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HaT

Set 8054

Italian Ally Cavalry

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All figures are supplied unpainted    (Numbers of each pose in brackets)
Stats
Date Released 2003
Contents 12 mounted figures and 12 horses
Poses 4 poses, 2 horse poses
Material Plastic (Medium Consistency)
Colours Light Tan
Average Height 24 mm (= 1.73 m)

Review

Carthage relied almost entirely on mercenaries and allies to fill its armies. These came from much of the ancient Mediterranean world, including parts of Italy not under the control of Rome. The Italian allies were particularly used during Hannibal's campaigns in Italy, and many proved to be good and loyal troops. However at different periods of the wars some of these men fought with the Romans, so the figures in this set are appropriate for either side.

All the figures in this set are armed with a spear. They carry no shield, which seems to have been normal, and they display the characteristics of their tribes. Their costume was influenced by many cultures, and there was no 'uniform' as such. However there were some particular features, and these appear in the set. The men wear tunics and helmets with a pair of feathers and in some cases a crest too. The feathers are really just simply strips of plastic which do not much resemble feathers, but since these are side on to the mould a plausible feather is quite impossible to sculpt, so these are as good as could be expected and do the job well enough. Some of the men also wear a cuirass, which in one case is of the common muscle type and in the other case bears the triple disc motif that identifies the man as a Samnite.

It is thought that these men rode bareback, and so the horses in this set are suitably done with no saddle or cloth. However they do have an armour plate on the face (a chamfron) and very decorative breastplate (poitrail or peytral). While such items are known to have existed, they were very expensive and while not uncommon would not have been the norm. This applies also to the pair of upright feathers, though in this case they are easily removed if desired. The stance of both horses is very similar, and the riders fit their mounts well.

These are nice models with good detailed sculpting and little flash. The difficulty is in depicting a diverse group of warriors with so few poses. While this is possible with the four men, the two horses do not provide sufficient variety to accurately reflect the likely appearance of a large body of this cavalry as they are too expensively decorated for many. Therefore while all the figures and horses are accurate, he have only given 8 accuracy points because of this problem. Still these are attractive figures, and like so many sets from HaT this is currently the only set of figures for this subject, and is therefore infinitely preferable to no figures at all.

Ratings

Historical Accuracy 8
Pose Quality 9
Pose Number 6
Sculpting 9
Mould 9

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