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Illyrian type helmet: Wikis


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The "Illyrian" type helmet originated in Ancient Greece from the Peloponnese in around the 7th century BC. The accurate representations on Corinthian vases are enough to show that the Illyrian helmet had developed before 600 BC.[1] It was a type of bronze helmet which in its later styles covered the entire head and neck, and was open-faced in all of its varieties.[2] The helmet was named as an "Illyrian" type due to a large number of early finds coming from Illyria.[3][4]



Judging from archaeological evidence, the helmet was an evolution of the Kegelhelm or Kegel type of the archaic era found in Argos.[5] The "Illyrian" type helmet did not obstruct the wearer's critical senses of vision though the first two varieties hampered hearing. There were four types of these helmets and all were open faced.

  • Type I (ca. 650 BC) left the neck unprotected and hampered hearing.
  • Type II (ca. 600 BC) offered neck protection and again hampered hearing.
  • Type III (ca. 550 BC) offered neck protection and allowed better hearing.
  • Type IV (ca. 500 BC) was similar to Type III but hearing was not impaired at all.

The primitive Corinthian helmet's design was effected to a small degree to by that of Type I and they were used simultaneously. Peltasts and cavalry found great use of this helm. The Illyrian type helmet was used by the Ancient Greeks,[6] Scythians[7] and became popular with the Illyrians who later adopted it.[8][9] A variety of the helm had also spread to Italy based on its appearance on ivory reliefs and on a silver bowl at the "Bernardini" tomb at Praeneste.[10] The helmet became obsolete in most parts of Greece in the early 5th century BC. Its use in Illyria had ended by the 4th century BC.[11]



  1. ^ Snodgrass (1964), p. 20.
  2. ^ Connoly (1998), p. 60.
  3. ^ Snodgrass (1999), p. 95.
  4. ^ Sekunda (1998), p. 53.
  5. ^ Connolly (1998), p. 60.
  6. ^ Snodgrass (1999), p. 52.
  7. ^ Cernenko, McBride, and Gorelik (1983), p. 45.
  8. ^ Snodgrass (1999), p. 52.
  9. ^ Snodgrass (1999), p. 76.
  10. ^ Snodgrass (1964), p. 20.
  11. ^ Wilkes (1995), p. 241.


  • Connolly, Peter (1998). Greece and Rome at War. Greenhill Books. ISBN 185367303X.  
  • E. V. Cernenko, Angus McBride, and M. V. Gorelik (1983). Scythians 700-300 B.C. Osprey Publishing. ISBN 0850454786.  
  • Sekunda, Nick (1998). The Spartan Army. Osprey Publishing. ISBN 1855326590.  
  • Snodgrass, Anthony M. (1999). Arms and Armor of the Greeks. John Hopkins University Press. ISBN 0801860733.  
  • Snodgrass, Anthony M. (1964). Early Greek Armour and Weapons: From the End of the Bronze Age to 600 B.C. University Press.  
  • Wilkes, John J. (1995). The Illyrians. Blackwell Publishing Ltd. ISBN 0631198075.  


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