Art/ Collection/ Art Object


ca. 1560
probably Istanbul
Turkish, probably Istanbul
Steel, iron, gold, silver, copper alloy
H. 10 3/4 in. (27.8 cm); Wt. 5 lb. 11 oz. (2580 g)
Credit Line:
Rogers Fund, 1904
Accession Number:
On view at The Met Fifth Avenue in Gallery 380
This helmet was forged from watered steel and decorated in gold with arabesques and Koranic inscriptions. It is very similar to one now in the Kunsthistorisches Museum, Vienna, made about 1560 for a grand vizier of the Ottoman sultan Süleyman the Magnificent (reigned 1520–66). Both helmets presumably were made in one of the imperial workshops, possibly in Istanbul. Although this helmet is a practical military object, judging from its fine materials and ornamentation, it must have been created primarily as part of a parade armor and as a symbol of rank.
Inscription: Inscribed on top of the nasal: "There is no God but God", "Mohammad is the Messenger of God"; below the nasal: "Victory from God", "By order of Safi ad-Din Ahmad Ibn (al-Hasan?)"; at the base of the nasal: "and close (imminent) conquest"; on the band at the base of bowl: a Koranic inscription; on the peak or visor, pious inscriptions which includes the 99 names of Allah, among them: "the hearing, the wise"; on the right cheek piece, front plate: "God"; on the right cheek piece, bottom most plate: "Oh living", "Oh everlasting."
Ex. coll.: Maurice de Talleyrand-Périgord, Duc de Dino, Paris.
New York. The Metropolitan Museum of Art. "Arms and Armor from the Islamic World," February 10, 2016–January 2, 2017.

Cosson, Charles Alexander. Le Cabinet d'Armes De Maurice De Talleyrand-Périgord, Duc De Dino. Paris: E. Rouveyre, 1901. p. 111, no. N.1, pl. 8.

Grancsay, Stephen V. "The New Galleries of Oriental Arms and Armor." The Metropolitan Museum of Art Bulletin 16, no. 9 (May 1958). pp. 241–42, ill.

Nickel, Helmut. Warriors and Worthies: Arms and Armor Through the Ages. New York: Atheneum, 1969. p. 90, ill.

Nickel, Helmut. Arms and Armor Through the Ages. Revised ed. ed. London: Collins, 1971. p. 90, ill.

Nickel, Helmut. Ullstein-Waffenbuch: Eine Kulturhistorische Waffenkunde. Mit Markenverzeichnis. Berlin: Ullstein, 1974. p. 83, ill.

Grancsay, Stephen V., and Stuart W. Pyhrr. Arms & Armor: Essays by Stephen V. Grancsay from the Metropolitan Museum of Art Bulletin 1920–1964. New York: The Metropolitan Museum of Art, 1986. pp. 443–45, fig. 109.1.

Atil, Esin. The Age of Sultan Suleyman the Magnificent. New York: Harry N. Abrams, Inc., 1987. p. 67, no. 49.

Miller, Yuri. "Nogle Typer af Orientalske Hjelme fra det 16. og 17. Århundrede og Deres Europæske Efterligninger." Vaabenhistoriske Aarbøger (2006). pp. 30, 63–64.

Pyhrr, Stuart W. "Armor for America: The Duc de Dino Collection." Metropolitan Museum Journal, Metropolitan Museum Journal, 47 (2012). p. 195, fig. 25.

Alexander, David, Stuart W. Pyhrr, and Will Kwiatkowski. Islamic Arms and Armor in the Metropolitan Museum of Art. New York: The Metropolitan Museum of Art, 2015. pp. 95–98, no. 33, ill.

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