Thread Rating:
  • 0 Vote(s) - 0 Average
  • 1
  • 2
  • 3
  • 4
  • 5
Greaves of Hair
According to Liddell and Scott the ancient Greeks used the word PILOS to describe hair or felt (or anything made of felt) and provide plenty of examples to support this. Modern Greek may have a different definition which doesn't really help in this instance. ... 3D%2383166
pilos , ho,

A. wool or hair wrought into felt, used as a lining for helmets, Il.10.265 ; for shoes, Hes.Op.542, cf. Pl.Smp.220b, Luc.Rh.Pr.15; but tên tôn oikeiôn pilôn genesin, playfully, of the human hair, Pl.Lg. 942e.

II. anything made of felt, esp. close-fitting cap, Hes.Op.546, Arist.GA785a27, AP6.90 (Phil.), etc.; pilous tiaras phoreontes wearing turbans for caps, Hdt.3.12; anti tôn p. mitrêphoroi êsan Id.7.62 , cf. 61,92 ; piloi tois dêmosiois IG22.1672.70 ; p. leukos ib.5(1).1390.13 (Andania, i B. C.); of various fashions, p. Arkadikos Polyaen.4.14 ; Lakônikos Poll.1.149 ; Makedonikos, = kausia, Id.10.162 ; p. chalkous a brazen cap, i. e. helmet, Ar.Lys.562 ; of the apex worn by Roman flamines, D.H.2.64 (pl.).

2. felt shoe, leukous hupo possin echôn p. Cratin.100.

3. felt cloth, used for carpets, mats, tents, etc., Hdt. 4.23,73,75, Hp.Aër.18 (pl.), cf. X.Cyr.5.5.7, Aen.Tact.33.3 (pl.), etc.; for horse-cloths, Plu.Art.11.

4. felt cuirass, jerkin, Th.4.34.

III. amadou, Polyporus igniarius, Thphr.HP3.7.4.

b. embryo of Nelumbium, ib.4.8.7.

2. ball, sphairizousa pilôi Suid. Hist.(FHGiip.464)Fr.2.

IV. = Lat. pilus, as in primus pilus, Suid. (Cf. Lat. pilleus.)
Author: Bronze Age Military Equipment, Pen & Sword Books
The above suggests that the word PILOS was also used by Thucydides [4.34] to describe a jerkin or felt cuirass. Does anyone know more about this? From what I can tell Thucydides is using PILOS (HOI PILOI) to denote felt caps, not armour in this passage.
Author: Bronze Age Military Equipment, Pen & Sword Books
The term used by Xenophon and Thukidides is SPOLLAS.
But I have my doubts if it was made of felt.
I have seen thick felt garments thet might resist arroes as layered linen did.
But I have my doubts if felt was used during the campaigning season in the Mediteranean.
A member in the Roman history thread has suggested use of felt on shileds which in my opinion might be more plausuble.
Belive me: wool especialy felt in the hot Greek summer is extemely uncomfortable.
Especially if you sweat in it during a battle.

Isichios talks of PILIMA = compressed material.
Is there a chance that armoring eas not done with the use of wool, but some other material? Please let me have your opinions.
Kind regards
My version of Thucydides [4.34.3] says this: gar hoi piloi estegon ta toxeumata, doratia te enapekeklasto ballomenôn, eichon te.

Translation according to J. R. Dent. "their caps would not keep out the arrows, darts had broken off in the armour of the wounded."

I can't find any variant of SPOLLAS in the above sentence. Unless Thucydides wrote two different versions of the Peloponnesian War or the version I have was not written by Thucydides, then he uses PILOS to describe felt caps. Can you provide a reference to where he uses SPOLLAS?
Author: Bronze Age Military Equipment, Pen & Sword Books
In the padded armor thread in the Roman section there are several ancient accounts of felted wool body armor. There is no reason why a linen undergarment wouldn't be worn under felt armor. Multiple layers of linen would be similarly "hot" in the mediterranean summer. I suspect felt armor was common in cultures that were primarily nomads/shepherds who could make their armor from their own animal resources, and linen armor in more agricultural based societies.
Dan H.,
Please allow me some time to find the Spolas references.
Please keep in mind that sometimes Pilos refers to the conical bronze helmet.
So the reference might mean the metal helmets.

I am more inclined to agree with Dan Peterson that felt if used as body armor would probbaly not used in the Mediterranean except ad protection from the cold. I cannot rule out the possibilty of being used on shileds but this is not on the body.


Please find my update on the word spolas:

Aristophanes, Birds (ed. F.W. Hall and W.M. Geldart) line 935
Other versions: ed. Eugene O'Neill, Jr., in English
# Pisthetairos eche tên spolada:

# Xenophon, Anabasis book 3, chapter 3, section 20
Other versions: in English
kai tautês tês nuktos sphendonêtai men eis diakosious egenonto, hippoi de kai hippeis edokimasthêsan têi husteraiai eis pentêkonta, kai spolades kai thôrakes autois eporisthêsan, kai hipparchos epestathê Lukios ho Polustratou Athênaios. (3.15)

# Xenophon, Anabasis book 4, chapter 1, section 18
Other versions: in English
kai entautha apothnêiskei anêr agathos Lakônikos Leônumos toxeutheis dia tês aspidos kai tês spolados eis tas pleuras, kai Basias Arkas diamperes tên kephalên. (2.20)

Kind regards
Quote:Please keep in mind that sometimes Pilos refers to the conical bronze helmet. So the reference might mean the metal helmets.

Except that the chances of an arrow piercing a work-hardened bronze helm is so low as to be statistically negligible. It is unlikely that the arrows Thucydides describes would have penetrated metal helmets as easily as he implies.
Author: Bronze Age Military Equipment, Pen & Sword Books
I agree that that the way he writes it raises questions.
But on Sfacteria (which the extract describes) it is likely that exept the hoplites there was a sizeble detatchment of "Skiritae" who some times fought more lightly armed than the rest of the Spartans or even freed helots.
The time of the even if memory serves me correect is not July August.
Also iit possibly might refer that because the piloi that tey were not encasing the face and neck couldn´t protect from arrow who scored a hit there.
The number of arrows was such the penetration was not important-just a hit on the uncovered area. Perhaps it is a comment on the inadequasy of metalik "pilos-like" helmet
Kind regards

Forum Jump: