A timeline of royal armour

A timeline of royal armour

Boy's armour belonging to Henry Prince of Wales in about 1607


This exhibition is now closed

The Tudors 1485-1603

Silver and engraved armour of Henry VIII, about 15151509: Henry VIII
crowned King

1511: Henry established the royal armour workshop 
in Greenwich

1515: Silvered and engraved armour made for Henry VIII

Boy's light cavalry armour belonging to King Edward VI, in about 15501547: Edward VI
became King

1550: Boy’s armour made at royal workshops in Greenwich, probably for the 13 year old King Edward VI

Mary I became Queen

Field armour of William Somerset Earl of Worcester about 15701558: Elizabeth I became Queen

Elizabeth allowed her favourite courtiers to order armour from the royal workshop – at a great price. An example is this field armour ordered by William Somerset, earl of Worcester, in about 1570

The Stuarts 1603 - 1714

Boy's armour belonging to Henry Prince of Wales in about 16071603: James VI of Scotland crowned King James I of England

1609: Boy’s armour presented to Henry, Prince of Wales 

1625: Charles I became King

Harquebusier armour for Charles Stuart, Prince of Wales1638: Harquebusier armour made for Prince Charles, later Charles II

1642: The start of the English Civil War

1649: Execution of Charles I. The monarchy was abolished and the royal armour workshop was closed

1660: Restoration of the monarchy and creation of the ‘Line of Kings’ at the Tower featuring a public display of historic royal armour

1660: Charles II became King

Harquebusier's armour belonging to King James II in about 16801685: James II became King

1687: Light cavalryman’s armour made for James II. This is the last surviving royal armour in the collection

Flintlock pistols possibly for King William III in about 1695
1689: William III and Mary II appointed joint rulers

A pair of flintlock pistols made by Pierre Monlong, possibly for King William III

Fit for a King

 Fit for a KingOpens 1 April 2010
See five hundred years of spectacular royal armour, offering a fascinating insight into the personalities, power and physical size of England’s kings. Entrance to this spectacular new exhibition is included in your standard admission ticket to the Tower. Click here to find out more >

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