English-made Greenwich armour sabaton, 1587–89
Antique Japanese (samurai) sode (shoulder guards), showing the individual lames connected to each other by silk lacing (odoshi)

A lame is a solid piece of sheet metal used as a component of a larger section of plate armor used in Europe during the medieval period.[1] It is used in armors to provide articulations or the joining of the armor elements.[2][3] The size is usually small with a narrow and rectangular shape.[3] Multiple lames are riveted together or connected by leather straps or cloth lacing to form an articulated piece of armor that provides flexible protection. The armor worn by the samurai class of feudal Japan used lames in the construction of many of their individual armor parts.[4] The Japanese term is ita, which can both refer to the lame or its borderings.[5]


The Dos Aguas armor produced in Valencia, Spain, is an example of a plate armor made of lames. The tassets are composed of three lames, with the inner edge of each turned out at right angles.[6] The design provided the armor strength due to the continuous arch-shaped flange.[6] The Schott-Sonnenberg style produced in Nuremberg also featured a three-lame skirt. The tassets are also composed of lames riveted to the lower lame of the fauld.[7]

See also


  1. ^ Webster's II New College Dictionary (3rd ed.). Boston, Massachusetts: Houghton Mifflin Harcourt. 2005. p. 631. ISBN 978-0-618-39601-6.
  2. ^ Kirkland, J. Michael (2006). Stage Combat Resource Materials: A Selected and Annotated Bibliography. Greenwood Publishing Group. p. 273. ISBN 978-0-301-30710-7.
  3. ^ a b Pyhrr, Stuart W.; LaRocca, Donald J.; Breiding, Dirk H.; Metropolitan Museum of Art (2005). The Armored Horse in Europe, 1480-1620. New Haven, Connecticut: Yale University Press. p. 72. ISBN 1-58839-150-7.
  4. ^ Trevor Absolon, The Watanabe Art Museum Samurai Armour Collection Volume I ~ Kabuto & Mengu, p. 33
  5. ^ Stone, George Cameron (1999). A Glossary of the Construction, Decoration and Use of Arms and Armor: in All Countries and in All Times. Mineola, New York: Dover Publications. p. 309. ISBN 978-0-486-40726-5.
  6. ^ a b La Rocca, Donald J. (2017). How to Read European Armor. New Haven, Connecticut: Yale University Press. p. 53. ISBN 978-1-58839-629-7.
  7. ^ Oakeshott, Ewart (2000). European Weapons and Armour: From the Renaissance to the Industrial Revolution. Rochester, New York: Boydell Press. p. 89. ISBN 978-0-85115-789-4.