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    There is a thread that displays current and soon to be military potential of the Slavic nations… but let's not forget our history.

    The Polish Winged Hussars – Elite Cavalry

    Hussar figurine

    The last thing many people ever saw
    [img width=700 height=498]http://michalpol.blox.pl/resource/husaria.jpg”/>



    Some about Winged Hussars:

    Firstly maybe talk about their look: why they had wings? We don't know it, wings could served to startle enemy's horses, but they are more often used to parades and shows.

    Armor – in the beggining, Hussars were light cavalry which looks similar to hungarian. They had caftans and "turkish shield", later light armors and helmets

    Furs and other preciousness – only nobleman could became hussar because every "towarzysz" have to bought their armament by himself, so to show their noble origin and status, he decorated his armor and weapon with exotic furs and other jewelry…


    Lance – main weapon, inspired on hungarian model and modified, very long (to 6,2 meters), selected wood, drilled inside to reduce mass and wrapped by leather to make it more stiffness. Russians try to copy it, but their lance was such flexible that during charge lance hit the ground like pole for pole vault. Mass center in lance was near end, so it was very easy to maneuver.

    Koncerz – eastern type of estoc, long sword for using only to fighting from horse against infantry with pole weapon.

    Hussar sabre/black sabre – inspired on hungarian model and modified. With this sabre, we can perform strikes from ground and horse, and strikes appropriate for Western Europe, Eastern Europe and even Japanese Katana! So it's consider as the best cavalry saber in the world. In that time, sabre was symbol of nobility too.

    Pistols – nothing special

    Bow – before introduction pistols, hussars use composite bows, mostly turkish and crimean-tartar

    Czekan – before introduction koncerz, weapon similar to battle axe

    Another important element:

    Horses – it was special race, created special for hussars by mixed polish tarpan with eastern horses – turkish, turkmen and persian, not arabian! They were very fast and nimble (for fighting with Tartars, and other light cavalry) strong and durable – they cauld move to charge, after long march with hussar who weighed with equipment about 100kg. Sale that horses was a crime punished by death.

    As You can see, Winged Hussars was mix of light and heavy cavalry capable to fight with every types of infantry (even pikemans) and cavalry from heavy Swedish reiters to light Tartars and Cossacks.


    Hussars were used in Russia and Transylvania, but in Poland they had uniqee tactic. It consisted from elements appropriate for eastern cavalry: impetus and agility with elements appropriate for western cavalry like density, but there was also elements appropriate only for polish hussars:

    – the longest lances
    – skills of charging (looseness in the beginning and closing ranks in terminal stage of charge) – firearms was than inefficient

    Only rich countries with lot of military experiences, skills – so with long military tradition and which could imbibe from achievements of others (close relations with Hungary, cultural exchange with eastern and western nations) could create formation like Winged Hussars. It is only simplification to show how unique and difficult were Winged Hussars.

    Famous battles:

    Battle of Kircholm
    Battle of Klushino
    Battle of Vienna

    Soon… – first full independent special unit and my favourite(next to Cossacks) – Lisowczycy


    Soon… – first full independent special unit and my favourite(next to Cossacks) – Lisowczycy

    Nice, nice!

    Here is a little Lisowczyk preview. A painting by Juliusz Kossak that is appropriately titled "Lisowczyk."




    Lisowczycy known too as elears (from hungarian "elu jaro" -> skirmisher) and "Straceńcy" -> lost man, were created in XVII century as irregular unit of light cavalry. Because Polish–Lithuanian Commonwealth had then problems with finances, so they created unit which payments was booty. Its succes they owe their first commander: colonel Aleksander Lisowski.

    Aleksander originated from noble family with military traditions. His father was Józef Lisowski, who went on a journey with voivod Jan Kiszka, across Europe. During that journey he studied combat techniques of many countries (Germany, France, Switzerland, Spain and Italy). Obtained knowledge he used to educate his sons – Alaksender was the best of them.

    Aleksander increased his knowledge, gain experience in many battles under command of bests commanders and used it to created one of the most effectiveness unit of those days…

    Lisowczycy was known then as a "special forces" to fight on backs of the enemy, destroy his supplies and teritorries.
    In the beginning of their career, they fought in Polish–Muscovite War in 1605–1618. Lisowski with few hundreds of people went fought to Ryazan and they reached Astrakhan. There they wanted to sail to Persia and there fought with Persians against Turks, but they don't had boats so Lisowczycy had to go back.

    One of theirs main rules was to kill everybody who they met.

    On next expedition, they had to go to White Sea. With some about 1000 people, Lisowski got Briańsk, Karczew, Orzeł, Peremyszl, Rżew and Jarosław.

    From Wikipedia wrote:
    From 1619, the Lisowczycy, then stationed near Kowno, were sent by Sigismund III Vasa to aid Ferdinand II, Holy Roman Emperor against the Protestants in the Thirty Years' War. Under the command of Walenty Rogowski, they defeated Transylvanian forces under George I Rákóczi at the Battle of Zavada and/or Battle of Humenné in November of that year. After the victory, they engaged in their traditional pastime (as they were not paid and they were obliged to gain everything by their own), plundering nearby lands, 'killing even children and dogs', as contemporary chroniclers recorded. It was around that time that they gained their new nickane: Riders of the Apocalypse.

    Germans mothers scared their children by "Polish Cossacks" to Napoleonic period.

    Józef Brandt – Lisowczycy shooting with bows

    I have hope that some of our Ukrainian Friends will elaborate Cossacks  ;)

    Maybe it's good thread for this question, so I need help! I'm looking for any information about uniforms of Russian Hussars and cherkeska in beginning of the xx centurie, but I don't speak Russian, so I can't searching on russian websites  :-[



    I have hope that some of our Ukrainian Friends will elaborate Cossacks  ;)

    I will do so in the following days :)



    I've done a thread about Cossacks in the Ukrainian section:



    Jumping back to Hussars for a bit, here is an interesting page with all things Hussar: http://www.polishhussarsupply.com/

    They have things from all over the former PLC, Russia and Ukraine: http://www.polishhussarsupply.com/Products.html

    Just in case anyone feels the desire to reenact a classic battle ;)

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