrival of a squadron of Vastmarki frigates went entirely unnoticed amid all the other hullaballo, and the Vastmark commodore (lord Ixapopolotl) spent many days waiting in many government offices, unable to find the man he was sent to see.

Queen Natasha, meanwhile, had arrived in Catalonia and found poor Diego's army milling about in confusion. After viewing the vast estate of the cities defenses, she decided there was little hope of capturing the formidable bastions with the few troops at her command. Instead, she gathered up the army and - learning of the invasion of Valencia by the Republican generals Tordés and Sven Unger - marched south to meet them.

The two armies met - tentatively, behind strong screening elements of light cavalry - in the southern plains, and Natasha saw she was outnumbered by almost two to one. She swung away north, into the mountains of Aragon. Tordés gave chase, and forced a battle in the passes near Sarrión. A bloody stalemate ensued, with the Navarrese (who were outnumbered) taking the worst of it. The Royalist army broke away, fleeing north. Tordés pursued.

Meanwhile, Largo and his main army had swept through Galacia and Leon, liberating the estates of the nobility and anyone else who tried to get in his way. King Jose (who had been in Leon) fled to Asturias. Largo ignored him and marched on into Salamanca. Tordés, meantime, had chased Natasha up into Navarre itself, where he lost track of her and her army. Determined to secure the province, Tordés halted and garrisoned the rugged countryside.

Natasha, for her part, managed to get the remains of her army back to Bilbao in Asturias, where she found Jose hiding in the palace in a desperately depressed state. The Republicans had secured the provinces of Salamanca and Old Castille during her march. Now nearly all of Spain was in the hands of the Republic.

And not to forget the Communards and students from Limoge, they had besieged Narbonne in early '41 and had kept up a heavy pressure of plays, speeches and other demonstrations of the workers arts. In '42 they were reinforced by various socialist battalions from Marseilles and set about bombarding the city in earnest. In the late summer of '42 the city surrendered, the garrison marching out to clasp hands with the students and everyone threw their hats in the air. An enormous party followed, during which time a vast quantity of vodka was drunk and many pastries consumed.

The King

  • Jose Sancho de Leon 1739-1746

The Players

  • T206-T208 (1741-1746) Lee Keefer
  • T205 (1739-1740) (open)

Last updated: 4 February 2002 (T206 - 1742)

© 2002 Robert Pierce

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