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Tim M.





Joined: 21 Jan 2007

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PostPosted: Wed 21 Mar, 2007 7:06 pm    Post subject: Bucklers attached to the arm?         Reply with quote

Question: Is it possible to have a buckler strapped/attached to the arm and thus leaving the hand free? Is this plausible or would there be some form of problem with doing this?
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Mark Shier
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PostPosted: Wed 21 Mar, 2007 8:21 pm    Post subject: bucklers         Reply with quote

Like this?
mark



 Attachment: 102.77 KB
Paris, Bibl. Sainte-Genevičve, ms. 0020, f. 123 c1335 battel of hebrews and caananites.jpg

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Steven H




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PostPosted: Wed 21 Mar, 2007 10:59 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

neat!

What is that image from?

Thanks

Kunstbruder - Boston area Historical Combat Study
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Elling Polden




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PostPosted: Thu 22 Mar, 2007 2:12 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

The shield in the picture is more a small round shield than a buckler.

Stapping bucklers to the arm would be rather counterproductive. First of all, it would not give nearly as much protection to the sword hand (the primary function of the buckler). Second, it would make the buckler slower to ready, its other main advantage.

There are some pictures small shields strapped to the arm, but the wast majority are center gripped.

"this [fight] looks curious, almost like a game. See, they are looking around them before they fall, to find a dry spot to fall on, or they are falling on their shields. Can you see blood on their cloths and weapons? No. This must be trickery."
-Reidar Sendeman, from King Sverre's Saga, 1201
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Jonathan Blair




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PostPosted: Thu 22 Mar, 2007 3:48 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

The only place where I've heard of using a buckler strapped on the arm while holding something else is Dungeons and Dragons.

The beauty of the buckler is its small size and weight make it easy to maneuver with the off hand to protect the sword hand as well as to use in shield knocks. Strapping it to the arm would require committing the whole body to performing a shield knock as well as leaving the sword hand open to attack (and if your sword hand is injured, you can't fight as well).

"Think not that I am come to send peace on earth: I came not to send peace, but a sword." - The Lord Jesus Christ, from The Gospel According to Saint Matthew, chapter x, verse 34, Authorized Version of 1611
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James Barker




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PostPosted: Thu 22 Mar, 2007 6:20 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Lets not forget those wacky 16th and 17th century armors; there is a long gauntlet with a shield integrated into it.
James Barker
Historic Life http://www.historiclife.com/index.html
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Lafayette C Curtis




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PostPosted: Thu 22 Mar, 2007 6:37 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

A buckler strapped to the arm?

No. I'm afraid not.

The very definition of "buckler" is a shield held in a fist grip, so if it's strapped to the arm then it's obviously not a buckler. Size matters less than the method of gripping. You can build something more than three feet across but when it's held exclusively in a fist grip then it qualifies as a buckler.
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Mark Shier
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PostPosted: Thu 22 Mar, 2007 9:49 am    Post subject: shield picture         Reply with quote

The image is from Paris, Bibl. Sainte-Genevičve, ms. 0020, f. 123 c1335 . It is online somewhere.
mark
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Hugh Knight




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PostPosted: Thu 22 Mar, 2007 10:05 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

While I agree that strapping a buckler to the arm is foolish and contrary to the purpose of a buckler, I thought you might find this picture somewhat interesting:
http://www.thehaca.com/Manuals/Gladiatoria/113.jpg
This picture is from the Gladiatoria Fechtbuch, and I'm told it represents an Eastern European form of shield/buckler rarely seen west of the Rhine; possibly Hungarian in origin.

While not strapped to the arm as the OP was asking about, the point on the front is obviously intended as an offensive weapon, so in effect it's doing allowing the weilder to do what the OP was getting at.

Incidentally, the picture Mark Shier posted was meant to show two very foreign--unknown, if you will--cultures. One way medieval artists added a touch of the exotic to their artworks was to invent fanciful armor, shields and weapons so that the viewer would know he wasn't looking at the kind of people he was familiar with. Giving all the combatants round shields was one way of showing these were foreigners--not that round shields were never used in European medieval combat, just that in this period and in this kind of gear we would expect to see heater-style shields. Inference from medieval iconography can be tricky.

Regards,
Hugh
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Martin Wilkinson





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PostPosted: Thu 22 Mar, 2007 10:48 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Hugh Knight wrote:
While I agree that strapping a buckler to the arm is foolish and contrary to the purpose of a buckler, I thought you might find this picture somewhat interesting:
http://www.thehaca.com/Manuals/Gladiatoria/113.jpg
This picture is from the Gladiatoria Fechtbuch, and I'm told it represents an Eastern European form of shield/buckler rarely seen west of the Rhine; possibly Hungarian in origin.


My understanding is that those shields were used in judicial duels (and not normal warfare), and i believe Hugh is right, in Hungary.

"A bullet you see may go anywhere, but steel's, almost bound to go somewhere."

Schola Gladiatoria
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Christian Henry Tobler
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PostPosted: Thu 22 Mar, 2007 11:46 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Yes, the text accompanying that plate in 'Gladiatoria' says that it is a 'Hungarian Shield'...the word buckler does not appear in the text.

All the best,

Christian

Christian Henry Tobler
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Tim M.





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PostPosted: Thu 22 Mar, 2007 1:50 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

I wasn't sure if it was a practical thing to do so that's why I asked
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Lafayette C Curtis




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PostPosted: Fri 23 Mar, 2007 6:24 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Practical? Yes, but a "buckler" attached to the arm would cease being a "buckler" and become a small shield instead.

To see it fro ma different angle, remember that even non-spiked bucklers can already be used to punch, to trap the enemy's weapons, or to lever the enemy's buckler or shield out of the way, so I don't see why an arm strap would be necessary. Note also that a human fist is usually large enough to carry a moderate-sized weapon or two alongside the buckler's wrist straps. I've done this with a pair of javelins and they didn't make my grip on the buckler any less firm.

BTW, How did Scots grip their targes? If it was by a fist grip, then it's another evidence that a fist-grip buckler doesn't need an arm strap to be used in conjunction with another off-hand weapon--in this case the dirk/skean.
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Felix Wang




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PostPosted: Fri 23 Mar, 2007 11:10 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

The targe is an arm-mounted shield. It is about the smallest you would want to make an arm-mounted shield. If you hand a small buckler mounted on the arm, it had better be big enough to cover the knuckles and the elbow. Anything smaller would seem to be an unnecessary risk.
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Werner Stiegler





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PostPosted: Fri 23 Mar, 2007 11:47 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Hugh Knight wrote:
While I agree that strapping a buckler to the arm is foolish and contrary to the purpose of a buckler, I thought you might find this picture somewhat interesting:
http://www.thehaca.com/Manuals/Gladiatoria/113.jpg
This picture is from the Gladiatoria Fechtbuch, and I'm told it represents an Eastern European form of shield/buckler rarely seen west of the Rhine; possibly Hungarian in origin..
They were rather popular in norther italian cities too, I've heard. Two of them are on display in the Jagd- und Rüstkammer in Vienna, and both of them are said to be of italian origin. But they are bigger than a buckler, big enough to protect the whole arm and part of the head too.
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Dan Howard




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PostPosted: Fri 23 Mar, 2007 2:42 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

We are once agin moving into the realm of definition. This discussion is a waste of time unless people can agree on the same definition for any given term.

What is the commonly accepted definition of "buckler"? Is it the same as that used in historical texts? as Lafayette said, if the definition of a buckler includes a central hand grip then the answer to the original question is obviously "no". If the shield is strapped to the arm then it cannot be a "buckler". How big does the shield need to be before it stops being called a buckler and starts being called something else? I'm not sure that a small shield can ever be called a "targe". Target literally means "small targe" so this might be the more correct term.
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Elling Polden




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PostPosted: Sat 24 Mar, 2007 4:43 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Agreeing with Dan...

As for the concept of holding something in the same hand as a small shield, I have tried i a couple of times. Overall, it does not seem to be worth it.
Shields on propper guiges are however showing great promise.

If the grip is thin enough, you can use a senter gripped buckler with a spear. The return isn't that great, however.
Thin gripped daggers or knifes can be held in the hand while using a spear, for close defense. They are not that good with striking polarms, though, since these are gripped differently.

"this [fight] looks curious, almost like a game. See, they are looking around them before they fall, to find a dry spot to fall on, or they are falling on their shields. Can you see blood on their cloths and weapons? No. This must be trickery."
-Reidar Sendeman, from King Sverre's Saga, 1201
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Lafayette C Curtis




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PostPosted: Sat 24 Mar, 2007 9:06 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Well, I have to admit I wouldn't hold a hand-to-hand weapon in the same hand as a shield or buckler. However, keeping a pair of javelins ready to throw in the shield/buckler hand has never been a problem to me as long as the shield's shape does not preclude this. It's certainly not something I'd want to do with an aspis, for example, but a smaller or flatter shield/buckler would do fine.
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Steven H




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PostPosted: Sat 24 Mar, 2007 11:45 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Elling Polden wrote:

Shields on propper guiges are however showing great promise.


So, I'm curious, what have you found to be proper guiges?
And what kind of shields are you using them with?

Thanks.

Kunstbruder - Boston area Historical Combat Study
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Jack Yang




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PostPosted: Sat 24 Mar, 2007 6:36 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Tim,
To my understanding, a shield strapped to your arm is not a buckler, but I think the other reason you asked the question is you want to know if it's efficient to hold a shield and a weapon with the same hand/arm. And my answer to that is 'yes'. I can tell you about my personal experience, although I'm not sure if anything like this was done "historically":

In my high school, we have a "padded sword fighting club", and I'm the captain of it. Basically what we do in that club is we build our own sparring weapons our of foam and pvc pipes and we spar with it.
So this guy in my club made a square shield that coves the entire forearm and when held in the right position can cover the lower arm as well. The shield is strapped to his left forearm, and his left hand is free to hold a dagger. Along the four edges of the shield, he made cases for some detachable throwing knives (out of duct tape -.-), and in his main hand he carries a short sword. When we fought, he would sometimes attempt to lock the opponent's sword with this shield and go in for the kill with his short sword, or some times he lock the opponent's sword with his and go in to kill with his dagger. And of course, he could also be cheap and just pull a knife from its case and throw it. -.-
It's a strange technique that I believe was never used in the medieval times, but it was pretty effective. The weakness of a shield with throwing knives, though, is that in close range, the opponent could take a knife from your shield and use it to kill you. But if you take out the knife slots, I think that's what you wanted in trying to strap a "buckler" to your arm.
=D
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