Cuirass (Char-aina) with Mail Shirt

cuirass, Iranian; mail shirt, Iranian or Indian

On view at The Met Fifth Avenue in Gallery 379

This exceptionally fine cuirass of crucible ("watered") steel is unusual in its use of octagonal plates decorated with fluting. The edges and central bosses are damascened in gold with Koranic inscriptions.

Iranian and Indian cuirasses of this four-plate construction are known in Persian as char-a'ina, "four mirrors." The term suggests the talismanic value of the mirror for repelling evil.

Cuirass (<i>Char-aina</i>) with Mail Shirt, Steel, iron, gold, leather, textile, cuirass, Iranian; mail shirt, Iranian or Indian

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