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Stratum plus. 2014. No.6

S. Yu. Kainov, Yu. A. Kuleshov (Moscow, Russian Federation)

Battle Half-masks of Eastern Europe in Light of Recent Findings and New Research

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Pages: 83-98

The paper focuses on the recently found half-mask that was discovered near the village of Dibrovo (Donetsk reg., Ukraine). Most likely, this half-mask comes from a nomad burial, which also yielded a stirrup, a flint and a knife. The specific burial ritual (with armor placed into the grave) that came into practice in South-Rus’ steppes after the Mongol invasion allows us to date this burial back to as early as the middle of the 13th century A. D. The half-mask found while excavating the stronghold of Old Rus’ town Vschizh (Bryansk reg., Russia) is also carefully considered within the framework of the paper. The report confirmed the presupposed dating of the half-mask by the 12th century, which allows us to challenge the hypothesis about expansion of this protective element after the Mongol invasion. It might be crucial to point out that due to the restoration and the X-ray fluorescence analysis, the method of coating became clear — amalgamation by silver and gold covered with a net of lines. In the conclusion of the paper, after consideration of all the findings of half-masks known for today, on the basis of their morphological peculiarities and chronology, the authors put forward a hypothesis about existence of at least two regions that produced half-masks.

Keywords: Eastern Europe, Rus', battle half-masks, weapons and armour, helmet

Information about authors:

Sergei Kainov
(Moscow, Russian Federation). State Historical museum. Red Square, 1, Moscow, 109012, Russian Federation
E-mail: [email protected]
Yuriy Kuleshov (Moscow, Russian Federation). Problem Academic Council “Аrcheologia militaris” by the State Museum of History. Red Square, 1, Moscow, 109012, Russian Federation
E-mail: [email protected]

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