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"Haut" plates

Posted: Wed Apr 09, 2008 6:24 pm
by jim-m
I am thinking of having a harness made based on the 15th century Avant armour in Glasgow.

I have a 16th century harness which has almost vertical plates on the pauldrons. I am told these are called haut or haught plates, though I may be wrong on this. They seem fairly common on Maximillian style armour and I wondered if anyone knew when they were introduced ie the earliest they may have been seen on armour and on what style of armour they may have been used on.

Any help greatly appreciated.

haut playes

Posted: Thu Apr 10, 2008 12:45 pm
by jelayemprins
Good thread topic!

The origins can definitely be seen in some of the earlier armours from the Santa Maria delle Grazie collection and others including our very own Warwick effigy -Richard Beauchamp in St Marys church has this pronounced top plate on the left pauldron adopting an upward sweeping curve which is the precursor of the rivetted- on Or forged in one haut plate.

The painting of S. Giorgio in Firenze dates to 1425 and has a definite short upwards plate within the left pauldron arrangement. This is the earliest I've come across. They do start to get taller from 1480.


Posted: Thu Apr 10, 2008 4:23 pm
by jim-m
Thanks for the response Jelayemprins. Great info. I'll start doing more research on this to see if I can justify adding haut plates to the Avant style armour I'm hoping to get.

Posted: Thu Apr 10, 2008 10:37 pm
by Thomas Hayman
Will it be used for mounted work? if not, i wouldn't bother with them, you are just as well served by a well fitting armet and wrapper.

Posted: Fri Apr 11, 2008 11:24 am
by jim-m
Definitely foot work for me Thomas. I like the haut plates for aesthetic reasons as much as anything else to be honest.

Posted: Fri Apr 11, 2008 12:36 pm
by Colin Middleton
You might find that stop-ribs are more common, pre 1500. Ask the guy who you're getting the armour off of. They've probably done quite a bit or research into the subject.

P.S. Good call on the Mianese harness.

Posted: Fri Apr 11, 2008 1:43 pm
by mattb
Haut pieces as you refer to them, a riveted addition ar really a post 1500 thing.
Reinforce plates attached to pauldrons in the later 15thC have flared upper edges though these are smaller than the haut pieces of later years.
As Jelayemp says there is some evidence for a raised flange at the upper edge of the pauldron (this is at the very uppermost lame) and it of quite modest size, the pauldrons depicted are of a similar form to those seen in the battle of san romano, having simple circular reinforces on the left side only.
If you are basing your harness on the Avant armour you would be better off taking inspiration from earlier sources than from 40 or so years later.

Says me with a composite harness :lol:

Anyway i've attached a few pictures for you.


Posted: Mon Apr 14, 2008 12:47 pm
by Colin Middleton
Oooo, pretty! Where are the pictures from?

As a side note, the bottom picture (and the left arm of the top) appear to have the 'haut peices' not on the pauldrons, but on the gard-braces (is that the correct piece?). This may indicate that they are an addition for use in the tourneyment, rather than a 'standard' part of the armour.

Posted: Mon Apr 14, 2008 3:32 pm
by Thomas Hayman
Don't know for sure but they look like they are from the Mantova book.

Posted: Mon Apr 14, 2008 8:26 pm
by mattb
Thomas Hayman wrote:Don't know for sure but they look like they are from the Mantova book.
Absolutely right Thomas. They're not great copies as my scanners not connected at the mo so i just took digital snaps.

The guards simply reinforce the same as any other milanese harness.

There is an example of about 1500-10 which has them integral with the pauldron and an even larger version on the reinforce.


Posted: Fri Apr 18, 2008 1:39 pm
by jim-m
Thanks very much for the very useful replies and photo's. I think I may not bother with the haut plates at all for this period, which is a shame because I really like them for some reason!