Is there any provenance for this helmet?

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Brother Ranulf
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Re: Is there any provenance for this helmet?

Postby Brother Ranulf » Mon Jul 29, 2019 6:37 am

As for its provenance, this object appears on the website of Medieval Armour by Avalon Shop. Also featuring on that site is this text:

The kettle hat were first produced in England around 1011, is a type of helmet made of steel in the shape of a brimmed hat. The Kettle hats were very popular with foot soldiers in Central Europe during the 10th and 15th century. A kettle hat is a type of helmet in the shape of a brimmed hat, its name from its resemblance to a metal cooking pot. These helmets were very popular with the cavalry, e.g.. Pikemen or crossbowmen.


The idea that any kind of ketel-hat (Middle English spelling) was used as early as 1011 is pure fantasy; restricting its popularity to Central Europe during just the 10th and 15th centuries is equally ridiculous. Calling pikemen and crossbowmen cavalry only adds to the gibberish. There is perhaps a language barrier involved and this description may have lost considerably in translation, but taking it at face value only undermines any faith that buyers may have in the company's veracity and reliability.

There is no evidence for the use of the ketel-hat in England before the latter part of the 12th century (King Richard wore one at the siege of Nottingham Castle in 1194) and here at least it retained the same simple hat shape throughout the time of its use, although details of its construction certainly changed over time. I can not speak for mainland Europe and there were many strange and outlandish variations on helmet shapes happening in Germany, for example. So if this ketel-hat with a face guard ever existed, my bet would be on a Continental style rather than English . . . but more likely is that it comes from the realms of fantasy.


Brother Ranulf

"Patres nostri et nos hanc insulam in brevi edomuimus in brevi nostris subdidimus legibus, nostris obsequiis mancipavimus" - Walter Espec 1138

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Re: Is there any provenance for this helmet?

Postby 40/- freeholder » Mon Jul 29, 2019 2:12 pm

The helmet looks as though it has a fitting for a nasal guard, suggesting the rim and visor are subsequent additions.




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