Friday, November 30, 2012

28mm Spanish Civil War - Carlist Requetés


As I apparently have the attention span of a sugar-addled 4-year old, I decided to do some more models for my Spanish Civil War collection. This time up are a dozen Carlist infantrymen who fought alongside Franco's Nationalists.

Illustrations kindly provided by Juan from Jose Bueno's 'Militares de la Guerra Civil Espanola'

The Carlists were (and are) an ultra-conservative popular political movement in Spain. They took their name from Carlos V, son of Ferdinand VII, who was a pretender to the throne of Spain with his declaration to be rightful heir on October 1, 1833. Politically, the Carlists advocated for a monarchical form of government modeled on the late-fifteenth century reign of Ferdinand and Isabel, who shared their power with the regional governments of Spain's various kingdoms. In addition, the Carlists supported the Salic Law enacted by Felipe V (r. 1700-1746), which reformed the process of succession in Spain such that only male heirs could inherit the throne and female heirs only in the absense of a male heir on any royal line. (Yeah, these guys weren't exactly lighting the world on fire with their progressive social agenda...)


Although they historically rejected any form of strong centralized government in favour of greater regional control, the Carlists allied with Franco and the Nationalists during the Spanish Civil War. From 1931, the Carlists had been cooperating with right-wing Catholic movements in an effort to resist the spread of republicanism, which they saw as the greater threat. Starting in 1934 the Carlists began to organize and become more paramilitary in nature, with several plots attempted to overthrow the Republican government. With Franco's military coup, he found the Carlist militias instrumental in driving forward his Nationalist cause. Throughout the Spanish Civil War it is estimated that the Carlist Requetés accepted between 70,000 to 100,000 volunteers into their ranks.



While many Carlists had no difficulty in allying with other right-wing groups, even those that were fascist-based, in ideological terms many Carlists were divided in their opinions. Purists hoped for a Carlist uprising that would install a government that was sympathetic to a decentralized monarchy. Other Carlists were more flexible and were in favour of a strong state that would 'purify Spain' in order to prepare her for a decentralized Catholic-monarchist utopia. Nonetheless, in spite of these differences the Carlist Requetés were a powerful force, vital to the Nationalist effort, especially in the early part of the war.



These 28mm models are from Empress Miniatures, though I understand several of them had their origins as Anglian castings before they were acquired. The figures are very nice, with great animation, requiring very little cleanup.



I find the Requetés' uniform to be quite smart (in a fascistic sort of way). The tasseled red beret with khaki jodhpurs and puttees are very distinctive. I have to admit that when Juan informed me that these troops often wore home-spun checked shirts and civilian pattern blanket rolls my eyes glazed over a bit. Nonetheless I tried out a few and they turned out alright I guess.





Next up for this project will be some Republicans from the International Brigades.

39 comments:

  1. Really good work, the uniform is quite distinctive with those berets. The officer reading is map is a really nice mini.

    I should stop looking or I'll buy some and look for a Pulp use!

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    1. Thanks Phil. Yes, these would be great for Pulp Adventure gaming - I can see some nice use for VBCW as well.

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  2. If you have the attention span of a sugar addled 4 year old then mine must be of a two year old! It's actually quite frustrating!!

    Any ways back to your fantastic painting! They really look great(especially the strips)and your background info is top notch! Makes me want to do some of mine!

    Christopher

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    1. Thanks Christopher. I'd very much like to see some more stuff from you for your SCW collection.

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  3. Oh what a butterfly you are...

    nice work Curt, always a sucker for red a beret..

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    1. Thanks Dave but more of a mangy moth, I think.

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  4. Great work on these Curt.. just fantastic. What I like most is that not only are you going and painting them all, but you are showing us all the research you did on them as well! Great stuff!

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    1. Cheers! I have to say I often enjoy the research more than the painting, but these are great castings and a joy to work with.

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  5. Curt
    Correction - you have the attention span of a war gamer!
    The car lists (fascist pigs that they are) look good.

    Cheers
    PD

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    1. You're probably quite right Peter! It seems a common 'ailment' amongst us.

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  6. Beautiful! The quality of Empress Miniatures is surely a strong call for a careful paint job. Although this is probably a period of time too sad for me to play. Yet I must admit I had my time with Hemingway, and I have good memories of the passionate Pilar. Damn Fascists! Good readings anyway.

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    1. Thanks Nicolas. Yes, there certainly is a tinge of melancholy to working in this period. It's very similar in mood as the Great War for me.

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  7. Wonderful work - I like the hex base to differentiate the commander
    Miles

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    1. Thanks Miles. Yes, I'm using the same method to differentiate command as I'm doing with my Great War stuff. A good idea from Sidney!

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  8. Beautiful painting work, Curt; they are fantastic!

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    1. Cheers Juan and thanks so much for providing the source images for me to work from - they were invaluable.

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  9. Superbly painted! Very nice basing too. They look like individuals, but yet retain a uniform look together as a unit. Best, Dean

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  10. Really like the look of these guys. Very nice work Curt!

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  11. Lovely, lovely work Curt! Short attention span maybe, but top quality nonetheless.

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    1. Thanks Michael! As it is a hobby I try not to feel too guilty about flitting about.

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  12. Excellent especially like the guy carrying the Cross. Hmmm now what kind of weapon radius does that have - LOL

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    1. Oh, loaded question that! But seriously its a good idea. I would say as long as the Carlists can see it being held aloft they would get a morale benefit.

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  13. Great figures Curt and a very interesting bit of info on Spains turbulent internal strife.

    I had frequently heard the term Carlist but never really knew what it alluded to. Interesting that it has spanned such a lengthy period of history, and continues to do so?
    You often wonder what thoughts fester in a population...

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    1. Yes, their history really extends right back to just after the Napoleonic Wars. A very interesting, long and troubled period for sure.

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  14. Really nice, the shirts came out well, and the history was very welcome

    Ian

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  15. Very nice I will look forward to seeing the good guy

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    1. Ah yes, I think our lads from the Mackenzie Papineau Battalion will be next.

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  16. Very impressive they look great and as always the history is cool
    Cheers
    Kent

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  17. Top-notch painting Curt. Like the stories as well as I have a difficult time understanding all SCW politics.

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    1. Thanks Mike! Yes, the surrounding politics are complex and bewildering but I found that once I read Beevor's book it became much more clear to me (and more human as well). Paul Preston is another good historian of the period which I'm currently reading.

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  18. Might need to re-try Beevor one day. I put it away fairly quickly. My reading time is so limited a book needs to grab my attention immediately or it ends up in the 'when the kids left home' storage cabinet.

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    1. I agree, he can be a bit of a slog. I first listened to 'The Battle for Spain' on audiobook which I found much more accessible. I then followed-along with the print version to re-read sections, check sources, etc.

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  19. Very impressive work altogether, the detail on the shirts is fantastic! Greetings!

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