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Re: [medieval-leather] Sources for info on armor construction.

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  • RNC1382@aol.com
    ... The Brit Museum piece is for an arm, probably the upper arm as if you were to curl it (it s currently flat) it would resemble the upper cannon of an arm
    Message 1 of 18 , Oct 3, 2001
      In a message dated 10/3/01 7:23:41 AM, owly3@... writes:

      >At the British Museum the part a pice of leather armor
      >plate of some kind that seems to be from the 13-15th
      >century (it's covered with those typical vines) I have
      >no idea which part it is though,though if I had to
      >guess maybe from the torso armor.

      The Brit Museum piece is for an arm, probably the upper arm as if you were to
      curl it (it's currently flat) it would resemble the upper cannon of an arm
      harness. It has holes for arming points on the top and fittings for straps
      (possibly bifurcate where they attach) on the side. Unfortunatley I know of
      no published pictures of the inside. Close examination of the piece in the
      display allows one to see where the straps attach. Don't have my photos to
      hand to speak more definatively.

      Bob C
    • Joel Tracy
      Regrettably, all my information would be concerning my various levels of success with fabricating leather-faced shields. I do not have much/anything in the
      Message 2 of 18 , Oct 3, 2001
        Regrettably, all my "information" would be concerning my various levels of success
        with fabricating leather-faced shields. I do not have much/anything in the way of
        historical documentation beyond what could be considered common knowledge about
        Viking, Roman, or Pictish shields.


        Jonathan T Getty wrote:

        > Anyone else have information on leather shields?
      • The_redman@compuserve.com
        In a message dated 10/2/01 4:27:46 PM, frojel@dcsi.net.au writes: just add the http thingie to the beginning of the site:
        Message 3 of 18 , Oct 3, 2001
          In a message dated 10/2/01 4:27:46 PM, frojel@... writes:

          << Have you got the URL? >>

          just add the "http" thingie to the beginning of the site: daviddfriedman.com
        • jamesahowell@juno.com
          Sorry I missed this earlier-look in the archives under leather shield-I know this has come up before and was discussed. Regards, Finnr On Thu, 04 Oct 2001
          Message 4 of 18 , Oct 4, 2001
            Sorry I missed this earlier-look in the archives under leather
            shield-I know this has come up before and was discussed.

            Regards, Finnr

            On Thu, 04 Oct 2001 00:48:18 -0200 Joel Tracy <wyrdwitch@...>
            > Regrettably, all my "information" would be concerning my various
            > levels of success
            > with fabricating leather-faced shields. I do not have much/anything
            > in the way of
            > historical documentation beyond what could be considered common
            > knowledge about
            > Viking, Roman, or Pictish shields.
            > joel
            > Jonathan T Getty wrote:
            > > Anyone else have information on leather shields?
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          • rmhowe
            ... Some notes I have on computer from my books, which is far from complete, I left in the bits on other leather items in them. If I had a month with
            Message 5 of 18 , Feb 16, 2002
              Jonathan T Getty wrote:
              > Anyone else have information on leather shields? <

              Some notes I have on computer from my books, which is far from
              complete, I left in the bits on other leather items in them.
              If I had a month with absolutely nothing else to do I could
              come up with a more complete reference but you'd have to pay me
              for it. ;) We're talking looking in several hundred books minimum.

              Charlesworth, Dorothy: Leather Found in Mediobogdum, the Roman Fort of
              Hardknott, Britannia 4, 1973. pp. 141-52 and plates XXI-II, finds of
              about half a dozen well drawn shoes (calceus) with multiple views and
              some shield covers.

              de Récy, Georges: Leather Work; From the French of Georges de Récy (The
              Decoration of Leather) translated by Maude Nathan, (1905) Reprinted
              The Caber Press, Jack C. Thompson, Editor. Originally 104 pages reduced
              48, retaining the period Middle Ages and Renaissance information and
              dropping the modern material. Eleven pictures depict leather caskets
              (3); An
              Italian 15th C.case of cut and embossed leather cuir bouilli; a French
              14th C.
              Coffret, incised, colored and gilt, a case of cut and punched leather -
              15th C., an Italian cover of a Case for a cup in wood covered embossed
              leather -
              cuir bouilli, embossed, painted and gilt, about 1500; A Powder-flask of
              covered with leather - cuir bouilli, cut and embossed - Italian 16th C.;
              An Italian 16th C. Shield of cut and embossed cuir bouilli; A Blind
              leather bookbinding of the Winchester Domesday Book - English 12th C.;
              A 15th C. German Brown Leather bookbindind, cut and engraved with
              punched background - German MS. Chronicle of Events; A blind-stamped
              Morroco binding with gilt roundels and coloured cameo design - Celsus.
              De Medicina, Venice 1477, A cover of a work box of wood covered with
              embossed leather, cuir bouilli, German 16th C.. Sections include Tools
              Leather, Choice of Skin, Methods of working in leather: tracing the
              on the leather, Incising the leather, Modelling Tools, Embossing
              modelled leather with Punched background, Leather Hangings and
              Furniture, Some extracts from the report of the commitee on leather for
              bookbinding appointed by the Society of Arts, February 1900.
              $8.95, The Caber Press, 7549 N. Fenwick, Portland, OR 97217

              http://www.scotpress.com/ has
              "SP-197. Highland Targets and Other Shields. By James Drummond. 70pp.
              pb. Full color, heavy paper reprint of the 1873 edition (which was
              issued in a limited run of just 50), with additional material by
              Drummond on shields. Many of you are familiar with Druumond's work
              on Ancient Scottish Weapons; this is an additional, little known
              work which concentrates upon the targets and other shields used
              in the Highlands, with illustrations and text on them. Such
              information always is difficult to locate, and this invaluable
              study shows numerous shields and their designs in great detail."
              $24.95 plus shipping.

              Early Anglo-Saxon Shields by Tania Dickinson and Heinrick Harke,
              Archaeologia, volume 110, 1992/3, Society of Antiquaries of London,
              Burlington House, Picadilly, London H1V 0HS, ISBN 0854312609.

              Evison, Vera: Sugar Loaf Shield Bosses, Antiquaries Journal 43,
              1963; 59pp, 40figs, pp. 38-96 and 40 figures - usually depicting
              multiple drawn objects, maps of provenance, 88 shield bosses of
              varying shapes, some shield struts, reconstruction of shield from
              Thetford, Norfolk; sword from Boar’s Lowe, Tissington, Derbyshire;
              shield grips, spear heads and a ferrule, pans similar to bosses,
              Bronze garnet inlaid pyramid, knife blades, two glass cups and a
              glass vessel, belt buckles, silver rims for the Alton coopered
              wooden drinking vessels, the Alton Buckle, iron clips, a purse
              mount, comb, bone strip holed at the ends, one shear blade, gold
              filigree open work brooch with garnets, pot, glass counters,
              seax (sax) pommel.

              Evison, V: Anglo-Saxon Finds near Rainham, Essex, with a Study of
              Glass Drinking-horns; Archaeologia 96, 1955. 38pp, 12figs,
              11b/w pls, pp. 159-98 and plates LIX-LXX, last plate is the
              Torrs Chamfrein which uses drinking horn ends as horns.
              A-S Square-headed brooch, glass whorls, girdle hanger, coopered
              bronze-bound drinking vessels, diagrams of pattern welded swords,
              shield bosses, pottery cups (4), spearheads, round mouthed pitchers,
              pots, gold pendant, 36 views of mostly different drinking horns.

              GALL, GÜNTHER.: Leder im europäischen ; Kunsthandwerk. Braunschweig,
              4to., orcl., xii, 406 pp., w. 16 pl. in color 304 ills. in text. (Bibl.
              für Kunst u. Antiquitätenfreunde, Bd. XLIV). Klinkhardt & Biermann
              - Braunschweig. There are a number of leather covered shields in it.
              A few early ones, many from around 1600. A number of the pieces such
              as the shields and caskets are illustrated from more than one view.

              Hastings 1066 - The Fall of Anglo-Saxon England; by Christopher Gravett;
              Illustrations by Gerry Embleton, Ed Dovey; Osprey Miltitary Campaign
              Series 13, 1992, PB, 96 pp., ISBN 1855321645.
              Depicts: A depiction from a Norman St. Augustine’s Commentaries (Bib.
              Munic. Rouen, Ms A 19) depicting David and Goliath. David is carrying
              a shoulder strap slung bag or pouch at his side - late 11th C. -
              page 17. French infantry assembly with shields from the Apocalypse
              manuscript of 1028-72. Two crossbowmen - with simple crossbows, in a
              modern depiction, one wearing a gambeson and helm and quiver, the other
              a simple knife page 26, in color. Gokstad Shield survival - 33.
              Scaled Seax and Sheath 34. Scale armored French knight depiction with
              Banner 38. Norseman wearing a tough hide coat, said to be as strong
              as mail, with axe - 46. Round and Kite shields 58. Tapestry archers
              with quivers - 65. A Norman archer in a modern depiction wearing
              Phrygian Cap, red tunic, and quiver - 79.

              Greece and Rome at War by Peter Connolly has reconstructions of
              then period shields.

              Kraus, Henry: The Living Theatre of Medieval Art: University of Penn.
              Philadelphia, 1967, xvii + 248p, 135 Illustrations, ISBN 0812210565.
              Shoemaker on Bench 74, Writing Slope with little rack on side for
              and little scalloped rack on wall for three pens with scribe 98 - 12th
              Chartres; Quatrefoils of the Seasons; Albigensian Crusade stories 132,
              End of
              Simon de Montfort, eyeballs and teeth everywhere 58, traction catapult
              sculpture 135; Tied Belted Sword Scabbard, and shield on sculpture -
              Ekkehard and Uta from Naumburg Cathedral, Germany 13th C. p.95;
              Reims Cathedral 13th C. sculpture of Abraham with tied belted sword
              scabbard 134.; Notre Dame de Paris 114 - Virtue of Courage 13th C. -
              seated, armored knight with sword and shield (with lion) and roundel of
              the vice of Cowardice.

              Bronze Age Metalwork in England and Wales; by Nancy G. Langmaid, Shire
              Archaelogy, 1976 first publication, 64pp.. ISBN 0852632665, .
              £3.80 / $6.36. The Early Bronze Age (c. 1850-1400 BC); The Middle Bronze
              Age ( (c.1400-1000 BC); the Late Bronze Age (1050 - 700 BC); The Final
              Bronze Age and Earliest Iron Age (in England 600BC), Museums, Select
              Bibliography, Glossary, the Illustrations, depicts items in copper,
              gold, mostly daggers, swords, a few shields, dress accessories, a bowl
              furnace for casting, an open stone mould, molds can be either bronze,
              or clay.

              El Cid - Champion of Spain; by John Matthews, Illustrated by James
              1998; ISBN 185314004X; 48pp., pb.. Illustrations: Mangonel, large siege
              engine; Moorish infantry and cavalry, armed with bows, swords,
              spears, and small shields, one carrying a banner; Casting of three
              of about 1150 with conical helms, long mail shirts, and carrying
              shields, armed with swords and spears; knights battling - from an
              century manuscript; three individuals of Royal bodyguard of King
              III (866-909) armed with swords, lances and shields - both round and
              kite-shaped; Eleventh Century sword and sheath of the type carried by
              Rodrigo’s followers; Spanish Soldier from the door of a Spanish
              depicting the type of Soldier that followed El Cid; picture of 11th C
              Spanish Soldier with spear, mail, helmet, coif, sword and kite shield;
              Twelfth C. Sword in scabbard.

              Monnich, Ted / Lord Karl von Nordmark: Construction of the Medieval
              Knightly Shield in Tournaments Illuminated 104:15 was a good article
              including raised decoration in period. Ted Monnich, last I knew
              was State Conservator for the S.C. History Museum in Columbia, S.C.

              There are lots of articles in early Tournaments Illuminateds on the
              construction and weights of shields in Period.

              Moscati, Sabatino & Venceslas Kruta (eds): The Celts.
              New York, Rizzoli, 1999. 719pp, Bibliography, Photo. & Illus., 8vo,
              First Edition paperback, New Softcover. $35.00, or 1991 Hardback,
              ISBN: 0-8478-1407-6, 712 pp., dustjacket. Huge book, lots of color
              for a major exhibition. A great many tools, including the remains of a
              leather bag with the (many) tools in it. Pottery reproductions of
              various shoes.
              This thing is indexed by locality only. Lots of chariots and wagons,
              armor, shields (with diagrams good enough to reproduce). Kinda the
              Celt Book, at least 2" thick by many authors in many countries. Lots of
              metalwork and pottery, and everyday items, sculpture, drawings of
              graves, oppida (forts), etc. Tremendous amount of jewelry and fittings.

              Nicolaysen, Nicolay: Langskibet Fra Gokstad Ved Sandefjord / The
              Discovered at Gokstad in Norway; Softcover. Gregg International,
              Reprint of 1882 ed. , Kristiania: A. Cammermeyer, Farnborough, England
              is available in "print on demand" at http://www.alibris.com/ $53 inc.
              Print On Demand: 2001 black and white facsimile of original book. Charts
              graphics may be obscured or resized to fit pages. No cover art (generic
              softcover binding). pp. 118. Norwegian/English. more details
              ISBN: 0598010394 Alibris I.D.: 8014706741
              It is the original book from the man who discovered the ship. Pictures
              plates and repinted in swedish and english in facing columns. The the
              has to do with the Gokstad ship plan, the furniture, beds, carvings, the
              Faering (small boat), the dress accessories (cast metal bits), shields,
              treen (woodenware), etc.

              Nicolle, David, Phd: Granada 1492 - The Twilight of Moorish Spain;
              ISBN 1855327406, PB, 96 pages, 1998. Battlescene Artwork by Angus
              Depicts: clothing, armor, weapons, horse fittings and saddles.
              The sceptre, crown, sword, psalter, and chest said to have belonged to
              Isabel of Aragon page 20. The Ceremonial Sword and Scabbard of Los Reyes
              Catolicos which was later used by the Habsburg Emperors (Inv. G1 and G2
              of Real Armeria, Madrid) page 20. Islamic belt, eared dagger and its
              scabbard, small pouch, larger pouch taken from Muhammed XII during his
              8first captivity (Real Armeria, Madrid). The slippers and ran or
              of Muhammed XII, made of tan colored leather (Museo Ejercito, Madrid).
              Various Islamic Sword hilts and upper scabbards. An undecorated 15-16th
              C. leather Spanish ardaga shield page 32. Moorish Archers with Quivers
              from ’The Army of Firuz’ in the early 16th C. Sulwan al-Muta.
              A reasonable representation of a Granadan army during the final war.
              Ms. 528, Library, Escorial, Monastery, page 72-3. Pages 88-9 depict
              Moresque stirrups (ex Lady Ludlow and Met Collections) and an early 16th
              C. Tunisian saddle with a small drum attached to the front (Real
              Madrid); Part of a late 15th C. Moorish bridle.

              Knights Hospitaller (1) 1100-1306; by David Nicolle, Phd.;
              Illustrated by Christa Hook; Osprey Warrior Series 33; ISBN 1841762148;
              PB, 64 pages including 10 plates. Bibliography and Glossary one page
              Depicts: maille above leather sole. Plate A showing brothers in
              gambeson for horse with exposed saddle (riderless), arming cap and
              of leather?; Plate C with Arms and Armour C. 1140 in views:Gambeson and
              full mail coat with coif, shoe and prick spur. Sword lacing and scabbard
              and buckleless belt construction, Construction and padding of an oval
              (not exploded, back and above views, nasal helms, sheet metal sword
              Plate E. Clothing Allocation according to the Hospitaller Statue of 1206
              - showing cloaks, tunics, chausses, undershirts and underpants, simple
              cloth coifs. Plate G: Arms and Armour circa 1230 showing buckless belt,
              sword, scabbard construction with belt laced to scabbard (front and
              and decorative design down front of scabbard; Faced convoluted helm,
              and cloth arming coifs, two gambesons, simple exploded knife
              pinned whittle tang; laced and leather covered lower leg mail - hung
              individually from laces to underwear tied at waist; ties at wrists for
              and mail mittens with leather slit palms, mail coat; heater construction
              from reverse. Plate I - Various devices (sheilds) of Masters of the
              of the Hospital of St. John and a banner bearer with sword, belt, large
              dagger. Page 44 showing mail leg and sword scabbard details from
              Temple Church, destroyed in WWII.

              The Vikings! Norse Film and Pageant Society Book:
              Parker, David E., and E. Rachel Lowerson: Anglo Saxon Costume, Arms and
              Armour; The Vikings! Society Handbook, 1992, 80pp., Arms and Armour: a.)
              the shield, b.) helmets, c.) armour, d.) the spear, e.) the seax, f.)
              sheaths, g.) swords, h.) scabbards, i.) axes;
              Viking Arms and Armour: a.) introduction, b.) armour, c.) the byrnie,
              d.) alternatives to mail, e.) the helmet, f.) the shield, g.) the spear,
              h.) the seax, i.) the sword, j.) the axe, k.) banners, l.) missle
              List of Abbreviations; List of References.

              Regia Anglorum: The Regia Anglorum Member’s Handbook by Ben Levick, Kim
              Siddorn, et al: 1992, 216 pp. softbound. $25. from Kim Siddorn.
              Arms and Armour chapter by N. Harrison and B. Levick:
              a.) Weapon Types, b.) Sword Types, c.) Armour, d.) Shields, e.)
              Standards and
              Banners. All pictorial illustrations by C.R. Levick, all other
              by Ben Levick.

              Richards, Julian D.: Viking Age England; Tempus Publishing Ltd., The
              Brimscombe Port, Stroud, Gloucestershire, GL5 2QG UK; PB 190pp.,
              ISBN 0752414895 £14.99. Illus: Warrior cross base, Middleton, North
              Yorkshire - depicts conical helmet and saxe sheath; Viking Grave finds
              drawing from Hesket in the Forest (Cumbria) depicting antler comb
              whetstone, spurs, shield boss, axe, sword, spearheads, bridle bits,
              Viking male burial from Repton with folding knife, sword, key, boar tusk
              penis substitution, silver thor’s hammer, leather bound wooden scabbard
              with a fleece lining (Biddle 1992); Viking carved grave slabs from York;
              Middleton Cross depicting Viking warrior on gift seat with sax sheath,
              axe, spear, sword and shield.

              Robinson, H. Russell, F.S.A, and Ronald Embleton: The Armour of the
              Legions; published by Frank Graham, 6, Queens Terrace, Newcastle upon
              Tyne, NE2 2PL, Printed by Howe Brothers (Gateshead) Ltd. ISBN
              40 page paperback, fully illustrated in color drawings and black and
              photos. Depicts many helmets, a variety of cavalry, legionaires in full
              kit with tools and accessories, fragments of bows and arrows, an ox
              barrel cart, the only surviving roman scuta (shield) from Dura Europas,
              in full equipment of the roman legionary, belt, dagger, anti-castration
              the bronze scaled 3cAD Horse armour from Dura Europas, Balearic
              and a scorpion catapult, the laced leather scale armour from Dura
              (possibly a leather thigh guard), A bronze laminated thigh defence for a
              cavalryman front and back, reconstructions of a 1st C Pompeii sword, and
              a late
              Augustan Sword from Mainz with their scabbards, A long spatha cavalry
              original, and a 1st C. Dagger and sheathe, three pilum (spear) remains,
              Roman Officers in armor, Reproduction armor front, back and side with
              drawings showing the full reconstuctions of lorica segmentatas. A
              in color of a heavily armored horseman on mount - 3rd C. Cataphractus.

              OSPREY WARRIOR SERIES: 32 - Greek Hoplite 480-322 BC - Weapons - Armour
              - Tactics; by Nicholas Sekunda, Osprey Warrior Series 32; 2000, plates
              Adam Hook; ISBN 1855328674, 64 pages. Depicts: Various views of Warriors
              from sculpture and pottery. A rare metal outer covering for a hoplite
              Plate A shows a 5th C. BC Greek Hoplite in full armor, with exploded
              of helmet, lorica, shield, and greaves from several views.
              Page 50 shows a diagram of the joining of the shield from pieces
              of poplar wood. Page 52 shows armorers forging and burnishing helmets
              plates. Page 56 shows a leather shield cover being removed, a shield
              for polishing the metal shield covering with oil until it gleamed.

              Siddorn, J. Kim: Viking Weapons and Warfare; Tempus Publishing Ltd, The
              Brimscombe Port, Stroud, GL5 2QG. FP2000 UK, lSBN 075241419 4
              160 pages, 88 line drawings, 31 colour plates, in English. UK, £15.99

              Waateringe, Willy Groenman-van: Romein Lederwerk uit Valkenburg Z.H;
              J.B. Wolters, Groningen 1967, 221 pages, many illustrations - both
              archaeological drawings and photos, a page specific English summary, and
              several page bibliography. This has Roman horned saddle parts, some
              some pouches, tents, shield covers and some odd bits.

              Wagner, Eduard, Dr. Zoroslava Drobna, and Jan Durdik:
              Medieval Costume, Armour and Weapons 1350-1450 also known as:
              Tracht, Wehr Und Waffen Des Spaten Mittelalters (1350-1450)
              Artia Prag, Czechoslovakia, 1957. Currently being reprinted by

              Waterer, John William: Leather and the Warrior : an Account of the
              Importance of Leather to the Fighting Man from the Time of the Ancient
              Greeks to World War II; ISBN 0950418218 Museum of Leathercraft,
              Bridgestreet, Northampton, Eng. Issue Price £25.00

              Master Magnus Malleus, OL © 2001 R.M. Howe
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              help people without aggravating me.* Inclusion, in the
              http://www.Florilegium.org/ as always is permitted.
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