If you steal our cattle - we will bid you battle
On the 2nd July 1685 the Duke of Monmouth met 'at a marshy place' with the Somerset Clubmen - unfortunately there was only 160 of them rather than the 10,000 rumoured to be assembling. Monmouth led them into Bridgwater the next day under their banner - an apron on a pole. Who were these clubmen and why were they in the folk memory as a force to be reckoned with?
Clubmen first came into existence in the English Civil War as locals, tired of the plundering and marauding of the passing armies, grouped together in associations of lightly armed vigilantes. A good piece on the Clubmen of the Civil War is here.
Poorly armed and trained they were no match for the Civil War armies. They were easily brushed aside though they often had the upper hand in petite guerre, attacking isolated units and convoys. More here