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Audio guide: Horse and rider

Audio guide stop: 3102

Crowdsourced transcription of the audio file

Horse and rider set of armour from Germany
Horse and rider set of armour from Germany
Download image CC BY-NC-SA 4.0

You can hardly miss this horse and rider standing guard in the gallery. Although the different parts of their armour were not originally made to go together, as an ensemble, they illustrate well the kind of suits that were produced in Germany in the early sixteenth century, a boom time for the European arms industry.

The grooves or fluting on the riders breastplate and elsewhere reflect the pleats and folds found on contemporary men's clothing. This style is named after the Holy Roman Emperor Maximilian I, a devotee of the joust and one of the most armour-conscious rulers of the Renaissance. If a suit of armour implied wealth and status, then so did ownership of a horse.

There was an unwritten agreement among cavalrymen that they would not deliberately injure an opponent’s mount, either on the battlefield or in the tournament, but horses were still vulnerable to arrows and some kind of protection was essential.

The horse here wears a face-guard called a shaffron, and a crinnet to protect its neck.

Co-production of this resource

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The transcription of the audio file for this stop was enabled by the AHRC funded crowd-sourcing platform MicroPasts. The below generously gave their time to transcribe the file.

Chris Gibbon, Terence Gould and Adi Levin

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