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Burgonet: M.1.4E-1936

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Object information

Maker(s)

Unknown (Production)

Description

Burgonet and buffe, for medium and light field use. The burgonet is formed of a one-piece skull, a pivoted peak, a pair of hinged cheek-pieces and a neck-guard of one lame. The skull has a high medial comb decorated along its crest with deeply embossed notches, some of which have broken through at the rear. Each side of the skull is slightly arched over the brow. It is cut back at each side, in a nearly rectangular outline, to receive the cheek-pieces. The upper rear corners of the cut-outs are themselves cut with broad, shallow, trapezoidal notches to accommodate the hinges for the cheek-pieces. The face-opening of the skull is bordered by fifteen modern, externally-flush lining-rivets. Five modern, brass-capped, round-headed lining-rivets with circular internal washers run around the rear of the skull at the height of the nape. A later hole of uncertain function is pierced just to the left of the central rivet. The rear of the skull is flanged outwards at its lower edge to receive a restored neck-guard of one lame which is attached at either side by a modern brass-capped rivet with a circular, internal washer. The slightly concave lower edge of the neck-guard has a notched inward turn accompanied by a recessed border containing seven modern lining-rivets retaining a modern leather lining-band. The rivets are of round-headed form with brass caps and circular, internal washers, except for the outermost ones which are overlapped by the cheek-pieces and therefore of externally flush form. The neck-guard is decorated with three vertical recessed bands serving as a continuation of the comb and the lateral bands of the skull. Attached by a pivot at each side of the skull is an associated peak which has short, slender arms with rounded ends and projects forward to a rounded point. The modern pivots are of small, round-headed form with brass caps and circular, internal washers. Behind the left pivot the skull is pierced with a possibly earlier pivot-hole, now plugged with an externally-flush rivet. The front edge of the peak has a notched inward turn accompanied by a recessed border. The peak is decorated with three recessed bands serving as a continuation of the comb and lateral bands of the skull. The cheek-pieces overlap the skull and are attached to it by internal hinges with cropped corners. The hinges are secured at each end by pairs of brass-capped, round-headed rivets. The cheek-pieces, of which the left one is a restoration, are of fairly narrow, upright form with strongly rounded upper rear corners and somewhat less rounded lower front corners. Their lower ends are flanged outwards, serving as a continuation of the neck-guard. Their front edges have plain, partial inward turns, and their lower edges, notched full inward turns, in each case accompanied by recessed borders. Three modern, externally-flush lining-rivets occupy the front border of each cheek-piece while a modern, brass-capped round-headed rivet is located half way along each side of the neck, just above the angle of the flange. Modern, decorative, brass-capped, round-headed rivets occupying construction-holes located at the upper front corner of each cheek-piece and its rear edge, just above the angle of the flange, align with holes for lining-rivets in the skull. Secured within each cheek-piece by its lower front lining-rivet is a modern, leather strap covered with green (originally black) velvet. The shorter right strap, which is now detached, terminates in a plain, double-ended, tongued, iron buckle, while the longer left strap, which it engages, has a decorated brass terminal. The straps fasten around the front of the neck. Each cheek-piece is pierced towards its upper end with a small, circular ventilation-hole surrounded by a further six such holes arranged in a circular formation. A modern, pierced stud, to engage the swivel-hooks of the buffe, is riveted just below the ventilation-holes.
The associated buffe is formed of a bevor protecting the chin, two falling, upper extension-plates protecting the face from the level of the mouth to just below the level of the eyes, and two gorget-plates protecting the throat. The bevor is medially ridged and strongly shaped to the point of the chin where it has been repaired with a riveted internal patch. Its upper edge is cut with a broad, fairly shallow notch. The notch is covered by the two, medially-ridged, downward-overlapping falling-plates. The upper of the two plates is considerably taller than the lower one and rises to an obtuse, central point at its upper edge which has a file-roped inward turn. A short distance below the turn, the upper plate is embossed with a prominent transverse rib, pierced with diagonal ventilation-slots, some of which have broken into one another at the right end and centre. The lower edge of each falling plate is bordered by an incised line. The plates are connected to one another and to the bevor at their outer ends by modern, brass-capped, round-headed rivets with circular internal washers. The lower edge of the upper plate is shaped around articulating rivets while the lower edge of the lower plate is extended downward as a short tongue to accommodate its rivets. These latter rivets occupy later holes pierced in the bevor just above the original holes which have broken out and are now vacant. Attached by an externally-flush rivet within the right side of the upper edge of both the bevor and the first falling plate is a modern, horizontal, spring-strip. The obliquely-cut and notched inner end of each spring is bent outwards and projects through a rectangular hole in its respective plate to support the overlying falling plate. Attached by a modern, brass-capped, round-headed rivet with a circular, internal washer at each of the upper rear corners of the buffe is a modern swivel-hook that engages the pierced stud of each of the cheek-pieces of the burgonet. Attached by similar rivets with brass rosette washers at each side of the neck of the bevor is a modern leather strap. The short left one terminates in a single-ended, tongued buckle, while the longer right one, which it engages, is covered with green (originally black) velvet and has a decorated brass terminal. The straps fasten around the rear of the neck of the burgonet. The rear edge of the bevor is slightly damaged by corrosion and cracks at both sides. The lower edge of the bevor is flanged outwards to receive two upward-overlapping gorget-plates. The restored lower plate is considerably deeper than the upper plate. Its strongly convex lower edge has a notched inward turn accompanied by a recessed border containing seven modern, brass-capped, round-headed lining-rivets, retaining a modern, buff-leather lining-band. The upper edge of each gorget-plate is bordered by an incised line. The plates are connected to one another and to the bevor at their outer ends by modern, brass-capped, round-headed rivets with circular, internal washers. The upper edge of each plate is shaped around the articulating rivets. Part of the composite half armour M.1.4A-E-1936.

Notes

History note: According to information probably supplied by Sir James Mann, and recorded under Acc. No. M.2-1950 in the Department of Medieval, Renaissance & Modern Works accession register, the composite armour of which the present piece forms a part was successively in the collections of [Louis] Bachereau, [S.J.] Whawell, [Sir Edward] Barry and Colville. E.W. Stead's own manuscript catalogue confirms that the armour came from the Barry collection. Mrs E.W. Stead and Mr Gilbert Stead of Dalston Hall, Cumberland.

Legal notes

Given by Mrs E.W. Stead and Mr Gilbert Stead

Acquisition and important dates

Method of acquisition: Given (1936-01-15) by Stead, E. W. and Gilbert

Dating

Mid-16th Century
Circa 1550 CE - 1560 CE

Note

The burgonet has a 'black from the hammer' finish, now partly oxidised to a russet colour with bright bands and borders showing pitting and medium patination. The buffe has been artificially coloured in modern times to match the burgonet, and its bright bands are similarly pitted and patinated.

The neck-guard and left cheek-piece of the burgonet are shown by differences in their workmanship and colour to be modern restorations. The peak is authentic but shown by its poor fit, its subtly different colour, the misalignment of its recessed bands with respect to those on the skull, and a plugged earlier pivot-hole on the left side of the skull to be associated. The buffe is shown by its different style, its roped upper edge and its different surface to be associated with the burgonet as well. The lowest gorget-plate of the buffe is shown by differences in its workmanship and colour to be a modern restoration.

The burgonet South German; the buffe North Italian

Components of the work

Rosette Washers composed of brass (alloy) ( buffe) Buckle Terminal composed of brass (alloy) ( burgonet, buffe) Straps composed of velvet ( burgonet, buffe) leather ( modern, burgonet, buffe) Buckle composed of iron (metal) ( burgonet) Lining-band composed of leather ( modern, burgonet, buffe) Lining-rivets Caps composed of brass (alloy) ( modern, burgonet) Buffe Depth 17.1 cm Height 23.1 cm Weight 0.66 kg Width 19.6 cm
Burgonet Depth 32.7 cm Height 28.1 cm Weight 1.88 kg Width 21.3 cm
Buffe, Bevor Cheek-pieces Decoration Borders Decoration Falling-plates Main Edge Borders Parts Skull Notches Upper Plate

Materials used in production

Steel

Techniques used in production

Hammered : The burgonet is formed of a one-piece skull, a pivoted peak, a pair of hinged cheek-pieces and a neck-guard of one lame; the associated buffe is formed of a bevor protecting the chin, two falling, upper extension-plates protecting the face from the level of the mouth to just below the level of the eyes, and two gorget-plates protecting the throat; hammered, shaped, riveted, decorated with recessed borders
Patinating Forming

References and bibliographic entries

Related exhibitions

Identification numbers

Accession number: M.1.4E-1936
Primary reference Number: 18166
Stable URI

Audit data

Created: Saturday 6 August 2011 Updated: Tuesday 1 December 2020 Last processed: Sunday 21 March 2021

Associated departments & institutions

Owner or interested party: The Fitzwilliam Museum
Associated department: Applied Arts

Citation for print

This record can be cited in the Harvard Bibliographic style using the text below:

The Fitzwilliam Museum (2022) "Burgonet" Web page available at: https://data.fitzmuseum.cam.ac.uk/id/object/18166 Accessed: 2022-05-25 17:07:51

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{{cite web|url=https://data.fitzmuseum.cam.ac.uk/id/object/18166 |title=Burgonet |author=The Fitzwilliam Museum|accessdate=2022-05-25 17:07:51|publisher=The University of Cambridge}}

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                        <figcaption class="figure-caption text-info">Burgonet</figcaption>
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