"we go on a mission to the Duchy of Bernburg or the Principality of Liechtenstein to inspect their navies, or let Charles XII enlist us as a volunteer just before the battle of Pultava"


   As the town of Bernburg in central Germany is roughly 150 miles from the coast, and the Principality of Liechtenstein is a doubly-landlocked alpine microstate in Western Europe, neither is particularly famed for its naval achievements. 

At the Battle of Poltava in 1709, Russian forces decisively triumphed over the hugely outnumbered army of Swedish king Charles XII, setting in motion Sweden’s fall from its position as a great power in Northern Europe.  Enlisting in Charles' army on the eve of the battle would therefore have been akin to joining Napoleon’s infantry en route to Waterloo. 

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