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Thread: Lorica Segmentata or Hamata

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    Mad Professor Senior Member Hurin_Rules's Avatar
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    Just wondering which type of armour you think would be better at protecting you from the enemy: the kind of banded/plate armour that became standard in the Roman Army after Marius, or the chain armor (Hamata) that was standard before and still used by auxiliaries and some legionaires afterwards.

    Which would be better at stopping a sword thrust? Which would give you a better chance of survival?
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    Tovenaar Senior Member The Wizard's Avatar
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    I would most certainly say the banded armor of the Romans under Claudius and later. I think a sword would more easily glance off of the surface of the armor, and arrows could not penetrate it as easily.



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    AKA Leif 3000 TURBO Senior Member Leet Eriksson's Avatar
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    Lorica Segmentata,easy to maintain,light and easily replacable,also offers good protection.The Hamata is a bit bulky...me thinks...
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    Member Member Auxilia's Avatar
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    Segmentata for me too - easier to make, easier to repair and I would think much stronger - no nasty little fragments of chainmail to pick out of a would

    Oh and the anti-falx arm protectors wouldn't go amiss either
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    Father of the EB Isle Member Aymar de Bois Mauri's Avatar
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    Since we're talking about Roman fashion, what about Lorica Squamata?




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    Tovenaar Senior Member The Wizard's Avatar
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    Lamellar? Good stuff, in combination with chainmail.



    ~Wiz
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    Member Member Auxilia's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by [b
    Quote[/b] (The Wizard @ April 28 2004,12:33)]Lamellar? Good stuff, in combination with chainmail.



    ~Wiz
    Both seem to have outlived segmentata in terms of legionary equipment.

    Not really sure why...
    Overheard at wargaming convention -

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    Father of the EB Isle Member Aymar de Bois Mauri's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by [b
    Quote[/b] (The Wizard @ April 28 2004,12:33)]Lamellar? Good stuff, in combination with chainmail.



    ~Wiz
    No. Squamata is scale armour, inferior to lamellar.

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    Father of the EB Isle Member Aymar de Bois Mauri's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by [b
    Quote[/b] (Auxilia @ April 28 2004,12:38)]
    Quote Originally Posted by [b
    Quote[/b] (The Wizard @ April 28 2004,12:33)]Lamellar? Good stuff, in combination with chainmail.



    ~Wiz
    Both seem to have outlived segmentata in terms of legionary equipment.

    Not really sure why...
    I agree. Like someone said previously, both of them should be harder to munufacture and therefore be costlier. Strange...

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    Tovenaar Senior Member The Wizard's Avatar
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    Squamata is lamellar, on several archeological sites regarding the finds at Dura Europos (amongst which a piece of horse armor, definately lamellar), calling it lorica squamata.

    Lamellar is easier to make than banding strip after strip of metal together, and chainmail is not much harder than the former, and cheaper too. At least, that's my guess, because many historians attribute (although only partly) the victory of the Sassanid Persians over the Parthians to them wearing chainmail instead of full lamellar as the Parthians did. 'Dark age' powers used chainmail en masse, and the Romans themselves stopped using the banded armor after a while.



    ~Wiz
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    Father of the EB Isle Member Aymar de Bois Mauri's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by [b
    Quote[/b] (The Wizard @ April 28 2004,13:57)]Squamata is lamellar, on several archeological sites regarding the finds at Dura Europos (amongst which a piece of horse armor, definately lamellar), calling it lorica squamata.
    Then what is the designation for scale armour?


    Quote Originally Posted by [b
    Quote[/b] ]Lamellar is easier to make than banding strip after strip of metal together, and chainmail is not much harder than the former, and cheaper too. At least, that's my guess, because many historians attribute (although only partly) the victory of the Sassanid Persians over the Parthians to them wearing chainmail instead of full lamellar as the Parthians did. 'Dark age' powers used chainmail en masse, and the Romans themselves stopped using the banded armor after a while.
    I'm not sure I've understood. Lamellar is easier to make than plate strips? Chain mail is not much harder than lamellar? Where have you evert heard such non-sense?

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    Mad Professor Senior Member Hurin_Rules's Avatar
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    Might I also ask why people think the Romans stopped making segmentata and the barbarians never used it? If it is better at protecting you and easy to make, why stop making it?
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    Member Member Auxilia's Avatar
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    Would comfort and mobility be a factor - in other words which is more comfortable to the wearer and which offers the best mobility?

    Just a thought
    Overheard at wargaming convention -

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    Tovenaar Senior Member The Wizard's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by [b
    Quote[/b] (Aymar de Bois Mauri @ April 28 2004,20:07)]
    Quote Originally Posted by [b
    Quote[/b] ]Lamellar is easier to make than banding strip after strip of metal together, and chainmail is not much harder than the former, and cheaper too. At least, that's my guess, because many historians attribute (although only partly) the victory of the Sassanid Persians over the Parthians to them wearing chainmail instead of full lamellar as the Parthians did. 'Dark age' powers used chainmail en masse, and the Romans themselves stopped using the banded armor after a while.
    I'm not sure I've understood. Lamellar is easier to make than plate strips? Chain mail is not much harder than lamellar? Where have you evert heard such non-sense?
    Don't you see the logic? The fact is that the Romans stopped using it themselves and every other power used chain mail. There must be something economical in that, especially for the Romans, no?



    ~Wiz
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    Father of the EB Isle Member Aymar de Bois Mauri's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by [b
    Quote[/b] (The Wizard @ April 28 2004,16:06)]
    Quote Originally Posted by [b
    Quote[/b] (Aymar de Bois Mauri @ April 28 2004,20:07)]
    Quote Originally Posted by [b
    Quote[/b] ]Lamellar is easier to make than banding strip after strip of metal together, and chainmail is not much harder than the former, and cheaper too. At least, that's my guess, because many historians attribute (although only partly) the victory of the Sassanid Persians over the Parthians to them wearing chainmail instead of full lamellar as the Parthians did. 'Dark age' powers used chainmail en masse, and the Romans themselves stopped using the banded armor after a while.
    I'm not sure I've understood. Lamellar is easier to make than plate strips? Chain mail is not much harder than lamellar? Where have you evert heard such non-sense?
    Don't you see the logic? The fact is that the Romans stopped using it themselves and every other power used chain mail. There must be something economical in that, especially for the Romans, no?



    ~Wiz
    Well, I know for sure that plate strips are much easier to make than any type of ring mail
    Have you seen any artisan making mail? It's a painstaking job Long and arduos. You have to bend and intertwine every ring with one another

    Plate strips only have to be worked upon, to increase steel tenacity and then to conform them to the body. In fact, one plate strip armour must take about 1/10th of the time that it takes to construct a mail coat.

    You mention economics, and that might be so, but not due to time to build them. Only due to possible cost. Maybe they needed high quality metal to make the plate strip armour work best. Or, in alternative, maybe plate strip armour wasn't that effective. Maybe it could make a blade slip between the plates, defeating itself as an effective protection.

    As you've made a suposition, i'll make another one:

    Why do you think that in most films, about Rome, that you see, most of the legionaires have the plate strip armour? Probably because, dispite the fact that the Romans never used it for a long time, it's easier to make than mail coats

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    Tovenaar Senior Member The Wizard's Avatar
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    Well actually I believe it is because when most people think of Rome, they think of the legionaries under Claudius, Marcus Aurelius, Trajanus, and more. Those are the legionaries who wore the banded armor.



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    Member Member Auxilia's Avatar
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    Here's another supposition - does segmentata require better quality metal than chainmail?
    Overheard at wargaming convention -

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    Mad Professor Senior Member Hurin_Rules's Avatar
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    Maybe-- but I thought the barbarians had just as good and in some cases better iron than the Romans.
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    Father of the EB Isle Member Aymar de Bois Mauri's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by [b
    Quote[/b] (Hurin_Rules @ April 29 2004,13:12)]Maybe-- but I thought the barbarians had just as good and in some cases better iron than the Romans.
    The Iberian populations surelly had.

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    Quote Originally Posted by [b
    Quote[/b] (The Wizard @ April 29 2004,05:55)]Well actually I believe it is because when most people think of Rome, they think of the legionaries under Claudius, Marcus Aurelius, Trajanus, and more. Those are the legionaries who wore the banded armor.



    ~Wiz
    Why, since most Holywood films aren't from that era?

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    Member Member Auxilia's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by [b
    Quote[/b] (Hurin_Rules @ April 29 2004,13:12)]Maybe-- but I thought the barbarians had just as good and in some cases better iron than the Romans.
    Oh well another theory blown out of the water

    Like I've mentioned before, I would suggest chainmail offers rather more flexibility and comfort at the expense of protection.

    The evidence - knights and men at arms in Italy and Spain often substituted chainmail for the shoulder and upper arm areas usually covered with plate armour (the knights of St John in particular were fond of this practice). The Roman auxiliaries were expected to be faster moving, employed as they were as scouts, skirmishers and so on than the legions, hence their being issued with chainmail, and hence segmentata eventually dying out as mobility became more important.
    Overheard at wargaming convention -

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    Father of the EB Isle Member Aymar de Bois Mauri's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by [b
    Quote[/b] (Auxilia @ April 29 2004,13:32)]
    Quote Originally Posted by [b
    Quote[/b] (Hurin_Rules @ April 29 2004,13:12)]Maybe-- but I thought the barbarians had just as good and in some cases better iron than the Romans.
    Oh well another theory blown out of the water

    Like I've mentioned before, I would suggest chainmail offers rather more flexibility and comfort at the expense of protection.

    The evidence - knights and men at arms in Italy and Spain often substituted chainmail for the shoulder and upper arm areas usually covered with plate armour (the knights of St John in particular were fond of this practice). The Roman auxiliaries were expected to be faster moving, employed as they were as scouts, skirmishers and so on than the legions, hence their being issued with chainmail, and hence segmentata eventually dying out as mobility became more important.
    In fact, some types of chain or ring mail are heavier and more uncorfortable than plate.

  23. #23
    Tovenaar Senior Member The Wizard's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by [b
    Quote[/b] (Aymar de Bois Mauri @ April 29 2004,19:23)]
    Quote Originally Posted by [b
    Quote[/b] (The Wizard @ April 29 2004,05:55)]Well actually I believe it is because when most people think of Rome, they think of the legionaries under Claudius, Marcus Aurelius, Trajanus, and more. Those are the legionaries who wore the banded armor.



    ~Wiz
    Why, since most Holywood films aren't from that era?
    Don't ask me... I believe people think of the 'lorica segmentata' (a name made by a 19th century historian) as the standard legionary armor because it was worn during the entire Pax Romana, and that was the period when Rome was the mightiest, most advanced, most cultured (the latter two depending on your views of course) state on the face of the earth. And of course depending on the views embedded in the imagination of people, by historians of old, do not ask me when.



    ~Wiz
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    Father of the EB Isle Member Aymar de Bois Mauri's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by [b
    Quote[/b] (The Wizard @ April 29 2004,15:53)]
    Quote Originally Posted by [b
    Quote[/b] (Aymar de Bois Mauri @ April 29 2004,19:23)]
    Quote Originally Posted by [b
    Quote[/b] (The Wizard @ April 29 2004,05:55)]Well actually I believe it is because when most people think of Rome, they think of the legionaries under Claudius, Marcus Aurelius, Trajanus, and more. Those are the legionaries who wore the banded armor.



    ~Wiz
    Why, since most Holywood films aren't from that era?
    Don't ask me... I believe people think of the 'lorica segmentata' (a name made by a 19th century historian) as the standard legionary armor because it was worn during the entire Pax Romana, and that was the period when Rome was the mightiest, most advanced, most cultured (the latter two depending on your views of course) state on the face of the earth. And of course depending on the views embedded in the imagination of people, by historians of old, do not ask me when.



    ~Wiz
    OK, I won't ask you...


    BTW, that was a good explanation...




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