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The Military History of the Selkie in the Dark Ages, from 826 to 1459, can be split into different periods,

This article is mostly about their tactics, organization, logistics, troop types (including the militias), deeds and misdeeds. Their weapons and armour is spoken of elsewhere.


Early and High Dark Ages (826-1280)

The Crusade (1280-1325)

Late Dark Ages (1325-1365)


Organization and Logistics

Cavalry: The Lance

The Lance was the tactical and logistical main unit of the Cavalry, composed of six horsemen, all of them either light, medium or heavy. They were, in and of themselves, one unit of horsemen,

Their superordinate unit was the Banner, usually composed of six Lances, a Banner Leader and Support personell. In an ideal structure, it would mean fifty people:

  • Banner-Captain + 5 Horsemen
  • 1 Lance of six horsemen
    • 1 Leftenant-Commander of the Banner
    • 5 Cavalrymen
  • 4 Lances of six horsemen
    • 1 Sergeant, 5 horsemen
  • Support Personell (carter, field doctor, etc.)

Infantry: Dornán

The Dornán (bunch, plural Dornáni) was the informal main formation of less organized militias of villages and farmsteads. An ideal structure is hard to define.

This formation was in use since the Age of the High Kings and, with the militias growing more and more professional over the course of the 18th and 19th centuries, the Dornán vanished.

While the units of the Gíománra were called Dornán as well, they are not related to the Dornán described here.

Infantry: Drongi

The Drongi (herd, singular Drong) was the main unit of infantry organization from around the Late Age of the High Kings to around the year 1000. They were subordinate to the Musters. Usually, a Drongi was made up of around twenty men.

Infantry: Céadi

The Céadi (group of 100, singular Céad) was the main unit of infantry organization between ca. 1000 and 1450, with the Scata replacing it starting around 1400. As the name suggests, the Céadi was composed of around a hundred men, of which ninety were combat troops. The Younger Militias organized their infantry in these formations, starting with their inception in 889.

In an ideal structure, it would look like this:

  • Captain
    • Quartermaster
    • Ensign with two men flag escort
    • Priest (usually a Servant)
    • Two musicians (usually drummers)
    • 2 Runners
  • 6 ealtai/flocks (singular ealta) -10
    • Sergeant
    • 9 Pikemen
  • 3 ealtai/flocks (singular ealta) -10
    • Sergeant
    • 9 Swordsmen

Infantry: Scata

Around 1400, the organization of the Infantry formed something, that would become known as the Scata, usually translated as Regiment (plural Scatai). It was a powerful combination of Pikemen, Swordsmen and Archers. For nearly three centuries, this type of formation was the mainstay of Selkie-Infantry, slowly being replaced by the Criúli (singular Criú) starting around 1660.

In an ideal structure, this would mean 285 men and women:

  • Captain
    • Lifeguard of five (also serve as disciplinary force)
    • Priest
    • Ensign plus flag-guard of five
    • Quartermaster-Leftenant plus staff of five
    • 6 musicians, usually drummers
    • 6 Runners (usually mounted)
    • 2 Cooks
    • 2 guides
  • 6 ealtai/flocks (singular ealta)
    • Leftenant
    • Sergeant
    • Quartermaster-Sergeant
    • Cook
    • Messenger
    • 20 pikemen
  • 2 ealtai/flocks (singular ealta)
    • Leftenant
    • Sergeant
    • Quartermaster Sergeant
    • Cook
    • Messenger
    • 20 swordsmen
  • 2 ealtai/flocks (singular ealta)
    • Leftenant
    • Sergeant
    • Quartermaster Sergeant
    • Cook
    • Messenger
    • 20 archers/musketmen/crossbowmen

Scatai were especially often hired out by the Mercenary-Guild of Redruth,

By the 1690s, the Scatai had all but vanished from the list of offered mercenary companies to be replaced by the Criúli (singular Criú), the Mercenary Companies. Of course, one could also hire individual ealtai.

Distinctive Troop Types

See also: Marcach.

Light Cavalry: Spearriders

Spearriders were armed with a spear and armoured in light padded armour, if armoured at all,

Spearriders were especially found in the most rural areas and among both bandits and militias alike.

Light Cavalry

Light Cavalry

Light Cavalry

Medium Cavalry: Lancers

Armoured in the Cathéide, the classical Horseman's Armour, the Lancer is usually called medium cavalry. The Militias in rural areas, and to this day the Younger Militia, made heavy use of these horsemen, who were not as heavily armoured as many of their opponents, could, however, rely on speed and manoeuvreability, as well as low costs.

Usually armed with a lance, a sword, a round shield and a multitude of daggers, they were a danger to their enemies, especially when charging. For non-combat purposes, many of the horsemen also carried bows and arrows or crossbows and bolts, usually to supplement their rations with fresh game or to defend themselves against wildlife.

Many of these horsemen patrolled the Old Traveling Roads and other important streets, sometimes as professional soldiers and men of the City Guards or as Militiamen.

Medium Cavalry

Medium Cavalry

Heavy Cavalry

The Orders


The Marcach's Dance or Armoured Dance

In a more modern case, the Marcach's Dance was the tactic of choice of Lieutenant Finnegan Riteoga of the Tribe of Navan, D-Platoon, 14th Company, 18th Maor-Regiment during the assault on Cohortial Strongpoint LXXIV during Operation Spartacus.

Women on the Battlefield

Fighting women have a long tradition and even outside of the Orders,

See also