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Richard Gessman




Location: Pittsburgh
Joined: 04 Oct 2006
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PostPosted: Mon 15 Oct, 2007 1:18 pm    Post subject: Help on armor books         Reply with quote

I am preparing to write a research paper on the evolution of armor, more specifically what the most popular types of armor were, and how and why that armor changed over time due to advancements in technology, improved weapons, e.t.c.

I was wondering if anyone would be able to suggest any books or online articles that may help me further my research into different types of armor from different time periods. Any help would be much appreciated.
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Dan Howard




Location: Maitland, NSW, Australia
Joined: 08 Dec 2004

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PostPosted: Mon 15 Oct, 2007 2:18 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

If you are interested in European armour then three books are a must read:
European Armour by Claude Blair.
Arms and Armour of the Medieval Knight by Edge and Paddock
The Knight and the Blast Furnace by Alan Williams.
and maybe Robinson's Armour of Imperial Rome

If you are interested in areas outside Europe then take a look at:
Oriental Armour by Robinson
Arms and Armor from Iran by Manouchehr.
Arms and Armour of the Samurai by Bottomley and Hopkins.
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Chad Arnow
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Location: Cincinnati, OH
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PostPosted: Mon 15 Oct, 2007 3:30 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Richard,
Dan's book recommendations are great, though I should point out the first 3 books be mentioned are out of print. The Blair book can be found used for $25 and up on sites like Bookfinder.com. The Edge/Paddock book can be found for usually a little more, say $45 (if you scour the net for that kind of price) and up. The Knight and the Blast Furnace is the most expensive, say $225 and up.

Unfortunately, many of the great books are out of print. The Blair and Edge/Paddock though are some of the best and may be available through linked library systems, public and school. They're well worth their prices used, though.

Take some time to peruse our Bookstore, as it has reviews and ratings of arms and armour titles, both by our users and Amazon customers.

We also have several articles on armour on our Features page which may be a decent start. They have Source sections to show where we got our info.

Happy

ChadA

http://chadarnow.com/
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Richard Gessman




Location: Pittsburgh
Joined: 04 Oct 2006
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Posts: 37

PostPosted: Mon 15 Oct, 2007 4:32 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Thank you both very much for such swift replies! The Blair and Edge/Paddock books seem like a good place to start. As always, the writings on this website are also a great deal of help, too.
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Felix Wang




Location: Fresno, CA
Joined: 23 Aug 2003
Reading list: 17 books

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PostPosted: Mon 15 Oct, 2007 6:29 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Ancient armour is a bit more complicated to get a handle on. Both of the books Dan Howard mentioned are good; also Bishop and Coulston's Roman Military Equipment. For the Greeks, it is a bit more difficult. Snodgrass's Arms and Armour of the Greeks is old, but is worth looking at. Everson's Warfare in Ancient Greece is somewhat limited in terms of illustrations, but is much more recent. Conolly's Greece and Rome at War and Warry's Warfare in the Classical World cover much more than just arms and armour, but are excellent in the limited coverage they do give to the subject.
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Richard Gessman




Location: Pittsburgh
Joined: 04 Oct 2006
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Posts: 37

PostPosted: Mon 15 Oct, 2007 6:55 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Thank you, I was actually looking for information on ancient greek armor.

Also, does anyone know where I can find information on egyptian armor? I'm asking because I saw a documentary on the history channel a while back, and it was mentioned that egyptian pharaohs often wore some type of cuirass, but they didnt mention a great deal about it, and I was wondering what type of armor was available to ancient cultures.
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Dan Howard




Location: Maitland, NSW, Australia
Joined: 08 Dec 2004

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PostPosted: Mon 15 Oct, 2007 9:10 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

I haven't found any books about ancient (bronze age) armour that I liked - except perhaps Connolly's The Ancient Greece of Odysseus. Most authors look at few drawings and sculptures and then draw all kinds of ridiculous conclusions. At least Connolly will develop a theory and then make a reconstruction to see if actually works. Scale armour (bronze and hide) was worn by all the chariot cultures - Egypt, Canaan, Shang, Hittites, Aryans, Mykenai, etc. The primary threat seems to have been from arrows. The Mykenaian Dendra panoply dates to around the same period.

I don't think you will be able to make a case for armour "evolution" over the long term. You regularly see the same typologies pop up again and again in many regions and time periods. There is evolution of armour over short periods - such as the development of plate harness in Europe and the movement away from scale armour in favour of lamellar in some cultures - though one could argue that scale and lamellar is the same armour - just assembled slightly differently. Bronze cuirasses are virtually identical to the iron cuirasses developed two thousand years later. You can't even use the flawed argument that bronze is inferior to iron. Mail doesn't seem to have changed much in two thousand years.
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Richard Gessman




Location: Pittsburgh
Joined: 04 Oct 2006
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Posts: 37

PostPosted: Tue 16 Oct, 2007 1:43 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Thanks for the advice, I think instead of trying to show how armor "evolved", I'll instead just talk about what the most popular types of armor were in different places and time periods, and why exactly that armor may have worked in the time and place it was used in.
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