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HaT

Set 8024

Numidian Cavalry

Click for larger image
All figures are supplied unpainted    (Numbers of each pose in brackets)
Stats
Date Released 1999
Contents 12 figures and 12 horses
Poses 4 poses, 2 horse poses
Material Plastic (Medium Consistency)
Colours Light Tan
Average Height 23 mm (= 1.66 m)

Review

If you found yourself in North Africa around the second or first centuries BCE, and you wanted to raise an army, chances are you would try and recruit a good number of Numidians to your ranks. Numidia was a region roughly equivalent to modern Algeria, and its people were renown as light infantry and cavalry. As a result of the harsh landscape, these people were practically born in the saddle, and were expert horsemen. Livy described them as 'by far the best mounted troops in all Africa', and both Carthage and Rome made use of their services, occasionally at the same time. They were the most famous cavalry of the Punic Wars, and an important element in many armies.

The usual four poses from HaT show these men riding into battle, with two holding their javelins or light spears up. These last two have ring hands into which the separate weapons fit well. Their clothing is fairly minimal, with just a short, baggy, sleeveless tunic secured by a belt. It would seem that this was their everyday dress, and they wore nothing special when going to war. In all respects their dress is properly realised, even down to their distinctive hair style.

All the troops here have javelins or light spears, and this is the only weapon definitely associated with them. However we feel that it is likely they would have had some form of knife on their person, though there is no evidence for this, and so none have been sculpted on these figures. They correctly carry the light, round shield with a rim but no boss, which was their only form of protection. However this is flat whereas it would seem the real thing was slightly convex.

The two horses have no saddle or bridle - the Numidians used only a rope neck strap for a harness, and controlled their mount with a short stick rather than a bit. Both horses are nicely sculpted, and the men fit them comfortably.

This was perhaps a relatively simple subject for some figures, but no less important than any others for the Punic Wars. Apart from the shield shape and arguably the absence of knives these are accurately done and well sculpted. Flash is not too bad, and though the number of poses is small it does at least deliver this important group of warriors, which was the only set of such men until the much later Zvezda set made its appearance.


Ratings

Historical Accuracy 9
Pose Quality 7
Pose Number 6
Sculpting 9
Mould 8

Further Reading
Books
"Ancient Armies" - Concord - Tim Newark and Angus McBride - 9789623616461
"Armies of the Carthaginian Wars 265-146 BC" - Osprey (Men-at-Arms Series No.121) - Terence Wise - 9780850454307
"Armies of the Macedonian and Punic Wars" - Wargames Research Group - Duncan Head - 9780950029948
"Cartago Contra Roma" - Almena (Guerreros Y Batallas Series No.32) - Rubén Sáez
"Cavalry" - Arms and Armour - V Vuksic and Z Grbasic - 9781854095008
"Fighting Techniques of the Ancient World" - Greenhill - Simon Anglim - 9781853675225
"Greece and Rome at War" - Greenhill - Peter Connolly - 9781853673030

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