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Reece Nelson




Location: Overland Park KS
Joined: 18 Oct 2007
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Posts: 257

PostPosted: Sat 09 Jun, 2012 9:25 pm    Post subject: Mirror polish armour 14th-early 15th century         Reply with quote

Hello all,

I'v been searching for hard evidence that they were doing mirror polishing on armour during the 14th and early 15th century. I know we've been able to document it for the later 15th century, but I have yet to see anything substantial to say for sure it was done earlier in the period Worried

I'v looked through countless art and nothing if seen shows that they had a mirror polish for sure...they show the armour as a whitish grey...its hard to say that it is indeed polished or not.

Thanks in advance
-Reece



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Blaz Berlec




Location: Podgorje, Kamnik, Slovenia, Europe
Joined: 26 Aug 2003
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PostPosted: Sun 10 Jun, 2012 3:07 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

I think the problem is that you usually need a "photorealistic" depiction of a scene, not just a drawing or a crude painting for the details like these to become visible. And I think there aren't that many before 15th century, when oil paintings become common. And those show mirror polished armour quite often, as was shown in this thread: http://www.myArmoury.com/talk/viewtopic.php?t...highlight=

Some early 15th century depictions:

1435 Knights of Christ, Ghent altarpiece by Jan van Eyck



1435 Heilspiegel Alterpiece by Konrad Witz



15th century, Konrad Kyeser: "Bellifortis"


Extant 15th Century German Gothic Armour
Extant 15th century Milanese armour
Arming doublet of the 15th century
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Reece Nelson




Location: Overland Park KS
Joined: 18 Oct 2007
Likes: 2 pages

Posts: 257

PostPosted: Sun 10 Jun, 2012 6:27 pm    Post subject: Mirror polish armour 14th-early 15th century         Reply with quote

Thanks for the quick reply, Blaze Happy

I should have mentioned that I was primarily searching for evidence for the year 1415. I have a harness in making for Agincourt and I will be doing the bluing that was commonly seen in the art, but needed to find solid evidence.

I honestly think it was available to them during that time, but my group is vey picky when it comes to documentation (probably a good thing considering we are trying to be as accurate as possible Wink
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Christopher Treichel




Location: Metro D.C.
Joined: 14 Jan 2010

Posts: 268

PostPosted: Mon 11 Jun, 2012 6:32 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

If you look through Standebuecher of towns that produced armour say like Augsburg or Nueremberg... you will find plenty of images of armor polishers. Maybe another question to take into account is how wealthy your persona is. Polishing a piece of metal mirror bright is not difficult... just labour intensive to maintain when you do it with a mixture of oil and abrasive. Here is a listing of these gents for Nueremberg dating back to your time period...http://www.nuernberger-hausbuecher.de/index.p...chpolierer
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Christopher Treichel




Location: Metro D.C.
Joined: 14 Jan 2010

Posts: 268

PostPosted: Mon 11 Jun, 2012 6:52 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

You might also check any litterature from your specific time period. Just remembered that in the Chasson de Roland they speak of mirror bright armour the writing of which predates you by 300 years.
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Michael R. Mann




Location: Germany
Joined: 26 Jun 2012

Posts: 28

PostPosted: Tue 26 Jun, 2012 7:30 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

As far as I know the mirror polish exists at least since the 12th century. It's documented that in the 12th century the profession of a Schwertfeger (also: Schwerdtfeger), engl. Armor Polisher, started.
The goal of the Armor Polishers was also to give the weapons a mirror glance.

We have found in the past only a german site which describes in a brief way the whole procedure at that time. And it seems that the Armor Polishers had a lot of time.
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Michael R. Mann




Location: Germany
Joined: 26 Jun 2012

Posts: 28

PostPosted: Thu 28 Jun, 2012 5:01 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Maybe also this site would be useful to assess if a armour was polished or not: http://www.ritterruestung-handgeschmiedet.de/...estung.htm (Rem. the english translation of the mentioned site isn't complete). Often ferric was used (industrial mass production of cheap armours) and armours where also protected by a (black?) color against rust.

You can also search for the term Plattner (means a specialized blacksmith for armours, sorry but I haven't fund a direct english translation). The mentioned site translate this term as armourer.


BTW: It's an interesting question which you have. But the problem is that many armours where destroyed and too often only representative armours survived. And here is the question if they where really used or not because some sources says only these representative armours *could* be used.
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