Heavy Cavalry Charge - Page 4




 
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May 29th, 2009  
bren122
 
 
in that case you are talking about a trip wire which would be suitable with 30cm stakes, though obviously a slightly longer one would be better. now all you have to do is talk your soldiers into carrying them. LOL.
May 30th, 2009  
Partisan
 
 
I've got to echo bren, the reality is that medieval armies were poorly equpped and did not have much in the way of logistic support. Foraging was the how an army existed. Now wood is generally available, but I don't see half the army settling down to whittle trees into sticks is a realistic proposition - nor do I think that you'll find twine universally available.

Now if we were thinking about the best way to slow down heavy cavalry - very boggy ground, position yourself on high ground so that they have to charge uphill, surround yourself with big stakes and have plenty of arrows - in short the tactics which have worked in the past. To my recollection there has only been 1 successful uphill cavalry charge and that was the charge of the Heavy Brigade in the Crimean War.
May 30th, 2009  
bren122
 
 
i think that rather than preparing them on site Perseus was suggesting that they be a part of the soldier's equipment. essentially they would have to be what we call boundary spikes, about 2 inches by 2 inches and 10-12 inches long. i think that if they were effective they would end up in the baggage if only because the soldier is going to 'forget' to pick them up the moment he puts it down.
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May 30th, 2009  
perseus
 
 
Quote:
To my recollection there has only been 1 successful uphill cavalry charge and that was the charge of the Heavy Brigade in the Crimean War.
Was the battle of Hastings not partly down to cavalry?

I am no horseman, but I guess any experienced rider would avoid difficult ground as you suggest. Why would embedded sticks either gathered from the woods or prepared specially not make the ground especially difficult to charge over? If the defending infantry were only lined immediately behind stakes this would not prevent the lance impacting on them.

Perhaps another option would be to dig potholes in front of the line, these may be difficult to see on muddly ground if they fill with water and impossible to destroy.

A few more notes.

Quote:
Modern historians agree that the major portion of knights during many Medieval battles fought on foot. Only with ideal conditions of terrain and support via long range combatants would attacks be carried out on horseback.

Using advantages of the terrain: Lancers needed hard, plain ground and enough space for attack. A clever enemy avoided battle on open ground and preferred marshy, mountainous or arboreous (Relating to or resembling a tree) grounds for battle.

This attack was often protected by simultaneous or shortly preceding ranged attacks of archers or crossbowmen. The attack This attack was often protected by simultaneous or shortly preceding ranged attacks of archers or crossbowmen. The attack began from a distance of about 350 metres and took about 15-20 seconds to cross the contemporary long range weapon's effective distance.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cavalry_tactics

OK so once the horses have slowed and have to 'tip toe' through whatever ground you have prepared, your own bowmen can take them at near point blank range. Any falling horse will then act as a barrier to the one behind. It seems amazing to me how horses could be effective at all against a half trained army
May 30th, 2009  
bren122
 
 
there have been plenty of uphill charges that have been successful- the first thing a general goes for in deploying his troops is height. Napoleon's cavalry was noted for its ability to deliver a successful charge uphill- Borodino, Austerlitz, etc.
although terrain could be a factor in choosing not to charge some other considerations were the chance to take prisoners (for the ransom) and to plunder the enemy camp. where there was little opportunity for these chance to charge into even the most ridiculous situations and conditions was seized with delight by the knight; the Crusades provide numerous examples.
i think that something we may be overlooking is that one reason for not putting impediments in front of your lines was that it would impede your attack.
June 1st, 2009  
Partisan
 
 
I stand corrected, perhaps it is time to produce a book on successful uphill cavalry charges!

I understand the thought of providing spikes to the baggage train, but this would've taxed an already limited system of resupply. Especially when you could set your army to whittling away for a few days before. That said I'm not sure that anything under a foot would pose a problem & it would require considerable depth. Not too sure how far a horse can jump, but say it's about 8ft? So you'd have to have 1 every foot, stasggered over the area you want to cannalise the cavalry - that's a lot. I think I'd stick with the handy big stakes that scare the bejesus out of horse & rider.
June 1st, 2009  
Solideo
 
Only way for stopping a wild fighting medieval horse which has been travelling around for days and days is throwing him carrots, everybody knows.
June 2nd, 2009  
perseus
 
 
LOL That's what I can lateral thinking

Perhaps taking to a bit too far in this case though
June 4th, 2009  
LeEnfield
 
 
The Battle of Hastings was fought on a hill, although the cavalry attacks were beaten back each time. The Cavalry were attacking a solid interlocking shield wall with spears sticking out of it.
June 5th, 2009  
Solideo
 
Quote:
Originally Posted by LeEnfield
The Battle of Hastings was fought on a hill, although the cavalry attacks were beaten back each time. The Cavalry were attacking a solid interlocking shield wall with spears sticking out of it.
I agree. Haroldīs way of gighting was to be fast and use the shiel defensive line, quite compact. Behing were axe men, who used long ones, but explanade on the hill was not wide enough to use them efectively.

When William normands run over the hill did not break the wall because to do it they shoud have needed to be on compact attack and thatīs impossible simply because some horses get afraid on the attack and try to go round, and some horses are faster than other running up hills, so cavalry attack could not be as compact as desirable.

The battle was longer than usual and William made their cavalry retreat, that promoted anglosaxons to go against them and normands turned back and got in problems Harold men. Anyway battle was nivelated and anglosaxons still up the hill.

Williamīs men found a lighter zone in the hill the right zone were they attacked furiously because of their lower inclination, that made Harold to go to that frontline with several hundreds of their better men and casualty and bad luck made him lost life there, where altar of abady was made.

In that time to loose the king was just to loose the battle, that was definitely which made William to be victorious.

Harold showed off to be a good fighter as he had shown months ago being victorious against the viking attack in Norteast England, he resisted perfectly the attacks with that shield defensive wall (itīs said many men were dead standing because of their compact lines) but his brave way of fighting (itīs said he lost 3 horses during battle) made him be in frontline and being killed and his tragedy end supposed to losse the battle.

I think cavalry did not define anything in that battle, it was casualty Harold died, if he didnīt perhaps the resolution was other.

Best regards
 


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