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synonymous with the best, it is clear that in those times our iron and steel were far inferior in every respect, so far as the manufacture of armour was concerned, to the iron and steel of foreign countries, especially that of Spain and Germany. In the reign of Henry VIII. there are instances recorded of English iron being sent into Germany to be tried as to its value for the manufacture of armour. Parcels of this iron were sent in 1530 to Nuremburg to be tested, and as we hear no more on the subject, we may conclude that the result of the trials was unsatisfactory. In Elizabeth's reign, iron having been found in Shropshire, and its adoption for use for armour having been strongly advocated by the magnates of that county, the then Master of the Armoury, Sir Henry Lee, in 1590 conducted a series of experiments as to the relative values of the English metal, and that from abroad, which it appears was used for the manufacture of armour. This, perhaps one of the earliest recorded tests of armour plates, proved eminently unsatisfactory to the national metal, and the subject again dropped. Though in early inventories we come across notices of gauntlets and bascinets of London make, we must suppose that the qualifying term related only to the place of manufacture, or perhaps to some peculiarity of design or fashion. Swords known to be of real English make are sufficiently rare to be much valued for that reason, and foreign workmen were so much employed in England that we cannot be sure of arms or armour being really the work of English hands until more recent times.
This would account for English armour being expensive, though we may be sure much foreign armour passed into England during the wars with France. As to armour being heavy, it is evident that to be efficient it needed to be thick. Of its cumbrousness also we need no proof, and the English nation appear to have been among the first, if not the earliest in Europe, to discard the metal casing, which while imperfectly protecting the wearer, must have largely diminished his power of motion and ability to come to close quarters; which last, according to so great a captain as Monluc, was one of the distinctive features of English fighting. Among the military writers of the sixteenth century we
find many complaints by the older soldiers of the growing disposition of our countrymen to abandon the use of armour. The death of Sir Philip Sidney from his wound received on the field of Zutphen, when having left off his quissards he had his thigh smashed by a musket ball, was adduced as an example of this evil custom; but no writing or talking could prevail against the evident advantages of freedom of action, and the use of armour, save in the tilt-yard and on such occasions, when not to be hurt, rather than to hurt others, was the prime motive, soon was abandoned. Certainly in the Civil Wars Haslerig's lobsters in their metal shells and Cromwell's Ironsides did for a time obtain advantages over the nudus miles, but even in the Civil War we find instances of officers throwing off their buff coats and leading their men to the attack in their shirt-sleeves. The abandonment of metal armour was however, if rapid, still in a manner gradual. Armour for the arms and legs was dropped, but body armour and headpieces lingered. At Zutphen, in the attack on one of the forts, Robert Dudley, Earl of Leicester, describing the gallant behaviour of young Edward Stanley, says: "Since I was borne I did never se any man to behave himself as he did. First clime the brech a pike length before and above anie person that followed him. Soe did he alone maintain the fight first with his pike, then with the stumpes of his pike and afterward his sword against at the least 9 or 10, and everie man either brake his pike upon his brest or hit him with the shot of their musket, yet would he not back a foot, but kept himself in this sort without any man to get up to him the ground was so false being all sandy, insomuch as we all gave him (for) lost if he had a hundred lives; for I was within 7 score yards and less myself, and 5,000 saw it, besides being all in yellow save his curatts."
To come now to the canvas coat of Sir Hugh Willoughby, and to describe it, we may say that it consists of six panels, two forming the defence of the breast, two of the back, and two smaller ones of the shoulders. These panels differ in certain respects in their construction internally, though outwardly they appear similar. The exterior and interior surface of all of them consists of
a stout canvas divided by cord into a series of small equilateral triangles, and with knots. at the corners of each triangle.
Thanks to the ravages of rats or damp, we are enabled to obtain a sight of the interior, and find that next the canvasses are layers of tow or hemp. In the front part of the two breast panels there will be found between the two layers of tow a series of circular discs of horn, about 1 inch in diameter, and inch in thickness. Each disc has a hole in the centre, and through the hole the string passes from one surface of the garment to the other. The discs are arranged like tiles, but overlapping from below upwards. The cord, which is knotted each time it comes to the outer surface, is so arranged as to retain the discs in the order described, and also prevents the tow from balling, or getting into lumps or ridges. The overlapping upwards is, of course, necessary to allow of the movement of the body backward or forward, and there are thus throughout the whole extent of the panel two thicknesses of canvas, two of tow, and two of horn. This would be quite sufficient to prevent the entry of either edge or point of sword or lance; and when we consider the miserable powder then in use, it is probable that, beyond a stout blow, the bullet of the musketeer would not do much harm. That the sixteenth-century bullet was a mild affair compared with the modern one, with its initial velocity of 2,000 feet per second, we may learn from the diary of the Earl of Essex's campaign in 1591, in France, where it is mentioned that a Captain Powre, receiving a chain bullet on his bombasted doublet, took no hurt, beyond being bruised much by the blow.
The backs and hinder parts of the breast panels of Sir Hugh Willoughby's doublet were constructed on the more common principle of small iron plates about 1 inch x 1 inch, and of oblong shape, arranged in a similar tile fashion, but apparently without the additional layers of tow. In one place where the rust of one of these iron plates has rotted the canvas, we can observe the construction of this part of the doublet.
The small iron plates are kept in position, like the horn discs, by the cord passing through them. So also in the small panels over the shoulders.
The neck is formed of quilted canvas, like the rest of the doublet, and has but two rows of plates, the upper half of the collar not being so lined.
The panels are separated from each other. by a line of unquilted canvas, so that the doublet can be easily folded and lie flat. As to the mode of closing it in front, this was probably effected by lacing, but there are now no traces of eyelet-holes on the two edges of the front panels. The doublet appears to have been made for a mediumsized man, the height of the back panels being 16 inches from neck to waist. There neither are nor were sleeves to this garment, and the arms would thus be quite free. The appearance of the doublet is similar to the dress in which the adventurous navigator is seen in his portrait, lent by Lord Willoughby de Eresby, and of which there is a replica in the painted hall at Greenwich. In the portrait the cord is shown as red; in the actual doublet it was blue. Did we not see the garment itself, we should suppose that Sir Hugh wore no defensive armour, and it is probable that this is not a peculiar case. Many of the hats of apparently civil fashion, seen in portraits of that age, were doubtless metal headpieces, covered with textile materials, and even the broad-brimmed beaver often contained a "secrete," or metal headpiece, often of light fashion, but sufficient defence against a sword-cut.
The high-crowned hat of iron shown at Warwick Castle as belonging to Charles I. was possibly the steel cap covered with black velvet mentioned by Bulstrode to have been worn by him at Edgehill. The hat seen in French portraits, and familiar to play goers as the Huguenot hat, is singularly like a cabasset, and was no doubt in many cases such a headpiece covered and adorned with velvet and lace.
It was mentioned that tow was used on both surfaces of the system of horn discs in the Willoughby coat, but not with the metal plates. The usual plan seems to have been to paint over the metal with pitch to prevent the surface rusting. In some cases the metal was tinned, as we know the interior portions of metal used in gauntlets were, according to the ordinances of the bodies controlling the makers of gauntlets. Perhaps pitch was
This gives an idea of the number of pieces of metal required for one of these garments, and shows that the steel coat, when made, must have cost somewhat more than such a simple affair would appear to. It also explains the misleading term a "plate-coat." Plate armour has been so generally applied to armour of sheets of metal in contradistinction to chain mail, that the term plate-coat gives more the idea of a breastplate and back. The horn discs of the Willoughby coat, if found detached, would puzzle most people, for a button with one eye, as it would appear to be, could not be fastened on to a flexible garment. This class of defensive armour would be less expensive than the brigandine, which had the plates of metal attached to the inner surface of canvas and velvet, by rivets, the exterior heads of which, richly gilt, and in the case of rich and noble owners often fancifully ornamented, are so often seen in illuminated MSS. It was probably also more flexible.
As to the correct name for the Willoughby coat, it would seem that the "jak stuffed with horne" as in the Fastolfe Inventory, 1459; the "doublet of defense covered with velvet" of Sir G. Daubeny's will in 1444; the "lasyng dublett cum worsted co-opertum of T. Eure's will in 1475; the "stuffed Jacke" of B. Lilburne's will in 1561, and the "cott of plait" bequeathed by J. Heworth in 1471, were all similar defences, differing only in the external covering.
So also the "210 Briggendines covered with black fustian and white lynnen clothe called
Millen cottes " (Milan coats) which are mentioned as being at Westminster in 1547, were probably a variety of the steel cotte. That they were not always made of new material we know from the fact that in 1562 Queen Elizabeth ordered "9 curates of old Almaigne rivets, 785 pair of splynts, 482 sallets, 60 old hedpeces and 60 old curats of demilances," to be altered and transposed into plates for making 1,500 jacks for the use of the navy. The French name for these coats of plate, composed of small pieces of metal, appears to have been escaille.
A curious instance of the mistakes made by persons translating from one language into another, when both tongues are foreign to the translator, occurs in one of the Calendars of State Papers edited by a Spanish gentleman who has rendered the French sentence, "Certaines brigantinez secretez faictez des calliez gorgiases et richez," into "Certain gorgeous brigandines made of tortoise shell and mother-of-pearl with secret drawers."
The translator evidently thought that the "brigantinez" were some sort of furniture, such as desks or writing tables. The same passage has, however, by an English translator been correctly given in another volume of the Calendars. It is a good instance, showing how necessary it is to study original documents, rather than translations.
XII. Inscr. mutil., four shields, eight powderings, crest and mantling. XIII. N.A. of C. XIV. There are five shields. Add XVI. Lat. chamfer inscr. to Simon Langham, Monk, Prior, and Abbot of Westminster; Bishop of Ely and London, Archbishop of Canterbury, Bishop of Praenest [in Italy], Cardinal [of St. Sextus], Chancellor and Treasurer of England, and Papal Legate; 1367. Altar Tomb (with recumbent alabaster eff.), Chapel of St. Benedict. XVII. Part of a marg. inscr. to Sir Bernard Brocas , Chamberlain to Anne, Queen of England. Altar Tomb (with recumbent eff.), Chapel of St. Edmund. XVIII. Lat. inscr. to Thomas Bilson, Bishop of Winchester, and Privy Councillor to James I., 1616, æt. 79; S.A. of C.
London, Westminster St. Margaret.-I. South wall of S.C.A. Add II. Arms and Eng. inscr. to Susanna Gray, dau. of Hen. Gray, of Enfield, Staffs., Esq., 1654, æt. about 10. West wall of N.A.
Twickenham. Has a shield with the royal arms; now upright, S.A.
Brancaster.-I. Lat. inscr. (in blk. letter) to William Cotyng, Rector, 148-; cross composed of three scrolls, heart, etc., lost. C. II. Lat. inscr. to James Habbys, Rector, 1519. C. III. Eng. inscr. in 16 vv., to Robarte Smithe, who built free school and two almshouses, but dec. (at Brancaster) before endowing them, which was done by Elizabeth, his sister, 1596. N. IV. Lat. inscr. to William Tayler, mcht., 1641, æt. 77. N.
South Creake.-I. In N. II. In N. Add III. A shield (a bend between two bears muzzled impaling on a bend between two horses' heads erased, three fleurs de lys; a crescent for difference), c. 1600, eff. of lady and
inscr. lost. N.
Felbrigg.-II. In N. IV. A shield remains. Add VII. Eng. inscr. to Robart Lounde, 1612, "beryed at the charge of Agnes, his wyffe." N.
Gaywood.-Eng. inscr. to Thomas Hares, Rector 36 yrs.; "wearied and wasted with constant paines in the ministry," 1634, æt. 62. C. Hunstanton.-The Altar Tomb of Sir R.
L'Estrange, which had been moved to the W. end of the S.A., has been restored to its former position in the centre of the C.
Metton.-I. In N. Add II. Lat. inscr. to Margarete Doughty. N. III. Eng. inscr. to Symond Taylor. N.
Northrepps.-I. Lat. inscr. to Robert Grey, 1492, mutil. Tower. II. Lat. inscr. (half South Porch. gone) to Berys (?) — 6. Norwich, St. John Maddermarket.-I. Inscr. lost, and a modern one added, mur. S.C. II. The inscr. also is scrollwise, mur. S.A. III. has a mchts. mk., and a modern inscr. added, stating that it commemorates Ralf Secker, M.P. 1449, and Mayor 1451; and Agnes, his wife; who were buried in this chapel of St. Mary, c. 1478, mur. IV. Mur. S.A., inscr. lost; a modern one added. V. has a mchts. mk. (with initials T.C.); a modern inscr. added states the eff. to be that of the second wife, Johanna, mur. S.C. VI. On one plate (? Flemish) inscr. in raised letters; and has scrolls, names under feet, and arms of the Mcht. Adventurers' Co. and mchts. mk. on one shield, mur. N.A. VII. The bracket is inscribed, and has a monogram (J.E.M.) on it; a modern inscr. added, mur. N. VIII. Has five, not four, sons (on one plate), two scrolls, three shields and monogram, mur. N.A. IX. Mur. S.C. X. Mur. S.A.; arms on inscr. XI. Skottowe, not Scottowe; eleven sons, not two (?), mur. S.A. XII. has four Eng. vv., mur. XIII. Mur. S.C. Add XIV. Eng. inscr. to Wm. Adamson, Rector 18 yrs., 1707, æt. 77, mur. S.C. XV. Eng. inscr. to Mary, wife of last, 1706, æt. 72, mur. S.C. XVI. A shield (quarterly); ? belonging to No. X. Mur. N. XVII. Another, belonging to No. XII. mur. N. XVIII. Three mchts. mks. with initials; another and inscr. lost. S.A. XIX. Eng. inscr. to Sarah Emperor, 1735, æt. 21 wks., mur. N.A. XX. Inscr. to Wm. Emperor, Esq., 1764 (?), æt. 50, mur. N.A.
Norwich, St. Laurence.- Only I. (to which add a mchts. mk., with initials I.A., and a small scroll inscribed "mercy"), and V. to be seen in Aug., 1888.
Norwich, St. Michael at Plea.-II. Rich. Ferrer was Alderman, and twice Mayor, mur. N.Tr. III. has arms and crest, mur. N.Tr. VI. Mur. N. VII. Mutil.
Reedham.-Add II. An achievement of arms; the shield gone, but one of two side shields (Berney) remains, two scrolls over them lost. S.C.
Runton.-I. Apparently lost. II. In N. North Walsham.-I. In N.A. II. In S.C.A. III. In N.A. IV. In S.C.A. V. and VI. apparently lost. VII. has a shield. N. VIII. In S.A.
Warham, All Saints'.-I. has a shield. N. Add II. Lat. inscr. to Edmund Framyngham, gent., LL.B., Fellow of Trin. Hall, Camb., 1626. Wife pos. mur. S.Tr.
Warham, St. Mary.-Lat. inscr., and four Lat. and ten Eng. vv. to Robert Purland, 1630. N.
Wells.-The brass was saved when the church was burnt down in 1879; inscr. in raised letters. Enclose " 'rector 14461449" in brackets. Now mur. C.
Dorchester.-II. has a (mutil.) scroll. III. Upper part of eff. gone. V. Apparently lost, unless it be one of these following: Add VII. Two shields, frags. S.A. VIII. Two shields (one mutil.), frags. S.A. Oxford, All Souls' College.-I. has four shields, a scroll gone. II. For "in acad.," substitute "in cassock"; a scroll nearly all
Oxford, New College.-I. A scroll also lost. II. has two shields. III. partly covered. IV. Eff. apparently lost. VI., VII., and IX. have each a scroll. X. partly covered. XI. Lower part of eff. and inscr. apparently lost. XII. has a mutil. scroll. XVII. slightly covered. XIX. has a plate of arms. XX. has a shield. XXI. has a shield.
Thame.-I. Bracket mutil., chamfer (not marg.) inscr. II. One shield left, chamfer (not marg.) inscr. in raised letters. III. One scroll and one Evang. symb. left. IV. has also a shield; chamfer inscr., and not mutil. V. Not now covered, but sons apparently lost. VI. Inscr. mutil; a large twisted scroll (mutil.) left, and only three Evang. symbs. VII. has a twisted scroll and two shields, coloured. VIII. Inscr. mutil. Inscr. cut in stone.
Little Bradley.-I. Inscr. and two scrolls lost; arms cut in stone, mur. C. II. Not
kng., now mur. C. III. Day had also thirteen chil. by his 1st wife (twenty-six in all). Add four shields and a plate of arms. N. wall of C. IV. In C. V. has four shields. C.
Ipswich, St. Laurence.-Add (Antiquary, xviii. 70) a shield, with same arms as I. C. Playford.-Now upright. C.
Stowmarket.-The brass is in N.A.
Great Thurlow.-I. Two shields remain : (i.) six annulets, 3, 2, and 1, and (ii) the same impaling, on a chief a cross tau between three mullets (Drury); lower part of male eff. and two other shields lost. C. Add II. A man in armour, with helmet, and wife in mantle, c. 1465; no doubt that mentioned by Haines as lost. C. III. A lady in mantle, c. 1460; head gone. N. IV. A shield (a fess engrailed), inscr. and three others lost. C.
Little Thurlow.-Has a shield (on a chevron three roundles, impaling; party per fess indented three fleurs de lys). N. Woodbridge.-I. Has a shield.
Add II. A small plate inscribed "As thou arte sow was I and as I am so | shalt thou be" | something above, and effs. of civilian and two wives and inscr. below, lost, c. 1600. Bolton, of Woodbridge, Esq., 1616, æt. 48. III. Eng. inscr. (shields lost) to Thos. Sayer, the younger, 1622, æt. 26. N. N.A. IV. Eng. inscr. in 8vv. to John
Lambeth, St. Mary.-I. Now mur., N.A. II. has a shield, now mur., N.A. Add III. Eng. inscr. and eight Eng. vv. to Margaret, dau. of Sir Geo. Chute, of Stockwell, Surrey, Knt., and Dame Anna his wife, 1638, æt. 6 yrs. I mo., mur., N.A.
Richmond.-I. The effs. are kng. qd. pl. Add II. Eng. inscr., with arms, to Margarite, wife of Thos. Jay, Esq., Commissioner for provisions to the King's army of horse "in these vnhappy warrs." had chil. Thomas, "Capt: of Horse," Frances, wife of Sir Tho. Jervoyse, of Hants., and Eliz.; 1646, mur. C. III. Eng. inscr. with Eng. vv. to James Thomson, 1748, æt. 47; mur., S.A.
Coventry, St. Michael.-I. W. wall of N.A. III. S. wall of S.A. Add IV. Eng. inscr. to Mr. Thos. Bond, draper, sometime Mayor,