Help support TMP

"Danishmends - Deciding on an Army List" Topic

5 Posts

All members in good standing are free to post here. Opinions expressed here are solely those of the posters, and have not been cleared with nor are they endorsed by The Miniatures Page.

For more information, see the TMP FAQ.

Back to the Medieval Discussion Message Board

350 hits since 16 Feb 2017
©1994-2017 Bill Armintrout
Comments or corrections?

TheGoldyGopher16 Feb 2017 2:25 p.m. PST

I am looking for some guidance on choosing an Army List for the Emirate of Danishmends (circa 1096) for a couple of games we are contemplating playing.

There really isn't a whole lot of information available, online at least, that provides enough guidance to help with our query.

Short version, there are some correlations to Seljuk and because the Danishmends are a Turk Tribe. So the prevailing philosophy of our group is to use the Seljuk lists.
There is one downside to this discussion, the few tidbits we gleamed indicated that the Turcoman Tribes (Horse Archers) were no where near as prevalent in the Danishmends Army as they were in a Seljuk Force.

The only discussion I see on this list is old
TMP link

So any help is greatly appreciated.

Personal logo Great War Ace Supporting Member of TMP16 Feb 2017 2:51 p.m. PST

The way I did it:

The Turks of Asia Minor and Syria:
The First Crusade faced the Turks of Anatolia before they even reached the Holy Land. They defeated the Muslims mainly because of good luck and the disunity of the warring Danishmendid, Ortoqid and Seldjuk Turks. As they slowly marched across Asia Minor, the crusaders fought a number of battles against the skittish Turks, winning every time. Then they laid siege to the most important of the Turkish-held cities of Syria: Antioch; which they took after a long siege through the winter of 1097-98. After Antioch fell, the First Crusade marched on Jerusalem.

Turkish Armies
in Syria, Mesopotamia and Asia Minor
1000 to 1250 A D

Up to 40% Turkish cavalry:
up to 80% unarmored Turcoman volunteers, sword, lance, 2 javelins and bow 4 and 5. Morale: 00-59=D, 60-89=C, 90-99=B. REQUIRED UNIT.
up to 40% light Turcoman volunteers, as above.
up to 20% light and medium mameluk/askaris, sword, lance, 2 javelins and bow 4 and 5. Morale: 00-19=D, 20-69=C, 70-89=B, 90-99=A. REQUIRED UNIT.

Up to 80% Kurd-Arab militia and volunteers:
up to 40% unarmored cavalry, Bedouin-Kurd-Arab volunteers, sword, lance and 2 javelins. Morale: 00-69=D, 70-89=C, 90-99=B. REQUIRED UNIT.
up to 20% unarmored cavalry, Saracen horse-archers, sword, lance and bow 3. Morale as above.
up to 20% light cavalry, Saracens, as above.
up to 40% light cavalry, Syrian-Arab militia, lancers, sword, lance and 2 javelins. Morale: 00-39=D, 40-89=C, 90-99=B.
up to 35% medium cavalry, Syrian-Arab militia, as above.
up to 10% heavy cavalry, as above.

*Up to 50% militia infantry:
up to 60% unarmored spearmen, sword and spear/javelin. Morale: 00-59=D, 60-99=C.
up to 20% unarmored archers, sword and bow 2.Morale as above.
up to 10% unarmored archers, sword and bow 3.Morale as above.
up to 40% light spearmen, sword and spear/javelin (1/4 with 2 javelins). Morale as above.
up 10% light crossbow-men, sword and crossbow 2 OR naphatin*. Morale as above.
up to 15% medium spearmen, sword and spear/javelin. Morale as above.

Bow note: Turkish bow 5 may not exceed 15% of total Turkish bow. The rest are bow 4.

*Naphatin: These troops use either slings or special crossbows to hurl small "grenades" filled with naphtha. Use the Sling table in either case for range to kill: but any roll of 9-12 out to 20" against any armored class target will require a morale check on the hit figure, if it is not eliminated. If the figure is actually eliminated using the Sling table, then each figure in base contact with the eliminated -- "broiled" -- figure will make a morale check. Naphatin only shoot in open order, and only on every second turn.
(Naphatin cost 9.8 points for each 20mm base.)

Infantry are on 20mm bases in units of 16 or more figures. No intermixing of types, but intermixing of weights is allowed.
Cavalry are on 25mm bases: mameluks in units of 10; volunteers and others in units of 20 or more. No intermixing of types, but intermixing of weights is allowed.

Infantry tactics:
open and close order, column, square, shield-wall, phalanx (spear/javelin only), open and close order missile fire (naphatin open order only), pre-contact missile fire (spear/javelin only, in open order only).
Cavalry tactics:
open and close order, column, wheel, pivot (Turkish only), half charge, withdraw post combat, feigned rout, open and close order missile fire, checkerboard (Turkish only).

TheGoldyGopher17 Feb 2017 1:19 p.m. PST

Thank you for the detailed answer unfortunately it doesn't really answer my question.

It can be argued that the Danishmends are a distant relation to the Seljuks, the two dynasties (I think that is the correct term) were locked in conflict from 1070 to 1178.

The turcoman, the nomadic tribe of Turkic people originally from the region that is today called Turkmenistan, migrated, more of a forced resettlement, under the Great Seljuk Empire along the great roads on Northern Iran, Iraq, and Syria. The turcoman tribes do not arrive into Western Syria until the late 11th Century. The areas these nomads settle into is called Turkmeneli today. Stretching across northern Syria, Iraq and Iran.

For a short period of time the Turcoman appeared to have settled in the steppes of Georgia, South of Modern Tblisi. By the 1114 they were gone and the King of Georgia recruited 40,000 Cuman nomads to live in these regions.

The Turcoman Nomads do not appear to have ever settled in the rocky hilly landscape that dominates central Anatolia.

So as my colleague so clearly put the question, if the Danishmends were a "Seljuk" Turk style army, where would the thousands of Turcoman (or any other nomadic tribes) who fought for them actually come from? Mercenaries from Georgia or Syria? This brought me pause because I have a hard time seeing "enemies" providing troops.

The other part of the question is one that is even tougher to find answers for. The Danishmends were not destroyed in battle with the Sultanate of Rum (RUHM) even though there are dozens of battles. Most sources indicate that the Rum forces were substantially larger, so either the Danishmends were substantially better led buy thier commanders OR there was a difference in the force composition that stymied the larger forces in the Rum contingent. Both are legitimate answers.

1ngram24 Mar 2017 11:41 a.m. PST

My reading is that the Danishmends were not a tribe. They were originally ghazis who eventually developed into an identifiable state. They were certainly turks and spoke turkish. I think Cahen goes into this in his books and articles.

As for their relationms with other states they allied with them and or fought them in an often bewildering series of contests. Due to their location they were concerned with not merely the Seljuks of Rumm but also the Georgians, the Byzantines and the Ortoqids.

Personal logo Great War Ace Supporting Member of TMP24 Mar 2017 7:03 p.m. PST

My assumption has been that Danishmends and Seljuks are "Turks", or Turcoman in a generic use of the word. From a Frank point of view, or Byzantine for that matter, there is no functional difference between any of the Turkish armies; they all fight on horseback with the composite bow, doing evasive tactics, ambuscades, feigned routs and so forth. The composition of their armies varies little if at all over the extensive period we are "into" as wargamers………..

Sorry - only verified members can post on the forums.