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The closed profile of the helmet and the shiny, smooth surface of steel, contrasts with the heads of spirally twisted rivets, that — despite their severe functionality — provide it with an extraordinary elegance. Until the middle of the 20th century, this helmet was considered a 19th-century copy. Covered with a thick layer of black paint (designed to protect against corrosion) it closely guarded its secrets. After being subjected to maintenance procedures, not only did this reveal its raw beauty, but also shed light on its mysterious past.
It represents a late Gothic form of the helmet, evolved from the medieval cervelliere, widespread at the end of the 15th and early 16th century. It appeared in numerous variations and variants, serving both knights and soldiers from other classes.

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This is a type of a closed helmet. The bowl is forged from one sheet, formed semi-circularly, with a broad, not too prominent crest, adorned with a cut linear ornament. The back is elongated, contoured into a sharp tip, with a slightly marked conjunction line in the middle. The sides of the bowl and the neck-guard are decorated with spirally twisted bumps. On the back, on the helmet tail, are the signatures of two craftsmen. A movable visor, with a strongly marked vertical conjunction line and horizontal viewfinder, is profiled in a sharp topped overlap at the bell's ridge. The visor was fixed on the sides of the bell with contemporary flat rivets, without any original rotary side hinges. The lower edges of the bell and the visor are wrapped in a flat-bent roll.
The closed profile of the helmet and the shiny, smooth surface of steel, contrasts with the heads of spirally twisted rivets, that — despite their severe functionality — provide it with an extraordinary elegance. Until the middle of the 20th century, this helmet was considered a 19th-century copy. Covered with a thick layer of black paint (designed to protect against corrosion) it closely guarded its secrets. After being subjected to maintenance procedures, not only did this reveal its raw beauty, but also shed light on its mysterious past.
It represents a late Gothic form of the helmet, evolved from the medieval cervelliere, widespread at the end of the15th and early 16th century. It appeared in numerous variations and variants, serving both knights and soldiers from other classes. Mass-produced in south German and north Italian armourer workshops (Nuremberg, Augsburg, Milan), it was exported to almost all of Europe. Thus, it is not surprising that it was also popular among Poles, which is confirmed by the native written sources. It appears in the Kraków archives, the records of cavalry and infantry units, Kraków's urban expenditures, and the list of weapons of Kraków guilds. Probably many examples of such helmets came from the native armourer production, for which 15th-century Kraków was famous. However, the majority were imported from the German countries.
The popularity of cervelliere and sallets is also indicated by numerous iconographic sources, and the best examples of those are the masterfully carved statues of guards in the scene of the resurrection at the altar of Viet Stoss, in the Church of St Mary.

Elaborated by the Historical Museum of the City of Kraków, © all rights reserved

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Salada type helmet

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Igor Szelest
05/11/13 10:28
Czy Saladyn mógł nosić saladę?

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