Great Seal Richard I

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Marghec
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Great Seal Richard I

Postby Marghec » Tue Nov 04, 2008 9:36 am

Hi all,

Does anyone have, or know where I can find a good hi definition photo of the Great Seal of Richard I ?

There are several representations online, but all very grainy when blown up. I have for some time wished to try to re-create the rather perculiar helm on the seal. It may be pure artist licence by the maker, but it is sufficient evidence for me to make one. It seems to be a sort of barrel helm, with the face cut out, and some sort of klap visor. Damned ugly, but unusual.

As I have a quiet winter ahead, now is the time. Anyone know of anyone else who has made one?


Thanks,

John T



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Brother Ranulf
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Postby Brother Ranulf » Tue Nov 04, 2008 10:22 am

Richard had three seals during his lifetime - in 1169 for his coming of age, in 1189 for his coronation and the last in 1198 when he was 41.

The helm on the final seal is generally considered to be an early great helm, not with a visor, but with extra reinforcing plates around the eye and face. I have a line drawing which shows this detail quite well - it could not operate well as a visor.

I could let you have the drawing but I would need to send it as a email attachment.


Brother Ranulf

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

Marghec
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Great Seal Richard I

Postby Marghec » Tue Nov 04, 2008 10:34 am

Thank you brother, I have PM'd you.

John T



Marghec
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Great Seal Richard I

Postby Marghec » Sat Nov 08, 2008 10:07 am

Hi Brother Ranulf,

I have PM'd you, but wonder if it has got through. I have tried to PM others on this net, but failed. Something I am doing wrong or Gremlins in my PC? To be fair, I am an ageing technocretin.

My e-mail is JTRemountDepot@aol.com

Best wishes,

John T



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Brother Ranulf
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Postby Brother Ranulf » Sat Nov 08, 2008 11:36 am

Hi John,

I did receive your PM and I sent an immediate response to the email address you gave. Will copy it and re-send as a PM with attachment, fingers firmly crossed . . .

Isn't technology wonderful????? :roll:

EDIT - just realised that PMs can not have files attached :cry:

Is there another email address I can try???


Brother Ranulf



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

Marghec
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Great Seal Richard I

Postby Marghec » Sat Nov 08, 2008 2:18 pm

Nothing received brother. May be my PC.

Try RJTremelling@aol.com

Otherwise, try pidgeons, at least we can eat them afterwards.

John T



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Brother Ranulf
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Postby Brother Ranulf » Sat Nov 08, 2008 2:18 pm

I have tried adding the picture as an attachment to this message to see what happens . .

There is no evidence for visors at this time (1198) and it is thought most likely that the helm simply has extra plates around the eye and face. There is no prominent hinge at the top which would be needed for the type of visor you mentioned.

Details of sword, saddle, spurs, harness, armour, heraldry and shield shape are all absolutely correct for this date and there is no reason to doubt that the artist was portraying the king accurately.
Attachments
richard1198a.JPG


Brother Ranulf



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

Marghec
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Great Seal Richard I

Postby Marghec » Sat Nov 08, 2008 4:19 pm

Thank you Brother Ranulf, that is much clearer than the images of the seal which I have.

Thank you also for your comments.

I am familiar with the developement of armour around this period, 1200 to 1350, the transition from mail to plate is my preferred period. I know that there is no evidence of visors, but on the basis than one can never prove a negative I intend to make a helm, with an open face, and a visor either hinged, or attached by pins and capable of being removed. I claim this as informed conjecture rather than Holywood fantasy, whilst I know that reinforcing plates were common, especially on later helmets, they are generally on the crown, or in some cases, as seen in the Manessa Codex amongts other sources, a barber on the lower face, to deflect lances etc at tournee, and even theses were generally removeable. I can see no reason to reinforce the centre of the face alone, and I know of no other evidence, do you? I accept that this arrangement would be cumbersome, but speculate that Richard may have had the latest 'hi tech' ideas in armour, and the fact that it is not seen elsewhere or again an indication that it was cumbersome and impractical, and not further developed.

I welcome your thoughts on my conjecture, and anyone elses. I also look forward to trying it.

Best wishes,

John T



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Madhamish
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Postby Madhamish » Mon Nov 17, 2008 3:26 pm

Try posting the query and/or a copy of the seal on the forum at the armour archive http://forums.armourarchive.org although the majority of posters are American SCA there are some very capable armourers and historians that hang out there.


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Marghec
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Postby Marghec » Mon Nov 17, 2008 7:19 pm

Thanks for your advice Hamish.

John T



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craig1459
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Postby craig1459 » Mon Nov 17, 2008 11:25 pm

Out of interest - when did the visor enter general usage? I notice the seal of Henry III in Durham is very similar to this one, but with what looks to me like a visor (or is it? lol)
Image


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Marghec
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Great Seal Richard I

Postby Marghec » Tue Nov 18, 2008 10:24 am

That is a variant which I have not previously seen Craig, what is the source please?

Thanks,

John T



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Colin Middleton
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Postby Colin Middleton » Wed Nov 19, 2008 2:24 pm

1200 is VERY early for visors. It's very early for full helms to be honest.

Weren't there reinforcing plates known in the early 13th C round the sight on great helms to make up for the fact that a large hole had been cut in the plate. This would produce a specific weak point.

Later re-inforce plates are usually on the edge of the face or site, but normally only above it, presumably due to anticipated angles of strike.


Colin

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Brother Ranulf
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Postby Brother Ranulf » Wed Nov 19, 2008 4:04 pm

The Henry III seal posted above is his second seal, circa 1259. Attached is a better-quality version of the design, showing that the helm clearly has no visor (click on it twice to get the full size version). As far as I know, Richard's great helm is the earliest example, with Robert fitzWalter's seal of around 1201 coming a close second. It seems unlikely that adaptations like visors would have been applied to such a helm before it had even become a standard type.

I am with Colin on this - there is simply no evidence for visors as early as Richard's third seal (1198), nor for a long period following. My knowledge of 13th century anything is fairly limited, but I don't recall seeing visors anywhere before the late 13th century.
Attachments
henryIII.jpg


Brother Ranulf



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

Marghec
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Great Seal Richard I

Postby Marghec » Sun Nov 23, 2008 8:52 am

Colin and Ranulf,

I am not a devotee of pure fantasy, but one can never prove a negative. I also know of no other evidence of visors of this period, probably because they had not been perfected, but there has to be a first, and if there was a new design on the market, Richard I would have been the chap to try it.

Perhaps I have badly described my interpretation as a 'visor'. I imagine more of a reinforcing plate, perhaps held in place with pins, which could be totally removed for greater vision. Yes, cumbersome, and not very good, which is perhaps why the idea did not catch on. As a similar example, look at many of the early flying machines, totally impracticle, but all part of the developement curve.

“If at first, the idea is not absurd, then there is no hope for it”

Albert Einstein

Thank you for your comments and interest,

John T




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