Legio Wargames

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By smacdowall, May 12 2020 11:24AM

William, Lord Hastings held the Yorkist left at Barnet and the right at Tewksbury. He and his men have justl left my painting table, ready for battle after this lockdown ends.


Here is the man himself together with his retinue of men at arms



And here is his full contingent with archers our in front


The miniatures are all Perry 28mm -- a mix of plastics and metals.

By smacdowall, Apr 28 2020 03:14PM

When I started building Wars of the Roses armies I set my sights on the middle period with the intent of fielding the major contingents present at the Battle of Barnet (1471)

With my Bosworth collection now complete I have gone back to filling in the blanks of my Barnet armies.



This is John Neville, Marquis of Montagu and his retinue. Montagu commanded the Lancastrian centre at Barnet, where he met his death. I thought I would give blackened armour to some of the men at arms. They are supported by archers in Mongtagu’s sable and gules (black and red) livery colours.


The rear-view. I am particularly pleased with the griffon badge on the standard and livery coat. I also decided to give several of the men at arms helmets painted in Montagu’s sable and gules livery colours.

By smacdowall, Apr 27 2013 10:08AM

The day after the Society of Ancients Battle day (14 April) was the anniversary of the Battle of Barnet (14 April 1471). I have been building up my Wars of the Roses armies based on the forces at Barnet, there was a battlefield walk being offered by The Battlefields Trust, and I happened to be in the neighbourhood. It was the first time I have been on one of these battlefield walks and it was most enjoyable, helped in no small part by the warm sunny weather. Getting out on the ground really gives you a very different perspective and can help you appreciate the difference terrain can make.



This picture is taken from what was probably the initial Yorkist position looking north towards the ridge line where the Lancastrians were deployed. It was a clear day when we were there but back in 1471 mist covered the field, possibly increased by the Lancastrian guns which had been firing throughout the night. As a result Edward IV had managed to get his forces to within a few hundred metres of the Lancastrians without being detected.



The following weekend I was at Salute. Usually I theat this as a sort of shopping trip and a chance to see what is new. Every once in a while, however. a game or demonstration really catches my eye. This year it was the Lance & Longbow Society's demonstration of the Battle of Cravant (1423). I think the way they modelled the Angli-Burgundian crossing ot the River Yonne is most impressive



By smacdowall, Apr 15 2012 04:41PM

As the Earl of Oxford and Duke of Exeter approached Newark, their scouts reported that King Edward had secured the town and had deployed his army to block their advance. His force consisted of his own retinue, that of his brother Richard of Gloucester, some Flemish mercenaries, William Stanley’s retainers, shire levies from the Midlands and some light artillery. They were deployed along a line of low hills with Gloucester on the left, Edward in the centre and the guns off the the right behind a small hamlet.


Oxford and Exeter had slightly more troops including their own retinues and retainers, those of Viscount William Beaumont and 4000 men raised in East Anglia and the Fens. The Lancastrians had slightly fewer archers than Edward but more men at arms and billmen. Their plan was to attack in 2 battles with Oxford, Beaumont and all of the archers in the forward Battle with Exeter deployed behind commanding a smaller Battle of men at arms and billmen.


Oxford’s Battle advances into bow range of the Yorkists and start to get the worst of the archery duel



The Yorkist guns open fire. They make a lot of noise and smoke but other than that have little impact on the outcome of the battle.



Exeter holds his men back and does not advance to support Oxford. At the start of the game each player had to roll a die to determine how the junior captains would interpret their orders. Richard was happy to obey his brother Edward's instructions but Exeter decided to vacillate. This remained his position right to the end of the game - the Lancastrian player never rolling high enough to get him moving, and not being able to afford to send Oxford back to force him to obey.



Seeing Oxford's men withering under the storm of arrows, Edward orders his billmen to the fore and signals the advance.



On the Yorkist left, Richard of Glocester, supported by William Stanley breaks the East Anglian troops of Oxford's left wing.



In the centre, however the fighing is much more evenly matched as Oxford and Edward come face to face. The initial clash is inconclusive.



For a moment Edward and his retinue find themselves exposed as they hold their ground while the troops on their flanks are pushed back. However the Edward’s Flemish handgunners continue to inflict damage on Oxford’s men and Richard of Gloucester has managed to stop his troops from pursuing and is ready to come in on Oxford’s right flank.



It is all over for Oxford. His men melt away and he finds himself surrounded on all sides by the victorious Yorkists. We can only assume that his head ends up on the chopping block.

Meanwhile Exeter withdraws from the field in good order, having not moved from his initial position. He dictates a message to Warwick saying how, despite Oxford's impetuosity, he has been able to preserve his forces in order to fight another day.









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