Elements of a Light-Cavalry Armor

Date: ca. 1510

Geography: Milan

Culture: Italian, Milan

Medium: Steel, gold, copper alloy

Dimensions: Wt. 19 lb. 13 oz. (8987 g)

Classification: Armor for Man-1/2 Armor

Credit Line: Gift of William H. Riggs, 1913

Accession Number: 14.25.716b–f

Description

This is a rare example of Italian armor decorated with fluted surfaces in the German fashion. Its etched and richly gilt decoration is derived from Christian symbolism and the Bible. The band across the top of the breastplate depicts the Virgin and Child in the center, Saint Paul on the right, and Saint George on the left. A Latin inscription below reads, CHRISTVS RES VENIT IN PACE ET DEVS HOMO FACTVS ES (Christ the King came in peace and God was made man). Another inscription, across the top of the backplate, reads, IESVS AVTEM TRANSIENS PERMEDIVM ILORVM IBAT. (But Jesus passing through their midst went his way [Luke 4:30]). The Trinity––Father, Son, and Holy Spirit––is depicted on the front of the gorget (collar).

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