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The evolution of shields in China (with references also to Korea and Japan) part II

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A clash between Tang Chinese (on the left) and Koreans (The Tang Army, Montvert publications). Note the shield of the Chinese infantryman on the left.

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CONTINUED FROM PART I

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I go on with modern reliable images of Chinese troops bearing shields from the Shang Dynasty Era up to the 19th century in order to demonstrate specifically the evolution of the Chinese shields. There are also a few examples of Korean and Japanese shields which are closely related to the Chinese ones, sometimes being almost identical with them.

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World maps of ancient geographers, part II

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Some maps of the known world according to ancient Greek historians and geographers. The first map is according to Eratosthenes, the second according to Hecataeos, and the third according to Dionysios.

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The evolution of shields in China (with references also to Korea and Japan) part I

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I chose to start with a Japanese example: Yayoi princess/queen Himiko with her guards, c.230 CE (Osprey publishing). Note the shield of the Yayoi warrior.

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            The question of the limited presence of shields or evidence of them in the archaeological finds of China, Korea and Japan, and in the artistic depictions of any kind of the respective cultures is well known to the researchers of ancient and pre-modern warfare of these nations [actually the European historical terms “ancient”, “medieval” etc cannot be applied adequately to the Chinese-Korean-Japanese History but the Western historians have to use them for convenience].

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Slaughter at the bridge: Discussion on a colossal Bronze Age battle

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Republication from  www.sciencemag.org

 

How warriors were equipped for battle.

About 3200 years ago, two armies clashed at a river crossing near the Baltic Sea. The confrontation can’t be found in any history books—the written word didn’t become common in these parts for another 2000 years—but this was no skirmish between local clans. Thousands of warriors came together in a brutal struggle, perhaps fought on a single day, using weapons crafted from wood, flint, and bronze, a metal that was then the height of military technology.

Struggling to find solid footing on the banks of the Tollense River, a narrow ribbon of water that flows through the marshes of northern Germany toward the Baltic Sea, the armies fought hand-to-hand, maiming and killing with war clubs, spears, swords, and knives. Bronze- and flint-tipped arrows were loosed at close range, piercing skulls and lodging deep into the bones of young men. Horses belonging to high-ranking warriors crumpled into the muck, fatally speared. Not everyone stood their ground in the melee: Some warriors broke and ran, and were struck down from behind.

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Μερικά όπλα της Περιόδου περί την Ελληνική Επανάσταση

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Στην σύζυγο μου, Νέλλυ, για την έμπνευση και την ενθάρρυνση που μου προσφέρει.

Τα παρόντα όπλα είναι μία συλλογή εικόνων όπλων τα οποία χρησιμοποιήθηκαν στη Χερσόνησο του Αίμου κατά το πρώτο τρίτο του 19ου αιώνα, δηλαδή συμπεριλαμβανομένης της Περιόδου της Ελληνικής Επανάστασης (1821-1829). Πρόκειται για όπλα τα οποία στη σημερινή ξένη βιβλιογραφία περί κατάταξης και ταξινόμησης όπλων χαρακτηρίζονται συχνά ως «οθωμανικά» ή «οθωμανικά βαλκανικά» αλλά στην πραγματικότητα χρησιμοποιούντο εξίσου από Τούρκους, Ελληνες («κλέφτες», αρματολούς, κάπους και στη συνέχεια αγωνιστές), Αλβανούς (μουσουλμάνους και χριστιανούς), Γιουρούκους, Βλάχους, Βούλγαρους και άλλους λαούς της περιοχής.

Πρόκειται για δύο πάλες (από τις οποίες εικονίζονται μόνο οι λαβές τους), ένα τυφέκιο (καριοφίλι),  δύο πιστόλες, μία μάχαιρα και άλλη μία μάχαιρα τύπου «κιντζάλ».

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Æthelred the Unready – The Lost King

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Republication from Heritagedaily

Battle of Assandun, showing Edmund Ironside (left) and Cnut the Great. (Matthew Paris, Chronica Majora, Cambridge, Corpus Christi College MS. 26, fol. 80v)

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Æthelred II, also dubbed the Unready was King of Saxon England during 978–1013 and 1014–1016.

Under his father Kind Edgar, England had experienced a period of peace after the reconquest of the Danelaw in the mid-10th century. However, beginning in 980, small bands of Danish invaders carried out coastline raids testing defences across England that included Hampshire, Thanet, Cornwall, Dorset and Cheshire.

After several successful Danish raids such as the Battle of Maldon, where a sizable Danish fleet defeated Byrhtnoth, ealdorman of Essex, Æthelred turned to paying tributes to hold off the invaders and keep the peace in his realm.

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