Medieval Military Combat

Battle Tactics and Fighting Techniques of the Wars of the Roses

Tom Lewis

Explores the battle techniques of the medieval period.
Publication date:
March 2021
Publisher :
Casemate Publishers
Illustration :
50 illustrations
Format Available     Quantity Price
ISBN : 9781612008875

Dimensions : 228 X 152 mm
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Regular Price: £25.00

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• A concise and entertaining look at close combat in battles during the Wars of the Roses
• Discusses the different types of soldier: bowmen, swordsmen, spearmen, and plated men-at-arms
• Shows how popular culture such as films have mis-represented medieval warfare

We don't know how medieval soldiers fought. Did they just walk forward in their armour, to smash each other with their maces and poleaxes, for hours on end, as depicted on film in programs such as Game of Thrones?

They could not have done so. It is impossible to fight in such a manner for more than several minutes as exhaustion becomes a preventative factor.

Indeed, we know more of how the Roman and Greek armies fought than we do of the 1300 to 1550 period.

So how did medieval soldiers in the War of the Roses, and in the infantry sections of battles such as Agincourt and Towton, carry out their grim work?

Medieval Military Combat looks at the techniques of such battles. It suggests that medieval battle numbers are highly exaggerated, and that we need to look again at the accounts of actions such as the famous Battle of Towton, which this work uses as a basic for its overall study.


A very good read for anyone trying to better understand warfare in the period and also for those interested in analytical approaches to the study of poorly documented conflicts.
The NYMAS Review

Screenwriters and directors of fantasy or medieval film or television battles would benefit greatly from reading this book!
Miniature Wargames - Arthur Harman

A work of seminal outstanding and meticulously detailed scholarship, this book is a unique and unreservedly recommended addition to community, college and university library Medieval History collections in general, and Medieval Military History supplemental curriculum studies lists in particular.
Midwest Book Review

The author of this ambitious study puts forward three hypotheses to present what he calls ‘a new theory of medieval battle'. First, he argues that the men-at-arms - what we would best understand as ‘knights' - were rotated on the front line as they could only engage their opponents for a few minutes at a time without becoming exhausted; second, that battles were far less deadly that might be imagined; and third that the overall numbers involved were far fewer than is generally thought.
Toy Soldier Collector & Historical Figures