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Joel Whitmore




Location: Simmesport, LA
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PostPosted: Wed 23 Mar, 2005 7:32 am    Post subject: Kingdom of Heaven Swords         Reply with quote

A while back there was a thread about the armor and weapons in the upcoming movie The Kingdom of Heaven. I ran across some newer pics that show the sword Bloom uses in the movie. For some reason they chenged the blade shape on the press release pic. It actucally looks more like a 12th century blade though the handle may be a bit long. Below are some of the newer pics I found.


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Patrick Kelly




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PostPosted: Wed 23 Mar, 2005 8:53 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

I think the PR image is just a bad job of photo cropping. There are some fairly clear photos on the website.
www.kingdomofheavenmovie.com

Historical and political issues aside I'm actually very eager to see this one. At least it looks like a high quality production from a technical aspect.

"In valor there is hope.".................. Tacitus
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Joel Whitmore




Location: Simmesport, LA
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PostPosted: Wed 23 Mar, 2005 10:55 am    Post subject: I'm with you here Patrick         Reply with quote

I am very interested to see this one. We know there will alwyas be historical or factual errors, but overall, there are very few movies out there about his era. The trailer appears to haev soem pretty epic battle scenes along with a knighting ceremony. The armor and arms , thought not entirely spot on, seems pretty true to the period. One thing I am interested in seeing is the competition between the military orders and thier tactics. I will probably see this one more than once.

Joel
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Jeremy V. Krause




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PostPosted: Thu 24 Mar, 2005 12:45 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Yeah, I will see this one though I don't hold out much hope for the quality,
I know I am preaching to the chior but what;s wrong with shields!?!
Why do heroes always have to wield their swords with both hands, I just don't get it. . .
What is anti-heroe about using a shield. Would it hurt them to present historically accurate sword and shield usage which was exclusive at this time?
Jeremy
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Jesse Zinn




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PostPosted: Thu 24 Mar, 2005 2:31 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Jeremy V. Krause wrote:
Yeah, I will see this one though I don't hold out much hope for the quality,
I know I am preaching to the chior but what;s wrong with shields!?!
Why do heroes always have to wield their swords with both hands, I just don't get it. . .
What is anti-heroe about using a shield. Would it hurt them to present historically accurate sword and shield usage which was exclusive at this time?
Jeremy


Tom Cruise used a shield in Legend... Wink


Jesse

Jesse D. Zinn
North Carolina

Hwt w Gr-Dena in ger-dagum
od-cyninga rym gefrnon,
h elingas ellen fremedon."
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Edward Hitchens




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PostPosted: Thu 24 Mar, 2005 2:49 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Russell Crowe had a shield and with it, he caused as much damage as his gladius (hell, he even smacked a Siberian tiger with it!).

I am so seeing that Kingdom of Heaven movie. It's Ridley Scott -- how bad can it be? I just keep the mindset that a filmmaker's job is to entertain, not educate. Sure, our shared passions for medival history will cause us to nit-pick (the design of Orlando's sword looks a little too early for the Crusades era). But if we feel entertained after seeing this movie, then clearly Mr. Scott has done his job. -Ted

By the way, what's this I hear about Beowulf being made into a movie?

"The whole art of government consists in the art of being honest." Thomas Jefferson
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Micha Hofmann




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PostPosted: Fri 25 Mar, 2005 5:01 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Hello myArmoury.com. Joined here after lots of reading.

Edward Hitchens wrote:

By the way, what's this I hear about Beowulf being made into a movie?


Check out http://www.beowulf-movie.com/

Concerning the shields I think that Hollywood Choreographers might find it easier to find "moves" for actors using swords with two hands - and it simply looks cooler most of the time. Wink

And I'm really , really looking forward to Kingdom of heaven... Happy
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Joel Whitmore




Location: Simmesport, LA
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PostPosted: Fri 25 Mar, 2005 11:46 am    Post subject: Swords adn shields         Reply with quote

Edward Hitchens wrote:
Sure, our shared passions for medival history will cause us to nit-pick (the design of Orlando's sword looks a little too early for the Crusades era).


Actually it's quite the opposite. The original shot of the sword made it look like a Type X VI which was later than the period the story takes place in (cir, Third Crusade). The photo above looks more like what would have been used during that time Type Xa or XI ) though, in my opinion, the handle is a little too long. As for the shield thing I am not sure why. My first guess is beacuse it doesn't let the camera see the hero a lot of times and it would be hard for the audience to tell pick out our man under all the maile. That's just one excuse I can think of lol. Speaking of which, at elast we don't have knitted maile anymore :-)

Joel
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Jesse Zinn




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PostPosted: Fri 25 Mar, 2005 11:46 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Edward Hitchens wrote:

By the way, what's this I hear about Beowulf being made into a movie?


Micha has given you the movie website. For some myArmoury.com discussion of the upcoming film, try,

http://www.myArmoury.com/talk/viewtopic.php?t...lf+grendel



Jesse

Jesse D. Zinn
North Carolina

Hwt w Gr-Dena in ger-dagum
od-cyninga rym gefrnon,
h elingas ellen fremedon."
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Alina Boyden





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PostPosted: Sat 26 Mar, 2005 1:03 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

This past quarter I've done two classes and about fifteen papers on the crusades. And yet, somehow, I still find myself looking forward to this movie.
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Patty B




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PostPosted: Fri 01 Apr, 2005 7:59 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

A new extended trailer for this movie went up tonight at Yahoo. It is the trailer I have been waiting for, with a lot more plot and continuity. There is also more combat footage and they are certainly using shields - even Balian! There is also a nice section of father-son bonding/sword fighting instruction. I would be interested in what folks think of the sword work shown.

http://movies.yahoo.com/shop?d=hv&cf=trai...1808529407[/url]
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Alina Boyden





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PostPosted: Fri 01 Apr, 2005 8:45 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Patty B wrote:
A new extended trailer for this movie went up tonight at Yahoo. It is the trailer I have been waiting for, with a lot more plot and continuity. There is also more combat footage and they are certainly using shields - even Balian! There is also a nice section of father-son bonding/sword fighting instruction. I would be interested in what folks think of the sword work shown.

http://movies.yahoo.com/shop?d=hv&cf=trai...1808529407[/url]


Well, the swordwork with the father and son lasted about 2.5 seconds or so. It was impossible to really tell what was going on. I think I saw edge parrying but I could be wrong.

That aside, I'm more tempted to see this movie after seeing the extended trailer. I'm still a bit miffed at the unrealistic characterization of Guy de Lusignan and Gerard de Ridefort. Also, I found it comical that they decided to use the 200,000 figure for Saladin's forces. That number was written after the battle in the Latin chronicles. I don't know if the movie actually shows 200,000 "saracens" or if that was hyperbole used by the characters in the movie. The actual figure was something closer to 12,000 on Saladin's side, maybe 20,000 tops. I think the Arab chronicler under Saladin listed 12,000 though.

What I saw of the sword and shield fighting I liked. It didn't seem ludicrous by any means. Still, it would be impossible to analyze the swordsmanship of the movie without seeing more of it. What I can say is that the armor and clothing look fairly accurate - except the mask they have Guy de Lusignan wearing. At least, I think it is supposed to be Guy de Lusignan, hard to tell.

Also, at the end of the clip they have a scene which obviously never occured in which the Balian character asks Saladin (I think it's Saladin) what Jerusalem is worth. Saladin replies "Nothing....and everything." Well, I'd agree with the "nothing" part. It is interesting to note that the crusaders held Jerusalem in extremely high esteem while the Muslims did not. There is a chronicle I read a few months back from Arab sources talking about Mongol invasions of Iran. (Really, what would become Iran. The Medieval kingdom of Khurasan in particular.) In them he states that each city in Iran is worth 10 Jerusalems. Jerusalem was a moderate sized, mediocre city to the Muslims. It did have religious significance of course, but it wasn't the great prize that it was for Europeans.


Last edited by Alina Boyden on Sat 02 Apr, 2005 12:19 am; edited 1 time in total
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Patty B




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PostPosted: Fri 01 Apr, 2005 9:50 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Thanks for your quick response, Alina. You gave me a lot of info to think about! I was especially interested in your thoughts on the "saracen count" and on the relative importance of Jerusalem to the Europeans and the Muslims. I guess my only specific feedback is that the character in the (silver?) mask is King Baldwin IV (Ed Norton).

Oh yes, do you, or any one else, happen to know what the viewing device is that Balian is using when he sights the approaching rider in the distance?
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Alina Boyden





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PostPosted: Fri 01 Apr, 2005 9:55 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Patty B wrote:
Thanks for your quick response, Alina. You gave me a lot of info to think about! I was especially interested in your thoughts on the "saracen count" and on the relative importance of Jerusalem to the Europeans and the Muslims. I guess my only specific feedback is that the character in the (silver?) mask is King Baldwin IV (Ed Norton).

Oh yes, do you, or any one else, happen to know what the viewing device is that Balian is using when he sights the approaching rider in the distance?


Baldwin IV? So I guess this takes place over a 2 year period then? If it is Baldwin IV then the mask is interesting at least because Baldwin IV was a leper. I didn't expect it to detail that much background considering the inaccuracy of the history involved.

A note on the numbers involved. Medieval numbers are terribly inaccurate for opposing forces. However, they tend to be reasonably good for their own forces. The Muslim chroniclers were especially good in this regard because they had well documented tax records and rosters. The fact that the chronicle in question was written by a secretary of Saladin's only adds credence to the figure of about 12,000.
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Joe Fults




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PostPosted: Sat 02 Apr, 2005 4:27 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

The new trailer looks fun at least. Surprised
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Gabriel Stevens




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PostPosted: Sun 03 Apr, 2005 10:50 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Alina Boyden wrote:
[quote="Also, at the end of the clip they have a scene which obviously never occured in which the Balian character asks Saladin (I think it's Saladin) what Jerusalem is worth. Saladin replies "Nothing....and everything." Well, I'd agree with the "nothing" part. It is interesting to note that the crusaders held Jerusalem in extremely high esteem while the Muslims did not. There is a chronicle I read a few months back from Arab sources talking about Mongol invasions of Iran. (Really, what would become Iran. The Medieval kingdom of Khurasan in particular.) In them he states that each city in Iran is worth 10 Jerusalems. Jerusalem was a moderate sized, mediocre city to the Muslims. It did have religious significance of course, but it wasn't the great prize that it was for Europeans.


I don't know if this is necessarily true. Jerusalem after all was the original direction of prayer for Muslims and even today is still considered their third most sacred place after Mecca and Medina. True compared to Baghdad and the cities of Khwarazm it wasn't all of that but I would guess it wasn't just blown off after it was lost. Considering how things went after Jerusalem was retaken I bet the act became much more important in the light of Khwarazm's utter destruction at the hands of the Mongols in 1219 and the sack of Baghdad and the end of the Abbasid Caliphs in 1258 again by the Mongols.
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Alina Boyden





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PostPosted: Mon 04 Apr, 2005 2:16 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Gabriel Stevens wrote:
Alina Boyden wrote:
[quote="Also, at the end of the clip they have a scene which obviously never occured in which the Balian character asks Saladin (I think it's Saladin) what Jerusalem is worth. Saladin replies "Nothing....and everything." Well, I'd agree with the "nothing" part. It is interesting to note that the crusaders held Jerusalem in extremely high esteem while the Muslims did not. There is a chronicle I read a few months back from Arab sources talking about Mongol invasions of Iran. (Really, what would become Iran. The Medieval kingdom of Khurasan in particular.) In them he states that each city in Iran is worth 10 Jerusalems. Jerusalem was a moderate sized, mediocre city to the Muslims. It did have religious significance of course, but it wasn't the great prize that it was for Europeans.


I don't know if this is necessarily true. Jerusalem after all was the original direction of prayer for Muslims and even today is still considered their third most sacred place after Mecca and Medina. True compared to Baghdad and the cities of Khwarazm it wasn't all of that but I would guess it wasn't just blown off after it was lost. Considering how things went after Jerusalem was retaken I bet the act became much more important in the light of Khwarazm's utter destruction at the hands of the Mongols in 1219 and the sack of Baghdad and the end of the Abbasid Caliphs in 1258 again by the Mongols.


Actually that was the point I was trying to make. Some of the panicked Abbasid authors were screaming their heads off about the mongol attacks on the lands of Iran (sorta) and Iraq (sorta). I'll have to go grab the name of the source eventually if I keep bringing it up but there definitely was the sentiment that the cities being sacked in these provinces were all vastly larger, more technologically advanced, and more economically important than Jerusalem.

I think that really the ultimate argument against Jerusalem being a great prize for the muslims would be Frederick II's negotiations. He negotiated a treaty in which the city reverted to Christian control for something like ten years. If the Muslims were willing to essentially lease the city to Christian rulers then it clearly can't have been the huge prize it was for the christians.
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Joel Whitmore




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PostPosted: Tue 05 Apr, 2005 5:54 am    Post subject: Arab Sources         Reply with quote

From what I understand from my brother (currently earning his PhD in Medieval history), there are tons of primary souce material about the crusades in Arabic. Much of it has not been translated into English, thus learning Arabic is a hot topic these days in medieval circles. For those of you not all that familiar with this era, many historians have found the Arab chroniclers more accurate than their European counterparts when it came to numbers of troops. Many European historians inflated numbers to glorify whatever side they chose. Sometimes they overinflated the numbers on thier side to make their leader seem mighty and sometimes they overinflated the enemy count to make thier own victory more heroic. So it's a tough thing for medieval historians to sort out this stuff. One has to really dig into primary sources, town and city levy lists, tax records and financial records to name a few. There are some great translated Arab texts out there and many are facinating in their straightforwardness. Just find a translated copy of Usama ibn Munqidh's Autobiography in which he writes many anecdotes about living with the Frankish crusaders after the first crusade. He talks of everything from Frankish medecine to the shaving of pubic hair! I am not trying to be crass here, but it just goes to show the unflinching honesty of some of these Arab writers.

As for the importance of Jerusalem it was obviously of religious significance to Muslims as teh place there Muhammad acended into Heaven. It's political importance to Muslims during the Crusades far outweighted its economic or religious importnace. Jreusalem was the reason the Crusaders came to the East in the first place and was the seat of Western power. Thus to take the city was to cut off the head of the Outreamer kindom.

I really like the costuming in the movie. Many people forget that it was difficult to tell the Christians from the MUslims as many of the crusaders had adopted the customs and dress of the Arabs. Now I don't know what specific period the movie focuses on, but there seems to be some major characters missing in the main cast. Namely Raymonfd of Tripoli and the Templar Gerard de Ridfort. But this depends on how deeply the movie goes into the history of that specific period.

Joel
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Alina Boyden





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PostPosted: Tue 05 Apr, 2005 9:26 am    Post subject: Re: Arab Sources         Reply with quote

Joel Whitmore wrote:
From what I understand from my brother (currently earning his PhD in Medieval history), there are tons of primary souce material about the crusades in Arabic. Much of it has not been translated into English, thus learning Arabic is a hot topic these days in medieval circles. For those of you not all that familiar with this era, many historians have found the Arab chroniclers more accurate than their European counterparts when it came to numbers of troops. Many European historians inflated numbers to glorify whatever side they chose. Sometimes they overinflated the numbers on thier side to make their leader seem mighty and sometimes they overinflated the enemy count to make thier own victory more heroic. So it's a tough thing for medieval historians to sort out this stuff. One has to really dig into primary sources, town and city levy lists, tax records and financial records to name a few. There are some great translated Arab texts out there and many are facinating in their straightforwardness. Just find a translated copy of Usama ibn Munqidh's Autobiography in which he writes many anecdotes about living with the Frankish crusaders after the first crusade. He talks of everything from Frankish medecine to the shaving of pubic hair! I am not trying to be crass here, but it just goes to show the unflinching honesty of some of these Arab writers.

As for the importance of Jerusalem it was obviously of religious significance to Muslims as teh place there Muhammad acended into Heaven. It's political importance to Muslims during the Crusades far outweighted its economic or religious importnace. Jreusalem was the reason the Crusaders came to the East in the first place and was the seat of Western power. Thus to take the city was to cut off the head of the Outreamer kindom.

I really like the costuming in the movie. Many people forget that it was difficult to tell the Christians from the MUslims as many of the crusaders had adopted the customs and dress of the Arabs. Now I don't know what specific period the movie focuses on, but there seems to be some major characters missing in the main cast. Namely Raymonfd of Tripoli and the Templar Gerard de Ridfort. But this depends on how deeply the movie goes into the history of that specific period.

Joel


I would not call Usamah ibn Munqidh unflinchingly honest. Now, I'm not calling him a liar, but he was in his 80s when he wrote the autobiography glorifying his youth. The text is an important one, but it is probably not entirely factual. That being said, Usamah is also my hero. I love his autobiography. It's just absolutely hilariously fun. I would highly recommend his memoirs to anyone wanting to be entertained and enlightened.

Also, I again have to disagree about the political significance of Jerusalem. If Jerusalem's importance lay in the fact that it was the head of the outremer kingdom then we would expect two things: 1) After the fall of Jerusalem, the crusader states would disintegrate. 2) Conquering Outremer would have to be a primary goal of the Muslims along with conquering Jerusalem. Neither of these things happened.

After the fall of Jerusalem, the Crusader states continued as normal until 1291 with the fall of Akka (Acre). So, for 100 years, the crusader states remained relatively stable, even without Jerusalem. This isn't surprising as it is the nature of feudal societies to be very difficult to destroy at a single stroke. Outremer was in fact a feudal society. As such, the dukes and barons controlling the lands of the kingdom of Jerusalem really didn't lose much.

The idea that there was a coherent policy of eliminating outremer is probably anachronistic until about 1260 and the rise of the Mamluks. The reason for this is one simple fact: After Richard the Lionheart arrived in outremer, Saladin never won another battle. So, what the Muslims learned, and of course here I am referring to the Ayyubid dynasty, was not to attack the crusader states too fiercely. If they had wanted to, the Ayyubids could have easily destroyed the few cities controlled by the Christians. However, they had learned that whenever they did so, Crusaders came from Europe and attacked them. Richard's successes had made the Muslims wary of crusades. Also, there was something of a comfort in the enemy you do know as opposed to the enemy you don't know.

So, I have a tendency to argue against the importance of Jerusalem in Muslim eyes. I think that the great preponderance of medieval Arab chronicles agrees with me. Of course, in history, there is always a great deal of room for discussion on these topics.

You're right Joel, learning Arabic is hot hot hot in Medieval Studies. The Crusades are a hot topic, but even more so people are studying the area of "Muslim-Christian relations." I'm almost done with my Latin, I've finished my French, and then I can either go fix up my German, do some Eastern European, or learn Arabic. So many languages, so little time.
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Bruce Wilson




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PostPosted: Thu 07 Apr, 2005 3:49 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

To drag this back to the weapons themselves, has anyone had a chance to look at the images of the weapons (and costume replicas) that are now available? Reliks.com have their usual high quality pictures up, giving us a chance to get a good look at some of these items.

Does the King of Jerusalem sword look just a little bit familiar to anyone here?!
I don't recall Edward III ever going crusading...

Wink
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