Object Title

Sallet

Sallet

Date

1490

Object Number

IV.12

Provenance

Probably purchased from the Peuker collection. From the castle of Ort in Bavaria from which it was purchased by Professor Bõhr of Dresden.

Physical Description

The skull is of light guarge iron. It is flattened at the top, with a central ridge running back into a pointed tail and in front over the brow and vizor. The face opening is square, and the vizor is swept forwards and pierced with two sights. It is fastened by a sprung stud at the right. The lower parts of the skull, the tail and vizor are pierced with numerous pairs of small holes for attaching a fabric covering. The surface is painted, the upper part of the skull with a flame pattern, the lower part and the vizor with a chequered design in red white and green, the squares charged with stars, portcullises and an interlace pattern in red and white.

Materials

Dimensions

HelmetHeight210 mm
HelmetLength455 mm
HelmetWeight2400 g
HelmetWidth230 mm

Associations

Places Germany

Bibliographic References

C Beard 'Some Tower pedigrees' The Connsoisseur, March 1931

Claude Blair, European Armour, B.T. Batsford Ltd., London, 1958, p.200-1.

A.R. Dufty and W. Reid, European Armour in the Tower of London, 1968, plate LXXIX d.

Dorling Kindersley, Weapon. A visual history of arms & armour, Dorling Kindersley Ltd, London, 2006, p. 89

C. Paggiarino, The Royal Armouries, masterpieces of medieval and renaissance arms and armour, Milan, 2011, volume 1

Notes

Unlike many quality examples which were polished to a mirror-like finish, these more cheaply made or ‘munition-type’ examples were often left rough and ‘black from the hammer’- hence the term ‘black sallet’. In order to enliven the overall appearance, many of these sallets were brightly painted with bold and at times elaborate designs featuring animal’s or even monster’s faces. Whilst it used to be assumed that these sallets were worn by archers, numerous artistic sources, including a painting of the battle between the city of Nuremberg and Margrave Kasimir of Brandenburg-Ansbach in 1502, show that they were in fact widely used by lightly armoured cavalry or men-at-arms.