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General >> Project Goliath - The History of The Sling >> Where is this image from?
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Message started by Chris on Apr 27th, 2005 at 12:53am

Title: Where is this image from?
Post by Chris on Apr 27th, 2005 at 12:53am
It's been kicking around in the historical gallery for a while now and I really want to know where it came from.  Has anyone seen it or know anything about it?  Can anyone identify the ship design?  

If it's a legit historical image, it's likely the earliest depiction of sling use in naval warfare.



Help!
Chris

Title: Re: Where is this image from?
Post by Mike_R on Apr 27th, 2005 at 12:58am
I dunno but to me it kinda looks like how kids who ride the "special" small bus to school would draw viking ships.

Title: Re: Where is this image from?
Post by Chris on Apr 27th, 2005 at 1:26am
True.  But you could say that about this cave painting of a neolithic slinger from Catal Hüyük too (~7000 BC).  They just drew funny in those days :)


Title: Re: Where is this image from?
Post by Matthias on Apr 27th, 2005 at 1:42am
That's not funny, that's style plain and simple... Some of the Lascaux (for example) paintings have a quality of line and form that can make an artist shiver, and those are 17000 yrs old.

I guess since we don't know where the image comes from we don't know who made the interpretation that it is depicting slings.  I guess we'll never know if tthose egg-people are wielding slings, or pointy paddles or?..

Title: Re: Where is this image from?
Post by Enfors on Apr 27th, 2005 at 4:54am
Being a Swede myself, I can say that those definitely look like Viking "dragon ships". They used to have a carved dragon's head at the front of the ship, presumably for intimidation purposes.

Title: Re: Where is this image from?
Post by Mike_R on Apr 27th, 2005 at 11:02am
I tried to draw a stick slinger so I could feel superior to those darn cave-slingers... Mine was worse so I guess it's back on the small bus for me.

Title: Re: Where is this image from?
Post by Matthias on Apr 27th, 2005 at 11:46am
Note the rams...

Title: Re: Where is this image from?
Post by Douglas_The_Black on Apr 27th, 2005 at 4:47pm
cant be greek could it?

Title: Re: Where is this image from?
Post by Matthias on Apr 27th, 2005 at 11:55pm
I'll take back my "maybe not nordic" first impression. I've been doing some digging and have come up with these:

Check out the guys with slings/axes/spears/paddles in number 3. Still haven't found any of those funny egg men. I think that will be the real tie in - this style of boat seems to show up all over europe.

Chris: have you seen this? http://www.rupestre.it/

Fun challenge... I'm still working on it.






Kalnes Norway


Ekenburg Sweden:



Title: Re: Where is this image from?
Post by Chris on May 3rd, 2005 at 2:30am
Very interesting.  I have a vague memory of it being viking.

However, maybe they are not slings.  The second image, from Kalnes Norway, has similar objects.  Maybe they are just ores?  What do people think?

Chris

Title: Re: Where is this image from?
Post by Thomas on May 3rd, 2005 at 8:58am
Slings are my guess after enlarging the Norway image. Paddles are too obvious and would not contribute to the story the image conveys. The various sea creatures and animals combined in the same image with dragon warships is interesting.

Tom  

Title: Re: Where is this image from?
Post by Thomas on May 3rd, 2005 at 10:41am
If these old images are typically schematic in form then some details are standardized to some extent. After viewing many images on the above links I am not so sure slings are shown in the Norway image.  The enlarged ends look much like paddles shown else ware in the down position.

Tom    

Title: Re: Where is this image from?
Post by Douglas on May 3rd, 2005 at 11:33am
They're not "Vikings" per se, since it dates to before the Viking Age. The pics are Scandinavian, but I think Bronze Age...

I don't think they are necessarily slingers, though... those could be clubs.

Title: Re: Where is this image from?
Post by archeorob on May 4th, 2005 at 10:16am
I'm going to put my vote down for greek ships, but it could really be either.  looking at the bit that's sticking out at the prow of the ship makes me think greek, and those oars are pretty suspicious.  But, really, that's a completely uneducated guess.

Rob

Title: Re: Where is this image from?
Post by english on May 4th, 2005 at 2:06pm
It certainly looks scandinavian, and those look like slings.  I think the square sail will reveal who made it or when it came from.  The rudder at the back may be important, and the lines drawn on the boats could also be significant.  I know nothing about ship design through the ages, but this makes me want to find out a little.  (I can't do it right now - my German oral exam is tomorrow.)

Title: Re: Where is this image from?
Post by Douglas_The_Black on May 4th, 2005 at 6:10pm
yes do you see how they are curved (the oars) i think that they are pretty big slings.  but i know little in this kind of thing.  :)

Title: Re: Where is this image from?
Post by Chris on May 5th, 2005 at 1:28am
Rob, your back!

-----------

Matthias, do you have any more images?  

Maybe someone can find a bronze age/viking/professor/historian and see what he/she things.  Hit up a university near you and let us know.

Chris

Title: Re: Where is this image from?
Post by archeorob on May 5th, 2005 at 11:53am
Yeah, I re-surface everyonce in a while!  The weather's warmed up and the sling comes out.

The size differences in the pictograph don't really make a difference, the artists weren't interested in creating the image to scale - look at the size of the guys compared to the boat!  So, those aren't necessarily huge slings, just representative.  

The square sail isn't as indicative as one would think, but the rudder certainly is.  I'm going to change my vote over to scandinavian. :)

Rob

Title: Re: Where is this image from?
Post by Matthias on May 5th, 2005 at 12:37pm
No kidding... square sails are pretty much everywhere but by lots of reckoning, bronze age boats aren't supposed to have stern rudders. The bow detail is pretty distinctive - unfortunately it is representative of ships found throughout europe. The Scandinavian pictographs are the closest I've found though... The lack of an upswept stern is telling too.

Chris do you have any other info about when/where you might have found this? Working on any projects at the time?

I think the obvious solution here might be for me to walk this over to the maritime archaeology prof and see what he can tell me.

Matthias

Title: Re: Where is this image from?
Post by hellier on May 5th, 2005 at 11:05pm
Hard to say, given artistic license.....but I'd say oars or swords....based mainly on the the impression one gets of a band of men all pointing their weapons ( ??) at each other...viz the habit of yelling and waving your weapon at the enemy prior to battle.....also I'd be going for a steering oar at the back their rather than a rudder...

Title: Re: Where is this image from?
Post by Chris on May 7th, 2005 at 3:09am
"Chris do you have any other info about when/where you might have found this? Working on any projects at the time? "

It's creation date is Aug 8, 2004.  That must be the day I downloaded it.

Chris

Title: Re: Where is this image from?
Post by Houndog on Sep 10th, 2006 at 2:36am

wrote on Apr 27th, 2005 at 11:02am:
I tried to draw a stick slinger so I could feel superior to those darn cave-slingers... Mine was worse so I guess it's back on the small bus for me.


They even let u OFF the small "special" bus??!! AMAZING....jk
they wont let me off without my "special" aid person there...hehe  ;D
(sorry this is an older post, but hey, couldnt pass up the oppurtunity)

Title: Re: Where is this image from?
Post by Mordechaj on Sep 10th, 2006 at 2:55pm

wrote on Apr 27th, 2005 at 1:42am:
That's not funny, that's style plain and simple... Some of the Lascaux (for example) paintings have a quality of line and form that can make an artist shiver, and those are 17000 yrs old.

I guess since we don't know where the image comes from we don't know who made the interpretation that it is depicting slings.  I guess we'll never know if tthose egg-people are wielding slings, or pointy paddles or?..


maby they are just carrying shields?

Title: Re: Where is this image from?
Post by Crazy Tom on Dec 22nd, 2006 at 4:18pm
early fishermen beating the water to trap fish in the nets ( /// slanted lines) ???

Title: Re: Where is this image from?
Post by Crazy Tom on Dec 22nd, 2006 at 4:22pm
i dont think it is half way finneshed, there is no rudder on the righte boat...

Title: Re: Where is this image from?
Post by funda_iucunda on Dec 29th, 2006 at 3:22pm
If the pictures would really show slings this weapon must have been rather common. But in that case there should be at least significant numbers of sling stones found at archeological sites. Sling stones or clay balls are the best and most common evidence for the use of the sling.
My question: has there been found any sling ammo in Sweden?  (Concerning Danmark or the Cimbric peninsula I haven't heard about findings of sling ammo, so far.) :-/

funda iucunda

Title: Re: Where is this image from?
Post by Willeke on Dec 29th, 2006 at 4:41pm
We have discussed Viking slings several times, here are 2 links: http://slinging.org/forum/YaBB.pl?num=10768576%2075
http://slinging.org/forum/YaBB.pl?num=1152377999/2#2
I do not know where in the viking world they were found.

Willeke

Title: Re: Where is this image from?
Post by Mauro Fiorentini on Sep 1st, 2012 at 11:30am
Just for the record, that is the "Stele di Novilara", a Picenian engraved stone dating the 7th Century b.C. found in Novilara, region Marche, Italy.
It depicts a naval battle between a ship of Picenian or Illirian pirates and a ship of Picenian mercenaries that are defending a Greek ship.
Some details are missing in our representation here but on the original you can see dead people, slaves and agricultural products which are what the Greek ship was filled with.
Please note how both rudder on the Picenian ships were on a central position, turning on hinges, something that will be forgot and discovered again only in the late Middle Age.
Sources:
http://www.cadnet.marche.it/novilara/pagina3.html
http://etadelferro.forumfree.it
M. Fiorentini, "Lavorare con il fuoco - la metallurgia fra aspetti tecnici e storici per un'interpretazione antropologica", Ancona 2011.
Greetings,
Mauro.

Title: Re: Where is this image from?
Post by curious_aardvark on Sep 2nd, 2012 at 6:42am
and the curvy things are most likely swords not slings.

Title: Re: Where is this image from?
Post by Mauro Fiorentini on Sep 2nd, 2012 at 7:57am
Actually, I think at least 3 of them may be read as slings; the image we have on this site is incomplete because it doesn't depicts the dead bodies under the ship on the right; which are quite far from people on the left ship, so perhaps have been hit with some range weapon.
It's important to say that the first interpretation of that stele was that these people are wielding spears. Never seen a recurved spear before  :D
I quite agree with the swords too because there were long curved swords in ancient Illiria (the opposite shore of the Picenum), but such long swords have not yet been found in the Picenum.
Again, bad English. Sorry sorry sorry  :(
Greetings,
Mauro.

Title: Re: Where is this image from?
Post by squirrelslinger on Oct 9th, 2012 at 4:39pm
well we all should go to a museam and try to figure out who this is

Title: Re: Where is this image from?
Post by Pikaru on Oct 9th, 2012 at 5:48pm
They're drift boat fishing.

driftboatfishing1.jpg (60 KB | )

Title: Re: Where is this image from?
Post by Pikaru on Oct 9th, 2012 at 5:49pm
See?
driftboatfishing2.jpg (4 KB | )

Title: Re: Where is this image from?
Post by Mauro Fiorentini on Nov 17th, 2012 at 10:23am
Ahahaha I don't think so  ;D
Unless, that is, they were fishing dead men (who're not shown in Chris's picture however)  ;)
Greetings,
Mauro.

Title: Re: Where is this image from?
Post by Mauro Fiorentini on Jan 21st, 2013 at 7:46am
Ok people for all of you too lazy to go there http://slinging.org/index.php?mact=Album,m5,default,1&m5albumid=4&m5returnid=53&page=53
we're discussing about this image here:



I don't know where Chris found the .gif file he uploaded in the site, but it's the reproduction of an engraved stele found in my Region, near an archaeological site called Novilara which dates back from the 9th to the 5th Century b.C.
It's the so-called Picenian culture, and the stele dates to the 5th Century.
It's preserved in the Museum of Pesaro-Urbino; I was looking at some pictures I took some years ago and... here it is, I had pictures of the stele!
Therefore I share them here, so we can see the original and not a .gif file.







I didn't resize the images so that we can see all the details, but if the reading becomes bad just tell me and I'll resize them to a proper size.
If C_A and the other mods agree, I'd like to change this topic's title with a more precise one such as "Boat slingers" or "Novilara's stele: boat slingers" or something else (suggestions welcome).
Greetings,
Mauro.

Title: Re: Where is this image from?
Post by Mauro Fiorentini on Jan 21st, 2013 at 8:10am
Let's read the stele from the top to the bottom.
The central part is occupied by the Greek merchant ship. It has a square sail and 15 rowers. Two other men are handling the sail. 4 rows are showed.
It has a central hinged rudder, a sort of small rostrum and an animal figure at the bow. There're 5 fish under the keel.
There're 2 couples of men in the left. Each man is connected to his partner by a line which links their legs. Another couple of men is on the left. Under this couple there's what seems to be an animal. 3 other animals are at the top left.
Under them is a strange sign which has been interpreted as a fantastic animal, a dragon perhaps. It can also be a ship's decoration. Or the rapresentation of the wind which pushes the ship away from the battle shown below.
Under this strange representation we find 3 other men, of which 2 are connected as the other couples above. The fact that they're connected means they're slaves.
Under them is a rectangle with zig-zag lines, interpreted as a plowed field.
Both this and the slaves have been interpreted as the ship's cargo, which consists of slaves and agricultural products. Both were typical products of my Region at that time, according to some ancient sources (mainly Silio Italico, and other Greek and Latin Authors).
And here we come to the lower part: the battle.
2 ships are shown, each one smaller than the Greek one.
They're equal in everything: same hinged rudder, 4 rows, same rostrum and animal figure in the bow.
The left one is equipped with 3 warriors, the right one with 4.
All the warriors are equipped in the same way, except for a fifth warrior which is fading in the far right (we can assume he's part of the right ship's crew).
They all have conical helmets (this stele is one of the sources for my linen hat, see http://slinging.org/forum/YaBB.pl?num=1358701012), a round shield (the fifth warrior has it shield decorated, or perhaps the signs on it mean it was made of wicker, according to other contemporary sources found in Sardinia), and that long weapon.
Some archaeologists here said these weapons are spears, other said they're a sort of weapon used to ignite the opponent boat.
I think they're slings, because of the reasons I'm explaining below.
First of all, every weapon goes straight for a bit, and then turns, with various angles, suggesting different moments of rotation if they're slings.
Then there're 2 or perhaps 3 spots near two of these weapon's end (from left to right, I'm talking of warriors 7 and 8). These spots may be due to the stele's deterioration, or may be efforts to represents two sling bullets.
In the end, the right boat is losing the fight. 4 dead men are showed under the keel, and it has lost its rudder.
The loss of the rudder can't be due to a javelin, which would remain stuck in the wood at worst. While repeated impacts may have caused it to detach, especially if it was hinged using cords instead of iron nails.
Under the left boat's keel we find 6 fish.
The fact that the two ships and their crew are represented equal strengthens the hypothesis that these are 2 Picenian war ships, a pirate one (right) and a mercenary one (left) which's saving the merchant one.
This would fit with the sources describing the Picenians as mercenaries and pirates (among other things) and with the fact that this celebrative stele was given to Novilara's Picenians by the Greek shipowner (or was made by the Picenians themselves to celebrate their victory).
I'll post sources as soon as I'll gather them.
Greetings,
Mauro.

Title: Re: Where is this image from?
Post by TOMBELAINE on Oct 6th, 2019 at 5:43am
To illustrate the boat of Iron Age, a replica in the museum of Bergen.
I think it's difficult to sling or to fight on this boat. So my idea is paddle. And it's possible to use a paddle like a cudgel, if necessary.
musje_1.jpg (351 KB | 3 )

Title: Re: Where is this image from?
Post by TOMBELAINE on Oct 6th, 2019 at 5:49am
The first image is mediterranean. agree with Mauro Fiorentini

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