Tuesday, 21 October 2014

Hattin Project: Erecting the Royal Tent

.. :"Not until that tent falls" 

Those were the words Sal'ad Din spoke when his young son Al Afdal, at his side, shouted victory over the Crusader Army of King Guy and his warrior munks.

So, in any attempt to war-game the Horns of Hattin battle, a piece of scenery mimicking the crusader epic centre of fighting, is essential. Sources state the actual tent color was bright red. I'm still in doubt is that's going to be the case here. Since I want to be able to use the tent in various scenario's, a more modest color scheme, seems more sensible. 

Above the rudimental outline of what will become the final piece. A saracen scout shown for scale.

I use multilayered corrugated paper (from sturdy boxes) as a base. It's strong, can withstand treatment with watery materials when not too abundant, and is light and easy to puncture and cut.
Styrofoam is cut and modeled into some rocky outcrop. Glued with simple white glue.

 A material used in gardening supplied the tent frame. Cut to size, made into a suitable form and tied with metal wire. Super glued.
Called in some extra hands from a former Britains siege crew to carry the thing in situ. Secured with a fixing hook (photo below) and poles white glued into pre-stung holes.

It is recorded that the tent was removed one or two times during the battle. To end somewhere in the vicinity of the summit of the Southern horn, where it was finally torn down and ended the fight.
This made me decide to not completely put up the tent in my scenery piece, but instead choose for an 'in process' piece of work.

 Again the Britains Heralds men at work in process. The first pieces of fabric have been attached to the framework. Again, I will not close the tent totally but this is not the end stage. More sections will be covered up. Thinking on how to camouflage the constructive top section. An ornamental piece it must be.

ABOVE: Work in progress. 

ABOVE: Finalized modular (theme) piece.

ABOVE: The tent on the (war-game) battlefield (photo by D. Donvil)

Always nice to get comments! Opmerkingen altijd welkom!



  1. Mooie foto's en diorama. Die figuren ken ik van mijn eerste katapult die ik van
    mijn vader kreeg toen ik klein was. Zover ik weet waren er maar twee houdingen.
    Zelf aangepast? Ik heb ze altijd erg mooi gevonden. Mooie tent, puin en stenen

  2. Hallo Peter, er is indertijd nog een 2e set gemaakt namelijk een balista:

    1. Bedankt voor de site Dirk.Leuk om die doosjes weer te zien.
      Ik zou het zo weer willen aanschaffen. Maar ja, je kan niet overal aan mee doen.
      Al zou ik dat graag willen.

  3. In lang vervolgen tijden beide gehad. de werptuigen hebben de tand des tijds helaas niet doorstaan.

  4. Modular (theme) piece for the Battle at Hattin was used yesterday at CRISIS in the 2nd (re)battle in 54mm scale. A great day out!, as Wallace & Grommit would put it. Both Saracens and Frankish 'forgot their crackers' 'cause overall the conflict ended in a draw (in my humble opinion). Where Sal 'ad Dins Muzzelmen had the upper hand in the first-, and the Christian Knights army in the second battle. The Royal tent was not set as an objective in the games, something that can be done rather simple. Very nice ambience, high sportsmanship and beautiful weather (outside!).

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