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Author Topic: Assembling an Arab Conquest Army  (Read 1084 times)

Offline OB

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Assembling an Arab Conquest Army
« on: May 19, 2022, 05:50:27 PM »

I’ve been doing a bit of reading about the Conquest period Arabs.  I’ve read The Arab Conquest of Spain by Collins.  I’m half way through Kennedy’s Great Arab Conquests and I’ve made a start on Hoyland’s In God’s Path.  All very interesting stuff.

I’ve also bought half a dozen or so packs of Forged in Battle Arab figures.  All very nice.

Now I’m at the stage where I want to catergorise the various contingents in the Army.

The Arab close fighting infantry seem to be deemed “warband” or “Blades”.  I think I can work with this in Comitatus terms.

The archers could I think be massed or Skirmishers depending.  Slingers can be skirmishers too.

The cavalry seem to be armoured or light lancers.  Maybe some horse archers too.

Sub Saharan African troops are more of a challenge.  Are they “warband” or a sort of light medium javelin infantry?

Anyhow, if you already have an Arab Army or have some thoughts on the issue  I’d appreciate your thoughts.

Offline FramFramson

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Re: Assembling an Arab Conquest Army
« Reply #1 on: May 19, 2022, 06:13:47 PM »
I don't have much to add, but having at least a few horse archers is a must. They were definitely present in varying quantities and locations.


I joined my gun with pirate swords, and sailed the seas of cyberspace.

Offline vexillia

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Re: Assembling an Arab Conquest Army
« Reply #2 on: May 19, 2022, 06:21:02 PM »
I am doing the same thing with the same range of figures but for ADLG.  See the link below for my progress to date.



ADLG has the following basic troop types, irrespective of origin, for the majority of the Arab armies:

Spear:  Heavy & medium infantry (both can have missile support)
Javelin men: Loose medium infantry and or light infantry
Bowmen: Loose medium infantry and or light infantry
Slingers: Light infantry
Cavalry: Heavy & medium cavalry impact (lance?)
Cavalry: Medium & light cavalry javelin
Camels: Medium & light camels bow

One early army has impetuous heavy & medium swordsmen but these are replaced by spear by about 696 AD in the lists. 

Heavy & light cavalry bow are available as small units in some of the Arab lists but aren't that common until the advent of Turks in the much later Arab armies (see Kennedy).  As far as I can see the former are Iranian. 

Not exhaustive but I hope it helps?

Finally I have few spare foot archers if you're interested.

https://blog.vexillia.me.uk/search?q=arab
« Last Edit: May 19, 2022, 06:23:31 PM by vexillia »

Offline OB

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Re: Assembling an Arab Conquest Army
« Reply #3 on: May 19, 2022, 07:20:54 PM »
I don't have much to add, but having at least a few horse archers is a must. They were definitely present in varying quantities and locations.

Yes, I can see I need to get a pack of them.  They do get mentioned rather a lot.

Offline OB

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Re: Assembling an Arab Conquest Army
« Reply #4 on: May 19, 2022, 07:23:53 PM »
I am doing the same thing with the same range of figures but for ADLG.  See the link below for my progress to date.



ADLG has the following basic troop types, irrespective of origin, for the majority of the Arab armies:

Spear:  Heavy & medium infantry (both can have missile support)
Javelin men: Loose medium infantry and or light infantry
Bowmen: Loose medium infantry and or light infantry
Slingers: Light infantry
Cavalry: Heavy & medium cavalry impact (lance?)
Cavalry: Medium & light cavalry javelin
Camels: Medium & light camels bow

One early army has impetuous heavy & medium swordsmen but these are replaced by spear by about 696 AD in the lists. 

Heavy & light cavalry bow are available as small units in some of the Arab lists but aren't that common until the advent of Turks in the much later Arab armies (see Kennedy).  As far as I can see the former are Iranian. 

Not exhaustive but I hope it helps?

Finally I have few spare foot archers if you're interested.

https://blog.vexillia.me.uk/search?q=arab

Thanks Vexillia, that all works for me.  I'll have a good ponder at your blog too.  Very nice figures btw, an excellent paint job. 

I'm good for foot archers at the moment I think.

Offline OB

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Re: Assembling an Arab Conquest Army
« Reply #5 on: May 20, 2022, 02:49:00 PM »
Just to add a bit more to this.

The Arabs seem to have acquired significant contingents of non Moslem troops.  This always seems to arise from a prior legal arrangement. 

The details vary so far as I've read.  All seem to have required acceptance of Arab over lordship, sometimes pretty notional.  Some, like the contingent of Sassanian heavy cavalry got high wages and a prestige position in the Army.  Others got tax exemption for their home district.  I've not come across mercenaries per se but that might just be a matter of perspective.

Nubian troops seem to have been valued. Many were armoured close fighters but Nubian archery seems to have been very well regarded.  I'm not sure if their archers were armoured or not.  Armour in both cases seems to have been quilted cotton.

I'll post my finished units here as I go.

Offline Eric the Shed

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Re: Assembling an Arab Conquest Army
« Reply #6 on: May 20, 2022, 04:17:38 PM »
I just classified my Arab Army into Warbands (medium or Light Infantry), Archers (Either as units or Skirmishers - depending on number of bases), Light Cavalry, Heavy Cavalry and Camels....

http://shedwars.blogspot.com/2022/05/the-saracens-army-takes-to-field.html



Most are gripping beast plastics - about 500 in total - mostly play Hail Caesar
« Last Edit: May 20, 2022, 04:28:26 PM by Eric the Shed »

Offline OB

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Re: Assembling an Arab Conquest Army
« Reply #7 on: May 20, 2022, 04:24:48 PM »
An impressive array.  Yes, medium or light warband is a good take I think.

Offline gregmita

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Re: Assembling an Arab Conquest Army
« Reply #8 on: May 21, 2022, 08:32:00 AM »
That's quite a big force! Interesting that HaT cavalry can mix so well with other brands.

Offline Eric the Shed

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Re: Assembling an Arab Conquest Army
« Reply #9 on: May 21, 2022, 08:51:04 AM »
That's quite a big force! Interesting that HaT cavalry can mix so well with other brands.

The only real issue with the HaT arabs are that their heads are tiny - so I lopped them off and added spares from the Gripping Beast boxes. They are a very cheap way of adding light cavalry

Offline OB

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Re: Assembling an Arab Conquest Army
« Reply #10 on: May 22, 2022, 11:56:11 AM »
My first unit, sub Saharan Africans from Forged in Battle 15mm.


Offline MaleGriffin

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Re: Assembling an Arab Conquest Army
« Reply #11 on: May 22, 2022, 03:08:38 PM »
Beautiful Army! Fantastic figures!
Hoc quoque transibit
Sanguinem sistit semper

Offline OB

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Re: Assembling an Arab Conquest Army
« Reply #12 on: May 27, 2022, 11:48:05 AM »
I've just received some Donnington New Era  figures that I thought I'd use to pad out my Forged in Battle stuff. 

The horses are pretty much the same size but the men (riders and foot) look like youths compared to their FiB equivalents. Not the end of the world by any means, they can be mixed in, but worth knowing I think.

Offline vexillia

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Re: Assembling an Arab Conquest Army
« Reply #13 on: May 27, 2022, 03:58:05 PM »
Thanks.

Offline OB

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Re: Assembling an Arab Conquest Army
« Reply #14 on: May 27, 2022, 06:34:29 PM »
I'll try and take some comparison pics and post them here.

 

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