The Archenriders, also known as the Ridesmen, were the standing military of Archendale, the largest and most powerful of the Dales. They were responsible for defending the Dale, patrolling its territory and enforcing its laws.
The army consisted of 10 rides, each of which was made of 60 mounted soldiers. Each ride was under the order of a ridemaster, particularly experimented fighters. Only five rides were usually active at a time, and soldiers alternated being on-duty and off-duty every two months (but could be assembled quickly in case of trouble).
The army whole organization was ruled by three officers, the Swords of Archendale, until they lost their position during the Year of Azuth's Woe, 1440 DR, when they were discovered to be consorting with Sembia.
Ridesmen preferred to engage in mounted combat, but due to the rough terrain of the Dale, they were often forced to fight on foot.
In addition to defending the Dale's territory, the army was responsible for enforcing its laws. Every officers had the authority to charge and arrest wrongdoers, and commanders of the rides could try and sentence offenders. Law enforcement by the army was known to be harsh, and to favor local Dalespeople against foreigners. As a result, minor disputes were often settled "out of court" without involving the military.
When not patrolling the Dale or attending guard duty, ridesmen spent most of their time honing their skills. As a result, they were amongst the most alert and deadly citizens of Archendale.
Base of Operations
In addition one ride was stationed in White Ford, while a last one was dispersed throughout the territories in 10-man patrols. Villages that hosted patrols were equipped with small barracks to accommodate the soldiers.
- Referenced only
- The Glass Prison
- Richard Baker (1993). The Dalelands. (TSR, Inc), p. 15. ISBN 978-1560766674.
- Ed Greenwood, Julia Martin, Jeff Grubb (1993). Forgotten Realms Campaign Setting 2nd edition (revised), A Grand Tour of the Realms. (TSR, Inc), p. 31. ISBN 1-5607-6617-4.
- Richard Baker (1993). The Dalelands. (TSR, Inc), pp. 12–13. ISBN 978-1560766674.
- Ed Greenwood (January 1996). Volo's Guide to the Dalelands. (TSR, Inc), p. 29. ISBN 0-7869-0406-2.