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  1. - Top - End - #1201
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    Default Re: Got a Real-World Weapon, Armor or Tactics Question? Mk. XXV

    Tobtor,

    I wish I had time to get deeper into this, but there seems to be a rule on this forum that interesting discussions break open and I'm given many requests to prove this or that thing I posted when I am under the gun and don't have time to break open books.

    As my time is very limited right now, a few quick replies.

    Whaling - see Basque sailors in the Bay of Biscay. I think you will find they were donig systematic whaling there from the 11th Century and were routinely traveling to the British Isles by the 14th. By the 1520s they were in Labrador and Greenland. I believe they had nearly extirpated one of the local whale species in their own region by the late 1300's which is why they started going further afield.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Histor...Basque_whaling

    What the precise history of whaling is by Norse seamen, I don't know as it's not something I have looked into. But i would be surprised if they hadn't done any of their own by the 15th Century.

    Narwhal Teeth - yes I do have sources but it would take me a while to track them down. Hanseatic records list various products and I remember underlining "Unicorn Horns" and looking into it, which is where i found out about Narwhal teeth. I'll pull some books off the bookshelf when I have the time.

    England and Holland and the Scania Market
    I think you are maybe (?) confusing or overlapping conflicts over the Oresund with conflicts to do specifically with the Scania Market. The Scania market itself ceased to be as important at some point, i forget what year but I think late 14th or early 15th Century, when the Herring population suddenly crashed. England and Holland did fight their way into the Baltic in the Dutch-Hanseatic War (1438-1441) and a series of other smaller wars in the 15th Century. I was unaware they had anything to do with the Scania Market.

    Defeats of Denmark
    It's a curious thing about the conflicts involving the Hanse, that they do not tend to make it into official histories of Europe in the era. But the Hanse fought many times with Denmark and I have all sorts of records about it, mainly from Philippe Dollinger who did what is basically the magisterial history of the Hanse in a book he published in the 1970's.

    As I recall the Hanse, or certain specific towns within the Hanse, fought at least 5 wars with Denmark between 1350 and 1450. When i have time I can dig up the dates and towns involved.

    However, we have discussed one particular incident on this thread before, the first and second bombardment of Copenhagen in 1427-28. In the first, a very large Hanseatic fleet was led by a German prince, and was driven off by the Danes with the help of 'floating batteries'. In the second, a smaller fleet led by Hanseatic city counselors and burgomeisters, brought their own floating batteries and wiped out the Danish fleet. The wiki covers the basics:

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bombar...enhagen_(1428)

    Among other amusing details the King fled forcing the queen (I forget her name but I remember she was English) to manage the defense, which she did quite well.

    Regarding the long occupation of the Scania market which you referred to upthread, I have this letter on the hard drive of my work computer, from Lubeck to Danzig in 1383, which I can quickly cut and paste to this post. You may find interesting. It refers to the castles they had seized during that war.

    1384 – Letter from Lübeck to Danzig from the delgates at the Hanseatic diet meeting at Marienburg [Malbork].

    In the year of Our Lord 1384 the delegates of the Prussian towns assembled in Marienburg on the Sunday before Christmas and discussed the following articles:

    1) First, concerning the general diet to be held on 5 March with the common towns in Lübeck: are we to be represented by delegates or merely by letters? It was unanimously resolved that delegates should be sent to this diet, because of the many matters which concern us, the common towns and the merchants.

    2) Further, are the castles in Skania to be surrendered on the date fixed in the treaty?... On this matter it seems best to us to keep the castles as long as we can and not to return them, unless the merchants are compensated for their losses, for the castles were pledged to the towns by the father of the queen [I think this is Margaret of Denmark / the Nordic Union] and not by the Queen herself ….

    3) As for the alliance formed by the towns, contained in the Treaty, is it to be continued or not? On this point we believe that the alliance should be continued in its present form.

    4) Shall we continue next year to levy poundage as before? We think that it should be levied as before, under oath.

    5) Concerning the warships, shall we continue to fit them out or not, etc.? It seems good to us to fit them out and to pacify the seas as far as is possible, as has been done before, and to ask the common towns to undertake the equipment of them as before, etc.

    6) As for the ban on the manufacture of cannon [the word used is geschossbuxen] in the common towns for the use of foreigners: our opinion is that the decision and consent of our lord the Grand Master [of the Teutonic Order] be accepted …

    7) As for the vessels which sail up and down the Vistula with herring or other cargo, when they are wrecked or ice-bound: on what terms are the skippers and crews to receive wages and subsistence, how long are the crews to be allowed to use wood from the banks, if the channel is blocked? On this question each delegate is to consult his own town council about what is to be done, and also whether the town has anything written on this matter [In their laws]. Each delegate is to bring these documents or a reply to the next diet and there report on the matter.
    There is also a reply from Danzig on these questions (mainly in the affirmative as i recall) but it's not on this machine.

    G
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  2. - Top - End - #1202
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    Default Re: Got a Real-World Weapon, Armor or Tactics Question? Mk. XXV

    These threads offer a great insight into just how wrong some of the common beliefs are, when it comes to the "dark ages" of Europe (sometimes even presented in pop-media as everything from the "fall" of Rome to "Italian Renaissance").

    If I wanted to make a case on another forum, where links to places like Reddit's "Ask Historians" are verboten (because it's Reddit), what could I point them to as a primer?
    It is one thing to suspend your disbelief. It is another thing entirely to hang it by the neck until dead.

    Verisimilitude -- n, the appearance or semblance of truth, likelihood, or probability.

    The concern is not realism in speculative fiction, but rather the sense that a setting or story could be real, fostered by internal consistency and coherence.

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    Default Re: Got a Real-World Weapon, Armor or Tactics Question? Mk. XXV

    Does anyone here know anything about the military technology and social-military organization of pre-Swedish Finland c. 1000 CE? Or know of any links to where I might find information on said military tech and organization? I'm working on building a campaign setting inspired by this culture but am finding it hard to do in-depth research.

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    Default Re: Got a Real-World Weapon, Armor or Tactics Question? Mk. XXV

    If "unicorn horns" were a "super luxury", then that suggests to me they were very rare commodities, not something available in large numbers through systematic whaling.

    I think the suggestion of them being obtained through Sami traders in the north would fit this. Narwhals (and other small whales) occassionally get trapped in small ice-free pockets within the Artic ice sheet in the winter. They would be comparatively easy to hunt. This wouldn't be systematic, but it would provide the occassional windfall. I would not be at all surprised if there was a trickle of narwhal teeth from the north due the odd successful narwhal hunt.
    Last edited by Haighus; 2018-06-13 at 05:39 PM.

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    Default Re: Got a Real-World Weapon, Armor or Tactics Question? Mk. XXV

    Quote Originally Posted by KarlMarx View Post
    Does anyone here know anything about the military technology and social-military organization of pre-Swedish Finland c. 1000 CE? Or know of any links to where I might find information on said military tech and organization? I'm working on building a campaign setting inspired by this culture but am finding it hard to do in-depth research.
    Look closely at the Finland parts of this Early 16th Century map (Olaus Magnus Carta Marina) it will give you some interesting clues.



    Link: https://i.redd.it/e0krlkq3ij8y.jpg
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  6. - Top - End - #1206
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    Default Re: Got a Real-World Weapon, Armor or Tactics Question? Mk. XXV

    Quote Originally Posted by Haighus View Post
    If "unicorn horns" were a "super luxury", then that siggests to me they were very rare commodities, not something available in large numbers through systematic whaling.

    I think the suggestion of them being obtained through Sami traders in the north would fit this. Narwhals (and other small whales) occassionally get trapped in small ice-free pockets within the Artic ice sheet in the winter. They would be comparatively easy to hunt. This wouldn't be systematic, but it would provide the occassional windfall. I would not be at all surprised if there was a trickle of narwhal teeth from the north due the odd successful narwhal hunt.
    Seems likely. Though again, I don't know.

    To give you an idea what 'super luxury' means I think I remember an anecdote where queen Elizabeth paid 10,000 lbs for one.
    “The nation that makes a great distinction between its scholars and its warriors will have its thinking done by cowards and its fighting done by fools.”

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  7. - Top - End - #1207
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    Default Re: Got a Real-World Weapon, Armor or Tactics Question? Mk. XXV

    Whaling - see Basque sailors in the Bay of Biscay. I think you will find they were donig systematic whaling there from the 11th Century and were routinely traveling to the British Isles by the 14th. By the 1520s they were in Labrador and Greenland. I believe they had nearly extirpated one of the local whale species in their own region by the late 1300's which is why they started going further afield.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Histor...Basque_whaling

    What the precise history of whaling is by Norse seamen, I don't know as it's not something I have looked into. But i would be surprised if they hadn't done any of their own by the 15th Century.
    Well, yes as I said some really local coast hunting. The norse in Iceland did not have big ships by the end of the 15th century (all wood expended), thus only foreigners traded much there, and niether danish, dutch nor germans did whalehunting before 16th century (or small scale in late 15th century), a time when Sweden mostly was under Danish rule...

    Narwhal Teeth - yes I do have sources but it would take me a while to track them down. Hanseatic records list various products and I remember underlining "Unicorn Horns" and looking into it, which is where i found out about Narwhal teeth. I'll pull some books off the bookshelf when I have the time.
    Well that they appear in inventory list dosnt mean its swedes trading them... it could be dutch-traders bringing them from Iceland.... But a few Narwhal teeth would be HUGELY expensive (more than gold by weight in some sources), thus just a few would be noted specifically.

    England and Holland and the Scania Market
    I think you are maybe (?) confusing or overlapping conflicts over the Oresund with conflicts to do specifically with the Scania Market. The Scania market itself ceased to be as important at some point, i forget what year but I think late 14th or early 15th Century, when the Herring population suddenly crashed.
    I think you are conflating a few things. The Scania market was a tradehub in the 12th-mid 14th century after which it turned pure herring market producing huge amounts of herring. The market drop in the early 16th century. Thus again I think your description is a little late for "medieval".

    Defeats of Denmark
    Well you mentiuoned Swedish Peasants defeating mercenaries... I agree on the Hanseatic thing. It was Swedish PEASANT victories I couldn't find (before Gustav Vasa). Yes, minor battles, but overall - no.

    Secondly you mentioned other (than the one mentioned) periods of CONTROL of the Scanea market, which I also cannot find documented. The wars was typically about other things (customs, conflict of rulership, Hanse support for Helstein etc).

    The point is: during the 10th-16th century Scania was a NOT "contested" area. It was Danish. And Denmark was (comparatively) a relatively "gathered" state, only Slesvig (and later Holstein as well) was more "contested" (and well some other "German" territories such as Rügen etc for shorter periods).
    Last edited by Tobtor; 2018-06-13 at 02:38 PM.

  8. - Top - End - #1208
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    Default Re: Got a Real-World Weapon, Armor or Tactics Question? Mk. XXV

    So thanks to back browsing through that article linked vis a vis knife fighting earlier i found a youtube series, (man at arms), about some baltimore blacksmiths making various weapons from various media. And amongst the stuff they've made i found somthing very interesting, they've made a titanium sword. Apparently there are alloys that can be forged without burning up. Although they had a devil of a time grinding it and in the demos it really dosen;t cut like it should, (if you compare it to their other sharp edged stuff it really struggle to cut compared to other stuff of the same size they've made, there's visible slowdown on the strikes).

    Thought it might be interesting since we recently had a titanium discussion.


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    Default Re: Got a Real-World Weapon, Armor or Tactics Question? Mk. XXV

    Since we are talking about it, what was the relationship between the Hanse and the Empire? Many Hanseatic cities must have been Imperial subjects. Were there official talks and representatives, or quarrels, or coordination attempts?

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    Default Re: Got a Real-World Weapon, Armor or Tactics Question? Mk. XXV

    Quote Originally Posted by Max_Killjoy View Post
    These threads offer a great insight into just how wrong some of the common beliefs are, when it comes to the "dark ages" of Europe (sometimes even presented in pop-media as everything from the "fall" of Rome to "Italian Renaissance").

    If I wanted to make a case on another forum, where links to places like Reddit's "Ask Historians" are verboten (because it's Reddit), what could I point them to as a primer?
    Primer on what specifically? Medieval history in general?
    “The nation that makes a great distinction between its scholars and its warriors will have its thinking done by cowards and its fighting done by fools.”

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    Default Re: Got a Real-World Weapon, Armor or Tactics Question? Mk. XXV

    Quote Originally Posted by Vinyadan View Post
    Since we are talking about it, what was the relationship between the Hanse and the Empire? Many Hanseatic cities must have been Imperial subjects. Were there official talks and representatives, or quarrels, or coordination attempts?
    All of the above. The relationship with the Empire was very complex, and the Hanse itself was almost never completely united and whenever it was even partly, never for long. There were times when one group of cities was trying to eradicate one of the big pirate groups while simultaneously another group was openly giving them shelter and acting as a base for their ships. Or when say for example, Lubeck and Danzig were at war with England but Cologne and Hamburg were still trading with the English and were opposed to the war.

    Most Hanseatic cities were at least nominally Imperial subjects but the Emperor had little sway over them regardless. There were numerous disputes in which the Emperor gave orders to a Hanseatic town like Lubeck or Hamburg and they were ignored as readily as a Papal Bull. More powerful Hanseatic Cities tended to have their own foreign policy while smaller or weaker ones tended to follow the policies of the largest regional towns or princes. For example Danzig led most of the Prussian towns, Riga the Livonian ones, Hamburg and Lubeck the Saxon towns and so on. Rostock and Wismar meanwhile tended to follow the Dukes of Mecklenburg.

    On the other hand the Hanse did support the Emperors in some wars and rarely moved at cross purposes to the Empire. The appreciated the nominal "cover" of the Emperor and the princes against other more rapacious foreign rulers (like the King of France) and usually supported Imperial policy. For the most part they just ignored the princely domain altogether unless they had no other choice - their interest was not in the "Game of Thrones" but rather just the pursuit of trade and building up of their towns into the little jewels of art and architecture that so many millions of tourists flock to every day in our lifetime, centuries after they were built. Most of their disputes with Princes were with local ones up north - the Dukes of Schleswig-Holstein, Mecklenburg and Pomerania; the Archbishop of Bremen: the Grand Master of the Teutonic Order; the King of Denmark and so on.

    These same princes were often also the closest allies of the Hanse towns. Usually kind of on again off again, but they tended to be friendly with the towns in their own district as often as not, especially in Mecklenburg, Pomerania, Frisia and lower Saxony. Quite often the princes and the towns shared similar economic agendas of pursing trade and prosperity in their region, so for example they would unite forces to try and stamp out robber knights.

    Denmark was mostly, though not always inimical, as they were in an almost permanent power struggle with the larger Hanseatic towns over control of the Oresund (and generally opposed to the burgher estate it seems). Sweden, as I said before, usually allied itself with the Hanse. The Teutonic Knights were closely allied with the Prussian cities until they started getting a little too heavy handed with them after their defeat by the Poles at Grunwald, leading to the 13 Years War after which the Prussian towns became (nominally) part of Poland. The Livonian Order was more conciliatory toward Riga, Dorpat and Reval by the mid 15th Century. Brandenburg is the one Princely estate which remained pretty hostile to the Hanse and to the towns in general, and was successful at it. They more or less strangled their own smallish towns (like Berlin) in favor of consolidating seignorial power. At the time no-one could foresee the implications of that.

    G
    Last edited by Galloglaich; 2018-06-13 at 08:30 PM.
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  12. - Top - End - #1212
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    Default Re: Got a Real-World Weapon, Armor or Tactics Question? Mk. XXV

    Quote Originally Posted by Tobtor View Post
    Well that they appear in inventory list dosnt mean its swedes trading them...
    It appears in inventory of items received in trade from Swedish towns or castles, or from Finnish castles.

    I think you are conflating a few things. The Scania market was a tradehub in the 12th-mid 14th century after which it turned pure herring market producing huge amounts of herring. The market drop in the early 16th century. Thus again I think your description is a little late for "medieval".
    You wound me sir! I'm always shocked how little respect I get in this forum after all these years. The herring market actually crashed for the first time in the end of the 14th Century. From the wiki:

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sk%C3%...nseatic_League

    "The abundance of herring around Scania abruptly ceased in the beginning of the 15th century and the region lost its importance as a trading place."


    They did gradually, eventually come back, but this happened again and again over the centuries.

    More broadly, this is how I understand the Skania market. The market was seasonal and moved every year as it was always located wherever the herring were running. The heart of the market was:

    1. Lots of fishermen coming from all over to catch herring: Swedes, Slavs, even Scots and English, their activities protected by the Hanse and unregulated.
    2. German (mostly Hanse) merchants bringing tens of thousands of barrels and huge amounts of salt mostly from the big salt mines at Luneburg
    3. These same merchants buying the fish, then processing them and packing them in barrels full of salt, and then sail back across the sea to lower Saxony or Prussia.
    4. The King of Denmark imposing a tax which, so long as it was reasonably low, was paid. When he tried to impose a less reasonable tax, or to kidnap the merchants and rob them, the Hanse fought back. More than once the Danes were thrown out.


    The other booths selling various other more general trade items - beer, weapons, textiles, glassware, and so on, was an adjunct to the main show, i.e. the fish harvest and fish market.

    And once the herring stopped running all of that went away, virtually overnight.

    Well you mentiuoned Swedish Peasants defeating mercenaries... I agree on the Hanseatic thing. It was Swedish PEASANT victories I couldn't find (before Gustav Vasa). Yes, minor battles, but overall - no.
    Well I guess it depends on how you define a 'minor battle', but you do have quite a few incidents. For example the Dalarna rising in 1434, led by Engelbrekt Engelbrektsson (say that 3 times with a mouth full of beer I dare you) which had quite significant consequences. As far as I'm aware it led to the expulsion of Danes from Sweden. And the army was mainly peasants, as well as some miners and a few burghers and petty nobles.

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

    That particular rising in Dalarna led to a Diet or 'Ting that is often cited as the first convening of the Swedish Riksdag.

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

    ... the one in Sweden being notable that it is only one of two I'm aware of on that scale in which the Peasants were specifically represented as one of the Estates.

    I believe around this time there was also another significant anti-Danish uprising in Norway but I can't remember the search terms.

    The point is: during the 10th-16th century Scania was a NOT "contested" area. It was Danish. And Denmark was (comparatively) a relatively "gathered" state, only Slesvig (and later Holstein as well) was more "contested" (and well some other "German" territories such as Rügen etc for shorter periods).
    Scania may have technically been ruled by the Danish crown, but of course in theory Sweden was part of Denmark through out the Late Middle Ages, but one Kingdom laying claim to a given area was usually a matter of degree in those times. I would argue that yes, the Scania market certainly was contested. The only reason the Hanse left it to Denmark in the 15th Century was that the herring had gone away in their mysterious fashion.

    G
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    Default Re: Got a Real-World Weapon, Armor or Tactics Question? Mk. XXV

    Quote Originally Posted by Galloglaich View Post
    Primer on what specifically? Medieval history in general?
    The general facts of what the "dark ages" really were and were not.

    (Someone's trying to point to the standard "dung ages" view of the period as support for a badly-constructed future history, and I'd like to at least give them the chance to learn the facts.)
    It is one thing to suspend your disbelief. It is another thing entirely to hang it by the neck until dead.

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    The concern is not realism in speculative fiction, but rather the sense that a setting or story could be real, fostered by internal consistency and coherence.

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    Default Re: Got a Real-World Weapon, Armor or Tactics Question? Mk. XXV

    Quote Originally Posted by Max_Killjoy View Post
    The general facts of what the "dark ages" really were and were not.

    (Someone's trying to point to the standard "dung ages" view of the period as support for a badly-constructed future history, and I'd like to at least give them the chance to learn the facts.)
    Yeah sadly I don't think there is such a thing. The closest you can really get is a good book on a particular region across a particular period of time, usually no more than a century or two, or else it's kind of meaningless. I have found one decent, relatively succinct book for the Holy Roman Empire in the "later middle ages" as the guy puts it.

    this is probably the best relatively succinct history of medieval warfare I know of. The next step would be perhaps to go to Hans Delbruck, but he is not succinct.



    But beyond that, you'd really have to specify a region and a 2 or 3 century time span.

    For example I also wrote my own book about Northwest Europe in the Baltic region, for the mid 15th Century (on my sig). I like to think it's pretty good. But part of the reason I wrote it is I wanted to read this type of book on that part of the world, but could never find anything like this in English.

    One of the biggest problems in understanding the Medieval World is that England is not Albania is not Florence is not Krakow. Europe was quite varied back then so you can't really make sweeping statements.

    The other reason it's hard is that almost all of our pop culture or 'lite education' derived assumptions about the period are wrong, and there is so much that is just unexpected, so it's a very steep learning curve to even get a basic grip on it.


    I often direct people toward those Osprey military books for a kind of 'cliff notes' version of history as relates to a particular region or type of warriors. It's probably the quickest way for people to get up to speed.

    G
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    Default Re: Got a Real-World Weapon, Armor or Tactics Question? Mk. XXV

    Quote Originally Posted by Tobtor View Post
    I agree that other finds is not proof of the same action; but there seem to be some bogs used for offerings, and then we have the large deposits in the same ones.
    I think that before i start responding to your facts some clarifications are in order. I never intended to challenge the consensus in Scandinavia. I was merely reflecting on some questions that were raised during one of the most complete seminar on watery finds. The wider context of european finds show that the case is still open, even if the scandinavian finds are explained. The mere fact that a reliable interpretation can be proposed there stand out compared to similar finds across Europe.

    Each of my hypothesis were intended to better understand thoses specificities. They all were used with various results on other finds. Some are easy to dismiss but other are reframing the question and, as much as you are certain of the scandinavian interpretation, you stated yourself that there is always a place for doubt.

    I don‘t want to make a new or better explanation, i just try to understand how some of the hypothesis that fit other comparable situations are refuted by your knowledge, what make the scandinavian situation so well explained.
    On a more theorethical basis, i wonder how and why the consensus seem so strong in Scandinavia. According to you, the proofs of the sacrifice are overwhelming. I want to make clear that i enjoy your knowledge. I hope i don’t sound too aggressive, i think it’s clear for everybody that english is not my first language. I try to make my case as clear as possible but i may sound better in my Head than in my words. I may not play the Devil’s advocate as best as i wish but i’m sincerely trying to relate what i know of a file with what you bring. And i find it very interesting.
    I think the scandinavian situation is very peculiar according to the state of the subject across Europe. That‘s not a critic of the archeologist or their interpretations but a musing on the specificity of the scandinavian situation. Most other finds are heavily disputed.

    Discussing the religious meaning of the deposits, and not specificaly on the scandinavian ones, some theoretical precautions are in order. Proving the intentionality of a deposit does not prove the ritual status, as shown by the literary sources. Proving the ritual does’nt even prove the sacrifice: the exsecratio is a ritual but not in a religious way. In any case, there is very little in history of religion connecting offerings and water, and even less connecting water to weapons. Both problems, and the specifics of some deposits, lead some to argue that some watery finds were the site of secondary deposit, where the sanctuaries discarded the offerings, maybe after showing them like in the Polybus depscription.
    In this last case, the religious meaning of the weapons is even less certain. Trophies are not offerings. And the true religious Act may be distinct from the final deposit. Clearly all those arguments should be disputed and they are less than perfect. They are nevertheless important to understand what is necessary to attest the religious meaning of an archeological find.


    As much as i understand, the hypothesis of the sacrifice of the weapons of the defeated was proposed in the XIX century and still stand today.
    It is not enough to discard any hypothesis but still worth considering. With all due respect for the many peoples who know more about the bogs than me, cases of self reinforcement are well documented in archeology, especially as soon as history of religions is concerned. In other parts of Europe, like in La Tène, the idea of sacrifice is almost the texbook example. You make a good case for the intentionality and ritual charachter of the bogs and i think i made it clear that i agree with you.

    I‘n less inclined to go further, bearing in mind the distinction between religious and ritual. The easier statement would be that the circumstances of the deposits are largely unknown. I think it is a cheap Argument here. My biggest problem yet is the few ethnographical occurences of the phenomenon of the sacralisation of the weapons of the defeated.
    I find quite interesting that the sources tend to be interpreted in light of this hypothesis. A closer inspection of the Texts show a muddier picture.
    I can totally accept that the case is closed in Scandinavia. I still find strange that such an unusual and expensive activity could take Place without leaving a bigger mark on latter periodes or in litterary texts.
    In historical time, some cult of water are documented. Even in rural catholicism. The offerings are mainly pins and little denominations of coins, a far cry from the wealth of the bogs. The main sanctuaries tend to be around sources. Bogs and swamps are also a strange place for a god and i don‘t know any documented example. The only documented sacrifice of a weapon in water in antiquity was made by Xerxes to cross the Hellespont, according to Herodotus. Tacitus mentionned swamps in Germania as infamous places. There is really little to back the idea of waters as a common place for sacrifices. Mostly the scandinavians finds.

    A similar problem appear with the sacrifice of weapons. Both trophies and vilification by destruction survive in historical time. Cases of sacralisation of victorious weapons are relatively easy to come by. The same cannot be said of the weapons of the defeated.

    In any case, the scandinavian phenomenon stand out by is scale and his uniqueness.


    Quote Originally Posted by Tobtor View Post
    Yeah, then he is wrong. Its completely different material in the graves and in the weapon sacrifices (except a few graves with very fancy belt equipment). There is really no relation.
    I think you misread this point that was made in the wider context of european finds. The complementarity is not in the scandinavian find, more in the general distribution of finds around Europe. In fact finds in water in northern Europe match finds in tumuli in the southern part of the continent. Hallstatt swords like Mindelheim or Gündlingen were extensively found in watery site in England, Scandinavia and the northern part of France. They were found in tumuli in the Rhone valley and between the Rhine and the Danube.
    The same can be said chronologycally, in England for example where the swords and daggers were mainly found in graves and tumuli in the early bronze age but switch to swamps and rivers in latter time.
    There is a lot of arguing about the consequences of this distribution but the inventory is fairly exhaustive. In any case we come back to the specifics of the scandinavian situation as a part of a more extended phenomenon.

    Quote Originally Posted by Tobtor View Post
    At both Illerup, Nydam, Vimose and many of the others we find clear evidence of large single deposits. For example the weapons are often found in separate "heaps",clearly put down together. We also have frequent examples of "bundles" of artefacts tied together with strings/rope or packed in textile. Sometimes several such bundles can be tied together by lets say half of sword a was found with 10 spears, while the other half was found with another group of spears and parts of sword B wich was found togther with... and so on...
    Ok. You have clearly demonstrated the intentionality of the deposits and their scale.

    Quote Originally Posted by Tobtor View Post
    Uhhmm no. It happened in a lot of the Scandinavian bog finds. So does systematic destruction by other means. Also gravegoods prior to the weapon sacrifices are also bent to fit into urns. Also several weapons show signs of use, shields shown signs of repair (even the most fancy ones with silver and gold!) and so on. How it is abroad (France, Germany) is of less interest since the equipment from the last phase of the Scandinavian weapon sacrifices are mainly from "eastern Sweden" (that is the region with the massacre!).

    I misread two different informations. The first was on the paucity of a proven intentionality of destruction except in Scandinavia. The second was a run down of the finds in Illerup that i misremembered. Sorry for the mistake. I hope i make clear that my commentaries are by no means objections. I went back to my sources and again Scandinavia stand out.

    So a few europeans facts may help clarify my thoughts . Swords in s were mainly found in terrestrial sites, like the sanctuary of Gournay. It seem to point to an offering but there is still some strange facts: the umbos of the shields found with the swords were destroyed in a manner that implies that the rest of the shield was missing. One of the possibility is that the destruction happened on a latter phase of the lifecycle of the weapon, like after the wood has rotten. The idea of a secondary deposit lessen the case for a religious meaning of this kind of destruction.

    About the swords in U, a fun little fact! A french archeologist tried to wear Celtics swords and he found fairly easy, when you fall, to trip on the shafth and bend the blade. The faster you went, the more bended was the blade. As i understand it better now, this has certainly nothing to do with the bogs. I have found some stuff on the shape of the broken swords in the bogs and the way they were broken rule out this situation. It’s nevertheless interesting as a precaution against hasty interpretation in other cases.

    And i have a few question: are the reparations on the finds coherent with fighting? Were the impacts and reparations made long before the destruction ( and it is thus possible that an object broken in fight was then overdestructed) or were the objects repaired and only then destroyed?
    About the bundles, how exactly do they relate to each others? I wonder if the objects seem to come from the same source? As i understand some objects are in different bundles, like the broken sword a in bundle b. How are thoses bundles related to each others?
    Also about the gravegoods, can you tell me more? They were also broken, Does one practice end with the start of the other?

    Quote Originally Posted by Tobtor View Post
    The weapon deposits all have the same basic characteristics as Illerup. Also newer re-excavations of older sites, confirm the picture.
    Interesting, but make a case to look at the differences.

    Quote Originally Posted by Tobtor View Post
    Both Ulla Lund Hansen and Xenia Pauli Jensen agree there is a ritualistic element and that we are dealing with a large sacrifices. There is some debate weather it is "offensive wars" (like Roman triumphs), a result of defensive wars against invading neighbours (Jørgen Ilkjærs hypothesis and the most prevalent one), or indeed returning mercenaries (which I do not think work, due to the "local" appearance of clothing and smaller use-items which would not last for long periods as mercenaries/auxiliaries). There is of course also some discussion of WHY such a ritual sacrifice happens and why it is developed in the first place, what the underlying meaning is and so on. But that doesn't change the fact that is a ritual.
    Ritual and sacrifice are two very different things. As much as i agree with your factual explanations i think the case for a religious meaning is less well made than you make it sound. In this case offering may not be the best way to describe the objects.
    I would also like to know how the practice emerged. What can be said about the chronology. I will certainly read more about the subject. But as i said i fail to see any corrsponding phenomenon and i find this peculiarity quite intriguing.

    Quote Originally Posted by Tobtor View Post
    Yes some items are bruttally broken by other means, such as smashing them up. This include a horse that have been killed many times over.
    I read that. Just one little question: was it possible to know if the horse was killed where he was found ?

    Quote Originally Posted by Tobtor View Post
    So because the missing weapons fit the interpretation of the deposits, we shouldnt make the connection? Or... ?
    No, the other way around. Connecting a specific fight with a specific deposit help explain the context of such a sitzation. Better yet if a good chronology can be made. I can spitball three hypothesis as an illustration. If the deposit is close in time and place with the massacre, à close connection between them seem probable and the ritual implications are strenghtened.
    A gap of maybe one generation could point to a first use of the weapon before the destruction. The ritual meaning of the deposit may still be present but it may not have been the most significant part.
    The place may also be important. Say you could find pieces of the massacre in various deposits. The ritual is again an option but is included in a wider scope than the aftermath of a fight. Same if we imagine a deposit far away from the place of the fight. The fact that the objects were transported change the way we have to look at them.
    As i said it is spitballed and likely to be easily dissmissed. But that’s the kind of stuff that i would like to know.

    Quote Originally Posted by Tobtor View Post
    Nothing in humanities can be proven without a doubt (and very little in natural science).
    Come on, no need to go all epistemological on me. Moreover you should be able to prove, let’s say the use of bronze in northern Europe. But documenting such material fact is easy.
    In my opinion you need extraordinarie proofs to assert a cultural explanation. I agree that the scandinavian bogs come close, but still i ask for more informations.

    Quote Originally Posted by Tobtor View Post
    However, that we are dealing with large deposits of weapons, which is not related to the grave-cult, but non-the-less have a relation to rituals (systematic destruction and deposition in well known offering sites, and with a long history of repeated large deposition suggesting that the "place" was important beyond immediate military needs), these depositions consist of entire "equipment" of the warriors including belts and personal items, but little in terms of jewellery and clothing, and no bones of humans (but a few horses). At the same time we find a defensive site where there have been a massacre, where we have bones and a some (at present a bit unclear how much) jewellery but no weapons. This massacre happens in the very specific region where the "war" represented in the weapon deposits of the period appear to come. Can we prove a relation? No. But we must consider it a very LIKELY connection.
    I agree with all of that. I think it’s a good resume of the scandinavian situation. I would be weary to go any further in any other context than this kind of discussion were i tried some far fetched possibilities. But i agree here almost word for word, also because you dropped sacrifice. I think it is a major point in discussing the finds. But i would certainly enjoy to read about the demonstration of their religious meaning and welcome any further information. I thank you again for your time.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Galloglaich View Post
    Yeah sadly I don't think there is such a thing. The closest you can really get is a good book on a particular region across a particular period of time, usually no more than a century or two, or else it's kind of meaningless. I have found one decent, relatively succinct book for the Holy Roman Empire in the "later middle ages" as the guy puts it.

    this is probably the best relatively succinct history of medieval warfare I know of. The next step would be perhaps to go to Hans Delbruck, but he is not succinct.



    But beyond that, you'd really have to specify a region and a 2 or 3 century time span.

    For example I also wrote my own book about Northwest Europe in the Baltic region, for the mid 15th Century (on my sig). I like to think it's pretty good. But part of the reason I wrote it is I wanted to read this type of book on that part of the world, but could never find anything like this in English.

    One of the biggest problems in understanding the Medieval World is that England is not Albania is not Florence is not Krakow. Europe was quite varied back then so you can't really make sweeping statements.

    The other reason it's hard is that almost all of our pop culture or 'lite education' derived assumptions about the period are wrong, and there is so much that is just unexpected, so it's a very steep learning curve to even get a basic grip on it.


    I often direct people toward those Osprey military books for a kind of 'cliff notes' version of history as relates to a particular region or type of warriors. It's probably the quickest way for people to get up to speed.

    G

    I actually bought your book on the Baltic. It's very good.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Max_Killjoy View Post
    I actually bought your book on the Baltic. It's very good.
    Well, it's got a pretty decent bibliography at the end. Certainly better than anything I ever posted here. Not a bad starting point.

    Beyond Central / Northern Europe though. Jacob Burckhardts Civilization of the Renaissance in Italy is probably the best single book I know of on the Late Medieval Italian Renaissance (he invented the concept after all). Fairly readable too.

    Henry Pirenne is probably the "go to guy' for Urban Flanders / The Low Countries. Good history of Europe too. Also readable (and reasonably succinct). His "Mohammed and Charlemagne" is also really interesting for the Carolingian period.

    Jan Dlugosz is without a doubt the best guy for the history of Medieval Poland - and the best single primary source I have ever found for the period. He's basically the medieval Herodotus. A primary source that reads like a particularly well written contemporary book. But that is not an easy book to get a hold of.

    Not sure of a single good source for the Iberian Peninsula, or France, or England, or Scotland or the Balkans, or the Byzantine Empire, or Hungary. maybe some other folks can chime in on that.

    Thanks, by the way :)

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    Default Re: Got a Real-World Weapon, Armor or Tactics Question? Mk. XXV

    Quote Originally Posted by Galloglaich View Post
    Primer on what specifically? Medieval history in general?
    Quote Originally Posted by Galloglaich View Post
    Yeah sadly I don't think there is such a thing. The closest you can really get is a good book on a particular region across a particular period of time, usually no more than a century or two, or else it's kind of meaningless. I have found one decent, relatively succinct book for the Holy Roman Empire in the "later middle ages" as the guy puts it.

    this is probably the best relatively succinct history of medieval warfare I know of. The next step would be perhaps to go to Hans Delbruck, but he is not succinct.



    But beyond that, you'd really have to specify a region and a 2 or 3 century time span.

    For example I also wrote my own book about Northwest Europe in the Baltic region, for the mid 15th Century (on my sig). I like to think it's pretty good. But part of the reason I wrote it is I wanted to read this type of book on that part of the world, but could never find anything like this in English.

    One of the biggest problems in understanding the Medieval World is that England is not Albania is not Florence is not Krakow. Europe was quite varied back then so you can't really make sweeping statements.

    The other reason it's hard is that almost all of our pop culture or 'lite education' derived assumptions about the period are wrong, and there is so much that is just unexpected, so it's a very steep learning curve to even get a basic grip on it.


    I often direct people toward those Osprey military books for a kind of 'cliff notes' version of history as relates to a particular region or type of warriors. It's probably the quickest way for people to get up to speed.

    G
    Yeah as someone over on the same forum where this is happening it's frustrating to see. This thread has really changed how i view things. I've actually been offering to point them over here myself because you guys can go over nearly anything given the right questions.

    Talking of which 2 things i'm going to put forth 1 related 1 unreleased.

    I gave my own very broad response to said poster based on various discussions we've had here in the past, but because it's an amalgamation of a number of semi-related discussions here i'd like to check i've taken the right lessons away from them by cross checking what i wrote with you lot, (though i acknowledge it's undoubtedly a massive simplification of an enormously complex subject):

    Yes he's seriously arguing that because it's true. Certainly some specific techniques where lost but we gained far more newstuff than was lost. I can point you a thread over at the GITP forums where numerous historians will be more than willing to go over any examples you care the bring up.

    The reason people tend to see it that way is the breakdown of the strong society that existed beforehand, but it wasn't really tech loss that caused that but the breakdown of the roman empire as a governing body. COmpared to later feudal systems the roman empire was much better, (general;y, exceptions exist), at organising things, probably because the roman empire had a strong central authority with a firm "chain of command", despite what hollywood would teach you Feudal systems where generally much more lose, the king in reality wasn't usually an absolute monarch but rather rules with the consent of his lords. As a result he had to give them a lot of autonomy which made things less coordinated as every lord did some things his own way.


    The second point is a touch of world building i'm engaging in, doubt i'll go anywhere with it as it would mean writing a full on romance in detail and i'm not really comfortable doing that for many reasons, but i enjoy world building for the hell of it so i'm going to ask the odd question anyway. When talking about greek, (or other classical nations worshiping the greek gods), what would the most probable weapons be for a king, (in the terms of symbol of authority sense, sort of a greek Excalibur, i just specifically want to avoid swords), i figured a spear would be the most obvious but i was wondering if there were alternatives?

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    Quote Originally Posted by Carl View Post





    The second point is a touch of world building i'm engaging in, doubt i'll go anywhere with it as it would mean writing a full on romance in detail and i'm not really comfortable doing that for many reasons, but i enjoy world building for the hell of it so i'm going to ask the odd question anyway. When talking about greek, (or other classical nations worshiping the greek gods), what would the most probable weapons be for a king, (in the terms of symbol of authority sense, sort of a greek Excalibur, i just specifically want to avoid swords), i figured a spear would be the most obvious but i was wondering if there were alternatives?
    Talking about symbols, rather than weapons, I would say the sceptre. In the Iliad, there is a sceptre that is passed around during assembly, and is only given to kings, and it gives you the right to speak. It can also be used to beat up people who talk without holding it.

    I remember reading about helms with three crests, like those on certain statues of Athena. I am not sure that it was a kingly symbol, but it looked impressive and must have been costly.

    The Argeades had a star as a symbol.

    The obvious problem is that, during classical Greece, kings were something of an oddity. Later on, during the Hellenistic period, you have talk of "doryktetos chora", "spear-conquered land", and the weapon of the king is the spear held by his soldiers. However, it could be quite literal: Alexander threw his spear at Asia when he first got there, to show that it was his prize.

    I would go with the spear also because one of the reconstructions of the Augustus of Prima Porta has him holding a spear as a symbol of military authority, and one equestrian statue of one of the good emperors had him hold a spear pointing downwards to signify the end of the war.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Carl View Post
    The second point is a touch of world building i'm engaging in, doubt i'll go anywhere with it as it would mean writing a full on romance in detail and i'm not really comfortable doing that for many reasons, but i enjoy world building for the hell of it so i'm going to ask the odd question anyway. When talking about greek, (or other classical nations worshiping the greek gods), what would the most probable weapons be for a king, (in the terms of symbol of authority sense, sort of a greek Excalibur, i just specifically want to avoid swords), i figured a spear would be the most obvious but i was wondering if there were alternatives?
    As mentioned, there were few kings in the Classical era (there were tyrants, by they were a different thing), they were a post-Alexander Hellenistic thing. "Barbarian" places like Makedonia always had kings, of course, but that was terribly un-Greek of them.

    The symbol of Hellenistic kingship wasn't a weapon or throne, but the diadem. A circlet of fabric worn around the head. Otherwise there's Zeus' lightning bolts (since he was the "king of the gods") or one of the many depictions of Zeus as a bull or swan. Or if a king claims heredity to an ancient hero, a depiction of that hero (like Herakles wearing a lion skin carrying a club). All of which could be featured on the king's personal banner and painted on his shield.
    Last edited by Kiero; 2018-06-14 at 04:44 AM.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Galloglaich View Post
    It appears in inventory of items received in trade from Swedish towns or castles, or from Finnish castles.

    G
    Would love to hear the place it came from whenever you got time to dig it up.

    Quote Originally Posted by KarlMarx View Post
    Does anyone here know anything about the military technology and social-military organization of pre-Swedish Finland c. 1000 CE? Or know of any links to where I might find information on said military tech and organization? I'm working on building a campaign setting inspired by this culture but am finding it hard to do in-depth research.
    I don't doubt it's hard. Few people are very interested in it, including us living there. Can you be more specific on what you wonder about, maybe jogs some things loose in my brain. It's also not something covered much in school.

    Just incredibly briefly you'd expect to see similar things as the rest of the region. Iron age warriors (it's not entirely off to say we were around 2 centuries behind rest of Europe in many regards), small communities headed by chiftens and local kings. Usually concentrated to areas close to the sea and rivers. Much older forms of agriculture was practiced still like burning swaths of forest. I don't know the Englsih name of it.

    At around this time (IIRC) there is a migration of Swedish speaking peasants to the coastal regions. The formal conquering comes about 2 centuries later. Christianity is tentatively making inroads. Around 10km from me is one of the oldest stonechurch in Finland from the early 1200s. Maybe I should pop over to the local museum, I hear Thursday is free entry day (dang, 1st Thursday of month need to wait a bit then).

    Not sure how much really is known of the culture. When people talk of Ye Olde Finnish culture it's Kalevala all the way and that's oral stories from the 19th century (passed down over the centuries as oral tradition, but unlikely to have avoided other influence down the years) eastern Finland which are likely not connected much with the other parts.
    Last edited by snowblizz; 2018-06-14 at 06:47 AM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by snowblizz View Post

    Not sure how much really is known of the culture. When people talk of Ye Olde Finnish culture it's Kalevala all the way and that's oral stories from the 19th century (passed down over the centuries as oral tradition, but unlikely to have avoided other influence down the years) eastern Finland which are likely not connected much with the other parts.
    That said, Kalevala is a fantastic source for RPG type stuff: spells, creatures, characters, adventure hooks and situations. Great evocative poetry - it's very Tolkein-esque. Great for any campaign set in a woodland setting.

    Between that and the Volsunga Saga you have almost everything you need for a really wild and magical early medieval setting.

    For more prosaic (but still interesting) histories of the region, you can also read the Chronicles of Novgorod, especially for the border areas around Karelia etc.

    Also look at that Olaus Magnus map I posted for the archers on skis, ice skates and war-reindeer and so forth.

    G
    Last edited by Galloglaich; 2018-06-14 at 10:00 AM.
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    Default Re: Got a Real-World Weapon, Armor or Tactics Question? Mk. XXV

    Why do people no longer make pizza dish/topside/inverted mags on firarms. Everything seems belt fed or on the underside.


    Bizen/p90's are an exception, but they're not popular designs.

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    There are three primary reasons.

    First, the standard bottom-loading magazines are driven entirely by the pressure of the spring and the shape of the magazine itself, so that gravity plays no part. Meanwhile, a top-loading magazine has a small but real possibility of gravity pulling the round down as it loads. For this reason, those sorts of magazine are slightly less reliable than the more common ones unless significant engineering effort is made to ensure this can't happen.

    Second, a top-loading magazine will either interfere with the weapon's sights (if you're using a pan or stick magazine) or else be somewhat cumbersome to change (for helical magazines or the fancy direction-changing ones the P90 uses - changing the magazine is a noted drawback of these weapons). A bottom-mount is out of the way, and access is fairly convenient.

    The third reason is that bottom-mount is the standard. Even discounting STANAG and equivalent interchangeability standards, a factory set up to produce one type of bottom-mount box magazine can easily make a slightly different type with minimal retooling. A different type will require more work to set up production.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Vinyadan View Post
    Talking about symbols, rather than weapons, I would say the sceptre. In the Iliad, there is a sceptre that is passed around during assembly, and is only given to kings, and it gives you the right to speak. It can also be used to beat up people who talk without holding it.

    I remember reading about helms with three crests, like those on certain statues of Athena. I am not sure that it was a kingly symbol, but it looked impressive and must have been costly.

    The Argeades had a star as a symbol.

    The obvious problem is that, during classical Greece, kings were something of an oddity. Later on, during the Hellenistic period, you have talk of "doryktetos chora", "spear-conquered land", and the weapon of the king is the spear held by his soldiers. However, it could be quite literal: Alexander threw his spear at Asia when he first got there, to show that it was his prize.

    I would go with the spear also because one of the reconstructions of the Augustus of Prima Porta has him holding a spear as a symbol of military authority, and one equestrian statue of one of the good emperors had him hold a spear pointing downwards to signify the end of the war.
    Quote Originally Posted by Kiero View Post
    As mentioned, there were few kings in the Classical era (there were tyrants, by they were a different thing), they were a post-Alexander Hellenistic thing. "Barbarian" places like Makedonia always had kings, of course, but that was terribly un-Greek of them.

    The symbol of Hellenistic kingship wasn't a weapon or throne, but the diadem. A circlet of fabric worn around the head. Otherwise there's Zeus' lightning bolts (since he was the "king of the gods") or one of the many depictions of Zeus as a bull or swan. Or if a king claims heredity to an ancient hero, a depiction of that hero (like Herakles wearing a lion skin carrying a club). All of which could be featured on the king's personal banner and painted on his shield.

    Cheers for the answer. When i say king it's more of a descriptive rather than specific title and its not necessarily hereditary, though it can be. Whilst the whole concept is based very loosely on greek themes i've got to emphasise the loosely, it's not really meant to be remotely historical and the cosmology is very different, it's probably about as greek as i'm led to believe Jim Butcher's Codex Alera series is roman. i.e. they both have a basis in classical cultures but play very loose and fast with it.

    The basic point of this weapon isn't that it's strictly a symbol of his authority in every respect but specifically his authority as a war leader who can call the other city states to war and will lead the combined forces in the field, (though this is very much in the sense of generalship, in the same way is true of the Olympians, the Lord of the Gods leads the armies, but once they came along Ares and Athena usurped other martial titles). It's based on Hephaestus's presentation of a weapon as an act of apology at Aphrodite and Hades wedding when the latter ascended to Lord of the Gods when Zeus and Hera formally retired from the roles, (though they remain gods of their respective domains and support and advise as requested their replacements).

    Whilst a gift of the appropriate weapon is common at most powerful nobles weddings it's especially important for the leader of the capital as many positions there are filled by the high priests and priestesses of various gods who are mostly chosen by the god or goddess in question. ades is a special exception, just as he became Lord of the Gods because Aphrodite chose him as her husband the high lord of the capital is chosen by the high priestess of aphrodite as her husband. He automatically becomes the high priest of hades in the process and gains all the appropriate godly blessings thereof, but he's not chosen directly by hades. That said no one's going to challenge their right to the rulership ethier, annoying the gods like that probably isn't a god idea and they're sufficiently blessed it's probably dangerous even without the gods taking a more direct hand.

    Hopefully that explains a bit better what it's supposed to encapsulates, (and highlights a significant cosmological difference or three along the way).

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    HalflingRangerGuy

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    Default Re: Got a Real-World Weapon, Armor or Tactics Question? Mk. XXV

    What's the future for firearms? seems like most of it's been very small refinements to reduce recoil/weight, and It doesn't look like there's much to really improve.

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    Default Re: Got a Real-World Weapon, Armor or Tactics Question? Mk. XXV

    Quote Originally Posted by The Jack View Post
    What's the future for firearms? seems like most of it's been very small refinements to reduce recoil/weight, and It doesn't look like there's much to really improve.
    Military firearms are a mature technology. I think mostly small advances in material science and engineering will do things like improve weapon life, ease of cleaning, accuracy etc.

    There will be more or better add-ons, like the grenade launchers you see now.

    Integration into some kind of overall weapons system / HUD / computer-aided aiming system is probably happening right now or is in the field for all I know. I think that's likely to be the biggest advance and it's not directly about the firearm. I heard about some computer system that allows rookies shoot rifles at qualified sniper-level accuracy so the concept already works in certain (non-battlefield) conditions.

    There's potential for caseless ammunition or maybe liquid propellant down the track, obviously these technologies have drawbacks or they'd already be in production since conceptually they've been around for a while.
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    Re: 100 Things to Beware of that Every DM Should Know

    Quote Originally Posted by Jay R View Post
    93. No matter what the character sheet say, there are only 3 PC alignments: Lawful Snotty, Neutral Greedy, and Chaotic Backstabbing.

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    Default Re: Got a Real-World Weapon, Armor or Tactics Question? Mk. XXV

    The largest difference from classical Greece I see is that Ancient Greece didn't have a priestly caste like Egypt or Persia. Priests tended to be either city magistrates, or people whose family had been hereditarily handling certain local rites, but otherwise lived ordinary lives.
    I am not sure about how one became priest in a large sanctuary outside of a city, like Olympia, Delphi, or Samos.

    @Galloglaich, thank you for the answer. That at least partially explains why the Hansa has something of an iridescent aura around it, when it comes up. The thing about Brandenburg going for a seignory opposed to cities also is interesting. I am used to the Italian model of seignories taking over from cities, after the cities have submitted the surrounding area. But, after all, Savoy must have been a bit like Brandenburg, too -- a non-urban noble house, whose lands expanded until they comprised and submitted large cities.

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    Default Re: Got a Real-World Weapon, Armor or Tactics Question? Mk. XXV

    Quote Originally Posted by The Jack View Post
    What's the future for firearms? seems like most of it's been very small refinements to reduce recoil/weight, and It doesn't look like there's much to really improve.
    The core problem is that recoil and stopping power and weapon weight are at least somewhat interlinked, so there's not a lot they can do to improve the punch of man portable ballistics, at least below the crew served weapon level. Crew served weapon have a fair bit of room to expand as tech improves because recoil isn't the limiting factor there, (as with personal kit), rather it's the weapon weight, (for a weapon with a practical sustained RoF), and to a degree ammunition weight in terms of things like cases and belts.

    The potential for powered exoskeletons or outright powered armour will probably lead to some significant changes one day, but that tech isn't remotely mature enough yet, (building the actual armour/exoskeleton sure, a viable power source however is another matter entirely). Once it arrives though the ability to heft so much more weight is going to have noticeable effects. The only other potential big change is if something causes one or more of the geneva convention statues on acceptable ammunition types to be repealed, you'd undoubtedly see a long period of frenzied development of new military ammunition types as a result.

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    PaladinGuy

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    Default Re: Got a Real-World Weapon, Armor or Tactics Question? Mk. XXV

    Quote Originally Posted by Vinyadan View Post
    The largest difference from classical Greece I see is that Ancient Greece didn't have a priestly caste like Egypt or Persia. Priests tended to be either city magistrates, or people whose family had been hereditarily handling certain local rites, but otherwise lived ordinary lives.
    I am not sure about how one became priest in a large sanctuary outside of a city, like Olympia, Delphi, or Samos.
    You posted while i was typing so sorry for the double post.

    To clarify a little the various priests and priestesses of the gods in this case are more mortals picked out as earthly representatives. They're expected in very large part to do things their own way, but they're chosen for innately being in line with the god or goddess in question. It's more (at least in terms of the high priestess of Aphrodite and the High Priest of hades), of the gods picking out the rulers of the capital and their role as priest/priestess is more of a consequence of the fact that since they do know their god/goddesses will they innately fulfill the roles of communicating and interpreting the god/goddess in question, and whilst it's common for existing lesser priest/priestesses to be involved in the rituals that underpin the choosing of a new high one they're not strictly required and the new high priest/priestess is chosen from outside the existing lessers.

    Simply put whilst you can and there are judges, and doctors, and blacksmiths and rules, and middle managers, (not sure what the greek equivalent would be), who are not chosen out by the god in question in the capital, (and it's the de facto state of things in other city states),the higher ups are all chosen for their role. They're chosen by the god/goddess because they posses something within them that instantly aligns with the god or goddess in question.

    As a simple example when it's time to pick out a new high priest, (though for most god/goddesses genders can end up swapped, exceptions exist), of Hephaestus the capital will host a smithing competition where anyone not allready a priest or priestess is free to take part, they may and often do pare the numbers down by successive competitions and judgings of the output work until eventually amongst them Hephaestus sees one who embodies what he believes a smith should be most well and he'll invest power into them, depending on the god or goddess this will manifest different ways, for Hephaestus it will aid them in their smithing and allow them to imbue the blade, (or armour or whatever it is they smith), with mythical properties, somthing that will be innately and clearly obvious in the final product he produces, which is how everyone sees that he's Hephaestus's chosen and he'll then become the master smith and leaders of the smiths as a craftsmens trade within the capital.

    Does that explain what the priest/priestess moniker means a bit more clearly?

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