What is Ravenwood?
Archers of Ravenwood / What is Ravenwood?
The Company: The Archers of Ravenwood portray an independent English Military Company known as a free-company in the year 1450. This is not to be confused with the term mercenary, as the latter tends to be completely unaffiliated with any given land or lord. A free-company contracts with the Crown’s representative for a Term of Service, usually lasting six months. Pay for the individual soldier is usually better than standard service, and one may acquire additional wealth through battlefield finds. With luck and skill, a successful soldier can retire in some measure of comfort.
Socio-economic rank: We represent the vast majority of what would be found at that time in history: the working class. Our social class ranges from poor peasant to modest gentry. The closest thing to nobility found in our ranks is the bastard son of a petty knight (the captain). The reason for this is two-fold:
1) There are many groups that attempt to portray nobility and even royalty. These groups tend (not by choice) to alienate other groups and limit interaction with those of “lesser” social status at events. The portrayal of a haughty noble tends to limit ones options. On the other side of the coin, their servants are often little more than “fixtures” at any given event.
2) The cost in terms of money and time required to convincingly portray nobility is excessive. Keep in mind that the average knight of the day would be the equivalent of a modern millionaire in terms of political and financial clout. The actual cost of properly outfitting your persona as a knight probably starts at $5000, and could easily become twice that. I believe that it is more important to accurately portray a person of lesser stature than to poorly portray a personage well above your means.
Nationalities: As the Company originates from English Military, the majority of our company would be English. Of the minority, most would be from Scotland (probably border region), Ireland, and English held territories in France such as Guyenne and Normandy. As Ravenwood has traveled on the continent for other contract work from time to time, it is reasonable that a few “continentals” would be in our midst, i.e. a Spaniard, a German, etc…
Military Organization: The Captain and his Lieutenants oversee the organization in all its aspects. The Serjeants are the hands-on coordinators of the ranks of soldiers. The rank and file includes heavy (polearm) infantry, skirmish troops, archers, and siege engineers. Squires, Pages, Banner bearers and the odd drummer can also be counted among the Company’s numbers.
Non-Military Occupations: The military unit has many diverse occupations within its organization. As it is relatively self-contained, many craftsmen and camp followers make up its ranks. In addition to soldiers, there are armourers, carpenters, blacksmiths, weavers, and of course cooks, midwives, and other persons who’s duties are essential to the everyday operations of the Company. Included in the ranks are even a few musicians, scholars, and apothecaries.
Company Background: Captain Anton, the bastard son of a minor English Knight, served in the Crown’s Army as an archer fighting the French. After many hard years, fate delivered his father’s modest estates into his hands. Drawing upon the combined monies from his savings and his estates, he created the Archers of Ravenwood. Several veterans from his past campaigns joined with him in this venture, and they recruited more along the way from England, Ireland, Scotland, and even Spain and beyond.
Anton and the Archers still serve King and Country in the Wars with France, but the tide of battle is turning, and political strife is rampant at home in the isles. The time approaches when the Company will have to decide where its loyalties and thus, its future lies…
Who We Are
The Archers of Ravenwood portray independent English Military Company known as a free-company in the year 1450. This is not to be confused with the term mercenary...