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Brian DeForest




Location: Nevada
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PostPosted: Fri 21 Sep, 2012 12:06 pm    Post subject: Shoulder shield?         Reply with quote

This might seem a silly question but, what is a shoulder shield? I read something on a site that mentioned it but canít find anything on it or the site again, other than one done up for a SCA or LARP battle. I was trying to find a historical example. The closest I could find are a gladiator pauldron and the sode for a samurai. Neither of these seems close to what I was thinking. I was thinking of something closer to a long rectangle shield mounted on the upper arm, that would cover a spear arm. I was looking up spearmen because I was thinking of going with a spear for the SCA.
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David Clark





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PostPosted: Fri 21 Sep, 2012 12:39 pm    Post subject: Re: Shoulder shield?         Reply with quote

Brian DeForest wrote:
This might seem a silly question but, what is a shoulder shield? I read something on a site that mentioned it but canít find anything on it or the site again, other than one done up for a SCA or LARP battle. I was trying to find a historical example. The closest I could find are a gladiator pauldron and the sode for a samurai. Neither of these seems close to what I was thinking. I was thinking of something closer to a long rectangle shield mounted on the upper arm, that would cover a spear arm. I was looking up spearmen because I was thinking of going with a spear for the SCA.


Maybe they were misinterpreting an Ailette?

Sad to say, your plan for a shoulder mounted shield in the SCA won't work. Any shield being used by a combatant must be controlled by a hand. No hanging shields or anything of the like.
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Joshua Spencer




Location: Plano, TX
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PostPosted: Fri 21 Sep, 2012 12:52 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

The only form of shoulder mounted shield I am familiar with comes from the jousting community. There is the large steel grand guard used in heavy jousting and the wooden encranche used in light jousting. Neither of these has any practical use in ground combat though. One of of the important aspects of a shield is you can move it around for better coverage and deflection angle.
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Tom King




Location: florida
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PostPosted: Fri 21 Sep, 2012 8:59 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

I believe spearmen in a few periods of medieval and early renaissance history used shoulder mounted targes with pikes and spears, but as to the specifics I leave it to the more knowledgeable members of the forum
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Robin Smith




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PostPosted: Fri 21 Sep, 2012 9:33 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote



Guige straps can be used to suspend a shield from your shoulder.

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Elling Polden




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PostPosted: Sat 22 Sep, 2012 10:24 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Shields used by knights on horseback are hanging on the guige, in order to leave the left hand free for the reins. Thus, a dismounted knight becomes a twohanded spearman with a shoulder shield.

Apparantly, it was also common to fight on foot with the shoulder strap in place when using a one handed weapon, often with the guige configured so that the shield hangs in the guard position. Thus, there is nothing preventing you from letting go of the shield, and using both hands.

You can also do this with round shields, kites and pavises.




And yes, it is a very good idea. I use shields like this when I'm using a spear or polearm (In w.europan reenactment fighting). But if SCA rules does not allow it that is kind of moot.



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"this [fight] looks curious, almost like a game. See, they are looking around them before they fall, to find a dry spot to fall on, or they are falling on their shields. Can you see blood on their cloths and weapons? No. This must be trickery."
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Bennison N




Location: Auckland, New Zealand
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PostPosted: Mon 24 Sep, 2012 7:26 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Just a quick hijack, then I'll go...

You say round shields can be used like this? Are you perhaps aware of any Middle Eastern examples of a similar concept?

In particular Mamluk, but even I suppose Turk or Circassian/Georgian...?

Thanks for your time. Carry on... Big Grin

"Never give a sword to a man who can't dance" - Confucius

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Gary Teuscher





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PostPosted: Mon 24 Sep, 2012 11:28 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Quote:
And yes, it is a very good idea. I use shields like this when I'm using a spear or polearm (In w.europan reenactment fighting). But if SCA rules does not allow it that is kind of moot.


Interesting. Any videos you know of showing a shield used in this manner?
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Lafayette C Curtis




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PostPosted: Thu 27 Sep, 2012 12:52 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Tom King wrote:
I believe spearmen in a few periods of medieval and early renaissance history used shoulder mounted targes with pikes and spears, but as to the specifics I leave it to the more knowledgeable members of the forum


Not in the later centuries; the "shoulder shield" appears to be a misinterpretation for an ordinary buckler in the 15th-century context. I brought up the same assertion a while ago and Daniel Staberg corrected me, which eventually led to this teh shiny thread: http://www.myArmoury.com/talk/viewtopic.php?t...burgundian
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R.M. Henson




Location: Honolulu Hawaii
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PostPosted: Fri 12 Oct, 2012 2:17 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

I don't think the OP is confusing ailettes for a shield. Here's an image I saved of what I think he means since I was curious about it as well. In this photo it looks like it may be a type of shield for jousting, but I'm just guessing. I also recall pictures of knightly combat with shields strapped to their shoulders while using a two handed sword but without the notch in the top corner of the shield. If this has a specific name I'd like to know what to call it.

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Sjors B




Location: Zevenaar, The Netherlands
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PostPosted: Fri 12 Oct, 2012 3:07 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

If i'm correct, the pictures you are reffering to are those in the second part of Codex Wallerstein (15th century).
Here you see several pictures of armoured knights in foot combat using what apears to be jousting shield, either strapped to the shoulder or on the lower arm.
Several pictures do suggest its effective use in defending against spear thrusts.

a few examples i could find on short notice:



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Craig Shackleton




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PostPosted: Fri 12 Oct, 2012 5:19 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Those shields are also featured prominently in the Gladiatoria group of manuscripts, as well as numerous depictions of St. George. That type of shield is usually called an ecranche, although I may have the spelling wrong and I'm not sure of the proper pluralization. They are used for jousting, but also shown for foot combat, often hanging from the shoulder. Most of the judicial combat manuscripts show them, but they appear to have been frequently dropped or discarded fairly early in the combats.
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Roberto Banfi




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PostPosted: Tue 16 Oct, 2012 7:50 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

anyone knows about sources for this shoulder-shield foot combat with a two hander / polearm in the 13th Century ?
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Julian Behle




Location: Germany
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PostPosted: Thu 25 Oct, 2012 12:06 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

I am not quite sure if this fits in this thread but I saw an effigy of a mid 14th century knight, having something shield-like laced to his spaulder/rerebrace. They're surprisingly smal and the shape irritates me and I wonder if it is rather plate than a shield. But it seems rather misshapen to me for a piece of plate, far to long and by 1350 Ailettes definitely are out of discussion. Has Someone ever seen anything like it before and knows its purpose.
http://effigiesandbrasses.com/static/monument..._r1284.jpg
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Jared Smith




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PostPosted: Thu 25 Oct, 2012 9:39 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

A similar type of shield to some of those shown affixed to full harness was used in the German tradition of jousting with sharpened lance. I can't remember the exact spelling of the period name for the style but it was something like schnerifin in 12th century era. http://thejoustinglife.blogspot.ca/2012_08_01_archive.html
Absence of evidence is not necessarily evidence of absence!
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Sjors B




Location: Zevenaar, The Netherlands
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PostPosted: Fri 26 Oct, 2012 2:50 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Roberto Banfi wrote:
anyone knows about sources for this shoulder-shield foot combat with a two hander / polearm in the 13th Century ?


you only see these shields used in combination with longsword of sword and spear combination, at least as far as i know and based on the manuscripts i've read.
With polearms (and i take it you mean stuff like halberds and ludzerne hammers) you don't see these shields

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Lafayette C Curtis




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PostPosted: Wed 31 Oct, 2012 12:24 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

The other problem is that we have no detailed sources for 13th-century fighting styles to begin with. Much less for a combination that we simply don't see depicted in art (since spear or polearm-men in this period's artwork either carried no shields or the conventional heater/truncated kite shield).
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