Holy Roman Army in the Medieval era.

Jan 2013
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Anywhere
Does anyone know what does the army of the Holy Roman Empire ever looked like. Since I'm just curios about it. Is the HRA based on the Carolingian model and what about the use of Infantry, Knights, Cavalry, and the like. I mean we all knew of the Carolingian Franks, Normans, Crusaders, Eastern Romans, Anglo-Saxons, Rus, Norse, and English. But never of the Holy Roman Empire.

Did they even had an army. Cause I know of the "Army of the Holy Roman Empire (1422-1806)", the "Imperial Army (HRE) and the Teutonic Order.
But never of the army being used by the Ottonian Dynasty to the House of Wittelsbach.
 

johnincornwall

Ad Honorem
Nov 2010
7,990
Cornwall
Obviously the starting point was the army of the Carolingian Empire in 800.

All downhill from there :)
 

AlpinLuke

Forum Staff
Oct 2011
27,595
Italy, Lago Maggiore
The Carolingian Army was obviously a Frank Army, so based on a relation of a kind of servitude between the Lord and the Warrior [cavalry men received real "privileges"].

The Carolingian culture received a remarkable "pollution" from the Latin one, thanks to the bridge of other Germanic cultures who arrived before of them in the Latin world [early Franks themselves, but overall Lombards who adopted Latin culture in the Italian peninsula].

This meant that many terms they used were Latin or with a Latin origin.

Caballarius was still used.
 
Jan 2013
1,207
Anywhere
The Carolingian Army was obviously a Frank Army, so based on a relation of a kind of servitude between the Lord and the Warrior [cavalry men received real "privileges"].

The Carolingian culture received a remarkable "pollution" from the Latin one, thanks to the bridge of other Germanic cultures who arrived before of them in the Latin world [early Franks themselves, but overall Lombards who adopted Latin culture in the Italian peninsula].

This meant that many terms they used were Latin or with a Latin origin.

Caballarius was still used.

Huh look at that. I never knew they used the Caballarius. Did it ultimately became the Knights. I've known the Ottonian dynasty still relied on Carolingian structure. However! Any use of Heavy Infantry, Pikemen or Halberdiers?
 

AlpinLuke

Forum Staff
Oct 2011
27,595
Italy, Lago Maggiore
Huh look at that. I never knew they used the Caballarius. Did it ultimately became the Knights. I've known the Ottonian dynasty still relied on Carolingian structure. However! Any use of Heavy Infantry, Pikemen or Halberdiers?
Among other Latin terms they used, in documents you can find "miles" and "milites" [a "miles" commanded the "milites", usually]. Not rarely they made reference to a "knight" as a "miles. Pay attention to use the term "knight" about 9th century: they weren't "knights" as we inted yet; they were important leaders in the cavalry, with a relation of servitude with the Lord.

The most common unit of the Carolingian army was the "scara" [plural "scarae"]. Generally it was a cavalry unit.

About the infantry ...

The Frank army gathered any year [usually in Spring ... there was the expression "Field of March" or "Field of May"] to literally count the available "free men" [warriors].

The warriors who weren't able to afford a horse composed the infantry. They had [at least] a spear, a shield and a bow [with more than one cord]. This was the mass infantry.

P.S. the "caballarii" of a scara had the possibility, once dismounted, to form infantry ranks [this tactic was not rarely used].
 
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Jan 2013
1,207
Anywhere
Among other Latin terms they used, in documents you can find "miles" and "milites" [a "miles" commanded the "milites", usually]. Not rarely they made reference to a "knight" as a "miles. Pay attention to use the term "knight" about 9th century: they weren't "knights" as we inted yet; they were important leaders in the cavalry, with a relation of servitude with the Lord.

The most common unit of the Carolingian army was the "scara" [plural "scarae"]. Generally it was a cavalry unit.

About the infantry ...

The Frank army gathered any year [usually in Spring ... there was the expression "Field of March" or "Field of May"] to literally count the available "free men" [warriors].

The warriors who weren't able to afford a horse composed the infantry. They had [at least] a spear, a shield and a bow [with more than one cord]. This was the mass infantry.
Ah i i see now.
So the Holy Roman army basically kept and borrowed Carolingian units like the Caballarius, Scars, Milites, and just your average militiamen.

But what about the Paladins, Laeti, Leudes, Truste (kings bodyguards), Purei, pauperes and inferiores?,


But the million dollar question is...were they well funded. I knew the ERE kept its military well funded. But did the HRE did the same.
 

AlpinLuke

Forum Staff
Oct 2011
27,595
Italy, Lago Maggiore
Ah i i see now.
So the Holy Roman army basically kept and borrowed Carolingian units like the Caballarius, Scars, Milites, and just your average militiamen.

But what about the Paladins, Laeti, Leudes, Truste (kings bodyguards), Purei, pauperes and inferiores?,


But the million dollar question is...were they well funded. I knew the ERE kept its military well funded. But did the HRE did the same.
Near the King there was a scara divided into:

scholares - the guard of the King;
scola - the guard regiment;
milites aulae regiae - substantially the soldiers of the Royal Court.

About being funded ... in the feudal society the relation Lord - warrior was also based on convenience: the Lord gave a privilege to the warrior [important warriors received a lot ... land to cultivate, a manor, servants ...].

I will be back about this.
 
Jan 2013
1,207
Anywhere
Near the King there was a scara divided into:

scholares - the guard of the King;
scola - the guard regiment;
milites aulae regiae - substantially the soldiers of the Royal Court.

About being funded ... in the feudal society the relation Lord - warrior was also based on convenience: the Lord gave a privilege to the warrior [important warriors received a lot ... land to cultivate, a manor, servants ...].

I will be back about this.
Please do return. Its a kinda of a mystery of the what the composition of the HRA truly looks like.
 

AlpinLuke

Forum Staff
Oct 2011
27,595
Italy, Lago Maggiore
In the meanwhile, note that the HRE Army changed during the centuries. For example the duty to serve of the Lords of the feuds under Frederick was still ruled by the "servitium militum". The owners of the feuds had to serve for a period from 1 to 3 months [according to the military necessity of the Empire]. The kind and the quantity of troops that the Lord had to carry were corresponding to the dimension of the feud [the "feudum integrum" was the unity of measure].

The substance of this system is that the resources to sustain the soldiers came from the feuds [given by the Crown to the Lords]. There were rules impeding to divide a feud to have to give less troops to the King ...

It was Frederick to diffuse a not so common payed service for the owners of the feuds [actually it was a duty to serve, if you owned a feud, so that the Crown didn't pay].

This means that the salary of the soldiers was a matter for the feudatory.

In the great mass of the Army there were the "milites stipendiarii" who received a salary to serve [here you meet the pauperes and the impotentes].

Money ...

The salary depended on the level in the hierarchy. Keeping in mind that a base feud produced a value of 20 "once" per year, according to Thorau [1999] a Knight earned up to 3-5 "once" per month [5 if well armored so ... not bad!]; a servant 3-6 "tarì" [making reference to what happened in Sicily under Frederick], sometime 1/4 of oncia [10 tarì]; a common "milites" received 1/15 of the salary of a servant [servientes].

My source about this is Treccani encyclopedia.
 
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