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Byzantine Auxiliary Light Cavalryman

An extract from Armies of the Dark Ages 600-1066
by Ian Heath


The Byzantines employed large numbers of auxiliary light cavalry throughout this period until by the reign of Nikephoros II and thereafter light cavalry consisted entirely of allied horse-archers.

This figure is based on a source dating to the 10th-12th centuries and is practically identical to the figure described under 82 and despite his cleanshaven appearance he is almost certainly a Pecheneg, called Patzinaks by the Byzantines and one of the principal mercenary elements in the Byzantine army by the 11th century. Other figures of the same type in a variety of sources carry shields of about 20 inches diameter and shortish, fairly broad-bladed swords, both probably Byzantine issue.
[Possibly based on a Byzantine Ivory Casket, 11-12th Centuries, Victoria and Albert Museum A.8-1937]

Next: 18. 10TH-11TH CENTURY BYZANTINE THEMATIC KATAPHRAKTOS in Armies of the Dark Ages 600-1066 by Ian Heath

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