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Author Topic: Mercenaries in late AS warfare  (Read 5475 times)

ubique

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Mercenaries in late AS warfare
« on: June 24, 2010, 08:46:06 PM »
Eala
Not the best historical source I know but watching channel fours 1066 drama got me thinking about mercenaries in the late AS period.During the program warriors with welsh accents "The weapon men of the west" go north to fight at Stamford bridge.By using the term west and the different style of dress to the AS I assume them to either welsh or cornish.Is there any evidence for for this?
 
lithsmen and butsecarles as far as I am aware were Danish crews for Englisc ships and I assume mercenaries in service during 1066 were also Danish due to Harold connections to Denmark.
 
or am as I suspect thinking to regionally about this subject and your average mercenary band would have been a mixed bag of Friesian,Anglo Danes,franks ect ect
 
Cheers
Liam

steve pollington

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Re: Mercenaries in late AS warfare
« Reply #1 on: June 24, 2010, 09:06:00 PM »
It rather depends on what you mean by 'mercenaries'. There were certainly swords for hire and the early legendary tales talk of kings with a dozen different nationalities in their armies. But were they strictly mercenaries in the sense that anyone could hire them? Maybe not, or only in some circumstances. The deeds of youthful adventurers might be freer than those of older warrios with a wider circle of contacts through trade, marriage and diplomacy. And what about the warband institution itself with its overlapping duties of loyalty and vengeance? Huskarlar were paid in silver, but they could not fight for just anyone, they owed their first loyalty to the king.

ubique

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Re: Mercenaries in late AS warfare
« Reply #2 on: June 24, 2010, 10:23:06 PM »
Good points steve ill have to dig deeper