Art/ Collection/ Art Object

Shaffron (Horse's Head Defense)

Date:
15th–17th century
Culture:
Tibetan or Mongolian
Medium:
Iron, leather, brass or copper alloy
Dimensions:
H. 21 in. (53.3 cm); W. 20 1/4 in. (51.4 cm); Wt. 6 lb. 13.2 oz. (3095.8 g)
Classification:
Equestrian Equipment-Shaffrons
Credit Line:
Purchase, The Collection of Giovanni P. Morosini, presented by his daughter Giulia, by exchange; Bashford Dean Memorial Collection, Funds from various donors, by exchange; and Fletcher Fund, by exhange, 1997
Accession Number:
1997.242d
Not on view
This shaffron is an excellent example of what appears to be a standard form, consisting mainly of a leather ground covered with small square iron plates, which are sewn to the ground by leather laces threaded through a single hole and a small boss at the corner of each plate. Shaped iron plates are laced down the center and at each cheek. The leaf-shaped finial of the vertical rib attached to the central iron panel is very similar to those found on Tibetan cane shields, leather arm defenses, and leather boxes.
[Art dealer, London, until 1997; sold to MMA].
New York. The Metropolitan Museum of Art. "Arms and Armor: Notable Acquisitions 1991–2002," September 4, 2002–January 18, 2004, no. 47.

New York. The Metropolitan Museum of Art. "Warriors of the Himalayas: Rediscovering the Arms and Armor of Tibet," April 5–July 4, 2006, no. 28.

Pyhrr, Stuart W., Donald J. La Rocca, and Morihiro Ogawa. Arms and Armor: Notable Acquisitions, 1991–2002. New York: The Metropolitan Museum of Art, 2002. p. 50, no. 47, ill.

La Rocca, Donald J. Warriors of the Himalayas: Rediscovering the Arms and Armor of Tibet. New York: The Metropolitan Museum of Art, 2006. pp. 8, 96, 100, 102–103, 140, no. 28, ill.

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