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Author Topic:   Sitting out a siege
Senior Member
posted 12-06-2005 01:24 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Steve-O-Gerst   Click Here to Email Steve-O-Gerst     Edit/Delete Message
I understand that in times of siege, the lord of the castle might let his peasants inside for protection.

What happens then? Where do they sleep? Are there spare rooms? room to make a hut inside the walls?

Do they start planting and harvesting in the square?

Does the lord put them to work throwing rocks and such at the enemy, or train them to fix holes or something?

Or do they just claim to be able to protect the peasants, and then tell them the castle's full when it comes down to brass tacks?

Whatever happens, there are people inside the castle, lying low, waiting it out. Sure, they throw rocks, and rotten cabbages, and dead cows, and spears, but there's only so much stuff inside the castle, and it has to be made to last. A Siege could last a long time. What do they do while they're waiting?

posted 12-07-2005 08:33 AM           Edit/Delete Message
The subject of castle sieges in a complex one.

Take a look here http://www.medieval-castle-siege-weapons.com


[This message has been edited by Paul (edited 12-07-2005).]

Senior Member
posted 12-13-2005 01:32 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Steve-O-Gerst   Click Here to Email Steve-O-Gerst     Edit/Delete Message
Well, yes. That's got a lot on the weapons, and armor, and casltes...

But I guess what I'm driving at is that during a siege, people would need a day-to-day routine. Hiding from the arrows and flying rocks wears the patience, and something to pass the time must have existed.

I suppose there was gambling, Dice and such. The Gypsies brought in Tarot cards, which may or may not be related to playing cards (Quite similar though, so I think yes.) Darts? Or perhaps they practiced archery and such...

Of course, there would also be tending to defenses, and heckling the attackers. (Hey, the toilet's clogged, can I borrow that catapult?)

posted 12-13-2005 02:27 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Maria   Click Here to Email Maria     Edit/Delete Message
Or perhaps they just wandered around being depressed, or looking for fat cows to throw over the wall to show the attackers they have plenty of food.

posted 12-13-2005 02:33 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Maria   Click Here to Email Maria     Edit/Delete Message
Now, seriously, I'm not sure they let the peasants in. I mean, no one is going to kill them (unless they are really really stupid and want to work the land themselves). And I don't know how attached peasants were to the noblemen, I mean, if it's lord something or his neighbour, what do they care?
I might be wrong, but I think a siege on a castle wouldn't last long, unless there was a serious reason (king inside, religious argument). Because you would need some kind of serious reason to keep the moral up. A siege on a town, now that would be different.

posted 08-01-2007 11:10 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Ricky     Edit/Delete Message
No - a standard tactic in Medieval warfare was to 'harrass' your opponant's land, which meant burning houses, ruining crops, slaughtering animals, and killing peasants.

This was done to undermine your opponant's authority - if they can't look after what is theirs, then they are a bad Lord.

And Sieges of castles could last several months or more, depending on the will of the garrison to stand.

All times are PT (US)

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