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Document Details :

Title: Τρίβολος
Subtitle: A Byzantine Landmine
Author(s): TSURTSUMIA, Mamuka
Journal: Byzantion
Volume: 82    Date: 2012   
Pages: 415-422
DOI: 10.2143/BYZ.82.0.2174096

Abstract :
A device with four points is preserved in the arms repository of the Georgian National Museum which, despite its small size, played a fairly large role in classical and medieval warfare. The iron item, called tribolos, is done elaborately, in the form of four welded arrowheads. The tribolos consisted of four sharp points of equal length, one point of which always projected upward no matter how it fell on the ground, creating a hazard to humans and animals. Caltrops were a kind of 'landmine' of the ancient world. Caltrops were first mentioned in the Classical period. Nevertheless, they turned into real military weapons only in Byzantine times. Their systematic and wide use by the Byzantines is noticeable. Caltrops held a significant place in Byzantine warfare. For its part, the caltrop discovered in Lechkhumi warrants the assumption that this specimen of Byzantine armament was known in Georgia and was perhaps actively used in battle.

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