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Henry O.





Joined: 18 Jun 2016

Posts: 164

PostPosted: Tue 06 Mar, 2018 2:19 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Daniel Staberg wrote:
Long pikes give an advantage but also demand more strength and skill to use. When my group went from the 10 foot pikes we had been using to testing a 14 foot model we noticed a real drop in both endurance and accuracy. It became notably harder to hit the exposed gaps in the armour but the testing was done with some restrictions as we did not have the necessary protective gear to allow face and throat trusts. Holding the pike in the middle increase accuracy but as you noted left us with the problem of having a lot of the shaft sticking out behind you.


Thanks again Daniel. That sort of reminds me of di Grassi's quip that those who recommended holding the pike at the end were perhaps "more strong of arm, but weaker of heart." Military treatises generally tend to consider longer pikes better than shorter pikes, but I've noticed some modern authors like F L Taylor claiming that while the swiss, germans, and most nations switched over to 18 foot pikes during the italian wars, the Spanish continued to use pikes that were only 14 feet long.

I know John Smythe also noted that it was important for the pikes to be made of a wood that was very stiff and did not allow the point to bend or sag when held outright, since pikes that sagged were "more heavie" and made it impossible to aim or thrust accurately. So perhaps the ideal pike length depended on not only strength, but what types of wood were available.

Carlos Valenzuela Cordero wrote:
Dear gentleman, let me introduce me: I am Carlos Valenzuela and I have been reading and writing about spanish Tercios and XVIth century spanish armies since ten years ago.
I have watched in my blog statistic one reference to this topic posted by Benjamin H. Abbott, and then I have read it. I have found very interesting your discussion here, and I want to contribute to it.


Hi Carlos, I've come across your Blog before and from what I've been able to read using google translate it has been extremely informative. Thank you!

If you don't mind, I have a couple of questions about the spanish "rodeleros".

In This post you include some illustrations of arquebusiers fighting with shields on their backs during the 80 years war, and I've sometimes seen illustrations of pikemen wearing shields on their backs as well. So I'm curious, would the spanish rodeleros during the start of the Italian Wars have carried a sword and shield only, or were they initially supposed to carry a third weapon such as a one-handed spear or throwing weapon as well? And if so when did they start using swords and shields exclusively?

Second, how did the pay and status differ between a pikeman and a sword-and-shield man in the spanish army, and how did that change over time? I've noticed that late-16th century english authors, especially those who had served in the Spanish army, repeatedly emphasize that the pike was the "most honorable" weapon to carry on foot and claim that spanish gentlemen and captains would typically prefer to carry a pike over any other weapon. Even in the 17th century Sir James Turner mentioned that Spanish captains in particular took great pride in shouldering their pikes themselves, rather than allowing them to be carried by a servant. Is this accurate? and if so was it always the case, or did this preference only develop towards the end of the 16th century?
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Mike Ruhala




Location: Stuart, Florida
Joined: 24 Jul 2011

Posts: 328

PostPosted: Tue 06 Mar, 2018 8:30 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

While researching 15th century armor for footsoldiers I came across some interesting information regarding the Hungarian Black Army in the form of some correspondence between Corvinus and Rangoni,


Quote:
"The third form of the army is the infantry, which divides into various orders: the common infantry, the armoured infantry, and the shield bearers.... The armored infantry and shield bearers cannot carry their armor and shields without pages and servants, and since it is necessary to provide them with pages, each of them requires one page per armor and shield and double bounty. Then there are the handguners... These are very practical, set behind the shield-bearers at the start of the battle, before the armies engage, and in defense. Nearly all of the infantry and arbusiers are surrounded by armored soldiers and shield-bearers, as if they were standing behind a bastion. The large shields set together in a circle present the appearance of a fort and similar to a wall in whose defense the infantry and all those among them fight almost as if from behind bastion walls or ramparts and at the given moment break out from it."


The shield bearers and armoured infantry seem to prefigure the doppelsoldner, my impression is this reflects a common order that was used both earlier and later on the timeline. It also suggests that the primary role of heavily armed infantry was probably more to do with force protection than offensive action. The Black Army also aimed for a much higher proportion of firearms in its ranks than was typical for the time and apparently had some trouble supplying adequate munitions. It seems to me they were using firearms and crossbows as the primary means of taking the fight to the enemy, "common infantry" to hold ground with armoured infantry and shield bearers providing a barrier between missiles and the soft shells kind of like Dan Howard suggests. Naturally things get more complicated than just that as the battle unfolds and I presume the primary mission of the infantry then as now was to close with and destroy the enemy.

Regarding a one on one fight the recently translated work by Pietro Monte suggests that a lightly armoured soldier has a reasonable chance of success against a heavily armoured one if he uses his maneuver advantage to fatigue his opponent and tries to put him on bad footing.

Historical fencing on Florida's Treasure Coast!
www.tcfencers.com
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Carlos Valenzuela Cordero




Location: Barcelona
Joined: 22 Feb 2018

Posts: 17

PostPosted: Wed 07 Mar, 2018 4:07 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Henry O. wrote:

If you don't mind, I have a couple of questions about the spanish "rodeleros".

In This post you include some illustrations of arquebusiers fighting with shields on their backs during the 80 years war, and I've sometimes seen illustrations of pikemen wearing shields on their backs as well. So I'm curious, would the spanish rodeleros during the start of the Italian Wars have carried a sword and shield only, or were they initially supposed to carry a third weapon such as a one-handed spear or throwing weapon as well? And if so when did they start using swords and shields exclusively?


Hi Henry. Spanish panoply suffer a very fast evolution during the period comprised between 1490's and 1520's.

If we assume the statement from Gonzalo Fernández de Oviedo, spaniards didn't use - even didn't know - what was a rodela before the Gran Capitán campaigns in Italy. Oviedo left Spain for Italy in 1498. He was living in Milán and Naples. Then, in 1512 he was made captain and 'alcayde' of the fortress of La Española.

If you read the different musters and ordinances, there were three or four types of infantry soldier in 1490's: espingardero - some sort of infantry gunner - crossbowman, lancer and "escudado" - some sort of paviser.

In 1503 the kings ordered the adoption of the swiss model for their infantry, and the lancers became pikemen and the escudados disappear. I said this, because in the musters or ordinances you can read the equipment they wear and the arms with they have to fought, but there is no official account for enrodelados or rodeleros, because there were no category for them, neither for alabarderos - halberdiers.

According to Salazar [1536], the rodelero have to fought with their rodelas and swords, and they have to carry also a dagger, and two darts, to throw against the enemy when the squadrons are near before the engagement.

Returning to Oviedo, there is an account - in their Quincuagenas - of a duel between coronel Villalba and a corsican in 1497. Both used partesana - partisan and rodela and sword. This is a duel, not war, but when Oviedo was in La Española, he ordered a lot of arms and artillery from Spain, and there is an entry of 50 rodelas and 50 partesanas in the same line. If you have read several inventories, you can assume that the relation between both had to be that they were though to be used together.


http://bibliotecadigital.aecid.es/bibliodig/e...md?id=1118

Diego de Álava y Viamont recommended in 1590 to carry a rodela to all pikemen, but by the end of the century, we have several statements on different treaties telling that the rodela was used only in assaults and sieges. According to Lechuga [1611] an entire army of 24.000-30.000 men only need 600 rodelas fuertes, capable of resist arquebus or musket impacts, that by their weight there were not supposed to use or carry during many time. Vargas Machuca recommended to all arquebusiers to carry a rodeleja - little rodela - but he was writting about american colonial war againts indians, and there were still rodeleros there in 1599 when he published his work.


Quote:

Second, how did the pay and status differ between a pikeman and a sword-and-shield man in the spanish army, and how did that change over time?


As I said before, there were three - four types of infantry soldiers during these time:

1490-1503: Espingardero [gunner] / Ballestero [crossbowman] / Lancero [lancer] / Escudado [Paviser]. There were also "hombres del campo", literally countrymen, whose panoply I dont' know.

From 1503 to 1508, there were Espingardero / Piquero - pikeman / Ballestero. but you can find in Italy the remains of the Escudados from Galicia and Asturas that came to Italy in 1503.

From 1508 onwards, we have also the Escopetero - also a gunner with a different type of gun or arquebus precursor.

From 1520's onwards, the crossbowman disappear - not in Spain or North Africa, and we have the Arcabucero [Arquebusier], the Escopetero, the Coselete [literally Corselet, pikeman equpped with corselet] and the Pica Seca [pikeman witth no corselet] and we have also Alabardero - Hallberdier, but they were mustered as corselets. There were no rodeleros at all in any muster or official account.


Quote:
I've noticed that late-16th century english authors, especially those who had served in the Spanish army, repeatedly emphasize that the pike was the "most honorable" weapon to carry on foot and claim that spanish gentlemen and captains would typically prefer to carry a pike over any other weapon. Even in the 17th century Sir James Turner mentioned that Spanish captains in particular took great pride in shouldering their pikes themselves, rather than allowing them to be carried by a servant. Is this accurate? and if so was it always the case, or did this preference only develop towards the end of the 16th century?


I am interested on those english authors. Can you tell me who they are?

Yes, it's supposed that starting to serve in a company with a pike was a brilliant prelude of a great career for noblemen in spanish armies. Francisco Ventura de la Sala give some examples of the past - writing in 1681 - about noblemen in the armies, like the son of the duke of el Infantado a "grande de España" serving for 4 ducats. But you can find a lot of examples of the contrary: a lot of "capitanes por cartas" - literally, captains by letters, recommended by his powerful relatives - that started their careers as captains with no military experience at all.

Gentlemen and Reformados - former officers who were no longer in service as officers because their units were dismantled - were expected to occupy the first ranks of the squadron, so it's supposed that was a prestigious task.

About the servants: captains use to had one page to carry their rodela and their "jineta" - it's a short spear and was the ensign of captains. In a tercio - until 1632 - it was supposed that there were 10 companies of pikes and two of arquebusiers, and the captains of pikes fought with a pike, and the captains of arquebusiers fought with an arquebus. What I have read, captains used to march on horse, not on foot, but when they have to form the squadron - after left a city or before arrive to a city or a place with hostiles - where they occupy their place with their pikes in the first rank.
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Tianhong Yu





Joined: 12 Jul 2016

Posts: 10

PostPosted: Wed 07 Mar, 2018 4:44 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Carlos Valenzuela Cordero wrote:
Henry O. wrote:

If you don't mind, I have a couple of questions about the spanish "rodeleros".

In This post you include some illustrations of arquebusiers fighting with shields on their backs during the 80 years war, and I've sometimes seen illustrations of pikemen wearing shields on their backs as well. So I'm curious, would the spanish rodeleros during the start of the Italian Wars have carried a sword and shield only, or were they initially supposed to carry a third weapon such as a one-handed spear or throwing weapon as well? And if so when did they start using swords and shields exclusively?


Hi Henry. Spanish panoply suffer a very fast evolution during the period comprised between 1490's and 1520's.

If we assume the statement from Gonzalo Fernández de Oviedo, spaniards didn't use - even didn't know - what was a rodela before the Gran Capitán campaigns in Italy. Oviedo left Spain for Italy in 1498. He was living in Milán and Naples. Then, in 1512 he was made captain and 'alcayde' of the fortress of La Española.

If you read the different musters and ordinances, there were three or four types of infantry soldier in 1490's: espingardero - some sort of infantry gunner - crossbowman, lancer and "escudado" - some sort of paviser.

In 1503 the kings ordered the adoption of the swiss model for their infantry, and the lancers became pikemen and the escudados disappear. I said this, because in the musters or ordinances you can read the equipment they wear and the arms with they have to fought, but there is no official account for enrodelados or rodeleros, because there were no category for them, neither for alabarderos - halberdiers.

According to Salazar [1536], the rodelero have to fought with their rodelas and swords, and they have to carry also a dagger, and two darts, to throw against the enemy when the squadrons are near before the engagement.

Returning to Oviedo, there is an account - in their Quincuagenas - of a duel between coronel Villalba and a corsican in 1497. Both used partesana - partisan and rodela and sword. This is a duel, not war, but when Oviedo was in La Española, he ordered a lot of arms and artillery from Spain, and there is an entry of 50 rodelas and 50 partesanas in the same line. If you have read several inventories, you can assume that the relation between both had to be that they were though to be used together.


http://bibliotecadigital.aecid.es/bibliodig/e...md?id=1118

Diego de Álava y Viamont recommended in 1590 to carry a rodela to all pikemen, but by the end of the century, we have several statements on different treaties telling that the rodela was used only in assaults and sieges. According to Lechuga [1611] an entire army of 24.000-30.000 men only need 600 rodelas fuertes, capable of resist arquebus or musket impacts, that by their weight there were not supposed to use or carry during many time. Vargas Machuca recommended to all arquebusiers to carry a rodeleja - little rodela - but he was writting about american colonial war againts indians, and there were still rodeleros there in 1599 when he published his work.


Quote:

Second, how did the pay and status differ between a pikeman and a sword-and-shield man in the spanish army, and how did that change over time?


As I said before, there were three - four types of infantry soldiers during these time:

1490-1503: Espingardero [gunner] / Ballestero [crossbowman] / Lancero [lancer] / Escudado [Paviser]. There were also "hombres del campo", literally countrymen, whose panoply I dont' know.

From 1503 to 1508, there were Espingardero / Piquero - pikeman / Ballestero. but you can find in Italy the remains of the Escudados from Galicia and Asturas that came to Italy in 1503.

From 1508 onwards, we have also the Escopetero - also a gunner with a different type of gun or arquebus precursor.

From 1520's onwards, the crossbowman disappear - not in Spain or North Africa, and we have the Arcabucero [Arquebusier], the Escopetero, the Coselete [literally Corselet, pikeman equpped with corselet] and the Pica Seca [pikeman witth no corselet] and we have also Alabardero - Hallberdier, but they were mustered as corselets. There were no rodeleros at all in any muster or official account.


Quote:
I've noticed that late-16th century english authors, especially those who had served in the Spanish army, repeatedly emphasize that the pike was the "most honorable" weapon to carry on foot and claim that spanish gentlemen and captains would typically prefer to carry a pike over any other weapon. Even in the 17th century Sir James Turner mentioned that Spanish captains in particular took great pride in shouldering their pikes themselves, rather than allowing them to be carried by a servant. Is this accurate? and if so was it always the case, or did this preference only develop towards the end of the 16th century?


I am interested on those english authors. Can you tell me who they are?

Yes, it's supposed that starting to serve in a company with a pike was a brilliant prelude of a great career for noblemen in spanish armies. Francisco Ventura de la Sala give some examples of the past - writing in 1681 - about noblemen in the armies, like the son of the duke of el Infantado a "grande de España" serving for 4 ducats. But you can find a lot of examples of the contrary: a lot of "capitanes por cartas" - literally, captains by letters, recommended by his powerful relatives - that started their careers as captains with no military experience at all.

Gentlemen and Reformados - former officers who were no longer in service as officers because their units were dismantled - were expected to occupy the first ranks of the squadron, so it's supposed that was a prestigious task.

About the servants: captains use to had one page to carry their rodela and their "jineta" - it's a short spear and was the ensign of captains. In a tercio - until 1632 - it was supposed that there were 10 companies of pikes and two of arquebusiers, and the captains of pikes fought with a pike, and the captains of arquebusiers fought with an arquebus. What I have read, captains used to march on horse, not on foot, but when they have to form the squadron - after left a city or before arrive to a city or a place with hostiles - where they occupy their place with their pikes in the first rank.



Hello Carlos. Did those pavisers you mentioned carry adargas?From what I hear Spanish swordsmen carried adarga before rodela. Do you think it's true?
Here I find an interesting post http://myArmoury.com/talk/viewtopic.php?t=119...mp;start=0
where Leonardo said there were no rodeleros as a dedicated type of foot soldiers.
It seems he wasn't the first one who held this opinion
http://www.esgrimaantigua.com/forum/viewtopic...1253df4d28

What do you think?
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Bartek Strojek




Location: Poland
Joined: 05 Aug 2008
Likes: 23 pages

Posts: 450

PostPosted: Thu 08 Mar, 2018 2:57 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Mike Ruhala wrote:


The Black Army also aimed for a much higher proportion of firearms in its ranks than was typical for the time and apparently had some trouble supplying adequate munitions. It seems to me they were using firearms and crossbows as the primary means of taking the fight to the enemy, "common infantry" to hold ground with armoured infantry and shield bearers providing a barrier between missiles and the soft shells kind of like Dan Howard suggests. Naturally things get more complicated than just that as the battle unfolds and I presume the primary mission of the infantry then as now was to close with and destroy the enemy.
.


I don't think there was anything atypical about Black Army's composition, because all Polish foot contingents of 15th and 16th century we have info about have very high amount of shooters.

From 60% to 90 or even 100%.

Pikemen/polearm bearers and pavisers are minority.

Polish army was similar to Silesian in this manner, from what I recall.

In Poland it had lasted all the way to ~1570 when new king, Istvan (Stephen Bathory) had formally and 'officially' scrapped all the melee infantrymen, introducing Hungarian style 'haiduk' with his handgun/arquebus being his primary way of fighting.


So I have to assume that it had happened even earlier in Hungary itself.

Much of this was modeled after hugely successful Hussites of course, with Czech mercenaries being constantly present and sought after in all 15th century was in the region.

So the case here is that huge contingents of pikemen etc. had never really caught on in Central/East Europe, east of Elbe.

Instead infantry concentrated on supplying heavy missile assault.

From the reasons that would be separate thing to study, of course.
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Carlos Valenzuela Cordero




Location: Barcelona
Joined: 22 Feb 2018

Posts: 17

PostPosted: Thu 08 Mar, 2018 4:51 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Tianhong Yu wrote:


Hello Carlos. Did those pavisers you mentioned carry adargas?From what I hear Spanish swordsmen carried adarga before rodela. Do you think it's true?


I am not keen on spanish panoply before late XVth century - 1490's and onwards - but I try to revise some books that I have to answer you properly.

By the late XVth and first XVIth, the adarga was used by spanish jinetes - light cavalry that adopted the moorish style of riding and fightin on horse.

To pavisers:
According to Alonso de Quintanilla report to the kings [1495] pavisers have to carry pavés, coraza and lanza - pavise, cuirasse and lance. The report was previous to the royal ordinance of 1495 that determined the following equipment:

Cuirass, helmet - caxquete - sword and dagger, long lance or common lance and medio pavés [half pavise] or escudo de Pontevedra o de Oviedo [Pontevedra's buclker or Oviedo's buckler. two provinces of Galicia and Asturias, northwestern Spain].

This long lance could be a 24 'palmos' lance [24 x 20.8cm = 4.99m] because this was the equipment of 200 men from the province of Jaén in the 1495 apercibimiento.

We know that a pavés cost in 1495 78 maravedíes, and a half-pavise of 1500, only 31, a common pavise [1496] 60 maravedíes, and a pavés de la montaña - mountain pavés - 100 [in 1496]

According to the 1495 apercibimiento - a national muster - from Galicia, León, Ponferrada and Asturias, had to be recruited 4.200 'peones a la gallega' - infantrymen to the galician way. The total of Spain was 18.560 infantrymen and we could see regional diferences:

The 'galician infantrymen' were equipped with:
casquetes gallegos, espada, lanza terciada con hierro largo y sus paveses de Pontevedra.

galician helmet, sword, terciada lance with long spearhed, and pavises from Pontevedra.

I am not sure what a 'lanza terciada' was, but terciada it could be the third part, so a lance which had the third of the lenght of a common lance.

In 1503, a group of this galician and asturian soldiers were imbarked to Sicily and they fought against french, so we have at least two forreign accounts of them. I'll recover them later.

Bibliography: La revolución militar moderna. El crisol español. René Quatrefages
Ejércitos y armadas de los Reyes Católicos. Miguel Ángel Ladero Quesada.


ADDED IN EDITION:
Reading some documents there is no evidence for infantrymen carrying 'adargas' instead of pavises, but, as I said before, I am not keen in pre 1490s spanish armies.


In the link you post before there is this statement:
Quote:
I am not an expert on Conquistadors but I want to make mention of the "Adarga" shield. I have some documentation stating that most of the Soldiers eventually found that the steel Rondella shields were too heavy in the tropics and also were quite unnecessary ( as a matter of over-kill ) in regard to defence against Indian darts and arrows, etc.


If your read Cortés relations, [url]https://archive.org/details/cartasyrelacion01cortgoog Cartas y relaciones de Hernán Cortés al emperador Carlos V[/url] you can read the muster taken in 28 april of 1521:
E acabados los bergantines y puestos en esta zanja, á 28 de abril del dicho año fice alarde de toda la gente , y hallé ochenta y seis de caballo , y ciento y diez y ocho ballesteros y escopeteros , y setecientos y tantos peones de espadas y rodela, y tres tiros gruesos de hierro , y quince tiros pequeños de bronce , y diez quintales de pólvora.

86 cavalrymen
118 crossbowmen and gunners - escopeteros
more than 700 peones - infantrymen - with swords and rodelas

Cortés himself made another statement:
Yo envió á la isla Española cuatro navios para que luego vuelvan cargados de caballos y gente para nuestro socorro; é asimismo envió á comprar otros cuatro para que desde la dicha isla Española y ciudad de Santo Domingo traigan caballos y armas y ballestas y pólvora, porque esto es los que en estas partes es mas necesaria ; porque peones rodeleros aprovechan muy poco solos, por ser tanta cantidad de gente y tener tan fuertes y grandes ciudades y fortalezas

He send 4 vessels to La Española - current Haití + Dominican Republic - to get horses and men, arms, crossbows and powder, because the 'peones rodeleros' - infantry rodeleros - were of little service alone, without - I deduce - the help of horsemen and crossbowmen.

To the Magallanes expedition [1518] they took for the army:
1000 lances and 200 pikes
95 dozens of darts
10 dozens of 'gorguces' or 'gurguces' - somekind of dart or spear
50 escopetas
60 crossbows with 60 dozens of arrows
100 corselets + brazal [to protect the arm] + espaldera [the shoulder] + cabasset
100 breastplate with 'barbote' - somekind of gorget which protect the neck until the chin and 'casquete' - helmet
200 rodelas

[Source: Colección de los viajes y descubrimientos que hicieron por mar los españoles v4]

There were no adargas at all, but this doesn't mean that spaniard didn't used it like infantry shields. What it's true regardin protection is that spaniards with time found no need to wear corselets, but they still used rodelas, as que can see in Vargas Machuca's work.

Regarding to the use of shields before the adoption or the rodela in late 1490s / first 1500s, spanish infantrymen tend to use pavises during all XVth century, even if they were fighting embarked: 67 paveses grandes para luchar en tierra and 133 paveses pequeños para pelear en las naves: 67 big pavises to fight on land, and 133 little pavises to fight in the boats [Source: La Armada de Vizcaya 1492-1493 - nuevos datos documentales].

During the catalan civil war [1462-1472] the rebels who fought the king wanted to recruit 3000 soldiers: 1800 crossbowmen, 800 pavisers, 200 long lances and 100 spingardes - XVth century gun. [Source: CoDoIn, Archivo Corona Aragón v14. Guerra civil catalana]



Quote:

Here I find an interesting post http://myArmoury.com/talk/viewtopic.php?t=119...mp;start=0
where Leonardo said there were no rodeleros as a dedicated type of foot soldiers.
It seems he wasn't the first one who held this opinion
[url]http://www.esgrimaantigua.com/forum/viewtopic.php?f=1&t=2096&hilit=rodeleros&sid=8862aff64ad76f0ab175111253df4d28[/url]

What do you think?


Before posting, I have to say that I have only browsed the two post you linked. I try to read them with calm later.

As I said before, there were no rodeleros at all in any muster or official account, as there were no such category of infantry soldiers in those years [in Europe], and the rodela was no part of the standard panoply of spaniards in european lands, neither the alabarda, the media pica - half pike - the partesana, the chuzo - somekind of spear - the jineta - another spear - the espontón - another spear - the corcesca - another spear - and so on, but they were used, and they were part of the "munición" - literally ammunition - the equipment/arms provided by the king, and paid by the soldier discounted from their wages and the "armas de respeto", the arms that were in charge of the captain of the artillery to supply to soldiers - and sailors - during the campagins, to substitute their lost or broken arms, or to change: to transform arcabuceros into coseletes, like happened in 1546-1547 german Charles V campaign.

If you read documents from the Comunidades in 1520's - CoDoIn 1, p277 - you will see that the rebels, following the model of the Catholics kings Isabel & Fernando, wanted to stablish the obligation to wear arms in order to form a militia to all man according their wealth and status. And the common arms to all were the sword, the dagger and the rodela:

Lo otro á condición que todos puedan traer las armas que quisieren ofensivas é defensivas , é que ninguna justicia gelas pueda tomar ni vedar que no las trayan, é que todos sean obligados á tener armas en esta manera : que cada un vecino de los del menor estado sea obligado á tener una espada , é un puñal , é un casquete , é una lanza é un pavés ó una rodela : entiéndase ser del menor estado el que no tiene cinquenta mil maravedís de hacienda. E los del mediano estado que sean obligados á tener cada uno una espada , é un puñal , é un casquete, é una pica é un coselete ó unas corazas é una rodela : entiéndese ser del mediano estado el que tuviere mas de cinquenta mil maravedís de hacienda é no pasare de doscientos mil. ... (1) Y los del mayor estado que sean obligados á tener cada uno dos espadas é dos puñales par asir á un mozo^ é una pica, é una alabarda, é una rodela é un coselete entero con su celada y gorjal é falda : entiéndese ser del mayor estado el que tuviere de hacienda mas de doscientos mil maravedís : é por questo se guarde mejor , que los alcaldes é regidores de cada un logar hagan hacer cada un año el día de Santiago alarde á todos los vecinos , é que cada un vecino salga á la alarde con sus armas , é quel que no las sacare todas, que pague de pena si fuere del menor estado trescientos maravedís, é si del mediano seiscientos, é si del mayor mil maravedís, é questa pena gela esecuten luego é no gela puedan perdonar é sea para á los muros del logar, é que demás desto los alcaldes é regidores les compren las armas que les faltaren é gelas den é gelas hagan.

Arms and equipment for men according their wealth:
Less than 50.000 maravedíes: Sword, dagger, helmet, lance, pavise and rodela
Between 50.000 and 200.000 mvds: Sword, dagger, helmet, pike, corselet or cuirasse, and rodela
More than 200.000 mvds: Two swords, tow daggers - with a servant - one pike, one halberd, one rodela, one complet corselet with salad, gorget and skirt [I am sure the name of the piece of the armour in english is not a skirt]

According to Fernando, there were no rodeleros. I assume that he was referring to América.
If you read Colección de Documentos Inéditos para la Historia de Chile, you will see that in an "información" - a document with witnesses to support some evidence, usually to defend from justice, or prevent some accusations or to accuse someone - Alvarado had in 1531, 120 men in horse, and 100 infantry men 'ballesteros, escopeteros y rodeleros'. If you read the chronicles of Oviedo, describing the troops of the Captains Hojeda and Nicuesa in Cartagena [current Colombia] they had 300 men: 150 rodeleros, 60 crossbowmen, 40 with corselets and pikes and 40 empavesados - pavisers. They sum 290, not 300, but even if Oviedo wasn't good at maths, we can watch the proportion in the different type of arms, with no escopetas or arquebuses at all.
According to the relación of Ordoñez, Francisco Pizarro had in Lima - during the civil wars of Peru between him and Almagro - 350 men in horses, 200 arquebusiers and crossbowmen and 150 pikemen and rodeleros, and in Lima were producing 2 arquebuses per day.

Of course, you have also the Vargas Machuca's treaty, talking about rodeleros, their equipment and their tactics, but it's from 1599 and they were fighting against indians. However, there is an interesant statement:
Y si el enemigo fuere de lanza, los rodeleros sean lanceros, para mejor entretener, porque la rodela es inferior á la lanza del contrario.

If the enemy had lances, the rodeleros were lancers, to better fight, because the rodela is lower that the lance of the opponent.

https://archive.org/details/miliciaydescripc00vargiala

If you read documents of american or asian expeditions, or inventories in american fortesess, you will see there are a lot of rodelas in the 1510s, 1520s years, but not in columbian expeditions, so we can assume that the statement of Oviedo that twere were no rodelas in Spain before late 1490s had to be true. In fact, in 1512, they supposed that the better rodelas in the world were produced in Naples, but they were manufactured in Vizvaya - Basque country - too, so we can assume that the biscain rodelas were copied by the basque armourers from their counterpart from Italy.
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Carlos Valenzuela Cordero




Location: Barcelona
Joined: 22 Feb 2018

Posts: 17

PostPosted: Thu 08 Mar, 2018 1:34 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Carlos Valenzuela Cordero wrote:
Tianhong Yu wrote:


Hello Carlos. Did those pavisers you mentioned carry adargas?From what I hear Spanish swordsmen carried adarga before rodela. Do you think it's true?


I am not keen on spanish panoply before late XVth century - 1490's and onwards - but I try to revise some books that I have to answer you properly.

By the late XVth and first XVIth, the adarga was used by spanish jinetes - light cavalry that adopted the moorish style of riding and fightin on horse.

To pavisers:
According to Alonso de Quintanilla report to the kings [1495] pavisers have to carry pavés, coraza and lanza - pavise, cuirasse and lance. The report was previous to the royal ordinance of 1495 that determined the following equipment:

Cuirass, helmet - caxquete - sword and dagger, long lance or common lance and medio pavés [half pavise] or escudo de Pontevedra o de Oviedo [Pontevedra's buclker or Oviedo's buckler. two provinces of Galicia and Asturias, northwestern Spain].

This long lance could be a 24 'palmos' lance [24 x 20.8cm = 4.99m] because this was the equipment of 200 men from the province of Jaén in the 1495 apercibimiento.

We know that a pavés cost in 1495 78 maravedíes, and a half-pavise of 1500, only 31, a common pavise [1496] 60 maravedíes, and a pavés de la montaña - mountain pavés - 100 [in 1496]

According to the 1495 apercibimiento - a national muster - from Galicia, León, Ponferrada and Asturias, had to be recruited 4.200 'peones a la gallega' - infantrymen to the galician way. The total of Spain was 18.560 infantrymen and we could see regional diferences:

The 'galician infantrymen' were equipped with:
casquetes gallegos, espada, lanza terciada con hierro largo y sus paveses de Pontevedra.

galician helmet, sword, terciada lance with long spearhed, and pavises from Pontevedra.

I am not sure what a 'lanza terciada' was, but terciada it could be the third part, so a lance which had the third of the lenght of a common lance.

In 1503, a group of this galician and asturian soldiers were imbarked to Sicily and they fought against french, so we have at least two forreign accounts of them. I'll recover them later.

Bibliography: La revolución militar moderna. El crisol español. René Quatrefages
Ejércitos y armadas de los Reyes Católicos. Miguel Ángel Ladero Quesada.


ADDED IN EDITION:
Reading some documents there is no evidence for infantrymen carrying 'adargas' instead of pavises, but, as I said before, I am not keen in pre 1490s spanish armies.


In the link you post before there is this statement:
Quote:
I am not an expert on Conquistadors but I want to make mention of the "Adarga" shield. I have some documentation stating that most of the Soldiers eventually found that the steel Rondella shields were too heavy in the tropics and also were quite unnecessary ( as a matter of over-kill ) in regard to defence against Indian darts and arrows, etc.


If your read Cortés relations, [url]https://archive.org/details/cartasyrelacion01cortgoog Cartas y relaciones de Hernán Cortés al emperador Carlos V[/url] you can read the muster taken in 28 april of 1521:
E acabados los bergantines y puestos en esta zanja, á 28 de abril del dicho año fice alarde de toda la gente , y hallé ochenta y seis de caballo , y ciento y diez y ocho ballesteros y escopeteros , y setecientos y tantos peones de espadas y rodela, y tres tiros gruesos de hierro , y quince tiros pequeños de bronce , y diez quintales de pólvora.

86 cavalrymen
118 crossbowmen and gunners - escopeteros
more than 700 peones - infantrymen - with swords and rodelas

Cortés himself made another statement:
Yo envió á la isla Española cuatro navios para que luego vuelvan cargados de caballos y gente para nuestro socorro; é asimismo envió á comprar otros cuatro para que desde la dicha isla Española y ciudad de Santo Domingo traigan caballos y armas y ballestas y pólvora, porque esto es los que en estas partes es mas necesaria ; porque peones rodeleros aprovechan muy poco solos, por ser tanta cantidad de gente y tener tan fuertes y grandes ciudades y fortalezas

He send 4 vessels to La Española - current Haití + Dominican Republic - to get horses and men, arms, crossbows and powder, because the 'peones rodeleros' - infantry rodeleros - were of little service alone, without - I deduce - the help of horsemen and crossbowmen.

To the Magallanes expedition [1518] they took for the army:
1000 lances and 200 pikes
95 dozens of darts
10 dozens of 'gorguces' or 'gurguces' - somekind of dart or spear
50 escopetas
60 crossbows with 60 dozens of arrows
100 corselets + brazal [to protect the arm] + espaldera [the shoulder] + cabasset
100 breastplate with 'barbote' - somekind of gorget which protect the neck until the chin and 'casquete' - helmet
200 rodelas

[Source: Colección de los viajes y descubrimientos que hicieron por mar los españoles v4]

There were no adargas at all, but this doesn't mean that spaniard didn't used it like infantry shields. What it's true regardin protection is that spaniards with time found no need to wear corselets, but they still used rodelas, as que can see in Vargas Machuca's work.

ADDED IN SECOND EDITION:
I have seen another account [CoDoIn Archivo de Indias, v34] with the arms sent to La Española in 1511:

300 tablachinas - somekind of shield like the light hungarian horsemen wore in the batlle of Orsha
200 medios paveses - hald pavises
100 adargas cordobesas - cordovan adargas

And no rodelas at all, but in 1515 they asked for 300 rodelas from Spain.


Regarding to the use of shields before the adoption or the rodela in late 1490s / first 1500s, spanish infantrymen tend to use pavises during all XVth century, even if they were fighting embarked: 67 paveses grandes para luchar en tierra and 133 paveses pequeños para pelear en las naves: 67 big pavises to fight on land, and 133 little pavises to fight in the boats [Source: La Armada de Vizcaya 1492-1493 - nuevos datos documentales].

During the catalan civil war [1462-1472] the rebels who fought the king wanted to recruit 3000 soldiers: 1800 crossbowmen, 800 pavisers, 200 long lances and 100 spingardes - XVth century gun. [Source: CoDoIn, Archivo Corona Aragón v14. Guerra civil catalana]



Quote:

Here I find an interesting post http://myArmoury.com/talk/viewtopic.php?t=119...mp;start=0
where Leonardo said there were no rodeleros as a dedicated type of foot soldiers.
It seems he wasn't the first one who held this opinion
[url]http://www.esgrimaantigua.com/forum/viewtopic.php?f=1&t=2096&hilit=rodeleros&sid=8862aff64ad76f0ab175111253df4d28[/url]

What do you think?


Before posting, I have to say that I have only browsed the two post you linked. I try to read them with calm later.

As I said before, there were no rodeleros at all in any muster or official account, as there were no such category of infantry soldiers in those years [in Europe], and the rodela was no part of the standard panoply of spaniards in european lands, neither the alabarda, the media pica - half pike - the partesana, the chuzo - somekind of spear - the jineta - another spear - the espontón - another spear - the corcesca - another spear - and so on, but they were used, and they were part of the "munición" - literally ammunition - the equipment/arms provided by the king, and paid by the soldier discounted from their wages and the "armas de respeto", the arms that were in charge of the captain of the artillery to supply to soldiers - and sailors - during the campagins, to substitute their lost or broken arms, or to change: to transform arcabuceros into coseletes, like happened in 1546-1547 german Charles V campaign.

If you read documents from the Comunidades in 1520's - CoDoIn 1, p277 - you will see that the rebels, following the model of the Catholics kings Isabel & Fernando, wanted to stablish the obligation to wear arms in order to form a militia to all man according their wealth and status. And the common arms to all were the sword, the dagger and the rodela:

Lo otro á condición que todos puedan traer las armas que quisieren ofensivas é defensivas , é que ninguna justicia gelas pueda tomar ni vedar que no las trayan, é que todos sean obligados á tener armas en esta manera : que cada un vecino de los del menor estado sea obligado á tener una espada , é un puñal , é un casquete , é una lanza é un pavés ó una rodela : entiéndase ser del menor estado el que no tiene cinquenta mil maravedís de hacienda. E los del mediano estado que sean obligados á tener cada uno una espada , é un puñal , é un casquete, é una pica é un coselete ó unas corazas é una rodela : entiéndese ser del mediano estado el que tuviere mas de cinquenta mil maravedís de hacienda é no pasare de doscientos mil. ... (1) Y los del mayor estado que sean obligados á tener cada uno dos espadas é dos puñales par asir á un mozo^ é una pica, é una alabarda, é una rodela é un coselete entero con su celada y gorjal é falda : entiéndese ser del mayor estado el que tuviere de hacienda mas de doscientos mil maravedís : é por questo se guarde mejor , que los alcaldes é regidores de cada un logar hagan hacer cada un año el día de Santiago alarde á todos los vecinos , é que cada un vecino salga á la alarde con sus armas , é quel que no las sacare todas, que pague de pena si fuere del menor estado trescientos maravedís, é si del mediano seiscientos, é si del mayor mil maravedís, é questa pena gela esecuten luego é no gela puedan perdonar é sea para á los muros del logar, é que demás desto los alcaldes é regidores les compren las armas que les faltaren é gelas den é gelas hagan.

Arms and equipment for men according their wealth:
Less than 50.000 maravedíes: Sword, dagger, helmet, lance, pavise and rodela
Between 50.000 and 200.000 mvds: Sword, dagger, helmet, pike, corselet or cuirasse, and rodela
More than 200.000 mvds: Two swords, tow daggers - with a servant - one pike, one halberd, one rodela, one complet corselet with salad, gorget and skirt [I am sure the name of the piece of the armour in english is not a skirt]

According to Fernando, there were no rodeleros. I assume that he was referring to América.
If you read Colección de Documentos Inéditos para la Historia de Chile, you will see that in an "información" - a document with witnesses to support some evidence, usually to defend from justice, or prevent some accusations or to accuse someone - Alvarado had in 1531, 120 men in horse, and 100 infantry men 'ballesteros, escopeteros y rodeleros'. If you read the chronicles of Oviedo, describing the troops of the Captains Hojeda and Nicuesa in Cartagena [current Colombia] they had 300 men: 150 rodeleros, 60 crossbowmen, 40 with corselets and pikes and 40 empavesados - pavisers. They sum 290, not 300, but even if Oviedo wasn't good at maths, we can watch the proportion in the different type of arms, with no escopetas or arquebuses at all.
According to the relación of Ordoñez, Francisco Pizarro had in Lima - during the civil wars of Peru between him and Almagro - 350 men in horses, 200 arquebusiers and crossbowmen and 150 pikemen and rodeleros, and in Lima were producing 2 arquebuses per day.

Of course, you have also the Vargas Machuca's treaty, talking about rodeleros, their equipment and their tactics, but it's from 1599 and they were fighting against indians. However, there is an interesant statement:
Y si el enemigo fuere de lanza, los rodeleros sean lanceros, para mejor entretener, porque la rodela es inferior á la lanza del contrario.

If the enemy had lances, the rodeleros were lancers, to better fight, because the rodela is lower that the lance of the opponent.

https://archive.org/details/miliciaydescripc00vargiala

If you read documents of american or asian expeditions, or inventories in american fortesess, you will see there are a lot of rodelas in the 1510s, 1520s years, but not in columbian expeditions, so we can assume that the statement of Oviedo that twere were no rodelas in Spain before late 1490s had to be true. In fact, in 1512, they supposed that the better rodelas in the world were produced in Naples, but they were manufactured in Vizvaya - Basque country - too, so we can assume that the biscain rodelas were copied by the basque armourers from their counterpart from Italy.
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Henry O.





Joined: 18 Jun 2016

Posts: 164

PostPosted: Fri 09 Mar, 2018 12:16 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Carlos Valenzuela Cordero wrote:
Hi Henry. Spanish panoply suffer a very fast evolution during the period comprised between 1490's and 1520's.

If we assume the statement from Gonzalo Fernández de Oviedo, spaniards didn't use - even didn't know - what was a rodela before the Gran Capitán campaigns in Italy. Oviedo left Spain for Italy in 1498. He was living in Milán and Naples. Then, in 1512 he was made captain and 'alcayde' of the fortress of La Española.

If you read the different musters and ordinances, there were three or four types of infantry soldier in 1490's: espingardero - some sort of infantry gunner - crossbowman, lancer and "escudado" - some sort of paviser.

In 1503 the kings ordered the adoption of the swiss model for their infantry, and the lancers became pikemen and the escudados disappear. I said this, because in the musters or ordinances you can read the equipment they wear and the arms with they have to fought, but there is no official account for enrodelados or rodeleros, because there were no category for them, neither for alabarderos - halberdiers.

According to Salazar [1536], the rodelero have to fought with their rodelas and swords, and they have to carry also a dagger, and two darts, to throw against the enemy when the squadrons are near before the engagement.

Returning to Oviedo, there is an account - in their Quincuagenas - of a duel between coronel Villalba and a corsican in 1497. Both used partesana - partisan and rodela and sword. This is a duel, not war, but when Oviedo was in La Española, he ordered a lot of arms and artillery from Spain, and there is an entry of 50 rodelas and 50 partesanas in the same line. If you have read several inventories, you can assume that the relation between both had to be that they were though to be used together.

http://bibliotecadigital.aecid.es/bibliodig/e...md?id=1118

Diego de Álava y Viamont recommended in 1590 to carry a rodela to all pikemen, but by the end of the century, we have several statements on different treaties telling that the rodela was used only in assaults and sieges. According to Lechuga [1611] an entire army of 24.000-30.000 men only need 600 rodelas fuertes, capable of resist arquebus or musket impacts, that by their weight there were not supposed to use or carry during many time. Vargas Machuca recommended to all arquebusiers to carry a rodeleja - little rodela - but he was writting about american colonial war againts indians, and there were still rodeleros there in 1599 when he published his work.


Thanks! So does the "rodela" refer specifically to the round shield made of metal? It's interesting that you say the Spanish use of rodelas may have been the result of Italian influence, because it seems the italian infantry and condottiere were still using shields quite a bit at the start of the Italian Wars. In this Illustration of the battle of Fornovo for example you can see the Italian footmen depicted carrying large oval shields and wide-bladed "ox tongue spears". Unfortunately, the equipment of the Italian soldiers during this period is something I know even less about.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Albanian_Stradioti_at_Battle_of_Fornovo.jpg

Anyways, like the poster above my first suggestion was going to be that maybe the Spanish originally used a similar shield made of wood or leather or something similar to the adarga. Perhaps many of the lance infantry still preferred to fight holding their lance in one hand and a small shield in the other, or many of the pavisers decided to start using a shield that was smaller, lighter, and more maneuverable?

The troops shown would be portugese rather than spanish, but here's some images from a series of tapestries made in 1481 depicting the Portuguese Siege of Arzila

https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/3/38/Landing_at_Asilah.jpg

[url]https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/6/6a/O_Cerco_de_Arzila_(Tape%C3%A7aria_de_Pastrana).jpg[/url]

[url]https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/d/de/Assault_on_Asilah.jpg[/url]

[url]https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/3/3c/Fall_of_Tangier.jpg[/url]

Some of the shields shown seem to be fairly large like pavises, but most of the shields shown in use by both the christians and muslims seem to be based on that distinctive heart shape.

In either case it does seem that perhaps the spanish troops were pretty reliant on polearms, not just sword and shield men, already.

Regarding the late 16th century perhaps I can shed some light on who exactly would have carried rodelas. The english by the 1590s seem to have adopted a similar distinction between armored pikemen, unarmored pikemen, and the "short weapons"- typically troops with halberds and bills who also wore armor (though some authors suggest that their armor could be slightly less heavy than that of the armored pikemen). Many authors did think it would be a good idea to include "targeteers" who carried just a sword and shield, but the conclusion seems to have been that on the battlefield their role largely overlapped with that of the halberders: guard the ensigns, fight in close quarters melees, pursue and execute fleeing enemies, fight alongside loose skirmishers etc. So they generally proceed allowing you to assume that any time you their instructions or diagrams include an "H" for halberdier, you could potentially swap out that halberdier for a billman or targeteer depending on what's available and it would work just as well. When discussing how many infantry of each type an army will have they will usually say something like "Out of every 100 footmen you should have 40 armed pikes and 10 armed with halberds, bills, targets, or the like short weapons."

Sir Roger Williams seemed to think that this was the case for the Spanish infantry as well:

"Euery hundred hath forty armed men [armored men], of which there must be 30. pikes, the tenne others, are hal|berds & targets of the proof; al their Gentlemen & vantagers are armed men, the most carry the pike, hauing plasterons of the proofe, I meane the fore part of the ar|mour. . ."

So perhaps among the men recruited as corselets most were made to arm themselves with pikes while a small number were allowed to choose between either a halberd or a rodela depending on what they preferred.

Or it may have been as you mention that some officers or some corselets owned a shield which was carried by a servant or in a wagon and would sometimes swap out their pike for their rodela if they had to fight in an assault or a skirmish. Most of the english treatises don't seem to go into much detail on this though.

William Garrard does mention that it might be a good idea for some of the pikemen and arquebusiers to wear a light target of some sort on their back for close combat, but in the sections where he goes into more detail on the equipment required of arquebusiers and armored pikemen he doesn't bring up shields at all. It seems that he was partly inspired by a 1548 work by Monsieur William de Bellay, who concluded that wearing shields on their backs must have been how the ancient greek pikemen were able to carry both pikes and shields at the same time, so he wanted modern pikemen to do the same in order to get rid of the need for halberders. But as near as I can tell this was never really practiced much if at all and later english authors don't mention the possibility of soldiers carrying shields on their backs at all.

Regarding their use in the new world, in the early 17th century a number of targets made of wood or metal made their way to the english colonies as well and the English settlers there apparently did find them more useful when fighting against native americans than their pikes and halberds were. After a short while though it seems that the new england colonies were switching over to militias armed entirely with firearms.

Carlos Valenzuela Cordero wrote:
I am interested on those english authors. Can you tell me who they are?

Yes, it's supposed that starting to serve in a company with a pike was a brilliant prelude of a great career for noblemen in spanish armies. Francisco Ventura de la Sala give some examples of the past - writing in 1681 - about noblemen in the armies, like the son of the duke of el Infantado a "grande de España" serving for 4 ducats. But you can find a lot of examples of the contrary: a lot of "capitanes por cartas" - literally, captains by letters, recommended by his powerful relatives - that started their careers as captains with no military experience at all.

Gentlemen and Reformados - former officers who were no longer in service as officers because their units were dismantled - were expected to occupy the first ranks of the squadron, so it's supposed that was a prestigious task.

About the servants: captains use to had one page to carry their rodela and their "jineta" - it's a short spear and was the ensign of captains. In a tercio - until 1632 - it was supposed that there were 10 companies of pikes and two of arquebusiers, and the captains of pikes fought with a pike, and the captains of arquebusiers fought with an arquebus. What I have read, captains used to march on horse, not on foot, but when they have to form the squadron - after left a city or before arrive to a city or a place with hostiles - where they occupy their place with their pikes in the first rank.


The the Spanish tend to come up a ton in english military treatises towards the end of the 16th century. Aside from being seen as a major threat and catholic boogieman it had also become clear that spain had the most disciplined armies and was the key innovator when it came to modern weapons and warfare at a time when the english military had become badly outdated and was making major efforts to modernize.

Here are some of the works that are probably the most relevant though:

---

Sir Roger Williams would probably be the main one. He took part in one of the early english expeditions to the Low Countries to fight on behalf of the Dutch protestants and apparently made a name for himself, but when the rest of his company was ordered to redeploy to ireland he instead decided to switch sides and fight alongside the Spanish for some time. He then went back to england, wrote a brief book describing the spanish army and what he thought made them so great, and quickly became a favorite of the Queen, a military advisor, and went on to take part in a number of later battles.

Regarding the use of shields, Williams seems to have been slightly less enthusiastic about them compared to other english authors.

"The diuisions of their foote bands.

Quote:
THeir Commissions for foote Bands are like vnto ours, some Ensigns 300. some 200. the most of an 150. Euery hundred hath forty armed men, of which there must be 30. pikes, the tenne others, are hal∣berds & targets of the proof; al their Gentlemen & van∣tagers are armed men, the most carry the pike, hauing plasterons of the proofe, I meane the fore part of the ar∣mour, the 60. others are shot. In the later dayes of Duke D'alua 25. of euery 100. were commaunded to be Mus∣ketters. With their armed pikes and musketters, they execute most of their seruices. They found such seruice in the musket, that this Prince of Parma hath the most of his shot musketters."


He mentions that the Spanish would send a soldier in very heavy armor to scout the enemy walls for breaches during a siege, and later mentions that they would sometimes carry a heavy target for this purpose as well:

Quote:
"Before they giue an as∣sault, they send sundrie Officers and Souldiers armed of Musket proofe and good iudgement to discouer the breaches"


Quote:
"I knowe no reason, that a thousand [this is a typo, should be ten thousand] armed men ought to aske aboue two hundred targetters of the proof: those weapons are very combersome, they are best to arme men to disco∣uer breaches; or for the defendants to discouer tren∣ches, or the enemies workes; and for to couer shot that skirmishes in streights; their weights are such, that few men will endure to carie thē (if they be of good proofe) one houre, I perswade my selfe, the best arming of tar∣getters, is to haue the corslets of reasonable proofe, and the targets light; so the bearers may the better and nim∣bler assaile, and fight the longer in defending."


So he says that he doesn't think there is a need for more than 200 targets of proof for every 10,000 soldiers, which seems very similar to the proportion you say Lechuga recommended.

---

William Garrard is a bit less well known. He wrote his Art of War after serving the king of Spain for 14 years but died in 1587 before it could be finished, and the draft was later corrected and published by a "Captain Hichcock" in 1591. It's sort of an odd one to read since some sections are Garrard's own words while other sections are copied from other military authors like Thomas Styward, Thomas Digges, and Monsieur de Bellay with Garrard occasionally making alterations while adding his own comments.

Interestingly, he suggests that weapons should be distributed based on each soldier's stature. If the pike came to be seen as the weapon carried by the tallest and strongest men, that might help explain why more and more gentry became eager to call themselves pikemen:

Quote:
"to a tall man a Pike, to a meene stature a halberd, and to a litle nimble person a Peece [firearm]."


He also criticizes the English for continuing to stockpile relatively high numbers of medieval billhooks, halberds, and longbows, claiming that they should be used only in situations where there are not enough pikemen or arquebusiers available:

Quote:
"for in this our age experiēce & practise makes apparant that Archers amongest forreine Nations be neuer vsed, and the Halberd but either amongst fewe or fewe in number. The Archer serues to small purpose, but when he is shadowed with some Trench or Bulwarke free from Hargabuse or Mushet shet: Or that lyning a band of Hargabu∣siers, he doth second them in any inuading onset, and then a whole flight of Arrowes, so that they be light and able to flie aboue twelue score, will merueilously gaule any maine battaile of footmen or Squadron of Hors∣men,

"The Halberd likewise doth onely serue in the sacke of a Towne, in a breach, in a Sallie or Camnisado, to enter a house, or in the throng of a stroken battade to execute slaughter. Wherefore touching these two weapons, vnlesse necessitie constrame, and that Hargabusiers be wan∣ting, Archers may well be spared: and these great numbers of Halber∣diers and Bill men, which are and haue bin in times past vsed in Eng∣land, may well be left off, saue a sew to guard euery Ensigne, and to at∣tend vppon the Colonell, or Captaine, which man Army will amounted a suficient number to depresse and ouercome and flying enemy."


Interestingly, he does claim that an "old Romaine Shield and a short sharpe pointed sword" might be better in a close-quarters press than a throng, and he later goes on to mention situations where it might be useful for pikemen or arquebusiers to wear a light shield on their back, but again, he doesn't really seem to have considered these an important piece of kit:

Quote:
"Finally the Halberdier, who is armed either with Brigan∣dine or Corslet, ought of dutie to attend with his Halberd when his turne comes about his ensigne, in marching, & set Squares, in the Captaines Lodging and Tent for his guard, and at the entrance of a house &c. to bée the formost person to force the pas∣sage.

"But in a day of battaile the old Romaine Shield and a short sharpe pointed sword, to execute in a throng of men, excéedes the Halberd and browne Bill.

"Besides the pikeman which is armed all ouer with a Cors∣let, and is to performe his dutie in a maine Square, stand o•… Battaile, to receiue the shocke of horse men, or charge of the e∣nemies infanterie."


Quote:
"In plaine ground he shall neuer turne out any shot to the skirmish, without certaine sléeues of pikes to gard them vpon the retraite from the charge of horses, and also troopes of short weapons, as swords and targets, Halberds or such like to backe them, if at any time they should come to the sword, or ioyne pell mell with the enimie, and such were called of the Ro∣maines vindices, but if euery shot had likewise at his backe a light leather or Uenecian [Venetian?] target, to vse with his sword when he saw occasion, they would doe great good seruice."


Quote:
"Those battail∣lons which are most necessarie to be had in vse, ought to consist of pikes marching before the Ensigne, behind it and on ye flanks, carrying light Uenecian rundels and targets on their backes: and in the midst about the Ensigne the halberdeares must stand, prouided alwayes that the notable personages & good souldiers for seruice be dispersed as well in the flanks & behind as before, and not to put them all to one brunt in the front, as though they were immortall and not able to be ouercome. By this or∣der a battell shall be able to sustaine a charge of horsemen or footmen to repulse them, & after enter into the enimies throng: for experience declares that the pikes are made voide of seruice when the rankes be closed pell mell togither, for then the soul∣diers are almost one vpon the bodie & backe of another. Where∣fore if the pikemen should haue no other weapons but their pikes and swords, they should remaine naked, which doth moue me to commend the rondell to receiue the blowes: and to fight withall in any presse or throng whatsoeuer. The halberdeares may verie well fight in a presse likewise with their halberds, rather then the pikemen with their pikes: The which halber∣deares are expresly appointed for execution: and so consequen∣ly to follow the said rondels at the héeles, to frée them from the charge of those that be armed, through the great & heauie blowes which they shall giue with their halberds. But touching the rondels, I would haue them alwayes to thrust with the point of their swords, although it were but at the face, the legges and féete, if the enimie be not disarmed in other parts."


In his sections on how the troops should be armed he recommends a lot of armor for pikemen, but again doesn't actually bring up any shields, targets, or rondels:

Quote:
"The furniture due to a pikeman besides his pike, rapier and dagger, consisting of a common Corselet, hauing a Coller, Curiat, Tases, backpart, Poldrowes, Wambrases, and Burganets for the head, for that they be sufficiently knowne, because I will not be ouer prolixe vpon eue∣ry particular point, I will onelie say thus much more touching the pike∣man, that he ought to haue his Pyke at the point and middest trimmed with handsome tassels, and a handle, not so much for ornament as to de∣fend the Souldiers bodie from water, which in raine doth runne downe alongst the wood."


In fact, he claims that, except perhaps during a siege, arquebusiers are most effective if they carry no armor and as little extra weight as possible:

Quote:
"Now as these careles persons farre misse the marke with ouer great securitie, so some bring in a custome of too much curiositie in arming Hargabusiers, for besides a Peece, flask, Tutch boxe, Rapier and Dag∣ger: they load them with a heauie Shirt of Male, and a Burganet: so that by that time they haue marched in the heat of the Sommer or deepe of the Winter ten or twelue English miles, they are more apt to rest, thē readie to fight, whereby it comes to passe that either the enterprise they go about, which requires celerity, shall become frustrate by reason of the staie they make in refreshing themselues, or else they are in daunger to be repulsed for want of lustines, breath, and agilitie.

"Wherefore in mine opinion it is not necessarie, that this extraordina∣rie arming of Shot should bee vsed, but in surprises of Townes, Escalades, and assaultes of breaches, to defende the Souldiers heades from stones, and such stuffe as they besieged haue prepared to driue them from their enterprise: Or else in some speciall set battaile against the cut and thrust of Weapons, which exploits, for that they bee not so ordinarie as is the Skirmish, so are these armes nothing so necessarie, but rather a burthen more beautifull then beneficiall, and of greater charge then cō∣moditie, specially a shirt of Male, which is very dangerous for shot, if a number of those small peeces should be driuen into a mans body by a bul∣let."


He does give one more hint though. He claims that aside from armored pikemen ("armed pikes") and unarmored pikemen ("disarmed pikes"), Armies sometimes include a third category he calls "light armed pikes" who wear only partial armor:

Quote:
"There bee yet another sort of light armed Pikes, which only haue the forepart of a Corslet and a Headpéece, as is the Al∣maine Riuet, or a good light Iacke, or plate Coate: these some∣times may be sent amongst the forlorne hoope of Hargabusiers, to defend them from the inuasions of Horsemen."


Later he does breifly mention that among some nations the light armed pikes will carry targets if they don't have iron breastplates:

Quote:
"where some doe vse to place the light armed pikes, who amongst some nations for want of brest plates of Iron, vse tand lether, paper, platecoates, iackets, &c. For a gorget, thicke folded kerchefes a∣bout their neck, a scull of Iron for a head péece, and a Uenetian or lether Shéeld and Target at their backes, to vse with their short Swordes at the close of a battaile, and in a throng."


So perhaps the target was used primarily by those who could not afford a complete corselet in the first place, and became less common as plate armor became more widely available?

---

Robert Barret, who wrote in 1598, is another interesting mercenary who claims to have spent time fighting for the French, the Dutch, the Italians and Spanish. His treatise I've found particularly fun to look through. It's written in the form of an imaginary dialog involving an fictional english "gentleman" who keeps asking the author stupid questions and gives Barret the opportunity to address what might be common complaints and explain why things are done a certain way and the theory behind them in rather than just sticking to to what modern armies do or should do. He brings up the spanish quite a bit.

Like Garrard he does seem somewhat critical of the bill and halberd compared to the target in specific situations. But again he only ever recommends 2 or 3 targeteers at most for every 100 infantrymen.


Quote:
Gent.

Well, to stand in argument I will not, for I haue seene little triall either Page 4 of the one or the other. But what thinke you of our abundance of blacke Billes which we thinke to be the next naturall weapon for the Englishman?

Capt.

True it is, that in time past our nation hath performed round slaughter. worke therewith: but the warres and weapons are now altered from them dayes, and we must accommodate our selues to the now vsed weapons, order, and time, to answere our enimies with the semblable, else happely shall we finde ourselues short of our reckening, with our all-too late repentance. But might I haue, in stead of these blacke Bills and Iacks, so many good armed Pikes, I meane good Corslelts furnisht, I would thinke my selfe farre better either to offend or defend.

Gent.

Why, would you not allow short weapon in the field?

Capt.

Truly no, not many, yet would I not exclude them all. For I know them necessarie for many peeces of seruice; as to performe executiō if the enemie break, or flie; to mingle with shot to back them if neede be; to passe with Conuoyes, & to stand by your Artillerie; to creepe along trenches, and enter into mynes, where the Pike would be ouerlong;* but best for the myne or breach is the Target of prooffe, short sword, and Pistoll: but for the plaine field, neither blacke bill, Hal∣bard, nor Partizan comparable to the Pike.


Most of all though he tends to stress the importance of "the Pike, which the Spaniards do tearme Sen̄ora y Reyna de las armas, the Queene and mistresse of weapons."

Looking through what weapons suggests for captains, he does mention, like you said, that if a company is made entirely of shot then the captain should carry a musket or caliver, but for any other kind of company he doesn't think the captain should carry anything but a pike:

Quote:

Now his band being of compound weapons, hee himselfe may vse and carie either Calliuer, Musket or Pike, as he shall fancie most, but the Pike is most honourable, deuiding his shotte into fore-ward and rere-ward of the pikes, contayning in their center the Ensigne and Halbards. But if the band be al pikes, or all shot alone, (which order I haue seene obserued amongst the Spaniards) then being pikes, he is by dutie to carie a pike, himselfe armed in a Corslet com∣plete, wherein he shall be curious to haue them gallant and good; which will cause his Company to imitate him therein. But if his Companie be all shot, then is he in like sort bound by dutie to carie a peece, either Musket or Calli∣uer, gallantly furnished, and neatlie kept. And not in musters and traynings to carie neither long-sword, neither Halbard, neither leading-staffe, neither halfe-pike, neither yet a page going before him; for it is a Bisognios tricke, ill be∣seeming a perfect Captaine.


Sorry for writing so slowly. I'm sort of out of time at the moment, but I'll try to post additional authors in the future when I get the opportunity.
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Carlos Valenzuela Cordero




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PostPosted: Tue 13 Mar, 2018 1:29 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Henry O. wrote:
Thanks! So does the "rodela" refer specifically to the round shield made of metal? It's interesting that you say the Spanish use of rodelas may have been the result of Italian influence, because it seems the italian infantry and condottiere were still using shields quite a bit at the start of the Italian Wars. In this Illustration of the battle of Fornovo for example you can see the Italian footmen depicted carrying large oval shields and wide-bladed "ox tongue spears". Unfortunately, the equipment of the Italian soldiers during this period is something I know even less about.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Albanian_Stradioti_at_Battle_of_Fornovo.jpg


I didn't know this image, thanks for sharing. The rodela is a round shield, but it could be also a wooden shield, at least, in America, because we have accounts of “rodelas de palo y aceradas”, rodelas of “stick” and “steely” rodelas. Sorry about the translation, but even in spanish sound strange, because we wouldn't use this adjectives today.

I am gonna copy and try to tranlate what Oviedo says in his heraldry treaty 'Libro del blasón Libro primero que trata del blasón: de todas las armas e diferencias dellas, e de los escudos e diferencias que en ellos ay'. I have to say that I have problems to understand word by word what Oviedo says, because, for example, I am not sure what 'tumbada' – lying down – could mean referring to the shape of a shield:

Ay otra manera de arma defensiva o escudo que son Rodelas, e estas asimismo entre los antiguos se usaron a pie e a caballo, e algunas de ellas combadas, e en el medio salida una punta, e otras más llanas sin la dicha punta en medio, pero tumbadas, e son muy buena arma e muy usada en Italia e aún al presente en España e otras partes, pero yo me acuerdo que el año que yo pasé a Italia jamás las había visto en España, e después acá se han usado mucho, e usan en estas partes, e en muchas antigüedades, parecen esculpidas, e pintadas e con diversas insignias en ellas.

There is another defensive weapon – armour – or shield called Rodelas, and this the ancient used on foot and on horse, and some of them are curved and in the center they have a peak, and there others more flat with no pike in the center, but 'lying down'. They are a good armour widely used in Italy and nowadays in Spain in other part, but I remember that the year in which I moved to Italy [1498] I had never seen in Spain, and then here [in Spain] have been widely used, and now are used in this parts, and in the ancient. They look like sculpted, and they are painted and with different badges.

In old spanish, arma was both weapon and armour, but nowadays we use 'armadura' to refer to armour.

I have been looking for ancient examples of armour in Italy. I have found a 1493 example of the use of 'rotella' by italian in the Storia di Bologna, by Cherubino Ghirardacci:

Quote:

Prima squadra, galluppì a cavallo con lance et bandirole circa 300.
Seconda squadra, provisionati a piedi ben armati con corracine, celadoni, gorzarini, falde, rotelle et partegiane 200.
Terza squadra, provisionati a piedi con ronche similmente armati numero 200.
Quarta squadra, provisionati targonieri a piedi ottimamente armati di corrazine, falde, fiancali,
arnesi, schinieri, celate con la spada, havendo ciascuno di essi avanti un ragazzo con un targone
lavorato ad oro et altri lavorati riccamente con perle numero 100.
Quinta squadra, lanzaroli a piedi bene armati con le corrazzine, falde, garzarini et celate numero 200.
Sesta squadra, ballestrieri a piedi ben armati con corrazzine, celadoni et gorzarini 200.
Settima squadra, tamburino, schioppetti eri ad una livrea tedesca 100.
Ottava squadra, con il trombetta, contestabili et capi de' provisionati a cavallo bene armati con barde dorate con le rotellette et partigiane in mano 50.
Nona squadra, con il trombetta innanzi, stradiotti con zubbe divisate di seta alla divisa de' Bentivogli sopra gagliardi cavalli, gioveni nobili della città 160, de' quali era capo Alessandro Bentivoglio.
Decima squadra, con il trombetta, ballestrieri a cavallo ottimamente armati 200, de' quali era capo Ermesse Bentivoglio.
Undecima squadra, con il tamburino provisionati a cavallo con corazzine, falde, gorzarini, celate, targhette all'arzone riccamente addobbati, tutti gioveni nobili della città, numero 300, de' quali era capo Annibale Bentivoglio.
Duodecima squadra, con gran numero di trombetti. Seguitava il signor Giovanni Bentivoglio conquesto ordine, cioè: Prima andavano avanti 12 camerieri sopra bellissimi cavalli con barde dorate, giupponi d'argento et giornee di seta alla divisa de' Bentivogli ricamate d'oro et d'argento con tremolanti e scagliette; seguiva poi Giovanni tutto armato sopra un bellissimo corsiero con una sopravesta d'oro; dietro lui venivano 22 huomini armati con ricche sopraveste di oro et di argento con le barde dorate.


I am gonna try to translate only the points referred to infantry carrying some type of shield:

Second squad: soldier on foot good armed with 'corazzine' – some sort of light cuirass made of sheets of steel or other material – 'celadoni' – big sallet – 'gorzarini' – gorget – 'falde' – loin guard or taces – 'rotelle' – round shield – and 'partegiane' – partizan.

So we find again the same relation between partizan and rodela, as Oviedo linked in their petition of arms from Spain to La Española, and you can see in the images you linked of the battle of Fornovo, infantrymen wearing rodelas and some kind of spear – not a partizan but.

The third squad is similarly armed like second squad, but with 'roncas' instead of partizans. The ronca is a kind of spear with the head like a big butcher knife. We can see it in the Charles V entry in Bologna:
https://it.wikipedia.org/wiki/Incoronazione_di_Carlo_V#/media/File:Hogenberg._Cavalcata_di_Carlo_V_e_Clemente_VII.jpg

The fourth squad is forme by pavisier infantrymen armed with corazzine too, loin guard, 'fiancale' – tassets -, 'arnesi' – literally harness – 'schinieri' – backplate – 'celate' - sallet – with sword, and everyone has a servant with a 'targone' – pavise.

The fifth squad had no shield, but they were 'lanzaroli' – some kind of halberdier.

Quote:
Anyways, like the poster above my first suggestion was going to be that maybe the Spanish originally used a similar shield made of wood or leather or something similar to the adarga. Perhaps many of the lance infantry still preferred to fight holding their lance in one hand and a small shield in the other, or many of the pavisers decided to start using a shield that was smaller, lighter, and more maneuverable?


As I said before, the 1495 ordennance determined the equipment of lancers, consisting in 'half pavise or Pontevedra or Oviedo's shield'. I don't know exactly what a Pontevedra or Oviedo shield was, but we have a description of Paulo Giovio saying that the galician – we know that they also came from Asturias – soldiers that came to Italy in 1503, 'según el antiguo costumbre de la milicia romana, escudos largos y recogidos y dardos para arrojar – according to the ancient costum of roman militia, they used long and close shields and throwing darts'.

We also have tue Jean d'Auton description: Doncques, pour entrer en propos, est vray que, au commancement de ceste présente année de grâce mille cinc cens et troys, au port de Rege en Callabre, arriva le secours d'Espaigne, mais ce ne fut pas troys jours après la journée, comme nous autres Françoys disons voluntiers. Que quessoit, la furent Espaignolz au nombre de troys cens hommes d'armes, quatre cens genetaires et quatre mille hommes de pié, nommés galliegues, avecques haultz bonnetz, presque tous deschaulx, targuetes et pavoys en main

https://archive.org/details/chroniquesdejea03autogoog

In the beginning of the present year of 1503, came the relief of spanis troop at the port or Rege on Calabria […] 300 men-at-arms, 400 jinetes, and 4000 thousand infantry men, called 'galliegues' – galician – with high caps, barefoot, 'targuetes' and pavises in their hands.

In another paragraph, Auton made another description:
Tousjours marchoyent en pays vers l'embusche des Françoys les Galliegues avecques leurs haultz bonnetz, targuetes et partizanes,

The galician marched through the country toward the french ambush, [the galician] with their high caps, 'targuetes' and partisans.

I would translate the french 'targuete' by the spanish 'targón', but I am not sure about this. A 'targón' according to the Glosario de voces de armería was a long shield with a notch and was used as a synonim of pavise.

Quote:

The troops shown would be portugese rather than spanish, but here's some images from a series of tapestries made in 1481 depicting the Portuguese Siege of Arzila

https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/3/38/Landing_at_Asilah.jpg

[url]https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/6/6a/O_Cerco_de_Arzila_(Tape%C3%A7aria_de_Pastrana).jpg[/url]

[url]https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/d/de/Assault_on_Asilah.jpg[/url]

[url]https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/3/3c/Fall_of_Tangier.jpg[/url]

Some of the shields shown seem to be fairly large like pavises, but most of the shields shown in use by both the christians and muslims seem to be based on that distinctive heart shape.

In either case it does seem that perhaps the spanish troops were pretty reliant on polearms, not just sword and shield men, already.


The images are very interesting, and the tapestries very rich. It's possible that infantrymen in Spain used heart shape shields, but all the chronicles and documents – only a few – from Xvyh century that I have could check said that 'adarga' was used by 'jinetes'. We can find some examples of dismounted 'jinetes' fighting with their 'adargas'. As I said in previous messages I am not keen on pre 1490s war.

There is a good representation of hundred of moorish infantrymen carrying adargas while christian infantrymen carried pavises, but this is an anachronic representation of the batlle of Higueruelas [1431] made during the reign of Philp II in the 1580s. There are a lot of ovoidal shields as well. It's supposed that is based on some altarpiece from a castilian church. Geoffrey Parker said that the Escorial frescos of the San Quintín campaign [1557] suffered from several anachronisms... And the painters were working on what had happened not thirty years ago and the king himself was testimony of this. So, we can not trust 100% on the Higueruela frescos as source for XVth century study of arms & armour.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Battle_of_La_Higueruela


In iberian peninsule there were different kingdoms and different regions. Even in the kingdom of Castile, that it was supposed to be strong ruled by the catholic kings, there were different panoplies in different regions: galician infantrymen or 'escudados', 'encoraçados' from Salamanca, 'espingarderos' from some provinces of Castile and Andalusia, crossbowman from Old Castile, so I wouldn't take a region for the whole of Spain, neither Portugal for Spain.


Quote:

Regarding the late 16th century perhaps I can shed some light on who exactly would have carried rodelas.


Some light no, a full sun ;-) It's more that I know until the date. Thank you very much for sharing this information and for extracting the different books.

Quote:
"Euery hundred hath forty armed men [armored men], of which there must be 30. pikes, the tenne others, are hal|berds & targets of the proof; al their Gentlemen & vantagers are armed men, the most carry the pike, hauing plasterons of the proofe, I meane the fore part of the ar|mour. . ."


That 'targets of the proof' had to be the 'rodelas a prueba' from spanish treaties.

Quote:
So perhaps among the men recruited as corselets most were made to arm themselves with pikes while a small number were allowed to choose between either a halberd or a rodela depending on what they preferred.


I think that even soldiers were clasified as armoured pikemen, sometimes, as you tell, they could take a 'rodela' and their sword and fight in assaults with them. We have examples of that in accounts, like in 1575, when a musketeer called Toledo, borrowed a 'rodela' and lead an attack to the fort of 'Bommenée' in Zeland.

Quote:
Or it may have been as you mention that some officers or some corselets owned a shield which was carried by a servant or in a wagon and would sometimes swap out their pike for their rodela if they had to fight in an assault or a skirmish. Most of the english treatises don't seem to go into much detail on this though.


They had to carry some 'rodelas' as you said, because they appear often in the accounts and the engravings or even tapestries.

Quote:
William Garrard does mention that it might be a good idea for some of the pikemen and arquebusiers to wear a light target of some sort on their back for close combat, but in the sections where he goes into more detail on the equipment required of arquebusiers and armored pikemen he doesn't bring up shields at all. It seems that he was partly inspired by a 1548 work by Monsieur William de Bellay, who concluded that wearing shields on their backs must have been how the ancient greek pikemen were able to carry both pikes and shields at the same time, so he wanted modern pikemen to do the same in order to get rid of the need for halberders. But as near as I can tell this was never really practiced much if at all and later english authors don't mention the possibility of soldiers carrying shields on their backs at all.


As well did the captain Diego de Alaba y Viamont in his treaty 'El perfeto capitan, instruido en la disciplina militar, y nueua ciencia de la artilleria'.


Quote:
THeir Commissions for foote Bands are like vnto ours, some Ensigns 300. some 200. the most of an 150. Euery hundred hath forty armed men, of which there must be 30. pikes, the tenne others, are hal∣berds & targets of the proof; al their Gentlemen & van∣tagers are armed men, the most carry the pike, hauing plasterons of the proofe, I meane the fore part of the ar∣mour, the 60. others are shot. In the later dayes of Duke D'alua 25. of euery 100. were commaunded to be Mus∣ketters. With their armed pikes and musketters, they execute most of their seruices. They found such seruice in the musket, that this Prince of Parma hath the most of his shot musketters."


This is very interesting. That is 10% of halberds and targeteers... Diego García de Palacio [1583] gives an example of a squadron with 825 men and 153 halberdiers, but no targetter at all, but most of the treaties of late XVIth centuries give examples of a few halberdiers and no targeteers at all.

Quote:
So he says that he doesn't think there is a need for more than 200 targets of proof for every 10,000 soldiers, which seems very similar to the proportion you say Lechuga recommended.


It could be that in an assault only a few men who occupied the first ranks need such protection.

Quote:
Interestingly, he suggests that weapons should be distributed based on each soldier's stature. If the pike came to be seen as the weapon carried by the tallest and strongest men, that might help explain why more and more gentry became eager to call themselves pikemen


This criterion could be observed as well in spanish treaties: tall men serving with pikes, strong men with muskets, and agile men with arquebuses.

Quote:

"The Halberd likewise doth onely serue in the sacke of a Towne, in a breach, in a Sallie or Camnisado, to enter a house, or in the throng of a stroken battade to execute slaughter. Wherefore touching these two weapons, vnlesse necessitie constrame, and that Hargabusiers be wan∣ting, Archers may well be spared: and these great numbers of Halber∣diers and Bill men, which are and haue bin in times past vsed in Eng∣land, may well be left off, saue a sew to guard euery Ensigne, and to at∣tend vppon the Colonell, or Captaine, which man Army will amounted a suficient number to depresse and ouercome and flying enemy."


Regarding to this, in spanish tercios we had at least two companies of arquebusiers. In these companies, there were 25 men serving with halberds – according to Eguiluz [1595] – but by 1610, according to Brancaccio, the 25/30 men per company served with half pikes, and the author said that they – and the rest of short arms - were of no use, because those men, serving wit corselets, were slow and were the blank of musketeers, while the company of arquebusiers had to move fast in the 'mangas' – or sleeves. Barroso said that they were serving with halberds or 'chuzos' somekind of spear, like a very short pike.

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"In plaine ground he shall neuer turne out any shot to the skirmish, without certaine sléeues of pikes to gard them vpon the retraite from the charge of horses, and also troopes of short weapons, as swords and targets, Halberds or such like to backe them, if at any time they should come to the sword, or ioyne pell mell with the enimie, and such were called of the Ro∣maines vindices, but if euery shot had likewise at his backe a light leather or Uenecian [Venetian?] target, to vse with his sword when he saw occasion, they would doe great good seruice."


Uenecian is Venetian, that's for sure.


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In his sections on how the troops should be armed he recommends a lot of armor for pikemen, but again doesn't actually bring up any shields, targets, or rondels


According to Eguiluz [1595] every soldier had to know how to use arquebus, pike, halberd, sword, dagger and rodela, but in his treatie he said nothing about wearing this rodelas, apart from captains.



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In fact, he claims that, except perhaps during a siege, arquebusiers are most effective if they carry no armor and as little extra weight as possible


Some authors recommended to arquebusiers to wear only a low morions without crest or sallet, others a shirt of mail too to protect from swords and pikes, others mail sleeves and a 'coleto', a waistcoat made of italian buffalo skin, and some author were againt the mail, because XVIth surgeons tend to extract the balls of the arquebuses from the bodies of wounded men, and the pieces of broken mail were so difficult to extract.



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He does give one more hint though. He claims that aside from armored pikemen ("armed pikes") and unarmored pikemen ("disarmed pikes"), Armies sometimes include a third category he calls "light armed pikes" who wear only partial armor:

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"There bee yet another sort of light armed Pikes, which only haue the forepart of a Corslet and a Headpéece, as is the Al∣maine Riuet, or a good light Iacke, or plate Coate: these some∣times may be sent amongst the forlorne hoope of Hargabusiers, to defend them from the inuasions of Horsemen."


In tercios we had picas desarmadas – 'disarmed pikes' – or 'picas secas', and it's supposed that they served with morion or sallet and gorget.


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So perhaps the target was used primarily by those who could not afford a complete corselet in the first place, and became less common as plate armor became more widely available?


It could be as you say. I have read an account of Guicciardini – florentine diplomatid and historian – about spanish infantry in 1512/1513:

Hanno le fanterie nome di essere buone, e massime in espugnare le terre ; ma comunemente sono male armate , ed i più hanno solo spada e brochiere
[Source: Opere inedite di Francesco Guicciardini v6. Legazione di Spagna 1512-1513

The infantry have fame to be good, especially during sieges, but usually they are bad armed, and most of them had only sword and rodela.

I translate brochiere for 'rodela' following the translation criterion of Salazar translating Maquiavello in 1536.


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Sorry for writing so slowly. I'm sort of out of time at the moment, but I'll try to post additional authors in the future when I get the opportunity.


Thank you very much for sharing this with me and the other mates of the forum. I know it's a big effor try to collect all this information and put together.

That was exactly what I was looking for.
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Henry O.





Joined: 18 Jun 2016

Posts: 164

PostPosted: Wed 14 Mar, 2018 3:42 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

It's no problem!

Yeah, I've noticed even in english the writings from this period tend to be pretty confusing. You've got a lot of loanwords, multilingual individuals, soldiers who have traveled a lot or stay overseas for a long time, and you end up with even some of the military treatises complaining that everyone else is using certain words wrong. For instance, during this period the English start calling most of their arquebuses "calivers" for a few decades, apparently because a few english soldiers once misheard a Frenchman describing his arquebus's "calibre" and thought it was the name of the weapon.

That's one of the other nice thing about Robert Barret, he actually remembered to include a glossary of various words: https://quod.lib.umich.edu/e/eebo/A04863.0001.001/1:17?rgn=div1;view=fulltext

---

I also have a couple of quick questions about Barret that maybe you can help with.

Do you know what battle or event is being described in the section below? I've seen it mentioned elsewhere as proof that footmen using pikes and muskets were capable of resisting a vast number of horsemen, But I'm not quite sure when or where the battle actually happened. Apparently a "Don Alvaro de Sandy/Sand" was able to march 4000 spanish infantry several miles across an open field despite a much larger army of Moorish horsemen trying to stop them.

Robert Barret wrote:
Moreouer, I would thinke good, at euery angle of the battell to be placed a good squadron of Muskets, which should serue to flanker it euery way, euen as the Caualleros or Trauassos do the curtaine of a fort: so that a well framed battell or squadron of pikes, well impaled with shot, and anguled with squadrons of Mus∣kets, seemeth a Castell with his curtaines Caualleros, and ditches: the manner whereof being framed of expert & resolute men, is of wonderfull force, the which was well to be seene in the iorney of Caruā [Carvan?] in Barbarie, where Don Aluaro de Sandy, with 4000 Spanyardes, foote souldiers of great valour, made a braue famous re∣traict, the space of 4. or 5. myles in a champion field, being be set and charged by Cydearfa, king of the Moores, with aboue twentie thousand horse, at the least fiue or six times, with the losse of onely 80 men of his; and the slaughter of seuen or eight hundred of the enemy. Which is a gallant example what braue footemen may do, being conducted by a good chiefe


Next. While english armies theoretically had at least one surgeon per company by this point, Barret claims the spanish took this a step further and had specific men picked out whose job it was to carry dead and wounded soldiers to where the surgeons were in the middle of battle. Do you know if this was actually practiced?

Robert Barret wrote:
The Spaniardes haue a laudable custome, which is, that they haue cer∣taine men appointed of purpose, to retract and draw foorth of the squadrons, such men as be hurt, and to bring them vnto the chirurgians: and for such as bee slaine right out, to conuay them away, so that their slaine numbers is neuer light∣ly knowne to the enemy. Which order I would wish to be receiued and obserued amongst vs.


third. Aside from the typical fire-by-rank volley method, Barret claims that spanish or italian musketeers would occasionally deliver volleys in a "Half-moon", where a column of 30-50 men would march forward, wheel into a semicircle to spread out their ranks, then all 50 would deliver a single massive volley at once in all directions (illustrated on page 43). Do you know if this sort of drill was common or ever used in combat?



Robert Barret wrote:

There is yet another order of discharging of troupes of Muskets in vollie, the which I haue seene vsed by the Italian and Spaniard, thus. Your Musketiers be∣ing deuided into sundrie troupes, of 30, 40 or 50 in a troupe, the one to se∣cond the other: then the two first troupes standing vpon the two angles of your squadron or battell, may bee drawne vp by two officers, by three, foure or fiue at the most in a ranke: and the said officers being at a sufficient di∣stance to discharge, shall cause the Musketiers to close somewhat neere, shoulder to shoulder, and so wheeling them about in figure of a halfe Moone, shall at their due semi-circle, or halfe compasse, cause the Mus∣ketiers to make Alto; and clapping their muskets on their rests, close one by an others shoulder, and each one hauing a care to his forefellowes, they shall at one instant, discharge altogether at one vollie vpon the enemy, and so retire, giuing place to other troupes: the maner and forme whereof shall by these figures fol∣lowing appeare.


---

Anyways, on the subject of targets. As I was skimming through, it seems that in "The commentaries of Messire Blaize de Montluc" he actually does mention soldiers or lower-level officers fighting while armed with a mail shirt, target, and a sword a number of times. Though this was apperently back when targets didn't protect against bullets very well.

This is the text me and Daniel S. mentioned earlier, so we might need him to double-check that the translation is accurate

Montluc wrote:
One of the Companies of Monsieur de Luppé our Lieutenant Colonel, and mine pre∣par'd to enter at this place, and now God had granted me the thing, that I had ever desir'd, which was to be present at an assault, there to enter the first man, or to lose my life: I therefore threw my self headlong into the Parlour, having on a Coat of Mail, such as the Germans used in those days, a Sword in my hand, a Targuette upon my arm, and a Morrion upon my head; but as those who were at my heels were pressing to get in after me the Enemy pour'd the great tub of stones upon their heads, and trapt them in the hole, by reason whereof the could not possibly follow I therefore remain•d all alone within fighting at a door that went out into the street: but from the roof of the Parlour, which was unplank'd, and laid open for that purpose, they pepper•d me in the mean time with an infinite number of Harquebuze shot,* one of which pierc'd my Targuette, and shot my arm quite through, within four fingers of my hand, and another so batter'd the bone at the knitting of my arm and shoul∣der, that I lost all manner of feeling, so that letting my Targuette fall, I was constrain'd to retire towards my hole, against which I was born over by those who fought at the door of the Parlour: but so fortunately nevertheless for me, that my Sol∣diers had, by that means,* opportunity to draw me out by the legs, but so leisurely withal, that they very court•ously made me tumble heels over head from the very top to the bottom of the Graffe, wherein rowling over the ruines of the Stones, I again broke my already wounded arm in two places. So soon as my men had gathered me up, I told them, that I thought I had left my arm behind me in the Town, when one of my Soldiers lifting it up from whence it hung, as in a Scarf, dangling upon my buttocks, and laying it over the other, put me into a little heart; after which; seeing the Sol∣diers Page 16 of my own Company gather'd round about me, Oh my Camrades (said I) have I always us'd you so kindly, and ever loved you so well, to forsake me in such a time as this? which I said, not knowing how they had been hindred from following me in.


It seems that one of the surgeons actually did figure out how to save his arm after this, though he says that the rest of the surgeons just wanted to amputate it.

There's also a pretty neat description of a targeteer and harquebusiers working together to clear out enemy soldiers who had retreated to the top floor of a tower:

Quote:
I then took Captain Charry by the hand, and said, Captain Charry, I have bred you up to die in some brave service for the King, you must mount the first; which said, he (who was certainly a man of as much courage as ever any man had) without any more dispute began to climb the Ladder, which could not be above ten or twelve staves, and he was to enter by a Trap-door above, as I have said before. I had very good Har∣quebuzeers, whom I made continually to shoot at the hole of this Trap-door, and put two of the said Harquebuzeers upon the Ladder to follow after him: I had two Tor∣ches with me (for the other two Signior Cornelio and the Count had taken along with them) by the light whereof we saw so clearly, that the Harquebuzeers did not hurt to Captain Charry, who mounted step by step, still giving our Harquebuzeers time to fire, and so soon as he came to thrust up his head into the Trap-door, they [the enemy] fir'd two Harque∣buzes, which pierced through his Target and Morrion without touching his head. The [friendly] Harquebuzeer who followed next after him discharged his Harquebuz under his Target▪ by which means Captain Charry advanced the last step, and so they all three leapt in the one after the other, where they kill'd three of the Enemy, and the rest leapt out at the hole. Those in the Flancks were also beaten off, and so our Fort was regain'd on every side.


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https://quod.lib.umich.edu/e/eebo/A05074.0001.001?rgn=main;view=toc

La Noue was a French Huguenot captain whose discourses on politics and war were quickly translated to English and seem to have been pretty widely read among military men. He tends to spend a lot of time talking about how great the German pistolier cavalry and the Spanish pikemen were.

To improve the french infantry he wanted more soldiers and captains to be armed with corselets and pikes. He also says that they may have a target of proof to use in assaults and skirmishes:

Quote:
Likewise where our Souldiers will now a daies weare no Corcelets, the same * might by this meanes be brought againe into vse and estimation: which is more easie to bee done then men weene for: but then the Capteynes must begin, who haue reiected the vse of the Pike: for they must bee enioyned to take it againe together with the Millan Corcelet. If they will they may also haue the Sword and Target of proofe against assaults and skirmishes. In the Companies one quarter should bee Corcelets, (and that should neuer faile) and the rest Harquebuts. And notwithstanding this were not a fit propor∣tion which requireth to consist of as many of the one as of the o∣ther, yet must we come as neere it as wee may.


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The Spanish In∣fanterie although it hath stooped to the ciuill warres of Flanders did neuerthelesse neuer habandon the Corcelet: and the third parte of their best men doe still weare it. Besides it hath alwaies conti∣nued the obseruation of orders: so as it deserueth this commenda∣tion, that in Christendome there is no better Souldier.


Quote:
I would wish they would practise some of the Spanish customes, * which in my opinion are very good. One is that when any newe Souldier commeth into their bands, the olde doe instruct him in his duetie: if he transgresseth they reproue him: and if he be mean∣ly apparelled they helpe him, least he should bee a dishonor to their nation: and he likewise taketh these admonitions as courteouslie, where we doe the contrary. For if a yong man newly come into a companie committeth any folly, they all doe laugh him to scorne: and if he haue any money, he is presently plumed either by play or some other practise: whereby many through this bad beginning doe start backe againe. Neither will I here conceale an other fault of our youth: which is, when any man seeketh amiably to reproue them, they spurne at it, and take all in euill parte, as if their age were not subiect to doe amisse.

Secondly, among the Spanyards ye shall not haue a braule in sixe moneths: for they disdaine qua∣rellers and delight in modestie: so as if any doe happen, they ende∣uour diligently to take them vp: and yet when they cannot bee en∣ded without blowes, they discharge themselues honorably. The French Souldier is much more diuers, and can hardly liue with∣out braules, shewing himselfe but ouer couragious against his companions.

Thirdly, if a Souldier among them be hurt, he that hath but one crowne will giue him halfe.

Fourthly, if any one doe any notable act, all his companions will praise and honor him, and seeldome doe they through enuy conceale any vertue. This like∣wise is good in them, that in their militarie commaundements euen the brauest Souldiers and of greatest calling will obey a sim∣ple Serieant: so pliable are they to their officers. As also when they are called to haue any charge, they doe as well keepe their au∣thoritie.

Finally, in the bodie of their guard they will not suffer any insolencie, but the same are as Schooles where their ordinary talke is of the dueties of Souldiers, Capteynes, Honor, and such like matter concerning Armes. More might be here sayd: but this is sufficient in that such as goe newly into the bands may knowe that these bee no custumes of Munckes, as the prouerbe goeth, but of excellent Souldiers. If the Capteynes of the regiments aforesaid would likewise take a little paynes, they might instruct theirs in like sorte: and labour no lesse to fashion them then a horse course• doth to breake his horse: And it were a great shame that we should not haue more care of men then of beastes.


According to La Noue, one of the reasons Spanish pikemen were so successful is that the Spanish gentry were much more willing to serve as footsoldiers armed with pikes than the French gentry, who would only be willing to serve has cavalry:

Quote:
Concerning the first point, experience teacheth, that nothing hath * more corrupted our Infanterie, than that our Gentrie haue with drawen themselues therefro, disdaining not onely to beare the har∣quebut and pike, but also many times to take anie charge. Wher by are entered pettie Countrie Captaines deuoid of all respect of honour, and such as seeke to inrich themselues with the generall spoiles of our warres. Yea, if any olde regimentes haue obserued some sorte the auncient discipline, yet are there many disorders crept in among them. The cause that maketh the Spanish In∣fanterie at this daie to be in such estimation, is for that their Gen∣try are so willing to serue therin, yea, rather than among the horse. For there will they serue out theyr apprentishippe of warre, to the ende to attaine to be Captaines, which degree they make as great account of, as we doe of the Colonelship of a whole regiment. It were therefore good to commit the charge of the companies to no∣table Gentlemen, who lykewise might choose to bee their Liuete∣nants and Ensignes, such other Gentlemen their neighbours of whome there be enow in the Prouinces, as might be capable ther∣of.


He concludes that French gentlemen and officers ought to be encouraged to fight with pikes and corcelets as well, so that the other troops become far more willing to follow their example and carry pikes themselves:

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As touching the second point for the reestablishing of Corcelets* & Pikes, I haue alreadie shewed that the Infanterie that is thereof vnprouided, is vnperfect: howbeit that there are meanes to remedie it. Whereof the most soueraigne, in my opinion, is to bring men to it voluntarilie rather than by compulsion, which may easily be done if the Gentrie through obedience will begin to leade the waie to the rest, who will not bee behinde when they shall see their Captaines which command them, take vpon them the vse of the same weapon that they appoint to them. It were good also that the orders of the said legions were such, as the third part of the men of whome they should consist, to be pikes, and the fourth harquebuts, so should the three legions containe 4500. corcelets, and 1500. harquebuts


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Concerning the difficultie, ordinarily pro∣pounded, which in deed is not small, how to induce the common sol∣diours to take the pike: I suppose it would soone be decided, when they should see (as I haue said) the Captaines & gentry practise the same weapon: & vpon occasion to fight, ioyne with the body of the battell, sauing such as shall be appointed to lead the shot: as also to imitate the Spaniard who alloweth the Corcelet greater pay than the simple harquebuze.


That last part about the pay may have helped too.
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Carlos Valenzuela Cordero




Location: Barcelona
Joined: 22 Feb 2018

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PostPosted: Wed 21 Mar, 2018 4:38 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Quote:

That's one of the other nice thing about Robert Barret, he actually remembered to include a glossary of various words: https://quod.lib.umich.edu/e/eebo/A04863.0001.001/1:17?rgn=div1;view=fulltext

I have enjoyed reading the glossary. I would say that Robert Barret spoke spanish, because the mistakes are few, and some of them – like 'cannonera' instead of cañonera – could be attributed to the printer.


Quote:

Do you know what battle or event is being described in the section below? I've seen it mentioned elsewhere as proof that footmen using pikes and muskets were capable of resisting a vast number of horsemen, But I'm not quite sure when or where the battle actually happened. Apparently a "Don Alvaro de Sandy/Sand" was able to march 4000 spanish infantry several miles across an open field despite a much larger army of Moorish horsemen trying to stop them.

Robert Barret wrote:
Moreouer, I would thinke good, at euery angle of the battell to be placed a good squadron of Muskets, which should serue to flanker it euery way, euen as the Caualleros or Trauassos do the curtaine of a fort: so that a well framed battell or squadron of pikes, well impaled with shot, and anguled with squadrons of Mus∣kets, seemeth a Castell with his curtaines Caualleros, and ditches: the manner whereof being framed of expert & resolute men, is of wonderfull force, the which was well to be seene in the iorney of Caruā [Carvan?] in Barbarie, where Don Aluaro de Sandy, with 4000 Spanyardes, foote souldiers of great valour, made a braue famous re∣traict, the space of 4. or 5. myles in a champion field, being be set and charged by Cydearfa, king of the Moores, with aboue twentie thousand horse, at the least fiue or six times, with the losse of onely 80 men of his; and the slaughter of seuen or eight hundred of the enemy. Which is a gallant example what braue footemen may do, being conducted by a good chiefe


Álvaro de Sande had a very long career, but, as far as I know, he only batlled against moors during the campaign of Argel [1541] and Los Gelves [1560]... I don't know what episode is refered by Barret, but the use of muskets in campaign is from 1560s onwards.

How would you pronnounce Gerbes in XVIth century english? It could be Carvan?

Quote:

Next. While english armies theoretically had at least one surgeon per company by this point, Barret claims the spanish took this a step further and had specific men picked out whose job it was to carry dead and wounded soldiers to where the surgeons were in the middle of battle. Do you know if this was actually practiced?


In the Azores campaign [1583] was stablished:
Que ningún soldado se retire estando peleando, diziendo que le falta algo, a pena de galera,y que al herido,que lo retire vno solo hasta el agua , y que los marineros lo recojan y que el soldado buelua a pelear.

That no soldier withdraws while fighting, saying that something is missing, or he will be condemned to the galley's sorrow, and the wounded man, has to be carried to the water – to the shore -, by one men only, and the sailors have to pick him up and the soldier who carried the wounded return to fight.
He doesn't say anything about picked men carrying soldiers.

Quote:

Robert Barret wrote:
The Spaniardes haue a laudable custome, which is, that they haue cer∣taine men appointed of purpose, to retract and draw foorth of the squadrons, such men as be hurt, and to bring them vnto the chirurgians: and for such as bee slaine right out, to conuay them away, so that their slaine numbers is neuer light∣ly knowne to the enemy. Which order I would wish to be receiued and obserued amongst vs.


I wanted to give an example of this, but I hadn't be able, apart of the example of the Azores campaign.

Quote:

third. Aside from the typical fire-by-rank volley method, Barret claims that spanish or italian musketeers would occasionally deliver volleys in a "Half-moon", where a column of 30-50 men would march forward, wheel into a semicircle to spread out their ranks, then all 50 would deliver a single massive volley at once in all directions (illustrated on page 43). Do you know if this sort of drill was common or ever used in combat?


I didn't know anything about this. Thanks for the gravure.


Quote:

Montluc wrote:
One of the Companies of Monsieur de Luppé our Lieutenant Colonel, and mine pre∣par'd to enter at this place, and now God had granted me the thing, that I had ever desir'd, which was to be present at an assault, there to enter the first man, or to lose my life: I therefore threw my self headlong into the Parlour, having on a Coat of Mail, such as the Germans used in those days, a Sword in my hand, a Targuette upon my arm, and a Morrion upon my head; but as those who were at my heels were pressing to get in after me the Enemy pour'd the great tub of stones upon their heads, and trapt them in the hole, by reason whereof the could not possibly follow I therefore remain•d all alone within fighting at a door that went out into the street: but from the roof of the Parlour, which was unplank'd, and laid open for that purpose, they pepper•d me in the mean time with an infinite number of Harquebuze shot,* one of which pierc'd my Targuette, and shot my arm quite through, within four fingers of my hand, and another so batter'd the bone at the knitting of my arm and shoul∣der, that I lost all manner of feeling, so that letting my Targuette fall, I was constrain'd to retire towards my hole, against which I was born over by those who fought at the door of the Parlour: but so fortunately nevertheless for me, that my Sol∣diers had, by that means,* opportunity to draw me out by the legs, but so leisurely withal, that they very court•ously made me tumble heels over head from the very top to the bottom of the Graffe, wherein rowling over the ruines of the Stones, I again broke my already wounded arm in two places. So soon as my men had gathered me up, I told them, that I thought I had left my arm behind me in the Town, when one of my Soldiers lifting it up from whence it hung, as in a Scarf, dangling upon my buttocks, and laying it over the other, put me into a little heart; after which; seeing the Sol∣diers Page 16 of my own Company gather'd round about me, Oh my Camrades (said I) have I always us'd you so kindly, and ever loved you so well, to forsake me in such a time as this? which I said, not knowing how they had been hindred from following me in.






Quote:

I then took Captain Charry by the hand, and said, Captain Charry, I have bred you up to die in some brave service for the King, you must mount the first; which said, he (who was certainly a man of as much courage as ever any man had) without any more dispute began to climb the Ladder, which could not be above ten or twelve staves, and he was to enter by a Trap-door above, as I have said before. I had very good Har∣quebuzeers, whom I made continually to shoot at the hole of this Trap-door, and put two of the said Harquebuzeers upon the Ladder to follow after him: I had two Tor∣ches with me (for the other two Signior Cornelio and the Count had taken along with them) by the light whereof we saw so clearly, that the Harquebuzeers did not hurt to Captain Charry, who mounted step by step, still giving our Harquebuzeers time to fire, and so soon as he came to thrust up his head into the Trap-door, they [the enemy] fir'd two Harque∣buzes, which pierced through his Target and Morrion without touching his head. The [friendly] Harquebuzeer who followed next after him discharged his Harquebuz under his Target▪ by which means Captain Charry advanced the last step, and so they all three leapt in the one after the other, where they kill'd three of the Enemy, and the rest leapt out at the hole. Those in the Flancks were also beaten off, and so our Fort was regain'd on every side.


Both are very valuable examples of the use of targets at the time.

Quote:

If they will they may also haue the Sword and Target of proofe against assaults and skirmishes.


Quote:

The Spanish In∣fanterie although it hath stooped to the ciuill warres of Flanders did neuerthelesse neuer habandon the Corcelet: and the third parte of their best men doe still weare it. Besides it hath alwaies conti∣nued the obseruation of orders: so as it deserueth this commenda∣tion, that in Christendome there is no better Souldier.


I remember that even in 1567, the duke of Alba complained about the lack of pikes in the spanish tercios who marched from Italy to Flanders, and demmanded 4000 pikes from Biscay to arm their soldiers because he feared that they couldn't for a squadron. In this year 1567, for example, the Tercio of Sicilia – one of the fout who marched to Flanders - had only a 19% of corselets between their men.

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I would wish they would practise some of the Spanish customes, * which in my opinion are very good. One is that when any newe Souldier commeth into their bands, the olde doe instruct him in his duetie: if he transgresseth they reproue him: and if he be mean∣ly apparelled they helpe him, least he should bee a dishonor to their nation: and he likewise taketh these admonitions as courteouslie, where we doe the contrary. For if a yong man newly come into a companie committeth any folly, they all doe laugh him to scorne: and if he haue any money, he is presently plumed either by play or some other practise: whereby many through this bad beginning doe start backe againe. Neither will I here conceale an other fault of our youth: which is, when any man seeketh amiably to reproue them, they spurne at it, and take all in euill parte, as if their age were not subiect to doe amisse.


That's true, that 'bisoños' were transformed in soldiers in two years by learning their job with the help of veterans, while they were in Italy, and with the instruction of sergeants and caporals.


Quote:

Secondly, among the Spanyards ye shall not haue a braule in sixe moneths: for they disdaine qua∣rellers and delight in modestie: so as if any doe happen, they ende∣uour diligently to take them vp: and yet when they cannot bee en∣ded without blowes, they discharge themselues honorably. The French Souldier is much more diuers, and can hardly liue with∣out braules, shewing himselfe but ouer couragious against his companions.


I don't understand entirely that text. Braule is a brawl, ok. 'Ended without blowes'... what does it mean?

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Thirdly, if a Souldier among them be hurt, he that hath but one crowne will giue him halfe.


Again, I have problems to understand this... He is speaking about a fine or what?

Quote:

Fourthly, if any one doe any notable act, all his companions will praise and honor him, and seeldome doe they through enuy conceale any vertue. This like∣wise is good in them, that in their militarie commaundements euen the brauest Souldiers and of greatest calling will obey a sim∣ple Serieant: so pliable are they to their officers. As also when they are called to haue any charge, they doe as well keepe their au∣thoritie.

Finally, in the bodie of their guard they will not suffer any insolencie, but the same are as Schooles where their ordinary talke is of the dueties of Souldiers, Capteynes, Honor, and such like matter concerning Armes. More might be here sayd: but this is sufficient in that such as goe newly into the bands may knowe that these bee no custumes of Munckes, as the prouerbe goeth, but of excellent Souldiers. If the Capteynes of the regiments aforesaid would likewise take a little paynes, they might instruct theirs in like sorte: and labour no lesse to fashion them then a horse course• doth to breake his horse: And it were a great shame that we should not haue more care of men then of beastes.


It's supposed that the body of guard was an almost sacred place, and they couldn't play games – they were great fans of cards and dces – fight, or even swear.


Quote:
According to La Noue, one of the reasons Spanish pikemen were so successful is that the Spanish gentry were much more willing to serve as footsoldiers armed with pikes than the French gentry, who would only be willing to serve has cavalry:

Quote:
Concerning the first point, experience teacheth, that nothing hath * more corrupted our Infanterie, than that our Gentrie haue with drawen themselues therefro, disdaining not onely to beare the har∣quebut and pike, but also many times to take anie charge. Wher by are entered pettie Countrie Captaines deuoid of all respect of honour, and such as seeke to inrich themselues with the generall spoiles of our warres. Yea, if any olde regimentes haue obserued some sorte the auncient discipline, yet are there many disorders crept in among them. The cause that maketh the Spanish In∣fanterie at this daie to be in such estimation, is for that their Gen∣try are so willing to serue therin, yea, rather than among the horse. For there will they serue out theyr apprentishippe of warre, to the ende to attaine to be Captaines, which degree they make as great account of, as we doe of the Colonelship of a whole regiment. It were therefore good to commit the charge of the companies to no∣table Gentlemen, who lykewise might choose to bee their Liuete∣nants and Ensignes, such other Gentlemen their neighbours of whome there be enow in the Prouinces, as might be capable ther∣of.


He concludes that French gentlemen and officers ought to be encouraged to fight with pikes and corcelets as well, so that the other troops become far more willing to follow their example and carry pikes themselves:

Quote:

As touching the second point for the reestablishing of Corcelets* & Pikes, I haue alreadie shewed that the Infanterie that is thereof vnprouided, is vnperfect: howbeit that there are meanes to remedie it. Whereof the most soueraigne, in my opinion, is to bring men to it voluntarilie rather than by compulsion, which may easily be done if the Gentrie through obedience will begin to leade the waie to the rest, who will not bee behinde when they shall see their Captaines which command them, take vpon them the vse of the same weapon that they appoint to them. It were good also that the orders of the said legions were such, as the third part of the men of whome they should consist, to be pikes, and the fourth harquebuts, so should the three legions containe 4500. corcelets, and 1500. harquebuts


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Concerning the difficultie, ordinarily pro∣pounded, which in deed is not small, how to induce the common sol∣diours to take the pike: I suppose it would soone be decided, when they should see (as I haue said) the Captaines & gentry practise the same weapon: & vpon occasion to fight, ioyne with the body of the battell, sauing such as shall be appointed to lead the shot: as also to imitate the Spaniard who alloweth the Corcelet greater pay than the simple harquebuze.


That last part about the pay may have helped too.


The incomes of a soldier were, from 1567 to 1632. It's supposed that from the 1632 ordinnace there were no more 'picas secas', but the payment was the same until late XVIIth century:

3 ducats per month to the 'pica seca' or 'disarmed pikeman'
4 ducats per month to the corslet
4 ducats per month to the arquebusier
6 ducats per month to the musketeer.

In fact, I gave an exampe of the son of the duke of the Infantado serving per 4 escudos, so it couldn't be the pay which attract those noblemen to fight as pikemen.

Otherwise, it's true that there were 'ventajas', like bonus, to be paid at the captain's discretion – at least 30 ducats ordinaries, and more extraordinaries - and the 'soldados aventajados' tend to be gentleman.
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Henry O.





Joined: 18 Jun 2016

Posts: 164

PostPosted: Sun 25 Mar, 2018 2:56 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Carlos Valenzuela Cordero wrote:


Álvaro de Sande had a very long career, but, as far as I know, he only batlled against moors during the campaign of Argel [1541] and Los Gelves [1560]... I don't know what episode is refered by Barret, but the use of muskets in campaign is from 1560s onwards.

How would you pronnounce Gerbes in XVIth century english? It could be Carvan?


Unfortunately I wouldn't know.

Here's La Noue's description, which might be who Barret heard about the event from:

La Noue wrote:
First I will alleadge * the braue retraict of Don Aluares of Sande in Afflicke. He had, as I haue heard, 4000. Spanyards, souldiers of great valour, and to come where he purposed, he was to passe a plaine of foure or fiue miles, which (trusting to his men) he aduentured to doe. But he was not so soone set forward, but eightéene or twentie thousand horse of the Moores were at his heeles, who coueted to catch him in this bad aduantage. He then hauing ordered his battaile and ex∣horted his men, went forward on his way where all these horse did fiue or sixe times set vpon him, but he bare their brunt and so braue∣ly repulsed them, that with the losse of 80. men at the most he brought the rest into safetie, and slew seuen or eight hundred of the enemies.


Both call it a "brave retraict"/brave retreat, so perhaps they're referring to a rearguard action while the rest of army was trying to withdraw? Although I suppose it's possible La Noue simply misunderstood or fell prey to propaganda. He was being held prisoner by the Spanish at Limburg at the time he was writing his "Discourses"

Carlos Valenzuela Cordero wrote:
Quote:

Secondly, among the Spanyards ye shall not haue a braule in sixe moneths: for they disdaine qua∣rellers and delight in modestie: so as if any doe happen, they ende∣uour diligently to take them vp: and yet when they cannot bee en∣ded without blowes, they discharge themselues honorably. The French Souldier is much more diuers, and can hardly liue with∣out braules, shewing himselfe but ouer couragious against his companions.


I don't understand entirely that text. Braule is a brawl, ok. 'Ended without blowes'... what does it mean?


Unfortunately I'm not too familiar with dueling culture of the time. He seems to be claiming that the spanish soldiers are more modest don't like getting in fights with each other as much as the french do, and that even when a disagreement between two of them "cannot be ended without blows" the rest try to ensure that fight is conducted in an honorable manner, as opposed to something like a tavern brawl.

Carlos Valenzuela Cordero wrote:
Quote:

Thirdly, if a Souldier among them be hurt, he that hath but one crowne will giue him halfe.


Again, I have problems to understand this... He is speaking about a fine or what?


I think he's referring to charity. As in "Even poor a soldier who has only one coin left will gladly give half of it to a wounded comrade in order to help out."

Carlos Valenzuela Cordero wrote:
The incomes of a soldier were, from 1567 to 1632. It's supposed that from the 1632 ordinnace there were no more 'picas secas', but the payment was the same until late XVIIth century:

3 ducats per month to the 'pica seca' or 'disarmed pikeman'
4 ducats per month to the corslet
4 ducats per month to the arquebusier
6 ducats per month to the musketeer.

In fact, I gave an exampe of the son of the duke of the Infantado serving per 4 escudos, so it couldn't be the pay which attract those noblemen to fight as pikemen.

Otherwise, it's true that there were 'ventajas', like bonus, to be paid at the captain's discretion – at least 30 ducats ordinaries, and more extraordinaries - and the 'soldados aventajados' tend to be gentleman.


That is interesting, thanks! So if the payment for pikemen was greater at some point perhaps had more to do with captains or commanders putting greater emphasis on pikemen and offering them more bonuses to retain their services.

Anyways, on the subject of the 17th century, Here's sir James Turner's "Pallas Armata", a collection of essays by the author on ancient and modern warfare, written in the 1670s:

https://books.google.com/books?id=0m9nAAAAcAAJ&printsec=frontcover#v=onepage&q&f=false

On Page 222 he talks about whether an officer should carry a pike, partisan, or halberd:

Sir James Turner wrote:
The Spanish and French Captains and Lieutenants [Spanish captains anyways, he says the Spanish companies still don't include a lieutenant rank] likewise carry Pikes, the Spaniards shoulder'd, the French comported: The Germans, Swedes, Danes, and almost generally all others carry nothing in their hands but Canes;


He then goes on to criticize these captains who neglect to carry weapons themselves, though he suggests that a halberd or partisan would be more manageable than a pike at this point.

Also interesting is page 220 where he discusses the office of "Sergent". He's referring to France, the low countries, and England rather than Spain specifically, but he states that many companies had trouble finding anyone willing to serve as a sergent. This is in part because the office required a lot of hard work but also, he says, because the Sergent had to carry a halberd instead of a pike:

Sir James Turner wrote:
And I have wonder'd very oft to hear mean Gentlemen say, they scorn a Halbert, but if you will give them a pike, they will gladly accept of it, for which they have not above the third of a Serjeants pay; and when they are Pikemen, they must punctually obey the Serjeants commands, or bear the weight of that Halbert over their Heads, which they scorn'd to carry on their shoulders; for a Serjeant hath power to beat both with his Halbert and his Sword.
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Tianhong Yu





Joined: 12 Jul 2016

Posts: 10

PostPosted: Fri 30 Mar, 2018 9:00 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Carlos Valenzuela Cordero wrote:


About the servants: captains use to had one page to carry their rodela and their "jineta" - it's a short spear and was the ensign of captains. In a tercio - until 1632 - it was supposed that there were 10 companies of pikes and two of arquebusiers, and the captains of pikes fought with a pike, and the captains of arquebusiers fought with an arquebus. What I have read, captains used to march on horse, not on foot, but when they have to form the squadron - after left a city or before arrive to a city or a place with hostiles - where they occupy their place with their pikes in the first rank.


Hello Carlos,thank you for your informative posts.I find them interesting.

Quote:
About the servants: captains use to had one page to carry their rodela and their "jineta" - it's a short spear and was the ensign of captains.


I have a question. Isn't jineta also the name of some type of short sword?

Quote:
What I have read, captains used to march on horse, not on foot, but when they have to form the squadron - after left a city or before arrive to a city or a place with hostiles - where they occupy their place with their pikes in the first rank.


That reminds me of another question.Is it common Spanish nobles were willing to fight on foot like French when the need arises?

By the way I have other questions but I'm afraid I can't ask you here because they are not much related to the topic.I'll send you pms instead.
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Carlos Valenzuela Cordero




Location: Barcelona
Joined: 22 Feb 2018

Posts: 17

PostPosted: Mon 09 Apr, 2018 10:38 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Quote:
Both call it a "brave retraict"/brave retreat, so perhaps they're referring to a rearguard action while the rest of army was trying to withdraw? Although I suppose it's possible La Noue simply misunderstood or fell prey to propaganda. He was being held prisoner by the Spanish at Limburg at the time he was writing his "Discourses"
 
Well, I wouldn't discard those statements – from Barret or La Noue – because I dont' know nothing about them, or I am not able to indentify them properly... Álvaro de Sande was captured by the turks in Los Gelves – Djerba in 1560, and then freed in 1564 after the king paid his ransom. His nephwe – another captain Álvaro de Sande but Figueroa in his second surname - died in the defense of this fortress.
La Noue was captured in 1580, and was held prisoner for five years. Maybe he had the occasion to talk to many soldiers, and they explained him this episode.





Quote:

Unfortunately I'm not too familiar with dueling culture of the time. He seems to be claiming that the spanish soldiers are more modest don't like getting in fights with each other as much as the french do, and that even when a disagreement between two of them "cannot be ended without blows" the rest try to ensure that fight is conducted in an honorable manner, as opposed to something like a tavern brawl.


Quote:





I think he's referring to charity. As in "Even poor a soldier who has only one coin left will gladly give half of it to a wounded comrade in order to help out."

That system of 'camarada' – literally 'comrade' – was appointed then in 1546/1547 by some italian witnesses as a good tool to suport friends during bad times, when the kings didnt' pay to them and they had to eat every day... Every 6-8 soldiers form a 'camarada', and then share their expenses together. If one had problems, the others had to help him. The italians try to live by themselves, without cooperation, and the result was a higher degree of desertion.
In the Ordonnance of 1632, there was a point – article XLI - stablishing this system of 'camarada' and the officer of the company couldn't permit a soldier to be by their own: 'because one soldier alone can't with only his payment mantain himself and afford the forced spending, like otherwise together can do it, and he alone doesn't have anybody that heal him or withdraw him if he is ill or wounded'.
La Soldadesca,viuiendo en Camaradas,que son las que han conservado à la nación Española i porque vn Soldado solo, no puede con fu sueldo entretener el gasto forçoso, como juntandose algunos lo pueden hazer, ni tiene quien le cure, y retire , si esta malo, o herido

According to Francisco Ventura de la Sala this system probed that the friendship was more important that blood.

Carlos Valenzuela Cordero wrote:
The incomes of a soldier were, from 1567 to 1632. It's supposed that from the 1632 ordinnace there were no more 'picas secas', but the payment was the same until late XVIIth century: 

3 ducats per month to the 'pica seca' or 'disarmed pikeman' 
4 ducats per month to the corslet 
4 ducats per month to the arquebusier 
6 ducats per month to the musketeer. 

In fact, I gave an exampe of the son of the duke of the Infantado serving per 4 escudos, so it couldn't be the pay which attract those noblemen to fight as pikemen. 

Otherwise, it's true that there were 'ventajas', like bonus, to be paid at the captain's discretion – at least 30 ducats ordinaries, and more extraordinaries - and the 'soldados aventajados' tend to be gentleman.


Quote:
That is interesting, thanks! So if the payment for pikemen was greater at some point perhaps had more to do with captains or commanders putting greater emphasis on pikemen and offering them more bonuses to retain their services.

It could be, but doing the maths, even with 30 ducats of ordinaries 'ventajas' for sharing, the most well paid men in the companies still were the musketeers.

Quote:

Anyways, on the subject of the 17th century, Here's sir James Turner's "Pallas Armata", a collection of essays by the author on ancient and modern warfare, written in the 1670s: 

https://books.google.com/books?id=0m9nAAAAcAAJ&printsec=frontcover#v=onepage&q&f=false 

On Page 222 he talks about whether an officer should carry a pike, partisan, or halberd: 
Sir James Turner wrote:
The Spanish and French Captains and Lieutenants [Spanish captains anyways, he says the Spanish companies still don't include a lieutenant rank] likewise carry Pikes, the Spaniards shoulder'd, the French comported: The Germans, Swedes, Danes, and almost generally all others carry nothing in their hands but Canes;


He then goes on to criticize these captains who neglect to carry weapons themselves, though he suggests that a halberd or partisan would be more manageable than a pike at this point. 

As I said in previous posts, the captains of the companies of pikemen served with pikes, and those of the companies of arquebusiers served with arquebuses, but the arm/ensign of captains was the 'jineta' or 'gineta' a spear carried by the captain himself, or most commonly by a servant.

Quote:

Also interesting is page 220 where he discusses the office of "Sergent". He's referring to France, the low countries, and England rather than Spain specifically, but he states that many companies had trouble finding anyone willing to serve as a sergent. This is in part because the office required a lot of hard work but also, he says, because the Sergent had to carry a halberd instead of a pike: 
Sir James Turner wrote:
And I have wonder'd very oft to hear mean Gentlemen say, they scorn a Halbert, but if you will give them a pike, they will gladly accept of it, for which they have not above the third of a Serjeants pay; and when they are Pikemen, they must punctually obey the Serjeants commands, or bear the weight of that Halbert over their Heads, which they scorn'd to carry on their shoulders; for a Serjeant hath power to beat both with his Halbert and his Sword.


I have never seen such opinions related to spanish armies...

Tianhong Yu wrote:


Quote:
About the servants: captains use to had one page to carry their rodela and their "jineta" - it's a short spear and was the ensign of captains.


I have a question. Isn't jineta also the name of some type of short sword?


Indeed, there were a 'espada a la jineta', as you pointed. There were also de 'lanza jineta' a light lance used by 'jinetes' – spanish moorisy style light cavalry.

You can check the 'Glosario de voces de armería'. It's old, and doesn't have any image, but you can't find a lot of information.
https://archive.org/details/glosariodevocesd00leguuoft

It's supposed that is the Fig.124 of this old Catalogue of the Real Armería:
https://archive.org/stream/catlogohistricod00real#page/211/mode/1up

Quote:

Quote:
What I have read, captains used to march on horse, not on foot, but when they have to form the squadron - after left a city or before arrive to a city or a place with hostiles - where they occupy their place with their pikes in the first rank.


That reminds me of another question.Is it common Spanish nobles were willing to fight on foot like French when the need arises?


I think so... The same Emperor dismounted in 1546 during the 'siege' of the imperial camp in Ingolstadt, so nobles had to follow the example of his master.
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