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Pair of rowel spurs

  • Place of origin:

    Germany (made)

  • Date:

    19th century (made)

  • Artist/Maker:

    Unknown

  • Materials and Techniques:

    Chiselled and blued iron

  • Museum number:

    568&A-1899

  • Gallery location:

    In Storage

At a time when people travelled long distances on horseback, spurs were an important and necessary accessory. They were designed to fit round the heel of a boot and were held by a strap and buckle which passed over the foot. The manufacture of spurs was a specialist craft, the makers being known as 'spurriers'.

This type, with revolving spiked wheels that pressed into the flanks of the horse, was known as a rowel spur. It was first developed in the late Middle Ages. Some rowel spurs are elaborate showpieces with more than a dozen revolving spiked wheels.

Physical description

Chiselled and blued iron, each spur has five eight-armed rowels with smaller rowels of eight points at the end of each arm.

Place of Origin

Germany (made)

Date

19th century (made)

Artist/maker

Unknown

Materials and Techniques

Chiselled and blued iron

Historical context note

The multiple rowels are non-functional, which suggests this may be a spur-maker's exhibition piece.

Descriptive line

Chiselled and blued iron, Germany, 19th century

Bibliographic References (Citation, Note/Abstract, NAL no)

Charles de Lacy, The History of the Spur , The Connoisseur, 1911
Charles Chenevix Trench, A History of Horsemanship, Longman, 1970

Production Note

In the 15th century style

Materials

Iron

Techniques

Forging; Blued; Chiselled

Categories

Arms & Armour; Accessories; Fashion; Tools & Equipment; Metalwork; Transport; Animals and Wildlife; Equestrian equipment

Collection

Metalwork Collection

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