Jump to content

Traitors


tonymaillman
 Share

Recommended Posts

Good choices Obs ......... although with Becket unfortunately it wasn't until after he was 'slain' that the full picture of just how much a martyr to his cause he was :wink:

Apparently imposing his own pennances on himself :( such as the rough hessian shirt he is said to have worn unchanged for years ....... and riddled with lice !

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Tone: have you a link showing the Romano- British kingdoms that emerged following the Roman retreat from Britain? :? Always been a period of interest for me, but not one that seems to have been given much attention by historians. :? Always wondered too, how inviting a small band of Saxons over (Hengist and Horsa), eventually gave rise to them taking over; given the Brits should have outnumbered them and should have had some residual military capability, inherited from the Roamans? :?

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Celt and Saxon is an excellent book for this period .... I'll dig it off my shelf and give you the ISBN number later :wink:

 

Fascinating period of british history also, Saxon chief Hengist (said to be of various race i.e. Frisian, Jute even danish in some chronicles) was invited over by the ruler Vortigern sometime between 446 - 449 AD to help in Vortigerns constant battles with the picts and other far northern tribes. He was accompanied by many Saxon mercenaries plus also his own brother Horsa.

 

There was a turning point in around 455 AD when they ended up fighting against Vortigern himself at the battle of Aylesford. Horsa was killed at this battle and thus fired up what was to follow with a Saxon influx to overtake the Kingdom.

 

Hengist is said to have died around 488 AD ......... a lot of detail about this era is also chronicled by Bede.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

What I can't quite get my head round is; the fact that the Romans must have bequethed considerable military organisation and knowledge, plus they must have initially had a larger population to recruit from? :? Whilst the Romano-British Kindoms may have presented a disunited opposition, Saxon encroachment must have taken some time and been rather piecemeal, thus taking a considerable time period? :? Whilst we have the myth of Arthur pen Dragon, the Brits did have Armoured Cavalry (Knights of the round table!), perhaps lighter spear armed infantry (remnants of the Roman Limitania); against the less imaginative and flexible Saxon shield wall. :?:?

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Yes but don't forget that there were also a number of Germanic mercenaries recruited by the Roman army also ...... I have my own thoughts on the existance and role played by a person called Ambrosius Aurelianus :wink:

 

There is also physical evidence of Angle/Saxon or Germanic peoples in Brittania as early as the first and second centuries.

 

The problem with 'inviting' them over to assist repelling attacks from northern raiders is that they were not just invited singularly but were also asked to bring their families as well, thus swelling the numbers migrating, PLUS also they were paid for their services with land to farm from. Eventually the Anglo-Saxon mercenaries realised that they were stronger than their new 'employer' - as it were - and gradually took these areas over themselves.

 

They weren't initially particularly well organised centrally but by around 600 AD had the 'majority' of the lands as they pushed back and colonised former Celtic/Briton lands ........ pushing and forcing the Celts and Britons both Northward and Westward into Wales and Cornwall. They were pretty well organised by 850 AD with the emergence and domination of Mercia, Northumbria (Bernicia and Deira) and Wessex.

 

Most Britons would still probably be adopting the earlier fighting tactics of pre-Roman Britannia ...... i.e. Iron Age Briton.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Until Hastings in 1066! :wink: After which of course, many redundant Saxon Housecarls found new employment with the Byzantine Emperor, in his elite Varangian Guard! :wink: The shield wall, was vunerable to outflanking by a more mobile enemy; a response to which was shown by the Vikings at Stamford Bridge, where they basically formed a circle. :?

Link to comment
Share on other sites

The 'killer' crunch that William had at Hastings though was the employment of large numbers of archers :wink: constant raining of arrows is very damaging at the early stages ....... look at the Bayeux tapestry, Saxon shields peppered with arrows. There are 29 archers depicted on the tapestry in total ....... 28 of them are Normans ! one of which is actually (although debatably) wearing a hauberk ! this was a RARE thing to provide an archer with ......... which stresses how important William thought archers were to him. There were also a number of crossbows in use there as well, and 'some' schools of thought are that the archer wearing the hauberk may well have been a crossbowman as he appears to be holding a number of arrows/quarrels in his hand ............... just a theory :wink:

 

ALL shieldwalls were vulnerable ! even the excellently formed Testudo of the Romans :wink: and also the 'rim to boss' wall of Saxon/Viking armies.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I think it was a fairly well known tactical option for archers to be used against a good, but less mobile infantry force EG: Persian V Spartans at Thermopalai; Edward I against Scots schilterons etc. :? I believe the Saxons did/could arrange there field armies in "divisions", as did Alfred against the Vikings, which allowed for a degree of finesse. :wink:

Link to comment
Share on other sites

It was well known amongst Eastern European and further afield armies yes ...... but the tactic of using archers in this way was by and large introduced here by William, thus the much favoured use of it in later english battles :wink: ......... it's very often Edward I who receives credit for the use of mass archers, he was mightily impressed with tales of southern welsh bowmen. Mainly before this the favoured English weapon was the crossbow. Early English bows (early 12th century) were in comparison quite crude items mostly of elm, English yew was no good for producing 'warbows' as is often mistakenly thought.

The Persian/Greek/Thracian/Mongol type bow was a recurve of much shorter dimensions, and very different from the stave type bow. The Mongols of course being masters of the horse mounted use of the bow, able to release an arrow virtually every couple of seconds :wink:

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I wonder how long the Native Indigenous peoples of North America hunted with bows and arrows? Was it invented here are brought by early travelers...

 

I read a novel about the Americans, French, Brits, and Japanese incursions into the Hermit Kingdom of Korea back in early 1800s. The hunters in Korea used iron arrows, or some kind of heavy arrows -- virtually killing off the Siberian tigers from the planet. It was called YOBO. Where did these hermits get the idea and the metals -- they didn't allow trade -- which is why the Brits, French, Americans and Japanese were sailing into their harbors with armed forces.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Hand propelled missiles are the oldest known weapons to man ....... obviously :roll:

 

Native Americans were using bows by around 5,000 BC ............ European cave paintings also show some form of bow may have been in use almost 50,000 years ago ........... one of the oldest is the Holmegaard bow, plus also the Oetze bow :wink:

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

Loading...
 Share

×
×
  • Create New...