Civil War

The Civil War began in 4792, nine months after the death of Aristarkes II, when Regikhord IV raised a rebellion against his half-uncle, Hyrkanthes. Hyrkanthes had the support of Thekla and the army, Regikhord of the provinces and elements of the militia.

In 4793 Hyrkanthes’ son Lyseppos took a punitive expedition to Suvein, after the city of Suveinir had given supplies and volunteers to the rebel navy. The castle of the anax was sacked, and the anax's wife and son raped and killed. The war proceeded well for Hyrkanthes, with Regikhord suffering a number of critical defections.

In 4794 Jasper of Suvein (previously of no military or political account) appeared on Kaplan with two tagmai of unconventional heavy infantry (the Melankreuthes), a small fleet of ships equipped for boarding tactics, and a hankering to avenge his wife and son. Despite a total lack of military experience, he out-manœuvred and outfought Hyrkanthes’ generals on Kaplan, and secured the island for Regikhord by the end of 4794. Regikhord, hard-pressed on Bethany, appointed Jasper his polemarkh. Hyrkanthes made preparations to meet Jasper at sea off the east of Kaplan.

In 4/4795 Jasper crossed through Sylvain (of where the kreion was a friend of Hyrkanthes, but Jasper’s ex father-in-law) to Thelmond with the Melankreuthes]], leaving his allied armies on Kaplan and his fleet (now enlarged) at Suvein. He defeated the episkopos/ of Korfyra and laid siege to Thekla. The city seemed likely to fall until Lykomorphus was appointed by the mayor to command the defence. (See Siege of Thekla.

The Melankreuthes, supported by local militia, destroyed relieving armies from [[Efyra]] and eastern [[Thelmond]]. During the second battle Jasper was absent, leading an invasion of [[Sale]] from Kaplan.

In 4797 Hyrkanthes forced Regikhord’s fleet to engage and destroyed it. He then mounted an expedition to relieve Thekla, leaving Regikhord besieged at [[Asthmara]] and his army confined to the peninsula north of the Isthmus at Asthmara.

Jasper met Hyrkanthes’ more numerous forces near Orio at dusk on the fourth day of the third quarter of the ninth moon, 4797 AED. Dawn found the Melankreuthes anchoring Jasper’s weak left wing from within extensive field fortifications. Hyrkanthes pushed through Jasper’s centre, but Jasper sortied with the Melankreuthes, broke and crushed the Nike (Hyrkanthes’ elite Imperial Guards), and killed Hyrkanthes. As the result of an indecisive battle, and without a strategic conclusion, the Civil War was over. Regikhord IV became emperor.

Copyright © 1991 by Brett Evill. All rights reserved.