The most expensive helmets. Part twelve. Wendel helmets
Wendel helmets. Medium - Wendel-14.
Archaeological excavations at Wendel and Walsgerde suggest that Uppland can be easily identified with the kingdom of Sveev, repeatedly described in the sagas. The findings suggest that the Swan kings had at their disposal well-armed squads, including cavalry, as indicated by stirrups found in the graves, and decorations for saddles of gilded bronze with inlays.
Helmet "Walsgard-8" had chain mail barmitsa around the perimeter, so it suggests that the chain mail in Scandinavia in the era of Vendel were known and even very well. (State Historical Museum, Stockholm)
The 6th century Gothic historian Jordan also wrote that the Svei had very good horses, with the exception of turing. Yes, and in the sagas, though later, the local kings fight on horseback and have at their disposal beautiful horses. By the way, Odin, the supreme god of the Scandinavians, rides on Sleipnir (translated as “sliding” or “lively, agile, nimble”) with an octopus horse, which emphasizes his swiftness.
Well, and any rider of that time, if he only had enough wealth for a horse, was usually enough for everything else. That is, the warriors-horsemen of Wendel time had helmets, chain mail, round shields with umbon, swords, the construction characteristic of the era of migration of peoples, and spears. And all this is found in the ship's burial, so that here archaeologists, one might say, was lucky. Moreover, they were especially lucky with helmets, because, unlike the “Viking Age”, they found so many that they were assigned serial numbers - “Wendel 1, 2, 3 ... 14 - that is, the common names of these helmets correspond to the numbers of those burials in which they were found.
"The burial of the noble Rus". Most likely the leaders were buried like this in the Vendelsky era. The Epoch Painting GI Semiradsky
Wendel-type helmets were most likely used throughout the Scandinavian region, but most of all they are found in the Uppland region and on the Gotland Islands. In Uppland, at least 12 helmets were found, of which 8 were subsequently reconstructed and published. These are the finds from the graves of Wendel and Walsgard, also found in other places. Consider them in more detail.
The earliest among all found is the “helmet from Torsbjörg”, which dates from the 3rd c. AD Only he was found not in the area of Uppland, but in the Thorsbjerg swamp on the border between modern Denmark and Germany. The helmet of this frame type of cutouts for the eyes does not have, as it does not have a longitudinal ridge. The frame itself consists of a rather wide longitudinal strip that connects to the helmet's front and rear crowns, and a lattice of thin iron strips between them, fastened with rivets. All parts of this openwork design are decorated with ornaments and silver plated.
It is interesting that along with him there was a typical Roman silver mask with traces of gilding from “sports” helmet II - the beginning of the III century. But it was impossible to put on this helmet with this mask, it did not fit it, so it can be assumed that it was worn either separately, or it was worn with another helmet, and it got into the swamp as a gift to the gods according to the principle “take it we do not need.
Mask from the swamp in Torsbjörg. (Museum of the Gottorp Palace-Castle, Schleswig, Germany)
Side view. And ... it is clear why it is impossible to wear her with a regular helmet.
Since there are a lot of helmets found, the Swedish scientist G. Arvidsson managed to develop their classification, which everyone currently uses: the first letter A denotes helmets without a crest, the letter - helmets with a crest, the second digit 1 denotes plates used for additional protection - The cheek pads and the back piece, and the 2 figure - the presence of a chainmail barmica. Here are just a “helmet from Torsbjörg” completely falls out of this classification. However, it is not surprising. After all, he is the earliest of all.
Helmet "Wendel-14". (State Historical Museum, Stockholm)
Well, now let's look at the samples of Wandel helmets that have come down to us from burials in Wendel, Valsgard and in some other places. Here, for example, a helmet from the burial "Wendel-14". according to the classification, G. Arvidsson clearly belongs to the A1 group, that is, it is a helmet without a crest, but with a shoulder strap and a backrest. And this is the earliest find among all the burials with helmets. It dates from the time from 520 and before the beginning of the 7th century, that is, the 536 disaster of the year could have happened after this helmet was in the ground. It is made of iron, dome-shaped with shallow eye openings. It is very corroded, but it can be seen that its frame consists of a crown, longitudinal and transverse strips, and the space between them is filled with plates that go down from the longitudinal strip to the crown.
“Wendel-14” is the only Swedish helmet that has two cutouts on the cheeks: the top for the eyes and the bottom for the mouth. This form is unusual and not typical for Wandel and Anglo-Saxon helmets. In combination with a large noseplate, such cheek pads form a very effective face protection and at the same time breathing all this does not constrain. Something they resemble the Roman imperial helmets, but only remind, no more.
The helmet is decorated with characteristic bronze gilded brows with a dotted pattern and a stylized animal head represented by its top view, that is, it is not voluminous. Similar heads, but smaller in size, adorn the ends of the brows. The surface of the helmet is covered with bronze decorative plates. But there is no convex comb on it.
Helmet "Walsgard-5". (State Historical Museum, Stockholm)
This helmet, according to the classification of G. Arvidsson, belongs to the B1 group. It is also frame, while its frame consists of a crown, a wide longitudinal strip and side bands. But the space between them is very ingeniously filled: in front, with two sub-triangular plates and a straight plate curved in the shape of the head in the middle part, and a “braided line” of iron bands between them. That is, this helmet was “ventilated,” although, most likely, it was worn with a pillowcase of leather or fabric, the color of which was visible in the slots of the braid.
And this is his modern reconstruction. Well visible "braided" with holes. Impressive, isn't it?
The batsman of this helmet is unusual, but characteristic of many Wandel helmets - from metal strips, hinged to the bottom edge of the helmet. The face is protected by a simple half-mask, and there are no cutouts for the eyes. The eyebrows of the hatching do not have, but they also end with the heads of animals, curved so that their long jaws touch the upper edge of the eyebrows.
The comb of the helmet is high with a longitudinal "ridge", decorated on both sides with the heads of animals. The helmet body, except for the openwork areas, is covered with bronze plates. Dated helmet beginning of VII.
The helmet “Walsgard-6” belongs to the B2 group, and it is even more unusual in design than all the others. That is, it has a half mask and a frame of a standard rim, a longitudinal strip with a ridge and transverse stripes, only the method of filling the empty space between them is very different from other helmets. Apparently his master did so with a rich imagination, since he filled this space with an openwork design of three fairly narrow Y-shaped strips interconnected (in pairs of two large and four small and four openwork cross-shaped plates with a hole in the middle)!
To protect the neck and the bottom of the face was supposed to be a chain mail stanchion attached to the edge of the helmet and to the bottom of the half mask. The ridge has a longitudinal "ridge", which, like other helmets, is decorated at the ends with the heads of fantastic animals. The eyebrows are connected to it, the heads of animals on which are located opposite each other and rotated in profile. The frame and this helmet cover chased bronze plates.
"Helmet from Ultuna". The crown is clearly visible from basket-shaped metal bands intertwined with each other. (State Historical Museum, Stockholm)
“The Helmet of Ultuna” is so named because it was found in the city of Ulthuna, near Uppsala. This is the helmet of the B1 group. Weight - 1,8 kg, of which 452 g falls on the comb. The dome of the helmet is the same as that of many other helmets, in particular, “Walsgard-5” without eye openings and eyebrow ornaments. It is unusual that both halves on both sides of the ridge are made in the form of a lattice of iron bands located diagonally. The neck and the cheeks were to be closed by five iron bands suspended on hinges, of which only one was preserved. The D-shaped ridge in the cross section of a bronze tube with a longitudinal "ridge" is traditionally decorated with animal heads at both ends. It was noticed that such ridges were characteristic of Wandel helmets of the end of the 7th - the first half of the 8th centuries.
Modern reconstruction of the helmet "Valsgard-7".
Many helmets were found on the island of Gotland, and not only the helmets themselves, but also parts from them. For example, these are iron eyebrows from helmets, inlaid with silver with animal heads; bronze brows inlaid with grenades and zoomorphic ornamentation; as well as decorative bronze plates for helmets with embossed braided patterns. Moreover, it is interesting that “the helmet from Sutton-Hu,” although it has a different design, is decorated in exactly the same way as the Vendle's. All this suggests that the tradition of making helmets in England and Scandinavia were very similar, although not identical. That is, quite close trade and cultural contacts between Scandinavia and Britain at that time already existed, but the military was not until the end of the VIII century, since they are not reflected in any evidence. Most of the helmets are longer than wide, that is, they were made for dolichocephalus and it was they who, therefore, lived in Scandinavia in this era. As a result, it should also be noted that such helmets could serve as a good protection against a chopping sword. The presence of lattice holes is unlikely in this case, weakened their protective functions, but the spear blows to the owners of such helmets, most likely, should obviously be wary!
P.S. But this is a Wendel-type helmet, modeled on the “helmet of Ultuna”, and of others similar to it, since no two were alike in the burials. The material is cardboard and paper, and it is made for classes with children in the framework of the “knight’s shift” in one of our summer camps in Penza. The Penza construction company “Rostum” organizes such thematic changes, which not only builds houses, but also has its own Academy, where they work with children from one year to the next 17 years. And right now, she is conducting a historical-literary camp shift "Knights of the Middle Ages" in a picturesque forest near Penza, where I will conduct both theoretical and practical classes. Full immersion in the plot-role-playing game "Knights of the Middle Ages" through various activities: creative workshops, sports, musical watches, watching movies, quests, contests. The program includes the history of medieval chivalry, life, costumes, customs, traditions, heraldry, weapon knights. Living conditions are the most comfortable. Every day swimming pool.
At one of the next classes we will make knight helmets and this is a sample of one of them. I always believed that if you know something and know how, then you need to share it, and share first thing with the children. So I share!
- The most expensive helmets. Helmet Crosby Garrett. Part one
The most expensive helmets. Part two. Helmet Hallathon
The most expensive helmets. Helmet of Gisborough. Part three
The most expensive helmets. Helmet Meskalamdug, the hero of the blessed country. Part four
The most expensive helmets. Part Five Benti Grange Helmet
The most expensive helmets. Part six. Helmets of Alexander Nevsky
The most expensive helmets. Part Seven. Helmets with horns
The most expensive helmets. Part Eight The Armory of the Moscow Kremlin in all its glory
The most expensive helmets. Part nine. Germaundby: the most famous helmet of the Vikings
The most expensive helmets. Part ten. Tophelhelm Helmets
The most expensive helmets. Part eleven. Wendel helmets and helmet from Sutton Hoo
Subscribe and stay up to date with the latest news and the most important events of the day.