The earliest accounts of the Scots-Irish (or "Scotti") come from Foederate Roman sources, particularly Ammianus Marcellinus who describes their relentless raids on Roman Britain. These Gaelic speaking inhabitants of Ireland engaged in almost continuous clan warfare, as young Gaelic males organised themselves into small, semi-independent warrior bands called Fianna, which engaged in constant training, hunting and raiding during the warmer months. Stories of the Fianna can be found in the Fenian Cycle of Irish mythology.
Warriors were sometimes rallied into battle accompanied by blowing horns and warpipes. The objective in clan wars was often the theft of enemy cattle (commonly referred to as a TÃ¡in BÃ³ in Gaelic literature) rather than the destruction of a particular clan or its settlements. Guerrilla warfare was the norm, as the geography of Ireland and Scotland at this time consisted mostly of forests, swamps, glens, bogland and river-crossings. Weapons used were slings, javelins, spears, bows, darts, short swords and axes. In Gaelic culture, the use of armor was generally disdained as being cumbersome and impairing the agility of the warrior. However, in a few rare cases its value was recognized and kings would be covered in armor and helmets to protect them. Armour was usually a simple affair; padded coats, the wealthier might wear boiled leather, and the wealthiest, bronze chest plates or cuirass, rarely mail (though it existed in Ireland, it was rare), or overlapping iron or bronze scales. Shields were usually round, with a spindle shaped boss, though later the regular iron boss models were introduced by the Middle Anglo Saxons and Vikings. A few shields were also oval in shape or square, but most of them were small and round, like bucklers, to better enable agility. Standards and hollowed out bull horns (a primitive battle trumpet) were often carried into battle to rally men into combat. Bagpipe would also gain popularity in the later years.
As these Scots-Irish warriors came into contact with the Middle Anglo Saxons in Britain, they worked out that using cavalry as opposed to chariots was cheaper, and by the 7th century AD Chariots had disappeared from Ireland and replaced by cavalry. Later, when the Gaels came into contact with the Vikings, they realized the need for heavier weaponry so as to hack through the much larger shields and heavy mail-coats of the Norsemen. Heavier hacking-swords became more frequent as did helmets and mailcoats. The Gael also learned from the Vikings how to use the double-handed Danish axe. Irish and Scottish infantry troops fighting with axes and armor in addition to their own native darts and bows were later known as "Gall oglaigh" (English: Galloglass) or "foreign gaels" and formed an important part of Gaelic armies in the future
- An army consisting mostly of unprotected (or protected if from Ulster) medium foot with light spear and swords is somewhat one-dimensional, and has little to recommend it save numbers. Perhaps its Bodley-Scotts revenge on the Irish for preferring DBMM?
- An inspired commander looks like a necessity to try and prevent the army being massacred by shooting and fleeing before it even gets into comtact, so perhaps a few biggish units and some smaller ones to provide rear support and also to try and find flanks?
User-contributed links about this army:
- Fanaticus history link on the Scots Irish
- 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
- British, Post-Roman From 680 Wolves from the Sea 6 Itâ€™s a mini (protected) Dom Rom swarm, or a wall of Def Sp after 600AD
- Irish (Internal Ally) Any Wolves from the Sea 11 MF with light spear. Eh?
- Scots-Irish, Later Any Wolves from the Sea 11 Lots of unarmoured MF with javelins and swords?
For most of the armies in Wolves from The Sea little evidence exists on troop appearance, and a largely irregular look would have been in fashion anyway. So, feel free to go off piste and pick from the following ranges. It may also be worth checking our Renaissance and medieval ranges. Those with Scots-Irish are specifically noted.
You can see some of the figures in the Ancients Photo Gallery also on this site
- Essex Miniatures Actually have a generic "Dark Age Europeans" range
- Donnington Up to 40 figures in their Sub-Roman Britain (SRB) range. The Basques and Bretons are possibly not too far off either
- Gladiator Miniatures by Fighting 15's (Gladiator Games) 36-strong Dark Age & SRB foot range
- Old Glory Dedicated Scots-Irish range, Anglo-Saxons, Arthurian Brits, other Dark Age types
- Museum Their Medieval Welsh are pretty generic, likewise some of the Norman and Viking ranges
- Minifigs UK Dark Ages & Norman Conquest range
- Irregular Minis Vikings, Saxons, Normans, Slavs,
- Lancashire Games Normans, Saxons, Dedicated Irish/Welsh range,
- QRF models (Feudal Castings ranges) Vikings, Irish, Welsh, Anglo Normans, Scots, Anglo-Saxons, Highlanders
- Tin Soldier Saxon, Norman, Viking, SRB, Rus & Slavs
- 2 Dragons Vikings & Rus, Anglo-Saxons, Slavs, Carolingians & Normans
- Isarus (more former TTG figures) Saxons, Normans, Goths, Vikings
- Outpost SRB, Saxons, Franks
- Khurasan Vikings for later period Scots-Irish
- Viking Forge Saxons, Vikings, Franks, Normans
- Brial Hallâ€™s Hall of Ancient Warriors Norse Irish range has Viking, Scots, Norman figures too
- Battle Line (NZ) former TTG Ranges, so as above
- 50 Paces Dark Age Slavs
- Camelot Games (Italy) Vikings & Rus,
- MY Miniatures King Arthur range, Anglo-Saxons, Vikings
- Splintered Light Dedicated Scots-Irish range
- Pass O The North SRB and Saxon ranges
- Baueda Viking range
- Donnington have some "New Era" (ie brand new) Viking and Irish castings
Dont forget, this period is TOO SOON for kilts!
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