Thursday, July 7, 2016

Perry Hundred Years War figures

    Back almost 10 years or so ago, I started buying a few of the Perry Miniatures figures from their Hundred Years War Agincourt to Orleans line at every Historicon. The idea was to build first an English and then later a French army from that era, which dovetails nicely with my Hussite and Swiss collections. As I bought them in person and the available stocks were limited, this became a rather haphazard affair, and aside from painting a few units of longbows, after a few years I made little progress with either acquiring additional figures or painting the small amount that I had.

   As I was planing my Hussite game for Historicon this year (using To the Strongest!), my Hussite army started to grow considerably, as already chronicled here. This made it seem necessary to increase the forces available for their enemies as well. Once I recalled that the Hussite Wars were contemporaneous with the later Hundred Years War, this long neglected lead suddenly had an immediately apparent use - to serve as forces in the "Catholic Crusader" opposition army! The already painted HYW troops on hand were limited to some longbowmen. Unfortunately, very few of these served with the Catholic forces; they were largely limited to the English (and Burgundian) armies of the time. However, I did find enough useful figures to raise one unit of Knights and another of dismounted knights/men at arms with polearms, plus a leader.

Hundred Years War Men at Arms with Polearms, Agincourt era.

Mercenaries hired by the Catholic "Crusaders" of the Hussite era would be virtually indistinguishable from these troops.

Red./white color scheme for this unit.

These figures painted up quickly with just some highlighting and shading of the red jackets, and then black "Magic Wash" after the painting was complete. 

Dismounted Knights with Polearms.

During both the later HYW and the Hussite Wars, it became common for the heavily armored Knights to ride to battle but dismount and fight on foot. 

With 85% of the figure being armor, these guys were very fast to paint.

The Magic Wash has worked really well to pick out the fine detail of these Perry sculpts. 

Later HYW mounted Knights. I deliberately used a White-Black Yellow color scheme for these units to somewhat suggest the Teutonic Knights, which will be used for the bulk of my "Crusader" forces. 

Rather than attempting to paint spirals, I went with bands on the lances. 

I used the horse furniture to echo the same white-black-yellow scheme. 

The dark chestnut mounts also give the unit a rather imposing appearance. 

Command figure. His surtout is sculpted with a grape cluster motif, so I chose a white - Purple-Green color scheme for him.

I also added purple and white flowers to his base!

It turns out this figure was meant to represent the French HYW commander Étienne de Vignolles,  called La Hire  (1390 – 1443). His actual arms were Noir, 3 grape clusters Argent.  He was a Gascon, and famously strong, crude, and short tempered ("Hire" = ire). He was a principal captain with Jeanne d' Arc.

How I acquired this figure i really don't know, as he is part of a set including Jeanne herself and The Bastard of Orleans, neither of whom I have! It seems that Jeanne d'Arc actually wrote to the Hussites, imploring them to forsake their heresies, and threatening them with the Wrath of God if they did not!

Notice how even the shape of the mail armor of his horse suggests the grape cluster motif!

Interestingly, in the course of our visits to the great many vineyards that lie on the shores of the finger lakes, we encountered some wines made from a cold-hardy grape developed in France in the 1930's, but grown there that was named "vignoles" in 1970.

Some  not great shots of the few Perry HYW  Longbow units I painted in July 2008.

Really fine sculpting on these!

This uinit of archers has a off white and green color scheme.

Is that Prince Harry?

A second unit of Perry Longbowmen. 

Slightly different costume on these - you can see the similarity to the dress of some of the Hussite figures. 

Red and brown/dull yellow color scheme for these chaps.

A "demi-unit" of Longbows.

It needs another 2 stands to make a full unit of 12. I have 12 Longbow figures primed for possible painting after Historicon, but I probably need to buy 6 more figures specifically to complete this unit. 

Their blue and white color scheme is reminiscent of the Burgundians of Charles the Bold!

Let's get Medieval!


  1. Nice job, love the archers and the dismounted knights...

  2. Nice work! I have a whack of HYW figures to paint up in 15mm. Did you use a particular reference to choose your colour schemes or just go with whatever you felt like? I don't have any HYW reference books so have found it all a bit daunting!


    1. I went with what I felt like in this case, especially as there is no complex heraldry in sight!

  3. They just look fantastic. The sort of figures I dreamed of owning as a small boy.

    1. They do have that "Medieval Knight" vibe, don''t they?

  4. Nice job, Perry figures are always a good thing to paint up. Enjoy H-Con.

  5. Very nicely done, a tempting period for sure.

    1. HYW is certainly what any English speaker thinks about first when we think of Knights and the Middle Ages.

  6. Great figures and painting Pete! - I like the Archers!


  7. The Perry brothers always do such fine sculpting. These HYW figures are no exception. I really like your armored, dismounted knights and your treatment of the mounted knight's lances looks very good to me. Archers are posed, painted, and based well too! Always rewarding to have projects overlap, no?

    1. I view everything from my Swiss to the WotR era as being project overlap in may case!

  8. More great medieval goodness maa and knights look good and you can't go wrong with longbow men I've got the Perry plastics 100years war figures to put together, way down the list! Lovely painting.
    Best Iain

    1. Yes, they do some great plastics for this era!

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  10. These look great, and I agree they are useful figures for most conflicts in the early 15th century, you could certainly use some of them for the Hussite wars