Standing Shield

German, Erfurt

On view at The Met Fifth Avenue in Gallery 373

Shields of this exceptionally large size and weight (50 lb. [23 kg]) were propped on the ground to form a wall that protected archers and infantrymen. This shield comes from the arsenal of the town of Erfurt and is painted with the coat of arms of that city and its dependencies Vieselbach, Kapellendorf, and Vargula. It presumably was made after 1385, when the archbishop of Erfurt acquired suzerainty over the town of Vargula, but before 1387, when the coat of arms was again augmented. The holes in the surface were made by crossbow bolts and by bullets.

Standing Shield, Wood, leather, gesso, silver foil, gold lacquer, polychromy, iron, German, Erfurt

Due to rights restrictions, this image cannot be enlarged, viewed at full screen, or downloaded.

Open Access

As part of the Met's Open Access policy, you can freely copy, modify and distribute this image, even for commercial purposes.


Public domain data for this object can also be accessed using the Met's Open Access API.