The Bryastovetz Horned Helmet


Originally posted on balkancelts:

Mac Congail

 

 

 

 

“On their heads they put bronze helmets which have large embossed figures standing out from them and give an appearance of great size to those who wear them; for in some cases horns are attached to the helmet so as to form a single piece, in other cases images of the fore-parts of birds or four footed animals”.

Diodorus Siculus (on Celtic helmets) (History V.30.2)

 

 

 

While horned helmets among the Celtic tribes are well documented in artwork and coins from the period,actual archaeological confirmation of the existence of this particular type of helmet has been rare. Indeed, until now it was thought that the only known example from Iron Age Europe was the Waterloo Helmet found in the river Thames in London. However, despite the belief that the Waterloo Helmet was unique, another example is to be found…

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Velsen


Originally posted on New at LacusCurtius & Livius:

There’s no particular reason to put online this drawing by Graham Sumner, except for the best reason of all: that I like it. What you see is the Roman naval base at Velsen, just west of Amsterdam, which was in use during the reign of the emperor Tiberius. It is almost certainly identical to the fort named Flevum mentioned by Tacitus. You can read more about it here, or in Edge of Empire.

You can order Edge of Empirehere.

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Meyer’s Longsword – The Kniecheihauw or Wrist Cut


Originally posted on Grauenwolf's Study of Western Martial Arts:

This is a subtype of the Zwerch used in the middle of the fight. It seems like more of an attack of opportunity than something one would do intentionally.

This is so called from the body part to which it is directed. Do it thus: After the initial Onset, when you have come under your opponent’s sword with your hands up above your head, and he holds his head thus between his arms, then cut with Thwart Cuts under his pommel up toward his wrist-bones or wrist-joints. If he holds his hands too high, then cut with these Thwart Cuts up from below toward the knob of his elbows; thus it is done.

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Race riots


Originally posted on Great War London:

So far, the black history month posts have been fairly positive stories – two young officers of mixed race, and a  successful propaganda speaker. Sadly (if unsurprisingly) it was not all plain sailing where race relations in Great War London were concerned. There were several incidents of race riots.

It was not quite all quiet on the home front. At least two race riots took place in London during the Great War.

In July 1917, the Times reported a ‘disturbance’ on Victoria Dock Road in West Ham. A police sergeant told magistrates that “in consequence of the infatuation of the white girls for the black men in the district, some of the inhabitants are greatly incensed against the coloured men.”

The previous Saturday night, a gang of white youths attacked houses inhabited by black men in Victoria Road causing considerable damage. In response, several black men came out into the…

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Samhain: An Introduction to its Mythology and Folklore


Originally posted on Heathen Harvest 2.1:

Yesterday I was in the supermarket shopping for ingredients to make spiced apples. It’s a large hangar in South East London which could happily accommodate several small aircraft – arguably more useful than the hordes of shoppers unthinkingly purchasing useless goods for the weekend. Being late October there’s a respectable Hallowe’en section [the fresh pumpkins get thrown away on 1st November] comprising all kinds of artifacts from ghost to cat trinkets and plastic scythes. As I made my way to the tills to purchase my ingredients I caught sight of an abhorrently corpulent mother buying armfuls of Hallowe’en materials, deadened face, deadened appearance, going through the motions of purchase at the shop’s behest. One of the things she was buying was a witch’s broom – probably for her daughter.

It occurred to me in that moment that there was a strong likelihood she had no idea why the broom was…

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Practice Notes: Flat Ochs vs Angled Ochs


Originally posted on Grauenwolf's Study of Western Martial Arts:

I arrived late at practice to find a lesson already in progress. Lessons are rare at my Wednesday night practice, and longsword lessons even rarer, so naturally I accepted the vorfechter’s offer to join in.

The drill was simple enough. I attack with a thrust and he parries by means of a krumphauw at my hands or wrists. The drill worked beautifully with all the other students, but always failed against me. Sometimes he would take a wrist, and a few times he took both, but invariably it ended the point of my sword in his chest. Stepping narrow or wide, left or right, nothing seemed to help.

Switching roles, I didn’t reasonably well using his technique. So what was wrong?

Like the other winkelfechters, I was originally taught that Ochs was flat, with the quillons horizontal and the thumb under the flat of the blade. You can see this…

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By heathenramblings Posted in Personal

How long should a longsword be?


Originally posted on Grauenwolf's Study of Western Martial Arts:

 

Real longswords from the Middle Ages and the Renaissance can range from about 110cm – 150cm with a medium probably about a 120-125cm, which is the “standard” length of most sparring swords today as well, give or take a couple of centimetres. However, when we look at illustrations in the fechtbuchen, we soon discover that the swords shown usually reaches from well into the armpit all the way up to the forehead. We may also consider the advise of Filippo Vadi, which although slightly ambiguous may be interpreted as further reinforcing this notion;

The sword should be of the correct measure, with the pommel just under the arm , as here is written.
To avoid any hindrance: the pommel should be round to fit the closed hand do this and you won’t be in troubles.
And know for sure that the handle should be a span long, use…

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By heathenramblings Posted in Personal

My Provost prize


Originally posted on gilbertdewolghop:

Tom finished editing the video of my provost prize yesterday – watch it below.

The better passes happen when I am facing ibn Jelal – good thing he was there!

An explanation of what playing a prize means.

My strongest form was clearly single sword, it is also the form that has changed the most since then.

Longsword is the form that most needs improvement. In that form I need to do more full cuts and use more fendente and sottani blows.

In Sword & Buckler I needed to use the crossing at the false edge more.

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By heathenramblings Posted in Personal

Death and Belief


Originally posted on A Heathen's Path:

I think, in the afterlife, I would like to be a Reaper.

A Reaper Man.

I just finished reading Reaper Man by Terry Pratchett. I’d found out about it on TVTropes, what with my obsession with Death, thanks to my worship of Hel. And after reading it, I understand why so many people love his books, and why so many have written him about how they hope Death is just like he is in the books.

And it can all be summed up in one easy, simple, line.

WHAT CAN THE HARVEST HOPE FOR, IF NOT BUT THE CARE OF THE REAPER MAN?

It’s a strange line, and just reading it, you might not get all the importance of the line. Really, without the last half of the book, it’s impossible to really convey, but Death, after being fired, spends his time as a mortal, and learns to care about…

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Weapon Trauma in Medieval Ireland


Originally posted on Bones Don't Lie:

Brian Boru, Irish hero who fought the Vikings, via Wikimedia

Myths and legends of Medieval Ireland describe this era as one of violence and conflict. The tales of Fionn mac Cumhaill and King Arthur describe roaming warbands and battles with mythological creatures. Numerous stories exist for kings and heroes who derive their fame from their ferocity and intelligence in conflict. The bioarchaeological evidence however supports this folklore. That’s not to say that it supports the presence of battles with otherworldly beings, but it does show that there was an increase in violence. Of the 140 cemeteries that have been excavated from this period, 13% of the individuals show sign of weapon related trauma. This doesn’t include the multitude of individuals who may have incurred flesh based wounds, a more likely form of injury. A new study by Geber (2012) examines the anatomical distribution and extent of weapon trauma from two…

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By heathenramblings Posted in Personal

The Ackworth Hoard


Originally posted on Antiquarian's Attic:

Yorkshire’s hoard of mysterious silver and gold

There’s a lot going off in Wakefield at the moment, in spite of hard times, with The Hepworth Wakefield doing consistently well, the Trinity Walk shopping centre adding commercial life and now a newly reorganised museum for the city.  This last, along with its sister centre at  Pontefract, is energising local young people – it’s included in the Young Archaeologists’ Club annual pass and has just had its first school group in.
It’s also timely for the sort of appeal which appeals to the youthful of any age: a mysterious hoard of treasure has been found at Ackworth and Wakefield council needs £5,500 to help keep it in the district. Who was the fugitive or thief who took a brown clay pot, made locally in Wrenthorpe , and stashed it with 591 gold and silver coins before burying it, probably at…

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Photo exhibition of the Koguryo murals goes on show in Yokohama


Originally posted on The Heritage Trust:

 
Detail of one of the Koguryo Tombs murals. Pyongyang, North Korea
 
The Nihon Shinbun Kyokai announces that -
 
Kyodo News and the Japan Newspaper Museum will jointly hold a press photo exhibition featuring the Koguryo Tombs and their wall paintings. The Complex of Koguryo Tombs, which was inscribed on the UNESCO World Heritage List, offers a unique testimony to Koguryo culture, its burial customs, and religious practices as well as daily life and beliefs, especially through the mural paintings. The paintings notably include images of hunting, women in colorful clothes and the Four Deities.
 
These artworks that flourished in ancient East Asia are believed to have connections to Japan’s Takamatsuzuka Tumulus and Kitora Tumulus. Kyodo News in 2010 and 2011 exclusively covered five tombs in Pyongyang and its vicinity, shooting numerous photographs. On display at the exhibition will be photographs of the ”Four Guardian Deities” murals…

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By heathenramblings Posted in Personal

Three Famous Ships From the Norse Myths


Originally posted on Mark Neumayer:

Today we have a bit of a continuation from last week when I posted some artwork of the figurehead of a drekar or dragon-boat. There aren’t that many named ships in the Eddas, but these three are pretty memorable.

Skidbladnir
We are going to start with this ship because the Elder Eddas tell us it is… “without doubt the best and most artfully constructed of any (ship.)” The ship belongs to the god Frey and was constructed by the sons of Ivaldi – the Dwarven master craftsmen who also created Odin’s spear Gungnir and the golden hair of Sif. The ship is quite large and has enough room to hold all of the Aesir gods and goddesses and their weapons and war supplies as well. As soon as the sail is raised a favorable breeze springs up and leads the ship wherever you wish to go. To top it all…

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The Last King of Wales & First to be Hanged, Drawn and Quartered


Originally posted on Wonderland1981 - The Wonderland Murders:

David became the first prominent person in history to have been hanged, drawn and quartered. His sons died in prison and his daughters were sent to convents.

Dafydd ap Gruffydd (or Dafydd ap Gruffudd, angl. David, son of Gruffydd; (11 July (?) 1238 – 3 October 1283) was Prince of Wales from 11 December 1282 until his execution on 3 October 1283 by King Edward I of England. He was the last independent ruler of Wales. He was hanged, drawn and quartered by the same King Edward who had done it to Sir William Wallace. David was approximately 45 years old.

To be hanged, drawn and quartered (less commonly “hung, drawn and quartered”) was from 1351 a penalty in England for men convicted of high treason, although the ritual was first recorded during the reigns of King Henry III (1216–1272) and his successor, Edward I (1272–1307). Convicts were…

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By heathenramblings Posted in Personal

Free Speech and Fascism


Originally posted on Circle Ansuz:

There are many who, in the wake of our recent action in San Francisco, have accused Circle Ansuz of being anti-free speech. This is the furthest thing from the truth. As one would expect from a group of anarchists, we LOVE freedom of speech. Many of the great fights to protect and enhance free speech rights in the United States, for example, were spearheaded by anarchists and labor radicals like Emma Goldman and Big Bill Haywood. The freedom to speak one’s mind without fear of official retribution is essential for the creation of a free, just society.

 

So in light of that, how can any group which claims to love free speech demand the shutdown of a publishing house, a key element in the dissemination of speech and ideas? Some argue this is an act of censorship. By muzzling an organization we disagree with or oppose, they argue, we…

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The First Picture Show — A Collection of the Earliest Wartime Newsreels


Originally posted on Military History Now:

The first conflict to be captured on motion picture film was the 1898 Spanish American War.

When America went to war with Mexico in 1846, correspondents from the nascent American news media, dubbed the penny press at the time for the one-cent dailies they printed, marched off with the army. Embedded with the newsmen was a lone practitioner of the then nearly unheard of art and science of photography. Using his crude and cumbersome camera, this first photo journalist captured everything from portraits of the American commanders and still life shots of ordinary Mexicans, to grainy images of the U.S. cavalry on parade and even conditions in a field hospital. While the name of the photographer in question has been lost to history, his pictures, which were rendered chemically onto glass plates known as daguerreotypes, represent the first ever photographs of an army at war. Later photographers would immortalize…

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Strange, meat-eating sea sponge found in deep ocean


Originally posted on Xenophilia (True Strange Stuff):

This photograph of the recently discovered carnivorous harp sponge, Chondrocladia lyra, was taken in Monterey Canyon, off the coast of California, at a depth of about 11,500 feetA new carnivore shaped like a candelabra has been spotted in deep ocean waters off California’s Monterey Bay.

The meat-eating species was dubbed the “harp sponge,” so-called because its structure resembles a harp or lyre turned on its side.

A team from the Monterey Bay Research Aquarium Institute in Moss Landing, Calif., discovered the sponge in 2000 while exploring with a remotely operated vehicle. The sponges live nearly 2 miles beneath the ocean’s surface.

“We were just amazed. No one had ever seen this animal with their own eyes before,” said Lonny Lundsten, an invertebrate biologist at the research institute and one of the first to see the harp sponge. [The World's Freakiest Looking Animals]

Researchers later collected two sponges and made video observations of 10 more. Comparison with other carnivorous sponges confirmed that Chondrocladia lyra, the sponge’s scientific name, was a new species and revealed…

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By heathenramblings Posted in Personal


Originally posted on Some Questions Arise:

Last weekend, I attended my first ever Swordfish conference. It was an overwhelming (and overwhelmingly positive) experience, and one about which I am compelled to share my thoughts, however mundane they might be. I am writing, I suspect, primarily for my own benefit, but nonetheless I thought that the wider community might find something worth reading here – a new or different perspective, I hope, and an attempt to put into words the meaning and purpose of an event like Swordfish as seen by a newcomer to this community.

I’ll start with a little background – I moved to London from Brisbane, Australia at the end of 2011. Suffice it to say that, yes, Australia does have an active (and growing) HEMA population, but one that is tiny in comparison to Europe and the US, and one facing the uniquely Australian challenge of trying to community-build across small populations separated…

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By heathenramblings Posted in Personal