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Full Version: R. D\'Amato & A. Salimbeti, Bronze Age Warrior
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Salve,
has anyone read this book from Osprey on the Eastern Mediterranean Bronze Age Warrior 1600-1100 BC?
I skimmed through it while at Barnes and Noble, admired mr Rava illustratrative plates - although I think there are errors when comes to the 'Bronze Age' bits (metal or organic parts of the bridle inside and around the horse's mouth) shown in these fine, colorful and spirited images. Three plates depict chariot horses (and one ridden horse in one of them) and I read the text about these plates, had no time to read the rest. In the bibliography no reference to mr Azzaroli (finest book on the ancient mounted warfare, at times a bit dated perhaps) or dr Anthony and his wife Dorcas Brown on the chariot warfare and horses etc on the Bronze Age, but there was reference to Littauer et al work on the chariots (very fine work indeed).
Obviously the depiction of a mounted warrior armed with spear and sword, and protected by a large shield, cuirass and helmet astride a riding horses covered with a shabraque must be very controversial, but perhaps not improbable around 1200-1100 BC in Greece and Anatolia, in some proximity to the warrior horse-ridding cultures of the Eurasian steppe.
I found no discussion on horses and horse training in this book, but then I just skimmed through.
Any thoughts, good gents?
Khaire!

I got this book recently as a gift (Thanks, Richard!), and I like it. I fully expected from the start to disagree with some of the interpretations, being acquainted with D'Amato's and Andrea Salimbeti's work. And I did disagree with some of it, but it was really hard for me to figure out why! I realize the limitations of the evidence, and I fully agree that leather/rawhide and linen armor were used, but I'm still a little uncomfortable with how all the pieces were put together. Not that I can come up with better explanations all the time, mind you! And not in every case, of course. But when you see some of the very fragmentary stick-figure images that some of the reconstructions are based on, you may get the same skeptical feeling. (I'm still not even sure that one particular fragment they show even depicts a man, much less a warrior!)

One of the aspects of the book that is both good and bad is the large number of times that they mention a find that I've never heard of before! Geez, I thought I was interested in this stuff... Good because now I know that stuff has been found, bad because there aren't enough PICTURES of it, nor even more details! Some details in some cases, let me be fair, but occasionally the descriptions are a little hard to follow, and I can't help thinking their interpretation may be off. It's the nature of an Osprey book, I know! Just can't help wanting MORE...

Oh, it's chock full of Linear B! Just about any weapon or social/military rank comes with its Linear B equivalent, very cool. Learn how to speak Mycenaean!

I'm a little dubious of the chariot typology. Again, much of it seems to be based on VERY stylized tiny artwork. And again, that's the nature of a typology. I'm not sure the chariot types translated into the color reconstructions very well--they look kinda boxy and bulky. And the role of chariot archery is downplayed.

Naturally the dates are all the old "high" dates, but I expected that. The low chronology will win out eventually, but we have several generations of entrenched academia to overcome. And of course a lot of people aren't even familiar with the problem. No biggy, just chop 300 years off all the dates.

Overall, it's a heck of a lot better than they previous Osprey on the Bronze Age! Many new good tidbits, and thoroughly informative and well-executed artwork.

Enjoy!

Matthew