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Marcus Woodhouse
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Joined: Sat Feb 18, 2006 8:35 pm

Postby Marcus Woodhouse » Fri Oct 02, 2009 9:13 pm

I don't think that medieval commanders were able to make the kind of sophisticated command and control measures in place for a lot of what is being discussed.
I honestly think that for most commanders, even the best it was enough to get everyone sort of in line facing the right way at the same time.
Even on a modern battlefield with real time TV downloads, instant radio transmissions, satnav, etc it doesn't take much for it to get really confused and for plans to go to Hell and back (look at "Black Hawk Down" as a example of this).
It might be possible with a small group who can all see and hear commands I really struggle to comprehend how it worked with hundreds or thousands of basically untrained men.
It clearly did because we're told it did, but maybe luck or chance was the key element rather than design. Idon't know, and I can't see how the teeny weeny numbers of archers who re-enact can make a plausible experiement for us to find out which is more the pity.


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Postby gallois » Fri Oct 02, 2009 10:02 pm

Some really nice replies there...I will have to try and translate some of the answers to show to the captain of my society. There are only 3 archers in my group who use warbows, mine is 130lbs, and invariably Im the only one in the shooting line at reenactments as the othe 2 guys like to skirmish. I have argued the point with the captain but he still insists on waiting an age between draw and loose for the younger less experienced archers to catch up. Ive now developed a techniue where I can point an arrow skywards and then draw at the last second. It means I am not at full draw but then as the field of battle is usually only a hundred meters or so all I lose is height!
Does anyone know what language or dialect may have been appropriate for Erpingham to have been using if it was indeed an instruction to his archers that was heard being shouted? His estates were north of Aylsham in Norfolk!

"A long bow and a strong bow,
And let the sky grow dark.
The nock to the cord, the shaft to the ear,
And a foreign king for a mark!"

Marcus Woodhouse
Absolute Wizard
Posts: 3337
Joined: Sat Feb 18, 2006 8:35 pm

Postby Marcus Woodhouse » Sat Oct 03, 2009 12:14 pm

He wouldn't need to say anything, just wink his third eye and wave all 14 fingers in the air while kissing his mother/sister/wife.


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