Tuesday, 7 March 2017

Almost There

That is the Goth Nobles finished for the army and they will be joining their mates in their nice new Really Useful box later today.

Heavy Metal.
 The army lists the group I join on weekends have all been re-formatted and point checked and uploaded to the WAC fan club blog, this has caused me to look again at Late Roman armies. I have several scholarly works on these armies and in every one you will have a statement, such as armour was not common during the period as the army declined, then in the next sentence you are told that there were three state armouries in each district with one dedicated to armour and the others weapons therefore the infantry were just as 'heavy' as previous Roman armies. So what do we do as wargamers, do we go with option one and field an army which is almost sure to be beat and as reluctant to appear on the battlefield as the poor sods it is depicting, or do we have option two, an army of real 'ard guys tooled up to the brim and unmoveable. No, we usually fudge it and go for a compromise, every second unit can have armour. Which is probably why these writers also mention the two differing theories.

I am trying to work out to what extent foederati/barbarian troops would have been supplied with Roman equipment, and I am not convinced it would be much. Why would you give potential enemies armour and weapons when they in all likelihood didn't have a lot and therefore would be easier to beat in the future. This of course also points to the superiority of the Roman army in these things, the Romans only suffered one major defeat by barbarians throughout the 4th and 5th centuries, Adrianople 378AD, the other disaster was one of their own making at the Frigidus in 394. I digress, foederati who simply joined for one or two campaigns would not have been outfitted at all in my view, but those who actually joined the army in recognised units or attached to a known commander i.e. Stilicho or Aetius as bucellarii no doubt would be. So I am leaning towards my Goths not being allowed access to Roman weapons and equipment at all as apart from the already mentioned bucellarii they are only in the army on an ad-hoc basis. Talk about shooting oneself in the foot.

Has anyone been watching the 1066 thing with the ubiquitous Dan Snow, I gave it a shot as I am a big Harold Godwinson fan but I canst takes no more. I thought Hardrada was enticed to England through the wiles of Tostig, not that he had been planning it all along and merely biding his time, as for William and his English accent that just grated. And when they portrayed three of the periods most macho warlords with three weedy historians (one a woman) trying to get into the mind set of these three men I reached for the remote. I cannot for the life of me understand why we cannot have world class drama inspired by our fantastic history, Robert Bruce, 1066, the Wars of the Roses and much much more. OK I know it is not a complete drama but another disappointment for me. At least with The Last Kingdom I expect tosh.

Oh, and I also managed to paint my Roman general, Aetius, over the last couple of days, so I now have all my commanders and characters, the army will be fighting at the weekend, I still have one unit of Huns to do but I am taking a week off painting this week, although I may put them together at some point and prime them for next week.


  1. A mean looking body of troops there George.

    I would go with the Goths being expected to equip themselves too.

    Forgot about the 1066 thing, appears I did not miss much.

  2. I am expecting a lot from the Goths, and going on past experiences that worries me.

  3. Fine looking barbarian rabble there George!

  4. They better repay my efforts on Sunday. Ta.