MAIOTIAN INFANTRYMAN

An extract from Armies of the Macedonian and Punic Wars
by Duncan Head, illustrated by Ian Heath


80.      MAIOTIAN INFANTRYMAN

This is one of two figures shown on a gilt gorytos-plate of the 4th century defeating Scythians. Though his axe, shield and bowcase are similar to Scythian types, and his companion has a Scythian short sword and coat, this man is stripped to the waist in very un-Scythian style, while both men are beardless, wear their hair shorter than do Scythians, and are depicted without the Scythians' high cheekbones and flat noses. Rostovtzeff therefore suggests they are members of one of the indigenous tribes of the northern Black Sea coast, the Sindi, Tauri and Maiotians, who were probably related to the ancient Kimmerians and to the Thracians. The Tauri were independent till the 2nd century, the Sindi and Maiotians subject to the Bosporan Greeks. Similar tribesmen will have provided many of the peasant subjects of the Scythians and Sarmatians, who may have fought for their masters as infantry.



Next: 81. BOSPORAN INFANTRYMAN in Armies of the Macedonian and Punic Wars by Duncan Head and Ian Heath




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