Object Title

Breastplate and tassets

Breastplate and tassets


About 1650

Object Number



Old Tower stock

Physical Description

Of short waisted form, with cut-out at the neck, narrow shoulders, a medial ridge and a deep flange at the waist. The edges of the neck and arm openings and of the waist flange have plain inward turns. The sides of the waist flange have recessed borders. At either side of the chest is a hole for the missing swivel-hook which engaged a pierced stud to the outside of it that originally held the shoulder straps from the backplate. The hook is replaced by a modern point and pin.
Each tasset is attached to the flange by two hinges, the hasps pointed at the bottom and top, being attached to the flange by a large domed rivet on the upper hasp and to the tasset by two smaller rivets vertically alighned on the lower hasp. The upper rivet on both lower inside hasps is secured internally with a square washer. The tassets are each of one piece, the main edges of which have inward turns accompanied by a recessed border. The upper right corner of the right tasset is cut obliquely for the passage of the left tasset. Each tasset is embossed to simulate 6 lames, the lowest being deeper than the rest. Each lame is bordered by a decorative rivet at the centre and at each side, forming 3 columns which terminate at the sixth lame in a diamond pattern of 4 rivets. Internally the left tasset has 2 square washers on the left column, 4 on the centre diamond and 3 on the right column plus 2 on the diamond. The right tasset has 3 washers on the left column plus 1 on the diamond, 2 on the centre column, and 1 on the right diamond.
It is externally bright and internally rough from the hammer and heavily lacquered. The top inside corner of the left tasset is damaged; the lower corner has split over the embossing; there is a hole in the lower right corner.


Dimensions: Max height: 54.8 cm (21.6 in), Max width: 52.2 cm (20.6 in)

Inscriptions and Marks

Right of ridge at neck stamped: IR. Left of ridge of neck stamped IW. Internally there are 3 (?) wedge-shaped construction marks on the right shoulder, while the upper edge of the flange has: X X


Places England