Wednesday, 13 February 2013

"In goodly and true love..."

“In goodly and true love, brotherhood and union” is how the Anglo-Burgundian army was decreed to behave, as it arrayed at Auxerre on 29 July 1423, before setting off to relieve the besieged town of Cravant (according to Thomas Rymer’s Foedera, written in c1705 from extant documents of the time). When the English and Burgundian forces assembled codes of conduct were drafted to ensure co-operation and discipline was sustained, this being the first active campaign between the two forces following their recent alliance against the French crown. Rymer added that they were to “love, cherish and uphold each other as brothers, kinsmen and good friends.” Waurin, whose account of Cravant is much more contemporary, echoed this state of affairs, stating that the Anglo-Burgundians “took the field in great friendship”.

The Burgundian contingent appears to have totalled around 1,000 fighting men; so comprising the smaller element of the overall army of about 5,000 (according to Waurin’s Chronicle). Accounts of the battle, written from an English perspective, focus on the exploits of English leaders in their attacks across the river. But there is nothing to suggest that the Burgundians did not play their full part in the fighting on the day, under the overall leadership of the earl of Salisbury.

Here are the completed additional Burgundian figures that I’ve done for the Cravant game. The men at arms comprise four bases and are Perry figures with a couple of Steel Fist Miniatures included. Painting is mainly by Jim Bowen, except for the men at arms wearing the heraldic surcoats which I’ve done (my reference being the useful Freezywater flag sheets). The flags are free downloads from the Kriggspil site, added for speed, of the arms of Burgundy.

I’ve made the Burgundian ‘battle’ a balanced force; of equally sized men at arms with pavisers, and crossbowmen. I may need to bulk up this contingent, once I get to placing the figures on the proposed terrain set-up – in which case I’ll draft in some ‘unemployed’ French pavisers…no one will ever notice!

Saturday, 9 February 2013

A river runs through it

I've started work on the additional baseboards that are needed for the Cravant game. In fact they are essential, as the river Yonne ran across the battlefield; initially dividing the two armies before the fording by the Anglo-Burgundians and subsequent attack.

I'm aiming to make boards that fit in with my existing ones, all of which I purchased from Realistic Modelling Services over a number of years. However Keith at RMS can no longer make bespoke boards, so it's down to me to make my first ever terrain. Generously Keith is assisting with guidance on what I need to purchase and sending 'how to' emails for me to follow as best I can.
The baseboard construction follows a typical manner. I had 12mm MDF sheets cut to size at my local DIY store - two sheets of 100x50 cms and one of 50 cms square. To this were glued sheets of blue foam, purchased from Antenociti. These had been cut beforehand with a long bladed knife to create a meandering river course and sloping sides cut roughly at an angle down to the water level. The river width is about 8 inches.

The riverbanks (and some corners which were off true) had a covering of mixed PVA glue and wall filler brushed over to create some texture (the rest of the boards will be flocked). Once dried the edges of the river bank contours were smoothed with sandpaper, then some stones and sand were glued on to create some details to pick out when painted. I also inserted some hollow plastic rod into holes drilled into the foam layer, along the river bank to give me options to insert trees I have which have brass rods coming from the base of the trunks. The river banks will now be painted, to match my basing as best I can, before I tackle the water.

Here's the rough layout that I've drawn up for the game, showing the proposed placement of troops and the main terrain features (if i can them all done).

Some figures should be up next....