Lorica Segmentata Research

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matmohair1

Marquis
M&BWBWF&SNWVC
:grin: just a quick look at the evolution of different types of 
Roman "Lorica Segmentata" armor designs, over the ages!
Updated with research done by M.C. Bishop, M. D. Thomas,
Raffaele D'Amato and Graham Sumner and others.
I also tried to include the corresponding artwork
from various other resources.

hope this proves helpful :wink: enjoy

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(Late 1st century BC to Early 1st century AD)
Kalkriese type


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(1st to 2nd centuries AD)
Corbridge types - A, B & C


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(2nd century AD)
Stillfried type


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(2nd to Early 4th centuries AD)
Newstead type


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Other designs


Possibly Ceremonial Variations
different types, including rounder designs and bronze plates...

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(2nd century AD)
Leather Lorica Segmentata


Sarmatian Banded Armor

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Sarmatian Inspired Styles

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Leather Lorica Segmentata - advanced form

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Composite Styles

Arlon type - mail or leather and shoulder plates

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Alba Iulia type - scale and plate

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plate armor with mail chest pieces

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further reading:

:idea: Lorica Segmentata Volumes I: A Handbook of Articulated Roman Plate Armour
By  M.C. Bishop  :arrow: https://www.scribd.com/doc/3961788/Lorica-Segmentata-Volume-I-A-Handbook-of-Articulated-Roman-Plate-Armour
:idea: Lorica Segmentata Volume II: A Catalogue of Finds
By M. D. Thomas  :arrow: https://www.scribd.com/book/3976906/Lorica-Segmentata-Volume-II-A-Catalogue-of-Finds
:idea: Arms and Armour of the Imperial Roman Soldier
By Raffaele D'Amato and Graham Sumner
:idea: Roman Army: wars of the empire - Brasseys History of Uniform
By Graham Sumner  :arrow: https://www.scribd.com/doc/30409353/Roman-Army-Brasseys-History-of-Uniform
:idea: Воины Рима. 1000 лет истории - Организация. Вооружение. Битвы
Warriors of Rome. 1000 years of history - Organization. Armament. Battles
written and illustrated by Silvano Mattesini and Marcella Mattesini
 

RC-1136

Baron
A lot of nice stuff. Especially the hybrids between Lorica Segmentata and other kinds of armour are exciting. A guy from the living history group I'm part of is working on some kind of Augustean plate/mail-hypbrid.  :smile:

But:
I don't want to be a killjoy but a lot of this stuff isn't very scientifical. Especially D'Amato is famous for his teleological approach regarding finding evidence for his "theories".
The whole line of argument for leather Lorica Segmentata is rather flawed.

Another problem (but connected to the leather Lorica) is to draw evidence solely from pictorial sources. To name just a few problems with that: Roman artists often worked very traditional and were heavily influenced by Greek models. Beyond that we don't know of these artist's slightest intention to be some kind of war photographers.

One example is this mosaic from Palestrina (Italy) often said to depict praetorians (because of the scorpion on one of the shields):

NileMosaicOfPalestrinaSoldiers.jpg

A few years ago I visited a conference where Graham Sumner spoke about possible rank insignia in the Roman army (very intersting topic!). He mentioned above paining as an example for a Roman copy of Greek art which gives zero evidence regarding Roman military.

Aaaand after a bit of searching for above picture I stumbled across this thread in the Roman army talk where Graham and a few other well educated guys talk about said mosaics importance. There's also some interesting stuff about the problem with pictorial evidence I rambled about above :wink:
 

Slytacular

Sergeant Knight
@RC: the mosaic has also been interpreted as a depiction of the Ptolemaic soldiers or Roman-Egyptian auxiliaries.
 

RC-1136

Baron
Indeed! It's a much better explanation.

The opening post in the thread of the Roman Army Talk I linked to is about this :wink:
 

matmohair1

Marquis
M&BWBWF&SNWVC
RC-1136 said:
a lot of this stuff isn't very scientifical. Especially D'Amato is famous for his teleological approach regarding finding evidence for his "theories".
The whole line of argument for leather Lorica Segmentata is rather flawed.

on the contrary  :cool: "Denial is not just a river in Egypt!"

Dr D'Amato is a pioneer, his book displays every archaeological item, studied from museum archives
and included in his research. Including actual surviving examples of leather lorica segmintata.
& speaking of Egypt, ...

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Slytacular said:
@RC: the mosaic has also been interpreted as a depiction of the Ptolemaic soldiers or Roman-Egyptian auxiliaries.
:wink:

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RC-1136

Baron
matmohair1 said:
RC-1136 said:
a lot of this stuff isn't very scientifical. Especially D'Amato is famous for his teleological approach regarding finding evidence for his "theories".
The whole line of argument for leather Lorica Segmentata is rather flawed.

on the contrary  :cool: "Denial is not just a river in Egypt!"

Dr D'Amato is a pioneer, his book displays every archaeological item, studied from museum archives
and included in his research. Including actual surviving examples of leather lorica segmintata.
& speaking of Egypt, ...

LQFme9k.jpg

As stated in the other threads: These pieces of leather could be anything. For D'Amato it's fitting to interpret them as belonging to armour. But this isn't much more than wishful thinking. I would rather interpret them among many other historians as part of a charioteer's equipment of which we actually know (!) that it was made that way!
IMG_2267.jpg
 

RC-1136

Baron
@Amontadillo
That's what I'm talking about.

@matmohair1
Indeed. This is why we still do research in history. But we have to be aware of the methodology we use if we want to get reliable results.

Aside from academia:
This is a very interesting thread on the Roman Army Talk. It begins with an Indian manufacturer trying to sell some leather loricas on their marketplace but the following discussion is very enlightening. Most noticeable would be the contributions on the first page by Graham Sumner as well as Dan Howard - you may know his great article about mail :wink:
 

matmohair1

Marquis
M&BWBWF&SNWVC
most of the problem lies with today's manufactures
who make random leather items or movie props
based on studded biker fashion - they all show leather in a distorted
and pervasive way than what it could have been in realty. making it too common
than quilted armor and crafted in either too simplistic or too fantastical designs.

boiled leather on the other hand has been widely used
throughout the ages and is a better candidate - however,
to make things clear, the existence of such items shouldn't
give people a reason to replace all metal objects in representations with leather.
 

Scuba Steve

Master Knight
M&BWBWF&SNWVC
The problem with leather armour, is that all examples of leather armour have thicker and heavier pieces as their metallic counterparts. The fact that leather of that quality was also not cheap, does not lead me to believe that leather armour would be used in wide scale, and would not serve as an affordable alternative to an already existing metal armour.

Having a metal lorica segmentata thus ends up weighing less for the same protection, and is ultimately cheaper as well. There serves no purpose to make something like lorica segmentata out of leather.
 

matmohair1

Marquis
M&BWBWF&SNWVC
:smile: and that's why leather is probably more suited to an urban setting

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while Iron sets, are better deployed in frontier zones, where it made more sense..

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Mamlaz

Sergeant Knight at Arms
I personally had the privilege of wearing lorica segmentata and I always wonder why did they not manage to go for a more "brigandine like" design;

https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/7/77/Brigandine,_Italian,_c1470,_Royal_Armoury,_Leeds_(internal_view).JPG
http://ageofcraft.com/image/data/product/Body/Leeds/_05.jpg

Not only is it far easier to maintain and easier to repair(main reason it became so widespread in the late medieval era), but it also spreads the weight along the hips just like a medieval breastplate does, unlike the lorica seg. which basically puts most of the weight on your shoulders.

I realize massive scale production is main reason for designs simplicity, but I doubt that the torso's of Roman soldiers differed so much that they would have trouble with the armor being fitted if they just made the waist a a bit more "corset like".
 

RC-1136

Baron
Mamlaz said:
I personally had the privilege of wearing lorica segmentata and I always wonder why did they not manage to go for a more "brigandine like" design;
Maybe they didn't think of it. It's like stirrups or wheelbarrows which we also would consider to be relatively easy to invent or even the wheel itself. Even some highly developed civilisations didn't think of inventing some of those.

I personally was often surrounded by guys wearing lorica segmentata but as being a fan of mail (or scale armour) I always preferred wearing lorica hamata.
 

Mamlaz

Sergeant Knight at Arms
The laminated pauldrons on a lorica hamata seems like it would have been very widespread.

The head and shoulders are basically the only part of the body that aren't covered by the mighty defense of the scutum(which has become  very underrated as of late).

 

matmohair1

Marquis
M&BWBWF&SNWVC
Crupellarius Gladiators, Aedui Revolt, under Julius Florus
and Julius Sacrovir, suppressed by Gaius Silius
- 21 AD


"There was also a party of slaves training to be gladiators. Completely encased in iron in the national fashion,
these crupellarii, as they were called, were too clumsy for offensive purposes but impregnable in defense…
…the infantry made a frontal attack. The Gallic flanks were driven in. The iron-clad contingent caused some delay,
as their casing resisted javelins and swords. However the Romans used axes and mattocks and struck at their plating,
and its wearers like men demolishing a wall. Others knocked down the immobile gladiators with poles or pitchforks,
and, lacking the power to rise, they were left for dead.
"

Cornelius Tacitus (117 CE), Annales III:40-46
:arrow: http://penelope.uchicago.edu/Thayer/E/Roman/Texts/Tacitus/Annals/3C*.html

In AD 21, the Revolt of Florus and Sacrovir saw an army of Gallic rebels, fronted by heavily
armoured gladiators called crupellarii, march north out of Augustodunum (Autun) to take on
Roman legionaries in open battle. The armour successfully negated the pila and gladii of the
legions, but the legionaries merely resorted to their pioneer tools – axes and mattocks – to
hack their way to victory over the gladiators. Osprey - Weapon 51 - The Gladius

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Mamlaz

Sergeant Knight at Arms
Holy hell that is epic :eek:

Probably defeated  in such a manner because they lacked formation training.
 

matmohair1

Marquis
M&BWBWF&SNWVC
:grin: Single Lace, attachment variations 

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Early "imaginary  :mrgreen: interpretations" of Roman armor...

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:wink:  also added a few more fixes and updates...
 
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