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Attic-Chalcidian Helmet by Jeffrey Hildebrandt
#1
This was my latest project - an Attic-Chalcidian helmet like those worn by Athena in some contemporary depictions. Following the Athena theme, it was decorated with Pegasus, the head of Medusa, and a crown of olive branches. It was raised from 8% tin bronze, decorated by repoussé into pitch, and was hand polished. The helmet was fitted with a wooden crest box, which the helmet's owner will be completing. Hopefully, she will update this post with photos when the helmet is lined and properly adorned.

I have published an article on my blog describing the process of building the helmet, for those interested. More photos can be found on my Flickr photostream.

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#2
I think this is a fantastic helmet. If I had the money I would like to order one right away. What makes this helmet special (in fact all helmets of this period) is the balance between the aesthtetics and functionality, which got lost somehow, in my opinion, with the influence of the celtic helmets of the northern Italy. One more thing which is very important is the fact that you can imagine by looking the lines of this helmet that it would have been very fitting to an actual human head.
Virilis / Jyrki Halme
PHILODOX
Moderator
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#3
That is a fantastic helmet and a tremendous work of art indeed.
Brian Stobbs
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#4
Also for those with a deep desire to have something linked to the past, Jeffrey is using actual tin/copper bronze with a tin content closer to the original than typical phos. bronze. This adds a unique level of accuracy for those interested in such things. Good quality "commercial bronze," a low zinc brass in fact, replicates the look of ancient bronze quite well, but at the end of the day it's still brass not bronze.
Joe Balmos
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#5
Jeff, is it a combination of these two helmets?

[attachment=11924]35-H_1.jpg[/attachment]

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Congratulations for the result, in every respect!
What i find interesting in these helmets is that all of them come from Italy, despite the fact that their earlier representations come from Attica and date to the 6th century bc, whereas most of the Italian helmets date to the 4th century bc. Attic art, even the Parthenon itself continue to represent it as one of the most frequent helmets, but i have seen none of them in the arhceological record in mainland Greece.
Khaire
Giannis


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Giannis K. Hoplite
a.k.a.:Giannis Kadoglou
a.k.a.:Thorax
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#6
Definitely that first one, from the White-Levy collection, and also this one:

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I had noticed the same thing about the distribution of extant finds. Thanks for your thoughts, as usual!
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#7
A true work of art....beautiful.
Phil McKay
Illustrator
http://www.philmckay.com
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#8
What i find interesting in these helmets is that all of them come from Italy, despite the fact that their earlier representations come from Attica and date to the 6th century bc, whereas most of the Italian helmets date to the 4th century bc. Attic art, even the Parthenon itself continue to represent it as one of the most frequent helmets, but i have seen none of them in the archeological record in mainland Greece.
Khaire
Giannis


Giannis is correct (when is he not?) regarding the lack of a clear archeological record in mainland Greece for these helmets. When we add to that the confusing manner of naming ancient Greek helmets from find spots rather than where we now know they were developed (Illyrian and Thracian helmets come to mind) the average museum visitor can leave the Greek galleries more confused than when he/she entered.

So many artifacts are listed with Italy as the source that more than once a student has informed me that he/she made the "startling" discovery that it was Southern Italy that influenced Mainland Greece rather than the other way around. Of course burial customs play a huge role in what fills up our museums as well as the nature and usage of metals, and the desires of looters to take only the most valuable objects for resale.

Museums should inform the public that the artifact record can inform as well as distort our understanding of the past. What we have is just a small sliver of the material culture available to the ancients. Using other sources as Giannis does, artistic and architectural, will provide a broader understanding, but at the same time the question lingers about why so very few Chalcidian helmets have survived when the artistic record abounds in such helmets.

Was it just an artistic convention?
Joe Balmos
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