Camp Furniture
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Camp Furniture

A bit of furniture can make life in camp much more comfortable, and those with wagons or pack animals to spare brought along as much as possible. Greek writers lovingly describe the furniture of Persian camps while remaining silent about how their own generals lived in the field.

  • x-frame chairs (Tutankhamun, Neo-Assyrian reliefs)
  • tables
  • couches (Neo-Assyrian reliefs)
  • beds (Alexander had one)
  • pillows (ditto)
  • bathtubs (Dareios III had one and Alexander used it, Plut. Vit. Alex. 20.10-13)
  • coffers (Dareios III and Alexander had them …, Plut. Vit. Alex. 8.2, 26.1-2)
  • vase stands (in the Neo-Assyrian reliefs)
  • movable screens?
  • aspis stands (Aristophanes, Acharnians, 1121, Museum August Kestner, Hannover, Germany (Inventory No. 1997.21) thanks David Harthen)
  • cushions, carpets etc. …

Geoffrey Killen, Ancient Egyptian Furniture. 3 volumes, second edition (Oxbow, 2017) {ends with the 20th dynasty (Ramesses XI) but the Egyptian tomb goods are the best source for furniture}

Liat Naeh and Dana Brostowsky Gilboa, eds., The Ancient Throne: The Mediterranean, Near East, and Beyond, from the 3rd Millenium BCE to the 14th Century CE (Austrian Academy of Science Press: Vienna, 2018)

Gersande Eschenbrenner Diemer, “Le bois en Égypte et en Babylonie du Ier millénaire av. J.-C. : étude croisée de l’archive des Egibi de Babylonie et du mobilier égyptien,” Mesopotamia LVI, 2021, pp. 139-150

The Phrygian furniture at Gordion:

  • Young, Rodney S. Gordion I: Three Great Early Tumuli, the Gordion Excavations Final Reports, Volume I. Philadelphia, 1981
  • Simpson, E., Spirydowicz, K., Dorge, V. Gordion: Wooden Furniture. Ankara, 1992.

Herodotus 9.70, 76, 80-83 on the Persian camp at Plataia

Xen. Hell. on the camp of Tissaphernes

A Roman funerary bed from Holborn Viaduct along the River Fleet, London

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