Most armour terms derive from medieval French. While some words are familiar, others are now quite obscure, so we thought it would be useful to have a brief explanation of what they really mean, and how they apply to the armour we make.

Bracers ~ Couters ~ Gauntlets ~ Greaves ~ Lamés ~ Pauldrons ~ Rerebrace ~ Spaulders ~ Vambrace


The archer's variant of the vambrace. Designed to protect the inside of the forearm from both bow string and arrow, bracers fasten on the outside of the arm rather than the inside, as vambraces do. [Examples]


Elbow defense, in its simplest form a cup spanning the gap between forearm and upper arm armour.


Jointed armour covering the hand, wrist and forearm. [Examples]


Armour for the leg, covering the shin and sometimes extending to the thigh. [Examples]


The segmented plates forming pauldrons and spaulders. [Examples]


Shoulder and upper arm armour combined, which extend to cover parts of the upper chest and back. Essentially an extended spaulder, which they evolved from. [Examples]


Upper arm armour, most often a single plate. [Examples]


Segmented upper arm and shoulder armour, similar to the pauldron except that they do not cover the arm hole, chest or back. [Examples]


Single-piece forearm armour. Archer's forearm armour are sometimes called bracers, though today the terms are becoming interchangeable. [Examples]

Web page and all original designs © David Gullen 2007