The Baltic, the furthest frontier of medieval Christendom, and one of the most perilous, where violence and the supernatural meet. Constantinople has finally fallen to the young Ottoman Sultan Mehmet “The Conqueror”, beckoning further strife. Hussite heretics continue to claim Bohemia as their own. The great trading cities of Prussia wage bitter war with the Teutonic Order, now dangerously distracted from their principal duties of defending the borders from Lithuanian, Tartar, Rus and Mongol raids. Beyond these borders the Golden Horde awaits, eager to “harvest the steppe” for slaves. The Lithuanian forests are full of magicians and shamans who conduct strange rituals in ancient groves where no Christian has ever tread. In these eerie places, Crusader knights are sometimes sacrificed to pagan deities.
Down in the cataracts of the rivers Dnieper and Don, group of escaped slaves have formed war-bands called the Cossacks. They have begun to strike back at their Ottoman and Mongol captors in a daring raids down the rivers and into the Black Sea. The cities in this region are prosperous and well organized, with fine, tall buildings, stout fortifications, cobbled streets, and mighty churches filled with art of astonishing beauty. But there are strange things lurking in the shadows. Secret societies of pagans, of fencing masters studying the Ars Martis, magicians and alchemists practicing occult rites of the Ars Magica, all saturated with the shadows of politics, intrigue and heresy.
Just like Volume 1, this intricately researched book will help you understand the medieval Baltic, not just as historians tell it, but also how the inhabitants felt it to be, full of the occult and mysterious as well as the profane and violent.
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