A magnificent armour for man and horse – with the horse bards being formerly exhibited at the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York. This horse armour is discussed in ‘A Record of European Arms and Armour Through Seven Centuries by Sir Guy Francis Laking, BT. Late Keeper of the King’s Armoury Vol. V’ (Fig. 142, page 1 “French fashion and workmanship about 1620-30 Metropolitan Museum, New York.”)
Page 42 discusses this superb piece as follows:
‘There is in the Metropolitan Museum of New York (Fig 1452) another such complete armament for man and horse of the Louis XIII period, and of French nationality; but it is less elegant in form, and it is undecorated save by a profusion of rivets. Indeed, it is a poorer production, but interesting, however, as conveying the same general feeling. The suit for the man and the chamfron for the horse came from the collection of the artist, M. Adolph Lessels; but the bards for the horse, though very complete, have been associated with it from some other source. It has been suggested that the bards are not genuine armour of the time; but Dr Bashford Dean is not of this opinion. It is, moreover, the bards to the horse which give character to the figure as set up. Upon the glancing knobs are recessed Maltese crosses; whilst large shell ornaments of French origin of the Louis XIII period embellish the croupiére on either side.’
Stratford Armouries can supply the field armour as shown in the photograph above, or a full cuirassier armour.
The piece is lifesize with the plinth dimensions being 26"high, 112" diameter.