These are the Suits in the Allen study collection.
Munition half suit circa 1510 and later
Composed and completed with modern in-fill pieces. Atypically for this collection, this piece includes a number of custom made new pieces to complete the look. The breastplate, backplate, helmet and the left arm from the elbow to the hand are antique. The right arm and upper portion of the left arm were made in 2022 by Wade Allen to complete the look. The idea was to create something representative of a cheap "splint" or "almayne rivet" armor that would have been made and purchased in large numbers in the early 16th c. The images show the first time the pieces were put together temporarily on a stand. The display also includes a modern mail collar by Jeffrey Hedgecock purchased as part of item number R-43. If all goes well, and I continue to enhance the display, I hope to associate the other related items from the Allen collection which are of the same type and date into a single coherent display that would also include item number A-56, item number A-229, item number A-319 and item number A-123.
Breast and Back plates: Breastplate formed of one piece. Globular form. Simple outward turns at the neck and arms. The rolls are tapered with a rounded profile on the outside, with a subtle crease in the front forming a very crude triangular roll. Short spray of flutes at the center composed of 5 full flutes with two step (one sided) flutes - one on each side. The flutes are accented by engraved lines. Pierced for laces at the center of the neck and with two marks. Waist flared to carry a fauld of 3 lames. The fauld lames secured to the flare by rivets and to each other by sliding rivets at the side. The bottom fauld lame has a narrow outward turn at the center which is slightly boxed. The breastplate is cut out at the sides of the waist. The sides and ends of the fauld lames extend significantly past the waist. This is typical of armours around 1500. Two buckles at the shoulders. Both appear to be old, but they are probably both associated. One is too nice for this simple armour and the mounting plate is decorated so that it appears to have been originally designed to be used on the surface of a piece of armour. Backplate formed of three plates with raised borders at the neck and waist and with one full flute and two one sided flutes at the center. These flutes are not accented with engraved lines. The back has a very full, rounded shape. The breast and back are secured by straps at the shoulders and would have been secured at the waist by a strap and buckle secured to the back plate. Leathers depend from the bottom plate of the fauld to secure tassets. All leather straps replaced. Given the way munition armours appear to fit, it is reasonable to assume that these breast and back really do form a cuirass. Nice example of a simple munition breast and back from the very beginning of the 16th century. A very similar cuirass in the Kienbusch Collection, Philadelphia (cat. no. 123, pl. LVII), which is described as having come from the Bayerisches Armeemuseum, Munich. A number of similar cuirasses are said to have been worn by the town guard of Munich in about 1500.
Measurements: width between the arms 11 1/4 in., top center of the neck roll to the waist 13 1/4 in., width a the arm holes 14 5/8 in., width at the waist 10 1/8 in.(given the cut into the edge of the waist, it is wider than this at the real waist), fauld lames 1 3/4 - 1 7/8 in. tall at the center, backplate 13 in. wide across the top, 13 3/4 in. wide under the arms, 1 3/4 in wide at the waist, 12 1/2 in. tall at the center.
Thickness: variable - a few sample measurements indicate app. .090 in under the flutes in the center, .070 about half way around on the left hand side and .050 at the side under the left arm. Fauld mostly .030-.040, if there is a pattern they are thicker in the center. Backplate generally .040-.078, most thicker spots near the waist and upper right corner. Some spots up to .070 in. thick. Most of the surface .050-.060, thinning at the shoulder blades.
Weight: breastplate and fauld 5 pounds 15 ounces (2690 g), backplate 3 pounds 5.2 ounces (1505 g).
Burgonet: Small, low combed with a movable fall and cheek plates. The bowl formed in one piece with a low central, roped comb. The fall is secured to the bowl by two rivets that allow it to be raised. The upper part of the fall is taller than many, extending the skull slightly. The fall overlaps the cheek plates, locking them in place when it is down. The tail is a separate piece riveted to the inside of a flare on the back of the skull. It is more typical for this to underlap the skull. The outer edge is rolled inward and roped. Cheek pieces are secured to the skull by external hinges. This is not typical of later pieces where hinges are generally inset. The cheek plates have rolled and roped borders at the lower edge. The lower edge of the cheek plate extends the flare of the neck plate. The flare is formed as a separate piece riveted solidly to the cheek plate. The face hole of the cheek plates is formed with a simple hollow bump. There is a decorated iron plume holder at the back of the skull. This is an example of a very early form of burgonet. It would have been used with a simple Maximilian armour, possibly with a splint armour. That is how it is displayed in this collection. Similar to item number A-182.
Measurements: Weight 1 pound 14.2 ounces (860g). Thickness of the bowl varies between .02 and .06 in. but is mostly around .035 in. The variation is pretty random, the thickest part being in the back left. Brim .023-.032 in. Cheekplates .016-.034 mostly app. .025 in.
portion of a splint arm protection: Consisting of elbow, forearm and hand protection. Elbow covering the outside and point of the elbow with a simple slightly tapered form puckered to fit to the bend of the elbow and with a central band formed by 2 one sided flutes. Forarm of gutter formed with a central slot to secure the hand protection. Hand protection on three leathers. Hand protection of three plates secured to a fourth wrist plate. The slot allows the wrist/hand protection to be retracted. Leathers replaced and broken. Holes for Y strap across the elbow and a strap in the center of the vambrace. The images of the half suit show this piece with additional pieces of armor - item number A-212 and item number A-270 - and a modern upper and right arm made to complete the look. The modern pieces are marked on the interior 'WCA' and are obviously modern rolled steel.
This type of thing was purchased by Henry VIII for his army (in 1512 Henry bought 2000 of these) and is often illustrated in various levels of completeness in illustrations of early 16th c. landsknechts found in many woodcuts. These would have been very common originally, but few survive. This has been assembled from the following original pieces: breast and back plates - item number A-212, burgonet - item number A-270 and part splint - item number A-290. One of the most famous displayed armor of this type is in Winchester and has been illustrated in books on armor including Arms and Armor of the Medieval Knight by Edge and Paddock on page 139. This book also includes one of the more famous woodcuts of this type of armor on page 140.
Not for sale.
Half suit 1540-early 17th c.
Composed half harness using pieces of German manufacture. Provides a good illustration of a half armour from mid 16th c. All parts original, but dating from 1540-early 17th c. Comprising a gorget with integral shoulder plates for infantry use from the early 17th c. that is similar to munions from earlier, breastplate with fauld, burgonet with faceted skull and tassets. The burgonet has changed since the suit was composed. Images that show triangular cheek plates show A-115, others show A-342.
Burgonet: Atypical early form - the bowl of rounded form with four creases and coming to a small bent point at the top center. The bowl covering the top, front and back of the head and flared at the back for a single neck lame. Sides of the face covered by cheek plates (the right a good replacement) and the front with a pivoted fall which comes to a point at the center. Edges of the fall, cheek plates and tail lame with inward turned, roped borders. The similar helmets illustrated in volume II of the KHM catalogue date the pieces with similar skulls to 1535. This piece is very closely related in shape and quality of construction to parts that survive from a large number of half armours that were bought by Vienna from Nuremberg in the 1540's. Marked on the outside of the fall with a Nuremberg shield mark (partially stamped) and on the inside of the fall with what appears to be an N in a circle (again, partial).
From what can be seen, it appears that the helmets illustrated in Das Wiener Burgerliche Zeughaus - 1977 on plates 32 and 33 are similar. There are many similarities to the helmet on Wallace A40 (it has a higher point, and black and white decoration, but the bowl shape, fall, face line, form of the cheeks and even the pair of additional holes over the cheek plates are similar).
Height: 9 1/2"" tall. Weight 2 pounds 10 ounces (1200g).
Thickness: Skull mostly .05-.06, but with thin spots at .03 and thick spots up to .07. Brim mostly .04-.05 thinning at the right side toward the back down to .025 and some thicker spots up to .065. Cheek plate mostly .035-.055.
Munions: two piece collar with five piece shoulders. Collar comprising main plate front and rear raised to form an integral neck protection with inward turned plain roll, pointed front-plate hinged on the left and retained by a stud and a keyhole slot on the right, and with spaudlers of five downward-lapping lames, the bottom lames each with turned and roped border. The shoulders are well shaped to the body, broadening out at the top 2 lames. As is typical, the top lame is relatively narrow and flat, the next one larger and shaped to the point of the shoulder, the next two are nearly flat and the last plate is cusped in to fit to the arm. Appears to have originally had a bright polished surface. Signs of the rough grind or file work remain on many plates. There are a number of similar pieces that have come out of the Solothurn arsenal that have survived in very good condition. The grind marks on this piece may show how the piece was originally finished. Shoulder plates secured by sliding rivets at the rear and leathers at the center and front. Shoulders attached to the gorget with a short leather strap at the back and extensions of the central and front leathers. The right side can be removed from the gorget to allow the piece to be put on. A slot in the end of the leather engages a rivet head on the inside of the gorget. Leathers and buckles replaced. Some signs of remnants of older coatings that helped to maintain the material. All parts fit well and are likely original to each other even though the rolls at the base of the shoulders are roped and the neck roll is plain.
Breastplate: German. White. With a central crease and drawn out to a point below the center. The neck with a tapered inward turned roped roll. The arms fitted with gussets with inward turned tapered rolls. All rolls with matching roped decoration. Retains fauld of 2 plates which would extend out in the center over the crotch, forming a simplified version of the faulds where the center of the bottom lame is pushed out over the cod piece. Lower plate with 2 (probably later, but possibly working life) leather straps which may be buff for the suspension of tassets. Gussets with buckles for the shoulder straps. Interior of both fauld lames and left gusset marked with a single punch mark that appears to be the assembly mark.
South-German Tassets: For a half armour. Seven lames, the upper four detachable. Creased center line. Hammered floral decoration on the terminal lame and leaf form decoration on the top lame. The bottom edge of the bottom lame of each segment with full rolls with fine roped decoration. the rolls on the terminal lame tapered and with a central bump. Lateral double decorative lines running up the sides. Decorative file work at the centers of the tops of the lames. Very nice, full form. Old leathers (one detatched from one plate). Old rivets and matching buckles (some tongues defective). The upper and lower sections secured by a keyhole slot and peg at the outside and a much smaller keyhole slot engaging a turning pin at the inside.
Decoration on the terminal lame similar to the decoration on the terminal lame of the tassets on item number 23 in the exhibition of Brunswick armor at the Tower of London April 10-October 31 1952. Those tassets have more lames and no decoration on the top plate. Overall form, terminal plate form and rolls and buckles also similar.
Exhibited: Feb. 10 2023-Oct. 2023 Orange County Historical Museum Hillsborough NC
Composed a breastplate - item number A-263, munions - item number A-292, tassets - item number A-62 and a burgonet - item number A-342 (formerly item number A-115).
Not for sale.
Black and white half suit circa 1550-1580
composed of a burgonet with faceted one piece skull with integral brim and separate tail lame and two cheek plates rough from the hammer surface with raised white bands item number A-251 (formerly displayed with item number A-152 a morion formed from 2 pieces), item number A-107 breast with prominent central point, sliding gussets and fauld of 2 lames, munions item number A-153b formed of one large plate front and back with integral shoulders, a backplate item number A-253 and elbow gauntlets item number A-156-e-f. Breast, main gorget plates, terminal shoulder plates and gauntlet cuffs decorated with arched raised 'white' bands instead of the more usual bands parallel to the edge. Gorget neck lames lacking. Leathers decayed and lost from the munions. Upper-most plate of the right shoulder missing. Breastplate painted on the inside with inventory/arsenal number 3946. Composed, but the breast, gorget, munions and gauntlets are well-matched. The burgonet is from the same period and well matched in style. Breastplate, munions and gauntlets with older black paint. The paint on the burgonet refreshed. The previous helmet (morion) is somewhat later - c. 1600.
Measurements: Breastplate 13 3/4 in. from center of neck roll to waist, 18 in. from center of neck roll to center of roll at the base of the lower fauld lame, 14 /4 in wide under the arms, 12 1/8 in wide at the waist, 17 in. wide at the sides of the fauld, 10 7/8 in wide at the top with the gussets set to the narrowest part of the slot.
Weights: right gauntlet 1 pound 6.4 ounces (635 g), left gauntlet 1 pound 8.8 ounces (695 g), Morion 2 pounds 4 ounces (1025 g), Breastplate 6 pounds 3 ounces (2805 g), Munions 4 pounds 9.2 ounces (2075 g).
Not for sale.
Half suit circa 1550-1580
Composed of a breast, back, and pair of munions.
Breastplate: Black and white with a pronounced point below the center of the chest. Neck bordered by an inward turned, tapered, roped roll. Arm holes bordered by sliding gussets with inward turned, tapered, roped rolls. Waist flared for the fauld. Breast decorated with recessed polished bands, the overall surface rough from the hammer. There is an indistinct mark at the neck. Reblackened. There are buckles which appear to have been manufactured by being pierced from sheet at the shoulders. They attach to the inside of the gussets. This would suspend the breastplate and serve to return the gussets to the outward position. One missing its tongue and detatched.
Measurements: 13 in. from the center of the neck roll to the waist, 10 1/2 in. wide at the outside of the gussets when extended, 9 3/4 in. wide with the gussets compressed, 14 5/8 in. wide under the armholes, 13 7/8 in. wide at the waist.
Weight: 4 pounds 3.2 ounces (1905 g).
Gorget with munions: German. Unmarked, but most likely Nuremberg. Black with polished recessed bands at the borders. Decorated with two narrow recessed grooves at the center of the front, back and down the center of each shoulder. Collar formed of 3 plates front and back. The lower plate coming to a blunt point at the front and back. Outer edge with a recesed band with raised border. The upper plate with a pronounced plain inward turned roll. Hinged at the left with an integral hinge and secured by a pair of pins at the right. Shoulders of 7 plates. The second plate shaped over the point of the shoulder. The terminal plate with an iron buckle and mount to secure the strap around the arm. The collar plates are secured by three leathers front and back, each secured to the plates by two rivets in each plate. The shoulders have a row of sliding rivets at the back and two leathers (center and front). The rear of the spaulders is secured to the gorget by a short leather strap. Recessed bands lke these are normally associated with Nuremberg. Blackened surface of modern paint, all rivets, leathers and neck pins replaced.
Back plate: German. Black and white with recessed bands. Straight upper neck line for use with a deep collar, likely a pair of munions. Neck and arm holes bordered by narrow, inward turned, roped border. Three recessed white bands radiating from the waist and recessed bands at the neck and arm holes. Surface rough from the hammer and painted black. Bands polished bright. Single waist lame designed to carry a culet (missing). Marked at the neck with Nuremberg mark. There are pairs of small holes at the base of the rolls at the neck and arms which would have been used to secure a lining. These holes are normally associated with 17th c. wear, so this back was likely refitted for use after its initial manufacture and use.
Consisting of item number A-210 (breastplate), item number A-219 (munions) and item number A-268 (backplate).
Not for sale.
Italian, Flemish or English Three-quarter Suit circa 1550-60 (original helmet c. 1600)
Composed Armour. Comprising a breastplate, backplate, morion(when acquired), close helmet, gorget, 2 arms and 2 knee length tassets. The armour is composed, possibly from items from a single armoury or collection (the close helmet was added later from a different source) - 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, tassets and arms date from 1550-60. The Morion most closely resembles those from c. 1600. The close helmet is also from 1550-70.
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 style of gorget is typical of pikeman's armours of the 17th c. 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.
The breasplate and tassets are very similar to II. 164 in the Royal Armouries (illustrated on plate LXII of European Armour in the Tower of London,arms this early with similar elbows and vambraces on the Anne de Montmercy armour in the Metropolitan Museum of Art NY). Another similar cuirass with similarly constructed pauldrons is preserved in the armoury at St. Mary's Church at Mendlesham. Another similar cuirass is preserved on Inv. Nr. A 1038, A 837 in Vienna described as Italian, c. 1545. In that case the brestplate has an additional lame at the waist and the pauldrons have turning collars, but the style is very similar. Another similar cuirass is Inv. Nr. A 406 in Vienna dated 1550/55. In this case the form is very similar with the single waist lame and similar rounded roping. The Vienna example is much nicer. Purchased with a later morion, now displayed with item number A-271 which is a close helmet of similar style that survived as a funerary achievement. Originally purchased with item number A-1-a. Now as displayed consists of item number A-1-b, item number A-1-c, item number A-1-d, item number A-1-e, item number A-1-f, item number A-1-g, item number A-1-h and item number A-271.
Not for sale.
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) swept 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 eye slot. 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. Originally acquired with later fully articulated vambraces each with turning joint, 6 lame pauldrons and floating elbow cops. Most commonly displayed with mid 16th c. arms from an English household - item number A-164 (right arm) and item number A-165 (left arm). Later displayed with item number A-339 (arms) and item number A-46 (gauntlets). Photographed with item number A-318 (greaves). Acquired with later gauntlets each with flared cuff and lames over the fingers (some missing - lost in shipment from auction house). 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. As purchased it consisted of original parts purchased as a ""suit"" item number A-114a, item number A-114b, item number A-114c and item number A-114d and restoration legs and arms.
Not for sale.
Partial suit circa 1570
Composed partial harness using pieces of German manufacture from the third quarter of the 16th c. Comprising a gorget with integral shoulder plates, heavy breastplate with gussets at the arms and single fauld lame, spaulders and elbows.
Breastplate: With a central crease drawn out to a rounded central point. There is a small rectangular hole near the center of the neck. This appears to be for securing the peg that would be used to secure the buff. The edges of the breastplate at the arm holes and sides are heavily beveled. Tapering inward-turned rolls at the neck and arms. Arms with sliding gussets. Gussets and upper roll with fine roping. Waist with a single lame fauld with turning pins at the sides for securing a removeable fauld. The single fauld lame has a roped roll a the bottom edge. The central hole at the neck and decorative style indicate that this is likely of Brunswick origin.
Height 13 3/4 inches from the center of the waist to the center of the top roll. Width 14 inches under the arms and 12 3/4 at the waist. 10 3/4 inches wide at the top with the gussets out, 10 1/8 inches when they are pushed in fully.
Thickness varies significantly, but there doesn't seem to be an intentional pattern to the thickness changes. Generally around .180-.190 in (4.57 mm - 4.83 mm). Some thick areas .220 inch, thin areas .150 inch. Gusset ranges from .055-.075 inch. Fauld lame .030-.040 inch. . Weight 10 pounds 9 ounces (4800g).
German Gorget: 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 strong 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. I have added two images of another separate pin in the collection. This one has lost its toggle, but retains its spring.
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.""""
For similar see WAM 2014.783 - formerly in the John Woodman Higgins Armory Collection and Claude Blair - European Armour - page 207 item 150 - illustrates item II. 1 from the Royal Armouries.
Pair of Spaulders: Formed of a main plate with one plate above and five plates below, central crease, and raised and recessed border on the top. The shoulder formed with a nice bulge at the top over the top of the shoulder. The spaulders are typical of the early 16th century.
Two Elbow cops: Nearly a pair. Open at the inside with inward turned roped rolls along the edges. The roping changes direction at the wide point of the wing. The cop rises to a blunt crease at the center. There is a line of rivets around the edges of the cops which would have secured a leather strip. There are also rivets in the center of the wing and back edge and a larger central hole. These cops would have have been secured to the vambrace by a leather strip secured to a pin through the hole in the middle of the front of the cop and a strap around the elbow. One of these elbows appears to show signs of the original finish. These pieces were heavily coated in oil and have gone through relatively few owners. There appear to be areas of surface finish which have not been heavily oxidized or recleaned repeatedly. This can be seen on the lower half of the cop. The surface appears to have been polished over signs of grinding. Ex. Royal House of Hanover.
Composed of item number A-158 (breastplate), item number A-25 (gorget), item number A-214a (spaulders) and item number A-177 and item number A-178 (elbows).
Not for sale.
Half suit circa 1570
Composed half harness using pieces of German manufacture from the third quarter of the 16th c. Comprising an acorn-topped burgonet, a gorget with integral shoulder plates, breastplate with gussets at the arms and three lame fauld, and elbow gauntlets. All in black and white form with rough from the hammer ground and raised decorative lines and borders where the steel has been ground smooth.
Burgonet: One piece skull boxed in four panels and rising to a point with an acorn finial. Integral brim, separate neck lame, two cheek plates (left associated,re-worked to fit, probably from the same original arsenal and from a similarly decorated, but slightly different helmet). Main edges with roped inward turns and recessed borders. The helmet decorated with four raised polished 'white' bands that continue onto the neck guard and peak. The edge of the peak, neck lame and cheek plates decorated with inward turned roped rolls. Formerly black and white. Cleaned. Black areas reblackened with paint to simulate original appearance.
Breastplate: German. Black and white with rough from the hammer surface with raised polished bands. The neck with a tapered inward turned roped roll. The arms fitted with gussets with inward turned tapered rolls. Retains fauld of 3 plates, the lowest with a central arched cut out with an inward turned, roped border. Purchased cleaned bright, then reblackened with paint to simulate the original appearance. Polished bands at the center, middle of each side and sides of the breastplate which continue on the fauld. The bands on the breastplate are very roughly formed on the outside, tooling appearing to be made by very small, narrow pien. The bands in the fauld more cleanly made, likely because raising bands on the thinner material is easier. Small interior patch at the upper corner under the left arm. Patch riveted in and the outer surface ground smooth. Old, possibly working life patch. Assembly marks of 3 punches of a squared punch on the inside of the breastplate, gussets and all three fauld lames. Holes in the fauld lames for (lost) interior leathers at the center of the white bands in the middle of each side. Probably old but associated D shaped buckles at the top of the gussets. There is a area in the upper half of the inside of the breastplate that appears to have been formerly painted with inventory marks. Minor delaminations at the edges of the breastplate, some cracking in the center fauld lame. The decoration on the roll at the center of the bottom fauld lame is very different from the roping on the gussets and top of the breastplate, but tthe matching assembly marks indicate that they are not associated.
Measurements: 13 in. wide at the waist, 15 in. wide under the arms, app. 11 in. wide at the top. Breastplate 13 1/2 in from center top to waist, 19 in. tall overall including the fauld. The breastplate varies between .070 in. and .105 thick. Fauld lames generally .050-.060.
Munions: gorget of 3 plates front and back. The main plates rough from the hammer and blackened with raised crescent decoration on each side. Neck plates polished, upper plate with a bold inward turn. Shoulders of 6 plates the second shaped to the point of the shoulder, the final plate with inward turned roped roll at the bottom. Bottom plates blackened with central raised polished band and terminal plates decorated en-suite with the main gorget plates with raised polished crescents.
German pair of black and white elbow gauntlets: Good quality black and white gauntlets with raised bands and recessed ground. Bands polished. 2 marks on each gauntlet. On one, a recognizable part of the Nurenberg guild mark. Remaining marks unclear. Cuffs of 2 plates attached by rivets. Metacarpal of four narrow and one wider plate. Knuckle plate with raised, roped ridge. Additional plate formed to the fingers between the knuckle plate and finger plates. Large thumb plate attached to the large metacarpal plate with leather. Re-leathered fingers.
Composed of item number A-256 (burgonet), item number A-264 (breastplate) item number A-252 (munions), item number A-45 (gauntlets).
Not for sale.
Suit circa 1580
Italian. Consisting of a close helmet, gorget, integral pauldrons and arm harness, gauntlets, breastplate, backplate tassets, and legharness. Close helmet with one piece skull with high roped comb, visor with single eye slit, ventail pierced with a circle of breaths on the right, and bevor. Bevor with roped inward turned roll at the edge of the face opening. Visor, ventail and bevor pivoted on common pivots. Bevor and ventail secured by hooks on the right. Visor and ventail decorated with single incised lines. Edge of the visor lightly roped. Lining rivets at the forhead and neck edges of the bowl. Front and back with single neck lames, each with outward turned roped border and an additional parallel raised ridge. Visor with lifting peg at the right. Collar of two plates formed to the body and flared to fit the neck. Roll at the top and simple raised border around the outer edge. Single incised line in the neck, possibly simulating a separate lame. With lining rivets around the neck and outer edge. Good internal patches in the skull, bevor and ventail. Gorget of two plates - one front and one back - with integral collar. Roll at the neck and braised ridge around the outer edge. Lining rivets at the neck and outer edge. Plates secured by a pivot rivet at the left side and keyhole and peg at the right. Rectangular loops on each side of the neck for the straps that secure the pauldrons. One piece breastplate of peascod form with integral rolls at the neck and arms. Flaired at the waist to carry a (later) fauld of two lames. Center of the breast at the neck stamped with a Z I and with two small B stamps to the right. Backplate formed to the back with central engraved line, inward turned rolls at the neck and arms and flared at the waist with an inward turned roll. Marked with 153 at the neck and G and P on the left and right side indicating that it was used for the Gioco del Ponte. Breast and back connected by straps at the shoulders of the breastplate connected to buckles at the top of the backplate and waist straps secured to the backplate that buckle over the waist of the breastplate. Arms with integral pauldrons. Pauldrons formed of three larger plates (main central plate with two smaller ones above) and four smaller lames covering the upper arm. Main plates bordered by a recessed border and inward turned, roped rolls. Arms consisting of upper cannon of the vambrace with integral turning collar, vambrace of two plates secured by hinges on the inside and pin on the outside and a couter of five lames, the central one formed to the elbow and with integral bracelet wing. Main borders with recessed and inward turned roped rolls. Other edges with double incised lines. Gauntlets of mitten form. Tassets of ten plates with rolled and roped borders. Each suspended from the fauld by three straps and buckles. On and older stand with base. As purchased, badly displayed with collar, arms and gauntlets on the wrong side. Cuirass collapsed below appropriate position, overall lightly rusted and with discolored varnish.
From the collection of the Archduke Eugen of Augsburg - according to the Abels tag, sold at the sale of items from the armoury 1927 in NY. From there Through Robert Abels a dealer in arms and armour to Erwin P. Kantor 7/27/1967 to his heirs. Legs described as restoration in the sale from Abels. Further investigation indicates the gauntlets, right tasset and some upper lames of left tasset are also restorations. Inspection of the Eugen catalogue from 1927 does not seem to contain a similar armour, though the style of restored legs are consistent with other items in the sale. Helmet, breast, back, collar and arms all original late 16th c. pieces.
Not for sale.
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.
German Burgonet: Of 'Black and White' form with recessed bands on each side of the skull. High, roped comb. Neck plate and brim formed of separate plates, each with rolled, recessed and roped borders. Cheek plates with flared bottom (conforming to the neck plate), raised circle in the center and a raised edge at the face openning. Signs of delamination as is common with authentic pieces. Includes original patch at the tail flare and 2 rivets to stabilize laminations at the forhead. Extremely fine roping on the rolls. Likely indistinct Nuremberg guild mark in the white band near the point of the brim. White bands lightly cleaned to restore original look. Right cheek plate replaced. Overall oxidized and stabilized surface. No signs of cleaning that would affect the surface. Small holes in the comb almost certainly from corrosion. Thickness of the bowl pretty consistently .050 in. Weight 3 pounds (1360 g).
German Black and White Cuirass: Comprising a heavy peascod breastplate with roped flanges at the neck and sliding gussets, the lower edge flanged for a skirt of 2 plates, the bottom one arched, turned and roped at the center, and matching three part backplate with separate riveted culet, the edges turned and roped, the surfaces throughout divided by bright bands and borders into blackened panels, rough from the hammer, and struck near the neck on both breast and back with the Nuremburg mark and a maker's mark of a pair of shears in an inverted shield (possibly that of Martin Schneider). The waist belt is an older modern replacement which needs to be replaced again. The shoulder straps are newer replacements. 5 of the 6 straps for the suspension of tassets remain and they are secured by 8 lobed roset washers. Working life leathers are relatively rare, these are a nice survival. The fauld lames are slightly deformed. The right gusset, breastplate and both fauld lames are marked with a chiseled 'X' assembly marks - the left gusset is different - possibly due to its having been for the left (it fits and matches the right in every respect). Identified maker's marks are relatively rare. Makers were qualified in separate armour elements, there appears to have been one who was a master in both breasts and backs in Nuremburg who used a similar mark, so the attribution is probably accurate. The form, material distribution, marks and details indicate that this is a pretty good cuirass. The rolls, roping, recessed bands and 'engraved' lines are all nice. This piece is nicer than many black and white armours. The line terminations at the points are indicative of a pretty aggressive method of manufacture.
Measurements: Breast mostly .090 inch thick tapering at the sides to app. .070.
Gorget with munions and tassets: Comprising a gorget of 3 plates front and back with integral shoulder protection of 6 plates (munions) and a pair of long tassets. Each with recessed polished bands in the main and raised bands on the secondary edges. All parts cleaned and releathered. Munions and tassets retain buckles which appear to be replacements. The rolls on the bottom plate of the tassets taper from the center. The inner edges of the top 3 plates are rolled and have recessed borders. The edges of these plates curve around the area where the cod piece might be. The tassets are assembled using sliding rivets along the outer edge and leathers at the center and inside. The main front plate of the gorget is marked at the center on the outside with the city mark of Nurmberg, and on the inside with a backwards N in a circle.
Composed of item number A-52 (burgonet), item number A-19 (cuirass), and item number A-168 (munions and tassets).
Not for sale.
Three quarter armour circa 1590
German. Nuremberg. Overall rough from the hammer with blackened finish decorated by recessed polished bands and inward turned, rolls. The majority of the rolls are roped. Comprising a burgonet, curirass with fauld and tassets, gorget with munions, elbow gauntlets and simulated mail sleeves.
Burgonet with one piece skull rising to a high comb at the center and extened to form a brim at the front. With two cheek plates and a separate tail lame. The cheek plates are extended to match the length of the tail lame with separate fixed plates. The edge of the brim, cheek plates, tail and a raised circular area in the middle of the cheek plates are polished bright against a blackened background. The edge of the brim and lower edge of the tail and cheek plates are bordered by inward-turned, rolled borders. The edge of the brim shows a delamination and crack which exposes wire in the roll. The cheek plates are pierced with 5 holes over the ears. The burgonet has a tubular plume holder decorated with diagonal lines secured to center of the back. There are remnants of lining leather at the brow and tail. The interior of the tail lame includes some signs of old painted arsenal or inventory markings in red and yellow. These appear to be 18 or 81, U8 and ZS. The inside of the skull shows signs of earlier raised or recessed bands that have been removed during the working life of the helmet. One cheek plate (the right) may be an old association. The right hinge is replaced. The breastplate has a deep peascod form with sliding gussets at the arms, a fauld of 2 lames, buckles at the shoulders and a roll at the neck. It is decorated by three recessed polished bands with central creases that continue on the fauld lames. The center of the bottom fauld lame is arched with an inward turned roped border. The fauld carries a pair of knee length tassets formed of seven plates which continue the recessed bands from the fauld at the center. There are raised bands on the inside edge continuing the central band from the fauld. The lower edge of the tassets is bordered by a recessed border and a tapered, inward turned and roped roll. The tassets are secured to the fauld by later hinged metal mounts. There are signs of holes for earlier straps and buckles on each side and the center of the tassets with matching holes in the terminal fauld lame. The fauld lames have holes formerly used to secure interior leather straps on each side. Some cracks to the fauld lames. The backplate is formed of 3 pieces and a separate culet plate. It appears to match the breastplate in form, decoration, mark, size and shape. The recessed bands on the sides have a crease at the center, the central band is flat. The bottom edge of the culet plate is cusped at the center. The main three plates of the backplate are certainly original and appear to have formed a cuirass with the breastplate. The culet lame may be later and the interior waist lame that joins them appears to be modern. The gorget is formed of two plates front and back. The main plates are formed to the shoulders, the upper plate tapers to the neck. The upper edge of the neck plates has a flattened inward turn. Munions of seven plates are attached to each side. These have a recessed and creased band at the center and a raised band at the front. The terminal plates are bordered by a recessed border and a an inward turned rolled and ropped edge. The intersection between the recessed border and central recessed band is decorated by a point formed in the border recess. The upper two lames appear to be associated and are possibly modern. The arms are covered by riveted mail with rings formed from round wire with pent roof overlaps and wedge rivets. These were later formed into the shape of sleeves. The elbow gauntlets include cuffs formed from two plates, back of hand covered by five plates, a knuckle rider and short mittens of two plates. The gauntlets are decorated with a central recessed band without a central crease. The border of the cuff is bordered by a recessed border and an inward turned rolled and roped border. The thumbs are protected by one main plate over the base of the thumb and three small scales over the thumb. They are currently secured to the metacarpal plates by a later leather. The gauntlets are nearly a pair. The right gauntlet has a rubbed mark in the recess of the cuff and signs of part of another one. The left gauntlet appears to have an associated inner cuff plate.
The gauntlets and burgonet are likley associated, but the breast, back, tassets and gorget with munions are well matched. Some rust, most leathers lost or replaced, and some modern and likely Victorian replacements. Overall well matched armour.
Measurements (in inches):
Breastplate: 12 1/4 wide at the waist, 15 wide under the arms 10 1/2 wide at the shoulders with the gussets extended, 12 3/4 tall from the center of the neck roll to the waist at the base of the peascod, tassets 15 long at the center. Thickness .085-.110 in the center (mostly .090-.10) it is pretty consistent between the side bands. It thins to generally .060-080 on the sides with some areas as thin as .050. The gussets are generally .050. Tassets generally .050, some spots thinner.
Backplate: 11 1/2 wide at the top, 12 wide at the center of the armhole (vertically). Thickness .050-.080, generally thicker at the waist and thinning toward the top. Side plates .040-050, mostly 040-045.
The stand used to display the armour in its current form is displayed in the final pictures. The main image was taken on this stand.
Not for sale.
Half Suit circa 1590
Composed. Etched in the Pisan fashion. Pieces well matched in size and etching pattern. Consisting of a gorget of two plates (upper lames missing), a breastplate of deep peascod form, asymmetrical pauldrons, arms and a gauntlet for the left hand. The breastplate is missing its gussets. The form of the pieces represent very nice examples of the typical very late 16th century form.
Burgonet: Once piece skull rising to a high comb and extended at the front and back to form a brim and tail. Small cheek plates at each side. Etched in the Pisan manner. When purchased coated in old, browned varnish with some rust underneath. After cleaining, the surface is in reasonable shape with most of the etching remaining with good detail. There is some brazed repair to the top of the crest and a larger soldered repair to a small portion of one side of the crest. The point of the brim is slighly bent. Cheek plates not quite a pair. Nice full form with high comb and small cheekplates typical of the style. Currently displayed on the half suit item number A-249.
Gorget: 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.
Breastplate: Italian. Of deep peascod form with a roll at the neck and a flare at the waist. Etched in typical Pisan fashion. Gussets lacking. Flair would have originally carried a fauld of (most likely) one lame.
Arms: Italian. Good quality Italian arm harness and pauldrons etched in the characteristic Pisan fashion. Assymetrical pauldrons the left covering more than the right. Formed of a main plate overlapping two plates above and four smaller plates below. The lower plates on sliding rivets at the back and leathers at the center and front. The top most plates secured by pivoting rivets at the front and back. The next plate is secured to the main plate by a pivoting rivet at the back and a leather at the front and in the center of the back. Left formerly fitted with a mount for a reinforce. Arms with tubular upper cannons, two piece lower cannons connected by a bracelet couter with one lame above and one below the cop. The upper incorporating a turning collar, the upper section with two smaller plates articulated at the ends. Etching in bands along borders and at the center of each element primarily consisting of cable patterns and trophies of arms. Some leathers replaced, others missing. Some later rivets used to secure plates in the pauldrons. Some loss at the back of the left pauldron and some wear in the etching in the center of the back of the left pauldron.
Gauntlet: Italian. Good quality Italian gauntlet for the left hand (fingers and thumb missing) etched in the characteristic Pisan fashion. One piece cuff joined with a rivetted overlap at the inside of flared form with inward turned, roped roll at the edge and a parallel raised, roped line with etching in between. Plain inward turn at the wrist. Back of hand covered by 5 plates and a knuckle plate with rounded areas over each knuckle. Hand plates with internal assembly marks in the form of 5 chisel marks at the edge. Retains some gilding. Ends of the metacarpal plates at the thumb side with multiple decorative notches, single notches on the opposite side. Associated with a lower quality modern copy of a right gauntlet with similar etching. Modern copy not forming a pair.
Tasset: Italian. Good quality tasset etched in the characteristic Pisan fashion. Formed of 13 plates - larger ones at the top and bottom and 11 narrow ones. Border with inward turned ropped rolls. Bottom plate with additional raised and roped ridge terminating in two raised medallions near the center. Retains some gilding. All rivets removed. Currently secured by temporary bolts.
Composed of a gorget item number A-149, breastplate item number A-235, arms and pauldrons item number A-242, burgonet item number A-301 and the left gauntlet from item number A-244. Displayed with a single tasset item number A-243.
Not for sale.
Half Harness circa 1600
Composed. Consisting of a breastplate with central crease ending in a small peascod point at the waist. Neck and arms with turned edges rolled in. Single fauld lame at the waist. Gorget of 2 main plates with 2 neck lames front and back. The top edge of the top plate with a turned edge rolled in. The top plates are hinged at the left and secured by a pin on the right. The gorget includes integral shoulder protection of 5 lames on each arm. These are secured by sliding leathers at the back and leathers in the center and front. The picture of the inside of the gorget shows te position of the arm collapsed backward on the right and flexed forward on the left. This shows how the sliding rivets in the back allow the arm to lengthen and the leathers collapse to allow forward movement. The gorget and munions have been releathered with buff leather. Burgonet (A-71) with a skull formed of one piece, brim formed of a separate piece secured inside the skull, 2 cheek plates secured by hinges. Now displayed with A-234 a burgonet formed with a two piece skull and separate brim, separate neck lame and cheekplates. All edges with plain inward turned rolls. The elements of this armour are also illustrated separately. Elements are: item number A-134 (breastplate), item number A-71 (burgonet formerly displayed on this harness with one piece skull and missing the tail lame) item number A-234 (burgonet), item number A-159 (gorget), and item number A-76 (munions)
Not for sale.
Half Suit circa 1600
Very typical munition form. Consisting of a breast, back, tassets and almain collar. Shoulder straps, belt and tasset straps expertly replaced with good simulation of buff leather. Breast, back and tassets very well matched. Possibly originally forming parts of the same armor. Consists of item number A-348 and item number A-285.
Burgonet: Augsburg. One piece skull with high angled comb and integral peak. Single neck lame and a pair of cheek plates. Rough from the hammer. Point of the peak with two marks, one the Augsburg pinecone, the other indistinct. The edge of the peak formed with a simple inward turned roll coming to a blunt point at the center and with a central crease. Neck plate with plain inward turn at the outer edge coming to a blunt point and with a pair of holes near the point for suspension in an arsenal. Cheek plates with a simple bump at the face, inward turned roll at the bottom and pierced with five holes over the ear. Retains lining rivets at the neck and forhead which still secure remains of the leathers. Signs of delamination esp. in the roll on the peak, some corrosion above the right cheek plate and the left hinge cracked. Nice shape with original parts.Weight: 3 pounds 6.8 ounces (1550 g).
Measurements: skull app. .045 varying mostly .035-.053, Cheek plates mostly .045 (generally thicker near the bottom above the flare and the flare thinning as it gets toward the roll), neck lame generally thicker at the top and thinning toward the roll, mostly .05 down to .03.
Breastplate: Good simple peascod form with integral flare forming a fauld. Inward turned plain rolls at the neck, arm holes and center of the flare between the tassets. Single engraved line at the neck and arm holes parallel to the rolls. Buckles at the shoulder (replaced). Fauld flare carries three straps on each side for the attachment of the tassets. Black rough from the hammer finish (refreshed with paint). Leathers replaced. Marked internally '14' matching the back and tassets.
Backplate: Simple back formed to the body with a narrow flare at the waist. Plain inward turns at the arms, neck and base of the flare. Single engraved lines at the neck and arm holes. Modern straps simulating buff at the shoulders and waist to secure the breastplate. Black rough from the hammer finish. Marked internally '14' matching the breast and tassets.
Pair of Tassets: Consisting of six horizontal plates. Plates secured by rivets front and back and a (lost) central internal leather. Lower edge with a plain inward turned roll. Sides with simple bump simulating a roll. Top plates with three buckles (replaced) for suspension from the breastplate. Black rough from the hammer finish (refreshed with paint). Marked internally '14' matching the back and breast.
Almain collar: Very typical munition form. Consisting of a gorget plate front and back with shoulders on each side of 6 plates. Main plates with raised integral collar. Plain inward turned roll at the neck. Shoulders of 6 plates each, the lower one with a roped inward turn at the elbow and recessed border rising to a central cusp. The shoulders have the typical form - a narrow top plate, a larger more shaped shoulder plate, three relatively straight plates and a terminal plate formed to the elbow. Terminal plates with buckles at the front and straps at the back to secure the armor around the arm. Black rough from the hammer finish (refreshed with paint).
This is an interesting example of 'restoration.' One shoulder appears to be late 16th c. The bottom two plates of the other shoulder match. The upper plates of that shoulder are reasonably well made modern plates. The central gorget plates are less well made simulating a very low end 17th c. piece. All of this doesn't look bad when displayed as part of a half suit, but it isn't right and shouldn't be used as example. The overall matching modern paint helps to blend the disparate pieces together.
I have provided interior images to help to show what is going on here. The first detailed image shows the inside of the right shoulder. Here we see the expected hammer marks, signs of oxidation and flaking of old finish and a more modern paint overall. The washers and rivets at the back are consistent - until we get to the final one that connects to the gorget. Here the washer is smaller and just has a different look. We also see that there is another hole next to the top of the slot. The leathers look good, but there are newer pieces patched into the end. All of this tells us that the shoulder is probably good, but it has been attached to the gorget recently. The unfilled hole at the top back is because the typical way to secure a shoulder to the gorget in an almain collar is with a small leather. These are often replaced by rivets later because it is easy, or it seems to make sense. At this point we have a good feel for the shoulder, but know that something has happened with the gorget. Since this is the spot that tends to tear out first, this might just be a repair.
The next image shows the inside of the left shoulder. Here we see a big difference between the condition of the two terminal plates and the other four. This tells us to look more closely. Next we see that the leathers are different from the ones we see in the other shoulder. These feel more modern, the rivets are definitely more modern and they have not torn out between the shoulder and the gorget, so they are probably recent work. Looking at the four upper plates, they mostly have good shape but there aren't any signs of overall hammering or damage from age. We also see that there isn't any sign of a second hole at the back of the top plate and the upper edge of the top plate is slightly flared. All of this indicates that the upper four plates are modern. If the only thing that lept out at us were modern leathers, that would be fine. But there is a lot more here.
Next we see the inside of the back plate of the gorget. There are hammer marks, but they don't cover the surface and they appear (mostly) to have been done onto a soft surface (the round dents) or onto or over an edge (long straight lines). There is also no sign of oxidation. This looks like a piece of modern rolled steel that has been minimally hammered into shape. The inside of old armor just doesn't look like this.
Finally we see the buckles. The one on the right (old and complete) shoulder looks like an original buckle. The one on the left is not bad. It is mounted on a well made plate, but it is a modern buckle (which appears to be placed backwards).
Playing around with the piece on a stand and comparing it to other collars I can also see that the main gorget plates are not wide enough to work correctly. The size doesn't allow the second lame of the shoulder to sit at the point of the shoulder as it should. So you end up with the shoulders bending farther down and not sitting right.
Not for sale.
Half Suit circa 1600-20
Augsburg. Well composed, quite possibly mostly from parts from a single series of similar munition armours in an arsenal. Consisting of a burgonet, breast, back, tassets, munions and a pair of elbow gauntlets. Rough from the hammer and with an overall blackened finish with areas of wear. Consists of item number A-272a (burgonet), item number A-272-b (munions), item number A-272-c (breastplate), item number A-272-d (backplate), item number A-272-e (tassets), item number A-272-f (gauntlets).
Burgonet: Augsburg. Rough from the hammer and with an overall blackened finish with areas of wear. One piece bowl with high comb with integral peak. Neck of a single lame, cheek plates with bottom flared to continue the neck lame. Peak with heavily struck Augsburg pine cone mark and less distinct maker's mark (possibly WH). Some remains of lining leathers. Overall very nice clean shape with parts that fit and work well together. Neck lame, cheek plates and hinges appear to be originally part of the same helmet (not associated).
Munions: Augsburg. Munions of one plate front and back the upper edge rolled at the neck. Shoulders protected by five lames formed to the shoulder and arm and the last extending at the back to form to the elbow and with an inward turned rolled edge. The right shoulder associated. The main front plate coming to a deep point and with an aggressive central crease. One set of shoulder plates creased at the center, the other plain. The central front plate chiseled with the large inventory number 37.
Breastplate: Augsburg. Breastplate with central crease with a small, but definite peascod at the waist. Inward turned rolls at the arm and neck holes. Single fauld lame secured to a narrow flare at the bottom of the breast by three rivets and formed with a shallow arched cut out at the center. The edge of the arch with an inward turned roll, nicely terminated to align with the tassets. Marked near the neck with Augsburg pine cone mark and maker's mark (a small, crisp HR inside a recessed rectangle) and on the right side with a 9. The breast also has punched marks on the outside that indicate the location of the waist and the center and approximate locations of the arm holes and three notches on the edge of the left side of the inside of the waist flare and matching notches on the right side of the fauld lame. Signs of delamination in various parts of the breastplate.
Backplate: Augsburg. One piece backplate with a tall separate waist lame with integral flare forming a simple culet. Backplate with inward turned plain rolls at the arm holes and an inward turn (over wire) at the neck that rises to a point in the center. Culet with plain inward turn at the bottom rising to a shallow point at the center and with small points at the sides. Inward turned rolls at the top and arm holes. Marked with Augsburg pine cone mark and maker's mark (a somewhat less distinct BN inside a possibly round recessed area) at the neck. No signs of internal construction markings, but with some external punch marks indicating the waist line and the center of the bottom edge of the main back plate. The back appears to have come from a somewhat taller armour than the breast.
Tassets: Augsburg. Well matched to the breastplate Consisting of 4 lames secured to the breast by three buckles each. The bottom edges of the tassets and the front edge of the upper plate each with plain inward turns. Each plate centrally creased and the top edges beveled. Secured by sliding rivets at the outside and leathers at the center and inside. The tassets match the fauld well enough that they may be original to the breast plate. The buckles are attached to the tassets by buckle plates with simple punched decoration. The tassets and fauld show no signs of having buckles or straps moved, but they have been reattached with later rivets.
Elbow Gauntlets: Long, tapered cuffs extending to provide additional coverage at the elbow. The cuffs formed of an outer and separate inner plate. The back of hand covered by five metacarpal plates secured to the cuff by a wrist lame. Knuckle plates formed with a transverse rib and shaped to the fingers. Finger plates secured to leathers. Base of thumb covered by large plates secured to the last metacarpal plate by a leather hinge, extended over the thumb with scales. Some terminal finger lames decorated with a stylized finger nail. The cuffs bordered by brass capped lining rivets retaining portions of what appears to an original strap that secured the gloves (showing signs of the original stitch lines). Back of hands and fingers not as nice as the cuffs. They may have been added.
Armour overall releathered long enough ago that the leathers are breaking. This could easily be composed from pieces from a series an arsenal (probably with the exception of the gauntlets), the main parts are all consistent with the same date and style. Augsburg marked pieces are rarer than Nuremberg ones, and munition pieces with additional marks identifying the maker are even rarer. This is a very nice example of a late 16th to early 17th century munition armour. No signs of replacement or restoration in the burgonet, munions, breast, back and tassets other than leathers and some rivets and a few buckles.
Not for sale.
Italian Half Suit circa 1610
Etched in the 'Pisan' fashion. Comprising a cabasset, gorget, breast, back, tassets, pauldrons, arms and gauntlets.
Cabasset: Almond shaped skull with small stalk at the top, central crease and narrow flat brim. Etched in the 'Pisan' fashion. Brim with inward turned roped border with a narrow recess. Just above the brim there is a line of original iron lining rivets - most retaining original brass caps with decorative washers. Some cloth lining band remaining between a few of the 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.
Gorget: Etched in the 'Pisan' fashion. Typical Italian straight necked form. Formed of 3 pieces front and back, the main plates with a rolled lower edge and flared at the neck to match the neck lames. Main plates joined by a rivet on the left and a pin engaging a keyhole slot on the right. Upper neck lames joined by a hinge on the left and a pin on the right. Neck plates associated and etched to match. Originally the plates would have been attached with three leathers front and back, now riveted through leather and false rivet holes.
Breastplate: Etched in the 'Pisan' fashion. Formed of one plate with integral flare at the waist, inward turned rolls at the neck and arms and typical shallow peascod form. Etched overall with seven wide bands of decoration consisting of a central region with figures, trophies and foliage borded by three bands on each side, the central one roped. The central band with two medalions at the neck.
Backplate: Typical overall form. Made of one plate with integral flare at the waist, inward turned rolls at the neck and arms. The surface with raised bands at the neck and arms extending down in sevem bands to the waist. The bands and recesses etched.
Pauldron and arm: Etched in the 'Pisan' fashion. Separate pauldron and arm. For the right arm. Pauldron of 7 lames, 2 above and 4 below the large main plate (similar form and etching, but the right pauldron somewhat larger) The uper plates of the right pauldron are currently secured to the main plate by a rivet at the front and the back. Holes on the plates indicate that the second plate was originally secured to the main plate with a rivet at the back and leathers at the front and center. Outer edge of the main plates with inward turned and roped border. Bottom edge of the bottom lame turned n the same manner. Rectangular hole in the center of the bottom plate to engage a turning pin in the arm harness. Strap and buckle on the inside of the bottom lame to secure it to the pauldron. 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 at the front, elbows of bracelet form joined at the back with rolled edges on the wing attached to the uper and lower cannons by one articulating lame.
Pauldron and arm: Etched in the 'Pisan' fashion. Separate pauldron and arm. for the left arm. Pauldron of 7 lames, 2 above and 4 below the large main plate (similar form and etching, but the right pauldron somewhat larger). Outer edge of the main plates with inward turned and roped border. Bottom edge of the bottom lame turned in the same manner. Rectangular hole in the center of the bottom plate to engage a turning pin in the arm harness. Strap and buckle on the inside of the bottom lame to secure it to the pauldron. 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 at the front, elbows of bracelet form joined at the back with rolled edges on the wing attached to the uper and lower cannons by one articulating lame.
Tassets: Etched in the 'Pisan' fashion. Originally formed of one plate each with simulated separate lames. Three figure-8 steel buckles at the top of each tasset. These engage straps secured to the flare at the bottom of the breastplate. The tassets with lines of copper alloy rivets mimicing those that would be present on multi-plate tassets.
Gauntlets: Etched in the 'Pisan' fashion. One piece cuffs with overlapped join at the wrist. Metacarpal formed of 4 plates. Knuckle plate formed to simulate knuckles and etched to simulate a roped ridge. Interior of the metacarpal plates marked with single notch assembly marks on the front edge. Rivets replaced. Small patch to the thumb side of the second plate from the knuckle. Single rivet filling a hole in the edge of the cuff next to the metacarpal which would have originally secured the thumb defense.
Decoration not an exact match on the pieces (except the backplate), but of very similar form. The surface overall rusted and cleaned on all parts except the helmet. 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. The low, shallow form of the breastplate and the rounded form of the pauldrons indicate a very early 17th c. date for these pieces. The cabasset and one piece tassets would be typical of this later date as well. Includes item number A-102-a, item number A-102-b, item number A-102-c, item number A-102-d, item number A-102-e, item number A-102-f, item number A-102-g, item number A-102-h.
Not for sale.
Cuirassier's Three Quarter Armor circa 1620
Consisting of a helmet, gorget, breastplate, backplate, arms with integral pauldrons, gauntlets and tassets.
Closed burgonet: Two piece skull joined at the high flat crest with a roll. The crest flat, with a thickness mimicing the roll. Roll formed with the right side rolling over the left side. Base of the roll with a narrow rounded recess similar to the rolls on other parts of the harness. The front and back of the bowl with flat overlapping seams at the ends of the crest. Bevor and brim pivoted at a common point. Base of the skull and bevor with a row of lining rivets. The bevor and skull each with a single large neck lame secured to the skull and bevor with solid rivets on each side, the outer edge with simple inward turns bordered by a row of lining rivets. Visor, brim and hooks excellent replacements by Albert Collins - master armourer in Sweden.
Gorget: Formed of a single plate front and back with a low extension at the neck. Top edge of the neck with a simple inward turn. Large front plate extending to a rounded point. Lower edges of the plates with simple bumps simulating a roll. Plates secured by a rivet on the left and keyhole slot and peg at the right. Right side with older and new repairs to stabilize the keyhole and peg. Carries a pair of steel plate mounted rectangular loops to secure the straps to which the pauldrons are buckled. Straps new. One mount likely new. Other mount?
Breast and back: Well matched breast and back. Breast with with a central crease extending to a simple, narrow peascod at the waist. The bottom of the breast flared to carry the tassets. Neck and arm holes with simple inward turned rolls. Right side of the breast with a small proof mark. Breast of heavier, shot proof weight. Well matched backplate formed to the shoulder blades and with simple inward turns at the neck and arms, and narrow flare at the waist bordered by a narrow inward turned roll with a narrow recess. Recess bordered by a row of rivets to secure a lining strip. Breast with replaced leather straps at the shoulders. Back with matching rectangular buckles mounted with pointed metal mounting plates at each shoulder. Breast and back secured at the sides by a peg in the backplate and hinged mounts in the breastplate. These are an older replacement for the original waist belt that would have been secured to the backplate at each side at the (now filled) holes.
Arms and Pauldrons: Two well matched arms. Pauldrons of 7 plates the center one (third from the top) larger and overlapping the upper and lower plates. The top three plates extended to cover the shoulder and overlap the breast and back plate. The outer edge of these plates with a simple inward turned roll bordered by a narrow, rounded recess and a line of rivets that secure remains of a lining leather. The bottom four plates shaped to the arm. The seven plates creased vertically at the center. Top 3 plates secured front and back with pivoting rivets. The upper plates include interior leathers to limit movement. Two in the case of the left and one in the right. The bottom five secured by sliding rivets at the back and leathers at the center and front. Permanently secured to the arms with turning collar. Turning collar engaging a closed upper canon. Closed lower canon formed of an inner and outer plate with a simple inward turned roll at the wrist (the left with a matching turn at the elbow), the plates secured by a pair of hinges at the back and pin at the front. Bracelet couter with central horizontal crease in the cop and wing bordered by a plain inward turn matching the pauldrons. The bracelet is closed by a riveted seam at the back. The cop is secured to the canons by one plate above and one plate below. All overlapping edges of the plates with rough bevels bordered by a single engraved line. The left slightly longer.
Gauntlets: One piece bell cuffs with 4 plate back of hand and a knuckle plate with a raised roped ridge. Hand plates with a single engraved line parallel to the edge. Cuffs with lightly roped inward turned rolls with parallel recessed border at the edge. Main thumb plate secured to the metacarpal by a leather strip. Scaled fingers and thump plates secured to leather. Restorations to the cuffs, fingers and thumbs by David Hewitt in 2021. Associated with the rest of the harness in 2021. Reasonably well matched, but liklely Italian and earlier.
Tassets: Designed to be worn in two configurations, long and short. The two parts secured to each other by a keyhole and peg at the outside and smaller keyhole and turning pin at the center. The overall tassets extending from the base of the breastplate to covering the knee with a polyene with single lower plate. Secured to the breastplate by (newer) hinged hasps. The upper tassets formed of a larger first plate with a central horizontal crease where the line changes from that of the flare on the bottom of the breastplate to the more vertical line of the pendant tassets. This top plate is overlapped by four narrow plates and a final longer plate. The bottom edge of the final plate with a narrow inward turn bordered by a narrow semi-circular recess. This allows the front of the roll to be roughly aligned with the body of the plate so that the lower tasset plates will align correctly. The lower formed of four narrow plates with one larger plate at the bottom which carries a poleyne of 4 plates. The main poleyn plate with a rounded wing on the outside with a simple inward turned roll the cop edges forming a blunt point at the center of the top and bottom. This is articulated to the main plates by a single lame top and bottom, the center of the upper lame rising to a point mimicing that on the cop. The lowest plate formed to the knee at the top and with a simple inward turn on the lower arched edge. The tassets currently secured by a central leather and rivets at the inside and outside. The inside line of rivets would originally have been a leather.
All but the gauntlets from the same source. Gauntlets associated by previous owner. Restorations to the helmet by Albert Collins. Minor repairs to the other parts by David Hewitt. Primarily from a single group purchased from Siri Melchoir. She inherited from her father. It was contained in Danish removal boxes. This and the other armour from the same source compare very closely to pieces from the Tojhusmuseum arsenal from which a few pieces have been sold. Same types still displayed in Castle Sedbergh. Consisting of item number A-331-a (helmet), item number A-331-b (gorget), item number A-331-c (breast and back) , item number A-331-d (arms), item number A-331-e (gauntlets), item number A-331-f (tassets).
Not for sale.
European Half Suit circa 1650
A composed half suit of the Cromwellian era. Composed of a good lobster-tailed pot and a breast and back with integral collar. Helmet bowl formed in one piece with raised lines radiating from the center. Articulated tail formed of 4 plates each with rolled outer edges. Secured at the sides by articulating rivets and with the remains of a central leather. 2 cheekplaces with rolled edges and central perforation. Brim fixed to the bowl. Sliding nasal secured by a turn-screw with large flattened head. The center of the bowl has a loop secured through a round washer. Leather strips for securing the lining remain around the tail, cheek plates and bowl. Breast and back rough from the hammer with inward-turned rolls at the neck and arms of the breast and neck,arms and base of the waist flare on the back. Breast with 2 proof marks, most likely pistol given the moderate weight of the breast and minimal depth of the dents. All 3 parts marked. Breast with several marks. The first is the A surmounted by a helmet used by the London Armourer's company between 1650 and 1660 during the inter-regnum. The others less distinct but probably an R - attributed to Francis Rolenson/Rawlinson - to the left of the crease, the last even less distinct, possibly MM. The inside is marked twice with paint, '219' and what appears to be '9R'. Back marked with a L on the collar and the number 2188 below the right shoulder strap. The L is a common mark on English armours, but not currently attributed. The helmet is marked with an M at the point of the brim on the outside and a broad V on the inside of the brim. The breastplate is certainly of English manufacture. The back is associated and is probably English. The marks on the helmet resemble the marks used by the London Armourer's company, but the one piece form is more typical of the continent and is possibly of German manufacture. Shoulder plates and waist belt replaced. Together with a modern copy of a buff coat and an inferior modern elbow gauntlet. For more information on armours and marks of the London Armourers see The London Armourers of the 17th Century by Thom Richardson.
Not for sale.
If you have any questions, please send them to Wade Allen
This site last updated Mon May 29 11:48:17 EDT 2023