Siculo Norman Saracen Option 1080AD to 1195AD

This list is the first of two alternatives, intended to reflect the Norman County/Kingdom of Sicily between its conquest by Roger de Hauteville (approximately 1060-1080 AD) and the absorption of the Sicilian Kingdom into the Western Empire in 1195. I don't like the feel of the existing list. It seems more a High Middle Ages army (FV 6 KN and such) -- more like the 13th century forces available to the Emperor Frederick II. Thus, I set out to rectify the “problem“.

The purpose of the two alternate versions of this early (as opposed to the A2) Sicilian list is to force the player to select between the two very different armies available to the Sicilian County/Kingdom. At least during its early stages, its rulers seem to have respected an unwritten rule which exempted their Saracen subjects from campaigning against their Arabic kinsmen. In these circumstances, the nature of the Sicilian King’s army changed significantly (and not for the better) as he would then have to call upon his utterly unreliable mainland vassals. For this eventuality, see the alternative Mainland Option list.

Era: Age of Chivalry   Siculo Norman Saracen Option 1080AD to 1195AD CR: H: 4 L: 4*   BP: 2 Init: 6
Number Type   Description Key FV PROT Weapon Cost
2 HC(d) Sicilian Barons# Key 5[1]0 +1 Lances 11
2 FT Saracen Foot Key 4[1]1 +1 Bows 6
2 FT Infantry Key 5[1]1 +1 Spears 6
2 SI Saracen Bowmen   2[1]1 +2 Bows 2
2 SI Crossbowmen   2[1]1 +2 X-Bows 2
o   Saracens**          
1 HC Saracen Nobles Key 4[0]0 +1 Bows/Lances 12
2 LC Saracen Light Cavalry Key 2[0]0 +1 Bows/Various 8
4 LI Saracen Guard## Key 4[1]2 +1 Bows/Swords 8
4 FT Saracen Foot Key 4[1]1 +1 Bows 6
2 SI Saracen Bowmen*#   2[1]1 +2 Bows 2
o   Christians          
1 KN(d) King’s Retinue/Wealthy Barons# Key 6[2]0 +2 Lances 14
2 HC(d) Sicilian Barons Key 5[1]0 +1 Lances 11
4 HC(d) Mainland Barons#* Key 5[1]0 +1 Lances 11
2 HC(d) Lesser Barons Key 4[0]0 +1 Lances 10
2 LC Local Light Cavalry Key 2[0]0 +1 Various 7
4 FT Infantry Key 5[1]1 +1 Spears 6
4 FT Town Militia Key 4[1]1 +1 Spears 4
1 LI Calabrians   4[1]2 +1 Javelins 7
2 SI Sicilian Greeks*#   3[1]2 +2 Javelins 2
2 SI Crossbowmen*#   2[1]1 +2 X-Bows 2


Core: 1GR

Bonus: (Max: 3 ) 1W or RG, 1RG, 1SH, 2 GR


Core: 93 Bonus: 227

*Most Christian armies of the period only allow for 3 light divisions. However, the Sicilian army had absorbed Saracen units and the early Sicilian kings (at least Roger II and William I) came to depend upon them. As the Sicilian King had access to these unique (in a Christian Kingdom) light units and adopted at least some of their doctrine, I feel that four light divisions is appropriate for this army.

#After (approximately) 1140 AD, either or both of these units may be replaced by two units of 5[1]0 (d) (King’s Retinue/Wealthy Barons) +2 Lances (12) Key; at a cost of one bonus point each.

The Bonus KN unit may be purchased if (and only if) both of these HC units are converted. This is for those players who insist that the KN class of heavy cavalry was available during this period. However, this choice affects the nature of the Saracen troops available. If the KN is purchased, Saracen Guard units and Saracen Noble HC may not be purchased. This is intended to reflect the decline in the quality of the Saracen forces during the Kingdom's final years. See Note ## below.

**At least 32 bonus points must be selected from the Saracen portion of the bonus list.

##FV 2 LI armed with Bows are common in contemporary Arab armies. However, the Sicilian King's light bowman were not your run-of-the-mill light infantry, they were an elite Royal Guard -- the best trained, best equipped (with sword and shield) and most reliable unit in the Royal Army. They are also described as more than willing to mix it up with enemy horse, and therefore rate a FV 4.

However, in its later stages of the Kingdom toleration of its Saracen element seems to have declined, and as a result the quality of the Saracen forces also declined. Later armies (post 1180) should reduce the Saracen Guard component in favour of Saracen Foot, and those which purchase the KN option may not utilize Saracen Guard units at all. After the Kingdom was attached to the Western Empire in 1195 this decline continued, and after this date I suggest the use of the existing A2 list.

*#A maximum of four bonus SI units may be purchased. Once this limit is reached, remaining SI units do not count towards the acquisition of the extra (fifth) light division.

#*These warlords were always ready to seize any opportunity to throw off the upstart de Hauteville Kings in Palermo, much preferring the idea of nominal rule by a far-off Emperor in Germany or Constantinople (they were indifferent as to which). Therefore, in historic matches the Mainland Barons should not be used against Western or Eastern Empire armies. In tournament play, they may always be used.

As indicated in the Introduction, in Historical matches this army should not be should be used against Arabic-speaking opponents. Instead, see the alternative Siculo Norman Mainland Option. In tournament play, the Saracen Option may always be used.

Ordo Link: Siculo Norman Saracen Option

Last Edited 12 April 2006

List Author: Chingachgook