Tuesday, February 20, 2007

Charny's Questions on War, #54 and #55: Men at arms on horseback


I wrote about the background to Charny's 14th century case studies on the rules governing "men at arms" a few days back. Here's two more unanswered questions. I like to visualize the events, or better yet the arguments that resulted.

54. Charny asks:

A captain of a city has retained a gentleman at the wages of a foot sergeant. So the captain and the people under him agree that all who take profit from their enemies will put into the common booty for the men at arms to share, and that and the footmen will have a share of it, but less than the men at arms. So it happens that the men at arms and the footmen of this garrison sally out against their enemies and kill and take and gain a great deal. The gentleman who is at the wages of a footman has found a horse and is mounted on that day with the others who are well armed. When they have returned they share the booty; and this gentleman demands the share of a man at arms, and the men at arms say no. Many good arguments are given on either side. How will it be judged by the law of arms?


55. Charny asks:

The captain of a place leaves it and rides out against his enemies, and he has made an ordinance that all should share in the booty in common whatever they gain. And they ride until they see their enemies. So the captain orders that all should dismount to fight on foot against their enemies; many dismount and many remain on horseback. Those who are on foot with their captain attack their enemies and defeat them. When it comes to the defeat, those on horse join those on foot who have already defeated the enemy. When evening comes, those on horse demand a share of the common booty, and those who are on foot say no. How will it be judged by the men at arms?

Just what were those mounted men at arms doing, in #55, before they rejoined those on foot?

2 comments:

  1. Ken Mondschein10:28 am

    It's a legal question. A contract is a contract.

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  2. Bob Vence12:14 am

    #54... The gentleman contracted as a foot soldier. Once he had a horse he should have altered his contract to match his situation. He should be paid as a foot sergeant.

    #55... The horsemen should get nothing. They ignored thier liege/employer by remaining on horse and not attacking. The implication is they were not acting as a rearguard, so they get nothing. The heralds should report them as cowards.

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