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Couter: HEN.M.134-1933

Object information

Awaiting location update


Production: Unknown




Couter, from a type of arm-defence known as a 'splint', worn with a type of infantry armour known as an 'almain rivet'. Formed of a single, shell-like plate, open at the rear and slightly shaped to the point of the elbow. Its outer edge is straight. Its upper and lower edges diverge from the outside to the inside of the elbow where they curve in markedly to a medial pucker. The upper and lower edges have partial inward turns. The inner end of the lower turn is damaged. Secured by a modern round-headed rivet with an octagonal internal washer within the centre of the front face of the couter is a short, vertical, modern strap cut with a slit. The strap, which served to connect the couter to the upper and lower cannons of the vambrace, lacks its matching opposite half. Secured by a modern, externally-flush rivet within the inner end of the pucker is a short, modern, buff-leather strap that terminates in a modern single-ended iron buckle with tongue, roller and centrally pointed hasp. The buckle engages a bifurcated, modern, buff-leather strap that is secured by single externally-flush rivets within the upper and lower ends of the outer edge of the couter. A later hole lying between these rivets is plugged with a smaller externally-flush rivet. Together with the lower cannon of a vambrace HEN.M.133-1933


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: 8.9 cm
Height: 19.3 cm
Weight: 0.36 kg
Width: 16.0 cm

Relative size of this object

16 cm19.3 cm8.9 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 16th Century
Production date: circa AD 1510


The couter is bright with a patchy light patina overall. Its metal shows evidence of delamination at many points.

Components of the work

Strap composed of leather ( modern)
Buckle composed of iron (metal)

Materials used in production


Techniques used in production

Hammered : Formed of a single, shell-like plate, open at the rear and slightly shaped to the point of the elbow; hammered, shaped, riveted

Identification numbers

Accession number: HEN.M.134-1933
Primary reference Number: 18616
Stable URI

Audit data

Created: Saturday 6 August 2011 Updated: Tuesday 20 March 2012 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) "Couter" Web page available at: Accessed: 2022-12-03 09:32:02

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{{cite web|url= |title=Couter |author=The Fitzwilliam Museum|accessdate=2022-12-03 09:32:02|publisher=The University of Cambridge}}

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