EAA Research Consultant
Join Date: Dec 2004
Location: Route 66
Jamaz thank you for responding on this topic, and its great to have input from someone from regions where this heritage is proudly preserved. I think your perspective is likely well placed, and I agree that these large, awkward devices would have been a hindrance in pitched battle. It seems that in medieval times there are often many misconceptions about knights in battle, including helms decorated with heraldic charges of awkward size. It has been proven that these were also most often funerary achievements, and often used in romantically charged artistic license.
Concerning practicality, as previously mentioned , the idea of these or any other size wings in order to produce frightening sound would have been superfluous, as the horrendous sound of charging cavalry in itself would drown out any such intended noise. It is interesting that, as David noted, the Samurai did mount a single identifying banner at the back of thier armour and apparantly, did wear this in battle. The origin of the wing idea did apparantly originate with the 'deli' light cavalry of the Turks, though it seems to have been a single wing and these were forward action, diversionary and distracting forces who deliberately sought to present disturbing image and create certain disorder among enemy troops.
With the Polish hussars, in any case, thier magnificent presence either with or without wings cannot be discounted. I appreciate your note on the known narrative and writings of the times not mentioning these wings in combat, and these were the references I was hoping would be noted on whether contemporary reports would have mentioned them.
Thank you for the input and interesting observations.
All best regards,