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Set 1511

The Trojan Army

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All figures are supplied unpainted    (Numbers of each pose in brackets)
Date Released 1977
Contents Varying number of pieces
Poses 10 poses
Material Plastic (Medium Consistency)
Colours Light Orange
Average Height 25 mm (= 1.8 m)


The further back one travels through history, the less evidence there usually is on all aspects of that period. There are exceptions, like Egypt, where a good deal of written and pictorial evidence survives to this day, but the Trojan War is very different. Briefly, this set is meant to depict the Trojan army at the time of the Trojan War as described in Homer's Iliad. This epic poem is a written version of an older verbal story, but though it was written as fact there is no proof that it recalls actual events. However, if such a war did take place, it is currently thought that it happened around 1200 BCE, and that the city of Troy was located on the site of Hissarlik in the north-west of modern Turkey. Ignoring the arguments regarding the historical facts of this subject, we will consider these figures for this place and time.

The set contains 10 poses, with warriors using a variety of weapons. Many look similar to figures in the Greek infantry set, but can't be described as great. They are mostly pretty flat, although many are quite nicely animated, but most seem to be in advancing poses rather than actually engaged in combat with an enemy. They are on a par with other Atlantic ancient sets, and are unremarkable in the main, though we thought the figure advancing with axe behind his shield (first row, second figure) was good and the most realistic. The figures holding their spear like a dagger, with the point toward the ground, are not good, and the soldier with a weapon in both hands would be pretty unlikely too. Both the archers suffer from an extreme example of a common problem - they are firing with arrows held across their chest, and on a flat trajectory, so they cannot be aiming them, nor expecting them to travel very far.

The most difficult aspect of this set is the accuracy. Quite simply, there is no evidence at all for warriors of Troy, so all that can be done is to look at the styles of their near neighbours and extrapolate what they might have looked like. Around 1200 BCE the metal would have been bronze, and cuirasses of strips of metal would seem possible, as worn by several of these figures, though the style used here looks to be from a later Greek age. These figures wear kilts and greaves, and helmets with various plumes coming out the top. The sculptor has included helmets made of leather covered with boar's tusks, which is fairly well documented for the Greek culture of the time, but we cannot know if this was normal in Asia Minor, though it may well have been. The mixture of weapons, with spears, swords and axes is likely to be appropriate, but some of the shield shapes seemed suspect to us, with some being miniature representations of the older full-body figure-of-eight types carried by Mycenaean heavy infantry. The complicated designs engraved on these shields seem to be pure guesswork. These figures do not seem to be much of a reflection of the styles of armour worn around that time in the eastern Mediterranean, so we have many doubts about the accuracy here. However with no real evidence we do not feel able to offer any sort of a score for accuracy, even though our gut instinct is that accuracy is poor!

The standard of sculpting is reasonable, which is certainly better than many Atlantic figures. Our sample had a fairly small amount of flash, but this varies enormously from set to set. At an average height of 25 mm these are much too tall for ancient men, and some are more like 27 mm tall, which is far too large. It seems clear that these figures were inspired by an illustration in a very old book of pictures of ancient warriors published by Blandford. Presumably they were produced to match the Atlantic Greeks, though in costume these two sets are several centuries apart. This set is an average quality effort with a fairly loose idea of the look of these men, but too large and definitely much inferior to the Caesar set.


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

Further Reading
"Armies of the Trojan War" - Partizan (Partizan Historical Series No.17) - Gabriele Esposito - 9781858186863
"Bronze Age Greek Warrior 1600-1100 BC" - Osprey (Warrior Series No.153) - R D'Amato & A Salimbeti - 9781849081955
"The Mycenaeans c.1650-1100 BC" - Osprey (Elite Series No.130) - Nicolas Grguric - 9781841768977
"Troy c.1700-1250 BC" - Osprey (Fortress Series No.17) - Nic Fields - 9781841767031

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