Heilbrunn Timeline of Art History



  • Armor for Henry II of France, ca. 1555
    After designs by Étienne Delaune (1518/19–1583)
    French (Paris)
    Steel, embossed, blued, silvered, and gilded; H. 74 in. (188 cm), Wt. 53 lb. 4 oz. (24.2 kg)
    Harris Brisbane Dick Fund, 1939 (39.121)

    This example of one of the most elaborate and complete French parade armors retains much of its original coloring. The surfaces are covered by dense foliate scrolls inhabited by human figures and a variety of fabulous creatures that derive from Italian grotesque. The decoration includes (at the center of the breast) a Roman warrior receiving tribute arms from two kneeling females and (on the shoulders) Apollo chasing the nymph Daphne (front) and Apollo with the slain monster Python (back). The crescent moon, a badge of Henry II (r. 1547–59), is found in several places.

    The design of the decoration is attributed to the Parisian goldsmith and printmaker Étienne Delaune (1518/19–1583), who served Henry II as an engraver at the royal mint. Numerous preparatory designs for this armor, many apparently in Delaune's hand, are in the Graphische Sammlung, Munich.

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    On view: Gallery 374
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  • Armor for Henry II of France, ca. 1555
    After designs by Étienne Delaune (1518/19–1583)
    French (Paris)
    Steel, embossed, blued, silvered, and gilded; H. 74 in. (188 cm), Wt. 53 lb. 4 oz. (24.2 kg)
    Harris Brisbane Dick Fund, 1939 (39.121)

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