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Half-shaffron: HEN.M.159A-1933

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Object information

Current Location: In storage


Production: Unknown




Half-shaffron, for field or tournament use. Formed of a main plate and a pair of ear-defences. The main plate is medially ridged, except at the brow, and narrows to a point at its lower end which extends to just below the level of the eyes. Its sides have large semi-circular cut-outs for the eyes. The cut-outs are slightly flanged outwards above the eyes. Their lower corners are rounded and flow into the lower edge of the main plate. The cut-outs and the lower edge are decorated with an inward turn notched with pairs of transverse lines and accompanied by a recessed border. The border contains fifteen holes for lining-rivets, all now occupied by modern, round-headed brass rivets, except the central one which is vacant and has been enlarged. The centre of the brow is fitted with a modern, round-headed brass rivet occupying a hole for the attachment of a missing decorative escutcheon. The slightly convex sides of the main-plate, above the level of the eyes, are each fitted with a pair of modern, round-headed brass rivets occupying holes for the attachment of missing side-plates. The straight upper edge of the main plate is pierced at its centre with a pair of rivet-holes for the attachment of a missing poll-plate. The upper corners of the main plate are cut away in a concave curve to receive the gutter-shaped, pointed ear-defences. The ear-defences have flanged lower edges that fit within the main plate and are in each case attached to it by three modern, round-headed brass rivets. The flanges are cusped at the riveting-points. Together with the poll-plate HEN.M.159B-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: 11.0 cm
Height: 43.5 cm
Weight: 0.73 kg
Width: 25.4 cm

Acquisition and important dates

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


16th Century
Circa 1550 CE - 1560 CE


South German

The shaffron is bright with light patination overall. The surface of the metal shows evidence of delamination just to the right of centre immediately below the level of the eyes.

Components of the work

Rivet Caps composed of brass (alloy)
Main Plate

Materials used in production


Techniques used in production

Hammered : Formed of a medially-ridged main plate and a pair of ear-defences; hammered, shaped, riveted, with a recessed border and notched transverse lines

Identification numbers

Accession number: HEN.M.159A-1933
Primary reference Number: 18660
Stable URI

Audit data

Created: Saturday 6 August 2011 Updated: Thursday 6 February 2020 Last processed: Thursday 3 August 2023

Associated departments & institutions

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

Citation for print

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The Fitzwilliam Museum (2023) "Half-shaffron" Web page available at: Accessed: 2023-12-02 16:24:56

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{{cite web|url= |title=Half-shaffron |author=The Fitzwilliam Museum|accessdate=2023-12-02 16:24:56|publisher=The University of Cambridge}}

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