Tuesday 15 May 2012

Phrygian Axemen

These Garrison 20mm Phrygian axemen - which I appear to have painted in subconscious homage to Wasps RFC - are based on an illustrations in Liliane and Fred Funcken's Le Costume et Les Armes des Soldats de Tous le Temps vol 1 (Casterman 1966 - I have all my Funckens in the original French, a vain attempt to convince outsiders that there is a profound intellectual aspect to my hobby). Along with Niels M Saxtorph's Warriors and Weapons of Early Times (Blandford 1972) this book had a profound effect on the design of Ancient figures in the early years of wargaming. Les Higgins/Phoenix Model Developments small range of Ancient Figures for example included an "Anatolian Guard Spearman" (I need another 18 to complete a unit, if you have any) lifted straight from page 27 of Funcken where he stands a few spots along from the inspiration for the Minifig S Range Mede spearman and the Garrison 20mm Persian Standard Bearer. Sadly no manufacturer madethe splendid "chameau de guerre" on the next page - a Bactrian camel complete with shield-lined wooden howdah, which allegedly saw service with the Persians. Phil Barker's WRG guides superceded the Funckens and Saxtorph, which at the time was hailed as progress...


  1. My Funcken is in French 'cos I'm older than you and it wasn't published in English when I bought mine.

    I haven't tried the camel yet - if I did it would be on the Garrison Dromedary, but who could tell the difference - but I did manage to 'resurrect' the figure next to it:

    Hope it comes out.... first seen at the Northern Garrison in the early 70s, but it never appeared as they couldn't get it out of the mould. Found the figure, glued it on a horse, one piece casting it works though I've only got 12 of them at the moment.

    If there is one Garrison item I'd love to be able to do it would be a smaller version of the 25mm Carthaginian elephant - still my all time favourite elephant;



    1. Good to hear from you, Rob. Glad that the 20mm are still available for a little while yet. I bet you had Saxtorph in the original Old Norse too!

  2. No, but by a strange coincidence I was in this little bookshop in Cromer at the weekend and picked up 'From the sagas of the Norse Kings' by Snorri Sturluson. English translation though....