DBx and FOG are wrong. The gardingi were personal military retainers of the Visigothic king. They were wealthy and led their own retainers into battle. Given they were wealthy, and a military elite, they probably fought mounted. And in an army where even some slaves wore armour, it is beyond belief that these palatine officials were unarmoured.
It bugs me when rules writers introduce arbitrary distinctions between troop types and armies. From what I’ve read there was little difference between the Germanic tribes operating in western europe during the migration period leading to the Fall of Rome. I’m interested in the Early Visigothic, Early Vandal and Suevi because they operated in Spain and Portugal, either passing through or settling permanently. The DBA army lists for these armies, II/65, II/66 and II/72c respectively, highlight the issue for me as they differ in ways that are inexplicable to me. DBA is not alone as other rule systems also distinguish these armies in various ways. It is all too much for me. Too made up by the list writers. So here is my blended army list for a generic Western Germanic horde, whether Visigothic, Vandal or Suevi.
The Suevi are covered by DBA army list II/72c Suevi 250AD-584AD, an option within II/72 Early Frankish, Alamannic, Quadi, Suevi, Rugian or Turcilingi. They were part of the general chaos during the Fall of the Western Roman Empire and ended up in Iberia. This post is part of my series on Troop Identities in DBA Army Lists.
I was thinking about a revised DBA army list covering Early Visigothic, Early Vandal and Suevi so thought I’d better do a bit of research. So on a rainy sunday I browsed through Simon MacDowall’s book on the Germanic Warrior at the end of the Western Roman Empire. As usual I couldn’t help taking a few notes.
The DBA army list III/34 Andalusian 710AD-1172AD is one of the two main Muslim armies of the Reconquista. I think the standard DBA list is pretty rubbish due to the high number light infantry. I don’t like it because it makes for a very weak army in DBA but also because it isn’t particularly historical. I’ll post a revision in due course. This post is part of my series on Troop Identities in DBA Army Lists.
I was wondering why some Germanic cavalry during the Fall of Rome and Barbarian Kingdoms are counted as lancers in Field of Glory and some as light spear. It isn’t clear to me why the Early Frankish, Alamanni, Burgundi, Rugii, Suebi or Turcilingi and the Gardingi of the Later Visigoths count as light spear rather than lancer like the rest. Or vice versa.
For the Big Day of the Britannia 600 AD Campaign Rich Wilcox chose army of his wife’s homeland, Wales. Rich was the first to get the bug for Britannia 600 campaign. He painted up a historical army, but was also the one to find the reference to the Giant of Snowdon, a character that subsequently joined his ranks.