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Montjoie Saint Denis!

By smacdowall, Jul 23 2020 04:29PM

Enough of archers and men on foot. It is time to deploy the flower of European chivalry — proud French knights well harnessed and properly mounted!

Nothing beats the colour of early Hundred Years War knights with shields and surcoats, and some mounted on caparisoned horses. The problem is that all the intricate heraldic designs need to be painted and they can be a bit intimidating.

I have now completed the contingents of Jean, Comte d’Hainault and Louis de Nevers, Comte de Flandres. In front are Hainault’s men. Those identifiable by their heraldic devices are, from right to left (their perspective): Robert II d’Harcourt, the Comte d’Hainault, Thierry II de Senzielles (carrying the count’s banner), Jean V Comte d’Harcourt. Godfrey de Harcourt, brother to Robert and Jean, fought on the English side with the Black Prince. See Ready to take on the French.

I rather dreaded painting d’Hainault’s coat of arms with its four lions. I can manage a lion pretty well but repeating the same image many times over on the shield, banner and horse caparison was a bit daunting. I took my time, not attempting to do them all at once. As you can see in the close-up the lions are not absolutely perfect but I learned a long time ago that the eye corrects mistakes and they look just fine when viewed at the distance you would normally see them on the wargames table.

This is the contingent of Louis de Nevers, Comte de Flandres. Again more lions but not quite as many! From right to left we have Robert le Moreau, Seigneur de Fiennes, a squire with the cross of St Denis on his shield, Jean IV Seigneur de Ghistelles with the banner, the Comte de Flandres, his son Louis II de Male, and Anseau de Joinville , Comte de Vaudémont.

The miniatures are from a mix of 28mm manufacturers. The Comte de Vaudémont in the foreground is from Crusader Miniatures. The squire behind him is Front Rank. Louis le Male to his right is from Perry Miniatures.

Jul 23 2020 05:34PM by Peter O'Toole

Tasty- I'm surprised you can see anything after those lions

Jul 23 2020 08:24PM by smacdowall

Only just. Now painting fleurs des lis on the French King's horse caparission. I'm seeing them in my sleep!

Jul 25 2020 10:08AM by Ross Macfarlane

Superbly done, as one would expect.

Given my talents, I found the best was to tackle intricate heraldry was to focus on Henry VIII's wars when I get urge to field knights in shining armour.

Jul 27 2020 07:28AM by smacdowall

Thanks Ross. I have tended to do the same. So the Wars of the Roses armies were started yearls later and finished sooner than the Hundred Years War ones. The trick is only doing a very few at a time. I started this project way back in the '80s and still not done!

Jul 28 2020 07:38AM by Tim O' Connor

Hi Simon
Great job and I admire your painting skills and your eyesight. I agree about your comments if it looks good at 3 or more feet then it looks good. Also you must have a very steady hand and they will look very threatening as they thunder across the war gaming table towards the English. Take care and stay safe from the virus which is on the rampage in one of the southern sates of Australia,just hoping it does not spread to Queensland where I live where we currently have no community only 6 cases from local citizens returning home and who are in strict quarantine.
best wishes

Aug 2 2020 05:18PM by smacdowall

Thanks Tim. In actual fact my hand is not steady at all!

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