Monday, May 20, 2024


 For the first time I tried to make a corpsman (eith injured soldier). I took as basis Arfix 

and in particular the unit of corpsmen:<

From this I did my template:


 My project about the German Amry in its first period of fighting (1914/1915) went on. More thant Tannenberg, I am fascinated by the following battle of Lodz, on middle November 1914, until 5th December 1914. This battle battle started in a still acceptable weather, just to turn rapidly bad.

Hence I wanted to recreate a mixture of uniforms: some men fighting, still have the normal uniform, while other already wears the coat and gloves. Some are just in the middle of this transformation, evident from the colour of the headgear.

I really liked to add the winter details to the normal uniforms, and, as fas as I remember, there are not examples of figures in this dress.

Thursday, May 2, 2024


My temporary limit as history lover is 1914 (maybe February 1915); over this period for me there is no more interest, because it is too close to the current epoch with all its awful aspects.

During my researches for a template of a German soldier of the summer 1914 I had a lot of difficulties to find good miniatures and poses. So I had to invent some different ways to achieve my goal.

I thought about armies that had a sort of similar uniform of that of the German Army in 1914 and my attention went - obviously - to the Prussian Army in 1870. From some figures of that Army (of that army there are much more examples) I did my template:

In the previous pictures is possible to have a glance of the differences I did: the colour of the uniform but also the helm, as well as the rucksack. I think in this way it is also very interesting to see the evolution of the German/Prussian uniforms from 1870 to 1914.

Figure Nr. 2

The same transformation was done here above.

I decided in the last case to change the head of the German shooter (figure nr. 3):

Figure Nr. 3

For this purpose I had to use an old but original picture of a German soldier and adapt it to the template as in the following figure (Nr. 4)

Figure Nr 4

Also in this case, the base was a Prussian soldier modified. I do prefer the new helm as it came out from the picture.

It is also interesting to note the increase in details if I just show here a previous template I did in 2015 (Figure Nr. 5)

Figure Nr. 5

Futhermore, to increase the different poses, I took samples from papersoldiers for Zulu wars and I transformed them:

Friday, March 1, 2024


 After a little of bit of misunderstanding and a lot of help from the good fellows of TMP I went back and I finally understood how an Austrian Battalion in 1866 was actually deployed for its Stosstaktik. 

I went back to a 3 divisions formations, each division on 2 companies (one after the other) and each division deployed on 3 ranks of about 55 men each.

So pratically an Austrian Battalion could act through its 3 divisions, that could split or adapt to the surrounding terrein.

What changed was the emphasis on the mass formations (often confusing called "columns" in English language sources) in the assault, and the near-extinction of the line except in purely defensive fights. Two company masses abreast, each of of four double ranks, formed the Division mass (about 25m wide by 22m deep), while three Divisions made a battalion mass--formed as six double ranks (about 50m wide by 40m deep). The division mass was the normal fighting formation.



Monday, February 26, 2024


I come bacjk to this post to complete my work and to prepare a future pubblication of all the material I found in an Italian/English version.

Just as fresh up, here the Batailles that fought at that battle.

What is important to note is the way the Cavalry was fighting. During the Crusades they used small units; a big unit was called "bataille" but the tactical unit was the "conrois", drawn up in ore or more very closely packed ranks (3 or 4 max) with heavy knights on the front, lighter sergeants behind and squires in the rear (probably not fighting but just as support to the knights). The identity of a conrois was indicated by a sort of pre-araldic patterns on shields. Each conrois consisted of around 20/25 men divided in smaller echelles (squadrons) or compagnies. 

So 1 bataille will be 1 cm wide, representing around 40 meters, i.e 3 conrois of 25 men each (total 70/75 horsemen) in 2 ranks, so 32/35 men per line (not 3 because the front would have been too short to face the large amount of Sudanese infantry); or possibly on 3 ranks (front of 25 horses) as a maximum depth of the convois, keeping between them wider spaces to face the large array of Sudanese infantry and to keep in any way a thick mass of horses charging and pushing.

The infantry will be arrayed in units of 4 rows, of 50 men each row (so 200 men in total) for the same width (1 cm on the map and 40 meters in reality); 10 of these.

The Bataille present at the battle (10) were possibly so divided into:

2 batailles as main body of the King
1 bataille under Hugo de Tabaria (Tiberias), Baron, (Hugo de Saint Omer) - Principate of Galilea
1 bataille under Rorgius de Chayphas (Haifa) - Principate of Galilea
1 bataille under Gunfridus de Turri David (around Jerusalem)
1 bataille under Hugo de Hebron, Principity of Galilea (Hugo de Saint Abrhams)
1 bataille under Eustach Graner, Lord of Cesarea
1 bataille under Guttmannus de Brussella, castello Brabantiae
1 bataille under Pisellus de Tuorna (i.e of Tournai)
1 bataille under Balduwinus de Hastrut, castello Flandriae (Flemish)

Map nr. 10 - Christian Cavalry formation at the 3rd Battle of Ramla


I added (2024) this part to increase the knowledge and completeness of this battle. I was wondering about the standards that the single "bataille" were carrying at the Third Battle of Ramla. A not easy task. 
The Flag of the Kingdom of Jerusalem is well know and was close to the King and does not represent a problem (2 Batailles):

Standard of the Kingdom of Jerusalem 1105

More difficult the rest.
Sometimes the Title of Prince of Galilea was switched to Prince of Tiberiad (Tabaria), hence the confusion. In any way this Falimy was ruling the Pricipate of Galilea (Tiberiad)
1 bataille under Hugo de Tabaria (Tiberias), Baron, (Hugo de Saint Omer); luckly I found this image that represents him (Prince of Galilea and Baron of Tiberiad) in the moment when he was killed in 1105 during a raid (so just after the Third Battle of Ramla)

From this miniature I did the following standard bearer of the Pricipauté of Galilea (and Tiberiad)

Principate of Galilea 1105

It was not easy to trace back this family. After some reasearches I found out that this was a son of Geldemar Carpenel, first Lord of Chayphas. (in fact the descendands and rulers of this fief were all belonging to this family.
I found a very interesting map, with the coats of arms of all territories/families exactly in 1105. It is easy to see the coat of arms of the Carpenel Family.

This is the standard bearer

Lordship of Chaypha (Haifa)


This was the usual appellative given to the Chatelain of Jerusalem aka of the Tower of David. 

His family's name was de Cavis 

GUNTFRIED dDE CAVIS  His name suggests Germanic origin.  Châtelain of the Tower of David
"...Peselus vicecomes, Gaufridus de Turre David..." subscribed the charter dated 1104 under which Baudouin I King of Jerusalem donated property to the Genoese church of San Lorenzo.  Albert of Aix names "Hugo de Tabaria, Rorgius de Cayphas, Guntfridus de Turri David, Hugo de Sancto Abraham, Eustachius Granarius, Gutmannus de Brussella castello Brabantiæ, Lithardus de Cameraco civitate Galliæ, Pisellus de Tuorna, Baldewinus de Hastrut castellis Flandrie" as those who went to relieve King Baudouin at Jaffa, dated to [1105/06] from the context.  Albert of Aix records "Gunfrido custode ac præposito turris David" (namedGunfridus custos ac præpositus arcis et turris Iherusalem” in a later passage) supporting King Baudouin “incivitate Ramnes”, dated to [1107][539].  A charter dated 1112 records that Patriarch Arnulf donated property to the church of Josaphat, including “decimam Gumfredi de Cavis scilicet de casalibus Mezera et Daltim” (another version "casalium Caveæ et Tarphim) quae fuerunt Gumfredi de Turri


It is possible to make a standard similar to that of the Kingdom of Jerusalem, with little modifications:

Standard of the Chatelain Turris David

It is quite difficult to understand this Hugo de Sancto Abraham. 
I found a document date 1104 where it is quoted this Hugo as a witness of an agreement between the King and the Genoese people.

Jerusalem. Baldwin, rex Iudee et Ierusalem ac defensor sanctissimi Sepulcri domini nostri Ihesu Christi, gives the church of St Laurence of Genoa plateae in Jerusalem and Jaffa; a third part of Asur/Arciuf and Caesarea, with a third part of their territories, which extend for a league, together with a casale in each; a third part of Acre, with a third part of the city territory which extends for a league; 300 besants a year in exchange for other casalia; a third part of every city and its territory which the Genoese help to take with 50 or more soldiers, together with a casale; and a third part of Old Cairo [Babilon] with three of the better casalia of their choice. Baldwin swears never to harm or imprison Genoese, who will pay no commercium; neither will merchants from Savona, Noli or Albenga or the family of Gandulfus Pisanus filius Fiopie/Tropię. Baldwin renounces rights on the goods of Genoese who die in his dominions and on shipwreck. Witnesses: Ugo de Tabaria; Ugo de Sancto Abraham; Geruasius dapifer; Galterius Machomet; Fredericus de Corbolio; Pesellus vicecomes; Golfridus de Turre Dauid; Gotman.

This text shows this Hugo together with the major Lords of the Kingdom. Later on, changing name, but with the same title other Lords witnessed the oath of the King. In one document, it is called - very important - "Prior name de Sancto Abraham"; this means it should be a sort of first Cavalry Order or a "Confraternita" of fighting people that did a sort of sacred oath. It is know that already in 1099 Goffredus de Bouillon organized Cavalry Orders to defend the pilgrims. In 1099 the Crusaders occupied Hebron and with Hebron considered the putative burial place of Abraham; it is then evident that this Order was accomplishing a service to the putative tumb of the Patriarch, as well as the Order of Saint Sepulcre in Jerusalem. It is important to note that the latter had a force of around 50 Knights; it is possible that this Order had the same force or a little smaller plus around 60 sergeants.
From this knowledge is possible hence to reproduce a standard for this Battaille that fought at the Battle of Ramla in 1105.

Standard of Hugue de Sancto Abraham


There are a lot of sources about this commander, Lord of Casesarea. There are some hypothesis about his origins, whether Flamish of  Frank, from Aquitaine. I think there is no doubt that he was from the Flamish Duchy, considering that the rest of the other Commanders of the Battailles at the Battle of Ramla were all Flemish, as Baldovinus, so there was a tight bond between this Lords and their King.

He became Lord of Caesarea in 1101 and Lord of Sidon in 1110. This gives the idea how much the King trusted him. In the year 1123 he was elected constable and bailiff of Jerusalem and during the captivity of King Baldwin II he defeated the Fatimi Army at the Battle of Yibneh, near Ibelin

The fact that he was from diocese of Thérouanne, and that on a seal of one his descendents is depicted a sort of coat of arms with parallel stripes, allows to reproduce his coat of arms with a good degree of certitude as follows. 

Some sources say in particular that besides belonging to this Diocese of Thérouanne he was originary from the town of Beaurainville (located in that Diocese); here coat of arms of the Town of Beuarainville nowadays: it is intersting to note the square with stripes, exactly like in the coin of that period. Considering also that in the epoch the heraldry was still very simple, it is evident that the eligible example for his coat of arms (or a sort of) at the Third Battle of Ramla could be like in the square (top left):

From this coat of arms is possilbe to see (top left) the (probably) original one; hence the standard:

                                        Standard of Eustace I de Granier

Eustace Granied's place of origin is written in a poem Versus de viris illustribus diocesis Tarvanensis qui in sacra fuere expeditione (translation Vers about illustrious men of the Diocese ot Thérouanne who took part in the Holy Expedition); in this poem Eustace I de Grenier is cited among the knights of the Diocese of Thérouanne who accompanied Baldwin of Boulogne, fhe future King of Jerusalem.

He is defined as "notus miles, cognomine Gernirs" i.e. "famous knight, with family name Gernirs" (actually his name was written in very different ways: Garnerius, Granerius, Granarius).

Guillaume de Tyre quotes him as one of the Barons of Baldwin of Boulogne. That means that from Flander this Knight was a vassal of Balwin

What can be said by sure is that he was Flamish, he came together with his Lord, Baldovinus de Boulogne and he was always very trustfull towards his King and a very gifted warrior.


Also this Lord is quoted in different sources, and like the other is a Flamish. 

                                                    Standard of Pisellus de Tournai

He was apponted Vicompte de Jerusalem, an office created soon after the end of the First Crusade, and Pisellus was the first to be appointed (1104); 

His flag represents the white of the Flag of Jerusalem, cosidering that in 1105 he was Vicompte de Jerusalem and the red as first colour/banner of the Town of Tournai in Flanders.

Also in this case, we have confirm he was Flamish, like all the others Commanders and Lord at the Battle.


He was from Hastrut, nowadays Heestert; here the coat of arms. As usual I took the simple version (the right shield)

                                                Standard of Balduvinus de Hastrut

Thursday, February 15, 2024


 While it was easy to understand how a SYW battalion was attacking or a Napoleonic Regiment, I found quite challeging to understand how a battallion or a brigade actually was deployed in 1866.

For this purpose I tried to simulate some different arrays, hoping to be clear:

Wednesday, February 14, 2024


 As it is well known, this regiment fought at the Battle of Custoza on 25th July 1866 and precisely under the command of Colonnel Maximilian von (Ritter) von Rodakowski charged furiously the famous "Quadrato di Villafranca" the Infantry square of Villafranca, arrayerd by the 49th Italian Line Infatry, inside which the Prince Crown Umberto di Savoia (future King Umberto I) recovered from the attack .A lot of painting from both sides represent this episode of the Battle, as well as I would love to do and hence I prepared the Italian Infatry (see my previous posts).

In the picture above, it is possible to see the moment of the charge. Please note that the Bersaglieri units wore at the battle the summer dress, i.e. white trousers. They formed little groups to defend themselves, while the real square was arrayed by infantry and not - like here depicted - by Bersaglieri.

This painting in any case in very intersting because it shows uniforms of the 13th Uhlanen Regiment, above all in the foreground the trumpeter (with white leather). It is also interesting to note that the painter represented the Regiment mostly armed with swords instead of lances. Starting from 1860  the carabine was withdrawn, and they were armed with lances (and swords). 

This regiment was raised in 1860  as Freiwilligen-Uhlanen-Regiment (volunteers Uhlanen Regiment) but was voluteer just in title; in fact its men were drwn from a single division of each of the regular Uhlan Regiments, nr. 1,2, 8 and 10 from Uhlans with at least 10 years of service.

In 1862 this regiment started to wear the blue/azure new uniform, abandoning the green regular one. The headgear was a low peakless cap called Tatarka with a lower portion of black lamswool and a square topped final part with a feather on the top of it (left side). Its size was reduced from 1863.

The overcoat (called "Uhlanka" was light blue, with a single row of 10 yellw buttons, bright red cuffs and badges; the coat was dark blue. 

They were armed with a lance without pennon, a pistol, and a light sabre.

Picture nr. 2
Here (picture nr. 2)  top the Colonel charging at the Battle of Custoza. Possible to see lancers and a Uhlan with sabre.

This unit was on 6 squadrons with 850 men and 775 horses (field strength), meaning that in wartime every suadron could rank on the battlefield 130 men.

I also found this (naif) painting representing always that episode (picture 3)

Picture nr. 3
It is interesting to see how little is the "tatarka"

Futher problem to understand was he saddle. In this paintings it seems quite simple (Black or brown) and little; from the following picture (nr. 4) it seems is was red, but I doubt in the field it was in this way

Picture 4

Nontheless it the following (Italian) painting of Raffaele Pontremoli (picture nr. 5) the saddle are very well represented (and there is some red) (see also the detail) with a sort of light white under saddle

Picture 5

I went on with my reasearches and I found this very clear image (in this case the saddle is all black!)

 and also

So finally, after all these researches and a lot of attempts I am able to present the tamplate of this regiment for the Battle of Custoza (picture nr. 8)

Please note that Osprey says the ulanka was without lapels, while all the other pictures I showed here represent the red lapels. I preferred hence to keep them, also because in the paintings of the battle, from people that saw personally that charge the lapels are represented.

This Regiment was in the Cavalry Reserve, 
based on 2 cavalry Brigades:

Brigade PulzOberst Ludwig Pulz
Uhl.-Rgt. Graf Trani Nr.13, 1., 2., 5., 6. EscadronsOberst Maximilian Ritter von Rodakowsky
Husz.-Rgt. Fürst Liechtenstein Nr.13, 3., 4., 5., 6. EscadronsOberst Ladislaus Graf Szápáry
Husz.Rgt. Kaiser Franz Josef  Nr.1, 1., 3., 4., 5. EscadronsOberst Alexander Rigyitsky de Skrbestje
4pfd. Cavallerie-Batterie Nr.8/V

Brigade Bujanovics
Oberst August Bujanovics von Agg-Telek
Uhl.-Rgt. Sicilien Nr.12, 1., 2. EscadronsOberst Friedrich von Berres
Husz.-Rgt. Prinz Württemberg Nr.11, 2., 5., 6. EscadronsOberst Joseph Török von Erdöd
Husz.Rgt. Prinz Carl von Bayern Nr.3, 1., 3., 4.. EscadronsOberst Julius Gradwohl
4pfd. Cavallerie-Batterie Nr.8/V

So at the battle this Regiment fought with 4 squadrons (1 - 2 and 5 - 6, together in 2 divisions) where the 6th squadron suffered the most. At the end of the charge this Regiment had lost:
10 officers, 237 men and 301 horses. This unit fought with its standard at the battle (usually they did not)

Tuesday, February 13, 2024


 I was trying to imagine a new posture for an Italian officer during the campaign 1866. The final result is as follows:

but to understand how I did it I prepared a little template with the mutation from a Prussian Officer in 1870 to the Italian Second Lieutenant. The main change is the passage of the sword from one side to the other.

Monday, February 12, 2024


 It came also the time for some templates concerning the organization of the Line Infantry in 1866. I will start from the Pelotons up to the Brigade. This is the top unit formed just with the same kind of units (infantry) while from that level upwards (Division and Army Corps) the unit were formed by a mixture of all specialities (Infantry, Cavalry, Bersaglieri and Artillery).

Usually the Italian Army of the 1866 War followed the Piedmontese system. It means that the Brigades had a name (usually of a Region of the Kingdom) and formed with the 2 regiments. For istance the Brigade PARMA was formed by the 49th and 50th Infantry Regiments. They were distiguished just by the number (49 or 50) on the kepy, while badges were commong for ALL the infrantry regiments (later on every regiment even inside the Brigade will have its own badge: inside the brigade of the same colours but with little difference in patterns).

Tuesday, February 6, 2024


 Many times,when you start a project, what is really lascking is the possibility to investigate with access to the original sources.

Reproducing the Battle of Custoza of 1866 is the same.

To be able to understand the dynamic of that huge battle I found - for the moment - 2 interesting book about the battle.

1) CUSTOZA (1866) written by General ALberto Pollio, for the Ministero della Guerra. I decided to go for the fourth edition dating 1935 - A. XIII, even though the cover is a little bit misleading and you will understand why.

This book has 300 pages with 5 maps. I publish here 2 maps of the Battle. As far as I know this are the best ever done and the first time they are published on internet.

Obvioulsy, to have details of the battle is not enough. I bought a lot of book concerning uniforms of that period:

The second book I bought concerning the Battle of Custoza is "Custoza 1866 - La via italiana alla sconfitta" written by Marco Gioannini and Giulio Massaro for Rizzoli.(2003)

385 pages and just one map of the battle (!)