Thursday, July 21, 2011

The weight of medieval armour could cause defeat in battle, new research finds

Suits of armour may have made medieval soldiers feel safe, but modern scientists have found that they were so heavy and constricting they were likely to have limited performance and even influenced the outcome of battles.

The research, by scientists at The University of Auckland, University of Leeds, and University of Milan, has been published in the Proceedings of the Royal Society of London, Biological Sciences.

“The steel plate armour worn by soldiers in medieval Europe weighed 30 to 50 kg, and there was a real trade-off between increased protection and reduced mobility,” says Dr Federico Formenti from the Department of Sport and Exercise Science at The University of Auckland.

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