Later Paleologan Byzantine: 1384AD - 1453AD

This list is an attempt to portray the armies that fought an increasingly hopeless battle to stem the Ottoman Turkish advance in the Balkans and to finally defend the great 'Roman' city of Contantinople. It's appeal to me is its cosmopolitan make up, with a wide variety of nationalities and troop types, but with few of any one type of troop. It was inpart inspired by the evokative drawings and medals made by Pisanello of the Byzantine emperor Manuel II on his unsucessful diplomatic trip to Italy (1399 - 1403) to seek military support to stem the muslim advance into Europe.

The time period covered starts after the defeat at the battle of Chortiates of the last true 'Byzantine' field army in the Morea and ends with the fall of Constantinople to the Ottoman Turks.

Era: Age of Chivalry   Later Paleologan Byzantine: 1384AD - 1453AD CR: H: 3 L: 5   BP: 2 Init: 5
Number Type   Description Key FV PROT Weapon Cost
2 HC(d) Stratiotai k 4[1]0 +1 Lance 10
2 LC(d) Turkopoloi k 1[0]0 +1 Bows 6
3 LI Peltastoi k 3[1]2 +1 Bows etc 6
1 SI Psiloi   3[1]2 +2 Javelins 2
3 SI Psiloi   2[1]1 +2 Bows 2
1 HC(d) Kavallaroi k 5[1]0 +1 Lance 12
1 MAA(d) Westerners k 5[1]0 +2 Lance 12
2 LC(d) Turkopoloi k 1[0]0 +1 Bows 6
2 LC Albanians k 2[0]0 +1 Javelins 7
2 FT Garrison k 4[1]1 +1 Spears 4
2 Levy Militia k 4[0]0 +0 Various 4
1 LHI * k 4[1]2 +1 Javelins 7
3 LI Peltastoi k 3[1]2 +1 Bows etc 6
1 LI Guard k 4[1]2 +1 Bows etc 8
1 LHI Guard k 5[1]2 +1 X-bows etc 10
1 LHI Guard k 5[1]2 +1 Longspear/javelins 9
3 SI Militia   2[1]1 +2 Bows 2
1 SI Militia   3[1]2 +2 Javelins 2
2 SI **   2[1]1 +2 X-bows 2
2 SI Mercenaries   2[1]1 +2 Handguns 2
1 SI Militia   2[1]1 +2 Staff Sling 2
1 LHI Men-at-Arms k 5[1]2 +1 Various 8
1 LHI Galley Crew k 4[1]2 +1 Javelins 7
2 LHI Galley Crew k 2[1]1 +1 X-bows 4
3 LC   k 2[0]0 +1 Various/bows 8
3 LC   k 1[0]0 +1 Bows 6


Core: 1-GR

Bonus: (Max: 3 ) 3 -GR; 1 - RG


Core: 95 Bonus: 202


Kavallaroi (which also includes Latinikon and were sometimes refered to as 'kataphraktoi') are not subject to Obligatory Charge.

Kavellaroi and Western men-at-arms cannot both be fielded in the same army. Western men-at-arms were unlikely to have used horse armour (+2 protection reflecting their full plate 'white harness') and were more likley to have fought dismounted.

LC(d) (Turkopoloi) are contingents of Asiatic mercenary horse archers, Turks, Wallachians, Bulgars and even Hungarians formed into regular Byzantine units.

Wallachians fought in Byzantine service right up to 1453.

LC(d) dismounts as: SI [k] 2[1]1 +2 Bows, but with a unit BP:2 and a bow range of 18"

LC (Albanians) are Stradiots armed with javelins & shields and cannot be used if Kavallaroi,Catalan Guard or Turkish allies are used.

A total maximum of 2 bonus units of LC(d) (Turkopoloi) and/or LC (Albanians) can be fielded.

Peltastoi are regular Byzantine troops, armoured and protected with shields, but can also represent bow armed native marines and galley crew.

NB: One unit can be used to represent the personal bodyguard troops of the rebel pretender to the Ottoman throne who was in Constantinople during the final siege.

LHI * can represent: Catalan/Aragonese sailors & mercenaries; javelin armed native marines; local Morean infantry (Tzakones); Thelematarioi (locally raised hereditary infantry) or Albanians.

**SI armed with X-bows are either native Byzantines or Italian mercenaries.

Crossbow armed Guard (Tzangratoroi) represent the 3 units of Cretans who formed the final Palace Guard at the fateful 1453 siege and who fought so heroically that the Ottomans let them depart the fallen city with their arms and goods unmolested.

Bow armed Guard represent the Mourtatoi (models for or modelled from similar Ottoman palace guard unit of the same name) - this may be the 'native' Byzantine guard unit that accompanied Constantine on his final desperate bid to expel the Ottoman troops that had breached the city walls.

Javelin armed Guard represent earlier regular Catalan guardsmen.

NB: Cretan & Catalan Guard units cannot be fielded in the same army. Cretans cannot be fielded with Kavallaroi and Catalans cannot be fielded with Western Men-at-Arms or SI with hand-guns.

Levy (Militia) are made up of the Greek urban and rural populations co-opted to defend the city having fled there for refuge from the Turks. They are true Armati Levy with a unit BP:2.

No more than 6 bonus SI may be purchased

Italians are either Genoese, Venetians or early on Savoyards.

If the Italian allied contingent is fielded all troops must be bought.

If the Turkish allied contingent is fielded at least 3 LC units must be bought.

Troops from the Turkish allied contingent must be deployed in their own seperate division(s).

Unpurchased Light troops from either of these allied contingent, or unpurchased Bonus SI (over 6) are excluded with regard to the purchase of all Light Bonus troops with regards to the extra Light Division rule.

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Last Edited: 10 November 2006

List Author: Aetius