MEDIEVAL TANK

During the Hussite Wars in the early 15th century, there was a vehicle that was essentially a medieval precursor of the tank. This vehicle was referred to as the “war wagon”. These wagons would be reinforced with metal plating and thick wood to shield against archers as well as melee strikes from infantry. A war wagon would be occupied by archers and crossbowmen who would fire arrows and bolts from the safety of their wagon’s defenses. If cavalry or infantry got too close to the wagon, the archers and crossbowmen would be defended by spearmen, who would use their polearms to beat back any attacker that got too close to the wagon. When placed in strategically defensible positions, these wagons prove to be quite effective against heavy cavalry. The concept of the war wagon was pioneered by the Bohemian knight Jan Zizka, who used these wagons to crippling effect against Holy Roman Emperor Sigismund’s forces. In fact, Jan Zizka’s usage of such tactics was so effective that he never lost a battle. I am thinking of including war wagons in future battles in my fantasy books.

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