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specifics in Spear fighting combat
#31
There is quite a difference between hoplomachia and what can be done in the phalanx. On another thread I warned against trying to extrapolate moves from small units to the phalanx. This is one the the groups I was thinking of. Slide 4 is good, but slide 14 unlikely with ranks behind you.

http://www.apittman.com/west/hslides.shtml
Paul M. Bardunias
MODERATOR: [url:2dqwu8yc]http://www.romanarmytalk.com/rat/viewtopic.php?t=4100[/url]
A Spartan, being asked a question, answered "No." And when the questioner said, "You lie," the Spartan said, "You see, then, that it is stupid of you to ask questions to which you already know the answer!"
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#32
I would agree, Paul. Groups and techniques like that have little or nothing to tell us about either Phalanx warfare, or Hoplomachia Sad roll:
"dulce et decorum est pro patria mori " - Horace, ODES
(It is a sweet and proper thing to die for ones country)

"No son-of-a-bitch ever won a war by dying for his country. He won it by making the other poor dumb bastard die for his country" -GeorgeC Scott as General George S. Patton
Paullus Scipio/Paul McDonnell-Staff
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#33
Yes of course,but the point here is I think that the sauroter was taking the point of balance rather backwards. This is the case with my spear,too. So much that I was a bit concerned about it at first. But I have seen representation so far that show the spear being held back,or the grip being very low,like in the Achilles vase.
http://i118.photobucket.com/albums/o118 ... and-me.jpg
http://i118.photobucket.com/albums/o118 ... C02477.jpg
My grip is even lower than the Achilles' one,but my spear is also shorter in comparison with my hight.
I don't know if this is better for tight formations. On the one hand,one would say that the shorter the part behind the grip, the better to avoid injuries of the rear ranks. On the other hand,the spear may had been held in a slight angle. And in this case it's even safer to have a long shaft,bringing the sauroter well over the rear rank's heads. Any opinions?
Khairete
Giannis


PS. Paul B. I have sent you a PM.
Giannis K. Hoplite
a.k.a.:Giannis Kadoglou
a.k.a.:Thorax
[Image: -side-1.gif]
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#34
Quote:On the one hand,one would say that the shorter the part behind the grip, the better to avoid injuries of the rear ranks. On the other hand,the spear may had been held in a slight angle. And in this case it's even safer to have a long shaft,bringing the sauroter well over the rear rank's heads. Any opinions?

If you wanted to make the fastest stabbing, most handy spear you could design, it would have a weight just behind the grip like a pommel equal to the weight of the spear sticking out in front of your hand. The reason is that there is no need to sweep a long length of wood through the air resistance behind you. This design is impractical due to the fact that the rear portion of the spear gains in counterbalance from a lever effect with added length. Both ends of the spear can be thought of as levers meeting at your fist.

So the balance point is probably a compromise to give you the maximum reach for any given total weight of spear. This could be tested.
Paul M. Bardunias
MODERATOR: [url:2dqwu8yc]http://www.romanarmytalk.com/rat/viewtopic.php?t=4100[/url]
A Spartan, being asked a question, answered "No." And when the questioner said, "You lie," the Spartan said, "You see, then, that it is stupid of you to ask questions to which you already know the answer!"
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#35
Hi Paul,

Quote:IIRC there is one showing a later Hoplite fending off an Amazon/Persian cavalryman with such a dory

If dory was a generic word for spear, does this infantry spear have a specific name? I mean, it's clearly not a sarissa, obviously. If Roman authors would have this spear in mind when referring to a hasta, would you say they're using the right word?

Btw, this image is what I have in mind when thinking of the infantry kontos - a long thrusting/stabbing spear between 7ft. and 9ft. long, shorter than the cavalry kontos of course.
Robert Vermaat
MODERATOR
FECTIO Late Romans
THE CAUSE OF WAR MUST BE JUST
(Maurikios-Strategikon, book VIII.2: Maxim 12)
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#36
Oh, dear Robert! I think you are on the wrong thread..... :lol: :lol: :lol:

I can't think off-hand of a specific word for the Hoplites "spear".....it was just "spear" = dory

And I think Hasta was often used as a translation but the two words were not quite synonymous.

"infantry kontos" ? What is that? AFIK, there is no such thing ( and I am reasonably certain until at least until 200AD or later...) - can you produce some unequivocal evidence for such a thing ? :?
"dulce et decorum est pro patria mori " - Horace, ODES
(It is a sweet and proper thing to die for ones country)

"No son-of-a-bitch ever won a war by dying for his country. He won it by making the other poor dumb bastard die for his country" -GeorgeC Scott as General George S. Patton
Paullus Scipio/Paul McDonnell-Staff
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#37
I think interpretations of kontos are in the Byzantine section.

Kind regards
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#38
Hi Paul,

Quote: I can't think off-hand of a specific word for the Hoplites "spear".....it was just "spear" = dory
And I think Hasta was often used as a translation but the two words were not quite synonymous.
I know, I was just checking if such a name even existed.

Quote:"infantry kontos" ? What is that? AFIK, there is no such thing ( and I am reasonably certain until at least until 200AD or later...) - can you produce some unequivocal evidence for such a thing ? :?
Just a description, based on several examples. You have asked about unequivocal evidence before, which of course can't be preented for just about any question regarding description of any ancient weapon.
But as I've written at least twice before, we hear from several author that they use the word kontos or contus with regards to a spear used by the infantry. To which you usually reply that ít must be a pilum, without providing that unequivocal evidence yourself. :wink:

But to return to the thread, this might be just a like the one I have in mind. It's clearly a thrusting spear (therefore not a pilum), clearly longer than the multi-purpose lancea, meant for one-handed use (therefore not a sarissa or a cavalry contus).

But several sources still write about a kontos or contus in the hands of heavy infantry, who clearly use this weapon as well as hold a shield. Hence the modernism 'infantry kontos', which describes just what it is: a one-handed thrusting spear longer than the pilum or the lancea, and of which we have several descriptions as well as artistic representations, like the one shown in this thread.

And yes, I'm in the right thread, for I was enquiring after a possible Greek name for what I see.

[Image: t_tn_gk_hoplite_v_cavalry_110.jpg]
Robert Vermaat
MODERATOR
FECTIO Late Romans
THE CAUSE OF WAR MUST BE JUST
(Maurikios-Strategikon, book VIII.2: Maxim 12)
[Image: artgroepbutton.jpg]
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#39
Quote:I think interpretations of kontos are in the Byzantine section.
There are, but not only there.
Robert Vermaat
MODERATOR
FECTIO Late Romans
THE CAUSE OF WAR MUST BE JUST
(Maurikios-Strategikon, book VIII.2: Maxim 12)
[Image: artgroepbutton.jpg]
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#40
Hi Paul,

Quote:Robert,
Do you know where the late roman spears were balanced to be held? Assuming the dory and the later spear had similar weighted points, which I do not know, the sauroter would shift the balance point back quite a bit. I've heard a number of times that they may have tapered as well, but I'm not sure what that is based on.

Sorry but no, I've never seen such information. Stephenson assumed I think that his long infantry spear was point-heavy, hence his solution of the high underarm grip.
Robert Vermaat
MODERATOR
FECTIO Late Romans
THE CAUSE OF WAR MUST BE JUST
(Maurikios-Strategikon, book VIII.2: Maxim 12)
[Image: artgroepbutton.jpg]
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#41
The butt spike can act as a counter weight when it has almost the same weight as the spear point.
A least it brings the spear a bit in balance when used single handed.
Otherwise the highest weight is only at one point.
As we know from practice/training.
Regards

Garrelt
-----------------------------------------------------
Living History Group Teuxandrii
Taberna Germanica
Numerus I Exploratores Teuxandrii (Pedites et Equites)
Ludus Gladiatorii Gunsula
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#42
From my experiance,the butt spike is usually a lot heavier than the spear point,being cast bronze. So it brings the point of balance back. However there were iron butt spikes as well as very small bronze ones,and also very many different sizes on the spear point. So no specific relation between the butt and point.
Khaire
Giannis
Giannis K. Hoplite
a.k.a.:Giannis Kadoglou
a.k.a.:Thorax
[Image: -side-1.gif]
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#43
If you refer to the large bronze pointed butt spike, the i see what you mean.
Is this also used for putting the spear ferm in the ground in a defencive stand, to make a strong spear/shield wall?

We use light spears (javalins) for single handed spear fights.
So the difference in opinion and expieriance could be laying in the fact that we use a different kind of spear.
Regards

Garrelt
-----------------------------------------------------
Living History Group Teuxandrii
Taberna Germanica
Numerus I Exploratores Teuxandrii (Pedites et Equites)
Ludus Gladiatorii Gunsula
Jomsborg Elag Hrafntrae
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#44
Quote:If you refer to the large bronze pointed butt spike, the i see what you mean.
Is this also used for putting the spear ferm in the ground in a defencive stand, to make a strong spear/shield wall?

Garrelt,

If by this you mean bracing the point of the butt-spike in the ground the way a 16th centruy pikeman would do, then no, the Greeks did not do this.

Men in the rear ranks of a hoplite phalanx could benfit by placing this in the ground like a staff to aid in stability and allow the right arm to be used in pushing.
Paul M. Bardunias
MODERATOR: [url:2dqwu8yc]http://www.romanarmytalk.com/rat/viewtopic.php?t=4100[/url]
A Spartan, being asked a question, answered "No." And when the questioner said, "You lie," the Spartan said, "You see, then, that it is stupid of you to ask questions to which you already know the answer!"
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#45
That is what i mean.
I was more thinking in making a hedgehog like defense.
I have seen this happen by re-eanactors in a battle completely natural without any knowledge about ancient fighting techniques.
They just got in a defensive stand and put all their weight in the front ranks to support the front ranks.
Locking their shields and putting the spear butts in the ground.
Regards

Garrelt
-----------------------------------------------------
Living History Group Teuxandrii
Taberna Germanica
Numerus I Exploratores Teuxandrii (Pedites et Equites)
Ludus Gladiatorii Gunsula
Jomsborg Elag Hrafntrae
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