The lepers, the Giants, the Amazons ... War ... It never changes.
Although the stop. Of course, it is changing, or we still had to fight with the lepers and the giants, you know, like in the good old times. Not heard of it? Well, despite the terribly monotonous contents of books on military history, in the past it was full of truly "exotic" armies. The site selected for you a few examples.
1. The Order of the Knights of St. Lazarus lepers h2> Imagine a medieval crusaders: beautiful noble bearded men in dazzling shining armor, brandishing swords in honor of Christianity. Now imagine their own, but as a religious decaying zombie. Now do you have the right image leprous knights belonging to the Order of Saint Lazarus.
If you picked up leprosy in the 12th century, your career prospects looked pitiable: You were good except for the role of bogey for naughty children. People had no idea about the causes of the disease, but were aware of its contagiousness, so make every effort to ensure that drive the lepers of society. Patients were not allowed any contact with healthy people, they were kept in special places - leprosarium. One of these places was a leper colony named Saint Lazarus of Jerusalem, specializing in the former knights. The Templars were sent to former members of his order and pay for their accommodation.
However, when the Crusades and the Ottoman hordes frequent knocked on the doors of Jerusalem (figuratively speaking) knights lepers decided they were not going to give up without a fight. Instead of quietly waiting for death, they again put on armor, they took up their swords and entered the fray.
Not to say that the knights of the Order of St. Lazarus were very successful in their campaigns, but it does not mean that they were formidable opponents. You see, a lot of unraveling guys also know about their own inevitable and impending death, and unable to feel pain because of nerve damage were certainly powerful psychological (and biological) weapons. Order lepers - what a wonderful story for Hollywood.
2. The Prussian army of giants h2> If you enjoy military history, it is possible that you have a collection of what some memorable things military: orders or weapons or anything. Prussian King Friedrich Wilhelm first was such a collector. He collected ... giants. Alive, I mean.
Frederick was so obsessed with very tall guys that have amassed an entire army - an army of giants. Given that the average height of the men of the time (17-18 centuries) was significantly lower than it is now, any guy above 180 cm was potentsalnym inductee into the ranks of the army. And the king did not accept failure if you do not want to join his illustrious host, great were the chances that you will catch the mercenaries and zataschut this "basketball league" force.
It is said that Friedrich formed squads of scouts and sent them to other countries for the purpose of kidnapping the highest gradzhan. Once it nearly caused an international scandal when scouts tried to steal another giant straight out of the coach, but it turned out that it was the Austrian ambassador.
If you were the king of any European country at the time and wanted to pay off the Prussian conqueror, you know what to do: send him a lanky guys as a gift and can walk safely. Peter the Great, for example, who with Frederick ties of close friendship, has built diplomatic relations with Prussia, thanks to a special selection of Russian giant, which is sent to the service of the king-to-weirdo.
Apparently, in addition to practical military purposes, Frederick moved sincere fetishism. He demanded that his great men married on the same giant female to lead "breed" more taller children. After his death, his successor, first of all dismissed the army - a natural, though perhaps not the smartest in terms of military affairs act.
3. Dahomey Amazons h2> What if your marriage fails develops and divorce - is not an option? If you live in the kingdom of Dahomey in Africa, the best way would be to send hateful pious serve the motherland - the invincible army of Amazons. Although ... if you think about sending an unbearable wife getting excellent combat training in a military camp actually it sounds like a very bad idea.
While the male population of Dahomey was almost destroyed in the continuous wars and illegal slave trade and the king decided the issue by a conscription of women. Many, by the way, went to the service voluntarily, but often the army were filled by those who too often burn dinner or whatever, African men are investing in the concept of "good wife." Dahomey Amazons studied martial arts with great success, the army numbered 6,000 dedicated and highly dangerous ladies - about half of the entire army of Dahomey - and each of them was able to chew off their own personal belongings enemy ritually sharpened teeth.
Amazon has been widely recognized as the most courageous warriors of the kingdom: the history of their existence they were defeated only twice. During that women were endowed with unimaginable at the time the freedom of action they could take alcohol and tobacco, as well as have up to 50 slaves in the service. For one touch to the Amazon was appointed the only possible penalty: death. When the kingdom of Dahomey ended its existence, the body of the Amazons was disbanded, but in 1979 the last of them still remember the hot battles with the French. On the fate of the unhappy men know little suspicious.
4. Celtic army naked h2> Celtic mercenaries took part in the wars against the Romans. Historians describe them as young adults, who fled into battle without having neither himself nor with nothing but a spear. According to the testimony of Polybius, mercenaries bothered burr, which tangled in clothing, interfered in the fight, so that they preferred to fight in the buff. What a fantastic argument! Hey, boss, I'm late for work because ... well ... in the area of the park has picked up a burr, you know, it prevents move quickly, well, that's ...
In 225 BC. e. mercenaries went on a campaign against the Romans in front of a huge (and unfortunately dressed) Celtic army. They, of course, there was nothing but gold jewelry, very noisy military horns and sonorous pipes. The Romans were a little shocked, but for some strange reason, naked freaks lost soldiers in full battle armor. On that ended their glorious path.
5. The US Army Air h2> are also common name "ghost army". During World War II, the Americans came up with a clever trick to realize the creative approach to such a sad lesson war. In 1944, they collected a combat team of artists, designers, actors, sound engineers, creatives from advertising agencies and other "creative intelligentsia» in order to use their skills to "sell" the enemy - in the literal and figuratively.
The 23 Detachment was about 1,100 people. Their mission was to intimidate the enemy with the help of "magic" in the Hollywood style, confuse him and demoralize. We used inflatable military equipment, sound and pyrotechnic effects, costumes and other props. While simulated pyrotechnics explosion on the "battlefield", the actors went to bars, drank there and sowed among Aryan heretical ideas, such as sex with a Jewish girl or anything like that. Meanwhile, German intelligence recorded the sudden appearance of combat units in places where only a day ago, there was nothing! Hundreds of tanks and installations artelleriyskih appeared literally out of thin air and threatening to take the direction of the German troops - reported the pilots of military aircraft and the German generals refused to believe his ears. As well?! With the same speed "ghost army" evaporated to be elsewhere. Surprise!
The existence of "ghost army" were kept secret right up to 1996.
6. Russian women's death battalion h2> In the midst of the First World War a big problem for Russia was disheartening. The population was distressed countless revolutionary strife and stubbornly refused to adjust to the winning way. But everything changed radically when the stage was Maria Bochkareva, Siberian nonideal- biography, but a bold and enterprising woman. She gave the idea of forming martial drum teams composed entirely of soldiers of the fair sex, and received highest resolution.
female battalion performed not so much military as propaganda problem: they were inspired by the exploits (or shame, depending on how you look at it) of Russian men. The idea was supported Bochkarev many women, however, when it became clear that "Yasha" (nickname of Mary, given in honor of her second husband robber) beats the muzzle subordinates not worse vahtmistra old regime dobrovolits ardor cooled down somewhat. However, those that still were in the battalion, showed great resistance, in particular, have successfully defended the Winter Palace during the October Revolution. Bochkareva became one of the first Russian female officers (she was given the rank of lieutenant), but ended up as usual in 1920 plucky heroine shot as "irreconcilable and sworn enemy of the republic of workers and peasants." Troubled were the times.