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Passage Hand
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Year 10,171 Contasta Ar


Gorean Weapons - Armor



This is my narrative and relevant references from the Books about Chain Mail and Armor.
It is not meant to be anything other than the facts of the matter.
Arrive at your own conclusions.

I wish you well,
Fogaban


 


Chain Mail and Armor
To The Index

I include chain mail, and body armor as a topic, not for its description, but simply to point out that these things are forbidden by the Priest-Kings.[1] The Priest-Kings do not explain the rationale for their rulings. They do enforce them, however, mercilessly, with the Flame Death.[2]

 


Armored Sleeve
To The Index

The one exception to the armor law that the Priest-Kings allow is for the gladiators in Ar. Murmillius (Marlenus) had his right shoulder, arm and hand sheathed[3] in what appears to be similar to the armored sleeve of the Roman murmillo gladiator.

 


Helmets
To The Index

However, it should be noted that helmets are used and some of these do indeed have a draping of linked chain. Specifically, some of the helmets of those of the Wagon Peoples.[4] Completely covering and protecting the face, this chain, with holes for the eyes is all but a mask.[5] But not all of their helmets are so fashioned.[6]

Some helmets of Torvaldsland, which can also have a movable nose piece, hangs a mantle of linked chain. Some, though have solid sides and, as you might expect, horns.[7]

Another helmet is mentioned as being wide-brimmed and having wings.[8]

Then there are other helmets mentioned. The most common Gorean helmet is nearly solid metal but has a slotted "Y" shaped opening for the eyes and mouth.[9] It is cushioned with rolls of leather[10] since it is heavy[11] and is buckled under the chin with straps.[12]

When not being worn it is carried in the left hand,[13] carried over the left shoulder,[14] slung from a spear[15] or strapped to a saddle.[16] Those with prestige even have someone else carry their helmet.[17]

Helmets are usually adorned with an insignia of some sort, perhaps of the company to which the wearer belongs,[18] for if the crest plate is empty, the bearer could be taken for an outlaw or mercenary.[19]

The material from which a helmet is made can be bronze,[20] iron[21] or steel.[22]

Helmets can also be different colors. Some are colored to identify the Caste of the one who wears it. Such is the case of the Assassin, who wears a black helmet.[23] Some are colored to match the city, as in the case of the blue helmets of Tharna.[24] There are also mentioned helmets which are gray,[25] yellow,[26] purple[27] and golden.[28] The rank and file of armies will polish their helmets.[29]

Certain helmets have other identifying marks on them. A messenger within the Caste of Assassins will affix a golden slash to the left temple of his helmet.[30] At one time, the palace guards of Tharna each had a tiny silver mask on the temple of their helmets.[31] The Taurentian helmet is laced with gold as one of the Ubar's guard.[32] An officer in the ranks of Port Kar has a golden slash[33] or slashes[34] across the temples of his helmet.

Captains of Port Kar are identified by the crest of sleen hair atop their helmets.[35] However, this crest of sleen hair is not just indicative of the captains in Port Kar for it is shown to also adorn the helmet of a Camp Commander,[36] and others.[37] Some helmets are spoken of as having plumes of hair[38] or have the rim trimmed in fur.[39] Plus, it seems, a tarnsman might wear a helmet which has a crest of sleen hair or larl hair.[40] One golden helmet is described as having a golden plume.[41]

Fighting helmets can be heavy and have a curving steel crest.[42] Other fighting helmets actually have covers to blind the wearer and are locked into place. Thus to enthrall the crowds of the arenas.[43]

Helmets serve other purposes too. Some will make an oath by their helmet.[44] They are used to drink from,[45] hold wash water,[46] used as a form of measure,[47] a container,[48] a way to bail water from a boat,[49] something in which to cook a meal,[50] or simply to mark one's spot.[51]








Footnote References


[1]
I would have supposed that armor, or chain mail perhaps, would have been a desirable addition to the accouterments of the Gorean warrior, but it had been forbidden by the Priest-Kings.
Tarnsman of Gor     Book 1     Page 48

They, like Gorean warriors, wore no visible body armor, as this defensive device was contrary to the rulings of Priest-Kings.
Swordsmen of Gor     Book 29     Page 334


[2]
Whatever the truth may be in these matters the Priest-Kings, as is their wont, did not explain the rationale for their rulings. They do enforce them, however, mercilessly, with the Flame Death. Perhaps the rulings on body armor were not even particularly rationally motivated, at all; perhaps they were the result of a random notion or an idiosyncratic whim on the part of one or more Priest-Kings. Whatever the case may be the rulings, as in the case of certain forbidden developments or innovations in weaponry and communication, and such, are in place.
Swordsmen of Gor     Book 29     Page 336


[3]
Murmillius, at least until he himself should lie red in the white sand, held the adherents of the games in Ar, and perhaps the city itself, in the gauntleted palm of his right hand, his sword hand.
Assassin of Gor     Book 5     Page 191

I spun and saw, standing beside me, on my right, sword drawn, in the heavy helmet of the arena fighter, with the small round shield, the sheathed right arm and shoulder, Murmillius.
Assassin of Gor     Book 5     Page 345


[4]
A net of linked chain, unhooked, dangled beside his helmet.
Fighting Slave of Gor     Book 14     Page 178


[5]
I could see he carried a small, round, leather shield, glossy, black, lacquered; he wore a conical, fur-rimmed iron helmet, a net of colored chains depending from the helmet protecting his face, leaving only holes for the eyes.
. . .
I could not see his face because of the net of chain that hung before it.
Nomads of Gor     Book 4     Page 10

He threw the chain mask from his face, back over the helmet and laughed.
Nomads of Gor     Book 4     Page 15


[6]
The second rider had halted there. He was dressed much as the first man, except that no chain depended from his helmet, but his wind scarf was wrapped about his face.
Nomads of Gor     Book 4     Page 14


[7]
The helmets of the north are commonly conical, with a nose-guard, that can slip up and down. At the neck and sides, attached by rings, usually hangs a mantle of linked chain. The helmet of Thorgard himself, however, covered his neck and the sides of his face. It was horned.
Marauders of Gor     Book 9     Page 73


[8]
The figure was in battle gear, and it removed from its head a large, winged helmet.
Mariners of Gor     Book 30     Page 173

He was a large man, with a wide-brimmed, metal-winged helmet.
Rebels of Gor     Book 33     Page 42


[9]
Above the shield was suspended a helmet, again reminiscent of a Greek helmet, perhaps of the Homeric period. It had a somewhat "Y"-shaped slot for the eyes, nose, and mouth in the nearly solid metal.
Tarnsman of Gor     Book 1     Page 22


[10]
and the simple helmet, innocent of insignia, with empty crest plate, of curved iron with its "Y"-like opening, and cushioned with rolls of leather.
Raiders of Gor     Book 6     Page 68


[11]
I wore the heavy Gorean helmet, concealing my features.
Raiders of Gor     Book 6     Page 82

and put on the heavy black helmet of the Assassin.
Tarnsman of Gor     Book 1     Page 182


[12]
I unbuckled the helmet strap and gently removed the helmet.
Outlaw of Gor     Book 2     Page 217


[13]
In his left hand he cradled a helmet.
Witness of Gor     Book 26     Page 488


[14]
I resheathed my sword, fastened my helmet over my shoulder, lifted my shield and spear and set out in the direction of the Sardar Mountains.
Nomads of Gor     Book 4     Page 5

I hung my helmet over my left shoulder with the sheathed short sword; on my left arm I bore my shield; in my right hand I carried the Gorean war spear.
Outlaw of Gor     Book 2     Page 45


[15]
He carried a spear over his left shoulder, balanced by his left hand; from the spear depended a shield, behind the left shoulder, and a helmet.
Slave Girl of Gor     Book 11     Page 18


[16]
He fastened his helmet to the side of the saddle and, from his saddle pack, withdrew a roll of leather.
Captive of Gor     Book 7     Page 264


[76]
His helmet bearer, on his own beast, followed him.
Magicians of Gor     Book 25     Page 96


[18]
In the light of the small lamp there, near the exit, I determined that the helmet bore the insignia of the company of Artemidorus of Cos.
Renegades of Gor     Book 23     Page 61


[19]
Neither his leather nor his helmet were distinguished by insignia. I supposed then, that he must be a mercenary, or an outlaw.
Captive of Gor     Book 7     Page 256


[20
The helmet was bronze.
Outlaw of Gor     Book 2     Page 21


[21]
a helmet, conical, of iron, with hanging chain, and a steel nosepiece, that might be raised and lowered.
Marauders of Gor     Book 9     Page 96


[22]
I tried to tear the steel helmet from my head with my manacled wrists
Assassin of Gor     Book 5     Page 336


[23]
He wore the black helmet of a member of the Caste of Assassins.
Tarnsman of Gor     Book 1     Page 133


[24]
By their shield insignia and blue helmets I knew them to be men of Tharna.
Outlaw of Gor     Book 2     Page 56


[25]
His helmet, with its "Y"-like aperture, was gray.
Captive of Gor     Book 7     Page 256


[26]
At one side of the clearing I saw Sarus, Captain of the Rhoda, leader of the men of Tyros. He lifted his yellow helmet from his head and wiped his brow.
Hunters of Gor     Book 8     Page 193


[27]
"You are a Taurentian, are you not?" I asked a fellow in a purple helmet.
Mercenaries of Gor     Book 21     Page 250


[28]
In a minute the rider appeared in view - a fine, bearded warrior with a golden helmet and a tharlarion lance.
Tarnsman of Gor     Book 1     Page 115


[29]
Regulars of Cos, regiments of them, in ordered lines, in cleaned, pressed blue, with polished helmets and shields, preceded by numerous standard bearers, representing far more units than were doubtless in the city at the moment, and musicians, advanced.
Magicians of Gor     Book 25     Page 89


[30
Across the left temple of the black helmet I fixed the golden slash of the messenger. In this disguise I freely wandered about the camp, observing the siege operations, the appointment of the compounds, the marshaling of troops.
Tarnsman of Gor     Book 1     Page 176

No one ventured to repel me. All were silent. I wore the garb of the Caste of Assassins, and on the left temple of the black helmet was the golden slash of the messenger.
Tarnsman of Gor     Book 1     Page 192


[31]
About the room, here and there, stood stem warriors of Tharna, grim in their blue helmets, each with a tiny silver mask on the temple members of the palace guard.
Outlaw of Gor     Book 2     Page 90


[32]
Then to my surprise I saw, with us, fighting, a common Warrior, not a Taurentian, one whose helmet was not laced with gold nor his shield bound with silver, nor his shoulders covered with the purple of the Ubar's guard.
Assassin of Gor     Book 5     Page 347


[33]
With him there stood a tall, bearded helmeted warrior of Port Kar, the golden slash of the officer across the temples of his helmet.
Raiders of Gor     Book 6     Page 51


[34]
Though his helmet still bore the two golden slashes, it now bore as well a crest of sleen hair, permitted only to captains.
Raiders of Gor     Book 6     Page 129


[35]
I gathered up my cloak, and my helmet, it with the captain's crest of sleen hair, and left the chamber.
Raiders of Gor     Book 6     Page 168


[36]
We now saw a tall figure there, behind the ramparts, one whose helmet was surmounted by a crest of sleen hair. There were standards held behind him. "It is the camp commander!" cried a fellow.
Renegades of Gor     Book 23     Page 312


[37]
In his left hand he cradled a helmet. It would muchly enclose the head. On it, mounted over the crown, from front to back, was a crest of sleen hair.
Witness of Gor     Book 26     Page 488


[38]
carried a spear, beneath the blade of which was slung a helmet with a plume of dark, swirling hair.
Slave Girl of Gor     Book 11     Page 12


[39]
At his saddle hung a conical steel helmet, oddly fashioned with a rim of fur encircling it, bespeaking a tradition in armory whose origin did not seem likely to be the Tahari.
Tribesmen of Gor     Book 10     Page 306


[40
They wore gray helmets, with crests of the hair of larls and sleen. Their leather told me they were tarnsmen.
Slave Girl of Gor     Book 11     Page 272


[41]
He was a tall man, in a golden helmet, plumed, too, in gold, and a golden cloak.
Magicians of Gor     Book 25     Page 90


[42]
the great helmet with its curving steel crest that concealed his features
Assassin of Gor     Book 5     Page 191

I spun and saw, standing beside me, on my right, sword drawn, in the heavy helmet of the arena fighter, with the small round shield, the sheathed right arm and shoulder, Murmillius.
Assassin of Gor     Book 5     Page 345


[43]
"Murmillius is apparently victorious again," said Vancius of the House of Cernus, lifting a blind helmet and fitting it over my head. Vancius, of the guards, turned the key in the helmet lock that fastened the helmet on my head. Within the heavy metal casque I could see nothing.
Assassin of Gor     Book 5     Page 333

"There is no time!" said Ho-Tu. "Bring the other helmet!" One of the girls presented Ho-Tu with another helmet. It seemed identical to the one I had worn. Then I saw that is was perforated.
Assassin of Gor     Book 5     Page 337


[44]
"Were it not for the daughter of Marlenus," said Pa-Kur, his metallic face as placid as the quicksilver behind a mirror, "I would have slain you honorably. That I swear by the black helmet of my caste.
Tarnsman of Gor     Book 1     Page 138


[45]
Some warriors entered, too, and instead of attempting to restore order had incredibly taken off their helmets, filled them with Kal-da and sat cross-legged with us, to sing and drink their fill.
Outlaw of Gor     Book 2     Page 80

Two were being dressed for the spit; two, as yet had been untouched, blood was being drained into a helm from the neck of the fifth. "Ivar Forkbeard!" cried the man holding the helmet. He lifted the helmet to Ivar. Over the helmet Ivar doubled and held his fist, making the sign of Thor. Then he drank, and handed to me the helmet.
Marauders of Gor     Book 9     Page 260


[46]
Callimachus descended from the stem castle, leaving his officer at that post. He took some water in his helmet and, using it as a basin, splashed his face with it.
Guardsmen of Gor     Book 16     Page 13


[47]
Lara, the Tatrix, straightened in my arms. "I do not find the terms satisfactory," she said. "Give him in addition to what he asks, the weight of ten tarns in gold, two rooms of silver and a hundred helmets filled with jewels.
Outlaw of Gor     Book 2     Page 143


[48]
When I had knelt before a post, my hands behind me, chained back about the post, a helmet beside me, set in the sand, like a vessel, into which ostraka would be placed, men had come to look upon me.
Dancer of Gor     Book 22     Page 363

"Lots were cast into a helmet, and drawn," he said.
Rebels of Gor     Book 33     Page 68


[49]
Nearby was a barge, one of the larger craft in our makeshift flotilla, carrying perhaps fifty men. It was poled by ten men to a side, working in shifts. Some other fellows, with their helmets, cast water out of it. Other men clung to its stern.
Vagabonds of Gor     Book 24     Page 96


[50
The Pani are fond of rice. It is sometimes boiled in a helmet.
Smugglers of Gor     Book 32     Page 112

It could have been the camp of a patrol or kill squad, but it seemed a tiny fire, not that serving several men, contented, sure of themselves, with rice boiling in the helmet.
Rebels of Gor     Book 33     Page 32

"Build up the fire," said Nodachi. "I have rice. We will boil it in a helmet.
Rebels of Gor     Book 33     Page 44


[51]
The fellow called Borton hurled his helmet down in the place, marking it for himself. Few, I gathered, would be eager to displace this token of his claimancy.
Vagabonds of Gor     Book 24     Page 23




















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