The Wallace Collection

The Wallace Collection, A Family Collection, A National Museum, An International Treasure House
  • Morion
  • Unknown Artist / Maker
  • North Italy
  • c. 1570
  • Iron, copper alloy and leather, etched and embossed
  • Height: 26.6 cm
    Weight: 3.16 kg
  • A148
  • European Armoury III
Images & Media
Further Reading
  • Morion, having a pointed skull, made four-sided by a ridge in the middle of either side; there is no stalk at the apex. The sloping brim is embossed to form a small bulge at the point at either end, the edge turned under and strongly roped. There is a repair on the left side. The lining-band rivets around the base of the skull have spiked, pyramidal, brass heads backed by circular washers stamped with a pattern. A small portion of webbed lining band remains on either side together with a fragment of the leathers for the ear-pieces. At the back is a shield-shaped plume-holder of steel. The surface is covered with etched decoration. On each of the four facets of the skull is a leaf-shaped panel, or reserve, containing trophies of arms and allegorical or biblical scenes, one apparently representing Hercules or Samson and the Lion, another Mars. The rest of the surface is decorated with a somewhat roughly etched design of trophies of arms, armour and musical instruments on a granulated ground.

    Morions of this particular type are distinguished by being unusually heavy and solid. This piece can be compared with others of the same form in the Doge's Palace in Venice. One with similar spiked rivets (but made of steel) is in the Fitzwilliam Museum, Cambridge. Another was in the Whawell Sale, Sotheby's, May, 1927, no. 88.