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Sarmatian cavalry and infantry
Quote:Most odd. Even when you open the image first? (Forgot to mention that part, sorry). Emilio has sorted it, now, however.
Even then. I'm probably missing something quite elementary but, as you say, Emilio has sorted it out anyway.

Back to the painting itself: as a rider, what do you think of the practicality of wielding a contus while riding sidesaddle? I know that modern sidesaddles are pretty secure (generations of gentlewomen riding to hounds!) but what evidence is there, if any, for ancient sidesaddles. I know of none.
Michael King Macdona

And do as adversaries do in law, -
Strive mightily, but eat and drink as friends.
(The Taming of the Shrew: Act 1, Scene 2)
Epona, a Gallo-Celtic goddess who was as well as being a goddess of fertility was also protector of horses, donkeys, and mules. Emilio had a link to a Russian site which stated she was revered in the Roman army as the protector of military horsemen and grooms and she was often depicted riding sidesaddle in Roman times and on ancient artworks. Not surprising since a lot of Rome's cavalry was Celtic. Smile


So are these riders in an artistic sense, supposed to be Amazons, and to the artist females ride sidesaddle? I managed to get a higher resolution image out of that web page to get a closer look and the riders on the right do could be females especially one of the unhorsed riders in front of the attacking force. Just click image to get a larger preview.


Michael Kerr

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Michael Kerr
"You can conquer an empire from the back of a horse but you can't rule it from one"
There is certainly no evidence that I have seen over the years for a side ways orientated saddle. Saddle evidence is really limited to saddle covers and saddle horn re-inforcers but that is supposing the saddles for the contos user is the same (which I believe changes saddle design anyway).

As I have ridden side saddle one could possibly sit in a two or four-horned Roman saddle and hook one leg over the front horn - this is what a modern side saddle does (not quite the same in design but the principle is the same). I found myself to be very secure in a side saddle; so much so, jumping a fence did not seem ridiculous, although I did not do it. One can brace against one horn sitting sideways as one does astride. Perhaps it would be more secure and potentially, far more to the point, more balanced for the horse as well
Moi Watson

Life should NOT be a journey to the grave with the intention of arriving safely in an attractive and well preserved body, but rather to skid in sideways, Merlot in one hand, Cigar in the other; body thoroughly used up, totally worn out, and screaming "WOO HOO, what a ride!

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