The Helmet of Alexander Nevsky
|This is from a 1854 Russian chromolithograph, done at the behest of Tsar Alexander II, of the side view of the helmet said to have been worn by Grand Duke (and later, Saint) Alexander Nevsky, now at the Kremlin Armory.
Editor's Note: See George's further thoughts on the attribution of this helmet below. Click on any picture for a larger view.
Contradictions and questions relating to the "Alexander Nevsky Helmet"
For some years, I have been giving some thought to the helmet which, in the 1854 chromolithographs, had been described as having been worn by Alexander Nevsky (mid 13th century), and which is thus labeled here. In a 1954 Russian book, which deals with items in the Kremlin Armory, the very same helmet is described as having been made in 1621 by the Russian armorer, Nikita Davidov, for the Tsar Mikhail Romanoff (1613-1645). It further states that this helmet had been described in ancient writings as "shapka erihonskaya", meaning "hat (helmet) of Iranian (Persian) style". There are problems with both of these attributions.
Conclusion: All things considered, there is a high probability that the helmet came into Russia from another land, most probably Iran. It came either as a gift to the Tsar or, more likely, as an item purchased for the Kremlin collection. If this is the case, it follows that both the 1854 and 1954 attributions are in error.
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