Saturday, 30 April 2011

Re Stylish Blogger Award...























Good Morning All! The sun is shining here in the Duchy and it is the back of 7.00am on Sunday Morning. I'm delighted ,if somewhat surprised, to have got nominated for this award and my first task is to thank Conrad for his kind words.I often feel that the Duchy is full of loose ends ,uncompleted projects and a few good ideas amongst the aforementioned ones. His link is- http://joyandforgetfulness.blogspot.com/





My second task is to tell seven things about me:





1)I met my wife at a church flower festival. Her presence there was due to a series of circumstances which are most baroque indeed but I am so glad that she did go...





2) My father was a lawyer with a great interest in the Romans and archaeology .He took me to Vindolanda and Hadrian's Wall as a boy,bought me Roman coins and other souvenirs. I think this early influence ( coupled with Ladybird books ) sparked off my love of History which has accompanied me throughout my life.





3) As a boy I always played games whereby the Britains toy soldiers fought the Timpo ones. Needless to say the Timpo ones were made to lose all the time.





4) I was a Sergent in the C.C.F at school ,loved it and thought about joining the Army but asthma soon put the idea out of my mind.





5) When my middle daughter was in hospital near Christmas around eight years ago some celebrities came round the ward. They were from Heart of Midlothian F.C - she wasn't interested at all but I was extremely excited and asked for autographs for myself. Anna wished she had been in the year before because the band Steps had come round the ward...





6) I love arty films and a highlight of my student days was getting into the Edinburgh Filmhouse for 50p on Wednesday afternoons. My favourite films are "Fanny and Alexander" by Ingmar Berman and Peter Greenaway's "Draughtsman's Contract"





7) I worked full time for a Church for 10 years and belong to another one now where I feel I more fully belong.





Enough about me ,now for some nominations:


http://gatheringofhosts.blogspot.com/ A fantastic ancients orientated blog...





http://oldschoolacw.blogspot.com/ Old School ACW gaming at it's best...





http://sharpbrush.blogspot.com/ Inspiring gaming indeed...








http://panzerkaput.blogspot.com/ The blog of an excellent artist





http://funnylittlewars-gardencampaigns.blogspot.com/ paul's fantastic FLW garden wargaming blog...

http://morts1938scrapbook.blogspot.com/ An interesting VBCW blog...

http://warsoflouisxiv.blogspot.com/ Always interesting information and inspiration...










http://threwdishways.blogspot.com/ A superb D M Cornish wargaming blog...









http://soweiterleague.blogspot.com/ Always worth a read...

















http://syldavianchronicle.blogspot.com/ Well thought out and inspiring ideas...

















Well thanks again Conrad and to the rest of you for reading...

Friday, 29 April 2011

Painted Figures...







My figure painting has been "A game of two halves" as they say in footballing circles. The 40mm efforts have been very unsuccessful so far and the less said the better about them.

I felt in the need of a boast so I went to the unpainted box upstairs and was inspired to paint up a unit of Tradgardland Jaeger from around 1866. They are from the Spencer Smith Classic range and jolly good figures they are too. I bought them last August when I began thinking about the Duchy of Tradgardland in the 19th Century. They were purchased around the time of Jan's op and were looked at briefly and filed away . Since then I have hummed and hawed about them ( not to mention making a few notes and looking at the lead in bags and boxes from time to time) as they have associations with a difficult time for us all. However I feel I have left such feelings behind( we have come through the treatment etc successfully and Spring is here symbolically and in reality too) by painting them and basing them for "Hearts of Tin" rules. I am pleased with the results,inspired to further paint units for the Civil War that tore Tradgardland in two around 1866 and hopefully be able to face those 40mm bounders once more! Now where did I leave my copy of "The Prisoner of Zenda" ...





A day to remember...








A good day was had by all at the Duchy- a day mainly devoted to the Royal Wedding on television. Indeed what a feast for the eyes it was. The Ladies of the Household enjoyed the myriad fashions on display and I revelled in the Ecclesiastical and Military ones ,not to mention exotic Royals from overseas. You can't beat the British for such a display of Pomp and Circumstance. May all the Ducal Household of Tradgardland extend our congratulations to the newly married couple. Let the loud huzzahs sound forth...






Thursday, 28 April 2011

Holiday Weekend -Huzzah!

Well the Holiday Weekend has begun- Royal Wedding tomorrow and on Monday the Feast of St Joseph the Worker/May Day! All the Tradgardland Household are off for the next four days and it is great! For part of tomorrow we shall all be glued to the television watching the Royal wedding (myself included) and then we shall see what the weekend holds...
It is indeed good to be off and the Wargames Show in Falkirk "Carronade" next weekend to look forward to also. I hope to attend it as it is an excellent show which is held in a superb venue and there are always superb games and traders too.
Finally,for now a wee timely challenge- which is the Royal Wedding depicted above and who are the happy couple? Answers to be posted as comments please.

Sunday, 24 April 2011

Germania Inferior- Tradgardland 69AD: a rules playtest...







Germania Inferior ( situated in the area where the Duchy of Tradgardland can be found today) is divided by civil war. Legionary fights against Legionary, brother against brother and former comrades in arms have become the bitterest of enemies...

A detachment, loyal to one of the Emperors vying for control in the area, has heard that enemy troops are in the area and march to investigate....

What will follow is a chance to try Ros McFarlane's "A Gathering of Hosts" rules. I have just finished Easter lunch and later in the day will set up a game on the spare dining room table. Tomorrow morning I will play the game,try the rules,take photos and post a battle report for your entertainment










Saturday, 23 April 2011

Greetings...

It is 6.30 am on Sunday morning here.A very Happy Easter to all from the Duke and Ducal Household of Tradgardland! The picture is by Rodney Matthews known to many of you for his fantastic LOTR poster amongst other artwork. Whatever you are doing today have a great day...

Friday, 22 April 2011

San Martino-poll news and some imagineering..

You are invited to my other blog to see how the poll progresses and to see some faltering first steps in imagineering- http://armyredwhite.blogspot.com/

Thursday, 21 April 2011

Your vote sought..

As I was working on my Army Red/White (Swiss) for Funny littlewars 54mm gaming inspired by H G Wells I wondered if it might be fun to collect an opponent for them at the same time- working on/collecting both armies in tandem. I would like your opinion on what enemies army Red/White will fight against. Background scenarios to be worked out later. All you have to do is vote at the poll . Thanks for taking part . You will find the poll at my Army Red/White blog-
http://armyredwhite.blogspot.com/

Historical evocations...



I have just watched an excellent film on BBC I player called Apocalpto. I had heard some things about the film but had never watched it so I went for it today...

I'm very glad I did because it was so evocative of time and place for me. I am no Mayan expert but the film seemed to capture the essence of life,warfare and death so well. I do so enjoy films that do this .

For perhaps our 18th century one cannot go beyond- Barry Lyndon, for some time earlier -Touts les matins de la monde and for the Napoleonic period- The duellists.

I guess I am not necessarily talking about 100% accuracy or as near as one can but films that take one to another place and time so well. I would be interested to hear here your comments about the films that do that for you!

Wednesday, 20 April 2011

Paint it black...

Not very good photo but ok trial run of a figure belonging to the Town Militia unit. I intend to do some more today whilst the family are at work...




Tuesday, 19 April 2011

18th century black uniforms- council sought...

I am considering painting up a 40mm infantry regiment with a black uniform...
I cannot find any evidence for 18th century infantry in black only the well known Prussian hussars. Does anyone know otherwise? I would be delighted to hear your thoughts and have your help-many thanks in anticipation!



Monday, 18 April 2011

Today in the Duchy...

Family back to school today. Have restarted painting ( to the accompaniment of LOTR talking book and Kerrang radio) 40mm Prince August chaps which are proceeding well. Took a break from them to do some 54mm bicycle mounted Staff figures for Funny Little Wars- http://armyredwhite.blogspot.com/ if you fancy a peep at them... Sorted out ( or rather shuffled about) some piles of unpainted figures to think about much later- say summer hols. Have been planning how to take my VBCW 1938 chaps forward - watch out for steam tank and some emigre advisers !

Friday, 15 April 2011

Mythical earth gaming circa 1977..










Of late ,here in the Duchy ,I have been wallowing in nostalgia. I have dug out the remnants of my 1970s Minifigs Mythical Earth Range ( here displayed in all their 1970s paint job glory) and re based them retro style on thin card painted green, been sent a copy of the SESWC Middle Earth period rules of the mid 70s and have set up a small game too. I have also been in touch with Dave Ryan of Caliver who intends to release the range once more. I have had great fun doing this and hope to build up a collection again one day. Photos depict an encounter between wood elves and wargs in Mirkwood. I will let you know what happened soon...

Tuesday, 12 April 2011

Journeying...

Just a short note to say I will be having a short break from the Duchy at present. Fear not,Gentle Reader,all is well with the Duke and his Household's health but there is indeed a need within me for a "period holiday" online at least...
My notional Luggage is ready, the coach awaits, I wish you all well until I return!



Sunday, 10 April 2011

Doldrums etc

I have got up and find myself in the Doldrums- listless,lacking in energy and hoping the winds of inspiration will blow soon. Perhaps the black dog is maybe sniffing around too... However I ,whilst unable to do anything constructive,have been musing upon old school ancients,nostalgia for the Toy Tub wargames shop in Edinburgh of my youth where my first lead figs came from, Roman Client Kingdoms,I Claudius ,opponents for my EIR and ancient city state imaginations based in the East ruled by priests of the sun... P.S email from Dave Ryan of Caliver esp for Bluebear Jeff- Thanks for the comment. I am certain that the last severeal times they were re-issued they were called MYTHICAL EARTH, which is the title Alan used when he e-mailed me.;or just renamed and put in a generic fantasy rangeN, I have no intention of calling them Lord of the Rings or MIddle Earth! CheersDave

Saturday, 9 April 2011

Sun it Rises...



Firstly some news from yesterday's post-Tidders I contacted Dave Ryan as you suggested -. He said, when asked if he would be making the old ME figures again -"When we find the masters moulds yes!"and also-"you might also mention that we have just released some 25mm Peninsular napoleonics- the first new 25mm Minifigs in 20 odd years!" I have contacted Mr Ryan over the over the years to buy from his marvellous emporium at Caliver Books. he is always friendly , helpful and provides a great service...


I don't know about you about some of my favourite items and therefore best purchases of books and music over the years have been bought as bargains or 2nd hand.Yesterday was indeed another example a brand new CD and EP both for £1 ! I had heard some of their songs before but I have been bowled over by their music since I bought it yesterday- I refer to the Fleet Foxes. Do give yourself a treat and listen to what they themselves describe as " Baroque harmonic pop jams!"


Spent yesterday in the garden planting potatoes, gardening generally,enjoying the sun,reading a reenactment magazine and making myriad hobby plans.The sun is up for what looks like another glorious day here in the Duchy of Tradgardland...

Friday, 8 April 2011

Hols at last and diverse matters...


Here I am feeling a tad like the battered old Minifig- more about his kindred anon and hoping that I will be more like the splendid chap in the painting in a day or two!Dear Reader read on...


Finished for Easter hols yesterday. I had found myself in that vile overtired place where I just couldn't stop- hardly sleeping, rising at 4.45 am and teaching all day then parent's evenings and being home by 7.30-8pm! I hope that I can stop this cycle- have started quite well with a lie in until 6.50am today - excellent for me I might add. Fluey/cold is going too thankfully! I have lain out the 40 mm Tradgardlanders once more and intend to get down to business today- the arms race had restarted Mr Olley!



Yesterday afternoon on my return from school amidst frenetic gardening and tea making I rummaged in the garage ( much easier now the Guinea Pigs have moved out from their winter quarters. By the by my daughter gets annoyed when I wind her up by calling them Skaven- actually Petal and Pumpkin are really cute..) and came accross an excellent 40mm Elastolin mortar ( really fires too) which the Duchy will field and some 40mm Elastolin which I am tempted to field too. I must try and see what full round Elastolin look with Prince August- have any of you tried it on the table top?




There I was the other day whilst reading blogs linked to Emperor v Elector I came upon "The Sharp end of the Brush" - a super place indeed. The pictures I saw there transported me right back to school days circa latish 1970's and the games we played with Minifigs Mythical earth range.... I was transported in my mind to games played set in middle Earth . The photos included one of my favourites- the giant!Sadly my figures are long since lost. I would dearly like to try what painting skills I have aquired over the years ( little I assure you) on such ME figures.Does anyone know who has the moulds and if the figs are available? I fear that I could be tempted to buy some to have a go ,dig out my copy of South EastScotland Wargames Club rules for the period from the loft and go for it..,Can any of you point me in the right direction?


Off to get more coffee and sort out the paint pots- have a great day whatever you are doing!



Monday, 4 April 2011

The arms race...



The current arms race between the Duchy of Tradgardland and the Electorate of Teutonburg-Fredonia is on hold here due to a nasty fluey cold. Sadly I felt the need to drag myself into work today however. Normal wargaming service will be resumed asap...

Saturday, 2 April 2011

Tradgardland 1730 gets even bigger...

Well it has been a busy day which began withe the paintbrush out,continued at Ikea and proceeded by visiting my mother en famile... Just enough energy left to let you know that the Army of the Duchy of Tradgardland of 1730 will be depicted in 40mm using Prince August moulds and home casting. Two regiments already cast and on the painting tray. More tomorrow including Muster Rolls from the Duchy and my reconstruction of the Duchy's Order of Battle from archival sources.

Friday, 1 April 2011

To tread upon the field of Mars once more ...


The Duchy of Tradgardland 1730...


Duke Georg finally left the Council Chamber,the debate had lasted until dawn, he could hardly comprehend that a state of war now existed betwixt the Duchy of Tradgardland and The Elector of Teutonburg Fredonia...

Wearily he lay down on his bed and tried to let sleep overcome him to no avail. He therefore dressed once more , sent for food to break his fast and arranged with his private secretary to meet with his staff directly...