This hand-made replica suit of armor is of the type produced in the German High Gothic period , Circa 1480. It features an abundance of detailed fluting that adds adornment detail as well as adding strength to the armor knight. The piece is fully articulated ( highly moveable ) and is wearable for an average size person up to approximately a maximum of 5" 10" tall and about 190 pounds . The polished and blackened carbon steel armor plate sections are highlighted with brass trim throughout. There is a high level of detail on this piece far above what you would normally expect on a replica suit of armor. The Helmet has a pivoting visor and adds a lower bevor chin and neck protective piece.
ZAWISZA CZARNY - THE REAL BLACK KNIGHT
The advent of
the 14th century saw the arrival on the
battlefield a revolutionary new military force – the heavily armored knight.
Combining mobility with armor to create a shock force, these legions arrived
with such devastating effect that it would shape military tactics from
Grunwald (Tannenberg) in the 14th century through Kursk in the 20th and
beyond. Covered in plate armor and riding an equally armored steed, the
knight and his war horse were the equivalent of the modern battle tank and
were used in much the same way. The heyday of the armored knight was in the
15th century and, ironically, often pitted Polish knights in German-made
armor against Teutonic knights on many of the same fields where German
Panzers engaged Russian T-34s in equally epic struggles five centuries
Zawisza Czarny was perhaps the most famous knight of the 15th century, high gothic period. He was a man of unblemished honor and was renowned across Europe for his bravery and his skills as a diplomat for King Wladyslaw II of Poland. He was known as “The Black Knight” for his jet-black hair and his custom made black armor. Like many knights of the 15th century who could afford to outfit themselves with the most up to date armor he had his made abroad in Germany. This type of armor became known as German Gothic armor due to the incorporation of the classic features of Gothic art – slender lines, extended forms, sharp contours, and fluting on flat surfaces. The German Armor Guilds also developed an advanced treatment for their armor to prevent rust while the armies were on campaign. This involved boiling the armor in a pot of “dirty” or used oil until the oil was absorbed into the metal, then burning off the excess. The result was a dark, glossy finish preferred by many knights, including Zawisza.
In 1428 Zawisza, along with his retinue of 500 knights, joined forces with King Sigismund's army in a war against the Ottoman Turks. It was a disastrous campaign, rife with political intrigue and treachery, and Sigismund's forces were soundly defeated. Disgusted the the treachery and disheartened with Sigismund's apparent cowardice, Zawisza refused to retreat and was overwhelmed and killed while guarding the retreating army. A monument near the site of his death reads “In Golubac, his life was taken by the Turks in 1428, the famous Knight, the symbol of courage and honor, Zawisza the Black. Glory to the hero.”
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