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Fit for a king

Boy’s armour (II.126)

This armour was designed for a boy and made in about 1610. We don't know who it was made for, but it is now thought that it may have been an armourer's demonstration piece or, more likely, it was made for Charles, Duke of Albany (later King Charles I). Although the proportions of the armour are small, even for a child, Charles was a sickly boy who suffered from rickets. In about 1636, Charles I was sculpted by Herbert Le Sueur wearing this helmet, although he would have outgrown it. The helmet and pauldrons are decorated with the faces of mythical beasts, in addition to the dragon that climbs over the skull. The slaying of a dragon is key to the story of St George, the patron saint of England.

View the Boy's Armour in our collection