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Josiah J





Joined: 24 Jun 2017

Posts: 1

PostPosted: Thu 12 Nov, 2020 5:30 pm    Post subject: 13th Century German Knight         Reply with quote

Hey folks,

So I have been lurking on this forum and others for several years, learning as much as I can about history and European arms and armour in general. Recently, I have been looking into building a kit of my own, and could use some help in terms of a couple historical points. As a note, I will be building as much of the kit as possible myself, because I enjoy it, and because I can't drop a lot of money at once on any one part of it.

I am basing my kit off the leftmost soldier in one of the miniatures found in the manuscript "Psalter mit Totenoffizium" (A German manuscript from 1265):


My current ideas are such:

The mail standard I have is riveted rings with an ID of about 1/4" and 16 gauge wire (this seems to be the most historically accurate for the era.)

In terms of the integrated mittens, I have seen several manuscripts were it seems as if one could flip back the mittens to allow for greater dexterity. Is this period accurate?

It appears that the mail has been tied off above the wrists and under the knees in the miniature. Is this something that was likely to happen?

What is the prevalence of gambeson worn under chainmail? I've seen several miniature depicting some kind of padded coif, but most miniatures that show underneath the hauberk only show a knee-length tunic.

Do you know of any good resources for how a hauberk was constructed historically? I have found resources on armourarchive, among others, but I have not found any examples of a hauberk with integral mittens and coif.

Also any other advice or comments would be welcome!

Thanks,
Josiah
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Paul Hansen




Location: The Netherlands
Joined: 17 Mar 2005
Likes: 5 pages

Posts: 777

PostPosted: Sun 15 Nov, 2020 10:23 am    Post subject: Re: 13th Century German Knight         Reply with quote

Josiah J wrote:
What is the prevalence of gambeson worn under chainmail? I've seen several miniature depicting some kind of padded coif, but most miniatures that show underneath the hauberk only show a knee-length tunic.


I think without any kind of padding underneath, the mail would be a bit useless. A sword blow may not penetrate but would still be incapacitating. On the other hand, if you had the money to buy mail, then a gambeson or similar garment underneath would be only a relatively small additional cost.
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Dan Howard




Location: Maitland, NSW, Australia
Joined: 08 Dec 2004

Spotlight topics: 2
Posts: 3,529

PostPosted: Sun 15 Nov, 2020 12:13 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

The garment under mail was not thickly padded. Aketons were designed to reduce chafing and improve the fit of the armour, not to improve protection. I've worn mail over nothing but a woollen sweater and been hit multiple times in the ribs with a baseball bat hard enough to knock me off balance and the only injuries I suffered were bruising.

The thicker garments that some insist were worn under mail were actually worn over the top of mail. We may not have any extant aketons from Europe but we do have them from Japan and the Middle East. The ones intended to be worn under mail are no thicker than the ones intended to be worn under lamellar and they are all no thicker than regular clothing.

Author: Bronze Age Military Equipment, Pen and Sword Books


Last edited by Dan Howard on Sun 15 Nov, 2020 12:17 pm; edited 1 time in total
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Jeff Cierniak




Location: NE United States
Joined: 17 Sep 2020

Posts: 35

PostPosted: Sun 15 Nov, 2020 12:15 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

I don't think a sword blow would be incapacitating through mail without padding underneath. Painful, sure, but mail was worn over just clothing for a long time. Don't have specific references, but I'm not aware of Romans or warriors of the viking era wearing padding beneath mail.

As far as the picture in question, I'm similarly curious. I have my eye on putting together a living history kit of about either that time or perhaps even 10th century Poland/Lithuania/eastern Europe and have been wondering about arming doublets, etc. beneath mail at that time.
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