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Rua Conde Dom Henrique

4800-412 Guimarães

PD1085

Breastplate
Author: Unknown
Origin: Germany
Dating: 15th century
Material: Iron
Dimensions (cm): 43 x 37,5 x 20,5
Inv. no.: PD1085

This piece (possibly of German origin), is designed to defend the torso, and is composed of a single plate with a round type of design to ensure a better fit for the thorax. The central area is embossed almost from top to bottom. Around the mid-chest area there are two buttons, perhaps for decorative purposes. The contours of the chest are more pronounced near the neck area and lighter in an arc shape at the base. The piece was worn by fastening it through two sets of two open holes in the shoulder area and through two bolts applied at the bottom, on the sides. The rim of the piece is turned outwards, almost all the way around. There is no other decoration (perhaps because it was intended to be worn under another piece). It has many dents, especially in the upper part of the chest.

The Breastplate was designed for the defence of the torso, and is one of the main parts of a suit of armour. It would protect the front part of the torso and initially consisted of a single plate of iron or steel. It is possible that at a very early stage, it had been used as a ‘simple’ reinforcement of the chainmail.

João Gouveia Monteiro

Objeto museológico (PDB)