When it comes to getting authentic armor for your event or experience, many people will just settle for a run of the mill, off the rack costume that doesn’t even come close to representing the type of armor worn during a specific time period or in a specific fantasy game. A Russian Centurion will look out of place in a castle during the middle ages and a Templar would be anachronistic in ancient Greece. Details will make all the difference when putting together an event or working with a movie or theater production. Those details include having the right armor for the time period that you are representing. Continue reading
In today’s world, people have many options of how to entertain themselves. They can watch movies, read books, play sports, go hiking, and even engage in live action role playing, more commonly referred to as LARP. Now let’s be honest…when most people think of LARPers, they associate this activity with a group of super nerds dressed in goofy medieval leather armor and other fantasy garb frantically winging latex swords at one another. While this train of thought is not unfounded, the truth of the matter is that we are all nerds in our own fashion and this is okay. In fact, the concept of LARP – people assuming roles and characters to play out a given scenario – doesn’t come out of left field. After all, isn’t this what actors do? When it comes down to it, actors and LARPers have a lot in common – they are both interactive storytellers. Sure, one may not wear the elven attire or medieval leather armor on a consistent basis, but both actors and LARPers essentially strive for the same goal of crafting a good story. Continue reading
For knights of the Middle Ages, head gear was key
To deflect sharp weapons and to make arrows flee.
A blow to an unprotected head was all it took
To end a warrior’s fight without a second look.
Thus, many medieval helmets came and went,
Each with their own style until their time was spent.
The Great Helm, Barbuta, and Norman Nasal –these medieval helmets who could forget?
Still there’s another, which brings us to the topic of today, which is the Bascinet. Continue reading
Nothing is more defining of the Middle Ages than a knight. These men in their medieval knight armor, with their noble steeds, inspired many. However, they had to pay their dues to reach this status. Indeed, knights are to be respected, but the respect definitely grows once you get a glimpse of everything they had to undergo.
Knights were highly regarded in medieval society, similar to the way celebrities are elevated in today’s culture. While it was possible for anyone to attain knighthood, certain components had to be in place. It was more than simply having knight armor, proper training, and the best weapons; one also had to have the right connections. Training and equipping a knight cost a pretty penny and as a result, it was not affordable for lower classes to engage in. Thus, knights were mainly comprised of men from wealthy families and nobility. If you were one of the lucky few to be born into a line of knights, you would inherit this honor. Knightly training began at a very young age. Boys were taught the code of chivalry and were required to exemplify the utmost respect. They were also given a wooden sword and shield and could most likely be spotted with at least a few pieces of knight armor.
Crowds flocked from miles around to watch them. They were quite a spectacle with their mad skills and flashy Roman armor. They gave an empire heroes to believe in and became the pride of the people. Indeed Roman gladiators were one of the most defining forces of ancient Rome. More than just men in Roman armor, these guys inspired many as they exemplified honor and bravery by risking their lives. While this is the basic essence of Roman gladiators, here are some interesting tidbits to give you a more complete picture.
For starters, not all gladiators were slaves. Granted, a decent portion of these men were prisoners or captives of conquests. These men were bought, sold, and traded. In addition to the slave class, however, free men also had a desire to hop on the bandwagon, as the prospect of fame and fortune was simply too enticing to resist. After all, gladiators that had a winning streak in arena matches became household names and statues of them in their Roman armor were likely to spring up. The free men who joined the gladiator ranks were comprised of all social statuses and included knights, ex-soldiers, civilians, etc. These men signed contracts with gladiator schools and were thus commissioned as fighters.
When it comes to the Middle Ages, perhaps the most defining image in popular culture is a knight in a full suit of armor mounted on horseback. Hailed as one of the most exciting times in history, the medieval period has been quite romanticized over the years, thanks to literature, cinema, and fine art. There is not necessarily anything wrong with this, but these glamourized depictions may lead to an inaccurate understanding of knights in conjunction with medieval armies and armor. By all means, let’s continue to enjoy and appreciate these mediums while not neglecting the way things really were.
Going back to the image of a knight in a shining suit of armor, one might assume that a knight was the sole hero of a battle. However, the truth is that every victorious battle had many heroes, as knights. Thus, knights fought alongside foot soldiers, such as pikemen and archers who brought with them, different weapons that aided greatly against adversaries. Further support came from squires and attendants who accompanied the armed forces and were responsible for task like armor maintenance, watching over horses, etc. Granted, knights were the primary force, but their success was indeed a team effort and the supporting players deserve recognition.
If you are a historical enthusiast, there’s no doubt that you’ve come across chainmail armor for sale. No one can deny its appeal bearing a spiffy look with its interlocking ring pattern. Nor can anyone discount the place of chainmail in history. Worn through the ages, it proved to be effective protection. And when it comes to selecting a piece of chainmail for yourself, you should be aware of the various options that lie before you. Continue reading
As Halloween is only days away, you may be rummaging through your wardrobe and thrifts store racks in hope of finding the perfect garb to impress at those weekend parties. While this search can be daunting, history is always a good place to find a bit of inspiration. Historical periods provide a plethora of cool fashions and perhaps, one of the most notable is ancient Rome. As one of the most powerful forces of all time, the Roman army enjoyed many victories. This was a result of their masterful warfare and fighting techniques, but let’s be honest, they also came dressed for the part. With this in mind, why not follow suite and sport a Roman soldier costume this season? However, this decision begs the question “Which Roman soldier costume should I wear?”After all, there were a few different types of Roman soldiers and ranks within the Roman army.
When in doubt, you could go with the most popular of the Roman soldiers and dress like a Roman legionnaire. These guys could be considered the Roman “all stars”, as they had the utmost respect and were the highest paid. However, if you are looking for a less conventional Roman soldier costume, you could be an auxiliary. These guys could be seen as the underdogs. Since they weren’t Roman citizens, they were regarded with less value and thus, they only received a third of the pay that Roman legionaries earned. Most of their time was spent keeping watch over frontiers and fortresses and at times, they were sacrificed as casualties of war because they fought on the front lines in direct line of fire. One could argue that this made them more courageous, but then again, they didn’t have much of a say in whether or not they wanted to stay out of the danger zone.
If you’ve ever seen a suit of armor for sale,
Were you aware of the pieces it does entail?
Though it may look like one big chunk of metal, it has many parts
That work together to guard against the enemies fiery darts.
Thus, if a suit of armor for sale catches your eye,
You should know the function of each component before you buy.
Whether you wear the suit or put it on display,
Here’s a brief overview to enlighten your day.
The Middle Ages was a time of exhilarating excitement, bloody battles, and awesome action that is, no doubt, one of the greatest periods in history. Though this era is now a thing of the past, its legacy and impact is still preserved through historical reenactments. Reenactments surface in a wide variety ranging from entertaining to educational. There are those seen at Renaissance fairs, and the like that blend history with fantasy with its aim of delighting its audience. Then there are those that are more than just a group of nerds in medieval leather armor playing with foam weapons, known as living history reenactments. The goal of this type is to accurately portray civilian life as it was in an authentic manner and its focus is not on public spectacle, but on ensuring the participants have a realistic experience. Both reenactment genres have their place and offer enlightenment, but let’s go back to the medieval leather armor and foam weapons for a moment to look at Medieval Times Dinner and Tournament, a reenactment experience fitting for the whole family. Continue reading