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Historical Overview Section
Serbia from 1180-1300
The Early Serbian? kingdom was effectively a vassal of Byzantium, but from the middle of the 10th Century it started to assert its independance, pushing out the Byzantines and Early Bulgars around 850, but wars of succession for the Serb throne led to re-incorporation into the Byzantine Empire in 971. Around 1040 AD an uprising centered on the coastal territories overthrew Byzantine rule, but the complex politics of Serbian succession ensured the Byzantines were able to re-establish de-facto control again. By 1163, Byzantine Emperor Manuel I Komnenos was sufficiently in control to decide the succession, however by appointing one Tihomir as Grand Prince of Rascia (the leading territory of Serbia) he unwittingly set in motion Serbian independance. Tiohmir's brother Nemanja had hoped to get the top job (bit of a fairlytale really) and persuaded Manuel to give him a slice of the country as well to rule on his own. Nemanja's Serb squadrons fought in the Imperial Army in 1164 in Srem during the Emperor's 1163 War against the Kingdom of Hungary, but from 1166-1168 Nemanja rebelled against his older brother, deposed him and sent him into exile. The Byzantines raised a mercenary army which Nemanja defeated at the Battle of Pantino. Nemanja subsequently intigues adn allies with the Venetians, the Early Hungarians, the Holy Romans but eventually the Serbs lost to the Byzantines Empire, leading Nemanja to swear alleigance to Manuel I - although this only lasted as long as Manuel lived, and so in 1180 this story begins for real when Nemanja declared independance yet again, this time with the tactit acceptance of Constantinople - although this didn't last long.
Nemanja took the name Stefan, which proved so popular among his own family that all the subsequent monarchs of the house used it as sort of title. Soon it became inseparable from the monarchy, and all claimants denoted their royal pretensions by using the same name in front of their original names, making opening the presents at a family Christmas a potentially dangerous social occasion. Through the 13th and 14th century the royal family of Nemanjic established rule over all of the Serb lands. The Serbs also played hosts to Later Crusader armies on their way to the Holy Land, had loads of wars against the Byzantines, Hungarians, Bulgarians, and other Serbian kingdoms as well.
Using the army in FoG
A classic lancer-swordsmen army, this time supported by cheap infantry bowmen. Not subtle, however lots of armoured superior lancers charging can be a frightening sight for any enemy, just be prepared to take casulties, and don't try too complex a plan.
As your core troops are undrilled you need a simple plan, as enemy with drilled cavalry will try to exploit your flanks and position themselves for flank intercept charges using the â€œmove full speed then turn 90 degreesâ€ with columns of drilled cavalry.
The big issue is protecting the flanks of your line of charging lancers. Some armies can simply do this with yet more lancers, accepting attrition along the way â€“ and this should not be discounted as your support troop options are limited. The Cuman LH can do a good job, but may be outnumbered - you don't want to lose BGs of LH as every one that dies means one BG of lancers may not even get into combat before the army breaks. 8's of MF with Bw may be OK on a flank where they will come up against against enemy mounted of LH. And a unit of 8 LF can form a good screen in front of lancers to protect them from shooting. However unattractive as it may seem to fritter points away, the Protected Shooty cavalry option for the Cumans may be worthwhile taking as a lone unit to shore up a flank as your lancers charge home.
The ideal combination for lancers is a mix of 4â€™s and 6â€™s, using the 6â€™s as the sledgehammer to take casualties and not suffer the -1 for losing 25%, and also to last longer before autobreaking. Lancer Cavalry also ideally need generals to help them in combat, and so having a general with a 6 is better value. Your lancers can also help your LH to hunt enemy LH, with combined Lancer/LH charges that enemy LH have to flee from, and where your own LH may be able to catch the flee-erâ€™s.
The HF spearmen are too few in number to do much, unless you are using them to bulk out a line of bowmen - but that's iffy to be honest.
UK Tournament Results with this army
User-contributed links about this army:
- List of Serbian Kings Medieval Geneology.com
- Register and you can put you own link in here and then write some brief detail about the link here
- put the link text readers will see in here write some more detail about the link here
- None allowed - these chaps appear as allies in other lists instead, where they make a nice simple addition of armoured lancers.
15mm Manufacturers supplying figures for this army
I would suggest using Norman figures plus any frankish/byzantine types for this army
You can see some of the figures in the Ancients Photo Gallery also on this site
- Essex Miniatures large Eastern Feudal line
- Donnington Russian/Slav ranges, as well as East Europeans
- Black Hat (Gladiator Games) Have extensive East European ranges
- Old Glory Slavs, Russians, Normans & Crusaders
- Magister Militum (includes former Chariot ranges) Armenian Range
- Museum Have Cilician Armenians as well as Frankish Knights and fairly generic Byzantines who will work well.
- Minifigs UK Russians, Khazars, Franks
- Irregular Minis Khazars, Pechenegs, early Russians & Frankish types
- Vexilia UK (Mirliton & Venexia ranges) Very nice east European Feudals, some shared with Black Hat
- Alan Touller Some of their Byzantine ranges may work here too.
- Tin Soldier Normans, Byzantines and others
- 2 Dragons Vikings & Rus, Slavs, Carolingians & Normans
- Fighting 15â€™s Maybe consider some of the Oddmial Oddzy Lithuianians at a pinch?
- Isarus (more former TTG figures) Normans & Byzantines
- Outpost Franks, Avars, Slavs, Crusaders, Byzantines
- Khurasan Avars & Byzantines
- Viking Forge Byzantines & Feudals
- Battle Line (NZ) former TTG Ranges - see above
- 50 Paces Byzantines & Slavs
- Camelot Games Vikings & Rus, Crusader Knights
- Legio heroica Crusades ranges
Which troops are absolutely needed for this army, and what are your thoughts on how to organise, paint and buy them.
Sample army lists for this army
Name of Army / Date
- Using asterisks inthe edit mode creates a bulleted list in the actual site
- This is a lot easier to do than easier than setting up tables
- For FoG I suggest listing your army in order or march
- with troop desctiptions on each line, for example
- 4 HF Armoured Average Drilled Impact Foot Swordsmen
- 8 LG Undrilled Unarmoured Poor Bowen
- Dont forget to include your Generals !!!
Include any notes you want here, including comments on how to use - or play against - the army.
Remember to leave a line before you copy the above section as a template for your own list
Alternative Lists & Historical Interpretations
((Alternative <Insert name of Army Here>))