[MR] Wikipedia: Sir John Hawkwood

Garth Groff via Atlantia atlantia at seahorse.atlantia.sca.org
Fri Mar 11 02:23:25 PST 2016

Noble Friends,

On this date in 1387, the famous mercenary commander John Hawkwood led 
the army of Padova to victory over Verona at the Battle of Castagnaro 
during the Italian inter-city wars so common during the 14th and 15th 
centuries. That Hawkwood won this particular battle might be significant 
to some students of history, but he is a fascinating figure in his own 
right: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/John_Hawkwood .

Sir John was one of the most successful condottiero, or mercenary 
captains. He led a large mercenary army made up largely of English and 
other soldiers who were left behind and unemployed in France during the 
various lulls in the Hundred Years Wars between the English and the 
French. Having nothing better to do than kill people, the almost 
constant small wars between various Italian city states gave them plenty 
of opportunity to ply their grim trade. These bands were often composed 
of vagabonds from many countries, sometimes former foes, who fought 
other mercenary armies composed of their former comrades. Hawkwood 
amassed a huge personal fortune with his army, several times switching 
sides because his foes offered more money. A dirty business.

Sir Arthur Conan Doyle used Hawkwood and his mercenaries as the basis 
for his historical novels THE WHITE COMPANY and SIR NIGEL. Doyle 
considered these to be among his finest works, but they were 
overshadowed by the Sherlock Holmes stories, much to the author's 
annoyance. Today the historical novels are largely forgotten.

Yours Aye,

Lord Mungo Napier, That Crazy Scot

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