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, CRISTVS 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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Title:Elements of an Italian Light-Cavalry Armor alla Tedesca (in the German Fashion)
Medium:Steel, gold, copper alloy, leather
Dimensions:Wt. 19 lb. 13 oz. (8987 g)
Classification:Armor for Man-1/2 Armor
Credit Line:Gift of William H. Riggs, 1913
Inscription: Inscribed on the breastplate: CRISTVS . RES . VENIT . IN . PA/CE . ET . DEVS . HOMO . FACTVS . ES[t] (Christ the King came in peace and God was made man); on the backplate: IESVS . AVTEM . TRANSIENS . PERMEDIVM / ILORVM . IBAT (But Jesus passing through their midst went his way [Luke 4:30]).
Ambrogio Uboldo, Milan (by 1839–d. 1865; his estate sale, Objets d'art et de curiosité . . . provenant d'Italie Collection Uboldo, Hôtel Drouot, Paris, May 21, 1869, no. 30, probably to Joyeau); [Joyeau, Paris, until 1872, sold to de Cosson]; Baron Charles Alexander de Cosson, London (1872–1893; his sale, Christie, Manson & Woods, London, May 2-3, 1893, no. 121, for £792 15s, to Duveen Brothers for Riggs); William H. Riggs, Paris (1893–1913; his gift to MMA).
London. South Kensington Museum. "Exhibition of the de Cosson Collection," 1891–93 (no cat.).
Paris. Palais des Armées de Terre et de Mer. "Exposition Universelle Internationale de 1900," April 14–November 12, 1900.
Seattle, Wash. Seattle Art Museum. "The Art of Chivalry: European Arms and Armor from The Metropolitan Museum of Art," March 11, 1982–June 6, 1982, no. 9.
Denver, Colo. Denver Art Museum. "The Art of Chivalry: European Arms and Armor from The Metropolitan Museum of Art," July 18–October 10, 1982, no. 9.
San Antonio, Tex. Witte Museum of the San Antonio Museum Association. "The Art of Chivalry: European Arms and Armor from The Metropolitan Museum of Art," November 13, 1982–February 5, 1983, no. 9.
Minneapolis, Minn. Minneapolis Institute of Arts. "The Art of Chivalry: European Arms and Armor from The Metropolitan Museum of Art," May 24–July 31, 1983, no. 9.
San Francisco. Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco. "The Art of Chivalry: European Arms and Armor from The Metropolitan Museum of Art," November 5, 1983–January 28, 1984, no. 9.
Detroit, Mich. Detroit Institute of Arts. "The Art of Chivalry: European Arms and Armor from The Metropolitan Museum of Art," April 4–June 17, 1984, no. 9.
The Metropolitan Museum of Art. "The Renaissance of Etching," October 21, 2019–January 20, 2020, no. 2.
Dassi, Antonio. Illustrated Catalogue of the Uboldo Collection: Milan. Vol. 2. ill.
Uboldo, Ambrogio, and D. Biorci. L'armeria Del Signore C.a. Uboldo, Nobile De Villareggio. Milan: Giuseppe Crespi, 1839. p. 14.
Biorci, D. L'armeria del Signore Ambrogio Uboldo, Nobile de Villareggio. 2nd ed. Milano: Giuseppe Crespi, 1841. p. 15.
Hôtel Drouot, Paris. Objets d'Art et de Curiositè. Paris: Hôtel Drouot, Paris, May 21, 1869. no. 30, ill.
Christie, Manson & Woods. Armour and Arms, or, Catalogue of the Famous Collection of Armour and Arms Formed by That Well-Known Connoisseur, The Baron de Cosson, F.S.A., Which Has Been On Loan to the South Kensington Museum for the Last Two Years. London: Christie, Manson & Woods, May 2–3, 1893. p. 18, no. 121, ill.
Orville, E. Notice sur les Armes et Armures Anciennes Figurant à l'Exposition Rétrospective Militaire. Paris: Berger-Levrault & Cie, 1900. p. 23.
Dean, Bashford. Handbook of Arms and Armor : European and Oriental, Including the William H. Riggs Collection, the Metropolitan Museum of Art. New York: Gilliss Press, January 1915. p. 61, pl. XXVII.
Laking, Guy Francis, Sir, Charles Alexander Cosson, and Francis Henry Cripps-Day. A Record of European Armour and Arms Through Seven Centuries. Vol. III. London: G. Bell and Sons, 1920. pp. 248–50, fig. 1035.
Mann, James G. "Notes on the Armour of the Maximilian Period and the Italian Wars." Archaeologia (1929), p. 225, pl. LXX, fig. 1.
Blair, Claude. "The Emperor Maximilian's Gift of Armour to King Henry VIII and the Silvered and Engraved Armour at the Tower of London." Archaeologia, or, Miscellaneous Tracts Relating to Antiquity 99 p. 225, pl. LXX, fig. 1.
The Metropolitan Museum of Art, Helmut Nickel, Stuart W. Pyhrr, Leonid Tarassuk, and American Federation of Arts. The Art of Chivalry: European Arms and Armor from the Metropolitan Museum of Art: An Exhibition. New York: The Federation, 1982. pp. 34, 36–38, no. 9, ill.
Nickel, Helmut. "Arms and Armor from the Permanent Collection." The Metropolitan Museum of Art Bulletin (Summer 1991), pp. 17, 64, ill.
Bridgeman, Jane, and Karen Watts. "Armour, Weapons and Dress in Four Paintings by Dosso Dossi." Apollo (February 2000), p. 26, fig. 4, n. 25.
Troso, Mario. Italia! Italia! 1526–1530: La Prima Guerra D'indipendenza Italiana: Con Gli Assedi Di Milano, Napoli, Firenze, Il Sacco Di Roma E Le Battaglie Di Capo D'orso E Gavinana. Parma: E. Albertelli, 2001. pp. 192–93, pl. T23.
Troso, Mario. L'Ultima Battaglia del Medioevo: La Battaglia dell'Ariotta: Novara, 6 Giugno 1513. [Monfalcone]: Edizioni della Laguna, 2002. p. 26, ill.
Mann, James G. Notes on the Armour of the Maximilian Period and the Italian Wars (2003), p. 225, pl. LXX, fig. 1.
Baptiste, Nicolas P. Armatus Corpus: Princes & Chevaliers (1330–1530): 600 Ans du Duché de Savoie. Gollion: Infolio, 2016. p. 108.
La Rocca, Donald J. How to Read European Armor. New York: The Metropolitan Museum of Art, 2017. pp.102-104, fig.119.
Jenkins, Catherine, Nadine Orenstein, Freyda Spira, Peter Fuhring, Donald J. La Rocca, Anne Varick Lauder, Christof Metzger, Femke Speelberg, Ad Stijnman, Pierre Terjanian, and Julia Zaunbauer. The Renaissance of Etching. New York: The Metropolitan Museum of Art, 2019. pp. 33–34, no. 2, ill.
Dowen, Keith A. "The 1520 Foot Combat Armours of Henry VIII: Design, Technology and Meaning." In Arms and Armour: History, Conservation and Analysis. London: Archetype Publications, 2021. p. 19, fig. 20.
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