(from the earlier pen drawing, I decided to go back and color it in, awww yeeeahh)
a soldier from the numenorean "golden age," ranging from about SA. 1000 to SA. 2000. I've done several takes on numenorean armor already, but most of them were supposed to be styles of the rather more conquistador-like late-second-age dunedain, and I thought it'd be fun to go back in time and try and make some designs that could have evolved into those later models (i'd love to make one of those huge, victorian-style "historic costume in pictures" books for middle earth, consisting of hundreds of plates tracking the evolution of dress and armament for all the different races and cultures, over the thousands of years of history, sadly I'll mos likely only have one lifetime, and will therefore end up restricting such a project to a few one offs like this one)
I see this as a sort of numenorean "hellenistic period" following numenorean Antiquity (from the reign of Elros Tar-minyatur and going until Tar-Aldarion) and preceding the Imperial phase (beginning with the reign of Tar-Ancalimon and ending, famously, with Ar-Pharazon's disastrous invasion of Valinor); a period characterized by numenor's rise as the great seapower, by increased interaction (benign at first) with the people of middle-earth, and the establishing of coastal cities in middle-earth. I went with a more or less greek hoplite/alexandrian-style cuirasse of scales and hardened linen, only the harness is much longer than the greek kind, trailing off into these long skirts of scale, which seems appropriate for both the great height of the numenoreans and their rather atlantian aesthetic. His Karma is quite a bit closer to tolkien's original design than some of my other designs
; I was thinking that at this stage numenor was not the crushing military presence that it later became, and so their armor at this time is more artistic and less concerned with remaining perfectly streamlined than the later models (like the difference between those beautiful, iconic greek korinthian helmets and the comparatively bland utilitarian roman "gallic" helmets)
i'm rather proud of that sword, I was trying to make it look like a greek xiphos, roman gladius and viking longsword all at once. It's always been a particularly damning question to me - given that the numenoreans, who practically cry out for a greco/roman bent to their style, are the descendents of the very northern european, dark-age seeming edain - how do you make fashion evolve from beowulfian mail and longswords into
a more mediterranian look?
the madness continues
Part of the Weekly Tolkien Sketchblog