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Pedro Paulo Gaião




Location: Rio de Janeiro, Brasil
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PostPosted: Sun 29 May, 2016 6:23 pm    Post subject: Constantine XI's Statue and Late Byzantine Armour         Reply with quote

As some of you might know, today (May 29) was The day when Byzantium has fallen. So, let's about two things:

How acurated the statue's armour is? Seens it was well researched, after all. Still, I have some doubts about if it was actually usefull for The byzantines wear so much scale armour as it is seen in 14th art. I mean, they dissapeared in many parts of Europe already in 10th. Still, they seen to have continued in Byzantium until its ultimate Fall. Same for The Klivanion, byzantine lamellar armour: Timothy Dawson said these lamellar were far superior to comtemporary armour (like western Maile) because of its construction (and Wikipedia says that some Modern testing discovered deflecting propertieson it). So, we could that Klivanion was only (if ever) surpassed by European Plate Cuirass from 1415-1420's?

The hot climate could explain why Western Plate was more popular in Serbia, although not so much in Anatolia and South of The Balkans (Epirus and Nicea/Ottoman Empire)?. Could a 1495's Gerdarme withstand the harsh Siria-Palestina climate, as King Charles of France was planning in his Crusades?



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Mario M.




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PostPosted: Sun 29 May, 2016 6:42 pm    Post subject: Re: Constantine XI's Statue and Late Byzantine Armour         Reply with quote

Pedro Paulo Gaião wrote:
Same for The Klivanion, byzantine lamellar armour: Timothy Dawson Said these lamellar were far superior to Western Maile Armour because of its construction (and Wikipedia says that some Modern testing discovered deflecting properties). So, we could that Klivanion was only (if ever) surpassed by European Plate Cuirass from 1415-1420's?


Superior to mail, perhaps.

But there is little information on it and basically no tests done that I know of.

To state it was only surpassed by plate in the 15th century is ludicrous though, as Europeans had coats of plates already in the 1250s which were most probably superior to any form of lamellar construction on Earth.


Pedro Paulo Gaião wrote:
The hot climate could explain why Western Plate was more popular in Serbia, although not so much in Anatolia and South of The Balkans (Epirus and Nicea Empire)?


Perhaps, though, Knights of Rhodes/Malta used plate armor yet they were in the middle of the Mediterranean.

Not to mention the Venetian commanders.


Pedro Paulo Gaião wrote:

Could a 1495's Gerdarme withstand the harsh Siria-Palestina climate, as King Charles of France was planning in his Crusades?


It would not be any more troublesome than Muslims wearing heavy padded lamellar or mail, as they did for centuries.

Under a plate harness there are couple of layers of fabric, under or often over Middle eastern armor there was more padding, padding which heated up the body just as a sheath of steel could.

Though, through my own experience, I would personally use a full mail hauberk and remove the back plate while leaving on the breast plate, that would allow my back to act as a heat sink and cool my torso instead of it being completely encased.

“The stream of Time, irresistible, ever moving, carries off and bears away all things that come to birth and plunges them into utter darkness...Nevertheless, the science of History is a great bulwark against this stream of Time; in a way it checks this irresistible flood, it holds in a tight grasp whatever it can seize floating on the surface and will not allow it to slip away into the depths of Oblivion." - Anna Comnena
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Dan Howard




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PostPosted: Sun 29 May, 2016 8:20 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

People have this bizarre idea that lamellar was somehow better than mail. Byzantine lamellar was munitions armour, just like Roman segmentata. Byzantine officers and anyone else with the means wore mail - Frankish mail was apparently the most desirable.

Climate has never ever played a part in what armour a soldier chose to wear. We know that the hottest and heaviest armours ever invented were worn in the arid regions of the Middle East for centuries. I've done it in the middle of an Australian summer. It is no more bother than heavy clothing. Acclimation is a lot more important than Northern Americans and Europeans seem to think. Especially those who grew up with air conditioning.

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Luka Borscak




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PostPosted: Mon 30 May, 2016 9:57 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Since Dan is probably tired of it, quick pro and con of mail and lamellar Wink :

Mail: pro -> great coverage, easy maintenance, great protection against anything, con -> more expensive, slight disadvantage against blunt trauma. Can be dealt with by using proper padding under or over mail.

Lamellar: pro -> better protection against blunt trauma, cheaper, con -> less coverage, harder to repair and maintain.
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Pedro Paulo Gaião




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PostPosted: Mon 30 May, 2016 12:30 pm    Post subject: Re: Constantine XI's Statue and Late Byzantine Armour         Reply with quote

Mario M. wrote:
Pedro Paulo Gaião wrote:
Same for The Klivanion, byzantine lamellar armour: Timothy Dawson Said these lamellar were far superior to Western Maile Armour because of its construction (and Wikipedia says that some Modern testing discovered deflecting properties). So, we could that Klivanion was only (if ever) surpassed by European Plate Cuirass from 1415-1420's?


Superior to mail, perhaps.

But there is little information on it and basically no tests done that I know of.

To state it was only surpassed by plate in the 15th century is ludicrous though, as Europeans had coats of plates already in the 1250s which were most probably superior to any form of lamellar construction on Earth.


Why are you so sure? I agree that certain 1330-1360's models could actually achieve similar levels of protection, but I see no logical explanation that can attest that they are superior.

Mario M. wrote:
Pedro Paulo Gaião wrote:
The hot climate could explain why Western Plate was more popular in Serbia, although not so much in Anatolia and South of The Balkans (Epirus and Nicea Empire)?


Perhaps, though, Knights of Rhodes/Malta used plate armor yet they were in the middle of the Mediterranean.
Not to mention the Venetian commanders.


Does the cultural factor can explain, for example, why people like the Ottomans and Byzantines did not adopt the full plate harness? I mean, in the fifteenth century the Ottomans had expanded considerably in the Balkans, however, those who used full harness were serbian knights who serve as mercenaries or as part of a serbian prince's retinue.

As for the Byzantines from what we know about art, they seen to have kept the same style of armor until their last frescoes and paintings in fifteenth century. In Manuel Paleologus's voyage to Europe, he claimed that Europeans "copied" the style of byzantine swords. I don't know if the style of byzantine swords were unconsciously influenced by european ones or if it was pure coincidence that both reached very similar models in the subject. Anyway, this shows a kind of conservatism from the Emperor at the matter, although he doesn't mention armour (by the way, I have much interest in Byzantine armor of the second half of the fourteenth century to the fall in the mid-fifteenth century)

Dan Howard wrote:
People have this bizarre idea that lamellar was somehow better than mail. Byzantine lamellar was munitions armour, just like Roman segmentata. Byzantine officers and anyone else with the means wore mail - Frankish mail was apparently the most desirable.


Why do you think they valued mail (mainly frankish mail) more than klivanion when in almost all paintings of the period, (especially the saint warriors) we always seem them being represented with typical Lamellar or even scale armour:

14th century:


I'm sure that the emperors should be equipped with the best armor available, then it doesn't makes sense to represent them almost always with an inferior armour..

Also, I think minimally pertinent to mention that the style of Byzantine lamellar are considerably different from the eastern ones. You can se the double fixing here.



Now, I know that Wikipedia isn't an authority, still, I would like to mentionthis:

Quote:
The lamellar klivanion was a rather different type of garment. Byzantine lamellar, from pictorial evidence, possessed some unique features. It was made up of round-topped metal lamellae riveted, edge to edge, to horizontal leather backing bands; these bands were then laced together, overlapping vertically, by laces passing through holes in the lamellae. Modern reconstructions have shown this armour to be remarkably resistant to piercing and cutting weapons. Because of the expense of its manufacture, in particular the lamellae surrounding the arm and neck apertures had to be individually shaped, this form of armour was probably largely confined to heavy cavalry and elite units.[49]

Because lamellar armour was inherently less flexible than other types of protection the klivanion was restricted to a cuirass covering the torso only. It did not have integral sleeves and reached only to the hips; it covered much the same body area as a bronze ‘muscle cuirass’ of antiquity. The klivanion was usually worn with other armour elements which would extend the area of the body protected. The klivanion could be worn over a mail shirt, as shown on some contemporary icons depicting military saints.[50] More commonly the klivanion is depicted being worn with tubular upper arm defences of a splinted construction often with small pauldrons or ‘cops’ to protect the shoulders. In illustrated manuscripts, such as the Madrid Skylitzes, these defences are shown decorated with gold leaf in an identical manner to the klivanion thus indicating that they are also constructed of metal. Less often depicted are rerebraces made of “inverted lamellar.""

Source: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Byzantine_army_(Komnenian_era)

Take a look in this "11th's Senior Officer armour":
http://www.hellenicarmors.gr/products.php?pageId=23&lang=EN
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Mario M.




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PostPosted: Mon 30 May, 2016 1:12 pm    Post subject: Re: Constantine XI's Statue and Late Byzantine Armour         Reply with quote

Pedro Paulo Gaião wrote:
Why are you so sure? I agree that certain 1330-1360's models could actually achieve similar levels of protection, but I see no logical explanation that can attest that they are superior.


Large plate segments are simply a superior form of protection to smaller plate segments because of better impact absorption.

Apart from that, those plates were worn over mail shirts in Europe(in most cases).


Pedro Paulo Gaião wrote:
Does the cultural factor can explain, for example, why people like the Ottomans and Byzantines did not adopt the full plate harness?


Perhaps the cultural factor, perhaps something else.

We do not really know for sure.


Pedro Paulo Gaião wrote:
In Manuel Paleologus's voyage to Europe, he claimed that Europeans "copied" the style of byzantine swords.


Do you have a source on that?

Sounds interesting, but makes little sense since the European X-type sword archetype appeared already in the 9th century.

“The stream of Time, irresistible, ever moving, carries off and bears away all things that come to birth and plunges them into utter darkness...Nevertheless, the science of History is a great bulwark against this stream of Time; in a way it checks this irresistible flood, it holds in a tight grasp whatever it can seize floating on the surface and will not allow it to slip away into the depths of Oblivion." - Anna Comnena
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Dan Howard




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PostPosted: Mon 30 May, 2016 5:20 pm    Post subject: Re: Constantine XI's Statue and Late Byzantine Armour         Reply with quote

Pedro Paulo Gaião wrote:

Also, I think minimally pertinent to mention that the style of Byzantine lamellar are considerably different from the eastern ones. You can se the double fixing here.


This construction never existed; there is no such thing as riveted lamellar. Dawson invented this construction because it looks a little like some of the illustrations but the 'dots' we are seeing are not rivets at all, but patches of lacing or embossed domes. The wikipedia article is useless because it is simply repeating Dawson's errors. It is impossible to know how armour was constructed by looking at illustrations. If you want some decent research on Byzantine lamellar then look for Beatson's work.

Quote:
Take a look in this "11th's Senior Officer armour":
http://www.hellenicarmors.gr/products.php?pageId=23&lang=EN

It is not Byzantine and it is not officer's armour. The only armour made from scales this large was used on horses.

Quote:
I'm sure that the emperors should be equipped with the best armor available, then it doesn't makes sense to represent them almost always with an inferior armour.

These things aren't photos. How is the artist supposed to show who is who if everyone is wearing the same armour? Take another look at that illustration. Is the horse armour realistic? If it isn't then why would you assume that the other armour is? How do you know if the artist ever saw an armoured soldier or if he simply copied other paintings? If you show an armoured soldier to a room full of artists, every single one of them will draw the armour in a different way; if we don't have the original armour, then how do we tell which artist depicted it accurately and which did not? Look at the palette. The entire painting is done using only six colours so how is the artist supposed to make a detailed painting showing realistic materials with such a limited range of colours? Why are no two soldiers standing next to each other in the same colour? Is the subject depicted in yellow because his armour is golden in colour or because he is being singled out as the subject? What about the cost? Some colours were very expensive and only used sparingly, so the less important things were picked out in cheaper colours. Some paints change colour over time. How do you know if the colour today is the same as when it was freshly painted? It is a waste of time trying to use these illustrations as evidence until you have done some very specialised courses in Byzantine art interpretation. To reconstruct historical armour you must use archaeological evidence.

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Timo Nieminen




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PostPosted: Mon 30 May, 2016 6:45 pm    Post subject: Re: Constantine XI's Statue and Late Byzantine Armour         Reply with quote

Mario M. wrote:
Large plate segments are simply a superior form of protection to smaller plate segments because of better impact absorption.


This depends on the weapon. If it's an arrow, smaller segments (scale, lamellar, mail) can be better than a large plate. The more energy that a projectile expends on moving the armour, the less energy it has left to penetrate the armour. How much the projectile moves the armour depends on how heavy the section of armour being moved is. Small segments of armour move more easily than large plates (because they're lighter).

"In addition to being efficient, all pole arms were quite nice to look at." - Cherney Berg, A hideous history of weapons, Collier 1963.
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Philip Dyer





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PostPosted: Mon 30 May, 2016 7:30 pm    Post subject: Re: Constantine XI's Statue and Late Byzantine Armour         Reply with quote

Timo Nieminen wrote:
Mario M. wrote:
Large plate segments are simply a superior form of protection to smaller plate segments because of better impact absorption.


This depends on the weapon. If it's an arrow, smaller segments (scale, lamellar, mail) can be better than a large plate. The more energy that a projectile expends on moving the armour, the less energy it has left to penetrate the armour. How much the projectile moves the armour depends on how heavy the section of armour being moved is. Small segments of armour move more easily than large plates (because they're lighter).

Umm, is the large plate is perfectly flat or muscle plate.. Allot of full plates strength comes from the fact is it can be formed into incredibly delfective surfaces with mail and lammellar can't match.Also, is doesn't ift he armor is unharmed if the armor movement allow the weapons to harm the man wearing the armor
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Timo Nieminen




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PostPosted: Tue 31 May, 2016 12:18 am    Post subject: Re: Constantine XI's Statue and Late Byzantine Armour         Reply with quote

Philip Dyer wrote:
Timo Nieminen wrote:
Mario M. wrote:
Large plate segments are simply a superior form of protection to smaller plate segments because of better impact absorption.


This depends on the weapon. If it's an arrow, smaller segments (scale, lamellar, mail) can be better than a large plate. The more energy that a projectile expends on moving the armour, the less energy it has left to penetrate the armour. How much the projectile moves the armour depends on how heavy the section of armour being moved is. Small segments of armour move more easily than large plates (because they're lighter).

Umm, is the large plate is perfectly flat or muscle plate..


Sure, the details of what happens when arrow hits armour depends on details of the armour, including angles, multiple layers, etc.

But the basic point stands - small plates (loosely suspended, like brigandine plates, lammellar plates, etc.) move more when hit by arrows and this robs the arrow of energy for penetration. It's been experimentally observed (Soar, "Secrets ..." IIRC), and you can sit down and do the maths of what happens when arrows of some particular mass (30g, 85g, 125g - pick what you prefer) and some particular energy (e.g., 100J) hits a metal plate of some given mass.

Philip Dyer wrote:
Allot of full plates strength comes from the fact is it can be formed into incredibly delfective surfaces with mail and lammellar can't match.


Mail doesn't do deflection - it'll catch points instead of deflecting them. Still, it works, and part of why it works is that it moves when hit.

This appears to be an important part of why mail performs so well.

Philip Dyer wrote:
Also, is doesn't ift he armor is unharmed if the armor movement allow the weapons to harm the man wearing the armor


Yes. Which is why plate should do better against maces etc. As discussed in the recent blunt force trauma thread:
http://myArmoury.com/talk/viewtopic.php?t=33589
arrows don't have enough energy for the blunt force trauma to be considered too dangerous (similar energies are used in modern less-than-lethal munitions). A statement that smaller (and therefore more mobile) plates might protect better against arrows is not a statement that such armour will protect better against warhammers and bills (and having seen how well bills can penetrate armour, I have a great deal of respect for them), so this isn't relevant to the point about arrows. 'Tis relevant to the more general question of "protectiveness", but that still depends on the weapons.

"In addition to being efficient, all pole arms were quite nice to look at." - Cherney Berg, A hideous history of weapons, Collier 1963.
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Mario M.




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PostPosted: Tue 31 May, 2016 1:35 am    Post subject: Re: Constantine XI's Statue and Late Byzantine Armour         Reply with quote

Timo Nieminen wrote:
This depends on the weapon. If it's an arrow, smaller segments (scale, lamellar, mail) can be better than a large plate. The more energy that a projectile expends on moving the armour, the less energy it has left to penetrate the armour. How much the projectile moves the armour depends on how heavy the section of armour being moved is. Small segments of armour move more easily than large plates (because they're lighter).


This is true, however, large plates have a higher chance of deflecting the arrow, which makes the weakness you pointed out sort of a +/-.

There is also the fact that most men who wore large plates, wore them over a shirt of mail, meaning that even if the arrow penetrates, it then has to deal with the same effect you just described, penetrating mail with a much decreased velocity and a blunted tip.

Shame nobody(that I know of) actually tested a composite set of plate+mail, but everyone rather does so separately.

I would argue that even a >1mm wrought iron plate over light mail is incredibly difficult to penetrate or the exact reasons both you and I pointed out.

“The stream of Time, irresistible, ever moving, carries off and bears away all things that come to birth and plunges them into utter darkness...Nevertheless, the science of History is a great bulwark against this stream of Time; in a way it checks this irresistible flood, it holds in a tight grasp whatever it can seize floating on the surface and will not allow it to slip away into the depths of Oblivion." - Anna Comnena
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Dan Howard




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PostPosted: Tue 31 May, 2016 2:51 am    Post subject: Re: Constantine XI's Statue and Late Byzantine Armour         Reply with quote

Mario M. wrote:
I would argue that even a >1mm wrought iron plate over light mail is incredibly difficult to penetrate or the exact reasons both you and I pointed out.

Yep. Me too.

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Lafayette C Curtis




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PostPosted: Tue 31 May, 2016 12:56 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Going back to plate armour in a hot climate, don't forget that 16th- and 17th-century Spanish and Portuguese forces campaigned extensively in North Africa. Most of their forces were light but even these "light" forces would have been fairly well-armoured by earlier (say, medieval) standards. And sometimes fully-armoured cavalry went along! Imagine the supply train that would have been needed to carry the water and fodder just to keep the horses alive.
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William P




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PostPosted: Wed 01 Jun, 2016 2:02 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

this conversation of what lamellae could or did not do

seeing as how the klivanion as we debate was more in use in the middle byzantine period, after the 13th century, byzantine armies started to become very heavily westernised in their armaments

we KNOW the byzantines in the 15th century adopted italian harness for those who could afford it, i suspect those of lesser means would use a variety iof maille, scale and western style coat of plates possibly some plated maille like the turks and i'd also suspect some armour llike those used in russia, but many more would be unarmorued or wearing padded coats/ ones with maille sewn into the lining
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Philip Renne




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PostPosted: Mon 27 Mar, 2017 11:15 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

On this topic, do reliable visual resources for byzantine armour at the time of the fall of Constantinople exist? It's difficult to imagine that the emperor wouldn't have had access to Italian harness given the extensive contact they had during that period. I'm also interested in any written materials that might shed light on this issue. The problem with icons of military saints is that they might merely be copying models many centuries older than the time they were rendered.
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Dan Howard




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PostPosted: Mon 27 Mar, 2017 11:28 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Philip Renne wrote:
On this topic, do reliable visual resources for byzantine armour at the time of the fall of Constantinople exist?

We don't know how accurate the illustrations are because there are few physical examples to compare with them.

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Pedro Paulo Gaião




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PostPosted: Thu 30 Mar, 2017 2:11 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Mario M. wrote:
Pedro Paulo Gaião wrote:
In Manuel Paleologus's voyage to Europe, he claimed that Europeans "copied" the style of byzantine swords.


Do you have a source on that?

Sounds interesting, but makes little sense since the European X-type archetype appeared already in the 9th century.


I don't have the exact primary source of that, but Ian Heath records it in his "Byzantine Armies 1118 - 1461 AD". p.42.




Dan Howard wrote:
People have this bizarre idea that lamellar was somehow better than mail. Byzantine lamellar was munition armor, just like Roman segmentata. Byzantine officers and anyone else with the means wore mail - Frankish mail was apparently the most desirable.

Climate has never ever played a part in what a soldier chose to wear. We know that the hottest and heaviest armors ever invented were worn in the arid regions of the Middle East for centuries. I've done it in the middle of an Australian summer. It is no more bother than heavy clothing. Acclimation is a lot more important than Northern Americans and Europeans seem to think. Especially those who grew up with air conditioning.


Byzantine Lamelar being munition harness? Really? Do you remember the source of that? I would be glad to study more about it. Also, with Beatson, you mean Peter Beatson? In wich book, article of internet page he covers byzantine lamelar?


Dan Howard wrote:
Quote:
Take a look in this "11th's Senior Officer ":
http://www.hellenicarmors.gr/products.php?pageId=23&lang=EN

It is not Byzantine and it is not officer's . The only made from scales this large was used on horses.


Hellenic armours' smith is internacionally known for his work with ancient and medieval greece, I believe we can rely on him about accuracy, in any case.


Lafayette C Curtis wrote:
Going back to plate armor in a hot climate, don't forget that 16th- and 17th-century Spanish and Portuguese forces campaigned extensively in North Africa. Most of their forces were light but even these "light" forces would have been fairly well-ed by earlier (say, medieval) standards. And sometimes fully armor-ed cavalry went along! Imagine the supply train that would have been needed to carry the water and fodder just to keep the horses alive.


+/-
I often research that subject, and from what I have read and seen, portuguese often used "lighter " in the means of changing plate cuirasses for brigandines (that's for 15th and earlier part of 16th century only). If you look at Pastrana Painels, there are actually few men-at-arms with full plate harness and horse with bardings, so that - using huge amounts of solid plate - would be actually attypical for African Campaigns. I know most of you dislike Osprey, but in Embleton's book about Portuguese Expansion, the states that such change of armor was done to counter the climate changes. Needless to say, since Isabel and Fernando's reign, spanish men at arms were forbbiden to had barded horses, their use would be attypical, not the rule (such information is in myArmoury's own articles about Renassaince Armies' book).


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Dan Howard




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PostPosted: Thu 30 Mar, 2017 2:21 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

There are plenty of Greek and Roman experts who don't have a clue about armour. You want a hoplologist, not a classicist.
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Lafayette C Curtis




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PostPosted: Tue 18 Apr, 2017 9:19 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Pedro Paulo Gaião wrote:
Dan Howard wrote:
Quote:
Take a look in this "11th's Senior Officer ":
http://www.hellenicarmors.gr/products.php?pageId=23&lang=EN

It is not Byzantine and it is not officer's . The only made from scales this large was used on horses.


Hellenic armours' smith is internacionally known for his work with ancient and medieval greece, I believe we can rely on him about accuracy, in any case.


"Internationally well known" doesn't automatically mean their interpretations are particularly accurate or trustworthy. The study of Byzantine armour is still in its infancy compared to the study of Western European armour; the source materials and artifacts are sparser to begin with, and we haven't quite had the 150 years of so of trial and error that we've undergone with Western European armour to build up an extensive knowledge base of which reconstructions work and which ones don't. So even the best Byzantine armourers out there have to exercise far more guesswork in interpreting their sources.

And, indeed, coming back to the sources, this isn't the first time we're telling you that you really should stop relying so heavily on modern depictions without checking with the original textual or iconographic sources. The armourer's website mentioned "Madrid Skylitzes 213v;" if you had bothered to follow that lead, you would have found the two original illustrations on the page mentioned. The latter isn't really relevant since pretty much all the body armour in it is covered by shields:

https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:The_captive_Maniakes_is_brought_to_Constantinople.jpg

but the former shows the purported source:

https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:The_captive_Maniakes_is_brought_to_Constantinople.jpg

We can immediately see why the reconstruction is problematic. The size of the scales depicted seems really huge compared to the human figures wearing them, and could have been an artistic shortcut to avoid the effort involved in drawing a larger number of smaller scales. Moreover, we can't even be sure that the material in question is metal armour -- note that the scales are depicted in the same colour as the pteryges, which was usually made of leather. And there's no convincing evidence either that the lines on the scales depict lamellar/scale lacing holes because very similar lines are present on the pteryges and as far as we know pteryges weren't built with laces dangling down or glued to their front.

The "senior officer" thing is also highly unlikely given that very similar armour was depicted on Byzantine line cavalry just a couple of pages earlier:

https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:General_Georgios_Maniakes_slaughters_the_Arabs.jpg


Quote:
Lafayette C Curtis wrote:
Going back to plate armor in a hot climate, don't forget that 16th- and 17th-century Spanish and Portuguese forces campaigned extensively in North Africa. Most of their forces were light but even these "light" forces would have been fairly well-ed by earlier (say, medieval) standards. And sometimes fully armor-ed cavalry went along! Imagine the supply train that would have been needed to carry the water and fodder just to keep the horses alive.


+/-
I often research that subject, and from what I have read and seen, portuguese often used "lighter " in the means of changing plate cuirasses for brigandines (that's for 15th and earlier part of 16th century only). If you look at Pastrana Painels, there are actually few men-at-arms with full plate harness and horse with bardings, so that - using huge amounts of solid plate - would be actually attypical for African Campaigns. I know most of you dislike Osprey, but in Embleton's book about Portuguese Expansion, the states that such change of armor was done to counter the climate changes. Needless to say, since Isabel and Fernando's reign, spanish men at arms were forbbiden to had barded horses, their use would be attypical, not the rule (such information is in myArmoury's own articles about Renassaince Armies' book).


Brigandine wouldn't have been any cooler than a plate cuirass in the North African climate. Any improvement in ventilation would have been due to the fact that brigandines were usually not worn in conjunction with arm harness, and it's quite easy to get the same effect with a solid cuirass worn without the arms.


Now, going back to the original question about the statue of the Emperor Constantine, I've looked a little further into the issue and I find it extremely unlikely that the statue is accurately depicting the armour Constantine actually wore. It's worth noting that by 1453 the Eastern Roman Empire was left with little more than Constantinople itself and its suburbs, so it wouldn't have had the raw materials it needed to produce armour on its own. Of course, it might still have been possible to import metal and fabric and leather and such and then have them worked in what few armouring workshops might still have survived within the walls of Constantinople, but it would have been hideously expensive compared to importing finished armour from major Italian production centres. So we would normally expect most Byzantine soldiers at this stage to look basically Italian, perhaps with a few Greek quirks in their kit; and given that the accounts of the fall of Constantinople said that the emperor Constantine wore the armour of a common soldier to the extent that it was impossible to tell him apart from the thousands of other Byzantine casualties after the siege was over, it's highly probable that his armour would have looked mostly Italian too.
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E.E.T. Yeo




Location: PA, USA
Joined: 28 May 2017

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PostPosted: Mon 29 May, 2017 1:10 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Dan Howard wrote:
There are plenty of Greek and Roman experts who don't have a clue about armour. You want a hoplologist, not a classicist.


The gentleman in question is taking his armour designs from iconography and reliefs, which itself is problematic. Maille and Scale are incredibly difficult and time-consuming for an iconographer to portray, especially if they haven't seen them in person. One of the reason that armour in modern iconography is so fantastic looking is that most iconographers aren't armourers and instead work on a craft as it was passed down to them. This drove me *insane* as I was researching the Byzantine Klivanion, as some icons and sculptures show overlapping scale and others show "banded" scale, which never made much sense to me.
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