Note:  Do not rely on this information. It is very old.


Condottieri, a word of Italian origin applied in the Middle Ages to the leaders of bands of Free Lances or Free Companions, which was the name given to those mercenaries who, trained to arms, and having no special ties of patriotism, traversed Europe always ready to sell their lives and swords to the highest bidders. They were the counterpart of the modern standing army minus the consideration of patriotism. Bulwer Lytton, in Rienzi, has given a good picture of them, and Scott, in the Legend of Montrose, describes a later edition of the same character in the person of Captain Dugald Dalgetty.