EXAMPLES OF IMPERIAL MILITARY DRESS c.1578

Text by Simon Chick
Engraving by Jost Amman


    Figure 1: This figure illustrates a 'Landsknecht' mercenary, typical of the majority of the Imperial infantry throughout the sixteenth century and who also saw employment in most European armies. His dress displays the fashionable padded jerkin and sleeves with 'slashing' that allowed linings to show through and which led to highly colourful costumes. His right leg is covered with a loose fitting plunderhose with ribbons tied at the knee, while his other leg has a tight fitting hose. He also has a wide brimmed soft hat decorated by ostrich feather plumes. His only weapon is a sword, but it is probable that he would have carried a dagger and a pike, or halberd.

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