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Sannita Warrior - IV Century B.C.

Elite Series



The bust is of a Samnite warrior from IV century B.C. dressed and fitted out traditionally. Existing pictorial evidence, in fact, reveals considerable Greek influence, that is: a hoplite helmet, a hoplon with a zoomorphic figure, and two javelins. The sword hilt is identical to a Greek Kopis, in other words a falcata in Latin. The metal breastplate with its trefoil design appears to be a typically Samnite element in common use in southern Italy in the IV century, which was also adopted by the Carthaginians. The broad bronze foil belt was, for the Samnites, a symbol of attained manhood.


The Samnites were an Italic people of Sabine descent, living in the mountainous region of Samnium, corresponding to the regions of eastern Campania, Molise, and southern Abruzzo. In the fifth century they extended their territory in Campania and captured Cuma and Capua. They were among the most feared enemies of the Romans, who conducted three military campaigns against them, which they called the First, Second and Third Samnite Wars. The struggles against Rome began in the year 343 and ended in 290. The Romans successfully and totally subjected the Samnites between the year 272 and 269. Between 82 and 80 B.C. the Samnites took part in the social wars and sided with Mario, which ended up with their total extermination at the hands of Sulla. History informs us of one of the most bitter defeats ever suffered by the Roman army; during the second war the Romans were beaten at Caudium. On that occasion the Samnites, not wanting to decimate the enemy, decided to take them prisoner, and humiliated them by making them pass under a yoke formed by their crossed javelins. The event is remembered as the Battle of the Caudine Forks.

Painted by Andrea Guidarelli
Sculpted by Davide Bucci

This product was added to our catalog on Monday 10 December, 2012.
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