Study Session 2013

The theme for this session is "taking suits apart" with the intent of showing several different styles of armour from the late 16th century, how the parts fit together, and how pieces are restored well or badly and how to understand how the armour is put together based on what you can see from the outside.

Armour

Trinkets

Italian Three-quarter Suit

Italian Three-quarter Suit circa 1560-80

Composed Armour. Comprising a breastplate, backplate, morion, gorget, 2 arms and 2 knee length tassets. The armour is composed, possibly from items from a single armoury or collection - at a glance they form an armour but on close inspection the arms do not match and the tasssets are not a pair. The armour retains much black paint finish on all parts. The breast, back and arms date from 1560-80. The Morion may be this early, or it may be as late as 1600. The tassets are most likely contemporary with the cuirass. The breast and backplates fit well together and have similar roped edges. Both are rough from the hammer. they appear to have been originally part of the same armour. The Breastplate has heavily roped borders at the neck and arms. the armholes are formed by a pair of sliding gussets. The breast has the 2 mounting holes used for attachment of a lance rest, so it was originally designed for use by heavy cavalry. Breastplate of mild peascod form with a single lame at the waist. Upper portion of the breast decorated with 2 raised volutes. The gorget is of simple 2 piece form with rolled edges at the neck and around the lower border, possibly 17th century. The helmet is a simple one piece morion with high comb and narrow brim. Comb and edge of the brim roped. Backplate of simple form. Roped borders to neck and arms en suite with the breast. Most of one arm rope lacking due to corrosion. The arms are composed of pauldrons of 9 plates each designed for use either without arms, with floating elbow cops (as currently displayed) or with elbow gauntlets. The elbows are "floaters" - not articulated to the vambrace, instead being attached to the arms by means of leather straps. They are of bracelet form with pronounced roped medial ridges. The left has a recessed border on the wing. The vambraces are designed for use with floating elbows and are formed of 2 pieces, attached by 2 hinges and secured closed by means of a pin. The left has a recessed border at the wrist, the right is plain. both have roped borders at the wrist and inside of the elbow. The tassets are formed of 9 (right) and 11 (left) plates. They are similar in design and construction, but obviously not a pair. The are secured to the fauld by 3 buckles (the left retaining all three original buckles, the right having 2 original and one replacement). Two buckles on the breastplate, the buckle on the waist belt, all rosette washers and all external leathers replaced. The replacement buckles are well-made modern copies of the original tasset buckles. The rosette washers are stamped with raised daps in each petal. They are two different sizes for larger and smaller straps. [inv. num. A-1]

Details



Italian Half Suit

Italian Half Suit circa 1570

Etched in the "Pisan" fashion. Comprising a cabasset, gorget, breast, back, tassets, pauldrons, arms and gauntlets. Etched overall with wide bands of decoration composed of a central region with figures, trophies and foliage bordered by 3 bands on each side, the central one roped. Pairs of medallions at the center of the neck on the breastplate, the bottom edge of the tassets and on the pauldrons. Decoration not an exact match on the pieces, but of very similar form. Cabasset of good form. Narrow brim with rolled and recessed border. Most original brass capped steel rivets with decorative washers. Some cloth lining band remaining between a few rivets. Point with a nice stalk, bent over to the back. Etched with 6 bands of trophies. Each side decorated with a central panel containing an armoured figure in antique style flanked by angels. Collar of 3 pieces front and back, the main plates with a rolled lower edge Neck plates associated. Pauldrons of 7 lames, 2 above and 4 below the large main plate (similar form and etching, but the right pauldron somewhat larger). Arms formed of a tubular upper cannon with rotating collar, lower cannon of inner and outer plates attached by pairs of hinges at the back and a pin on the inner plate engaging a hole in the outer plate, elbows of bracelet form with rolled edges on the wing attached to the uper and lower cannons by one articulating lame. Simple peascod breastplate with rolls at the neck, arms and between the tassets, the bottom edge of the breast flared to accept the tassets, etching at the arm holes simulating gussets. Gauntlets with bluntly pointed cuffs, the back of the hands covered by 5 lames, the last formed to the knuckles. Backplate with rolled borders at the neck, arms and bottom edge. Overall decorated with recessed bands and etching. The tassets formed of one piece with simulated lames. The surface overall rusted and cleaned. Much etching remains. Leathers and most rivets replaced. The tassets incorrectly cut apart and re-assembled. The 5 hand lames of the left gauntlet and the top plate of the left tasset replaced. [inv. num. A-102]



Three-quarter Suit

Three-quarter Suit circa 1590

Composed. Consisting of a matching breast and backplate, Burgonet, munions and long tassets. All of the pieces with recessed polished bands and raised rough from the hammer surfaces. Edges with inward-turned roped rolls. [inv. num. A-194]



Armour

Armour Late 16th cent

A Composite Italian Full Armour of steel. Close-helmet with one-piece skull, visor, upper and lower bevor and 3 neck lames front and back. The skull rising to a tall roped comb (small holes near the top of the comb and one small brazed repair) swepted slightly back, bordered by incised lines, with circular holes over the each ear in the form of a circle of 8 holes with a central hole. With a shaped plume-holder incised with chevrons at the base by one rivet on each side. Pointed visor with horizontal vision sight divided centrally, pointed lifting-peg fitting into the upper bevor. The upper bevor fits the visor exactly, the upper edge curved in at the back of the eyeslot. Pierced with circular breaths in the form of a circle of 8 holes with a central hole (matching the holes in the skull, but forming a larger circle). on the right and pivoted at the same points as the chin-piece. Chin-piece and upper bevor secured by hooks which engage in to flattened pegs pierced with a hole. Face hole of the chin-piece bordered by a roped inward-turned roll. Face edge of the skull plain with single engraved line. Lining rivets around the face hole flush on the outside. Three neck-plates at front and rear (lower two rear plates replaced), the bottom ones each with turned and roped border and an additional roped ridge parallel to the border. Gorget of two main plates with single neck-lames at the front and rear. The outer edges of the main plates are bordered by a half roll and recessed border, the half roll roped. The neck edge of the main plates with matching roped half-rolls. The neck plates with roped full rolls. The neck plates are secured by an internal hinge at the left and a pin in the rear plate engaging a hole in the front plate on the right. The main plates are secured by a turning hook on the right which engages in a keyhole slot. Breast-plate of deep peascod form with medial ridge and two embossed volutes at the top, moveable armhole gussets, single plate skirt, and later fixed lance-rest. Back-plate shaped to the back and embossed with a "V" towards the top. Inward-turned roped rolls at the neck, arms and on the edge of the narrow waist flare. Arm holes with recessed borders. Tassets each of five upward-lapping lames. The rounded bottom edge of the final lame with a full inward turn and parallel ridge, each roped. The ends of each plate with roped half-rolls. Each tasset with a central crease and small filed notch at the center of the top edge. Tassets originally designed for 3 buckles, re-fitted for 2 buckles to match the fauld lame on the breastplate. Right tasset with 2 notch assembly marks on inside of the plates. Later fully articulated vambraces each with turning joint, 6 lame pauldrons and floating elbow cops. Later gauntlets each with flared cuff and lames over the fingers (some missing). Later full leg harness each hinged together and with articulated round-toed sabatons. Dome-headed rivets throughout. Originally on a padded wooden manikin with modern butted mail apron and mounted on a wooden plinth from its display since WWII. Remounted in the current collection. Helmet, breast and back similar to those on B-13 from Mantova. Gorget very similar to that on Corselet II.47 in the Royal Armouries (illustrated on plate LIX in European Armour in the Tower of London). Breastplate with narrow waist and very deep peascod. Some buckles probably original. Most rivets replaced. All straps replaced. [inv. num. A-114]



Italian Close Helmet

Italian Close Helmet circa 1580

One-piece skull, visor, upper and lower bevor and 3 neck lames front and back. The skull rising to a tall roped comb (small holes near the top of the comb and one small brazed repair) swepted slightly back, bordered by incised lines, with circular holes over the each ear in the form of a circle of 8 holes with a central hole. With a shaped plume-holder incised with chevrons at the base by one rivet on each side. Pointed visor with horizontal vision sight divided centrally, pointed lifting-peg fitting into the upper bevor. The upper bevor fits the visor exactly, the upper edge curved in at the back of the eyeslot. Pierced with circular breaths in the form of a circle of 8 holes with a central hole (matching the holes in the skull, but forming a larger circle). on the right and pivoted at the same points as the chin-piece. Chin-piece and upper bevor secured by hooks which engage in to flattened pegs pierced with a hole. Face hole of the chin-piece bordered by a roped inward-turned roll. Face edge of the skull plain with single engraved line. Lining rivets around the face hole flush on the outside. Three neck-plates at front and rear (lower two rear plates replaced), the bottom ones each with turned and roped border and an additional roped ridge parallel to the border. Similar to the helmet on B-13 from Mantova.

Weight: 6 pounds 11.2 ounces (3,045 g). [inv. num. A-114a]



Italian Breastplate and Backplate

Italian Breastplate and Backplate circa 1580

Breast-plate of deep peascod form with medial ridge and two embossed volutes at the top, armhole gussets, single plate skirt, and later fixed lance-rest (removed). Tall inward-turned, finely roped rolls at the neck and armholes. The armholes on the main plate have a line incised parallel to the edge. Fauld lame with incised line parallel to the upper edge and inward-turned roped roll central arch. Steel buckles at the shoulders. Back-plate shaped to the back, embossed with rounded ribs in the form of a "V" towards the top and parallel to the arm holes. With incised vertical line at the center. Inward-turned, roped rolls at the neck, arms and on the edge of the narrow waist flare. Breast of heavier form, consistent with those made for cavalry use. Breast and back associated. Similar to those on B-13 from Mantova.

Breastplate - height 15 from base to center to neck hole. Width 10 in. at the waist and 13 1/2 in. under the arms. Neck roll 1/4 in. wide and 3/8 in. tall at the center. Backplate - height 14 3/4 in. widhth under the arms 14 3/4, 10 1/4 in. at the waist. 11 1/4 in at the upper edge.

Breastplate - thickness at the outer edge .035 at the upper corner under the arm to .080 near the waist. At the holes for mounting the lance rest .075-.110, primarily in the .080-.095 range. Center .110-.130 in. Upper area thins to .055 in. at the upper corner, but generally .070-.085 in. Peascod thins to .055 at some spots, but generally .065-.080 near the center. Overall, the center is app. .125 in. thick, tapers out to .070-.080 in. at the sides before thinning to app. .060 in. very near the edge and top. Backplate - varies between .022 in. and .060 in. Most of the area is .030 in. to .040 in. Thickness is much more variable. It does not seem to be intentionally thickened in any specific area. [inv. num. A-114b]



Italian Gorget

Italian Gorget circa 1580

Gorget of two main plates with single neck-lames at the front and rear. The outer edges of the main plates are bordered by a half roll and recessed border, the laf roll roped. The neck edge of the main plates with matching roped half-rolls. The neck plates with roped full rolls. The neck plates are secured by an internal hinge at the left and a pin in the rear plate engaging a hole in the front plate on the right. The main plates are secured by a turning hook on the right which engages in a keyhole slot. Very similar to that on Corselet II.47 in the Royal Armouries (illustrated on plate LIX in European Armour in the Tower of London). [inv. num. A-114c]



Tassets

Tassets circa 1580

Tassets each of five upward-lapping lames. The rounded bottom edge of the final lame with a full inward turn and parallel ridge, each roped. The ends of each plate with roped half-rolls. Each tasset with a central crease and small filed notch at the center of the top edge. Tassets originally designed for 3 buckles, re-fitted for 2 buckles to match the fauld lame on the breastplate A-114b. Right tasset with 2 notch assembly marks on inside of the plates. [inv. num. A-114d]



Italian Gauntlets

Italian Gauntlets circa 1550-1580

A pair of fingered gauntlets. Pointed cuffs of one piece with a central crease and joined at the inside of the wrist by 2 flush rivets. The seam stepped so that the outside is flush. The cuff is flared evenly thoughout its length. The outer edge of the cuff is bordered by a roped inward roll and a recessed border. The border includes a raised central ridge. The roll, central ridge and recessed border with single engraved lines. The back of hand is formed of 4 narrow plates toward the wrist and one wider plate at the knuckle. Each of the plates has a central crease with a notch in the edge aligned with the crease and a pair of incised lines parallel to the visible edge. The ends of the metacarpal plates have a shallow semi-circular extension with a small notch cut at the end of the extension. The extension allows the rivets to be mostly aligned with the edge of the plates. The knuckles are covered by a single plate with a central raised and roped ridge and the outer edge is shaped to the fingers. Thumbs of one large plate with a raised central tear-drop and scales covering the thumb. The main thumb plate is attached to the larger metacarpal plate by a hinge with one rivet on each end. The metacarpal plates are slightly boxed. Small finger and thumb plates replaced. Fingers re-leathered. Rivets replaced. Cleaned over-all. Cuff at the wrist roughly three and one half inches in diameter. Outer edge of the cuff tear-drop shaped 6 inches by 5 one half inches. Cuff 5 inches long at the point and 2 inches long at the inside of the wrist. Metacarpal app. 4 inches across at the knuckle plate. [inv. num. A-46]



Pair of finger gauntlets.

Pair of finger gauntlets. late 16th-early 17th century

Of blackened steel, each comprising a flared, boxed cuff with low medial ridge, and slender turned and roped border with a line of domed brass-headed rivets, roped boss over the ulna, seven overlapping metacarpal plates, a knuckle plate embossed over each knuckle, and an additional plate to which the fingers are secured all articulated with on domed brass-headed rivets, overlapping finger plates riveted to leathers, separate hinged thumb guards and leather wrist straps with iron buckles. the final metacarpal plate is wider than the rest and is formed to the knuckle plate. Most of the rivets in the cuff, metacarpal and thumb are original. Remains of lining leathers. One of the wrist straps original. Some finger lames original (most often these are all modern replacements). The cuffs are formed of an inner and outer plate, riveted together. The inner plate is boxed to go over the vambrace but fit close the wrist. There are assembly marks in the metacarpal plates. The plate to which the finger leathers are secured has pairs holes at the inner edge for attachment of the finger leathers (these are not currently used, instead they are attached by single rivets at the center of the plate). From the collection of John Wilmot. [inv. num. A-121]



Gorget

Gorget circa 1560

South German, probably Augsburg. Of bright steel composed of 4 plates front and back. The top one with inwardly-turned and roped roll, the bottom one drawn down to a blunt point in the front. Hinged on the left side with an integral hinge in the top collar plate and a rivet n the main plates. Secured by a rivet on the rear plate engaging a keyhole in the front plate and two pins engaging holes in the upper plate on the right. Two pins are relatively rare. This may be to keep the upper plates aligned perfectly if the collar is meant to engage a roll on the bottom of the helmet. The upper one is secured to the rear plate and engages a hole in the front plate, the lower one is secured to the front plate and engages a hole in the rear plate. The top corners of the second rear plate are notched to allow the gorget to open, the plates to fit nicely and still allow for an overlap. With brass-capped rivets throughout. The rivets that secure the straps for the pauldrons are modern. The other rivets may be original, which would make the leathers original. Possibly some form of mark on the main front plate. Very nice form with tapering neck plates. The gorget includes two straps for securing the pauldrons which appear to be later replacements. Details of the contruction including the difference in thickness between the front and back plates, the double pins, beveled edges, inset hinge, brass capped rivet heads and finished edges of the inner plates indicate this likely formed part of a high quality armour. This is very similar to the gorget on Wallace A45 catalogued as A45.02.

Ex. Coll. Peter Parsons (2011), Robin Wigington (1977), Part of a South German armour sold by Sotheby , Co. London 12 Feb. 1974, lot 172.

Thickness varies on the front main plate between 0.070 in. and 0.095 in. It is generally in the 0.080 in. range. The main rear plate is thinner - 0.040 in. to 0.055 in, mostly .040-050.

Weight: 2 pounds 8 ounces (1,130 g) [inv. num. A-201]



Pair of knee length tassets

Pair of knee length tassets circa 1560-70

Black and white. Formed of eight lames with detachable poleyns of 4 lames. The tassets are divisible between the fourth and fifth lames. The bright band at the center is bordered by narrow recesses, the borders on the side are recessed with a narrow raised edge simulating a roll on the outside and a small roped inward turned roll on the inside. There are white bands down the middle and on each side. There are three buckles on each for suspension from the fauld. The segments are secured by keyhole slots and pins on the outside and pins with hooks on the inside. Decorated with original brass rosette washers and a few replaced pewter rosettes. There are remains of a leather strap at the edge of the outside. This would have been used to limit the motion of the sliding rivets or possibly to secure a lining. The image of the separate pieces of the right tasset with the poleyn from the outside shows the knee at full bend. Both tassets include marks which are likely to identify the matching tassets among others - 7 punched marks on the lowest lame of each section that separates and on the wing of the cop. Ex. Royal house of Hanover. [inv. num. A-181]



Cuisse with poleyn

Cuisse with poleyn circa 1580

Comprising a one-piece cuisse with poleyn of 4 plates. The cop of deeply rounded form with a small wing. The edge of the cop rises to a point at the center, the outer edge of the lames are cut to form a point in the center and points over the rivets. The top edge of the cuisse, wing and bottom plate with inward-turned rolled roped edges. The rolls are fairly even, the one on the top of the cuisse does taper a little bit. The rolls on the edge of the cop wing are full rolls on the flat portion of the wing but they flatten out and finally disappear in the indented area. The cuisse is shaped to the thigh, creased at the center and has an additional raised and roped line parallel to the top edge. The leg has a band of etched decoration in the form of a set of trophies of armour flanked by roped bands along the center line. The band between the top roll and roped line is etched with a foliate design. The edges of the cop and lame are filed with a simple roped decoration and have notches at the center crease. There are single filed notches on the inner ends of the cop, lame, lower plate and cuisse. The image of the leg with the knee bent illustrates the extent of motion allowed by the armour (almost, it does move a little more under pressure). Strap mounting rivets remain near the top of the cuisse and on the cop. The lower lame has a central slot to be secured to the greave.

Height 14 1/4 in. tall.

Generally varies between .030 and .050 inch thick, mostly .035-.040 in. with some places where it is as thin as .020 in. on the lower plate. [inv. num. A-169]



Greaves and Sabatons

Greaves and Sabatons circa 1580

The greaves formed of two plates front and back formed to the leg hinged on the outside and secured by pins on the inside. Each with a sabaton of 9 plates (4 small plates overlapping a larger center plate then 3 smaller and terminal plate overlapping the central plate in the other direction) with terminal plate of boxed form turned over at the front and sides. Main plates creased at the center of the front and back. Sabatons creased at the center of the 4 plates closest to the greave, the crease ending in the main central plate. Small inward-turned, roped rolls formed around a wire at the bottom of the greave plates and very small, fine outward turned roll at the top of the back plate (behind the knee). The rear plate pierced with a hole for the spur. An additional plate rivetted into the inside of the plate to provide a threaded attachment for the spurs. 2 hinges on the outside of each greave. Hinges fully wrapped. The barrels cut into 4 sections (2 on each side). The ends rounded and filed to form simple flowers. Stamped with curved accents to emphasize the shape. Attached to the front and rear by one rivet each. Sabaton plates attached by sliding rivets at each side and originally 2 leather straps (one on each side of the instep, most of the inner remaining on both). Remains of leather strap in the base of the toe plate to secure sabaton to the shoe. 18 in. tall. Sabaton 11 3/4 in. from the back of the heel to the front of the toe. 80 painted inside the back plate of the right greave. From the George F. Harding Collection [inv. num. A-124]



South German Armour Parts

South German Armour Parts circa 1550-60

Pauldrons, fauld and tassets. All matching. Rolled and roped borders with parallel pairs of raised lines as border. Pauldrons of 6 upward-lapping lames in a particularly German fashion normally associated with Augsburg. Pauldron plates attached by leathers at most points. Sliding rivets at the back of the lower 5 plates. Fauld of 3 lames with sliding rivets and internal leathers including an edge leather for lining. Fauld with central crease and parallel lines at the ends of the plates. Center of bottom plate arched slightly with rolled and roped border. Matching tassets of 5 lames connected by sliding rivets at the outer edge and internal leathers at the center and inside. Tassets suspended from the fauld by 3 buckles each. Buckles with filed decoration. Rolled edges on the inside and bottom of the tasset plates. The pauldrons and tassets retain leather strips riveted inside the outer edge for securing the linings. [inv. num. A-108]



Spaulder

Spaulder circa 1580

Formed of 7 upward-lapping plates. The top two plates are attached by a sliding rivet at the back, central leather and a rivet at the front. The remaining plates are attached with sliding rivets at the back and leather strips at the center and front. All leathers originally secured to the plates with 2 rivets on each plate. Full rolled and roped edges at the top, front and bottom. Raised edge at the rear. Very nice form, swelling up to fit the shoulder. Central crease.

Overall height 14 1/4 with the rear sliding rivets collapsed and 15 1/2 inches when extended (slots vary in length, generally 1/2-5/8 inch long and 2 are not presently sliding due to tight rivets and later internal paint), width 7 1/2 inches at the widest point on the outside of the rolls and 5 1/8 inches at the elbow - measured from the outside of the roll to the outside of the roll diagonally (the lower rear corner is curved in at the back so that the edges are 4 5/8 inches apart). The rolls are very small - app. 1/8 in wide.

Weight 1 pound 11.2 ounces (770 g). [inv. num. A-117]



Arm harness

Arm harness circa 1580

Right arm formed of a tubular upper cannon fitted with a turner of 2 lames. The upper and lower are secured by a raised, roped ridge in the upper that is engaged by a flair in the lower plate. The cop of bracelet form joined at the inside - the center of the flair - with a single lame above and below. The vambrace formed of an inner and outer plate secured by one inset hinge on the inside and two pins on the outside. The main edges with roped inward turns. Many of the rivets - primarily those on the visible side - are capped with dapped brass caps. The four outer (visible) articulation rivets have brass rosette washers. The arm has a typical Brunswick form with a crease along the outside. There is a small clip on the inside of the turner which would secure the pauldron strap. Ex. Royal House of Hanover. [inv. num. A-172]



Arm harness

Arm harness circa 1600

Left arm formed of a tubular upper cannon fitted with a turner of 3 lames, the upper lame retains 3 rivets which secured a leather tab to lace the arm to the sleeve. The upper and lower are secured by a raised ridge in the upper that is engaged by a flair in the lower plate. The cop of bracelet form joined at the back with a single lame above and below. The vambrace formed of an inner and outer plate secured by two external hinges on the inside and a pin on the outside. The main edges with inward turns. The surface is rough from the hammer with remains of oxide finish. There is a pin on the outside of the main plate of the turner to secure the arm to the pauldron and a rivet on the inside securing a piece of leather that would originally have been a loop to secure the pauldron strap. The main edges are decorated with incised lines. Many of the rivets retain dapped brass caps. Ex. Royal House of Hanover.

Weight 3 pounnds 5.2 ounces (1,510 g). [inv. num. A-173]



Morion

Morion circa 1580-90

German, Nuremberg. Rounded skull with tall, tapering comb. Comb with widely spaced fine roped decoration. Flaired brim rising to a point at the front and back. Skull "droops" deeply at the center covering more of the head than normal. Brim with an inward very finely and widely spaced roped roll turned over wire and a recessed border. Twelve holes around the skull above the brim for lining rivets (missing). Two later wiring holes at the base of the brim. Marked with the Nuremberg guild control mark at the rear point of the brim. Shows significant signs of layering and flaws from slag inclusions in the original metal. These show on the inside and outside surface as well as at the edge of the roll.

Provenance John Woodman Higgins Armory Inv. No. 2639 from William Randolph Hearst, sold Gimbel Brothers, New York, 31st October 1941.

Exhibited Charleston Art Gallery of Sunrise, Charleston, West Virginia, January-1 May 1975.

Measurements: 11 in. (28 cm) tall. [inv. num. A-222]



Tasset

Tasset circa 1610-20

Italian. With blued and gilt decoration. Separates into two parts between the ninth and tenth plate. The tasset formed of sixteen upward lapping plates with a poleyn of five plates. The top plate is boxed to form to the flair at the base of the breastplate. The exposed edges of the plates with five points each and bordered by three parallel engraved lines. The cop of shallow form with a mostly flat wing. Articulated with two lames above and two lames below, the final lame larger and cut with a rounded (patched) bottom edge. Decorated with gilt rivets and engraved lines. Apparently originally the plates were attached using three internal leathers and had an additional narrow strip at the ends of the plates. Some modern patches at plate 14 and terminal plate. Leathers broken. Now loose or secured by modern bolts.

Provenance: John Woodman Higgins Armoury Inv. Nos. 927.4.a and b from Dr. Bashford Dean, Riverdale, New York, 28th September 1929

Measurements: 29 in. (61 cm) long. [inv. num. A-223]



German Greave plate (front)

German Greave plate (front) late 16th cent

Originally part of a complete cased greave. Designed to be worn with a full legharness and mail sabatons. Greave has good shape and terminates at the ankle where it has a rolled edge and a series of small holes for the attachment of the mail sabaton. The turning hook used to secure it to the lower plate of the poleyn remains. There is a brass collection tag with the number c. 27, and a paper one with the number c. 57. This was originally a very nice piece - it has a wide etched bands of decoration at the center and narrow bands at each edge. There are remnants of gilt in the etching. This style of greave built for use with a mail sabaton was often used in Italy. The style of etching is associated with Augsburg Germany. The etched decoration is app. 1/2" wide at the sides. The central band tapers from app. 2 1/8" to 1 1/2".

Height 12 in. at the center crease, 4 1/2" wide at the calf, 3" wide at the ankle.

Varies between .018" and .036" thick. It is generally thicker near the ankle and thinner at the calf. [inv. num. A-38]



Tasset end plate

Tasset end plate circa 1550-60

German. From a garniture. Cupped under the knee and with 2 keyhole slots to secure it to the end of a tasset. Decorated with etching in three bands around the edge and at the center. In each cae the central band wider than the side bands. Roped around the edge. With pairs of rivets simulating leather rivets at the center and inside. Due to the quality of the manufacture and etching, and the fact that it is an exchange piece, this formed part of a very good quality armour. Ex. Royal Armoury of Portugal in Lisbon in 1834. [inv. num. A-220]



German Gorget

German Gorget circa 1550

Formed of 3 plates front and back with additional plates covering the points of the shoulders. Main front plate with central crease. Main rear plate formed to the shape of the neck and shoulders. Neck tof two lames front and back. Upper plates with srong inward-turned roped rolls. Neck lames creased at the center front following the crease in the main plate. Neck lames attached by 3 leathers front and back, each secured by 2 rivets in each plate. Upper plate secured by an integral hinge at the left and a pin at the right. Main plates secured by a pin at the left and a pin engaging in a keyhole slot at the right. Attached shoulder protection of two plates each. One a small articulating plate, the other shaped to cover the point of the shoulder. Edge rolled and roped. Secured with sliding rivets at the back and leathers at the center and front edge. The leather on the right can be detached from the main plate to allow the gorget to be opened. Two hinged mounts for the suspension of the pauldrons, each carrying a vertical pin with a spring-loaded catch. One associated. Older leathers. A pair of holes at the base of the center of the rear main plate.

Top of neck slightly out of round. App 6 1/2 inches across on the inside (app. 1/4"" longer front to back than side to side). The main plates are 10 1/4 inches wide at the front, 11 1/2 inches wide at the join between the front and back plates and 13 1/4 inches wide at the back. Overall thickness varies between 0.03 in. and 0.050 in. It is generally around 0.040 in. thick. [inv. num. A-25]



Gorget

Gorget circa 1580

Composed of a single plate front and rear of rounded form. Decorated with etched cabled bands filled with trophies-or-armour in the style typically described as "Pisan". Patches at the ends of the front plate at the pivot and closure. Originally would have had an additional pair of small neck plates. [inv. num. A-149]



Weapons

Double horned anvil stake

Double horned anvil stake 17th-18th c.

Handwrought steel, with two parallel horns and base stake. Worn. Formerly displayed as part of the Higgins Armoury display of the shop used by armourers. Illustrated in the Higgins Catalogue page 28 and also on page 30. Acquired by John Woodman Higgins from Sumner Healy Galleries, N.Y., February 24, 1932. Ex-Higgins Armory Museum, Worcester, MA.

Measurements: 19 in. long and 18 1/4 in. tall. Face 4 1/2 in. long, 3 1/4 in. wide. Flat horn 7 in. long, 2 3/8 wide at the face tapering to 2 1/8 at the end. Round horn 7 1/2 in. long.

Weight: 34 pounds. [inv. num. TO-1]



Double horned anvil stake

Double horned anvil stake 17th-18th c.

Handwrought steel, with two parallel horns and base stake. Worn. Formerly displayed as part of the Higgins Armoury display of the shop used by armourers. Illustrated in the Higgins Catalogue page 28. Acquired by John Woodman Higgins from Sumner Healy Galleries, N.Y., February 24, 1932. Ex-Higgins Armory Museum, Worcester, MA. Includes the Higgins Armoury inventory tag - item 1718.

Measurements: 22 1/2 in. long and 24 in. tall. Face 5 1/2 in. long and almost 4 in. wide with the mushrooming. Flat horn 2 3/4 wide tapering to 3/8 in. wide. Round horn app. 2 1/2 in. wide at the widest point. Varied curve from almost flat to round near the point.

Weight: app. 59 pounds. [inv. num. TO-2]



Candle mold  stake

Candle mold stake 17th-18th c.

Handwrought steel, with one long thin "horn" and a flat extension on the other end with several grooves and a small hole. On a stake with a tapered end which includes a base. Worn. Formerly displayed as part of the Higgins Armoury display of the shop used by armourers. Illustrated in the Higgins Catalogue page 28 and also on page 30. Acquired by John Woodman Higgins from Sumner Healy Galleries, N.Y., February 24, 1932. Ex-Higgins Armory Museum, Worcester, MA. 27 3/4 in long and 14 3/8 in tall. [inv. num. TO-3]



Rapier

Rapier 17th century

Long diamond shaped blade with narrow fuller toward the hilt. Flat ricasso within the hilt. Hilt formed of tapered bars of rounded form. Oringinal wire grip with turk"s head knots at each end. Pommel lightly faceted. [inv. num. W-53]



Rapier

Rapier 17th century

Rapier. Swept hilt. Long blade of diamond section. Tapered pommel. Wire wrap replaced. [inv. num. W-27]



Pike

Pike 15th/16th century

Pike. Recently obtained directly from the Luzern Zeughaus (arsenal), thispike has been in storage and periodic use there since the late 15th/early 16th Century. Shows hand forging and lamination, with square/diamond section point, round ferrule, and side straps xx inches long. It is mounted on a hand-hewn tapering round-section arsenal shaft of ash, which is old and original to the period of use. It was common for the arsenals to periodically replace polearm shafts as they showed signs of damage or rot, so it is virtually impossible to determine the age of a polearm shaft. This is certainly not a museum or collector replacement. Markings were also added at various times. Most of the shafts are marked on their lower end with a stamped “LUZERN” mark of varying forms. All show storage and handling marks and some have scattered worming, but all are fully sound and serviceable. Some shafts stamped “CL” on ends (likely an abbreviation for “Canton Luzern”) and some have painted inventory numbers. Pikes of this exact style and description are pictured and described in Katalog der Waffen-Sammlung im Zeughause zu Solothurn, by Dr. Rudolph Wegeli, published 1905. Some even bear the same star or boot-shaped maker’s marks, as well as a horseshoe mark with two points above. Pikes of this type are also described in “Katalog der Historischen Sammlungen im Rathause in Luzern”, a published inventory of weapons in the Luzern Zeughaus. It is extremely rare to find a group of historical weapons of this age from their original source with no alterations. While pikes were common in the 16th and 17th Centuries, very few now survive in their full length.Overall lengths vary between 14" 1"" to 15" 4"", most being just over 15 feet. Metal is forged iron and length varies between 20"" and 35"", with side straps set in hand cut dados in the shaft. Straps fastened with iron head nails from the period of the shafts, but some are later replacements. With star maker"s mark. Maker"s marks appear on a very small number of polearms (app. 10% in this group). LZ-09, 15"1"", 4 1/2"" blade, 6"" head, 17 3/4"" straps. Star mark stamped into the blade. [inv. num. W-42]



Halberd

Halberd early-mid 16th century

Halbard. German or Swiss. Long spike of stiff diamond section, axe blade with slightly curved cutting-edge and pierced with a central quatre-foil and a triangular set of holes above and below. Fluke pierced with a trefoil with elongated stalk. . With decorative cusps on the fluke and some on the blade. Head terminates as 2 long straps secured to the sides of an old haft. Head 35 1/4 in. long from the point to the base of the socket. [inv. num. W-48]



Halberd

Halberd early-mid 16th century

Halbard. German or Swiss. Long spike of stiff diamond section, axe blade with slightly curved cutting-edge and pierced with a central quatrefoiland. fluke also pierced with a quatrefoil. With decorative cusps on the fluke and some on the blade. Head terminates as 2 long straps secured to the sides of an original haft. Stamped with an anchor on the fluke. Head 34 1/2 in. long from the point to the base of the socket. [inv. num. W-49]