Early Republics: Switzerland, the Dutch, and France

  • Everett Carl Dolman


Profound social change is often preceded by technological innovation. The stirrup, for example, has been credited with transforming post-Roman Europe into a feudal society locally dominated by petty overlords.1 With the ability to stand solidly on stirrups attached to a saddle, instead of clinging precariously with the pressure of one’s knees, a mounted warrior could bring to bear the full impact of his arm and beast, and a devastating charge on the battlefield could sweep away any unorganized resistance. Those who could afford the expense of full body and horse armor, plus maintenance for himself, his horse, and his retinue, could presume to assert political dominance over a relatively compact area. Appropriately, with the demise of the Western Roman Empire, the sociopolitical system that emerged in the Medieval Europe was characterized by a large number of dispersed and relatively independent fiefdoms.


Armed Force Northern Province National Guard Officer Corps Military Organization 
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© Everett Carl Dolman 2004

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  • Everett Carl Dolman

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