19th Century
The Palace Guard

Oil on panel, signed bottom left
Image size: 6 x 11 inches (15.25 x 28 cm)


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This painting depicts a 16th century palace guard standing outside of an open door, wearing a set of armour and holding a wooden staff. The guard blows on a medieval bugle horn, made from a natural bull horn with a metal mouthpiece.

The subject’s armour is made up from a combination of a helmet, gorget, cuirass and spaulders. A gorget was a steel collar used for neck and throat protection and the gorgets were a part of ancient armour and were intended to protect against swords and other bladed weapons. Most medieval gorgets were simple shielded plates to protect the neck and were worn under the breastplate (the cuirass). The spaulders are the components of plated armour that cover the man’s shoulder area.