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Spanish morion: HEN.M.43-1933

Object information

Awaiting location update






'Spanish' morion, for infantry use, with etched decoration. Formed in one piece with an almond-shaped crown that rises to a short, backward-directed 'stalk' at its apex; and a narrow, integral brim that is turned down evenly all round. The edge of the brim has a file-roped inward turn. A large section of the right side, and a smaller section of the left side of the brim are each restored with riveted internal patches. The front and rear of the brim have each been pierced with later wiring-holes. The front hole has subsequently been plugged with an externally-flush rivet. The base of the crown is encircled by sixteen modern lining-rivets, all of which are of brass-capped, round-headed form with circular internal washers, except for one at the left side which has a flat, internal head and is externally flush. The rivets retain a modern leather lining-band. The central pair of rivets at each side also retain the remains of the connecting-leather for the missing cheek-pieces.
The crown of the helmet is decorated with eight vertical bands of etched trophies on a stippled and blackened ground that radiate from its apex which is etched with acanthus foliage. All eight bands are enclosed to either side by three narrower bands, of which the central one is decorated with guilloche and the other two remain plain. A band of guilloche enclosed by a pair of plain bands also decorates the base of the skull. The brim of the helmet is decorated with a band of cabling enclosed by a pair of plain narrow bands.


History note: Mr James Stewart Henderson of 'Abbotsford', Downs Road, St Helen's Park, Hastings, Sussex.

Legal notes

J.S. Henderson Bequest

Measurements and weight

Depth: 25.9 cm
Height: 21.3 cm
Weight: 1.43 kg
Width: 23.1 cm

Acquisition and important dates

Method of acquisition: Bequeathed (1933-03-16) by Henderson, James Stewart


16th Century, Late
Production date: circa AD 1590


North Italian

The helmet is bright with a light to fairly heavy patination overall. Its ornament shows some wear. The surface of the metal shows some evidence of delamination, particularly on the right side.

Components of the work

Lining-band composed of leather ( modern)
Lining-rivet Caps composed of brass (alloy)

Materials used in production


Techniques used in production

Hammered : Formed in one piece with an almond-shaped crown that rises to a short, backward-directed 'stalk' at its apex; and a narrow, integral brim that is turned down evenly all round; hammered, shaped, riveted, with etched and file-roped decoration on a blackened ground

Identification numbers

Accession number: HEN.M.43-1933
Primary reference Number: 18311
Stable URI

Audit data

Created: Saturday 6 August 2011 Updated: Wednesday 11 January 2023 Last processed: Friday 8 December 2023

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 (2024) "Spanish morion" Web page available at: Accessed: 2024-07-25 13:41:35

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{{cite web|url= |title=Spanish morion |author=The Fitzwilliam Museum|accessdate=2024-07-25 13:41:35|publisher=The University of Cambridge}}

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