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Old 01-24-2015, 06:53 AM   #71
DanHoward
 
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Default Re: Charlemagne's Paladins - roleplaying in the 8th century

War saddles were in the region since at least the Roman period. They didn't need stirrups to charge with mounted lances. Even two centuries earlier, Gregory of Tours describes couched lance warfare in his History of the Franks. Here is one incident where Clovis' mail armour saves him from two lance impacts:

"Now when the king had put the Goths to flight and slain king Alaric, two of the enemy suddenly appeared and struck at him with their lances, one on each side. But he was saved from death by the help of his coat of mail as well as by his fast horse." [2.27]

Thomas Bullfinch's book has some myths that would be neat in this kind of campaign. Here he lists Charlemagne's twelve paladins.
http://www.bartleby.com/183/2.html

De re Militari has some primary sources.
http://deremilitari.org/2013/06/medi...f-charlemagne/

One passage instructs an abbot called Fulrad to raise troops and meet at Stassfurt on June 17. The horsemen are to be equipped with "shield and spear, long-sword and short-sword, bow, quivers and arrows."

Note that none of the cavalry here are required to have armour; only the elite wore armour during this time. In this case, probably only the abbot himself would have been required to turn up with armour. The Capitulare missorum says that only vassals with twelve or more mansi were required to have mail. Further down, the text says that custodians of churches and monasteries kept mail armour and were forbidden to give them to anyone other than their own vassals without permission.

Nokter wrote this: "Coxarum exteriora, quae propter faciliorem ascensum in aliis solent lorica nudari, in eo ferrets ambiebantur bratteolis" [2.17], which seems to say that, on rare occasions, small iron plates were worn on the hips - a possible reference to scale armour.
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Last edited by DanHoward; 01-25-2015 at 05:22 AM.
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Old 01-24-2015, 11:27 AM   #72
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Default Re: Charlemagne's Paladins - roleplaying in the 8th century

Very interesting. So the information in MArtial Arts that Dark Age 'knights' didn't use the couched lance is just wrong?

I've also read that the couched lance was relatively new at Hastings - that would seem to be an unusual way to describe a tactic which was 500 years old. I'm just trying to get what I've read from various sources to gel with what you're saying.
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Old 01-24-2015, 03:21 PM   #73
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Default Re: Charlemagne's Paladins - roleplaying in the 8th century

The earliest use of the couched lance in battle dates back to the Sasanians. There is nothing to suggest that it ever stopped being used from then onwards.

Here are some images
http://cdn.romanarmytalk.com/media/k...sardavaniv.jpg
http://cdn.romanarmytalk.com/media/k...sMaxantius.jpg
https://markhackard.files.wordpress....ract.jpg?w=700
http://www.xlegio.ru/netcat_files/Im...ary/fig-05.gif
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Old 01-24-2015, 04:58 PM   #74
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Default Re: Charlemagne's Paladins - roleplaying in the 8th century

About available armors I've this data. They were (almost) certain in use among Carolingians:

- Cloth, Padded
- Layered Cloth, Light (even with *Reinforced* option)
- Mail, Light (most common for Turks and Moors)
- Mail, Fine
- Mail, Heavy
- Scale, Light/Medium ("Brunia" - without Chinese Mountain Scale option)
- Plate, Light/Medium (only for helmets)

Possible armors in use:

- Cane (only for derelicts)
- Horn
- Layered Cloth, Medium/Heavy (fairly rare)
- Layered Leather, Light/Medium (rare)
- Leather, Light (mainly as "emergency armor for poor people" or backing for scale armor)
- Leather, Medium (rare)
- Scale, Heavy (fairly rare)

Technologically possible, but (if) very rare:

- Hamata Squamataque
- Plate, Light/Medium (only for bronze cuirasses and greaves)
- Segmented Plate, Light/Medium
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Old 01-24-2015, 05:47 PM   #75
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Default Re: Charlemagne's Paladins - roleplaying in the 8th century

Mail and scale are probable. All else is speculation. I'd allow greaves for the most wealthy - iron, bronze, and splint - but nothing else. Lower ranked fighters wore no armour at all. There was no such thing as cheap armour for poor fighters during this period. There was no such thing as cheap armour for poor fighters during most periods - even leather and cloth were reserved for the elite in most cases.

In the texts, brunia and lorica are used interchangeably. The terms literally translate as "armour" but often they are used specifically to refer to mail. When another type of armour is intended, the term is qualified - such as the "small iron plates" described by Nokter and the spangabyrnja in the sagas.
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Old 01-25-2015, 09:16 AM   #76
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Default Re: Charlemagne's Paladins - roleplaying in the 8th century

Wasn't padded cloth in use among late roman armies, byzantines and sometimes germanic mercenaries? The word "gambeson" is derived from the french "wambais" and the germanic "wambeis".

I've put "Brunia" as "Scale" because Lionello G. Boccia's work "Armi Difensive dal Medioevo all'Età Moderna" ("Defensive Weapons from Middle Ages to Modern Age") classifies "Brunia" as kind of scale armor, sometimes with strange variants (for example exagonal scales).
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Old 01-25-2015, 02:34 PM   #77
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Default Re: Charlemagne's Paladins - roleplaying in the 8th century

Quote:
Originally Posted by Gustavus Adolphus View Post
Wasn't padded cloth in use among late roman armies, byzantines and sometimes germanic mercenaries? The word "gambeson" is derived from the french "wambais" and the germanic "wambeis".
Byzantine armies had something called an epilorikon that was usually worn over the top of other armour. What has that got to do with Frankish armies? The first instance of "gambeson" or any of its synonyms appears centuries after Charlemagne. Do you have a Frankish text that actually mentions textile armour?

Quote:
I've put "Brunia" as "Scale" because Lionello G. Boccia's work "Armi Difensive dal Medioevo all'Età Moderna" ("Defensive Weapons from Middle Ages to Modern Age") classifies "Brunia" as kind of scale armor, sometimes with strange variants (for example exagonal scales).
He is wrong. Every language in Europe has the same word: brunia, broigne, brünne, brynja, brnja, bronnie, bruni, byrnie, brinie, bronja and all the other derivatives. It simply means "armour", but whenever a text gives the context of this word it invariably refers to mail. Whenever the word is used to refer to scale armour it is qualified.

Where on Earth did he find hexagonal scale armour? The only hexagonal plates I've ever seen are in Asian jacks such as the Japanese kikko.
http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedi...o_katabira.JPG
http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedi...Kikko_vest.JPG
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Old 01-25-2015, 02:56 PM   #78
Gustavus Adolphus
 
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Default Re: Charlemagne's Paladins - roleplaying in the 8th century

Because the original word for "Gambeson", "Wambeis", derived from the word "Wamba" in Old High German, language spoken between 500 and 1050 AD. This is mere speculation, but in every case I think that could be plausible the presence of "padded cloth thick enough to give DR" worn under mail armor for Carolingians Knights.

Thanks for the correction about "Brunia"; probably the author has taken as good the term to indicate particular Frankish Scale armors. Probably this choice is correlated to rich Italian terminology for white and defensive weapons. Anyway I think that the rest of the book is good and accurate, the drawings are based on archeological reperts and there's explained how it works the museal classification of archeological war items.

Well, hexagonal scales may sound strange, but they're possible to assemble. If I find the picture from the book on internet, I'll post it.
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Old 01-25-2015, 03:04 PM   #79
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Default Re: Charlemagne's Paladins - roleplaying in the 8th century

Quote:
Originally Posted by Gustavus Adolphus View Post
Because the original word for "Gambeson", "Wambeis", derived from the word "Wamba" in Old High German, language spoken between 500 and 1050 AD. This is mere speculation, but in every case I think that could be plausible the presence of "padded cloth thick enough to give DR" worn under mail armor for Carolingians Knights.
It is plausible in the 11th century. Not in the 8th century.
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Old 01-25-2015, 03:16 PM   #80
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Default Re: Charlemagne's Paladins - roleplaying in the 8th century

Found.
The first is classified as "early brunia", the second hexagonal scale armor is classified as "late brunia". In the book there's specified that "brunia" could refer to both scale and mail armor. But the italian term for "mail" is "cotta di maglia", so "brunia" is the italian word for Dark Ages Scale Armor ("Armatura a scaglie" or "Armatura di scaglie" is the term for generic scale armor).

http://oi59.tinypic.com/2zplff8.jpg
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