The Wallace Collection

The Wallace Collection, A Family Collection, A National Museum, An International Treasure House
Partial armour
  • Partial armour
  • Unknown Artist / Maker
  • North Italy
  • c. 1580
  • Low-carbon steel, extensively hot-worked, copper, copper alloy, cloth, leather and silk, etched.
  • Weight: 12.86 kg, total weight
  • Armourer's mark: orb and cross, the orb containing a 'P'
    Incised mark: 'I'
  • A57
  • European Armoury II
Images & Media
Further Reading
  • The scale on which lower-quality infantry armours like this one were produced is revealed by a search for comparable examples. 50 armours of this same type, and by the same maker, exist today in the Rijksmuseum in Amsterdam. All of these were formerly housed in the Amsterdam civic armoury, to be used in time of war by the citizens in defence of their city. Today we often see armours like this as single objects on display in museums, when in reality they existed in large arsenal groups of scores, if not hundreds of armours.

    The decoration of this series is very unusual; instead of the more typical groupings of weapons, musical instruments and trophies of arms, the bands of this armour contain a strange annular design which, atypically, appears to be entirely non-representational.