The Roman Republican Oval Scutum was only gradually replaced with the rectangular scutum. Curved, rectangular scuta were constructed largely of strips of overlapping bentwood, possibly set in place by steaming over a curved form (in much the same way as modern plywood is made) although no direct evidence survives to prove this. This meant the shield was strong and yet light enough to be carried over long distances. The curved shape of the shield allowed it to absorb heavy blows, while the sides sloped away from the attacker, allowing arrows and enemy blows to glance off without transmitting the full force of the impact to the legionary soldier behind it. The boss in the centre of the shield, constructed either from a copper alloy (brass or bronze) or iron, was itself used offensively, being heavy and dense enough to stun an opponent and ease the legionnaires strike with his Gladius. The shields large size allowed the soldiers to form the tustudo or shield wall that could protect them during an advance. Our Republican Oval Scutum is made from 1/2 inch plywood, covered with linen and has a rim of leather. The Leather edge is stitched to look like sinew. The Shield includes large steel boss with a hardwood central rib support and integral handle. Hand painted wing design in full color on the red front.
Weight: approx. 19 lbs
Overall height: 50 inches
Overall width: 35 inches
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