Royal Armouries

Pikeman’s Armour

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Pikeman’s Armour

Pikeman’s Armour. English, about 1625 (II.112)

  • Pikeman’s Armour

    Pikeman’s Armour. English, about 1625 (II.112)

  • coloured engraving of a long hall displaying arms and armour

    The Great Horse Armoury, Tower of London, by Sir John Gilbert, engraved by Henry Melville, 1841-44

  • pikeman's armour

    Pikeman’s Armour. English, about 1625 (II.113)

  • LOK II.114

    Pikeman’s Armour. English, about 1625-30 (II.114)

  • Pikeman II.115

    Pikeman's armour. English, London, about 1630 (II.115)

Statistics

Object Provenance:
English, about 1625
Object Number:
II.112

Pikeman’s Armour

Description

The armour comprises a broad-brimmed pot, a gorget, breastplate with solid plate tassets and backplate. All elements are decorated with embossed parallel chevrons bordered by double incised lines.

The pot retains its original cheekpieces, mounted on modern leathers. The breastplate is joined at either side to the backplate by decorative brass hasps which fit over pierced studs, and at the shoulders by modern leathers with original scales and decorative pierced terminals which fit over swivel hooks with decorative washers at either side of the chest.

The tassets are attached by matching hinged hasps whose upper terminals fit over pierced studs on the flange at the waist. On the flange of the backplate and at the right of the flange of the breastplate are pierced studs for the attachment of a sword hanger. The armour retains its original black from the hammer finish.

This is one of a small but distinctive group of very fine English pikemen’s armours. These were once attributed to the royal workshops at Greenwich, but it has since been shown that they were made by members of the Armourers Company of London. Their decoration was probably intended to reflect the pattern of the Bargello or ‘flame stitch’ patterns popular at the same time for interior decoration.

In the New Horse Armoury the armour can be seen opposite the Line of Kings displayed on a full figure mannequin, holding a pike.

Tower arsenal

References

J. Hewitt, Official Catalogue of the Tower Armouries, London, 1859: 16, II.79
Viscount Dillon, Illustrated Guide to the Armouries, Tower of London, London, 1910: 172, II.94

Statistics

Object Provenance:
English, about 1625
Object Number:
II.112

Related Objects

Pikeman’s Armour Click on the title link above to find out more.

Pikeman’s Armour Click on the title link above to find out more.

Pikeman’s Armour Click on the title link above to find out more.

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Line of Kings