Gael with mail ?

Viking, Saxon, and Early Christian Irish cultures

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Gael with mail ?

Postby the_power on Thu May 29, 2008 9:32 pm

So, I've just realised I'll have a lovely new haubergon for Bunratty. Though I've got nice Vike kit, I love going Gael, as there are so few of us...

But...I can't help thinking that a haubergon over a jacket & shorts would look dumb. Any other ideas ? I'm thinking of making up a simple oiled wool leine to go on under it.

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Re: Gael with mail ?

Postby carraig on Sun Jun 01, 2008 12:40 pm

Lend & trews kit just doesn't go well with a hauberk.
Try a leine + maybe a leather jerkin of some sort underneath the mail. It will be better because of 2 things:

1. Probably only rich folk could afford mail. And since it's somewhat a custom based on a few obscure fragments of sagas and some high-cross bas-relief that the rich go leine-clad, while the trews and lend are reserved to common folk, it will be more suitable to combine rich dress with a hauberk.

2. It simply looks good being accurate still.
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Re: Gael with mail ?

Postby the_power on Sun Jun 01, 2008 2:36 pm

carraig wrote:Try a leine + maybe a leather jerkin of some sort underneath the mail. It will be better because of 2 things:


Oh. More kit required. Your ideas and opinions intrigue and interest me, and I wish to subscribe to your newsletter....

Seriously though, Any idea what pattern to make the leather jerkin with ? I've some nice leather on the way (pigskin and calfskin) that would be light enough to make clothing with. Am I just going for an outsize leather tunic ? Maybe stitch light leather to wool to give it body, comfort & cushioning ? Keep the sleeves short, so the leine is visible through it ?

Hmm. Also thinking of putting a hood on the leine, to make sure people know it's high-status.

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Re: Gael with mail ?

Postby Seathrun on Sun Jun 01, 2008 4:24 pm

carraig wrote:Lend & trews kit just doesn't go well with a hauberk.
Try a leine + maybe a leather jerkin of some sort underneath the mail. It will be better because of 2 things:

1. Probably only rich folk could afford mail. And since it's somewhat a custom based on a few obscure fragments of sagas and some high-cross bas-relief that the rich go leine-clad, while the trews and lend are reserved to common folk, it will be more suitable to combine rich dress with a hauberk.

2. It simply looks good being accurate still.

I agree, In the King of Cashal story it talks about the nobles and their shinny green shields fighting in their liene. Latter it says they started to wear mail as the danes did. That is what I do with my high class kit. I do not have a leather jerkin but I agree it would help to absorb the hit.
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Re: Gael with mail ?

Postby carraig on Sun Jun 01, 2008 9:42 pm

Seriously though, Any idea what pattern to make the leather jerkin with ?


Well, since we have no extant leather jerkins, only some written evidence of their use in neighbouring lands, anything I write now will be conjectural. The first way to make one is just making it T-tunic shaped, with sleeves the same lenght as the hauberk sleeves. Another contraption I see in reenactment these days is something like an aketon made of padded or quilted leather, although that's a thing I'm not entirely sure about - don't know any historical basis for it.

So - my opinion is - make a T-tunic out of leather, and try to make it such a size, so that it will be covered neatly by the mail. That way You either have a piece of garment in a quite a simple and possible shape that might be used back then, and even if it's too much a guess rather than proper reconstruction, You always have some under-mail protection. Better still than an aketon of fabric, which is widely spread as an under-mail device in reenactment, although we have second to nil evidence of it's use in Viking period.
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Re: Gael with mail ?

Postby Seathrun on Sun Jun 01, 2008 11:45 pm

carraig wrote:
. Better still than an aketon of fabric, which is widely spread as an under-mail device in reenactment, although we have second to nil evidence of it's use in Viking period.


I usually just do 2 layers of wool overtunics under my mail for vikes. I keep the acton for Norman stuff. I agree little if any evidence for it 10th c or earlier. I have no idea on Roman stuff though.
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Re: Gael with mail ?

Postby brendan on Sun Jun 01, 2008 11:56 pm

From other threads the Romans have suggested that there is a thing called a sub armarillis(sp?) which is like an akheton in function but built differently (cant remember details).

With the leather a lot depends on the thickness of the leather: Thick leather will tend to buckle and bend. I had this experience with the 3mm tabard type thing I made out of leather (It sits unused somewhere in my appartment). It can spread weight but doesnt make for comfort.
If the leather is thin, then I am not sure what benefit it will give more than felted cloth.

Seth's suggestion of 2 wool tunics sounds best to me. Still, it leaves the question as to how the weight spreads over the shoulders.

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Re: Gael with mail ?

Postby Seathrun on Mon Jun 02, 2008 12:17 am

I let the belt take alot of the lower part of the weight. Once you are used to the weight its not bad. My Hauburk is flat ring rivited is onlt 23 pounds. Way less than my back pack full of stuff for a week long hike.
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Re: Gael with mail ?

Postby the_power on Mon Jun 02, 2008 2:53 pm

I've been promised that my new hauberk will be around 8kg - 18lb or so. So weight won't be a problem. :)

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Re: Gael with mail ?

Postby Morcant on Sun Jun 08, 2008 9:28 pm

There seems to be pictoral evidence of padded protective dress during the VIII-IXth centuries. At least some carvings can be interpreted as representing such armor.

Image
Pictish stone from Dull.

Image
Cross of Muiredach.

Maybe designing it like a ionar shirt could be a good solution?
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