SotF: Imperial Legion Archives: Evolution of Imperial Knight Do


    Standard of the Imperial Knights


    For most of Septim Empire and to the early periods of the Stormcrown Interregnum, the Imperial Legion’s infantry doctrine remained the same. The common legionary armed with a shield, a shortsword, a helmet and body armour fights in a group of eight known as a contubernium led by a Decanus which itself is a part of a larger group of ten contubernia known as a century led by a Centurion. Fighting as a solid block, legionaries fight in rotation to reduce fatigue and provide incentive for the foremost soldier to fight well. This system of combat gives the century unparalleled combat endurance against their foes. However it is not without its downsides.


    Imperial knights are elite shock troops of the Imperial Legion and they serve on foot or on horseback. Like their mainstream counterparts, infantry Imperial knights also fight in teams of eight but this organisation is instead known as a squad and is led by a Knight-Sergeant and is part of a larger group of four squads known as a platoon led by a Knight-Captain and then a group of four platoons known as a company led by a Knight-Commander. An infantry Imperial knight is primarily armed with a two-handed weapon such as a polehammer, a battle axe or a greatsword and their role in the battlefield is to disrupt enemy spear or shield formations before engagement with the main Legionary formations. To compensate for the increased mortality rate, infantry Imperial knights are equipped with heavier armour than their Legionary counterparts and an increased pay. Imperial knight cavalrymen however fulfil the role of heavy cavalry.


    Unlike the various knightly organisations of Daggerfall, an ‘Imperial Knight’ is occupation and not a title of nobility. However Imperial knights who have distinguished themselves in service may be landed, given a House, the title of ‘Ser’, tax exemptions and patronage from the Imperial Throne itself. In return for the continued benefits, one in four child of a generation of a landed Imperial knight household must serve as an active knight in the Legion in addition to paying for their own equipment or risk losing the rank and properties as a landed knight.


    ~ Excerpt from Imperial Legion Archives: Evolution of Imperial Knight Doctrine, Section One, by Marius Servilius, Legate of the Imperial Legion, Tadius Flint, Imperial Scholar and Ser Hijol Kvan, 1st Lord-Commander of the Imperial Knights




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