Preview: Dangerous Arts

With the release of ‘Dangerous Arts’ the newest publication from the Royal Armouries, we are providing you with the chance to preview a sample of the book. From the earliest times, the finest craftsmen in the world created beautiful objects for their wealthiest patrons. Worn by kings and coveted by emperors, these items not only revealed the owners’ power but also their standing as great connoisseurs of the arts. Dangerous Arts reveals a world that combines art with conflict, deathRead more

Sir Arthur Conan Doyle’s campaign for better armour on the Western Front: Part three

  Part Three: Private Companies Written by Philip Abbot  Archives and Records Manager for the Royal Armouries in Leeds. At least eighteen designs for armour using steel plate, mail and even textiles were manufactured commercially in Britain during the First Word War, and no less than forty patents for helmets and armour were taken out in Britain between 1914 and 1918. It comes as no surprise therefore to learn that Conan Doyle also received letters from a number of private companiesRead more

New acquisition: the Missaglia Breastplate

On 29th June, at the Thomas Del Mar sale, the Royal Armouries purchased a rare breastplate by a famous family of armourers, the Missaglia family. The breastplate is stamped with the armourer’s mark of the Missaglia family: a Lombardic ‘M’ under a split cross on the right shoulder. The Missaglia’s were the foremost armourers of the Middle Ages, working from their famous workshop in Milan. This breastplate was made by Giovanni Angelo Missaglia (recorded 1504-1529), a third generation armourer ofRead more

Meet the Jouster: Stacy Van Dolah-Evans #TeamEngland

  Age: 40 High: 5’11 Weight: 12.5 stone Armour: Burgundian Export 1475-1490 Motto: Mors Aut Gloria – Death or Glory Jousting: 16 years Strengths: experience in Jousting & Melee. Won the Royal Armouries melee at the Easter Tournament 2015. Weakness: NONE! (Perhaps overconfidence?) Stacy is the producer of the International Tournament of Arundel Castle and also one of England’s finest jousters. Stacy has ridden horses since childhood at a competitive level, and progressed into mounted 15th century cavalry and tournamentRead more

Hall of Steel Cleaning: a ‘Call to Arms’

Written by Andrew Brown, Head of Estates and Facilities at the Royal Armouries in Leeds. After a number of years the Hall of Steel desperately needed a spring clean. This in itself posed a challenge due to the height and access difficulties to the Hall, in addition to closing down the area and restricting visitor access. An external cleaning company Cleanbright Ltd were commissioned to undertake the internal high level areas and our own Facilities staff tackled the outer staircase, allRead more

Agincourt 600: The ‘Livre des fais du bon messire Jehan le Maingre, dit Bouciquaut’

The ‘Livre des fais du bon messire Jehan le Maingre, dit Bouciquaut’ is one of the beautiful manuscripts included in the Royal Armouries’ Agincourt exhibition at the Tower of London, commemorating the battle’s 600th anniversary this year.To accompany the exhibition, the Royal Armouries has produced a catalogue with Yale University Press, edited by our Curator of Tower History and Tower Special Collections Malcolm Mercer and trustee Professor Anne Curry. Here, contributor to that publication Dr Craig Taylor of the University ofRead more