Greaves

[18] An example of hoplite greaves.

Greaves were pieces of armor that hoplites wore to protect the parts of the legs that the hoplon did not cover. A pair of greaves offered protection from stabs and slashes to the lower legs, from the knee down to the ankle. Between the Corinthian helmet and the hoplon, every part of the hoplite was protected except for their lower legs, hence the necessity for coverage in these areas.  The greaves were often made thin so that they didn’t interfere too much with the hoplite’s movement or weigh them down, allowing them to have more endurance and fight longer on the field. Peasant farmers in phalanxes generally couldn’t afford greaves, opting to purchase armor to protect the more vital areas of their body.

Leave a Reply