Visby #3 Gauntlet – Phillipus Taber

A few hundred meters from the southern gates of Visby on the Swedish isle of Gotland is a limestone cross with the inscription “Anno Domini MCCCLXI feria III post jacobi ante portas wisby in manibus danorium ceciderint Gutness hic sepulti. Orate pro eis.” Translated to english, it reads: “In the year of Our Lord 1361, on 27 July, fell Gotlanders into the hands of Danish in front of Visby gates. They are buried here. Pray for them.” 

The area is known as Cross meadow, and was the site of a bloody battle between the defending Gutnish peasants and the invading Danish army led by King Waldemar IV. Sources conflict on how many were killed, but the Swedish History Museum lists the number at 1800 or “approximately half of the Island’s men”. The dead were buried in a series of mass graves in the place known as Cross Meadow. Excavation of these graves led to a wealth of finds including at least 20 gauntlets or fragments of them. This is a reconstruction of gauntlet #3. The original intent was to use it for cut and thrust rapier, but I also selected gauntlet 3 because of the articulated thumb plates, as I had not successfully produced articulated fingers before.

Construction is stainless steel plates riveted to leather and then padded with wool and stitched to a leather glove. This design is used because of how easy it is to replace the glove when it wears out, just cut the stitches and sew in another glove.

11 thoughts on “Visby #3 Gauntlet – Phillipus Taber

  1. This looks just like what I would expect to see in a museum – beautiful work! Thank you so much for sharing!

  2. Oh, wow, I’ve seen a couple of specials about the archeaology at Visby, including one episode of “The Medieval Dead.” It’s fantastic to see such a well-done recreation of an artifact from that battle. Thank you for sharing!

  3. Wonderful work. Your entry was evocative as well as lovely. Thank you for sharing.

  4. This is so cool! I’ve definitely heard of Visby, but I’ve never seen a reconstruction of the gauntlets before. I’d be curious to know how it works for fencing — it looks like it would be effective and practical. Beautiful craftsmanship, and I enjoyed learning more about Visby’s history. Thank you for sharing it!

  5. The articulated thumb is brilliant!! And I love that you made them so that you can replace the lether glove as wear and tear from use, sets in.
    Thank you for sharing your work!

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