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Jean Henri Chandler




Location: New Orleans
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PostPosted: Wed 13 Jan, 2010 6:37 am    Post subject: Linothorax testing         Reply with quote

http://news.discovery.com/archaeology/linotho...armor.html

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Linothorax#Unive...ax_Project

http://www.uwgb.edu/aldreteg/Linothorax.html

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0ERSx1o8wwk

System D'Armes Historical European fencing in New Orleans

Essays on Hroarr

Introducing the Codex Guide to the Medieval Baltic
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S. Jansone




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PostPosted: Wed 13 Jan, 2010 8:21 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Great and interesting experiment!
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Dan Howard




Location: Maitland, NSW, Australia
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PostPosted: Wed 13 Jan, 2010 1:25 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Wasted opportunity. Greek linen armour was not glued. It was quilted just like every other type of layered textile armour ever worn in battle. Examples include the European padded jack, Indian peti, Aztec ichcahuipilli, the recent Mycenaean find at Patras, etc. If resources weren't squandered on the glued part of the tests then so much more would have been discovered about quilted textile defenses.

It is no better than all those boofheads shooting arrows at butted mail and pretending that it has any relevance to the riveted mail that was actually worn in battle.
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David Clark





Joined: 10 Feb 2009

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PostPosted: Wed 13 Jan, 2010 3:30 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Dan Howard wrote:
Wasted opportunity. Greek linen armour was not glued. It was quilted just like every other type of layered textile armour ever worn in battle. Examples include the European padded jack, Indian peti, Aztec ichcahuipilli, the recent Mycenaean find at Patras, etc. If resources weren't squandered on the glued part of the tests then so much more would have been discovered about quilted textile defenses.

It is no better than all those boofheads shooting arrows at butted mail and pretending that it has any relevance to the riveted mail that was actually worn in battle.


I feel I must disagree. You are the first I have ever heard say that the Greek linothorax was quilted, not glued. According to Osprey (admittedly not the most reliable source) and John Warry's "Warfare in the Classical World, the linothroax was glued layers of linen. I have read this in several other rescources that I do not have in front of me at the moment.
Supposedly the glue not only held the layers of cloth together firmer than quilting, but it also cted as a sort of stiffener to further protect.
(Note: I have not yet watched the video links....Though I do agree with you on the butted mail *shiver*)

EDIT: I re-read the chapter concerning linos from Warry's book and saw that he agreed that the army under Alexander wore quilted linothoraxs. I appologize for my error. However, he does state that the earlier Greek linos were of glued laminated linen.
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Sean Manning




Location: Austria
Joined: 23 Mar 2008

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PostPosted: Wed 13 Jan, 2010 7:48 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Hi David, there is a old (probably > 100 year) debate on whether Greek tube-and-yoke armours were usually leather or usually linen (every possible material was used to make armour of that cut at some point). Linen would be stronger for a given weight, but leather better matches the appearance of this armour in ancient art.

When he published Greece and Rome at War, Peter Connolly suggested that these armour were glued linen instead of quilted linen. He may have been inspired by the glued linen masks used in Greek plays, and thought this would explain the springy appearance of the shoulder guards in some ancient paintings of this armour (as well as the fact that it usually appears smooth, not covered with stitches from quilting). But no evidence ever appeared to support this, its not clear that any contemporary glue would have the right properties, and no other culture used glued linen armour. It also turns out that both leather and quilted linen can be springy enough to reproduce the paintings. Earlier and later sources refer to linen thorakes/body armours, but none from the 5th or 4th century BCE when this armour was especially popular (the name "linothorax" is a modern term based on these earlier and later sources).

The idea that Greek tube-and-yoke armours were glued linen is a hypothesis which has been repeated so often that many people think its a fact.
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S. Jansone




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PostPosted: Wed 13 Jan, 2010 11:36 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Does anyone know if any experiment with quilted thorax type armour has ever been made? Not stuffed like later gambeson, but quilted from more than two or more layers?
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Dan Howard




Location: Maitland, NSW, Australia
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PostPosted: Thu 14 Jan, 2010 3:45 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

David Clark wrote:

EDIT: I re-read the chapter concerning linos from Warry's book and saw that he agreed that the army under Alexander wore quilted linothoraxs. I appologize for my error. However, he does state that the earlier Greek linos were of glued laminated linen.

There are only two surviving examples of Greek layered linen armour and both date to the Mycenaean period. One is a small fragment found ay Mycenae. The other, much larger, example was recently found at Patras. The former is too small to learn much from it. The other has not been reported yet but I'll bet that it turns out to be quilted just like every other layered textile defence ever used in any culture in any time period.

There is no evidence for glued linen armour in a Greek context or any other. The so-called glued linen masks that the Greeks allegedly used are just as likely to have been a papier mache construction. It is a circular argument. The masks are used to support the existence of glued linen armour and the alleged armour is used to support the argument for the masks being glued linen.

The so-called evidence for Greek linen armour in a classical or hellenistic time period is limited to one single passage. All of the other sources that people commonly cite actually refer to Near or Middle Eastern use. There is more evidence suggesting that the armour in question was made from leather rather than linen.


Last edited by Dan Howard on Fri 15 Jan, 2010 12:36 am; edited 1 time in total
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Dan Howard




Location: Maitland, NSW, Australia
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PostPosted: Thu 14 Jan, 2010 3:53 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

S. Jansone wrote:
Does anyone know if any experiment with quilted thorax type armour has ever been made? Not stuffed like later gambeson, but quilted from more than two or more layers?

The above test included some quilted examples but it was biased in favour of glue.. Williams' book briefly discusses some tests with quilted linen. The construction offers better protection than a similar weight of hardened leather.
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Nat Lamb




Location: Melbourne, Australia
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PostPosted: Thu 14 Jan, 2010 4:13 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Weren't some shields covered with a layer of cloth glued to the face? (I recognise that this means absolutely nothing with regards to cloth armour, just technically it would mean that "quilted" didn't aplay to 'all' layered cloth defenses, but here the exception is as illistrative as the rule)
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Dan Howard




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PostPosted: Thu 14 Jan, 2010 1:03 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Do you have a primary source to suggest that the Greeks did this?
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Nat Lamb




Location: Melbourne, Australia
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PostPosted: Thu 14 Jan, 2010 5:34 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

no, not Greeks, I was thinking Vikings, but based on "half remembered recieved wisdom" which I believe counts as a heptenary source. My point still stands though that (assuming the Vikings did) the only other time glue was used in conjuntion with cloth was to attach it to a solid surface.
I have another reason for thinking that Dan is right about the no gluing thing but this is in the realm of "Wild theorising"... I ran some experiments a while back with a 12 kilogram steel bar and a volenteer (me) to test the diference between impacts of bar on flesh, and with phonebook as an intermediary. Rig was built to release the bar from same angle each time (was on a pivot). What I (anecdotaly) found was that although bruising was less with the phone book, it hurt more (admitadly very subjective). Also, on impacts on the stomach, the bar by itself was't too bad, but bar plus phonebook absolutely knocked the wind out of me. I wouldn't be suprised if a glued linen cuirass would function in much the same way.
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