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Old 18th February 2016, 12:21 PM   #251
Ibrahiim al Balooshi
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Default Border Reivers

Originally Posted by Jim McDougall
Ibrahiim, outstanding note referring to the 'Border Reivers' of these northern regions! These are the unconventional groups that inhabited border regions and in essence did not claim allegiance nor favor to either English nor Scottish nationality. They were independent raiders whose raids and activity was not restricted to either side of these borders.
While Shotley swordsmiths had mostly removed to Birmingham it would not be surprising that local armourers would have been in place locally to keep the widely varied range of arms and armour serviceable.

It seems quite likely many variances in swords might derive from these contexts.

Salaams Jim, I am tracking through various accounts of Border Reivers and note at;

Quote" Chains were drawn 4 or 5 times around the thighs of the horses which helped deflect spear thrusts. A scarf was wrapped around and around the neck for protection against getting one's throat cut. There was no leg armor but thigh-high thick leather riding boots worn with spurs. Sometimes small shields called bucklers were carried. In the early 1500s helmets were worn for protection of the upper part of the face and neck. In the 16th century, these were replaced with light, open helmets called burgonets -- the steill bonnets. These provided protection without a loss of vision. They were peaked on top with protective cheek plates and a flared rim to protect the neck. They were padded inside with leather.

Border Laws required that all men must appear at Muster Days with all arms and armor. The Borderer probably did not show the government on these days all the weapons he had. The lance or the lang spear was the most common weapon and was about 8 to 12 feet in length. Basket hilted broad swords were predominately used among the less wealthy at the end of the 16th century. The nobility wore rapiers and parrying daggers. Dirks, which were long narrow daggers, were carried by everyone, including the clergy.

Longbows and arrows were used even as late as 1580. The Scots also used the bow but not as effectively as the English and preferred a small light crossbow known as the latch.

Scots on foot carried 16 foot pikes. A Jeddart Staff was a 4 foot blade of steel and was slim, providing a long cutting edge with a spike at the bottom for piercing.

Pistols were carried by the Border men but with some trepidation since these weapons were tedious to load and reload and if not in good condition could result in losing a good hand. Also they were not particularly accurate unless at a very close range".Unquote.

From another source at http://wwwborderreiverstories-neble...-reivers_7.html I note;

Quote."Broad swords fitted with basket hilts to protect the hand were in general use and jealously guarded because of their cost by their owners. Often they were handed down from generation to generation. That the sword was of supreme importance can perhaps by gauged from the argument and feud that raged between the Scotts of Teviotdale, Scottish Borders and the Charltons of Hesleyside, Tynedale, Northumberland, England.

In 1596 Thomas Lord Scrope, English West March Warden, when writing to the English Privy Council of his sour relationship with his opposite number on the Scottish side, Sir Walter Scott of Buccleuch, Keeper of Liddesdale, complained that Scott even made an argument for his grandfather’s sword which had been stolen by the English Charlton’s of Hesleyside some years before.

I am led to believe that the present Lord and Lady Charlton are still in possession of this sword today, four hundred years later.

The dirk, a long narrow dagger, in general use, made up the store of the Border Reivers armoury".Unquote.
Below a selection of artwork showing Border Reivers and a map of their operational areas called Marches..separate Clan like regions for the different Reiver groupings. See also

Ibrahiim al Balooshi.
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