The Draco standard was an invention of the Iranian Parthians and was also used by the Northern Iranian Sarmatians . When the Romans adopted the principle of the cataphract from the Sarmatians in late antiquity , they also adopted their standards .
A Roman Draconarius was usually a lancer armed with a Contus lance, called a Contarius . The Contarii can be heavily armored ( Katafracti , Clibanarii ) or lightly armored riders. Roman Draconarii often wore masked helmets .
After the Great Migration, riders carrying Draco standards spread across Europe, partly via the Sarmatians and partly via the Romans. Dacians , Goths , Slavs , Huns , Lombards , Byzantines , Avars , Franks , Bulgarians , Rus , Pechenegs , Polovzians and even the Celts and Anglo-Saxons in Britain used the Draco standard in their cavalry.
- Marcus Junkelmann : Horsemen and statues made of ore . von Zabern, Mainz 1996, ISBN 3-8053-1821-9 , ( Zabern's illustrated books on archeology , also as: Antike Welt . Special issue).