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Ryan Harting





Joined: 19 Dec 2011

Posts: 19

PostPosted: Tue 22 May, 2012 9:18 am    Post subject: Great Helm worn over Bascinet         Reply with quote

I think it's been commonly ascertained that in the early 14th century many great helms were worn over an iron skullcap or a bascinet. In the latter case I am stumped as to how a great helm (as in a Pembridge or Black Prince styled helm) would actually wear such a helm over a bascinet. Was it as simple as two chinstraps or was it normally pointed to the aventail in some manner?
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M. Curk




Location: Slovenia
Joined: 21 Dec 2011
Likes: 3 pages

Posts: 35

PostPosted: Tue 22 May, 2012 11:38 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Isn't it true that chinstraps were rarely if ever attached to period helmets? If I'm right it is a modern way to fix the helmet on a person's head. For the great helm - it was pretty big so it rested on your shoulders and not on the top of the skullcap worn underneath. But it was usually attached to the body armour with a chain, wasn't it?
Please, correct me if I'm wrong.

Cheers!
Miha
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Ryan Harting





Joined: 19 Dec 2011

Posts: 19

PostPosted: Tue 22 May, 2012 12:44 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

The Black Prince Great Helm was outfitted with a chinstrap, I don't know for certain about the Pembridge. In either case both had holes for a liner. The attachment of chains was as far as I know merely a fashion statement that only lasted at most 20 years. As for period art, I see many great helms being depicted in mid-turn of head, particularly in the 1360's in Italy and the 1330's in France. So there is an artistic precedence and a functional one for some manner of fixture to the head other than gravity. Perhaps I should be asking whether there is any real evidence for knights fighting with great helms over bascinets at all, as opposed to how it was done. I know we see many knights depicted with their great helms in hand or near them in effigies while they wear a bascinet, but is that our sole evidence?
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Randall Moffett




Location: Northern Utah
Joined: 07 Jun 2006
Reading list: 5 books

Posts: 2,098

PostPosted: Tue 22 May, 2012 5:05 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Ryan,

Not as much evidence as you would think but there is indeed evidence for this system in use.

Take a look at Southwicks article if you can get ahold of it.

http://www.royalarmouriesshop.org/books/arms-...no.-1.html

Miha,

I honestly think they were much more common than is thought. They appear in many different manuscripts, sculpture and other artistic mediums. The Taymouth Hours has a few such examples off the top of my head. As Ryan said just because they often lack specific holes for a chin strap only means they were likely attached in a different manner such as to the liner.

I think when mail coifs move to aventails and helmets become integrated it was less needed as mail can be tightened to a strap is unneeded. That said with mail coifs separate from the helmet this is not possible. Until the aventail I think chin straps were needed.

We do have some physical evidence for chin straps though. Several sallets have them and kettle helmets.

The chain on the great helm was likely so they could take it off without loosing it.

RPM
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