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Kai Lawson




Location: Madison, WI
Joined: 26 Aug 2010
Likes: 7 pages

Posts: 481

PostPosted: Wed 07 Mar, 2012 12:28 pm    Post subject: Holy Roman crusader         Reply with quote

Hello everyone:

One of my friends is interested in a compliment to my kit, but would like to be from the Holy Roman empire (he's Swiss, and though Switzerland doesn't exist yet in context, he's still partial.) Are their any regional differences he should be aware of in terms or gear (armor, weapons, clothing, etc...), when compared to Norman or French (rather 'standard') foot soldiers?

Additionally, are there any existing depictions of the Papal Banner as would have been carried by the papal legate Adhemar de Monteil, also called Adhemar du Puy? I have seen the Hastings style green and yellow tri-tongue banner, but would it have changed in ~34 years?

"And they crossed swords."
--William Goldman, alias S. Morgenstern
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Gregory J. Liebau




Location: Dinuba, CA
Joined: 27 Nov 2004

Posts: 669

PostPosted: Thu 08 Mar, 2012 8:50 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

At the time of the First Crusade Germanic men-at-arms would have varied little from their more Westerly counterparts. Slight differences in arms and armor may have characterized regional influences but the basic gear configuration and a majority of the details will be the same for English, Franks and Germans alike.

There is limited artwork or extant artifacts available from the period to examine many of the particularities that probably actually influenced "regional" looks. Swords and weapons may be some of the best items to specifically consider for their styles. My best suggestion for further differences would be for your friend to stick to a normal gear set based primarily on the typical evidence, such as the Bayeux Tapestry, and then supplement it by looking at whatever 11th and early 12th century Germanic artwork there is to find... Once this is done, take motifs from the images such as border decorations or coordinated colors that may be reflective of popular art (i.e. useful for shield or standard imagery) and incorporate such details modestly to stand out in a crowd.

Good luck on the endeavor!

-Gregory
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Kai Lawson




Location: Madison, WI
Joined: 26 Aug 2010
Likes: 7 pages

Posts: 481

PostPosted: Thu 08 Mar, 2012 9:01 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Thank you for the reply!

I was hoping that might be the case, as it makes buying and making gear much simpler. I wasn't sure enough in my knowledge base to give a firm 'yes' or 'no.'


Anyone know anything about the papal banner?

"And they crossed swords."
--William Goldman, alias S. Morgenstern
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Daniel Wallace




Location: Pennsylvania USA
Joined: 07 Aug 2011

Posts: 580

PostPosted: Sun 11 Mar, 2012 12:03 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

as stated above by Gregory, there are not many images from the time of the crusade that gives insight into what the common men at arms might have looked like, nor what the papal banner was.

the papal banner may have simply been the adopted symbol of the church during the time of the 11th century. there are many symbols that you can consider that the banner would have. the lamb, the PX, the symbol of the fish, i don't know how long the banner of keys has been used to identify the roman church but it is also possible. romantically you can also consider the "knights cross" because at the time of the first crusade the "cross" was a binding symbol of the crusaders. but through all my reading of the various accounts of the first crusade there is no proof that the cross was featured on the banner. all that is known is that it was a growing symbol at this time and was used to identify christian.

now the 'christian' styled cross - that did not develope until later.

and the chances are that the shapes of the banners didn't change too much. the Bayeux Tapestry is probably the most famous depiction from the time period although it shows much of it characters in mail this probably wasn't the case for the men-at-arms. nor some of the knights, the first crusade called everyone, poor and rich alike from the fighting class. as i would imagine that equipment varied greatly. the 'princes' of the crusade, you would expect them to be fully mailed knights and much of their direct retainer, but there are depictions in the writings of much lesser "knights" that may have only had a horse and sword with not much else that would distinguish them as 'knight'

Anna Commena gives some of the best descriptions of the crusader princes, even though she was very young at the time of the crusade (i believe around 14 years of age), her writing tells that the 'latins' left an impression on her.
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