When a new wargaming period captures my interest, collecting a period specific reading list is typically not far behind. After watching Jake's project blossom followed by his hosting a very enjoyable Italian Wars' game, I began pondering the possibility of fielding my own force. Although an order from Wargames Foundry was in-hand, the project really made a leap up the queue with the arrival of an already painted collection. What this instant army did was pull me forward in the more usual, project life cycle. For most newly launched projects, plenty of time exists for getting up to speed on the historical background before the first combat formation can be fielded. With my instant army, I have a need to quickly attain a modicum of background on the period.
To that end, I picked up a thirty-six lecture series on the Italian Renaissance from The Teaching Company. This series of lectures was an excellent introduction to the period for me and highly enjoyable during my 600 mile round trip monthly commute. Aside from the lecturer's sometimes annoying pronunciations of a few words, I highly recommend the course for those interested in the Italian Renaissance. My understanding of the lectures was enhanced by my trip to Florence and Rome in 2014 and Venice in 2009. Places and personalities discovered on the ground in Italy were given an enlightening context.
In addition to the lecture series, I picked up a quartet of books to provide added background material.
The books are:
The Renaissance At War by Arnold
Mercenaries and their Masters, Warfare in Renaissance Italy by Mallett
The Italian Wars 1494-1559 by Mallett and Shaw
The Art of War in Italy 1494-1529 by Taylor
Only a brief flip through each at this point but I look forward to tackling one or two of these on my next trip.
Besides these and a number of Ospreys, what are other books focusing on the wars during the 1494-1529 period that should be added?