20 January 2007

The Renaissance Project, part 1

I've been talking and thinking about my Renaissance project for quite a while. I have yet to make much progress, but here is what I have.

First off, I actually do have a plan! I need to work on four different aspects:

1. Research

2. Rules

3. Miniatures

4. Gaming

I have made some progress through the Research bit. I have a small but growing collection of books on the subject. These include Ospreys (doesn't every gamer have at least a dozen?) and some more scholarly works. Here is the list so far:

Osprey MAA # 58: The Landsknechts link
Osprey MAA # 94: The Swiss at War link
Osprey Campaign # 43: Fornovo 1495 link
Osprey Campaign # 44: Pavia 1525 link

These Ospreys have been in my collection for five years or so, and have been looked through extensively. They are an excellent way to whet one's appetite for more substantial reading material, and the color plates are helpful for painting.

The Art of War in Italy, 1494-1529 (Taylor) link
The Renaissance at War (Arnold) link
Artists and Warfare in the Renaissance (Hale) link

These volumes are more recent additions, with Taylor's book being a Christmas gift from my wife (yay!). Arnold's book is a very concise overview of the 16th century, being a part of the Cassell History of War series. I have yet to read Hale's book, but it is filled with illustrations and woodcuts by period artists.

Of course, I want to purchase more books. These will be added slowly, worked in with the schedule for miniatures purchases.



  1. The campaigns in and around "Italy" are certainly interesting. I say "Italy" (in quotes) because, of course, it wasn't a country at that time, but more of a collection of city-states and foreign possessions. I've always sort of thought of it as "the Holy Roman Empire in miniature".

    Be sure to read (or reread) a number of Niccolo Machiavelli's works . . . they give great insight into the period. And, a number of Shakespeare's plays are essentially set in the Italian theatre. "All's Well That Ends Well" gives a look at some of the character types found in these wars. (I remember playing Parolles in "All's Well" -- a classic "braggart warrior").

    This is a wonderful and colorful period which you should enjoy.

    -- Jeff


  2. Very interested to follow this one Greg. I have a load of Foundry landschnechts sitting around unpainted, waiting for a set of rules etc to present themselves. So I will be following your project quite keenly to see what rules and figures you end up choosing.

    Best of luck with it.