By David Nicolle
Mercenaries have been a typical characteristic all through so much of Europe within the 14th and fifteenth centuries, and have been identified some distance previous. yet nowhere did this type of subtle approach of hiring, cost and service provider of mercenaries improve because it did in Italy. The condottiere – whose identify got here from the condotta or agreement among himself and his service provider – was once the outcome. no matter if commander or humble trooper, the condottiere used to be an entire specialist. His ability hasn't ever been doubted, yet his loyalty and commitment to a specific reason frequently has. David Nicolle offers a desirable exploration of the condottiere; his roles, hands and kit.
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Extra resources for Italian Medieval Armies 1300 - 1500
It was a poorly conceived scheme from the start, compounded by inept navigation and pilot error in the gathering dusk of an overcast and windy day. None of the paras landed anywhere near their targets, there were many injuries from misjudged glider landings, and the Fallschirmjager were quickly rounded up by British patrols. It made an undignified end to the illustrious history of 7 Flieger Division, but the new 1 and 2 Fallschirmjager Divisions would quickly show that the traditions created were still very much alive.
First to suffer in this role was I Battaglione Paracadutisti 'Tuscania', now under Maggiore Edoardo Alessi, which was despatched to help Rommel in July; it was almost completely destroyed at Agedabia in early December during LieutenantGeneral Sir Alan Cunningham's Operation Crusader. In the interim, Bignami's parachute brigade at Tarquinia was reconstituted officially on 1 September as 1° Divisione Paracadutisti 'Folgore' under Generale Francesco Sapienza. With the air/sea invasion of Malta specifically in mind, it soon had three infantry regiments (l°-3°) of 1,482 men apiece, plus a 459-man parachute-saboteur (guastatori-paracadutisti) battalion under Maggiore Burzi modelled on Sturmabteilung 'Koch'.
4, page 29). After a plan to use the Ramcke Brigade to capture selected bridges over the river Nile in September was sensibly scrapped, the paras were instead allocated positions slightly right of centre in the Alamein line with the 'Folgore' Division further to their south. The new idea was that they would be used as ground reinforcements to exploit Rommel's hoped-for breakthrough towards Cairo and Suez. Quite how they would have accomplished this without adequate motor transport is unclear. Montgomery's Operation Lightfoot launched on 23 October thwarted this plan anyway, and on 2 November Ramcke was ordered to withdraw his brigade 30km west in a night march.
Italian Medieval Armies 1300 - 1500 by David Nicolle