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Re: English longbow men

A favourite subject of mine. Looking forward to getting these in due course. Thank you!

However, I know it's petty but I feel the need to comment on the "two fingered salute", as it has been called in this thread. #1 that story is a myth, however it's a very enjoyable myth, so let's keep it. However, #2, it's the wrong way around; that's a Peace sign, or a "V for Victory" sign, not a F-off sign.

Churchill loved to play around with it:

QI discussion of the English V sign

And the confusion is quite widespread; this photo is captioned, "An Indian soldier gives the V for Victory sign"

Re: English longbow men

PDA , the origins of the two fingered salute/insult are unknown, lost in the mists of time, so just because no one can prove post Agincourt was the start, no one can prove it wasn`t either, and it`s one of my favorite stories of our humour in the face of adversity , so I am keeping it

Re: English longbow men

Alan, that's what I said. I'd just prefer it the other way round, so it has more 'ooomph' for the English collectors.

Re: English longbow men

LOL! Yup! "Fork Yew!"

Re: English longbow men

tom s
love the 2 fingered salute to the french.

Although not really intended as a salute, per say, it was a silent message intended for communication in loud and rambunchious environments, such as muddy fields on wet-weather days, when most people are hungry and anxious, to convey nothing but respectful messages!

In this case, it meant quite respectfully, "Table For Two To The Victors, sil vous plais!"

Re: English longbow men

Were these announced in any way? I have more archers than I know what to do with but these look nice sculpts and I'm sure I can find room for some more. Strelets are being really playful at present.


The life-like poses of the new masters are great. Shooting a longbow myself (and doing some medieval reenactment, too) I’d like to know where the sculptor has found a reliable source for a military quiver on the back.

Usually, bowmen of this period did attach it to the hip. In battle, the arrows were stuck in the ground for easy access. That’s the way they commonly are depicted. It’s really the best place if you want to shoot volley after volley as quick as possible. No arrows tangling up in the quiver.

There also are contemporary texts, describing up to 24 arrows carried ‘in the belt’. Another option was a small sack. But quivers on the back? And archers grapping their arrows directly by reaching over their shoulder?

Many years ago, I went to a medieval event with a quiver - yes, you guess it right, on my back. Just to be told by every nitpicker, this was wrong. Some even called me ‘Robin’… Since then, I left it at home. So I would be happy for every hint, enabling me to remove the dust from that quiver and wear it proudly.

Re: Quiver-Question

OnnO that is a fair point, I suspect they were carried on the back while on the march, then fixed to the waist/belt when in use. removing a longbow arrow from a quiver on the back must be challenging anyway.

Re: Quiver-Question


the two-fingered salute should be kept, but the fingers should be spread as a 'V' and the knuckles should be facing away from the gesturer to denote that a very different blessing is being bestowed.

Indeed, the origin of the two-fingered salute is disputed, and it is possibly symbolic of the female pudenda. Messages associated with the latter can be enhanced by raising said digits level with the chin, protruding the lingual body and oscillating it vigorously between the out-stretched phalanges.

This may entail various other vocalisations, culminating in a resounding chorus of 'suits you monsieur'

Re: Quiver-Question

I've read that when the French took Englishmen prisoner, they would cut off one of his fingers so as not to be able to shoot arrows. The two fingered salute was to show they had all their fingers and taunt the enemy.

Re: Quiver-Question

Right, one cut-off finger would not be enough to disable an archer. At least you need two fingers holding the string to shoot a bow. One finger above and one under the arrow. Maybe that's the origin of the 'V'?

Re: Quiver-Question

i had read,(cant remember where),that the french would cut the two fingers off of bowman and parole them back to their home.the two fingers in the air meant that they had won the battle and not had their fingers cut off.
dont know if its true or not.but it should be cause it sounds good.

Re: Quiver-Question

Just for clarity, we Brits have been bought up to believe for six hundred years the origin of the two fingered salute, insult, originated at Agincourt , the French having promised to cut the two bow fingers off any captured archer. After victory the English army marched passed the French having been given the road to Calais holding aloft their hands waving their two fingers at the French. This has been quoted as fact in almost every account of the battle, but there is no historical proof that it happened, or did not happen, it sounds right,and we Brits love the story,so we are keeping it, but we will probably never know if it actually true.

Re: Quiver-Question

I think I'd buy this set just to get the "I've still got my fingers" pose but the other figures are great as well. I like the way they've positioned the fingers, I know what it means and no one else has an excuse to misinterpret it. After all Streletz are catering for us strange people whose hobby is toy soldiers not for those strange people whose hobby is being outraged by everything.
The quiver on the back isn't a big deal for me, indeed I didn't really notice it until someone pointed it out. Likewise the comments over at Benno's about dates and styles of helmets, swords, etc, I'm not that well read so for me a Medieval archer is a Medieval archer. And these are very fine looking Medieval archers!

As for unsubstantiated and unprovable pieces of history I have one of my own, I think that killjoy revisionist historians who seem to delight in robbing us of all of our favourite oral history are the real reason why paintball guns were invented. Obviously I can't prove that but it makes perfect sense to me.

Re: Quiver-Question

Good point Alan! A quiver on the back seems plausible, when on the march. Or while hunting? I remember a drawing by L & F Funcken in one of their old books about medieval knights & armor. It featured a knight and his entourage, one of them an archer on horseback equipped with such a quiver. But this was just a ‘modern’ drawing and he was the only archer in that group.

On the other hand there are the well known Airfix covers from their vintage Robin Hood boxes and playsets… But in fact all these figures came without a quiver on the back. Even the ‘Robin Hood’ sculpt had none.
However, Strelets’ longbowmen are a must-have for my collection. My home is my castle and here they may wear their quiver just the way they like

Re: Quiver-Question

Not sure why the two fingers gesture attracts such interest. Like most things of that nature they say a lot more about the present than the past. Funny that nobody can quote the source nor feels the need to. I like Mr Rowland's account as the Sheela na Gig was on many churches with connotations of fertility so at least there is some documentation with that one.
From churches to the Bible, Genesis 27:3 mentions quivers, bows and hunting so that gives some credence to the hunting use as the English translation of the Hebrew, Greek, Latin texts would have used common terminology in the 16th/17th centuries (time of vernacular translations). Hunting the doe under the greenwood required stealth and firing on the move. One of my ancestors was a Fletcher ( 2 or 3 greats grandfather ie 18th c )so my toxophilic knowledge is probably genetic and therefore outstandingly accurate.

BTW my hobby is collecting military miniatures not toy soldiers. My hobby, my terms of endearment likewise feel free to use plastic wotsits, widdel sojurs ,
martial simulacra or whatever and if it keeps the show on the road- fine by me.