Azula vs. Galen Marek

After two days of prep time who will prevail in a fight to the death between the Dark Knight and the God of War?

Batman vs. Kratos

Monday, May 16, 2011

Warrior Bio: Polish Winged Hussars


 This section of the Polish Winged Hussar covers the arms and armor used by these Legendary Cavalrymen  from 1620-1683.

Long Range: Bandolet carbine, Luk (bow) 
Wheelock Bandolet 

  The Bandolet Carbine got its name from the the leather shoulder belt from which it was slung.  Based on my research this carbine was most likely Wheelock, as  Flintlock designs did not replace the Wheelock one until a little before the turn of the century (in the carbine category at least) . The Wheelock had an advantage over the earlier matchlock in that it was always ready to fire, and could now be fired with only one hand. This was essential for a mounted Cavalryman, who need the other hand to maneuver the horse. Still, like all early gunpowder it had as many disadvantages as advantages. The lock or pyrite that caused it to fire could easily fail, making misfires a common occurrence on the battlefield, particularly if the weather conditions were poor. In addition the lock had to be treated with the utmost care, lest it break completely. A Hussar could still use the butt to try to  bludgeon his foe to death though if it was broken completely or he found himself in a emergency situation. The procedure for reloading was very time consuming, so it may have only been used once per battle. The Range was 150-200 meter , although the accurate range would be more like 50 meters. As for its penetrative power it will certainly be one of the best here, but a quote from a Hussar site leads me to suspect that it will not be as overwhelming as some people would portray it as "the best period armor protected against harquebus fire, especially if at long range or if the blow was glancing."

Bandolet with Flintlock 

 "Wheellock operation relies on the friction of a steel wheel rubbing against a stone (iron pyrite - ‘pirytu’) which creates a spark, igniting the priming powder, which is kept in place by a pan cover. The iron pyrite stone is placed into a vice-like cock, cushioned by a piece of leather. The first step in firing is to to lower the cock until the pyrite contacts the the wheel, or the pan cover depending on the specific design. The wheel connects to the mainspring through a chain composed of a few flat-links, which are attached to the wheel's axle. The wheel is cocked with a key, a sort of spanner or wrench that turns a nut, which rotates the wheel in the opposite direction. The wheel is locked in place when cocked by a latch. When the trigger is pulled, the latch is released and 1) the pan cover moves exposing the priming powder, and 2) the wheel spins, scraping against the iron pyrite. This generates sparks, exactly like flicking your Bic (cigarette lighter)." With Credit to Hussar Firearms for description

(Carbines can briefly be seen) 

Luk (bow) :
Tartar bow

The last use of the bow in Europe was at Leipzig, in 1813. Although it was regarded as obsolete long before then, the Polish Hussars seem to have used it throughout the division's history, although it became increasingly regulated to a ceremonial role. It is mentioned in the official Polish site that the bow they used came from the East, which led me to make an inference that it was a Tartar or a Turkish bow, based on the long history of conflict between the two. Eastern bows are smaller and easier to use while on horseback then Western ones. The Polish Hussar would often hang the bow  on the left side of his saddle and the quiver on his right.
Polish Hussars with bows

 The draw weight of these bows could be anywhere from 100-160, although for Hussars I would assume it was towards the lower end of this spectrum. These were powerful weapons but there were a lot of drawbacks that will hurt the Hussar in this fight. According to the Polish site this weapon was most often used while chasing down fleeing enemies, which is unfortunate for the Hussars as Cataphracts are much too disciplined to rout. Another factor is the lack of skill the average Hussar possesses with the bow. Dalerac, who dedicated much of his writings to the Hussars, remarked that while many Polish Nobles carried bows as part of their everyday attire, few were able to shoot it accurately. Finally and perhaps the most important factor to consider is the lack of armor of their foes, which meant that armor piercing arrows would have been a rarity at best. 

Mid Range: Flintlock pistols, Koipa lance
Flintlock Pistol

 All Calvary of this period carried pistols and the Hussar was no exception.  An edict of King Stephan Batory in the 1570s required every hussar to carry at least a brace of pistols; 4 pistols became customary fairly early, and carrying 6 was a common practice.  By the mid 1600s Flintlock pistols imported from France had replaced the Wheelock. Their use was limited however by the hussars, as they were never used during charges only in the melee that followed. Even then they were sometimes passed over for other quicker weapons. 
The Hussars would have carried these both on their person and saddle

 The Flintlock design enabled the pistol to work better in undesirable weather conditions, and like its predecessor could be kept loaded for weeks on end. The drawbacks were still there however. The efficiency of short firearms was low. They used small loads of powder, small shot, and had low range and poor accuracy. Effective use was limited to about twenty meters, and preferably less. The hussars treated them only as secondary weapons. They would have never used these during a charge. 

 (It is important to remember here that he is using a 1760's Germanic pistol)  
Koipa lance
A scene from the Battle of Vienna, 1683

 The signature weapon of the Hussars was the Koipa lance. This massive lance reached a staggering 5.5 meters (18 feet) . The reason for this length was that the standard pike was roughly 15 feet meaning that in a battle between Hussar and Pike-man the Lancer will have superior range.  In order to make it light the core was bored out from the point to the ball(which was used for better grip).  A 2.5-3.0 meter flag was attached just below the steel point.
Polish Winged Hussar

  The drawback to being so long and hollow was that it broke quite easily, making this a one use weapon. After almost every battle the captain of the hussars would send a request to the government for these lances, which were very expensive to produce. 

       (Many  of the weapons featured in the match can be seen in that video) 

Close Range: Szabla, Koncerz, Pallash, 
*My research indicates that each Hussar would carry two of these on their person and one underneath the saddle. 
Two Szabra
 The Polish Szabla was another famous weapon of the hussars. This beauty of a weapon was around 2.5-3.0 feet in length and double edged. A steel ring surrounds the grip allowing for greater control while fencing or dueling someone else. It was an ideal weapon for horseback, allowing for quick downward slashes, stabs and even hacking. Its design allows for quick recovery, and in their off time hussars would have fenced with this wonderful weapon. While on horseback this weapon would be  in a scabbard on either his right or left thigh. 

A better quality image of the szabra
 The polish szabra was so effective that it may have  led to the adoption of the weapon type in the West.

Another great duel here


The Polish Koncerz

This ridiculously long blade was 4-5 feet long and was hung under the saddle by the Hussar. The blade was rather thin and not sharpened, eventually ending in a sharpened triangular point; this sword had no hacking or slashing capability whatsoever.  It had no other purpose other then to thrust, which it seemed to due quite wonderfully.  The Koncerz could allegedly thrust through "ringmail", which actually meant plate mail. 
Koncerz can be seen under his knee
 The disadvantage of this weapon was that it was rather unwieldy to use on horse, much less ground. In addition  though it may have pierced plate  it is unknown how far deep it went and whether it was able to kill the person wearing that armor. 

(not the best video, but illustrates problem that the Koncerz wearer may face).

The Polish Pallash
 The Polish Pallash was a bit of a multi purpose weapon. It had a double sided blade, so it could slash, and a straight blade for thrusting attacks. This sword was around 3 feet in length, and was carried on his other thigh(the one not carrying the saber). Like the saber the Hussar would have trained with it when not on campaign. 

Extremely close range: Polish Hunting dagger (rare) 
 A stretch...
 With the possible exception of a brief anecdote no source even comments on the dagger, and thats why to include it is a bit of a stretch. What is known is that hunting was popular in Poland, and it is possible that a hussar/hunter could have brought this blade to the battlefield. The blade is 18 inches long and features an ebony grip. 

Special/rare weapons: The Polish War Hammers: Czekan axe , Horseman's pick, Obuch

*Note I haven't been able to find anything saying that a Hussar carried any more then one of these on
 him at a time. 

Czekan "axe": 
The Schematics of the axe/hammer hybrid

In truth this was as much war hammer as axe. The metal part consisted of a hammer-like head on one side and a ax with a short, slightly curved blade on the other. The Length of this was around 2 and a half feet, so it was a fairly short weapon that would have only been used once the Lance had broken.  It seems to have been gradually replaced by the Nadziak as the 17th century wore on however. Like all war hammers this was probably a bit slow. 
(very Inaccurate but entertaining. Shows some advantages of the war hammer) 


The curve of the spike varied between as seen here or curved back completely

The Nadziak or "horseman's pick" was the most popular of the three war hammers, and perhaps the most formidable. Its hammer-head (usually with a square, but sometimes with an hexagonal face) which has a moulded neck, narrower towards the centre of the weapon, is balanced on the other side by a slightly drooping beak.This was apparently a very dangerous weapon in Poland, as the Polish Parliament outlawed its use no less then 3 times between 1570-1620(although they added the clause "except for war use").  The Hammer part could be used to inflict blunt force trauma, while the beak could be driven though armor. 
 Further expanding on that here is a quote from the Polish War-hammer site
""The nobleman walking with an obuch often injured his serfs and sometimes even killed them. Because of the danger it represented it was forbidden to come armed with a nadziak at the time of big meetings, sessions of parliament, sessions of the local councils or tribunals where scuffles were common. At the entrance to the Gniezno cathedral there is a fixed notice warning people whosoever would enter this house of God with such a brigandish instrument he would be excommunicated. And indeed it was a brigandish instrument for if someone should hit somebody else with the nadziak's sharp end behind the ear he would kill him instantly, pushing through his temples a fatal iron."

There are some serious drawbacks to this weapon though. Its relative heaviness made it unwieldy and, thus easily avoided. The injury caused by the weapon was also small and rarely immediately fatal. Additionally, if swung too hard the weapon often became embedded in the victim or their armour making retrieval difficult, complicated by the fact that their opponent may still be alive. Also the Hussars seem to have refrained from using this weapon on formation and many Hussars would prefer their sabers to these weapons(a preference which will  doubtless change once they encounter Byzantine armor) .

(Mike Loads demonstrates a advantage of the hammer side of the Poll-axe against plate armor.) 
* After researching, I have axed another version of the War hammer for being impracticable and not really being used for combat. Called the Obuch this was really used just as walking stick for nobles.
The Nazdiak's axed brother

*Horse Breeds* :  Eastern style horse, lack of directed breeding, makeshift horses

   The horse used by the Hussars were of no  definite breed, instead the Polish would often mix their indigenous horses with other breeds that they encountered which were primarily of the Eastern variety . This sub category included  Anatolian, Persian, Turkish, Kurdish, Crimean, Caucasian, and Arab breeds. The horse used by the Hussars was a strong powerful beast, and was refined through training as the following quote shows   "The creation of a good combat cavalry horse was not a simple affair. There was a long training process. Ideally, they were used in battle only after they were 7 years old, only when they were mature, properly trained, experienced and acclimated to work. The rigorous training program bore fruit in strength and reliability. Strength and endurance is important, but of particular importance is good temperament, experience and training."

       Just like with their lances, the Polish Hussars were often perilously low on good horses due to the horse's significantly greater mortality rate. In the battle of   Kircholm the hussar regiment lost  300 horses but only 150 riders. Polish trained horses were killed faster then their masters could replace them, and the Polish soon became rather innovative, and would use the army draft horses before the actual warhorse. They also acquired a habit of replacing their slain mounts with those captured from the enemy. Although a horse is better then no horse presumably, there were several drawbacks to this tactic. 1. The horse may not know or trust his rider very well, which could lead to some complications in battle (in addition it may not be properly trained) and  2. The horse may not be of the best breed for combat.

  Also the Polish Hussar may be a little more reluctant to shoot the Byzantine's fine Nisean mount for the above reason then the Byzantine will be at shooting his . 


Head:szyszak helmet, nasal guard, karacena scale  gorget(rare) 
Side profile
    The helmet of the hussars was known as the szyszak. This "lobster-like" helmet  was made of  burnished steel and brass, and it insured coverage of the cheeks, back of the head/neck and in some cases, the nose/upper cheek region.  Burnished steel was superior to blackened steel, as it helped prevent rust.  Inside the helmet was a one inch leather strip, which the Hussars would stuff with linen, hay,straw basically whatever the hussars could get their hands on. This helps provide some cushioning for crushing blows to the head. Could also have metallic "wings" sprouting from the sidesThe Karacena scale gorget  consisted of iron scales riveted to a leather support . This gorget would have been hung around the lower neck, giving it some protection and was placed over cuirass. Only the richest officers would have had it. 
Neck Armor

  Hussar helmets were decorated with depictions of the Virgin Mary, possibly to try to invoke protection from her.   The Hussars do not seem to have neck armor. 

Body: Breast and back plate,  gorget, shoulder Pauldrons,  Tassets (rare) animal skins, WINGS!
Note the Leopard skins

 The Hussars have a wonderful set of armor and I doubt my ability to do it justice through my own descriptions. So I am going to copy+paste the descriptions  from "My Armory"

"The breastplate, the basic part of every armor, was made of bright steel, on the average 3-5mm-10mm. thick( *note* in contrast the knight's armor was 2-3 mm thick!) , and consisted of a large upper plate with a central ridge and of a lower part of three to five lames or splints riveted underneath to leather straps (Fig. 16). The backplate, constructed en suite and with the same number of splints, was joined to the breastplate by buckles and thongs.The gorget was always of two plates pivoted on the left shoulder and secured on the right by a stud and key-slot—unlike its Hungarian counterpart, it was worn over the cuirass. Each pauldron was constructed of a single spherical plate covering the shoulder, having in the front one or several small "wings" protecting the armpit, and terminating in some lames of which the lowest was cut in S-shape to protect the elbow" 
A glorious Hussar charge

     The Armor was custom tailored for every individual hussar, and was described as "bullet-proof" (most likely this only applied to carbines and pistols, as the other Hussar page mentioned that no armor of the time could stop musket shots.  The Hussar armor was also surprisingly flexible, and the Hussar could twist or bend his body forward with ease. Very, very rarely a Tasset was included and was attached to the bottom portion of the plate.  On top of all  skins of leopards, bears, wolves even tigers were hung, giving a tiny bit more armor value but  much more aesthetic value. 

Putting the "Winged" in Winged Hussars:
Towering above this Hussar's back are what made him legendary
 To put it simply, the original purpose of these massive things has been lost to time, in the same manner that the Byzantines Greek Fire is now lost.  These were worn in battle but only in nice weather. Bad weather probably would have made them damp. 

 These wings don't really give  any protective value, but they did have psychological. the wings were alleged to have made varying sounds of buzzing as the wind whistled thru them which terrified both the enemy horses and the enemy themselves.  This is bitterly contested issue with some insisting that A. you wouldn't have been able to hear the buzzing over cannon fire, muskets, yells ect (a good point in my view) and B. the wings may have not made any noise at all! The author of Polish Winged Hussar 1576-1777 insists that he couldn't hear the wings at all when he was on set for the filming of  with fire and sword. They do make their user appear larger then life and this may intimidate undisciplined opponents. Also there is strong evidence to suggest that it was one wing that towered above their head, not two. 

Arms: Karwasze, single plate gauntlet 
The two parts were laced together
 The Karwasze was a oriental arm guard first adopted by the Hussars in 1590. By 1630 it had replaced the earlier mail arm guards known as zarekawie pancerzowe ("mail sleeves"). There were two parts of these; one that covers the upper arm and one that covers the lower (they break at the elbow). This type of armor is comprised of two plates, for front and back arm, tied together by small leather buckles. It is unclear whether they are able to overlap at the elbow; different depictions suggest two different conclusions here. This style of armor originated in Turkey. 

   Polish Hussars also wore a single plate gauntlet on their bridal arm.
Legs: Tasset, leather
       The Hussar doesn't seem to have had much in the way of leg armor.  This isn't completely surprising when you think about it, as the leg is  probably the region least likeliest to be targeted in a calvary duel, given that the body of the horse is in the way of a lot of shots.  They did have some protection though, and the Tasset would have extended down to the thigh(for those rich enough to have afforded one) .  Based on the pictures they seem to have worn a great deal of leather from the knees to the boots, giving the Hussar some protection against slashing. 
*Note: Total weight of armor was only a slim 30-40 pounds!
Blocking: No shield, nobles dueled 

 While early hussars did carry a shield, these had fallen out of use by the time frame that I am dealing with. Thus the hussars get no benefit that such an instrument could provide.  Many Hussars were  great duelers though, in addition to being trained, so this will net hem some point.  Duels could occur for a great many of reasons, whether it be for revenge of a dead family member, for a faster promotion(more on that later) , to insults, both real and imagined.  Both warrior will be rewarded points for "weapon blocking" just that the Hussars will be awarded more. Whether that will compensate for not having a shield remains to be seen. 

Horse Armor and Saddle: Stirrups, Oriental style saddle, No horse armor

How cool would it be to walk to school with this guy?

From myArmory: "Polish hussar saddles of oriental type but of local production are deep; to give a proper support to the rider's back, especially at the moment of a lance at*tack. Usually they are covered with embroidered leather or velvet, their bow being mounted in brass or silver while the stirrups, generally called the "Polish variety," are in fact strongly influenced by Tartar-Turkish styles."

The Polish do not seem to have armored their horses, preferring speed over defense. This will be both a disadvantage and a advantage against the Byzantines: on one hand they are much faster then the cumbersome hussars, but on the other once the Byzantines start realizing that their weapons aren't piercing armor to well they are going to start aiming lower. 

Tactics: Charge in waves, repeated charges, tightly packed charge, at a bit of a disadvantage against heavy Calvary, Lance as a psychological weapon, close quarter fighting only if charge fails
The mass of spears could even overwhelm pikemen 

    In order to conserve the maximum amount of energy for their horses  Hussars would try to wait until they were about fifty paces to charge, although naturally if they were under fire from the enemy they would charge sooner. Prior to charging they would be in loose formation, however once they went into full gallop the formations would become increasingly tightly packed. Not every Hussar would rush into the fray at once, and some would stay back initially. These reserve could presumably flank or reinforce where needed. Like the Byzantines they could would frequently retreat, regroup and recharge. 

 These charges had little effect against good armor, and the lances would smash upon impact with plate as the battle of Danzig (1627) shows. They excelled against lightly armored foes, and their lances could easily smash through enemy formations, quickly causing a route. As stated above, charges were the main battle tactic of the Hussars, and they wouldn't go in for a close quarter fight so long as they had their lances.  

Morale/Motivation: Confessions before battle, Patriotism, Social Maneuvering, Pay
What they fought for..

 Like the Byzantines, Hussars would try to make peace with god before battle, in order to remove religious burdens prior to the fight.

 Nobles fought primarily for two reasons: genuine patriotism and social/political advancement. Throughout its history the Poland-Lithuanian Commonwealth was frequently  beset by  foreign predations and the Hussars would have felt honor bound to serve in these cases. Being a Hussar was an easy way to get noticed, which would both help nobles get noticed by higher circles and achieve political office. Neither goal would be unrealistic, as Hussars were very popular in Polish society, often being allowed into places that few others would be. Like every elite soldier, they could expect pay higher then their fellow man. 

Rules Of Combat:  ranks,  treated fellow Hussars as equals, conserve energy, forbidden from leaving battle formation
Yes even he would have been treated as a equal...

The Towarzysze or companions were a group of nobles that made up the core of the Hussars. Together with the rotmistrz or commander they shared the economic risk/investment of raising troops.  Under the companions were poczet or retinue, followed by the pacholiks or retainers. Underneath all of these were the camp servants. Hussars of all ranks would refer to each other as pan brat or "my lord-brother", formally treating each other as equals. Like the Byzantines, Polish Hussars would conserve their energy until the time when they needed it; the charge. 

 Once The Hussars got in formation, they were forbidden from leaving them. 
Training/Discipline/Quality of Enemies: Nobles, Volunteers and career based on wealth, State, Royal and Private companies, partially trained by families,  formal training, Quality of enemies:  Very High
A proud Polish noble

  The Hussar regiments were near universally comprised of nobles, specifically the upper and middle class of nobles. Low-income nobles and those that were not nobles at all were could occasionally be found in Hussar regiments, but this was a rare sight. The higher end nobles would enlist for three-five years before quiting, poorer nobles and younger sons of the rich  (who would not generally receive inheritance) could elect to become career soldiers.  

 There were three types of Hussar regiments; those paid for by the enterprising nobles themselves(these were often the first to see action) , those paid for by the state, and then the royal company that the crown paid for. The latter was considered the most prestigious to be in, and serving even briefly could earn a Hussar the title "soldier-knight". 

     Nobles children would have been brought up with the horse, and by a young age he could both ride and wield a saber effectively. Because of this the state didn't seem to worry about teaching the basics, and would instead focus on harder maneuvers like steering your horse with your feet and formations. 

 As mentioned previously, Poland was constantly beset by foreign would-be conquerors . The Hussars probably fought every one of their neighbors at least once, and would have gained a great deal of battlefield experience from these encounters.

Martial Arts/fighting style: "War Sports" , Fencing, duels 
When the Poles jousted they had neither armor nor shield.. 

  Two prominent sports practiced by the Polish children during childhood were jousting and "running at the ring". Running the ring is where someone would try to lance a small metallic ring dangling from a small wooden framework. Jousting was fought  exactly in the manner the old knights did, all the way down to the sharpened lances! Small wonder that many a Polish child were killed in these. 

 Polish Hussars were quite skilled at fencing, specifically with their prized saber and this was an emerging sport among nobles during the Hussar period. Since Polish duels were common they would have gained yet more experience with both the szabra and the war hammer(which some Poles carried to duels).

Polish Winged Hussar Sources:

Polish Winged Hussar 1576-1775 Here

Polish armies 1569-1696, Volume 1 Here

Vienna 1683: Christian Europe Repels the Ottomans Here

Warhorse: cavalry in ancient warfare Here

The Polish Winged Hussars -angelfire Here

Calvary The history of the Fighting Elite Here

Poland" History of Polish Calvary Here

Husaria: the Commonwealth's "Tanks" Here
 The horse of the Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth  Here

Polish Renaisance Warfare - the Hussars Here
Imperial Armies of the Thirty Years' War (2): Cavalry Here
Firearms- Weapons of the Polish Lithuanian Commonwealth, 1570-1750 here

Hussar's charge: the moment of impact: Here
Armchair general for some Calvary weapons Here
How Hussars Fought here

Eastern Influences on Polish Arms here
Koncerz and Palasz  (Cavalry Stock and Broadsword of the Polish Lithuanian Commonwealth, 17th C.) Here
Great Polish Hussar site Here
Hussar sabers here
Polish Art Center-  Szabra here
Authentic 17th and 18th cen. Blades  here
Polish War Hammers Here

Battle Tactics of the Polska Husaria By Rik Sulima~Suligowski Fox Here
Suligowski Regiment- modern day reenactment group here
My Armory Here
Great documentary for Polish armor Here


  1. I think that this is rather incredible. Truly I can see why these guys were the best of their times. Had gunpowder not become so common they would have kicked ass for a much longer time. You had some great videos in this as well, it can't be easy finding great eductional videos like you do. Clearly I can see the effort you've put into this.

    I think if something will undo the Hussars it will be the low quality of their non-gun weapons. Like the fragile spear or their poor bow skills.

    Otherwise it will be a hard fight between great horsemen of the ages.

    I can't wait for it :)

  2. heey

    First of all, a great fight.
    I really love the clips of fighting Hussars. Is there a movie or anything you know off?

    Lastly, i warn you not to take the warriors serie very serieusly. I tend to find the presentator telling inaccurasies. He is by a long shot not as good as someone like Mike Loads. For example, this clip of weird weapons of the middle ages, had some faults in them like that the sword was stiff and that knights in plate armour used a shield. ( they had plate armour and did not need shields.) Well for what you wanted to show, it did not matter very much since its almost impossible to get with a sword trough plate.

  3. one more small question though. I have seen that some of the hussars are wearing headbands with feathers, similair to what is depicted by natives. Does this have a meaning or status as far as you know?

  4. @MAster OF the Boot. Thanks man. I am having difficulty in determining whether the caibine will be able to peirce the Byzantine chest, I am near positive the Flintlock wont


    And dont worry I didn't, I just used it to show that plate armor was very hard peirce.

    As for the feathers I plan on looking that up later today!

  5. Damn, looks like I reviewed too early. I nearly missed the awesome, kickass review of the warhammer and its variants. Damn though, you know how to put on a good show. You are the one inspiring me:)

  6. Heey,
    Great work as always. Its funny that in an advertisement vid of a shop, you see that an man breaks butted mail and very thin plate armour, but in an educational show, you see that a man that has recieved training and is using an even bigger poleaxe, cannot destroy the armour.
    Its good you used both though.

    Anyhow, i had in my mind that the battle would be won by the hussars, but im doubting that now. The fact that they have no shield and no armoured horses are going to hurt them a lot. I also doubt the feathers, because in my mind, the enemy can pull at those things and pull you off.
    I cannot wait to see the egdes.

    1. The wings was tighten up to the sadles so they could'nt been pulled off. The wings tightened to them backs were mostly used at some events in 18 century.

  7. Let's see... The Byzantines, in my opinion, have the advantage here. This is because the only weapon that is undeniably superior for the Hussar is his carbine, and not every shot from the carbines will hit the opponent. Futhermore, I think horse armor will play a big role in this fight as the Hussar's tactic is to charge while the Byzantines can be more flexible with archery, Greek Fire etc. This charging puts the Hussar mounts in danger of being dismounted. Without a good polearm I doubt a pedestrian Hussar would have a chance unless he unloaded with his pistols. My only problem with the Byzantines is that throughout history they had a habit of losing battles to inferior opponents of smaller numbers for dumb reasons (Adrianople, Arab wars, Crusades, Manzikert). By contrast, the Hussars seem to be much more unified through constand wars with outsiders. IMHO, this is the best chance for the Hussars, not their actual equipment or tactics.

    1. carabine's was a not main weapon for the hussars. Main weapon is the kopia and the sabre. The hussars role in the battle was to break the enemy lines pull back and do it again if they needed. Then if enemy has been broken kossacks (later "pancerni" name changed during ukrainian upspring)take it over to finish enemy off. You must look at the tactits they used. If You look at the enemies of the hussars and compare the human losses during the battles with turks, swedes, russians which were eqiped with pistols, muskets, and all kind of advanced weapon you will see they had all they needed with them and nothing more. Whay use shield if you have a 10mm thick breast plate?

  8. Well, Hussar lance (kopia) was also superior to Kontos, because kopia was longer, and with lances the first to hit is the one that will live.

    BTW Poles at that time used rockets, not hussars per se, but well, cataphracts also probably don't used Greek fire by themselves :)