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Ushio Kawana




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PostPosted: Sat 10 Sep, 2011 12:10 pm    Post subject: about the greaves of fluted armour(Maximilian armour)...         Reply with quote

Hi Happy

We know "fluted armour(Maximilian armour)" well.
The all surface of the armour is fluted.
However, only the greaves are not fluted.
I have not watched the "fluted greaves". Are there the "fluted greaves"? Question
I have very simple question... Question
Why are not the greaves fluted? Question Question Question


thanks Happy

I'm interested in Medieval Arms and Armor.
But... My English is very poor ><;
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Ian S LaSpina




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PostPosted: Sat 10 Sep, 2011 1:10 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

I'm just offering a guess here... but from what I know about greave construction, they are the one piece of armor that must be exactly fit to the wearer. If greaves are not perfectly form-fitted to the lower leg of the person who will wear them, they don't function properly. The weight of the greaves should be supported by the shape of the calf and lower leg. If they're not, the weight of the greaves will just rest on the top of the foot and seriously hinder movement and greatly increase fatigue. Greaves are not pointed to an arming garment, so the fit is critical. If you've worn improperly fitted or improperly constructed greaves, you'll know what I'm talking about.

Perhaps fluting the greaves would take away from this structural requirement to function properly. Less surface area would be in contact with the body. That might cause them to sag on the wearer and sit on top of the foot. Other than that, I have no idea, but it seems like it might be reasonable. Greaves were the one piece of armor that I needed to have a cast of my lower leg made in order to have them shaped properly.

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Sjors B




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PostPosted: Sat 10 Sep, 2011 1:46 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Ian is right, because greaves must be made exactly to size they are the most difficult part of an armor to make and the shape is difficult to forge
Adding fluting to an armor is very hard, risky and expensive, if you screw up, there's a good chance you'll have to throw away the armor part and start over again.
Not only do i think its to difficult to make, but also, as Ian already said, fluting might take away the effectivnes of greaves

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Colt Reeves





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PostPosted: Sat 10 Sep, 2011 3:53 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Just skimmed Blaz Berlec's Extant 15th Century German Gothic Armour thread: http://www.myArmoury.com/talk/viewtopic.php?t...mor+armour

I only spied two with what looked like greave decoration. One was decorated with rivets and later removed from the exhibit, and Blaz Berlec speculated it was some sort of reproduction and not the real deal. The other had minor fluting from front to back about the middle of the calf.

The first, about a quarter down the page, Berlec labeled as:
1480 New York, USA, Metropolitan Museum, de Dino collection, Franco Italian, removed from display, reproduction?
Images from Laking Guy Francis, European Armour and Arms Vol. 1

And the second, almost half-way down:
Moscow, Russia, The Kremlin Armoury
Images courtesy of Ivan Glin, AAF ID

Just thought I'd toss this in, for what it's worth.

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Josh MacNeil




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PostPosted: Sat 10 Sep, 2011 4:14 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

I don't really have the practical experience to disagree here, so I wanted to throw in a minor conjecture for the sake of clarification. Ian, when you make your point about greaves needing to fit the wearer precisely, are you talking about two piece (front & back) greaves? I ask because I have a pare of MercTailor demi-greaves and they sit on my legs quite comfortably despite not being tailored; this being due to the straps holding them in place. Where as with two piece greaves they would have to be held in place by the contours of the leg like you mentioned. Forgive me if I got a tad off topic here, but I felt it wouldn't hurt to clarify.

- JM
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Chad Arnow
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PostPosted: Sat 10 Sep, 2011 4:17 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Josh MacNeil wrote:
I don't really have the practical experience to disagree here, so I wanted to throw in a minor conjecture for the sake of clarification. Ian, when you make your point about greaves needing to fit the wearer precisely, are you talking about two piece (front & back) greaves? I ask because I have a pare of MercTailor demi-greaves and they sit on my legs quite comfortably despite not being tailored; this being due to the straps holding them in place. Where as with two piece greaves they would have to be held in place by the contours of the leg like you mentioned. Forgive me if I got a tad off topic here, but I felt it wouldn't hurt to clarify.

- JM


The term "greaves" is typically applied to things that fully encase the lower legs. There are other terms for things that cover the front and strap around the back: demi-greaves, half-greaves, shinbalds, etc. A gutter-shaped piece of metal that fits the front of the lower leg takes less care to craft (I'd think) than something contoured around the back of the leg and calf.

Happy

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Ian S LaSpina




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PostPosted: Sat 10 Sep, 2011 4:17 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Josh MacNeil wrote:
I don't really have the practical experience to disagree here, so I wanted to throw in a minor conjecture for the sake of clarification. Ian, when you make your point about greaves needing to fit the wearer precisely, are you talking about two piece (front & back) greaves? I ask because I have a pare of MercTailor demi-greaves and they sit on my legs quite comfortably despite not being tailored; this being due to the straps holding them in place. Where as with two piece greaves they would have to be held in place by the contours of the leg like you mentioned. Forgive me if I got a tad off topic here, but I felt it wouldn't hurt to clarify.

- JM


Yes, schynbalds and demi-greaves are a different animal, I'm speaking only about fully enclosed cased greaves. You can get away with a lot more when it comes to just front greaves.

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Chad Arnow
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PostPosted: Sat 10 Sep, 2011 4:19 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Colt Reeves wrote:
I only spied two with what looked like greave decoration. One was decorated with rivets and later removed from the exhibit, and Blaz Berlec speculated it was some sort of reproduction and not the real deal. The other had minor fluting from front to back about the middle of the calf.


The one marked "removed from display" is almost certainly not original. The condition is too good, the shapes are off, and it's not on display at the Met anymore.

On the second one you listed, it's possible the fluting you're seeing on the lower leg is an extension of the knee piece, not the greave itself. But I can't tell for sure with that pic.

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Gregory J. Liebau




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PostPosted: Sat 10 Sep, 2011 5:44 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Greaves on most late 15th and early 16th century plate harnesses would have been supported in part by the demi-greave, which was often slid over a latch or pin-like fitting at the top of the greave. Weight carried from the back would rest on the calf, as noted before. The upper portion of a properly fit sabaton would also carry weight and keep the greave steady. Even with all of this in mind, fit does not have to be exact in order to have greaves function properly, although that was certainly the objective of the armorer as he crafted a harness for a client - it's just good form (pun intended).

Archaic and Classical Greeks and their contemporaries in the Mediterranean (such as most Italian peoples as well as Thracians, Macedonians and other Northern Greek-speaking peoples) wore one-piece, springy greaves that were fit to the calf and typically didn't even have suspension until the 3rd century BCE, when they were probably mass produced for the huge armies amassed in the time of the Successor Kingdoms in the East and alternately for the growing armies of Rome. These greaves were often times highly decorated with repousse work that pulled the greave's form away from the natural musculature of the calf in almost all spots except along the front of the shin and back of the calf. Modern reenactors wear such greaves (as long as they're custom fit) a great deal without fear of losing them while moving about in mock combat and their popularity in contemporary imagery and archaeological records indicate their widespread success despite heavy decoration.

So, I do not think that Renaissance greaves' lack of fluting has anything to do with a fear of messing up well fit greaves or disturbing the functionality of the pieces. It is more likely that it was not a practical measure to increase the safety of the wearer. Fluting's practicality is to reduce the possibility of shock damage to a piece of steel that may be sustained from mass weapons. A fully-harnessed warrior would be expected to fight from horseback or, if from foot, in very close quarters with an available side arm. While mounted, the calf and foot would be against the side of the horse, often even blurred from view by saddle components. It is unlikely that an opponent would be interested in aiming a blow at this region with the required angle, precision and force to damage a rider's leg - this would not only probably not incapacitate the rider, who's on a horse and doesn't really need his leg intact, but also leave the combatant open to attack from the rider high on his horse. If a harnessed combatant was fighting on foot in close quarters, it is unlikely that enough force could be generated by a weapon thrust or swipe to crush an encased greave, and such an action would again completely expose the upper region of the combatant to attack. It is not a practical movement to make, and armored combat manuals, from what I've seen, rarely indicate that a cautious soldier should strike at a greave.

It probably just wasn't considered necessary to flute greaves for the reinforcement qualities provided by the practice, so the time was not taken to do so. Also, from an aesthetic perspective, fluted greaves would present an overwhelming amount of flutes on any given harness - so it also serves to distract the eye from what could be considered an excessive amount of detail. That's my take on this poser!

-Gregory
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Colt Reeves





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PostPosted: Sat 10 Sep, 2011 6:10 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Chad Arnow wrote:

The one marked "removed from display" is almost certainly not original. The condition is too good, the shapes are off, and it's not on display at the Met anymore.

On the second one you listed, it's possible the fluting you're seeing on the lower leg is an extension of the knee piece, not the greave itself. But I can't tell for sure with that pic.


Assuming the first is a reproduction, the more interesting question to me is whether it is accurate to whatever harness it was based on. Lots of rivets for decoration seems rather unique.

And for the second I think the fluting is on the greave itself, but as you say, it is hard to tell for sure.

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As my loss is grievous, so my hope is small.
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Gregory J. Liebau




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PostPosted: Sat 10 Sep, 2011 6:28 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Josh Warren pointed out to me when I asked him to review my post (because he often wears greaves) that he's convinced Maximillian harnesses had smooth greaves to resemble the hosen worn by contemporaries in fashionable German garb of the early 16th century. I find this to be a convincing and prudent observation that even surpasses any functional implications I mentioned earlier. There are numerous surviving armors that mimic the "puff and slash" style of and the form of Maximilian armor is obviously a dedication to the robust garb worn at the time. The shape of the typical plate sabatons used by Germans is also indicative of this trend, from the pointy Gothic pieces to the duck-footed Maximilians.

Some examples of the silhouettes of German males from this time period, accentuating the natural form of the calf while covering the rest of the body :





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Ian S LaSpina




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PostPosted: Sat 10 Sep, 2011 8:24 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Gregory J. Liebau wrote:
Josh Warren pointed out to me when I asked him to review my post (because he often wears greaves) that he's convinced Maximillian harnesses had smooth greaves to resemble the hosen worn by contemporaries in fashionable German garb of the early 16th century. I find this to be a convincing and prudent observation that even surpasses any functional implications I mentioned earlier. There are numerous surviving armors that mimic the "puff and slash" style of and the form of Maximilian armor is obviously a dedication to the robust garb worn at the time. The shape of the typical plate sabatons used by Germans is also indicative of this trend, from the pointy Gothic pieces to the duck-footed Maximilians.

Some examples of the silhouettes of German males from this time period, accentuating the natural form of the calf while covering the rest of the body :


An excellent point, as an example, here's 'puffed and slashed' taken to the extreme with the costume harness of Wilhelm Von Roggendorf ca. 1520's... It would follow that the smooth greaves would be an extension of this style of armor mimicking the clothing of the time.


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PostPosted: Sat 10 Sep, 2011 11:44 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

How long was it before people started laughing at that armour and the owner was embarrassed to wear it at tournaments? Think about how quickly fashions go out of style today. About ten or fifteen years. Would that puffed and slashed armour be considered ridiculous in 1530 or 1540?

Did fashions last longer back then, without TV and other media to drive trends in an accelerated way?

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Gregory J. Liebau




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PostPosted: Sun 11 Sep, 2011 12:05 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Adam D. Kent-Isaac wrote:
How long was it before people started laughing at that armour and the owner was embarrassed to wear it at tournaments? Think about how quickly fashions go out of style today. About ten or fifteen years. Would that puffed and slashed armour be considered ridiculous in 1530 or 1540?

Did fashions last longer back then, without TV and other media to drive trends in an accelerated way?


Fashion among the nobility always moved swiftly. Indeed, after ten years or so things probably would have come and gone as per today's fashions. The puffed and slashed style was prevalent in central Europe throughout the early 16th century but in different forms. This, however, probably doesn't concern the owner of this armor.

Why? Well, if you were the sort of person who could afford a parade harness of such exquisite detail made by Kolman Helmschmid, one of the leadering armorers in Augsburg, you could probably afford to buy a new harness of equal value annually - you'd have to be impeccably rich for it to even be considered appropriate to buy armor from the man. Unlike today, it was not practical or advised to save your whole life for anything only to get one of them. Armor of this sort, as fancy clothing or other accoutrement was, was a sign of social status and was not available to just anyone. In 1520 Wilhelm von Roggendorf would have had fun showing off this armor. I suspect that by 1521 he was probably not wearing it so much any more, and that's why it comes down to us in such excellent condition as a display piece.

-Gregory
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William P




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PostPosted: Sun 11 Sep, 2011 2:37 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Adam D. Kent-Isaac wrote:
How long was it before people started laughing at that armour and the owner was embarrassed to wear it at tournaments? Think about how quickly fashions go out of style today. About ten or fifteen years. Would that puffed and slashed armour be considered ridiculous in 1530 or 1540?

Did fashions last longer back then, without TV and other media to drive trends in an accelerated way?


actually, according to a book 'imperial ausria,treasures of art, arms and armour from the state of styria' which is a book surrounding the collections in the armoury in graz suggests precisely what you mention,

it mentions that this style was seldom seen outside germany largely due to the expense and effort needed in its manufacture, it says that 'the style declined after 1525 and was passe' by 1540'. i have no idea when aximilian armour was frst introduced but it is often tied to the reign of maximillian the 1st so probably the beginning of the 16th C
i think after that the peascod breastplate and burgonet stated becomeing popular with some troops.and the close helm with the knights, though a few helmets dated to about 1560 shown in the book have combed tops alot like the morion
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PostPosted: Sun 11 Sep, 2011 2:53 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Gregory J. Liebau wrote:
I suspect that by 1521 he was probably not wearing it so much any more, and that's why it comes down to us in such excellent condition as a display piece.

-Gregory


Probably had a room with his 1518 - 1519 -1520 - 1521 -1522 - 1523 - A painting of his soon to be finished 1524 armour so that he could show off and keep showing off his armour of the year collection ..... Wink Laughing Out Loud

May have had practical field armour as well for those time he actual may have had to fight in a tournament or in war ?

If not him. other Princes, Dukes and kings would have had showpiece armour and rooms to display them in.

As family treasures these would have been preserved as opposed to common using armour of the rich and common armour of the poorer sort ! Although less rich, but still good armour was also preserved in armouries but unfortunately what we might be very happy to still have would have been recycled because they where not " special ", would be a lot of interesting armour that at the time didn't seem worth preserving.

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Chad Arnow
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PostPosted: Sun 11 Sep, 2011 6:55 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Gregory's theory about matching the hosen is compelling. But, greaves during other eras don't seem to have been decorated as a rule either. In that gothic armour thread, there is little evidence of fluting on greaves apart from one likely Victorian repro and a blurry pic that may depict decorated extended knee pieces, not decorated greaves. Were hosen during that era (mid to late 15th century) the same as during the Maximilian armour era?
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Michael Curl




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PostPosted: Sun 11 Sep, 2011 8:57 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

In response to Jean, I think either The Knight and the Blast Furnace, or Armourers discussed that very armour, and it was designed to be a practical piece, since their was a set of exchange arms which were much less showy. If you ignore the arms, you notice that their is nothing wrong with the piece in a functional sense.
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Aleksei Sosnovski





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PostPosted: Sun 11 Sep, 2011 11:17 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

I think plain greaves were a matter of fashion, there was no any practical or technological issue with them. The assumption that a fluted greave would be less comfortable or would be too difficult to make is simply ridiculous, with the skill the armorers had they could make pretty much any shape. But the fashion required masculine torso but slender legs and especially calves. By the 16th century it became obvious (as can be seen on the images posted by Gregory J. Liebau). Fluted greaves would make calves look thicker, while plain greaves and fluted cuisses would make calves look thinner.
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Ushio Kawana




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PostPosted: Tue 13 Sep, 2011 1:33 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Hi Happy
Thanks lots replies Big Grin

I feel all opinions right....
I thought that it was a fashion at first...
Because I have asked about "splayed-toed sabatons" before.

Forum Index > Historical Arms Talk > about 16th "splayed-toed" sabatons
http://www.myArmoury.com/talk/viewtopic.php?t...highlight=

ummm... It is difficult to look for an answer...

thanks ^^

I'm interested in Medieval Arms and Armor.
But... My English is very poor ><;
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