1636: The Saxon Uprising — Snippet 27

1636: The Saxon Uprising — Snippet 27:


December, 1635

Unequal laws unto a savage race

Chapter 10

Prague, capital of Bohemia

After he entered the huge salon that served Morris and Judith Roth for what Americans left back up-time would have called a living room on steroids, Mike Stearns spent half a minute or so examining the room. No casual inspection — this was a careful scrutiny that lingered on nothing but didn’t miss any significant detail, either.

By the time he was finished, his hosts had seated themselves on a luxurious divan located toward the center of the room and the servants had withdrawn at Judith’s signal, giving them some privacy.

Morris had a pained expression on his face. “Go ahead. Make the wisecracks about the nouveau riche so we can be done with it.”

Mike gave him a glance and smiled. He took a last few seconds to finish his examination and then took a seat on an armchair across from his hosts.

“Actually, I was going to compliment you on your judgment,” he said. “God help me for my sins, but I’ve become an expert on gauging ostentation, the proper degree thereof. I’d say” — he raised his hand and made a circular motion with his forefinger — “you’ve hit this just about right. Splendid enough to cement your position with the city’s Jewish population and satisfy any gentile grandee who happens to pop over that you’re a man to be taken seriously, but not so immodest as to stir up the animosity of those same gentiles.”

Morris grunted. “The second reason’s less important than the first. The only gentile grandee who pops over here on a regular basis is Pappenheim.”

Judith winced. “Puh-leese don’t use that expression in front of him, either one of you. The man has a sense of humor — pretty good one, in fact, if you allow for the rough edges — but it only extends so far, when it comes to himself. General Gottfried Heinrich Graf zu Pappenheim does not ‘pop over.’ He visits, with grace and style.”

Morris and Mike both smiled. Then Morris added: “The point being, Pappenheim’s the only important gentile figure in Bohemia who’s ever been over here and most of what’s in these public rooms is stuff that means nothing to him.”

He pointed to a series of etchings on one of the walls. Morris and Judith were the subjects of three of them, two separately and one as a couple. Mike didn’t recognize any of the other people portrayed, but from subtleties of their costume he thought they were probably other prominent figures in Prague’s very large Jewish community.

“Those are all by Václav Hollar,” Morris said. “He was born and raised here, but then moved to Cologne. Judith sweet-talked him into coming back with the offer of a number of commissions.”

Mike shook his head. “Never heard of him.”

“He became well enough known that there’s a brief mention of him in my records,” Judith said. She was referring to the files on her computer. Before the Ring of Fire, Judith’s interest in her family’s genealogy had led her to compile quite a bit of information from the internet on Prague’s Jewish community during the seventeenth century. Her ancestors had come from here. One of them, in fact, had been the famous rabbi known as the Maharal, Judah Loew ben Bezalel, whom legend said invented the golem.

“But that happened years from now in our old timeline,” Judith went on, “after he moved to England. In the here and now, he’s too young to be famous. Which is a good part of the reason I wanted him. You’re right that it can be a bit dangerous — might be more than a bit, under some circumstances — for Jews to be too ostentatious.”

Morris shrugged. “What I was getting at, though, was that we could have commissioned Rubens or Rembrandt to do those portraits and Pappenheim wouldn’t have known the difference.”

“Rubens and Rembrandt wouldn’t have come anyway,” said Judith, “but if they had you can be sure that Wallenstein would have known about it — and he does know who they are.”

“Speaking of Wallenstein…” Mike’s expression had no humor left in it now. “He doesn’t look good. At all.”

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28 Responses to 1636: The Saxon Uprising — Snippet 27

  1. robert says:

    Tennyson, and an appropriate source, too.

    If Wallenstein dies, it had better be kept secret until they (Pappenheim and Morris) get things a bit more settled in that region.

  2. KIMs says:

    Now we get to see what Mike has been up to. It’s interesting the comment on Wallenstein. Does he have a successor? Might it be Pappenheim? If I were Mike I’d have the army ready to move on a moments notice. No permanent bivoac (sp?) Send the fastest troops first then the artillery, maybe by river? Even if Axel and Wettin haven’t heard of OPSEC, Mike and Simpson have. I’d bet Nasi has people listening in on all the radio frequencies he can. Are there scanners than could have been adapted that could identify frequencies used, the monitor those more closely? C3I has a tremendous impact on how war and battles are fought. As shown in Poland. Sorry about the rambling.

  3. jeff bybee says:

    am rereading grantsville gazette 2 it said an upcomming novel would be called ” the torture of fulda” wasa it6 renamed the dreesen insident?

  4. Robert H. Woodman says:

    If Wallenstein dies while Mike is trying to put out fires in the USE, things could get pretty bad. Do you suppose Wallenstein is in poor shape due to all the quacks he listens to? If so, perhaps Nasi could do everyone a favor by having the worst of the quacks meet with “unfortunate” but non-suspicious, “accidents”. Or perhaps Mike could just shoot them out of hand by claiming that they are enemy agents trying to kill Wallenstein.

    I don’t remember; does Wallenstein have sons who could inherit his title and be credibly competent?

  5. Jason says:

    Well Wallenstein had a two children a son who dies in infancy and a daughter who survived to adulthood I wouldn’t be surprised that he arranges for a political marriage to his hand picked sucsessor.

  6. Mike says:

    Wallenstein’s only remaining child (the daugther referenced by post 5)was referenced as a prospective candidate for marriage in 1634 Bavarian Princess. I don’t remember offhand if that was by the Archduchess of Tyrol for one of her sons or by the Austrians for Ferdinand IIIs younger brother (currently a priest but him dropping orders was discussed). Wallenstein married her mother in 1617. Not sure if the daugther was first or the deceased son.

    For reference, while I don’t know if Schiller’s plays (circa 1797-99) on Wallenstein are 100% accurate on her, but Schiller depicted Wallenstein’s daughter, Thekla, as falling in love with Piccolomini’s son (non-historical fictional character) in the 1633-1634 time frame leading up to Wallenstein’s assassination. So, unless Schiller really adjusted Thekla’s age, she should be roughly marriagable age for 17th century nobility.

  7. Todd Bloss says:

    If Wally dies, I don’t see how Pap could succeed him without lineage.

  8. Todd Bloss says:

    -Sorry, I posted before reading the post about Pap, possibly, marrying the daughter.

  9. Doug Lampert says:

    Inheritance is solvable.

    Wallenstein can adopt someone or have them marry his daughter or leave the estate to his wife. Adult adoptions weren’t common at this time, but people will be familiar with the idea of adopting an adult to make them your heir from Roman law, and Wallenstein has no other obvious heirs except his wife unless there’s a brother or nephew I haven’t heard about or the daughter gets married.

    The thing is that Wallenstein has established his own dynasty with no connection to the former rulers and no higher noble granting the titles and lands. He didn’t inherit based on any particular legal theory, and thus no matter what he says the rules are they won’t invalidate or threaten his claim on the throne. He can define his own hereditary mechanism without regard to the prior rules, and as long as it’s reasonable enough that his men and the population will accept it, it goes through.

    If Wallenstein were to adopt Papenhiem I doubt anyone would complain about Papenhiem inheriting, although pragmatically Papenhiem would want to make sure the daughter goes into a convent or marries him. If Wallenstein leaves it to his wife the only people who will complain are the ones that don’t accept him. If he leaves it to his daughter then everyone with a single male relative will start considering marriages, but that’s about the only problem.

  10. Drak Bibliophile says:

    Minor Snerks.

    Wallenstein has a living son at this time and Pappenhiem is loyal enough to back the baby as Wallenstein’s heir.

    Would you want to argue with Pappenhiem? [Evil Grin]

  11. dave o says:

    Bohemia is an elective monarchy. Prior to Wallenstein, the previous kings were Ferdinand II and Frederick, Elector Palatine. Previous to that, the Hapsburgs ruled the country. In theory, anyone could be elected king. As a practical matter, I don’t think we know enough about politics in Bohemia to make a sensible prediction about what happens if Wallenstein dies. I’m not sure Pappenheim would be a good choice: the snippet suggests he has some limitations. Doubtless Flint has his own ideas which we will find out when the complete book finally comes out. April’s a long way away.

  12. robert says:

    Wouldn’t it be funny if Morris succeeded Wallenstein? Nah!

  13. Drak Bibliophile says:

    Morris might end up on the regency council for Wallenstein’s son. [Grin]

  14. wombatcombat says:

    It is not a matter of whether or not Pappenheim could succeed Wallenstein but rather if he did could he hold bohemia together.

  15. robert says:

    @13 Gee, Drak. Tell me more…

  16. ET1swaw says:

    IIRC Wallenstein’s daughter was born in 1622 making her 13 ATT.
    @13 The butterfly waved its mighty wings!!! OTL Pappenheim died from Lutzen (same as G2A) and Wallenstein was assassinated in 1634. NTL Wallenstein has an infant son and Pappenheim is healthy as a horse.
    Charles Louis (eldest son of Frederick V of Palatine (Winter King) and Elisabeth Stuart (sister of Charles I of England)) is turning 18, and has a claim through his father on Bohemia. Ferdinand III has a claim through his father as well. Both have younger brothers (respectively Rupert of the Rhine, Maurice, Edward, John Phillip Frederick, and Gustavus Adolphus (16, 15, 10, 8, and 3); and Leopold Wilhelm (21)). The sons of Claudia Medici (Hereditary Noblemen of the USE Province of Tyrol) are 7 and 5.

  17. dac says:

    I love that you people are crazy enough about Flint’s series to get into all these details, but not HarryPotter/Twilight crazy. Yet….

  18. Blackmoore says:

    @drak… I haven’t gotten through “Tangled Web” but I though i saw a refrence to the passing of Pappenheim. or is that set after these events?

  19. jeff bybee says:

    13 is marragle age for the nobility at this time
    I remember ellen goodman wrote an artical that said as late as the end of the 1800s the marrage of 12 and up was common with young as 8 possible.
    in the book the texians by dan parkinson about the fighting in 1832 has a 14 year old orphen who has been running his own farm for 2 years proposes to his 14 year old girl friend on the eve of battle.
    while that was a novel please also remember david farrigate first US admeral fought comanded guncrews in his first battle as a midshipman at age 9 and comanded a prize ship at age 12 and comander barney who was a heroi of the revolutionary navy and the war of 1812 was 15 when his captian died and he took comand of his sailing ship . he sailed it on the spain conducted business and contracted repairs arranged to tranport troops for spain returned to spain took on cargo and sailed the ship home to america- delivering her and a goodly profet to her owners

  20. Drak Bibliophile says:

    Blackmoore, there’s a mention of Pappenheim’s death in the Original Time Line not in the Current Time Line.

  21. Blackmoore says:

    @Drak, Thanks – I’m in Cannon Law right now, and Tangled Web is really hard to locate in Buffalo.

  22. Maddie says:

    @10- Where did it say the baby was a boy? I only remember that they said that Wallenstein’s wife was pregnant in The Bavarian Crisis.

  23. Drak Bibliophile says:

    Maddie, “minor snerks” means that I’m “reading from” snippets that haven’t been posted yet. [Wink]

  24. Maddie says:

    Ah, I see. Infant kings have never worked out well, historically.

  25. robert says:

    @25 Should Wallenstein die and a regency council consisting of Morris (or, better yet, Judith) and perhaps Pappenheim and some other like minded people, be formed to rule and raise the kid, this infant king-to-be will be a great ruler and a better person than his father when the time comes.
    I might want to have Julie McKay on the council were I Albrech von W. But that’s just me. So, Drak, who is on the council?

  26. Drak Bibliophile says:

    There’s nothing in the snippets I’ve seen about a regency council.

  27. JN says:

    Alfred Lord Tennyson

    It little profits that an idle king,
    By this still hearth, among these barren crags,
    Matched with an aged wife, I mete and dole
    Unequal laws unto a savage race,
    That hoard, and sleep, and feed, and know not me.

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