The Ostrogoth Helmet

The Ostrogoth Helmet of Torricella Peligna 

By Domenico Pettinella

The Torricella Peligna Ostrogoth helmet, so-called because it belonged to an Ostrogoth warrior, was found in 1922 during excavations in the locality of Santa Lucia, between Torricella Peligna and Roccascalegna, and was recently put on display, together with other findings, during the exhibition “From Coptic Egypt to Byzantine Abruzzo – The Byzantines in Abruzzo (6th – 7th Century),” organised in the ducal castle of Crecchio by the local section of the Archeoclub and by the Government Department of Antiquities of Chieti. The coastal Abruzzo region, including the Torricella region, was involved in marine traffic in Byzantine times and it continues to give us proof of both of the presence of and of settlements of Ostrogoth, Longobard and Norman peoples who crossed the peninsula. And the Torricellan Helmet is a proof of that. In 537 the territory of Torricella was fiercely contested fought over by Ostrogoths and Byzantines and the helmet, which has come down to us in very good condition, belonged to a warrior of the Ostrogoth army defeated by the Byzantines.

© Amici di Torricella

Translation courtesy of Dr. Marion Apley Porreca