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Chad Arnow
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PostPosted: Thu 04 May, 2006 6:16 pm    Post subject: The Maciejowski Bible         Reply with quote

I just picked up a copy of Sydney Cockerell's Old Testament Miniatures: A Medieval Picture Book With 283 Paintings from the Creation to the Story of David from Ebay. This is a reprinting of the famed Maciejowski Bible a collection of illustrations of Old Testament scenes drawn around 1250.

I think this is one of the most fantastic book pickups I've made recently. This book is a treasure trove of illustrations of life (civil and military) in the 13th century. Each face of a folio gets its own full page; since the book is 12.2 x 15.8 inches, the pictures are large and detail is easy to see. The facing page tells what the scene is and shows the passage from the Bible it came from.

What surprised me most were the many colors depicted for armour. Mail is always shown as the same color, but helms vary widely. Some look silver like you would expect steel to be colored, while many seem white. Others are obviously colored green, red, orange, etc. Here's an example from Albion's site:



When great helms are pictured they are basically all this form. Kettle helms are also popular as are conical helms with nasals.

In almost every scene showing multiple warriors, someone has one of those crazy "chopper" things like MRL used to make or like Del Tin still makes (http://deltin.it/i2.htm).

If you can find a used copy of this book (and Amazon currently has several), it's a great pick up.

Happy

ChadA

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Elling Polden




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PostPosted: Fri 05 May, 2006 5:50 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

you can see a slight difference in the equipment of the israelites and philestines; The israelites are armed like State of the Art europeans, with heathers and kettlehats; The Heathens™ are using nasal helms, and round shields, strapped to the arm.
This is probably a result of the drawer's anecdotical knowledge of moslem equipment; Round shield and pointed helmets, with noseguards...

"this [fight] looks curious, almost like a game. See, they are looking around them before they fall, to find a dry spot to fall on, or they are falling on their shields. Can you see blood on their cloths and weapons? No. This must be trickery."
-Reidar Sendeman, from King Sverre's Saga, 1201
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Russ Ellis
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PostPosted: Fri 05 May, 2006 6:22 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Nice pickup Chad! I've been meaning to hunt up one of those myself.
TRITONWORKS Custom Scabbards
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Chad Arnow
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myArmoury Team

Location: Cincinnati, OH
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PostPosted: Fri 05 May, 2006 7:48 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Eiling,
Thanks for that observation. I had spent time just looking at the plates for details on scabbards, armour, and weapons without really seeing who was who. Knowing the difference makes, well, a difference. Happy

It was also interesting to see a battle axe with a back spike in one of the scenes. It's a little earlier than I would have expected to see that.

All in all, this is a fantastic resource. The only problem is that the book is too tall to fit on any of my shelves. If I lay it on its long edge instead, it hangs off the shelf. Happy

Happy

ChadA

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Eric Allen




Location: Texas
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PostPosted: Fri 05 May, 2006 8:59 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

I noticed that about the helmets, too. In fact, one of my first posts at this site was starting a thread about the possibility of helmets being painted based on the Macj.

that's quite the catch about the difference between Israelite and "heathen" equipment. Might also be the artists' "social commentary" relating the Israelites to the state-of-the-art Europeans (read: crusaders).
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Greyson Brown




Location: Windsor, Colorado
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PostPosted: Sat 06 May, 2006 5:34 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Medieval Tymes has all of the images on their site. There are actually several places where you can see shiny mail next to black mail (see the rescue of Lot in leaf 3).

I was amazed by the variety of colors depicted, too. A lot of the images show orange clothing and armour. At first I thought that it was just an imperfect red, but the blood is never orange; it is always a true red.

I also noticed that, in the first few images (the creation of Earth), the world is depicted as a circle. While that may or may not be intended to represent a sphere, it is kind of interesting evidence in the discussion of whether people of the middle ages actually thought the world to be flat.

By the way, I feel your pain on the oversized book issue. I have a few myself.

-Grey

"So long as I can keep the path of honor I am well content."
-Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, The White Company
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Steve Grisetti




Location: Orlando metro area, Florida, USA
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PostPosted: Sat 06 May, 2006 6:02 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Greyson Brown wrote:
Medieval Tymes has all of the images on their site....
Thanks for the link, Grey!
"...dismount thy tuck, be yare in thy preparation, for thy assailant is quick, skilful, and deadly."
- Sir Toby Belch
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