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David Butchee




Location: Houston Texas
Joined: 15 Jul 2009

Posts: 28

PostPosted: Sat 08 Feb, 2014 2:59 pm    Post subject: Accuracy of Epic Armoury 'Crusader Helmet'         Reply with quote

I do hope this is the right forum for this; I wanted some input on the historical accuracy of this Great Helm, and also the earliest date a helm of this type would be seen. One question in particular about accuracy is the large holes in the face guard.

A link to it: http://www.darkknightarmoury.com/p-19508-crus...steel.aspx
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Mart Shearer




Location: Jackson, MS, USA
Joined: 18 Aug 2012

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PostPosted: Sat 08 Feb, 2014 3:52 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

From my research, it seems that domed and conical helmets with these early masks appear in the last quarter of the 12th century, BUT the variety with the flat top only seems to arrive after 1200. Much of the art available doesn't show riveting, giving the impression that the top is raised from a single piece. How large the breaths were can only be inferred from images where scale isn't always precise. I would date the general form to 1200-1215. From 1215-1225 we see more occipital coverage being added.
http://www.medievalart.org.uk/Chartres/18_pag...l22_23.htm
http://www.medievalart.org.uk/Chartres/115_pa...anelA1.htm
http://www.bildindex.de/bilder/MI00007g09a.jpg
http://manuscriptminiatures.com/4930/14732/

ferrum ferro acuitur et homo exacuit faciem amici sui
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Foong Chen Hong




Location: Malaysia
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PostPosted: Sat 08 Feb, 2014 5:09 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Too bad the artist during medieval time aren't doing so well in proportion and sizing.

I believe the holes has to be much smaller and more hole around the face since if the hole are too large, it give arrow an easy entrance to the face,

Descanse En Paz
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Harry Marinakis




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PostPosted: Sat 08 Feb, 2014 6:07 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

I can't comment on the helm but I will comment on Dark Knight: Avoid them, unless you like throwing away money.

Do an Internet search to find out why.
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David Butchee




Location: Houston Texas
Joined: 15 Jul 2009

Posts: 28

PostPosted: Sat 08 Feb, 2014 8:31 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Thanks for the input, I really was hoping it would be accurate for the Third Crusade, (Kingdom of Heaven mislead me). It's too bad about Dark Knight Armoury not being a good website to order from.

Mart Shearer, do you happen to know what this is a picture of? http://www.bildindex.de/bilder/MI00007g09a.jpg

No one just happens to know of any other reproduction Great Helms for under $125? :/
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Foong Chen Hong




Location: Malaysia
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PostPosted: Sat 08 Feb, 2014 8:54 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

David Butchee wrote:
Thanks for the input, I really was hoping it would be accurate for the Third Crusade, (Kingdom of Heaven mislead me). It's too bad about Dark Knight Armoury not being a good website to order from.

Mart Shearer, do you happen to know what this is a picture of? http://www.bildindex.de/bilder/MI00007g09a.jpg

No one just happens to know of any other reproduction Great Helms for under $125? :/


Hate to break it for you, if you want historical accurate great helm like Maciejowsky helm or Dargen helm. They won't be under that price.

http://www.bytheswordinc.com/p-4020-great-helm-french-md-306.aspx (By good quality and lowest cost, this is the best I could find)

Or if you are going for third crusade, there are some norman helm around the net with that price if you look around.

Descanse En Paz
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Mart Shearer




Location: Jackson, MS, USA
Joined: 18 Aug 2012

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PostPosted: Sat 08 Feb, 2014 8:58 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

David Butchee wrote:
Mart Shearer, do you happen to know what this is a picture of?
http://www.bildindex.de/bilder/MI00007g09a.jpg


Sure, It's one of the roof panels from the Shrine of Charlemagne (Karlsschrein) in Aachen Cathedral made in 1215. The panel depicts on the left side the Miracle of the Lances, where the lances of those doomed to die in the next days battle take root overnight and begin sprouting new growth in the dead wood. This is considered a sign that their martyrdom against the Saracens will result in their rebirth in the next life. The same scenes from the contemporary Chartres Cathedral windows:
http://www.therosewindow.com/pilot/Chartres/w7-14.htm
http://www.therosewindow.com/pilot/Chartres/w7-15.htm

ferrum ferro acuitur et homo exacuit faciem amici sui
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Harry Marinakis




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PostPosted: Sat 08 Feb, 2014 11:06 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

By The Sword was rated "F" by the Better Business Bureau, for the same reason that Dark Knight is to be avoided. Looks like they've been recently upgraded.

Their business practices are unscrupulous. They don't actually any stock, they have a website front and the contract out your order to other businesses. If there's any problems - good luck getting it fixed. Check out their reputation over at Sword Buyer's Guide.

If you decide to order from them, make sure that you fully understand the nitty-gritty details of their exchange policy. Even if they're at fault you'll never get a refund without paying big fees.

Lots of stuff like this from the BBB:

"By The Sword, Inc. failed to post that items would require >30 days to ship. Charged a $25 "administrative" fee to cancel, hidden in terms."

I had a similar experience - paid for an item, waited for weeks and weeks, turned out the item was no longer available. They demanded $25 to cancel the order even though the item had been discontinued. Then they shipped me a totally unrelated item - a very heavy maille item - and refused a refund because they had already shipped to me. It wasn't even what I ordered! The demanded that I ship this 20-pound item back - at my expense, about $40 - if I ever wanted to see a refund (minus the $25 fee, of course). What a nightmare. I wrote to the Florida district attorney and finally got By The Sword to refund my money, months later.
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Mark Griffin




Location: The Welsh Marches, in the hills above Newtown, Powys.
Joined: 28 Dec 2006

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PostPosted: Sun 09 Feb, 2014 7:37 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Quote:
No one just happens to know of any other reproduction Great Helms for under $125?


As a good craftsman friend once said to someone who asked a similar question 'I can do you a sketch of one for that if you like.'

Real armourers charge real money for real armour.

However, looking at that ByTheSword thing for double what you can get better elsewhere, that's not always the case.

I'd say that if you are happy with the GDFB stuff then stick with them, they produce an ok range at pretty good value for those that want to dabble but need something serviceable from the word go.
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Henrik Granlid




Location: Sweden
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PostPosted: Sun 09 Feb, 2014 8:02 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

I'll have to second the notion that Get Dressed For Battle is a decent place to get dress helmets, at least from what I gathered whilst researching them for a combat helmet.

Otherwise, you could contact some SCA armourers over at the Armour Archive (http://forums.armourarchive.org/phpBB3/index.php), if you go into the want ads and write something like "Want a 16 gauge early greathelm" and add some details such as the helmet not being for SCA, but only for costume and reenactment etc, you might be able to find something below $200, since it wont need all the added safety features of a normal sca helmet etc.

So go see if there's anything out there that's good for you, or if there is a local retailer selling armour that you can actually visit and go "Oh I like that helmet, can I try it on?"

Good luck in your search.
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Mark Moore




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PostPosted: Sun 09 Feb, 2014 8:27 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

You can buy this same helm from Kult of Athena for about $124 +shipping. I see it only in the darkened finish, but I bet they can get it in the polished version if one asks. Historically accurate or not, I like it. Big Grin ...And you need not worry about any troubles with KOA....Their business practices are top notch and they are great folks to deal with. Big Grin ...McM
''Life is like a box of chocolates...'' --- F. Gump
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Mart Shearer




Location: Jackson, MS, USA
Joined: 18 Aug 2012

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PostPosted: Mon 10 Feb, 2014 3:07 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

David Butchee wrote:
Thanks for the input, I really was hoping it would be accurate for the Third Crusade, (Kingdom of Heaven mislead me)./


Perhaps you've learned Lesson #1, "Never rely on a movie for documentation." Conical and Phrygian style helms, with the peak angled forward, remain fairly common. Hemispheric tops made in one piece seem more common than conicals though. Here's a miniature that's perfect for the Third Crusade.
http://gallica.bnf.fr/ark:/12148/btv1b84526716/f15.item



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BNF Latin 15675 fo004r-dtl.jpg


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Corey Skriletz




Location: United States
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PostPosted: Mon 10 Feb, 2014 4:34 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

As the late 12th century is my particular area of focus, I thought I'd shoot a few links. There are a few manuscripts that depict helms with face plates and as was stated earlier, most of these depict it as being round or point-topped.

Here is a 12th century Spanish manuscript depicting the soldiers of the Reconquista. In the top row you see three soldiers wearing helms with face plates.
http://www.flickr.com/photos/bullets4brains/12445886655/lightbox/

Here is a 12th century Italian manuscript depicting a phrygian helm with a faceplate. (note: you can find this one for sale in quite a few places.)
http://www.flickr.com/photos/bullets4brains/12445885805/

Now onto the argument of whether or not they had flat-top helms with face plates. There is evidence that they had flat-top helms without face plates, as is depicted in this manuscript depicting them murder of Thomas Becket. Which dates between 1175-1200. As there is evidence of face plates on other helms, and the existence of the flat top helm, it would track that one could easily fasten a face plate to a flat top helm.
http://www.flickr.com/photos/bullets4brains/12446028453/

Here is King Richard I's seal which appears to depict him wearing a flat-top face plate helm, with a crest, of all things, on top of it. Keep in mind that this is the king, so he could well be privy to more advanced technology than others of the time. This seal dates between 1195-1199
http://www.flickr.com/photos/bullets4brains/12446028403/

And finally there is this fresco, again depicting the murder of Thomas Becket. This one I am hesitant to present as evidence, as i am not entirely sure that it does date back to the 12th century. I had read that it does, but without more proof, or even knowing where it can be found, I am unwilling to say that it does.
http://www.flickr.com/photos/bullets4brains/12446371024/

The major hang up I would have with that helm is the breaths. This isn't due to any fer of arrow penetration, that fear exists on all great helms with the existence of the eye-slits. I just don't like the look of it, but that's all in the eye of the beholder I suppose.

If I were to recommend a great helm, I would suggest this one:

http://www.kultofathena.com/product.asp?item=...ace+Guard+

She's a great price, and she's real tough. Made of 14 Gauge steel, you just can't find this helm for a better price anywhere else.

Another good choice is the aforementioned Italian Phrygian face plate helm, which you can get for a decent price, here:
http://www.kaswords.com/medieval-norman-phrygian-helmet.aspx


Hope this stuff helps somewhat.
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Mart Shearer




Location: Jackson, MS, USA
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PostPosted: Mon 10 Feb, 2014 8:25 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Corey,
I hope my intent isn't mis-understood, as I'm not trying to beat up on your post, but rather trying to point out the same errors of trying to make things too advanced for the Third Crusade. As your example of Richard's 2nd Seal shows, some masked helmets are 12th century technology, but we see most of them in Italian and Spanish sources, with Richard's Seal being the only example of a flat-topped one before 1201 which is documentable.

Corey Skriletz wrote:
As the late 12th century is my particular area of focus, I thought I'd shoot a few links. There are a few manuscripts that depict helms with face plates and as was stated earlier, most of these depict it as being round or point-topped.

Here is a 12th century Spanish manuscript depicting the soldiers of the Reconquista. In the top row you see three soldiers wearing helms with face plates.
http://www.flickr.com/photos/bullets4brains/12445886655/lightbox/

Here's the best picture of those three men available from the Morgan Library, MS M.429, folio 149v. The Morgan Library assigns this to c.1220, Toledo, Spain.
http://corsair.morganlibrary.org/icaimages/4/m429.149va.jpg
http://manuscriptminiatures.com/4648/12021/
I'm not sure these are faceplates: This may be tarnish, as some appears to have migrated to the men on the middle row of the adjacent folio. Or it could be an attempt to show Africans. It's a judgment call.
http://corsair.morganlibrary.org/icaimages/4/m429.150rb.jpg

Quote:
Here is a 12th century Italian manuscript depicting a phrygian helm with a faceplate. (note: you can find this one for sale in quite a few places.)
http://www.flickr.com/photos/bullets4brains/12445885805/

It's from a wall painting of the Martyrdom of Becket, in the Church of Sts. John and Paul (SS Giovanni e Paolo), Spoleto, Italy. Some scholarship dates it as early as 1180, while others place it as late as 1210. Here's a color photograph.
http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-NDz7HQX5kgw/Ul5Y5By...P24079.jpg

Quote:
Now onto the argument of whether or not they had flat-top helms with face plates. There is evidence that they had flat-top helms without face plates, as is depicted in this manuscript depicting them murder of Thomas Becket. Which dates between 1175-1200. As there is evidence of face plates on other helms, and the existence of the flat top helm, it would track that one could easily fasten a face plate to a flat top helm.
http://www.flickr.com/photos/bullets4brains/12446028453/

The mirrored image you link is from British Library Harley 5102, fo32r. It is assigned a date of 1201-1225 by the British Library- "Date 1st quarter of the 13th century".
http://www.bl.uk/catalogues/illuminatedmanusc...Start=5102
http://molcat1.bl.uk/IllImages/Ekta/big/E070/E070628.jpg
The "effigy of Geoffrey de Mandeville 1st Earl of Essex", Obit. 1144, has a similar "chin guard". There is considerable reason to doubt the assignment of the effigy to Geoffrey, or any of the Mandevilles.
http://effigiesandbrasses.com/774/3814/
http://www.castlewales.com/mistaken_identity.html
Quote:
Third, the specific identification of the effigies in the Temple Church is somewhat questionable. Loftie points out that the identities of the effigies were always subject to much futile conjecture, especially during the time of their restoration in the early eighteen-forties. Tummers and Loftie both point out that the date of death of a person does not necessarily coincide with the creation of his effigy. The effigies could have been completed at any time from one to several years after the actual death of the person for whom they were carved. According to Loftie it is possible that not more than ten years separates the oldest effigy in the Temple from the latest based upon the finished product. Therefore, the actual identity of any given effigy must rest upon the available extant records and documents not upon the date of death of an individual.

Previously two effigies from the Temple Church have been assumed to be identified by the supposed armorial bearings upon their shields. The first one, Richardson's plate three, has been identified as Geoffrey de Mandeville, first earl of Essex. He died in 1144, and his body was first held within the precincts of the old Temple but not buried as he had been excommunicated at the time of his death. He was later buried in 1163 at the portico of the west door in the consecrated churchyard of the new Temple, after he was absolved of his excommunication by the pope. Park argues that de Mandeville was buried in the west porch of the new Temple because no one was buried inside until after the end of the twelfth century. He also argues that de Mandeville was a founder of the Temple in London and that his burial in the west porch was a privileged location for such a man. Lankester writes that this effigy cannot be identified as de Mandeville because the designs on the shield are not the accepted heraldic arms of the de Mandeville family, and there are no other recognized authorities for attaching this identity to the effigy. The other effigy identified by his arms carries a shield charged with three water bougets which were the arms of the de Ros family. This effigy was not placed in the Temple Church until the late seventeenth century.




Quote:
Here is King Richard I's seal which appears to depict him wearing a flat-top face plate helm, with a crest, of all things, on top of it. Keep in mind that this is the king, so he could well be privy to more advanced technology than others of the time. This seal dates between 1195-1199
http://www.flickr.com/photos/bullets4brains/12446028403/

The 3rd Crusade is generally dated from 1189-1192. Richard's 2nd Great Seal post-dates the Crusade, but does barely fall in the 12th century. As you note, the king could afford and be privy to better and newer technology that would be limited to perhaps a dozen other men. Here is Richard's 1st Great Seal from 1189 showing the more typical domed helmet for the Crusade:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Seal_-_Richard_I_of_England.jpg
FWIW, here's the Seal of Alexander II of Scotland, which appears very similar to Richard's 2nd Seal, though he wasn't crowned until December of 1214.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Alexander_I...al_01).png


Quote:
And finally there is this fresco, again depicting the murder of Thomas Becket. This one I am hesitant to present as evidence, as i am not entirely sure that it does date back to the 12th century. I had read that it does, but without more proof, or even knowing where it can be found, I am unwilling to say that it does.
http://www.flickr.com/photos/bullets4brains/12446371024/

http://armourinart.com/195/304/
I doubt the museum's date of c.1260. My suspicion is that this is also from the 1st quarter of the 13th century.

Quote:
If I were to recommend a great helm, I would suggest this one:

http://www.kultofathena.com/product.asp?item=...ace+Guard+

I have a problem with the spangen- construction. It's simply not seen in any of the artwork for these early masked helms, though it does still seem to be used in kettle hats of the period.

Quote:
Another good choice is the aforementioned Italian Phrygian face plate helm, which you can get for a decent price, here:
http://www.kaswords.com/medieval-norman-phrygian-helmet.aspx

Clearly based on the Spoleto painting, but I think the angle of the mask is all wrong when compared to the original art.

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David Butchee




Location: Houston Texas
Joined: 15 Jul 2009

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PostPosted: Wed 12 Feb, 2014 6:16 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

So other than the riveted construction, is the GDFB 'Spangenhelm with Face Guard' that was mentioned, accurate for the Third Crusade? (14 ga for $118 sounds like a very good price) How early did faceplates like that on conical helmets appear?

It's not quite as large of a face plate, but I found this effigy dated 1170; http://effigiesandbrasses.com/3471/2919/
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D. S. Smith




Location: Central CA
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PostPosted: Wed 12 Feb, 2014 6:30 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Harry Marinakis wrote:
By The Sword was rated "F" by the Better Business Bureau, for the same reason that Dark Knight is to be avoided. Looks like they've been recently upgraded.

Their business practices are unscrupulous. They don't actually any stock, they have a website front and the contract out your order to other businesses. If there's any problems - good luck getting it fixed. Check out their reputation over at Sword Buyer's Guide.

If you decide to order from them, make sure that you fully understand the nitty-gritty details of their exchange policy. Even if they're at fault you'll never get a refund without paying big fees.

Lots of stuff like this from the BBB:

"By The Sword, Inc. failed to post that items would require >30 days to ship. Charged a $25 "administrative" fee to cancel, hidden in terms."

I had a similar experience - paid for an item, waited for weeks and weeks, turned out the item was no longer available. They demanded $25 to cancel the order even though the item had been discontinued. Then they shipped me a totally unrelated item - a very heavy maille item - and refused a refund because they had already shipped to me. It wasn't even what I ordered! The demanded that I ship this 20-pound item back - at my expense, about $40 - if I ever wanted to see a refund (minus the $25 fee, of course). What a nightmare. I wrote to the Florida district attorney and finally got By The Sword to refund my money, months later.


I had a very poor buying experience with By The Sword when my wife and I were getting stuff for a Ren Faire a couple years ago. I won't be ordering from them again.

Lo, they do call to me.
They bid me take my place among them,
In the halls of Valhalla!
Where the brave may live forever!
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Mart Shearer




Location: Jackson, MS, USA
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PostPosted: Wed 12 Feb, 2014 7:48 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

David Butchee wrote:
So other than the riveted construction, is the GDFB 'Spangenhelm with Face Guard' that was mentioned, accurate for the Third Crusade? (14 ga for $118 sounds like a very good price) How early did faceplates like that on conical helmets appear?

It's not quite as large of a face plate, but I found this effigy dated 1170; http://effigiesandbrasses.com/3471/2919/


An earlier drawing from 1641 of the monument, now lost, is also known.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Clito4.jpg


An interesting aspect of this earlier depiction of a less damaged effigy is the inscription for the date of death, showing "OBIT ANN DNI M.CC.XXVIII", i.e. Died the Year of Our Lord 1228. It is widely accepted that this monument was placed decades after the Count's death in 1128. Some have suggested as early as 1160. Since we don't have the actual monument to compare, we can reason that this is a "ready made" effigy, waiting for a name and date to be carved in the border. The Count of Flanders arms are not on his shield. All that would be required is to add the information around the border, but the M.CC. may have come standard if the effigy dates to the 13th century.

Similar face masks appear in the Rolandslied of Konrad Pfaffe, Cpg 112. Unfortunately the dating on this manuscript is not precise, with the University of Heidelberg giving it "end of the 12th century" status. Some have suggested 1170 or 1180-1200.
http://digi.ub.uni-heidelberg.de/diglit/cpg112/0084

The best answer for the round or conical tops with face masks being used in the 3rd Crusade is, "Maybe." Monuments with similar helmets in Spain and Italy get dated from 1160-1220 with little support for either extreme.



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David Butchee




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PostPosted: Wed 12 Feb, 2014 8:14 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Dang it, all I wanted was just one piece of evidence that face plates appeared before the 1200's, but lo, there is none.
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Harry Marinakis




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PostPosted: Wed 12 Feb, 2014 10:09 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Mart
Here's a helmet that I had made a few months ago:

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Mart Shearer




Location: Jackson, MS, USA
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PostPosted: Wed 12 Feb, 2014 10:58 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Harry,
That's better looking than most of the commercially available products.

David Butchee wrote:
Dang it, all I wanted was just one piece of evidence that face plates appeared before the 1200's, but lo, there is none.

David,
I think that's too harsh. It's already been shown the 2nd Great Seal of Richard I dates to the late 12th century. I suspect most of the Spanish examples of masked helms are also from the late 12th century. Unfortunately it's hard to prove some sculpture in a cathedral dates to 1185 rather than 1205 when the building remained under construction for centuries. There's a sculpture in Monreale Cathedral with a masked helm. Many people point out the main construction between 1174 and 1182, but the sculpture is in the Cloister which wasn't completed until circa 1200.1175-1200 is about as good of a date as we get.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Monreale
http://gladius.revistas.csic.es/index.php/gla...ew/134/134

We can do some comparisons with well dated objects like the Shrine of Charlemagne or Abbot Nantelm's Shrine for St. Maurice. Personally I would feel more comfortable with a masked helm with rounded or conical skull being used in the 12th century by high nobility first, and then trickling down to lesser men over the course of a couple of decades. Spain and Italy seem to be the origin of the innovation.

Here's a thread from Tim Radt on Arms and Armour Forum with lot's of Spanish examples: Unfortunately, dating is quite wide in variability, from 1150-1225. It's a shame we can't be more precise than a 75 year window.
http://www.armsandarmourforum.com/forum/index...-in-spain/



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