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I recently asked how big a giant pig would need to be in order to carry a 10 foot tall (3.0 meters) and 272 kilogram (599.66 pounds) humanoid (wearing plate armour or an ankle-length cuirass with parapleuridia made of interlaced narrow plates) on its back. I learnt that said pig would weigh approximately 1 metric ton and after doing some detective work, I theorised that this pig would stand around 12 feet tall and have a 11 foot long body.

Now here's the tricky bit.

This type of pig has a physiology akin to that of Entelodonts (prehistoric omnivorous pig-like mammals related to hippos and whales) and are ridden by mentioned 10 foot tall humanoids acting as cataphracti (heavily armored cavalry) using horned saddles similar to those used by the Sarmatians. This animal obviously needs to be able to move quickly in short bursts and support its massive weight in order to function effectively as a battle charger. What sort of leg structure would this pig need to fulfil both functions?

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  • $\begingroup$ In Latin and if you insist on ending with -ii, cataphractarii; or, if you Latinize the Greek word directly, cataphracti. In any case, not **cataphractii, which looks like the plural of a non-existent **cataphractius. $\endgroup$ – AlexP Apr 7 '18 at 10:39
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    $\begingroup$ I love how the closest living equivalents of pigs are horses and rhinos and elephants $\endgroup$ – Adi219 Apr 7 '18 at 15:55
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    $\begingroup$ @Adi219 : I love how a quadruped ends up 12 feet tall yet only 11 feet long (especially one supposedly based on an animal that we can clearly see from the fossil record is longer than it's tall) :) $\endgroup$ – Pelinore Apr 8 '18 at 10:51
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    $\begingroup$ @Pelinore I think the OP might want to recheck their calculations 😂 $\endgroup$ – Adi219 Apr 8 '18 at 10:59
  • $\begingroup$ I would say to look at hippos. Is it just me or do hippos look like some kind of pork? $\endgroup$ – monsto Apr 9 '18 at 21:44
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The closest living animal to compare the pigs to would be Elephants. The typical Asian elephant weighs between 2.5 to 5 tons and their height is between 6 to 10 feet. The pig is 1 ton and twelve feet. Elephants can also charge at their enemy in short bursts(35-40 kpmh speeds) and have been used for warfare in India and during the Second Punic War in Rome.

Elephant legs are very wide but not extremely short. The pig would probably have similar legs to an elephant, but due to its lower weight and larger height, the legs could probably be a little longer and slimmer.

Edit: Though I initially considered rhinos to be the closest match, I settled on elephants because elephants have been tamed and used for warfare and transportation with success, which is a quality of the fantasy pigs that rhinos lack (to the best of my knowledge).

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A 1 ton pig is essentially a female black rhino with no horn. Elephants are much taller and heavier. A female black rhino would be the same mass, and have the same body shape. Copy the rhino's leg structure. Keep in mind there are much larger rhinos out there, a male white rhino can get up to about 4 tons.

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  • What sort of legs would a 1-ton pig need

A 1 ton pig is no heavier than a large draft horse, so in all honesty you shouldn't really need any particularly specialized type of legs for this.

See https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Horse

Which tells us a Heavy or draft horse can weigh from 700 to 1,000 kg (1,000kg = 1.1 (US) tons)

  • I theorised that this pig would stand around 12 feet tall and have a 11 foot long body

I suspect you may have theorized wrongly, take the body of the largest Shire horse then chop it's legs off & replace them with appropriately sized pig legs & the animal is unlikely to stand anywhere close to 6 foot at the shoulder, the head won't be much above if that's what you're measuring to.

A female hippo will probably give you a fairly good body plan for what you're thinking of, including the legs & I think ticks all your boxes including the short bursts of speed, they weigh around 1,500 kg (so around 1.5 tons) are around 5 feet at the shoulder with a top speed of around 30 km / hour.

If you want something taller than that with a pigs body plan it's going to weigh a good chunk more than your original 1 ton specs.

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Pigs are artiodactyls and the in the size range you have 4 artiodactyls to work with (not including whales), Cattle, Bison, and Kouprey which all have similar limbs and Hippo which are fairly squat like pigs so it really depends on how pig like you want to make them.

If you want them to be similar to entelodonts then definitely go with the former, entelodonts are fairly thin limbed and tall. Oxen might give your best bet since they can carry a lot of weight. Although Bison have large heavy heads just like entelodonts and can move faster.

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Your 1 ton estimate is off. Taking the horse (the only common riding animal) as a parallel, a rule of thumb is that you don't want it to carry more than 20% of its body weight. So for your 272 kg/600 lb humanoids, that's 1360 kg/3000 lbs, plus more for the armor, say close to two tons.

So probably the best comparison animal is the hippotamus: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hippopotamus Which despite being primarily aquatic, does move quite fast on land, in short bursts. IDK how they'd do on a long march, though.

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The closest living equivalent is a horse. Horses can weigh anywhere between 300 to 1000 kilo's, getting you that 1ton of weight. Its dimensions would also be similar to that of the largest horses.

Heres the wikia on the Shire Horse: https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Shire_horse

It weighs between 850 to 1100 kilo's and averages out at 7 feet tall. The largest recorded horse was over 2m tall and weighed 1500 kilo's.

If I were you, I would use something inbetween the Elephant and Horse for legs. Horses have long thin legs and pigs are far more stocky like the Elephant.

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