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Michail F




Location: MN, USA
Joined: 04 Feb 2005

Posts: 7

PostPosted: Fri 04 Feb, 2005 3:05 pm    Post subject: Seeking Info on "everyday" life of common soldier         Reply with quote

Does anybody have any suggestions about any books that would deal directly and in detail with the typical "life of the 16th/17th C. European soldier" in terms of life in the field, shelters used, types of protective clothing, food and food preparation, transport of equipment, general logistics, etc., , as well as tactics? I've got much info on arms and accoutrements but am not finding much on the little details of life in the field. This info would be used for "living history" type historical presentations. I did 20 years of this around the USA for the US Civil War/ War of 1812 but now in my dotage would like to do it for earlier times. Any help would be appreciated! Michail F
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Gordon Frye




Location: Kingston, Washington
Joined: 20 Apr 2004
Reading list: 15 books

Spotlight topics: 2
Posts: 1,191

PostPosted: Fri 04 Feb, 2005 4:34 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Michail;

First, if you haven't already, go to the Features page of this website and check out "Renaissance Armies, 1480-1650". Nathan has taken some useful chapters from the old George Gush book long out of print and posted them here for all to read. They are aimed more at the modeler and gamer than the living historian, but they're a good start.

Another place to go is this one, "The Gunpowder Plot!" http://www.bcpl.net/~cbladey/guy/html/main3.html There is some pretty decent foundational information there.

The Osprey Men-at-Arms series has some good titles as well, such as The Landsknechts", "The Conquistadors", "Pavia 1525", "The Armada Campaign 1588", "The Irish Wars 1485-1603" and a few others that you can find through perusing their website. Again, good basic information

For getting really into the life and times of the Renaissance Soldier, there is actually a wealth of information available, you just have to do some digging for it. I would recommend "History of the Art of War in the 16th Century" by Sir Charles WC Oman. It's in reprint through Barnes and Noble, I believe, and is a wealth of information. Another excellent attack on the subject is "Weapons and Warfare of Renaissance Europe" by Bert Hall. REALLY good information in the last chapter about raising and paying 16th Century armies.

If you can find it, "Weapons and Warfare 1618-1648" by Edouard Wagner is GREAT! Hard to find, but beautifully illustrated, though it focuses on the Central European campaigns of the 30 Years War. Great stuff!

Moving deeper, "Elizabeth's Militia" (sadly I forget the author's name!) is a great reference too, as is anything by J F Hale. "Arms and Armour in Colonial America, 1526-1783" by Harold Peterson has a LOT of good information on the 16th Century as well, with quotes from Spanish soldiers stationed in places like la Florida and New Mexico.

But better yet are the works available by the people of the period themselves. Available in reprint are Sir Roger Williams' "Actions in the Low Countries" in which he relates his adventures as a Soldier in the Spanish Army of Flanders prior to the English Intervention, and his opponent in The Great Musket vs Bow Controversy, Sir John Smythe has a book in reprint to, I believe it is "Certaine Discourses Military". Both are from the 1580's.

I hope that this helps some, but for more info, feel free to PM me, I love to talk about this stuff.

Cheers,

Gordon

"After God, we owe our victory to our Horses"
Gonsalo Jimenez de Quesada
http://www.renaissancesoldier.com/
http://historypundit.blogspot.com/
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Björn Hellqvist
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Location: Sweden
Joined: 19 Aug 2003

Posts: 723

PostPosted: Fri 04 Feb, 2005 7:05 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

What Gordon said. If you go for the Osprey books, look for the "Warrior" series titles first, then the "Elite", as those deal with the individual and small unit level. The "Men-At-Arms" series is more general in nature.
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Gordon Frye




Location: Kingston, Washington
Joined: 20 Apr 2004
Reading list: 15 books

Spotlight topics: 2
Posts: 1,191

PostPosted: Fri 04 Feb, 2005 7:10 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Thanks Bjorn! I'd forgotten that Osprey names all of their series now, and it's not just "Men at Arms" anymore... I guess I've been buying those things for a while now. Heck, I still have some from when they were Hippocrene! So: What Bjorn said!

Cheers!

Gordon

"After God, we owe our victory to our Horses"
Gonsalo Jimenez de Quesada
http://www.renaissancesoldier.com/
http://historypundit.blogspot.com/
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Gordon Frye




Location: Kingston, Washington
Joined: 20 Apr 2004
Reading list: 15 books

Spotlight topics: 2
Posts: 1,191

PostPosted: Sat 05 Feb, 2005 12:11 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Michail;

A friend just reminded me of this great resource too, illustrations from Derrick's "Image of Ireland" from the 1580's, though the actions shown are from the 1570's. Here's a link to some high-resolution details of the engravings:

http://www.lib.ed.ac.uk/about/bgallery/Galler...eland.html

Cheers!

Gordon

"After God, we owe our victory to our Horses"
Gonsalo Jimenez de Quesada
http://www.renaissancesoldier.com/
http://historypundit.blogspot.com/
View user's profile Send private message Visit poster's website Yahoo Messenger


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