Saturday, September 22, 2007

Sannit warrior's belt (from my notebook)

One of my main interests is history. I didn't wrote posts about it for many time but now I wanted to begin a serie of posts about interesting hystorical facts I learnd here, in Campania. The stories I wrote in my notebook when attended lectures.

I begin with sannits.

Sannits were italic people speaking osc language that lived on the mountains here in sud Italia from VII century b.C. (more or less). They were shepherds but very good warriors too. Becoming more and more numerous, they went down from their mountains and conquered Campania (and other places). They had not own state, but an alliance of different tribes, and Nocera was a sort of a capital of this alliance at that time.

There are many interesting stories about these people. I'll tell you about their military belt now.

The sannit men clothed short tunics tied up with a bronze belt( see it). This belt was a thing of their initiation, a sign of belonging to the adult men, warriors. It was very interesting for me to know about this fact. I read about tattoos as the sign of initiation, even mutilations of body, but sannits had chosen more intelligent way to distinguish warriors. They had special belts.

Those metallic things were incredible. They (found in tombs) ARE elastic and flexible. The belts are simple but with very elaborated fasteners (from 1 to 13).

This belt was so important for sannits that they were buried or burned with them (and with personal arms). And to lose his warrior's belt during the war was warrior's real or symbolic death.

This is traditional interpretation of this accessory.

There are other examples of warrior's belt. They have gladiators and there is one picture of a woman with it, but we want to be romantic as scientists. And than, gladiators clothed as real warriors of this of that nation, so they had to wear belts if they were sannits. I think.

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