Friday, 15 July 2011

THE CROSSBOW versus the bow

The crossbow played an important role in the late Medieval period. The crossbow was really the first hand-held weapon that could be used by an untrained soldier to injure or kill a knight in plate armour. The most powerful crossbows could penetrate armour and kill at 200 yards. Crossbows are easier to aim than longbows because the crossbowman doesn't have to use a hand to hold the string back while aiming.  On a similar note, a crossbow can be loaded long before the bowman might need to shoot. In this way, the bowman would be able to shoot immediately if surprised. Crossbows require less upper body strength to operate as well. One can use both arms to span (draw back) a crossbow. Crossbows do, of course, come with a price. That price is in efficiency and in the firing rate. 

No bow is perfectly efficient, but Medieval crossbows were particularly inefficient. The reason for this is that the draw length and the lathe (also called a prod) of crossbows are short. So even though a crossbow may have a great deal of stored energy when spanned, the tips of the lathe do not have enough time to reach the maximum velocity, so the amount of stored energy is not transferred fully to the bolt. It is the lathe tip velocity that determines the speed of the bolt thThe English lowbowmen were something like today's power lifters. After many years of frequent practice a power lifter's skeleton modifies and he can handle more weight. Similarly the medieval longbowmen had skeletal deformities from their lifelong archer practice with extremely stiff bows. Modern archers can't draw reproductions of medieval longbows - they are not strong enough.SCHLEICH 70006 WORLD OF KNIGHTS - ARCHER

The French nevEr dveloped their own longbowmen largely for rasons of social contol. Th English longbowmen asserted their rights because they were armed. The French were wary of the under classes being empowered. At Crecy and Poitiers they employed Genoese croSsbowmen mercenaries who posed less of a social threat.
The key to understanding the different social attitude toward archers of the English and the French may be experienced in the famous St. Crispin speech in Henry the Fifth.
"We few, we happy few, we band of brothers;
For he to-day that sheds his blood with me
Shall be my brother; be he ne'er so vile,
". It is inconcievable for a French knight of the time to consider anyone of the lower class (infantry or archer) as a brother. Their whole society was build on the strongest class distinctions.
At Crecy the French knights rode down their own archers (who shot some of them) because they held them in contempt as mercenaries and non-noble. The English cared for their archers who were valued and respected as much as a commoner could be at the time.
The French made the Genoese crossbowmen fight without their Pavises(shields) from too close to the English and they had to loose their weapons uphill. The crosbowmen also suffered from wet bow strings. The English longbow was easier to unstring and they had been able generally to keep their string dry.
Church at Crecy picture

The French at Crecy (and Poitiers) attacked too soon. They merely had to refuse battle for a day or so and the English would have had to move from their pre-pared poasitions. The crossbow string would be dry, the Genoese would have been able to fight on level ground and behind their big Pavises. The pavise was a large shield designed to protect crossbowmen while they reloaded their bows. It was made from wood, boiled leather and canvas and was decorated with coats-of-arms and pictures of saints. Rows of these highly-decorated shields would have been quite an awe-inspiring sight on the battlefield.
The pavisePaviseThe English crossbowmen unlike the Genoese wore no armor and had no shield. The Genoese could crouch behind the shield and weather the English arrows as they did in a castle under seige. The longbowmen had to stand upright and weather the crossbow quarrels as best they could. Longbowmen were very vulnerable to enemy missles.
 The longbow might loose five times as many arrows per unit of time but grat difference in defensive equipment probably would have given the advantage to the crossbowmen.
We'll never know because the French never used the crossbowmen properly at Crecy (or Poitiers). After all the French went into battle even before their own large infantry had arrived. They threw away all their advantages. If the battle had started with a real duel between crossbowmen and longbowmen where the crossbowmen weren't crippled by the stupidity of the French knights they might still have lsot but they would have thinned the ranks of the longbowmen and that might have been enough. The Hundred Year's War would have been over almost at the beginning.As it was the Fench learned nothing and repeated all their mistakes again and again at Poitiers and is loosed. 
A lthough there are working examples of Medieval crossbows, there are no working examples of Medieval longbows, so a direct comparison between the two cannot be made. Hence, the only data I can draw on for longbows is either from historical evidence or from reproductions of Medieval longbows. It is my belief that while the range of longbows changed very little from the 11th. century through Medieval times, the range of crossbows certainly did increase. Historical evidence would indicate that in the hands of a well-trained longbowmen, distances of 250-350 yards were commonly attained. A few modern archers have regularly achieved distances of 350-450 yards with reproduction longbows. Inigo Simot loosed an arrow 462 yards 9 inches in 1914, and there is a claim of someone loosing an arrow 482 yards with a longbow.
At the time of the battle of Crecy (1346 C.E.), the English longbow almost certainly had a greater range than the crossbow used in field combat. ArrowsThroughout the Medieval Period though, crossbows became more powerful. Sir Ralph Payne-Gallwey loosed a bolt from an actual Medieval crossbow spanned with a cranequin and achieve a cast of 490 yards. The ordinary 15th. century crossbow would likely cast a bolt 370-380 yards. These crossbows would surely outperform almost any longbow in terms of distance, but the accuracy of the crossbow at those ranges would likely be poor at best.
With range out of the way, power is an even more difficult subject to breach. In general, arrows weigh more than bolts, so they have a larger momentum (force) associated with them. However, a late Medieval crossbow bolt has a higher speed associated with it, which will overcome the lower mass. (the the force being equal to the mass times the square of the velocity). Both longbows and crossbows were capable of penetrating all but the thickest plate maile armour, but my understanding is that the heavy crossbow was the main driving force leading to heavier and heavier plate maile armour. At point blank range, the crossbow almost certainly had greater penetrating power than a long bow. QuarrelsBy the 15th century, and possibly earlier, it is safe to say that heavy crossbows (such as a windlass spanned crossbow) were more powerful than longbows. The common crossbow probably wasn't much more powerful Pope Innocent II in 1139 tried to ban this weapon as he thought it should not be used against Christian souls, yet it remained popular in most parts of Europe. GGBR2A-00028
© North Wind Picture ArchivesThe French used large numbers of mercenary crossbowmen, such as the Genoese, in their armies. In England it was mainly used for hunting and in castle defence. Its limitations were its slow rate of shot. A good crossbowman could shoot 3 arrows a minute, compared with the 12-15 arrows a minute of the longbow.though

Camille Desmoulins

Owing to his difficulties in establishing a career as a lawyer, Desmoulins' position in Paris was a precarious one, and he often lived in poverty. However, he was greatly inspired and enthused by the current of political reform that surrounded the summoning of the Estates-General. In letters to his father at the time, he rhapsodized over the procession of deputies entering the Palace of Versailles, and criticized the events surrounding the closing of the Salle des Menus Plaisirs to the deputies who had declared themselves the National Assembly - events which lead to the famous swearing of the Tennis Court Oath.
The sudden dismissal of popular finance minister Jacques Necker by King Louis XVI on July 11, 1789 proved the spark that lit the fuse of Desmoulins' fame. On July 12, spurred by the news of this politically unsettling dismissal, Desmoulins leapt onto a table outside the Cafe du Foy (one of many cafés in the garden of the Palais Royal frequented in large part by political dissidents) and delivered an impassioned call to arms. Shedding his customary stammer in the excitement, he urged the volatile crowd to "...take up arms and adopt cockades by which we may know each other", calling Necker's dismissal the tocsin of the St. Bartholomew of the patriots." The stationing of a large number of troops in Paris, many foreign, had led Desmoulins and other political radicals to believe that a massacre of dissidents in the city was indeed imminent. This was an idea that his audience also found plausible and threatening, and they were quick to embrace Desmoulins and take up arms in riots that spread throughout Paris rapidly.
The "cockades" worn by the crowd were initially green, a color associated with liberty, and made at first from the leaves of the trees that lined the Palais Royal. However, the color green was also associated with the Comte d'Artois, a reactionary aristocrat, and the cockades therefore were quickly replaced by others in the traditional colors of Paris: red and blue. The forces semi-organized under this banner attacked the Hôtel des Invalides to gain arms and, on July 12, embarked upon the Storming of the Bastille.
May and June of 1789, Desmoulins had written a radical pamphlet entitled La France Libre, which his publisher at that time had refused to print. The rioting surrounding the storming of the Bastille, however, and especially Desmoulins' personal and publicized involvement in it, altered the situation considerably. On July 18, Desmoulins's work was finally issued. The politics of the pamphlet ran considerably in advance of public opinion; in it, Desmoulins called explicitly for a republic, stating, "... popular and democratic government is the only constitution which suits France, and all those who are worthy of the name of men." La France Libre also examined and criticized in detail the role and rights of kings, of the nobility, and of the Roman Catholic clergy.
Desmoulins' renown as a radical pamphleteer was furthered by the publication, in September 1789, of his Discours de la lanterne aux Parisiens,which featured as its epigraph a quotation from the Gospel of John: Qui male agit odit lucem ("He who does evil hates the light" John 3:20). This was understood to allude to the iron bracket of a lamppost at the corner of the Place de Grève and the Rue de la Vannerie, often used by rioters as a makeshift gallows for anti-revolutionaries and those accused of profiteering. A famous Revolutionary song, the Ça ira ("It shall be"), also immortalizes this lantern, in the lines, "Les aristocrates à la lanterne... Les aristocrates, on les pendra!" ("To the lantern with the aristocrats... The aristocrats, we'll hang them!")
The Discours de la lanterne, written from the perspective of the Place de Grève lamppost, was aggressive in its celebration of political violence, and attributed exalted qualities of loyalty and patriotism to the citizens who made up the Parisian mob. This hard-edged fervor found an appreciative audience in Paris, and Desmoulins, as a result of the pamphlet, became known as the "Procureur-général de la lanterne" ("the Lanterne Prosecutor" or "Lanterne Attorney").
In November 1789, Desmoulins issued the first number of a weekly publication, Histoire des Révolutions de France et de Brabant, which would run until the end of July 1791. This publication combined political reportage, revolutionary polemics, satire, and cultural commentary; "The universe and all its follies," Desmoulins had announced, "shall be included in the jurisdiction of this hypercritical journal." The Révolutions de France et de Brabant proved extremely popular from its first to its last number. Desmoulins became notorious, and was able to leave behind the poverty that had marked his previous life in Paris.
The politics of the Révolutions de France et de Brabant were anti-royalist and pro-Revolutionary. The newspaper celebrated the Revolutionary zeal of "patriots" from the battlefields ofBrabant to the Cordeliers district in Paris (home to the well-known and powerful revolutionary Club des Cordeliers, of which Desmoulins was a prominent member), and also criticized the excesses and inequities of, among a wide range of targets, the aristocratic regime. The savagery with which Desmoulins attacked those with whom he disagreed drew lawsuits, criticism, and reciprocal attacks. His previous friendships with powerful figures such as the Comte de Mirabeau and Baron Malouet, suffered. Both men, angered by what they perceived as libellous statements, declared that Desmoulins should be denounced and Malouet “went so far as to ask that Camille be certified insane.” The Actes des Apôtres, the equally savage royalist newspaper that served as the Révolutions' opposite number, engaged in a continual war of insults with the Révolutions, and particularly with Desmoulins, whom it dubbed, in a satirical poem, "l'ânon des moulins".
Upon the death of the Comte de Mirabeau in April 1791, Desmoulins (to whom Mirabeau had, at one time, been a great patron and friend) countered the predominantly sentimental and forgiving eulogies that appeared in the Parisian press by publishing a brutal attack in which he declared the late Mirabeau to be the "god of orators, liars, and thieves."This presaged later about-face attacks against prominent and once-sympathetic Revolutionary figures, such as Jean Pierre Brissot, by Desmoulins - a method which would, ultimately, be turned against him by his own former friends.
On July 16, 1791, Desmoulins appeared before the Paris Commune as the head of a group petitioning for the deposition of Louis XVI, who had, in June of that year, briefly fled Paris with his family before being captured and escorted back to the city. The flight of the king had caused civil unrest, and the petition, presented a day before the anniversary of the Fête de la Fédération, contributed to this agitation. On July 17, a large crowd that had gathered at the Champs de Mars in support of the petition was fired upon by military forces under the command of the Marquis de Lafayette, an incident which became known as the Champs de Mars Massacre.
 Accounts differ as to whether or not Desmoulins was present at the Champs de Mars; in the subsequent upheaval, warrants for the arrest of himself and Georges Danton were issued. Danton fled Paris, and Desmoulins, though he remained in the city, and spoke on several occasions at the Jacobin Club, decreased his journalistic activities for a time.
Early in 1792, following a bitter quarrel with Jean Pierre Brissot over a legal case which Desmoulins had taken up and discussed in several broadsheets, Desmoulins published a pamphlet, Jean Pierre Brissot démasqué, which attacked Brissot savagely and personally. In it, Desmoulins claimed that the invented verb brissoter had taken on the meaning "to cheat," and accused Brissot of betraying republicanism. The case constructed against Brissot in this pamphlet was expanded and used to terrible and destructive effect in Desmoulins' later, 1793 publication, Fragment de l'histoire secrète de la Révolution (also known as the Histoire des Brissotins), in which the Girondist political faction, of which Brissot was a prominent member, was accused of traitorous and counter-revolutionary activities. This "history," produced in response to calls by Brissot and his followers for the dissolution of the Paris Commune and of the Jacobins, contributed to the arrest and execution of many Girondist leaders, including Brissot himself, in October 1793. Desmoulins intensely regretted his role in the death of the Girondists; present at their trial, he was heard to lament, "O my God! my God! It is I who kill them!" He was seen to collapse in the courtroom when the public prosecutor pronounced the sentence of death.
This growing remorse was accompanied by an element of recklessness. In the summer of 1793, General Arthur Dillon, a close friend of Desmoulins and his wife, a known royalist, was imprisoned. In an openly published Lettre au General Dillon, Desmoulins went far beyond the politically delicate act of defending Dillon, and attacked powerful members of the Committee of Public Safety - notably Saint-Just and Billaud-Varenne.
Beginning December 5, 1793, Desmoulins published the journal for which he would be best known and most celebrated: Le Vieux Cordelier. Even the title of this short-lived publication spoke of conflict with the current regime, implying that Desmoulins spoke on behalf of the "old" or original members of the Club des Cordeliers, in opposition to the more radical and extreme factions that had now come into power. In the seven issues that comprised the Vieux Cordelier, Desmoulins condemned the suspicion, brutality, and fear that had come to characterize the Revolution, comparing the ongoing Revolutionary Terror to the oppressive reign of the Roman emperor Tiberius and calling for the establishment of a "Committee of Clemency" to counter the climate of mercilessness fostered by the Committee of Public Safety. In the fourth number of the journal, Desmoulins addressed Robespierre directly, writing, "My dear Robespierre... my old school friend... Remember the lessons of history and philosophy: love is stronger, more lasting than fear. The perceived counter-revolutionary tone in these calls for clemency led to Desmoulins' expulsion from the Club des Cordeliers and denunciation at the Jacobins, as well as, ultimately, to his arrest and execution.
Desmoulins took an active part in the August 10, 1792 attack on the Tuileries Palace. Immediately afterwards, as the Legislative Assembly (France) crumbled and various factions contended for control of the country, he was appointed Secretary-General to Georges Danton, who had assumed the role of Justice Minister. On September 8, he was elected as a deputy from Paris to the new National Convention. He was affiliated with The Mountain, and voted for the establishment of the Republic and the Execution of Louis XVI. His political views were closely aligned with those of Danton and, initially, Robespierre.
The appearance of the Vieux Cordelier in December 1793 marked the start of a rift between Desmoulins and Robespierre. Initially directed, with Robespierre's approval, against the excesses of the ultra-radical Hébertist faction, the journal was rapidly turned against Robespierre himself and his allies in the Committee of Public Safety. Its calls for a Committee of Clemency sharply divided Danton and Desmoulins, who advocated such a committee, from Robespierre, who viewed the idea as indulgent and dangerous.
On January 7, 1794, the Jacobin Club sought to expel Desmoulins from its number. Robespierre, seeking to protect Desmoulins, suggested as an alternative that the offending issues of the Vieux Cordelier be publicly burnt. Desmoulins' response,"Brûler n'est pas répondre" ("Burning is not answering"), echoed the cry of Jean-Jacques Rousseau, the influential philosopher whose work was central to Robespierre's own vision of the Republic. Robespierre persisted in his attempt to protect his childhood friend (his argument was that Desmoulins was a "spoilt child" whom others had led astray), but Desmoulins' refusal to renounce the Vieux Cordelier made it politically difficult for any tolerance to be extended to him.
The condemnation and execution of the Hébertists in March 1794 meant that the sole remaining serious source of dissent within the Committee of Public Safety's regime was theindulgent faction headed by Danton and voiced by Desmoulins. The energies of the Committee, and especially of Saint-Just, therefore turned to the elimination of the Dantonists. Charges were brought before the Committee of Public Safety, and an arrest warrant for Danton and Desmoulins was finally issued on March 31.
Danton, Desmoulins, and many other actual or accused Dantonist associates were tried from April 3 through 5th before the Revolutionary Tribunal. The trial was less criminal in nature than political, and as such unfolded in an irregular fashion. The accused were prevented from defending themselves by a decree of the National Convention. This fact, together with confusing and often incidental denunciations (for instance, a report that Danton, while engaged in political work in Brussels, had appropriated a carriage filled with several hundred thousand livres of table linen)and threats made by prosecutor Antoine Quentin Fouquier-Tinville towards members of the jury, helped to ensure a guilty verdict. Additionally, the accused were denied the right to have witnesses appear on their behalf, though they had submitted requests for several - including, in Desmoulins' case, Robespierre. The verdict was passed in the absence of the accused, who had been removed from the courtroom to prevent unrest among the trial's observers. Their execution was scheduled for the same day.
In a letter to his wife from the Luxembourg Prison, Desmoulins wrote, "[I]t is marvellous that I have walked for five years along the precipices of the Revolution without falling over them, and that I am still living; and I rest my head calmly upon the pillow of my writings... I have dreamed of a Republic such as all the world would have adored. I could never have believed that men could be so ferocious and so unjust."
Of the group of fifteen who were guillotined together on April 5, 1794, including Marie Jean Hérault de Séchelles, Philippe Fabre d'Églantine and Pierre Philippeaux, Desmoulins died third, and Danton last.
On December 29, 1790 Desmoulins married Lucile Duplessis. Among the witnesses to the marriage were Robespierre, Brissot, Jérôme Pétion de Villeneuve. The Desmoulins' only child, Horace Camille, was born on July 6, 1792; his godfather was Robespierre.
Lucile Desmoulins was arrested mere days after her husband, and condemned to the guillotine on charges of conspiring to free her husband from prison and plotting the "ruin of the Republic." She was executed on April 13, 1794.
Horace Camille Desmoulins was raised by Adèle and Annette Duplessis (the sister and mother of Lucile, respectively). He was later pensioned by the French government, and died in 1825 in Haiti.


The firm of Dulcop is still going but will on ly produce their figures if you want like fuckin thousands and thousands!!!!This one was painted by me after I nicked it from this kid.

Wednesday, 13 July 2011


The Apaches lived in the desert environment of far West Texas. In the desert, it does not rain very often. When it does rain, it does not rain very much. Deserts do not have much water. Plants and animals need water to live. 
Then they have to move on to a new place to find more food. If there were a lot of people living together they might not be able to find enough food to live on. They would starve and some people would die. This is why the Apaches organized into small groups and did not organize into larger bands. A group ( a small number of people ) can live in the desert because a small number of people do not need very much food. A band with many more people would not be able to find enough food in a desert.The Apaches hunted and gathered food. They were not farmers. They did not plant crops like corn. Anthropologists call people who hunt and gather – get ready – hunter gatherers. Hunter gatherers hunt wild big animals and gather wild plants and very small animals for food. When they have caught and found all the food in an area they have to move on to a new place. People who move all the time and have no permanent homes are called nomads or nomadic people. Almost all hunter gathers are nomadic.The Lipan Apache Indians were organized into groups and there was not really an Lipan Apache tribe. There were no Lipan Apache leaders higher than the leader of each group. All the Apache groups spoke Apache, dressed in similar clothes and ate the same kinds of food. So all the groups were Apache and all these Apache groups together are what we should call the Apache culture. But, people who don’t know better still call the Apache a tribe. Now you know they are wrong. Sometimes the groups would BAND together to fight a common enemy. When this happened they might appoint a temporary leader over several groups and group leaders. With the Apaches this leader was always temporary. As soon as the fight was over the band would separate back into groups again. The Apaches were not the only Indian culture in Texas organized into groups. There are several others as you will see.
The Comanche Indians were organized as bands, not as groups or as a tribe. Each band had its own name. Each Comanche band had its own leader. There were groups of families in the bands. In the Comanche, groups or families could leave one band and join another. But, there was no one leader or chief over all the Comanche bands. Each band did what it wanted to when it wanted to. The bands might join together to fight a common enemy too big for just one band to fight. Sometimes several bands would camp together for a while. The Comanche were not the only Indian culture in Texas organized into bands. There are several others as you will see.
The Comanches did not live in a desert. The Comanches lived on the plains. A plain is an environment with a lot of open grass land. There are trees in spots and along the rivers and streams in the plains. The plains get regular rain and there is enough water for lots of grass, plants, and animals to live on. All the grass and water supported large herds of buffalo. With so many buffalo they are a good source of lots of food. Because there is a lot of food and water on the plains the Indians could live in larger bands and not in smaller groups. 
The Comanches were nomadic hunter-gatherers. They were nomadic because they followed the big herds of buffalo around. They were hunter - gatherers because they hunted buffalo and gathered some plants when they could. But, hunting buffalo was the best and easiest way to get lots of food on the plains. Crops like corn can be planted and grown along the rivers and streams in the plains. Some Indian cultures north of Texas did plant corn and crops on the plains. But, most hunted the buffalo because hunting buffalo was a easier way to get food on the plains of Texas than planting and raising crops.

Tuesday, 12 July 2011

cafe storme

late second world war british

 WW2 BRITISH  Army Tunics,  Smocks and webbingThe British Brodie Pattern Mark II Steel Helmet without a camoflage net attached. This style of British helmet saw service in every theatre of war; of which Commonwealth Troops took part during the Second World War. It was also worn by all three services (Army, Navy and Air Force) although colour schemes did vary. This particular Brodie Pattern Helmet has a metal rim around it's 

outer edge. There are also many examples which are devoid of this 'rim'.WW2 US Marine Corps Paratrooper full uniform packageWW2 US Marine Corps Pacific Camouflage full uniform packageWW2 US Marine Corps full uniform packageWW2 US Airborne uniform packageWW2 AMERICAN US Marine Corps M41 Camouflage TunicWW2 AMERICAN US Marine Corps M41 Camouflage tunicWW2 AMERICAN USMC Airborne  tunicWW2  British Private soldier Uniform  Package British Army Paratrooper Denison Smock

Monday, 11 July 2011

has mars already been visited?

Mars is the fourth  Mars probably got its name from the Greeks because of its red colour. In Greek mythology Mars is Ares, the god of war. Mars has been known and studied for a long time. It has been studied a lot from here at Earth itself. But Mars is a difficult planet to study completely from Earth because it is so tiny. In a secret missionAmerican nasa discovered that Mars has ruins from a very old civilisation. Fats Crampton the leader of the secret mission said that a chip shop was found near twin peaks and bottles of light ale were still drinkableThis info came to me from my mate who works at NASA

Washington 2013 The White House
For reasons of top security we have to reveal to the American public that a space mission to Mars was put into operation in 1990 and in 2008 a space ship reached the planet. Its findings were beyond imagination"
This is the speech that Obama will give to the world on the date above.The CIA have decided to send every fat bastard civil war re-enactor to MarsLandscape image captured by probe (Nasa)