Reenactment Event at Birdoswald
Birdoswald, 28th May 2007
Thank the gods for long lenses. The cavalry were elusive for long times. I guess the horses are nervous of the crowds. However, with a powerful enough a lens one could catch them moving about in the distance.
The cavalry did eventually come in close, giving the spectators a chance to admire their beautiful animals.
Right: Note the four prominent pommels on the Roman saddle, they provides the rider the grip he needs (keeping in mind that for most of the ancient era cavalry did not know stirrups!).
The horses of the ancient world were closer to ponies than the large horse breeds we would find in stables today.
A great collection of tools, all in use in Roman times.
The troops had their own encampment with proper, leather tents. There they sat, relaxed, warmed themselves at the fire or just watched the world go by between the displays.
A vexillarius and a legionary caught unawares at the end of a public display.
A good example of customization of armour. I am not specifically aware of this alteration having a historic precedent, but I don’t doubt it existed. An arm protector (manica) is said to have been used in the Dacian campaigns against the dreaded scythe like weapon, the falx. It was the same sort of protection afforded to certain gladiators in the arena. But that protector would have had its segments overlapping from top to bottom. Here the overlap is reversed. Its aim is to provide protection for the arm as it thrusts out from the shield wall.
Personally, I wonder though how practical such a reversed manica is when it rains…
Left: the legionary ranks on parade
Right: two auxiliaries and a legionary. Note how the foremost auxiliary has found a solution to cold feet. This indeed seems a very likely practical solution, wrapping one’s feet in cloth or fur before putting on the caligae.