levantia title


Military contents

Rômaic armour

C10th infantry

C10th infantry boots

C10th horse archer

C10th khoursor

C10th katafraktos

C12th infantry

C12th katafraktos

Scale armour



Heavy infantry of the twelfth century

byzantine soldier

Although Emperor Leo expressed the aspiration in his Taktika that the best equipped foot-soldiers might have metal armour, in practice in that earlier period, lamellar was primarily for cavalry. A scattering of later pictures indicate that in the twelfth century more infantry had the benefit of this exceptionally effective armour. This example is primarily based upon a twelfth century fresco of Saint Nestôr in the Church of Saint Nikholas at Kastoria. The construction of this lamellar is unique to Byzantium, and the inverted lamellar sleeves and skirt are also distinctive to this century.

byzantine warrior saint

Saint Nestôr, Church of Saint Nikholas, Kastoria.

Anyone wishing a more complete discussion should see my article ‘Kremasmata, Kabadion, Klibanion’ in Byzantine and Modern Greek Studies, number 22 (1998), available as a PDF download elsewhere on this site.