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Close helmet: HEN.M.71-1933

Object information

Awaiting location update






Close helmet, for heavy cavalry use, composed of elements of a similar period and fashion, with later etched decoration. Formed of a one-piece skull with a peak and a bevor attached to it by common pivots, and a single gorget-plate front and rear. The rounded skull rises to a low medial comb, decorated at its crest with roping. The lower edge of the skull has been cut away at the brow. A modern plume-holder is riveted at the nape of the skull. The flat narrow peak projects forward to a central point. Its upper edge extends a considerable way up the brow. The bevor which is weakly shaped to the chin, is cut with a broad, U-shaped face-opening. The gorget-plates have convex lower edges. The main edges of the helmet have file-roped inward turns.
The helmet is decorated with etched bands of trophies on a stippled and blackened ground. The main bands are bordered to either side by narrow bands of guilloche, which are repeated at the main and secondary edges of the helmet.


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: 33 cm
Height: 34 cm
Weight: 2.09 kg
Width: 25.5 cm

Relative size of this object

25.5 cm34 cm33 cm What does this represent?

Relative size of this object is displayed using code inspired by Good Form and Spectacle's work on the British Museum's Waddeson Bequest website and their dimension drawer. They chose a tennis ball to represent a universally sized object, from which you could envisage the size of an object.

Acquisition and important dates

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


Early 17th Century
Production date: circa AD 1600


All parts of the helmet are associated with one another. The gorget-plates are probably modern restorations made from old metal. The etched decoration of the helmet is modern throughout.

The helmet is bright with a mottled medium patination throughout.

Components of the work


Materials used in production


Techniques used in production

Hammered : Formed of a one-piece skull with a peak and a bevor attached to it by common pivots, and a single gorget-plate front and rear; hammered, shaped, riveted, with file-roped and etched decoration on a blackened and stippled ground

Inscription or legends present

Inscription present: eight-pointed asterisk

  • Location: Inside the rear gorget-plate
  • Method of creation: Struck
  • Type: Mark
  • Text: 27
  • Type: Label

Identification numbers

Accession number: HEN.M.71-1933
Primary reference Number: 18440
Stable URI

Audit data

Created: Saturday 6 August 2011 Updated: Wednesday 11 January 2023 Last processed: Wednesday 11 January 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 (2023) "Close helmet" Web page available at: Accessed: 2023-03-21 02:01:37

Citation for Wikipedia

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{{cite web|url= |title=Close helmet |author=The Fitzwilliam Museum|accessdate=2023-03-21 02:01:37|publisher=The University of Cambridge}}

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