Medieval Arms, Armor, And Tactics

download Medieval Arms, Armor, And Tactics

of 181

  • date post

    02-Jun-2018
  • Category

    Documents

  • view

    220
  • download

    0

Embed Size (px)

Transcript of Medieval Arms, Armor, And Tactics

  • 8/11/2019 Medieval Arms, Armor, And Tactics

    1/181

    MEDIEVAL ARMS, ARMOR, AND TACTICS

    And Interactive Qualifying Project

    Submitted to the faculty

    Of the

    WORCESTER POLYTECHNIC INSTITUTE

    In partial fulfillment of the requirements of the

    Degree of Bachelor or Science

    By

    Jack Waddell

    And

  • 8/11/2019 Medieval Arms, Armor, And Tactics

    2/181

    Abstract

    This project examined and photographed nearly 300 examples of medieval armsand armor in the Higgins Armory collection, and documented the

    characteristics of armor, weapons, and their associated tactics during themiddle ages (approximately 500CE to 1500CE) as well as the historical and

    technological background against which they were employed.

  • 8/11/2019 Medieval Arms, Armor, And Tactics

    3/181

    Acknowledgements

    We would like to thank the Higgins Armory Museum for providing us with access toauthentic medieval artifacts and essential research tools.

  • 8/11/2019 Medieval Arms, Armor, And Tactics

    4/181

    Table of Contents1. Abstract........................................................................ .........................................pg 2

    2. Acknowledgements.................................................................................................33. Table of Contents ................................................. ..................................................44. Introduction (By Brent Palermo) ............................ ............................ ......................55. Historical background of the Middle Ages (By Jack Waddell)....................................6

    a. History.............................................................................................................6b. Feudalism........ ............................ ............................ ............................ .............35c. War in the Middle Ages .................................................... ................................40d. Medieval Technology............................................... .........................................47

    6. Armor of the Middle Ages (By Jack Waddell) ................. ............................ .............55a. Introduction......................................................................................................55b. Armor for the Body ................................................. ............................ .............57c. Armor for the Head................................................. .........................................69d. Armor for the Legs .................................................. .........................................78e. Armor for the Arms ................................................. .........................................81f. Shields ................................................ ........................................................ ....87g. Snapshots of Armor Ensembles over Time ............................................ .............90

    7. Weapons of the Middle Ages (By Brent Palermo) ........... ............................ .............100

    a. Daggers............................................... ........................................................ ....100b. Swords............ ............................ ............................ ............................ .............105c. Axes................................................................................................................112d. Halberds ........................................................ ..................................................115e. Glaives.............................................................................................................116f. Bills ..................................................... ........................................................ ....117g. Maces..............................................................................................................117h. Morning Stars................................................. ..................................................118

    i. Flails .................................................... ........................................................ ....119j. War Hammers......................................................... ............................ .............120k. Spears ................................................. ........................................................ ....121l. Lances.............................................................................................................122m Pikes 125

  • 8/11/2019 Medieval Arms, Armor, And Tactics

    5/181

    Introduction

    The middle ages were a time of relative chaos for Europe. With the collapse of

    the Holy Roman Empire at the end of the 5th century, the countries of Europe were

    thrown into disarray. After a great deal of border-shifting and consolidating, Europe was

    stable enough to work together and begin the first crusade in the late 11th century. 500

    years and three crusades later began the Renaissance, which is considered by most as the

    end of this chaotic era.

    The weapons, armor and tactics of medieval combat evolved simultaneously.

    Arms and armor evolved constantly to negate each other; for instance, the use of plate

    mail in the 12th century caused the addition of spikes to most pole-arms that could

    penetrate it. Tactics were also changed with the invention of a new weapon or a better

    piece of armor. The infantry that could formerly be dispersed easily by cavalry became a

    formidable foe when wielding pikes.

  • 8/11/2019 Medieval Arms, Armor, And Tactics

    6/181

    Historical Background

    The End of Western Rome (5th Century)

    At the end of the 5th Century, the Western Roman Empire was left in tatters. The

    Germanic tribes held much of the land that had been imperial lands. The Ostrogoths,

    who had been hired by the Eastern Emperor to reclaim Rome, instead settled there

    themselves. The Franks were moving into what is now France, and the Anglo-Saxons

    had begun conquering what we know as the British Isles, though some of the Britons had

    escaped to mainland Europe to settle Brittany. Vandals were marching through much of

    western Europe and settling into northern Africa. The Visigoths had, by this point,

    conquered the area of Spain (Strayer 1974: 29). Nominally, most of these tribes

    recognized the Emperor in Constantinople as their superior, but to no practical extent.

    The Germanic tribes did not set out to destroy Roman culture, but their own culture

    doomed that of the Latins. Laws were local and rulership hereditary for the most part.

    Delegation of authority, the key to Roman bureaucracy, was impossible to a German

    ruler who stood to lose too much political strength to an empowered subordinate

  • 8/11/2019 Medieval Arms, Armor, And Tactics

    7/181

    The Byzantine Empire (6th

    Century)

    The Eastern Roman Empire, which became known as the Byzantine Empire, was

    finding itself with new difficulties. Local cultures, somewhat suppressed throughout the

    duration of the Empire, were beginning to bubble back to the surface, especially in Syria

    and Egypt. Constantinople had a problem. It could placate those of the Greco-Roman

    culture in the West, Greece, and the Balkans, or it could placate the resurging local

    cultures in Syria and Egypt. Since Constantinople was the seat of the Orthodox church as

    well as the Byzantine Empire, this cultural stress found its voice in religious debate

    (Strayer 1974: 36 37).

    Justinian, Emperor from 527 to 565, tried to combat this growing schism and

    unite the Empire, and the Mediterranean, again (Collins 1991: 113). He conquered Italy

    from the Ostrogoths, pushed the Visigoths from southeastern Spain, and recovered north

    Africa from the Vandals. But now Justinian found the same difficulty that had suffocated

    the Western Roman Empire; there was no real desire for societal unity in the empire.

  • 8/11/2019 Medieval Arms, Armor, And Tactics

    8/181

    The Empire was split apart. The eastern lands of the Empire finally broke free

    from Constantinople, becoming Arab nations. Mohammed (570 to 632) did much to

    unite the Arabs into one political and religiously united nation (Collins 1991: 136 40).

    The strengthened Arab nations, even after Mohammeds death, were thus able to conquer

    Syria, Egypt and much of North Africa, and Spain. The Arab conglomerate controlled

    much of the Middle East, though Turkey was still held by the Byzantines, and had

    considerable holdings in North Africa and Western Europe by 720, and was by this point

    raiding into Gaul (Strayer 1974: 40, 41).

    Pre-Carolingian Europe (7th Century)

    With the East and West separated physically by the Arab Empire as they were

    ideologically by their cultural differences, the two regions grew even further apart. The

    remnants of the Byzantine Empire - Greece and the Balkans - united under patriotism and

    a sense of religious identity. This did not do much to unite the Orthodox Church with the

    Roman Church, and tensions rose between the two factions of Christianity. Western

  • 8/11/2019 Medieval Arms, Armor, And Tactics

    9/181

    Western Europe was weak and without the benefit of a common civilization.

    Lombards still stand in Italy, the Franks hold Gaul, the Anglo-Saxons have conquered

    much of England, Visigoths still, for the time being, call Spain their own, and Germany is

    split between the Bavarians, the Franks, an