The posting below highlights Professor B. A. Litvinsky’s discussion of Partho-Sassanian helmets in an article on pre-Islamic helmets in the Encyclopedia Iranica on December 15, 2003.
The version printed below is different from that which appeared in the Encyclopedia Iranica in that (excepting the drawing panel entitled “Figures 34-58“) it has embedded two paintings and a photo produced in textbooks published by Osprey Publishing. All descriptions under the paintings and photo (excepting the drawing panel entitled “Figures 34-58) are from Kaveh Farrokh’’s lectures at the University of British Columbia’s Continuing Studies Division and Stanford University’s WAIS 2006 Critical World Problems Conference Presentations on July 30-31, 2006
Helmets of the Parthian period are known from works of art. A sculptured head from Nisa (2nd–1st cent. B.C.E.) wears a bowl-shaped helmet with corrugated visor, high crest, and moveable cheekpieces. This type of helmet probably goes back to Hellenistic prototypes. Ares and Athena depicted on the rhyta from Nisa wear helmets of different types. A late Parthian helmet appears on the rock-relief in Firuzābād (see ARDAŠIR I ii.). It is a hemispherical helmet of a noble Parthian with a neck-guard surmounted with a knob and a plume.
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