Armies of the Volga Bulgars & Khanate of Kazan: 9th–16th centuries (Men-at-Arms #491) (Paperback)

Armies of the Volga Bulgars & Khanate of Kazan: 9th–16th centuries (Men-at-Arms #491) By Viacheslav Shpakovsky, David Nicolle, Gerry Embleton (Illustrator) Cover Image
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Description


Facing off against Byzantines, Arabs, Vikings, Turks, Mongols, and Russians, this steppe culture dominated Black Sea and Caucasus trade during Medieval times.

The Bulgars were a Turkic people who established a state north of the Black Sea, and who showed similarities with the Alans and Sarmatians. In the late 500s and early 600s AD their state fragmented under pressure from the Khazars; one group moved south into what became Bulgaria, but the rest moved north during the 7th and 8th centuries to the basin of the Volga river. There they remained under Khazar domination until the Khazar Khanate was defeated by Kievan (Scandinavian) Russia in 965. Thereafter the Volga Bulgars - controlling an extensive area surrounding an important hub of international trade - became richer and more influential; they embraced Islam, becoming the most northerly of medieval peoples to do so. Given their central position on trade routes, their armies were noted for the splendour of their armour and weapons, which drew upon both Western and Eastern sources and influences (as, eventually, did their fighting tactics).

In the 1220s they managed to maul Genghis Khan's Mongols, who returned to devastate their towns in revenge. By the 1350s they had recovered much of their wealth, but they were caught in the middle between the Tatar Golden Horde and the Christian Russian principalities. They were ravaged by these two armies in turn on several occasions between 1360 and 1431. A new city then rose from the ashes - Kazan, originally called New Bulgar - and the successor Islamic Khanate of Kazan resisted the Russians until falling to Ivan the Terrible in 1552. The costumes, armament, armour and fighting methods of the Volga Bulgars during this momentous period are explored in this fully illustrated study.

About the Author


David Nicolle is Visiting Research Fellow at the Institute of Medieval Studies, Nottingham University. He is the author of numerous books on aspects of medieval military history, including many for Osprey.

Gerry Embleton has been a leading illustrator and researcher of historical costume since the 1970s, and has illustrated and written Osprey titles on a wide range of subjects for more than 20 years. He is an internationally respected authority on 15th and 18th century costumes in particular. He lives in Switzerland, where since 1988 he has also become well known for designing and creating life-size historical figures for museums.
Product Details
ISBN: 9781782000792
ISBN-10: 1782000798
Publisher: Osprey Publishing
Publication Date: October 22nd, 2013
Pages: 48
Language: English
Series: Men-at-Arms