Help! what is this armour?

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Help! what is this armour?

Postby brendan_the_lesser on Mon Mar 23, 2009 9:28 pm

need to find this out as quick as possible, what type of armour is represented here? it looks like a series of bands, like a roman lorica segmentata, is it metal? i've seen banded skirts like that, but this extends all the way to the chest. is it an odd representation of a coat/jack of plates?
I've seen it on a load of other tomb effigies, but i can figure out what it is

really need help with this, thanks in advance.
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Re: Help! what is this armour?

Postby redneckjedi on Tue Mar 24, 2009 1:20 am

Could be a Coat of Plates...
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Re: Help! what is this armour?

Postby the_power on Tue Mar 24, 2009 10:14 am

I think it's banded armour. Never seen it in a medieval context for torso armour, but it's pretty common for skirts and shoulders. Though, if I were making it, I'd rivet the bands onto vertical leather strips, and there are no rivet marks on any of the bands. It's also over mail, so unlikely to be a gambeson - though remotely possible.

It's a question worth posting on armourarchive.org, I think. I'll do that, and report back!

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Re: Help! what is this armour?

Postby the_power on Tue Mar 24, 2009 10:32 am

http://forums.armourarchive.org/phpBB2/ ... 01#1337301

Actually, as a followup; on sundays there is a small market in Howth Castle. Not that it's a great market, but you do get to look around the back of the castle (which is usually closed to the public). Around the back are the older bits, maybe 12th or 13th century, that are slowly falling apart, and what seems to be a detacted 18thC chapel in a small wood, whose roof seems to have collapsed sometime in the 20thC. It's quite a massive building; no wonder the current St. Laurences only need to live in the small part of it they can afford the upkeep on. The walled gardens are also quite extensive, and seem to be just locked up & let go wild. Shame.

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Re: Help! what is this armour?

Postby finnobreanan on Tue Mar 24, 2009 4:44 pm

I've also seen this type of armor on other tomb effigies. It is discussed in the Men at Arms series on The Irish Wars 1485-1603 . I don't have my copy here at work, but they represent it as metal armor plates that overlap. you can see a close-up on the back cover at:
http://www.amazon.com/Irish-Wars-1485-1 ... 855322803#
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Re: Help! what is this armour?

Postby finnobreanan on Tue Mar 24, 2009 5:01 pm

Here's another example of the same armor: Church of Ireland Church, Lusk, County Dublin - Effigy of James Bermingham.
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Re: Help! what is this armour?

Postby brendan_the_lesser on Tue Mar 24, 2009 7:13 pm

Thanks for all the help guys, especially to John for sticking it on armour archive, cheers, i was hoping there would be a definitive answer, no such luck :(
Think i'm going to have agree with the suggestion of the banded armour, never seen anything like it before though. i doubt it was quilted armour like a gambeson as suggested on AA, there are representations of that on other effigies (with vertical quilting), and that looks nothing like this.

i was just stumped looking at John Hunts book "Irish medieval figure sculpture" last night, nearly all the armoured effigies from the 14th to 16th century wear this armour. haven't read any mention of such armour in any sources...

Has anyone ever seen/heard of reconstructed armour based on this style? would be pretty unique and great to see

EDIT: just want to post this extra picture, this is from another tomb, from St Canice's Kilkenny, this does seem to be made of plates rather than bands, but once again i've never seen a coat of plates without a leather covering...
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Re: Help! what is this armour?

Postby finnobreanan on Wed Mar 25, 2009 2:42 am

Brendan,

According to the source I used above, "His corset comprises horizontal lames secured to a canvas or leather foundation by sliding rivets, and is worn in conjunction with plate arm and leg harness, a mail haubregeon and a mail pasaine to which circular pauldrons are attached." He also states that, "Surviving monuments confirm the archaic armour of this type predominated amongst the 'degenerate English' (Piers Butler, Earl of Ormond is used as an example) of Ireland until the 1550s." They would date, from tomb art, to also have been used in the 1400s and earlier.

This is NOT an Acton or Cotun/Gambeson, which appears very differently in tomb art. The last example you posted actualy shows the rivets. Very detailed carving on that one!
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Re: Help! what is this armour?

Postby the_power on Wed Mar 25, 2009 10:20 am

Brendan, Finn, great research. That is what this forum is for!

Finn, what source were you citing for detail on the armour ? I've been talking of getting a harness commissionned for years. Something distinctively irish, and 15thC might be just what I needed to kick off the process.

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Re: Help! what is this armour?

Postby brendan_the_lesser on Wed Mar 25, 2009 11:02 am

i'm guessing Finn might have been using Hunt's book, Irish medieval figure sculpture, i'm using the book of plates rather then the discussion volume, i was only able to get one and it was a choice of boring text or pretty pictures, no real choice if you ask me :lol:

a great discussion alright, and definitly a type of armour i'd like to see on a battlefield at some stage.
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