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"Night and day our horse is saddled and our saber is girt."

Suleiman I, letter to Francis I

Ghilman Cavalry: Vital statistics
Ghilman

Unit type

Light cavalry

Built/trained at

Stable

Damage and weapon type

Good

Armour

Medium

Production cost

  • Pop cost: 1
  • Resource cost: 60Coin; 60Food
  • Ramp cost: 2Food

Range

  • Melee
  • Good LOS

Unit move and creation speed

  • Unit movement speed: fast
  • Creation speed: medium

Unit HP

Medium

Technological requirements/
Upgrades

Senate:—

  • Monarchia

House of Worship:—

  • Quran

Factions available

Recruited from the distant lands surrounding the Black Sea and drilled to perfection, Ghilman Cavalry are the best medium cavalry unit which can be raised by Arab potentates. Think of them as a Trooper which arrives one era earlier in the game, allowing you to outclass your Christian foes on horseback whenever you meet them, so you will be able to develop a more efficient cavalry wing for your army. The only issue, however is that like normal Troopers, Ghilman Cavalry have their own problems against other cavalry units and heavy infantry. Additionally, while they aren't that tech-intensive like Imperial Era European troops, you can train them only from the Nobles' Court, so it will be guaranteed that even if resources are willing, you may always find these men in short supply. As a force, Ghilman are recruitable only for those who have researched Monarchy alongside Darul Islam.

In the Islamic world, the term "ghulam" meant a slave or servant, and was used in military parlance to just as how the word "knight" referred to a "serving boy"), but this is often more of the exception, and not the rule east beyond the Lebanon and the Urals. Unlike European knights which were raised from the local gentry, ghilman were recruited from slaves purchased from abroad. The reason for this was because the Islamic Middle East was politically unstable, and personal slaves were seen as more reliable than the local aristocracy, especially following the overthrow of Umayyad rule in Arabia. This arrangement however didn't always provide the results which sultans always wanted: eventually, heavy reliance by the Abbasids on their so-called "slaves" turned them into a rich and powerful social caste dominant in the military and the civil service, and some even founded their own kingdoms, such as those of mediaeval Egypt.

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