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HaT

Set 8058

Carthaginian Allies

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All figures are supplied unpainted    (Numbers of each pose in brackets)
Stats
Date Released 2001
Contents 48 figures
Poses 8 poses
Material Plastic (Medium Consistency)
Colours Light Tan and Grey
Average Height 23 mm (= 1.66 m)

Review

During its wars with Rome Carthage relied on troops from its vassal states, its allies and mercenaries to provide most of its fighting men. HaT had already provided most of the major groups in these armies, and this set is something of a rundown of the rest, tying up some loose ends to complete the Punic Wars.

The first two figures on the top row represent Lusitani (from the Western part of the Iberian peninsular). Both have the caetra shield and carry a javelin. One of the figures is armoured, though only a minority would have been so. He has a mail shirt and greaves, and a triple-crested helmet. His colleague is more simply dressed, with a sinew helmet common in this region. All the details are authentic, and the poses are reasonable, though the second figure with the javelin close to his body is quite flat.

The remaining two poses on the top row are Celt-Iberians, which were a people from the North of the peninsular with influences from both their Northern Celtic and Southern Iberian neighbours. This mix shows in their appearance, with crested Montefortino helmets and large Celtic shields, and the distinctive falcata sword on one. The swordsman has some excess plastic caused by his cloak, and he also appears to have greaves wrapped right round his lower legs.

The first two figures on the second row represent a very important and large element of many Carthaginian armies - the Celts. HaT point out that several other companies make these warriors so there is little value in repeating this, but have included two here, presumably to represent their people's large contribution. Both are completely naked, a habit which declined during the Punic Wars but was still to be found throughout the period. Their hair is lime-washed and spiky, and they have the torc around their necks. The swordsman has no scabbard for his weapon, and his companion has some rather unconvincing muscle definition round his right shoulder and upper arm. However possibly of greater concern, at least to him, is that he has no genitals at all. Being unimpressed by the level of equipment in the lower abdomen would probably result in a spear through the chest at the time, but we felt the sculptor could have been much less coy about this 'feature'. For the sake of the warrior we hope that this is not authentic or even typical!

Our final two models are of Libyans with javelins, which was a traditional Libyan weapon. It would seem that the various tribes liked to adopt some quite severe haircuts to distinguish themselves, and these two have a ridge of hair down the centre of the otherwise shaved head. They are correctly clothed and armed, though the man with two javelins has not got any of the straps for holding his shield.

The standard of sculpting is quite good, with good folds in the clothing and some nice poses. The ridge between the mould parts is very noticeable and will require some trimming, though there is otherwise little flash. All the shields and weapons come as one with the figures, so there is no assembly required, though this does mean there is some extra plastic in certain blind spots.

Making only two poses for a group of warriors is hardly going to be a good representation for the subject, and clearly a realistic group of any of these types would not be possible from the contents of this set. As representatives in a wargame they will be welcome, however, and since it is unlikely that any manufacturer will ever make full sets of any of these (apart from the Celts), at least two is better than none. As far as is possible these seem typical of their subject, and at least they help to complete the range, which is always a good thing in our eyes.


Ratings

Historical Accuracy 9
Pose Quality 8
Pose Number 4
Sculpting 7
Mould 7

Further Reading
Books
"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
"Cannae 216 BC" - Osprey (Campaign Series No.36) - Mark Healy - 9781855324701
"Cartago Contra Roma" - Almena (Guerreros Y Batallas Series No.32) - Rubén Sáez
"Celtic Warrior 300 BC-AD 100" - Osprey (Warrior Series No.30) - Stephen Allen - 9781841761435
"Hannibal's Army" - Andrea Press (Historical Warriors Series No.3) - Carlos Canales - 9788496527577
"Rome's Enemies (2) Gallic and British Celts" - Osprey (Men-at-Arms Series No.158) - Peter Wilcox - 9780850456066
"Rome's Enemies (4) Spanish Armies" - Osprey (Men-at-Arms Series No.180) - Rafael Treviño - 9780850457018

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