Monday, 22 March 2010

The Nobility of England

For a few months, I have concentrated on English knights of the reign of Henry III.

The reign was a period which saw some conflict in France and Wales as well as the Second Barons' War. Many of the same characters saw action in the next reign as Henry's son, Edward Longshanks, fought in Wales and Scotland.

 The figures are all 15mm by Legio Heroica. I used a mix of the early 13th century and mid 13th century ranges. The early period helmets would have been obsolete by the time of the Barons' War, so unlikely to have been worn by the nobility, but the figures are nice and it gives me more variety plus some of the poorer knights may have still used them. By Edward I's wars, helmet styles had evolved even further.

 I originally decided to just do a few English, representing my local area. However, the more I read and researched, the more carried away I became so that I have ended up with a full size army.

 A major resource which I used was British History Online. This includes many county histories. I live on the border of Worcestershire and Warwickshire and luckily these two are covered. The histories give a great deal of detail of who owned land where through most of recorded history. I think that at times the heraldry is inaccurate but it is a very useful starting point. Early Rolls is very useful for checking the heraldry though be sure to cross check as some arms vary from roll to roll. I also used Grazebrook's Heraldry of Worcestershire, trawling through to find places which were local to me and arms which were carried in Henry or Edward's reigns.

 Over the next couple of weeks I'll upload a series of photos of various figures, with a bit of gossip about many of them.

To start, here's Humphrey de Bohun, 2nd Earl of Hereford and Constable of England.
He was at times in opposition to the king, but was in the King's army at Lewes. Some books put him on the Barons' side at Evesham but this is probably a confusion with his son - also called Humphrey. The younger Humphrey can be seen to the rear. He was a commander for the Barons at Lewes and again at Evesham. He seems to have earned de Montfort's displeasure at Evesham for choosing to remain in command of the Welsh. He probably did not flee with them immediately - he was mortally wounded and died soon after the battle.

 The arms in black are those carried by the de Spineto family who held land at Coughton, about 5 miles from where I live.


JET (aka Jason) said...

How is it that there are no comments? Spectacular painting! Makes me want to start painting some more medievals.

Swampster said...

Thanks JET.
A number of people have been kind enough to make some comments on a couple of fora where I posted the links, so I don't feel too down-hearted :)

Miniature Minds said...

Inspiring stuff!


Swampster said...

Thanks very much.

Galpy said...

Yes i have to agree with the other comments above so many people visit blogs but never leave those comments that we so enjoy. I love your painting skills your figures are some of the best i have seen. I'm more than impresssed and will add your blog to my site maybe you'l pop on over and see what you think. I've also become a follower.

Swampster said...

Thanks Galpy.
I'll come and have a look.

Enionline said...

I like this miniatures, the painting is beautiful but the historical research is very accurate.

Swampster said...


Bluewillow said...

lovely Mate,

looking forward to some more!