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Paying for Peace, the Khemer Empire Submits

In 802 AD/CE, King Jayavarman II declared his independence from Java calling himself kamraten jagat ta raja ("Lord of the Universe who is King"). With the help of his Brahman advisers he chose wisely in establishing the Khemer Empire north of Tonlé Sap (meaning Great Lake) in what is present day Cambodia. It's natural choke points and annual flooding make it ideal for agriculture and defense. It's capital city of Angor grew to become the largest urban center in the preindustrial age with some estimates making it 1 million inhabitants, but his descendant, King Jayavarman VIII is not fairing so well. He has managed to fight off the Mongols for two years but its time to submit or be overrun. He will pay tribute to Kublai Khan. The end of the Khemer Empire itself will be marked by the sacking of Angor in 1431. [1] [2] [3] [4] [5]

My Take by Alex Shrugged
I included this piece to illustrate how important it is to consider terrain when locating your bug-out location. King Jayavarman II was depending on experts (the Brahman) to help him locate and manage a territory that could both support his people and be reasonably defensible. They realized that the massive lake acted as a defense point choking off ingress but also providing water and nutrients to the flood plain. It was a great location and made it practical to support such a large number of people.

According to God, Reducing Government Debt Is BAD!

In the Middle Ages, government debt was financed through rente, the idea that you can sell annuities on future rents of your property or your future earnings to pay your tax obligations.... sort of like paying your taxes on the installment plan by borrowing from merchants and others for a fee or rente. But with fluctuations in the economy, the Saxon city of Goslar attempts to reduce its payment obligations by paying off its debt.... which is not allowed under the law without the creditor's consent.

Viennese theologians object to the redemption of debt on the principle that it will hurt the Church that is dependent on such income. The debate will go back and forth until 1451 when Pope Nicholas V will allow the right of the debtor to pay off his debt under conditions that would seem at least understandable to modern sensibilities. [6] [7]

My Take by Alex Shrugged
The hold up seems to be that the government got the idea of financing debt in this manner from an old practice the Church had of accepting donations of property and allowing the donor to live on the property until he died... apparently while paying rent. It was a good deal because you could avoid death taxes since the death tax responsibility devolved to the Church and the Church never died. If the Church agreed that such rente debts were redeemable then donors could change their minds and "buy back" their property from the Church... and that would goof things up for the Church. In any case, that is how I read it. I am more than willing to be corrected. Please, please please correct me. I want to understand this issue better.

It's Another "First" for Wales!

If it weren't for the honor, I'm sure David, the last Welsh Prince, would rather skip the whole thing, but King Edward I is unlikely to forget who started the war in the first place. The Prince of Wales will become the first nobleman in history to be hanged, drawn and quartered for the new crime of "High Treason"... another "first" for Wales. For the sake of public decency, women convicted of the crime will be burned at the stake. (Uhhh... yeah. We got standards here.) Soon to join the Prince in this honor will be "Braveheart," Sir William Wallace in 1305.

The crime and punishment will remain on the English law books until 1870. [8] [9]

My Take by Alex Shrugged
Uh... yeah. As I recall my reading, Prince David was none too smart but quite enthusiastic. In later years he will be suspected of conspiring to have his brother, Llywelyn, killed in the Battle of Orewin Bridge but no one at the time made that accusation so it's probably not true.

The Hapsburg Dynasty Is a Lock for the Next 457 years

In a concession that will make King Rudolph the First's sons a lock on the Hapsburg dynasty, the King signs the Treaty of Rheinfelden, transferring much of Austria to his elder son, Albert I of Germany. Albert's rule will be strict but fair, allowing for the grievances of the peasants, which to this point had been pointless blathering to most of the nobles, The younger son, Duke Rudolf II, will be nothing more than a titular head. Albert will be assassinated by his nephew, John Parricida, in 1308 but this won't stop the Hapsburg Dynasty from spreading across Europe until 1780 with the death of Maria Theresa, the Holy Roman Empress and the last of the Hapsburgs. [10] [11] [12] [13] [14]

My Take by Alex Shrugged
For better or worse, these guys will have their fingers into everything for a very long time.

See Also


  1. Rise and Fall of Angkor Civilization
  2. Tonlé Sap ACME Labs/Google Map (SATELLITE MAP)
  3. Tonlé Sap, Wikipedia
  4. Devaraja, Wikipedia
  5. Khmer Empire, from New World Encyclopedia
  6. The Medieval Origins of the Financial Revolution: Usury, Rentes, and Negotiability, John H. Munro, The International History Review, Vol. 25, No. 3 (Sep., 2003), pp. 505-562
  7. Year 1283, Wikipedia
  8. Hung, Drawn and Quartered, Linda Alchin, 2012
  9. The First Nobleman Hung, Drawn, and Quartered, Matthew Zarzeczny, Ph.D.
  10. Austria: Accession of the Hapsburgs, from Britannica
  11. House of Habsburg, Wikipedia
  12. Albert I of Germany, Wikipedia
  13. John Parricida, Wikipedia
  14. Maria Theresa, Wikipedia

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