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Greyson Brown




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PostPosted: Wed 20 Apr, 2005 9:41 am    Post subject: Early Bascinet Visors?         Reply with quote

Almost any work dealing with armour of the 14th century illustrates a hundskull bascinet, and most show a klapvisor as well. Unfortunately, the klapvisor is almost exclusively German and Italian, and the hundskull dates from about 1370 and later. According to John Miles Paddock, in Arms and Armour of the Medieval Knight, early bascinets were fitted with globular visors, but the only example that I have been able to find is that on the brass of Sir Hugh Hastings (c. 1347). The visor of Sir Hugh is rather poorly depicted in my opinion, but some of the smaller figures along the edge have visors rather like a side pivoting version of an early klapvisor.

Does anyone know of other depictions of these apparently rare globular visors?

Also, I know that Valentine Armouries produces this replica, but it looks a bit more like a great bascinet visor to me. Does anyone know how accurate this particular visor is, and/or whether there are other manufacturers that produce early bascinet visors? Thanks.

-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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Alexi Goranov
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PostPosted: Wed 20 Apr, 2005 12:37 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Hi Jason,

from what I have read and seen, the earlier visors on the bascinets were characterized by being smaller and barely covering the face. They were also not projecting forward like the pig-faced visors (also called hundsgugel or houndskull) but were rather rounded off and somewhat globular.


this is a line drawing of one of the best examples of the kind. The original is in the Valeria museum in Sitten Switzerland. I agree that the Valentine armouries visor reminds me of the great beacinets more than the earlier kinds. That being said, the Sitten helmet is dated to 1370.

i am aware of at least one more bascinet with similar visor in the Deutcshes Hisorisches museum. It is also dated to 1370.
Both of them are suspended by the klappvisier method.

This is one of the better repros I have seen.

This is the website


Here is another one from BestArmour

I have also seen period illustrations of bascinets with a more expanded nose-cone, but I do not think that this is what you are referring to. Example bellow. It is dated to very late 14th, early 15th century.




I hope that helps
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Alexi Goranov
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PostPosted: Wed 20 Apr, 2005 1:34 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

This was kindly sent to me as a reply to this thread by Brian Rainey form the Armour Research Society

Quote:
Quote:
Almost any work dealing with armour of the 14th century illustrates
a hundskull bascinet, and most show a klapvisor as well. Unfortunately,
the klapvisor is almost exclusively German and Italian, and the hundskull
dates from about 1370 and later. According to John Miles Paddock, in Arms
and Armour of the Medieval Knight, early bascinets were fitted with
globular visors, but the only example that I have been able to find is
that on the brass of Sir Hugh Hastings (c. 1347). The visor of Sir Hugh is
rather poorly depicted in my opinion, but some of the smaller figures
along the edge have visors rather like a side pivoting version of an early
klapvisor.


You are correct, early bascinet visors were globular and side-pivot/mount.

The visors depicted in the Hasting’s brass are all, most likely, very
similar to each other in shape and style. They show the same general
globose shape and side-pivot attachment that is commonly attributed to the
early 14th century, most notably England. England had the phenomenon of
creating brasses that did not carry over to the rest of Europe, for some
reason. These brasses are some of the earliest sources for 14th century
bascinet visor research that we have to work from.. I highly recommend the
Monumental Brass Society and
their publications.

Another source for similar visor depictions is the Romance of Alexander.
Rounded side-pivot visors can be seen throughout the manuscript. The
entire document can be viewed here in high resolution:

Romance
of Alexander


Quote:
Does anyone know of other depictions of these apparently rare
globular visors?


The Hastings brass and the Romance of Alexander are the common and readily
available sources.

Quote:
Also, I know that Valentine Armouries produces this replica, but it
looks a bit more like a great bascinet visor to me. Does anyone know how
accurate this particular visor is, and/or whether there are other
manufacturers that produce early bascinet visors? Thanks.


That visor is NOT similar to the early 14th century side-pivot visors. As
you mentioned, it is similar in style to the visors of great bascinets
that would have appeared around in first quarter of the 15th century, most
similar to the following three examples:

Museum of Navarre, circa 1425. See European Armour, Claude Blair.

Musee de l’Armee, Paris, circa 1425. See Arms and Armour, Paul
Martin.

Musee de Beaux Arts, Dijon, circa 1410-40 (probably 1425-30, like above).
Arms and Armour, Paul Martin.



Last edited by Alexi Goranov on Wed 20 Apr, 2005 2:52 pm; edited 1 time in total
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Michael P Smith





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PostPosted: Wed 20 Apr, 2005 1:55 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

The sources Alexi mentions are the best for this. I have combed through the Romance of Alexander and have isolated some of the better images of these types of visors. Here they are:


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Søren Niedziella
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PostPosted: Thu 21 Apr, 2005 12:42 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Here are some pictures of helmets from Musée de l'Armée, they are all (1-4) registered as been from the 14th century. I guess number 2 is what you are looking for?


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helmet.jpg


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helmet003.jpg

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Alexi Goranov
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PostPosted: Thu 21 Apr, 2005 7:30 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Søren Niedziella wrote:
Here are some pictures of helmets from Musée de l'Armée, they are all (1-4) registered as been from the 14th century. I guess number 2 is what you are looking for?


#2 looks more like a great bascinet to me than an early bascinet. #6 and #3 (numbers within the pictures not the actual order) are not basinets, at least according to me (I know you are not saying that they are). #6 is an armet, and #3 is a barbut with a visor.

The last basinet with the sheet metal aventail is a peculaiar example. There is another similar one in the Dodge's palace in Venice.
#4 (item number H21 in the museum inventory) )is a "typical" pig-face bascinet. I really like its the proportions.

thanks for posting these.

Alexi


Last edited by Alexi Goranov on Thu 21 Apr, 2005 7:47 am; edited 1 time in total
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Alexi Goranov
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PostPosted: Thu 21 Apr, 2005 7:45 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Another informative post from Brian Rainey of the ARS
Quote:
Søren Niedziella,

On the helms you posted, all but one (possibly two) are from well into the
15th century:

1. This helm is a 15th century helm, most likely 1425-1450. It is of
Italian style, but could have possibly been made elsewhere. The visor
does not belong to it and is now displayed as a seperate and distinct
piece.

2. This helm is also of 15th century origin. This would not be the type
of helm that Greyson is looking for... being up to 80 years AFTER the time
frame he mentioned (1440s). While the visor and helm appear to be
authentic, I have doubts as to whether they go together.

3. Ths helm is a 15th century armet... not even close to a style of
bascinet or 14th century helm. I am wondering if the book you refer to
sis not actually classify these as 15th century helms, rather than 14th.

4. This IS a 14th century helm of a fairly standard pig-faced design.
Most likely dated in the 1370-80s. There are some oddities about this
helm... but it is not relevant to the current context.

5. This is a 15th century great bascinet with a pig-faced visor
(1400-1415). The rivetted neck plates would lead me to believe that this
helm was once a standard bascinet that was retrofit to the great bascinet
style. As such, parts of this helm could have been made as early as
1470-80. I also have doubts as to the authenticity of the visor/helm
combination. They may not belong together.

Cheers!
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Greyson Brown




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PostPosted: Sat 23 Apr, 2005 2:23 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Thanks for all of the info, guys. Mr. Rainey's input in particular was very informative, and the Romance of Alexander does depict the type of visors I had expected to see based on the written description in Edge and Paddock's book.

Working on the belief that klapvisors are defined by method of attachment, rather than shape (after all, there are hundskull-shaped visors that use the exact same method of attachment), I traced (because I really can't draw) pictures of klapvisors (including the first two that Alexi posted, as they appear in Brian Price's Techniques of Medieval Armour Reproduction: The 14th Century). I then modified these pictures, so that the visor was attached via side pivots. The result was that I had basically drawn the visors that appear in the Romance of Alexander. Isn't vindication wonderful. Big Grin

Now I just have to get the whole world behind me in undoing the misconception that the klapvisor is actually a type of visor; it is in fact a method of visor attachment. Razz So what we really have are hundskull and globular (though I think "dished" describes these a little better) visors that can be attached via the side pivot or klap method. Somehow, I don't see myself winning enough support to change the existing nomenclature. Laughing Out Loud

After I posted the original thread, I went back and looked through a couple more of my books. I found a couple of line drawings from the Hastings Brass, but not a whole lot else. I did find a picture in one book that showed a visored bascinet with a round face (I would call this one "globular" as it looked like half of a sphere, or globe), and an extention that would cover the throat/neck area (like the ones on the Hastings Brass, but with a more streamlined outline). The odd thing about this picture is that everything else in it appears to be late 13th century. The book that it is in does not cite the original, and all that the picture credits tell me is that the original is in the British Library. I'll try to post a picture of it if anyone is interested.

Thanks again!

-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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Alexi Goranov
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PostPosted: Sun 24 Apr, 2005 6:39 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Another one form Brian Rainey of the ARS
Quote:
Quote:
Thanks for all of the info, guys. Mr. Rainey's input in particular
was very informative, and the Romance of Alexander does depict the type of
visors I had expected to see based on the written description in Edge and
Paddock's book.


No problem, anytime. That is why we are here.

Quote:
Now I just have to get the whole world behind me in undoing the
misconception that the klapvisor is actually a type of visor; it is in fact
a method of visor attachment. So what we really have are hundskull and
globular (though I think "dished" describes these a little better) visors
that can be attached via the side pivot or klap method. Somehow, I don't see
myself winning enough support to change the existing nomenclature.


I am not certain what global misconception to which you are referring. It
is generally and widely known that klappvisier is a descriptor for the style
of mount on a visor. At times, when a visor is referenced, there are
generalizations performed... that might be what you are seeing. But the
meaning of the word is very well known... or should be. It is published in
thousands of places.

Globular is not really a used term... not sure where you got it. Actually,
the terms you are using, I have not heard used. Globose, maybe... but I
would not use globular. The majority of anyone who knows anything about
14th century armour will not used a terms like globular.

On "hundskull".... the correct and widely accepted modern term is
"hounskull" which is most likely a bastardization of the German word
hundsgugel (literal translation is "hound's hood").

BTW: It is a good thing to note here that other than a single literary
reference (which is a parody of French troops from an English point of view
in 1436/8, I believe), the English appear to not use descriptors for
the visors... what we use is modern terminology. In English inventories you
will only see "visored bascinets" or "visored helms".

Try these:

side-pivoted pig-faced visor
klapvisor/klappvisier mounted pig-faced visor
side-pivoted round-faced visor
klapvisor/klappvisier mounted round-faced visor
side-pivoted blunted pig-faced visor
klapvisor/klappvisier mounted blunted (bullet-nosed) pig-faced visor

These are good modern English descriptors for the types of visors. They
were narrowed down by a friend of mine who is writing a book on existing
14th century armour.

I would not use the word "dish" as a descriptor for style as that refer to a
single type of metal shaping that could be used to get a particular shape...
there are other ways to obtain the same shape.

I HIGHLY recommend that you obtain a copy of European Armour - circa 1066
to circa 1700
. Blair, Claude.

This is the single most valuable reference available for general armour
knowledge, period. If I were stranded on a desert Island and could only
bring one book to read, it would be this one.

Brian"
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Greyson Brown




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PostPosted: Mon 25 Apr, 2005 9:21 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Alexi's signature feels rather apt at the moment. Nonetheless, thank you for the corrections and insights. Looks like this will have to be one of those do-it-yourself projects for the future.

-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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