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Title: British and Foreign Arms and Armour
Author: Ashdown, Charles Henry
Language: English
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*** Start of this LibraryBlog Digital Book "British and Foreign Arms and Armour" ***

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Despite it being referred to, there is no illustration ‘Plate XLI’ in
this book.

                          _COMPANION VOLUME_

                           A COMPLETE GUIDE
                              TO HERALDRY

                           A. C. FOX-DAVIES
                  Of LINCOLN’S INN, BARRISTER-AT-LAW

                        ART OF HERALDRY,” ETC.


                            GRAHAM JOHNSTON

               In One Volume. Containing over 600 pages.
                     Large square 8vo, Cloth Gilt,
                             10s. 6d. net

[Illustration: Sir Richard Vernon, 1452. Tong Church, Shropshire


                          BRITISH AND FOREIGN
                             ARMS & ARMOUR

                         CHARLES HENRY ASHDOWN


                       PRIVATE COLLECTIONS, Etc.


                          T. C. & E. C. JACK
                       16 HENRIETTA STREET, W.C.
                             AND EDINBURGH


                            _THE PRESIDENT_

                                AND TO

                              THE MEMBERS
                                OF THE
                        ARCHÆOLOGICAL SOCIETY,


                              THE AUTHOR.




The study of Arms and Armour is one of absorbing interest to a large
and ever increasing number of the community, inasmuch as it appeals
in a marked degree to the student of history, the antiquarian, and
to those who work in the realms of art. To the first it appeals
as a concrete reminder of the struggles of nations for liberty,
independence, power, or conquest; to the second it breathes of
the age in which it saw the light with all the feeling and tone
which characterised it; to the third it is a source of delight by
the consummate beauty of its form or the exquisite details of its
adornment. Unfortunately there are few books extant which serve as
a guide to the student, although there are many which deal with the
subject. The great works of Meyrick, with Skelton his illustrator,
are standard only in a sense that it is necessary to be thoroughly
acquainted with the subject in order to guard against the many errors
embodied in them. Grose is hopelessly antiquated, while Fosbroke,
Stothard, Strutt, Shaw, Planché, Cotman, and others who flourished
before or about the sixties, only deal pictorially or casually with
the subject. The Rev. Charles Boutell by his translation of Lacombe
did much to foster the study, but it was from a French point of view,
and his epitome of English armour and arms, though excellent in its
way, is only superficial, and a digest of his great works on Monumental
Brasses. In the latter he probably did more to further the study than
any preceding author; he was the first to rationally systematise
the arrangement of armour in periods in consonance with the salient
features it possessed, thus breaking through the previous methods of
classifying it by reigns, which was obviously absurd, or by centuries,
which was equally ridiculous. I have followed his method with but
little variation in the pages of this book, inasmuch as no better
arrangement is extant. It is a matter for great pride to myself that
such standard works should have emanated from a former Hon. Secretary
of the St. Albans and Herts Architectural and Archæological Society,
and if the present volume should in any degree further the good work
of my predecessor it will have achieved the height of my ambition.
Hewitt is delightful reading, but his arrangement is unsystematic and
involved; to the advanced student, however, he is invaluable. The later
works of Demmin, Clephan, Gardner, &c., are masterly monographs upon
the subject, but hopelessly out of place in the hands of a beginner.

It is with a view to rectifying this obvious requirement that the
following pages have been compiled, and it is confidently anticipated
that a careful reading and digest of each separate period of armour,
supplemented with the study of local brasses, effigies, museums,
private collections, &c., will enable the average student to attack the
more advanced works upon the subject with equal profit and pleasure.
It is perhaps necessary to caution the student of brasses against many
existing cases where the armour shown is not essentially that of the
period when the person died, inasmuch as many warriors in their old age
requested that the armour delineated upon their monumental slabs should
be that in which they achieved renown in youth or manhood. In other
examples the brass was not executed until some time after the person
represented had deceased, and details had undergone change in the
interim; while cases are not unknown where the brass of one person has
been taken to record the demise of another, perhaps many years later. A
flagrant example of this may be cited in the brass of Peter Rede, _d._
1577, in St. Peter’s, Mancroft, Norwich, who is represented in complete
plate of the years 1460 or 1470, with visored salade, &c. Occasionally
we find the artist exercising his powers of recollection with startling
results, as in the case of the Wodehouse brass in Kimberley Church,
Norfolk, 1465, but probably executed sixty years later. The knight
delineated has a skirt of mail of 1490 with three fluted tuilles, very
high pike-guards, a camail of 1405 or earlier, sabbatons of 1500, and
a breastplate with placcate of 1470. Fortunately such vagaries are so
apparent that the observer is placed upon his guard at once.

The average Englishman is probably more unacquainted with arms and
armour than any other technical subject. Beyond a general idea that
the Crusaders fought in mail, and the Wars of the Roses were waged
by warriors clad in plate, his knowledge does not extend, and he
consequently witnesses many startling incongruities upon the stage
of a theatre, or the arena of a pageant, with the most profound
indifference. He will perceive Richard III. in a camail and Ivanhoe in
a salade with the utmost complacency. The pity of it is that those who
are responsible for the historical inaccuracies should be so ignorant,
for no effort ought to be spared in endeavouring to educate the nation,
and especially the youth of it, in the fundamental principles of rigid
historical truthfulness. In our theatres recently we have witnessed
Bolingbroke in a fifteenth century tabard, a waist-belt, and round-toed
sabbatons, with the Duke of Norfolk in an almost equally grotesque
parody of the Camail and Jupon Period; Pistol with a basket-hilted
rapier; Henry V. in a camail, late fifteenth century gauntlets,
twentieth century boots, and vambraces covering parts of his coudières.
Upon the arena knights of Richard II.’s period have appeared in full
plate armour of 1470; at Queen Eleanor’s funeral without ailettes;
while bear’s-paw sabbatons have figured conspicuously in many scenes
previous to 1480. These are elementary details which even a cursory
knowledge of military equipment could avoid, but in the illustrations
of historical scenes in books and magazines equal ignorance prevails,
and a knight in pure mail and a surcoat, making love to a maiden in a
reticulated head-dress seated under a two-centred Tudor archway, is
only an example of the incongruities which almost every day insult
the intelligence and offend the eyesight of the educated reader.
Unfortunately many illustrators go to the works of Sir Walter Scott for
details of mediæval military equipment, and are thereby led hopelessly

It will be noticed in the following pages that continual reference
is made, respecting early armour and weapons, to the MSS. which
are preserved in our inimitable national collection at the British
Museum, and I cannot too earnestly advise the student to utilise
to the utmost extent possible the treasure-house of military detail
preserved therein. The feeling which prompted early illuminators to
represent Biblical and other personages in contemporary equipment,
whereby Goliath was shown habited in Norman hauberk and helm, Moses
appeared on horseback with couched lance in the mixed mail and plate
of the thirteenth century, and Julius Cæsar crossed the Rubicon in
a salade and complete Yorkist plate, is simply invaluable to the
student, inasmuch as every detail, though at times almost microscopic,
is faithfully delineated, and every new fashion recorded at once upon
its adoption. I have drawn upon many manuscripts for illustrations,
but there are scores still untouched which only need the student’s
attention to deliver up many valuable examples of details probably
quite unknown at the present time.

There are collateral subjects connected with the study of Armour
and Arms which the exigencies of space have compelled me to wholly
or partially omit, such as heraldry, mantling and the changes it
underwent, caparisoning and barding, the later development of weapons
of precision, history and varieties of the sword, &c., some of which
would require special monographs to deal with, and do full justice to,
the subject.

One of the main ideas has been the simplification of those points upon
which the majority of the books extant are either silent or deal with
in a casual and unsatisfying manner. One period especially, which
gave me infinite trouble as a student, is that between 1320 and 1360,
while another feature, generally omitted or hurriedly glossed over,
is the equipment of the common soldier. In conclusion I must express
my deep sense of obligation to the authorities connected with the
Tower of London, the Wallace Collection, the British Museum Manuscript
Department, the South Kensington Museum, the Rotunda at Woolwich, the
Edinburgh Castle Museum, the United Service Institution, the Armourers’
Hall, &c., for the kind facilities they have willingly and promptly
afforded for sketching, photographing, and examining the various
exhibits preserved in those institutions.

                                                 CHARLES HENRY ASHDOWN.

        ST. ALBANS, HERTS.

The Author gratefully acknowledges his indebtedness to Viscount Dillon;
the Marquis of Salisbury; the late Sir John Evans, K.C.B.; The Very
Rev. the Dean of Ely, D.D.; Sir Ralph Payne-Gallwey, Bart.; H. J.
Toulmin, Esq., J.P.; A. F. Calvert, Esq.; W. Page, Esq., F.S.A.; E. J.
Hunt, Esq., B.A.; H. R. Wilton-Hall, Esq.


     CHAP.                                                PAGE

        I. WEAPONS OF PREHISTORIC MAN                        1

       II. THE ASSYRIANS                                    20

      III. THE ROMANS                                       36

       IV. SAXONS AND DANES                                 47

        V. THE NORMAN PERIOD TO 1180                        65

       VI. THE CHAIN MAIL PERIOD, 1180-1250                 81

      VII. CHAIN MAIL REINFORCED, 1250-1325                 97

     VIII. THE CYCLAS PERIOD, 1325-1335                    139

           1335-1360                                       146

        X. THE CAMAIL AND JUPON PERIOD, 1360-1410          166

       XI. THE SURCOATLESS PERIOD, 1410-1430               194

      XII. THE TABARD PERIOD, 1430-1500                    213

     XIII. THE TRANSITION PERIOD, 1500-1525                265

      XIV. MAXIMILIAN ARMOUR, 1525-1600                    275

       XV. THE HALF-ARMOUR PERIOD AFTER 1600               313


     XVII. PROJECTILE-THROWING ENGINES                     340

           EUROPEAN ARMOUR                                 349

           UPON ARMOUR                                     360





The prehistoric man of the Stone Age had undoubtedly one of the most
difficult materials to deal with that can possibly be conceived,
inasmuch as it was intensely hard, very brittle, and, so far as flint
is concerned, occurred naturally only in comparatively small masses.
Yet with this crude matter, and with implements of the same material,
he succeeded in producing implements for husbandry and domestic use,
weapons of war and for the chase, which excite our warmest admiration,
both for the beauty of their proportions and the exquisite skill
required in their manufacture. To the worker in flint the number of
objects capable of being produced in that exceedingly refractory
medium was limited, but these as the age progressed were eventually of
a very high order of excellence, probably deemed unattainable by the
earlier man. We will take the different weapons in the order of their
importance, premising that in this chapter we shall have no armour to
deal with, though doubtless the man of the very earliest age had some
protection in the way of skins, plaited osier, or bark with which to
ward off hostile blows, in addition to the shield, which is common to
every race without exception when in the savage state.

[Illustration: FIG. 1.--Stone celt with cutting edge.]

_Celts._--The word “celt,” said to be derived from a doubtful Latin
word signifying a chisel, is the name by which a particularly large
and widely distributed class of weapons or implements is known. The
word has no connection with the Celtic people, and should be pronounced
“selt” and not “kelt,” as one frequently hears. The form of the celt is
well known, inasmuch as many hundreds exist in our museums and private
collections. They are found widely distributed in all parts of Europe,
and generally throughout the known world, being regarded in many places
in mediæval and even in modern times with superstitious reverence as
thunderbolts with inherent mystical qualities.

[Illustration: FIG. 2.--Stone celt with cutting edge.]

The primitive celts occurring in England are simply flints roughly
chipped into form with unsharpened edges, and are chiefly found in
those counties where flint abounds. They are not, however, confined
to them, but occur in other parts where flint is not abundant, being
fabricated in a different material such as agate, quartz, granite,
obsidian, clay-slate, greenstone, serpentine, and other rocks. These
crude celts, being merely chipped out and very roughly formed, are
at times difficult of recognition; they belong to the Palæolithic or
earlier period of the Stone Age. The second development of the celt
appears in the grinding of one edge so as to produce a cutting portion
(Figs. 1, 2), the ruder ones simply having a serrated edge produced by
being chipped. This grinding was doubtless executed by means of sand
and water, and in scores of examples a remarkably even result has been
obtained (Fig. 3). The third form in which the celt is polished all
over is the highest development and the most recent (Fig. 4), and is
classed in the Neolithic period. Some of these have ornamentation upon
them in the form of ribs running longitudinally upon the sides, and
some are bored with a circular or oblong hole. For use these celts were
fixed transversely at the end of a haft of wood either by binding or by
the wood being cleft for their insertion; in peace they performed all
the offices which are associated with a hatchet, and in war those of a

[Illustration: FIG. 3.--Celt with ground edge.]

[Illustration: FIG. 4.--Stone celt with polished surface.]

_Spear-heads._--The greater part of these belong to the later period,
and are remarkable for the care and attention which has been bestowed
upon their construction. They invariably present a lance-like outline
of symmetrical proportions with the edge in one plane, and are chipped
so as to be very thin (Fig. 5); at times notches occur upon either
side to facilitate their fixing into the end of the spear shaft and
being bound firmly in it. Others have been found with the cutting edge
carefully ground and polished, but with the tang only chipped and the
edges serrated to afford a firm grip for the sinews used to affix it to
the shaft. They vary in length from three to ten or more inches.

_Arrow-heads and Javelin-heads._--The earliest forms of these are
simply elongated splinters of flint or other stone, and undoubtedly
were simply tied upon or inserted in the end of the arrow shaft by a
ligament. They show but little work, simply as much as was necessary
to give a satisfactory point, and to provide a tang for fixing. These
may be termed lozenge-shaped (Fig. 6), and side by side with them
are those of a leaf-shape--these two being the designs presenting
the least amount of work and skill in fabrication. Subsequently a
barbed and tanged variety was evolved, showing the maximum amount of
technical skill in the making, and having the most deadly properties
by reason of the difficulty of extraction when once inserted under the
skin (Figs. 7, 8). They are as a rule of symmetrical proportions, the
barbs carefully chipped to offer the least amount of resistance to the
penetrative force of the arrow, and even at times a certain amount of
polishing and grinding was added to insure keenness to the point and

[Illustration: FIG. 5.--Flint spear-head.]

[Illustration: FIG. 6.--Lozenge-shaped arrow-head.]

[Illustration: FIG. 7.--Barbed arrow-head.]

[Illustration: FIG. 8.--Barbed arrow-head.]

The British Museum is in possession of a number of these arrow-heads,
which may be considered almost as works of art, together with some of
larger proportions which undoubtedly formed the heads of javelins (Fig.
9). Being fabricated of such imperishable material they have naturally
been preserved in very large numbers, and hardly a museum exists
without at least a few specimens being contained in it. In the mediæval
period many quaint superstitions were associated with them, and their
preservation as amulets, charms, and general attributes of curative
powers, &c., has led to the handing down to the present generation of
scores which would probably have been broken up in the ordinary course
of events.

[Illustration: FIG. 9.--Javelin-head.]

[Illustration: FIG. 10.--Dagger from British Museum.]

[Illustration: FIG. 11.--Dagger from British Museum.]

[Illustration: FIG. 12.--Dagger with notched edge.]

_Daggers._--The dagger is one of the commonest forms of weapon relating
to the Stone Age, as might be supposed from its simple form and easy
construction when compared with others. In its crudest and earliest
condition it merely consisted of a flint rudely chipped to a point at
one end; but subsequently it assumed a more definite form, and almost
equal attention was paid to the handle and to the blade. The latter
was invariably leaf-shaped, and broader towards the point than at the
butt, where it is usually rounded or cut off square. The beautiful
example, Fig. 10, is of white flint and may be seen in the British
Museum, while Fig. 11 from the same collection is of black flint and
about eight inches in length. As this is thickened at the butt it
may have been used without any handle, but undoubtedly most of these
blades were so mounted, and in Fig. 12 we have an example of the
notched variety, where two indentations are perceived on either side
for the passage of the tendons fixing the blade to the handle. In a
few cases a shaped handle having a pommel and a grip, and with the
blade formed out of the same piece of flint, has been discovered; the
weapons in these instances have been ten or twelve inches in length,
and modelled precisely the same as the bronze dagger which succeeded
them. The highest type of flint weapons of the dagger class are those
which have been discovered in Egypt; they are provided with long thin
blades, beautifully ground or chipped on one side to form an edge, and
elaborately serrated upon the thicker side forming the back, with cross
ripple markings for ornamentation, the whole forming a specimen of
clever handicraft and skilful workmanship which can only be adequately
appreciated by actual inspection.

Among the weapons of the Stone Age may be mentioned the sling-stones,
which are found in considerable numbers in countries where flints
abound; they are of a lens-like shape and from two to three inches
in diameter, being probably formed in this manner for insertion in a
cleft stick which was used for throwing them. Balls of stone are also
occasionally found with grooves in them, which suggest the presence at
one time of string; these may have been used as weapons for throwing
with the string attached, or wielded in the hand as a flail.

_Battle-axes._--Although the celt may be regarded as fulfilling the
functions of a battle-axe among its other manifold duties, yet a
true battle-axe was evolved by the Stone man towards the latter part
of his existence. It was invariably perforated by a circular hole,
effected by grinding, and as a rule assumed approximately the shape
shown in Fig. 13. Examples of these battle-axes have been found with
cutting projections upon each side of the shaft; this was probably the
prototype of the bipennis subsequently made in bronze and finally in
iron. An example is shown in Fig. 14.

[Illustration: FIG. 13.--Stone battle-axe.]

[Illustration: FIG. 14.--Battle-axe.]


The term “Bronze Age,” so generally used for the period immediately
preceding the introduction of iron, conveys to most readers very scanty
ideas as to the duration of time over which it extended. Indeed,
to those thoroughly conversant with the subject, the chronological
arrangements of the various periods of the age, and the grouping
together of these into one comprehensive whole, is practically a case
for individual calculation, and these tally but seldom. However, it
may be taken that, speaking broadly, the bronze period commenced in
Britain about 1500 B.C., and at a much earlier age upon the Continent,
one authority placing it as early as 3000 B.C. Iron was in general
use about three or four centuries before Christ on the Continent, and
Cæsar makes no mention of bronze in his description of the weapons and
accoutrements of the Britons.

_Celts._--Of all the varying forms of bronze implements the celt is
probably the most widely distributed and the best known, and there
is every reason to believe it was the first of the articles to be
manufactured. It is generally admitted to be both an implement for
everyday use and also a weapon of war. Its general utility was that
of a chisel, a wedge, or a wood-splitting hatchet; in war it was the
prototype of the battle-axe. It is of very wide distribution, being
found all over the Continent of Europe, and has many varieties. In
order of development the flat celt is undoubtedly the earliest, and
was derived from the celt of the Stone Age, the example shown in
Fig. 15 differing but little from the flint prototype. This pattern
gradually developed until one similar to Fig. 16 was evolved. From
this crude form the flanged variety was produced, giving an extra
grip for the handle; then a transverse ridge was added, thus forming
two receptacles to receive the split end of the handle (Fig. 17). The
latest development of the celt is that in which a socket is made for
the insertion of the handle (Fig. 18).

The relative form of the handle with the celt affixed has been much
discussed, but the consensus of opinion leads one to believe that the
handle was somewhat in the shape of a hockey-stick, the bent part
being inserted in the socket of the celt. Before the evolution of the
socketed celt the latter was inserted in a cleft stick and projected
from one side at right angles, being firmly bound in that position by
cross-lacing. This projection doubtless suggested the bent stick of a
later period.

[Illustration: FIG. 15.--Earliest bronze celt.]

[Illustration: FIG. 16.--Later celt.]

[Illustration: FIG. 17.--Celt, flanged and ridged.]

[Illustration: FIG. 18.--Latest development of celt.]

_Daggers._--Of contemporary date with the celt, and perhaps of even
more remote antiquity, is the bronze dagger, which in its original
simple form may have been used as a knife for domestic purposes and
a dagger for war, though subsequently the two became quite distinct.
The general form of the blade may be gleaned from Figs. 19 and 20,
where the ribs towards the point may be readily seen. This ribbing and
grooving of the blade are a distinctive feature, and are sometimes
beautifully developed into a pattern more or less intricate. The
handles were made of ivory, bone, or wood, and are very seldom found
entire. The method of adjusting the haft will be gleaned from the
position of the rivets; the handle was evidently either split into
two pieces and then placed on either side, or a cut was made for the
insertion of the tang or lower part of the blade. In some cases the
pommel of bronze has been found accompanying the dagger, and also
traces of what may have been the sheath. That variety of dagger having
a tang to fit into the shaft seems to be peculiar to our islands, as
those found on the Continent invariably possess a socket into which
the handle could be fitted. Some very small and thin daggers have
been found side by side with flint weapons, which appears to point to
a time when the metal was very scarce, in the earliest part of the
Bronze Age; subsequently the stouter form of weapon shows analogies
with continental forms, and so points to intercommunication between the
mainland and this island at that early date.

[Illustration: FIG. 19.--Bronze dagger.]

[Illustration: FIG. 20.--Ribbed bronze dagger.]

_Swords._--The sword does not appear to have been contemporaneous with
the early thin dagger, but was no doubt a subsequent evolution based
upon the dagger. Of all the forms which have been handed down to us
from the most remote antiquity, the bronze sword is the most beautiful,
and it is very questionable if any of the hundreds of shapes of lethal
weapons of that description which have subsequently seen the light can
vie with it in symmetry of form and general gracefulness. Only one
other class of weapon of this period attempts to rival in beauty the
leaf-shaped sword, and that is the spear, which is often of the most
graceful lines. The beautiful workmanship exhibited by these weapons
raised doubt at times as to their real origin, many asserting that
they were of Roman fabrication, but it has been definitely settled
that they antedated the Italian historical period. Iron and steel were
substituted for bronze at a very early period in the Roman army, the
shape, however, being unaltered. The fact that the majority of finds
of bronze swords occurs in countries where the Romans never penetrated
militates against the supposition of their Roman origin. The length of
the blade averages about two feet, though some are as short as one
and a half feet, and some as long as two and a half. The hilt plate
alters much in form, and there are many varieties: the handle was of
wood, bone, or horn, split into two plates and riveted on either side
(Figs. 21, 22). The blade was apparently cast in a mould so carefully
made that there was no necessity for file-work or hammering afterwards,
the edges being formed by the uniform reduction all round of the
thickness of the metal (Fig. 23). Blade and tang were cast in one
piece, although one variety which appears to be common to the British
Isles has a handle affixed to the blade by rivets, after the manner of
the dagger (Fig. 24). The rivet heads occasionally show signs of having
depressions in them, as though they were splayed by a punch, while
some have been closed by a hollow punch so as to leave a small stud.
Occasionally swords are found having the hilt and finished blade cast
in one piece, while others occur bearing signs of the hilt being cast
upon the blade. A few swords have been found with gold ornamentation
upon the hilts, and many in which the blade is decorated with a pattern
produced in the casting. Although of bronze, and therefore not subject
in any great degree to aerial oxidation, the sword appears to have
been universally protected by enclosure in a scabbard. These in some
instances were of bronze, but more often of leather or wood, with
fittings of bronze, and in all cases the scabbard was of greater length
than the blade it contained. Some scabbards even appear of fantastic
forms, as though the man of the Bronze Age, like his successor of
the Iron Period, was not averse to the occasional outshining of his

[Illustration: FIG. 21.--Bronze sword.]

[Illustration: FIG. 22.--Bronze sword showing rivet-holes.]

[Illustration: FIG. 23.--Bronze sword with cast edge.]

[Illustration: FIG. 24.--British sword with riveted handle.]

[Illustration: FIG. 25.--Bronze spear-head, leaf-shaped.]

[Illustration: FIG. 26.--Spear-head with apertures for thongs.]

_The Spear._--The spear is undoubtedly of the most remote antiquity,
and dates far back into the Stone Period; its inception seems to be
inherent in all savage tribes, and is a natural evolution of the idea
of inflicting injury upon a foe at a distance, and again of preventing
his approach to do personal harm. The primitive man probably pointed
a long stick by attrition on a rock, and subsequently hardened it by
fire: a splint of bone, being harder than the wood, occurred next,
and probably the flint succeeded, to be followed in due time by the
bronze head. The difficulty of affixing the head, however, seems to
have hindered progress at first in this direction, for the bronze
dagger undoubtedly antedated the spear-head, which continued to be of
flint for a long period after the dagger was introduced. It is highly
probable that the first spear-head was not constructed until the
Bronze man discovered the secret of making the socketed celt by means
of a core placed within the mould; with the advent of this invention
spear-heads became possible. Of course it may be open to question
whether any of the blades with tangs were really spear-heads and not
daggers, or incipient sword-blades. Some spear-heads have been found
which are undoubtedly of the tanged description, but they are not of
British, and possibly not even of European origin. The general form of
the head tends towards the leaf-shape, though this is not so pronounced
as it is in the sword (Fig. 25). The advent of the spear-head occurred
when man had developed considerable skill in the casting of bronze
and its manipulation under the hammer, and the really extraordinary
deftness shown in making the core, so that the minimum of metal was
used with the maximum of effect and strength, calls forth the warmest
admiration. Some of these cores are prolonged through the centre of
the blade, so that the metal is really attenuated, but at the same
time of uniform thickness, the inserted staff providing the necessary
rigidity. Respecting the sizes of those found there can be no question
but that the larger heads (and some have been found nearly a yard in
length) were intended for use only in the hand as spears, while some
of the smaller are the heads of javelins, or possibly of arrows. The
blades are at times of remarkable beauty of design and of excellent
workmanship. The sage-leaf form is of very common occurrence, the
central core reaching to the point, and ornamented with subordinate
ribs which also strengthen the blade. In these forms a hole is punched
in the socket for the insertion of a rivet to fix it to the lance
shaft. Others show two small loops cast upon the socket for a thong
to pass through, which was afterwards brought down to the shaft
and securely fastened (Fig. 26). This variety shows no rivet-hole.
Ornamentation is by no means rare upon these spear-heads; it generally
takes the form of open work, such as circles and ovals perforating
the blade, and of filed or cast patterns upon the sockets, some even
showing traces of gold inlaying. Barbed spear-heads are extremely rare,
and were probably only used in the chase.

[Illustration: PLATE I*

Shield of Italian Workmanship, Sixteenth Century

_A. F. Calvert_]

_Arrow-heads._--Arrow-heads in bronze practically do not exist in this
country, although they occur on the Continent and in Egypt, where they
are generally of the types shown in Figs. 27 and 28. It is highly
probable that the flint arrow-head was in use through the whole,
or nearly the whole, of the Bronze Age, being retained because of its
efficiency and cheapness. Bronze must have been a comparatively rare
and dear alloy, and the weapons exhibit as a rule the minimum of metal
in their construction compatible with efficiency; arrows from their
very nature are continually being lost, and this fact alone would
render their use expensive.

[Illustration: FIG. 27.--Bronze arrow-head.]

[Illustration: FIG. 28.--Bronze arrow-head.]

_Shields._--Among primitive races the shield was invariably of
wicker-work or of wood, and as the examples in bronze which have been
unearthed are of a high order of skill in workmanship and design we
may naturally infer that they were of comparatively late introduction,
and only appeared when the expert artizan of the age was capable of
producing plates of considerable area and of uniform thickness. In
the British Museum are several very fine examples of shields, one of
which we illustrate to show the general form and shape (Fig. 29). It
was dug up not far from the river Isis, in the vicinity of the Dyke
Hills, near Dorchester in Oxfordshire. It is circular in form, about 13
inches in diameter, and ornamented with two concentric rings of bosses
which encircle an umbo. All these bosses have been repousséd in the
metal except four, which are used in two instances as rivet heads to
fix the handle in position, and in two others to fasten buttons to the
interior of the outer rim. It is probable that a guige was fastened to
these buttons. So thin is the metal that it can hardly have served as a
shield without some auxiliary strengthening, and this was conjecturally
afforded by a lining of leather moulded into the depressions of the
shield when wet. There is no reason for supposing that the metal
now seen was the size of the original shield; in fact there is a
probability that it was larger, and that the metal merely formed the
centre. A bronze buckler found near Aberystwith was formerly in the
Meyrick Collection and preserved at Goodrich Court, whence it was
transferred to the British Museum. It is about 26 inches in diameter,
with no less than twenty concentric circles of knobs and ribs, with
the usual buttons for fixing the guige. The general type of shield is
that having a series of concentric rings raised in the metal with studs
between the ribs. The ornamentation is in all cases raised by hand with
hammer and punch, and doubtless the metal was much thicker and the
diameter much less in the early stages of making.

[Illustration: FIG. 29.--Bronze shield. (British Museum.)]

[Illustration: FIG. 30.--Bronze mace-head.]

A considerable number of bronze weapon-like forms have been from
time to time discovered, the uses of which are only conjectural. Thus
long blades of a triangular bayonet-like section occur, which may
either have been a sword or rather rapier for thrusting only, or have
been attached to a shaft and served as a spear. Others, again, have
a socketed head from the side of which projects a cutting blade of
various sizes and forms which might be the halberd in an incipient
stage. There also exist short, thick, scythe-like blades of great
strength, with strong rivets for attachment to some shaft, which may
have been constructed to fit upon the wheels of chariots. Knobs of
bronze occur having a socketed centre and projecting spikes upon the
sides which undoubtedly when fitted to suitable handles formed the
maces of the Bronze Age (Fig. 30), or possibly were portions of early
“morning stars” or military flails.



The bas-reliefs of Assyria afford us ample materials for becoming
acquainted with the arms and armour of that great and warlike empire,
and our own national collection probably contains the richest store of

_The Tunic._--This appears to have been of thick quilted linen or
of leather, as sometimes long hair is shown upon it. It reached to
the knees and had half-sleeves: at times a pectoral is shown of
large proportions. Another, and much more military style, consisted
of rope fastened side by side, and so bound round the body that it
had the appearance of a tight-fitting cuirass. This would be much
more efficacious against the sword and the arrow than the tunic. It
generally terminated at the waist. In the earlier sculptures there
are no indications of the metal cuirass or of greaves, but the latter
subsequently came into vogue; they were of metal and reached to the

In the invasion of Greece by Xerxes the Assyrians are described as
having defensive tunics of flax, which were stuck together surface to
surface by a soft mucilage to the number of over a dozen, and formed an
excellent defence against a sword-cut. All the varieties of armour are
faithfully shown upon the sculptures, some exhibiting the scale-like
nature of a few cuirasses, from which we may infer that mascled armour
was known to them as to most Oriental nations.

_The Helmet._--This was generally the hemispherical skull cap so much
affected by Asiatic races then and now; it was made either in iron or
leather, furnished with a chin-strap, and decorated at times with a
horse-hair crest. A design is sometimes seen which strongly approaches
the Phrygian in shape, having a portion of the crest curving over
towards the front, while another variety is that of a truncated cone
curved backwards. Defences for the neck and sides of the neck are

At Marathon the helmets worn were “interlaced or interwoven,” from
which we may infer that chain mail was not unknown to the Assyrians; it
may, however, refer to bands of metal plaited together.

_The Shield._--This was circular and concave and, if we may credit
Herodotus, made of cane. The representations of this defence bear
out the assertion, however, for the front is generally marked out in
concentric circles, and wherever the back is exhibited the same circles
invariably appear. The light and tough nature of the material would
strongly commend itself for this purpose. Occasionally shields are
shown covered with leather, or one plate of metal, while others have
a surface covered with lozenges, which doubtless represents a kind of
pourpoint or quilted material stretched over the framework.

_The Sword._--The Assyrian sword as delineated upon the sculptures was
slung at the left side, and passed through two notches in the belt so
as to make it assume a horizontal position.

The sculptures in the British Museum show the general character of the
sword (or rather of the scabbard, for they are all sheathed) with great
minuteness. The pommel is very elegant in form and generally carved;
the grip is of peculiar formation, and there is no guard; from actual
examples which have been found we know that the broad blade has two
edges and terminates in a point. The scabbard is extremely artistic in
form, and the whole weapon partakes more of the nature of the dagger or
anelace than of the sword.

_The Bow_ was a favourite weapon and of the usual Oriental pattern,
being composed of horn, wood, and the large sinews of certain animals
firmly glued together. It was carried partly unstrung over the shoulder
when not in use; the total unstringing was not advisable because of the
time occupied in getting it ready, most Asiatic bows bending backwards
into an oval shape when unstrung, and requiring much physical exertion
and time to replace the string. The quiver was also suspended in the
same position, containing arrows of some length made of cane.

_The Lance_ was of short proportions, with oblong and leaf-shaped
heads, often unbarbed; it could be thrown, if desired, like a javelin.
The mace is also shown upon the sculptures, but rarely.


_The Tunic._--This was invariably of a quilted material, thickly
padded, and generally composed of linen several times folded; it could
resist a cutting weapon but not the point of a sword or lance. Over
it was placed the pectoral, which covered the shoulders as well as the
chest, and was very similar to the mediæval camail.

_The Helmet_ was of the semi-globular form as a basis with various
additions, none, however, of a distinctive national character. The
material used was quilted linen of many thicknesses glued together.

_The Shield_ was used only by the spearmen, and was about a yard in
height; it was of peculiar shape, being rectangular in the lower part
and semi-circular in the upper, where a round opening was pierced,
through which the approach of the enemy could be viewed with safety.
The outer parts were covered with leather strengthened with rings and

_The Bow._--The main strength of the Egyptian armies lay in their
bowmen, who fought from chariots or on foot. English pattern than the
Oriental, as also did the arrow, which was at times over 30 inches in
length. The latter was made of cane or reed, feathered and barbed, the
heads being of bronze.

_The Spearmen_ or heavily-armed troops were accoutred in cuirasses of
bronze scales overlapping, and supported on the shoulders by straps;
or else in short tunics of heavily-quilted material with bronze plates
sewn on in a pattern. Their helmets were quilted like the tunics.

Various weapons appear to have been used by the Egyptians, but they
were all secondary to the bow and spear. The sword was straight,
double-edged, tapering from the hilt to the point, and constructed
of bronze. Scimitars, daggers, battle-axes of various shapes, and
slings were in use, while a speciality seems to have been made of the
javelin, which was hurled by means of a stick.


For the better understanding of the arms of the Greeks it is desirable
to consider those of the two distinct ages into which their history
naturally falls, viz. the Heroic and the Historic.


This period is approximately 1000 years B.C., of the time of Homer,
from whom we obtain all, or nearly all, of the particulars respecting
arms and armour.

_The Cuirass._--This was made of bronze, as was the whole of the
defensive armour at that time. It was worn over a linen tunic, and
apparently consisted of a breastplate guarded round the arms and neck
with lames. That of Agamemnon is stated to have had ten bands of
bronze, twelve of gold, twenty of tin, and six of bronze round the
neck. We have mention of the defensive equipment of Menelaus which was
pierced by the arrow of Pandarus. It first passed through the golden
clasps of the waist-belt, then the breastplate, and finally through
a coat of mail which was worn underneath. The cuirass was often very
highly ornamented by repoussé work and also inlaid with gold.

_The Helmet._--The most elaborate helms were those fitting lightly to
the head and adorned with a crest which projected before and behind,
and was also furnished with plumes. The simpler forms were of leather
or bronze, fitting closely to the head, and without peak or plume.

[Illustration: PLATE II of Philip II.

_A. F. Calvert_]

[Illustration: FIG. 31.--Greek greaves (front and back view).]

_The Greaves_ covered the legs from the knee to the instep, and
from their form must have been constructed of bronze or some alloy
possessing a large amount of pliability, inasmuch as they were in one
piece, and yet nearly met behind the legs, where they were fastened
with clasps. Homer frequently alludes to the excellent way in which
these defences were made, whereby they in no way hindered the wearer
(Fig. 31). It is conjectured that the bronze used in the construction
of the greaves resembled in some respects the hardened brass or
“latten” of the mediæval ages, and that they were carefully moulded to
the limbs of the wearer.

_The Shield_, by far the most important part of the defence, was either
round or oval in form and made of bronze, protected at the back with
hide, and at times covered with it. Strengthening discs of metal,
bosses, and rings of metal were also added (Figs. 32, 33). It appears
to have been of very great weight, even Ajax on one occasion being
embarrassed by the weight of his own shield, which we are told was of
bronze backed by seven tough bulls’ hides. They reached from the neck
to the ankle, and were often elaborately decorated. A guige appears to
have been fitted at times, which passed over the right shoulder.

[Illustration: FIG. 32.--Greek shield.]

[Illustration: FIG. 33.--Greek shield (front and back).]

[Illustration: FIG. 34.--Greek sword in scabbard.]

_The Sword._--Homer applies the terms “long, large, sharp, trenchant,
and two-edged” to the sword, and it is evident that it was of the same
description as that characteristic of the Bronze Age (Fig. 34). It
was ornamented with studs of gold or silver, and the sword-belt was
apparently worn over the shoulder.

[Illustration: FIG. 35.--Greek bow.]

_The Lance or Javelin._--This was by far the most important weapon in
the Grecian armoury, and plays the chief part in all Homeric combats,
which commence by the spear being poised in the hand and hurled as a
javelin. It decided the contest as a rule, and it was only upon its
failing to do so that the combatants had recourse to the sword. The
lance was made of ash--long, tough, and ponderous; the head was of
bronze and unbarbed.

_The Bow._--Only one description of a bow is given to us--that of
Pandarus, which is said to be of ibex horn, strung with sinews (Fig.
35). The arrow-head is of iron; the only mention of that metal in the
warrior’s equipment, and the arrows were kept in a quiver fitted with
a lid. The sling appears to have been relegated to the lowest order of
combatants, who occupied the rear of the army, and sent their missiles
over the heads of those in front. The great chiefs and the spearmen
did not disdain to use the stone upon occasion, and we have graphic
descriptions of the huge rocky pieces the combatants hurled at one


The equipment described by Homer had not particularly altered in the
Iron Age except in certain details and modifications necessitated by
the changed order of combat. The heavily-armed soldier, having already
a tunic as a _just-au-corps_, put on greaves, cuirass, sword (hung upon
the left side by a belt passing over the right shoulder); the large
round shield, supported in the same manner, helmet, and spear, or two
spears, as occasion required. Men thus equipped were termed Hoplites,
the term “hopla” more especially denoting the defensive armour, the
shield and breastplate, or cuirass. The mode of combat by the Greek
phalanx necessitated the adoption of a long and heavy spear; the ranks
were sixteen deep, and each rank consisted of the men standing close
together with shield touching shield, while the spears or pikes, each
24 feet in length, reached 18 feet in front of the nearest rank when
couched. As a space of about 2 feet was allowed between each rank,
the spears of the five files behind him projected in advance of each
front-rank man.

The sword continued to be of the leaf-like form which prevailed in
the Bronze Age, and was longer than the Roman sword of the following
era. At the same time a sword was in use which was the prototype of
the subsequent weapon: it had a long, straight blade slightly tapering
from the hilt to the point, where it was cut to an acute angle for
thrusting. A central ridge traversed both sides of the blade, and it
was double-edged. Upon these swords and their scabbards a wealth of
decoration was lavished by the Greeks. The great shield of the Heroic
Age gave place to a round or oblong shield reaching only to the knee;
it was concave to the body, and appears to have been decorated as a
general rule: one invariable ornament was a flat band or border round
the circumference. This shield was the true battle-shield of the
heavily-armed hoplites. A much smaller and lighter one was used by the
cavalry and the light infantry, being made of hide with the hair on. A
cross-piece was affixed at the back for a handle, and a cord was looped
round the inside of the shield, which afforded a grasp for the hand.

[Illustration: FIG. 36.--Greek helmet with cheek-guards.]

[Illustration: FIG. 37.--Greek helmet.]

[Illustration: FIG. 38.--Greek helmets of the Bœotian shape.]

[Illustration: FIG. 39.--Helm, breastplate, and backplate from Cumæ.
(Tower of London.)]

The helms all appear with characteristic neck-guards and pendent guards
for the face, which were free to move upon simple attachments at the
side; the front is shown to be protected by a more or less ornamental
visor or nasal. The crest, of which three distinct varieties are
shown, assumed many modifications of those varieties, but the general
arrangement was to lengthen it so as to extend from the front portion
of the helmet to the neck-guard, and the upper portion spreading
like a fan. The body of the helm in nearly every instance was made
the ground for elaborate decoration. To the crest was added at times
one or two plumes, the whole producing a striking military effect
(Figs. 36 and 37). The true Greek war-helm, however, had very little
exterior ornamentation, but was in every respect a most serviceable
and business-like headpiece. It was known as the Bœotian helm (Fig.
38), and the general shape may be gathered from an examination of the
Italian “barbuta” of the fourteenth century, its lineal descendant.
A fine helmet of this character is preserved in Case 24 at the Tower
of London; it is of bronze, and was excavated at Cumæ, an ancient
Greek colony near Naples. It is shown in Fig. 39. Fitting closely
to the head and neck, the lower part reached to the shoulders; in
front two openings for the eyes, with a drooping nasal between and a
narrow vertical opening opposite the chin and neck, gave a general
protection which was most effectual, and only exposed the absolute
minimum to chance of injury. Its efficacy was soon recognised, and it
was eagerly assumed by the hoplites and the leading Greek warriors. The
greaves now appear without straps behind, and were retained in their
place solely by the elasticity of the metal; they are represented as
adhering closely to the limb, and were probably moulded from casts
taken direct from the wearer. About 400 B.C. the heavy bronze cuirass
of the Greek soldier, which had been transmitted from the Heroic
Period, gave way to a lighter but equally efficacious defence, made
of linen crossed many times in folds and glued together, such as we
have seen used by the Egyptians, and, in fact, by nearly all Asiatic
races. The mounted soldiers wore a shorter cuirass than the hoplites;
it was moulded to the figure, and from the lower edge pendent straps
of leather were affixed for the protection of the lower part of the
body and the thighs. These “lambrequins,” as they were termed, were
very numerous, and at times ornamented with metal plaques; they were
longer than the Roman lambrequins of a subsequent period by reason
of the Greek cuirass terminating at the waist (Figs. 40 and 41). The
javelin or throwing-spear of the light-armed troops was furnished with
a strap to aid in propelling it. A pair of Greek greaves are preserved
in Case 24, Tower of London, which are probably of the Heroic Age, as
they are furnished with rings for the attachment of fastening straps.
From the same case we have examples of the bronze cuirass, backplate,
and breastplate, with a bronze attachment at one shoulder for fastening
the two together. An outline of the chief muscles and prominences upon
the human form are crudely imitated in repoussé work, and indications
exist upon the backplate of the fastenings by which it was attached to
the front (Fig. 39). The bronze belt or zone which was worn by many
warriors below the cuirass is also exemplified and shown in Fig. 42.
The fastenings in front show a considerable amount of artistic skill.
To this zone were attached the lower defences for body and limbs.

[Illustration: FIGS. 40 and 41.--Greek cuirasses.]

[Illustration: FIG. 42.--Spear-head, dagger and sheath, and bronze belt
from Cumæ. (Tower of London.)]

[Illustration: PLATE III*

German Shield, Sixteenth Century, by Desiderius Colman

_A. F. Calvert_]

The shape of the spear-head is similar to that shown in Fig. 42. It has
a central ridge strengthening the blade, and is furnished with a hollow
socket for receiving the head of the shaft.

[Illustration: FIG. 43.--Greek parazonium.]

[Illustration: FIG. 44.--Greek quiver bow-case.]

[Illustration: FIG. 45.--Greek quiver.]

[Illustration: FIG. 46.--Greek bow in case.]

The Greek dagger was termed the “parazonium,” and was common to all the
troops (Fig. 43): it was broad in the blade and came to an acute point,
the general shape of the blade being of a leaf-like outline similar to
the sword. This shape was subsequently adopted by the Romans. A dagger
and sheath from Cumæ differs in form from the foregoing (Fig. 42), and
partakes more of the character of the anelace of the mediæval period.
The holes are shown for rivets by which the wooden or bone handle was
fastened, and the sheath, which is very plain, terminates in a small
knob. The dagger had a small shoulder-strap of its own, by which it
was suspended at the right side in a sloping position much higher than
the waist.

The bow was of the short form, and made of the same materials as those
used in the Heroic Age. A quiver was in general use by the Greek
archers, which contained both bow and arrows, as in Fig. 44, which is
shown with its accompanying strap. This, however, was not always the
case, as quivers are shown for arrows alone, as in Fig. 45, and also
bow-cases which are not adapted for arrows as well (Fig. 46).


[Illustration: FIG. 47.--Etruscan helmet.]

With regard to the arms and armour of the Etruscans we find but little
difference existing from those of the Greeks, but certain developments
occurred which distinguished them from those of the parent country and
were subsequently adopted by the Romans, thus laying the foundation
for a separate and distinct style of equipment. The helmet in general
followed the Greek lines but had a tendency towards the formation of
a deep bowl-shape for the head; also wings were adopted, at times,
which projected to a considerable extent and gave a distinctly Asiatic
character to the headpiece (Fig. 47). For the ordinary soldier a
skull-cap was in use with a truncated point upon the summit, and
ornamented bosses round the rim (Fig. 48).

[Illustration: FIG. 48.--Etruscan soldier’s helmet.]

The cuirass with its dependent lambrequins was formed, like that of
the Greeks, by joining a back- and breast-plate, but the overlapping
shoulder-guards, with a tendency to meet in front, so often observed
upon Etruscan pottery, are quite distinct from the Greek model (Fig.
49). Cuirasses are also shown made of overlapping plates of metal (Fig.
50); of discs or lames of plate sewn on a padded base (Fig. 51); and
one quilted throughout apparently without any metallic defence (Fig.
52). It has the thorax attached to it, and being viewed from behind
exhibits that protection, as is also the case in Fig. 51. As a rule
greaves were not worn, the limbs being entirely unprotected. The
archers had a cap similar to Fig. 48, together with a tunic of leather.
The bow in use was of a very simple form, as shown in Fig. 53. The
shield was circular, and similar in outline to that of the Greek, but
differed in its great convexity; the one shown in Fig. 54 exhibits the
interior, with the method of affixing the handle.

[Illustration: FIG. 49.--Etruscan cuirass.]

[Illustration: FIG. 50.--Scaled Etruscan cuirass.]

[Illustration: FIG. 51.--Etruscan cuirass with thorax.]

[Illustration: FIG. 52.--Etruscan cuirass with thorax.]

[Illustration: FIG. 53.--Etruscan bow.]

[Illustration: FIG. 54.--Etruscan shield. (Inside.)]



The defensive armour of the Romans differed essentially in the early
form from the later, or, broadly speaking, between the Republican
Period and the Imperial Period; though it overlapped considerably it
may be as well to accept these periods for differentiation.


[Illustration: FIG. 55.--Lorica of Roman General (Republican).]

_Cuirass or Lorica._--This was formed upon the Greek style of
armour based upon the Etruscan model, and consisted of a back- and
breast-plate, strapped together at the sides and fastened by broad
epaulette-like belts upon the shoulders (Fig. 55). These belts fastened
in front to a ring attached to the breastplate, and were permanently
fixed, low down over the shoulder-blades behind. The lorica was of
bronze, and modelled to the shape of the figure; short straps of
leather were fixed at the arm-openings, which fell over the shoulders;
at the lower part of the cuirass there were two bands of leather, one
showing underneath the other, and both generally dagged at the edges;
below this again depended the lambrequins, often covered with metal
studs or plates, and sometimes curled and plaited. They were of the
same shape as the shoulder-pieces, but much broader, and always of
leather. The tunic worn under the cuirass had half sleeves, and its
lower border reached nearly as low as the lambrequins.

[Illustration: FIG. 56.--Roman helmet (Imperial Period).]

The military cloak or paludamentum was draped over the cuirass in
picturesque folds, varying according to the taste of the individual

_The Helmet_ was very similar to the Greek model, and had a crest and
cheek-pieces (Fig. 56).

The Roman leaders often affected the laminated cuirass, or else that
composed of overlapping scales of bronze (Fig. 57). The shield was made
upon the Greek model, and the weapons consisted of the lance, javelin,
and sword.


[Illustration: FIG. 57.--Officers lorica (Republican Period).]

With the advent of the emperors our knowledge becomes of a more
definite character. The admission of foreigners into the Roman army,
although it had proved disastrous to the republic, was continued by
the emperors, and not only were the natives of the conquered countries
enlisted but also mercenaries were employed.

Consequently a great variety of armour and arms existed in the Roman
armies, but the essential ones stand out prominently in sculptures,
painting, and upon coins, &c., and with these only will we deal.

[Illustration: FIG. 58.--Roman laminated cuirass.]

_The Cuirass._--The heavily-armed troops bore the laminated cuirass
(Fig. 58), which consisted of about seven lames of steel encircling
the trunk, each lame being divided into two portions, which joined in
the middle of the back and in front. Affixed to the top lame, back
and front, were four or more bowed lames passing over the shoulders
and working freely upon the pivots which secured them. In front, and
fixed to the lower part of the second lame from the bottom, were three
or four short lames pendent and hanging vertically so as to protect
the middle of the body below the waist. The lames encircling the body
were sewn down to a tightly-fitting leather garment, the true cuirass,
which was continued upwards before and behind in order to protect
the chest and throat and passed over the shoulders under the curved
lames. The whole cuirass opened down the front, the iron bands being
hinged behind, fastening with a clasp in front. To the lowest lame was
generally affixed two rows of leather, dagged at their edges, and the
lambrequins descended beneath them, one row of the straps being shorter
than those beneath, which fell lower than those used in the earlier age.

The officer of the Imperial Period affected the lorica modelled to
the figure as worn by the soldiers in the Republican Period, but
considerably shortened and seldom reaching below the waist, but the
scaled cuirass was also a favourite.

[Illustration: FIG. 59.--Roman helmet.]

[Illustration: FIG. 60.--Roman helmet.]

_The Helmet_ of the soldier was simply a skull-cap with a peak and
pendent cheek-guards (Fig. 59), but subsequently was furnished with a
descending hollowed neck-guard, a bar across the forehead acting as a
visor, and two cheek-pieces, hinged, which could be fastened together
beneath the chin (Fig. 60). During the later days of the empire the
helmet became deeper. A common form of ornament for the crest was
simply a round knob.

_The Shield._--This was of two distinct kinds, a long, rectangular,
and very concave shield borne only by the legionaries, and an oval,
flattened form carried by the horsemen. The rectangular shield was
about two feet six inches long, and composed of two plates of metal
overlapping, with bands of metal strengthening it at the top and also
at the lower edge, where it often rested on the ground. With this
shield the well-known testudo was formed. The cognisance of the legion
appeared upon the outer face, and on the column of Trajan, where
members of the “thundering legion” are depicted, the device is that of
a conventional thunderbolt of the usual zigzag description. The oval
shield carried by the cavalry (the equites) and the light-armed troops
(the velites) was a much-flattened variety of the old shield, and in
the later years of the empire was adopted by the legionaries when
the rectangular shield was discarded; it was, however, considerably
enlarged in its later form.

[Illustration: FIG. 61.--Roman swords.]

_The Sword._--The early sword, like that of most nations, was of
bronze of the well-known leaf shape, and, compared with those of other
nations, comparatively short. In the first century B.C. it had become
modified into a weapon about two feet in length, having a two-edged
blade with parallel sides, and the point at an obtuse angle (Fig.
61). A short cross-guard, thin grip, and swelling pommel completed
this remarkable weapon, which when used against adversaries armed
with lance, javelin, or a long sword must have necessitated the Roman
legionary getting within the guard of his adversary before being able
to use his weapon, thus implying a high degree of personal bravery. It
was worn upon the right side, suspended from a shoulder-belt. Upon the
Trajan column, dating from 114 A.D., the sword appears much longer than
in earlier representations, and shortly afterwards a long single-edged
sword called the “spatha” was in use side by side with the short sword.

[Illustration: PLATE IV*

Shield of Augsburg make, Sixteenth Century

_A. F. Calvert_]

_The Spear._--“The spear that conquered the world,” as a French author
defines it, was the redoubtable _pilum_, concerning which much has been
written and much disputation has arisen. It is most remarkable that
a weapon which is constantly alluded to as the essential arm of the
Roman warrior, and which has been fully described by a writer, should
be of such extreme rarity that its very form has provided matter for
discussion and dispute. The description of the pilum by Polybius,
who flourished in the second century before Christ, is comprehensive
and distinct, but owing to the lack of representations and of actual
models, much misconception has arisen concerning the exact meaning of
his words. He describes it as a weapon having a very large iron head,
which was furnished with a socket to receive the wooden shafts. The
socket was about a third of the length of the weapon, and the barbed
head of the same length. In the Museum at Wiesbaden there is a reputed
pilum, but the marvel is that there do not exist hundreds of examples
of a weapon with which combats without number have been fought over an
area equal to the half of Europe.

The large iron head mentioned by Polybius is an obtusely pointed
pike-head with three or four barbs projecting backwards to a short
distance from the head; behind the head is the neck, which, though
long and slender, is capable of resisting a considerable amount of
violent usage. This neck is about twenty inches in length, and at its
base swells into a socket for the shaft, and encases the latter for a
good portion of its length, being fitted with extreme care. The whole
weapon was about six feet nine inches to seven feet in length, and
may be described as one-third visible shaft, one-third shaft in iron
socket, and the remainder a slender iron rod bearing a large head. It
will readily be seen that, owing to the uncased shaft at the base, the
centre of gravity would lie between the middle portion of the weapon
and the head, thus adapting it for throwing purposes.

The particular purpose of the pilum was to deprive an adversary of his
shield. The method adopted was to approach within throwing distance
and hurl the massive weapon at an opponent, who would naturally
interpose his shield in defence; if the head crashed through the
shield the object was accomplished, for owing to its form withdrawal
was impossible, while the heavy shaft prevented any advance, and at
the same time hindered retreat. To prevent the probability of either,
however, the legionary with sword and shield promptly fell upon his
embarrassed adversary, and there could be but one ending to such
an unequal combat. For use at close quarters it was also equally
efficacious, for, wielded with both hands like a mediæval pike, it
could resist with ease the sword-cuts of the enemy; indeed Polybius
tells us that the legionary received the sword-cuts of the enemy with
calm confidence on his pilum, which resisted them with ease, while the
adversary’s weapon was cut and hacked into the mere semblance of a
strigil, or skin-scraper. This weapon was essentially Roman, and the
troops wielding it were known as _pilani_. The cavalry carried a long
and slender lance furnished with the _amentum_, a leather thong fitted
nearly two-thirds of the length of the spear from the butt, being
the centre of gravity of the shaft. This thong was of great use in
propelling the spear when used as a javelin. The Roman dart was about
three feet in length, and fitted with an extremely thin point about six
inches long; upon striking any obstacle the point became so bent and
distorted that it was of no use for hurling back again at the enemy.
The light-armed troops also possessed a spear which was about four and
a half feet in length.


were a nation of Germanic origin, and originally occupied the land
lying upon the north bank of the Rhine, stretching from Mayence almost
to the sea. They successfully resisted the advance of the Romans in
the second and third centuries, and eventually began an aggressive
migration southwards, which finally resulted in the subjugation of the
modern countries of Holland, Belgium, France, and partly of Germany and
Italy. Long before this consummation, however, we find that the Franks
freely enlisted in the Roman armies, and eventually formed the bulwark
between the western dominions of the Romans and the fierce barbarian
hordes who poured down from the north in almost overwhelming numbers.
History teems with examples of their prowess as a military nation;
their large stature, bold and wild aspect, and utter fearlessness,
rendering them at first most formidable opponents of the comparatively
little men of the native Roman armies, and equally valuable allies
afterwards. As a Teutonic race we naturally expect to find them armed
with the weapons characteristic of the northern tribes.

_The Francisca._--Under the Merovingian dynasty, from the fifth to the
eighth century A.D., the Franks used a weapon in their warfare which
has become associated with their name. The _francisca_, or battle-axe,
was a heavy missile weapon which has been described by Procopius as
having a very broad blade and a short handle, but so many varieties
have been found that we must infer that his description was simply a
broad and general one. Thus some are long and narrow in the blade and
only slightly curved, and some have a cutting projection of various
shapes upon the back portion of the axe-head. In use it was thrown with
tremendous force and unerring aim at an enemy, the Frank being able
to accomplish this because of the freedom from embarrassing armour
or clinging garments which he enjoyed, and also, owing to constant
practice, the distance to which it was hurled was a very remarkable
feature. So heavy and strong was this formidable missile that a shield
was invariably crushed in or cut through, if interposed, whilst a blow
received upon the person inevitably ended in death. If used in the
hand the weapon was of the same terrible character. It is questionable
whether the bipennis, or double-headed axe, ever found great favour
with the Franks, although it has been attributed to them.

_The Lance_, sometimes termed the _framea_, appears to have been a
weapon chiefly associated with the cavalry, and not differing in any
essential points from that generally carried by horsemen at the time.
The head was of many forms, and the socket always an integral part
of it; the latter extended to a distance of eighteen inches or more
from the head, and was hollowed to receive the shaft, being fixed in
position by a rivet which passed through the wood and also through two
holes in opposite sides of the socket.

_The Angon._--The angon was both in form and in use similar to the
pilum of the Romans. It had a barbed head and a long, slender neck of
iron, one found in Germany being over a yard in length. A socket fitted
over a heavy shaft, and the whole weapon had a length of about six
feet. In use the angon was hurled at the enemy in order to pierce his
body or his shield; if the latter occurred the soldier was practically
deprived of his defence, as he could neither advance nor retreat with
such an incubus fixed in it. The Frankish warrior, however, quickly
seized the advantage thus gained, and rushing forward deliberately
trod upon his weapon, thus dragging the shield out of the hands of his
opponent who, being left comparatively defenceless, was easily overcome
with axe or sword.

_The Sword._--The Frankish sword was about thirty inches in length; the
blade was broad, straight, and double-edged, with parallel sides ending
abruptly in a somewhat obtuse point. It had a very short cross-bar as
a guard, a straight grip, and a small, slightly swelling pommel. The
scabbard, constructed of either wood or iron, was decorated with plates
of inlaid work, generally in copper. This sword does not appear to have
been universal in the army, but to have been appropriated by those
having an official position. What may be termed a large knife, or a
long and heavy dagger, also formed a characteristic Frankish weapon.

With regard to the defensive equipment of the Franks we are in some
degree of doubt, inasmuch as no national armour was evolved. In the
earlier part of their history they appeared to have disdained any
defence but the shield, but in the time of Charlemagne a simple hauberk
of pourpoint was worn, covered more or less with metal plates, and a
leathern cap upon the head. The shield was of metal and circular, with
a central projecting boss or umbo similar to that of the Saxons. The
soldiers forming the élite of the army were provided with an equipment
which was a modified form of that worn by the Roman legionaries. The
earlier Franks appear to have been a nation of infantry, but in the
Carlovingian period they developed qualities of horsemanship which
eventually led to their army being exceptionally rich in cavalry,
almost one half of their force subsequently being classed under this



The military equipment of our Saxon and Danish forefathers is of much
interest to us as a nation, inasmuch as we are curious to ascertain
with what weapons and with what personal defences our ancestors were
able, apart from personal courage, to overcome the fierce opposition
of the Romanised Britons. That this resistance was of a formidable
character we may judge from the extended time occupied in the conquest
of England, running into hundreds of years and necessitating waves
of invasion. They won the country bit by bit, and the conquered were
effectually displaced by the invaders; so thorough was this that
practically the Britons disappeared before the warlike Teutons, whereby
all their traces of occupation were wiped out and only the great works
of engineering or building skill of those “who built for eternity,
and not for time,” resisted their devastating march. It is probable
that during the many centuries of Roman occupation many of the Britons
had learned the method of warfare and the use of the weapons of their
conquerors; and we know that British recruits for the Roman armies
were in considerable demand. Consequently we may fairly assume that
the Saxons were opposed by Roman swords, spears, and javelins, and
that a certain amount of Roman armour protected the defenders. To this
equipment we may ascribe the fierce and prolonged resistance offered to
the invaders, who were only able to found their first petty kingdom,
that of Kent, after a struggle of nearly forty years’ duration.

[Illustration: PLATE V*

Italian Rondache, Sixteenth Century

_A. F. Calvert_]

_The Saxon Spear._--The chief weapon of offence among the Saxons was
undoubtedly the spear, which was of two kinds--the longer, used by
the cavalry, or in certain cases to be employed against them, and the
shorter, which partook of the dual nature of a spear and of a javelin.

The chief authorities for Saxon arms and armour are (_a_) the
illuminated manuscripts preserved in the British Museum, the Bodleian
Library, &c., some of which date back to the eighth century or even
earlier; (_b_) the written description of the equipment of certain
warriors of a still more remote period; and (_c_) the sagas, most
of them of a warlike nature, which not only laud the heroic deeds
of warriors but constantly refer to the weapons and armour borne by
them. But these details, necessarily crude and by themselves to a
certain extent unreliable, are fortunately supplemented by actual
examples which have been found in Saxon barrows all over the country
and preserved in many museums, from which we are enabled to verify the
illuminations and descriptions.

A spear is found as a rule in all Saxon interments, or more strictly
speaking the iron head, the wooden portion having generally decayed.
From numberless references to the latter we find that it was invariably
made of ash, and the warrior is often poetically referred to as the
“ash-bearer.” The shorter kind is found in barrows, doubtless because
of limitation of space, and so commonly do they occur, that probably
every Saxon, from freeman upwards, was interred with one. They are
sometimes found reversed, with the iron head near the feet, and the
hollow shoe or button which protected the end of the shaft near the
skull. From many measurements taken from the head of the spear to the
shoe, the total length of the shorter kind has been found to be about
six feet.

In some places portions of the wood have been found still preserved;
these have been tested and proved to be of ash wood, but in no case
have these remains demonstrated that the shaft was excessively thin as
is represented in illuminations, where as a rule only a narrow ruled
line is drawn for the shaft. Judging from the numerous illustrations of
mounted horsemen with which the MSS. abound, the length of the longer
variety was about nine or ten feet. The accompanying illustration (Fig.
62) represents various forms of spear-heads copied from Saxon MSS. in
the British Museum, from which it will be seen that no stereotyped
pattern was in vogue, but that almost every variety of possible form
was brought into use. That which at once attracts the attention is
the form of guard invariably used below the spear-head, and which was
doubtless intended to ward off sword-cuts which might possibly sever
the shaft. They were of iron, and sometimes as many as three were in
use. In two of these examples the barbed form of head is shown, which
is the most uncommon, both in illustrations and also in actual finds
in barrows. Probably this form was generally in use for javelins, the
other variety being easily withdrawn after inflicting a wound. In
Fig. 63, which presents examples of actual spear-heads found in Great
Britain, we notice that the shaft is fixed in a socket which is always
furnished with a longitudinal slit. Nails or rivets were used to fasten
it to the shaft. The absence of the cross guards should be noticed;
probably they were inserted in the shaft and formed no integral part
of the spear-head. In the Tower Collection, however, is a spear-head,
with a cross-piece similar to the guards shown in illustrations, which
was discovered some time since near Nottingham. The short spear was
not carried singly but generally in pairs, and at times three are
represented; for instance, in a British Museum MS. the destroying angel
is shown with three javelins, one in flight, one poised for throwing in
the right hand, and one grasped in the left.

[Illustration: FIG. 62.--Anglo-Saxon spears, &c. (Add. MS. 11695; Tib.
c. vi. &c.)]

[Illustration: FIG. 63.--Saxon spear-heads.]

_The Sword._--Swords were essentially cavalry weapons among the
Anglo-Saxons, and were not carried by any person beneath the rank of
thane. The earliest of those found in England have no quillons or
cross-pieces, but merely pommel, grip, and blade. The latter was long,
straight, rounded at the point, and double-edged, 30 inches long and
2 inches wide at the hilt; the grip was of wood and with but little
swell. The total length is generally about three feet. Irish swords
of the same period are about six inches shorter; both kinds were
provided with wooden scabbards. Undoubtedly this sword was fashioned
from classical models. During the later Saxon occupation a cross-piece
was added to the weapon; it became more acutely pointed, and the
pommel occasionally showed signs of ornamentation. No. 2 of Fig. 64
is a sword found in Cambridgeshire, and shows the quillons in an
incipient form, while the addition of a knob to the pommel relieves the
monotony seen in No. 1. No. 3, from the same find, has the cross-piece
enlarged, while the other swords show various stages of development.
The two swords, Nos. 5 and 6, are from MSS. of the eighth century. A
rare example of the sword of this period is preserved in the Wallace
Collection, and is shown in Fig. 65. It has a flat, crown-shaped
pommel, with five small lobes and short, straight quillons rounded at
the ends, the grip being missing. The blade is grooved, measures 30¼
inches in length, and shows traces of an inscription or ornament.

The sword preserved in the British Museum, which was obtained from
the bed of the River Witham, is very similar to this and is probably
contemporary, while another weapon has recently been found in the
Thames with the hilt upwards which is almost identical with that found
in the Witham. The blades of all three examples are about thirty
inches in length. The grip of the swords appears to have been made
of pine-wood, judging from a few remains which have been found. It
is more than probable that the wood was covered with leather, bone,
or horn. That the sword-hilts were at times of a costly character
and richly ornamented we may infer from the Wallace sword, which has
traces of silver work upon the quillons; the British Museum sword,
which has the pommel and quillons inlaid with gold and copper in a
lozenge pattern; and from numerous references in the MSS. to weapons
with hilts of gold or silver, inlaid work, setting of precious stones,
&c., the illuminations invariably showing the hilts and mountings of
a yellow colour, thus implying gold, or gold plating. The sheaths
were invariably of wood covered with leather, with ornamental designs
painted or stamped upon them, and mountings of bronze or more costly
metal. The sword is less often found in Saxon graves than the spear,
as might be expected, seeing that its use was confined to the upper

[Illustration: FIG. 64.--Saxon swords of various dates.]

[Illustration: FIG. 65.--Sword, 9th century, traces of ornamentation
very rare. (Wall. Coll.)]

_The Axe._--The axe was a distinctive and characteristic weapon of
the northern nations, and its use by the Anglo-Saxons is proved by
references and illustrations in a few late MSS. It is therefore
possible that the Danes introduced its extensive use.

Its occurrence in interments in this country is extremely rare, and but
very few examples have come to light. There appears to have been three
varieties in use, the taper, the broad, and the double. Examples of
the taper axe, found in Kent, are engraved in Fig. 66, Nos. 1 and 4;
the broad axe is shown in Nos. 2 and 3, while a few other varieties
are drawn. The double axe, or bipennis, very rarely occurs in
illuminations, and has not been found in any Anglo-Saxon grave. Its
form is shown in Fig. 62. The pole-axe is a variety, and appears in the
hands of the Saxons at the battle of Hastings.

[Illustration: FIG. 66.

1. Taper axe.

2. Broad axe.

3. Broad axe.

4. Taper axe.

5. Irish axe.

6. German axe.]

[Illustration: FIG. 67.--Saxon knives.]

_The Dagger_ or knife was a weapon in common use, and has been found in
many Saxon graves. They are of various sizes, but probably only those
of large dimensions were weapons, the smaller being used for domestic
purposes. A fine example from Kent is No. 1 in Fig. 67. It is 16 inches
in length, and provided with a small cross-piece. No. 2 is also from a
Kentish find; Nos. 3 and 4, Irish. No. 4 is remarkable by reason of
the preservation of the wooden handle, which shows traces of carving.
The use of the dagger is shown in a very spirited little sketch taken
from an Anglo-Saxon Psalter of the Duc de Berri (Fig. 68), where the
spearman has been assailed by a dagger of the form shown in Fig. 67,
No. 3. The head of the javelin is barbed in contradistinction to that
of the spear, as previously mentioned. Both of the combatants appear to
be emerging from the encounter second best. The long-bow was used by
the Anglo-Saxons, but not extensively, and but few illustrations are
found in MSS., while examples of arrow-heads in graves are uncommon;
those illustrated in Fig. 69 are from MSS. chiefly, and but few from
finds in graves. The sling was not extensively used, although it is
occasionally shown in MSS. The accompanying cut (Fig. 70) is from the
Anglo-Saxon and Latin Psalter of Boulogne. Other examples occur in
Cott. MS., Claudius B. IV., and on the Bayeux Tapestry. Fairly numerous
weapons may be cited as being occasionally in use, such as the bill,
the mace, the pike, the “morning star,” &c., but they were in their
incipient stage, and individual not universal favourites.

[Illustration: FIG. 68.--From an Anglo-Saxon Psalter.]

Respecting the defensive equipment of the Anglo-Saxons we are forced
to the conclusion that the helmet and the shield were the principal
portions, and that in numberless cases these only were adopted, others
being considered subsidiary or superfluous. Indeed in the earlier
periods of the Saxon occupation they are invariably represented with
these defences only, the byrnie, &c., being essentially reserved
for the leaders; but as the nation increased in prosperity so the
additional defences were slowly added.

[Illustration: FIG. 69.--Saxon arrow-heads.]

[Illustration: FIG. 70.--Saxon slinger.]

[Illustration: PLATE VI*

Italian Rondache, Sixteenth Century

_A. F. Calvert_]

_The Saxon Helmet_ was commonly of the Phrygian shape, but examples
are plentiful of the hemispherical, the conical, and the combed
hemispherical, side by side with the Phrygian. The foundation of the
helmet was a framework of bronze or iron bands riveted together, of
which the principal was the piece passing round the head, and that
reaching from the forehead over the head to its junction with the
plate at the back. These two were of thicker material than the
rest. Occasionally the latter band was produced so as to form a nasal
which became universal at the end of the tenth century. Upon this
sub-structure a leather cap of varying forms was fixed, sometimes with
ornamental additions in leather crowning it. The commonest form is seen
in Fig. 75, while other varieties are perceived in Figs. 71, 76, and 77.

[Illustration: FIG. 71.--Saxon helmets.]

[Illustration: FIG. 72.--Saxon helmet with comb. (Add. MS., 18043.)]

[Illustration: FIG. 73.-Saxon umbos.]

_The Shield._--The shield was of wood covered with leather, invariably
round in shape, but at times oval and convex. The lime was the
favourite wood used in its construction, the “yellow linden” being
often mentioned by Saxon poets. The distinguishing characteristic
of this defence was the central boss or umbo, of which such a large
number have been found in Saxon interments (Fig. 73). It was a hollow
boss of varying form and dimensions, but generally about six inches in
diameter, and projecting three or four inches from the outer surface
of the shield; the wood was cut away to allow of its being fixed, and
across the hollow at the back a piece of metal was carried, riveted at
both ends to the boss. This formed a grasp for the left hand by which
the shield was carried, the umbo protecting the hand from injury. As it
was often spiked there is reason to suppose that at times the shield
was used as an offensive weapon (Fig. 75). To strengthen it, radiating
strips of iron or bronze were occasionally carried from the umbo to the
edges of the shield, the simplest being a prolongation of the grip. It
was not a heavy shield, in no way comparable to those of some other
nations. The mode of carrying the shield when not in use is seen in
Fig. 76.

[Illustration: FIG. 74.--Saxon umbos, from the Herts County Museum, St.

[Illustration: FIG. 75.--Saxon king and shield bearer. (MS., end of
10th century.)]

[Illustration: FIG. 76.--Anglo-Saxon horseman. (Cott. MS., Cleop. C.

[Illustration: FIG. 77.--Saxon byrnie of leather. (Cott. MS., Cleop. C.

[Illustration: FIG. 78.--Leather armour, 10th century.]

_The Byrnie or Battle-Sark_ was at times made of leather. In the figure
reproduced from a British Museum MS. (Fig. 77) the coat appears to be
of hide with much of the hair apparently left upon it; its lower edges
are dagged, and it defends the body and a part of the legs, whereas
in Fig. 78 the defensive covering appears only upon the upper part of
the body. The byrnie was also made of padded stuff judging from the
illustrations, but the earlier examples are so excessively crude and
inartistic that it is rash to make authoritative statements. When a
forest is indicated by four leaves and a twig, a mountain pass by
a bulbous mole-hill, and elaborate Saxon embroidery by half-a-dozen
scattered dots, it will readily be perceived that such a technical
detail as body armour cannot be definitely settled by these rude
drawings. Hence a controversy has arisen, which can by no means be
considered as definitely decided, upon the question as to whether the
Anglo-Saxons possessed byrnies of true interlinked chain mail. Hewitt
in his “Ancient Armour” maintains the affirmative, and contends that
the references in the poem of “Beowulf” to the “twisted breast-net,”
the “hard battle-net,” the “locked battle-shirt,” the “byrnie twisted
with hands,” the “war byrnie, hard and hand-locked,” can only mean
chain-mail. He further refers to the Bayeux Tapestry where a body is
being stripped, and the links show inside the hauberk as they are
represented on the outside. These arguments certainly carry weight,
but until a _bonâ-fide_ example of Anglo-Saxon manufacture is brought
to light the question must apparently be left in abeyance. One of the
modes of defence concerning which there is no doubt was the sewing on
of separate flat rings of iron to a tunic of woven material or leather,
and also the covering of the same with metal or leather plates,
either cut into the form of scales and overlapping, or square or oblong.

[Illustration: PLATE VII*

Milanese Salade, Fifteenth Century

_A. F. Calvert_]

A very interesting little group is shown in Fig. 79 from a Saxon MS.,
Cleopatra B. 4, in the British Museum. The book is Ælfric’s Paraphrase
of the Pentateuch and Joshua, and the subject of the drawing is the
battle of the three kings against the cities of the plain. One king
is habited in a ringed byrnie which extends to the knees and half way
down the arms; he wields a sword with a trilobed pommel and short
quillons, and defends himself with a shield having a spiked umbo. His
armour-bearer carries another shield, but is quite unarmed, his duty
merely being to defend his master. The Phrygian cap and simple tunic
he wears are probably those of everyday life. The second king has no
defensive armour and no armour-bearer, unless the figure seen behind
him in a grotesque attitude fulfils that office. The bifid beards and
the characteristic Saxon wrinkling of the sleeves should be noticed, as
also that the legs of the group appear to be bare.

[Illustration: FIG. 79.--Group from Cott. MS., Cleop. B. 4. _c._ 1000.]

[Illustration: FIG. 80.--From Anglo-Saxon MS., Prudentius, 11th

The leg-bands seen upon the Saxon soldiery were similar to those worn
by all civilians, and adjusted in the same manner; if, however, they
were of leather instead of the usual textile fabric a certain amount of
defence could be obtained (Figs. 77 and 80). It is curious to observe
that a number of soldiers are habited precisely as the civilians,
with no other defences than the helmet and the shield, from which we
conclude that the Anglo-Saxon of an early period simply dropped his
implements of husbandry at the call to arms and took up the shield,
helmet, and the spear.

Towards the latter end of the Saxon period the arms and armour
became almost identical with that in use on the Continent owing to
the constant intercourse which occurred in the reign of Edward the
Confessor, so that in 1066 the difference in accoutrement was simply
small matters of detail.


[Illustration: FIG. 81.--Danish helmet, shield, and sword.]

The military equipment of the Danes was very similar to that of other
northern Teutonic nations, and no single piece of their arms and armour
has been immortalised as of special significance with the single
exception of the Danish axe. Upon their first appearance in England
the only armour worn was a defence for the chest, consisting of a
broad collar encircling the neck, with depending pieces upon which
were sewn flat rings, plates of metal, horn, &c. In addition to this
pectoral, if it may be so termed, greaves were used, consisting of
stout pieces of leather affixed after the form of shin-pieces, and,
judging by representations in illuminated MSS., carefully moulded to
the limb, inasmuch as the prominent muscles are shown upon them. This
was probably effected by boiling the leather and subsequently pressing
it into shape. After their settlement in England they gradually adopted
other defences in imitation of the Saxons, but more especially of
the Normans, until their equipment in the first half of the eleventh
century became in every respect a replica of that of the latter nation.

The Danish helmet in its early form was a close-fitting skull-cap
fitting well down into the back of the neck; upon this as a foundation
the chiefs wore protruding horns, and at times wings of metal,
imparting a highly-ornamental aspect to the headpiece. Later a conical
helmet having a knob upon the top and being made of metal or leather,
or a mixture of both, was adopted; this in its fully-developed state
was fitted with a nasal (Fig. 81).

[Illustration: FIG. 82.--Danish weapons.]

The shield is reputed to have been of the shape shown in Fig. 81, which
is taken from the prayer-book of King Canute, MSS., Cal. A. 7, in the
British Museum. Presuming that the illuminator has not allowed his
imagination to run riot we must admire the highly ornamental form there
delineated, evidently founded upon the universal circular shield of the
Teutonic nations.

The Danish sword was similar to that of the Anglo-Saxons, and differed
only in the scabbard, upon which more labour was spent in ornamentation.

The spear illustrated (Fig. 82, No. 2) is that of Canute as shown upon
his coins, while the companion weapon is that of the ordinary soldiery.

The Danish axe (Fig. 82, No. 3) was the famed bipennis, consisting
of two axe-blades of similar form on either side of the shaft, which
latter in a few cases was furnished with a spike. The axe could be
used as a pole-axe for close combat, or, if furnished with a shorter
handle, be hurled in a similar way to the francisca. A variation of the
bipennis is seen in the companion axe, which is furnished upon one side
with a diamond-pointed cutting blade of steel in substitution for the

[Illustration: PLATE VIII

The Bayard Armour in the Rotunda, Woolwich]



With the advent of the Normans in 1066 the subject of arms and armour
in England becomes more definite and exact. This is chiefly owing to
the Bayeux Tapestry, to the multiplication of MSS., carvings in ivory
and metal, and the records preserved upon seals. The date of the famous
tapestry has long been a matter of dispute, but it is universally
agreed that if it was not woven by Matilda and her handmaidens it was
certainly begun and completed within fifty years of the Conquest. Hence
its reliability is undoubted upon contemporaneous arms and armour.

[Illustration: FIG. 83.--Norman pennons (Bayeux Tapestry).]

_The Lance._--The head of the lance was commonly of the leaf form, and
sometimes approached that of the lozenge; it was very seldom barbed,
although this variety, together with the others, appears upon the
Bayeux Tapestry. The horizontal bar-guards, so characteristic of the
Anglo-Saxon spear, are very rarely pictured; they were not, however,
relinquished by the conquered nation, but are seen at times in MSS.
written subsequently to the Conquest. Nearly all the Norman spears
were embellished with pennons of from two to five points (Fig. 83).
The length of the spear appears to have differed little from that of
the Anglo-Saxon, and like that weapon they were of uniform thickness
throughout (Figs. 88, 91, 92, 93, &c.).

[Illustration: FIG. 84.--Figure from “Massacre of the Innocents.”
(Cott. MS., Nero, C. 4, _c._ 1125.)]

_The Sword._--Remembering that the Normans were essentially a
Scandinavian nation, we might fairly expect to discover traces of their
origin in the sword of the period, and this we find to be the case. It
was still straight, long, and double-edged, slightly tapering towards
the acute-angled point. The quillons were straight at the time of the
Conquest, but became bent in a small degree towards the close of the
period; the grip was without swell, and a spherical knob formed the
pommel. The scabbard was suspended upon the left side by a small cord
round the waist, but occasionally was supported by the hauberk by being
passed through a hole in the garment, which thus concealed a portion
of it. See Fig. 84, which dates from _c._ 1125, and exhibits this

_The Bow._--At the battle of Hastings the Normans appear to have been
extremely well provided with bowmen, in contradistinction to the
Saxons. The Conqueror is said to have reproached the latter for this
omission, but archers appear in the ranks of the Saxons on the Bayeux
Tapestry, grouped in small numbers among the axemen, and arrow-heads
of iron are occasionally found in Saxon graves. It would appear that
all the Norman foot soldiers carried bows, and we know that the rain of
arrows from the sky had a marked effect upon the fortunes of the day at
Hastings. The bow was of very simple construction at that time, and the
quivers were without covers, and at times slung upon the back, so that
the arrows are seen over the right shoulder.

_The Mace._--At Hastings the Saxons appear to have used the stone
hammer and the Normans a mace having the head heart-shaped; they had
recourse to this after the lance had been splintered. The axe is not
seen in the hands of the Normans, though it subsequently came into high
favour with them, but many of the Saxons wield the weapon which, from
its handle being four or five feet in length, may justly be termed the

[Illustration: FIG. 85.--Details of armour (Bayeux Tapestry).]

[Illustration: FIG. 86.--Figure showing coif worn under mail.]

The body armour of this period is of great interest by reason of its
complexity and variety. Upon the Bayeux Tapestry there are delineated
seven different kinds, which are reproduced in Fig. 85. No. 1 is
undoubtedly the ringed byrnie which we have noted during the Saxon
period, and No. 2 is either intended to represent interlinked chain
mail or, what is more probable, scale armour, as it is invariably
represented with the points of the scales downwards. These scales were
of various materials, such as iron, bronze, leather, cuir-bouilli, and
horn. Cuir-bouilli was leather softened by boiling (generally in oil),
and stamped or moulded into a definite form when in that condition;
upon drying it became intensely hard and tough. It was a favourite
agent for defence for centuries, and did not eventually disappear in
England as such until the close of the fourteenth century. Nos. 3 and
4 may possibly be composed of iron rings or discs of metal lying upon
leather or padded material, with strips of leather sewn on between
the rings. Some authorities profess to discover jazeraint work in
this representation, which was a method of defence much used in later
centuries for archers’ jacques and various other garments, but we have
no right to assume that the Normans at that period carried such a heavy
weight of armour as this would necessitate, or were acquainted with
such a technical and complicated manufacture as jazeraint work implies.
The circles, moreover, are too large to represent studs. Nos. 5 and 6
are the ordinary markings used for the Gambeson (or Wambeys), the plain
quilted defence which is perhaps the most ancient of all armours and
was known to the early Egyptians. It was padded with a soft material
such as wool, or tow, or cloth reduced to shreds, which was enclosed
between two layers of material and then sewn together. Although
offering but little opposition to a lance-thrust it was highly
efficacious in warding off a sword-cut, or stopping arrows when not
delivered at short range. Against the mace, or a stone from a sling, it
was of little use in preventing bones from being broken. This defence,
with various styles of quilting and varieties of stuffing materials,
was in use for many centuries in England as an under garment, to
prevent the chafing of chain mail and plate, besides affording
additional protection, while among the rank and file of our English
armies it was often the only defence worn. In MSS. it is shown in
different tints, invariably self-colours, but occasionally in stripes,
chequers, &c., and this serves to prove, if proof were needed, that the
surface exposed to view was not metal but material. No. 7 is a crude
representation of the ordinary conical helmet, furnished with a nasal,
to which is attached a coif or camail of quilted material, defending
the back and sides of the head and falling upon the shoulders. As a
rule, this quilting was continued over the head, and protected the
wearer from the chafing of the helmet, while at the same time it
distributed its weight. At times, however, this method was not in use,
but a separate covering of soft or padded material was adopted; in Fig.
86 it is represented cut into the shape of a coif and tied under the
chin. No. 8 is an example of different markings upon the same dress
which is very common in MSS.; it is invariably introduced in those
places where additional defence was required or desirable, and probably
consisted of metal reinforcing the under garment.

[Illustration: FIG. 87.--Methods of representing different kinds of
defences, other than plate.]

It may not be out of place to deal at this point with various armours,
quite apart from plate, which will be referred to or illustrated
in this work. Hewitt has dealt with this subject perhaps more fully
and lucidly than any other author, and the woodcut on opposite page
(Fig. 87) is taken from his work. No. 1 is perhaps the commonest
of all, and will be referred to as “banded mail.” Its construction
is fully dealt with in Chapter VII. Occasionally the lines between
the alternate crescents are shown double, but probably that is only
a modification of this style of defence. During the thirteenth and
fourteenth centuries it was in constant use, and did not altogether
die out for some considerable time afterwards. It is interesting to
compare the variations in this style either of the actual defence or of
the modes of delineation by the artists; the brasses of Bacon, Creke,
d’Aubernoun, Northwode, Raven, Cheyne, &c., may be cited as examples
worthy of interest in this respect, though many more may be found upon
careful inspection. No. 2 is very common in illuminated MSS., and is
occasionally found chiselled upon effigies; the Trumpington brass
is an example of its incision in metal. No. 3 is generally found
exemplified in brasses and effigies of the thirteenth to the fifteenth
centuries, and is by far the finest method for representing interlinked
chain armour. It has a richness and reality which is unsurpassed by
any other method. On the brass of Sir Thomas Burton it is shown in
perpendicular chains; horizontal on that of Sir William Bagot; large
rings are engraved in the case of Sir John Hanley, and there are many
examples of small rings. On the brass of Sir Robert Russell there is a
remarkable width between the parallel rows of chains, from which it
may be inferred that although the chain-mail proper linked laterally,
and also above and below, occasionally parallel chains linked at the
sides only were in vogue. It is probable that the mail shown on the
d’Aubernoun brass is of the latter pattern. No. 4: early examples of
this are to be found on the Septvans and Buslingthorpe brasses. No. 5
is taken from one of the Temple Church effigies; a modification of this
method, in which the lines are straight, may be seen upon an incised
figure of a knight at Avenbury, Herefordshire, _c._ 1260. No. 6 occurs
upon foreign effigies. No. 7 is an example of the mail shown upon the
monumental statue of Sir William Arden, in Aston Church, Warwickshire.
No. 8 is from early woodcuts. Nos. 9 and 10 are probably intended to
represent banded mail, and No. 11 appears upon an ivory chessman of the
thirteenth century. No. 12: this has been mentioned as occurring in the
Bayeux Tapestry, and there are many other instances of its use. No. 13
occurs upon the Great Seal of King Stephen and other examples of early
seals. No. 14, a variety of No. 12. No. 15, from a steel statuette;
the indentations appear to have been made with a punch. No. 16 is from
an effigy in Bristol Cathedral. No. 17, from Roy. MS. 14, E. IV., a
manuscript written and illuminated for King Edward IV. No. 18 is much
used upon seals--one of King Stephen, for example. Nos. 19 and 20, from
Add. MSS. 15295 and 15297. No. 21, from two MSS. of the twelfth and
thirteenth centuries (Egerton MS. 809; Add. MS. 15268). No. 22, from
Harl. MS. 2803.

[Illustration: PLATE IX

The “Rhodes” Suit at the Rotunda, Woolwich]

[Illustration: FIG. 88.--Armour, _c._ 1190.]

Under the gambeson or the hauberk or both was worn a tunic reaching
nearly to the knees, and as a rule a little longer than the defensive
garments. It is well shown in the accompanying figure (Fig. 88, from
Harleian Roll, Y 6, “The Life of St. Guthlac,” a work of the close of
the twelfth century).

[Illustration: FIG. 89.--Norman hauberk, 1066.]

_The Hauberk._--The hauberk was to the Norman what the byrnie was to
the Saxon, the chief method of bodily defence. The coif for the head
was generally a part of it, with only a small opening for the face, but
at times it is shown made in two pieces, the lower extending upwards
to the neck and the coif falling over it. This was doubtless to afford
better means of adjustment for the gorget, plastron-de-fer, or other
reinforcement which was undoubtedly worn under it upon the breast. The
lower part of the garment was generally made to open up the front in
order to afford convenience in riding, but occasionally examples are
met with where openings are made upon both sides. For foot soldiers no
opening was, as a rule, necessary. In some cases the reinforcement for
the breast appears upon the outside of the hauberk in the shape of
a square or oblong pectoral; when worn thus it was possibly of metal
plates or studs attached to leather (Fig. 89).

[Illustration: FIG. 90.--Tegulated armour, _c._ 1090.]

[Illustration: FIG. 91.--Scale armour. (Harl. MS., 603.)]

Towards the end of the eleventh century the different distinct styles
of armour became more numerous, and do not present such uniformity as
at the time of the Conquest. Hefner gives an illustration of tegulated
armour (Fig. 90) from a painting on vellum dating from _c._ 1090,
when this system appears to have been introduced. In the original the
plates are silvered, and some bosses on pendant scales of a figure
shown upon the right are gilded. The square or oblong scales are shown
as overlapping like slates upon a roof, and being probably sewn upon
leather would afford a good protection to the wearer. Two soldiers also
in the same group have chausses of mail of the same description, and
the coif is continuous with the body portions of the hauberk.

[Illustration: FIG. 92.--Armour, 1148. (Add MS., 14789.)]

[Illustration: FIG. 93.--Goliath. (Harl. MS., 2803.)]

_Chausses_ of mail of various patterns apparently came into general
use about the commencement of the twelfth century. They are mentioned
above, and apparently in the figure referred to (No. 90) are continuous
scale work round the limbs; in other examples they partake of the
character of half-leggings protecting only the knees and shins of the
wearer (Fig. 86). An excellent example of this (Fig. 92) is afforded by
a small representation in an illuminated manuscript Bible of the date
1148, where, in a capital letter F, the figures of David and Goliath
are introduced, the giant lying prone upon the central projection of
the letter with a stone in his forehead and the neck of the hauberk
partly cut through. This is beautifully illustrated in Shaw’s “Dresses
and Decorations.” The hauberk is shown continuous with the coif; the
legs are protected by chausses of some pliable material, thickly
covered with protective studs. These evidently fasten down the back,
and are drawn over the feet by bands or straps meeting underneath.
Later still, in a MS. written about 1170 (Fig. 93), we have an example
of Goliath wearing chausses consisting of a thin material which creases
near the calf, and only a single row of the protective studs down the
shin. The short boot is analogous with those worn in Fig. 88, though
here defended, or ornamented, with a few studs.

[Illustration: FIG. 94.--Great Seal of Alexander I., King of Scotland.]

_The Norman Shield._--The shield generally adopted by the Norman
cavalry was kite-shaped and probably of Sicilian origin; it was
either flat, or round so as to encircle the body to some extent. The
protection afforded by such a shield is obvious, inasmuch as it guarded
the upper part of the body where it was the broadest, and by tapering
downwards defended the left leg. It was invariably made of wood and
covered on both sides with leather, in addition to which extra defences
of metal were added. Shields of this description are referred to which
intimate that the whole of the exterior was of polished metal, though
they seem to be exceptional. On the great seal of Alexander I., King
of Scotland (Fig. 94), the rivet heads are shown upon the reverse of
the shield, which fastened the plates in position. It was held in the
left hand by a bar or strap near the inside upper portion as shown
in the figure. The length varied, but may be taken as approximately
four feet in height with a maximum width of two feet. The shield for
foot soldiers was somewhat small, as may be seen in Fig. 88. At the
time of the Conquest flat shields were frequently used, but all were
eventually bowed. The umbo occasionally appears in illuminated MSS.,
but its use was exceptional. In nearly every case a guige, which
is very plainly shown in many of the engravings, is provided for
suspending the shield round the neck. The round shield (Fig. 95) is
of much rarer occurrence. It is shown in Harl. MS. 603 and other MSS.
of the close of the eleventh century, and was very probably confined
entirely to foot soldiers.

[Illustration: FIG. 95.--Circular shield, _c._ 1090. (Harl. MS., 603.)]

_The Helmet._--The characteristic defence for the head at this period
is the conical helmet fitted with a nasal, thus distinguishing it from
the Saxon type, which did not possess this extra defence for the face
until a few years previous to the Conquest, when Norman influence
began to prevail in England. In the Bayeux Tapestry the nasal is
shown upon practically all the Norman helmets, which are invariably
conical and not very high; they were secured to the head by straps
under the chin, and at times by laces to the body armour. The nasal
continued in use until about 1140, when it was generally discarded, but
isolated examples may be found in every succeeding century down to the
seventeenth. It was fixed or movable, and that worn by the Conqueror at
Hastings was of the latter description, as he removed it to reassure
his force by a sight of his features when a report spread that he had
been slain.

A neck defence was at times fitted to the helmet, which reached to the
ears on either side and depended to the shoulders: it is shown in Fig.
85, No. 7. Cheek-guards also were in use.

It must not be supposed that the Phrygian-shaped helmet affected by
the Saxons became obsolete in the Norman period; on the contrary it is
frequently represented in MSS. (_cf._ Harl. MS. 603, eleventh century;
Harl. MS. 2800, twelfth century, &c.).

During the period under discussion (1066-1180) various additional
weapons were introduced which the exigencies of warfare appeared
to necessitate. Foremost among these was the military pick called
variously the Bisacuta, Oucin, and Besague, designed to perforate the
joints between the metal plates of the hauberk. It is shown in Fig.
109, furnished with one point only, though it commonly had two, as
might be inferred from the name Bisacuta. It was a modification of the
martel-de-fer. A dagger for the use of foot soldiers was also in use,
adapted for rushing upon and disabling knights who had been unhorsed
in a cavalry charge; it was termed the Cultellus, and appears to have
attained occasionally the dimensions of a short sword. One of the most
ancient of weapons is the Guisarme, which, in its earliest forms, is
conjectured to have been a combination of the scythe and the prong.
The advantage of having a weapon with a cutting edge and also adapted
for thrusting, while at the same time serving to ward off a blow by
entangling another weapon in the angle formed by the junction of
the two, would appeal very strongly to the foot soldier, by whom it
was chiefly used. The term “bisarme,” by which it was occasionally
known, would indicate the dual nature of the weapon, which consisted
essentially, in all its multitudinous variations, of a cutting glaive
with a rising spike at the back. It was always fixed to a staff six or
more feet in length, and at times the knife edge partook more of the
nature of an ornamental axe than of the glaive. Frequent mention of
“grinding of the guisarmes” occurs in ancient writers, from which we
infer that the cutting edge was one of its valuable characteristics,
while references to the “deadly” or “destructive” guisarme are
very common. Some appear to have had small bells attached to their
extremities to frighten the horses of the cavalry. So common was the
weapon that in Scotland it became one of the recognised means of
offence with which the foot soldier was required to be provided.

The bipennis, or double axe, was still in use, but only by the Saxon
element; the complete fusion of the conquerors and the conquered led to
its gradual extinction as a national weapon.

[Illustration: PLATE X*

Armour of Charles V. (Work of Negroli)

_A. F. Calvert_]



[Illustration: FIG. 96.]

The essential differences between this period and the last are: (1)
the substitution of chain mail for the jazeraint, mascled, and scale
armour which had formerly been used; (2) the adoption of the pot-helm
or heaume as a secondary defence for the head in place of the conical
helmet, the coif-de-mailles, or the pot-de-fer under the mail; (3) the
introduction of the sleeveless surcoat and the crest.

[Illustration: FIG. 97.--Painted “Pot Helmet,” _c._ 1241.]

_The Heaume._--The term “heaume” may perhaps by some be deemed to be
hardly applicable to the head-defence when first introduced, inasmuch
as it was small in size, fitted closely to the head, and was in most
respects a helmet. But inasmuch as a second defence was worn underneath
it from its very inception, the word “heaume” is an appropriate
designation, as it infers a reinforcement to an existing protection
in the next few centuries during which it is constantly in evidence.
It may readily be divided into two distinct classes, namely, those in
which the plates composing it are riveted together so as to form one
piece, and secondly, those in which a movable ventail can be affixed.
Further subdivisions may be made if desired, such as flat-topped,
round-topped, and sugar-loaf. The word “heaume” or helm among the
northern nations simply meant a covering of any kind for the head, and
we have an example in the Anglo-Saxon wærhelm, of which examples have
been given in this work. Of the first heaumes the flat-topped, or
those with slightly curved crowns, were probably the earliest, of which
the woodcut No. 96 furnishes an example.

A helm which is preserved in the Musée d’Artillerie in Paris probably
exemplifies the transition between the Norman helmet and the barrel
heaume. The conical Norman crown is preserved, but instead of the
pendent neck and cheek guards and nasal, the head and face are entirely
covered by a cylinder of iron, which is complete but for a vertical
slit covered by a projecting nasal and two transverse occularia, one
on either side. In England very early examples may be seen upon the
monumental effigy of Hugh Fitz Eudo, in Kirkstead Chapel, Lincolnshire,
and in a slightly modified form in the carvings of the Presbytery
arcade of Worcester Cathedral, also in the groups of the Painted
Chamber, Westminster. Holes for breathing purposes are entirely absent,
the sole openings being a pair of horizontal occularia separated
by a perpendicular band. In this class may be included the painted
pot-heaume on a parchment MS. dating approximately from the year 1241,
which is shown coloured in green and white diagonal stripes, and is
now in the town library of Leipzic (Fig. 97). This flat-topped variety
appears to have been viewed with much favour, for we have many examples
of it in this period and in that immediately following. For instance,
the seal of Roger de Bigod, Earl of Norfolk (1231 to 1240) (Fig. 98),
exhibits a heaume which is flat-topped, furnished with two occularia,
and nine small square breathing holes on either side, strengthened with
cross pieces of iron. The seal of Richard de Clare, Earl of Gloucester
and Hertford, who died in 1262 (Fig. 99), shows a flat topped helmet
of cylindrical fashion, in which the occularium is formed by one
ornamental wavy slit of which the lower edge is slightly cusped. The
helmet of Hamelin, Earl of Surrey and Warenne, 1202 (Fig. 100), is of
the round-topped variety, and is remarkable for the narrow occularium
and the complete absence of any breathing holes. It is taken from the
Cott. MS., Julius, C. VII.

[Illustration: FIG. 98.--From the seal (1231-1240) of Roger le Bigod,
Earl of Norfolk.]

[Illustration: FIG. 99.--From the seal of Richard de Clare, Earl of
Gloucester and Hertford (_d._ 1262).]

It is difficult to see the protection against a lance or sword-thrust
afforded by the heaume of Hugh de Vere, Earl of Oxford, _d._ 1263 (Fig.
101), unless an interior plate was in use to reinforce the numerous
openings in the fore part. The peculiarity of the surcoat covering the
neck should be noticed, as it is uncommon at this period. From the
examples given it will be apparent that from the year 1180 to 1250, the
era under discussion, no heaume is represented with a movable visor,
and this may be taken as a distinguishing feature, inasmuch as they
appear shortly afterwards.

[Illustration: FIG. 100.--Helmet of Hamelin, Earl of Surrey and Warenne
(_d._ 1202). (From MS. Cott., Julius, C. vii.)]

[Illustration: FIG. 101.--From the seal of Hugh de Vere, Earl of Oxford
(_d._ 1263).]

[Illustration: FIG. 102.--Interlinked chain mail showing method of

[Illustration: FIG. 103.--Sir John de Bitton, Bitton Church,
Somersetshire, 1227.]

Whatever doubts may exist respecting the presence of true chain mail in
the early Norman period in conjunction with mascled, scale, leather,
horn, and jazeraint work generally, no misconception can arise with
respect to the epoch under consideration, where, together with the
heaume and the plastron-de-fer, it formed the sole defence of the
knight. Chain mail has existed from very remote antiquity, but owing
to its nature is of such a perishable quality, exposing the maximum of
surface to atmospheric oxidation, that practically no examples have
come down to us of all the vast quantity fabricated in remote ages.
There are in the British Museum some aggregations of iron rust brought
from the excavations at Nineveh, which experts assert have once been
hauberks of chain mail of the true pattern (so far as interlocking is
concerned), and hence are credited with being the earliest examples in
existence. That the Romans used rings, together with discs and plates,
as defensive covering, backed by a substratum of a tough textile
fabric, is well known; but whether these rings were so interlinked
as to form a true chain mail has been much questioned. Discoveries
have, however, been made from time to time which tend to prove that
they were not unacquainted with it, and taking into consideration the
extent of territory they possessed, and the number of nations owning
their sway, it would be a matter for wonder if they were ignorant of
its existence. Sculptures may be referred to which appear to indicate
true chain mail, but so many conventional styles and methods were used
by artists to indicate defensive equipment, that it is difficult to
arrive at a definite settlement of the question. That this means of
protection originated in the East is undoubted, where its coolness
would be a great advantage; that it spread in some mysterious way to
the Teutonic nations of the West is also certain, and we must look
for its introduction there to an age long prior to the time of the
Crusades. It was imitated, however, by the unskilful western artificers
in such a manner that immense weight occurred and became an inseparable
condition, and in this manner during the early Crusades it came
into contact with the light chain mail, characteristic of Oriental
workmanship, covering the nomadic cavalry of the East. These horsemen
were enabled in consequence to move with a swiftness and freedom quite
impossible to the crusading knights, thus being forcibly reminiscent
of the ponderous Spanish galleons of the Armada, and the small but
handy English vessels. In the twelfth and thirteenth centuries the
cost of true chain mail was prohibitory to all but the very wealthy,
in spite of great quantities which fell to the lot of the victors in
Palestine. The manufacture varies under the conditions of time, place,
and requirements. Wire, or what answered for wire, was made in the
earlier periods of a very rough character, in the manufacture of which
the hammer evidently played an important part; but later on, when the
art of wire-drawing became known, the cross section of a link exhibits
as perfect a circle as it would if of modern construction. This wire
was wound tightly round an iron core of convenient size, cut off in
rings, and each ring separately treated by flattening the overlapping
ends, piercing them with a steel punch, and inserting a small rivet.
This rivet was either hammered to flatten it, or it was finished off
in a vice. The general method in almost every coat of mail was for one
ring to interlink with four others; a few variations occur, however,
such as rows of rings occasionally interlinking with other rows above
and below, the use of alternate double rings, &c. From the foregoing
it will readily be seen that the cost of production of chain mail
in labour alone must have been excessive. The strengthening of the
mail by insertion of leather straps was occasionally done, the straps
being carried through the links in horizontal rows, while vertical
rows of strapping in addition to the foregoing are not unknown. In
the metalwork, also, the resistance of mail could be considerably
augmented by enlarging the rivet joinings. Considering the intricate
nature of mail, it is no matter for wonderment that neither in the
centuries under consideration nor in those immediately following do
we find the common soldier clad in true chain mail, as every portion,
large or small, would be carefully retained by the knightly wearer. The
incised slab of Sir John de Bitton, in Bitton Church, Somersetshire,
1227 (Fig. 103), may be taken as an excellent example of this early
period preserved in a monumental effigy: the large shield covering the
greater part of the body has no guige, and is necessarily quite flat,
though doubtless convex in reality. The coif-demailles is separate
from the hauberk, and has a lappet overlying the upper part of the
gorget to protect the junction there. The length of the hauberk can
only be surmised, inasmuch as the lower border is not shown, but from
other examples we glean that it reached nearly to the knees. The mail
gloves are also distinct from the hauberk, and bands, laces, or straps
are used to protect the junctions with the sleeves: separate fingers
are not shown, but the gloves are precisely similar to the mitten
gauntlets of the end of the century. The chausses are of chain mail,
and continuous with the covering for the feet. The heaume is not shown;
it is probable that the flattish configuration of the upper part of the
head indicates that a pot-de-fer of some kind was worn under the coif,
as in Fig. 104. The sword is long and broad, the hilt having short,
straight quillons and a cylindrical grip, terminating in a circular
pommel. The spurs are of the short pryck form. It should be noticed
that the artist has drawn the figure too large for the slab, and has
consequently been compelled to encroach upon the bevelled edges.

[Illustration: FIG. 104.--Rich. Wellesburn de Montfort, _c._ 1270.
Hitchenden Church, Bucks.]

_The Surcoat_ is of the sleeveless variety, one of the distinguishing
features of this period, and reaches nearly to the heels, being, as
usual, split up in front and probably also behind, for convenience in
riding. It was introduced in order to guard the mail from rain, and
indirectly as some protection against the heat of the sun’s rays; but
the chief reason for its adoption was that it afforded a means for
recognising the wearer, whose features were now completely hidden by
the heaume, thus rendering it impossible in the hurly-burly of battle
to know friend from foe. Previous to this the nasal helmet, although
covering but part of the features, had at times led to confusion, even
as early as the battle of Hastings as previously stated. Thus heraldry,
which up to this time had only been in an incipient condition, suddenly
found itself of the highest importance, and developed in the course
of succeeding centuries into a science, the study of which was deemed
absolutely necessary for all pretending to the possession of gentle
blood. The surcoat had its inception in the long, flowing tunic
which during the last period dealt with had been worn underneath the
hauberk, as shown upon the two great seals of King Richard I., and the
suggestion would be natural to transfer the latter to the outermost
position, leaving to the padded gambeson alone the duty of supporting
the weight of the hauberk. The first English monarch to appear in this
military attire as an outer garment was King John, and he is shown
thus habited upon his great seal: while his rival, the Dauphin Louis,
who proved such an unwelcome visitor in the latter part of his reign,
is similarly represented upon the French seal, as may be seen in the
Harl. MS. 43, B. VII., date 1216, to which it is appended. To the
Cott. MS., XIX. 2, the seal of Alexander II. of Scotland, 1214-1249,
is attached, and this also shows the surcoat. It was of white material
or self-coloured, sometimes diapered, and generally bore heraldic
charges. The length varied, and both long and short surcoats are seen
of approximately the same date; the former reaching at times to the
heels and the latter to the hem of the hauberk. The material varied
with the means and taste of the wearer; the better descriptions were
of silk, richly embroidered with gold and sometimes decorated with
precious stones, cloth of gold of the richest quality being also used.

[Illustration: FIG. 105.--Taken from the tomb of Geoffrey Plantagenet,
Count of Anjou.]

_The Crest._--Although much uncertainty exists among exponents of
the art of heraldry upon the origin of the crest, yet a little
investigation leads to the conclusion that it need not be a matter
of speculation or conjecture. The first example of the nature of a
crest appears upon the cap of Geoffrey, Count of Anjou, died 1150;
his monumental slab in the museum at Le Mans, which stood formerly in
the cathedral there, exhibits the figure of a lion (Fig. 105). The
helmet of Philip d’Alsace, Count of Flanders (_c._ 1181), shows a lion
painted upon the side of the same character as another appearing upon
his shield; but what is generally acknowledged to be the earliest
authenticated example of a crest fulfilling all the desired conditions
is that of Richard the Lion Heart, who upon his great seal shows a
fan-shaped ornament surmounting the heaume, and upon the base is
painted a lion passant (Fig. 106). One of the earliest instances of
the use of a crest on the Continent is that afforded by a MS. in the
Royal Library at Berlin, and belonging to the end of the twelfth
century (Fig. 107). In this case an actual figure, that of a red lion,
appears, and not paintings, as in the two examples previously cited.
It is possible that the adoption of a crest upon the helmet may have
been partly of a defensive character, for the effect of a sword-cut
would be very materially modified after passing through a stiff
erection of steel plate or of tough cuir-bouilli, while against the
mace and the pole-axe it would also afford some slight protection. In
support of this conjecture it may be noticed that crests at first were
ridged and serrated, somewhat after the style which distinguished the
pike-guards of the fifteenth century in their embryonic stage, as if
purposely designed to arrest the edge of a weapon. The many examples
which occur in an undecorated form preclude the thought that they were
invented in order to bear heraldic cognisances, although they were
quickly seized upon to fulfil the duty hitherto borne by the shield and
surcoat, namely, to afford means of identifying the wearer. Of course
the fan-shaped ornament under consideration may have simply been the
outcome of that instinct for personal adornment and decoration which
appears to be inherent in the human race, and which manifested itself
in the mediæval period much more than now; but when it is considered
that many of these fans are carried forward well over the face and at
the same time far backwards, the conclusion is almost compelled that
they originated in an endeavour to secure more protection for the top
of the head than the crown of the heaume afforded. The great crests of
a subsequent period were never used in actual combat, but were reserved
exclusively for tournament purposes.

[Illustration: FIG. 106.--Heaume, Cœur de Lion.]

[Illustration: FIG. 107.--“Pot Helmet,” from the _Eneit_ of Heinrich
von Veldeke.]

_The Shield_ during this period was cut off as a rule in a straight
line at the top, and was convex, so as to partially enclose the figure
(see Fig. 108). It gradually decreased in size, until towards the close
it became the small, well-known “heater-shaped” shield which remained
in vogue for such a lengthy period. It was invariably decorated with
the armorial bearings of the wearer, which in the early part of
the chain mail period were mostly fanciful or devotional and of a
transitory character, but became hereditary as it progressed. The only
weapon of importance introduced was the arbalest, which will be dealt
with in the next period.

[Illustration: FIG. 108.--From the seal (1315) of John de Bretagne,
Earl of Richmond.]

The equipment of the ordinary rank and file of the chain mail period
did not vary in any essential features from that which preceded it.
In Fig. 88 we have two foot soldiers from Harl. MS. Y6, one of whom
wears the Norman helmet, now truncated, with a nasal, which apparently
is very long and wide. A similar helmet, but minus the nasal, defends
his companion. The usual hauberk of chain mail or a cheaper substitute
covers the body, and the legs are undefended. The mode of wearing
the stockings and the cross bar below the leaf-shaped head of one
spear tends to the belief that the illuminator was of Saxon blood
or depicting others of that descent. The shields are suspended by
guiges in both cases, and the fanciful decorations illustrate the
assertions previously made in this chapter. In woodcut No. 109 a very
characteristic group of soldiery of about the year 1220 is shown,
taken from Harl. MS. 4751. The heavily-armed arbalestier in pot-helm
and mail is one of a force defending a castle, and has discharged a
quarrel which transfixes an archer of the attacking party. Before
him, and apparently without any defensive equipment other than a
chapelle-de-fer, is a foot soldier with a military pick in his right
hand and a sword of short dimensions in the left. An arbalestier is
probably shown in the third position from the front, and an archer
fourth, while the fifth is unmistakably a slinger. As was generally
the rule, no protective covering was allowed the slingers--the one
in question has not even a hat--who from the nature of their weapon
were perforce compelled to be always in open order when in action and
at a distance from the enemy, and presumably suffered less than the
closely-packed bodies of men-at-arms, billmen, and even archers. His
sling appears to be in no way different to the Saxon weapon shown in
Fig. 70. The last man is clad in a coif and hauberk of mail, and is
armed with an axe. At this period a weapon appears in the illuminated
MSS. which is apparently of recent introduction, namely the Staff Sling
or Fustibal. It is generally shown in besieging operations pitted
against the defenders on the walls, or in naval warfare as in Fig.
110. The action of the sling is readily seen, the loop at the end
allowing the bag to disengage itself automatically at the psychological
moment, and to discharge the stone. In this case it seems to be charged
with some combustible material to be hurled on board an opposing ship.
The slinger is as usual bareheaded and devoid of bodily defences. With
him is an archer also discharging combustibles affixed to the end of an
arrow. He is habited in a sleeveless leather hauberk strengthened with
round plates, presumably of metal; a coif of mail or leather covers his
head. The third figure carries a sword, spear, and pole-axe, possibly
his own, and also the close-quarter weapons of the projectile throwers.

[Illustration: FIG. 109.--Soldiers, _c._ 1220. (Harl. MS., 4751.)]

[Illustration: FIG. 110.--Staff-sling, &c. (MS. by Matthew Paris.)]

The equipment of a man-at-arms at the close of this period is well
shown in Fig. 111, from Auct. D. 4, 17, in the Bodleian Library. It
dates from about 1250, and illustrates the defensive properties of
leather in combination with iron. The steel chapelle-de-fer covers
a chain mail coif which may be part of a continuous hauberk, as the
arms and hands are covered with mail of the same description. Bands
of leather round the throat afford the protection of a gorget: they
are affixed to a hauberk composed of leather scales of large size and
leaf-like shape showing the midrib, while a belt round the waist and
pendent leaves on the skirt complete a most effective means of bodily
defence. The legs are enclosed in soft leather chausses protected by
metal studs, upon which is a cross-gartering of leather thongs. The
only weapon shown is an axe of formidable proportions. A spearman of
_c._ 1280 is shown in Add. MS., 11639, representing Goliath of Gath, in
which a chapelle-de-fer is a feature (Fig. 112).

[Illustration: FIG. 111.--Armour of cuir-bouilli, _c._ 1250.]

[Illustration: FIG. 112.--Chapelle-de-fer, _c._ 1280. Figure of Goliath
from Add. MS., 11639.]



The special points which distinguish this period are:--

1. The introduction of Banded Mail.

2. The use of Ailettes.

3. The invention of the Conical Heaume borne by the shoulders.

4. The reinforcement of the Chain Mail by Plate.

5. The development of the Crest.

[Illustration: FIG. 113.--Sir John d’Aubernoun, 1277. Stoke d’Aubernoun
Church, Guildford, Surrey.]

One of the most remarkable brasses in existence is that of Sir John
d’Aubernoun, in Stoke d’Aubernoun Church, near Guildford, Surrey (Fig.
113). It is the earliest known example of this form of monumental
effigy either in the British Isles or on the Continent, and dates
from about the year 1277, the fifth of Edward I. It is to be noted
that it is unique among the brasses of this reign by reason of the
knight being represented with straight lower limbs, the remainder all
having the cross-legged position. Although the figure is somewhat
disproportionate, and the partial covering up of the lower parts
of the legs by the surcoat is unfortunate, yet as a work of art,
and especially as an example of technique and patience on the part
of the engraver, it is unrivalled. Every separate link of the mail
is faithfully represented. The reinforcement of the chain mail by
secondary defences is here exemplified in its primitive stage, a
pair of genouillières only appearing, which from their ornamental
appearance are presumably of cuir-bouilli, or of plate covered with
cuir-bouilli. The reason for the introduction of this defence was not
alone the protection afforded: the intolerable drag of chain mail
upon the knee or elbow when flexed prevented freedom of action in
either joint; but by the termination of the mail at the upper part
of the genouillière to which it was affixed, and the continuation of
it below, an advantage was gained which was fully appreciated. The
coif-de-mailles upon the head descends to the shoulders on either side
and covers part of the surcoat, while the hauberk has sleeves which
are prolonged to cover the hand with mail gauntlets, not divided for
the fingers. The mail chausses are continued like the sleeves of the
hauberk, in order to protect the feet as well as the legs. Over the
mail appears a loose surcoat reaching to below the knees and confined
at the waist by a cord, from below which it opens in front and
falls on either side in many folds, being also divided at the back
to facilitate riding. It does not bear any ornament or design, but
apparently is of rich material, and has a fringed border. The sword is
long and straight, with short quillons drooping towards the blade; the
grip is slightly swelling, and the circular pommel is enriched with a
design. The method of suspending the sword is peculiar to the period:
it grips the scabbard in two places, between which a small strap runs
as a guide; the weapon thus hangs diagonally across the left front
of the figure. The guige bearing the shield is enriched with roses
alternating with the mystical cross (signifying good fortune and long
life) termed the Fylfot, Gammadion, or Svastika, in which each arm of
a Greek cross is continued at right angles; it passes over the right
shoulder, and supports a small, flat, heater-shaped shield, upon which
the arms appear (_azure_, a chevron, _or_). The spurs are the usual
short ones of the pryck variety affixed by ornamental straps. The lance
passes under the right arm, and displays a small fringed pennon charged
with the same armorial insignia as the shield; it is shortened to
permit of its introduction, and shows no grip for the hand. This is the
only example of a brass in which the lance is introduced.

[Illustration: FIG. 114.--Sir Roger de Trumpington, 1289. Trumpington
Church, Cambridge.]

Another celebrated brass exemplifying in a remarkable degree the
military equipment of the period is that of Sir Roger de Trumpington,
1289, in Trumpington Church, near Cambridge (Fig. 114). This well-known
monumental effigy is one of five brasses which portray knights in the
cross-legged attitude, concerning which so much has been said and so
much written. The popular idea is, that the cross-legged position
denotes a pilgrimage, or else a participation in a Crusade, on the
part of the deceased, but this supposition is entirely negatived by
the existence of monuments to _bonâ-fide_ Crusaders, and to persons
known to have visited the Holy Land, who are represented with the lower
limbs not crossed. It is to be noted that this position is entirely
confined to England with the exception of one at Dublin, and the
generally accepted ideas are that these persons so represented were
benefactors to the Church and died in the odour of sanctity. But it
is perfectly admissible to suppose that, after all, this position was
entirely an idea of the artist or the engraver, preventing as it did
the ungainly stiffness in the d’Aubernoun brass. There are two examples
of carved stone effigies both cross-armed and cross-legged--Sir Roger
de Kerdeston, 1337, at Reepham, and Sir Oliver d’Ingham, 1343, at
Ingham, Norfolk; but neither of these were Crusaders, while both were
benefactors to their respective churches.

[Illustration: FIG. 115.--Heaume of Sir William de Staunton, 1312.]

The armour shown in the Trumpington brass is similar in general outline
to the d’Aubernoun example, but is peculiar in manifesting nothing
of an ornamental character. Two or three additions to the equipment,
however, are shown which are important. The head rests upon the great
heaume, which is of large proportions and conical, adapted for resting
upon and being supported by the shoulders. At the apex is shown a
staple for affixing either the contoise or the heraldic crest (to be
alluded to later), and this feature is also shown upon the heaume of
Sir William de Staunton, 1312, at Staunton, Notts (Fig. 115). From the
lower part of the back of the heaume a chain depends which fastens to
a narrow cord tied tightly round the waist; by this arrangement the
knight was enabled to regain this most important part of his equipment
in the event of his being unhelmed. Later on this chain was affixed to
a staple riveted or welded to the plastron-de-fer, openings being made
in the hauberk and surcoat to permit of this.

[Illustration: FIG. 116.--From the seal of Henry de Beaumont, Earl of
Buchan, 1322.]

[Illustration: FIG. 117.--Crest of John de Warenne, Earl of Surrey
(_d._ 1344). (From his seal, 1329.)]

_Ailettes._--This period might almost be termed the “ailette period,”
but for the fact that this extraordinary adjunct only prevailed during
a portion of the time. They were small shields or defences fastened
at right angles across the shoulders, designed to lessen the effect
of a sweeping cut from a sword or battle-axe, and were prototypes of
the passe-gardes of the late fifteenth century, and of the epaulettes
of the present day. The fact that a brass has necessarily a plane
surface prevents these being seen in their proper place; a perspective
representation would afford a vertical line only upon each shoulder,
and in order to display the surfaces and avoid any foreshortening,
the artist has turned them at right angles to their real positions.
The usual mode of their adjustment may be plainly perceived from a
representation of the seal of Henry de Beaumont, Earl of Buchan,
1322 (Fig. 116), where the stiff lower portion is bent upwards and
downwards to prevent a lateral fall; at the same time it is shaped
to the shoulder, and probably fixed tightly to the hauberk, or the
coif-de-mailles, by rings or rivets. Another example from a seal is
that of John de Warenne, Earl of Surrey, 1329 (Fig. 117). Here the
ailettes are apparently fastened only by one of the points and the half
of one of the sides, but undoubtedly the whole of it was concave to the
helmet; if so delineated by the artist the remote point would have been
invisible, and not proper for heraldic representation as required upon
a seal. Ailettes are rarely shown upon brasses and effigies; possibly
the Buslingthorpe, Chartham, Gorleston, and Clehongre examples are
the only ones in addition to the Trumpington. Upon seals they occur
fairly often, but not with any frequency until the commencement of the
fourteenth century. An early notice of ailettes occurs in the Roll
of Purchases for the great tournament held at Windsor in 1278, where
they are stated to have been made of leather covered with a kind of
cloth. Silk laces were supplied to fasten them, and it is remarkable,
to say the least, that the brass of Sir Roger de Trumpington, who
was one of the thirty-eight knights taking part in the tournament,
should furnish one of the earliest and best examples which has come
down to modern times. In the curious painted window at Tewkesbury
representing Gilbert de Clare, Earl of Gloucester, who perished upon
the field of Bannockburn in 1314, we have the best illustration of
ailettes contributed by stained glass. Probably the windows were made
not long after the event, judging from the armour, which would be
designed of contemporary pattern. Hewitt engraves a figure of a knight
in Ash-by-Sandwich Church in which the ailettes appear as square
projections behind the shoulders. In illuminated MSS. of this period
the ailettes are very frequently shown, and are figured with combatants
in all positions, so that the nature of the defence can be very clearly
seen. They are also shown of all shapes and sizes. A lozenge-shaped
ailette is seen on the accompanying figure (No. 118) from Roy. MS. 14,
E. III., in which the same device appears as upon the shield, thus
proving that it is not a square one worn awry. At times one ailette
only seems to have been used, and that upon the left side; it appears
as a reinforcement to the shield in an illuminated MS. of Sir Launcelot
(Add. MS. 10,293), date 1316 (Fig. 119). Sometimes the ailettes are so
high and wide that they almost enclose the great heaume by forming a
circle round it, being fixed behind where they meet, and only allowing
a small opening in front for vision. The proper position is, as has
been stated, upon the shoulders and at right angles to them, but when
enlarged or of an inconvenient shape they were fixed upon the upper
part of the arm or behind the shoulder. For example, in Fig. 120, which
is taken from a MS. in the Bodleian Library, the ailettes are shown
of a circular form, which obviously would be awkward to fix upon the
shoulder, hence we see them upon the upper part of the arm.

[Illustration: FIG. 118.--Lozenge-shaped ailette (Roy. MS. 14, E.
III.), _c._ 1280.]

[Illustration: FIG. 119.--Soldier with one ailette (Roy. MS. 16, G. 6),
14th century.]

[Illustration: FIG. 120.--Soldier with circular ailettes.]

[Illustration: FIG. 121.--Knight (Roy. M.S. 2, A. 22), _c._ 1290.]

The use of ailettes is somewhat perplexing, and antiquarians have held
various theories respecting them. That they were not merely armorial is
proved by many showing no designs upon them whatever; that they were
not for the purpose of distinguishing leaders in a fray is negatived by
the fact that a knight’s cognisance was much better recognised from his
shield, surcoat, and crest; also, the ailettes appear in tournaments
where there would be no necessity for recognition. The only supposition
which appears to be defensible is that they were shields for the
neck and shoulders, but more especially for the latter, as the great
heaume protected the neck. In Germany they were called “tartschen,”
or shields. The defence afforded by a thick piece of leather, quilted
material, or steel in that position will be at once appreciated; so low
did they reach at times that they covered the junction of the arm with
the body at the back, and this is well exemplified in the Clehongre
effigy, dating from 1320, in which they are attached to the shoulders
by arming points, and are concave to the body. Occasionally for
tournaments and pageant purposes ailettes appear to have been made most
elaborately; thus we find in the inventory of Piers Gaveston in 1313 a
mention of a pair garnished and fretted with pearls.

[Illustration: FIG. 122.--Figures from martyrdom of Thomas à Beckett
(Harl. MS. 5102, Fo. 32), _c._ 1220.]

There is a singular figure of a knight in an attitude of devotion
illustrated in Roy. MS. 2, A. XXII., dating from about 1290, which has
been ably reproduced in Shaw’s “Dresses and Decorations of the Middle
Ages” (Fig. 121). Many little details of thirteenth-century armour are
delineated, affording a valuable acquisition to our knowledge. The mode
in which the coif-de-mailles is fastened up to the side of the head by
an arming point is well shown; the same method has been illustrated
in Fig. 122 on p. 107, where two continuous hauberks are seen looped
up in the same way. The palms of the hands are free from rings, in
order to afford a better grasp of a weapon; this was the usual mode
for constructing the mail gauntlet, and is also shown in Fig. 123. It
also permitted the gauntlet being slipped off the hand when required.
The gauntlets are continuous with the sleeves of the hauberk. Upon the
shoulders are singularly small ailettes, consisting merely of a cross
similar in design to those emblazoned upon the surcoat. The thighs
are defended by chaussons or haut-de-chausses of mail, apparently
with rings only upon the parts exposed. The chausses are of Bezanté
armour, formed of small discs, each with a stud in the centre; these
are sewn or riveted on to a pliable material, probably leather, which
is fastened together by a series of points down the back of the leg.
The chausses are prolonged to cover the feet, upon which are strapped
the usual short pryck spur. The heaume is very much ornamented, and
its general contour points to an earlier date than _c._ 1290, as does
also the absence of genouillières. The lance and its pennon are shown.
A leg protection of leather and highly ornamented was in use upon the
Continent at this period; its form and dimensions may be gleaned from
Fig. 125.

[Illustration: FIG. 123.--From “Lives of the Two Offas,” by M. Paris
(Cott. MS., Nero, D. 1).]

[Illustration: FIG. 124.--Circular ailettes. (MS. 211, Bod. Lib.)]

In a MS. in the Bodleian Library (No. 211) a knight or man-at-arms
is represented carrying a shield and wearing ailettes of a circular
pattern, which are fastened to his banded mail at the upper part of the
arm (Fig. 124). He wears a hemispherical steel cap and is clothed in
a voluminous surcoat. A similar example, but of later date, is shown
in Roy. MS. 20, D. 2, British Museum, where a figure habited in banded
mail and a conical pot-helm, with sword and shield, wears circular
ailettes in precisely the same manner as the previous example (Fig.

[Illustration: FIG. 125.--Leg defence (Italian), _c._ 1289. Relief in
Annunziata Convent.]

[Illustration: FIG. 126.--Knight (Roy. MS. 2, D. 11), 13th century.]


The knightly Banner of the period was either square or oblong; in
the latter case the height was invariably twice the width (see
Fig. 127). It was the distinctive mark of the Knight Banneret, and
always indicated superiority of command and importance, inasmuch
as it required a retinue of at least fifty men-at-arms with their
followers to adequately support the dignity. Thus it was a position of
distinction which could only be enjoyed by the rich, and the chronicles
of the mediæval period record instances of knights who, having
specially distinguished themselves on the field of battle, declined
the proffered honour of Knight Banneret on the score of insufficient
means. If, on the other hand, it were accepted, it was usual to convert
the pennon of the knight into a banner on the spot by simply cutting
off the tail or tails. The simple knight, or Knight Bachelor as he was
termed, carried a Pennon or Pavon, which was furnished with one or
more tails, as in Fig. 121, where it is represented with three; that
of Henri de Perci, first Earl of Northumberland, with two (see Fig.
128); and in the d’Aubernoun brass, where one is depicted. He became
eligible for knighthood at twenty-one, presuming that he had sufficient
private property to support the dignity, but had to distinguish himself
in the field or otherwise before the honour was conferred. It was not
absolutely necessary to be of gentle birth, as many examples may be
cited of knighthood being conferred upon those who could not claim such
descent. The contingent he led into battle under his pennon varied in
number according to his means. The Pennonçel or Pensil was a small,
narrow streamer to which the Esquire, or aspirant to knighthood, was
entitled. It was necessary for him to serve an apprenticeship in
arms, and he generally attended the castle of a neighbouring baron,
or the court of the king. Such was, briefly, the etiquette respecting
the three different flags of knighthood, quite apart from those of
the chief commanders and the great standards. There were, of course,
variations introduced. Pennons shown in Figs. 129 and 130 from the
Painted Chamber are triangular, and the banner in Fig. 130 is nearly
three times as high as it is wide. Before quitting this subject it may
be mentioned that knighthood was quite distinct from birth and social
position, and was simply a scheme of military rank, the aspirants
having absolutely equal opportunities for acquiring the dignity.

[Illustration: FIG. 127.--Banner of Knight Banneret.]

[Illustration: FIG. 128.--Pennon of Henri de Perci, Earl of

[Illustration: FIG. 129.--Pavon, Painted Chamber.]

[Illustration: FIG. 130.--Early heaume and helmets with nasals. Painted

_The Heaume._--During the first thirty years of this period, that
is until about 1280, the heaumes continued to be generally of the
flat-topped variety not reaching to the shoulders, but having the
addition of a movable visor. One, however, shown in Fig. 131 and dating
from _c._ 1250, differs considerably, and shows a heaume approaching
the dimensions and shape of a bascinet, while the visor is adapted
for raising or for removal. An earlier example without a visor is one
seen in a group from the Painted Chamber in conjunction with helmets
having a nasal (Fig. 130). In Fig. 132 we have an example of one of the
earliest and plainest of this variety, in which the ventaille could
be removed at pleasure from the two projecting studs on the heaume
which kept it in place. Fig. 133 is of the same type, but furnished
with a more elaborate visor, and with a crown surmounting it. Fig. 134
is from the seal of Richard Plantagenet, King of the Romans and Earl
of Cornwall, who died in 1272, and Fig. 135 from that of Robert de
Ferrars, Earl of Derby, died _c._ 1279; in both we trace the tendency
to alter the shape of the lower rim. The movable ventaille was not in
all cases directly detachable from the heaume, but swung outwards upon
a hinge on one side, similar to a wicket gate; as this hinge had a
pin running through it which could be withdrawn, the visor was wholly
removed if not required.

[Illustration: FIG. 131.--Helmet, _c._ 1250.]

[Illustration: FIG. 132.]

[Illustration: FIG. 133.]

About 1270 the round-topped variety came into fashion, of which
examples are found until the end of the century and even after it. The
seal of Patrick Dunbar, 10th Earl of March, affords a good illustration
of the heaume with a circular crown; it is furnished with a movable
visor. Other examples are shown in groups in the Painted Chamber at
Westminster, and two very late specimens are represented in Figs. 116
and 117 on p. 102.

[Illustration: FIG. 134.--From the seal of Richard Plantagenet, Earl of
Cornwall, King of the Romans (_d._ 1272).]

[Illustration: FIG. 135.--From the seal of Robert de Ferrars, Earl of
Derby (_d._ before 1279).]

[Illustration: FIG. 136.--Knight, showing mail over pot-de-fer, 1290.]

About the year 1280 the conical-topped heaume came into use, whose
general form is delineated in Fig. 137, and has already been noticed
in the Trumpington brass. It was of great weight, and either hung
at the saddle bow, or was carried by the squire, when not in use; it
rested upon the shoulders, and thus relieved the head of the greater
part of its weight. Two heaumes are here shown (Figs. 138, 139) from
Add. MS. 10,294 in the British Museum. One is of the plain and ordinary
pattern, but the second shows a movable visor which can either be
raised or removed entirely. It also illustrates a reinforcing plate
protecting the sides of the head. Inside it was thickly padded, and
representations of this feature may often be discerned upon monumental
effigies, where the heaume is used to support the head of the recumbent
knightly figure. To keep it in position laces were attached to the
lower edge at the back; these are clearly seen in Fig. 121, p. 106.

[Illustration: FIG. 137.]

[Illustration: FIG. 138.--Heaume. (Add. MS. 10,294.)]

[Illustration: FIG. 139.--Heaume. (Add. MS. 10,294.)]

[Illustration: FIG. 140.--Heaume of Henri de Perci, _c._ 1300.]

The development of the crest during this period did not make much
headway, but a few examples from seals and MSS. will show that there
was a certain amount of progress. The heaume of Baron Henri de Perci,
_c._ 1300 (Fig. 140), exhibits a highly ornamented crest with the
distinctive feature of two streamers affixed to its base, the contoise
or mantling in its incipient form. The comb is deeply serrated, and
ornamented with gadroons springing from the centre. Upon the seal of
Henry de Lacy, Earl of Lincoln, 1301 (Fig. 141), the conical heaume is
shown, not reaching, however, to the shoulders, with a small, plain
comb upon its summit, differing in that respect from the crests of
Richard Fitzalan, Earl of Arundel (Fig. 142), and Humphrey Bohun,
Earl of Hereford (Fig. 143), which both date from the same year. A
singularly plain heaume, considering the distinction of the wearer,
is that of Edward, Prince of Wales, 1305, as delineated upon his seal
(Fig. 144). The crest of John de Warenne, Earl of Surrey, 1329, shown
in Fig. 117 on p. 102, displays a startling development upon the
preceding examples, and exhibits a high order of decorative design in
crests at this early period.

[Illustration: FIG. 141.--From the seal of Henry de Lacy, Earl of
Lincoln, 1301.]

[Illustration: FIG. 142.--From the seal of Richard Fitzalan, Earl of
Arundel, 1301.]

[Illustration: FIG. 143.--From the seal of Humphrey de Bohun, Earl of
Hereford, 1301.]

[Illustration: FIG. 144.--From the seal of Edward of Carnarvon, Prince
of Wales, 1305.]

[Illustration: PLATE XI

Sir Robert de Bures, 1302. Acton Church, Suffolk]

At Acton in Suffolk is a monumental brass to Sir Robert de Bures,
dating from the year 1302, which holds the proud position of being the
finest early brass in existence, and which may also fairly claim to
be the finest military brass extant. The details of equipment differ
but little from the d’Aubernoun and Trumpington brasses, but the guige
of the shield, by being partially hidden under the tippet of the
coif-de-mailles, indicates that the coif was entirely separate from
the hauberk, and was not continuous, as might be imagined from the
early brasses. The genouillières are very elaborate, and probably of
cuir-bouilli; above them and beneath the skirt of the hauberk are
seen the padded and quilted trews covering the chausses from the knee
upwards. This garment, whose surface was usually of silk, baudekyn, or
other costly material, is shown in the brass to be richly embroidered
with fleur-de-lys and an ornament resembling in shape the Greek lyre,
disposed alternately in lozenges formed by the reticulations of the
silken cords, and a similar decoration appears upon the grip of the
sword (Plate XI.).

Sir Robert de Septvans, 1306, is another knight whose brass effigy
has the cross-legged position; it is in Chartham Church, Kent, and
affords an excellent illustration of the military accoutrement at the
termination of the reign of Edward I. (Fig. 146). The singular name of
Septvans (or Seven Fans) is derived from the heraldic cognisance of the
family, and is shown upon the figure as seven fans of the shape used
for winnowing wheat at that period. The coif-de-mailles is thrown back
in this effigy, and rests upon the shoulders in folds; the ailettes are
square or oblong, and the sleeves of the hauberk are thrown back off
the hands and are shown depending from the wrist. Beneath the hauberk
the quilted undergarment called the haqueton appears; the trews are of
similar material, and apparently are continued under the genouillières,
probably to avoid chafing. The latter are of plate, and a stud is shown
which fastens them to a strap behind the knee. The sword-hilt and
scabbard are enriched with a highly effective diaper design.

[Illustration: FIG. 145.--Knight in banded mail, 1310. Croft, Lincs.]

Between the years 1306 and 1320 there are no brasses in existence
exhibiting the full military equipment of the time, the example at
Croft, 1310, being only a half-brass and singularly devoid of detail
(Fig. 145). Two brasses, however, dating from 1320, afford us an
opportunity of seeing the marked development in defences which had
been adopted in the interval. The Bacon brass in Gorleston Church,
Suffolk, has been much mutilated, but sufficient is retained to make
it of interest. The coif-de-mailles, hauberk, surcoat, sword-belt,
shield, and guige show no differences, but in the plate defences a
great advance has been made. The back of the upper arms from shoulder
to elbow, and the front of the lower arms from the bend of the elbow
to the wrist, are protected by plates of steel, fastened by steel
straps round the limbs; these are respectively the Demi-Brassarts
and Demi-Vambraces. Upon the elbows are the Coudières, and upon
the knees Genouillières of plate, while the shins are defended by
Demi-Jambarts, all being fixed over the chain mail to fulfil the office
of reinforcements. At the shoulder and elbow bends, roundels of plate
appear, and over the shoulder are ailettes marked with the Cross of St.
George. The shield is small and heater-shaped, and is furnished with
a narrow guige. In the Fitzralph brass, 1320, Pebmarsh Church, Essex
(Fig. 147), the general arrangement is similar to the Gorleston brass,
but no ailettes are shown, and the shield is large and concave to the
body. Upon the feet are Sollerets consisting of five lames of plate
riveted together and kept in place by two straps passing under each
foot. The swords of both figures show straight quillons not drooping
to the blade as formerly. The pryck spur is still in vogue, and from
the roundels the small projecting spikes should be noticed. The five
cross-legged brasses thus described and illustrated are all that now
remain to us, and of these five only one, that of Trumpington, so far
as is known, represents a knight who followed the banner of the Holy
Cross to Palestine.

[Illustration: FIG. 146.--Sir Robert de Septvans, 1306. Chartham
Church, Kent.]

[Illustration: FIG. 147.--Sir -- de Fitzralph, _c._ 1320. Pebmarsh
Church, Essex.]

[Illustration: FIG. 148.--Figures from “Massacre of the Innocents”
(Add. MS. 17,687), _c._ 1290.]

The defensive equipment of the ordinary foot soldier of this period
is well delineated in Fig. 148, which is taken from Add. MS. 17,687
in the British Museum, a German illumination dating from _c._ 1290.
The subject is the Massacre of the Innocents, a favourite theme for
illustrations in those times: the central figure is holding in the air
a child (not shown except the foot) preparatory to dashing it upon the
ground, while the soldier to the right has the decapitated head of a
child, also not reproduced, in his left hand. The coif-de-mailles are
in all three examples peculiar in being continued as a pectoral; in two
cases they are constructed of banded mail, and in the third of studded
jazeraint. Two hauberks are shown, one of banded mail and the other of
jazeraint. The central figure has genouillières of leather which, like
those of his companions upon his left, are apparently continuous round
the joint: the strips of pendent leather from them have been sewn over
the shins and calves, while studded strips over chausses of the same
material cover the lower limbs of his comrade. The third figure has
simple chausses of banded mail with no reinforcement: long swords with
characteristic pommels are worn, and the whole group is a most striking
example of the lack of uniformity at the period. Also see Figs. 149 and

[Illustration: FIG. 149.--Soldier (Sloan MS. 346), _c._ 1280.]

[Illustration: FIG. 150.--Swordsman of the chain mail reinforced

_Archers._--From the time of the Norman Conquest the practice of
archery assumed an importance which did not fall to its lot before
in England. The Saxons had not paid particular attention to this arm
from a military standpoint, only using it in sport, and the success
of the Normans at Hastings was due in a great measure to the skill
and superior numbers of their archers. The latter are shown on the
tapestry both in hauberks and without, and one is seen on horseback.
The bow appears to be of the simplest form of construction, and the
arrow decidedly not the cloth-yard shaft of a later age. It became a
custom from a very early date for the archer to bear a stake sharpened
at both ends which the front ranks drove firmly into the ground with
the second and uppermost point sloping from them, while the rear ranks
filled up the intermediate spaces with theirs. When protected thus
in front and on both flanks it was found that the archers of England
could defy the charge of the heaviest cavalry. Already in the twelfth
century the English began to develop that prowess in archery which
subsequently made them renowned throughout the Continent of Europe. At
the siege of Messina by Cœur de Lion we are told by Richard of Devizes
that the Sicilians were obliged to leave their walls unmanned “because
no one could look abroad but he would have an arrow in his eye before
he could shut it,” while Richard himself did not disdain the use of
the weapon, but used it personally with deadly effect when besieging
Nottingham Castle, defended by the adherents of his brother John. Among
the enactments of Henry I. of England it was provided that if any one
practising with arrows or with darts should by accident slay another it
was not to be visited against him as a crime.

[Illustration: FIG. 151.--Archer, _c._ 1250.]

[Illustration: FIG. 152.--Archer, 1330. (Roy. MS. 16, C. 6.)]

[Illustration: FIG. 153.--Archers. (Roy. MS. 20, D. 1.)]

[Illustration: FIG. 154.--Archer, &c., from Painted Chamber.]

It was during the period now under consideration, 1250 to 1325, that
the archer first stepped into prominent notice, and that the efficacy
of his weapon, the most deadly that the art of man devised until the
introduction of gunpowder, came to be fully recognised. During the
Norman period the infantry as a rule were armed with the bow, but
the other weapons they bore were considered of equal if not greater
usefulness and importance in battle, owing probably to the undeveloped
condition of the weapon. With the advent, however, of the long-bow
proper, and the invention of the arbalest, the deadly effect of the
arrow and the quarrel began to be fully recognised and accepted, and
changes consequently occurred in the art of warfare occasioned by the
adoption of these weapons. The bow was not at first considered to be of
exceptional efficiency in the open field, but to be especially valuable
in sieges, and the defence of mountain passes and strongholds. When
this idea was proved to be erroneous we find from various Statutes
of Arms that a number of the military tenants were ordered to be
provided with the long-bow and arrows. The Statute of Westminster, for
instance, especially mentions the bow. Their equipment was considerably
augmented also with respect to body armour, for in Fig. 109 on p. 94
we see the bowman of _c._ 1220 defended only by his chapelle-de-fer,
whereas in Figs. 153, 155, taken from Roy. MS. 20, D 1, dating from the
end of the century, when the conical heaume had been generally adopted,
the archers are depicted with the same headgear and the body defended
by a hauberk of banded mail. Whether arrows were ever furnished with
the small cross-pieces as shown is conjectural; they are, however,
often shown in MSS. having a foreign origin. In Fig. 154 the archer is
seen clad in a coif-de-mailles and hauberk. The arrow-head is usually
barbed as shown, but whether the three-barbed arrow of Spain, shown in
the Spanish Codex, Add. MS. 11,695, written in 1109, was ever adopted
in England is very doubtful. The fourteenth century showed the fullest
development of the bow, as we shall find, and during that period the
archer attained the height of his importance, but by his equipment at
this early period we may conclude that he was taking an important place
in the military force of the nation.

[Illustration: FIG. 155.--Mounted archer (Roy. MS. 20, D. 1.), _c._

[Illustration: FIG. 156.--Military equipment, _c._ 1280.]

[Illustration: PLATE XII*

Foot Armour of Philip II., made by Desiderius Colman

_A. F. Calvert_]

_Arbalestiers._--The arbalest or cross-bow was known apparently as
early as the fourth century, and is mentioned in manuscripts of the
tenth; it appears, however, to have been chiefly used for sport that
time. It was not before the close of the twelfth century that it was
recognised as a military weapon, or is illustrated in manuscripts. In
the beginning of the twelfth century there appears to have been an
effort made for its introduction, but at a council held under Pope
Innocent II. in 1139, it was placed under an interdict as a barbarous
weapon and unfit for Christian warfare, and this condemnation was
subsequently confirmed by Innocent III. In the meantime, however,
Richard I. of England and Philip Augustus of France had sanctioned its
use during the Crusade in which they had taken part, Richard being the
first to advocate its use, and Philip acquiescing and subsequently
adopting his example. The cross-bow thus introduced into England at
the end of the twelfth century practically became obsolete at the
termination of the thirteenth, when the long-bow almost succeeded in
extirpating its rival. This, however, was by no means the case upon
the Continent, where it was the leading arm until the introduction
of the arquebus, and throughout the thirteenth century cross-bowmen
became integral units of every English army, sometimes being mounted.
The King’s Bodyguard, founded by Richard I., was formed partly of
arbalestiers. In the copious records left by Matthew Paris, who died
in 1259, the cross-bowman is continually mentioned. His particular
post was in the forefront of the battle and upon the wings, where the
heavy quarrels discharged from his weapon were supposed to check the
advance of the enemy’s cavalry; and scarcely a battle is recorded
in that part of the thirteenth century where the arbalestier is not
credited with performing most conspicuous service. In the battle near
Damietta in 1237 a hundred Templars and three hundred cross-bowmen
are said to have fallen, and the Emperor Frederick in 1239, writing
to Henry III. of England, mentions the very prominent part played in
a campaign by the arbalestiers. In the contest with Louis IX., Henry
III. had seven hundred cross-bowmen in his force, while the French had
a vastly greater number. In King John’s time the pay for a cross-bowman
on foot was threepence per day, while if mounted he was paid sevenpence
halfpenny or fifteenpence, according as to whether he possessed one or
two horses. Notwithstanding the conspicuous successes of these troops
they occupied an invidious position in other countries than our
own; for the knights and men-at-arms, if they perceived the day being
won by the prowess of the cross-bowmen, did not hesitate to charge
through their ranks in order to share in the glory. This occurred
many times upon the Continent, though happily no record exists of its
happening in England.

[Illustration: FIG. 157.--Arbalestier, _c._ 1250.]

[Illustration: FIG. 158.--Archer and arbalestier, 13th century.]

Like the bowman of his time the arbalestier was clad occasionally in
heavy armour. In the annexed Fig. 158 of an archer and a cross-bowman,
from Add. MS. 15,268 and dating from the close of the thirteenth
century, the armour of the latter appears to be of the tegulated
or the scale variety, though it is quite possible that it may be
intended for banded mail. Upon his head he wears a leather skull-cap
strengthened apparently by iron bands, under which appears a linen or
soft leather coif. A representation of a similar skull-cap of leather
(Fig. 159), ornamented with a strengthening device in iron which is
prolonged into a nasal, is shown upon one of the figures in the Painted
Chamber, Westminster. The pile of the cross-bow bolt is shown to be
quite distinct from the barbed head of the arrow. In Fig. 109, p. 94,
the cross-bowman is represented as heavily armed in a pot-helm and
hauberk of mail. The supersession of the cross-bow in England by the
long-bow was due to natural causes. It was found that as the long-bow
underwent improvements it outclassed the cross-bow in more ways than
one. A powerful and skilful bowman could discharge half-a-dozen or more
arrows during the time necessitated for winding up the cross-bow for
a second shot; also the distance covered by the arrow, together with
its penetrative force, were quite equal to that of the quarrel, and
is generally considered to have been superior. In consequence of this
rapidity of fire the English archer invariably beat down the attack
of Continental cross-bowmen, if equal in numbers, and, very often,
when they were in excess. Compactness of troops was a great point in
mediæval warfare, and the bowmen could stand closer together with their
bows vertical than their brethren of the cross-bow with their weapons
in the horizontal position. There is little doubt that the cross-bow
was the ideal weapon for the ordinary soldier of an ordinary race,
inasmuch as little intellect was required to direct the aim and little
strength was necessary if the usual mechanical means were used to
bend the bow. For the efficient use of the long-bow, on the contrary,
a keen judgment was an absolute necessity, and it was only a race of
considerable physical power that could put forth the strength and
maintain the exertion which the long-bow demanded. It is undoubtedly
a matter for national self-complacency to reflect upon the fact that
while the British gradually discarded the cross-bow and adopted the
long-bow almost entirely, the Continental nations proceeded in exactly
the opposite direction.

[Illustration: FIG. 159.--Nasal. Painted Chamber, Westminster.]

[Illustration: FIG. 160.--Arbalestier, 1330. (Roy. MS. 16, G 6.)]

_The Hand Cross-bow._--The cross-bow as at first introduced was of a
simple construction, and permitted of the bow being drawn by the hands
alone, without the aid of mechanical means. Such a bow is that shown in
Figs. 109, 157, 160, &c., which when required to be strung was simply
placed upon the ground, the left foot inserted in the iron loop at the
end of the stock, and the string drawn up with the right hand, until
it engaged in the notch. This is termed the hand cross-bow. The oldest
arbalest in the Wallace Collection dates from 1450, and is probably
of German construction. The stock is of wood inlaid with plaques of
polished stag-horn, which are beautifully carved in relief. The bow is
of great strength, partly enveloped in parchment and leather painted,
and the original cord remains.

_The Goat’s Foot, or Hind’s Foot, Cross-bow._--The apparatus to bend
this bow is essentially a double lever consisting of two pieces
articulated together. The smaller piece is divided into two distinct
parts, each of which terminates in a catch; one of these engages
with the bow-string and the other upon points on either side of the
stock. The longer arm of the lever was drawn back, and the catch with
the bow-string followed it until, being brought up sufficiently into
position, the string was caught by the notch and remained secure until
discharged. An arbalest is preserved in the Wallace Collection, dating
from 1520, the bow of which is built up of layers of cane, whalebone,
hide, and parchment, ornamented and painted; this bow was bent by the
goat’s-foot lever, a few examples of which are to be seen in the Museum.

_The Wheel and Ratchet Cross-bow._--This apparatus is affixed to the
bow stock behind the trigger by a stout cord which passes round the
stock and holds the mechanism firmly. It consists of a flat, circular,
iron case which contains in its outer periphery a small toothed wheel
which can be turned by a long handle. Passing through the circular
case and engaging with the small wheel is a straight ratchet with one
side cogged: this ratchet has a catch at the end remote from the case
which engages with the bow-string. By merely turning the handle and so
revolving the wheel the ratchet is wound through the case, thus drawing
back the string to its resting-place. The apparatus is then detached
and hung at the belt until wanted again.

In Plate XL., p. 366, taken at the Rotunda, Woolwich, an arbalestier
of _c._ 1450 may be discerned in the act of winding his cross-bow by
a one-handled moulinet, the head of the stock, which is very short,
resting on his knee and not on the ground. It takes a weight of 400
lbs. to bend this bow.

[Illustration: PLATE XIII*

Philip II., Armour by Wolf of Landshut, 1550

_A. F. Calvert_]

_Moulinet and Pulleys Cross-bow._--A piece of iron bent into the form
of a stirrup is affixed to the stock (adjacent to the bow in this
case), similar to that of the hand cross-bow, for the insertion of
the left foot, so as to gain the largest amount of steadiness and
purchase. At the butt end of the stock, against the archers body, a
system of fixed pulleys, having cords running over another system of
free pulleys, is firmly affixed by the insertion of the butt into a
socket. The free-pulley system has a catch attached to it which engages
with the cord of the bow: by winding up the fixed system with a small
windlass having a handle on either side, the free system approaches the
butt, bringing with it the string of the bow, which after a time is
duly caught in the notch provided for it. The tackle is then released
and hung at the belt until wanted. An excellent example of Moulinet
and Pulleys may be seen in the Wallace Collection, dating from 1490 to
1500; it is constructed of steel, and is in good preservation.

_The Cross-bow à Galet._--In this type the bow is bent by means of a
lever fixed to the stock, and was much used in the sixteenth century
for the discharge of stones, spherical balls of lead, &c. In order to
afford a good purchase for the lever, the stock between the bow and the
string-catch was very often curved downwards into a segment of a circle
and made of metal.

_The Barrelled Cross-bow_ was as a rule bent by hand, although a short
stick was occasionally used. A half-tube covered the groove through
which the quarrel travelled, thus leaving a passage for the string. It
did not carry to any remarkable distance, but in spite of this was in
much request during the seventeenth century.

[Illustration: FIG. 161.--Slinger with staff sling or fustibal, 13th

The missiles for cross-bows are termed quarrels, or bolts, and
generally terminated in a four-sided pyramidal head or pile, being
occasionally feathered with wood or brass. One kind was so feathered
as to cause the bolt to rotate upon its axis. The cross-bow did not
altogether disappear from the army. We find mention in 1572, in the
time of Queen Elizabeth, of cross-bowmen being part of a force of six
thousand men furnished by the queen to King Charles IX. The slinger of
this period is well delineated in Fig. 161. It will be perceived that
he carries no protection whatever in the shape of armour; his weapon is
the staff sling or fustibal.

_Banded Mail._--Toward the close of the thirteenth century a new
species of armour made its appearance, which is generally known by the
name of Banded Mail. It was in extensive use for about a century or
more, and appears upon the knight as well as upon the ordinary soldier.
Chain mail was apparently superseded by the banded mail, though not
entirely, as the former appears upon regal effigies and persons of the
aristocratic families, from which we may infer that the chain variety
was retained by those who could afford it and banded mail was used by
those whose means were limited.

As the structure of banded mail always presents difficulty to the
student, and many conjectures made at various times have as a rule
rendered the question more difficult still without solving it, it is
obviously not out of place in this work to deal comprehensively with
the subject and, it is hoped, to definitely decide the question. The
premises from which we may argue are as follows:--

[Illustration: FIG. 162.--Banded mail: knight of the De Sulney family
at Newton Solney, Derbyshire.]

1. From the time of the first Crusade, or approximately about that
time, chain mail proper was the flexible defensive covering for the
English knight, and various kinds of jazeraint armour, in which
leather, metal plates, padded material, &c., were indiscriminately
used, for the ordinary soldier. The chain mail was obviously too dear
for the average purse.

2. During the period mentioned above archery was in an incipient
condition, and bodily defences were adapted to withstand the weapons
in ordinary use, which, if we exclude the javelin, and, under
extraordinary circumstances, the lance, were hand and not missile

3. The simultaneous adoption of banded mail, not only by the common
soldier, but also by a large proportion of the knightly forces, points
conclusively to the fact that chain mail was no longer considered an
adequate defence; in other words that the adoption of a new arm had
rendered it inefficient, and that another description of armour was
imperatively demanded to withstand its effects.

4. The use of leather as a means for bodily defence had been known
from the most ancient times, and in England had been freely used by
the Saxons, as we have seen. From the Conquest onwards it had steadily
advanced in favour, and culminated in importance in the first half of
the fourteenth century during the Studded and Splinted Armour Period,
not finally disappearing until the adoption of total plate defences
rendered its use obsolete. Its second rise into favour during the
seventeenth century is obviously not connected with this question,
except to emphasise the fact that leather has always been considered an
efficacious defence against sword-cuts, and also against missiles which
are not gifted with too great powers of penetration.

5. The fact that banded mail, whether seen upon the inside or the
outside, presents exactly the same appearance (see the Creke,
Northwode, and d’Aubernoun brasses) and is delineated in such manner in
illuminated manuscripts, and carved the same in monumental effigies,
precludes the supposition that rings of metal were sewn down or
otherwise affixed to a garment of leather, as had been the fashion with
Saxons and Normans. Unless, however, we suppose a total abandonment of
leather as a defence which had been growing in favour previously and
which culminated afterwards, we must conclude that leather in some form
was used in the construction of the mail.

6. The abandonment generally of chain mail and the adoption of banded
mail occurred synchronously with the extraordinary development of the
long-bow in the latter part of the thirteenth century.

7. Banded mail was of so flexible a character that folds are depicted
in garments constructed of this material; it was used for hauberks,
camails, chausses, sleeves, and, in short, for every purpose in which
its predecessor had been used.

8. It is represented in MSS. with a metallic surface. The colour is
always silver, white or grey of various shades, and gold. We have
therefore to devise a protection which shall be of greater service than
chain against arrows; which shall be comparatively cheap; in which
leather plays a more or less conspicuous part; which shall present the
same appearance when viewed upon both sides; shall be flexible; and
finally shall have a metallic surface or general appearance.

[Illustration: PLATE XIV

Suggested Construction of Banded Mail]

The accompanying diagram (Plate XIV.) is taken from a photograph
of a piece of banded mail constructed according to our idea of the
structure of the mediæval defence. The rings are iron washers, 1 in.
in diameter and 1/16 in. thick. Through the centre of the washers a
piece of leather exactly as wide as the apertures passes from end to
end. The washers are arranged like rouleaux of coin, each one just
covering the aperture through the centre of the one below. Between
each row of washers a thick piece of leather is placed, the raw edges
being visible on either side of the mail where they have been rounded
off with the knife. The section of this leather band would be similar
to that of a dumb-bell, the centres on each side of the leather being
hollowed so as to permit the edges of the rouleaux to approach each
other and almost touch, the thin centre only preventing them. To the
middle of this leather band the individual rings of the mail are sewn
of both the upper and lower rows. The best portion of this example is
that immediately to the right of the white band. The appearance of
both sides of this example of mail is precisely similar; it is very
flexible, and easily bends in any required direction. The weight,
however, would probably be prohibitory, even to a mediæval knight, and
in order to lighten it we may suggest that every alternate washer be
made of leather, or even that two washers of leather alternate with one
of metal. Against this it may be argued that banded mail is represented
with a metallic tint, but so also is chain mail, which must have
presented ordinarily a rusty-hued mass with simply an outer surface
of polished iron. The liability to rust of chain mail must have been
excessive, and the two outer and accessible surfaces were undoubtedly
the only portions usually polished. So well known is this fact that in
the pageants now prevalent brown string is knitted to represent chain
armour, the outer surface being subsequently covered with a metallic
medium. As a consequence the limners of banded mail would represent it
with a metallic surface even though it presented as brown or rusty an
aspect as chain mail. The washers used in the modern example would in
the mediæval period be flattened rings of metal, and the excessively
coarse and large banded mail would be oval rings and not circular. The
bands are at times represented by single lines, and the suggestion is
obvious that the lines simply represent the junction of the rouleaux
which have not the extra defence of the bands of leather, or else the
band is so narrow that one line is sufficient for its representation.

We will now deal with its efficiency for defence against arrows,
which appears to have been the chief reason for its being called into
existence. These missiles would strike either upon the rouleaux or upon
the bands, and would impinge either at a right angle to the plane of
the surface, or at any angle less than a right angle. An arrow striking
the rouleaux at right angles would endeavour to pass through (1) the
thickness of a metal or leather disc; (2) the leather running through
the discs; (3) the thickness of a metal or leather disc at the rear. If
it struck a metal disc, however, there would be a deflective tendency
either to right or left, according to the slant of the disc.

An arrow striking at an acute angle upon the rouleaux would glance off
if the discs slanted in its direction; if the discs sloped from it the
arrow might insert itself between two of them, penetrate the band of
leather running through the centres, and then endeavour to pass between
two discs at the back. So tightly, however, would these discs be
pressed together, by the leverage of the arrow-head itself in enlarging
the opening between them in the front, that it is questionable if
the inertia remaining in the arrow would enable it to overcome such
resistance, remembering that the discs are firmly fixed both at the top
and bottom to the leather bands. If an arrow struck upon one of the
bands it would have to penetrate at least half-an-inch of leather and
force apart the rouleaux firmly sewn, or affixed in other ways, to the
band on either side.

The specimen of banded mail constructed in accordance with the
foregoing method possesses in actual practice the resisting power
claimed for it; the apparent weak point is the penetrability between
the discs. If, however, the rings are firmly sewn to the lateral bands
the resistance to an arrow is almost if not quite equal to that of any
other part of the mail; the arrow becomes firmly fixed in the discs
without penetrating to the body. It is an unsettled question as to
whether or not complete armour of leather discs was ever introduced
into England: certain it is that the armour of William Longuespée,
first Earl of Salisbury, in Salisbury Cathedral was originally painted
brown, but that might signify, as we have said before, rusty chain mail
and not leather; whereas upon the few sculptured effigies in banded
mail preserved to us the colouring has altogether disappeared.



Probably at no time in the history of defensive armour has it presented
a more picturesque appearance than during the brief ten years of the
Cyclas Period. Fitting closely to the figure, the various garments
followed the outlines of the human form, and in no parts showed any
marked peculiarities or eccentricities. The evolution of the style
was undoubtedly derived from the experience gained during the Chain
Mail Period, when that defence was proved to be ineffectual against
the terrible effects of lance and sword. Both of these weapons, even
if they did not actually pierce the mail, either bruised the body, or
broke bones, and thereby incapacitated the wearer; while the protection
afforded by the loosely hanging folds of the surcoat of previous
periods, especially against sword-cuts, has been duly noted. Hence
during the Cyclas Period we meet with the introduction of multitudinous
coverings, whereby the lance, the sword, and the arrow were opposed by
plate and mail, and by various padded garments of a textile nature.
The superposition and nature of the defensive equipment will now be

[Illustration: FIG. 163.--Sir Robert Shurland, 1300; showing the

1. _The Haqueton._--This consisted of a stuffed and padded garment
covering the whole body from the neck to the knees, and the upper
part of the arms; it rested immediately upon the under-shirt of wool.
The padded character of the garment may be seen from the Creke and
d’Aubernoun brasses, where the lower edge reaches the genouillières.
In the Clehongre effigy the haqueton, though doubtless worn, is not
apparent. The padding, besides being defensive, served to protect the
body from the pressure of the mail and plate defences.

[Illustration: FIG. 164.--Sir John de Creke, 1325. Westley Waterless
Church, Cambs.]

2. _The Hauberk._--During the Cyclas Period this garment appears to
have been generally made of banded mail, which consisted of rings or
discs firmly attached on two sides to bands or strips of leather, and
overlapping each other right and left in alternate rows. The protection
afforded by this defence was so good, and the flexibility so great,
that banded mail was in very common use during the greater part of the
fourteenth century for hauberks, camails, and chausses. The hauberk
either terminated in a point in front at the knees, in similar fashion
to the camail, or was rounded, or cut squarely off, according to
the individual taste of the wearer. The sleeves in nearly all cases
terminate a little below the elbow. It probably extended well up the
neck and reinforced the camail.

3. _The Breastplate, or Plastron-de-fer._--So far as we are aware no
exact description of this defence is extant; we only know that it was
of steel, that it covered the upper part of the front of the body,
that it was invariably of a globular shape, and that it was securely
attached to the hauberk, but whether it had a companion backplate so
as to form an entire cuirass is entirely conjectural. Staples were
affixed to it for chains, which at that period were so often attached
to the hilts of the swords and daggers, and sometimes also to the great
heaume, the chain seen in the Northwode brass being for the latter
purpose. The globular form it imparted to the cyclas is well seen in
monumental effigies, but not so readily discernible in brasses.

4. _The Gambeson_ was a body-covering stuffed with wool, padded as
a rule in vertical parallel lines of needlework, and worn over the
plastron-de-fer and hauberk. In the monumental effigy of Sir Robert
Shurland (who in the year 1300 was made a Knight Banneret), engraved in
Stothard, we have probably a unique representation of a knight habited
only in the gambeson, which in this particular case is furnished with
sleeves covering those of the hauberk, although as a rule it was
sleeveless. It fitted closely round the neck, and reached to within a
few inches of the knee. In Fig. 163 this garment alone is shown, all
other details of the effigy being omitted.

5. _The Cyclas._--This extraordinary garment differed from its
predecessor, the flowing surcoat, in being laced up at the sides,
reaching to the knees behind and being cut short in front, so as to
expose the lower portions of the gambeson, hauberk, and haqueton. It
was of a thin material easily falling into folds, silk being the ideal
substance, and was usually girded round the waist by a narrow cincture.

[Illustration: FIG. 165.--Vervelles, showing method of affixing camail
to the bascinet.]

[Illustration: FIG. 166.--Small figure from tomb of Aymer de Valence,

A great diversity of bascinets were in use at this period, but all of
them fitted more or less closely to the head, the chief modifications
being in the extensions at the side of the face and at the back of
the head. In the typical brass of Sir John de Creke (Fig. 164) the
bascinet is fluted, while an ornamental apex furnishes the attachment
for a crest or the flowing contoise. To this headpiece is affixed the
camail (or cap-mail), a means of protection for the neck which was
first introduced at this period and remained in fashion for nearly one
hundred years, when it was superseded by the gorget of plate in the
time of King Henry V. The upper portion of this camail was securely
fixed to the bascinet by means of staples or vervelles (Fig. 165), a
cord or lace being threaded through which may be perceived in the Creke
brass. A narrow strip of mail with a very ornamental border is carried
round below the rim. In all cases the camail covers a part of the
cyclas. The upper portions of the arm are defended by demi-brassarts
with coudières, while roundels fashioned to represent the heads of
lions protect the joints of the limbs. The forearms are entirely cased
in vambraces of plate. The chausses are of banded ring mail protected
in front by jambarts and genouillières, while the sollerets are of
mixed mail and plate. Upon the effigy of Aymer de Valence, however,
who died in 1323 and is buried in Westminster Abbey, only roundels are
shown protecting the upper parts of the arm, and incipient coudières;
upon one of the small figures surrounding the effigy a gorget of
plate of a very crude form appears to be indicated, superposed upon
the camail and lying also upon the cyclas (see Fig. 166). Upon the
Creke brass there are no indications that a visor could be affixed if
required, but in the Add. MS. 12,228 in the British Museum a bascinet
is shown of an ornamental character which is provided with a small
defence of this nature which could probably be removed entirely if
required. The neck-guard is seen to be well developed and to be
provided with a projecting rim. Two small feathers surmount the helmet,
and were worn in place of the flowing contoise (see Fig. 167).

[Illustration: FIG. 167.--Bascinet and visor, _c._ 1320. (Add. MS.

[Illustration: FIG. 168.--Bascinet and visor. (Add. MS. 10,294.)]

[Illustration: FIG. 169.--Swords and dagger, _c._ 1330.]

[Illustration: FIG. 170.--Sir John de Northwode, _c._ 1330. Minster,
Isle of Sheppey.]

[Illustration: FIG. 171.--Knight of the Cyclas Period.]

The man-at-arms of the period was provided with a bascinet which was
more of the character of a simple pot-de-fer; in Fig. No. 168 an
example is shown to which a visor is attached and capable of being
thrown up when not in use. The sword is suspended in front of the
knight by a device which is very simple when compared with that which
formerly obtained; a belt passes round the figure and the two ends are
affixed by swivels to the scabbard. The weapon has apparently a 36-inch
blade, the quillons are straight, swelling slightly at the ends and
drooping in the centre; the grip is swelling and wire bound and has
a wheel pommel. In Roy. MS. 16, G. 6, many swords of this period are
shown, and are all characterised by their plainness and simplicity of
form (Fig. 169). The brass of Sir John d’Aubernoun who died in 1327
and lies in Stoke d’Aubernoun Church, Surrey, shows a figure similar
in most respects to the Creke brass. The roundels at the elbows are
fixed by arming-points, the helmet is less elaborately decorated, the
method of fastening the sword is old-fashioned, and he wears pryck
spurs and not roundels as shown in the Creke brass. A very noteworthy
and curious brass of this period is that at Minster in the Isle of
Sheppey, in memory of Sir John de Northwode, who died _c._ 1330. The
bascinet is of a peculiar swelling form so suggestive of the globular
head-pieces fashionable on the Continent at that period, and the camail
is finished over the chest in engrailed escallops. A chain is joined to
an ornamental staple attached to the breastplate, and passes over the
left shoulder to its attachment with the tilting helm. Only escalloped
coudières and roundels protect the upper arms and scale-like plates of
steel the lower; these vambraces may possibly be of cuir-bouilli, so
prevalent at the period. The grip of the sword swells considerably and
the quillons are short. Only the upper part of this brass is shown in
Fig. 170, but it has been restored and now shows the complete figure.
The shield at this period was of the heater shape and small; it was
concave, so as to enclose the figure, and a narrow guige passing round
the neck secured it. The effigies of Prince John of Eltham, d. 1334,
in Westminster Abbey; that of Sir John d’Ifield at Ifield in Sussex;
and also that of Humphrey de Bohun, Earl of Hereford and Constable
of England, d. 1321, in Hereford Cathedral, and the Pembridge knight
at Clehongre Church, Herefordshire, may be studied with advantage as
exhibiting varieties in detail of this style of armour. A knight of the
Cyclas Period is figured in Cotman having the same peculiar swelling
helmet, and also the addition apparently of a plate gorget in place of
the camail; this may, however, be simply a leather covering for the
throat (Fig. 171).



[Illustration: PLATE XV*

Tilting Armour, Prince Philip II., by Wolf of Landshut, 1554

_A. F. Calvert_]

The Studded and Splinted Armour Period was essentially an era of
transition, intermediate between a mode of defence which had proved
inadequate by reason of its sheer cumbersomeness and multiplicity
of details, and the light and easy effectiveness of the succeeding
style, the Camail and Jupon, which was ushered in about 1360. During
the studded mail period the prolonged struggle of King Edward
III. for supremacy in France occurred, and the fierce old English
blood found many channels for venting its superfluous ardour. The
defensive and also offensive equipment of knight and soldier underwent
many and sudden changes as exigencies suggested, and keen was the
contest between the three styles then prevailing, viz. chain mail,
cuir-bouilli, and plate. From accredited sources of information we
glean that the partisans of chain mail passed through this stirring
period relying almost entirely if not wholly upon its efficacy; the
believers in cuir-bouilli clothed themselves in fanciful garments of
that material reinforced by a substratum of banded or other mail;
while the advocates of plate essayed various departures of a more or
less cumbrous character, which must have proved abortive by reason
of their weight and crudity, although containing, as many did, the
germs of improvements which, when elaborated, made the armour of later
periods so effective. There were other experimenters who believed
in a judicious mixture of all three kinds of defence, and as they far
outnumbered the remainder the period has gained the name which heads
this chapter.

In an age which saw so many varieties, and when each man did that which
was pleasant in his own eyes, it is difficult to distinguish essential
characteristics by which the amateur may readily recognise armour of
this period, but a few salient features may be mentioned which were
fairly persistent throughout.

1. _The Surcoat_ or skirted jupon was sleeveless and fitted the upper
part of the body tightly, but below the waist was made full so as
to hang in folds to the knees; as a rule it opened up the side, but
sometimes was slit only a short distance up the front and then laced
at the neck. It displayed the armorial bearings of the wearer above
the sword-belt, then worn round the waist or a little below it, and in
some few cases the skirt was dispensed with and terminated at the belt.
The lower part of the skirt was either plain or escalloped, the latter
feature sometimes partaking of the nature of gadroons and extending
upwards to the belt. The skirt also at times was of a different colour
to the upper part, a feature which is well shown in one of the windows
at Ely Cathedral, dating from 1335, where six figures are shown in
contemporary armour, and the skirts of three surcoats are darker in
colour than the upper part, one being ornamented with a band of a still
darker colour. All the skirts shown reach below the knees and have no

2. _The Hauberk_ beneath the surcoat was of chain-mail of various
patterns, or banded mail, and reached to the knees, being about an inch
longer than the upper garment. It was furnished with a high collar
and with sleeves reaching to the wrists, plate gauntlets being almost
universal at this period. The hauberk exemplified all the various kinds
of chain mail known in the mediæval period. The banded mail, already
spoken of in the preceding period, had varieties; instead of the rings
being merely superposed as in Fig. 162, they were at times interlinked
and given a slight twist, so as to lie flat similarly to an ordinary
curb chain, each of these continuous chains being sewn to the usual
raised leather band on either side. In some examples, chains of large
and thick links an inch or more in diameter are shown merely fastened
down to the under leather or material without any separating bands. But
probably the most effectual defence, though of enormous weight, was
the usual system of putting rings or discs of metal face to face, like
rouleaux of coins, and known as the pure banded mail, which afforded
effectual protection against the deadly arrow of the period, which
could neither penetrate nor force apart the tightly wedged discs. We
read of knights emerging from the fray bristling with arrows, which
were pulled out of their harness by the squires.

3. _The Breastplate_ was undoubtedly worn at this period, as the
globular conformation of the upper part of the body and the chains
sometimes affixed to that part through the surcoat prove. It can hardly
be imagined that these chains could be fastened to a hauberk. It is
probable that the breastplate was always worn immediately below the
surcoat; and there are indications that the haqueton or gambeson was
sometimes worn at this period under the hauberk.

4. _Chausses_ of mail were universally worn protecting nearly the whole
length of the legs and covering the feet.

[Illustration: FIG. 172.--Bascinet, _c._ 1330. (Roy. MS. 16, G. 6.)]

[Illustration: FIG. 173.--Bascinet, _c._ 1330. (Roy. MS. 16, G. 6.)]

[Illustration: FIG. 174.--Bascinet and visor, _c._ 1330. (Roy. MS. 16,
G. 6.)]

[Illustration: FIG. 175.--Helmet, Thos. Beauchamp, 1347. (Hastings

[Illustration: FIG. 176.--Bascinet and gorget, _c._ 1350. (British

[Illustration: FIG. 177.--Bascinet, &c., Almeric, Lord St. Amand, 1347.
(Hastings brass.)]

[Illustration: FIG. 178.--Bascinet with laminated gorget. (Add. MS.

[Illustration: FIG. 179.--Bascinet and gorget of plate. (Add. MS.

[Illustration: FIGS. 180 and 181.--Bascinets, Meliadus MS. (Add.

So far as uniformity is concerned, the four articles enumerated above
are all that can be cited with any degree of accuracy. The bascinet
of the period was of many and varying shapes, and at times approached
the grotesque. Two are given here from Roy. MS. 16 G. 6 (Figs. 172,
173), which are adorned with acanthus-shaped crests: the camail
depending from both is of banded mail, and the vervelles by which it
is affixed are shown. It is probable that this style prevailed more
upon the Continent than in England. The form of helmet shown in the
Ely window before mentioned is globular, the lower part covering
the ears and cheeks; a comb much flattened and of no great height
traverses it from the forehead to the back of the head. A common form
of bascinet is shown in Fig. 174, which covers the head and neck, and
is provided with one of the cumbrous visors of the age. This revolves
upon pivots fastened well back, and not only protects the face, but
partly fulfils the duty of a gorget. The occularium is formed by a row
of circular apertures in a reinforcing plate. This massive form of
visor is well shown on the head of Thomas de Beauchamp (Fig. 175) on
the celebrated Hastings brass, one of the few brasses of this period of
armour which have been handed down to us, and which in consequence is
simply invaluable. The visor is provided with a reinforcing plate and
slits for the occularium, with breathing holes below, while the great
projection at the lower part (when allowed to fall) not only protects
the neck, but also a portion of the chest. A bascinet is preserved in
the British Museum which dates from _c._ 1350, and illustrates the
manner in which the gorget plate was affixed (Fig. 176). The bascinet
of Almeric, Lord St. Amand (Fig. No. 177) is provided with a singular
adornment, the chapelle-de-fer or steel bonnet: the brim, being movable
upon pivots at the sides, could be brought down so as to protect the
face. But such an arrangement left the chin and throat open to injury,
and to obviate this a mentonnière of massive proportions is shown,
thus anticipating the protection of the same nature as required by
the salade a century later. This illustration of the chapelle-de-fer
is the only one engraved upon a brass, but another example of it on a
monumental effigy may be seen in Westminster Abbey upon an equestrian
figure on the tomb of Aymer de Valence, _c._ 1296. A late example of
the war hat dating from 1515 and of German make is No. 135 in the
Wallace Collection, while a pictorial representation of it may be seen
in Julius, E. IV., the life of Richard Beauchamp, Earl of Warwick,
written at the close of the fifteenth century. Bascinets not very
unlike those in vogue in the reigns of Henry V. and Henry VI., and
later on in the Tudor period, were in use, as may be seen from the
illustrations taken from Add. MS. 12,228, Figs. 178, 179, and the
romance of King Meliadus, Figs. 180, 181.

[Illustration: FIGS. 182-184.--Figures from the monument of Lady Percy
in Beverley Minster, _d._ 1330.]

In the spandrels of the canopy of a monument to Lady Eleanor Fitzalan,
wife of the first Lord Percy of Alnwick, in Beverley Minster, who died
in 1330, are seven military figures exemplifying this period of armour,
and in one or two cases the helmets are reinforced by a larger plate
which descends to the back of the neck and to each shoulder, over which
it curves outwards so as to nearly cover the camail. These pieces are
riveted on to the bascinet proper, which is generally furnished with a
huge visor.

A complete set of the figures in the canopy are here delineated, not
in the cramped original postures, but in erect positions. They all
possess points of difference, and a comparison of the various defences
exemplified by each will give an excellent idea of the feeling which
characterised the armour of this difficult period (Figs. 182-188).

[Illustration: FIGS. 185-187.--Figures from the monument of Lady Percy
in Beverley Minster, _d._ 1330.]

[Illustration: FIG. 188.--Figure from the monument of Lady Percy in
Beverley Minster, _d._ 1330.]

[Illustration: FIG. 189.--Helm and crest, Sir Geoffrey Luterell, 1345.]

The heaumes of the period were generally round-topped and furnished
with movable visors, while the crest and its adjuncts at times assumed
large, if not formidable, proportions. That of Sir Geoffrey Luterell,
1345, from the famous Luterell Psalter, is shown in Fig. 189, and that
of Sir Hugh Hastings, 1347, in Fig. 190.

[Illustration: FIG. 190.--Crested helm, Sir Hugh Hastings, 1347.]

The shoulders were generally left unprotected, except by the mail of
the hauberk, but occasionally roundels are used similar to those of
the Cyclas era. Demi-brassarts covered the upper arms, shown in many
illustrations of the period as overlapping lames of plate, occasionally
complete and protecting the front as well as the back of the limb.
Coudières, if worn, were invariably of cuir-bouilli, and of a pattern
which is almost stereotyped, and shown in Fig. 191, the genouillières
being of similar design.

In Add. MS. 12,228 at the British Museum many combats of the period are
depicted, and almost without exception coudières and genouillières of
this pattern are shown.

[Illustration: FIG. 191.--Bascinet and coudières, Meliadus MS. (Add.

[Illustration: FIG. 192.]

_Vambraces_ were generally dispensed with, the hauberk sleeve being
deemed sufficient together with the large cuff of the gauntlet. Where
used the vambrace or demi-vambrace may be of plate, as in the Cyclas
Period, or of cuir-bouilli as on the brass of Sir John de Northwode
on p. 145. They were also of pourpoint as on the arm here illustrated
(Fig. 192). As this curious variety of defensive equipment is now
mentioned for the first time, it may be stated that not only in this
period but in the succeeding, it was most extensively used. Pourpoint
in its simplest form is merely a padded garment; studded pourpoint,
or studded mail, as it was occasionally called, consisted of metal
discs or roundels, generally of steel, secured by rivets to the padded
garment, or to leather or cuir-bouilli. These roundels were made very
similar to the modern stud, but with a short neck; where large roundels
are seen, as in the vambrace shown, the smaller head is buried in
the pourpoint, or boiled leather, and the larger back, as we should
term it, is visible. This is generally reversed in the case of other
defences which we shall have to consider, where only the small heads
appear upon the surface for ornament, and the real defensive disc is
buried in the pourpoint. It is probable from the illustration that the
pourpointerie shown were stiff, moulded pieces of cuir-bouilli slipped
on over the underlying hauberk sleeve.

[Illustration: FIG. 193.--Genouillière and reinforcement, _c._ 1330.
(Roy. MS. 16, G. 6.)]

_Genouillières_ were invariably of cuir-bouilli, and where illustrated
in MSS. or shown in stained-glass windows are of a yellow colour. There
was not much variety in form, and they generally followed the design of
the coudière. A simple and very common form, dating from c. 1330, is
shown in Fig. 193, from Roy. MS. 16, G. 6.

_Cuissarts._--There was seldom any special defence for the upper
leg, but occasionally haut-de-chausses of studded mail are met with,
especially as we approach 1350. An effigy at Tewkesbury exhibits
studded cuissarts, and may be ascribed to _c._ 1350 (Fig. 194). Whether
this pourpoint supplemented the chausses of banded mail or was worn in
their place is a moot point.

[Illustration: FIG. 194.--Effigy. Tewkesbury.]

[Illustration: FIG. 195.--Leg of man-at-arms. (Add. MS. 12,228.)]

[Illustration: FIG. 196.--Demi-jambart, &c., of studded cuir-bouilli.]

[Illustration: FIG. 197.--Sollerets of cuir-bouilli, Sir William
Cheyne, 1375.]

_Grevières or Jambarts._--These, if of plate, are rare, but
demi-grevières are common (Fig. 195). Perhaps the defence most in
vogue was of the splinted kind, which consisted of parallel bands
of steel arranged in vertical lines and embedded in pourpoint with
studs showing, or affixed to cuir-bouilli. The latter was often used
for vambraces and cuissarts (Fig. 196). Perhaps the best example of
splinted armour and banded mail combined is that shown in the brass of
Sir Miles de Stapleton on p. 188, and many references to this style
of defence will appear in the chapter on the Camail and Jupon Period.
Sollerets, if worn at all, were invariably of the pattern shown in
the Creke brass, and seldom covered all the upper part of the foot.
Occasionally we find the ubiquitous cuir-bouilli being used, and a
brass as late as 1375 shows an example; it is that of Sir William
Cheyne at Drayton Beauchamp, Bucks. (Fig. 197).

_The Shield._--Very few representations of the shield of the period
occur, but that in use was of the small heater-shape variety. An early
shield occurs at Whitworth, Durham (Fig. 198).

[Illustration: FIG. 198.--Early shield at Whitworth, Durham.]

This work would be incomplete without a reference to the famous
Hastings brass in Elsing Church, Norfolk, dating from 1347, which
gives details of armour of that most interesting period of English
military history for which we generally look in vain to other brasses,
to monumental effigies, and to MSS. A full description of this
invaluable record has been written by Mr. Albert Hartshorne, F.S.A.,
which appeared in _Archæologia_, Vol. 60, and is more comprehensive
than any account previously published. He relates the recovery of one
of the missing figures from the Fitzwilliam Museum and its subsequent
restoration to the original position it occupied. The figure of Sir
Hugh Hastings occupies the centre, surrounded by a much mutilated
canopy, in compartments of which are represented four contemporary
warriors, &c. The work is of foreign origin, possibly Flemish or
French. The bascinet is of the globular form so well shown in French
MSS. of the period; it is furnished with a visor which would come down
well over the gorget. The latter is of plate, and the first shown upon
a brass; it is acutely pointed in front and of massive proportions,
and guards the neck and chin, thus anticipating the protective
character of the mentonnières a century later. It lies directly upon
the camail, and was doubtless articulated, fastening at the back by
buckles. The rings of the camail and hauberk are very small, and show
distinct signs of interlocking. The usual skirted jupon of the period
covers the body to the knees, upon which is emblazoned the Hastings
Arms, a maunche differenced with a label of three points, which also
appears upon the shield. Roundels of unequal size protect the arm-pits,
that upon the left being the larger; demi-brassarts cover the upper
arm, and demi-vambraces the forearm, being arranged as in the Bacon
brass in Gorleston Church, and the Fitzralph brass in Pebmarsh Church
(Fig. 147), whilst a roundel protects the elbow-joint. The sleeves of
the hauberk are slipped off the hands, as in the case of Sir Robert
de Septvans (Fig. 146), and depend from the wrist, thus showing the
quilted haqueton or gambeson under the mail; the latter is also
apparent beneath the lower hems of the hauberk and jupon, quilted in
vertical lines. The cuissarts are of studded mail, from which depend
broad bands of cuir-bouilli passing round the knees; upon the latter
the genouillières appear as a reinforcement provided with fluted bosses
curiously spiked. The legs from this point downwards are missing, but
a rubbing in the British Museum, taken in 1782, shows that the figure
wore mail chausses, and that the feet were provided with rowelled
spurs. Sir Hugh Hastings served in Flanders 1340 to 1343, and also in
Brittany: he took part in the operations at Bergerac and Auberoche in
1345, and was present at the siege of Aiguillon in 1346.

[Illustration: FIG. 199.--Figure from Hastings brass, 1347.]

In two of the niches of the canopy are the figures representing King
Edward III. and Henry, Earl of Lancaster. The king holds a drawn sword
but has no scabbard; laminated epaulières and reinforced coudières
appear on each figure but no roundels; gorgets are absent and the
shins are protected by demi-grevières of plate. Both the king and
his cousin have cuissarts of studded mail. Another figure represents
Thomas Beauchamp, Earl of Warwick; he carries a pennoned lance in his
right hand, and is chiefly remarkable for the visored bascinet (Fig.
175), which, with its dependent guards for the neck and its huge visor
protecting the neck and part of the chest as well as the face, may be
compared with the armed figures from the tomb of Lady Eleanor Fitzalan
at Beverley, 1330. It is similar to that worn by a companion figure,
Ralph, Lord Stafford, on the same brass, and also by that representing
Lawrence Hastings, which is now missing. The latter is known to have
shown a figure with a gorget of plate similar to Sir Hugh Hastings,
with roundels at the shoulders and elbows. Another lost figure is that
of Hugh le Despencer, whose stone effigy may be seen at Tewkesbury.

The newly found figure is that of Roger, Lord Grey of Ruthin; it
shows defences similar to the others, but has complete brassarts of
plate, with demi-grevières, and the gambeson appears above the mail
collar. The figure is bareheaded and leans upon a pole-axe, which would
apparently be about four feet long: the inclusion of this weapon is
remarkable so far as brasses are concerned.

The last figure represents Almeric, Lord St. Amand, whose headpiece
is extremely peculiar (Fig. 177). The globular bascinet appears to
be protected by a steel bonnet, or chapelle-de-fer, having a wide
projecting rim which worked upon pivots at either side and could be
brought down when required level with the eyes, while the back would
afford some protection for the neck. A comb or ridge is also shown,
probably hollow, and enclosing a similar small ridge on the bascinet,
upon which it would run as a guide. This is the only example of a
headpiece of this fashion engraved upon a brass, but on the monumental
effigy of Aymer de Valence at Westminster, _c._ 1296, one of the
equestrian figures is shown similarly habited. The gorget is different
from that of Hastings in being hollowed out at the sides; it rests
directly upon the camail, which is shown with very large and coarse

In all the figures the sword is suspended at a single point and not
at two as in the Cyclas and previous periods, while the cord round
the waist is also dispensed with. The woodcut heading our Preface
indicates crudely the armour prevailing in this period. The subject of
the illustration is unknown, but it probably represents an episode at
a mediæval garden-party, where a section of the guests indulge in a
little “gentle and joyous sport” for the edification of the others.

In connection with the armour of the Studded and Splinted Periods
the representation of the sovereigns of England upon the coinage is
of considerable interest, inasmuch as it illustrates in a remarkable
degree the extraordinary conservatism of the moneyers and die-sinkers
of the mediæval period. The first representation of regal defensive
equipment occurs in the reign of King Edward III., and in the
Studded and Splinted Period. The gold noble of the second coinage
of this monarch represents him standing in a ship bearing a shield
upon his left arm and a sword in his right. The shield is large and
heater-shaped, and the sword has a short grip, a globular pommel, and
short quillons drooping towards the blade, which is long, and narrows
gradually towards the point. Camail of very capacious extent covers
the body nearly to the waist and extends down the arms to the elbow;
from below this the sleeve of a mail hauberk appears, covering a
small portion of the forearm and pendent about a foot. The forearm is
apparently unprotected, but a gauntlet covers the right hand, which
alone is visible. Upon the jupon appearing below the camail are four
studs, indicating pourpoint defence. In 1346, the half-noble exhibits
a much more contracted camail, a tightly fitting jupon with short
sleeves, and the sleeve of a chain mail hauberk apparently reaching
to the hand. The noble of 1351 shows camail, a short-sleeved jupon
revealing a hauberk reaching to the elbow, from beneath which issues a
loose sleeve to the wrist, of soft folding material, probably part of
the gambeson. The jupon is loose and plain to the waist, below which
appears studded work. The half-noble is the same, except that the chain
mail hauberk reaches to the wrist. In 1360, the noble presents the
same characteristics with regard to the camail and jupon, but a loose
sleeve, fringed at the wrist, is apparently attached to the jupon. The
half-noble of the same date has a rough indication of a coudière, with
mail brassarts or hauberk sleeve, and a gauntlet.

[Illustration: FIG. 200.--Man-at-arms, _c._ 1350.]

[Illustration: FIG. 201.--Knight, _c._ 1350.]

Richard II. nobles have the camail with a tippet of material reaching
nearly to the waist, below which appear the studs; the arm is encased
in the short sleeve of the jupon, and a long sleeve of material beneath
it; but on the half-noble a hauberk sleeve of mail is depicted to the
elbow. Henry IV. is represented in his first coinage habited almost
the same as his predecessor, but in 1412 a gold noble was issued
showing the arm in a brassart, coudière, and vambrace, but with the
same unaccountable studs below the waist. The gold coins of Henry
V. continued to be of the same pattern as those of Henry IV. In
Henry VI.’s first coinage the arm is encased in laminated brassarts,
coudière, and a scoop-shaped piece of chain mail emerging from the
coudière and reaching nearly to the wrist, where a gauntlet or glove
with a flexible cuff is shown. Otherwise the coin is the same as in
Henry IV.’s time. The rose-noble of Edward IV. exhibits the same
characteristics, as does also the angelet. With this reign the type
of the king standing in a ship ceases, but is revived again in the
time of Henry VIII., whose first coinage comprehended a regal on
which the peculiar scoop-shaped piece of mail upon the arm is shown,
an indefinite kind of cape serves for the upper part of the person,
and the inevitable studs appear below the belt. On the George noble,
issued between 1526 and 1533, we get, for the first time in more than
a hundred years, an approximation to contemporary armour in the figure
of the Saint, who is clothed in Maximilian plate from head to heel,
with large pike-guards appropriate to the time. On subsequent coins of
Edward VI., James I., and Charles I. the armour is correct. Summarising
the above respecting the persevering studs we find them represented
on coins a century and a half after they ceased to be worn; camail is
shown sixty years after it was disused; plate does not appear until a
hundred years after it came in vogue, and the drooping sleeve of mail,
though used on the Continent, was not seen in England after the Cyclas
Period. Speaking generally, Richard II. and the monarchs immediately
succeeding had the pleasure of seeing themselves represented upon the
coinage in the same equipment as the ordinary soldier of the time,
with the sole exception of the crown. Upon the silver coinage the head
only of the monarch is represented until we come to the reign of Edward
VI., when the Maximilian type is shown, and subsequent coins exhibit
contemporary armour.

[Illustration: FIG. 202.--Military equipment, _c._ 1360. (Add. MS.



[Illustration: PLATE XVI*

Helmet of Philip II., by Wolf of Landshut, 1554

_A. F. Calvert_]

With the advent of the camail and jupon we enter upon a period which
presents a certain amount of uniformity, and is in marked contrast
to the tentative styles which preceded it. Throughout the Surcoat,
Cyclas, and Loose-skirted Jupon Periods, defensive armour was in a
state of transition; warriors sought to render themselves immune
by every conceivable expedient, discarding those which failed upon
trial, and augmenting those which proved efficacious. The cumbrous
mentonnières and gorgets of plate; the enormous visors; the great
globular bascinets; the multiplicity of garments in the Cyclas Period,
and the indiscriminate use of cuir-bouilli, horn, pourpointerie, chain,
and plate, in that which followed, were all in this period relegated
to the limbo of forgetfulness, and a uniformity of attire was adopted
which was the more striking when compared with those which immediately
preceded it. This similarity or prevalence in fashion in military dress
has lasted to the present time, for in all the different periods we
shall deal with after this uniformity commenced, we shall notice that
certain features are prominent, and that only minute deviations call
for our attention. As human knowledge is but the consolidated result
of experience, so we may attribute the Camail and Jupon Period to the
French wars of Edward III. and Philip of Valois, which for nearly
twenty years devastated France, and in which the two decisive battles
of Cressy, 1346, and Poictiers, 1356, are included. During that
long period the various defences underwent the fiery ordeal of actual
use, and only those which emerged triumphantly from the struggle were

[Illustration: FIG. 203.--Breastplate, Camail and Jupon Period. (Roy.
MS. 15, D. 3.)]

[Illustration: FIG. 204.--Sir Ralph de Knevynton, 1370. Aveley, Essex.]

To the student of armour and arms, this period is of exceptional
interest by reason of the unwonted facility with which it may be
studied, inasmuch as there is hardly a cathedral, or church of any
importance in the kingdom, which does not possess, in some manner,
details of military equipment relating to it. Brasses and monumental
effigies simply abound, stained glass is by no means uncommon, while
carvings in wood and stone exhibit details which are at times of great
importance. The wealth of technical matter thus preserved enables the
student to reconstruct the period with a fidelity which is wanting
in those earlier. It must not be supposed that the great and salient
features of the style were at once adopted; there was a transition
period of nearly twenty years, during which the old defences were in
part retained, and only discarded by degrees. Before pointing out these
exceptions, however, it may be as well to take the several features of
the equipment in order, as has been done in preceding styles.

[Illustration: FIG. 205.--Sir Robert Swynborne, 1391. Little Horkesley
Church, Essex.]

_The Jupon._--The jupon was a sleeveless outer garment reaching
from the neck to midway between the hips and the knees. It was
tight-fitting, as may readily be gleaned by inspection of brasses
and effigies, and no folds or creases can be observed in it. In
construction it consisted of several thicknesses of material sewn
through, thus becoming almost homogeneous, and upon this firm
sub-structure a layer of silk, velvet, or other rich material was
firmly fastened down, and bore in the great majority of cases the
armorial insignia of the wearer. There are exceptional cases in which
the jupon was stuffed and quilted. The arm-holes became decorated in
the later years of this style, but owing to the covering camail we have
no knowledge of any decorations upon the neck. The skirt was finished
with an enriched border of either escallops, or acanthus leaves, or
dags--dagging being a mode of ornamenting the hems of civilian garments
prevailing in the reigns of Edward III., Richard II., and the fourth
and fifth Henrys; it consisted in cutting out borders of sleeves,
skirts, &c., into open work of various devices. This rich and splendid
covering to the real body defences was always laced up at the sides,
occasionally only on one side, under the left arm.

[Illustration: FIG. 206.--Bascinet. St. Peter’s Church, St. Albans.]

[Illustration: FIG. 207.--Bascinet. St. Peter’s Church, St. Albans.]

[Illustration: FIG. 208.--Snout-faced bascinet.]

[Illustration: FIG. 209.--Bascinet. (Tower of London.)]

_The Breastplate._--This was worn underneath the jupon and over the
hauberk to which it was affixed, and gave the swelling, globular
appearance to the knights so characteristic of the period; its
termination at the waist imparted a contour of body almost wasp-like
at times. We are unaware of the form of this defence, and also as to
whether or not it possessed a companion backplate, so as to form a
complete cuirass; however, the appearance of the back of many effigies
of this period leads to the supposition that a similar plate was
used to protect that part of the body. In the MS. Roy. 15, D. 3, a
foreign knight is shown wearing his breastplate upon his jupon, and it
is of the form depicted in Fig. 203; it may perhaps be taken as the
general shape of this defence. Upon a sculptured effigy of the year
1370 in Bamberg Cathedral, a copy of which is reproduced in Boutell’s
“Monumental Brasses,” a heart-shaped breastplate is shown, but there
are no British examples of the exposed defence. In the Bamberg
effigy chains are shown depending from staples in the breastplate for
attachment to the sword-hilt and misericorde, and the brass of Sir
Ralph de Knevynton at Aveley, Essex, 1370, also has this feature (Fig.

_The Hauberk._--During the earlier portion of the Camail and Jupon
Period the hauberk was invariably constructed of banded mail, but
towards the end of the century it was superseded by linked chain mail,
although late examples of the banded may be found, such as that of Lord
Berkeley, 1392, at Wotton-under-Edge, Gloucestershire, and Sir Nicholas
Hawberk, 1407, Cobham Church, Kent. The defence reached to about the
middle of the thigh, and subsequently to 1380 became sleeveless. The
lower edge appears as a rule about two inches below that of the jupon,
and is, in some cases, made ornamental by pendent rings, as in the case
of Sir Robert Swynborne. Under the hauberk the quilted gambeson, or
haqueton, was worn as usual, but no portion of it appears in brasses or

[Illustration: FIG. 210.--Snout-faced bascinet, _c._ 1400. (Wallace

[Illustration: FIG. 211.--Visored bascinet from Roy. MS. 20, C. 7.]

[Illustration: FIG. 212.--Knight. (Richard II. MS., in Bibliothèque du

_The Bascinet._--The bascinet was very tall at the commencement of
the period and acutely pointed at the apex; it gradually lessened
in height as time advanced. It descended on both sides well over
the ears, and was carried round to the back of the neck, as a rule,
in a straight line. The apex was not over the centre of the head,
but more towards the rear; when the knight couched his lance and
bent forward in the saddle the point was thus brought forward to a
perpendicular position. This detail cannot be perceived in brasses, but
is very apparent in monumental effigies, and is shown on the opposite
page (Fig. 206), taken from a stained-glass window in St. Peter’s
Church, St. Albans, and approximately of the date 1380. The visor is
represented in gold-coloured glass, and this feature of gold gilding
is by no means uncommon in MSS. of the early part of this period,
from which it is possible to infer that the visors were either of
cuir-bouilli, latten, or were enriched by gilding. At first the visors
were removable at will, being merely hung on projecting knobs at the
sides; but afterwards, when the snout-faced variety came into vogue,
they were invariably fixed, and could only be raised or lowered. An
earlier form of bascinet is shown in the windows of the same church
which has a close-fitting visor, very similar to those which marked the
advent of the pot-helm in the thirteenth century (Fig. 207). Towards
the close of the fourteenth century the adoption of the “snout-faced,”
or “pig-faced” visor (Fig. 208) became universal, eliciting much
uncomplimentary criticisms from contemporary writers and being the
subject of many caricatures in carvings of the period. In the Tower of
London a bascinet weighing 5¼ lbs. is preserved (Fig. 209); the visor
or ventaille, which weighs 1 lb., originally hinged up to a pivot in
the centre of the skull. In the Wallace Collection, Fig. 210 shows a
beautiful example which was formerly in the Meyrick Collection; it is
French, and dates from _c._ 1400. An early example of this form of
visor bascinet is preserved in the collection at Parham dating from
1365, which shows the ventaille partly covering the neck, and this
form is common in the Roy. MS. 20, C. 7, in the British Museum, dating
from 1400 to 1415 (Fig. 211). Here, however, the feature is made of
such huge dimensions, reaching doubtless as far as the collar-bones,
that a feeling is engendered of disproportion, or of caricature; but as
the examples are very numerous, and all appear the same, the thought
is perforce dispelled. Huge visors are also depicted in a History of
Richard II. of England preserved in the Bibliothèque du Roi (a figure
from which is here shown, Fig. 212), which must have provided a large
amount of breathing space and also acted to some extent as a gorget.
The bascinet termed the Barbute is essentially Italian, and does
not occur upon any English brass or effigy; it appears to have been
prevalent on the Continent, and some of the head-pieces shown upon
the common soldiery in English MSS. partake of the character of this
defence. It was worn without any visor, but a portion of the camail,
adapted for the purpose, was lifted in order to cover almost entirely
the small opening left in front, being fastened to the staples with
which these helmets are almost always provided. The Barbute in the
Wallace Collection (Fig. 214) shows this feature very distinctly, as
it is provided with two staples for the purpose, while the nasal thus
formed by the camail is well shown in the effigy of Ulrich Landschaden,
1369, in Neckarsteinach (Fig. 215), which, however, is defended by
the ordinary bascinet, though strange to note, the figure is entirely
without any visible plate armour for the limbs. A bascinet with an iron
nasal of rigid form is shown in the MS. Roy. 14, E. 4, and depicted
in Fig. 216. It will be seen by the various figures illustrating the
Camail and Jupon Period that the height of the bascinet became less
towards the end of the time when it prevailed, and showed a distinct
tendency to merge into the globular form of the succeeding period.
The bascinet of Sir William Burgate, 1409, in Burgate Church, Suffolk
(Fig. 217), is remarkable for its high comb or apex, and is probably of
foreign origin.

[Illustration: FIG. 213.--Snout-faced helmet, _c._ 1400.]

[Illustration: FIG. 214.--Barbute, _c._ 1400. (Wallace Collection.)]

[Illustration: FIG. 215.--Effigy at Neckarsteinach, 1369, showing

[Illustration: FIG. 216.--Nasal from Roy. MS. 14, E. 4]

[Illustration: FIG. 217.--Bascinet. Sir William Burgate, 1409.]

_The Camail._--The term camail is said to be a derivative of
“cap-mail,” though one authority deduces it from “curtain-mail.” As we
have seen in the preceding chapters, this protection for the neck had
been used for centuries, but at no time did it attain the dimensions
and efficiency which distinguished it during the period under
discussion. It is probable that a gorget of plate of some description
was worn underneath it, to which we shall refer when speaking of the
epaulières. The well-known representation from Nero, D. 7, in the
British Museum, representing the Black Prince receiving a grant of
Aquitaine from his father, shows the prince with his helmet and its
depending camail doffed, but no gorget, however, is disclosed. At first
the lower portion of the camail fell almost perpendicularly to the
shoulders, and covered but a small portion of them, as may be seen in
the brasses of Sir John de Argentine, 1360, Horsheath Church, Cambridge
(Fig. 218); Sir John de Paletoot, 1361, Watton Church, Herts (Fig.
224); and Sir John de Cobham, 1375, Cobham, Kent; but as the period
progressed, the mail expanded so as to cover not only the shoulders,
but the upper part of the arm. At first banded mail was universally
employed, and examples may be found of its use even as late as 1405, on
the brass of Sir Thomas Massyngberde, but by the year 1380, chain mail
of varying patterns had become popular. The links were arranged either
in horizontal lines or vertically, and examples may be found where
they vary in size from that of a coarse dog chain down to extremely
fine links. For examples, see brasses of Sir John Wingfield, 1400,
Letheringham Church, Suffolk (Fig. 219); Sir John Hanley; Sir John
Bettesthorne, Mere Church, Wiltshire; Sir George Felbrigge (Fig. 220);
the painting of the Black Prince in St. Stephen’s Chapel, Westminster,

[Illustration: FIG. 218.--Sir John de Argentine, 1360. Horsheath
Church, Cambridge.]

[Illustration: FIG. 219.--Sir John Wingfield, _c._ 1400. Letheringham
Church, Suffolk.]

[Illustration: FIG. 220.--Sir George Felbrigge, 1400. Playford Church,

The method of attaching the camail to the bascinet was by a lace
running through staples termed vervelles, which were visible until
about the year 1387, when the fashion was introduced of covering
them with a more or less enriched border. To the student this forms
a valuable clue to the date when inspecting a brass or monument, but
must of course be used in conjunction with other characteristics. The
brass of Sir William de Echingham, 1387, is one of the latest showing
this feature (see Fig. 221). Towards the latter part of the period
mixed mail and plate made their appearance (see Fig. 222, knight of the
d’Eresby family).

[Illustration: FIG. 221.--Sir William de Echingham, 1387. Etchingham
Church, Sussex.]

[Illustration: FIG. 222.--Knight of the d’Eresby family, 1410. Spilsby
Church, Lincs.]

[Illustration: FIG. 223.--Gauntlet, late fourteenth century. (Wallace

_Plate Defences._--One of the features of this period was the enclosure
of the limbs in plate defences which conformed generally to the natural
curves, and present a striking contrast to the distortions which
appeared during the greater part of the fifteenth century. Upon the
shoulders laminated epaulières occur, the upper plates of which are
habitually hidden by the camail and jupon, but were probably affixed
to or depended from the gorget of plate before mentioned. Brassarts
of plate enclosed the upper arms, while coudières of a close-fitting
pattern protected the bend of the arm. There was no distinct fashion
during this period for the outer projecting plate of the coudière; at
first a roundel appeared as in the case of Sir John de Argentine (Fig.
218), and Sir John de Paletoot (Fig. 224), but the general form was
that exhibited in the brasses of Sir John Wingfield (Fig. 219) and
Sir George Felbrigge (Fig. 220). Cylindrical vambraces of one plate
guarded the forearms to the wrist, where they were covered partly by
the cuffs of the gauntlets. The latter during this period attained to
a higher degree of perfection than had previously been the case, and
great attention was paid to detail and careful fitting. The fingers
and thumbs were distinct and articulated; a plate covered the back
of the hand and another was formed into a cuff. The introduction of
gadlings, or spikes of steel upon the knuckles and joints, occurred at
this time, not solely for ornament but for actual weapons of offence
when other means had failed. In a trial by combat fought before Edward
III., one of the combatants gained the advantage by striking the
gadlings of his gauntlet into the face of his adversary. At times they
are shown of great size, projecting a considerable distance from the
knuckles. Towards the close of the fourteenth century the terminal
parts of the finger-guards are shown with imitation finger-nails, and
many of the gauntlets seen upon the effigies are richly decorated. A
most interesting specimen, unique in England and of great rarity, is
Fig. 223, in the Wallace Collection, dating from the latter half of the
fourteenth century and of French make. The plates for the fingers are
missing; the covering for the back of the hand and the cuff is formed
of one piece, with the exception of a small plate, which, however, is
not movable. The decorations are bands of latten. The gauntlets of
the Black Prince hanging over the tomb in Canterbury Cathedral are
often referred to; they are of the same period as those in the Wallace
Collection, but made of latten, gilded, and cannot vie with them in
workmanship. The gadlings are well seen upon the various brasses of
this period, those of Sir George Felbrigge being perhaps one of the
most prominent (Fig. 220).

[Illustration: FIG. 223A.--Brass in St. Michael’s Church, St. Albans.]

[Illustration: FIG. 224.--Sir John de Paletoot, 1361. Watton Church,

The mail defences for the lower limbs have the same characteristic
of following the outline closely, and of being what may be termed
skin-tight. The thighs were enclosed in cuissarts of steel, back
and front plates hinging upon the outside of the legs and buckled
between the thighs, thus differing from the Splinted Armour Period,
when front plates only were invariably used. The knees were guarded by
genouillières of plate, which at first were of simple construction,
and consisted of a single plate (_vide_ Sir John de Argentine, Fig.
218), but eventually these were reinforced by lames of steel above
and below. Steel grevières protected the shins and calves, and a
small plate depending from the genouillière, or from one of its lower
reinforcements, gave an additional protection to the front plate. The
sollerets were invariably of plate jointed, like the epaulières, after
the manner of a lobster’s tail; they were long and pointed, and gave
rise to the fashion which prevailed until sabbatons were introduced, of
pointing the toe downwards through the stirrup when riding. At the back
of the knee-joints, and also at the joints of the shoulders, elbows,
and ankles, small pieces of mail were introduced called goussets or
gussets, being fixed generally upon the garment worn underneath the
plate, but at times to the inside parts of the plate itself. They
served as reinforcements to the hauberk.

[Illustration: FIG. 225.--Misericorde, John Cray, 1380.]

One of the peculiarities of the Camail and Jupon Period is the
magnificent hip-belt, of far more elaborate workmanship and finish than
in any preceding or following age. It generally consisted of raised
square or oblong brooches, veritable triumphs of the goldsmith’s art,
and occasionally studded with jewels, linked to each other to form a
continuous band, and fastened in front by an enriched morse or clasp.
At times roundels were used, and occasionally a running pattern in gold
or embroidery. In the early figures it is shown with a buckle and a
loop, a piece of pendent belt passing through and fastened like the
Order of the Garter. A brass exemplifying very plainly the loop and
buckle lies in St. Michael’s Church, St. Albans, and dates from _c._
1370 (Fig. 223A). (It is remarkable for showing two tabs of leather
or plate upon each shoulder, issuing from beneath the camail; we may
have here a replica of the French fashion of epaulière at the period,
which generally was encircled by tabs of cuir-bouilli.) See also Fig.
218, Argentine, and Paletoot, Fig. 224. This seldom occurs upon late
examples. The general method of wearing it was horizontally round the
hips, but a few exceptions will be found upon searching the engraved
figures. This fashion was copied by the ladies of the period, who wore
hip-belts, showing beneath the super côte-hardi, of equal richness to
their lords.

[Illustration: FIG. 226.--Shield, 1375.]

_The Sword_ was attached to the belt at the uppermost part of the
scabbard, and hung perpendicularly at the left side. It generally had
a wheel pommel and a swelling grip, with quillons either straight or
drooping slightly towards the blade. The latter was about an inch and
a half broad at the hilt, thirty inches in length, and tapered to the
point, while the section was either of a flattened or a lozenge shape.
It was double-edged, and had a grip of varying dimensions, ranging from
four inches in length to an extent which, in some examples, almost
suggest a two-handed weapon, or the hand-and-a-half or bastard sword
of a later period (compare the d’Eresby and Felbrigge brasses). The
pommel, grip, and scabbard were at times elaborately enriched with a
profusion of ornament. A new weapon was introduced at this period,
the misericorde or dagger of mercy, used for despatching a fallen foe
whose wounds were beyond all surgical aid, in the combat _à outrance_,
or in the field; or as a last resource for defence when other weapons
had failed. It was a straight dagger with no guard as a rule, and
having both the hilt and scabbard curiously ornamented; the blade had
but one edge, the section being triangular. From its occurrence upon
many monumental effigies, we gather that as a rule the misericorde
was attached to the belt by a chain, but this feature is not as a
rule shown upon brasses. The curious brass to Sir Ralph de Knevynton,
however, exemplifies it, though the chains for attachment of both
sword and misericorde are affixed to the breastplate (see Fig. 204).
The misericorde of John Cray, 1380 (Fig. 225), shows it depending at
an angle from the belt, while towards the close of the reign of King
Richard II. the knights have the weapon slung hilt downwards to the
front, though this curious fashion was soon discarded.

[Illustration: FIG. 227.--Shield, Hereford Cathedral, 1375.]

[Illustration: FIG. 228.--Heaume of Thomas de Mowbray, Earl of
Nottingham, and Earl Marshal. (From a drawing of his seal, 1389: MS.
Cott., Julius, C. vii.)]

_The Shield_ in use at this period is but rarely shown, and never upon
brasses. Upon the tomb of Robert Wyvill, Bishop of Salisbury, 1375
(Fig. 226), a shield occurs which has a central boss riveted on and is
concave to the person; a projection is shown at the upper part, upon
the back of which the guige is apparently fixed. In the “Pilgrimage
of Human Life” in the French National Library we have represented the
discarded habiliments of a knight who is departing upon a pilgrimage:
the shield is small, notched in the right-hand corner for the lance
rest, and presents a concave surface to the front. The snout-faced
visor upon the bascinet shows it to be of the period now dealt with. A
sculptured effigy in Bamberg Cathedral, dating from 1370, has a shield
which is notched in the corner and also concave to the front; while
another shield from Hereford Cathedral affords us an example of an
English pattern dating from 1375, which also is concave to the front
(Fig. 227). It occurs upon the tomb of Sir Richard Pembridge. For the
emblazoning of arms the heater-shaped shield is invariably used.

[Illustration: PLATE XVII

Heaume, Crest, and Shield of the Black Prince in Canterbury Cathedral]

[Illustration: FIG. 229 and 230.--The Pembridge heaume, Hereford

[Illustration: FIG. 231.--Panache of Wm. de Latimer, 1372.]

[Illustration: FIG. 232.--Panache, Edward Courtenay, 1400.]

_The Heaume._--During the period under consideration the great heaume
was in use for tilting purposes, the visored bascinet being reserved
for warfare. The heaume retained its conical crown in order to fit
over the bascinet, but the lower rim was still too high above the
shoulders for the latter to afford any support to it, and the curve as
shown is not adapted (Fig. 228); we must therefore infer that the whole
weight was borne by the bascinet, and that the inside of the heaume
was padded in order to make it fit securely. In the lower part of the
front a hole or staple is generally found, by which it could be fixed
securely by a thong or chain to the cuirass. It is doubtful whether
any great heaumes are in existence which date back to the thirteenth
century, and there are only a few authentic examples of the fourteenth.
One of them is the heaume of the Black Prince in Canterbury Cathedral
(Plate XVII.), the upper part of which is covered by the chapeau or cap
of dignity bearing the heraldic lion. No breathing-holes are shown,
and the occularium is extremely narrow. As weight was apparently of no
object at this period, a secondary defence was often introduced in the
form of a large plate of iron covering the whole of the left part of
the face, hinged at the termination of the occularium upon that side,
and falling lower than the rim of the heaume, to which it was further
affixed by bolts and nuts. This _pièce de renfort_ may be viewed as
the prototype of the “grande garde” of the succeeding century: an
excellent example is preserved in the collection of Lord Zouche at
Parham. It will be observed that the lower or cylindrical portion of
the Black Prince heaume consists of two pieces riveted together, and
this was the usual method at the time. In the heaume of Sir Richard
Pembridge, Hereford Cathedral (Figs. 229, 230), however, the three
pieces (cylinder, truncated cone, and crown) are welded together, and
the rivets are more for ornament than for increased strength; the metal
is thickened round the occularium, and the lower edge is roped so as
not to present a cutting edge. There are a number of holes in the
upper portions to permit the aglets of the laces to be passed through,
by which the crest and lambrequins could be attached to the heaume.
In the lower front portion are the two holes in cruciform shape to
allow passage for a T-bolt appended to the chain for securing to the

[Illustration: FIG. 233.--Pranker heaume.]

[Illustration: FIG. 234.--Heaume, Sir Edward de Thorpe, _c._ 1410.]

A very rare example of the great heaume, which may date from the early
part of the fourteenth century, is one preserved in the Rotunda at
Woolwich. The crown is conical; the visor hinges on the left side,
and closes with a spring on the right, and numerous small holes are
pierced in it for air. The occularium is a narrow slit above the
visor and below the crown. It is much corroded, and probably when
new weighed more than at the present time (9½ lbs.) (Plate XXXIX.,
p. 364). During the studded and splinted style of English armour,
heraldic crests had been introduced as we have seen, following upon the
fan-shaped decorations of an earlier period: in the latter part of the
fourteenth century all warriors of distinction adopted the fashion, and
subsequently all men of knightly rank. These crests were invariably
made of cuir-bouilli, which material allowed itself to be moulded into
any desired shape, and had the advantage of being unaffected by the
weather, besides affording some protection from a sword-cut. Crests
of all shapes, sizes, and degrees of grotesqueness sprang into being,
some tending to enormous proportions and thus forestalling the mantling
of extravagant size so characteristic of the fifteenth century. The
contoise or flowing scarf invariably accompanied the crest. A panache
of feathers was a favourite form of crest, by reason presumably of its
lightness and gracefulness; that of Sir Wm. de Latimer, 1372, and of
Edward Courtenay, 1400, are reproduced as examples (Figs. 231, 232).
As a foreign specimen of the great heaume of the Camail Period we
may refer to the example preserved in the Historical Court Museum at
Vienna, dating from about _c._ 1360, and known locally as the “Pranker
heaume” (Fig. 233). It is made of four strong hammered-iron plates
with smaller reinforcements, and weighs about twelve pounds, being
probably used only for tournaments. The crest, two golden horns with
silver combs, is of the usual cuir-bouilli, and weighs about three
pounds. A late heaume of this period, dating from _c._ 1410, is that
of Sir Edward de Thorpe, which is of sufficient height to rest upon
the shoulders (Fig. 234). A panache surmounts the elaborate coronet;
the occularium is very high, and could hardly allow of a bascinet being
worn underneath. The usual ring for affixing it to the breastplate is
shown at the base.

[Illustration: FIG. 235.--Sir Miles de Stapleton, 1364. Formerly in
Ingham Church, Norfolk.]

[Illustration: FIG. 236.--Genouillière, Sir Thomas Cheyne, 1368.]

The orle or wreath is of the greatest rarity upon monumental brasses
of the Camail and Jupon Period; Sir Reginald de Cobham, 1403, has a
small jewelled orle, however, and one of the same character is shown
on the brass of a knight of the d’Eresby family, 1410 (see Fig. 222).
This piece of ornament originated in the band of cloth, silk, or velvet
placed round the bascinet to support, and act as pad to, the heaume,
and subsequently, when the latter was discarded, remained to be a
foundation for the crest.

[Illustration: FIG. 237.--Sir Humphrey Littlebury, Holbeach, Lincs.]

The earlier effigies and brasses of this period are in many of
their details exemplifications of the studded and splinted style of
defence, and are in fact of greater use in that respect than the few
contemporary brasses and effigies which remain and are generally used
as examples. The lost brass of Sir Miles de Stapleton, 1364 (Fig. 235),
once in Ingham Church, Norfolk, is, for instance, an excellent example,
probably the best; he has a studded jupon fitting tightly to the figure
and escalloped at the hem, with haut-de-chausses or cuissarts of the
same material. His genouillières are of single plates with two rows of
reinforcing cuir-bouilli tabs depending below, while the jambarts are
of metal splints affixed by rivets to the cuir-bouilli beneath. The
long pendent tab of the belt should be noticed. The remarkable brass
of Sir Ralph de Knevynton, 1370 (see Fig. 204), at Aveley, Essex, may
also be quoted as showing the same features respecting the jupon and
cuissarts; but the shape and position of the belt, the great length
of the misericorde, its quillons, the crude genouillières, the long
hauberk pointed in front, the pose and shape of the figure, and the
chains depending from the breastplate, make this brass, which is of
Flemish workmanship, one of the most singular of its kind. Sir John
de Argentine, 1360 (Fig. 218) and Sir John de Paletoot, 1361, have
cuissarts of studded material and pendent belts; Sir Thomas Cheyne,
1368, also has studded cuissarts, and jambarts of studded splints
similar to those of Sir Miles de Stapleton, but his genouillières
are most remarkable and quite unique. They appear to be constructed
entirely of cuir-bouilli with pendent tabs of singular form reinforcing
the jambarts (Fig. 236). The Cheynes appear to have been a family
addicted to peculiarities, as Sir William Cheyne, 1375, has laminated
sollerets of remarkable construction and also quite unique (see Fig.
197). Sir Humphrey Littlebury, Holbeach Church, Lincolnshire (Fig.
237), has cuissarts of cuir-bouilli with studs of an ornamental form;
his genouillières are crude and of single plates, but the hem of his
jupon is remarkable for graceful beauty, being deeply dagged into
acanthus-leaf form. A rich hip-belt has a pendent tab at the side, but,
strange to note, the sword is not suspended by it, but has a separate
belt passing diagonally round the waist. This second belt is not
unfrequently found in sculptured effigies but seldom upon brasses. The
brass of Robert Albyn, _c._ 1400 (Fig. 238), Hemel Hempstead, Herts,
where two belts are shown, has the sword suspended from both belts.
Sir John de Cobham, 1375, the founder of Cobham College, has studded
cuissarts and genouillières reminiscent of those of Sir Thomas Cheyne.
The brass of Sir John de St. Quintin, 1397 (Fig. 239), in Brandsburton
Church, Yorkshire, is remarkable for the very wide and elaborate
hip-belt, which is fixed higher than is usual upon a shortened jupon,
necessitating a small subsidiary belt from which to suspend the sword,
and also an extra length of hauberk, which is curiously bent round
the limbs. The coudières are larger than usual, and together with the
genouillières are ornamented. After 1380, many jupons are shown with
fur round the arm openings, as in the brass of Sir Nicholas Dagworth,
1401, where the great length of the sword-grip, ornamentation of the
armour, great height of the bascinet, and elaborate hem to the jupon
are special features.

[Illustration: FIG. 238.--Robert Albyn, 1400. Hemel Hempstead Church,

The years between 1400 and 1410 must be looked upon as a transition
period, inasmuch as features distinctive of the Camail and Jupon and
of the Surcoatless overlap each other. For example, the brass of Sir
Thomas Braunstone, Constable of Wisbeach Castle, in Wisbeach Church,
Cambridgeshire, dating from 1401 (Fig. 240), has taces, apparently five
in number, although his neck is camailed, the jupon being dispensed
with; whilst Sir John Hanley, who, together with his two wives, is
shown upon a brass in Dartmouth Church, dated 1403, has five or six
taces and a shortened jupon, edged with fur round the arm-holes, but
with a camailed neck.

[Illustration: FIG. 239.--Sir John de St. Quintin, 1397. Brandsburton
Church, Yorkshire.]

[Illustration: FIG. 240.--Sir Thomas Braunstone, 1401, Constable of
Wisbeach Castle. Wisbeach Church, Cambridgeshire.]

[Illustration: FIG. 241.--A knight, _c._ 1405. Laughton Church,

Sir John Wylcotes in Great Tew Church, Oxfordshire, although wearing
camail, has a reinforcing gorget of plate superposed upon it. The
latter example is a strange mixture of old and new styles; high pointed
bascinet and camail being blended with palettes and taces. Lady
Wylcotes, who is shown upon the same brass, wears the nebule head-dress
which went out of fashion thirty years previously. A knight of the
d’Eresby family, 1410 (see Fig. 222), exemplifies a strange mixture of
transition styles. The orle has been previously noted, but the bascinet
is provided with a bavière which is placed upon the camail. The
laminated epaulières are curiously brought forward in order to cover
the goussets, over which they form protecting arches. Round the waist
is seen the ornamental belt worn by all knights of that period round
the hips; it carries no sword or misericorde and is therefore purely
ornamental, and, if we may say so, entirely superfluous. The sword-belt
across the body from the right hip is the fashion of the Surcoatless
Period. (A knight in Laughton Church, _c._ 1405 (Fig. 241), also
exhibits this feature of the sword-belt, though otherwise he conforms
to the period.) A waved fringe of mail appears below the five taces;
the genouillières have prominent projections over the knee-caps and are
very ornamental, while the sollerets have a decorative gousset of chain
mail. Altogether the armour is eccentric, and probably both the wearer
and his wife were of the same character, inasmuch as the lady is shown
in a reticulated head-dress without the veil and the high-waisted gown
then only prevailing on the Continent. The knight’s suit is beautifully
enriched with a design which imparts a very characteristic aspect to
the entire figure.



[Illustration: FIG. 242.--Helmet, _c._ 1415.]

[Illustration: FIG. 243.--Robert, Lord Ferrers of Chartley, 1407.
Merevale Abbey Church, Warwickshire.]

With the advent of this period we find the knightly defence consisting
essentially, for the first time in English history, of a complete suit
of plate with no textile covering whatever worn over it. Hence the
term “Surcoatless Period,” which distinguishes it from any preceding
or succeeding era. The camail was now finally abolished after being
in vogue in one fashion or another for over one hundred years. Its
great recommendation was mobility, as it enabled the wearer to move
his head easily in almost any direction, but the great detraction
was undoubtedly the weight. The bascinet itself was heavy, but when
the thick curtain of chain mail was added it must have been almost
insupportable, as practically the whole weight was borne by the head.
Now, however, a gorget of plate was substituted for the camail (Fig.
243), and in order to relieve the pressure upon the head still further,
the bascinet was so formed as to rest upon the gorget, to the upper
part of which it was affixed in such a manner that it allowed the
head to be turned right and left. Thus the defences for the head and
neck, instead of being supported by those parts, were transferred
to the shoulders. The bascinet, as it gradually developed into the
barbute type, became more globular in form, although still retaining
the pointed apex (Fig. 242); the lower portion which protected the
chin, and known as the _bavière_, was riveted to the upper, generally
near the temples. The breastplate, now visible for the first time, is
of globular form and provided with a backplate; from it one can easily
perceive how the knights of the Camail and Jupon Period obtained the
peculiar globose formation of the upper portion of the body. From the
waist, and connected with the breastplate, depended a row of plates
or lames of steel overlapping each other and made in various designs;
these were denominated the _taces_. To support them a lining of
leather or other strong material was used underneath, to which they
were firmly affixed. At first the skirt of the hauberk is generally
shown, similar to its former appearance under the jupon, but after a
time, probably about 1420, the hauberk was discarded, and the knight
relied for protection upon his plate armour and padded gambeson alone.
Round the taces the hip-belt was worn horizontally during the earlier
part of this period, with the sword and misericorde depending as in
the time of the camail and jupon; but subsequently the style was
modified, and innovations crept in which will be dealt with later.
Laminated epaulières were still in use to protect the shoulders,
but instead of the lames being prolonged in front to protect the
goussets (as shown in the Braunstone and d’Eresby brasses), a plate
of varying form, called a _palette_, was affixed to the cuirass by a
strap, which admitted of greater freedom for the arms. The brassarts
were often formed of lames of plate riveted together, though the
older form of front and back plates was in use. The coudières are
remarkable for the beautiful fan-like shape of the outer plate, which
was enlarged in order to afford extra protection to the elbow-joint,
and in some cases was of very large proportions. The vambraces show
no change. The gauntlets were larger in the cuffs than those of the
preceding period: they retained the gadlings and were often of most
elaborate workmanship; the fingers remained separate and conformed
to the natural shape, finger-nails being often engraved upon them to
complete the resemblance. The cuissarts, genouillières, grevières,
and sollerets, did not differ essentially from those of the Camail
Period, except in the richness of ornamentation which was at times
shown. One point, however, and an entirely new one, is exemplified upon
a few brasses--the protection of the back part of the knee-joint by
small lames of steel. The skilful and costly nature of this defence
prevented its general adoption; it was revived, however, at a later
period, during the early part of the sixteenth century, and became
fairly prevalent.

[Illustration: PLATE XVIII*

Armour made for the Infante, afterwards Philip III.

_A. F. Calvert_]

The sword was but slightly altered from its former shape, the chief
difference being the quillons, which were straight and of considerable
length, and the general elongation of the grip, whereby it developed
into more of a hand-and-a-half, or bastard sword, than formerly (Fig.
244). It should be explained that in wielding this weapon the right
hand only would be generally used, but upon occasion, in order to give
extra effect to a stroke, the left hand could be brought up to the
pommel, which was invariably pear-shaped in order to insure a firm
grip. The misericorde was suspended as usual upon the right side,
but the point of the blade is now directed towards the rear, and is
generally hidden in brasses by the body of the knight (Fig. 245). One
of the characteristics of this period should be specially noted, viz.
the mode of suspension of the sword by a narrow band passing diagonally
over the front of the body from the right hip to the left side, and
occasionally, but rarely, furnished with a buckle. The inception of
this style is shown upon the brass of a knight in Laughton Church which
exhibits both hip-belt and sword-belt worn over the jupon; it prevailed
in England for approximately sixty years (Fig. 241).

[Illustration: FIG. 244.--Knight, 1410. South Kelsey Church, Lincs.]

[Illustration: FIG. 245.--Sir Thomas Swynborne, 1412. Little Horkesley
Church, Essex.]

[Illustration: FIG. 246.--Sir Thomas de St. Quintin, _c._ 1420. Harpham
Church, Yorkshire.]

[Illustration: FIG. 247.--Coudière, Lord Camoys, 1424. Trotton Church,

[Illustration: FIG. 248.--Coudière, Peter Halle, 1420. Herne Church,

One of the earliest examples in brasses of this period is that at
Great Tew Church, Oxfordshire, referred to on p. 192 as being of a
transition character, in consequence of the camail appearing beneath
the gorget. The bascinet and bavière are in one piece, and the whole
revolves upon the gorget, which is probably prolonged upwards inside
the headpiece. The placcates are oviform; the upper lame of the taces
covers the lower part of the breastplate; the hauberk and hip-belt are
in use, and the great heaume is shown under the head, to be worn as
usual over the bascinet. Robert, Lord Ferrers of Chartley, 1407 (Fig.
243), presents a very unornamental suit of this earlier portion of
the period, showing the globular helmet with the mentonnière riveted
to the upper portion and revolving within the gorget; it should be
compared with the Wylcotes brass. Sir Simon de Felbrygge, K.G., 1413,
is shown with the royal banner of King Richard II., and wears the
diagonal sword-belt; he is furnished with many lames in his epaulières
and has shield-shaped palettes, while the coudières show the fan-shaped
plates in their incipient stage. The Yorkshire St. Quintins appear to
have been eccentric in the style of their armour. We have referred to
peculiarities in respect of Sir John de St. Quintin and his brass,
1397 (_vide_ p. 191), and in that of Sir Thomas de St Quintin, in
Harpham Church, Yorkshire (Fig. 246), we have more characteristic
originalities. The orle round the bascinet is of very large
proportions, and ornamented with a brooch in front; the gorget consists
of three plates, the upper one of peculiar form, showing ridged
projections over the cheekplates of the bascinet, while the epaulières
are more of the nature of the pauldron of a subsequent period, in being
composed of a single piece. The arm openings are protected respectively
by a roundel and a shield-shaped palette, and roundels are also used at
the elbows, these being strongly reminiscent of the early camail days
(_vide_ Sir John de Argentine, 1360, p. 175).

[Illustration: FIG. 249.--Bascinet, Sir William Calthorpe, 1420.
Burnham Thorpe Ch., Norfolk.]

The hip-belt is among the latest examples of that fashion, having been
generally discarded by this date; it is very elaborate, and suggestive
in point of width of that of the brass of Sir John de St Quintin in
1397 (p. 191). The hem of the hauberk is wavy, and so also is that of
the gambeson showing beneath it; this is possibly the only example of
the gambeson being visible at this late period. But perhaps the chief
points to be observed are the laminated defences for the back parts
of the genouillières. If they are lames they probably represent the
earliest development of this nature; on the other hand the artist may
have intended to represent banded mail, and omitted the small vertical
lines. The development of the fan-shaped coudière may be well observed
in the brass of Lord Camoys, in Trotton Church, Sussex (Fig. 247),
where the defence, both inside and out, may be seen, but the strap or
other fastening joining the two sides of the opening is not shown. The
coudière may have been riveted to the brassarts and vambraces, in which
case it was not needed. A brass in which the fastening is apparent
is that of Peter Halle, _c._ 1420, in Herne Church, Kent (Fig. 248),
where the strap may be noticed crossing the mail. Upon the brass of
Sir William Calthorpe, 1420, in Burnham Thorpe Church, Norfolk, the
bascinet is shown very highly ornamented with a border; he also wears a
collar of Esses round the neck (Fig. 249).

The brass of Sir John Lysle (Fig. 250) in Thruxton Church, Hampshire,
bears the date 1407, and if the effigy were executed at that time, or
approximately so, we have the earliest example of complete plate in
existence in England. There are, however, certain points about the
armour delineated which lend themselves to the supposition that the
brass was executed some ten or more years later, viz. the absence of
any hauberk; the development of the fan-shaped coudières; the position
of the misericorde and the sword-belt, &c. The distinction probably
belongs to the Ferrers brass.

The brass of Sir John de Leventhorpe, 1433, at Sawbridgeworth Church,
Herts (Fig. 251), is interesting as showing the development of the
lowermost tace into the subsequent tuilles of the Tabard Period. In
this effigy the lame in question is divided into two tuilles which
still have the same width, and partake of the nature of taces; each
tuille is suspended by two buckles. This is one of the earliest
representations of this feature in England.

[Illustration: FIG. 250.--Sir John Lysle, 1407. Thruxton Church, Hants.]

[Illustration: FIG. 251.--Sir John de Leventhorpe. 1433. Sawbridgeworth
Church, Herts.]

[Illustration: FIG. 252.--Shields. (Harl. MS., 4379.)]

The shields used in the Surcoatless Period were similar to those in
the preceding, but manifest infinitely greater varieties. They were
invariably small in size and notched for the lance, but as every knight
apparently designed his own, it is obviously impossible to enumerate
or illustrate them. They all, however, agreed in presenting a concave
surface to the opponents lance, whereby it was prevented from glancing
upwards or downwards and thus inflicting injury, while the general
tendency was to deflect the lance-point to the left, whereby it touched
neither horse nor rider. The examples here given are from one of the
Harleian MSS., No. 4379 (Fig. 252), and may be taken as a general type
of the knightly shield in this and also in the preceding period.

[Illustration: FIG. 253.--Richard de Beauchamp, Earl of Warwick, early
15th century. (From the Warwick Roll.)]

[Illustration: FIG. 254.--Billman, Richard II. (Roy. MS. 20, C. VII.)]

Remembering that there was no arbitrary law regulating the military
equipment and dress of the ordinary soldier at this period, it is
somewhat difficult to deal decisively with the subject, but a few
examples and some broad outlines may probably be sufficient to enable
the reader to grasp a general idea of the subject.

_The Man-at-arms_ in the middle of the fourteenth century was generally
armed with the lance, sword, and mace, the martel-de-fer or a military
pick at times supplanting the latter. The shield was heater-or
heart-shaped and notched, but sometimes circular, and of various sizes.
A hauberk or jacque reaching to the knees, and having sleeves to the
elbow, constructed of any of the numerous kinds of jazeraint work, or
of banded mail, covered his body; it was reinforced at the shoulders,
elbows, and knees with roundels, caps, or plates, while two mammelières
were in use to cover the chest and act more or less as breastplates.
Greaves and vambraces of leather strengthened with splints of iron,
with thick leather gauntlets and shoes, guarded the limbs, while a
skull-cap with banded camail or a thick leather gorget depending,
protected the head and neck. Either a gambeson or a leather tunic under
the jacque completed the equipment.

[Illustration: FIG. 255.--Cuir-bouilli headpiece. (Roy. MS. 20, C.

[Illustration: FIG. 256.--Soldier, _c._ 1400. (Roy. MS. 20, C. VII.)]

_Billman, Pikeman, or Foot Soldier._--The pikeman of the period was
equipped with a more elaborate defence than is generally credited,
and consequently his comparative immunity from hurt by the lethal
weapons of the time goes far to explain the determined resistance
made by the infantry. The very fact that there was no uniformity in
his accoutrement rendered him a formidable foe to the knight, who
naturally directed his lance to that portion of an enemy’s person
possessing the least defensive equipment; but it required more than
human divination in the excitement of a contest to discern the weak
points in the equipment of men all armed in a different manner. The
broad rule respecting the armour of the infantry in mediæval times was
that the knightly defence of one period became the soldiers salvation
in the succeeding period. At the same time many a contemporary piece of
equipment was obtained from the field of battle and used to augment the
personal defence. The figure (Fig. 254) (taken from the British Museum
MS. Roy. 20, C. VII.) may be taken as a general type of the billman
of the reigns of Edward III., Richard II., and possibly Henry IV. and
V. Upon the head he wears a skull cap composed of two pieces of iron
riveted together with reinforcing strips of metal; from this depends
a camail of banded mail which is strengthened by a plate defending
the cheeks, chin, and throat, in imitation of the bavière then coming
into vogue with the knightly class. Possibly this piece was home-made,
and the village blacksmith had a hand in its fabrication. The body
is protected by a leathern jacque having roundels at the shoulders
with crude brassarts, coudières, and vambraces, possibly of leather.
A tegulated skirt of pieces of leather, horn, or iron plates reaches
to the knees, which are defended by metal genouillières, from which
depend grevières of metal or cuir-bouilli. Indications of cuissarts
are apparent, and the legs are covered with chausses of banded mail
in addition. It will thus be seen that the billman’s equipment for
defence was but little inferior to that of the knight. No sword or
mace is shown, but these were in common use. The fauchard he wields
is nine feet in length, with cutting edges upon both sides, a sharp
pike-point at the end, and a hook with which to dismount a horseman.
A second example from the same MS. (Fig. 255) shows a head-covering
of cuir-bouilli in the form of overlapping leaves or scales, while
the camail is of soft pliable leather. In this cut the small badge is
delineated upon the left breast that denoted the leader under whom the
soldier fought. Another soldier with a circular shield and armed only
with a sword, is taken from the MS. above named (Roy. 20, C. VII.); he
wears a piece of tegulated defence, probably leather, over a leathern
jerkin, while his sleeves appear to be of a stuffed and quilted nature,
similar to a gambeson. He has demi-plate upon the legs and is furnished
with a bascinet (Fig. 256). A soldier is also shown wearing the high
bascinet so characteristic of the knight of the early Camail Period;
it had doubtless formed part of some loot, and the wearer added to
the defence a large bavière which also partially served the function
of a breastplate, while a tippet of banded mail covers the shoulders
(Fig. 257). Some of the foot soldiers carried a small circular shield
or buckler about 9 inches to 12 inches in diameter and furnished with
a boss in the centre; the left hand would be able to grasp both it
and the pike as well.

[Illustration: FIG. 257.--Soldier with plate gorget, _temp._ Richard
II. (Roy. MS. 20, C. VII.)]

[Illustration: FIG. 258.--Spearman, _c._ 1400. (Roy. MS. 20, C. VII.)]

Towards the end of the reign of Richard II. the fashion of wearing a
houppelande over the armour came in vogue both for knights and common
soldiery, thus preventing the armour from being seen, except the lower
parts of the legs (see Fig. 258). With this incongruous habit appeared
also the snout-faced or pig-faced visor of alarming proportions,
serving as a visor, gorget, and pectoral combined. The annexed cut is
taken from a group of combatants in Roy MS. 20, C. VII., who are all
defended in the same ungainly manner. With the advent of the reign of
King Henry IV. this visor became of less size and different shape,
while reinforcements to the bascinet were added to compensate. In
Fig. 259, from Roy. MS. 15, D. III., a soldier is shown with bascinet
and neck-guard affixed; to protect the throat an extra plate is used
swinging upon pivots on either side of the helmet--a crude bavière.
Another foot soldier is shown with a similar defence (Fig. 260), but
his bascinet is globular at the top and furnished with a projecting
neck-guard, in which we cannot fail to see the salade in its early
stage. We may refer this to the reign of Henry V., as well as that
shown in Fig. 259. Another bascinet of the same period is given in Fig.
262, where the small holes for fixing the lining are shown, and also
those round the lower edge and opening for the face, for the camail.
This bascinet still further suggests the salade, as does also the one
in the British Museum (Fig. 263).

[Illustration: FIG. 259. (Roy. MS. 15, D. III.)]

[Illustration: FIG. 260. (Roy. MS. 15, D. III.)]

[Illustration: FIG. 261.--Soldier, Richard II., gorget over camail.
(Roy. MS. 20, C. VII.)]

[Illustration: FIG. 262.--Bascinet, _temp._ Henry V.]

[Illustration: FIG. 263.--Bascinet from Brit. Mus.]

[Illustration: FIG. 264.--Quivers and scimitar. (Roy. MS. 14, E. IV.)]

_The Archer._--The equipment of the archer was essentially of a lighter
nature than that of the billman. A pot-de-fer upon the head, with
coif-de-mailles or camail; a brigandine or jacque of pourpointerie,
covering at times a small plastron-de-fer; upon the left arm a bracer,
otherwise legs and arms in cloth stockings and sleeves; a girdle with
axe, sword, or scimitar depending therefrom; a quiver at the right
hip with its burden of goose-or pigeon-feathered arrows, and the long
yellow bow slung at the back in company with a small round target--such
was the war dress of the mediæval bowman. At times a stake sharpened
at both ends was carried to hinder a charge of cavalry, but this was
generally improvised upon the spot. In Roy. MS. 14, E. IV., the quivers
at this period are shown to be of an elongated bag form, and quite
different to the late fifteenth-century style. A very favourite weapon
with archers, judging by the number of men represented wearing it in
all MSS. of the time, is the scimitar, which is invariably of the shape
shown in Fig. 264. The curious guard for the fingers, springing from
the pommel, is very characteristic.

[Illustration: FIG. 265.--Weapons from Roy. MS. 20, C. VII. Nos. (left
to right)--7. Pole-axe (the voulge); 2. Pole-axe; 4. Pike; 1. Pike; 3.
Pike; 5. Pole-axe (bardiche); 6. Fauchard (guisarme).]

The weapons used by the billmen of this period are well shown in
Roy. MS. 20, C. VII., and are reproduced in Fig. 265. No. 1 is
shown in use by a soldier whose left hand is guarded by the circular
projection, which, together with the long point, was made of steel.
The shaft of this formidable pike or partisan was about five feet in
length, the point three feet, and it depended for its efficacy upon
its armour-piercing qualities. Nos. 2, 5, 7 are the pole-axe with
varying modifications, the total length, including shaft, being about
eight feet; it was apparently a favourite weapon, and is many times
represented, No. 5, the bardiche, however, being somewhat uncommon.
Nos. 3 and 4 are simple forms of pikes, with a cross-guard in one
case, and an armour-piercing spike in the other. No. 6 is the deadly
fauchard, a variety of the guisarme, evolved originally from the
scythe; it was a common weapon in the Middle Ages, but inflicted such
ghastly wounds with its razor-like edges back and front, that its use
in Christian warfare was often deplored. Its total length was usually
about eight feet.

[Illustration: FIG. 266.--Combat with pole-axes between Earl of Warwick
and Sir P. Malacat. (Cott. MS., Julius, E. IV.)]

The antiquary, John Rouse, of Warwick, has left us some excellent
drawings of military equipment of the fifteenth century, which are
preserved in the Cottonian MS., Julius, E. IV. They illustrate the
romantic adventures of Richard de Beauchamp, Earl of Warwick, and one
of these spirited sketches is introduced here (Fig. 266). It represents
a combat with pole-axes between the earl and Sir Pandulf Malacat at
Verona, when Sir Pandulf was badly wounded upon the left shoulder,
and would probably have fared worse had not the combat been stopped.
We gain an excellent idea from this sketch of the mode in which the
gorget was adjusted, which is difficult to realise from a brass. The
misericorde is suspended as in the later days of Richard II., and a
central prolongation of the front taces is represented, which occurs
upon several English brasses. The shape and character of the formidable
weapons are well delineated in the sketch.

[Illustration: PLATE XIX*

Armour of Philip III., made by Lucio Picinino of Milan

_A. F. Calvert_]



[Illustration: FIG. 267.--Tabard, William Fynderne, 1444. Childrey
Church, Berks.]

[Illustration: FIG. 268.--Tabard, Sir Ralph Shelton, 1423. Great
Snoring Church, Norfolk.]

The sources of information for this period are considerably enlarged
when compared with those preceding it, as, in addition to MSS.,
missals, brasses, and monumental effigies we may add paintings by
the old masters, crude woodcuts following upon the introduction of
printing, and, what is of still greater value, actual examples of
arms and armour in our public and private museums, churches, &c. The
fifteenth century probably saw a greater output of armour than any
other in English history: the stirring times in France under the Duke
of Bedford and other leaders at the end of the Hundred Years’ War was
followed almost immediately by the thirty years of intestine strife
of the Wars of the Roses. Under the stress of these conditions armour
continued to improve in defensive power until, in the reign of Richard
III. and the earlier part of that of Henry VII., it attained to its
maximum stage of efficiency in England. In the combat during this
century between the forgers of weapons of offence and the armour with
which to resist them we have the greatest struggle ever witnessed in
this country; so invulnerable did the plate become by completeness
of covering and dexterity in tempering that all the efforts of the
bowyer, fletcher, weapon-forger, and gunsmith had to be enlisted to
break down the solidarity of the defence, and it was not until the
succeeding century that the victory could be fairly claimed for the
attacking faction. The Tabard Period witnessed every device in armour
that the wit of man could evolve, and it was produced under those
circumstances which would best achieve the desired result, namely the
stress of urgent need. The name by which this age is known, that of
the Tabard Period, has been selected by reason of the tabard being
practically the only distinguishing feature which did not change, and
was fairly persistent throughout. It is also used in contradistinction
to the preceding Surcoatless Period. The tabard was a surcoat which
was generally long in the body (to mid-thigh), and had sleeves to the
elbow in the earlier portion of its existence; but in the later period
the sleeves were much shortened, and the tabard at times only reached
to the waist. It was split upon both sides, and the front and back
portions fastened together by points, drawn closely together or left
wide apart to show the armour beneath; occasionally no points whatever
were used, and the front and back hung loosely from the shoulders. It
served as a protection against sun and rain, and also as a means of
personal adornment, being generally emblazoned upon the body and also
on the sleeves with the armorial bearings of the wearer. It was of silk
or other material, sometimes padded so as to hang stiffly; in most
examples it depends in folds. An early brass showing this feature is
that of William Fynderne, 1444, at Childrey in Berkshire (Fig. 267),
where the armorial bearings are depicted upon the body and sleeves,
both of which are long. An early tabard is that shown upon the brass
of Sir Ralph Shelton, 1423, in Great Snoring Church (Fig. 268), which
fits tightly to the figure, and the tincture of the body of the tabard
has apparently been attempted by the engraver. Another early example
is that of John Wantele, 1424, at Amberley Church, Sussex, where the
arms are shown upon the body (which reaches almost to the knees) but
not on the sleeves. Later examples are those of Sir John Say, 1473, at
Broxbourne, Herts, and Piers Gerard, 1492, Winwick, Lancs. In the Roy.
MS. 18, E. V., is a very spirited drawing of Julius Cæsar crossing
the Rubicon, in which he is represented as wearing a tabard. A very
elaborate example, _c._ 1500, is on the brass in Ormskirk Church,
Lancashire, commemorating a former member of the Scarisbrick family
(Fig. 269). The figure in question wears sabbatons.

[Illustration: FIG. 269.--Brass in the Scarisbrick Chapel of Ormskirk
Church, co. Lancs., to a member of the Scarisbrick family of that name,
_c._ 1500.]

[Illustration: FIG. 270.--Bascinet of one of the Neville family,
Brancepeth, Durham.]

[Illustration: FIG. 271.--Bascinet and orle, Sir Humphrey Stafford,

_The Helmet._--During the earlier part of the Tabard Period, until
about 1450, the helmet differed but slightly from those shown in the
Surcoatless, the modifications being chiefly in the form of the apex
and the addition of a close-fitting visor. In the example shown (Fig.
270) the visor was probably rapidly adjusted to the lower studs in time
of danger, or the heaume could be worn. The shape of the apex should be
noted, and this feature is also somewhat similar in the helmet of John,
Duke of Somerset, A.D. 1444. In those cases where the knight trusted
to the bascinet only, the bavière is raised considerably to guard the
face. This is well seen in the brass of Sir Humphrey Stafford, 1450
(Fig. 271), where the orle is a prominent feature. An example is given
here of a brass of a later period exhibiting armour of an earlier date,
an occurrence which at times causes confusion. Sir John de Harpedon’s
brass (Fig. 272) is well known in Westminster Abbey, and dates from
1457; the armour is most unusually simple for that period, and could
well be attributed to thirty years earlier, except in regard to the
gauntlets. There are no less than eleven lames in the taces.

[Illustration: FIG. 272.--The brass of Sir John de Harpedon.]

[Illustration: FIG. 273.--Chapelle-de-fer, _c._ 1485.]

About 1450 the Salade (Germ. _schallern_, from _schale_, a shell, or
Italian _celata_) was introduced into England, and for a considerable
time formed the headpiece of knights, men-at-arms, and archers. It
rested entirely upon the head, and was not affixed in any way to the
body armour. Its coolness was a great recommendation, as was also the
facility with which the head could be moved in all directions. There
appear to be two distinct head-pieces from which the salade could owe
its development; the chapelle-de-fer is one, and it probably suggested
the German shape. This was in use from the thirteenth to the fifteenth
centuries, and consisted of a light iron headpiece with a flat broad
brim turned down. In the earlier examples the brim projects equally
all round, but later it is much flatter at the front than at the back,
where it was drawn out to a point (see Fig. 273). The Italian _celata_
was the second model from which the salade could trace its evolution;
it was the helmet of barbute form referred to on p. 173, and which
was undoubtedly founded upon the Greek model. It gradually developed
in the fifteenth century into the shape shown in Fig. 274, losing its
pointed apex and swelling outwards at the back of the neck. Upon their
introduction into France, both German and Italian forms were classed
under the name Salade. The salade in its primitive form was a head
protection forged at first out of one piece of metal (Fig. 275 and
Fig. 276) with a comb upon the crest and an occularium, which was made
available by pulling down the front of the helmet until it rested level
with the eyes. This was superseded by one having a movable visor which
could be raised or lowered at pleasure, and generally when lowered
was locked with a spring catch (Fig. 277). A few examples occur in
which the long projection at the back is jointed after the form of the
lobster’s tail, and at times the salade measured as much as sixteen
or eighteen inches from front to back. An example weighing 5 lbs. is
in Case 25 at the Tower of London, dating from 1450: it is of German
make and still bright, though much pitted all over (Fig. 278). A very
interesting example is Fig. 279, in the Wallace Collection, dating from
about 1460, which was probably used by a mounted archer. As in the
Tower example, it is bright but pitted: the crown is without a ridge,
but becomes combed at the tail; the form of the salade enables it to
be thrown well back upon the head when not in use. The small holes
round the visor were probably intended for the sewing in of a lining,
and the pairs of holes at the sides show where the strong lining was
affixed which supported the helmet itself. Salades of this shape are
shown in contemporary paintings, those of Albert Dürer for example.
The mentonnière was habitually used with the salade: it was a plate
fastened by one, two, or three screws or almayne (sliding) rivets to
the upper part of the breastplate, and was moulded so as to cover the
lower part of the face to the lips or nose and reach to the ears on
both sides (see Fig. 280). In use the visor of the salade when lowered
fell outside the mentonnière, thus effectually protecting the face
of the wearer. A plate cheek-guard or bavière was worn at times, and
this reinforcement is plainly seen in the salade, with crest, of the
Duke Ludwig of Bavaria, 1449 (Fig. 281). A salade of German pattern
with a very high crown is shown in Fig. 282; the general type of
armour prevailing upon the Continent in 1450 is here presented, the
laminated brassarts being a special feature. As a rule, however, a
collar or standard of mail was deemed to be a sufficient protection
under the mentonnière. An example of the mentonnière dating from about
1480 is No. 840 in the Wallace Collection; it has two plates, of which
the upper one is held in position by a spring catch; it suggests the
falling bufe of a later period. Fig. 283 represents a salade of the end
of the fifteenth century; it will be seen that a comb runs over the
crown, and that a sliding neck-guard is used in place of a rigid tail.
A magnificent example of Milanese workmanship is shown on Plate VII.*,
p. 60.

[Illustration: FIG. 274.--Italian celata.]

[Illustration: FIG. 275.--German salade, _c._ 1440.]

[Illustration: FIG. 276.--Early salade.]

[Illustration: FIG. 277.--Salade from Rhodes, _c._ 1470.]

[Illustration: FIG. 278.--Salade, 1450. (Tower of London.)]

[Illustration: FIG. 279.--Salade, _c._ 1460. (Wallace Collection.)]

[Illustration: FIG. 280.--Mentonnière, in Whissonsett Church, Norfolk.]

[Illustration: FIG. 281.--Schallern, with Crest of Bavaria (Duke Ludwig
of Bavaria, 1449).]

[Illustration: FIG. 282.--German type of salade and armour, 1450.]

[Illustration: FIG. 283.--German schallern, _c._ 1480.]

[Illustration: FIG. 284.--Early Italian armet, _c._ 1450.]

_The Armet._--Towards the end of the Tabard Period the armet was
introduced into England, and partially superseded the salade and other
forms of head-protection. The origin of this helmet and the derivation
of the name are equally involved in obscurity; but it probably
first saw the light in Italy, and gradually spread through Germany
into England. “Armet” may be derived from “elmetto” or “armetto,”
little helm, or “heaumet,” the diminutive of “heaume.” The essential
difference between the armet and all those head-pieces which antedated
it was that, while the older styles had been put on by lowering them
over the head and the weight had in nearly all cases been borne by
the head, the armet opened out in its lower part upon hinges, and
could thus be closed round the head and neck, while the weight was
transferred to the gorget and thence to the shoulders. It was in all
respects neater, lighter, and handier than either the salade or the
bascinet, while providing a fine defensive form for both head and neck.
The armets, like the bascinets, had in their earlier stages a camail
attached by a row of vervelles (Fig. 284) and a reinforcing piece
upon the forehead. The same pin and hinge arrangement peculiar to the
bascinet is used for affixing the visor, which latter, by falling,
secures the opening of the helmet in front, at the same time forming
the occularium by leaving a space between its upper edge and the lower
edge of the reinforcement covering the forehead. Under the hinges or
pivots of the visor are the upper parts of the two chin-pieces, hinged
to the crown, which overlap in front and are strapped together at
the chin. At the back occurs a tailpiece from which projects a short
stem to which is attached a flat disc, probably to protect the back
of the helmet, which was its weakest part. An example in the Wallace
Collection (Fig. 285), dating from 1470, has the stem remaining but not
the roundel, while the holes for attaching the camail are well seen.
The pivots for the visor are in the reinforcement in this case. Another
armet from the same collection has the pointed visor and bavière in
one plate, while the roundel is shown at the back (Fig. 286), and the
latter example shows the camail superseded by the laminated gorget with
which the armet articulated. Fig. 287 also has the disc in position; it
dates from 1480, is without any reinforcing piece upon the forehead,
and the occularium is contained in the visor. No. 46 suit of armour in
the Wallace Collection has an armet dating probably from 1490, with
pointed visor and bavière in one piece; the neck portion is furnished
with a hollow roping running round it, which fits upon and grips the
upper lame of the gorget, which being perfectly circular, like the neck
of the gorget, allows the head to be turned right and left. This was a
feature of the close helmets of the succeeding century.

[Illustration: FIG. 285.--Armet, _c._ 1470. (Wallace Collection.)]

[Illustration: FIG. 286.--Armet, probably Italian, _c._ 1480.]

[Illustration: FIG. 287.--Armet, _c._ 1480. (Wallace Collection.)]

[Illustration: FIG. 288.--_Cap-á-pie_ suit of Gothic armour, _c._ 1470.
(Wallace Collection.)]

[Illustration: FIG. 289.--Breastplate, _c._ 1490. (Tower of London.)]

_Body Armour; the Breastplate._--The breastplate from approximately
1430 to 1450 remained of the same globular form which had characterised
it in the Surcoatless Period, but after that date we often find it
reinforced by another plate, called a demi-placcate, springing upwards
from the waist, the upper part as a rule being moulded into a graceful
system of cusps. In some cases, a second reinforcing plate is added
over the first, but it is doubtful if these plates reached to the waist
in any single case. By the system of introducing almayne rivets the
breastplate could be given a certain amount of mobility, and adapt
itself to the movements of the wearer. The goussets at the arm-holes
were ridged or roped and sometimes turned back upon the breastplate.
The backplates, also, about 1450, were made in several pieces, in
order to obtain freedom of movement; the well-known _cap-à-pie_ suit
(Fig. 316) in the Wallace Collection has no less than five pieces in
the backplate. Towards the end of the century, the breastplate was
reinforced with goussets of plate adapted to the movement of the arms
by judiciously-placed rivets. This is shown in Fig. 289; in the Tower
Collection, _c._ 1490 or 1500, in Case 48; it shows a roped border in
the upper part, holes for affixing the lance-rest, one in the centre
for the screw of the gorget or mentonnière, and an articulated lame of
the taces at the lower part. The section is shown with it. The suit of
armour, No. 10 in the Wallace Collection, has the breastplate fitted
with plate goussets; it dates from 1470. A demi-placcate of one plate
is well delineated in Fig. 291 from Roy. MS. 18, E. V., 1473, being a
portion of the defence of “Goliath of Gath” in that manuscript.

[Illustration: FIG. 290.--Palette suspended from pauldron, _c._ 1470.
(Wallace Collection.)]

[Illustration: FIG. 291.--Demi-placcate, &c. (Roy. MS. 18, E. V.)]

_Arm Defences._--These were of great variety and, as the century
progressed, of the most original and complicated description,
giving to this period the most characteristic forms by which it
can be identified. Soon after 1440, and perhaps before that time,
the defences of the right and left arms in England began to be of
different construction, similar to changes which had already become
well advanced upon the Continent in the same direction. The right
arm was encased in steel which, compared with other portions, was
comparatively thin, light, and capable of the greatest flexibility
and mobility; this was occasioned by the need of extreme quickness of
sword-play in combat after the lance had been shivered in the charge.
Laminated epaulières and laminated brassarts were accordingly lavishly
used upon the right arm as affording the maximum amount of movement,
these being strengthened by a few extra defences of plate adapted so
that they would not hinder the flexibility so obtained. A brass at
Swaffham, 1470, illustrates the use of lames upon the right arm (Fig.
292). The left or bridle arm, on the contrary, was guarded by extra
strong and thick plate defences and reinforcements of all descriptions,
shapes, and sizes; in fact the general idea was to render the whole
of the left side of the knight impenetrable to the weapons then in
use. Probably this was occasioned by the partial or total disuse of
the shield in warfare, as being an encumbrance whose disadvantages
more than counterbalanced any possible benefits which might have been
derived from it. It can be readily seen that in combat with an ordinary
right-handed swordsman the left side of the body would be liable to
receive more hurts, both in number and intensity, than the right, hence
this extraordinary strengthening of the defences upon that side.

[Illustration: FIG. 292.--Brass at Swaffham illustrating use of lames
on right arm, 1470.]

[Illustration: FIG. 293.--Development of the coudière.]

[Illustration: FIG. 294.--Development of palette.]

[Illustration: FIG. 295.--Pauldron of Walter, Lord Hungerford, 1459.
Salisbury Cathedral.]

[Illustration: FIG. 296.--Laminated pauldron.(Cott. MS., Julius, E.

[Illustration: FIG. 297.--Pauldron, &c., Sir Miles Stapleton, 1466.
Ingham Church, Norfolk.]

_Pauldrons._--The defence known as the Pauldron was introduced in
England about 1430, and may be looked upon as a development of the
palette, which, becoming larger and larger, finally ended by covering
the epaulières. This enlargement may be readily seen from the
accompanying Fig. 294, where the palette is seen to have reached the
shoulder. The right arm defences of Walter, Lord Hungerford, 1459, from
his effigy in Salisbury Cathedral (Fig. 295), afford us an example of
the pauldron in its early stage; it is plain and of small proportions,
just sufficient to fit upon the lames beneath. The peculiar shape of
the coudière with its flutings should be noticed. A pauldron consisting
of long lames of plate is shown in Cott. MS., Julius, E. IV. (Fig.
296), and also on the Staunton brass; it, however, invariably consisted
of a strong and rigid plate, which is well exemplified in the brass of
Sir Miles Stapleton in Ingham Church, Norfolk, 1466 (Fig. 297), where
the defence, beautifully ornamented by curves and cusps, is not only
designed as a protection to the shoulder and upper arm but also to a
certain extent for the neck, which is also encircled by a standard
of interlinked chain mail. In this ridging for neck defence occurred
the first idea of passe-gardes or pike-guards, an innovation which in
different forms was in vogue during the latter part of the fifteenth
and nearly the whole of the sixteenth centuries. It is still further
indicated in the brass to Thomas Colt, Armiger, 1475 (Fig. 298), at
Roydon, Essex, where a serrated ridge is shown traversing a large part
of the pauldron with the evident object of arresting a sword-cut.
The pauldron is of large dimensions, and projects well over the
breastplate. William Yelverton, 1481, whose brass is shown at Rougham
in Norfolk, has the passe-garde well developed and rising in a high
ridge on the left side of the neck; the pauldron is of fair dimensions,
but strange to note does not cover the left gousset (Fig. 299). It
is probable that the wearer bore a shield. The pauldron and its
passe-garde or pike-guard is well shown upon a suit of Gothic armour
in the Wallace Collection, dating from about 1490 (Fig. 300); here the
great difference in the sizes of the two pauldrons is shown, the small
one upon the right shoulder necessitating a palette in the form of a
roundel being introduced to guard the gousset of the right arm.

[Illustration: FIG. 298.--Pauldron, Thomas Colt, 1475. Roydon, Essex.]

[Illustration: FIG. 299.--Pauldron, William Yelverton, 1481. Rougham,

[Illustration: FIG. 300.--Pauldrons, &c., 1490. (Wallace Collection.)]

[Illustration: FIG. 301.--Coudière, &c., Thomas Playters, 1479.]

_The Coudières._--Until about 1450 the coudières were of normal sizes
and proportions, but when the shield was discarded and the left side
of the knight was strengthened, the left coudière became of supreme
importance in the warding off of a blow, and hence underwent changes
which in some cases can only be termed monstrous and extravagant.
Probably the brass of Sir Robert Staunton, 1458, in Castle Donington
Church, Leicestershire, furnishes the maximum example of immensity
in coudières, though the peculiarity of having both of the same size
and pattern should not be overlooked. Another and later brass, that
of Thomas Playters, 1479, in Sollerley Church, shows a coudière of a
peculiar shape and of great size, reproduced in Fig. 301. A secondary
defence was introduced about the middle of the century to protect the
inside bend of the left arm, called the garde-de-bras, well seen upon
the brass of Sir John Peryent the younger, 1450, at Digswell, Herts
(Fig. 302); in the accompanying Fig. 303 is shown an example of a left
coudière from the Wallace Collection (No. 46), dating from about 1490.

[Illustration: FIG. 302.--The brass of Sir John Peryent the younger.]

_The Taces, Tuilles, and Tuillettes._--The taces introduced into armour
during the Surcoatless Period reached approximately to the mid-thigh
of the wearer, and during that period short lames were attached in
front at times, making the skirt of plate even longer. As the Tabard
Period progressed, however, the taces showed a tendency to decrease in
number, thereby shortening the skirt of plate and permitting more of
the thigh to be uncovered. In order to remedy this, separate plates,
rounded so as to encircle the limb to a certain extent, were affixed to
the lowermost tace by straps in front of each thigh, and as the taces
contracted the “tuilles,” as they were termed, grew longer and broader.
An excellent example is that of Henry Parice in Hildersham Church,
Cambridgeshire, 1465 (Fig. 304), who has tuilles, genouillières, and
elbow-pieces of extravagant size; the tuilles are here shown suspended
by straps to the lowermost of three taces. Incidentally the skirt of
the gambeson is disclosed in this figure, and apparently the edge
of some defence of mail worn under the taces. A precisely similar
example occurs at Roydon, Essex, upon the brass of Robert Colt, 1475.
Towards the end of the century the taces had so far contracted that
they reached only to the hips, as shown in the brass of Sir Anthony de
Grey, 1480, in St. Albans Abbey Church (Fig. 326), but another mode
was sometimes adopted, as seen in the brass of Sir Robert Harcourt at
Stanton Harcourt, Oxfordshire (Fig. 305), where the tuille was not
attached to the lowest tace but to a higher one, the intermediate
space being filled up with short lames and mail. Other smaller plates
were at times added to protect the outer part of the thighs, called
“tuillettes.” If the front tuilles are themselves composed of several
plates, or jointed, then the term “tuillette” is also applied to them.

[Illustration: FIG. 303.--Garde-de-bras, _c._ 1490. (Wallace

[Illustration: FIG. 304.--Tuilles, &c., Henry Parice, 1465. Hildersham
Church, Cambs.]

[Illustration: FIG. 305.--Sir Robert Harcourt, _c._ 1472. Stanton
Harcourt, Oxon.]

_Leg Defences._--These did not undergo such decided transformations as
the remaining portions of the armour, but a few innovations deserve
attention. Until 1450 there was no decided change from the style
prevailing in the Surcoatless Period, with perhaps the exception that
the reinforcing plate of the genouillière protecting the grevière
had a tendency to lengthen, but was still cut off square. After the
above date we find that it is generally pointed in the lower part
and laminated, while reinforcing plates begin to appear above the
genouillière protecting the thigh and often overlapping each other. An
unusual reinforcement for the genouillière is shown in Fig. 306; it is
of chain mail and occurs upon a suit in the Wallace Collection dated
1470. The actual cap covering the knee did not undergo much change,
except that it was often prominent and ridged, but one innovation, and
a marked one, is exhibited upon a few brasses (in the Grey brass, St.
Albans, for example), where the usual outer guard is prolonged round
the back of the knee in order to protect the gousset generally shown
there. A peculiar variety of genouillière is delineated in Fig. 307,
where a spike is seen projecting from the guard, and a considerable
number of lames and reinforcements are shown. It is difficult to see
the possible use of this spike, and one can only suppose that it was
so placed to annoy the horse of an antagonist when at close quarters.
It is from Roy. MS. 18, E. IV. The sollerets remain pointed, and
were often of extravagant length, but with less lames as a rule than
in the early part of the century; towards the end, about 1490, they
disappeared and became extinct, the broad-toed “sabbatons” taking their
place. Those of Piers Gerard, 1492, Winwick, Lancashire, are early
examples of this fashion (Fig. 308).

[Illustration: FIG. 306.--Reinforcement to genouillière, _c._ 1470
(Wallace Collection.)]

[Illustration: FIG. 307.--Spiked genouillière. (Roy. MS. 18, E. IV.)]

[Illustration: FIG. 308.--Sabbaton of Piers Gerard, 1492. Winwick,

[Illustration: PLATE XX*

Armour of King Sebastian (Backplate)

_A. F. Calvert_]

[Illustration: FIG. 309.--Lance-rest, 1480. (Wallace Collection.)]

Until about the year 1460 the sword was worn at the left side suspended
by a narrow band passing over the right hip, as in the Surcoatless
Period, but after the above date it appears upon brasses and monumental
effigies in front of the body, with the point slightly inclined to
the left as a rule, but sometimes hanging perpendicularly. It has a
singularly short and ill-proportioned hilt, with a much-swollen grip
and a pommel pear-shaped or circular, while the quillons are straight,
with a slight droop at the ends towards the blade. The lance-rest was
added in the latter half of the century, and is shown projecting from
the breastplate in many brasses. Upon some existing suits of the period
and later the rest is capable of being folded up when not in use, and
kept in place in both positions by a spring. The lance-rest shown in
Fig. 309 dates from 1480, and has a strut or support beneath it to aid
in bearing the weight of the lance.

[Illustration: FIG. 310.--German tilting armour, 1480, from the
Collection in the Museum at Vienna.]

_Tilting Armour._--From the very earliest times since man bore arms
he has engaged in friendly contest with others, not only as a means
of recreation and engendering mutual respect, but it was readily
recognised that the only way to obtain skill in deadly combat was to
constantly practise the art of war in the time of peace. It was also
natural and proper that these friendly combats should be governed by
rules and regulations whereby the minimum of risk should be run, and
so avoid the possibility of turning a manly pastime from a source of
enjoyment into a combat of deadly earnestness. Although history records
that the latter result really occurred at times, it was the exception
that proved the rule, and tilting was part and parcel of a knight’s
everyday life, and the glories of the tournament the hoped-for goal.
During the early part of the Middle Ages single encounters, and also
the mêlée, were fought in the usual harness which the knight was in
the habit of wearing in battle, and no other precautions were taken
excepting the use of blunted spears and restricting the use of the
sword to the edge only. As time advanced, however, and armour became
heavier and more cumbersome, the being hurled out of the saddle by
a dexterous thrust of an opponent’s lance was a matter of moment,
seriously endangering life and limb, whereas it had formerly been
deemed comparatively trivial when the defences were of mail or textile
fabrics. Hence as time progressed it became necessary to have special
armour for the tilt, or to add such extra defences to the fighting
armour that the increased weight promised security in the saddle, and
the multiplicity of plates between himself and the weapons of his
opponent practically guaranteed immunity from harm. This idea, once
established, eventually led to the result that a knight armed for the
joust could not mount to the saddle, but had prominent portions of
this armour fitted when mounted. He became an apparently impregnable
tower of steel, immovably fixed in a huge saddle. The student of armour
must carefully discriminate between these tilting suits and actual war
harness; the former were never used upon the field of battle, although
at times we know that certain of the tilt defences were borrowed in
order to reinforce the usual harness. The fifteenth century witnessed
the inception and almost the culmination of the idea, and a few of
the tilting suits of the latter part of that era are still extant.
Fig. 310 represents the upper portion of a suit of tilting armour from
the collection in the Museum in Vienna; it dates from 1480, and is
eminently typical of the period. The half-suit, No. 21 (Fig. 418) in
the Wallace Collection, is very similar to the suit illustrated. The
great tilting heaume is composed of three plates of varying thickness,
ranging from nearly half an inch in the principal portions of the
front to an eighth of an inch in the back. A comb, convex in section,
runs down the centre of the crown, and radiating flutings are seen
to ornament the back. The neck of the heaume is firmly fixed to the
backplate, and three screws serve the same purpose in front for the
breastplate. The occularium, formed by the aperture between the crown
plate and the front, appears somewhat large when seen in this position,
but remembering that the lance is held considerably lower than the
heaume it is possible that an opening half an inch or even less would
be presented to it. It was quite possible to have comparative freedom
of movement for the head inside the heaume, which was invariably
furnished with a quilted lining.

[Illustration: PLATE XXI*

War Armour, early Seventeenth Century, Milanese make

Armour of Prince Philip II., German make, 1549

_A. F. Calvert_]

[Illustration: FIG. 311.--Queue. (Wallace Collection.)]

[Illustration: FIG. 312.--Queue, vamplate, and lance. (Tower of

[Illustration: FIG. 313.--Polder mitten. (Tower of London.)]

[Illustration: FIG. 314.--Garde-de-bras. (Wallace Collection.)]

The specimen in the Wallace Collection weighs twenty pounds. The
breastplate is globular in form, and flattened upon the right side to
allow of the queue (Fig. 311) being affixed; this singular addition
consists of a bar of steel rectangular in section and screwed firmly
into the breastplate, bearing at the rear extremity a turned down hook
which resisted the upward pressure of the butt of the lance. The
front portion of the queue has another hook turned upwards, in which
the lance rested, and behind which it was gripped by the hand. This
hook was omitted when the lance-rest was separate and affixed to the
right side of the breastplate, as seen in the figure, where it appears
to be forged in one piece and secured by two screws. An excellent
example demonstrating in a practical manner the use of the queue is
exhibited in the Tower Collection, where the lance is seen in position,
and a large vamplate of curious design is affixed for the protection
of the hand and arm (see Fig. 312). In order to admit of the free
passage of the lance the large palette protecting the right armpit is
slightly hollowed at its lowest part; the Wallace suit has a companion
palette protecting the left arm. Upon the shoulders are pauldrons of
two plates, decorated with radiating fluting, and upon these in the
Wallace suit are two upright iron pins or projections to which were
attached the flowing ends of the lambrequin, contoise, or mantling,
depending from the crest. In the example from Vienna eyelets occur upon
the pauldrons for the same purpose. The brassarts are laminated and
overlap each other downwards. Upon the right arm appears the Polder
mitten (a corruption of _épaule de mouton_, so named from its shape),
an additional reinforcing piece which is screwed to the vambrace and
protects a large portion of the arm. It has fine flutings radiating
from the bend. No gauntlet is seen, the vamplate generally affording
a sufficient protection for the hand. A similar reinforcement for
the right arm is upon the Wallace suit, which differs only in a few
details, whilst a very fine example of this reinforcement, but dating
from a later period, is preserved in the Tower (No. 371, Case 25) (Fig.
313), which exhibits excellent workmanship. The elbow-joint of the left
arm is protected by a _garde-de-bras_ similar in form to that upon the
right arm; this is riveted to a manifere (or _main-de-fer_) of one
plate protecting the bridle hand, and decorated with flutings radiating
from the wrist. The protection for the left arm in the Wallace suit
is represented in Fig. 314; it is a large and finely fluted piece
secured to the vamplate by three screws. A small oak shield covered
with leather and painted is secured by a guige passing through two
holes in the left upper part of the breastplate; it is not connected
in any way with the arm, but simply hangs in position. This is the
Stechtarsche. In Fig. 310, no armour is shown below the waist, but the
Wallace suit is furnished with taces of four plates, to the lowest of
which are fixed the tuilles; while the breastplate is reinforced by
a placcate. Judging from the deep grooves and indentations upon the
heaume and palettes this suit has been donned at times in the combat
_à outrance_, when the war spear was employed, as the lance-head or
coronal customarily used in the Joustes of Peace would not effect
such damage. The Joustes in question were conducted upon the original
methods, namely, in the open lists or field and without any obstruction
between the combatants; the system of running with a barrier between
the horses was termed the Italian course, and was not used generally
in Europe until the sixteenth century. This Italian course is known
as _Über die Pallia_ (over the barriers), or _Welsches Gestech_, in
contradistinction to the open course or _Das Deutsche Stechen_. The
Wallace suit, including the heaume, weighs 96 lbs., and bears the
Augsburg guild mark. A few extra tilting pieces which came into vogue
upon the Continent in this period will be dealt with in a subsequent

A fine suit of Gothic armour to which reference has been previously
made is in the Wallace Collection (Fig. 288) which dates from 1470. The
salade is of fine covering form and is fitted with a lifting visor; the
mentonnière has one plate which falls if required. The breastplate is
reinforced with a large placcate and has laminated goussets protected
by fluted roundels. The taces are of three plates, to which the
tuillettes (so called because they consist of more than one plate) are
suspended. Espalier pauldrons of very fine workmanship protect the
shoulders and upper arms; the coudières are peculiar to the period,
while mitten gauntlets with long cuffs and demi-vambraces are also
used. Demi-cuissarts of three plates have the genouillières fixed to
them, while the jambarts are complete. The sollerets and a few other
parts of the suit are restorations. The chain-mail reinforcements to
the jambarts are of rare occurrence.

[Illustration: FIG. 315.--Gothic armour from the Tower of London]

A suit of armour in the Tower of London deserves special mention
by reason of its being the oldest _cap-à-pie_ suit of plate in the
collection. It is shown in Fig. 315, and probably dates from the
middle of the fifteenth century, having practically no decorations
of any importance. It is furnished with a visorless salade having a
long tailpiece, and a gorget with a roped border which is probably of
a later date. The epaulières consist of five laminated plates; the
coudières are small, while demi-brassarts and complete vambraces cover
the upper and lower arms respectively. The gauntlets are of overlapping
plates with large cuffs. The breastplate has two demi-placcates
reinforcing it, and the backplate is of three pieces. The taces
are three in number, to which tuilles of one plate are affixed.
Demi-cuissarts, plain small genouillières with fan-shaped guards, and
grevières of complete plate (probably recent) protect the lower limbs.
There are no sollerets. The figure is equipped with a pole-axe of an
original pattern, the shaft being partially sheathed in iron. Another
suit, No. 26, probably dates from the last years of the fifteenth
century, as it is furnished with a chain-mail skirt. The breastplate
has a demi-placcate strengthening it; the gauntlets are very elaborate
with fine gadlyngs and cuffs (probably the cuffs only are original);
the cuissarts have four lames upon the upper parts, while the sollerets
are of beautiful construction but recent workmanship. The backplate is
of two plates, and a garde-de-rein is affixed below. The suit has
been much restored.

[Illustration: PLATE XXII*

Half-suit, Pamplona Armour, Philip III.

_A. F. Calvert_]

The finest example of complete war harness for man and horse to be seen
in London, and probably in England, of the very early period of 1460 is
that which occupies such a prominent position in the Wallace Collection
(Fig. 316). It was formerly in the famous collection of the Count de
Nieuwerkerke, who purchased it from M. E. Juste, of Paris, for £1200,
but probably if it came under the hammer now it would bring in four to
six times that sum. As one might expect, it has had to be made up in
a few parts to its present complete condition, but nothing whatever
has been done to the armour for the lower limbs, which is original and
well preserved. This is the more to be wondered at inasmuch as those
are the parts more liable to suffer injury and need replacement than
any others. The salade is of fine form and furnished with a visor, the
occularium being formed between the upper part of the visor and the
lower edge of the crown-piece. The mentonnière is attached by a screw
to the breastplate, and is in two parts, the upper one falling if
required, similar to the buffe of a later period, while a demi-placcate
is affixed by an almayne rivet to reinforce the breastplate. The
backplate is in five plates, all riveted in such a manner as to afford
the maximum of movement for the back. A garde-de-rein of four plates
is affixed below. The left coudière is of a graceful form and large
proportions; the right differs in pattern, and has a garde-de-bras
riveted to the vambrace protecting the inner bend of the arm. The
cuissarts, composed of a number of plates, are of a most ingenious
design, whereby tuilles are rendered superfluous. But perhaps the chief
point of interest is centred in the sollerets, which have extreme
lengths of pointed toe-caps; to these are attached the spurs, the necks
of which are ten inches in length. At a period when it was necessary
to cut the straps of sollerets when fighting on foot, and so remove
the projecting point as to enable the knight to walk, it is curious to
find in this suit that no provision is made for such a contingency,
and that the long, pointed toe is riveted on. The genouillières are of
latten, and below them deep pointed plates extend, to which are affixed
the grevières, which fasten by spring catches on the inside. The whole
of the armour is of a most graceful form, and the eye, accustomed
to mediæval representations of contemporary equipment, dwells with
delight upon this beautiful example of art from the Middle Ages. The
use of latten as a means of adornment for the edges of various plates
gives a rich contrast to the dull grey of the steel. Another fine
suit of _cap-à-pie_ armour dating from the fifteenth century, in the
Wallace Collection, is No. 46, which may be of German origin, and
dates from about 1490. The head is protected by an armet of very fine
proportions, opening down the centre of the chin-piece, and having a
bavière and visor in a single plate. The breastplate is very globose,
and is an example of the mediæval fashion of engraving mottoes, texts,
invocations to the saints, &c., upon armour, as it bears a prominent
inscription. It is furnished with sabbatons, and partakes in many
characteristics of the nature of armour of the succeeding century.

[Illustration: FIG. 316.--Equestrian figure. (Wallace Collection.)]

[Illustration: FIG. 317.--Thomas de St. Quintin, 1445. Harpham Church,

The second half of the fifteenth century saw armour not only in
its highest development, but also of the most beautiful form, for
nothing can exceed the graceful lines and excellence of workmanship
characterising the Gothic style, as it is usually called. It was made
to fit the human form and to adapt itself to the movements of the
wearer. One of the most valuable relics we possess, illustrating its
features, is the absolutely unique effigy of Richard Beauchamp, Earl of
Warwick, in the Beauchamp Chapel, St. Mary’s Church, Warwick, _temp._
1454 (the earl died in 1439). It is of latten, gilded, and in perfect
preservation: every feature, turn, and curve of the original copy is
faithfully reproduced not only upon the front part or upper surface,
but also upon the back; it was turned over some time since in order to
be copied, and was found to be as carefully and accurately finished
there as in the parts usually visible. Every detail is represented
except the mentonnière, which is usually absent in effigies, though
the catch for its attachment is shown. The points calling for special
notice are the passe-guards or pike-guards upon the pauldrons which
constitute a very early example of this adjunct, and also the presence
of two large tuilles and two smaller tuillettes. The coudières are
large and of the beautiful butterfly pattern, covering the inner bend
of the arm; they are both equal in size and of the same pattern.
Although the work was executed by an Englishman, William Austin, the
armour is undoubtedly of Milanese manufacture, and may be ascribed
to the Missaglias. An early example, foreshadowing the changes which
occurred in defensive armour in the second half of the fifteenth
century, is that of Thomas de St. Quintin, 1445, in Harpham Church,
Yorkshire (Fig. 317). The figure is represented in pointed bascinet and
mentonnière, beneath which the laminated epaulières are partly visible.
These are almost covered by two palettes of singularly large size, that
upon the left being the greater; the reinforcement to the breastplate
appears below. Upon the right coudière is an additional plate termed
the garde-de-bras, and another of larger proportions and different form
covers the left. The breastplate is of the short form, and necessitates
the addition of six taces, to which are appended the tuilles. The
figure shows the sword and misericorde being worn as in the Surcoatless
Period. The effigy of Sir Richard Vernon, 1452, at Tong Church,
Shropshire, is an excellent example of mediæval Gothic armour, and as
portrayed in “Shaw’s Dresses and Decorations” is simply magnificent.
Our frontispiece is adapted from the illustration. The orle surrounding
the bascinet is gorgeous with chased work and pearls; the head rests
upon a ponderous heaume, shaped for the shoulders, and bearing crest
and mantling. The mentonnière is here in place: the breastplate is
reinforced by a demi-placcate, and there are eight lames of taces with
short tuilles. The genouillières have only a lower reinforcement,
and the sollerets are comparatively short. A very late example of
the hip-belt is shown, from which the misericorde is suspended, the
sword-belt being quite distinct. The pauldrons are dissimilar, the
right being the smaller and hollowed for the lance; while the upper
parts of both are fluted. The coudières are distinctly beautiful, with
radiating flutings upon the butterfly shape, which is folded inwards
over the goussets.

[Illustration: FIG. 318.--Walter Green, 1450. Hayes, Middlesex.]

[Illustration: FIG. 319.--John Gaynesford, 1460. Crowhurst Church,

Of the same date as the Beauchamp effigy is the well-known brass of
John Daundelyon at Margate, 1455, whose breastplate is of the short
character, as shown in the effigy; the bascinet is very pointed
at the apex, and the mentonnière appears of singularly graceful
form. The palettes are large and dissimilar, the left covering a
considerable portion of the breastplate; upon the left arm is a
circular garde-de-bras attached to the coudière, while an extremely
large coudière is shown upon the left arm which may be regarded as a
second garde-de-bras: the gauntlets are characterised by long pointed
cuffs. Walter Green, 1450, whose brass occurs at Hayes, Middlesex,
is represented without any bascinet, but with the head resting on a
visored tilting helm (Fig. 318). The epaulières consist of a number of
lames which extend upwards to the neck, where they are confined by a
band, and over these are two symmetrical pauldrons of plain pattern.
His armour bears a remarkable resemblance to that of John Gaynesford,
1460, in Crowhurst Church, Surrey, even to the plain gauntlets of four
plates covering the hands. In both examples the taces are numerous
and worked into broad escallops, tuilles being omitted (Fig. 319).
An early example of the garde-de-bras is that represented upon the
memorial effigy of Sir John Verney, Albury, 1452, where a small
garde is attached to the coudière of the right arm and an enlarged
one of peculiar shape to the left (Fig. 320). Upon the same effigy
also occurs a complicated genouillière, which, fitting closely to
the knee, is provided with two reinforcements above and below, the
extreme plates being worked into highly ornamental forms (Fig. 321).
A coudière of large size and graceful form is shown upon the brass
of Henry Parice, 1464, at Hildersham, Cambridge, where arming points
are seen attaching it to the brassart and vambrace: it is serrated
in the upper extension, and the same decoration is repeated upon the
pike-guard of the pauldron. In this figure the lance-rest is shown
affixed to the breastplate (Fig. 322). Upon the same brass there is an
example of extravagant tuilles attached to the lowest of three taces
by straps, while the rare occurrence of the skirt of the haqueton with
the edge of a defence of mail (possibly a hauberk) is shown, another
instance being that at Roydon, Essex, upon the brass of Robert Colt,
1475. Sir Robert Staunton’s brass, 1458, in Castle Donington Church,
Leicestershire (Fig. 323), affords us the best example of extravagant
coudières, and is also remarkable for showing the salade, which is of
extreme rarity upon brasses and effigies. The latter is represented
very wide in form, with a falling visor having the occularium in it,
and guided by a prolongation which apparently runs backwards and
forwards upon a hidden comb. The gorget is of plate, over which the
laminated epaulières are shown, apparently meeting over the chest:
other details of the arms are hidden by the enormous coudières, which,
strange to say, are of similar size and form. They are cusped and
fluted in the upper parts. Upon viewing these arm defences the reason
may readily be perceived why the knights deemed the shield superfluous.
A demi-placcate is added to the breastplate. The armour shown upon
the brass of Sir Robert del Bothe, 1460, in Wilmslow Church, Cheshire
(Fig. 324), is characterised by excessive singularity of contour,
suggesting an origin in one of the northern continental countries.
No headpiece is shown, but the knight probably wore the salade: a
mentonnière of several plates covers the upper part of the breastplate,
which apparently is not reinforced. The massive pauldrons are almost
similar in outline, and each is provided with a projecting ridge upon
the shoulder in addition to a low pike-guard. The chain mail gousset
is very apparent where the pauldron has been cut away to permit of
the lance being held. The coudières are strange, almost grotesque,
in form. The right arm in wielding the sword, mace, and lance, would
be almost always in an extended position, hence the small latitude
allowed in the coudière for bending it: the left, or bridle arm,
would necessarily be bent more. The awkward position of the arms may
be explained by stating that on the brass the knight is holding the
right hand of his lady with his own. The long form of breastplate
necessitates only three taces, which are escalloped, and two large
tuilles, vieing in size with those of Henry Parice, are appended. The
genouillières are remarkable for the excessive development of the
guard-plate protecting the gousset at the back of the knees; this guard
is seen upon many effigies but few brasses, and where it occurs in
the latter might easily be overlooked--see the brass of Sir Anthony
de Grey for example. Upon the brass of Sir Thomas Grene in Grene’s
Norton Church, Northamptonshire (Fig. 325), the knee-guards are, if
anything, larger than those upon the Bothe brass, while Henry Green,
in Luffwick Church, Northamptonshire, 1467, who wears a tabard, has
similar guards. Sir Robert del Bothe is among the first, or is the
first, to exemplify the wearing of the sword in front of the body
sloping from right to left: this fashion was introduced about 1460,
and is one of the clues used in identifying the chronology of a brass.

[Illustration: FIG. 320.--Right and left coudière, Sir John Verney,
Albury, _c._ 1452.]

[Illustration: FIG. 321.--Genouillière, &c., Sir John Verney, Albury
Church, _c._ 1452.]

[Illustration: FIG. 322.--Coudière, &c., Henry Parice, 1464.
Hildersham, Cambs.]

In the brass at Grene’s Norton, mentioned above, however, a curious
modification occurs; the misericorde, which is of huge dimensions and
like an anelace in some respects, is slung perpendicularly in front,
and the sword suspended on the left side. The brass of Sir John Say,
1473, at Broxbourne, Herts, is habited in a tabard blazoned with his
armorial bearings, and exhibits the hausse-col or standard of mail
then commonly worn round the throat when the tilting helm alone was
used as a protection for head and neck. The memorial brass to Sir
Anthony de Grey, 1480, in St. Albans Abbey Church, Herts, exemplifies
the armour known as the Richard III. style in every particular (Fig.
326). Round the neck is a hausse-col or standard; the head rests
upon a tilting helm, the occularium and projection beneath it being
visible over the right shoulder, while the staple for affixing it to
the breastplate appears with the mantling over the left. The pauldrons
are large, and apparently reinforced by a secondary plate beneath;
they are symmetrical in shape and have no pike-guards. The coudières
are large and of peculiar shape while long cuffs are appended to
the shell-gauntlets. This form of pauldron was fairly prevalent at
the time, and also during the early part of the next century. Two
demi-placcates appear upon the breastplate: the taces are only three
in number, and short tuilles appear in front with tuillettes covering
the hips: the genouillières appear with reinforcements extending well
up the thigh and a guard-plate passes behind the goussets. The sword
is slung in the prevailing mode, but the misericorde is in an almost
horizontal position at the back. Similar armour in its broad outlines
is used upon the figures in the Warwick Roll of John Rouse, written and
illustrated in the reign of Richard III., of which we give examples.
Richard Neville, Earl of Salisbury, is represented in a salade with an
unusual knob upon the summit (Fig. 327); the short taces and dependent
tuilles are here exemplified, as are also the shell gauntlets. The
shield with its bouche at the corner is concave to the front, and the
sword is shown with a disproportionately short grip and much swollen,
similar to that in the De Grey brass. The figure of King Richard III.
(Fig. 328) habited in a tabard also occurs in the Roll; the coudières
are peculiarly spiked, but otherwise the armour has the usual Yorkist

[Illustration: FIG. 323.--Sir Robert Staunton, 1458. Castle Donington
Church, Leicestershire.]

[Illustration: FIG. 324.--Sir Robert del Bothe, 1460. Wilmslow Church,

[Illustration: FIG. 325.--Sir Thomas Grene, 1462. Grene’s Norton
Church, Northants.]

[Illustration: FIG. 326.--The brass of Sir Anthony de Grey, 1480, in
St. Albans Abbey Church, Herts.]

[Illustration: FIG. 327.--Richard Neville, Earl of Salisbury, from
Warwick Roll.]

[Illustration: FIG. 328.--Richard III., from Warwick Roll.]

Among the most interesting pieces of armour in the British Isles we
must include the Rhodes armour preserved in the Rotunda at Woolwich.
The Knights of St. John of Jerusalem occupied Rhodes after their
expulsion from the Holy Land, and subsequently migrated to Malta. In
the early part of Queen Victoria’s reign General Sir J. H. Lefroy was
sent by the British Government to Turkey, and while there secured the
Dardanelles cannon described elsewhere, and also the Rhodes armour,
left behind by the Knights. This is one of the most valuable of
late “finds,” and the whole of it is in the Rotunda. Much is in bad
condition and would not bear cleaning, but one suit has been made up
and is illustrated in Plate IX., p. 72. The salade is of a very deep
form with a large visor; there is a lobster-tail neck-guard of two
lames. The mentonnière is more of the nature of a gorget, and is not
affixed to the breastplate. The pauldrons are laminated and continuous
with the brassarts, which have turners, while the coudières are of the
sixteenth century. The vambraces are late fifteenth century, as are
also the gauntlets. The breastplate is globose and furnished with a
placcate, while the backplate has been provided with a garde-de-rein
from the Tower. The cuissarts and genouillières are late fifteenth
century, but the jambarts are of a still later date. In order to
complete the figure a chain-mail hauberk has been lent from the Tower,
and the tuilles and sollerets have been made. The two-handed sword is a
fine example, dating from _c._ 1510. The whole suit may be looked upon
as an example of the style prevailing _c._ 1490.

[Illustration: FIG. 329.--Bowman, 1473.]

[Illustration: FIG. 330.--Arbalestier, _temp._ Edward IV. (Harl. MS.,

[Illustration: FIG. 331.--Arbalestier, early fifteenth century.]

[Illustration: FIG. 332.--Chapelle-de-fer, _c._ 1490. (Tower of

[Illustration: FIG. 333.--Chapelle-de-fer, _temp._ Edward IV. (Roy. MS.
14, E. IV.)]

The period under discussion, from 1430 to 1500, saw the common foot
soldier, whether bowman, arbalestier, billman, petardier, or cannonier,
much better equipped, and in every way more carefully provided for,
than in any preceding age. It had early been perceived in England that
the native infantry was as effective in battle as the flower of foreign
chivalry, and instead of being jealous of this fact, as were the
foreign nobles as a rule of their own foot soldiers, the knights of our
own country sought by every possible means to add to the deadly prowess
of the soldier, and to defend him by every artifice that wit could
devise. It came to be recognised as an article of military knowledge
that a charge of cavalry against English archers armed with the
long-bow resulted, under ordinary conditions, in disaster, and that no
good result was to be obtained by it, but on the contrary it was simply
to court destruction. The lessons of Creçy and of Poictiers had been
well learnt, and it was remembered that the French chivalry, although
encased in steel and the horses defended by bardings, simply melted
away before the deadly sleet of arrows emanating from the English
position, and in spite of their most strenuous efforts only managed
to reach the archers in such a disorganised form that an effective
charge was out of the question. So long as the bowmen stood firmly in
their position and preserved order and discipline they had nothing to
fear from the most determined charge of cavalry. The secret of this
undoubtedly was that although the knight himself was impervious to the
arrow so long as it did not strike a gousset or the junction or joint
between two plates, his horse was by no means equally well protected,
and it is well known that the arrow was in most cases directed towards
the unfortunate steed in preference to the invulnerable rider. It thus
became a custom for the knights and heavily-accoutred men-at-arms to
dismount and advance on foot to the charge, in imitation doubtless of
the example set by the Black Prince at Poictiers. But the slow progress
of such a mass of heavily-armed men against a body of archers gave the
latter plenty of time to select their opponents, and with unerring aim
to challenge the weak points of their adversaries’ defences with the
deadly cloth-yard shaft. The invariable result was that the archer
came off victorious, and the discomfited mail-clad knight thus found
himself unable to reach the enemy with whom he desired to close either
on horseback or on foot. In this dilemma the invention of the pavise
came to his help, and for a time the archer was to a certain extent
nonplussed. This was at first an upright wicker-work defence, square
in form and plane of surface, sufficiently large to cover the knight
and also the page or squire who bore it. The knight also carried his
own shield as an additional defence, and thus effectually protected
from arrows could advance to close quarters, or if necessary, take
post behind his own archers in order to repel a charge of cavalry. The
pavise, once introduced, was quickly improved upon, and soon developed
into a convex shield of wood faced with leather or other protective
material, and resting upon the ground. Some of these were elaborately
decorated, being painted with designs of more or less merit, some
of which have been preserved to the present age and form remarkable
instances of mediæval art. In the Wallace Collection is a pavise
of parchment upon a foundation of wood, with a semi-circular ridge
down the centre, upon which occurs a representation of a castle and
background. It is of German origin, and dates from about 1490; another
in the same museum of about the year 1500 has a similar ridge down the
centre, is of the same materials, and is painted black. The arms of
Nuremberg in colours are upon the left-hand top corner. The examples
are only sufficiently large to cover one man, and might therefore have
been used by archers, arbalestiers, cannoniers, &c., for these were
alert to seize upon the new defence, and quickly adopted it. During
the siege of a town or fortress the pavise was in constant use, and
in MSS. of the fifteenth and sixteenth centuries it is common to note
in the illuminations how they are employed to cover every type of
combatant. In Cotton MS., Julius, E. IV., many examples are delineated,
bodies of pavisiers being shown in combat with each other. Fig. 329
is a representation of a mediæval long bowman of the year 1473, in
which he is shown with a hat and gorget of banded mail and a hauberk
of overlapping scales of leather covered by a brigandine of leather.
The only plate defence is a corselet. The quiver is slung at the back
and a sword in front. The arbalestier shown in Plate XL., p. 366,
is habited in a very graceful salade, a brigandine of the fifteenth
century partly covered by demi-breast and backplates, or placcates,
and wears a knee-piece upon the left leg. The arbalestier of the time
of Edward IV. is represented in the Harleian MS. No. 4379 (Fig. 330)
as possessing a complete defensive equipment, consisting of bascinet,
camail, brigandine of jazeraint work, tuilles of leather plates, and
complete plate for the legs. In addition he has a corselet of plate.
The peculiarly-shaped quiver for the bolts is characteristic of the
period. That arbalestiers were as an established rule better provided
with defences we have already seen: a further confirmation is afforded
by the accompanying Fig. 331 of an arbalestier of the earlier part of
the fifteenth century, before the dagged houppelande of Richard II.
and Henry IV.’s reign had gone out of fashion: he is represented as
being clothed in it, whereby the defences of the body and arms are
hidden, but the legs are in plate, with sollerets for the feet, and
a chapelle-de-fer, or plain skull-cap, covers the head. It is taken
from Sloane MS. 2433.

[Illustration: FIG. 334.--Archers’ salades, _temp._ Edward IV. (Roy.
MS. 14, E. IV.)]

[Illustration: FIG. 335.--Salades, _temp._ Henry VI.]

The chapelle-de-fer was a common headpiece for the soldier of the
fifteenth century; an example dating from _c._ 1490 is preserved in the
Tower (Fig. 332) which shows a point in front, and numerous holes round
the brim for a padded lining. Another representation is from Roy. MS.
14, E. IV. (Fig. 333), which is simply a pot-de-fer with the addition
of a turned-down brim. The soldier also wears a coif-de-mailles.
It must not be supposed that salades were entirely confined to the
knightly orders; they are seen upon horse and foot soldiers of all
grades; three are delineated here which are very common, and are
represented freely in MSS. (Fig. 334), while others of different forms
appear in this chapter (Fig. 335). In MS. No. 6984 of the Bibliothèque
Nationale, Paris, a work of the late fifteenth century, a reputed
knight is shown opening a door. He is copied in Fig. 336, and is
undoubtedly a leader of arquebusiers, pikemen, or arbalestiers, and
not of the knightly order. The extra protection of a roundel at the
side of the salade was very common upon the Continent, while leather is
used for taces as in Fig. 330. The limbs are in plate, and a corselet
is shown. The tabs at the neck, shoulders, and knees are of frequent
occurrence in illuminations.

[Illustration: FIG. 336.--(No. 6984 Bibliothèque Nationale, Paris.)
Late fifteenth century leather and plate defences.]

[Illustration: FIG. 337.--Petardier and swordsman, fifteenth century.
(Roy. MS. 18, E. V.)]

[Illustration: FIG. 338.--Hand-gun man, _c._ 1473. (Roy. MS. 18, E. 5.)]

The petardier of the fifteenth century, who hurled small bombs, or
else pots filled with Greek fire, into the ranks of the enemy, was
also clothed in plate, sometimes from head to heel. He was considered
of great importance, and consequently rendered as impervious as
possible to the weapons with which he might be assailed. The thrower
of the fire-pot represented in Fig. 337 (from Roy. MS. 18, E. V.) is
protected thus, even to roundels covering the goussets, unless these
are mammelières, which are of very frequent appearance. Opposing him
is a foot soldier wielding a bastard sword and protecting himself with
a small buckler; he wears a visored salade with camail and a gorget,
a close-fitting brigandine over a hauberk of mail, and his arms are
protected by plate. As is the case in the majority of representations
of soldiers of this period, the legs are entirely undefended. From the
same MS., which dates from 1473, we reproduce an interesting figure
(No. 338) of a hand-gun man discharging one of the crude pieces of that
period, whose picturesque appearance it would be difficult to excel.
The salade is especially enriched with an enlargement of the customary
roundels, while two demi-placcates reinforce his breastplate, which is
probably of leather. Only genouillières appear upon his legs, a system
of defence which was much in vogue at that time. A hand-gun man of 1470
is depicted in Fig. 339. Among the mercenaries introduced into England
during the Wars of the Roses were “Burgundenses” or Burgundian hand-gun
men. Warwick had a body of these at the second battle of St. Albans in
1461, and in Fig. 340 we have in all probability a representation of
their accoutrement. Upon the body the defences are a padded jacque,
similar in nature of material to the gambeson, combined with chain mail
and pourpointerie. The visor upon the salade is apparently fixed, while
the legs are encased in mail chausses covered with demi-cuissarts and
jambarts. The cannonier of the period was usually without any defensive
equipment whatever. A small illustration is appended from the Sloane
MS. No. 2433 of the fifteenth century, from which it will be perceived
that he is dressed in ordinary civilian garments (Fig. 341). It was
probably deemed unnecessary to clothe him in armour by reason of the
distance which separated him from the contest.

[Illustration: FIG. 339.-Hand-gun man, 1470.]

[Illustration: FIG. 340.--Hand-gun man, _c._ 1470.]

Javelin men are represented in many MSS. of this period, but invariably
in those of a foreign origin. The soldier delineated in Fig. 342 is
taken from Harl. MS. 4374, and is remarkable for the cap-à-pie defences
he wears. The size and shape of the shield is also worthy of notice.

[Illustration: FIG. 341.--Cannonier, fifteenth century. (Sloane MS.

[Illustration: FIG. 342.--Javelin man, 1480. (Harl. MS. 4374.)]

Two brigandines as used in the fourteenth and fifteenth centuries are
preserved in the Tower of London; details of their structure are given
in Figs. 343 and 344, both being drawn the exact size of the originals.
In Fig. 343, A is a square sheet of thin iron, rounded at the corners
and with a hole in the centre. In B it is placed between two coverings
of canvas and fastened by strings, three of which pass through the
centre; the loose ends are continued to pass over and through four more
plates which surround B and practically touch it on all sides. This is
a common and inexpensive form of jazeraint.

[Illustration: FIG. 343.--Details of brigandines, fourteenth and
fifteenth centuries. (Tower of London.)]

[Illustration: FIG. 344.--Details of studded Brigandine, fourteenth and
fifteenth centuries. (Tower of London.)]

Fig. 344 is more complicated. A represents a small plate of iron,
thinner than that used in the preceding example. The heads of six
studs, which are screwed or otherwise fastened into the plate, are
shown side by side. In B the plate is shown edgewise and one of the
studs also. C represents this plate and four others placed between
two layers of canvas, cloth, or other material with the stud heads
perforating one of the layers and the plates overlapping like slates
upon a roof. D represents the appearance of the face of the brigandine
when finished. It will readily be perceived that such a garment would
be very pliable, and yet offer considerable resistance to an arrow, or
bolt, or a sword-cut.



The salient features of the Transition Period are:--

1. The adoption of sabbatons in the place of sollerets.

2. The chain mail skirt.

3. The general use of a closed helmet.

[Illustration: FIGS. 345 and 346.--Helmets. (Tower of London.)]

_The Helmet._--This defence was invariably of the “closed” pattern,
and consisted of a crown with a ridge, generally roped, down the
centre; two cheek-pieces meeting together at the chin and fastening
there; the visor and bavière formed of one piece, pierced with oblong
apertures for the occularium, and having small holes for ventilation
and breathing purposes. The bavière was a relict of the mentonnière
of a previous period, and the close helmet may be regarded as a
direct evolution from the armet; indeed it is at times difficult to
differentiate between the two. The roundel at the back of the neck in
the armet gave way to a plate-guard. The neck portion of the close
helmet was furnished with a hollow rim, generally decorated with
roping, which fitted over a corresponding solid rim upon the upper
portion of the gorget and permitted the head to be rotated from side
to side. The visor and bavière in the early helmets were in one piece,
and very often of the bellows pattern, but later examples show them in
two distinct pieces, the upper portion, or visor proper, falling down
inside the bavière.

The helmet shown in Fig. 347, dating from 1500, opens down the sides
instead of down the chin and back like the armet, and the same pivot
which secures the visor also serves as a hinge for the crown and
chin-piece. In Fig. 347A we have illustrated a German fluted helmet,
partly engraved and gilded and of good form and workmanship. It opens
down the chin. The skill shown in the forging of the crown and the
fluting of the twisted comb is remarkable, and each rivet of the lining
strap of the cheek-pieces forms the centre of an engraved rose. It
is provided with a roped rim to fit over a solid rim on the gorget.
Fig. 348 is the front view of a helmet dating from 1520 which differs
chiefly from the last helmet in the form of the visor, while the
example shown in Fig. 348A is of Italian origin and of the same period.
It is small and of an extremely graceful form. Figs. 345, 346, are
contemporary helmets from the Tower of London.

[Illustration: FIG. 347.]

[Illustration: FIG. 347A.]

[Illustration: FIG. 348.]

[Illustration: FIG. 348A.]

[Illustration: FIG. 349.--Standard of mail, William Bardwell, 1508.
West Herling Church, Norfolk.]

_The Gorget_ of the period consisted of laminated plates riveted at
the sides of the neck and working freely upon each other, but covering
from below upwards. These gorgets were an essential feature of the
following, or Maximilian, period. It often spread over the chest and
extended down the back as well; it was furnished with sliding rivets
to allow of the maximum of freedom. At times this gorget was fixed
to and formed part of the close helmet. Towards the latter part of
the period the standard or collar of mail appears to have been worn
very frequently to protect the neck; in these cases one or more lames
forming a gorget were added to the lower part of the helmet to fit over
and reinforce the standard. An example is shown in Fig. 349.

[Illustration: FIG. 350.--Globose breastplate, 1510. (Tower of London.)]

_The Breastplate_ was globose, and as a rule furnished with one or more
articulated lames (or taces) at the lower part, which permitted freedom
of motion for the body at the waist. Fig. 350 represents a breastplate
in the Tower which has one lame. Goussets of plate are invariably
found at the junction of the arms with the body; these were also made
to slide freely upon their rivets. At the top a projecting collar
protected the part where the gorget was covered by the breastplate, and
this feature is exemplified in Figs. 350 and 351, the latter also being
an example from the Tower of London though a little later in date. The
apertures pierced in it were made for the attachment of various tilting
pieces. The ornamentation shown in Fig. 350 consists of mere sunken
indentations, and suggests flutings.

[Illustration: FIG. 351.--Breastplate. (Tower of London.)]

_The Pauldrons._--These became much modified from the huge examples
characteristic of the latter part of the Tabard Period, losing their
angular appearance and becoming more rounded and at the same time
mobile. This was effected by making the whole pauldron of lames of
steel, generally overlapping upwards; the upper lame was as a rule
moulded into a strong pike-guard, sometimes upon the left shoulder
only, but generally upon both. The lames were carried well round to the
back and front over the goussets, and were attached to the back- and
breast-plates. If the right gousset is exposed a roundel is generally
affixed to the pauldron. That the plate pauldrons of an earlier date
were not, however, entirely superseded is shown by the monumental
brass of W. Bardwell, 1508, in West Herling Church, Norfolk, where
a massive pauldron furnished with two pike-guards is shown upon the
left shoulder, and a dissimilar one of still larger proportions, and
provided with one guard, upon the other (Fig. 349).

[Illustration: PLATE XXIII*

Flemish Armour, 1624

_A. F. Calvert_]

_The Brassarts_, Vambraces, Coudières, and Gauntlets all partake more
or less of the laminated character, but the coudières are remarkably
small when compared with those of the later Tabard Period, and
furnished with large expanding guards for the inside bend of the arm.

_The Cuissarts_, Genouillières, and Grevières are of plate, with
rounded caps for the genouillières and a few lames for reinforcements.

_The Sabbatons._--These broad-toed sollerets were introduced during the
later part of the previous period, those of Piers Gerard (date 1492)
being illustrated on p. 232. They present many varieties of form, but
are not distinguished for extraordinary size, as they were during the
Maximilian period.

_The Skirt of Mail_ was a marked feature of the period, and one by
which it may generally be recognised. At times it almost reached to the
knees, but as a general rule it terminated a short distance below the
middle of the thigh. It was of fine mail, and in all probability only a
skirt fastening round or below the waist. Occasionally it is slit up a
short distance back and front, in order to give facilities for riding.
The mail skirt had been growing in favour for some time: Lord Audley,
1491, upon his brass in Sheen Church, Surrey, exhibits it, and Edward
Stafford, Earl of Wiltshire, 1499, in Luffwick Church, Northants, has
a similar skirt, namely to mid-thigh. Perhaps the earliest example is
that of John, Lord L’Estrange, 1478, at Hillingdon, Middlesex, who has
a mail skirt to the knees, one tuille in front and one on either side;
sabbatons; a pike-guard upon the pauldron, and guards round the back of
the knees: but all are very plain, similar to the Stanley brass.

The tuilles lying upon this skirt were generally of large proportions
and suspended from the bottom tace; they did not reach, however, so
low as the hem of the skirt. Wm. Bardwell’s brass exhibits no tuilles
whatever over the skirt of mail, and Richard Gyll, 1511, sergeant of
the bakehouse under Henry VII., shows upon his brass in Shottisbrooke
Church, Hants, two almost ludicrously small tuilles, affixed to the
lowest of four narrow taces. John Colt, 1521, of Roy don Church, Essex,
has extremely small tuilles over his deep skirt of mail similar to the
Gyll brass; he is habited in a tabard.

From the foregoing it will readily be gleaned that very important
alterations occurred in armour of this period, differentiating it from
that of the preceding. The great pauldrons, exaggerated coudières,
and general angularity, and, one might almost say prickliness, of the
later Tabard Period was modified to a smoother and rounder style, while
it lost entirely that remarkable beauty of form which, however much
distorted by fanciful additions, characterised the Gothic armour as
a whole. The beautiful flutings and ornamental curves disappeared to
make way for a heavy, cumbersome style indicative of German stolidity,
and in direct antagonism to the mobile quickness and agility suggested
by the majority of suits dating from the latter half of the previous
century. These characteristics may be readily seen in the brass to Sir
Humphrey Stanley in Westminster Abbey, Fig. 352; and also that to a
knight, _c._ 1510, shown in Fig. 353.

[Illustration: FIG. 352.--Sir Humphrey Stanley, 1505. Westminster

[Illustration: FIG. 353.--Knight, _c._ 1510.]

That this excessive plainness was not always carried out, however,
may be gleaned from a few effigies which display an almost lavish
ornamentation. The genouillière of Sir Roger le Strange, 1506,
Hunstanton, is given here (Fig. 354) as an example, where the spike
and fluted reinforcements are a special feature, and also the right
genouillière of Sir John Cheney, 1509, in Salisbury Cathedral, where
the cusped reinforcements are noteworthy (Fig. 355).

[Illustration: FIG. 354.--Genouillière and reinforcements, Sir Roger le
Strange, 1506, Hunstanton.]

[Illustration: FIG. 355.--Genouillière, Sir John Cheney, _c._ 1509.
Salisbury Cathedral.]

Towards the end of the period, however, we find that although the
salient points of this Transition Period in armour were retained,
the taste for ornamentation led many knights to discard the extreme
plainness of the mode, and to adapt a style of decoration which in many
cases approached the graceful. Effigies of the years 1515 to 1520 show
flutings upon the breastplate, taces, and tuilles; rosettes or other
ornaments upon the splays of the genouillières and coudières, with
fluted pauldrons of artistic shape spreading over the backplate and

A suit of armour is preserved in the Rotunda Museum at Woolwich which
is of unique interest, inasmuch as it is attributed to, and certainly
is of the date of the redoubtable Chevalier Bayard. It was brought
from the Château of St Germain, and is an object of profound regard
to Gallic visitors. The armour is engraved, russeted, and partly gilt
(Plate VIII., p. 64), and dates from _c._ 1520 or earlier. In places
it is fluted, but a marked peculiarity of the suit is the polygonal
section of the cuissarts and jambarts, which may be discerned by a
close inspection of the figure. The breastplate is globose and the left
epaulière is furnished with a pike-guard, while the sabbatons are of
the bear’s-paw pattern.

[Illustration: FIG. 356.--The Wallace heaume, _c._ 1515.]

[Illustration: FIG. 357.--Globular tilting heaume. (Tower of London.)]

For tilting purposes the great heaume was still in use, and several
examples preserved in our museums date from this period. Not the least
interesting is the well-known Wallace heaume, of English construction,
and dating from _c._ 1515 (Fig. 356). This rare example is formed of
two plates only, the top and back part being one piece, and the front
part or bavière being the other. The two plates are securely riveted
together at the sides and a piece is flanged over upon the crown, where
four rivets hold it in place. The height of the heaume is 14 inches.
It is much pitted, and in places broken. Of the heaumes preserved in
the Tower a great probability exists that they were made for pageant
purposes or simply for funeral achievements. One of early fifteenth
century date weighs 15 lbs.; another of the usual shape, but furnished
with a comb, is said to have belonged to John of Gaunt. Probably the
most interesting in that collection is a globular tilting heaume
fitted with a bavière which is affixed by screws, and also gripped by
the visor pivots; it extends downwards to the breastplate, to which
it was fixed by an almayne screw (Fig. 357). In it a square opening
occurs opposite the right cheek, protected by a small door, opening and
closing upon a spring. The visor is strongly reinforced, and works upon
a central comb on the crown: the occularium is formed by the lower
part of the visor and the upper edge of the bavière, and is remarkably
narrow. It weighs 13 lbs. In the Rotunda at Woolwich is preserved the
well-known Brocas heaume (Plate XXXIX., p. 364), dating from the time
of Henry VII. and formerly in the Brocas Collection. It weighs 22½ lbs.
In Haseley Church, Oxon; Petworth Church, Sussex; Ashford Church, Kent;
and in Westminster Abbey, are other heaumes of considerable interest,
and a few are in private collections. A heaume which dated from _c._
1510 was at one time in Rayne Church, Essex, and belonged to Sir Giles
Capel, the head portion of which was almost globose, while a second
example, in which, however, the visor is slightly ridged, or of the
bellows variety, is in Wimborne Minster. These heaumes invariably weigh
more than 20 lbs.; but the Westminster example is an exception, as it
only scales 17 lbs.



This style of armour, which prevailed for so long a period, and of
which examples in some form or other exist in almost every museum of
importance, saw its origin in the reign of the Emperor Maximilian, from
whom it is named. It is essentially the late Gothic style of armour
richly decorated with fluting, and reinforced by numerous extra pieces
designed to afford additional security to the wearer in the tilt-yard.
For the battle-field the plain, unornamental armour of the Transition
Period was invariably used; the Maximilian was for tilting and pageant
purposes chiefly, and for display. Its introduction, and subsequent
development upon the lines followed by the civil dress, was a sign of
the decadence of armour for use in the battle-field--the turning-point
which eventually led to its abolition.

The invention and use of gunpowder was the death-knell of chivalry in
the full sense of its meaning. The mail-clad knight and the heavily
armed man-at-arms had played their part through many centuries, and
were now to disappear; steel-clad squadrons in all the majestic might
of the pomp and circumstance of glorious war, with levelled lance and
mantling streaming in the wind, had lived their day and were now to
be no more, Armour had served its purpose so long as sword and lance,
javelin and bolt, were the usual weapons of war; but when it was
discovered that against the deadly lead of the arquebus it was of no
avail, it was gradually discarded as obsolete and cumbersome.

[Illustration: FIG. 358.--The Emperor Maximilian I.]

[Illustration: FIG. 359.--Maximilian armour, 1535. (Wallace

All the examples of Maximilian armour present the same broad features,
and can be easily recognised. As an effective defence against lance
and sword and mace they were extremely efficacious, and the armourers
of the period attained a high degree of excellence in producing suits
which were, for tourney purposes, invulnerable. The general features
of the armour followed the lines shown in Fig. 358, which is taken
from a drawing by Hans Burgkmair in 1508, and represents the Emperor
Maximilian I.

[Illustration: FIG. 360.--Helmet, Maximilian armour. (Wallace

[Illustration: FIG. 361.--Gorget, Maximilian armour.]

A suit (Fig. 359) eminently typical of Maximilian armour, having
its whole surface ridged throughout in closely grouped channels,
is in the Wallace Collection; it was manufactured at Nuremberg in
1535. The closed helmet (Fig. 360) is of a very fine pattern, simple
but effective, with visor and bavière in one piece, only a narrow
occularium being pierced for sight. The neck articulates with the
upper plate of the gorget, which consists of four plates (Fig. 361).

The breastplate (Fig. 362) is ridged with a strongly marked tapul
upon the large placcate which strengthens it; the double-headed
eagle appears upon the upper portion of this. In the upper centre of
the breastplate proper is a hole of square section for affixing a
mentonnière or bufe. To the backplate (Fig. 363), in the lower part of
which occurs a fleur-de-lys, a garde-de-rein of two plates is attached.

[Illustration: FIG. 362.--Breastplate, &c., Maximilian armour, 1535.]

[Illustration: FIG. 363.--Backplate, Maximilian armour, 1535.]

The taces of three plates have the tassets fastened to the lower lame.
The pauldrons (Fig. 364) are large and of a different pattern for each
shoulder, the right being hollowed for the lance, with a roundel to
protect the opening. The inside bend of the arm has fourteen splints
for protection, as may be seen from the illustration (Fig. 365).
Strange to say, the inner bends of the knees have the same protection
(Fig. 366).

The sabbatons present a very fine example of the “bear’s paw” pattern;
they are attached to the jambarts, which, as usual in this style, are
not fluted (Fig. 367). In many of the European collections, suits of
armour of this pattern may be found.

[Illustration: FIG. 364.--Pauldrons, Maximilian armour, 1535.]

[Illustration: FIG. 365.--Maximilian armour, 1535.]

[Illustration: FIG. 366.--Maximilian armour.]

[Illustration: FIG. 367.--Sabbaton, Maximilian armour. (Wallace Coll.)]

_The Helmet._--The closed helmet continued to be used during this
period, though modified and altered in many particulars by the
armourers. The flutings are carried as a rule from front to back over
the crown, and the universal comb is decorated with a roped pattern.
The visor is generally moulded into three or four ridges, giving the
well-known bellows appearance. The gorget is affixed to the helmet, and
appears as three or more spreading lames of steel, the lowest being
worked into a pattern; at times, however, it appears distinct, and the
helmet revolves upon the expanded upper edge of the gorget.

A very perfect type of close helmet is shown in Fig. 368, in which
the comb is much larger than was the custom at an earlier date and
resembles that of a morion. The visor is formed of two parts, the upper
or visor proper, which falls down inside the second part or bavière,
and could be raised for vision if required without disturbing the
lower portion. The date is _c._ 1560, and it is probably Milanese.
The helmet engraved in Fig. 369 is of English origin and partakes of
the nature of a helmet and also a burgonet. The latter form of helmet
appeared during the Burgundian wars, hence its name, at the beginning
of the fifteenth century, and is essentially a helmet with cheek-pieces
attached, the protection for the face being afforded by separate
pieces, the bufe or laminated chin-piece being used at times. Fig. 370
is an Italian burgonet dating from 1540.

[Illustration: FIG. 368.--Milanese close helmet, _c._ 1560.]

[Illustration: FIG. 369.--English close helmet.]

[Illustration: FIG. 370.--Italian burgonet, 1540.]

For war purposes the salade was still preferred, though the form in the
Maximilian Period was at variance with that in the Tabard, and even in
the Transition, Period. A fine example, dating from 1520, is preserved
in the Wallace Collection (Fig. 371). It has a low comb, and the
neck-guard is broken up into three lobster-tail plates. The visor is
large, and contains the occularium; in the lower part it is hollowed
so as to fit the chin, while a series of breathing-holes are pierced
through the centre.

[Illustration: FIG. 371.--Salade, Maximilian, 1520. (Wallace

[Illustration: FIG. 372.--Breastplate with tapul. (Tower of London.)]

_The Breastplate_ is short and furnished with goussets sliding upon
almayne rivets; a cable pattern appears upon the turned-over edges,
and flutings radiate from the waist upwards. A placcate is often
found reinforcing the breastplate after the manner of the fifteenth
century Gothic suits, and this feature may be seen exemplified in Fig.
224 in the Wallace Collection. If a placcate is not used, at times a
thick band of steel makes a reinforcement round the waist, forming an
integral part of the breastplate. The taces are generally three or
four in number, and to the lowest are affixed the _tassets_, which
are laminated, and of three or more plates, taking the place of the
now obsolete tuilles. To the backplate is affixed the garde-de-rein,
or kidney guard, which may be of chain mail, or laminated scales; if
of plates these are placed inside each other upwards, so as to guard
against the thrust of the pike from a footman. The scales, if used, are
also turned in the same direction.

The breastplate of the earlier part of this period was more globular
than the Gothic example; the slight ridge down the centre gradually
developed into a strongly marked _tapul_ (Fig. 372). In the first years
of Elizabeth’s reign the tapul was humped in the centre with a very
marked projection, but as the reign progressed this hump descended
until it was near the lower edge and produced the _peascod_ form
(Figs. 373, 374), which was an imitation in metal of the doublet then
prevalent. For combats on foot the breastplate was often made entirely
of lames of plate moving upon rivets, thus insuring great freedom of
movement for the body (Fig. 375).

[Illustration: FIG. 373.--Peascod breastplate. (Tower of London.)]

[Illustration: FIG. 374.--Breastplate. (Tower of London.)]

[Illustration: FIG. 375.--Laminated peascod breastplate. (T. of

_The Pauldrons_ are invariably furnished with large pike-guards; the
left differs from the right, which is hollowed to receive the lance,
with a roundel falling over it for protection. The arm defences are
laminated where possible, and large butterfly coudières occur. In some
suits the inside bend of the arms, and also the backs of the knees, are
protected by a series of laminated plates affording great protection
while allowing complete freedom of movement; the beautiful workmanship
and accurate adjustment of these lames are especially noteworthy. An
example from the Wallace Collection is given in Fig. 376; there are two
examples in that museum and another in the Tower, upon a suit made for
Henry VIII. for fighting on foot.

_The Cuisses, &c._--These are long, and furnished with one or more
laminated plates at the tops for flexibility. They are generally
complete, covering the back of the leg as well as the front; to insure
mobility the back at times is composed of lames. The genouillières are
small and tight-fitting, but provided with large plates to protect the
back of the knee. The jambarts are close-fitting and of fine form, and
these are the only parts undecorated with fluting which appears more or
less over the whole suit. Sabbatons are of the bear’s paw pattern, the
toes being at times of remarkably wide dimensions.

[Illustration: FIG. 376.--Defence for bend of arm.]

The brayette was generally composed of steel plates, although examples
exist which are made of a single plate. It was designed to afford
protection to the abdomen, as the breastplate only descended as far as
the waist, where the brayette was affixed by means of straps. At times
it was made entirely of chain mail modelled to the form, while many
suits exhibit the cuisses, tassets, and brayette made in one piece. In
deference to British susceptibilities these pieces are removed from
contemporary suits of armour in our museums and exhibited separately,
but on the Continent they are invariably shown in position.

The tilting reinforcements were many and varied, but a few of the most
prominent may be described.

_The Grande Garde._--This was a protection for the left side of the
breastplate and the left shoulder; it extended from the neck to the
waist, and generally covered a small portion of the right of the
breastplate as well. In Fig. 377 the general shape is indicated, the
left or bridle arm being incapable of a forward movement when it was
affixed. The three large screws and nuts are for securing it to the
breastplate, and also for engaging with the lower edge of the volante
piece, which in this example is separate, and has oblong indentations
for that purpose as seen at A.

[Illustration: FIG. 377.--Grande garde. (Wallace Collection.)]

[Illustration: FIG. 378.--Volante piece and grande garde, _c._ 1580.
(Wallace Collection.)]

[Illustration: FIG. 379.--Grande garde and volante piece. (From a

[Illustration: FIG. 380.--Manteau d’armes, 16th century. (Tower of

_The Volante Piece._--This reinforcement was intended for the
protection of the neck and face up to the eyes; it was either separate
from the grande garde, as in Fig. 377, or formed a part of it as in
Fig. 378, where a series of studs are shown which permanently fix it.
In this example an oblong slit is shown in the lower part of the grande
garde by which an attachment to the breastplate can be effected. If no
grande garde is used a volante piece similar to a large mentonnière in
construction was affixed to the breastplate, generally by three screws,
and while effectually protecting both sides of the helmet was also
prolonged over both shoulders.

[Illustration: FIG. 381.--Manteau d’armes. (Wallace Collection.)]

A combined grande garde and volante piece (Fig. 379) is represented
upon a king engaged in combat in the field in a fifteenth century
missal presented by the Duchess of Burgundy to Henry VI., which
indicates that some of the reinforcements used in the tilting yard
were at times made available for war purposes; this, however, was the
exception and not the rule.

_The Manteau d’Armes._--This piece consists of a large concave shield
intended to protect the left side of the breastplate and the left
shoulder, and was used in the Italian or Free Course. It was firmly
fixed to the breastplate by screws. The surface of the shield was
usually embossed with a raised trellis-work design, either appliqué or
raised from the surface by repoussé; this arrangement was intended to
furnish a “grip” for the adversary’s lance (Fig. 381).

[Illustration: FIG. 382.--Polder mitten. (Tower of London.)]

_The Polder Mitten_, or _Épaule de Mouton_, was attached to the right
vambrace, and afforded protection against lance-thrusts to the bend of
the arm and the parts immediately above and below. The example shown in
Fig. 382 is from the Tower of London.

[Illustration: FIG. 383.--Suit of armour for fighting on foot, King
Henry VIII. (Tower of London.)]

_The Garde-de-Bras_ was essentially a protection for the left arm in
tilting; it was attached to the coudière.

The Maximilian armour for fighting on foot in the lists was of
very elaborate workmanship, but not as a rule embellished with the
ornamentation which distinguished the equestrian suit. A complete
suit for this purpose is preserved in the Tower; it was made for King
Henry VIII., and is one of the finest in existence, containing as it
does over two hundred separate pieces, most of them provided with a
hollow groove which fits over a corresponding ridge upon the adjacent
piece, thus presenting such a perfect interlocking system that the suit
could not be taken to pieces without the greatest trouble. There are
no goussets or exposed parts of the person of the wearer, the whole
body being enclosed in a case of steel whose joints do not permit of
the passage of a pin. It weighs nearly one hundred pounds, and has the
broad-toed sabbatons of the period, and not only is the armour carried
inside the legs and arms at the bends but plates are also provided
under the seat. The breastplate has a slight ridging down the centre,
the precursor of the tapul or prominent projection so characteristic
of the breastplates immediately following. Upon this suit arm and knee
protections are used similar to those illustrated in Fig. 376.

_Lamboys or Bases._--The drapery used at this time, depending in folds
from the waist and hanging over the thighs, was occasionally imitated
in steel, but examples preserved to the present age are of great rarity.

[Illustration: FIG. 384.]

[Illustration: FIG. 385.--Three-quarter suit “slashed” armour, 1520.
(Wallace Collection.)]

The finest in existence is probably that preserved in the Tower, which
once belonged to Henry VIII.; it is a suit made by Seusenhofer of
Innsbruck, and was presented to the king by Maximilian I., in 1514
(Fig. 384). It is shown mounted in the collection, a portion of the
lamboys back and front being removable for the purpose. A close helmet
with gorget attached protects the head and neck; pike-guards are
affixed to both pauldrons, and a tapul appears upon the breastplate.
The legs are encased in close-fitting plate defences with no elaborate
ornamentation; indeed, but for a beautifully-designed border in brass
with the initials H and K appearing upon it, it is now practically
devoid of ornamentation. This, however, was compensated for when
new by being silvered.

[Illustration: FIG. 386.--Arm defences, slashed armour, 1520. (Wallace

[Illustration: FIG. 387.--Interior of tasset, slashed armour, 1520.
(Wallace Collection.)]

[Illustration: FIG. 388.--Tasset, slashed armour, 1520. (Wallace

A most interesting three-quarter suit of armour of this period, dating
from 1520, was formerly in the Meyrick Collection but is now in the
Wallace. It was made in imitation of the slashed and puffed dress
of the early part of the sixteenth century, and these features are
reproduced by repoussé from the back of the plates in steel (Fig.
385). Other suits of a similar character are in existence (a portion
of one being in the Tower), but no other so fully exemplifies this
peculiarity as the Wallace example. The helmet is of the closed type
with a bellows-pattern front of five ridges, the visor and bavière
being in one piece; the chin-piece is singular in being of only
one plate hinged upon the left side of the helmet. The gorget is a
standard collar of mail. The breastplate is globose and furnished
with laminated plate goussets (Fig. 391); five plates form the taces,
while tassets (Figs. 387, 388) of five plates are moulded round the
thighs; the protection behind is afforded by a _culette_ (Fig. 390), an
arrangement of five plates, shaped to the figure, and depending from
the backplate (Fig. 389), thus taking the place of the garde-de-rein.
Upon these suits (_i.e._ for fighting on foot) were at times worn the
grotesque helmets which many museums exhibit, showing satanic faces,
and extravagant erections upon the head. One of these is the well-known
ram’s-horn visor in the Tower, a present from the Emperor Maximilian
to Henry VIII. It was formerly gilt, but has subsequently been painted
and furnished with a pair of spectacles. Allied to these grotesque
helmets were the pageant varieties, of which a number are extant at the
present day. They were made solely for processions, triumphs, general
obsequies, &c., of gilded leather, wood, and other materials. Examples
are given in Figs. 392, 393, and 394.

[Illustration: FIG. 389.--Backplate, slashed armour, 1520. (Wallace

[Illustration: FIG. 390.--Culette in place of garde-de-rein, slashed
armour, 1520. (Wallace Collection.)]

[Illustration: FIG. 391.--Breastplate and taces, slashed armour, 1520.
(Wallace Collection.)]

[Illustration: FIG. 392.--Pageant helmet with the crest of Burgau.]

[Illustration: FIG. 393.--Pageant helmet with the crest of Austria
(ancient) or Tyrol.]

[Illustration: FIG. 394.--Pageant helm, second half of the 15th century

The latter half of the Maximilian Period, or broadly speaking from
about 1545 to 1600, saw a change in armour which renders it distinct
from the preceding half. The rich flutings were discarded by reason
of their tendency to hold the opponent’s lance and to direct its head
towards vulnerable spots. As a substitute for the ornamental fluting
the plain surface of the steel became covered with rich artistic
designs, some of them being of exquisite beauty and marvellous
workmanship, while occasionally repoussé work was added to heighten
the effect. Aqua fortis was freely used for etching in combination
with hand engraving, while damascening in gold and silver was also
resorted to, the resulting suit presenting the absolute perfection
of ornamentation of that particular character. But it is only in the
surface decoration that we can admire the armour of the period, for
in other respects it falls far short of that which preceded it. The
outline was in most cases grotesque, or bordering upon it; the metal
was thinner and lighter than before, while the devices for permitting
it to cover the bombasted breeches, so fashionable at the period,
effectually mars its beauty of outline. So similar in contour and
general configuration of the several parts is the armour of this time
(which may be termed the Decorative Period) that a description of one
suit is to all intents and purposes a description of the whole, and
the suits severally preserved at the Armourers’ Hall and the Wallace
Collection will answer the purpose. These were made by the celebrated
English armourer, Jacobi, whose illustrated album of twenty-nine suits,
made by him between 1560 and 1590, is now in the South Kensington
Museum. The album was sold at the Spitzer sale to M. Stein and was
acquired by the nation; it is of extreme value to the student of
armour, and a reproduction of the work has been issued. The suits were
made for the Duke of Norfolk, the Earls of Rutland, Bedford, Leicester,
Sussex, Worcester, Pembroke, and Cumberland, Sir Henry Lee, Master
of the Armoury, Sir Christopher Hatton, &c., and a number have been
preserved and identified by the details in the album. The suit in the
Armourers’ Hall is one of the three made for Sir Henry Lee, while that
in the Wallace Collection was made for Sir Thomas Sackville, created
Baron of Buckhurst in 1567, and subsequently Earl of Dorset. This suit
came from the Château Coulommiers en Brie, and was taken thence when
the château was dismantled during the first French Revolution (Fig.

[Illustration: FIG. 395.--Jacobi armour, 1575. (Wallace Collection.)]

[Illustration: FIG. 396.--Helmet, Jacobi suit.]

_The Helmets_ are of the closed pattern, of the burgonet type, with
an umbril or shade for the eyes, made after the style of a visor and
coming well forward, while a falling bavière (Fig. 398) is hinged at
the sides and projects well to the front, forming an occularium with
the umbril (Fig. 396). A deep comb passes over the top of the helmet.
The Sackville suit has a triple-barred face-guard as well (Fig. 397).
A morion could be worn with these suits; it was an oval helmet with a
high crest like a comb, and a brim which was peaked both before and
behind (Fig. 415).

_The Gorget_ consisted of four lames of plate.

_Breastplates._--These are all of the peascod form with roped turnover
borders and the goussets laminated with one plate. The backplates are
secured to the breastplates by steel straps over the shoulders and
under the arms (Figs. 397 and 398).

[Illustration: FIG. 397.--Face-guard, breastplate, tace, and tassets,
Jacobi armour, 1575.]

[Illustration: FIG. 398.--Falling bufe and backplate, Jacobi suit.]

_Taces_ are of four plates adapted to cover the bombasted breeches.
In the Wallace suit the taces are of one plate only, to which are
permanently affixed the _Tassets_ of four plates, and these may be
detached from the lower edge of the breastplate if required, so as
to permit of the bombasted breeches being worn with no covering,
the breastplate being finished at the lower edge to allow of it. In
other suits, however, the lobster-tail tassets descend to the knees
in a dozen or more lames of plate, where they are covered by the

[Illustration: FIG. 399.--Reinforcing breastplate, grevières,
sabbatons, and gauntlet, Jacobi armour, 1575. (Wallace Collection.)]

_Genouillières_ are of a close-fitting pattern, with small plates
defending the outside bends of the legs, and two or more reinforcing
plates above and below.

_Jambarts._--These are splinted and laminated at the ankles.

_Sabbatons_ are round-toed, closely fitting, and composed of about ten
plates (Fig. 399).

_Pauldrons._--These are of about five plates coming well forward in
order to protect the goussets (Fig. 400).

_Brassarts_ cover the upper arms and are provided with _Turners_, a
device for allowing the arm protections to revolve. The brassarts were
made generally in two plates, one having a hollow roped border which
fitted over a solid rim provided for it upon the adjoining plate, thus
allowing a complete revolution of half the brassart. In addition the
arms are protected by coudières and vambraces.

[Illustration: FIG. 400.--Pauldron, Jacobi armour.]

[Illustration: FIG. 401.--“Forbidden” gauntlet. (Tower of London.)]

_The Gauntlets_ are of the usual description, but one supplied with
the Lea suit is in the Armourers’ Hall, and is of the locking pattern,
an invention of the latter part of the sixteenth century. It was often
termed the “Forbidden Gauntlet.” Its object was to prevent a weapon
being wrenched or forced out of the hand; the extra plate over the
fingers is considerably prolonged, and can be securely locked by a
hole in the plate engaging with a knob upon the wrist. An example in
the Tower is illustrated in Fig. 401. With these Jacobi suits were
delivered various extra defences, such as a manifer, polder mitten,
grande garde and volante piece, extra pauldron for the right shoulder,

[Illustration: FIG. 402.--The Ferrara half-suit, 1570. (Wallace

The passion which prevailed for parade armour during the reign of Queen
Elizabeth, led, as we have seen, to a high degree of ornamentation
being bestowed upon many suits, but perhaps the greatest amount of
intricate workmanship was lavished upon the _rondaches_, or shields,
which were made to accompany the armour. In the Wallace Collection
there is one of the most beautiful examples in existence, a rondache
magnificently embossed and damascened, made for Diane de Poitiers
and bearing her monogram and insignia. It dates from _c._ 1530, and
is of Milanese manufacture, probably by the Negrolis. About a century
and a half ago it was purchased in Italy for five hundred pounds.
There are excellent examples in the Tower, Windsor Castle, and the
British Museum, while those at Madrid are renowned for the wealth of
ornamentation bestowed upon them. Plate I.*, p. 16, is of Italian make
and composed of different pieces screwed together; the four ovals
contain representations of classical scenes, and four heads among
other decorations are upon the border. A shield which once belonged
to Philip II. is shown in Plate II.*, p. 24; while in Plate III.*, p.
32, a German masterpiece by Desiderius Colman, finished in 1552, is
shown. This was executed at the time when the fiercest rivalry existed
between the Colmans of Augsburg and the Negrolis of Milan. The subjects
depicted are War, Peace, Wisdom, and Strength. Another rondache of
Augsburg make is given in Plate IV.*, p. 40, whilst Plate V.*, p. 48,
and Plate VI.*, p. 56, exhibit two beautiful designs from Italy.

[Illustration: FIG. 403.--Humphrey Brewster, 1593. Wrentham Church,

One of the most splendid examples of armour of the Decorative Period
in Europe, or, as has been asserted, _the_ most splendid example, is
the Ferrara demi-suit once belonging to Alfonso II., Duke of Ferrara,
&c. _b._ 1553, _d._ 1597 (Fig. 402). The armour dates from _c._ 1570,
and is probably the work of Lucio Picinino; it occupies a prominent
position in the Wallace Collection, and asserts pre-eminence even in
that wonderful aggregation of examples of beautiful workmanship. The
pieces consist of a breastplate of the peascod variety with laminated
goussets, and a backplate; a gorget of five lames and a tace of one
plate, which could be removed if required from the breastplate;
tassets, laminated pauldrons, brassarts, vambraces, and coudières. The
entire design of this grand example of the armourer’s art is worked out
by embossing from the back to surfaces of different levels, chasing
and enriching with fine gold damascening, plating, and overlaying. The
work is of remarkably even quality, and is at the present time in an
excellent state of preservation. Examples of some of the decorations
are given in the beginning of this work, where (to the number of four)
they are inserted as ornamental head-and tail-pieces.

[Illustration: FIG. 404.--Close helmet, Hatfield House, late sixteenth

A half-suit of armour dating from about the close of the sixteenth
century is to be seen in the Wallace Collection. It is of North Italian
manufacture and is adorned with vertical bands containing panels of
classical figures, interlaced designs, trophies of arms and armour, &c.

[Illustration: FIG. 405.--Italian armour, late sixteenth century.
(Wallace Collection.)]

[Illustration: FIG. 406.]

[Illustration: FIG. 407.]

The closed helmet (Fig. 406) has a skull-piece with a comb, and the
chin-piece opens down the side; the very deep visor strengthens the
front of the helmet and is pierced for sight, while the lower edge of
the helmet articulates with the upper edge of the gorget (Fig. 407),
which consists of three plates. The breastplate (Fig. 408) is slightly
peascod in form, and is furnished with a massive lance-rest. The tace
of one plate has tassets of three plates depending (Fig. 410), while
the pauldrons (Fig. 411) consist of seven lames each. The suit was
evidently intended for tilting purposes, as there are holes for the
adjustment of various reinforcements, while the lance-rest of such
strong proportions and the deep flange upon the inner side of the
tassets only confirm the supposition.

During the later years of the reign of Elizabeth the ordinary armour
for fighting purposes assumed a character which is very familiar,
inasmuch as it is depicted upon scores of brasses and modelled upon
hundreds of effigies in all parts of the kingdom. Fig. 403, from the
brass of Humphrey Brewster, 1593, at Wrentham, illustrates the style.

[Illustration: FIG. 408.]

[Illustration: FIG. 409.]

The infantry of the Maximilian and Decorative Periods consisted of
pikemen (who we glean from contemporary documents formed the greater
part of the army at that time), arquebusiers, cannoniers, and archers.

_The Pikeman_ was furnished in the early portion of the period with
a plain pot-de-fer having a turned-down brim, but later with a
crested helmet based upon the classic style, and later still, the
cabasset helmet. Very little armour is represented upon the pikemen
in contemporary drawings of the early part of the century, but it is
probable that a breast-and backplate with occasionally armour for the
arms and thighs, were in general use. A tunic, slashed breeches, and
long hose are as a rule shown, but no attempt at uniformity. Henry
VIII.’s army is delineated in Aug. III. in the British Museum upon a
somewhat large scale, and the pikemen are represented in every variety
of costume prevalent at the time. Their weapons are a pike or spear of
considerable length and a sword, while a circular buckler is apparently
the only means of defence; the lower class of officers carry the

[Illustration: FIG. 410.]

[Illustration: FIG. 411.]

[Illustration: FIG. 412.]

During the reigns of Edward VI. and Mary the morion and the cabasset
helmet became almost universal for the pikemen, being in many cases
richly etched in vertical bands or covered with arabesques. When first
adopted the cabasset helmet was comparatively small (Fig. 413); about
1560 the small projecting spike at the apex became curved, and as the
century progressed the brim grew narrow at the sides, and projected
to a considerable distance before and behind, while the height of the
headpiece increased (Fig. 414). The morion, which is distinguished
from the cabasset helmet by having a comb (Fig. 415), developed an
exceedingly large one, at times 6 inches in height, about the years
1570-80, while the brim took on a very strong curve and was generally
roped at the edge. By the end of the century the comb had lessened in
height, and the brim became wider--it was still very lavishly decorated.

[Illustration: FIG. 413.--Cabasset helmet.]

[Illustration: FIG. 414.--Cabasset helmet, Hatfield House, _c._ 1580.]

[Illustration: FIG. 415.--Morion.]

The pikemen during the reigns of Edward VI., Mary, and Elizabeth
were defended by back- and breast-plates with tassets, gorgets,
gauntlets, and steel hats or cabasset morions (Plate XXVI., p. 318).
The breastplates were made much thicker than formerly in order to be
bullet-proof, or at least pistol-bullet-proof, while the tassets were
generally of one plate, though marked in imitation of several. The
point of the tapul gradually descended upon the breastplate until it
assumed the peascod variety and eventually disappeared.

_The Arquebusier_ in the early part of the sixteenth century carried
little body armour; he is usually represented in the slashed and
ribbed dress of Henry VIII.’s time, with a bonnet bearing a feather
upon his head. He was provided with a matchlock arquebus and a rest,
with a sword at the left side, while hanging from a cord which crossed
the body from the left shoulder were the circular powder-flasks and
bullet-bag. The arquebusiers opened the battle, being in the van with
the artillery.

[Illustration: FIG. 416.--Sabbatons, Hatfield House.]

About the year 1550 we find the arquebusiers clad in the armour termed
almayne rivets, a name which was first applied to the system of sliding
rivets invented in Germany, whereby lames and plates were given a
considerable amount of play by the longitudinal slots in which the head
of the rivet worked, but subsequently was applied loosely to suits
of armour in which these rivets were used. Henry VIII., for example,
sent to Milan for 5000 suits of “almayne rivets,” and in 1561, when
an inventory was made of armour in the Tower of London, 3752 “almayne
rivets” are catalogued, besides 350 “almayne corselets” (Harl. MS.
7457). The armour thus designated embraced a back- and breast-plate
with espalier pauldrons to the elbows; three taces with pendent
tassets of eight plates to the knees, fastened to the thighs by straps.
A rigid gorget of plate and the headpiece completed the defence. This
armour for the arquebusiers lasted during the century with but little
variation; towards the end the tassets were much widened to accommodate
them to the breeches then worn, and the breastplate was made so high
in the neck that occasionally a gorget was dispensed with. Among the
firearms used by the arquebusiers the _carabine_, _petronel_, and
_caliver_ may be mentioned; the petronel was so called because its
straight and square butt-end was held against the chest when fired, and
the caliver was a light piece necessitating no rest and largely in use
during the succeeding century. An improvement was made in the loading
of the arquebus, by having a single charge in a leather case, and
aggregations of these cases were termed bandoliers; this system was in
use until the invention of the cartridge-box. An example of the armour
worn by arquebusiers and footmen toward the close of Elizabeth’s reign
is given in Plate XXIV., taken from Edinburgh Castle, where the high
breastplate is seen, covered, however, in this case, with a gorget. The
pauldrons are large, and below them occur complete protection for the
arms, the turners being very prominent. A similar suit is in the same
museum which is furnished with the long breastplate strengthened with a
placcate at the bottom; it exhibits a little more ornamentation and is
better finished (Plate XXIV.).

_The Cannonier_ had no particular uniform allotted to him, and his
only distinction was an apron. His cannon commenced the battle, as is
generally the case in modern times, but with this difference, that he
was placed in the forefront of the fray instead of the rear. To afford
him some kind of protection a large mantlet was part of the equipment,
and in a combat a mantlet and a gun were placed alternately. The
artillery used was the falcon and serpentin, and we have also mention
of bombards, while in the waggons were carried the powder and stone
balls, together with bows and arrows, for archers were in use at this
period and for some decades of the succeeding century.

[Illustration: FIG. 417.--Close helmet, Hatfield House, showing umbril.]

_The Cavalry_ consisted chiefly of demi-lancers clad in half-armour,
and many suits of this character are preserved in museums. It was,
as a rule, of better quality and finish than that served out to the
footmen, the defences for the arms being complete, and lobster-tail
tassets reaching to and covering the knees. The head was protected by
the close helmet or open casque, which is furnished as a rule with a
comb, an umbril over the eyes, hinged ear-pieces, and a neckplate at
the back where a holder was affixed for a plume (Fig. 417). A light
armour, especially adapted for infantry and light cavalry, consisting
of a breastplate and tassets which reached either to the middle of
the thigh or to below the knee, was much in use during the sixteenth
century and known as the _Allecret_. During the Maximilian period the
officers were furnished with allecrets as a rule, while the Swiss
soldiers especially were partial to this system, which defended only
the vital parts of the body, and did not hamper the free movement of
the limbs. For light cavalry it was of great advantage, as it gave
much less trouble to the horses when the legs of the wearer were only
partially defended, as with tassets. To the lance and sword which were
always carried the pistol was added, this being generally a wheel-lock
dag with a long barrel, the charges or cartridges being enclosed in a
steel case called a patron. Troops called Dragoons came into being,
who dispensed with the lance and used as their chief weapon a long
wheel-lock pistol termed a dragon from the shape of its muzzle, which
was modelled similarly to the head of that mythical monster. The barrel
of the dragon was approximately of the same length as the modern
carbine. The mounted arquebusier either discharged his piece when on
horseback, resting it in a fork which projected upwards from the front
of the saddle, or else dismounted to fire in the same manner as the

       *       *       *       *       *

There were a number of Courses or methods of combat in tournaments
during the Middle Ages, but the three chief were the Das Deutsche
Stechen, the Sharfrennen, and the Italian Course or Über die Pallia.

1. The Das Deutsche Stechen. This is generally known as the German
Course, and was in use in the early mediæval period. The chief object
of the knight was to splinter his lance, or unhorse his opponent, and
with that end in view the saddles were unprovided with the usual high
plate at the back. The lance possessed a sharp point, and the small
shield upon the left side of the rider, which simply depended from
straps and was not borne by the left arm, was the part aimed at by the
opponents. The shield in the Wallace suit (Fig. 418) is 14 inches wide,
and made of oak over an inch in thickness. This form of tilting was
run with lances having a rebated coronal head in the later mediæval
period. The suit mentioned has no leg armour except the tuilles, and
the right hand no gauntlet, according to custom. About the middle of
the fifteenth century a salade was used instead of the heaume, but a
special kind of heaume like a truncated cone was used in the sixteenth

[Illustration: FIG. 418.--Suit for the Das Deutsche Stechen Course,
_c._ 1485. (Wallace Collection.)]

2. Sharfrennen. The main idea in running this course was to unhorse
the opponent, and with this end in view the armour and appurtenances
were different in many essentials to those used in other courses. The
saddle, for example, was unfurnished with any support either in front
or behind, and no armour was worn upon the lower limbs, which could
thus maintain the maximum “grip” of the horse without any encumbrance.
To protect the thighs and knees of the riders large steel pieces called
_cuishes_ were attached to the saddle; these were necessary because the
horses often collided in running this course, no central barrier being
used. A pair of cuishes are preserved in the Tower which date from _c._
1480; the edges are decorated with a roped border. The lance used was
thick and heavy and provided with a steel point; upon impact it was
customary to drop it in order to avoid the risk of injury to the right
arm by splinters in the event of the lance shivering. The vamplate
used in this course was of unusual proportions, covering the whole
of the right side of the body; an example may be seen in the Rotunda
at Woolwich, No. XVI. 102, which is of much larger size than the one
illustrated from the Tower Collection (Fig. 312). The body armour was
of a ponderous nature, nearly every piece being duplicated. In this
course, if one of the combatants was not unhorsed immediately upon
impact, it was customary for his attendants to rush forward and aid him
in recovering his seat.

[Illustration: FIG. 419. Tilting armour for the Über die Pallia Course,
_c._ 1580. (Wallace Collection.)]

3. The Italian Course, or Über die Pallia. This course was of later
origin than the Stechen or Sharfrennen, and originated in Italy, as
the name implies. It was introduced into Germany during the first
decade of the sixteenth century, and became immensely popular. A wooden
barrier with a height of about five feet separated the combatants,
who rode on either side of it, left hand inwards. The suits of armour
for the course are, strange to say, invariably provided with armour
for the lower limbs, and a typical example is one preserved in the
Wallace Collection dating from _c._ 1580, which has a closed helmet,
breastplate of the peascod form with a lance-rest, tassets of two
wide plates, and a backplate (Fig. 419). The pauldrons are of the
espalier pattern with brassarts, vambraces, coudières, and fingered
gauntlets. The cuisses are wide, a peculiarity noticeable in the armour
of the latter end of the sixteenth century. Reinforced genouillières,
jambarts, and sabbatons complete the suit. Additional defences are
the large _manteau d’armes_ with the lower edge turned outwards from
the body and decorated with a trellis pattern to engage the lance
of the opponent, and also a tilting reinforcement for the elbow on
the left-hand side. A second suit of much interest is provided with
a tilting helmet of great weight, the back of which is affixed in a
peculiar manner to the backplate (Fig. 420 was similarly fastened),
which rises high in order to receive it, while the bavière is of the
form of a mentonnière, being affixed by bolts to the breastplate.
There is a manifere for the left hand as well as manteau d’armes and
elbow reinforcement (Fig. 421). A third suit for this course has no
sabbatons, the stirrups being made to protect the feet.

[Illustration: FIG. 420.--Tilting-helmet of Sir John Gostwick, 1541.]

The lance used was tipped with a coronal head; it was held upon the
left side of the horse’s head, and the main idea at first was to
unhorse an adversary, which was a matter of great difficulty, as the
riders sat in a deep well-saddle with high projections both back and
front. Subsequently, however, the shivering of lances became the chief
object, and they were made light and hollow (the bourdonass) for that
purpose, and riders very seldom lost their seats in consequence.
The armour also began to lose that ponderous character it formerly
possessed, and light Italian suits were in favour. These also were
adapted for running the various courses prevailing, screw holes and
adjustments allowing of the reinforcements being attached for each.

[Illustration: FIG. 421.--Manifere, left-hand tilting gauntlet, _c._
1560. (Wallace Collection.)]

Arising out of the three chief courses were various subsidiary ones,
the Free Course being probably the chief. It was the Italian Course
used without the central barrier, and therein resembling the Stechen.
A cap-à-pie suit in the Wallace Collection dating from about 1580
resembles that for the Italian Course, but has an addition to the
manteau d’armes protecting the left side of the breastplate and the
top of the left espalier, a small extra plate to fasten on this and
the left-hand part of the breastplate, together with a reinforcing
plate to fix to the right espalier. This course dates from the second
half of the sixteenth century. The Foot Tournament was fought with
lance and sword, and no leg armour was used--striking below the belt
being forbidden. There was also a Club Tournament, in which a short
wooden mace, the baston, was used by the combatants, and this caused a
peculiar type of helmet to be evolved termed the “grid-iron,” which is
shown in Fig. 422, dating from the fifteenth century. A later variety
(Fig. 423) is furnished with a latticed visor.

[Illustration: FIG. 422.--“Gridiron” helmet, 15th century.]

[Illustration: FIG. 423.--Helmet, with latticed visor, end of 15th

In connection with tournaments generally, the saddles preserved in many
museums are of interest, the one dating from 1470, in the Tower of
London, being exceptionally so from its enormous dimensions, inasmuch
as when seated in it nearly the whole body of the tilter was protected.

[Illustration: PLATE XXIV

Footman’s Armour, late Sixteenth Century. (Edinburgh Castle)

Cromwellian Armour, _c._ 1644. (Edinburgh Castle)

Pikeman’s Armour, end of Sixteenth Century. (Edinburgh Castle)]



[Illustration: FIG. 424.]

Although to the average student the armour prevailing after the
sixteenth century possesses absolutely no interest whatever, yet as a
certain amount continued to be worn, and it possessed characteristics
entirely its own, it is necessary to be acquainted with these features
in order to possess a comprehensive knowledge of the entire subject.
Of cap-à-pie suits it may be broadly stated that none exist; of
three-quarter and half-suits there are many to be found, but extremely
few of these are of workmanship which can in any way compare in wealth
of decoration with that of the latter half of the sixteenth century,
or vie in elegance of form with the Maximilian or Gothic armour. The
period exhibits a brutal strength and crudity in armour which forcibly
suggests boiler-plate work. The defences are simply made to cover the
vital parts of the body with the maximum amount of efficiency, without
any consideration whatever for gracefulness of outline or beauty of
surface. The helmet continued to be of the same pattern as that of the
end of the Maximilian Period; variations, however, may be found; that,
for example, delineated in Fig. 424, and dating from _c._ 1605, is
more of the nature of a close-helmet than a burgonet, being entirely

[Illustration: FIG. 425.--Three-quarter suit, 1630. (Wallace

A typical three-quarter suit of English manufacture is that shown in
Fig. 425, dating from about 1630 and forming a part of the Wallace
Collection. It is shown in the Museum as a cap-à-pie suit, but the
sabbatons and jambarts do not belong to it and date from _c._ 1580.
The close helmet is fitted with an umbril to which is riveted the
face-guard, pierced with sight and breathing apertures; a gorget
plate is affixed bearing the number 10 upon it. Under this plate is
the gorget proper, consisting of three plates. The breastplate has a
slight tapul and is marked 42. Upon the right-hand side an indentation
has been caused by a musket ball. There is a backplate, and also a
garde-de-rein of three plates. The espalier pauldrons have brassarts
attached fitted with turners. The tassets of thirteen plates have the
genouillières depending from them.

_Cavalry._--During the early years of the reign of James I. the
cavalryman had his name altered from lancer or demi-lancer to
cavalier, probably owing to Spanish intercourse. The general tendency
to discard armour as being cumbrous and ineffective led to many
noblemen and officers of regiments contenting themselves with a
cuirass worn over a buff coat, and subsequently, in Charles I.’s
reign, whole regiments were thus accoutred, and received the name of
cuirassiers in consequence. The dragoons also, who were introduced
into the army during the latter years of the preceding century, only
wore as a defence a buff coat made long and full and a burgonet.
Apart from these, however, we find that the regiments using the lance
were equipped with a close helmet, gorget, back- and breast-plate,
pauldrons, vambraces, gauntlets, tassets, and garde-de-rein, while
a good buff coat with long skirts was worn beneath the armour. The
weapons comprised a sword which was stiff, cutting, and sharp-pointed;
a lance of the usual pattern or pike-shaped, 18 feet long and provided
with a leather thong to fasten round the right arm, and one or two
pistols, with the necessary flask, cartouch box, and appurtenances.

The cuirassier was armed with two pistols carried at the saddle, and a
sword similar to the lancers.

The arquebusier wore a good buff coat, a back- and breast-plate, and
armour generally resembling the lancer; he carried an arquebus 30
inches in length, two pistols, and the usual necessaries.

[Illustration: FIG. 426.--Casquetel (British Museum.)]

The carbineer had similar defences, but carried a carbine or petronel
(Plate XLI.*, p. 368), instead of the arquebus, and a sword in place of
the pistols.

The dragoons carried a pike and also a musket.

In 1645 the arquebusiers wore triple-barred helmets, cuirasses with
garde-de-rein, pauldrons, and vambraces; at the same time the dragoons
changed their muskets for the shorter piece termed the dragon, and four
years afterwards again changed it for the caliver. The triple-barred
helmet of the arquebusiers and dragoons is shown in Plate XXVI., from
Edinburgh Castle, and Plate XXV., from the same source, illustrates a
three-quarter suit of an officer of arquebusiers or lancers of the time
of Charles I. A second suit, No. 32, is furnished with palettes over
the goussets and an open-faced helmet called a casquetel (Plate XXV.).

[Illustration: PLATE XXV

Three-quarter Suits, _temp._ Charles I. (Edinburgh Castle)]

_The Pikeman_ of the time of James I. was accoutred in a morion-shaped
helmet with a comb of moderate size and a flat brim, not curved, but
pointed back and front. It was provided with a holder at the back,
in which four or five large feathers were inserted. A back- and
breast-plate reached to the waist, to which were affixed two broad
tassets meeting in front of six plates each (Plate XXIV.), which spread
over the well-padded breeches, reaching to the knee and covering the
front part of the limbs only. No gorget or defences for the arms
are shown. His arms are a pike and a sword. Grose in his “Military
Antiquities” illustrates thirty-two different positions in the exercise
of the pike. The pikeman of the Cromwellian period had a similar
accoutrement, but his morion may better be termed an iron hat, inasmuch
as the crown is low with a small comb, the brim wide and drooping and
coming well over the eyes and the back of the neck, and it is without
plumes (Fig. 427). Two cheek-guards are added. A back- and breast-plate
with pendent tassets consisting of many plates formed with a leather
coat and the helmet the sole protection. In Charles I.’s reign a
rondache was served out to pikemen, but after a few years was discarded.

[Illustration: FIG. 427.--Pikeman’s pot, 1620. (British Museum.)]

_The Musketeer_ wore a morion in James I.’s reign similar to the
pikeman but with no feathers, and this with a back- and breast-plate
completed his metal defences. In 1625, the morion was discarded in
favour of a jaunty felt hat with feathers, but subsequently the
morion was again worn with the addition of cheek-pieces. No tassets
are shown upon a musketeer’s uniform. Grose illustrates forty-five
separate orders for the discharge of one bullet from the musket. In
1637 an elaborate drill-book was issued by a Colonel Munro, in which
he states that musketeers should be formed in companies with a front
of thirty-two men, but six ranks deep; the first firing at once and
casting about and reloading; the second rank passing to the front
between the files to give fire next; then the third rank, and so on
until the whole ranks have discharged. Directions for handling the
matchlock published in 1620 contain quaint directions to the musketeer:
“He must first learn to hold the piece, to accommodate the match
between the two foremost fingers and his thumb, and to plant the great
end on his breast with a gallant soldier-like grace, and if ignorant
let him acquaint himself first with the firing of touchpowder in his
pan, to bow and bear up his body, and to attain to the level and
practice of an assured and serviceable shot, ready to charge and, with
a comely touch, discharge, making sure at the same instant of his mark
with a quick and vigilant eye.”

In the reign of James I. a long rapier blade was added to the equipment
of the musketeer for protection after he had discharged his piece.
It was variously called the “swine’s feather,” “hog’s bristle,” and
“Swedish feather,” the latter probably indicating the country of its
origin. The swine’s feather and also the musket rest were abandoned
during the Civil War.

[Illustration: PLATE XXVI

Triple-barred Helmet, _temp._ 1689. (Edinburgh Castle)

Cabasset Helmet, Footman, _temp._ James VI. (Edinburgh Castle)]

_Archers._--The persistence of archers in the ranks of the English
forces long after the introduction of firearms and cannon is a
noteworthy feature. During the sixteenth century they formed a
numerous force, and were the subjects of especial care by the military
commanders in the time of Queen Elizabeth. In Harl. MS. 7457, being
an inventory of the Tower arms in 1561, there are accounts of many
hundred brigandines, jacks, salades (salletts), and skull-caps for
furnishing the defences of archers, while regulations are extant of the
same period which provide that: “Captains and officers should be
skilful of that noble weapon, and to see that their soldiers according
to their draught and strength have good bows, well nocked, well
stringed, every string whip in their nock and in the middle rubbed with
wax; a bracer and shooting glove and some spare strings; every man a
sheaf of arrows in a leather case which contains twenty-four arrows,
whereof eight should be lighter than the rest to gall the enemy with a
hailshot of light arrows before they shall come within the danger of
their harquebus shot. Let every man have a brigandine or a little coat
of plate, a skull or huskyn, a maule of lead of five foot in length,
and a pike, the same hanging by his girdle with a hook and a dagger;
being thus furnished teach them to march, shoot, and retire, for these
men can neither be spared in battle nor in skirmish. No other weapon
can compare with the same noble weapon.” Even as late as the time of
Charles I. special commissions were issued under the Great Seal for
enforcing the use and practice of the long-bow, and the Earl of Essex
at the commencement of the Civil War issued a precept in 1643 directing
the raising of a company of archers for special service.

In the time of Charles II., James II., and William and Mary officers
still wore breastplates, but armour for the ordinary soldier was as
a rule altogether discarded. As late as the commencement of the last
century the officers of some regiments wore a small steel gorget, but
all that remains to us at the present day to remind us of the days of
chivalry and the steel-clad forces of bygone times, is the Life Guard
with his back- and breast-plate and steel helmet.



[Illustration: FIG. 428.--1. Halberd, 1470. 2. Bill. 3. Two-handed

_The Guisarme._--This may be claimed with all confidence to be one of
the most ancient of weapons, as its first inception occurred in the
Bronze Period, and from that remote age down to the seventeenth century
it was more or less in evidence (Fig. 428). It terminated generally in
an extremely strong and sharp point; the two sides were approximately
parallel, and both brought to a keen and almost razor-like edge, while
a short way down the blade a hook was fashioned. During the Mediæval
Period, when it was known by the name of the fauchard, an agitation
for its abolition occurred in consequence of the deadly and ghastly
nature of the wounds inflicted by this weapon. There are many forms,
and additions of various hooks and spikes occur in varieties of the
guisarme; the point also was at times modified, and instead of being
straight partook more of the form of the curved bill-hook of modern
times. The blade lent itself to elaborate ornamentation, and many
examples of the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries exhibit splendid
specimens of the work of the engraver. It was used in England as late
as the battle of Flodden (Fig. 429).

[Illustration: FIG. 429.--1. Pole-axe. 2. Fauchard (guisarme). 3.
Halberd. 4. Glaive, 1550.]

_The Pole-Axe._--The battle-axe and the pole-axe may be claimed as
one and the same weapon, simply differing in the length of the shaft,
which necessitated the use of both hands in the case of the pole-axe,
whereas one was sufficient for the other. It is essentially a weapon
of the northern nations of Europe, and in its primitive form was the
flint axe of the Stone Age, subsequently fashioned in bronze in the
succeeding period. The form was as a rule very simple from the Saxon
Period to the fourteenth century, consisting merely of an axe-blade
upon one side balanced by a spike upon the other; in that century and
also in the following it became one of the most important weapons
of war, and saw many alterations and modifications. The blade, for
example, became enormously lengthened, broadened, and flattened, and
the spike occasionally became lance-shaped, or falcon-beaked, like a
military pick, while the head of the shaft developed into a spike or a
short, double-edged sword-blade. In the fifteenth century it became the
favourite weapon for encounters on foot, when the pole was furnished
with one or two guards for the hands, and was strengthened with iron
splints; the lateral spike developed into the shape of a war-hammer
having a broad head furnished with rows of pyramidal studs or spikes,
the vertical blade at the head being retained. The earliest preserved
in the Wallace Collection dates from _c._ 1350, and is similar in form
to a pole-axe delineated in Roy. MS. 16, G. VI., which shows a straight
cutting blade rectangular at the base, and with the top edge forming
an acute angle with the cutting edge. Another, of date _c._ 1420, has
a strong semi-circular axe-blade balanced by a hammer with pyramidal
projections upon the face, the head terminating in a strong spike. Two
iron pieces almost cover the shaft for a distance of nearly three feet.
In Edinburgh an axe is preserved dating from the Maximilian Period
(Plate XXVII.) which shows an axe-blade with a circular cutting edge
balanced by a spike, the head being furnished with a pike-blade. The
shaft is protected for some distance from the axe-head.

[Illustration: PLATE XXVII

Arms from Edinburgh Castle

1. Bill.

2. Halberd.

3. Military Fork.

4. Two-handed Sword.

5. Arquebus.

6. Pole-Axe.

7. Glaive.

8. Halberd.

9. Ranseur.]

_The Halberd._--This weapon consists essentially of an axe-blade
balanced by a pick, the head of the shaft being prolonged in the form
of a spike. In the northern part of Europe the weapon had been in use
from an exceedingly early period, but was not introduced into France
and England until the end of the fourteenth century. The forms are
many and varied, the blade developing from a crescent shape to that
of a square, which prevailed in the fifteenth century and preceded
the curved form. The spike also underwent changes, broadening and
flattening at times until it presented a blade-like aspect, which was
often curved downwards towards the shaft. It was essentially a weapon
for the foot soldier, and although it is occasionally seen with a very
long shaft, these are for pageant purposes, the war weapon seldom
exceeding five or six feet in length. The form of the halberd probably
lent itself more to ornamentation than any other weapon of the age, and
those made for parade purposes exhibit at times a remarkable wealth of
decoration. The halberd became obsolete when the pike came into favour.
A beautiful example of a halberd of the date _c._ 1470 from Edinburgh
Castle is shown in Plate XXVII., which exhibits a singularly long and
formidable spike, with a concave cutting edge to the axe-blade balanced
by a drooping pick. The shaft is ironed for a good distance from the
head. Fig. 428 exhibits a halberd of the date 1470 where the axe-blade
is crescent-shaped and the beak slightly drooping, as in the Edinburgh
example; the spike, however, is not so long, but has a stronger section
of diamond shape. The oldest specimen in the Wallace Collection dates
from about 1430, in which the axe-blade possesses a straight cutting
edge, and the spike is superseded by a strong tapering blade. A later
example, dating from _c._ 1550, from the Edinburgh collection is shown
in Plate XXVII.

_The Partisan._--This weapon was introduced into England in the middle
of the fourteenth century, and from the fifteenth to the seventeenth
centuries was used extensively on the Continent, but especially in
France. It consists of a long double-edged blade, wide at the base,
where it is provided with projections of various forms, hooked,
crescent, &c., and tapering to a point. It is always symmetrical, both
sides balancing in form. The Ranseur and the Spetum are modifications
of the partisan. In Plate XXVII. a ranseur is shown from the Edinburgh
Collection, dating from the early sixteenth century: here the two
points on the lateral projections give a graceful outline to the
weapon, while at the same time increasing its efficiency. A spetum from
the Wallace Collection is shown in Fig. 430; it dates from _c._ 1490.

_The Pike._--The pike was the “bayonet” of the mediæval and later
periods, and only disappeared at a comparatively recent date. It was
one of the simplest of weapons, being merely a long, narrow, lance-like
head of steel strengthened by lengthy strips of metal, which ran for a
considerable distance down the pole, rendering it almost immune from
sword-cuts. The length of the weapon varied very considerably, from
over twenty feet to less than ten, but the latter was the usual length.
For resisting a cavalry charge the base of the pike was fixed into the
ground, an iron shoe or point being provided to protect that part. The
long strips of steel down the shaft may be considered one of its
special features, as it could not be put out of action by any ordinary
cuts of the sword, axe, &c.

[Illustration: FIG. 430.--1. Spetum (partisan), 1490. 2. Partisan,
1570. 3. Partisan, 1580.]

[Illustration: FIG. 431.--1. Glaives. 2. Ox-tongue partisan. 3.
Guisarme. 4. Bills, 1540.]

During the eighteenth century a half-pike was carried by infantry
officers which was known as the Spontoon. It had a long shaft with a
leaf-shaped head, the latter having as a rule a cross-guard beneath it.

_The Voulge._--This weapon may be regarded as a cousin to the guisarme,
from which at times it differed but little. In its simplest form it
consists of a broad blade fixed at the side of a shaft, and attached to
it by two or more rings which spring from the back of the blade. The
latter is invariably carried up to a sharp point over the axis of the
shaft, and some examples show a spike upon the side opposite to the
blade. The voulge is a Swiss weapon, and was in use by that nation at
a very early period; it did not become popular among the Continental
nations, although the French seem to have used it in the fifteenth
century, when the arbalestiers were armed with it.

_The Fork._--The military fork undoubtedly owed its conception to the
agricultural implement, and in its earlier forms was of equally simple
construction. The two prongs were eventually made of unequal length,
and examples are to be found having three prongs, all unequal. As usual
with shaft weapons, hooks were added with which a horseman might be
dismounted from his charger, and barbs were occasionally added to give
effect to side blows. During the fourteenth century it was much used;
it appeared as early as the eleventh century, and was not entirely
discarded until the end of the seventeenth. Plate XXVII. from the
Edinburgh Collection is a scaling-fork with a particularly long shaft,
the very prominent hooks being designed to drag defenders off the

[Illustration: FIG. 432.--1. Military fork. 2. Halberd. 3. Corseque
(partisan). 4. Spetum]

[Illustration: FIG. 433.--1. Spontoon (partisan). 2. Partisan. 3.
Glaive. 4. Halberd.]

_The Bill._--The bill was in its incipient condition the agricultural
scythe mounted on a staff, and as such was used for many years
following the ninth century, but developments took place in its
structure, and it subsequently became much altered in form, invariably,
however, preserving the one characteristic feature of a crescent-shaped
blade with the inside edge sharpened. A small portion of the point was
double-edged. This weapon was usually referred to as the “brown” bill,
which suggests that their usual condition was a rusty one. It remained
in use until about the fifteenth century, when it was superseded by the
pike. The term “bill” is essentially a generic one, and all shafted
weapons of peculiar form which do not fall readily under any particular
heading are classified as bills. Thus the weapon shown in Plate XXVII.,
and classified under the term “bill” in the Edinburgh Collection,
has a very strong resemblance to that variety of the guisarme called
the fauchard, but its extreme narrowness in the centre of the blade
disqualifies it. It dates from _c._ 1470.

_The Glaive_ differed from the bill in having the cutting edge upon the
convex instead of the concave curve of the blade, and also in being
much broader. Hooks, spurs, and other projections appear upon the base
of the blade. This weapon was more in use upon the Continent than in
England, chiefly in France and Germany, and did not become obsolete
until the beginning of the seventeenth century. The term “glaive” may
be applied to a simple shaft weapon bearing any resemblance to a knife
blade: thus No. 7, Plate XXVII., from the Edinburgh Castle Museum,
would fall under that category.

_The Morning Star._--This was a mace with a spiked head, in great
use upon the Continent, especially among the German nations; both
cavalry and infantry were armed with it, the long-shafted weapon being
appropriated by the foot soldier. Doubtless one of its advantages was
the facility with which it could be made, a skilled armourer not being
necessary. The short weapons of the cavalry were generally made of iron.

[Illustration: FIG. 434.--1. Holy water sprinkler. 2. Military flail.
3. Holy water sprinkler.]

_The Military Flail, or Holy Water Sprinkler._--The Military Flail is
akin to the Morning Star and the Morgenstern. It consists of a shaft to
which is affixed a staple having a chain depending, and to the end of
this a ball of iron usually covered with spikes. At times a flail of
iron or wood, garnished with spikes, is substituted for the chain and
ball (Fig. 434).

_The Mace._--The mace has probably a more remote antiquity than any
other weapon. Commencing in the Stone Age, it has come down through the
Bronze Period to that of Iron, and was in general use by Egyptians,
Assyrians, and throughout the East. The Normans and Saxons both used
it at Hastings, and, as a weapon, it did not disappear until the
sixteenth century. It has undergone many changes of form, being at
times of cog-wheel shape, oval, globular, dentated, &c., but the
general form was that of radiating flanges surrounding a central head.
The knob was at times of lead, and some maces are furnished with a
spike, as a prolongation of the shaft (Fig. 435). As early as the
fourteenth century, the mace was in use as a sign of authority among
the law officers, and in the sixteenth century was the characteristic
weapon of the sergeant-at-arms. The royal arms were stamped upon the
shaft at the termination of the grip: this end became in consequence
the important part of the weapon; the ornaments and guards augmented
and developed, while the end furnished with the knob shrank into
insignificance. Finally the mace was reversed; the arms now appear upon
the upper end of the shaft in all corporation and other maces. The
mace was the weapon of militant churchmen, who sought thus to avoid
the denunciation against those “who smite with the sword”; they argued
that although the Scripture forbade the shedding of blood there was no
restriction respecting the dashing out of brains.

[Illustration: FIG. 435.--1. Morning star. 2. Mace. 3. Maces (or
goedendags, or morgensterns).]

_The Martel-de-Fer._--Under the mace variety the martel-de-fer may
be classified. It is of very ancient origin, and has at all periods
been a favourite weapon of both horse and foot soldiers, but probably
more so during the fourteenth and fifteenth centuries than at other
periods. The mediæval archer is often represented with this weapon, and
apparently preferred it to the sword. The general shape was a plain
hammer-head projection, often serrated to prevent glancing off plate,
balanced by a pick or blade upon the opposite side; in only a few
examples is the shaft prolonged into a spike. In the Chain Mail Period
it was often made with a heavy falcon beak without the hammer-head,
while some examples dating from the Tabard Period have two sharp
beaks of pick-axe form for penetrating the joints of armour, which
are probably the same weapons mentioned by writers of the fourteenth
century and termed bisacutas.

_The Lance._--The spear, javelin, and lance of the Bronze and Iron
Periods down to the time of the Saxons and Normans have been treated
under their different headings. For three centuries after the Norman
Conquest the spear does not exhibit any remarkable change; it was
of uniform size and thickness from end to end, with a lozenge or
leaf-shaped head, rarely barbed, the lozenge being the commoner form.
For tournament purposes the heads were blunted, but as jousting became
more popular special points or coronals were introduced, of which
examples are shown in most museums. These were not intended to pierce,
but only to give a grip upon plate armour.

During the Splinted and Camail Periods the men-at-arms invariably
dismounted and fought upon foot, and in order to adapt the lance to
these altered conditions it was cut down to about five feet in length.
Later in the Camail Period a small circular plate was fixed upon the
lance to protect the hand, and this subsequently developed into the
vamplate of varied form and dimensions. At this time also the shaft
of the lance became much enlarged for tilting purposes, and was made
hollow, with longitudinal grooves upon the exterior; in this form it
splintered in the encounter; when the tilting had for its object the
unhorsing of combatants the lance was made stronger and heavier. During
the reign of Elizabeth the lance ceased to hold the important position
it had hitherto maintained among weapons, and became obsolete, but in
later times it has been revived for the use of cavalry.

_The Sword._--The various parts of a sword should perhaps be mentioned
before proceeding to a chronological description of the varieties. The
two essential parts are the blade and the hilt. The prolongation of
the blade which fits into the handle is the tang; the upper portion
near the hilt the ricasso. The essential portions of the hilt are the
quillons, which cross at right angles between the blade and the handle
to protect the hand; the grip, which is self-explanatory, and the
pommel, the expanded piece at the end of the grip.

[Illustration: FIG. 436.--Sword, _c._ 1340; blade 33 in. long, 2 in.
wide at hilt. (Wallace Collection.)]

_Pre-Norman Period._--The swords of this age generally in use
throughout Europe were of the Scandinavian type, and may be divided
into three classes: (1) those having the character of a broadsword,
with parallel sharp edges and an acute point, and the tang only for
a grip; (2) a similar variety having a cross guard; and (3) a sword
with the blade slightly curved. The grip was usually of wood covered
with skin, but sometimes of bone: the pommels were of varying shapes,
as round, triangular, trefoil, and quatrefoil. The cross-guards began
in a simple projection, but increased as time went on; they, together
with the pommel, were at times very highly ornamented. The sheaths were
usually of leather, stiffened with a wood framing. As will be seen by
referring to the plates, the sword did not vary much in form from the
twelfth to the end of the fifteenth century (Fig. 436). The blade was
always two-edged, and about forty inches in length; the quillons at
times drooped towards the blade, but were generally straight; the grip
varied perhaps more than any other part, being at times almost double
handed, and at others--the later Tabard Period, for instance--was so
short and swollen as to appear unserviceable. The shape of the pommel
takes many forms, varying almost with the individual taste of the
owner; occasionally the pommel and other parts were subjected to a high
degree of ornamentation, with precious stones and inlaid work of all
descriptions. During the thirteenth century the curved sabre was used,
but very rarely; it is shown in Fig. 154, p. 125, a group from the
Painted Chamber. Other varieties were the falchion, cultellus, anelace,
and scimitar.

_The Falchion_ was chiefly used by archers and men-at-arms. It had
a blade wide at the point; the edge was curved and convex, the back

_The Cultellus_ was a short sword, and is not often mentioned or
represented. It was designed especially for the use of foot soldiers
when rushing upon knights who had been dismounted in a cavalry charge,
or for the close encounter of infantry against infantry.

[Illustration: PLATE XXVIII*

Sword of Philip II., with the Mark of Clement Horn of Solingen

_A. F. Calvert_]

_The Anelace_ was a long dagger which was secured to the person by a
chain. It is often represented upon effigies and brasses of civilians
in the fourteenth and fifteenth centuries, and at times assumed very
large proportions. The handle is as a rule made in the fashion of that
of the cinquedea, from which it was probably derived. The latter is
a dagger or short sword which had its origin in Italy; the blade is
generally of the width of five fingers at the hilt (whence the name);
the quillons always bend towards the blade, and the latter, which is
two-edged, averages from eighteen to twenty inches in length. The
representation given here is from a beautiful specimen in the Wallace
Collection dating from 1470 (Fig. 437), the blade of which is nearly
four inches wide and nineteen inches long; the quillons are of latten
and the handle of ivory, studded with filigree work.

[Illustration: FIG. 437.]

_The Scimitar_ became a favourite weapon with the infantry during the
greater part of the Tabard Period, the blade being curved at the back
with a cusp at the point, which distinguished it from the falchion. A
finger-guard was often added by prolonging one side of the cross-piece,
whereby it ran parallel to the grip, and then either curved outwards
or, later in the period, turned inwards to join the pommel.

In the Transition and Maximilian Periods the sword underwent many
changes, chiefly in the hilt, which presented a bewildering variety
of additional pieces, all intended for the protection of the hand and
the entanglement or breaking of the sword-blade of the opponent. Four
examples are given here from the Royal Armoury at Madrid which exhibit
these extra guards (Plates XXVIII.* and XXIX.*). The old cross-piece
did not die out, but became bent in another form as a capital S; rings
appeared on either side of the cross-piece and at right angles to it;
back-guards were introduced, and also the basket-hilt. The quillons,
by being curved as indicated above, developed the knuckle-guard on one
side of the grip which eventually reached the pommel, while the other,
circling towards the blade, developed counter-guards for protecting
the back of the hand. Thus the rapier-guard was developed, the
varieties and modifications of which are almost numberless. The Wallace
Collection contains a matchless array of these beautiful weapons, the
earliest dating from 1540: some of these have lavish ornamentation
bestowed upon them. Broadly speaking, cup-hilts were a common form
where long, straight, or curved quillons were used in conjunction
with a cup-shaped finger-guard at the base of the blade, which was as
a rule highly decorated. The swept hilt had a broad back-guard which
narrowed towards the pommel, together with curved quillons. Upon many
swords of the sixteenth century and later curved guards may be seen
extending round the ricasso; this is the pas d’ane, while rings may
also be observed for passing the thumb through. The rapier blade was
long, thin, and tapering; it was essentially a thrusting sword, but not
exclusively so. These weapons were for parade and the duel, a two-edged
rapier of special design being used in war. During the eighteenth
century the general tendency of the hilt was to become less complicated
and to develop the simple basket form.

[Illustration: FIG. 438.--Flamberge, _c._ 1630. (Wallace Collection.)]

_The Two-handed Sword_ was an invention of the fourteenth century, and
formed one of the ordinary weapons of the foot soldier. To wield it
both hands were employed in making cutting sweeps, and consequently
very open order was necessary for troops thus armed; at first it
did not find favour in England, except for use in the lists, being
chiefly carried at the saddle-bow by knights as a reserve weapon in
case of being dismounted, when they trusted to its use against foot
soldiers. In Scotland, however, it appears to have been in great
favour, and its practice much resorted to. An excellent example and
of an early date (_c._ 1490) is preserved in the Banqueting Hall of
Edinburgh Castle, which is remarkable for its exceptional length,
being exactly six feet,--four feet three inches in the blade, and
the handle twenty-one inches (Plate XXVII.). The grip is of the
usual character and the pommel is small; the quillons droop slightly
towards the blade and terminate in two spirals, small engaging-guards
being furnished on both sides. There is a strong ricasso of oblong
section giving great strength to the blade, and the usual two lateral
projections of rather large proportions. During the Maximilian Period
it was a favourite weapon in England, and its value for the defence of
a narrow pass, and against stormers at a beleaguered town, was fully
recognised. The Scottish claymore is really the two-handed sword, and
the application of the name to the basket-hilted broadsword of the
eighteenth century is a mistake. The two-handed sword with waved blade
is called a flamberge (Fig. 438); the example is from the Wallace
Collection (date about 1630); the blade measures fifty inches and the
handle over twelve. A ring-guard is furnished on either side of the
quillons; there are the two usual projections from the ricasso, which
is covered in leather. An earlier example, _c._ 1530, has a grip of no
less than twenty-two inches; the blade is fifty inches long, and it has
ring-guards and diagonally curved quillons (Fig. 428). The ricasso is
covered with leather, as in the former example.

[Illustration: FIG. 439.--Hand-and-half sword, 1490. (Wallace

The Hand-and-half, or Bastard Sword, illustrated in Fig. 439, dates
from 1490, and may be claimed as belonging to the two-handed variety.
It came into vogue in England during the Camail and Jupon Period, but
was used much earlier in Germany; the blade is forty inches long, but
in some examples it is nearly fifty. It could be wielded with one hand,
but to give extra effect to a blow, if desired, the left hand could be
brought into action near the pommel, where the grip is smaller. This
type of sword was in use during the whole of the fifteenth century.

_The Dagger._--This weapon has been described where necessary in
preceding chapters up to and including the Camail and Jupon Period,
when the misericorde with its triangular blade was so much in evidence.
In the reign of Richard II. the wearing of a dagger of some kind
was universal, even the ladies having a small baselard attached to
their girdles. Shortly afterwards a long poniard of Continental
origin superseded the previous weapon, which, like the sword, had a
thumb-guard attached in the form of a ring. The cinquedea, which may
be looked upon as a dagger, has been dealt with on p. 334. An example
of the military dagger of the fourteenth century is in the Wallace
Collection, dating from 1440, with a fifteen-inch blade, and is of the
greatest rarity, although illustrations in missals, &c., are numerous.
A specimen of the “Kidney” dagger, so called from the shape of the
base of the grip, is also preserved there, dating from 1480; it was in
common use in England until the time of Charles I.

[Illustration: PLATE XXIX*

1. Sword of Hernando Cortes.

2. Sword of Philip II.

3. Sword of Gonsalvo de Cordoba, late Fifteenth Century.

_A. F. Calvert_]

The main-gauche, or left-handed dagger, was of Continental origin, and
enjoyed an immense popularity in England during the sixteenth century.
It was held in the left hand to ward off blows and entangle the point
of the adversary’s weapon, while the long rapier was being used in the
right hand.



No evidence is extant respecting the inventor of the first machine
for missile throwing, but we know that they have existed from the
earliest ages, and have been used by all the great nations of
antiquity. Under the Greeks and Romans, but especially the former,
they attained a remarkable degree of excellence, and many accounts of
their extraordinary efficiency have come down to us. The Romans took
their ideas from the Greeks as a basis to work upon; among their best
authorities Vitruvius may be classed. The principles involved in these
engines were not altogether lost, but descended to the mediæval ages,
and probably during that period more elaborate, powerful, and gigantic
machines were constructed than at any previous time.

[Illustration: PLATE XXX*

Armour of Charles V., from Augsburg or Nuremberg

_A. F. Calvert_]

The complicated methods by which a fortress was captured or a town
carried during the Middle Ages are not generally known, and the
means adopted at the present time are as a general rule credited
with being the outcome of the skill and science of the past few
centuries. This, however, will not bear the test of investigation,
for we find that almost every device has had its prototype in past
ages, and nearly every idea has been forestalled. It comes almost
with a shock to some, and produces feelings of incredulity, to be
told that huge missiles vieing in destructive effect with the modern
shell, and as a rule many times larger, were sent with unerring aim
into the heart of a besieged town, levelling houses to the ground
and dealing destruction far and wide. The idea of a siege in mediæval
times is generally that of a tree to batter down a door, archers to
shoot down the defenders on the walls, desperate charges of cavalry
against sallies of the garrison, and forlorn hopes of men carrying
scaling-ladders with which to surmount the walls. These are, however,
only a few concomitants of the complicated methods by which a siege was

The Greeks and Romans constructed their engines upon the principle of
the bow, whereas the mediæval engineers adopted that of the sling.
The latter was by far the more clumsy of the two, but probably just
as effective. Had the methods by which the Greeks were enabled to
construct their splendid engines been handed down, the possibility
is that mediæval machines would have been far less cumbersome
and much smaller. Probably the greatest living authority upon
projectile-throwing machines is Sir Ralph Payne-Gallwey, Bart., who
has constructed models of ancient and mediæval machines with most
successful results. He says, “My engines are by no means perfect in
their mechanism, and are always liable to give way under the strain
of working. One reason of this is that all modern engines of the kind
require to be worked to their utmost capacity, _i.e._ to the verge of
their breaking-point, to obtain from them results that at all equal
those of their prototypes. The ancient engines did their work easily
and well within their strength. Although my largest catapult will throw
a stone to a great distance it cannot throw one of nearly the weight
it should be able to do, considering the size of its frame, skein of
cord, and mechanism. In this respect it is decidedly inferior to the
ancient engine.”[1] The author of the above has, however, been able to
construct a catapult which throws a stone of 8 lbs. to a distance of
between four hundred and fifty and five hundred yards.

_The Catapult._--The “Tormentum” of the Romans was a generic name for
military engines, and so named from the twisting of the hair, thongs,
sinews, &c., of which the propelling mechanism was made. What were the
exact materials used, and in what proportions, is entirely unknown,
and probably the knowledge did not extend beyond a century or so after
the fall of the empire. There can be no doubt but that the sinews of
animals played an important part in the construction of the skein. The
method of making the catapult was as follows, omitting unnecessary
details. A quadrangular wooden frame of great strength was fitted near
one end with the skein, which was made in the form of a circle and
of very considerable thickness, the rubber tyre of a large motor-car
wheel approximating both in size and shape. This was folded into two
parallel straight lines and passed through holes in the frame on
either side, where a simple mechanism grasped it which could revolve
the ends, cogs preventing them from turning in any direction but that
desired. Between the parallel parts of the skein the end of the arm
was placed, and by twisting the ends of the skein the arm was made to
press with considerable force against a horizontal beam supported by
uprights at the two sides. The arm was provided with a hollow in the
upper part for holding the stone. If now the arm were drawn back by
means of levers, ropes, and pulleys, the distortion upon the skein was
increased enormously, and if when loaded with a projectile the arm
were released, it sprang back against the beam with great velocity
and force, throwing the stone to a distance during the action. This
propulsive force was considerably augmented in some machines by the
addition of a sling to the end of the arm, which practically lengthened
the arm and consequently hurled the projectile to a greater distance.
Ancient writers assert that the range was sometimes as much as from
seven hundred to eight hundred yards.

[Illustration: FIG. 440.--Principle of the balista.]

_The Balista._--This machine was used by the Romans for discharging
the Falarica or ponderous spear, which had an iron head of over a
foot in length at one end, with a ball of lead at the other end, and
was at times used to carry incendiary material. It was projected upon
the same principle as the stone in the catapult, namely by means of
twisted skeins, but in the case of the balista two were in use. They
were fitted vertically in a frame open to the front: an arm was passed
through each skein, and when the skeins were twisted, the arms sought
to diverge from one another. A rope acted like the string of a bow, and
was wound back by a suitable apparatus, thus tending to draw the arms
to a parallel position; upon its release the falarica was propelled
in exactly the same manner as an arrow is discharged. It rested in
a directing hollow trough until the trigger was pulled. These heavy
missiles travelled at times to a distance of between three hundred and
four hundred yards and it will thus be seen that practically the two
ends of a bow are used for the propulsive force. The balista could also
be used for discharging stones if required by a simple alteration of
the bow-string, and the addition of another trough for directing the

_The Trebuchet._--The Trebuchet was a mediæval weapon derived from
the classical engines of previous ages, but depending entirely upon
the principle of the sling in contradistinction to that of torsion.
It was a gigantic arm of wood, lengthened considerably by a sling;
the arm was pivoted near one end remote from the sling, and this
beam being actuated by the fall of an extremely heavy weight caused
it to describe the quarter of a circle and discharge the missile. It
superseded the catapult, chiefly for the reason that the making of the
skeins of the latter had become a lost art, and also that a trebuchet
could be quickly constructed on the spot required with materials
generally found ready to hand, whereas the catapult necessarily had
to be transported. Consequently trebuchets were invariably dismantled
after a siege and not carried from place to place, the ponderous nature
of the machine presenting an obstacle to such a course. There is no
doubt that the addition of the sling was an idea obtained from the
East at a very early date, as a MS. of the thirteenth century contains
a representation showing it. In Add. MS. 10,292, British Museum, a
trebuchet is shown in use against a castle which is being attacked
by knights of the Ailette Period clad in banded mail. This shows the
sling affixed to the arm, but no comparison of size is possible, as
the machine is shown smaller than a horse, and the horse is nearly the
size of the castle. In Roy. MS. 16, G. VI., dating from _c._ 1330, two
trebuchets are shown in action against a castle. They are much out of
drawing, as the arm bearing the counterpoise of one is actually shown
longer than the arm bearing the sling, whereas it was probably only
a small fraction of the length. Hewitt quotes from a work written by
Gilles Colonne (_d._ 1316) for his pupil, Philip the Fair of France,
in which he says, “Of perriers (a general name for stone-projecting
machines) there are four kinds, and in all these machines there is a
beam which is raised and lowered by means of a counterpoise, a sling
being attached to the end of the beam to discharge the stone. Sometimes
the counterpoise is not sufficient, and then they attach ropes to it
in order to move the beam. The counterpoise may either be fixed or
movable, or both at once. In the fixed counterpoise a box is fastened
to the end of the beam, and filled with stones or sand or any heavy
body. These machines cast their missiles with most exactness, because
the weight acts in a uniform manner. Their aim is so sure that one may,
so to say, hit a needle. If the gyn carries too far it may be drawn
back or loaded with a heavier stone; if the contrary, then it must be
advanced or a smaller stone supplied. Others of these machines have a
movable counterpoise attached to the beam, turning upon an axis. The
third kind has two weights, one fixed to the beam and the other movable
round it; by this means it throws with more exactness. The fourth sort,
in lieu of weights attached to the beam, has a number of ropes, and is
discharged by a number of men pulling simultaneously at the cords. This
last kind does not cast such large stones as the others, but it has the
advantage that it may be more rapidly loaded and discharged than they.
In using the perriers by night it is necessary to attach a lighted
body to the projectile; by this means one may discover the force of
the machine and regulate the weights of the stone accordingly.” This
very valuable description of four varieties of the trebuchet at such an
early date gives us an idea of the state of perfection to which they
had then arrived, and from other sources may be obtained particulars
relating to the size and weight of the missiles employed. They were
not always of stone, but barrels of Greek fire, pitch, naphtha, and
other inflammable substance were used; also occasionally the bodies
of dead horses and other animals, often in a state of decomposition,
barrels of offensive or putrid matter, and other missiles of a similar
nature designed to cause pestilence, were thrown into towns or
fortresses when the defence was obstinately prolonged. In the account
left to us by Guillaume des Ormes of Carcassone in 1240, we read:
“Afterwards they set up a mangonel before our barbican, when we lost
no time in opposing to it from within an excellent Turkish petrary,
which played upon the mangonel and those about it; so that, when they
essayed to cast upon us, and saw the beam of our petrary in motion,
they fled, utterly abandoning their mangonel. And in that place they
made ditches and palisades, yet as often as we discharged our petrary
we drove them from it.” At the siege of Bedford Castle in 1224,
the garrison of which were followers of Faukes de Breauté, a leader
of mercenaries in the time of King John, seven mangonels were in use
in the besieging force. Matthew Paris mentions the terrible effects
of the trebuchets in 1246 at the siege of the castle of Cappacio,
when seven well-ordered machines discharged day and night such an
uninterrupted storm of missiles upon the ill-fated fortress that it
was battered into a helpless condition, and had perforce to surrender.
He also states that in 1253 the Gascons hurled stones and darts of
such wonderful size that many of them were carried into England to
be exhibited as curiosities. In the defence of castles the garrison
naturally set up missile-throwing weapons, and these were as a rule
built upon the ground within the encircling walls, and threw their
projectiles high in the air over the battlements into the enemy’s camp.
Smaller ones were also built upon the walls and towers. Where large
towns were besieged it was no unusual thing to have from one to three
hundred projectile-throwing engines in action. The mangonel, petrary,
mangonella, biblia, and many other names used by mediæval writers, all
refer to the trebuchet and its many modifications.

[Illustration: PLATE XXXI*

Burgundy Cross Armour of Philip II.

_A. F. Calvert_]

Various machines were invented during the Middle Ages, in which
the principle of propulsion was the steel bow mounted upon a frame
partaking of the nature of the arbalest. These bows were at times
of considerable size, and threw javelins, spears, and weapons of a
similar nature. Being mounted upon wheels, they served all the purposes
fulfilled by modern field artillery. In the same category may be
mentioned one which threw one or two stones at a single discharge:
it consisted of a vertical spring of steel which was pulled backwards
by ropes and pulleys, and upon being released threw one missile from
a sling attached to its extremity and another from a cup fixed to the

[Illustration: PLATE XXXII*

Gauntlets of Charles V.

_A. F. Calvert_]



It may come somewhat in the nature of a shock to the self-complacency
of the average Englishman to learn that in the great stores of armour
in the public and private collections of Great Britain and Ireland
only an infinitesimal portion is of English origin, and also that
England was never celebrated in any age for the output of reliable
suits. The excellent quality of English steel is, at the present time,
accepted throughout the world, while the care and finish bestowed upon
articles fabricated from it is proverbial, and in marked contrast
to that of many other nations. This fact is so well known that the
average inhabitant of our isles unconsciously places armour in the same
category, and believes as a matter of course that it was pre-eminent
in the Middle Ages. But the superiority of British iron is a matter
of the last two or three centuries, and only sprang into existence
when armour was becoming obsolete, whereas upon the Continent the
manufacture in some places dates back almost to remote antiquity. This
is especially the case with regard to Germany, whence has emanated
the great majority of the armour seen in our museums. If we take the
Wallace Collection, for instance, we find that sixteen cap-à-pie suits
are contained in it, of which thirteen are German, two Italian, and one
English. Of this number the eight earliest, dating from 1460 to 1560,
are of German manufacture. Of the three three-quarter suits dating
from 1520 to 1540 the whole are German, while of the nine half-suits
only one is Italian, the remainder coming from Germany. A similar
comparison taken in other museums would probably give a like result.
If, however, a collection has no suits of armour previous to the year
1605, a probability exists that English armour might occupy the second
if not the first place, inasmuch as the half and three-quarter suits in
use during the Civil Wars were largely made in England. It must not be
supposed, however, that the English armourers of the Middle Ages were
incapable of manufacturing defensive or offensive equipments, for it
is almost certain that the greater part used from the time of the War
of the Barons to the Wars of the Roses was fabricated at home, always
excepting that worn by royalty and the most prominent nobles. English
armour was, however, heavy and cumbrous, the inferior quality of the
metal necessitating great thickness in order to secure efficiency;
consequently those who could afford it procured the foreign article,
where the superior temper gave a minimum of weight with the same or
even better protection. It may be compared to the modern Harveyised
steel plate for battleships, of six or eight inches in thickness, which
affords greater security than the eighteen inches of iron formerly
in use. A large amount of foreign armour has found its way into our
country owing to the law of tournaments, whereby the equipment of the
vanquished became the lawful spoil of the victor; while the prolonged
wars waged upon the Continent by English armies--invariably with some
degree of success--must have furnished both the knight and the common
soldier with means of defence superior to that of home manufacture.

[Illustration: FIG. 441.--Spanish soldiers, eleventh century. (Add. MS.

It is curious to note how in the early part of the Middle Ages the same
general outline of military equipment prevailed over the civilised
portion of the continent of Europe, and this is exemplified in Fig.
441, taken from Add. MS. 11,695, a Spanish parchment of the eleventh
century. If the warriors delineated in it are compared with those
represented upon the Bayeux Tapestry, the only essential differences to
be discovered are the excessive lengths of the hauberk and gambeson,
and also the circular shield. The trilobed pommels of the swords and
the cross guards of the lances suggest a Scandinavian origin, but the
hauberk, nasal helmet, and leg defences are almost exact counterparts
of the Norman equipment. Again, in Fig. 442, which represents a
continental warrior of the year 1100, the general appearance is
similar to our own knights of the Chain Mail Period, if we except the
peculiar helmet and the deep indentations in the skirt of the surcoat.
The coif-de-mailles, hauberk, chausses, shield, and sword are almost
precisely the same. In the year 1330 the continental equipment was the
same in its broad character as in England, which may be seen from Fig.
443, taken from Add. MS. 12,228 in the British Museum, where the only
differences are the trefoil coudière and the laminated brassarts, which
were not general in our country, although isolated instances occur of
both. During the Camail and Jupon Period the plate armour was precisely
similar all over the Continent, the only variations being in the shape
of the jupon, which was sleeveless in England, but was often provided
with baggy sleeves ornamented with rows of buttons in other countries,
chiefly Spain and Italy, while tight sleeves were worn in Germany.
The frequent intercourse between the Continent and ourselves in the
fifteenth and sixteenth centuries led to the free introduction of
foreign supplies, and English armour lost what little insular character
it formerly possessed.

[Illustration: FIG. 442.--Continental warrior. (From a foreign MS.,
_c._ 1100.)]

[Illustration: FIG. 443.--French knight, _c._ 1330.]

[Illustration: PLATE XXXIII*

Armour of Charles V., made by Colman

_A. F. Calvert_]

It may be stated as a general fact that no authentic suits anterior
to the year 1400 are in existence, although many separate pieces are
preserved which were made before that year, chiefly helmets, mail,
gauntlets, and a few pieces of plate. The same may be said of the
armour prevailing from 1400 to 1440, though larger and more numerous
portions of it exist, but of the Gothic armour which came into being
after that date a number of complete suits are extant. Germany was
almost the sole maker of this description of defence, and not only
are the majority of suits of this period of German make, but Germany
itself has for long been the happy hunting-ground of collectors, and
was at one time deemed almost inexhaustible. There are many German
armourers whose names have been handed down upon the roll of fame, but
the most honoured bore the name of Colman. This family had settled in
Augsburg in the latter part of the fourteenth century, and gradually
established a reputation; the most famous and best known being Lorenz
Colman, who began work in 1467. He was patronised by Maximilian, King
of the Romans, a few years later, and appointed Court Armourer in
1490. In conjunction with the emperor there can be no doubt that the
Maximilian style was evolved in the first decade of the sixteenth
century. Lorenz died in 1516, and an example of his workmanship dating
from 1515 may be seen in a cap-à-pie suit in the Wallace Collection.
His successor, Koloman Colman, surnamed Helmschmied, produced many
wonderful examples of skilled workmanship, such as are exemplified in
his suits constructed for the Emperor Charles V. (Plate XXXIII.*), and
preserved in the Royal Armoury at Madrid.[2] In Plate XXX.*, the large
tilting-piece, comprising grande garde, volante piece, and pauldron
in one defence, is remarkable, while the pair of gauntlets belonging
to the same monarch and illustrated in Plate XXXII.*, are admittedly
the most superb examples in existence. The magnificent flutes, together
with the delicate enrichments of the gadlings, have probably never been
equalled. The style of ornamentation agrees exactly with that of Colman

[Illustration: FIG. 444.--Complete plate: head and neck, _c._ 1400.
(Roy. MS., 20, c. 7.)]

The equestrian suit shown in Plate XXX.*, p. 340, is of Augsburg
or Nuremberg make, and is also of the time of Charles V. It is of
considerable interest in exhibiting the various kinds of extra defences
such as the grande garde, garde-de-bras, and manifere, the last
differing from the Wallace specimen in having separate fingers. The
subject of horse armour, or bardings, has not been treated in this
work owing to the exigencies of space; it is a matter of considerable
interest, and the horse shown in this plate exhibits it in very
nearly its highest development. The error is very prevalent that
horse defences were of comparatively late introduction (_i.e._ of the
fifteenth and sixteenth centuries); the accompanying Fig. 444 from Roy.
MS. 20, c. 7, _temp._ Henry IV. or earlier, shows defence of a very
high order, inasmuch as the chanfron covers the whole of the head,
and the crinet, of lames of plate, encircles the neck completely. In
England horse-armour originated in the twelfth century. Plate XXXIV.*,
exemplifies the wealth of elaborate decoration bestowed upon horse
furniture in the sixteenth century; the chanfron in the centre has
been worked into the semblance of a dragon with which the mainfaire is
in harmony. The chanfron on the left is of Moorish workmanship.

[Illustration: PLATE XXXIV*

1. Moorish Chanfron.

2. Chanfron and Mainfaire, Sixteenth Century.

3. Chanfron, with Imperial Arms.

_A. F. Calvert_]

During the fourteenth century the Italian armourers had been making
steady progress towards fame, and in no city more so than Milan, where,
towards the end of the century, armourers came to the front whose names
are famous. A Milanese salade, _c._ 1480, is represented in Plate
VII.*, p. 60, and was produced by one of the Negroli family, who made
their home in the city. The salade is cast in one piece, except the
visor, and the ornamentation is a pleasing combination of the Italian
and Oriental styles. The delicacy, vigour, and force of its execution
may readily be perceived upon inspection of the illustration. Another
example of the work of the Negrolis is given in Plate X.*, p. 80,
which represents a three-quarter suit made for Charles V. The Milanese
were among the first to feel and acknowledge the influence of the
Renaissance in their work, and the decorations upon the pauldrons,
coudières, &c., of this suit exemplifies it.

Among the armourers who were entrusted with work for King Philip II. of
Spain, the successor of Charles V., were the Wolf family of Landshut,
and an example of their skill is shown in Plate XXXI.*, p. 346, upon
the suit known as the Burgundy Cross armour. It was made in 1551 by
Sigmund Wolf, and is richly decorated with bands of the natural colour
of the steel, on which are etched alternately the Cross of Burgundy
(the St. Andrew’s Cross), and the emblems of the Golden Fleece, all
gilded. The high pike-guard upon the _right_ shoulder is a structural
feature of this suit. An example of German armour dating from 1549,
when Philip was heir-apparent (Plate XXI.*, p. 236), is an excellent
example of the Decorative Period of the sixteenth century; it shows a
mitten gauntlet upon the left hand, and unequal tassets. An earlier
suit, made by Desiderius Colman in 1545, is adapted for jousting on
foot, and has lamboys or bases (Plate XII.*, p. 128). The espalier
pauldrons and roundels, the peascod breastplate, and the lames of
plate over the knee in the cuisses, are features of the suit. Wolf
of Landshut in 1554 made a suit for Philip II. (Plate XV.*, p. 146),
for the Über die Pallia, or Welsches Gestech Course, which exhibits
the manteau d’armes affixed and a small reinforcing piece attached to
the right espalier, forming a pike-guard. To this suit a forbidden or
locking gauntlet for the right hand is attached. The tassets are of
unequal length. A helmet supplied at the same time as the above suit
is a veritable triumph of the armourers craft (Plate XVI.*, p. 166).
The details may readily be seen in the illustration, and the volante
piece, fixed to the helmet by a strap round the gorget, and so moving
with it, is of special interest. Sigismund Wolf in 1550 made a suit for
Philip which is represented in Plate XIII.*, p. 132. “Many of the extra
pieces for this suit are now at Brussels. The ornamentation is chaste,
consisting of narrow bands, etched with graceful scrolls and volutes on
white burnished steel.”

[Illustration: PLATE XXXV*

Milanese Armour of King Philip IV.

_A. F. Calvert_]

The year 1554, which saw the production of some of the above suits,
probably witnessed the delivery of another to King Sebastian of
Portugal, which is preserved in the Royal Armoury at Madrid, and is
perhaps the most magnificent in the whole collection. The details
of the backplate, pauldrons, and arm defences are shown in Plate
XX.*, p. 232. It is the work of Anton Pfeffenhauser of Augsburg,
and undoubtedly his masterpiece; as an example of repoussé work it
places him upon an equality with the best German masters of his time.
“Mythological figures are embossed upon the bands traversing the
backplate; designs symbolical of Power, Victory, Peace, and Navigation
are represented on the pauldrons, back and front, while the coudières
display the four figures of the cardinal virtues.” It is essentially a
pageant suit, as is also the one presented to Philip III., when prince,
at the age of seven. It is a half-suit of Italian workmanship, formed
in gilded iron and decorated with figures, masks, &c., all embossed
and damascened (Plate XVIII.*, p. 196). Another, presented to the same
monarch in his childhood, is represented in Plate XIX.*, p. 212, and
is believed to be the work of Lucio Picinino of Milan. The decoration
is less profuse but quite as beautiful as in the preceding example. A
piece of Spanish armour made at Pamplona in Navarre in 1620 is shown
in Plate XXII.*, p. 240. Mr. Calvert states: “It is of steel-plated
iron and of extraordinary thickness.… A curious feature is the seven
indentations made by the bullets of an arquebus, and each set with
silver pearls. These marks do not say much for the quality of the
metal, which is 10 millimetres thick. The backplate, which is only
3 millimetres thick, has been perforated by a bullet. The arms are
defended by espaliers reaching to the elbow, where they meet the cuffs
of the gauntlets.”

Plate XXI.*, p. 236, is a suit of Milanese make, early seventeenth
century, intended for war purposes, and absolutely devoid of
ornamentation. An example of Flemish armour of 1624 is represented in
Plate XXIII.*, p. 268; it was sent by the Infanta Isabel Clara Eugenia
to Philip IV. The ugliness of the breastplate and the huge rivet-heads
upon the pauldrons are strongly suggestive of the “boiler plate” armour
prevailing in England at the same period. Plate XXXV.* is a suit
presented by the Cardinal Infante Ferdinand to Philip IV., and exhibits
the lames of plate inserted in the gousset of the coudière, similar to
the Henry VIII. foot armour in the Tower. It is of Milanese make, and
decorated with vertical bands of medallions, &c.

[Illustration: FIG. 445.--Globose breastplate (Burgundian). (Tower of

A second example of armour of Spanish make is given in Plate XXXVI.*;
it was fabricated at Pamplona for the Duke of Savoy in 1620, and is
decidedly an improvement upon the suit shown in Plate XIX.*, p. 212,
which came from the same locality. It is worthy of remark that Spain,
with all its vast resources of the finest iron ores in the world, did
not become a centre for arms and armour. She was undoubtedly able
to supply her own requirements, and in the wars against the Moors
these were of no mean order, but no distinct Spanish “School” was
evolved similar to the German or Italian. The excellent quality of
her swords attained world-wide reputation, and the blades of Toledo,
Bilbao, and Seville are justly famous. No town in France achieved
special success in armour or arms, although many were active in the
production. Burgundy was chiefly noted for its eccentricities, the
breastplate illustrated in Fig. 445 furnishing an example, though many
inventions, such as the burgonet, emanated from that warlike district,
while its hand-gun men of the fifteenth century were the best in
the world. Holland and Belgium have always enjoyed a reputation for
arms, and Netherlandish weapons and defences were in great demand.
The overwhelming superiority of Italian products must not be ascribed
solely to one town, Milan, for many others were famous, such as Pisa,
Verona, Lucca, Mantua, and Brescia, while Florence became a serious
rival to Milan in the latter part of the sixteenth century. In Germany,
Augsburg and Nuremberg probably were the most renowned for armour, but
Cologne bore pre-eminence for weapons.

[Illustration: PLATE XXXVI*

Armour of Duke of Savoy, 1620. Made at Pamplona.

_A. F. Calvert_]



[Illustration: PLATE XXXVII*

Double Breech-loading Cannon, in Bronze, used in Spain from the end of
the Fifteenth Century.

_A. F. Calvert_]

The invention of gunpowder and its use in propelling missiles
from tubes was the signal for the abolition of armour, as we have
indicated, though the struggle for supremacy between the two lasted
for considerably more than a century. The Eastern nations are
generally credited with the discovery of the properties of a mixture
of saltpetre, carbon, and sulphur so far as their use in fireworks
is concerned, but it was undoubtedly to the Western nations that the
knowledge and application of the propelling nature of the mixture were
due. The first authentic account of its use for military purposes must
be ascribed to the seventh century, when, under the name of Greek
fire, it was used at the defence of Constantinople by the Byzantine
emperors against the invading Saracens. The true Greek fire, however,
is supposed to have contained more ingredients than the three which
constitute gunpowder proper, viz. resin and naphtha, the latter being
in excess, and this mixture appears to have been so inflammable and
so difficult to extinguish that the terror excited by its use was
out of all proportion to the destruction that it wrought. It was
propelled from balistæ, projected from tubes, and carried by means of
arrows which bore tow steeped in the composition, while its use in
a besieged town to pour down upon assailants was probably the most
efficacious. Its composition was for a long time kept secret, but
the knowledge gradually spread, and during the later mediæval period
its use was not unknown in England (Fig. 337). Gunpowder proper was
used for the first time in the Spanish wars with the Moors in the
twelfth century by both combatants; and the secret of its composition
was discovered by Roger Bacon in the thirteenth century, probably from
the translation of manuscripts. Schwartz, a German Frank, perfected it
about a century later, and its first use in England occurred in the
wars against the Scots by Edward III. in 1327, when the cannon were
denominated “crakeys,” a diminutive from “crake,” the first name of
the composition, which may be a corruption of “grec.” At the siege
of Cambrai in 1339 cannon were in use, and they are specifically
mentioned by Froissart. After that time their use became general, and
in 1346 many were in operation at the battle of Creçy, the gunpowder
being imported from abroad until the reign of Elizabeth, when English
powder-mills were established in the country. The word artillery had
been in use to denote projectile-throwing weapons anterior to the use
of gunpowder, and became eventually the term by which the larger kind
of firearms was designated. The construction of the first cannon was,
as might be inferred, of the rudest possible description. Pieces or
bars of iron were arranged longitudinally so as to form a rough tube,
around which iron hoops were placed to hold them together. The powder
and ball were in a separate case, open at one end to allow of the exit
of the ball; this case was inserted in one end of the tube and secured
by a stirrup arrangement pivoting upon two projections on either side
of the tube, which fell over the open end and prevented the case from
being blown out when the discharge occurred. The powder was fired by
the insertion of a red-hot wire. The cannon was fixed down to a piece
of timber which rested upon a similar piece: at the breech end of the
cannon the two planks were hinged together, and by the insertion of
wedges in the front between the timbers the piece could be elevated.
Other contrivances almost as crude as that described were introduced
in order to overcome the difficulties of taking aim. The projectiles
were at first made of stone, and subsequently of lead or iron, or stone
coated with lead. It must not be supposed that the introduction of such
weapons created the profound consternation which a few contemporary
writers have led us to suppose; the general impression produced was,
in fact, one of contemptuous indifference, and it was only after
many improvements had been effected that cannon began to be taken
seriously. The earliest were only used in sieges, as the transport
of such cumbrous pieces was nearly an impossibility, and when they
were subsequently adopted for use in the field it was but seldom they
were used after the first discharge. During the fifteenth century
fresh developments took place; trunnions were invented, whereby the
recoil was transferred directly to the carriage; the weapon was cast
in one piece which tapered towards the muzzle, and many improvements
in loading and discharging were made. Bombards were introduced, being
short pieces with a large bore which were fired at a considerable
elevation and discharged balls of stone to a small distance; they were
the prototypes of our modern mortars and howitzers. One of the earliest
examples of mediæval ordnance preserved in this country may be seen at
the Rotunda, Woolwich (Plate XL., p. 366). It is known as the Creçy
Bombard, and may possibly date back to the time of Edward III. It is
said to have been found in the moat of Bodiham Castle, Sussex, and is
known to have been in Battle Abbey for many years. Its interior is of
cast iron, one of the earliest known specimens of the metal in that
form, and iron hoops have been shrunk upon this inner core. The chamber
in the smaller portion of the breech will hold about three or four
pounds of powder; the stone shot discharged weighed about a hundred
and sixty pounds and was fifteen inches in diameter. The carriage is
modern. The cannonier wears a capacious salade and is defended by
a hauberk of mail and a thick leather apron; he is discharging the
bombard with a hot iron and protects his face with his hand from the
inferior powder blown off the touch-hole by the explosion.

[Illustration: PLATE XXXVIII

The Dardanelles Bronze Gun, A.D. 1468. (Rotunda, Woolwich)]

Very large cannon were in use at times. Mons Meg at Edinburgh is an
example of a fifteenth century production; it weighs nearly four tons,
has a calibre of 20 inches, and threw a stone projectile of 300 lbs.
The powder-chamber is considerably smaller in bore than the cannon, in
order to withstand the force of the discharge. This piece is reputed
to have been made in 1455 for the siege of Thrieve Castle by James
II.; this latter monarch was killed five years later by the bursting
of a similar cannon, the Lion. Another example is preserved at Ghent,
where a foundry existed for their manufacture: the piece has a calibre
of 26 inches, while English guns are to be seen at Mont St. Michael
of 15 inches and 19 inches bore respectively. A remarkable example
of fifteenth century monster ordnance is the Dardanelles bronze gun
preserved at the Rotunda, Woolwich, and illustrated in Plate XXXVIII.
It was cast during the reign of Sultan Mahomed II., A.D. 1468, and
presented to Queen Victoria by the Sultan of Turkey in 1867. It weighs
18 tons 14 cwt., the calibre is 25 inches, and the total length equals
17 feet. It is made in two parts, which are screwed together, and
the breech portion which forms the powder chamber has a bore of only
ten inches. The stone shot weighed 6 cwt. each. The names applied to
ancient ordnance were many and various, and at the same time confusing,
inasmuch as the calibre of the various pieces was constantly changing.
The following is an approximate list of some of the pieces ordinarily
in use:--

Cannon Royal, weight of shot, 66 lbs.; Carthorun, 48 lbs.; Cannon, 34
lbs.; Bastard Cannon; Great Culverin, 15 lbs.; Bastard Culverin, 7
lbs.; Demi-Culverin, 2 lbs.; Basilisk, Serpentin, Aspik, Dragon, Syren.
For field service: Falcon, 1 lb.; Falconet, 14 ozs.; Saker.

[Illustration: PLATE XXXIX

1. Peterara, time of Edward IV.

2. Wall Arquebus. (Rotunda, Woolwich.)

3. The Brocas Heaume.

4. Heaume from Rotunda.]

Cannon have been made of various materials apart from iron and bronze,
such as wood, paper, and rope, the outside covering being of leather.
All the early guns used in England were obtained from abroad; the first
foundry in England was that of Hugget of Uckfield, Sussex, in 1521,
who cast cannon in brass and iron, using the Sussex iron smelted with
charcoal. There are some pieces of ordnance preserved in the Rotunda
at Woolwich which are of this age, and may possibly have come from
the Sussex foundry. Examples of early cannon are rare in England,
but on the Continent many may be found, especially in Belgium. The
Rotunda and the Tower of London probably contain the finest specimens
in the British Isles. In the Royal Arsenal at Madrid is preserved
a small piece of ordnance dating from late fifteenth century. It
is double-barrelled and breech-loading, and exhibits a wealth of
ornamentation upon almost every part (Plate XXXVII.*). A breech-loading
peterara of forged iron of the time of Edward IV. is in the Rotunda,
and is illustrated in Plate XXXIX. It is made of longitudinal bars
of iron hooped together with iron rings; the powder-chamber with its
lifting handle is seen in position, and a simple locking arrangement
prevented its blowing out upon the discharge. Trunnions are affixed to
the piece, and the metal by which it was attached to the long-decayed
wooden gun-carriage is still preserved. The length of the gun is 3 feet
and the calibre 2½ inches, while the name implies that the shot was of
stone. This very rare piece of ordnance is in excellent condition.

The progress in artillery was very slow, but gradually cannon became
mounted upon wheels and rude carriages, an advance upon the logs and
cumbrous beds of the preceding period, while iron was substituted
for stone in the projectile. The engagement of trained professional
gunners in place of the civilians who had managed the artillery in the
fourteenth century, was another step which led to improvement, Dutch
artillerymen being employed by Henry VIII. Charles VIII. and subsequent
French monarchs undoubtedly did much for the improvement of the weapon;
they adopted light guns for field artillery, and introduced the system
of rapidly taking up different positions from which to assail the
enemy. The Civil War in England found a great scarcity of cannon, and
more particularly of efficient gunners, and generally it may be stated
that the English use of artillery was much behind that existing upon
the Continent until the middle of the eighteenth century.

[Illustration: PLATE XL

The “Creçy” Bombard, _temp._ Edward III. Arbalestier, Fifteenth
Century. (Rotunda, Woolwich)]

The existence of cannon in the mediæval period would naturally suggest
a weapon that might be used in the hand, and from a very early period
hand-guns have been in evidence. They are rarely mentioned by writers
of the time, and very few illuminations are extant showing the weapons
then employed, which would tend to show that their use was restricted,
and their efficacy valued but little. The earliest were simply tubes
affixed to a stick and fired by means of a lighted match; some of them
were ignited from the muzzle, thus indicating that they were shotless
and only used to frighten horses in a cavalry charge. The long-bow
and arbalest were of infinitely greater efficacy than the early
hand-gun, and it is a matter for wonder that the latter held a place
at all in the armies of the period. It was made in various shapes,
but that generally shown in contemporary illustrations is depicted in
Fig. 339, the piece being discharged by means of a touch-hole on the
top of the barrel near the breech. The earliest use of a hand-gun is
involved in obscurity; there can be no doubt that many attempts were
made to introduce such a weapon, but the first mention that occurs
is in the reign of Edward III., when they were brought into England
from Flanders. They were in use by both horse and foot soldiers, the
stock in the first case being shortened so that it could be placed
against the chest, while in the second it passed under the right
arm, the left hand being used to grasp it and the right to hold the
discharging match. The gun was supported in the case of cavalry by a
forked rest which projected from the saddle. In all these guns the
powder-chamber was smaller than the calibre of the barrel. In some
cases the hand-gun was used as a mace after being discharged.

_Hand Culverin._--A larger hand-gun was subsequently evolved, which
was much in use during the second half of the fifteenth century, and
necessitated the presence of two men for its manipulation. It was
called the hand culverin, and had a bore of about three-quarters of an
inch; it was constructed of forged iron, and was attached by bands to
a straight stock of wood. This weapon was fired from a rest. It was
subsequently improved by the addition of a pan and touch-hole at the
side and a modification of the stock, while the barrels were often of
brass or bronze, and polygonal in section. Their weight varied from
ten to sixteen pounds, and a variety which was carried on horseback
at times weighed nearly sixty pounds. Warwick the King-maker employed
“Burgundenses” or Burgundian hand-gun men in the Second Battle of St.
Albans, 1461, and culveriners formed a part of the forces under Edward
IV. in the later battles of the Wars of the Roses.

_The Serpentin, Matchlock, or Arquebus._--An improvement was made about
the year 1500, whereby the slow match, hitherto held in the hand,
was affixed to a lever bent into the form of a serpent and fastened
by the centre to the stock on a pivot; by pulling the lower portion
the upper end carrying the match was made to descend upon the priming
powder. Subsequent innovations consisted of a sliding cover over the
flash-pan, and the jointing of the serpentin to increase the leverage.
The matchlock was in use for about two centuries, in spite of the
cumbersome nature of the weapon, the slow rate of its discharge, the
trouble involved in keeping the match alight during boisterous or rainy
weather, and the heavy rest for holding it when loading and taking aim.
The greatest merit was undoubtedly its simplicity and cheapness. The
arquebus shown in Plate XXVII., p. 322, is of the sixteenth century,
time of James VI., and is in the Edinburgh Museum. The figure of an
arquebusier may be discerned in Plate VIII., p. 64, under the horse’s
head of the Bayard figure. The arquebus is seen poised upon its rest
with a piece of loose tow hanging from the barrel; the arquebusier
is in the act of taking aim, and is accoutred in seventeenth century
military dress. In Plate XXXIX. a wall arquebus is shown from the
Rotunda, which is nearly 9 feet in length and weighs 87 lbs. It is
fitted with a tube sight and an arrangement for pivoting in an iron
socket upon a wall or in an embrasure. Its calibre is 1.3 inches. These
pieces were at times carried into the field and required three men to
manipulate them.

_The Wheel-lock._--The great difficulty experienced in keeping the
match alight resulted in the invention of the wheel-lock in the earlier
part of the sixteenth century at Nuremberg, and its introduction into
England about 1540. The mechanism consisted of a wheel serrated at the
edge which protruded into the priming pan, and was fixed by its axle to
the lock plate (Plate XLI.). This axle was made square upon the outside
for a key, while at the other end a strong spring engaged with it; by
winding it the spring was compressed and held in place by a catch. The
lock held a piece of pyrites, and when it was depressed rested in
the priming pan, which had a removable cover; upon the trigger being
pulled the spring caused the wheel to revolve quickly, whereby its
file-like edges struck sparks of fire from the pyrites with which it
was in contact and thus ignited the powder. For the cavalry and also
for sporting purposes the wheel-lock was in use for many years, but its
cost precluded a general introduction among the infantry. A high degree
of ornamentation was lavished upon many of these weapons; examples may
be readily found in all museums of importance.

_The Snap-hance._--This variety of lock was invented in Holland or
Germany about 1550, and from the simplicity and ease with which it was
made and the consequent cheapness of production, rapidly came into
favour in England and on the Continent. It is said to have been evolved
by a body of Dutch poultry stealers (Snaphans), who could not use the
matchlock because of the light entailed, or the wheel-lock because of
the expense, and thereupon devised the snap-hance, little dreaming that
the invention would become so popular. The wheel-lock was superseded by
a hammer which struck upon a piece of sulphurous pyrites; the flash-pan
was the same, but the cover was actuated by a spring and flew back when
the hammer descended, thus allowing a free passage for the shower of

_The Flint-lock._--The snap-hance was undoubtedly the intermediate
weapon between the wheel-lock and flint-lock. The latter may be claimed
as an English invention, as a specimen occurs in the Tower having the
date 1614 upon it, the date generally assigned for its introduction
being 1630 according to continental records. The knowledge that fire
could be produced by striking flint upon steel was well known to the
ancients. In the flint-lock the fall of the hammer containing the
flint was made to open the flash-pan and at the same time to strike
sparks from its cover. The earlier kinds had all the mechanism upon
the outside of the lock, but subsequently it was hidden, and a tumbler
connected the mainspring with the hammer. Highly decorated examples
of the flint-lock are common, especially those of Italian and Spanish
origin (Plate XLI.*). The weapon did not come into extensive use in
England until the second half of the seventeenth century, but it
eventually superseded all others, and was adapted for every kind of
firearm, both military and civil, and remained in use until the advent
of the percussion cap about 1830.

Pistols underwent the same variations as the larger weapon, but these
were often combined, being fixed in shields, battle-axes, pole-axes,
daggers, halberds, &c.

The subject of this chapter is an extremely wide one, and an attempt to
cover it completely in the pages of this work has not been attempted;
the broad facts given here may, however, be acceptable to the general


[1] From “Projectile-throwing Engines of the Ancients,” by Sir Ralph
Payne-Gallwey, Bart., by kind permission of the author, to whose work I
am indebted for several particulars in this chapter.

[2] The Royal Armoury at Madrid is undoubtedly the finest collection of
its kind in the world. It was founded by King Charles V., 1516-1568,
and in addition to Spanish armour and arms contains magnificent
examples of the works of the greatest armourers of Europe. By the
kindness and courtesy of Mr. Albert F. Calvert, author of “Spanish Arms
and Armour, being a Historical and Descriptive Account of the Royal
Armoury at Madrid,” we are enabled to produce illustrations of many of
the exhibits from photographs supplied by him. These illustrations are
distinguished by an asterisk (Plate I.*, &c.).


    Ailette, 101
      ”      circular, 109, 110
      ”      introduction of, 97
      ”      lozenge-shaped, 103
      ”      of Henry de Beaumont, 102
      ”      of Gilbert de Clare, 103
      ”      of John de Warenne, 102
      ”      use of, 105

    Album, Jacobi, 294

    Albyn, Robert, brass of, 190

    Allecret, 307

    Almayne corselets, 305
      ”     rivets, 282, 305

    Almeric, Lord St. Amand, bascinet of, 151
      ”        ”       ”     chapelle-de-fer of, 151
      ”        ”       ”     mentonnière of, 151

    Amand, Lord St., 161

    Angon, Frankish, 44

    Anelace, 252, 334

    Anton Pfeffenhauser, 357

    Arbalest, 93

    Arbalestier, 126
      ”          at Rotunda (Plate 40, p. 366), 132

    Archer, Chain Mail Reinforced Period, 122
      ”     Surcoatless Period, 209

    Archers, English, 255
      ”      Etruscan, 35
      ”      Half Armour Period, 318

    Archer’s stake, 209

    Archery, 124, 130

    Argentine, Sir John de, 189

    Armet, 221

    Arm defences, Tabard Period, 225

    Armour, Burgundy Cross, 355
      ”     Charles V. (Plates 30 and 33, pp. 340, 352), 353
      ”     upon coinage, 161
      ”     decorated, 292
      ”     Edinburgh Castle (Plate 24, p. 312), 306
      ”     Edinburgh Castle (Plate 25, p. 316), 316
      ”     English, 352
      ”        ”     and foreign compared, 350
      ”     Flemish (Plate 23, p. 268), 357
      ”     foot, 358
      ”     fluted, 277
      ”     Frankish, 45
      ”     German (Pl. 21, p. 236), 353, 356
      ”     German influence upon, 349
      ”     Gothic, 353
      ”     horse, 354
      ”     for Infante (Philip III.), (Plate 18, p. 196), 357
      ”     influence of gunpowder upon, 360
      ”     Italian, 355
      ”        ”     influence upon, 349
      ”     lancers’ (Plate 25, p. 316), 316
      ”     Maximilian, 278
      ”     Milanese (Plate 21, p. 236), 355, 357
      ”     Milanese, of King Philip IV. (Plate 35, p. 356), 358
      ”     Norman, 67
      ”     from Pamplona (Plate 22, p. 240), 357
      ”     by Picinino (Pl. 19, p. 212), 357
      ”     Roman Republican, 36
      ”     Savoy, Duke of (Plate 36, p. 358), 358
      ”     King Sebastian (Plate 20, p. 232), 356
      ”     slashed, 291
      ”     tegulated, 74
      ”     tilting, 233

    Armourers’ Hall, 294
      ”         ”    gauntlet, 298

    Arms, towns renowned for, 359

    Arquebus, 306, 367
      ”       wall (Plate 39, p. 364), 368

    Arquebusier, 260, 315
      ”          Maximilian, 30

    Arrow-heads, 4
      ”          bronze, 16
      ”          Saxon, 55

    Assyrians, the, 20

    Artilleryman, 365

    Audley, Lord, brass of, 269

    Augsburg armour (Plate 30, p. 340), 353
      ”      Colman family of, 353

    Axe, Danish, 64
      ”  Edinburgh Castle (Plate 27, p. 322), 322
      ”  Saxon, 53

    Bacon, Sir -- de, brass of, 118

    Balista, 343

    Bamberg, effigy at, 169

    Banded mail, 70, 134
      ”          construction of (Plate 14, p. 136), 134
      ”          introduction of, 97

    Banner, 110

    Banneret, knight, 110

    Barbute, 172

    Bardiche, 210

    Bardwell, William, brass of, 270

    Bascinet (British Museum MSS.), 150, 153, 172, 173, 209
      ”      Lord St. Amand, 151
      ”      Thomas de Beauchamp, 150
      ”      Sir William Burgate, 174
      ”      Camail and Jupon Period, 170
      ”      Sir John de Creke, 142
      ”      Cyclas Period, 142
      ”      Parham Park, 171
      ”      St. Albans, Camail and Jupon Period, 170
      ”      Sir Humphrey de Stafford, 216
      ”      Studded and Splinted Period, 149
      ”      Surcoatless Period, 195, 208
      ”      Tower of London, 171
      ”      Ulrich Landschaden, 173
      ”      Wallace Collection, 171

    Baselard, 338

    Bases or lamboys, 289

    Basket-hilted sword, 337

    Bastard sword, 197, 261

    Battle-axes, 8

    Bavière (British Museum MSS.), 208, 266
      ”     Surcoatless Period, 195
      ”     Tabard Period, 220

    Bayard, Chevalier, armour of (Plate 8, p. 64), 272

    Bayeux Tapestry, 65, 67

    Bear’s-paw sabbatons, 280

    Beauchamp Chapel, 244
      ”       Richard de, 211
      ”              ”    effigy of, 244
      ”       Thomas, Earl of Warwick, 160
      ”       Thomas de, bascinet, 150

    Belt, bronze, Greek, 31

    Berkeley, Lord, 169

    Bifid beard, Saxon, 62

    Bill (Plate 27, p. 322), 328

    Billman (British Museum MS.), 205
      ”     Surcoatless Period, 204

    Bipennis, 54, 80

    Bitton, Sir John de, 87

    Black Prince, heaume of, 184

    Bœotian helmet, 29

    Bohun, Humphrey de, crest of, 116

    Bolts or quarrels, 133

    Bombard, the Creçy (Plate 40, p. 366), 363

    Bombards, 307, 362

    Bothe, Sir Robert del, brass of, 249

    Bouche, 253

    Bourdonass lance, 311

    Bow, Assyrian, 22
      ”  Egyptian, 23
      ”  Greek, 26, 32
      ”  Norman, 66

    Bowman, 255

    Bracer, 209, 319

    Brass at Croft, 118

    Brass of Robert Albyn, 190
      ”      Sir John d’Aubernoun, 97, 144
      ”      Lord Audley, 269
      ”      Sir -- de Bacon, 118
      ”      William Bardwell, 270
      ”      Sir Robert del Bothe, 249
      ”      Sir Thomas Braunston, 190
      ”      Humphrey Brewster, 301
      ”      Sir Robert de Bures, 116
      ”      Lord Robert Ferrers of Chartley, 199
      ”      Sir William Cheyne, 157
      ”      Robert Colt, 230, 248
      ”      John Colt, 270
      ”      John Daundelion, 247
      ”      Sir William de Echingham, 176
      ”      Lord L’Estrange, 270
      ”      Sir Simon de Felbrygge, 199
      ”      Sir -- de Fitzralph, 118
      ”      John Gaynesford, 247
      ”      Henry Green, 250
      ”      Walter Green, 247
      ”      Sir Thomas Grene, 250
      ”      Sir Anthony de Grey, 230, 252
      ”      Richard Gyll, 270
      ”      Sir John Hanley, 190
      ”      Sir Robert Harcourt, 230
      ”      Sir John de Harpedon, 217
      ”      Sir Hugh Hastings, 150, 158
      ”      Sir Ralph de Knevynton, 169
      ”      Knight at Laughton, 193
      ”      Sir John de Leventhorpe, 201
      ”      Sir John Lysle, 201
      ”      Sir John de Northwode, 144
      ”      Henry Parice, 230, 248
      ”      Sir John Peryent, 229
      ”      Sir John de St. Quintin, 190
      ”      Sir Thomas de St. Quintin, 200, 244
      ”      Sir John Say, 252
      ”      Sir Robert de Septvans, 117
      ”      Edward Stafford, 269
      ”      Sir Humphrey Stanley, 271
      ”      Sir Miles de Stapleton, 157, 188, 227
      ”      Sir Robert Staunton, 229, 248
      ”      Sir Roger de Trumpington, 99
      ”      Sir John Wylcotes, 192

    Brassarts, demi-, 118
      ”        Jacobi, 297
      ”        Transition Period, 269

    Brayette, 284

    Breastplate (British Museum MS.), 168
      ”         Burgundian, 358
      ”         Camail and Jupon Period, 168
      ”         Cyclas Period, 140
      ”         Globose, 242
      ”         Jacobi, 296
      ”         long form of, 250
      ”         Maximilian, 282
      ”         peascod, 283
      ”         Studded and Splinted Period, 148
      ”         Surcoatless Period, 195
      ”         Tabard Period, 223
      ”         Transition Period, 267
      ”         (Tower of London), 225

    Brigandines, construction of, 263

    Bronze Age, 9
      ”         arrow-heads of, 16
      ”         daggers of, 11
      ”         mace of, 19
      ”         shields of, 17
      ”         spear of, 14
      ”         sword of, 12, 19

    Bronze gun, Dardanelles, 363

    Brown bill, 328

    Bufe, 279

    Bures, Sir Robert de, brass of (Plate 11, p. 116), 116

    Burgate, Sir William, bascinet of, 174

    Burgonet, 28
      ”       Hatfield House, 307

    “Burgundenses,” 262

    Burgundian breastplate, 358

    Burgundy cross armour (Plate 31, p. 346), 355

    Byrnie, Saxon, 58

    Cabasset (Plate 26, p. 318), 304

    Caliver, 306, 316

    Calthorpe, Sir William, 201

    Camail and Jupon Period, 166, 174
      ”        ”       ”   bascinet, 170
      ”        ”       ”   bascinet, St. Albans, 170
      ”        ”       ”   gauntlets, 178
      ”        ”       ”   hauberk, 169
      ”        ”       ”   heaume of, 183
      ”        ”       ”   hip belt, 180
      ”        ”       ”   laminated epaulières, 177
      ”        ”       ”   leg armour, 180
      ”        ”       ”   misericorde, 182
      ”        ”       ”   plate defences, 177
      ”        ”       ”   shield, 183
      ”        ”       ”   sword, 181
      ”        ”       ”   visor, 171

    Cannon, construction of, 364
      ”     Dardanelles (Plate 38, p. 362), 363
      ”     at Ghent, 363
      ”     Madrid (Plate 37, p. 360), 365
      ”     at Mont St. Michael, 363
      ”     names of, 364
      ”     at Rotunda, 364

    Cannonier, 262, 306, 363

    _Cap-à-pie_ suit, Tower of London, 240
      ”           ”   Wallace Collection, 242

    Carabine, 306

    Carbineer, half armour of, 316

    Catapult, 342

    Cavalry, Half Armour Period, 315
      ”      Maximilian Period, 307

    Celts, bronze, 9
      ”    Egyptian, 7
      ”    origin of name, 2
      ”    pronunciation of, 2
      ”    Palæolithic and Neolithic, 3

    Chain mail, 84
      ”         fabrication of, 86
      ”         Period, 81
      ”         Reinforced Period, 97
      ”           ”          ”     archer, 122
      ”           ”          ”     guige, 99
      ”           ”          ”     heaume, 101
      ”           ”          ”     soldier, 121
      ”           ”          ”     sword, 98
      ”         Saxon, 60

    Chanfron (Plate 34, p. 354), 354

    Chapelle-de-fer, 259
      ”       ”      of Lord St. Amand, 151

    Charles V., equestrian suit of, 354
      ”         Negroli armour (Plate 10, p. 80), 355

    Chausses, 98
      ”       Norman, 76
      ”       Studded and Splinted Period, 149

    Cheney, Sir John, genouillière of, 272

    Chevalier Bayard, armour of, 272

    Cheyne, Sir Thomas, 189
      ”     Sir William, 157, 189

    Cinquedea, 334

    Claymore, 337

    Clehongre, effigy at, 145

    Club tournament, 312

    Cobham, Sir Reginald de, orle of, 187
      ”     Sir John de, 190

    Coif-de-mailles, 98
      ”        ”     fixing of, 105

    Coif, Norman, 73

    Coinage, armour upon, 161

    Colt, John, brass of, 270
      ”   Robert, brass of, 230, 248
      ”   Thomas, pauldron of, 228

    Collections, foreign armour in, 350
      ”          German suits in, 350

    Colman, Desiderius, foot armour (Plate 12, p. 128), 356
      ”     family at Augsburg, 353

    Composition of gunpowder, 361

    Construction of early cannon, 361

    Contoise, 101, 186, 237

    Continental equipment, 351
      ”         and English equipment, 352

    Coronal, 238
      ”      lance head, 311

    Corporation mace, 331

    Corselets, almayne, 305

    Coudières, 118
      ”        butterfly, 244
      ”        fan-shaped, 201
      ”        of Thomas Playters, 229
      ”        Studded and Splinted Period, 155
      ”        fan-shaped, Surcoatless Period, 196
      ”        Tabard Period, 228
      ”        Wallace Collection, 229

    Courses, 308

    Courtney, Edward, panache of, 187

    Crakeys, 361

    Cray, John, misericorde of, 182

    Creçy bombard, 363

    Creke, Sir John de, bascinet of, 142

    Crest, Humphrey de Bohun, 116
      ”    Richard Fitzalan, 116
      ”    introduction of, 90
      ”    John de Warenne, 116

    Crests, 97, 115, 186

    Crinet, 354

    Cross-bow, 126
      ”       barrelled, 133
      ”       à Galet, 133
      ”       goat’s foot, or hind’s foot, 131
      ”       hand, 131
      ”       missiles, 133
      ”       moulinet and pulleys, 132
      ”       wheel and ratchet, 132

    Cross-legged effigies, 99

    Cuirass, 30
      ”      Etruscan, 34
      ”      Greek, 24
      ”      Roman Imperial, 39
      ”      Roman Republican, 36, 37

    Cuirassier, Half Armour Period, 315

    Cuir-bouilli, 98

    Cuishes, 309

    Cuissarts, Transition Period, 269

    Cuisses, Maximilian Period, 284

    Culette, 291

    Cultellus, 79, 334

    Culverin, hand, 367

    Cumæ, 29

    Cyclas Period, 139, 141
      ”            soldier of, 144
      ”            sword, 144

    Dag, 308

    Dagger, 338
      ”     bronze, 11
      ”     kidney, 339
      ”     main-gauche, 339
      ”     Norman, 79
      ”     Saxon, 54
      ”     thumb-guard, 339

    Daggers, 6

    Dagging, 168

    Dardanelles bronze gun (Plate 38, p. 362), 363

    Danes, 63

    Danes and Saxons, 47

    Danish axe, 64
      ”    helmet, 63
      ”    shield, 64
      ”    spear, 64
      ”    sword, 64

    Das Deutsche Stechen, 238, 308

    d’Aubernoun, Sir John, brass of, 97, 144

    Daundelion, John, brass of, 247

    Decorated armour, 292

    Defences, not plate, 71

    Demi-placcate (British Museum MS.), 225
      ”           Tabard Period, 223

    d’Eresby brass, 192
      ”      orle, 187

    Despencer, Hugh de, 160

    Dragon, 308
      ”     Half Armour Period, 316

    Dunbar, Patrick, heaume of, 113

    Early cannon, construction of, 361

    Early projectiles, 362

    Echingham, Sir W. de, brass of, 176

    Edinburgh Castle, armour in (Plate 24, p. 312), 306

    Edward III., 160

    Edward, Prince of Wales, heaume of, 116

    Effigies, cross-legged, 99

    Effigy, Bamberg Cathedral, 196
      ”     Richard Beauchamp, 244
      ”     Clehongre, 145
      ”     Prince John of Eltham, 145
      ”     from tomb of Lady Eleanor Fitzalan, 153
      ”     Sir Robert Shurland, 141
      ”     Aymer de Valence, 143
      ”     Sir John Verney, 247
      ”     Sir Thomas Vernon, 246

    Egyptians, 22

    Engines, projectile-throwing, 340

    English archers, 255
      ”     armour, 352
      ”     and Continental equipment, 352

    Épaule de mouton, 237, 286

    Epaulières, laminated, Camail and Jupon Period, 177, 196
      ”           ”        Tabard Period, 226

    Equestrian suit, Charles V., 354
      ”          ”   Wallace Collection, 241

    Equipment, continental, 351

    Espalier pauldrons, 239

    Etruscans, 33

    Falarica, 343

    Falchion, 334

    Falcon, 307

    Fauchard, 210, 320

    Felbrygge, Sir Simon de, brass of, 199

    Ferrara suit, 300

    Ferrars, Robert de, heaume of, 112
      ”      of Chartley, Lord R., brass of, 199

    Fire-pot, 261

    Fitzalan, Lady Eleanor, effigies from tomb of, 152

    Fitzalan, Richard, crest of, 116

    Fitzralph, Sir -- de, brass of, 118

    Flail, military, 329

    Flamberge, 337

    Flemish armour (Plate 23, p. 268), 357

    Flint-lock, 369

    Fluted armour, 277

    Foot armour, 287, 288, 358
      ”  soldier (British Museum MSS.), 206, 207
      ”    ”     Surcoatless Period, 204
      ”  tournaments, 312

    Forbidden gauntlet, 356
      ”         ”       Armourers’ Hall and Tower of London, 298

    Foreign armour in collections, 350

    Foreign armour and tournaments, 350

    Fork, military, 326
      ”   scaling (Plate 27, p. 322), 326

    Francisca, Frankish, 43

    Franks, 43

    Free Course, 286, 312

    Fustibal or staff-sling, 134

    Fylfote, 99

    Fynderne, William, tabard of, 215

    Gadlings, 179

    Gambeson, 67
      ”       Cyclas Period, 141
      ”       Surcoatless Period, 196

    Gammadion, 99

    Garde-de-bras, 229, 237, 287

    Garde-de-rein, 241, 279, 282

    Gauntlet, Armourers’ Hall, 298
      ”       Camail and Jupon Period, 178
      ”       Charles V. (Plate 32, p. 348), 354
      ”       forbidden, 356
      ”       Jacobi, 298
      ”       mail, 107
      ”       shell, 253
      ”       Surcoatless Period, 196

    Gaynesford, John, brass of, 247

    Genouillière, Jacobi, 297
      ”           of Sir Roger le Strange, 272
      ”           Wallace Collection, 231

    Genouillières (British Museum MSS.), 156, 232
      ”           Chain Mail Reinforced Period, 98
      ”           of Sir John Cheney, 272
      ”           Studded and Splinted Period, 155, 156
      ”           Tabard Period, 232

    Geoffrey, Count of Anjou, crest of, 90

    Gerard, Piers, sabbatons of, 232
      ”       ”    tabard of, 215

    German armour (Plate 21, p. 236), 353, 356
      ”                               Course, 308
      ”                               suits in collections, 350

    Ghent, cannon at, 363

    Gilbert de Clare, ailettes of, 103

    Glaives (Plate 27, p. 322), 328

    Goedendag, 330

    Gorget, Jacobi, 296
      ”     Maximilian Period, 280
      ”     Surcoatless Period, 194, 212
      ”     Transition Period, 267

    Gothic armour, Wallace Collection, 239
      ”            style, 242
      ”            suits, 353

    Goussets, laminated, 239
      ”       plate, 225, 267

    Grande-garde, 285

    Greaves, Greek, 25, 30, 31

    Greek engines, 341
      ”   fire, 261, 360
      ”   historic age, 24, 27
      ”   lance, 27
      ”   phalanx, 27

    Green, Henry, brass of, 250
      ”    Walter, brass of, 247

    Grene, Sir Thomas, brass of, 250

    Grevières or jambarts, Studded and Splinted Period, 157

    Grey, Sir Anthony de, brass of, 230, 252

    Grey of Ruthin, Lord, 160

    Gridiron helmet, 312

    Guard-plate to knee, 250

    Guige, 78, 238
      ”    Chain Mail Reinforced Period, 99

    Guisarme, 210, 320
      ”       Norman, 79

    Gunpowder, composition of, 361
      ”        influence on armour, 360
      ”        introduction of, 27

    Gyll, Richard, brass of, 270

    Gyn, 345

    Half Armour Period, 313
      ”    ”    archers, 318
      ”    ”    arquebusier, 315
      ”    ”    carbineer, 316
      ”    ”    cavalry, 315
      ”    ”    cuirassier, 315
      ”    ”    dragoon, 316
      ”    ”    helmet, 313
      ”    ”    musketeer, 317
      ”    ”    pikeman, 316
      ”    ”    three-quarter suit, 314

    Halberd, Edinburgh Castle (Plate 27, p. 323), 323

    Hand-and-a-half sword, 197

    Hand culverin, 367
      ”  guns, 365
      ”  gun man, 261, 262
      ”  gun men, Burgundian, 262

    Hanley, Sir John, brass of, 190

    Haqueton, 117
      ”       Cyclas Period, 139

    Harcourt, Sir Robert, brass of, 230

    Harpedon, Sir John de, brass of, 217

    Hastings, Sir Hugh, brass of, 150
      ”       Sir Hugh, heaume of, 154
      ”       Lawrence, 160

    Hatfield House, burgonet, 307
      ”        ”    helmet, 300
      ”        ”    sabbatons, 305

    Hauberk, 98
      ”      Camail and Jupon Period, 169
      ”      Cyclas Period, 140
      ”      Norman Period, 73
      ”      Studded and Splinted Period, 147
      ”      Surcoatless Period, 196

    Hausse-col, 252

    Haut-de-chausses, Studded and Splinted Period, 156

    Hawberk, Sir Nicholas, 169

    Head-piece (British Museum MS.), 206

    Heaume, 81
      ”     Berlin, 91
      ”     Black Prince (Plate 17), 184
      ”     the Brocas (Plate 39, p. 364), 274
      ”     Roger de Bigod, 82
      ”     Camail and Jupon Period, 183
      ”     Chain Mail Reinforced Period, 101, 112
      ”     Richard de Clare, 83
      ”     Cœur de Lion, 91
      ”     conical, introduction of, 97
      ”     Patrick Dunbar, 113
      ”     Hugh Fitz-Eudo, 82
      ”     Edward, Prince of Wales, 116
      ”     Robert de Ferrars, 112
      ”     Hamelin, 83
      ”     Sir Hugh Hastings, 154
      ”     Henry de Lacy, 115
      ”     Painted, at Leipzic, 82
      ”     Sir Geoffrey Luterell, 154
      ”     Henry de Perci, 115
      ”     Pembridge, 185
      ”     Richard Plantagenet, 112
      ”     Pranker, 187
      ”     Rotunda (Plate 39, p. 364), 185
      ”     Sir William de Staunton, 101
      ”     Tower of London, 273
      ”     Sir Edward de Thorpe, 187
      ”     Tilting, 235
      ”     Various, 274
      ”     Hugh de Vere, 83
      ”     The Wallace, 273

    Helmet, Assyrian, 21
      ”     Cabasset, 304
      ”     Danish, 63
      ”     Egyptian, 23
      ”     Etruscan, 33
      ”     Greek, 24, 28
      ”     Gridiron, 312
      ”     Grotesque, 292
      ”     Half Armour Period, 313
      ”     Hatfield House, 300
      ”     Jacobi, 295
      ”     latticed, 312
      ”     Maximilian Period, 280
      ”     morion, 304
      ”     nasal, 112
      ”     Norman, 78
      ”     of Philip II. by Wolf (Plate 16, p. 166), 356
      ”     Roman Imperial, 39
      ”       ”   Republican, 37
      ”     Saxon, 56
      ”     Tabard Period, 216
      ”     Transition Period, 265

    Henry de Beaumont, ailettes of, 102

    Henri de Perci, banner of, 111

    Heraldry, beginning of, 89

    Hip belt, Camail and Jupon Period, 180
      ”   ”   Surcoatless Period, 196

    Hog’s bristle, 318

    Holy water sprinkler, 329

    Horse armour, 354

    Houppelande, 207, 259

    Huskyn, 319

    Imperial Period, Roman armour, 37

    Infantry, Maximilian Period, 301

    Italian armour, 355
      ”     Course, 238, 286, 310

    Jacobi brassarts, 297
      ”    breastplate, 296
      ”    gauntlets, 298
      ”    genouillière, 297
      ”    gorget, 296
      ”    jambarts, 297
      ”    pauldrons, 297
      ”    sabbatons, 297
      ”    suits, 294
      ”    taces, 296
      ”    turners, 297

    Jacque, 204, 262

    Jambarts, demi-, 118
      ”       Jacobi, 297

    Javelin, 4, 31, 263

    Jazeraint work, 264

    John de Warenne, ailettes of, 102

    Joustes of Peace, 238

    Jupon, Camail and Jupon Period, 167

    Kidney dagger, 339
      ”    guard, 282

    King Sebastian, armour, 356

    Knevynton, Sir Ralph de, 188
      ”          ”           brass of, 169

    Knighthood, 111

    Knight, Transition Period, 271

    Lacy, Henry de, heaume, 115

    Lambrequins, 31, 237

    Lamboys or bases, 289

    Laminated goussets, 239

    Lancaster, Henry, Earl of, 160

    Lance, 99, 332
      ”    Assyrian, 22
      ”    Bourdonass, 311
      ”    Frankish, 44
      ”    Greek, 26

    Lance head, coronal, 311
      ”         Norman, 65
      ”         rest, 233

    Landschaden, Ulrich, bascinet of, 173

    Landschut, Wolf, family of, 355

    Latimer, Sir W. de, panache of, 186

    Latten, 242

    Latticed helmet, 312

    Laughton, knight at, brass of, 193

    Leg armour, Camail and Jupon Period, 180

    Leg defence, leather, 109

    Leg defences, Tabard Period, 231

    L’Estrange, Lord, brass of, 270

    Leventhorpe, Sir John de, brass of, 201

    Littlebury, Sir Humphrey, 189

    Lobster-tail tassets, 307

    Long-bow, Saxon, 55

    Lucio Picinino, 357

    Ludwig of Bavaria, Duke, salade of, 220

    Luterell, Sir Geoffrey, heaume of, 154

    Lysle, Sir John, brass of, 201

    Mace, 329
      ”   Assyrian, 22
      ”   Bronze Age, 19
      ”   Corporation, 331
      ”   Norman, 67
      ”   Saxon, 67
      ”   used by ecclesiastics, 331

    Madrid, Royal Armoury at, 353

    Mail, banded, 134
      ”   gauntlet, 107
      ”   skirt, 240

    Main-de-fer, 237

    Mainfaire, 355

    Main-gauche, 339

    Malacat, Sir Pandulf, 212

    Mammelières, 204, 261

    Man-at-arms, Chain Mail Period, 95
      ”          Surcoatless Period, 203

    Mangonel, 346

    Manifere, 237

    Manteau d’armes, 286, 311

    Mantling, 237

    Martel-de-fer, 331

    Matchlock, 367
      ”        drill, 318

    Maule, 319

    Maunche, 159

    Maximilian armour, 278
      ”        breastplate, 282
      ”        cavalry, 307
      ”        cuisses, 284
      ”        gorget, 280
      ”        infantry, 301
      ”        pauldrons, 283
      ”        Period, 275
      ”        pikeman, 303

    Mentonnière, of Lord St. Amand, 151
      ”          Tabard Period, 219
      ”          Wallace Collection, 221

    Milanese armour (Plate 21, p. 236), 355, 357

    Military flail, 329
      ”      fork, 326
      ”      pick, 79

    Misericorde, 252
      ”          Camail and Jupon Period, 182
      ”          John Cray, 182
      ”          Surcoatless Period, 197

    Missaglias, 244

    Mons Meg, 363

    Mont St. Michael, cannon at, 363

    Morgensterns, 330

    Morion, 304

    Morning star, 329

    Musketeer, Half Armour Period, 317

    Names of cannon, 364

    Nasal, Norman, 78

    Negroli family, 355

    Neville, Richard, 253

    Norman armour, 67
      ”    bow, 66
      ”    chausses, 76
      ”    coif, 73
      ”    hauberk, 73
      ”    helmet, 78
      ”    lance, 65
      ”    mace, 67
      ”    nasal, 78
      ”    pennon, 65
      ”    period, 65

    Norman shield, 77
      ”    sword, 66

    Northwode, Sir John de, brass of, 144

    Occularium, 218, 222

    Open Course, 238

    Orle, 187, 246
      ”   Sir Reginald de Cobham, 187
      ”   d’Eresby, 187

    Palette, 196, 237

    Paletoot, Sir John de, 189

    Pamplona armour (Plate 21, p. 240), 357

    Panache, 186
      ”      Edward Courteney, 187
      ”      Sir William de Latimer, 186

    Parazonium, Greek, 32

    Parice, Henry, brass of, 230, 248

    Partisan, 210, 324

    Pas d’ane, 336

    Passe gardes, 227

    Patron, 308

    Pauldrons, 237
      ”        Thomas Colt, 228
      ”        espalier, 229
      ”        Jacobi, 297
      ”        laminated, Tabard Period, 227
      ”        Maximilian, 283
      ”        Tabard Period, 227
      ”        Transition Period, 268
      ”        Wallace Collection, 228
      ”        William Yelverton, 228

    Pavise, 257
      ”     (British Museum MS.), 258
      ”     Wallace Collection, 257

    Pavon, 110, 111

    Peascod breastplate, 283

    Pembridge, Sir Richard, shield of, 183
      ”                     heaume, 185

    Pennon, 110
      ”     Norman, 65

    Pennonçel, 110

    Perci, Henry de, heaume of, 115

    Perrier, 345

    Peryent, Sir John, brass of, 229

    Petardier, 261

    Peterara (Plate 39, p. 364), 365

    Petrary, 346

    Petronel, 306

    Pfeffenhauser, Anton, 357

    Philip III. armour (Plate 18, p. 196; Plate 19, p. 212;
                        Plate 22, p. 240), 357

    Picinino, Lucio (Plate 19, p. 212), 300, 357

    Pike, 210, 324
      ”   guards, 227, 244, 268

    Pikeman, Half Armour Period (Plate 24, p. 312), 316
      ”      Maximilian Period, 303
      ”      Surcoatless Period, 204

    Pilum, Roman (Imperial), 40

    Pistols, 370

    Plantagenet, Richard, heaume of, 112

    Plastron-de-fer, Norman, 73

    Plate defences, Camail and Jupon Period, 177
      ”             goussets, 225

    Playters, Thomas, coudière of, 229

    Polder mitten, 237, 286

    Pole-axe, 210, 240, 321
      ”       Saxon, 54

    Poniard, 338

    Pot-de-fer, 260

    Pourpoint, 155

    Pranker heaume, 187

    Pre-Norman Period, sword of, 333

    Projectile-throwing engines, 340
      ”                          early, 362

    Pryck spurs, 99

    Quarrels or bolts, 133

    Queue, Tower of London, 236
      ”    Wallace Collection, 236

    Quintin, Sir John de St., 190, 199
      ”      Sir Thomas de St., brass of, 200
      ”      Thomas de St., brass of, 244

    Quiver, 209
      ”     Greek, 33

    Ranseur (Plate 27, p. 322), 324

    Rapier, 336

    Rhodes armour (Plate 9, p. 72), 253

    Ricasso, 337

    Richard III., 253

    Rivets, almayne, 305

    Roman armour, Republican, 36
      ”     ”     Imperial Period, 37
      ”   engines, 341

    Rondache, Augsburg (Plate 4, p. 40), 299
      ”       Desiderius Colman (Plate 3, p. 32), 299
      ”       Italian (Plate 1, p. 16), 299
      ”         ”     (Plate 5, p. 48), 299
      ”         ”     (Plate 6, p. 56), 299
      ”       Philip II. (Plate 2, p. 24), 299

    Rondaches, 298

    Rotunda, 253
      ”      cannon at, 364
      ”      heaume, 185

    Roundels, 118

    Royal Armoury, Madrid, 353

    Sabbaton, 232

    Sabbatons, bear’s-paw, 280
      ”        of Piers Gerard, 232
      ”        Hatfield House, 305
      ”        Jacobi, 297
      ”        Transition Period, 269

    Sabre, 334

    Salade, 217, 260
      ”     on brasses, 248
      ”     of Duke Ludvig of Bavaria, 220
      ”     of German pattern, 220
      ”     Maximilian Period, 281
      ”     Milanese (Plate 7, p. 60), 355
      ”     Tower of London, 219
      ”     Wallace Collection, 219

    Salletts, 218

    Saxon arrow-head, 55
      ”   axe, 53
      ”   byrnie, 58
      ”   chain mail, 60
      ”   dagger, 54
      ”   helmet, 56
      ”   long-bow, 55
      ”   pole-axe, 54
      ”   shield, 57
      ”   sling, 55
      ”   spear-heads, 49
      ”   swords, 50

    Saxon umbo, 57

    Saxons and Danes, 47

    Say, Sir John, brass of, 252
      ”   ”    ”   tabard of, 215

    Scaling fork, 326

    Scarisbrick Tabard, 216

    Scimitar, 209, 335

    Sebastian, King, armour of (Plate 20, p. 232), 356

    Septvans, Sir Robert de, brass of, 117

    Serpentin, 307, 367

    Sharfrennen, 309

    Shell gauntlets, 253

    Shelton, Sir Ralph, tabard of, 215

    Shield, Assyrian, 21
      ”     Bronze Age, 17
      ”     (British Museum MS.), 203
      ”     Camail and Jupon Period, 92
      ”     Danish, 64
      ”     Egyptian, 23
      ”     Etruscan, 35
      ”     Greek, 25, 28
      ”     Norman, 77
      ”     Roman, Imperial Period, 39
      ”     Saxon, 57
      ”     Sir Richard Pembridge, 183
      ”     Studded and Splinted Period, 157
      ”     Surcoatless Period, 203
      ”     of Robert Wyvill, 183

    Shields or rondaches, 298

    Shurland, Sir Robert, effigy of, 141

    Sieges, 340

    Sir John de Bitton, 87

    Sir Oliver d’Ingham, stone effigy, 100

    Sir Roger de Kerdeston, stone effigy, 100

    Sir Robert de Trumpington, brass of, 99

    Sir William de Staunton, heaume, 101

    Skirt of mail, Transition Period, 269

    Slab, Sir John de Bitton, 87

    Slashed armour, 291

    Sling, Saxon, 55

    Sling-stones, 7

    Snap-hance, 369

    Snout-faced visor, 171

    Soldier, Cyclas Period, 144
      ”      Chain Mail Period, 93
      ”      Chain Mail Reinforced Period, 121

    Sollerets, 120
      ”        studded and splinted, 157

    Spanish soldiers, eleventh century, 351

    Spear, bronze, 14
      ”    Danish, 64
      ”    Egyptian, 23
      ”    heads, 4
      ”      ”    Greek, 32
      ”      ”    Saxon, 49
      ”    Roman Imperial, 40
      ”    Saxon, 48

    Spearman (British Museum MS.), 207
      ”      Chain Mail Reinforced Period, 96

    Spetum, 324

    Spontoon, 326

    Sprinkler, holy water, 329

    Spurs, 242
      ”    pryck, 99

    Stafford, Lord, 160
      ”       Edward, brass of, 269
      ”       Sir Humphrey de, bascinet of, 216

    Staff-sling or fustibal, 94, 134

    Stake, archer’s, 209

    Standard of mail, Transition Period, 221, 267

    Stanley, Sir Humphrey, brass of, 271

    Stapleton, Sir Miles, 189
      ”         ”    ”    brass of, 157, 188, 227

    Staunton, Sir Robert, brass of, 229, 248

    Stechtarsche, 238

    Stone Age, 1
      ”        arrow and javelin heads, 4
      ”        battle-axes, 8
      ”        celts, 2
      ”        daggers, 6
      ”        sling-stones, 7
      ”        spear-heads, 4

    Stone effigy, Sir Oliver d’Ingham, 100
      ”           Sir R. de Kerdeston, 100

    Strange, Sir Roger le, genouillière of, 272

    Studded and Splinted Period, 146

    Suits, Jacobi, 294

    Surcoat, 98
      ”      Chain Mail Period, 88

    Surcoat or jupon, Studded and Splinted Period, 147

    Surcoatless Period, 194
      ”           ”     archer, 209
      ”           ”     bascinet, 195, 208
      ”           ”     bavière, 195
      ”           ”     billman, 204
      ”           ”     breastplate, 195
      ”           ”     fan-shaped coudières, 196
      ”           ”     foot soldier, 204
      ”           ”     gambeson, 196
      ”           ”     gauntlets, 196
      ”           ”     gorget, 194, 212
      ”           ”     hauberk, 196
      ”           ”     hip belt, 196
      ”           ”     man-at-arms, 203
      ”           ”     misericorde, 197
      ”           ”     pikeman, 204
      ”           ”     shield, 203
      ”           ”     sword, 197
      ”           ”     taces, 195

    Svastika, 99

    Swedish feather, 318

    Swine’s feather, 318

    Sword, 252, 332
      ”    anelace, 334
      ”    Assyrian, 21
      ”    bastard, 261, 338
      ”    basket-hilted, 337
      ”    bronze, 12, 19
      ”    Camail and Jupon Period, 181
      ”    Chain Mail Reinforced Period, 98
      ”    Cinquedea, 334
      ”    Cortes (Plate 29, p. 338), 335
      ”    cultellus, 334
      ”    Cyclas Period, 144
      ”    Danish, 64
      ”    Egyptian, 23
      ”    Falchion, 334
      ”    Flamberge, 337
      ”    Frankish, 45
      ”    Gonsalvo de Cordoba (Plate 29, p. 338), 335
      ”    guards of, 335
      ”    Greek, 25, 28
      ”    Norman, 66
      ”    Pre-Norman Period, 333
      ”    Roman Imperial, 40
      ”    Philip II. (Plate 28, p. 334; Plate 29, p. 338), 335
      ”    sabre, 334
      ”    Saxon, 50
      ”    scimitar, 335
      ”    Surcoatless Period, 197
      ”    Tabard Period, 232
      ”    thumb-guard, 336
      ”    two-handed, 255, 336

    Swynborne, Sir Robert, brass of, 170

    Tabard, William Fynderne, 215
      ”     Piers Gerard, 215
      ”     Period, 213, 214
      ”       ”     arm defences, 225
      ”       ”     bavière, 220
      ”       ”     breastplate, 223
      ”       ”     coudières, 228
      ”       ”     demi-placcate, 223
      ”       ”     genouillières, 232
      ”       ”     helmet, 216
      ”       ”     laminated epaulières, 226
      ”       ”     laminated pauldrons, 227
      ”       ”     leg defences, 231
      ”       ”     mentonnière, 219
      ”       ”     pauldrons, 227
      ”       ”     sword, 232
      ”       ”     taces, 229
      ”       ”     tuilles, 229
      ”       ”     tuillettes, 229
      ”     Scarisbrick, 216
      ”     Sir John Say, 215
      ”     Sir Ralph Shelton, 215
      ”     John Wantele, 215

    Taces, Jacobi, 296
      ”    Surcoatless Period, 195
      ”    Tabard Period, 229

    Tapul, 283

    Tassets, 282
      ”      lobster tail, 307

    Tegulated armour, 74

    Thorpe, Sir Edward de, heaume, 187

    Three-quarter suit, Half Armour Period, 314

    Thumb-guard, dagger, 339
     ”           sword, 336

    Tilting armour, 233
      ”       ”     German, 234
      ”       ”     Wallace Collection, 235
      ”     heaume, 235
      ”     pieces, 285

    Tormentum, 342

    Tournaments, 308
      ”          and foreign armour, 350

    Tower of London, Greek armour, 29

    Towns renowned for arms, 359

    Transition Period, 265
      ”          ”     brassarts, 269
      ”          ”     breastplate, 267
      ”          ”     cuissarts, 269
      ”          ”     gorget, 267
      ”          ”     helmet, 265
      ”          ”     knight, 271
      ”          ”     pauldrons, 268
      ”          ”     sabbatons, 269
      ”          ”     skirt of mail, 269
      ”          ”     standard of mail, 267

    Trebuchet (British Museum MSS.), 344, 345, 346, 347

    Trews, 117

    Tuilles, Tabard Period, 229

    Tuillettes, Tabard Period, 229

    Tunic, Assyrian, 20
      ”    Egyptian, 22

    Turners, 254
      ”      Jacobi, 297

    Two-handed sword, 336

    Über die Pallia, 238, 310

    Umbo, Saxon, 57

    Umbril, 307

    Valence, Aymer de, effigy of, 143

    Vamplate, 310
      ”       Tower of London, 236

    Vambraces, demi, 118
      ”        Studded and Splinted Period, 155

    Ventaille, 112

    Verney, Sir John, effigy of, 247

    Vernon, Sir Thomas, effigy of (Frontispiece), 246

    Vervelles, 142, 176, 222

    Visor, Camail and Jupon Period, 171

    Volante piece, 285, 356

    Voulge, 326

    Wantele, John, tabard of, 215

    Warenne, John de, crest of, 116

    War hat, Wallace Collection, 152

    Warwick Roll, 253

    Welsches Gestech, 238

    Wheel-lock, 367

    Wolf family, 365
     ”   Philip II., armour (Plate 13, p. 132), 356
     ”   tilting armour (Plate 15, p. 146), 356

    Wylcotes, Sir John, brass of, 102

    Wyvill, Robert, shield, 183

    Yelverton, William, pauldron of, 228


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