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Forum Index > Historical Arms Talk > Sublte differences between the 1st and 2nd crusade? Reply to topic
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M. Lanteigne

Location: Southern Ontario, Canada
Joined: 16 Oct 2011

Posts: 30

PostPosted: Sat 30 Jan, 2016 4:26 pm    Post subject: Sublte differences between the 1st and 2nd crusade?         Reply with quote

Hey Folks,

I have a few questions about an average Man-At-Arms from England, from the first and second crusade. Basically, I would like to do an impression of one or the other, based on the gear I currently have, which is:

1 x Spangenhelm (4 plate style with nasal) OR a St. Wencelauss helm with nasal.
1 x Riveted maille shirt, with HALF sleeves
1 x Valiant Armoury Crusader sword with integrated sword belt and sheath
1 x Men's Kyrtle
2 x hose
2 x braes
1 x pair boots
- still need a shield.

Looking at manuscripts, I don't see many half sleeved maille shirts (any for that matter) during the 2nd crusade. But my research is limited to online sources. The helmet style in the 2nd Crusade also seems to have graduated to sugarloafs and great helms.

BUT, I really, really want to wear a surcoat, which do not seem to appear until the mid 11th century at least.

So...for those of you that know this time period, can I do the 1st crusade with a surcoat? Or, am I pooched on that equipment issue?


"Iron Sharpens Iron"
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Craig Peters

PostPosted: Sun 31 Jan, 2016 3:59 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

If you're not already aware, Manuscript Miniatures: is one of the best places online to look at period images.

Are you sure you are looking at images from only the First Crusade and Second Crusade? The reason I say this is that the earliest evidence for any great helms is circa the end of the 12th century- there doesn't seem to even be good evidence for great helms during the Third Crusade from 1189-1192 AD. During the Second Crusade nearly everyone would have worn a nasal helmet (the St. Wenceslas helmet might be appropriate, although the brow design could look a bit out of place).

Also, I am confused by your comment that a surcoat does not seem appropriate until the mid 11th century. The First Crusade takes place at the very end of the 11th century, so by the dates you have given, a surcoat should be fine for both crusades. However, the historical evidence does not support this. Nearly every piece of evidence supports the surcoat appearing right around 1200 AD, or the Fourth Crusade. So having a surcoat for the Second Crusade is a 60 year anachronism; for the First Crusade, the surcoat is a style that is a century in the future.

By the way, the Valiant Armoury Crusader sword's hilt furnishings look fine for a 13th century sword. They look really out of place for a Second Crusade sword, and even more so for a First Crusade sword. Something like Albion's Senlac or perhaps the Reeve or Bayeux would be more appropriate.
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