Norman knight (Varangian) in chain mail. 11th century.

Norman knight (Varangian) in chain mail, from the second half of the 11th century.

Reconstructed from the embroideries of the Bayeux Tapestry and contemporaneous original weapons.

Helmet conical, riveted together from iron plates reinforced crosswise with copper clasps and provided with a broad nose guard.

The body is covered by a ring-stitched, leather breastplate (also Brunnika, Haubert), which is provided with a hood, short sleeves, trousers and on the chest with the opening necessary for putting on the breastplate, which is closed by a square bib.

The armoured shirt (ring mail) was probably a garment made of leather or textile (jacket or trousers) with a large number of metal rings sewn or bound directly into the basic garment. Unlike chain mail, the rings are not physically interlocked. No actual examples of this type of armour are known from collections or archaeological excavations in Europe. The Bayeux Tapestry has been wrongly interpreted as depicting several different types of armour. Today it is generally accepted that virtually all the armour on the tapestry is standard armour.

The lower legs are covered with fur and wrapped with wide leather strips. The feet are covered with leather half-boots with spurs with straight stirrups and short, square spikes. Under the breastplate the knight wears the tunic with long sleeves and the sword belt, to which the broad, long, double-edged sword with short handle, short parry bar and mushroom-shaped pommel in a leather scabbard is attached by means of a leather flap inserted through the breastplate.

The right rests on the long-handled battle axe with crescent-shaped edge. Shield of leather-covered wood, elongated ovoid, slightly curved, metal-bound with bosses. A dragon is painted on the front. Inside a strap for the upper arm and a leather handle.

Note:  Knights of the Order of the Golden Fleece. Guelderian Wars. 16th century.

The shield hangs over the right shoulder on the shield cuff.

Source: Knights and Soldiers from Antiquity to Modern Times. The Weapons Collection of Karl Gimbel.

Biest Illustration

Auguste Racinet. The Costume History by Françoise Tétart-Vittu.

Racinet's Costume History is an invaluable reference for students, designers, artists, illustrators, and historians; and a rich source of inspiration for anyone with an interest in clothing and style. Originally published in France between 1876 and 1888, Auguste Racinet’s Le Costume historique was in its day the most wide-ranging and incisive study of clothing ever attempted.

Covering the world history of costume, dress, and style from antiquity through to the end of the 19th century, the six volume work remains completely unique in its scope and detail. “Some books just scream out to be bought; this is one of them.” ―

The Fabric of Civilization: How Textiles Made the World Paperback – December 7, 2021
by Virginia Postrel (Author)

From Neanderthal string to 3D knitting, an “expansive” global history that highlights “how textiles truly changed the world” (Wall Street Journal)

Fashionpedia - The Visual Dictionary Of Fashion Design

Fashionpedia - The Visual Dictionary Of Fashion Design

FASHIONPEDIA is a visual fashion dictionary covering all the technical terms from style to material to production with illustrations and infographics. It encompasses rich, extensive information and yet is easy to read. Whether you are an industry insider or a fashion connoisseur, FASHIONPEDIA is all you will ever need to navigate the fashion scene.

Textilepedia. The Complete Fabric Guide.

The Textile Manual is an encyclopaedia of textile information, from material to yarn, from fabric structure to the finishing process. Encompassing practical tips for a range of textiles and detailed visuals, this ultra-accessible manual is the perfect companion for fashion aficionados and aspiring fashion designers.