Arms & Armor: The Cleveland Museum of Art

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European armor evolved from garments of chain-mail, made from thousands of handmade rings, to suits of articulated metal plates-once the apogee of military technology, now the image of herioc chivalry-and how the brutally utilitarian weapons of the early Middle Ages became the ancestors of exquisite swords and firearms of the sixteenth to the early nineteenth centuries. We learn how, when technological innovation banished it from the battlefield in the seventeenth century, armor continued to develop as a representation of power and rank, and how master craftsmen in leather, wood, steel, ivory, and gold created some of the most compelling objects in European decorative arts.

200 pages

Published 2008