Object Title

Mail and plate coat

Mail and plate coat



Object Number



Purchased from Robert Hales Antiques, 1999, no. 53. Originally from the Bikaner armoury, Rajasthan.

Physical Description

Comprising a long sleeved coat with two main plates on each side of the central opening, each with three spear-head shaped fastenings. The main plates are each bordered by a single narrow plate under the arm, all of these plates being engraved, or more probably chased, with wide borders containing engrailed shapes and dotted shading. At the back are five columns of small plates, some with cusped lower edges others plain in an apparently random arrangement. The mail on the upper chest is of very fine quality, of heavy links that have the outer edges filed to leave a ridge around the circumference. Somewhat lighter mail between the plates and forming the very long sleeves that terminate in slanted cuffs. The skirts, split at the back, are of weak poorly formed mail.


Dimensions: The length of the coat is 910 mm, the chest is 530 mm, the waist is 510 mm and the distance from cuff to cuff is 1870 mm. Weight: The weight of the coat is 10.4 kg.

Inscriptions and Marks

There is an inscription on the outside of the right front plate and a longer one inside.


Places India


The difference in quality between the coat proper and the skirt suggest that the latter is an addition. A detached link, originally solid but cut for connecting the plates, was submitted to D, Starley for metallographic examination.