Object Title





Object Number



Purchased 9 April 1986. From the von Giech armoury, Thurnau Castle, 1856 Inventory no. 104 , sold to Sotherby's 19h November 1974, lot 211 with zischagge (ill). It was purchased at the von Gitch sale by Dr P H I Parsons and later exchanged by him with Wigington.

Physical Description

The breastplate is fitted with a deep waist lame, overlapping upwards, and articulated by a rivet in a cusp at either side, and by a central internal leather attached by two rivets at either end. The medial keel continues over the waist lame. At either side of the chest is a mushroom headed stud for fastening the shoulder straps. Near the arm at the right is a proof mark. The backplate is round shouldered and has a waist lame matching that of the breastplate. At either shoulder is fitted a leather shoulder strap, attached by two rivets, with a rectangular iron terminal plate attached in the same way and pierced with two keyhole slots. Low at either side of the waist is a leather waist strap, attached by two rivets, fitted with a plain iron buckle at the left. There is a proof mark at the base of the backplate. The main edges are outwardly flanged, and bordered by close-set lining rivets and single incised lines. The subsidiary edges are bevelled, and bordered by single incised lines. The lining rivets have small internal washers, and retain the buff leather lining bands. To these are sewn the original leather lining, which are complete at the top, and fragmentary at the bottom. The external surfaces are black from the hammer and file-hatched vertically on the upper half, and horizontally on the lower. All the rivets except those on the shoulder strap are original, of iron with large, domed brass heads. The straps are replacements At each shoulder are two rivet holes for the previous shoulder strap. The linings have been re-sewn.


Dimensions: Breastplate height 490 mm (19.3 in.), width 330 mm (13 in.); backplate height 400 mm (15.7 in.), width 322 mm (12.7 in.) Weight: Breastplate 14 lb 2 oz (6.4 kg), backplate 13 lb (5.9 kg)



This cuirass is broadly comparable to Polish hussar cuirasses of the late 17th and early 18th centuries; compare the breastplate, possible dateable to 1713, at Warsaw, Z Zygulski Jnr., Bron W Dawnej Polsce, Warsaw 1975, pl. 180.