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  • From Vikings to Crusaders, the Norman Conquests of the Middle Ages

    Posted on June 9th, 2011 admin 1 comment

    Norman Crusader Helmet

    The Normans were descendants of Scandinavian Viking (Norse) conquerors, and were located in northern France within the city-state Normandy of which they gave their name to "Normans". The Normans played a major political, cultural and military role in medieval Europe, known for their Christian views and backgrounds that date back to the Viking age of Scandinavia during the 11th and 12th centuries. In order to spread their religious views and political idealism they needed to take over most of Europe and they did so by conquests "crusades" which later lead to the successful Siege of Antioch and the expansion of the Crusader Kingdom in Transjordan and the region of Galilee.

    Now you can become part of an historical crusade with our new Medieval Anglo Norman Crusader Helmet! Reenact the Siege of Antioch or use it as a simple costume accessory or display piece. Find this unique medieval helmet and more only at MedievalCostumesandGifts.com!

  • Body Armor for Medieval Knights

    Posted on April 28th, 2011 admin No comments

    Medieval HelmetTemplar Chainmail Shirt

    You’ve likely seen pictures depicting the body armor worn by knights during medieval times. They wore chain mail and plate metal armor. They also wore padded clothing as protection underneath. They needed all the protection they could get while in battle. However, the very best in body armor was the most expensive available–much like today. (Some things never change.) Outfitting yourself with armor for battle was costly for a knight. Thus, a knight of means had an advantage as he could more fully protect his body prior to battle. This definitely gave the knight the upper hand. Plate armor was constructed of large metal plates. Plate body armor was less flexible than chain mail, however, it guarded against both slashing blows as well as stabbing. It was practically invulnerable to swords altogether. The knight had far greater protection while battling it out. This certainly gave him a psychological edge as well.

    Chain mail is designed as hundreds of tiny metal rings hooked together to create a mesh-like covering for the knight. Knights did not refer to it as "chain mail." That term came into use much later. Knights referred to it as "mail." Chain mail was effective, but how effective depended upon the material used to construct it, how tightly woven it was, the thickness of the material and weave, and lastly the method used to hook or weave the metal rings together. Although chain mail was more flexible and provided some effective protection, it could be penetrated by a stabbing blow. Slashing blows were not much of a match, but a stabbing action could certainly penetrate the rings. As a result, many knights of means opted to don both plate armor and chain metal, thus effectively doubling their protection. Plate armor looks heavy, but it was surprisingly light. The reason is that the distribution of weight was spread evenly over one’s body. We’ve all seen the caricatures of knights having to be lifted onto their horses due to their plate armor, but that is a myth. In fact, even the plate armor worn for jousting–which was much heavier than battle armor–would not have required a knight to be lifted onto their horse. Jousting armor was heavier to avoid dying from an injury during a game. But it was not used during battle, when different skill sets were needed, including speed.

    Knights wore helmets, which were arguably one of the most important pieces of their ensemble. Knights worse differently designed helmets over the course of history. Depending on the time period, he might be wearing one design or another. For example, in the very early days, a knight’s helmet looked a bit like a cap. It had a piece of chain mail attached to it. But later on, helmets were made of plate armor. The face was protected by a visor, that was somewhat frightening to gaze upon. This may have also served as psychological edge. No knight was completely outfitted without his shield. Their shields were wooden underneath a piece of animal hide and rimmed with a piece of metal. This helped the knight to protect himself from incoming arrows, sword thrusts, and other weapons.

  • How about a Medieval Helmet for Mardi Gras

    Posted on March 4th, 2011 admin No comments

    Well that day is upon us again, but venetian masks seem too cliche, you want to stand out but still would like to be hidden…hmmm, well I got it! How about a Medieval Helmet for Mardi Gras! Be a Knight or wear a Viking helmet and dangle your beads from the horns! HUZZAH to Mardi Gras! Its time to take it medieval!

    For such a great occasion we decided to put out a promo code for our helmets! Starting Now through March 10, use promo code "MardiGras11" to receive a 15% discount! Don’t be left out for Mardi Gras, buy your helmet now! Only at Medieval Costumes and Gifts.

  • Update For New Medieval Merchandise and Promos

    Posted on March 3rd, 2011 admin No comments

    Well It is a new month and the Ren Fairs are storming the castles everywhere, Busy year for all of us so far, just got new inventory last week if you already haven’t noticed our two new additions to the Medieval Costumes & Gifts Family, the Arthurian Knight Helmet and the Norman Helmet with Chain mail. Both helmets are 18 gauge steel and feature brass accents, they would make a fine addition to your medieval collection or would simply look great on top of a mantel. So be sure to check those out!

    Also new month means new helmet of the month! SAVE 15% this month on a brand new Corinthian Helmet! Just use the promo Code "Helmet03" to receive your 15% off discount!

    Don’t forget, if you have purchased items from us before, be sure to share those pictures with us on Facebook or Flickr, to view all of our social sites simply click on the buttons located under the "Follow Us" category.

  • Armor Helmets of the Ancient Greeks

    Posted on February 10th, 2011 admin No comments

    Helmets in Ancient Greece were manufactured to be sturdy in battle and intimidate the enemy. The medieval styles varied slightly, but were mostly made of tough bronze and accented with a tall plume.

    The Italic Corinthian helmet is most noted for its tall plume which ran into a long ponytail design at the tail end. The front of the helmet featured wide cheek protectors which came around from the sides of the helmet, nearly touching near the nose and mouth. This style of helmet offered small eye slits for the warrior to see in battle. Although fairly useful as a protective measure, the helmet pieces covering the eyes and ears made it hard for warriors to see and hear while fighting.

    Hoplites were Ancient Greek citizen soldiers. Their helmets were similar to the Corinthian helmet, but usually with less decoration. If a plume was present, it was usually tan or off-white. Their helmet style was made to cover the majority of their face and head as these soldiers were usually the men standing at the front of the battle lines. Hoplite soldiers braced themselves against attack with large shields and spears. They usually did receive some military training, but were mostly responsible for their own weapons and armor.

    Armor from Ancient Greece kept the same basic style throughout history. The tall plume, usually accented with a ponytail end, defined the majority of their helmets. These plumes along with broad cheek guards define the Greek helmets. These distinctive features make it easy for Greek armor collectors to find and gather more items for their collections.

    Like the Corinthian Greek Helmet in the above picture, well be sure to check the other Greek helmets we have in stalk so you can start your very own collection! Only at Medieval Costumes & Gifts!

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