Great Wonder: Varangian Guard

Ares de Borg

Norman Knight
Sep 19, 2004
Heart Of Europe
Hi, this is a wonder I have had in my game for a pretty long time.
Now, with Rob's wonderful Varangian Guard unit just around the corner, I decided to release it.

Here's a preview of the wonder:

Here's how you could use it in the game:

And here's the file:
From the civilopedia:

Varangians first appear in the Byzantine world in 839, when the emperor Theophilus negotiated with them to provide a
few mercenaries for his army. Although the Rus' often had peaceful trading relations with the Byzantines, Varangian
raiders sometimes attacked from the north. Such attacks came in 860, 907, 911, 941, 945, 971, and finally 1043. These raids were successful only in causing the Byzantines to re-arrange their trade treaties; militarily, they were always defeated by the superior Byzantines, especially by the use of Greek fire.

The ruling class of the two powerful city-states of Novgorod and Kyiv eventually became Varangian, and the Byzantines soon acquired an official mercenary force that became the Varangian Guard. This occurred in 988, when Kyivan Prince Vladimir the Great converted to Orthodox Christianity. In exchange for a marriage to Basil II's sister Anna, Vladimir
gave Basil 6,000 Varangians to use as his own personal bodyguard. The Varangian Guard was one of the fiercest and most loyal elements of the Byzantine army, as described in Anna Comnena's chronicle of the reign of her father Alexius I, the Alexiad. Their main weapon was a long axe, although they could also be skilled swordsmen and archers.

They were the only element of the army to successfully defend part of Constantinople during the Fourth Crusade,
although the Guard was apparently disbanded after the city's capture in 1204. By this time, the term Varangian
referred to any mercenary from northern Europe, and the Guard was probably composed more of English, Scottish and
Norman mercenaries than Russians or Scandinavians.
I love unit-producing wonders. Great job Ares.:goodjob:
This (& the unit of course) will definetly go into my 3rd mod.
You know I've got a weak spot for spawning wonders. I also appreciate the complete job you've done with the pedia et al.

Pressures on you now Rob :p

(I know you'll knock out another dazzler ;) )
Nice splash. But the perspective of the statue looks to be from below, while the angle of the base is from above.
About the Varangians, weren't they Scandinavians, although they lived in Kiev?
The Varangian Guard consisted of Scandinavians hired as mercenaries in Konstantinopel. Kiew was founded by Swedish vikings. :)
Bungus said:
Nice splash. But the perspective of the statue looks to be from below, while the angle of the base is from above.

Looks great! But I agree with Bungus on this point. Otherwise, perfect.:)
Ares de Borg said:
Kiev was founded by Swedish vikings. :)
Well, they had some part in its history. But I think its debatable that the Scandinavians founded it.
if i remember correctly wasn't Harald Hardrada (probrably spelt wrong) the
famous viking king, who attacked britian in 1066 with Tostig Godwinson at
one point, earlier in his life a member of the Varangian Guard?
lol yeah that's for sure!
no armour! in enemy territory! WHAT WAS HE THINKING?????

lol great wonder! :)
My mother was from a small town on the island of Chios called Parparia. In that small town there are areas called Varangou and Maglava. The town was at one time defended by the Varangian guard or given land in that area as an award for service in the Byzantime theme unit. Maglavites were ranks within the Varangian guard.

I have a website about the history of Parparia called

It is a timecapsule of Byzantine history.
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