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Hallo Ray!

I wish to make further comments on something I wrote on Tuesday:

>  (I still sometimes pay brief visits to two Albic-related ATLs,
>  one diverging in King Arthur's time, with an Elvish enclave
>  surviving in Somerset in a different UK, and one having the
>  ancient Elvish civilization never fall, but each time I try to
>  work on either of them, I quickly realize how unrewarding the
>  enterprise is.  I should perhaps finally lay those two timelines
>  to rest.)

The timeline which diverges in King Arthur's time is the "UKW World",
named after the United Kingdom of the Westlands.  The idea behind it
is that after the fall of the Commonwealth of the Elves, a community
of Elves survived in Somerset until it was assaulted by King Arthur
in the early 6th century (some versions of Arturian legend relay such
an event), which led to tensions within Arthur's realm and to the
battle of Camlann.

In the UKW World, King Arthur rejected the instigation of the Church
to campaign against the Elves.  This meant that the Elven community
survived - to the present day.  It also meant that Arthur became the
founder of a dynasty under which all Britons were united.  Britain
gradually lost territory to the English, but as for 2010, Wales is
still about twice as big as it is today, with the Hafren (Severn in
English) running its entire course in Wales.  Through a series of
inheritances, the descendants of Arthur have managed to become the
kings not only of Wales, but also of England, Scotland and Ireland.
The four kingdoms were at one point united in the United Kingdom of
the Westlands.

The UKW World is one where overall history is similar to that of our
timeline, but with many differences in detail.  Generally, there is
more regionalism and federalism, and some countries followed
alternative pathways to democracy, such as the Hanseatic League.

Rosicrucianism, an alternative strain of Christianity borne from
Joseph of Arimathea carrying the Gospel to the Elves, plays more or
less the role of Protestantism, being a widespread religion in the
Westlands and the predominant religion in the Hanseatic League and
in Scandinavia; also the Albigensians may have been Rosicrucians
rather than Cathars.  There is a connection between Rosicrucianism,
Elvendom and the larger number of early democracies: the Elvish
Rosicrucian tradition emphasizes free will and the Purpose, and
calls for a liberal society.

This world, however, is still very sketchy, and I currently keep
it alive mainly for an "urban geofiction" project which I started
a few years ago, then put aside, until my interest in it was
rekindled by this site:

http://urbangeofiction.stadtkreation.de/

The project involves the UKW World's version of Glastonbury, the
capital of Elfham.  In the UKW World, Glastonbury is a bustling
city of about 200,000 inhabitants, the majority being Elves, but
English, Welsh and other nationalities are also present there.
Glastonbury is the see of the Archbishop of Glastonbury, who is
sometimes called the "Rosicrucian Pope", though he does not have
the same kind of power over the Rosicrucians of the world as does
the Roman Pope over the Catholics.

The linguistic landscape of the UKW World differs from OTL mainly
in being a bit more diverse.  Low German, the language of the
Hanseatic League, is a full-fledged national language.  I am also
considering a fragmented France like that of BPJ's Lucus and Adam's
Carrajina timeline, with Burgundy becoming a separate nation-state
and Bourgignon becoming a language with its own literary standard,
and a Rosicrucian republic in the Languedoc, with Occitan as its
national language.  The Elves of the UKW of course speak an Albic
language (essentially the same as one of the modern Albic languages
of the LLL, but that languages is not developed yet).  Ah yes, and
Manx and Cornish never died.

Now to the other Albic-related ATL.  In "OTL" as well as the UKW
World, the Commonwealth of the Elves fell ultimately due to
internal strife.  There was an ultraconservative but technologist
movement (the Commonwealth was technologically on the level of
Classical Greece, with the development of machinery running on
wind and water power), the "Society for the Strengthening of
Elvendom", founded by a brilliant but unruly inventor-politician
(and allegedly magician) named Lóchanâro.  Lóchanâro's first
attempt to get into power was by elections, but he lost.  Then
he launched a rebellion which was subdued, and he went into exile
to Tartessos in Spain, where he became the court wizard of the
senile and insane king Argantonios II.  Lóchanâro used his
position to coax the king into an alliance with Carthage and a
war against the Commonwealth of the Elves, where his followers
staged a second rebellion; after seven years of war, the
Commonwealth collapsed, and Celtic warlords took over control
over the British Isles.

In the ATL, which doesn't have a handy name yet, Argantonios II
dies of a stroke before the war starts, and his son, Argantonios
III, dismisses Lóchanâro from his position as court wizard and
extradites him to the Commonwealth, where Lóchanâro is tried for
treason and imprisoned, and the Society for the Strengthening
of Elvendom falters and splits into several factions which waste
their resources on combating each other.  The war does not
happen, and the Commonwealth overcomes the social problems which
had led to the rise of the Society (the main issue was the legal
status of immigrant workers from the Continent).

I have history in the Mediterranean proceed the way we know it
with little changes, but in northwestern Europe, the Commonwealth
of the Elves continues to prosper and starts influencing the
cultures of neighbouring peoples, where similar states (democratic
federations) develop, and Eaism (the Elvish religion) begins to
displace pagan beliefs.  Of course, eventually the Roman Empire
clashes with the Eaist cultural sphere, which is technologically
more advanced than Rome (the Elvish culture, through the combined
effect of an emphasis on artisanship and science, and the absence
of slavery, fosters the development of labour-saving devices),
and utterly superior at sea.  I think an equilibrium is eventually
reached with a Limes Borealis running from somewhere near the
mouth of the Loire through central Germany to the Danube near
Regensburg.

Eaism filters into the Roman Empire from the north, but is
suppressed by the Roman authorities; the events concerning Jesus
of Nazareth happen on schedule, and Joseph of Arimathea carries
the gospel to the Elves.  So we get Rosicrucianism in that timeline
as well, and even bigger than in the UKW World.  The Völkerwanderung
is pretty much monkeywrenched by the presence of a rival centre of
civilization in the northwest, but the Western Roman Empire
collapses on schedule.  With the Elves launching an industrial
revolution based on renewable energy sources, the world speeds into
modernity several centuries earlier.

But things soon get pretty unpredictable.  This means that I am
pretty stuck with this project.  What does this mean linguistically?
The Old Albic language should develop in a different direction than
the splinters of Albic in the LLL.  The languages of the peoples of
the Eaist cultural sphere in northwestern Europe would be heavily
borrowing cultural vocabulary from Albic.

For now, I prefer leaving both timelines alone, save for the city
of Glastonbury in the UKW World, which I intend to develop as a
model for realistic sustainable urban development.  At any rate,
there is still enough to do on Old Albic language and culture.

--
... brought to you by the Weeping Elf
http://www.joerg-rhiemeier.de/Conlang/index.html