Sunday, December 27, 2015

12th Century Man At Arms - In Pics

Mid/late12th century armor prior to the introduction of early plate armor and great helms. The armor was based primarily upon a chain mail hauberk in the European 4 in 1 pattern worn over a three quarter length padded gambeson. The venerable nasal helmet was still being used in conjunction with an arming cap and chain mail coif. The lower extremities were usually covered by chain mail chausses that extended over the top of the foot. Leather gauntlets were often covered in chainmail as well for added hand protection.

It was also the early beginnings of heraldry and the use of coat of arms - color patterns and symbols to represent combatants in the field. Found upon surcoats and the smaller, more agile heater shields it facilitated battlefield identification in the melee of medieval combat.

The primary weapon remained the sword characterized by Oakeshott as the types XI to XIII having the cruciform hilt and either the brazil nut or disk shaped pommels made popular by the Normans and later Crusader swords of the 11th and 12th centuries. Daggers were also belted as were smaller axes. Spears and larger lances rounded out the armaments of the mounted knight.

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