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David Evans




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PostPosted: Thu 10 Feb, 2011 11:47 am    Post subject: Buff coat from the Rijkmusuem         Reply with quote

Tripped over this on the web

First the portrait

http://www.rijksmuseum.nl/collectie/zoeken/as...mp;lang=en

second the buff coat

http://www.rijksmuseum.nl/collectie/zoeken/as...mp;lang=en

supposedly the leren kolder is that worn by Hendrick Casimir I

Odd things pop out. The Armour is barely groin length, even with tassets attached. The helmet makes it clear that this is foot armour, if it was intended to be worn on Horse there would be a different style of helmet, look at http://www.rijksmuseum.nl/collectie/zoeken/as...mp;lang=en for an example.
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Matthijs Witsenburg




Location: The Hague, Netherlands
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PostPosted: Thu 10 Feb, 2011 1:11 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

This is from an era where firearms were common. The leren kolder (leren = leather, the term kolder I only know in malienkolder = maille shirt) is meant as a bulletproof vest, not as armour against swords and lances.
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Adam D. Kent-Isaac




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PostPosted: Fri 11 Feb, 2011 9:48 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

He probably served as an infantry commander, hence the pikeman's armour he is wearing in his portrait.
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Simon G.




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PostPosted: Fri 11 Feb, 2011 11:20 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

The armour and even the people in these two paintings look strange, somewhat deformed. I see it's by the same painter. Would you know of similar armour painted by other people? Perhaps it's a peculiarity in this painter's work.
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David Evans




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PostPosted: Fri 11 Feb, 2011 1:28 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

another one by the same painter is this

http://www.rijksmuseum.nl/assetimage.jsp?id=SK-A-204

And you're right, the armour does look out of proportion.
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Thom R.




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PostPosted: Fri 11 Feb, 2011 1:33 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

David Evans wrote:
another one by the same painter is this

http://www.rijksmuseum.nl/assetimage.jsp?id=SK-A-204

And you're right, the armour does look out of proportion.


One thing to keep in mind with 17th and 18th c portraits, is often stock armour and weapon "props" at the salon/studio would be used rather than personal armour of the man being depicted. not always, but happened fairly often.
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Paul Hansen




Location: The Netherlands
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PostPosted: Sat 12 Feb, 2011 12:53 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Thom R. wrote:
One thing to keep in mind with 17th and 18th c portraits, is often stock armour and weapon "props" at the salon/studio would be used rather than personal armour of the man being depicted. not always, but happened fairly often.


Hendrik Casimir I was one of the most influential men of the Netherlands in his time, so I'd guess that he'd not use whatever the painter had available.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Henry_Casimir_I_of_Nassau-Dietz
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David Evans




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PostPosted: Sun 13 Feb, 2011 1:00 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

equally there's a group of painting where the painter has used almost exactly the same armour to depict a cluster on British Nobles and Gentry in cuirassier armour, including Charles I. Which paintings were then copied and used to depict Oliver Cromwell in a "Kingship" manner.

However. We can't tell if the body of the painting was done without the patron present and then his head added in. Nor can we deduce a great deal about the armour, other than the painter may have a problem with gauging sizes..:-)


What is interesting is that we appear to have a buff coat that, if correctly provenanced, can be linked to a painting that shows that the buffcoat is meant to be worn under armour by an officer who is fighting on foot.

if you look closely at the buffcoat there is a very short distance from the base of the armpit to the seam of the skirts. That is probably the waistline and may be sitting on the natural waist line. Which is a little higher up than most people wear their trousers now....
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Thom R.




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PostPosted: Sun 13 Feb, 2011 10:43 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Paul my comment was a more general one, although that particular portrait still is rather odd..... a pikemans armour with a buff underneath and spurs? the whole just seems rather odd to me, and proportionally, the whole portrait is off. (but that is not uncommon)

David brings up another good point - we know that these kinds of things were more of a production oriented business with stock pre-painted backgrounds and even stock paintings where just a few personal details like the head would be painted in upon a paid commission. tr
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David Evans




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PostPosted: Sun 13 Feb, 2011 1:45 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Do you mean this image ?


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Henrik Bjoern Boegh




Location: Aust Agder, Norway
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PostPosted: Mon 14 Feb, 2011 5:05 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Simon G. wrote:
The armour and even the people in these two paintings look strange, somewhat deformed. I see it's by the same painter. Would you know of similar armour painted by other people? Perhaps it's a peculiarity in this painter's work.

This is due to the 17th century cut of his clothes, and probably also because of the painters tecnique. I've seen in some artbooks that the artists sometimes used different tools or glasses to enable them to get the sketches drawn quickly. And the problem with these tools were that they sometimes put the proportions of the people a wee bit out of balance (sometimes too long thighs, small tummies etc.). Has anyone read anything about what these tools were?

Cheers,
Henrik

Constant and true.
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David Evans




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PostPosted: Tue 15 Feb, 2011 11:57 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

remembered this oddly short arsed buff coat image that Daniel posted some time back


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tywmusk-1.jpg

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Daniel Staberg




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PostPosted: Wed 16 Feb, 2011 12:21 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

I'm not sure I would call it "odd" after all that lenght and general style is very common in Dutch paintings of soldiers from the first decades of the 17th Century. Infact they are so common that I wonder if they may not be buffcoats at all but rather leather jerkin. Thinner and of lower quality leather they would still have the same colour as a buffcoat.
"There is nothing more hazardous than to venture a battle. One can lose it
by a thousand unforseen circumstances, even when one has thorougly taken all
precautions that the most perfect military skill allows for."
-Fieldmarshal Lennart Torstensson.
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David Evans




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PostPosted: Wed 16 Feb, 2011 1:26 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Odd was a bit of a strong word.......

A buffcoat for horse is generally long enough to cover the thighs when sat. The 3 examples posted are clearly shorter than that but I'm not convinced now that that the shorter buffcoats being shown are thiner than a Horse buffcoat.

2 reasons spring to mind. The first is the posted link. That buff coat of Hendrick Casimir I just doesn't look any thinner than a Horse buffcoat. The Littlecote examples are as thin as 2mm in parts. A Mark Beabey buffcoat varies from a thicker 5mm to 6mm for the body so there is some clear variation.

The drape of the buffcoats shown in paintings puzzled me at first but someone posted this picture from this example in the V&A

http://collections.vam.ac.uk/item/O78845/coat/

That shows just how much a 17th century buffcoat can take a "cloth like drape". It's been explained to me that modern leather is treated with hot oil to speed up the process. Which gives a firmer product.



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David Evans




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PostPosted: Wed 16 Feb, 2011 1:31 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Forgot this painting of Hendrik I found. Dressed for horse with a nice looking lobster pot on the floor next to him in a buffcoat thats near groin length. I'm wondering if it's almost an artistic convention. Can anyone think of a painting that shows a buffcoat that reaches the thigh in length ?


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Adam D. Kent-Isaac




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PostPosted: Wed 16 Feb, 2011 4:35 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

OK, that last painting is absolutely exaggerating the body proportions. Nobody actually looks like that. The legs are made to look much longer than they would actually be, and the torso, overly brief. It's a matter of artistic style.
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David Evans




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PostPosted: Mon 21 Feb, 2011 12:09 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

I tripped over a reference in Osprey's Imperial Armies of the Thirty Years' War vol.1 relating to the purchase of arms and armour from Wurzburg for a regiment of Foot. Enough equipment was bought to arm a regiment of 3,000 men, with 1,500 muskets, 300 caliver, 200 halberds, 1,000 pike, 1,200 sets of armour and 1,851 buffcoats.

Does anyone know any more about this reference as it would be interesting to see a little more detail ?
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Daniel Staberg




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PostPosted: Mon 21 Feb, 2011 1:56 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Yet another error by the author, the two ospreys on the Imperial army are filled with significant errors which show a lack of both research and knowledge. In some parts text has simply been copied from older works such as Parker and Delbrück and slightly rewritten before being inserted in the Osprey text.
The 'Würzburg purchase' is taken from Heilmann's work on the Bavarian army, he quotes from an unnamed archive document. The 1851 'buffcoats' are in fact "1851 Schüssenröcklein" i.e "Shooters coats" which is what cassocks were called in German. And as far as i can tell the purchase is neither from Würzburg nor from 1625, Heilmann actually writes "In the begining of the period" ("Im anfang der periode"), Würzburg & 1625 are simply connected to the previous quote. My guess is that the authors does not read German and thus simply missed the two quotes are from separate documents. Or he is in turn quoting/copyign someone who made that kind of error.

"There is nothing more hazardous than to venture a battle. One can lose it
by a thousand unforseen circumstances, even when one has thorougly taken all
precautions that the most perfect military skill allows for."
-Fieldmarshal Lennart Torstensson.
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David Evans




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PostPosted: Mon 21 Feb, 2011 2:10 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Daniel

Thanks for that, I couldn't work out why they would buy 1,851 buffcoats for a regiment of 3,000 men, It just didn't add up. 1,250 would make some sense, 1,200 would make better sense but 1,851 made no sense.

That's still an odd figure thro. I make it about 3,000 men who need a coat/cassock issuing, so why only 1,851...? Is it a typo or transcription error ?
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Daniel Staberg




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PostPosted: Mon 21 Feb, 2011 2:25 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

David Evans wrote:
Daniel

Thanks for that, I couldn't work out why they would buy 1,851 buffcoats for a regiment of 3,000 men, It just didn't add up. 1,250 would make some sense, 1,200 would make better sense but 1,851 made no sense.

That's still an odd figure thro. I make it about 3,000 men who need a coat/cassock issuing, so why only 1,851...? Is it a typo or transcription error ?

The cassocks were only issued to the men with firearms, so 1500 to the musketeers, 300 to the calivermen and the remaining coats to their NCO's. It was regarded as part of the soldiers equipment in the same way that armour was issued to and worn by the pikemen and halberdiers. The soldiers were expected to provide their own clothing at this time (first decade of the 17th C), this changed later on and by the 1620's the men were being issued coats, breeches and stockings from central depots when the resources were available. Shoes were also issued at times.

"There is nothing more hazardous than to venture a battle. One can lose it
by a thousand unforseen circumstances, even when one has thorougly taken all
precautions that the most perfect military skill allows for."
-Fieldmarshal Lennart Torstensson.
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