London was sacked several times during the roman and viking times. And remember that is one of the most defensible cities out there, on an island, far away from any borders and too large to be raided by random viking bands.Well, sure, somewhere in the world there is a war going on pretty much all the time. That doesn't change the fact that for about 90% of the population of the world, they aren't involved in an armed conflict at any given time. And, yes, cities were enslaved. Sure. But, again, these are outliers.
To put it another way, how many times was London enslaved? London's a couple of thousand years old. Must have happened many times.
And, what kind of industrial center are you thinking about? What time period are we looking at? Again, looking at Japan, Japan was more or less self sufficient and trucking along for centuries.
Something I think people tend to forget is just how empty the medieval world would be. The population of all of England in the 11th century was what, 2 million? About 1/30th what it is now. That's a LOT of empty space. D&D worlds are freaking ginormous. The population density should be about what you see in Siberia or northern Canada.
Same for Japan. An island with usually very peaceful neighbours most of the time. Those are the exceptions, not the rule.
And I am not talking about globally, even regionally conflict was constant be it wars, rebellions or just raiding.
The time after WW2 till now was the most peaceful time (western/central) Europe ever experienced in recorded history.
The industry I was thinking of was large iron smelting operations. From the numbers I have seen 1 ton of iron goods required 100 tons of wood which need to be locally sourced because bulk transportation is limited unless you find a fantasy solution for it or are on the coast. So even when the total requirements for wood can be balanced with the total forest of the entire country to be sustainable, the wood is required in very few areas and locally a give and take forestry does not allow for industry.
This week we continue our four-part (I, II, III, IVa, IVb, addendum) look at pre-modern iron and steel production. Last week we prospected our iron ore and extracted it from the ground and did some…
During the ancient and medieval era there was significant deforestation and Europe was nearly stripped of most forests in the span of a few centuries, forests only really recovering in times of catastrophic loss of life which freed up farmland to be overgrown.