Early Baltic Crusader

This army list portrays the C12th & early C13th armies of German settlers, Danish and Swedish colonists and the early Baltic Military Orders. It fought against the pagan Prussian, Latt, Estonian and Lapp tribes, as well as the Orthodox Russian city states and principalities and the emerging Lithuanian duchy.

Most campaigning was done in winter – with frozen lakes, rivers and marshes being used as routes for raiding. Terrain was generally low and undulating, with woods, streams and marshes – almost totally impassable in the summer.

This army can be used to represent the combined crusader army (led by the Bishop of Tallinn) that was defeated by the Russian city-state of Novgorodat led by Alexandre Nevskii at Lake Peipus in AD 1242 – the famous "Battle on the Ice".

Era: Age of Chivalry   Early Baltic Crusader 1150 AD to 1236 AD CR: H: 4 L: 1   BP: 2 Init: 5
Number Type   Description Key FV PROT Weapon Cost
1 MAA(d) Men-at-Arms* X 5(1)0 +2 Lance 12
4 HC(d) Heavy Cavalry* X 5(0)0 +1 Lance 11
3 Levy Estonian Levy# X 3(0)0 +0 Various 4
1 KN(d) Teutonic Brethren** X 6(2)0 +2 Lance 14
2 MAA(d) Men-at-Arms* X 5(1)0 +2 Lance 12
4 HC(d) Heavy Cavalry* X 5(0)0 +1 Lance 11
1 HC(d) Teutonic Sergeants** X 3(0)0 +1 X-bows 9
2 FT Settlers## X 5(1)1 +1 Varoius 6
12 Levy Estonians Levy# X 3(0)0 +0 Various 4
1 SI     2(0)0 +2 X-bows 2
1 SI     3(1)2 +2 Javelins 2


Core: 1 WD

Bonus: (Max: 3 ) 2 WD, 2 RG, 1 GR


Core: 93 Bonus: 155

For each Bonus KN or MAA or HC unit bought, at least 2 Levy units must also be purchased.

If no Bonus SI are bought, another RG can be added to the Core Terrain and the CR becomes: H:4; L:0;

*MAA are German & Scandinavian colonists and settler nobility, the retinues of the German bishops and also seasonal Crusaders. Non-Teutonic HC are either the lesser ranks of the German and Scandinavian retinues and a few military order Sergeants.

#The Estonian Levy were notoriously fickle and ‘flighty’. They represent forcibly recruited and converted, unenthusiastic and unreliable local tribes, mainly from the estates of the military orders or the German Bishoprics. They were brought along to primarily ensure that they did not rebel back at home! They often fled the field on or before the initiation of combat. They are ‘true’ Armati Levy with unit BP:2.

**The number of Teutonic Brethren and Teutonic Sergeants was proportionately very small in numbers. If any Teutonic troops are bought all must be. Teutonic KN also includes members of the ‘notorious’ Sword Brethren.

The Teutonic Order was specifically noted for their X-bow armed Sergeants. My view is that in the terrain of the Baltic and with the nature of Baltic campaigning (e.g. large-scale mobile raids), these operated primarily as mounted infantry. To represent this the mounted crossbowmen are classed as weaker HC which when fielded dismounted go up in terms of fighting values and also get an increased protection – which would represent the pavises carried in the baggage. HC(d) (Teutonic Sergeants) do not have impetus when fielded mounted.

##Settlers are primarily German & Scandinavian troops fighting in defence of their towns and settlements. They were very reluctant to participate in offensive action hence they are not included in the Core section of this list.


It was tempting to add in some allied Baltic tribal troops either as LHI or WB or some allied Lithuanian LC but to be frank this just complicates the list and there is little evidence for this in the contemporary chronicles. It would be better to add in a contingent of allied MAA in the Pagan Prussian list to represent this.

Even the small numbers of SI in the Bonus list is purely conjectural and only added for diversity. The SI X-bow represent German colonists, the SI javs are local native scouts.

List Author: Aetius