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How To.. wear the Pugio and Gladius (belts, fasteners)
#1
Quote:Where the devil did anyone ever get the idea that a waistbelt goes thro' a baldric strap, with the sword fixed rigid low down on the hip like a Texas gunslinger. I think it stems from the idea that no one is truely aware why a scabbard has four rings on it, and that was the easy way to figure it out without even thinking.

Brian, I recently got one of these and, although speculative, it really does the job. The hooks utilise all four rings.
http://armillum.com/tienda/index.php?ma ... cts_id=474

I make no claims to its accuracy, but it is an intriguing thought. :wink: The adjustable length means it can be changed for use with and without armour.

As for baldrics, we do see them on infantry tombstones, seemingly when only a single belt is worn. The dual belt system seems to show the scabbard attached directly to the un-aproned belt with an exception here ( http://www.romanarmy.com/cms/component/ ... Itemid,94/ ). I'm talking about a 1st-C AD context.
http://www.romanarmy.com/cms/component/ ... Itemid,94/
http://www.romanarmy.com/cms/component/ ... Itemid,94/

That said, I also also can't stand seeing belts and scabbards slung low like John Wayne would wear them. Belts cross the belly button, sword pommel nearly level with the armpit.
TARBICvS/Jim Bowers
A A A DESEDO DESEDO!
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#2
The sword pommel should be in the region of the armpit Jim, that's why I say that it appears no one has ever truely considered the baldric. I had a picture that I now cannot put my hand on, this showed a set of beltplates that were found at Chichester where one plate has a ring on it. This is where my theory is that a balric only went from top ring to top ring, with a separate strap going from a bottom ring on the scabbard to such a ring on a beltplate. The ESG have for years now shown a stupid system of the waistbelt going thro' the badric that puts the sword low on the hip that can't be correct.
Brian Stobbs
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#3
Quote:this showed a set of beltplates that were found at Chichester where one plate has a ring on it.


Pictures in this thread..
http://www.romanarmy.com/rat/viewtopic. ... 888#211888

The ring could be for other purposes than sword suspension, but is a reasonable suggestion. The plates are of a type in use during the aerly second Century. As there is only a single plate with a ring it is difficult to surmise its true purpose.

It could have been for a decorative terminal like these plates for example and nothing to do with the suspension of a sword..
[Image: LEGBELT.jpg]
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#4
Brian, I have passed my belt through the baldric, and the pommel is at armpit height! Actually helps stop the belt dropping! 8) But itrequires the correct length, or as Jim has mentioned, an adjustable baldric.
But there seem to be representations in later images of what you are describing. At least it looks that way to me..
Visne partem mei capere? Comminus agamus! * Me semper rogo, Quid faceret Iulius Caesar? * Confidence is a good thing! Overconfidence is too much of a good thing.
[b]Legio XIIII GMV. (Q. Magivs)RMRS Remember Atuatuca! Vengence will be ours!
Titus Flavius Germanus
Batavian Coh I
Byron Angel
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#5
Quote:I have to ask where people mention the xxth hand book, just which xxth are they refering to. For in my opinion there is no one who can lay down any hard and fast rules in the re-enactment game. There is one group a xxth who put forward the idea many years ago of the Baldric Strap, that has been blindly followed by most groups and is a load of nonsence. Where the devil did anyone ever get the idea that a waistbelt goes thro' a baldric strap, with the sword fixed rigid low down on the hip like a Texas gunslinger. I think it stems from the idea that no one is truely aware why a scabbard has four rings on it, and that was the easy way to figure it out without even thinking.

Matt Amt's Legio XX of course...it's the only one to my knowledge that has a Legionary Handbook. My post specifically stated that the 20th's handbook in conjunction with RAT would give a person an accurate answer to whatever it is they are looking for.

Also, the "idea" of the baldric strap as Jim posted is quite suitable for soldiers wearing ONE belt. I've also yet to see anyone wearing it low...it just doesn't work. Especially with a segmentata. My pommel is always bumping my upper bicep.

As an aside, pugiones always have 4 rings, but ALL the evidence shows the top two being used....

Quote:The sword pommel should be in the region of the armpit Jim, that's why I say that it appears no one has ever truely considered the baldric. I had a picture that I now cannot put my hand on, this showed a set of beltplates that were found at Chichester where one plate has a ring on it. This is where my theory is that a balric only went from top ring to top ring, with a separate strap going from a bottom ring on the scabbard to such a ring on a beltplate. The ESG have for years now shown a stupid system of the waistbelt going thro' the badric that puts the sword low on the hip that can't be correct.

If the sword is that high, then the rings are going to way above the belt...so what do you attach it to? Do you have a picture of your theory? Even if only the top rings are used....I dunno, maybe I just wear my belt high on my seg.

Sorry, not to highjack the thread...I think Sean's post was pretty spot-on. A consensus with some variation is the best thing you can hope to accomplish...too many groups out there with their own ideas (which is good).
____________________________________________________________
Magnus/Matt
LEGIO II AVG COH VIII
It amazes me how quickly stupid people are out-breeding the smart ones.

"The greatest impediment of all is the square-jawed, flat-talking Tatum, who is so wooden he presents a fire hazard." - The Toronto Star on Channing Tatum in "The Eagle".

"I am on a drug. It\'s called Charlie Sheen. If you try it once, you will die. Your face will melt off and your children will weep over your exploded body" - Charlie Sheen
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#6
Actually I just looked at the pics of me on my website...half the sword IS way too low, half it's up where it should be. Something to be mindful of that's for sure...I think it depends on where my balteus gets attached to my seggie...
____________________________________________________________
Magnus/Matt
LEGIO II AVG COH VIII
It amazes me how quickly stupid people are out-breeding the smart ones.

"The greatest impediment of all is the square-jawed, flat-talking Tatum, who is so wooden he presents a fire hazard." - The Toronto Star on Channing Tatum in "The Eagle".

"I am on a drug. It\'s called Charlie Sheen. If you try it once, you will die. Your face will melt off and your children will weep over your exploded body" - Charlie Sheen
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#7
Quote:The sword pommel should be in the region of the armpit Jim, that's why I say that it appears no one has ever truely considered the baldric...
Yes, we did 8) My baldric is intentionally short so that the sword hangs high. The baldric only goes from the top ring to the top ring, and the sword does not go anywhere at all during the movement. I cannot afford that, having my both hands occupied with the signum Smile
Quote:This is where my theory is that a balric only went from top ring to top ring, with a separate strap going from a bottom ring on the scabbard to such a ring on a beltplate. The ESG have for years now shown a stupid system of the waistbelt going thro' the badric that puts the sword low on the hip that can't be correct.
Notice that I do not wear belt at all. I think the point of having the sword higher up is to prevents it from moving around, and no other straps/rings are necessary. This is not to say that no one had them.
M. CVRIVS ALEXANDER
(Alexander Kyrychenko)
LEG XI CPF

quando omni flunkus, mortati
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#8
Quote:As for the 4 suspension loops - ....
.... it could just as well be the manufactures of Gladii were making the scabbards with all 4 loops and leaving it up to the individual soldier to decide how he's going to suspend his sword and how many loops to use.
I personally feel you just hit the nail on the head.
TARBICvS/Jim Bowers
A A A DESEDO DESEDO!
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#9
I think maybe I should try another way to find out if I can get into some heads, can anyone out there tell me what a cast ring is doing on a beltplate (ie it's function) I would also add what I mentioned earlier Please don't say for money bag.
Brian Stobbs
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#10
Quote:I think maybe I should try another way to find out if I can get into some heads, can anyone out there tell me what a cast ring is doing on a beltplate (ie it's function) I would also add what I mentioned earlier Please don't say for money bag.

Hoo, could have any number of uses, but a lot would depend on just where on the belt such a plate is found. Have any been found in situ, or near enough to get an idea?

--Sword scabbard suspension (my first guess would be without a shoulder baldric)
--Decorative dangly
--If it's actually on the TOP edge of the plate, stick one of the lorica laces through it to hold the belt up--or hook it over a hook on the lorica, as on the Stillfried cuirass
--Belt apron suspension of some sort
--For making the soldier say "What's this little ring for on my belt?"...

Okay, the last one's a stretch, but it could be something we haven't thought of. On the whole, I'd lean towards scabbard suspension, assuming there are two of them, on the bottom edge of the belt. But there IS that hook on the Stillfried girdle plates...

John, I can easily add more links to RAT, though there is one already on the main page, and a few more scattered here and there on specific topics. I'll put it on my "to do" list!

Matthew
Matthew Amt (Quintus)
Legio XX, USA
<a class="postlink" href="http://www.larp.com/legioxx/">http://www.larp.com/legioxx/
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#11
Brian seems to think the Guard wear their gladii swinging low.
I had a look at our pics and this is not the case . In most cases the pommel is under the armpit with a varying degree of angle.

I agree nobody knows how baldrick and belt interacted but looking at the variety each man would probably come to his own conclusions and inevitably if it works others would imitate.

Most of us do pass the belt through the baldric if we wear a baldric but there is no rule to say that is how it is to be done. In practice this arrangement means that when you are called to draw and scabbard the gladius it is there when you reach for it and you can see the top of the scabbard to get the point of the gladius in.

It works so I for one see no reason to change it.
Quod imperatum fuerit facimus et ad omnem tesseram parati erimus
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#12
I would of thought that where a ring on a beltplate is considered for anchoring a gladius scabbard with a seperate strap coming from a lower ring on the scabbard, most would consider it to be at the centre rear of the belt and logic would also say it was at the bottom of the plate.
Brian Stobbs
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#13
That's if the belt is worn in such a way that the rings facilitate the sword resting high enough on the body...
____________________________________________________________
Magnus/Matt
LEGIO II AVG COH VIII
It amazes me how quickly stupid people are out-breeding the smart ones.

"The greatest impediment of all is the square-jawed, flat-talking Tatum, who is so wooden he presents a fire hazard." - The Toronto Star on Channing Tatum in "The Eagle".

"I am on a drug. It\'s called Charlie Sheen. If you try it once, you will die. Your face will melt off and your children will weep over your exploded body" - Charlie Sheen
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#14
I would like to know just how a gladius cannot be swinging low when the waistbelt is passed thro' such a crazy designed baldric that splits and goes to a top and bottom ring on the scabbard. Indeed I would also like some one to show me the actual Roman evidence that such a Roman Baldric design.
Brian Stobbs
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#15
In Civwar its called hiking up your traps.... things that hang loose and low bang around, get fouled with other gear, and slow you down when moving. High and tight keeps everything where it is supposed to be, so when you reach for it, it is there, not tripping you.

My pugio has four straps, one to each ring, while perhaps not "perfect" by some standards, the second set of rings makes sure I do not lose my $700 pugio while tramping about at Lafe!! Even a well paid Roman soldier would have recognized the importance of a back up strap (Idiot Strap) here and there... tombstone or not (I know some of you disagree, have to agree to play well together anyway). How much did a fancy pugio cost in Denarii in 73 AD?

Personally my baldric rides under the belt. No matter what I do, my scabbard never moves. I can draw my sword in the dark without taking a fatal second to look for it, or having it trip me as I get into formation because it has slid around somewhere impertinent or unreachable.

These are "practicality assumptions" I am making. While I cannot have the mind of a Roman soldier, I can look at the gear and say "I think it works best this way...." and they had 16-25 plus years to figure it out!

Every group, even those that play well together, have differences in emphasis and standards. Pandora's box
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