Glimmingehus - a fortified manor in the south of Sweden

This is a report from Company recruit Robin Eriksson, who visited the only 15th century reenactment event in sweden.

 

A weekend at Glimmingehus

Glimmingehus was brought to life on the 16th to 17th July by two Swedish re-enactment groups and some other guests. One group is the Guild of Saint Olaus, a well known and established group focusing on Swedish freemen. The other group is Companie of Saint Sebastian, a fairly young group that focuses on English archers in Yorkist or Burgundian service. One big goal of the event is to gather the few late 15th century re-enactors in the Nordic countries. The crew that gathered was a good one and we did a great job bringing the manor back to life. Besides soldiers drilling in the courtyard and patrolling the vicinities, we had a crew cooking in the castle kitchen. A luxury for us soldiers to just sit down and enjoy a great meal.

In Sweden Glimmingehus is called a castle but it's really more like a fortified manor as you can't compare it to other European castles. The main building was founded in 1499 by the Danish knight and admiral Jens Holgersen Ulfstand. During the 17th century it was nearly destroyed in the wars between Sweden and Denmark and after that it served as a storage for grain. Today the building is a museum and shows lots of interesting finds from the area, some of them being a bullock dagger and a cranequin.

The visitors could take a guided tour to see our small camp that we lived in besides the moat. Here we showed equipment that you could find in a soldiers camp, arms, armour, field kitchen and pavises. We also had some crafts shown like blacksmithing and sewing.  


Showing arms and armour to the visitors. (Photo by Susanna Frydén)

Each afternoon we put on a warbow demonstration and a historical fencing demonstration. The warbow demonstration went very well and we had a good time. First we talked about the archer, his equipment and function on the battlefield. Then we showed the audience how far we could shoot down the range. On the last day, Fredric explained to the crowd that we were aiming at an irrigation well about 150 meters away. Martin then stepped up and let his first arrow fly in a large parabolic course through the air. A few seconds later a loud metallic bang sounded as his arrow struck the top of the well. The crowd cheered and applauded and Martin was very pleased of his lucky shot. The rest of us also let our war arrows fly, some almost reaching 200 meters out in a farmer's field. After that we shot at a dummy wearing a padded jack, maille and a plackart to show the effect of different arrows. The jack and the maille was no match for our arrows launched by our heavy bows but the plackart put on a good fight. A lot of holes and dents but no fatal penetration thanks to the jack and the maille under. The next step was to show what happens when a moving enemy comes closer. We sent out our infantry or cannon fodder(two out of three were Norwegians :D) some 70 meters down the field . They then advanced on our line and we started to shoot at them with LARP arrows. A funny thing was that on the second day, the targets armoured up with bevors and pavises ;) to protect themselves from our hard hits. The days ended with a small demonstration of historical fencing. Daggers, longsword, disarming and  sword and buckler was shown in the courtyard.



Archery demonstration. Point blank shooting at an armoured dummy. (Photo by Susanna Frydén)

On Saturday evening we had a small private banquette in a dining room besides the kitchen. Various pies for head course and fritters for dessert was some of the dishes on the menu that the kitchen crew had been working  all day with. The whole event would never have turned out so great if it wasn't for them!



Hot pies from the owen! (Photo by Robin Eriksson)



All dressed up for banquette! (Photo by Bengt Ericson)


Links:
Guild of saint Olaus
Companie of Saint Sebastian
Glimmingehus

 

 

By Robin Eriksson, Recruit Company member