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Was the Lorica REALLY polished?
#46
(SIGH)<br>
<br>
Do I have to state this again?<br>
<br>
We can't know FOR ABSOLUTE CERTAIN what kind of finish the Romans employed on their armor. We can't tell whether it was buffed to a mirror finish, or "satinized," or blacked, or blued, or pinked, or painted with red and green pokadots.<br>
<br>
However....<br>
<br>
ALL THE AVAILABLE PRIMARY EVIDENCE-- artistic, written, and whatnot-- suggests that whatever finish they employed, with was bright and shiny, not dull and dark. Those who support a blued or blackened or painted finish can't point to a single piece of primary evidence that supports their view. Their entire argument rests on "practicality"-- i.e. they didn't have the time or technology or whatever to make their armor look shiny all the time. This is the purest form of speculation.<br>
<br>
In fact, it has been amply shown time and again that, during the period the lorica segmentata was in use, Roman soldiers had an abundance of time on their hands to perform basic maintenance on their kit, which would include knocking the rust off and sanding-and-or-buffing it to a nice bright finish. To state that they had to spend all their time foraging for food is patently ridiculous-- this was the ROMAN ARMY, not a barbarian warband. Legionaries spent 90% of their time in a nice, fortified encampment. Food was provided and distributed at proper intervals, or a soldier could simply buy a sausage roll at any number of fast food stands outside the camp gate. When on the march "in country," huge amounts of food and fodder were hauled along with the baggage train and distributed among the contuburniae; when foraging was required, small foraging teams would go out, gather it up, bring it back, and distribute it. On the march, your average legionary certainly had the Roman equivalent of an MRE in his kit and could put together a nice evening meal in a minimal amount of time. Only in times of extreme crisis would a Roman army ever want for food, or have to spent an inordinant amount of time securing it.<br>
<br>
IF you want to forge-blacken and / or blue your lorica, go right ahead. You can say with perfect accuracy that this MIGHT conceivably have been the way at least SOME Romans finished their armor. Just don't say this WAS the way ALL of them did it, because modern experiments have proven yada yada yada. There is NO primary evidence for blued, blackened or painted finishes. Nada. Zip. Bagutsa. There is SOME evidence for a bright, light-colored and shiny finish. Until we find a Roman legionary frozen and perfectly preserved in an Alpine glacier, we'll just have to settle for that.<br>
<br>
T. Flavius Crispus<br>
Legio VI Victrix Pia Fidelis<br>
California, USA <p></p><i>Edited by: <A HREF=http://pub45.ezboard.com/[email protected]ytalk>FlaviusCrispus</A> <IMG HEIGHT=10 WIDTH=10 SRC="http://photos.groups.yahoo.com/group/legiovi/vwp?.dir=/Flavius+photo&.src=gr&.dnm=flavhead2.jpg" BORDER=0> at: 9/8/03 8:39 pm<br></i>
T. Flavius Crispus / David S. Michaels
Centurio Pilus Prior,
Legio VI VPF
CA, USA

"Oderint dum probent."
Tiberius
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#47
Ahh Flavius,<br>
I am talking about fire-blue, not gun blue. It is much lighter, more a grey. Anyway, why are you getting so worked up over this? I said it might be, you are getting mad... don't. I meant no argument, no offense, I am just not so sure of all the "for sure" things.<br>
<br>
I want to see more real proof. Maybe they did have time to kill, maybe not... alas, 'tis a hobby and whilst I find it interesting, it ain't my real life. <p>DECIMUS MERCATIUS VARIANUS<br>
Netscape Aim/AOL screen name: Sturmkatze<br>
<br>
Alteris renumera duplum de quoquo tibi numeraverunt.</p><i></i>
DECIMvS MERCATIvS VARIANvS
a.k.a.: Marsh Wise
Legio IX Hispana www.legioix.org

Alteris renumera duplum de quoquo tibi numeraverunt

"A fondness for power is implanted in most men, and it is natural to abuse it when acquired." -- Alexander Hamilton

"Suppose you were an idiot. And suppose you were a member of Congress.... But then I repeat myself." ~Mark Twain

[img size=150]http://www.romanobritain.org/Graphics/marsh_qr1.png[/img]
(Oooh, Marshall, you cannot use an icky modern QR code, it is against all policies and rules.)
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#48
<< I meant no argument, no offense, I am just not so sure of all the "for sure" things.<br>
<br>
I want to see more real proof. Maybe they did have time to kill, maybe not... alas, 'tis a hobby and whilst I find it interesting, it ain't my real life. >><br>
<br>
Hey, I'm not getting mad, it's just that.... WHAT PART OF "WE CAN'T BE CERTAIN" DON'T YOU UNDERSTAND?<br>
<br>
What would constitute "real proof" for you? The aformentioned frozen legionary in a pristine, rust-free lorica? Finding an intact legionary manuel with step-by-step instructions on how to get that nice, mirror finish on your lorica?<br>
<br>
At the risk of sounding like a stuck CD, we're dealing with 1,900-year-old evidence here, and no one back then thought about us poor reenactors of the future. So we have to interpret a very meager amount of evidence to the best of our ability. We can't rectroactively use our experience as reenactors to make any firm conclusions about how they did things, especially when it comes to purely aesthetic issues. Hence, a modern blacksmith's opinion about forge-blued or blackened or grayed or whatever armor has no bearing whatsoever on the kind of finishes the Romans employed on their armor. If you like the look of forge-blued or grayed or whatever armor, go ahead and use it-- no one is stopping you. It is, as they say, a free Empire.<br>
<br>
OK, I'm done.<br>
<br>
T. Flavius Crispus<br>
<br>
<p></p><i></i>
T. Flavius Crispus / David S. Michaels
Centurio Pilus Prior,
Legio VI VPF
CA, USA

"Oderint dum probent."
Tiberius
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#49
Forge blue-black-grey.... since l've seen it I know that such metal when oiled and/or waxed will shine and gleam and glint.<br>
<br>
I now know from experience how difficult it is to buff off the layer of forge bluing from iron. The more I work with the iron the more I am convinced of the protective quality and durability of the forge bluing.<br>
<br>
So far here's what I've learned:<br>
- Iron hammered into sheets comes off the anvil dark.<br>
- This darkening is rust resistent<br>
- When wax and/or oil are applied it is more resitent to rust than burnished iron that is waxed and/or oiled.<br>
- Buffing it off to create a burnished "bare metal" finish takes a certain amount of time<br>
- Buffing rusty iron with mild abrassives wears it down.<br>
<br>
The question is: "Did the Roman armor smiths buff off a protective layer?"<br>
<br>
I hope to have our first iron seg done in a few months with experiments to commence immediately.<br>
<br>
Salvete<br>
<br>
Sean Richards<br>
_________<br>
<br>
Gaius Valerius Tacitus Hibernicus, Centurio<br>
LEGIO IX HISPANA COH III EXPG CEN I HIB<br>
<br>
Vexillatio I: Los Angeles, Riverside, Orange, San Diego, Camp Pendelton<br>
Vexillatio II: Texas, Arizona, New Mexico, Colorado, Nebraska<br>
Vexillatio III: Washington, Okinawa , Northern California<br>
<br>
www.legio-ix-hispana.org<br>
<br>
619.563.5700 PST 9am- 8pm, most days<br>
<br>
<br>
<p></p><i></i>
Hibernicus

LEGIO IX HISPANA, USA

You cannot dig ditches in a toga!

[url:194jujcw]http://www.legio-ix-hispana.org[/url]
A nationwide club with chapters across N America
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#50
Oops, here we go again.<br>
When I said my Kalkriese was part forged I didnt mean to say that it was deliberately left forge blued!<br>
<br>
However, some parts were unforged mild steel as modern reconstructions and some parts deliberately forge shaped, as would have been the originals, to allow a basis for comparison. These were as it happens the parts which have, despite quite a lot of "polishing" (initially, and after several very hot and/or soggy events like Stoneleigh) retained a "black" tinge or patina, and which seem to best withstand the nasties of the British weather.<br>
<br>
As all of the original pieces appear to have been forge shaped, and obviously not made from modern mild steel sheet bent to shape, it is most probable that even when polished (as it clearly suggests from the literary sources) they may also have had a slight black patina in the shine.<br>
<br>
I do like the idea of the polka dots though - still think Lauraus Ashleyus floral would be quite fetching though - especially with a nice pink tunica (but then thats back into tunic wars again).<br>
<br>
Claudia <p></p><i></i>
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#51
Sean's post is more what I mean... I have <strong>NEVER</strong> said that fire-blue IS the <strong><em>only</em></strong> way or in fact a way, I said it might be. We are talking TWO THOUSAND YEARS AGO... who really knows. Until my comrade Magnus get's his time machine running and we can see that all Romans wore pink-painted Lorica, we shall never know.<br>
<br>
Anyway, I just feel that as reenactors, we should keep an open mind. I am not some close-minded academe who only looks at rusty bits. I DO think there is a lot to be learned from it, but what will they think 2000 years from now (assuming the big meteorite doesn't hit the Earth in 2014 and kill us all)?<br>
<br>
And oh yes, we DO need an overall Roman Reenacting Organization... it's going now, look for info on it soon.<br>
<br>
<p>DECIMUS MERCATIUS VARIANUS<br>
Netscape Aim/AOL screen name: Sturmkatze<br>
<br>
Alteris renumera duplum de quoquo tibi numeraverunt.</p><i></i>
DECIMvS MERCATIvS VARIANvS
a.k.a.: Marsh Wise
Legio IX Hispana www.legioix.org

Alteris renumera duplum de quoquo tibi numeraverunt

"A fondness for power is implanted in most men, and it is natural to abuse it when acquired." -- Alexander Hamilton

"Suppose you were an idiot. And suppose you were a member of Congress.... But then I repeat myself." ~Mark Twain

[img size=150]http://www.romanobritain.org/Graphics/marsh_qr1.png[/img]
(Oooh, Marshall, you cannot use an icky modern QR code, it is against all policies and rules.)
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#52
Salve,<br>
<br>
The appropriate way to establish an answer to questions is not to pose some assumptions and accept such gut feelings as proper evidence. It involves searching for references in the extant source material. If those provided above are not numerous enough, by all means grab the <em>Thesaurus linguae latinae</em> and look up all the others. There is plenty more available.<br>
Regards,<br>
<br>
Sander van Dorst <p></p><i></i>
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#53
Sean Richards writes:<br>
"The question is: "Did the Roman armor smiths buff off a protective layer?""<br>
<br>
No, the question is, "How is armor portrayed in Roman artwork, and/or described in Roman literature?" I think we've answered that one. Doesn't really matter how much time or effort went into making or keeping the armor shiny, that's entirely a secondary question. And don't even bother with "WHY"--that will only keep you awake at night!<br>
<br>
<br>
Decimus writes:<br>
"I just feel that as reenactors, we should keep an open mind."<br>
<br>
And I feel that we should follow the evidence at hand, and NOT drift off into speculation if it isn't necessary. If there were NO information about the finish/color of the armor, then anyone's guess or theory is as good as anyone else's. But since we do have evidence in one direction, we should stick with it. When we get EVIDENCE for something else, sure, then we'll have options.<br>
<br>
I might be able to come up with a hundred practical reasons why a curved gladius is better than a straight one, but without solid evidence, it's just fantasy.<br>
<br>
Valete,<br>
<br>
Matthew/Quintus, Legio XX <p></p><i></i>
Matthew Amt (Quintus)
Legio XX, USA
<a class="postlink" href="http://www.larp.com/legioxx/">http://www.larp.com/legioxx/
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#54
Quote:</em></strong><hr>And oh yes, we DO need an overall Roman Reenacting Organization... it's going now, look for info on it soon.<hr><br>
<br>
Amen to that brother! I shall answer that clarion call when it sounds with all that I have available! (If you know what I mean... )<br>
<br>
On this matter guys, I feel that it is <em>extremely</em> important, when it comes to matters of construction, that we follow what evidence we have to the letter, as much as possible. It has to look proper, to the best of our ability. This of course differs, when it comes to the trial and error of performing demos and such, where we can use what was written and then try it out, adjusting where necessary.<br>
<br>
Again, I must defer to Matt's advice on this one, as well as the references posted by Sander. There is no literary or artistic evidence for anything but shiny armor. Even if the armour was blackened, or blued and given a wax coat, would you, as an artist, still paint it light grey? Or white? Or as a writer, would you elude to it as being shiny? Or perhaps you would take the time to describe it as being something else? Like the main colour? On a dull, cloudy day, blued armour, waxed or not, would <strong>not</strong> appear shiny. It will look like dark armour. Give a satin finish any amount of light, and it's still light grey or better. Or tinned armour, for that matter.<br>
<br>
Remember, the armourer had many apprentices, and the legionarys had slaves. So there's more than just the individual soldier to do any buffing or cleaning. We also don't know when exactly the armour was made to shine during the production process. It could be done when it is newly hammered, before any of the accoutrements are on.<br>
<br>
Anyway, as Matt said, until we get some <em>evidence</em>, I'll stick to my satin finish.<br>
<br>
I actually really like the satin finish...so much that i've taken scotch brite pads and rubbing compound to all my metal, especially the high polished Deepeeka stuff. The pugio looks a lot more "real" now. But that's just a personal preference.<br>
<br>
<p>Magnus/Matt<br>
Legio XXX "Ulpia Victrix" Coh I<br>
<br>
"Lay your hand, or thy tongue against the greatness of Rome, and feel my wrath." - Matt Lanteigne<br>
<br>
- Number of posts: current +1248</p><i></i>
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#55
When we get several more segs done with a forge "blue" look, when the first iron seg is complete we'll photograph them mixed in with "satin finish" segs and post 'em so you can see how shiny they were.<br>
<br>
Can someone post the URL's or pics of those seg's depicted in paintings?<br>
<br>
Salvete<br>
<br>
Gaius Valerius Tacitus Hibernicus, Centurio<br>
LEGIO IX HISPANA COH III EXPG CEN I HIB<br>
<br>
Vexillatio I: Los Angeles, Riverside, Orange, San Diego, Camp Pendelton<br>
Vexillatio II: Texas, Arizona, New Mexico, Colorado, Nebraska<br>
Vexillatio III: Washington, Okinawa , Northern California<br>
<br>
www.legio-ix-hispana.org<br>
<br>
Sean Richards<br>
619.563.5700 PST 9am- 8pm, most days<br>
<br>
<br>
<br>
<br>
<p></p><i></i>
Hibernicus

LEGIO IX HISPANA, USA

You cannot dig ditches in a toga!

[url:194jujcw]http://www.legio-ix-hispana.org[/url]
A nationwide club with chapters across N America
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#56
Shiny or not, the base colour is what is important. Blued armour, is.......blued! A satin finish on metal is a lot different in <strong>colour</strong> than blued/blackened armour, which is the point here. It's the artistic depictions which must be taken into account, as well as the literary. Go back and read the references to the sources; not one mentions anything to do with black, or blued armour.<br>
<br>
You don't see the gladius blades being kept black from the forge do you? As per sander's reference:<br>
<br>
Onasander, 28<br>
<br>
<em>Menelèmenon d'estoo tooi strategooi lampron ektattein to strateuma tois hoplois, rhadia d' hè phrontis hautè parakalesanti ta xiphè thègein kai tas korythas kai tous thoorakas smèchein: deinoteroi gar hoi epiontes phainontai lochoi tois toon hoploon aithygmasi, kai polla ta di' opseoos deimata proempiptonta tais psychais tarattei to antipolemon.</em><br>
<br>
'It must be imperative for the general to deploy the army <strong>shining through its arms</strong>, an easy matter by ordering to <strong>sharpen swords and to clean the helmets</strong> and the body armours: for the advancing units appear more terrible by the <strong>shine of arms</strong>, and the intimidating sights that strike preemptively in their minds shock the enemy'<br>
<br>
C'mon guys, a little common sense goes a long way here. I have more than a shadow of doubt, that a battle being fought at a time of day when there is little light, or overcast conditions, that blackened or blued armour, regardless of it's finish, will "Shine".<br>
<p></p><i></i>
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#57
Quote:</em></strong><hr>You don't see the gladius blades being kept black from the forge do you?<hr><br>
<br>
How do _I_ know?? Have you ever SEEN a real gladius in minty condition?? <p>DECIMUS MERCATIUS VARIANUS<br>
Netscape Aim/AOL screen name: Sturmkatze<br>
<br>
Alteris renumera duplum de quoquo tibi numeraverunt.</p><i></i>
DECIMvS MERCATIvS VARIANvS
a.k.a.: Marsh Wise
Legio IX Hispana www.legioix.org

Alteris renumera duplum de quoquo tibi numeraverunt

"A fondness for power is implanted in most men, and it is natural to abuse it when acquired." -- Alexander Hamilton

"Suppose you were an idiot. And suppose you were a member of Congress.... But then I repeat myself." ~Mark Twain

[img size=150]http://www.romanobritain.org/Graphics/marsh_qr1.png[/img]
(Oooh, Marshall, you cannot use an icky modern QR code, it is against all policies and rules.)
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#58
Mmmmmm...Minty-Fresh Gladius....mmmmm.<br>
<br>
Sorry, had to. Was getting a bit heavy in this thread for me.<br>
Scaevola <p></p><i></i>
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#59
"How do _I_ know?? Have you ever SEEN a real gladius in minty condition?? "<br>
<br>
No, but the guys who described them and painted pictures of them had. Do you want to assume that ALL of them are lying to us? Or just incompetent?<br>
<br>
We can't prove that the Romans didn't wear swim fins and tutus, either. Heck, at this point, since the artwork, literature, and archeology are all so obviously dubious, we can't even prove that the ROMANS existed! If you want to do whatever you want until someone presents enough proof to change your mind, that ain't history. Sorry, Marsh.<br>
<br>
Vale,<br>
<br>
Matthew/Quintus <p></p><i></i>
Matthew Amt (Quintus)
Legio XX, USA
<a class="postlink" href="http://www.larp.com/legioxx/">http://www.larp.com/legioxx/
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#60
Quote:</em></strong><hr> No, but the guys who described them and painted pictures of them had. Do you want to assume that ALL of them are lying to us? Or just incompetent? <hr><br>
<br>
No, not at all, but from what I've read, quite a LOT of this art was done a couple of hundred years later, yes? I know you also do RevWar, so you tell me, how much artwork and stuff about RevWar is wrong today and that's what, only 228 years ago?? I am not calling these original sources liars, I am saying that alll of this is a perhaps, you are saying it is an absolutely NOT...<br>
<br>
Hell, in relaity, has anybody ever even found a complete set of Lorica?? I think the finds from Kalkriese are fascinating... I really DO wish they'd find some Roman soldier that fell into a bog somewhere...<br>
<br>
Anyway, isn't reenacting more experimental archeology? I have always considered it thus and if you do, you try new and different things to see if it works. Academia is way too hidebound... If I only wanted to know what "scholars" thought, I'd just read the books and not reenact. <p>DECIMUS MERCATIUS VARIANUS<br>
Netscape Aim/AOL screen name: Sturmkatze<br>
<br>
Alteris renumera duplum de quoquo tibi numeraverunt.</p><i></i>
DECIMvS MERCATIvS VARIANvS
a.k.a.: Marsh Wise
Legio IX Hispana www.legioix.org

Alteris renumera duplum de quoquo tibi numeraverunt

"A fondness for power is implanted in most men, and it is natural to abuse it when acquired." -- Alexander Hamilton

"Suppose you were an idiot. And suppose you were a member of Congress.... But then I repeat myself." ~Mark Twain

[img size=150]http://www.romanobritain.org/Graphics/marsh_qr1.png[/img]
(Oooh, Marshall, you cannot use an icky modern QR code, it is against all policies and rules.)
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