Re: [Authentic_SCA] Re: 15th Century under armor
I am most grateful for the info and have passed it onto my lord who is going to make a brig similar to the one in the link and has not had much luck with finding what was worn under it.
Thank You so MUCH for sharing.
----- Original Message -----
From: Pete McKee
Sent: Friday, March 04, 2005 9:40 AM
Subject: [Authentic_SCA] Re: 15th Century under armor
--- In Authentic_SCA@yahoogroups.com, "Lyonet" <llyonet@c...> wrote:
> I am wondering if anyone has any information on padded armor that
would of been worn in the mid 15th century? Specificly what would of
been worn under a brigadine? >
Those exposed plates on the inside of that brigandine will chew up
your clothing if you don't wear something under it. By mid 15th
century, I take it you mean 1450ish? My experience is with the
early 17th century, so this may or may not apply to your needs.
An arming doublet ( I think it was called a gambeson in earlier
periods)protects your clothing and gives you some padding to cushion
blows. It also adds weight, and is VERY warm. A leather jack or
jerkin would protect your clothes if the extra padding is not
important to you. The arming doublet is made to the same pattern as
a normal doublet of your period, without the sleeves. It consists
of several layers of heavy canvas (hemp, not the modern cotton duck)
with some sort of batting in the middle. All this is held in place
with rows of stitching, either in parallel vertical rows, or in a
diagonal criss-crossing pattern. The batting could consist of tow
(an initial stage of processing flax or a byproduct, I'm not sure
which), rags, raw wool, or dry grass. The synthetic batting sold at
craft supply places is good for warmth, but won't give the padding
needed for combat. It also looks "poofy" compared to period
materials. You may be able to find the old style 100% cotton
batting at a good quilting supply store. You can save money on the
inner layers of canvas by using the cotton duck, or a canvas
painters drop cloth. I've found some of the latter at Lowes home
supply stores that have a coarse "rustic" weave to them. If you use
the hemp on the outside, and the coarse cotton stuff on the inside
layers, it's not such a big deal if the outer layer wears through a
bit. Hope that helps some.
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- Regarding under-armour stuff...
For the most part, better-armed and equipped soldiers would wear
at least a chainmail shirt under their coat of plates, both to
cushion the blows as well as to provide rudimentary protection to the
arms and armpits, thereby immediately "solving" the problem of the
rivets shredding clothes. However, due to the weight and
inconvenience, this practice (brig over mail) is very rare in the
SCA, since we're not really too concerned about an arrow punching
through a weak joint between the plates or a heavy blow popping
rivets in combat ;) To be honest, I don't fight too too often heavy,
but I have a Wisby Type 1 coat of plates and never had too much
trouble with the rivets tearing clothes, I just duct taped over the
rivets on the inside and it was done.
To solve the problem (and also for the less well-equipped men at
arms who would forgo mail hauberks entirely), you want to get
yourself either an arming doublet or some kind of gambeson. In
period this stared off first to go under mail to help cushion the
blows (sometimes worn by itself by footsoldiers), and later evolved
into an elaborate garment involving lacing points, strategic padding,
and patches of mail over various places like the armpits and groin in
order to reduce the weight of having to wear a full mail shirt.
Examples can be seen here:
If you want to make your own, you can check here, as they have
directions as to how to make one and period illustrations:
Hope that helps!