The Tiberius Psalter. England (Winchester), c.1050.
British Library Cotton Tiberius C VI

Folio 9, Goliath

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Goliath stands ready to fight David.


Back to the Tiberius Psalter, England, c.1050

p 319 Edward Lewes Cutts Scenes and Characters of the Middle Ages
From the embroidery of the tunic, and the ornamentation of the shield and helmet, we conclude that we have before us a person of consideration, and he is represented as in the act of combat; but we see his armour and arms are only those to which we have already affirmed that the usual equipment was limited. The helmet seems to be strengthened with an iron rim and converging ribs, and is furnished with a short nasal.

The figure is without the usual cloak, and therefore the better shows the fashion of the tunic. The banding of the legs was not for defence, it is common in civil costume. The quasi-banding of the forearm is also sometimes found in civil costume; it seems not to be an actual banding, still less a spiral armlet, but merely a fashion of wearing the tunic sleeve. We see how the sword is, rather inartificially, slung by a belt over the shoulder; how the shield is held by the iron handle across its hollow spiked umbo; and how the barbed javelin is cast.

Referenced on p55, Arms and Armour of the Crusading Era, 1050-1350, Western Europe and the Crusader States by David Nicolle
102 Psalter, Wessex, c.1050
(British Library, Ms. Cotton Tib. C. VI, London, England)

This illustration probably represents Goliath. He is unarmoured except for a pointed helmet that was presumably based on a conical original. It may be of two-piece construction with a rim or simply be a badly drawn spangenhelm. It has no nasal. His shield is round with a rather small boss; his spear has a barbed head which is almost certainly an artistic convention, and his more realistic sword hangs from a baldric. The sword itself has long curved quillons, a domed pommel, and altogether looks slightly later than the mid-11th century date normally given to this manuscript.

Referenced in WAR - 005 - M.Harrison, G.Embleton - Anglo-Saxon Thegn AD 449-1066
The Biblical 'Goliath' dressed in Anglo-Saxon fashion from a mid-11th century manuscript. His sword hangs through a loop in the narrow baldric which is thrown around the shoulder and not under the arm (an illustrator's error). The tunic is a typical Dark Age form, with rumpled sleeves and decorative inset material at the neck which is closed by a drawstring. The rim of the shield is unlikely to be of metal and more likely to be of hardened leather nailed and bound to the edge, and then painted decoratively. The figures on the right wear cloaks pinned on the right shoulder by circular brooches. (British Library, Ms. Cotton Tiberius C VI)