12/08/2019 at 12:51 #119735
When I were a lad… it was not unusual to see Phalanxes of Hellenistic Pike using Pelte (peltes? I don’t do Greek).
Where did this come from? Is it because the Antigonids had a unit of Pike called Peltasts? I am only wondering, as I found a big bag of unpainted pikemen and I have lost/misplaced their original shields but i do have a large number of spare peltes…. peltoi….
I was only momentarily tempted – I really probably won’t do it… but it made me wonder why it was a thing once upon a time.
pat12/08/2019 at 13:44 #119740
Pelta is the term for a small light shield and is a circular in shape. Peltasts can carry different shields. The crescent shape used by Thracians and early Greek peltasts, the large oval thureos used by later peltasts and the circular ones about two feet in diameter which were used by psiloi, Iphicratean peltasts and later phalangites.
12/08/2019 at 13:53 #119742
- This reply was modified 4 months ago by willb.
Ok, to clarify, I meant the crescent shape as used by early Peltasts.13/08/2019 at 11:31 #119817
Who Asked This JokerParticipant
Pelte is a Greek word that means “Pelt” as in the hide of an animal. A Pelte, I presume, is any hide covered shield. Most phalangites used round pelte. The Antigonid pike you mention are probably modeled after the Hypaspists of Alexander’s army which could fight as a phalanx with a long pike or as light infantry (peltasts) in various roles.
"Nearly all men can stand adversity, but if you want to test a man's character, give him power."
--Abraham Lincoln13/08/2019 at 13:03 #119819
A Lot of GaulParticipant
I can’t think of any historically attested examples of pike-armed phalangites carrying crescent-shaped shields. Perhaps someone mistakenly thought that the Antigonid “peltasts” carried them, or that they were borne by the spear-wielding “peltasts” of Iphicrates, widely thought to be the inspiration for the Macedonian phalanx of Philip II.
“Experience is the teacher of all things.” ~ Gaius Julius Caesar13/08/2019 at 16:41 #119843
I remember seeing them too.
I think it was just the usual wargame figures design confusion. Something like this:
Phalangites carried a pelta
The pelta I’ve seen are crescent shaped
Therefore phalangites carried a crescent shaped pelta
That’s how I’ll make them
Stuff like that used to happen a lot and sometimes produced very striking figures. I used to have serried ranks of Garrison Phrygian Hoplites with double headed axes. Strictly speaking they didn’t have shields so were not hoplites. Loved them but I cannot think they were based on real troops.
http://withob.blogspot.co.uk/15/08/2019 at 13:00 #120006
A Lot of GaulParticipant
I think that OB nailed it!
“Experience is the teacher of all things.” ~ Gaius Julius Caesar
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