Saturday, June 17, 2006

Review: Journal of the Armour Research Society

The Journal of Armour Research Society is an annual publication that may be of interest to the armor enthusiast: the articles in the first issue from 2005 will give you a flavor of the contents. The links below should carry you through to the first page of each article on the Society’s site. The site also has information on the Society’s workshops, forums, and links to several museum collections.

Observations on Armour Depicted on Three mid-15th Century Military Effigies in the Kirk of St. Nicholas, Aberdeen by Tobias Capwell, Curator of Arms and Armour, Glasgow Museums, Scotland

There aren’t a lot of Lowland effigies of armored knights and or squires from this period that survive in decent condition. Toby Capwell covers three in detail.

The Armourers of Cologne: The Organization and Export Markets of a Foremost European Armour-making Center (1391-1660) by Pierre Terjanian, Associate Curator of Arms and Armour, Philadelphia Museum of Art

Organization, masterpieces, workforce, quality control, maker’s marks and export markets, with a few examples of high quality Cologne harness and construction details.

The Treatment of Mail on an Arm Guard from the Armoury of Shah Shuja: Ethical Repair and in situ Documentation in Miniature by Simon Metcalf, Queen's Armourer, St. James Palace, UK

How do you conserve a plate arm guard in which most of the connecting mail has been lost, while reliably documenting your work for anyone that might want to study the piece in the future? In this case, by making replacement links of riveted mail, and stamping each and every one of them with a tiny “VA”.

The Glancing Surface and Its Effect on 14th Century Armour by Douglas W. Strong, Independent Scholar

Flanged edges and applied stop ribs protecting eyeslots, arm and neck openings, cuisses, shoulder harness and vambraces and deflecting lugs on bascinets. Not necessarily a lot of new information for those familiar with the existing pieces, but he does present the insight that it is easier to apply a fabric covering to pieces like the Chalcis body armors if applied stop ribs are used than with a flanged edge.

Armour Purchases and Lists in the Howard Household Accounts: Part II by Robert W. Reed, Jr., Independent Scholar

For me, this was the most interesting article. It contains extensive lists and descriptions of armor loaned or given out to Howard’s retainers or already in their possession for military expeditions in 1464, 1468 and 1481. Valuation of different pieces of armor is sometimes provided as well as many other payments associated with the great household. It ends with notes regarding Lord Howard’s own equipment stowed aboard the Greate Cobbam, including “my Lordes cloth sak, a panyer with spises, the boketes of leder, the almondes, and the rys, the lampreys, and the sturgeon” a note to “remember the cheesses” and finally twelve books, including the Destruction of Troy, the Tree of Battles and “Le Jeu des Des”

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