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Chainmail Hauberks (Full Sleeve Shirts)

Hauberks are long sleeved chainmail shirts that often terminate at the knee, and have a split up the front and back to allow for riding horses. The name Hauberk comes from the Old Frankish word “halsberg” which originally described a small piece of mail that protected (“Bergen – to protect) the throat and neck (the “Hals”).  Hauberks were expensive to manufacture, both in materials and in the labour time and skill required to make them. As such they were usually only worn by nobles and professional soldiers. The Bayeux Tapestry features Norman Knights wearing knee-length hauberks with three quarter length sleeves. Their Saxon adversaries wore shirts of a similar design. Hauberks were in use in Europe until the 15th century when the advent of plate armour and better firearms led to its decline.

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