The Wallace Collection

The Wallace Collection, A Family Collection, A National Museum, An International Treasure House
  • Sallet
  • Unknown Artist / Maker
  • Germany
  • c. 1510
  • Iron or steel
  • Weight: 2.22 kg
  • A84
  • European Armoury I
Images & Media
Further Reading
  • Several of the surviving late, full-faced sallets, dating from the early 16th century, have visors which still bear some residual resemblance to their half-visor predecessors of the 15th century. In these cases, of which this helmet is a typical example, the visor is bisected by a horizontal ridge which traces what was formerly the line of the visor’s lower edge. Above this ridge, the visor looks very much like the old sallet half-visor. Below however, the visor is now quite different, extending to envelope the chin and pierced with a variety of holes and slots. Visors of this type tend to be somewhat strange in appearance. This strangeness becomes quite pronounced in the case of the more exaggerated examples, such as one in the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York (c. 1500-10; 29.150.4), which bulges out dramatically both above and below the horizontal ridge, which in its case has become a recessed crease.

    Helmets of this type were still worn with a bevor, albeit one cut lower around the face than earlier types. Bevors of this new form are illustrated on a number of German effigies, including those of Walter von Reifenberg (d.1506) and Philipp von Kronberg (d. 1510), both at the Church of St John in Kronberg, near Frankfurt. The Wallace Collection helmet was probably worn with something similar.