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"What positions for the longbowmen figurines of the WOTR?" Topic

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14 Jan 2020 5:14 p.m. PST
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MacColla30 Nov 2019 8:25 a.m. PST

Paskal, speaking from experience as a weekend archer, how exactly do you envisage putting a longbow over – or on – the shoulder?

You say "if they could"; I find it difficult to imagine the archers packing away their bows before joining in a melee.

I find it even more difficult to imagine anyone joining in a melee encumbered with a six feet longbow on their back. That really is a ridiculous idea!

Warspite130 Nov 2019 3:23 p.m. PST


Thank you!


Paskal Supporting Member of TMP01 Dec 2019 6:41 a.m. PST

@ MacColla & Warspite1 :

In the last century, I read in "Longbow: A Social and Military History of Robert Hardy" that the length of the longbow wood should be equal to the size of the longbowman and that the length of the longbw rope corresponded to the longbowman "span"…

Thus, your longbowman will not be encumbered with a six-foot long bow on his back, for even if the wood of his long bow was six feet, his longbow with his rope, would not be six feet long but practically the length of the span of the longbowman.

Forget what you just read, I see your point of view, frankly, I almost agree with that.

As I have not known any longbowmen of the WOTR and I have never shot myself with a bow, I bow to the best knowledge.

Nevertheless as like someone suggested it at the beginning of this topic, now I doubt that the longbowmen fought in melee and I suggest that the longbowmen fled if they could or at best stood apart slow-moving troops – M.A.A. and billmen – and shot them from afar, but once again I would bow to the experience of a longbowman of the WOTR.

Warspite103 Dec 2019 2:23 p.m. PST

If troops were on the battlefield they were expected to fight.
The fact that many longbowmen also carried the small steel shield called a buckler also implies that they were expected to fight.


Paskal Supporting Member of TMP03 Dec 2019 10:24 p.m. PST

@ Warspite1 :

Well in this case, when it happened we do not know
not what they did of their longbows …

Matheo05 Dec 2019 9:34 a.m. PST

Why wouldn't they hand them over to few selected "carriers", maybe even camp followers, and rejoin the fight with melee weapons?

dapeters05 Dec 2019 10:27 a.m. PST

Warspite1 you of the school that Longbowmen particularly livery, were used offensively as melee troops?

Paskal Supporting Member of TMP06 Dec 2019 9:08 a.m. PST


They would not have time …


They are used in defensive and flee the melee, no other solutions.

Matheo07 Dec 2019 8:30 a.m. PST

Why? Imagine this:
- archers step forward, start shooting
- they run out of arrows, or the lines close. Either way, archers retire behind MAA and billmen
- while the lines clash, and melee tropps engage in fighting, archers deposit their bows arm themselves and rejoin the fight.
I see no problem with timing

Paskal Supporting Member of TMP08 Dec 2019 11:18 p.m. PST

@ Matheo :

It's not a problem of timing but I find it weird, I think they systematically avoid melee.

dapeters09 Dec 2019 9:48 a.m. PST

@Matheo kind of a supporting role

MajorB09 Dec 2019 11:41 a.m. PST

I think they systematically avoid melee.

Why would they avoid melee seeing as they are equipped with melee weapons?

dapeters09 Dec 2019 12:21 p.m. PST

A buckler and shield is no match for bill.

Paskal Supporting Member of TMP10 Dec 2019 11:56 p.m. PST

@ dapeters:

Yes a kind of a supporting role.

@MajorB :

Because a buckler and a shield are no match for a bill.

Warspite111 Dec 2019 2:10 p.m. PST

Yes. I do think Retinue bow fought, Welsh tribal bows might have skirmished and then fallen back. Shire levy would certainly take a morale test!

I think we suffer from the fact that, as wargamers, we have to classify and grade everything – bowman, billman, slinger, crossbowman, etc. In fact the chief classification was just: 'soldier'. All else was detail. As an example, when the 10,000 Greek hoplites were retreating out of Persian territory and found they needed slingers to out-range hostile native javelinmen, about 1000 Rhodian hoplites – with slinging experience – just dropped their armour and long spears and changed roles. They adapted to the circumstance to survive. Why? They were soldiers first, not 'hoplites'.

Switching to the WOTR… the longbows move to the front and begin trading fire with the other side's longbow. The arrows start to run out (typically there were only 24 per man) OR one side gets the worst of the archery and decides to melee instead. Suddenly one or both sides are closing. The billmen either move to the front or the longbows move back. The melee starts and every man (billman or longbowman) is going to be needed to fight. Why? Because the enemy is now near enough to spit on them; both sides are fighting to survive; and each side knows that the first side to turn and run will get hacked in the back as they turn and try to run away.
At this point any longbowman who tries to say: "I am a longbowman and I don't do fighting" will be either laughed at, scorned or thrown head-first into the ranks of the enemy with the words: "You are here to fight" ringing in his ears.
As wargamers we complicate things far too much!

If longbowmen carried swords and bucklers then they intended to use them. [I agree with MajorB's last answer]

also @ dapeters
I have watched re-enactors fighting with sword and buckler (S&B). It is fast and furious. I have also seen Sikh ritual sword and buckler fighting, it was even faster and far more furious! There were sparks coming off the bucklers when they were struck.


S&B is a flexible and very responsive combo of attack and defence.

If you put one S&B man against one billman then I would say 'even odds'. Where a difference might be found is if a group of billmen fought a group of sword and buckler. The bills might have an advantage due to length and mutual co-operation. But remember that if the buckler is used to deflect the bill's point and the S&B man is running/charging, then once the S&B man is past the bill blade the billman is virtually defenceless except for using the shaft like a quarter-staff.
Remember also that Spanish S&B men were used to go under the points of the pike (much longer than bills) in the early 16th century, throwing themselves under, if necessary. But once past the point, the shorter weapon has advantage. It then becomes a 'knife fight in a phone box' and the shorter weapon always has the advantage.


dapeters12 Dec 2019 9:17 a.m. PST

Thanks Barry, but at the risk of splitting hairs their not soldiers, they are at best warriors. They are self determining fighters and when not being used to fight battles their enforcers for their employers. Happy to stab or shoot some peasant. On the battle field the true killers are the men at arms (which everyone has in the back of their mind.) Skirmishing sure, because it small groups. Battle lines is something different. A buckler is almost used offensively but again no real help against a line of bills. A long Bill is maybe 8 feet more like 6 they way used them in a battle line was like a spear. Those pikes a hundred years later were 16 to 21 feet and the Spanish could get underneath them. Bills are too short for that. So in your example you might parry a Bill thrust (but it is your one arm against the other guys two) but you know expose to the second Bills. Your principally weapon is your bow the Guy with the pole arms…I think there is no issue with being in support I just don't them marching up to men at arms or billmen like Tommy's in the Sommes.

Charlie12 Dec 2019 11:00 a.m. PST

Of course not – you wouldn't put a line of sword&buckler armed archers in front of a mass of polearms and expect them to come out the winners.

But the archers with their swords and bucklers (and possibly picking up polearms too?????) being part of the big mob of mostly polearm-equipped men makes sense.

Paskal Supporting Member of TMP13 Dec 2019 1:08 a.m. PST

@ All :

Yes longbowmen shoot and avoid close combat, that's logical.

Charlie13 Dec 2019 10:06 a.m. PST

What about the English forces in France during the last decades of the 100 years war, which often considered almost entirely of archers, with a very small number of men-at-arms?

Were they expected to never fight hand-to-hand?

(Though yes, I'm aware as has been discussed in one of these threads, that the armies sent to France could be considered of a very different quality to the masses of troops quickly raised for certain WOTR batles).

Paskal Supporting Member of TMP13 Dec 2019 11:51 p.m. PST

@Charlie :

Well yes, I see that you remember, how it was discussed in one of these threads, that the armies sent to France could be considered of a very different quality and organization from the rapidly raised masses of troops of the WOTR battles

Warspite115 Dec 2019 2:28 a.m. PST

@dapeters – Yes, you are splitting hairs. Soldier/warrior, terrorist/freedom fighter. They mean the same.
I have seen re-enactors in combat and one bill versus one S&B is very even, especially if the bill is armoured. The S&B man can be very quick on his feet.
Bills have some advantage in mass, as do spears, pikes and bayonets. Once you are beyond the first contact phase, when the melee has broken into groups, fast-moving, lesser armoured longbow have advantages. This was proved at Agincourt!

@Charlie – I totally agree with your last answer.

@Paskal – And how do they avoid close combat? The fighting is already upon them. If they run, they risk starting a rout or being cut down by their own cavalry which were stationed behind to prevent people leaving.

The one excavated gravepit at Towton (1461) has revealed 40 to 41 bodies of which 25% have the anatomical changes associated with being longbowmen.
ALL OF THEM died from hand-to-hand injuries. Mostly legs, head and face. Some defensive (hand and arm injuries) testify that they were facing their attackers.
None were shot dead although two had suspected arrow wounds.

I strongly suggest Paskal re-reads my answer and (like a lot of wargamers) stops thinking about ancient and medieval armies in terms of 'one role' and thinking about them as soldiers, warriors or whatever term you use.

When the chips are down and the enemy is coming at him, the longbowman will reach for his sword or axe and buckler and he fights to save his life. He does not stand there and say: "I am a longbowman, I don't do sword stuff…."


Paskal Supporting Member of TMP15 Dec 2019 11:22 p.m. PST

@ Warspite1 :

If the longbowmen are light infantry, they did not have to fight in melee or then it was the massacre as at the Battle of Saint Aubin du Cormier:

TMP link

Now they could face in melee opposing archers, crossbowmen or hangunners and others troops not specialized in melee…

Warspite116 Dec 2019 3:07 a.m. PST

You have not answered my question.
HOW do they avoid close combat?
Do they go on strike and say: "we shoot, we don't fight"?
Do they run away and risk starting a rout or risk being cut down by their own light cavalry stationed behind the army to prevent people from leaving?

And if they refused to close combat, why did they carry swords and bucklers?
Why carry something they will not use?

I suggest that you are being blinded by their title – longbowmen – but you are forgetting they are soldiers first. Soldiers fight, that is what they do.

I do not see any significance in the TMP link which you provided:


dapeters16 Dec 2019 9:51 a.m. PST

Warspite and Charlie

These are not regimented soldiers.

'When the chips are down and the enemy is coming at him, the longbowman will reach for his sword or axe and buckler and he fights to save his life. He does not stand there and say: "I am a longbowman, I don't do sword stuff…."

First looking for my horse second throwing my kit down and running like hell.

Again I don't think we are really disagreeing. Yes they Liveried archers were equipped to fight, some individuals might have even been relatively good with sword and buckler. But aside from going at other Archers, poorly equip leveys and troops all ready disorder/shaken the best you might hope for is a support role.

Charlie16 Dec 2019 9:59 a.m. PST


Well sure yes, supporting the men-at-arms.
Remember we don't really know how men-at-arms and archers were deployed together. But assuming they were close to each other, doesn't it make sense that the men-at-arms would be in the thick of the melee, and the archers there in, as you said, a 'support role'?

Warspite117 Dec 2019 5:00 a.m. PST


Most of the major battles – Towton, Barnet, Tewkesbury, etc – appear to had been decided after an extended melee. In the case of Towton a VERY extended melee.

Are we to suggest that the billmen and foot knights fought in the front ranks while the longbow stood behind and did nothing? Twiddled their thumbs? Played dice?
Worse, if they start 'running like hell' then panic is infectious and the rest of the unit will run as well. As men from the same estates, the same towns, the same farms, the bill and bow men were related and all knew each other. The longbow would not be popular if they did not take part, less popular if they fled.
The medieval Swiss used to hang the first man to run. While not recorded as a practice in England I am quite sure that a coward would soon be found dead if/when everyone went home. Medieval communities were close-knit, it would be social death for a longbowman to even think of running.

In most ancient and medieval armies troops were stationed to the rear as provost guards, to prevent back sliders. That is the role which would be best suited to the hobilars, scourers and custrells. Security screen to the rear to stop friends leaving, a rear guard and a mounted reserve to chase the enemy when they break and run.

I am quite sure that longbowmen were in the back ranks by the time the melee started, having either actioned back or been passed through by the bill. Then it is EVERYBODY'S fight, with the billman in the front and the longbow – with weapons drawn – supporting the bills to their front or else running around the flanks to attack the side of the enemy, and probably encountering the enemy's longbow trying to do the same thing!


Paskal Supporting Member of TMP17 Dec 2019 5:49 a.m. PST

@ Warspite1:

But if, because at the battle of Saint Aubin du Cormier in 1488, the English longbowmen were massacred in close combat during their flight and there was no survivor.

In recognition they were raised a monument.

You didn't find the link … here it is!


Longbowmen are not made for hand-to-hand combat and they should therefore avoid it at all costs …

But if they couldn't, what did they do with their longbows?

Those of Saint Aubin du Cormier threw them away so as not to clutter up?

Or fled with it?

For the melee if they should not be in a separate unit, they occupy the last ranks and are partly protected by melee combat specialists from the first ranks ..?

Very good but then to shoot they were at first ranks of the unit and when the melee was coming, they interpenetrated the ranks of MAA and billmen behind them to find themselves in the rear of the unit?

LOL? "Is that the Roman legion" ???

First we should know the formations and know how many ranks were trained this type of unit?

But if they were in separate units, as at the battle of Saint Aubin du Cormier in 1488, for them close combat was to be avoided …

Charlie17 Dec 2019 8:15 a.m. PST

Yes, I don't think it's unreasonable to imagine them dropping back through the ranks of men-at-arms, or the latter advancing through them.

And I'm sure sometimes they did get massacred, especially if unsupported by men-at-arms! But one instance of that happening isn't proof that they always avoided combat.

dapeters17 Dec 2019 9:41 a.m. PST

when I say supporting they have (I presumed)dropped their bows and pull their swords or other hand one handed weapons along with any bucklers. Following up behind Men at arms or billmen, sure, adding rank pressure so to speak. But also looting and dispatching fallen enemy. A couple young idiots might have tried to get to the front. But the second they see the same men at arms or billmen turning around the longbowmen would be out of there.

The Swiss are very unique in this period they have elaborate swearing in ceremonies were they explicitly stated that they will keep a breast of the man on the left as well as the right, that if the man in front falls they will step into the that rank. That they will obey their officers and loot only when given permission, that failure to do any of these things (and a couple others) will result in a field execution. The close you get to this is some of the religious orders oaths. Your longbow might have a indenture.

dapeters17 Dec 2019 9:47 a.m. PST

I too have wonder about a leader sending off parts of his retinue. Because if he dismounts then is men arms can be supported by the lesser dismounted melee troops. With archers it becomes more complicated.

Warspite117 Dec 2019 6:11 p.m. PST


You have still not answered the basic question. In a mixed unit how are the longbowmen going to avoid fighting? Their friends are fighting one or two metres away from them.

And yes, I know that some longbowmen were massacred in one battle. They could have died because of a flank attack, been pinned against a river or simply got in each other's way. You cannot assume that they died just because they were longbowmen!

Meanwhile… I spent all afternoon on this…

TMP link

Paskal Supporting Member of TMP17 Dec 2019 11:39 p.m. PST

@ Warspite1 :

Each time the longbowmen are in a separate unit, they are destroyed if they are taken in close combat.

If they are not in separate units, they are in the front ranks to shoot and then how do they find shelter when the melee is going to start?

In this type of unit, they should therefore interpenetrate the rear ranks of their units…

Also given the era and the types of troops, I don't think it was the type of unit that was used.

We do not even know what formations were used and therefore on how many ranks they were fighting …

The question is not about the number of longbowmen in an English army but "What positions for the longbowmen figurines of the WOTR?" …

Warspite118 Dec 2019 4:28 a.m. PST


Your latest reply is a series of sweeping generalisations.

"Each time the longbowmen are in a separate unit, they are destroyed if they are taken in close combat."
How do you know that? You don't. You base this on the one battle you quote where longbowmen were killed. Other factors may have applied.

"how do they find shelter when the melee is going to start?"
They do not, they take part in the fight. This is what I have been saying and you repeatedly ignore. They are armed for fighting and they are noted as fighting at Agincourt, etc. I have just found reference (in the House of Beaufort) to English longbowmen, in Paris, being employed to make arrests and control crowds. They are not just paid to shoot, they are general purpose soldiers.

"Also given the era and the types of troops, I don't think it was the type of unit that was used."
Read the Walter Strickland retinue which I have repeatedly posted which is a 50/50 bill and bow unit.

See: TMP link

"The question is not about the number of longbowmen in an English army but "What positions for the longbowmen figurines of the WOTR?"
They deploy at the front to shoot during the opening phases of the battle and then either the billmen move through or the bowmen fall back. Either way the longbowmen then fight because that is their other function.
This is also confirmed by Henry VIII's army where 60%bill and 40% longbow were mixed in the same units and Tudor writers who said the best place for a longbowman was with a stout bill (meaning billman) at his back.

Paskal I know English may not be your first language but if you ask for information and then argue against the information you are given then I see no point in continuing to reply to you.

[finally head butts keyboard and walks off to read books]


Paskal Supporting Member of TMP18 Dec 2019 6:28 a.m. PST

@ Warspite1

If they are not in mixed units they were massacred in more than one battle because of the lightness of their equipment and I cited the Battle of Saint Aubin du Cormier because I know it well and because that's what happened because they weren't in mixed units.

In this case if during WOTR, the units are mixed, Longbowmen, M.A.A. then billmen, after their shots the longbowmen interpenetrate the M.A.A and billmen (if the M.A.A. are part of these units) who are behind them at the start of the fight to form the rear ranks …

On on how many ranks were formed these mixed units?

Warspite118 Dec 2019 6:42 a.m. PST

You win, I leave…

Good bye.

Charlie18 Dec 2019 10:16 a.m. PST

You tried your best.

Paskal Supporting Member of TMP19 Dec 2019 2:57 a.m. PST

As you know the longbowmen figurines for WOTR, there is no shortage in the trade, but they are sometimes in positions not very useful…

First of all, in a unit of longbowmen figurines for WOTR, should they all be in the same position?

For example, in a longbowmen unit that shoots, does everyone shoot at the same time?

How do you organize your longbowmen figures in a unit?

Longbowmen were sometimes forced to fight in melee and yet we do not find longbowmen figurines in melee?

How did they fight during WOTR?

You will say to me with their swords, their daggers, with sometimes the "boce" or "Bocθte" sometimes called "rondelle ΰ poing " in fact what there is in general on the figurine, but not of other weapons as sometimes during the HYW?

In fact, as they were poorly protected and their shields were tiny, the melee was to be a real massacre for the longbowmen when they were forced into close combat.

But some might think that the longbowmen avoided melee and leaving this kind of activity to the M.A.A and the billmen, taking refuge behind them, whether the combat units are "mixed" or not …

Already would have to know how were formed and on how many ranks were deployed the units in combat during the WOTR.

Warspite119 Dec 2019 3:56 a.m. PST


Paskal asks detailed questions – for which we have no detailed answers – and then he ignores the few answers which I can give him or denies the existence of mixed units already proved by the few documentary sources we do have (Strickland etc).

Researching my other thread, about 15th century retinues, I have now found some contemporary illustrations which Paskal might like to look at…

Osprey Warrior No 11 – English Longbowmen 1330 – 1515.
Page 9 – ten Burgundian longbowmen in a line with stakes in front and 9 billmen standing behind them. Illustration has been dated to 1465-1485.
(the same picture is also repeated [smaller] in Osprey
Armies of Medieval Burgundy page 32)

Page 54 – drawing from the Beauchamp Chronicle (circa 1480)
English longbowmen in a line shooting with billmen (actually a partisan is visible) standing behind them.

Additionally Burgundian mixed pike and bow are shown in colour plate J in Osprey Warrior 11 – English Longbowmen 1330 – 1515.

Given that Burgundian longbowmen were often English and they followed other English practices such as having stakes I think we can conclude that mixed bill and bow WAS an established practice.

It is also worth mentioning that the Burgundians even had a drill (shown in J) for pikemen to kneel while the longbow fired over their heads. There is no record of such a drill in England so – in my Bills, Bows and Bloodshed rules – I only allow Burgundian bows to shoot over one rank Burgundian pike at full effect.

Thank you for your interest and support Charlie!


Paskal Supporting Member of TMP20 Dec 2019 3:31 a.m. PST

@ Warspite1:

LOL – So you were gone but you come back anyway ???

In short you come and go? LOL … But let's go …

I never said that mixed units did not exist, but that it was not systematic …

We should discuss the organization of mixed units or no of the combat during the WOTR, their constitution in terms of deployment and especially number of ranks,the place of each type of combatant in these mixed unit according to his social rank, his type of armament ect …

Very important to understand certain things.

Warspite121 Dec 2019 2:55 p.m. PST

I was replying to Charlie, not Paskal.

20 Dec 2019 3:31 a.m. PST: Paskal said: "I never said that mixed units did not exist"

But on 17 Dec 2019 11:39 p.m. PST: Paskal also said: "Also given the era and the types of troops, I don't think it was the type of unit that was used."

And on 01 Dec 2019 6:41 a.m. PST: "the longbowmen fled if they could or at best stood apart slow-moving troops – M.A.A. and billmen"


Charlie, and others, may care to note that I have asked repeated questions of Paskal, which he REFUSES to answer or acknowledge (see my various replies above) and when I finally provide page references to 15th century illustrations which prove my point Paskal ignores those as well.

I feel my limited time would be better spent trying to make a chocolate teapot or nail jelly to a wall.


Paskal Supporting Member of TMP22 Dec 2019 5:41 a.m. PST

@ Warspite1:

LOL – So you left, then came back and you leave again, what are all these comings and goings ???

One day we will have to find a text describing exactly the WOTR english infantry formations in number of ranks and types of troops.

Druzhina23 Dec 2019 10:35 p.m. PST
Paskal Supporting Member of TMP24 Dec 2019 7:45 a.m. PST

@ Druzhina:

Thank you Druzhina, but the army of the Duchy of Burgundy is not an English army of the WOTR.

@ to others :

According to Jean Le Fθvre de Saint-Remy, who fought for the english at Agincourt, record how there the archers' quited their stakes, threw down their bows and arrows and, seizing their swords, axes and other weapons, sallied ot open them, and … Anyway, although it is not the WOTR, this is first-rate information and of the utmost importance …


Sir John Smythe, writing in 1590, the longbowmen units did consist but of 7or 8 ranks at the most.And the reason was this: 'that if they had placed any more ranks than 7 or 8, the hind ranks of archers would have lost a great deal of ground in vollley of their arrows at their enemies … as also the sight of the hind ranks would have been hindered by so many former ranks'.


I still don't know if the Billmen were mixed with the longbowmen but in any case, it was certainly not the case for the men-at-arms and at Agincourt for the deep of their formation they drew up 4- deep, but presumably where more men were avaivable as in the WOTR, deeper formations might be used …

Matheo24 Dec 2019 9:49 a.m. PST

@ Warspite1 – don't, just… Don't :) Paskal has already made his mind based on his own premises, no matter how unrealistic they may seem. No point arguing.
As for the topic itself – I came to believe that we need to ditch our wargaming habits of thinking about different units on medieval field of battle. Especially if we're talking about WotR. The only way I can imagine a lot of retinues fighting together is to treat each retinue as a mixed arms unit made of longbowmen, billmen and MAAs.They form next to each other, taking as much space in the line as needed to accomodate their numbers. Then – when the command is given by the lord commanding the whole ward – longbowmen step forward and start loosing. Then they retire and libes clash – just as we both suggested. The point I'm making is that any missile troops would act as a part of their own retinue, not as a separate missile-only unit.
I also believe this to be the case for most of medieval period, the only separation of a retinue/contingent being based on the foot-horse category. This would only change during XVI century, during and after Italian Wars, when huge formations of pikemen, inspired by invincible Swiss, enforced the change of military practice and specialization of bodies of men (think early colunelas that led to the development of tercio).
I also think the same applied to cavalry, btw. I thonk it's unrealistic that heavily armed knights and MAA would fight separately from their serjeants, or that late medieval ordinance gendarmes and "archers" formed separate units. I'd rather say that knights formed the front rank, with serjeants backing them up in subsequent ranks.
These are all educated guesses, but so far I have seen no proof otherwise.
Oh, and let me go back to the archers for a while. We do know of quite a number of prominent people that were wounded/killed by an arrow DURING THE MELEE. Starting with Saxon named Harold, through Henry, Prince of Wales (later Henry V) at the battle of Shrewsbury, lorde Dacre at the battle of Towton up to and including king James at Flodden. This lead me to believe that some missiles were being shot even after the initial barrage, either overhead into the rear ranks of the enemy (lord Dacre was allegedly struck in the face when he retired to the back to catch a breath and have a drink), or directly into enemy, shot from inbetween the men in the front (James IV).

Warspite128 Dec 2019 7:43 a.m. PST

My great thanks to Druzhina and to Matheo for their time and trouble. I rather fear they are wasting their time with someone who asks questions and then ignores the replies.

Matheo, your thinking on mixed troop types in WOTR is exactly in line with my own and is the basis for my own Bills, Bows and Bloodshed. More to come on BBB in the new year…!

What Paskal does not realise is that:
a) I am no longer speaking to him. It is a waste of time.

b) the text describing English formations in the WOTR does not exist. If it existed, I would have mentioned it to him.
The contemporary sources have been much searched by greats like Sir Charles Oman, Robert Hardy, Andrew Boardman and many other people much better than I and nothing has turned up. This is why we look at practices – IN BURGUNDY – where the archers were mostly English and followed English practices.

The Burgundian illustrations appear to confirm that which I – and later Tudor writers – have said. The best place for an archer is with a stout bill (billman) at his back.

I rest my case and repeat my thanks to Matheo and Druzinha for their noble efforts.

Off to proof-read Bills, Bows and Bloodshed! :)

And a Happy New Year to one and all! :)


Paskal Supporting Member of TMP28 Dec 2019 10:43 a.m. PST

Definitely with Barry, it's the eternal return :'-)

If the texts describing the English infantry information during the WOTR do not exist, it is not worth speculating and imagining things based on what was done in Burgundy at the same time or under Henry VIII of England .

In fact the only things I found were at the beginning of the 15th century and it may not be valid for the WOTR …

Below are the questions I asked on Nov 21, 2019 and the point where we are at the end of 96 comments.

For the answers we have not advanced a millimeter, we only find speculations without values.

As you know the longbowmen figures for the WOTR, it does not miss, but they are sometimes in positions not very useful…

It's true!

First of all, in a unit of longbowmen figurines for the WOTR, should they be in the same position?

We don't know!

For example in a longbowmen unit that shoots, everyone shoots at the same time?

We don't know!

How do you arrange your longbowmen figurines in a unit?

We don't know!

The longbowmen were maybe up to 8 for a M.A.A. to say that even in melee, the fate of a battle rested on their shoulders and yet we do not find longbowmen figurines in hand-to-hand combat?

It is true there are no longbowmen figurines in these positions …

Where did they put their longbows during melee?

We don't know!

What were they fighting for during the WOTR?

We don't know!

You'll tell me with their swords and daggers, actually what's on the figurine, but nothing else specific?

We don't know!

In fact, as they were little protected and when they had shields, they were tiny, the melee had to be a real massacre for them when the longbowmen were in hand-to-hand combat.

We don't know!

Some might think that the longbowmen were not fighting in hand-to-hand combat and leaving this kind of activity to the MAA and the billmen, took shelter behind them, but as they were the majority of the combatants I do not believe it…

We don't know and :-), but too bad and a Happy New Year to one and all ! '-)


Matheo02 Jan 2020 7:52 a.m. PST

@Warspite1 – are these rules going to be avavailable for purchase?

Paskal Supporting Member of TMP05 Jan 2020 5:42 a.m. PST

It is incredible that we have been able to "discuss" questions without answers for so long … Fortunately there is speculation otherwise many historical subjects would not last long!

In any case there are some who have not bothered to put their bows on the shoulder and even shoot on horseback with ?

But all of that is just cinema!


Warspite105 Jan 2020 7:21 a.m. PST

I am proof-reading them again and doing last tweaks. I hope to get Bills Bows and Bloodshed to the printers within two weeks.

Meanwhile… anyone who has been following this thread might be interested by:

TMP link
TMP link

in which I attempt to bring together ALL the available information on this period. I will add to both threads as more becomes available.


Paskal Supporting Member of TMP06 Jan 2020 11:40 p.m. PST

Those who are interested in the initial topic question "What positions for the longbowmen figurines of the WOTR?" ,will look at what the actors of this film and that will demonstrate some things to them '-)

What was declared impossible by some in this topic is made by film actors :'-)

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