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A round shield can refer to any type of hand-held shield that has a round shape. They come in highly varying sizes, and have, in different forms, been very popular in Europe, the Asia and the Americas, throughout the Bronze Age, the Classical period, the Post-classical period, and the Early Modern period. During the Bronze Age they were generally large and designed for bashing and shield wall tactics (such as Spartan bronze shields), while since the late post-classical they were mostly designed for parrying and riposte (such as the small Buckler, supplanted by the heater shield).
Although offering less protection, especially to the legs than the kite shield, the round shield was meant more towards use as an offensive weapon. The word "swashbuckler" came from this, as soldiers beat their weapon against the buckler.
List of round shields
- A Buckler is a very small round shield popular in the late Middle Ages and Renaissance.
- The Romans used the Clipeus and Parma.
- Rotella gained popularity in the Renaissance amongst fencers, owing to its classical origin.
- Targe typically referred to a round shield.
- The Dhal Shield was a round shield in India.
- Captain America's shield, a fictionalized round shield used offensively when thrown.
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