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Kostas Charalampidis





Joined: 13 Apr 2015

Posts: 6

PostPosted: Fri 25 Sep, 2020 12:33 pm    Post subject: Cheires Armguard         Reply with quote

Hello!

I'm interested lately in cheires, (hands/arms translated in ancient Greek), which was a type of armguard used by Persians, Parthians, Seleucid Greeks, Roman, Kushan and other people in Asia from Antiquity until early Medieval times.

I still don't understand the construction of such armor, since the finds are limited.

I'm kindly asking for pictures and information about archaeological finds, paintings, reliefs and sculpture or any other kind of material evidence of the construction and the way they were worn.

Thanks a lot in advance!
-Kostas.



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Matthew Amt




Location: Laurel, MD, USA
Joined: 17 Sep 2003

Posts: 1,407

PostPosted: Fri 25 Sep, 2020 3:57 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

In Latin we call that a manica, and it's a pretty simple laminated or segmented construction. Here's mine:

https://www.larp.com/legioxx/manica.html

They can be iron or copper alloy. Many of the Roman examples have a small plate or two to cover the back of the hand, apparently riveted not articulated.

Another excellent page:

http://www.romanarmy.net/manica.shtml

Does that get you started?

Matthew
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Kostas Charalampidis





Joined: 13 Apr 2015

Posts: 6

PostPosted: Sun 27 Sep, 2020 7:25 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Hello!

Thank you SO much! Yes, this helps very much! We use the word in Greek (since Roman times) for sleeve and rubber tube.

Roman, Czirik Rabat and Khalchayan finds show constructions of half cylinder (covering only the extensor muscle groups of the arm.

On the first picture I posted and on this small statue we see Seleucid arm guard that cover circumflex the arms and legs.

Are there any finds that show similar style of guards?

Thank you!



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Dan Howard




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

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PostPosted: Sun 27 Sep, 2020 8:43 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Kostas Charalampidis wrote:
Hello!
On the first picture I posted and on this small statue we see Seleucid arm guard that cover circumflex the arms and legs.

Are there any finds that show similar style of guards?

Thank you!


You can't make armour that looks like that; even with Renaissance-era sliding rivets. You have to have segmented expansions in the back while simultaneously having segmented compressions in the front.

IMO they are not showing segmented plate at all. In your first image the pattern on the arms is the same as on the large item behind it. In your second image there is banding on both his arms AND his legs and feet. It may not even be depicting armour. It could just as easily be some type of quilted clothing.

Keep in mind that those sculptures and illustrations are not photos. All of those items were originally painted. We have no idea how much detail was painted on and is now lost to us.

Author: Bronze Age Military Equipment, Pen and Sword Books
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Matthew Amt




Location: Laurel, MD, USA
Joined: 17 Sep 2003

Posts: 1,407

PostPosted: Sun 27 Sep, 2020 9:27 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Yeah, as Dan says, it may not be possible to make a completely tubular segmented piece like that. Though I don't know if anyone has tried! Of course, on that little figurine, we're only seeing one side, and many believe the manica was worn on the inside of the arm like that, so that the back, which we can't see, was uncovered.

BUT, again as Dan says, we may not even be looking at armor, there, only clothing. Quilted or just striped, possibly? If there were more archeology to back up those leg and foot coverings, that would help, but...

Matthew
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Kostas Charalampidis





Joined: 13 Apr 2015

Posts: 6

PostPosted: Fri 02 Oct, 2020 9:16 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Thank you so much all for your replies!

https://www.apollo-magazine.com/the-art-of-power-in-ancient-pergamon/

https://www.flickr.com/photos/carolemage/8404206319

http://grifterrec.rasmir.com/kushan/heraios.html

https://soundcloud.com/metmuseum/marble-balustrade-reliefs-with-military-spoils-from-the-sanctuary-of-athena

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cataphract#/media/File:Ardachir_relief_Firuzabad_1.jpg

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cataphract#/media/File:Tabriz_Sasanian_Plate_3.jpg

Here are some links that show tubular manicae. Although there are not known to me archaeological finds of tubular manicae, it's important to note that Greeks have always been very precise in illustrating weapons, when correlated with archaeological finds.

Quote:
BUT, again as Dan says, we may not even be looking at armor, there, only clothing. Quilted or just striped, possibly? If there were more archeology to back up those leg and foot coverings, that would help, but...

Yes, it's possible, but we have finds of manicae which are metallic!



Quote:

You can't make armour that looks like that; even with Renaissance-era sliding rivets. You have to have segmented expansions in the back while simultaneously having segmented compressions in the front.

What if metallic plates are not riveted, but sewed on leather sleeve or cloth? Please note the second link that again comes from the balustrade of Athena Altar in Pergamon. The armguard seems to be formed by metal strip that is spiral. This could work similarly to 'goose arm" tubes we usually have as shower tubes.

This is getting very nice, please keep helping!

Many thanks!
-Kostas.

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Martin Kallander




Location: Sweden
Joined: 25 Sep 2018

Posts: 88

PostPosted: Fri 02 Oct, 2020 9:37 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

I'm sure you could make it work with sliding leathers, that is how Ian does it with his skirt of plates which is essentially the same thing. Geting it to work properly would probably take a while and be quite costly though, nobody has ever made one like that as far as I'm aware so you'd have to trial and error your way there using quite expensive materials.
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Kostas Charalampidis





Joined: 13 Apr 2015

Posts: 6

PostPosted: Fri 02 Oct, 2020 11:42 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Please note I'm not trying to forge/ create one.

I'm just trying to gather information based on finds and not reports, so that I know more about this armor.

Only in rare cases we see Greeks defending the arms and legs. Helmets with masks is another rarity, but those could be an evolution of Phrygian Helmet chick guards. Did the Seleucid introduce this kind of helmet in a heavy cavalry culture like Persian, Skythian, Parthian and Kushan, or they just adapted their own armor to the needs of the region?

Was the style of their armor different than the style of the people of central Asia? Rabat armor seems to have semi tubular manicae and I think it's the earliest find of manicae we have.
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