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Author Topic: Yeomen of the Guard - help please !  (Read 1183 times)

Offline Stuart

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Yeomen of the Guard - help please !
« on: February 01, 2013, 05:19:00 PM »
I'm slowly working upon a unit of dismounted Yeomen of the Guard for my Tudor army and whilst I don't really game that much i'm struggling with a couple of basing / troop classification issues.

Their musters show that they both halberd and arquebus armed in 1513 and i'm not sure whether to base them as shot or hlberdiers or to mix them which I think would look more aesthetic.

Also, in looking through a few army lists they dont get a mention so i'm keen to rectify that for my army but again im not sure how to classify them - they're inferior to someone in full plate but superior to a levy billman, sadly there's no distinction for halfway between the two.

The nearest I could find in DBR (stop sighing) is Rusian strelsty who are both axe and arquebus armed and classed as superior shot (rather than inferior as other arquebus armed troops).

But I don't want them to be invincible - not that i game much but it's bugging me.

I want them to appear historical so i'm leaning toward mixing them but how do you think would be the best way to treat them on the gaming table?

Also, there's an option of maybe having them with a caveat of being a certain distance from Henry on the field or would that be too restrictive? Historically in both Henry VII & VIII's reign they fought independantly (Stoke 1487 & Therouanne 1513)

Anyway, your collective thoughts if you will....

Offline Franz_Josef

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Re: Yeomen of the Guard - help please !
« Reply #1 on: February 02, 2013, 03:41:49 PM »
I don't think each man was halberd and arquebus armed simultaneously.  Halberd was for dismounted, court duties and guarding the king's tent in camp.  When mounted to accompany the monarch, they would carry the arquebus (and perhaps some of the dismounted men would carry it when guarding the king in the field, although very unlikely while at court).

Offline janner

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Re: Yeomen of the Guard - help please !
« Reply #2 on: February 02, 2013, 03:56:28 PM »
I would support a mixed unit given tactical developments on the continent, but I well out of my comfort zone :-)

Offline Stuart

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Re: Yeomen of the Guard - help please !
« Reply #3 on: February 02, 2013, 04:37:28 PM »
Sorry, poor explanation on my part there. They were armed with the halberd, arquebus and also the longbow but not all together. 600 accompanied the king to France in 1513 and were armed with halberd or arquebus, sadly the proportion is not stated / lost.

The comparison with Stelsty perhaps isnt the best as they were armed with arquebus and a rather large axe.

I think I'm also leaning toward a mixed unit as it will look more unique and give the unit some interest - also perhaps being more true to life as opposed to an artificial wargame separation

Offline 15thpanzer

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Re: Yeomen of the Guard - help please !
« Reply #4 on: February 02, 2013, 07:54:30 PM »
For what it is worth, my opinion would be to follow your gut. The unit being in close proximity to His Majesty is a good leash for such a potentially powerful unit. But, selfishly, just looking forward to seeing the result of whatever you decide. Have been getting drawn more and more into Tudor history recently after Mantel's fabulous pair (role on the third) and now half way through Thomas Penn's Winter King. Great to see all this history manifest itself on your blog. Cheers.

Offline Arlequín

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Re: Yeomen of the Guard - help please !
« Reply #5 on: February 03, 2013, 12:03:15 AM »
A little out of my league here, but as I recall...

In wargaming terms, I believe they should be classed as 'Household' or at the very least 'Retinue' troops. They were full time soldiers and paid at the same rates as mounted archers (8d) after all. Henry VII had 50 archers in his original guard, which Henry VIII doubled in 1510, if I recall correctly. These were archers, but armed with halberds (or partizans, depending on your source) - It had been common practice in Calais and Berwick etc, to provide halberds to archers for 'watch and ward', while they retained their bows for battle. Henry VIII added a further 500 archers for the French Campaign, along with 50 'Harquebusiers' and 100 mounted archers.

This seems to say the same; http://yeomenoftheguard.com/detailed.htm#henryviii

In this context I'd assume that they would fulfil the same role as a present day Guards Battalion. They would be skilled archers and likely be selected from numerous applicants for very few open places in peace time. For the war though, standards might be dropped a tad, but they would still test the skills of the archers before signing them up to pad the corps out to its 600.

In comparison to the other troops though, they'd be somewhat of an elite, even if just in their own minds.  ;)
« Last Edit: February 03, 2013, 12:10:47 AM by Arlequín »

Offline Stuart

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Re: Yeomen of the Guard - help please !
« Reply #6 on: February 03, 2013, 11:16:30 AM »
Thanks all - i'm going with my gut; they will be on a mixed bases and gming wise I think I will classify them principally as halberdiers but also with an ability to shoot though not with rear support (hope that makes sense).

Just got to paint them now, 2 down 8 to go !


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