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Thread: Usage of Armor in the late roman army

  1. #161

    Default Re: Usage of Armor in the late roman army

    Quote Originally Posted by Renatus View Post
    My reading of the De Rebus Bellicis differs from this. The purpose of the thoracomachus is stated specifically to be to protect the body against the discomfort of wearing armour, "so that, when it has been put on first" (ut hoc inducto primum), it prevents the body from harm caused by the weight and friction of the armour. The inventor goes on to say, "So when, as we have said, the thoracomachus has been put on" (Hoc igitur, ut diximus, thoracomacho inducto) and the soldier takes up his weapons, he is ready for battle. By using the phrase "ut diximus" and repeating "inducto", the writer is referring back to his earlier statement and thus that the thoracomachus is put on as a preliminary to the soldier donning his armour. He nowhere suggests that it can be used otherwise than in conjuction with armour.
    Stephenson and Sumner certainly thought that the inference was it could be worn as armour in its own right and show how it could be worn in this fashion in some of their books. I personally feel it was probably worn on its own whilst on the march and then the armour to be worn in battle was placed over it before the troops deployed into their respective battle formations.

    I'd like your translation of this word please as I'm not sure- musculorum

  2. #162
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    Default Re: Usage of Armor in the late roman army

    Sounds like it's acusative form.
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  3. #163
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    Default Re: Usage of Armor in the late roman army

    Quote Originally Posted by Magister Militum Flavius Aetius View Post
    Also, there's almost undisputable evidence that LS was never a dominant form of armor, and that chainmail from the republican to the late era was dominant combat armor.
    while i also think that LS was never so dominant (cause it was expensive and tough for maintenance plus the reenactors claim it's quite uncomfortable to wear), i'd very much like to see any of ur undisputable evidence for that?


  4. #164
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    Default Re: Usage of Armor in the late roman army

    It's mostly in archalogical finds as chainmail from the roman era is found a lot more often than pieces of Segmentata.
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  5. #165

    Default Re: Usage of Armor in the late roman army

    Some late roman cohort renactmeant group look at the diference in the armor












    Last edited by Pharoah; July 14, 2011 at 02:11 PM.

  6. #166
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    Default Re: Usage of Armor in the late roman army

    Well, you have to llok at this, in the fact that this is a re-enactment, not the actual thing. Also those Spangemhelms with chainmail coifs were eastern Roman/sassanid border and moreso 3rd century, when the shield designs suggest they were stationed in Pannonia (The Red and YEallow) and the balkans (the blue and yellow)
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  7. #167
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    Default Re: Usage of Armor in the late roman army

    Quote Originally Posted by Magister Militum Flavius Aetius View Post
    It's mostly in archalogical finds as chainmail from the roman era is found a lot more often than pieces of Segmentata.
    k, but the "roman era" is an extremely wide term. for most of the "roman era" the LS hadn't been used at all. so, it doesn't prove much, unless we can be certain that archeological findings dating back to 1-3c AD (the era in which LS was used) also confirm that.

    btw, we further need to be sure that actual digging locations did not serve as an auxiliary bases cause it would neither prove that chainmail was dominant. what we need is a location known be home of a legion during the 1-3c AD.

    Quote Originally Posted by Magister Militum Flavius Aetius View Post
    ...when the shield designs suggest they were stationed in Pannonia (The Red and YEallow) and the balkans (the blue and yellow)
    how'd u know that?
    is there a reference what shield colors were used in a particular region?
    Last edited by juvenus; July 14, 2011 at 02:44 PM.


  8. #168
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    Default Re: Usage of Armor in the late roman army

    Red and yellow one is Celtae Seniores, which was WRE and part of the Pannonian/Norican/Raetian Garrison. The Blue one is the Herculani or Iovanii Iuniores and was stationed in the Praesenti armies of the Easter Empire outside of Constantinople. Source is the N.D.
    Quote Originally Posted by Roma_Victrix
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  9. #169

    Default Re: Usage of Armor in the late roman army

    Quote Originally Posted by Renatus View Post
    The etymology of "cuirass" indicates that it entered English from French and that, ultimately, it derives from the Latin for leather. However, this tells us only that, at some time, the French may have had armour made of leather. Can you point us to a Latin word for armour that has a "leather" element in it? I know of none but I am always ready to be educated.
    Depends what is written in latin in the ND.

    [107]
    [107.1] Under the control of the illustrious master of the
    offices:
    [107.2] First corps of shield-bearers,
    [107.3] Second corps of shield-bearers,
    [107.4] Senior light-armed corps,
    [107.5] Corps of senior gentiles,
    [107.6] Third corps of shield-bearers,
    [107.7] Corps of confidential agents and those assigned from that corps,
    [107.8] Bureau of memorials,
    [107.9] Bureau of assignments,
    [107.10] Bureau of correspondence,
    [107.11] Bureau of requests,
    [107.12] Doorkeepers,
    [107.13] Court ushers (cancellari).
    [107.14] Arsenals mentioned below in Illyricum;
    [107.15] of shields, saddle-cloths and weapons, at Sirmium,
    [107.16] of shields, at Acincum,
    [107.17] of shields, at Carnuntum,
    [107.18] of shields, at Lauriacum,
    [107.19] of weapons, at Salona.
    [107.20] In Italy:
    [107.21] of arrows, at Concordia,
    [107.22] of shields and weapons, at Verona,
    [107.23] of leather corselets, at Mantua,
    [107.24] of shields, at Cremona,
    [107.25] of bows, at Ticinum,
    [107.26] of broadswords, at Luca.
    [107.27] In the Gauls:
    [107.28] of all weapons, at Argentomagus
    [107.29] of arrows, at Matisco,
    [107.30] of leather corselets, ballistae, and mail, at Autun,
    [107.31] of shields, at Autun,
    [107.32] of ---, at Soissons,
    [107.33] of broadswords, at Rheims.
    [107.34] of shields, at Trier,
    [107.35] of ballistae, at Trier,
    [107.36] of broadswords and shields, at Amiens.
    [107.37] The staff of the aforesaid illustrious master of the offices is
    constituted from the corps of confidential agents in this manner:
    [107.38] A chief assistant,
    [107.39] Deputies of the chief assistant,
    [107.40] Assistants for the various arsenals,
    [107.30] An inspector of the public post at court,
    [107.41] Inspectors for all the provinces,
    [107.42] Interpreters for all peoples.
    In this translation there is the word "leather corselets" in other tranlations they have the word "cuirass".

    What was in the original latin you tell me?

  10. #170
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    Default Re: Usage of Armor in the late roman army

    Is that Fabricae or unit listings?

    EDIT: L:ooks like both but my copy I don't think lists that many.
    Quote Originally Posted by Roma_Victrix
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  11. #171

    Default Re: Usage of Armor in the late roman army

    Quote Originally Posted by Valentinian Victor View Post
    Whilst you might find the concept of metal cuirasses ridiculous, more historians are ready to believe that if they were worn then they were made out of iron or bronze than if they were made out of leather. The only support I have found for leather cuirasses is from Graham Sumner who came to my defence in a RAT thread about this topic.

    And your wrong about cavalry wearing cuirasses, there are many depictions of Late Roman cavalrymen wearing cuirasses, granted these may be officers, but they are wearing muscle cuirasses. And of course it may well be that Catafractarii/Clibanarii riders wore them as well.
    Sorry, what was that image again?

    It's made of chocolate this one, it melted in the sun!



  12. #172
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    Default Re: Usage of Armor in the late roman army

    Quote Originally Posted by Magister Militum Flavius Aetius View Post
    Red and yellow one is Celtae Seniores, which was WRE and part of the Pannonian/Norican/Raetian Garrison. The Blue one is the Herculani or Iovanii Iuniores and was stationed in the Praesenti armies of the Easter Empire outside of Constantinople. Source is the N.D.
    ah so it has nothing to do with the color itself, u simply know those patterns from the ND.


  13. #173

    Default Re: Usage of Armor in the late roman army

    I have no problem with the idea that Late Roman infantry wore flexible leather/textile muscle cuirasses, my belief is that some also wore metal ones made out of either bronze or iron. This is based on a number of monumental works that show cuirasses that were obviously metallic in origin, and also on artwork that shows infantry in cuirasses that were brownish or light blue in colour, indicating bronze or iron.

  14. #174

    Default Re: Usage of Armor in the late roman army

    Quote Originally Posted by Valentinian Victor View Post
    and also on artwork that shows infantry in cuirasses that were brownish or light blue in colour, indicating bronze or iron.
    I suspect the color coding is highly misleading.

    my belief is that some also wore metal ones made out of either bronze or iron.
    Bronze? Now I know you're tripping because they used bronze as money.

    Iron sure, but were are the remains of low carbon wrought iron breastplates? You may as well say they continued with the lorica segmenta. No way they would replace something efficient with something ineffficent.

    My argument for the Cuirass and mail combo is the efficiency.

  15. #175
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    Default Re: Usage of Armor in the late roman army

    I thought LAte ROman Generals and high Ranking officers wore Steel Cuirasses?
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  16. #176
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    Default Re: Usage of Armor in the late roman army

    Quote Originally Posted by wulfgar610 View Post
    Depends what is written in latin in the ND.

    In this translation there is the word "leather corselets" in other tranlations they have the word "cuirass".

    What was in the original latin you tell me?
    The word translated as "leather corselets" in lines [107.23] and [107.30] in your list is, in both cases, loricaria in the Latin.

    Quote Originally Posted by Valentinian Victor View Post
    Stephenson and Sumner certainly thought that the inference was it could be worn as armour in its own right and show how it could be worn in this fashion in some of their books. I personally feel it was probably worn on its own whilst on the march and then the armour to be worn in battle was placed over it before the troops deployed into their respective battle formations.

    I'd like your translation of this word please as I'm not sure- musculorum
    I agree with you provided, of course, that there was capacity in the baggage train to carry all the armour. I have not been right through Stephenson and Sumner but Stephenson in Romano-Byzantine Infantry Equipment, pp.59 & 62, suggests that the thoracomachus provided an extra layer of protection to help absorb the blows of the enemy, rather than that it could be a form of armour in its own right. This makes a lot of sense.

    Musculorum is the genitive plural of musculus. The word has a variety of meanings: a small mouse, a kind of fish, a mussel, a muscle of the body, a siege shed or mantelet, and a kind of small boat. The meaning in any one case depends upon the context. I suspect that you have in mind its relation to the muscle cuirass, in which case it would mean "of (the) muscles". In a context relating to siege equipment, it would mean "of (the) mantelets". I hope this helps. If not, please let me know the passage in question and the context and I will have another go.

  17. #177
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    Default Re: Usage of Armor in the late roman army

    Quote Originally Posted by wulfgar610 View Post
    My argument for the Cuirass and mail combo is the efficiency.
    so what's the problem then? i'm sure no one is denying its efficiency


  18. #178

    Default Re: Usage of Armor in the late roman army

    Quote Originally Posted by wulfgar610 View Post
    I suspect the color coding is highly misleading.



    Bronze? Now I know you're tripping because they used bronze as money.

    Iron sure, but were are the remains of low carbon wrought iron breastplates? You may as well say they continued with the lorica segmenta. No way they would replace something efficient with something ineffficent.

    My argument for the Cuirass and mail combo is the efficiency.
    I dont want to sound rude, but do you actually bother to research before you post?

    Bronze was used in statuary and was definately used as armour, Roman bronze was brass in colour and would have looked like gold once burnished.

    If your going to make statements that the Late Roman legionarii wore leather cuirasses then your going to have to provide quotes and references we can check out. I for one would be delighted that you have such references as it would back up some arguments. I am in the process of confirming that at least one important Late Roman document contains possible references to muscle cuirasses, I'm going to float some references past Renatus first so he can check out the Latin for me (my Latin is rather basic in parts I'm afraid).

  19. #179

    Default Re: Usage of Armor in the late roman army

    Quote Originally Posted by Valentinian Victor View Post
    I dont want to sound rude, but do you actually bother to research before you post?

    Bronze was used in statuary and was definately used as armour, Roman bronze was brass in colour and would have looked like gold once burnished.
    We know of the extensive of bronze use in armor in the earlier classical period.

    But how often do you find references to bronze in the late period armor?

    Skill and product in iron working became wider spread from the late republic onwards paticularly with the absorption of Celtic type peoples. The ease of bronze over iron is in that it can be cast, but copper was worth up to 70 times the price of iron.

    Note that 200 BC and 200 AD are different kettles of fish, you seem to think it all the same.

    Quote Originally Posted by Renatus View Post
    The word translated as "leather corselets" in lines [107.23] and [107.30] in your list is, in both cases, loricaria in the Latin.
    Ok, loricaria, and which means?
    Last edited by wulfgar610; July 15, 2011 at 06:00 PM.

  20. #180

    Default Re: Usage of Armor in the late roman army

    Just thought I'd throw this out there. In my new Roman book which I just purchased several weeks ago during my vacation in Albuquerque, there is a picture with some Roman Hastati or Principes wearing what they say are "Italian muscle-cuirasses, which can be recognized by its lack of shoulder guards." The name of the book is "The Roman Army The Greatest War Machine Of The Ancient World," edited by Chris McNabb, published by Osprey Books. Apparently you can see the whole book here: http://www.scribd.com/doc/45795634/O...-Ancient-World and the picture I'm referring to is on page 70.
    Last edited by First Citizen Gallienus; July 16, 2011 at 12:04 PM.

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