AYYUBID MAMLUK c. 1240

[based on the 13th Century Kitab al-Diryaq]
An extract from Armies and Enemies of the Crusades 1096-1291
by Ian Heath


47.      AYYUBID MAMLUK c. 1240

Since he carries a Turkish sabre rather than the usual sword this figure may very well represent one of the new wave of Khwarizmian or Kipchak mamluks to be found in Ayyubid employ in the 1230s and 1240s. In addition steppe-influence is apparent in his hat with upturned brim; this was the Saraquj, typical of Mongol dress (see 84) and adopted by the Ayyubids and early Mamluks via such mercenaries. The Saraquj was usually white. In the source the tunics and coats (the latter called 'Tartar coats' see 55 and 56) of such figures are all of rich brocade, principally blue, green or pink in colour.

The sabre came into more widespread use in the late-13th or early-14th century under Mongol influence though curved swords are occasionally depicted or recorded in use as early as the 11th century, probably introduced from Central Asia via slave-soldiers purchased in the East.

Note the spurs fixed to his boots. Usamah mentions Khuff boots with spurs but pictorial sources tend to indicate that spurs were uncommon amongst Moslems during this era except in Andalusia and 13th century Mamluk Egypt.



Next: 48. SELJUK HEAVY CAVALRYMAN in Armies and Enemies of the Crusades 1096-1291 by Ian Heath




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