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Re: Romans on stage (Check out ABC.com - Empire)

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  • Matthew Amt
    ... Ah, the loss of true civilization! There are still vestiges: We don t wear coats and ties at the beach, nor swim suits in the office. Certain attire is
    Message 1 of 2 , Jul 1, 2005
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      > From: David Wills <dwills777@...>
      >
      > Well, we've probably strayed off topic, but I totally agree with you, Matt, on
      > the costume/clothing of the ancients. Even wearing the wrong color shoes
      > could get you stigmatized and rejected. Imagine today, if people wearing
      > saggy pants or bad shorts got ostracized! Wouldn't it be more fun to go to
      > the mall? : )

      Ah, the loss of true civilization! There are still vestiges: We don't
      wear coats and ties at the beach, nor swim suits in the office. Certain
      attire is appropriate only for certain settings.

      > I wonder, though, about the theatre education. I'm toying with an outdoor
      > Christmas show involving Roman soldiers (partly--which is how I got into the
      > Roman reenacting thing in the first place) and historyseems to indicate that
      > the soldiers most likely to be encountered as normal "police patrols" would
      > not be wearing armor at all, except helmets, and probably carrying smaller
      > shields than the typical battle scutum. They'd have gladii, and being
      > auxiliae, hastae most likely (or maybe javelins other than pila). That's
      > plenty formidable against generally unarmed men. Anyway, the question is,
      > will the public see the soldiers as properly dressed? Or will they figure
      > that we just cut a corner to save money (we're doing that where we can, of
      > course) and left off the armor. Lorica segmentata is out, natch, and whew!
      > for that--I have enough trouble keeping the rust off myone set of hamata, let
      > alone adding 8 sets of seg to my wardrobe inventory--so what would make the
      > public happy? If
      > we explained in the brochure what/why? We're already doing that to explain,
      > "Why no Wise Men at the stable" and a couple of other things.

      Actually, there are a couple pages on my site on the subject!

      http://www.larp.com/legioxx/holyland.html

      http://www.larp.com/legioxx/stage.html

      I'm not a complete hard-nose on such things! For churches and stage groups,
      I always recommend aluminum and other low-maintenance materials. It's not
      living history, and there's no point in killing yourself over details.
      Again, Hollywood has a great advantage--a movie could show troops having
      morning inspection in full kit, even as something in the background, then
      have the detail shucking their armor to go on duty. For your purposes,
      maybe a soldier grumbling about the bright side (not having to wear the
      armor) would do? There is also flexibility because we simply don't know for
      certain, so whatever you do is probably as good a guess as anyone else's.
      The point is simply to avoid going to extra effort to do something or add
      details which we know are not accurate. (For the creators of "Empire",
      coming up with body armor that looks macho but still shows off the hunky
      actor's pecs and biceps must have been a real challenge!)

      Never heard anything about smaller shields for certain duties, though.
      Not all shields were as large as some reenactment groups use, though, so you
      could certainly aim for the "minimal" size if that's a concern. (Bigger
      ones are handy to lean on!)

      When my Legio XX does "crowd control" at the local Walk Through
      Bethlehem, we just wear our full mid-first century AD kit and don't even
      worry about it. It's still more accurate than anything in "The Passion".

      Valete!

      Matthew/Quintus, Legio XX
    • David Wills
      Ah, the loss of true civilization! There are still vestiges: We don t wear coats and ties at the beach, nor swim suits in the office. Certain attire is
      Message 2 of 2 , Jul 1, 2005
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            Ah, the loss of true civilization!  There are still vestiges:  We don't
        wear coats and ties at the beach, nor swim suits in the office.  Certain
        attire is appropriate only for certain settings.

        Only if it's a semi-formal  beach.  Swim suits at the office.  hmm.  Well, no.  My Speedo days are long  over.  That would be scary. : )


        >carrying smaller
        > shields than the typical battle scutum.  

         

           Actually, there are a couple pages on my site on the subject!

        http://www.larp.com/legioxx/holyland.html

        http://www.larp.com/legioxx/stage.html

        I'm not a complete hard-nose on such things!  For churches and stage groups,
        I always recommend aluminum and other low-maintenance materials.  It's not
        living history, and there's no point in killing yourself over details.

        I utterly agree.  I have read those pages, and Johnathan is filling a great niche on stages.  Hope the USMC keeps him here for a lot longer, so he can get that business off the ground.  I have some of his stuff, too.  Nicely made. 

        I also bought Peter Connolly's book The Holy Land which agrees with my suspicions of some things, but doesn't go far enough on some other topics of particular interest.  Oh, well. Historians tend to find ONE thing or bit of evidence and then preach that it was the ONLY sort of its kind.  There were a dozen methods of crucifixion, e.g., not just the one shown in the book.  It had some to do with how long they wanted the condemned to last.  Same with weapons (nod to Mr. Moderator), wherein we have a certain helmet found at such and so a place, and we say "provenance indicates this helmet was used at _____ so that is the acceptable helmet for this time period.  More likely, as you point out on your site, there were ten different helmets in a particular maniple, and there's a good chance that there were many sorts that we've never seen, slight armorer variants, personal prefs (Hey, this cheekpiece rubs against my high, Jack Palance cheekbones--think you can modify that for me?")  For all the hundreds of thousands of Roman military helmets produced, we only have a few extant today.

        I'll shut up now.  Does that show come on tonight?  Wasn't home last night.  Probably missed it, but I watched for it on Wed.  No show.

        Guess I'll have to wait for the DVD.

        Again, Hollywood has a great advantage

        Yeah, like a hundred million dollars to invest in a film, for example.  I think I could produce some good video for that.  (btw, we did make a video, and I gave a copy to P. Antonius to deliver to you, but since he'll probably keep it, if  you'll send me your mailing address, I'll send you your own copy, being as I owe you a favor anyhow.  "Stonehenge Sacrifice", starring a few of the Leg IX HSPA coh viii and about half of the Texas Coritani, shot at Stonehenge II near Kerrville, TX.) Besides our personal gear, and some extra costume stuff I brought, I think our budget was about ten bucks, plus gasoline and lunch/dinner, which everybody had to pay on their own.  Big bidness.

        Anyone else interested, contact me, I can burn more DVD, or VHS, if you'd prefer.

        D

         

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