Monday, January 30, 2017

The Telling Tales To The Styles of The Greek Helmet

Back in ancient Greece, people who wore helmets wore the Corinthian helmet. It originated in ancient Greece, and its name comes from the city of Corinth, which was an ancient city-state. This helmet was made of bronze, and in later styles it covered the entire head and neck. There were slits for the eyes and mouth, and the nape (neck area) was protected, too.

Sometimes, to be comfortable, the ancient Greeks would tilt the helmet upward to be more practical. In these situations, the helmet was worn like a cap. After some time had passed, the Corinthian helmet suddenly wasn't as popular anymore, and the Italo-Corinthian types made some headway in popularity, with a new Italian influence making a new wave. 

After a while, during the Classical period, the style became a Thracian helmet, and this was all the rage. They also created a simple type of helmet, one which did not get in the way of the eyes, and this was a pilos type of helmet. The Corinthian helmet, as aforementioned, seems to be a popular helmet among the ancient Greeks, and it was associated with glory, and also with the past. The Romans loved it, too. Pretty soon, under the influence of the armies of the ancient worlds, this helmet evolved into a jockey-cap style helmet. 

This Corinthian helmet was mentioned in ancient literature. Herodotus, the old writer, mentions it in his Histories. There is a story of two tribes who lived along a river, and their fair maidens occasionally fought each other with sticks and stones. You may choose to read this as a metaphor for "fought with words." They wore only the finest Greek clothing, and they wore Corinthian helmets. This lets us know that even the tamest (fair maidens) were fighters in ancient Greece and also that they took-no-prisoners and were able to leave their helmets on as a gesture of defense.

This was a ritual fight between the maidens, and it happened occasionally to shake things up. It was a fight to honor the goddess Athena, who was the virgin goddess. If the young women were to die in battle, it was thought that they were being punished for lying about their virginity. So, this story is resonant with these times, and can tell us a lot about the recent revival in gladiator culture and such.

In today's time, some Marvel comics heroes wear Corinthian helmets, too. And in Star Wars, Boba Fett wears the same helmet with a T-shaped visor. Many other characters in popular culture are part of the trend toward Greek helmets, and this history clearly shows its richness and potential for continuing to be a figuring force in literature and culture today.

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