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Miguel T





Joined: 12 May 2014

Posts: 5

PostPosted: Sat 22 Jul, 2017 12:10 pm    Post subject: Lamellar armor in 13th and 14th centuries Greece         Reply with quote

Hello guys, does anyone knows any textual mention of lamellar or scale armor from those centuries in greece, being used by the byzantine or frankish states soldiers? It seems to me that those kinds of armor appear all the time in the church paintings and even in miniatures, but I still havent seem any written source that mentions it...
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Dan Howard




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

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PostPosted: Sat 22 Jul, 2017 5:23 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

I don't think they exist. The vast majority of textual sources don't specify the type of contruction. Most simply use a generic term for armour such as "thorax" or "klibadion". Modern writers can't distinguish between scale and lamellar so there is no chance of an older text doing so.
Author: Bronze Age Military Equipment, Pen and Sword Books
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Miguel T





Joined: 12 May 2014

Posts: 5

PostPosted: Sat 22 Jul, 2017 7:04 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

But is there any evidence for the use of scale or lamellar armor in greece (both by byzantines and frankish crusader states) during those centuries? As far as I've been able to find, the only safe references (that is, not the religious paintings or the Romance of Alexander manuscript), such as the mention by Ibn Battuta of the armor worn by greek cavalrymen or the weapons left by a 14th century soldier to a monastery at Athos about what armor was worn mention only mail and possibly leather armor. Also, the western writers who wrote about the venetian Stradioti (many of whom were greek) only mention a few mails and helmets, other than cloth armor, as being worn by them. Putting those pieces together, I've been inclined to think that lamellar and scale armor were not worn by the late Byzantines or by the majority of greek soldiers after the Latin crusades in greece. That's why I'd like to know if anyone knows of any reference to armor being worn by the late medieval greek soldiers that could be either lamellar or scale...
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Lafayette C Curtis




Location: Indonesia
Joined: 29 Nov 2006
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PostPosted: Wed 06 Sep, 2017 3:14 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Well, I haven't looked into it as deeply as you have, but I pretty much share your conclusion (that the evidence doesn't seem to favour the continued use of these types of armour into the time period in question).
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Dan Howard




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

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PostPosted: Wed 06 Sep, 2017 5:01 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

There is plenty of evidence for scale armour in Greece from the Bronze Age onwards. There is no evidence for lamellar until after the Roman period. By the 13th-14th centuries they have been pretty much phased out in favour of mail and plate.
Author: Bronze Age Military Equipment, Pen and Sword Books
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Graham Shearlaw





Joined: 24 Oct 2011

Posts: 80

PostPosted: Wed 06 Sep, 2017 9:54 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Lamellar is mecanicaly waste full, look at all the over lap, that's wasted metal that does nothing towards keeping you safe but you have to carry around.
Plates is per sqare inch/cm lighter and just as good at protecteing you.
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Dan Howard




Location: Maitland, NSW, Australia
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PostPosted: Thu 07 Sep, 2017 3:52 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Scale and lamellar are usually made from thinner plate. Some are as thin as 0.3mm. The construction relies on the overlap to provide protection. Any attack will meet with two or sometimes three layers of metal. The main problem with these armours is the lacing.
Author: Bronze Age Military Equipment, Pen and Sword Books
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Mark Moore




Location: East backwoods-assed Texas
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PostPosted: Thu 07 Sep, 2017 11:24 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Dan Howard wrote:
The main problem with these armours is the lacing.


That is the issue I have often thought about. Seems to me that one good slice from a blade to the lacing...the whole thing would begin to fall apart. Didn't mean to de-rail here....just saying. I guess the lacing would have been covered for the most part, but it's bound to be visible *somewhere*, wouldn't you think?.........McM

''Life is like a box of chocolates...'' --- F. Gump
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Dan Howard




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

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PostPosted: Thu 07 Sep, 2017 3:25 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

It takes a lot of damage to the lacing before the armour will start to fall apart but the lacing causes lots of other problems. When it gets wet the armour can double in weight and wet lacing can freeze in winter. Blood can't be properly cleaned out, which attracts ants and lice. The lacing deteriorates quickly and has to be replaced regularly. The "plated mail" construction fixed all the problems by replacing lacing with mail.
Author: Bronze Age Military Equipment, Pen and Sword Books
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