Object Title

Helmet (top)

Helmet (top)

Date

1800-1899

Object Number

XXVIA.144

Provenance

Presented by the Bank of England Museum, 17 January 1978. Originally from St. Luke's Museum, Old Street, founded after the First World War, and subsequently transferred to Debden (where it was neglected). Both these establishments were Bank of England printing works. Transferred from Debden to Bank of England Museum and later given to the Tower.

Physical Description

It has a low, round circular bowl, chiselled with 16 ribs that terminate at the base in slightly chiselled arcades. Each rib is emphasised by gold koftgari strokes on each side giving the appearance of a palm frond. Around the base of the bowl, the arcades and spaces between them are filled with flowers and foliage in koftgari.
At the top of the bowl is a flower-shaped boss, riveted to the bowl with eight 'petals', into which is screwed a tubular plume holder. There are two other plume holders and a sliding nasal-bar having leaf-shaped terminals and a hook to hold it in the 'up' position. The helmet is decorated with kofgari. The three plume-holders, and stalk of nasal are decorated in koftgari with a herring-bone pattern. Round the rim are most of the butted links which held the mail aventail in position, of which only a small piece, of fine butted mail, survives.

Dimensions

Dimensions: The bowl measures 203 mm from front to back, 203 mm from side to side and is 810 mm high. Weight: The weight of the helmet is 0.07 kg.

Inscriptions and Marks

None

Associations

Places India

Notes

The fact that the skull is fitted with a plume tube on an inverted lotus base suggests this may be an old Persian skull adopted for use in India.