The Knight and the Blast Furnace: A History of the Metallurgy of Armour in the Middle Ages & the Early Modern Period

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November 2002



The suit of armour distinguishes the European Middle Ages & Renaissance from all other periods and cultures. Unlike flexible defences, popular everywhere else in the world, the rigid, articulated, exoskeleton of a "suit of armour" was a more extravagant and less adaptable means of personal protection. It required greater metallurgical resources to make, but offered far better protection against available weapons. This book tells the story from its invention in 14th century Lombardy, which depended on the production of the necessary steel, until its eventual decline in the 17th century, principally because of the development of another military technology, the gun. The metallurgy of 600 armours has been analysed, and their probable effectiveness in battle is assessed by means of mechanical tests.


Foreword by Claude Blair Acknowledgements SECTION ONE IRON
1.1 The earliest ironmaking 1.2 Swords 1.3 Hardening of steel SECTION TWO MAIL
2.1 Mail 2.2 Armour of the later Roman Empire and the early Middle Ages SECTION THREE KNIGHTS
3.1 The birth of the knight 3.2 Infantry and crossbows SECTION FOUR ITALY
4.1 The triumph of an industry 4.2 The flourishing of an industry - The Metallurgy of Italian armour 4.3 The metallurgy of Italian armour before 1510 4.4 The eclipse of an industry - Italian armour after 1510 4.5 The metallurgy of Italian armour after 1510 SECTION FIVE GERMANY
5.1 "German" armour up to 1450 5.2 The metallurgy of "German" armour up to 1450 5.3 Augsburg armour 5.4 The metallurgy of Augsburg armour from the later 15th century onwards 5.5 Innsbruck armour 5.6 The metallurgy of Innsbruck armour 5.7 Landshut armour 5.8 The metallurgy of Landshut armour 5.9 Nurnberg armour 5.10 The metallurgy of Nurnberg armour 5.11 The metallurgy of Nurnberg tournament armours of the late 15th century SECTION SIX THE REST OF EUROPE
6.1 Miscellaneous "German" armour 6.2 Flanders 6.3 The metallurgy of Flemish armour 6.4 England 6.5 The metallurgy of armour (presumed to have been) made in England 6.6 Spain 6.7 France 6.8 Sweden 6.9 North Germany and The Netherlands SECTION SEVEN GUNS
7.1 The invention of guns 7.2 The earliest guns in Europe 7.3 Guns in 15th century warfare 7.4 Handguns in the 16th century SECTION EIGHT PRODUCTION
8.1 Furnaces and blooms 8.2 Hardening armour 8.3 The mass-production of armour SECTION NINE PROTECTION
9.1 Thickness of armour 9.2 Attack on armour 9.3 Effectiveness of armour according to contemporary evidence 9.4 Estimating the effectiveness of armour 9.5 Conclusion - Did it work? Index


Alan R. Williams, Ph.D. (1974) in History of Science, University of Manchester, is Visiting Research Fellow, Engineering Department, Reading University. He has published extensively on the metallurgy of armour and weapons, and is the co-author of The Royal Armoury at Greenwich (1995).
EAN: 9789004124981
ISBN: 9004124985
Untertitel: New. Sprache: Englisch.
Erscheinungsdatum: November 2002
Seitenanzahl: 956 Seiten
Format: gebunden
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